Speedy Sweet and Sour Chicken

by Divine Domesticity on February 28th, 2009

My recipe for Sweet and Sour Chicken is adapted from a very popular recipe making the rounds on cooking blogs. The original recipe does not cook the chicken through while frying, and instead has you bake it through in the oven for an hour. I did try this originally, but found that those small pieces of chicken were much too dry after all that cooking.

For my variation, I cook the chicken all the way through while frying. This saves you a whole butt load of time, and prevents the chicken from drying out.

Speedy Sweet and Sour Chicken
Makes 4 servings

3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper
1 cup cornstarch
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup canola oil

1. Cut boneless chicken breasts into 1" chunks. Season with salt and pepper. Dip chicken in cornstarch and then in egg. Fry in a little oil until brown and cooked through. Prepare sauce ingredients (below) together and pour over chicken.

¾ cup sugar
4 tablespoons ketchup
½ cup vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon garlic salt

1. If you like extra sauce, make double the amount above. To prepare: Bring all sauce ingredients to a boil on the stovetop. Stir constantly and let cook over medium heat until thickened and reduced - about 6-8 minutes. Pour over cooked chicken pieces.

Adapted from Cooking This and That

17 months old!

17 months old!

It has been MONTHS since I was able to take pictures of Miss V.

First, I lost the camera charger. Then, I lost the camera. We also moved twice, which means pretty much everything except the baby is lost somewhere in the house.

Here is my sweet baby girl, 17 months old. Her bangs aren't quite as crooked as they look here, but they still need a trim.

She is full of sassafrass, and a very sweet girl. I love her so much!

Limoncello Cheesecake Squares

by Divine Domesticity on February 26th, 2009

If you find yourself wanting to make a dessert for your family or a party and you want something a little different than the typical run of the mill party food, try out these delicious Limoncello Cheesecake Squares. Purchased biscotti is crumbled in a food processor to make a quick crust.

Limoncello liqueur is widely available for purchase these days, and a simple Google search will provide many homemade recipes if you are that daring. I, however, am not that daring.

Leftover Limoncello liqueur is so tasty when poured over ice, poured over vanilla ice cream, or blended in a milk shake.

Limoncello Cheesecake Squares
Makes 12-16 servings

Nonstick cooking spray
8 ounces purchased biscotti
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted
3 tablespoons grated lemon zest
1 (12-ounce) container fresh whole milk ricotta, drained, at room temperature
2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup limoncello liqueur
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 large eggs, at room temperature

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray the bottom of a 9 by 9 by 2-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Finely grind the biscotti in a food processor. Add the melted butter and 1 tablespoon of lemon zest, and process until the crumbs are moistened. Press the crumb mixture over the bottom (not the sides) of the prepared pan. Bake until the crust is golden, about 15 minutes. Cool the crust completely on a cooling rack.

2. Blend the ricotta in a clean food processor until smooth. Add the cream cheese and sugar and blend well, stopping the machine occasionally and scraping down the sides of the work bowl. Blend in the limoncello, vanilla, and remaining 2 tablespoons of lemon zest. Add the eggs one at a time, and pulse just until blended. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.

3. Pour the cheese mixture over the crust in the pan. Place the baking pan in a large roasting pan. Pour enough hot water into the roasting pan to come halfway up the sides of the baking pan. Bake until the cheesecake is golden and the center of the cake moves slightly when the pan is gently shaken, about 1 hour (the cake will become firm when it is cold).

4. Transfer the cake to a rack; cool 1 hour. Refrigerate until the cheesecake is cold, at least 8 hours and up to 2 days. Cut the cake into squares and serve.

Recipe from Giada De Laurentiis at the Food Network

Fruits and Greens Smoothies

by Divine Domesticity on February 24th, 2009

I don't know about you, but lately I've been feeling the urge to clean out, throw out, and start with a clean slate. My entire life seems out of whack lately, nutrition being part of that.

I am not a smoothie girl, but every once in a while I like to treat myself. This is a great smoothie that packs a lot of nutrition in. Sure, the color is a little scary, but I personally could not taste the spinach in this, which was great. Perhaps if you tell your kids it is monster goop they would try it? Heh.

Fruits and Greens Smoothies
Makes 2-3 Smoothies

1 banana, cut in chunks
1 cup cling peaches
1 (6 ounce) tub vanilla yogurt
1/2 granny smith apple, cored and chopped
1/2 cup juice of your choice
1 1/2 cups fresh spinach leaves

1. Place the banana, peaches, yogurt, apple, juice and spinach into a blender. Cover and blend until smooth, stopping frequently to push down anything stuck to the sides. Pour into glasses and serve.

Recipe source: Unknown

Chocolate Tapioca Pudding

by Divine Domesticity on February 6th, 2009

Tapioca pudding is one of my favorite comfort foods. My mom made it often while I was growing up, but in recent years she made a chocolate version. So delicious! Just be sure to add whipped cream on top and enjoy.

Chocolate Tapioca Pudding
Makes 6-8 Servings

1/2 cup tapioca pearls (I used the Reese brand)
2 1/2 cups milk
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs, separated
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

1.In a bowl, soak tapioca in 2 cups of room temp. water overnight. Drain water.

2.In a double boiler, heat milk just until no longer cold. Add salt and tapioca. Continue to heat until small bubbles appear at sides of pan. Cover, turn heat to very low and cook for one hour. Make sure the milk mixture does not simmer or boil.

3.Separate egg whites from yolks. Beat egg yolks and sugar together until light yellow in color. Add a little of the hot mixture to the egg yolks and blend thoroughly. Then add the egg yolk mixture to the hot milk mixture, stirring constantly. Place the double boiler over medium heat and cook until tapioca mixture is very thick, from 15 - 30 minutes.

4. Beat egg whites until stiff. Slowly fold the hot tapioca mixture into the egg whites. Stir in vanilla and chocolate chips. Serve warm or chilled with whipped cream.

Recipe from my mom

Featured Recipe From the Archives: Cheeseburger Ring

by Divine Domesticity on February 4th, 2008

This is so white trash. I just love it.

Tweak the ingredients to your liking. I omitted the mustard and didn't add the cheese to the ground beef mixture so it would melt and combine. Instead, I added partial slices of cheese on top of the puff pastry, then the ground beef and pickles, then another slices of cheese to top it off. It doesn't really matter how you do it. It is completely trashy and good eats.

Cheeseburger Ring

Makes 1 ring, serves 3-4 people
View printer friendly recipe


1/4 cup onions, diced
3/4 lb lean ground beef
1/4 cup ketchup
2 teaspoons yellow mustard
8-10 slices cheddar cheese
2 (8 ounce) packages refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
16 slices dill pickles
3 large plum tomatoes
2 cups lettuce

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. In frying pan, cook ground beef with onions over medium heat 8-10 minutes or until beef is no longer pink; drain.

2. Add ketchup, mustard and 5 of the cheese slices, cut up; stir until cheese is melted. Remove pan from heat.

3. Unroll crescent dough; separate into 16 triangles. Arrange triangles in a circle on a 13-inch round pan or baking stone with points towards the outside. (There should be a 5-inch diameter opening in the center.) Scoop meat mixture evenly onto widest end of each triangle.
Top each scoop with 2 pickle slices.

4. Bring points of triangles up over filling and tuck under wide ends of dough at center of ring. (Filling will not be completely covered.) Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven.

5. Cut each of the remaining 4 cheese slices into 4 triangles. Arrange cheese triangles over top of ring.

6. Slice tomatoes. Arrange tomato slices around inside center of ring.

7. Slice lettuce into thin strands. Place in center of ring.

8. Serve with additional ketchup and mustard, if desired.

Recipe from Recipezaar.com

The Ultimate Creamy White Chili

by Divine Domesticity on February  3rd, 2009

This delicious recipe for Creamy White Chili comes from My Kitchen Cafe. It is a delicious mix of chicken, chilies, beans and yummy toppings makes this my ultimate white chili recipe. I was eating leftover for days and never got sick of it.

The Ultimate Creamy White Chili
Makes 6 servings

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 medium onion, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon oil
2 cans (15 1/2 ounces each) Great Northern Beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) chicken broth
2 cans (4 ounces each) chopped green chilies (if you like less kick, add just one can)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup whipping cream

Optional toppings:
Fresh cilantro, chopped
Frito's or tortilla chips
shredded Monterey Jack cheese
sour cream

1. In a large saucepan, saute chicken, onion and garlic powder in oil until chicken is no longer pink. Add beans, broth, chilies and seasonings. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat; stir in sour cream and cream. Garnish with desired toppings. Serve immediately.

Recipe from My Kitchen Cafe

Featured Recipe From the Archives: Simple Rhubarb Pie

by Divine Domesticity on February 2nd, 2009

Super Easy Rhubarb Pie
Makes several servings

4 cups chopped rhubarb
1 1/3 cups white sugar
6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon butter
Ready made pie dough

1. Preheat oven to 450f. Place first dough in baking dish and form to your liking. Combine flour and sugar in a separate bowl. Add 1/4 of mix to the bottom of your pie crust. Add chopped rhubarb then add the rest of your flour/sugar mixture. Break up butter into small pieces and dot on top of rhubarb. Bake for 15 minutes on lowest rack. Reduce temperature to 350f and bake for 40-45 minutes. Drape pie loosely with tin foil once crust has browned to your liking to avoid burning. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or at room temperature. Now go eat!

Recipe from my mom.