Pizza Dough {From Scratch}!

We had a sleepover last month with the youth girls from church and we made homemade pizzas.  This is the dough we used and it's amazing!  Enjoy!

1 cup water
1 tbls olive oil
2-1/2 bread flour
1 tbls sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp yeast

Put all above ingredients in breadmaker (IN THE EXACT ORDER LISTED) and turn on dough cycle. Once dough has finished, some at this point would say punch down and let rise again, but I'm not so patient for that. Just saying!

Betty Crocker's Easy Red Velvet Cake

1 box Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® German chocolate cake mix
1 1/4 cups water
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 bottle (1 oz) red food color
1 tablespoon unsweetened baking cocoa
2 oz cream cheese, softened
2 teaspoons milk
1 1/2 cups whipping cream
1/2 cup powdered sugar

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  1. Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pans). Grease bottom and sides of 13x9-inch pan or two 9-inch round cake pans and lightly flour, or spray with baking spray with flour.
  2. In large bowl, beat all cake ingredients with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds, scraping bowl occasionally. Beat on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour into pan(s).
  3. Bake as directed on box for 13x9-inch pan or 9-inch rounds. Cool completely.
  4. In chilled large bowl, mix cream cheese and milk until smooth. Beat in whipping cream and powered sugar with electric mixer on high speed, scraping bowl occasionally, until soft peaks form. Frost top of 13x9-inch cake or fill and frost cake layers. Store in refrigerator.
SuperMoist® butter recipe chocolate cake mix can also be used for this recipe. Use 1/2 cup butter in place of oil. 
You will need the whole 1-ounce bottle of red food color to achieve the intense red color that is characteristic of this special cake.
For a classic red velvet cake, add 3/4 cup buttermilk, reduce water to 1/4 cup and reduce oil to 1/4 cup. All other ingredients remain the same. (Do not use dark or nonstick 13x9-inch pan.) 
Let me just say that this frosting is pure heaven.  I think it's my new favorite from scratch frosting.  Oh and I used more cream cheese for a more intense flavor and it was soooo... worth it.  

Potatoes Au Gratin

I made these for a friend we had over for dinner and they were awesome!  He didn't like the way they looked, but loved the way they tasted. 
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • Salt and white pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds new red potatoes cooked and sliced 1/2-inch thick
  • 3 ounces grated Cheddar cheese
  • 3 ounces grated Monterey cheese
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Grease an 8 cup rectangular baking dish with 1 tablespoon butter. In a nonreactive saucepan, over medium heat, melt the remaining butter. Stir in the flour and cook for 2 minutes. Whisk in the milk and cook until the liquid is slightly thick and coats the back of a spoon, about 4 to 6 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat. In a mixing bowl, toss the sliced new potatoes with salt and pepper. Fold in the cream sauce and pour into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the top of the potatoes with the grated cheese. Place the pan in the oven and bake until golden brown and bubbly, about 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool for a couple of minutes before serving.
from Emeril Lagasse

Hurry Up Chicken Pot Pie!

I was craving some chicken pot pie (gotta love pregnancy hormones).  But I didn't have a lot of time to whip something up to satisfy the craving.  Well this is pretty close the "real" thing.  And best part, you don't have to babysit it either!  I do think that it was better the 2nd day (aka leftovers).
  • 2 cups chopped cooked chicken breast
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, sliced (I would say optional for me)
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced carrots
  • 1/2 cup frozen green peas
  • 1 (10 3/4-ounce) can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • Salt and pepper, optional
  • 1 1/2 cups instant biscuit mix
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 stick melted butter
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a greased 2-quart casserole, layer the chicken, eggs, carrots, and peas. Mix the soup, chicken broth, and season with salt and pepper, if desired. Pour over the layers. Stir together the biscuit mix and milk, and pour this over the casserole. Drizzle butter over the topping. Bake until the topping is golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes.
from Paula Deen

**When I made this it was kinda runny so I would suggest throwing some flour into the liquid just to thicken it up a bit.  I don't like runny though, so it depends on your preference.
**I also used LOW SODIUM chicken broth cause me and salt don't like ea. other.  I flavored mine with Paul Prudhomme's Salt free seasoning which is absolutely essential! 

Southwestern Chicken and Black Bean Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette

I saw this recipe and thought, hmph this out to be a fun one to try.  And it was!!!  Hubby even liked it to so it is a keeper.

This creative combination of seasoned chicken, fresh oranges, and black beans tossed with a refreshing citrus vinaigrette makes an irresistible salad.  
6 servings/serving size: 1 cup chicken mixture, 3 1/3 tablespoons dressing
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into ½-inch strips
2 cups fresh orange sections (about 2 oranges)
1/2 cup shredded reduced-fat Monterey Jack cheese
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro, optional
1/3 cup lime juice
1/4 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon canola oil
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
Salt and pepper to taste (optional)
6 cups mixed greens
1. Combine cumin and chili powder in large zippered plastic bag.  Add chicken, seal bag, shake to coat.
2. In large nonstick skillet coated with nonstick cooking spray, cook chicken over medium heat until done, 10 minutes; let cool.
3. Transfer chicken into large bowl, add orange sections, cheese, onions, black beans, and cilantro, mixing gently but thoroughly.
4. In small bowl, whisk together lime juice, orange juice, oil, garlic, salt and pepper.  Pour over chicken mixture, tossing gently to coat.  Serve over mixed greens.
Note:  Cilantro has a distinct flavor and may be omitted if desired.
 from Holly Clegg Trim &TERRIFIC Diabetic Cookbook


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