Thursday, January 24, 2013

Avocado Quesadillas

I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with avocados.  I think they're interesting, and I know they're very good for you.  But I have a hard time just eating avocado.  They really don't have a particularly strong flavor, at least not the ones I've encountered.  Some people profess to just sprinkling a bit of salt and/or lemon juice over half an avocado and eating straight from the skin with a spoon.

I need to doctor up my avocados.

These avocado quesadillas are easy and quick, and you can adjust the heat level to make it as mild or as spicy as you like.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Tex-Mex Venison Chili

Winter has returned to the Northeast, and it's great weather for hot and spicy foods like chili.

Our neighbor across the street was kind enough to give us some venison (neatly sealed in airtight packages), but having had no experience up to this point with cooking this particular meat, I was at a bit of a loss for what to do with it.  I figured my best bet would be to start with something simple using the ground venison.

I decided on chili.  And since I had a package of McCormick's Tex-Mex chili seasoning (which appears to be a relatively new product), I thought I'd give it a go.

Unfortunately, I have no in-process pictures, because I'd been home sick from work for a day and a half and really didn't feel like doing much fussing with the camera.  My only goal was to feed my husband.

I made this batch the "old fashioned" way on the stove, but it would easily translate to a slow cooker.  It's also really low in calories - a 1 cup serving has about 140 calories.  Plus, venison is a really lean meat.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

TurboFire Chicken Cacciatore

People seem to love slow cooker meals.  I do too.  Relatively little prep work, easy clean up - especially if your slow cooker has a removable insert that you can put in the dishwasher - and your house smells great all day.

Here's a great, healthy chicken cacciatore recipe from the TurboFire cookbook that went over well with my family.  I did some adjustments to meet my taste preferences from the original recipe. Here's what I did.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Gilded Irish Coffee Cupcakes with Brown Sugar Meringue Buttercream (Cupcake of the Month #12)

So I got a bit behind with non-Christmas baking over the last couple weeks, but I finally found time this evening to make the final 2012 Cupcake of the Month.

Ain't it pretty?  Plus, it marks

Teacher, Baker, Gourmet Meal Maker's 100th Post!

It's an Irish coffee mini cupcake, topped with brown sugar meringue buttercream and "gilded" with festive gold sugar sprinkles (because I could find neither gold luster dust or sanding sugar).

It's quite a finish for the 2012 Cupcake of the Month series - but never fear, cupcake fans!  My mom got me the 2013 Martha Stewart Cupcake calendar, so there are more cupcakes on the way. Perhaps not one every month, but they'll make an appearance every so often. Promise.