Category Archives: Recipes

The Winners for Pancake of the Day……

!st Place Winner is 2nd Block Kitchen 1

Lab days are exciting for the students.  Who wouldn’t be excited?  They are cooking breakfast for themselves and their friends.  They serve it, sit down and enjoy it.  Words cannot describe how proud they are to accomplish this task.  Just setting the table is a work of art for some.  Most of them eat in front of the TV or to my horror in their bedroom alone.  So this is a great thing for them sitting down at a table with what I call a family.  Ninety percent of them want to ask a teacher to eat with them and it is not just for the extra credit.  It is to show the teacher what they can do.  It is not just any teacher they invite.  I have found that it is the caring teachers that really go out of their way to show how much they love their job of teaching  high school students.

Preparing food — It does so much more than fuel our body.  It fuels our soul!  

With that said let’s get to the important stuff.  Cast your vote this weekend for the best pancakes of the day.   I know it is a hard choice this time.  Good luck to all.

Happy Cooking, 

The Teacher Cooks 

2nd Place Winner !st Block Kitchen 4

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Filed under Blueberry Pancakes, easy, quick, Recipes

Chocolate Magic Bars

It is way beyond me that something this easy is so good!  And for the life of me I should not keep any of these ingredients on hand.  I honestly could eat the entire pan by myself and almost did last night but GI Joe saved the day and he ate the other half!

Yesterday was one of those days that you just want to stay curled up in a blanket by the fire.  It was quite cold and rainy. I just wanted to stay home, but I had shopping to do.   My niece, that is in pharmacy school, is getting married in June and next Saturday she is having her first wedding shower in Savannah.  We picked up her gift and wouldn’t you know it they had Lenox Butler’s Pantry on sale.  I have wanted it since the first day I set my eyes on it.  Yes, I bought  eight place settings and three serving pieces.  Now if you know someone who wants Vintage Vine in beige, please let me know.  I really need to unload it!  GI Joe said,”Well, Happy Anniversary, Valentine’s Day and Birthday!”  It is so worth it though.

Since having a light dinner last night, I really wanted to go to downtown Villa Rica to Gabe’s.  Their Bread Pudding is the best.  Not wanting to venture out in the rain and cold,  I stood in front of the pantry with the  door open and all I saw was  sweetened condensed milk and semisweet chocolate pieces.  I told myself not to make those bad Chocolate Magic Bars, but myself did not listen. 

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Filed under Chocolate, Cookies, Dessert, Desserts, Eagle Brand Milk, easy, quick, Recipes

And The Winner Is……..

Our 1st Place Winner!

The recipe and all the interesting things that happened in our first lab of the semester is located on the previous post.

Here are the results of today’s bake-off.  Everyone did just great.  Vote for the one that you think deserves the top of this post.  Voting ends Sunday!  Good luck!

To vote go to the comments.  Remember that your e-mail address will not be shared.  It is just for my use to answer questions that you might have.  So here you go with today’s reults:

And a very close 2nd place winner!

 

24 Comments

Filed under Biscuits, Cheese, Cooking, easy, quick, Recipes

Cheese Drop Biscuits with Garlic Butter

If you are in a hurry and are craving homemade bread this recipe is for you!  The Athlete loves these drop biscuits and and I have been known to put them together at the last minute because I saw a look of disappointment on his face.  They only take about 10 minutes to put together so it is hard to say no.  So just get in the kitchen and whip these little drops of cheesey goodness into shape and wait for the compliments to come your way!  Recipe and how to photographs can be found at the end of the post.

Deviating from the usual muffin lab that I do for the  first lab of the semester was quite interesting.  Why change something that works you might ask? Well, having all of the ingredients for a recipe helps.  My pantry had several boxes of Bisquick and the drop biscuits put it to good use.

I gave the demonstration yesterday.  With new cooks their knowledge is very limited so they ask me lots of questions or they just watch and try to soak it all in.  It is as if they are learning a new language. For some of them it is very difficult and for others it comes very easy.I’ve never done these drop biscuits as a lab before, therefore have nothing to compare it to.  All the biscuits were edible!  That is always good.  Everyone enjoyed themselves.

I have to say this about tasting what each group prepared.  Some groups will not start eating until I come to their table and taste their food.  They all sit there speechless waiting for me to let them know how it taste.  Even the slight hesitation as I am talking will scare them.  My approval is a very powerful tool.  Sometimes it is a little scary.  I don’t want to say the wrong thing and discourage a student.    I know you are all are wondering what I might say if the food is bad.  And yes, I have had the pleasure of tasting bad food !!  I always try to remember what a good friend of mine told me. She saw a friend’s new baby for the first time and it was NOT a pretty baby. She said, ” Oh my goodness, what a pretty blanket.”   Focus on the positive!

As a sideline here,  one of the department heads observed me yesterday and  an administrator today.   It is the first time anyone has ever observed the first lab of the semester. All kinds of things can go wrong during the first lab.  You can have students that hate each other working together.  Then you might have a group that every member is scared to do anything so nothing gets done. This list goes on, but all went well!  Thank goodness.

Cheesy Drop Biscuits with Garlic Butter

From Betty Crocker

  • 2 cups of original Bisquick
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 cup of shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons margarine or butter melted
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  In a medium bowl mix Biquick and shredded cheese together.  Add milk.  Stir with fork until soft dough forms.  On a cookie sheet, drop dough by 10 to 12 spoonfuls about 2 inches apart.  I like to used parchment paper to line the baking sheet .  If you do not use the paper I would lightly grease the baking sheet because the cheese will cause the biscuits to stick.

Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown.  In small bowl, stir butter and garlic powder until well mixed: brush on warm biscuits before removing from cookie sheet.  Serve warm.

Here are photos to show the steps:

2 cups of Bisquick and 1 cup of shredded Cheddar cheese

Mix Bisquick and cheese . Then add milk and stir until a soft dough forms

Place on baking pan and bake at 450 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes.

Mix 2 Tablespoons of melted butter with 1/4 teaspoon of garlic powder

Brush butter and garlic powder on warm biscuits

Enjoy!

Happy cooking,

The Teacher Cooks

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Filed under Biscuits, Cheese, Cooking, easy, Recipes

San Francisco Salad

For about six years GI Joe traveled to Savannah once a month for National Guard duty for the Air Force.  Many of those weekends I traveled with him and spent the time on Tybee Island.  One of our favorite restaurants to visit was the Sundae Cafe.  It is a little funny how we found out about this restaurant.  I was buying gas at the local BP station and when I paid I asked the clerk if she knew of some good places to eat.  She said, ” Well the place next door must be good because there is always a crowd there.”  I would never chosen the restaurant unless someone had recommended it.  It is located within a  a strip of four stores.  The local liquor store is on one side and the BP on the other. We became frequent customers because the food is excellent and it is very nice and elegant on the inside.  So you can’t judge a restaurant by the cover!   One of my favorite dishes to order is the spring salad.  I have tried many times to duplicate it, but failed.  Thanks to Anna,  I have found the recipe !!  

Last weekend we had dinner with our long time friends.  It was a fantastic meal!   Anna served this San Francisco Salad that was  extraordinary!  I love the flavors of the feta and the tart cranraisins with the texture of the toasted walnuts.  Together with the  salad dressing adding  the  right amount of sweet and tangy and red onion gives it the little kick.    So thanks to Anna we can all enjoy this scrumptious salad!    

San Franciso Salad

  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1/cup sugar
  • 1  tablespoon black pepper
  • 3/4 cup cranraisins
  • 8 ounces crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 bag of mixed greens (or enough for 8 servings)

Melt butter.  Saute walnuts 5 minutes or until golden.  Drain.  Mix sugar and pepper together and roll walnuts in the mixture.  Cool.

Place cheese and nuts over mixed greens and pour dressing over salad.

Dressing

  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup red onion chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 cup fresh parsley chopped
  • 1/2 cup oil

Place all the ingredients for the dressing in a jar and shake until mixed well.  If preferred, dressing  can be  served separately and spooned over each salad.

Recipe can easily be halved for four servings.

 

Enjoy!

The Teacher Cooks

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Filed under easy, healthy, quick, Recipes, Salad, salad dressing

Tuna Salad with Pasta

On any given day you’re in a rush, right?  Need a very easy and quick meal that you can make from staples found in your pantry?  There is no excuse to order pizza out.  It is expensive and calorie laden.   Here is the answer – pasta salad.   Most anything added to pasta will make a  good meal.  Another good point about pasta is that most people who can boil water can do pasta.  So in the time that it will take you to boil water plus another 10 minutes dinner can then be served.    

Pasta does not always have to  come with a sauce that takes time to make.     Just a little oil, seasonings, vegetables, meat, fish, poultry,or beans in any combination will work.  You can’t get any easier than that!  Be creative!  If you don’t trust your creativity check out the recipes on the pasta boxes.  I have found most of them  very good.    

Tuna salad with pasta  is a standby in my house. Start with just a tuna salad.  I love this and often have it along side a tossed salad and Italian dressing.  The Athlete prefers a Panini which is very good with Havarti cheese with dill.  Yummy!       

Bring the water to boil and then put in pasta.  Cook according to directions on the box.  Now assemble the tuna.   This is what I use:   

Mayonnaise, Sliced green olives, Pasta shells, dill relish, Tuna, mustard

Tuna Salad with Pasta   

  • 2 cups of uncooked pasta shells ( or pasta of choice)
  • 12 oz. can of Solid White Albacore Tuna- drained
  • 1 teaspoon of mustard
  • 2 teaspoons of dill relish
  • 1/4 cup sliced green olives
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoon of mayonnaise ( you could need a little more depending on amount of liquid added with pickles and olives) 
  •  2 cups of pasta shells according to directions.  Drain.

   

Mix drained tuna with the remaining ingredients and stir in the  hot pasta.  Enjoy right out of the bowl or wait and serve with crisp greens or a side salad. Serves 4   

Enjoy Cooking,   

The Teacher Cooks

20 Comments

Filed under Cooking, easy, healthy, pasta, quick, Recipes, Salad, Tuna

Cornbread Muffins with Cheese and Chilies- another Paula Deen recipe

Today was a great day at school!  Especially after yesterday.  I was not sure I wanted to return.  But, alas I did and have to say it was a fulfilling day at that.  There are a few little projects  needing  some work, if you know what I mean.   What would teachers do if every student was perfect?  Some of my fellow teachers might say , “A lot!”   But in the end it might be quite boring.

We visited the media center today to explore the world of blogging and how it related to Nutrition and Wellness class.   As I monitored the class work,  I glanced at the computer screen next to me and asked,  ” How did you do that?”   It really amazes me the computer skills that my students  have.  Now I am in the other seat.  The slow learner!!!  The student is so encouraging, ” Oh, Mrs. L  let me show you how to do it.  It is just a click here and that is it.”   Now I am the student and he is the teacher.   I feel excited about learning something new and it gave this kid a big smile.

Throughout the semester my class will be commenting on many of the  posts.  The instructions are different each time but always they are to use good writing skills.  If you read the comments you will see that some are very good.  Some on the other hand could use improvement.

Let’s get to the baby corn muffins.  This is Paula Dean’s recipe.  I just kicked it up a bit with some jalepeno peppers.  They are quite easy to put together.  I can’t lie and tell you that they are healthy, but it is all about the size of the portion.  These are extremely small,  just don’t eat twelve!

Depending what size pans you use you could possibly make 48.  Don’t worry they freeze really well.  To reheat just wrap in foil  and place in the oven for about 10 minutes.  They can be reheated in the microwave wrapped in paper towel.

Here’s how you make them.  Enjoy!

Gather all the ingredients

1 1/4 cups of cornmeal and 2 teaspoons baking powder

Add 1/2 teaspoon salt

Then add 1 cup of sharp grated cheese, 1 8 oz. can of creamed corn, 1 cup sour cream, 1 4 oz. can chopped green chilies and I added 1 chopped jalapeno to add some heat.

Chilies, sour cream, corn and cheddar cheese are added then mix lightly.

Beat slightly 2 eggs and 1/2 canola oil and stir until combined. Do not overmix.

Put in greased mini muffin pan

Bake for 18 to 20 minutes.   Just a note here about filling the pans.  The ones above are filled just a little too much.  It makes it very hard to get out of the pan.  At first I thought that I should put oil around the tops of the pan.  No!!  This did not help.  I did find that filling the pans 1/2 instead of 2/3 was the answer.  It just did not look as if it would be enough batter, but it will work  making them much easier to remove.

Enjoy!

Green Chili Corn Muffins

  • 1 1/4 cups  cornmeal
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 8 oz. can cream-style corn
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 4 oz. chopped green chilies
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 2 eggs slightly beaten

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Grease miniature muffin tins wih vegetable oil or cooking spray.

In a small bowl combine the cornmeal, salt, and baking powder.  Add the cheese, corn, sour cream, and chilies.  ( I stirred in minced jalapeno).  Stir until lightly combined.  Add the oil and eggs and stir until eveything is just combined.  Do not overmix.  The batter will be very stiff.  Place about 1/2 tablespoon of batter into each muffin cup.  Bake for 18 to 20 minutes.

Make 48 miniature muffins

Happy Cooking,

The Teacher Cooks

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Filed under Bread, Cheese, Cooking, corn muffins, easy, Muffins, quick, Recipes

Chicken Salad

Here is what I cooked up for lunch today!  Very quick and very good!

Yesterday when preparing another chicken dish I had an extra boneless chicken breast.   Being extremely busy with  two  recipes going at once I put the chicken breast in a small saucepan and cooked in water for about 10 minutes.  Cooked, cooled and put in the refrigerator.  Job done!  I  did not want to waste the chicken.  Really I had no plans for it until I was on my way home from work starving!!

I do love chicken salad.  One of my favorites is on the menu at the  Swan House in Buckhead along with their frozen fruit salad.   Anyway cooked chicken is so versatile it can put together in many combinations.  So go for it! It  is a perfect dish for the novice cook.  All cooking required is the chicken.  And really you don’t even have to do that.  Use a rotisserie chicken!  In some stores you can buy them for a cheaper price than you can cook at home.  So don’t be afraid go make an original chicken salad that you and your family can enjoy.

Here is how I put this together:

  • 1 large cooked chicken breast ( Use leftover chicken or turkey) cut into chunks
  • 1/2 celery stalk thinly sliced
  • 1/2 green onion top thinly sliced
  • 10 red grapes halved
  • 8 pecan halves broken into pieces
  • Hellman’s mayonnaise enough to make slightly creamy
  • Paula Deen’s seasoned salt to taste

Mix all ingredients together and serve over salad greens and enjoy every bite!  Serves 1 hungry person.

Happy Cooking,

The Teacher Cooks

8 Comments

Filed under Chicken, chicken salad, Cooking, easy, fruits, grapes, healthy, quick, Recipes

Chili in 30 minutes served with Macaroni

With all of this cold weather we have been having  it calls for a big bowl of hot chili.  I have chosen a quick and easy recipe that you can put together in about 30 minutes especially if you have some browned ground meat in the freezer.  If not it is still quick.  The recipe came from the AJC.   So if you are in a big hurry for chili and don’t want to wait around for 2 or 3 hours for the usual chili then this is for you. 

Rinse with cold water a 15 1/2 oz. can of red kidney beans

You need 3/4 cup of chopped onion

Saute onion in tablespoon of butter

Since I am using browned ground beef that I had in the freezer I am sauteing onion in a little butter.  When browning the ground meat you can cook the onion at the same time and drain on paper towel.

1 lb of browned ground beef

Add 10 oz. can of rotel tomatoes and small can of tomato sauce

Add 1 teaspoon of cumin

 Sorry blurry picture.  

Add 2 teaspoons of chili powder

Add 1 can of drained and rinsed red kidney beans

Let this simmer for about 30 minutes.  You may have to adjust the liquid by adding 1/4 to 1/2 cup of water.  While the chili is simmering then cook macaroni according to directions on the package.    Serve chili on top of the macaroni and top with cheddar cheese. 

Dig in!!!

Here is the recipe for you to enjoy!

Macaroni Chili

  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 3/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 15 1/2 oz. red kidney beans drained and rinsed
  • 1 8 oz. tomato sauce
  • 1 10 oz. can stewed tomatoes or Rotel tomatoes
  • 3/4 c. of macaroni (cook according to directions)
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheese

Brown ground meat and onion.  Stir in all ingredients except macaroni and cheese.  Simmer for 30 minutes.  Serve over cooked macaroni and top with cheese.

Serves 4

Happy cooking,

The Teacher Cooks

7 Comments

Filed under Chili, Cooking, quick, Recipes

Pull-Apart Parmesan Dill Bread or Cinnamon Bread

 

This was the second day of the new semester and I decided to mix it up a little bit.  Why not have a demo right off the bat?  Make it more interesting .  We don’t have to do the same old stuff.   Show the students what the class is really about.  Have some fun.  Eat some food.  And that is what we did! 

It was a great day in the classroom.  I felt like a move star.  All  eyes were on me.  You could hear a pin drop.  I am serious!!!  You could tell that they were soaking in every word that I was saying.  That is what I live for as a teacher.  You just know at that moment that you are doing the right thing.  Now mind you it may not happen this way for a long time, but today it did.    I could feel the excitement.  The comments that the students made about the class– it was music to my ears.  

I did not make anything spectacular.  I just used a can of refrigerated biscuits and made something a little different.  The recipe came out of a textbook we used a few years ago.  It is not that healthy, but it is quick and good.   I made two variations.  One savory Pull-apart Parmesan Dill Bread and the other sweet Pull-apart cinnamon and sugar bread.  They both are very good.  

So here is what we cooked up today in my class.  I hope that you will try these and enjoy! 

12 oz. can of refrigerated biscuits cut into quarters

 Using a pair of kitchen shears cut 12 oz. of refrigerated biscuits into quarters. 

Mix 2 Tablespoons of Parmesan Cheese and 1/2 teaspoon of dill

2 Tablespoons of sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

 Or if you are making the sweet side of the bread mix together 2 Tablespoons of sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. 

Melt 1 1/2 Tablespoons of butter and coat the biscuits

 Melt about 1 1/2 Tablespoons of butter or margarine in a small bowl.  Coat the quartered biscuits in the butter.  I found that you can only put a few in at the time. The butter will help the cheese or sugar to stick to the biscuits. 

Put seasonings in a bag and coat the biscuits

This is another thing that I love about teaching.  Students see things that teachers don’t see at the time.  When I am giving a demo I am really concentrating on following the recipe, cleaning up and being ready for the next class.   In other words my thinking is really one tracked.  Thank goodness for students that think outside of all of that. 

That is what happened this morning.  The recipe did not call for you to put the seasonings in a bag and shake to cover, but to put them in a small bowl .  WRONG!  Putting them in a bag was much more efficient.  So thanks to a young gentleman in my first block we changed the recipe to be much more efficient. 

Grease an 8 inch cake pan

Parmesan and dill bread ready to cook

Cinnamon and sugar bread ready to cook

Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until golden brown.  Turn upside down on a serving plate.  Pull apart to serve, or cook for 5 minutes before cutting into 8 wedges. 

Bake for 12- 14 minutes at 400 degrees

This is the  Parmesan Dill  pull apart bread! 

Here is the Cinnamon sugar Pull apart Bread

 I feel good about today.  Here’s hoping that you had a great day,too!  Here you go with the recipe.  Enjoy! 

Pull-Apart Parmesan Dill Bread 

  • 2 Tablespoons Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried dill
  • 1 package (12oz) refrigerated biscuits
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons Margarine or butter, melted

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Lightly grease 8-in round cake pan.  In a small bowl, stir cheese and dill until combined.  Cut biscuits in quarters.  Add a few biscuits at a time to margarine, separating pieces with fingers.  Add cheese mixture and toss with fingers untill all pieces ar coated.  (  I put everything in a bag and shook until all the biscuits were coated.)  Arrange in one layer in prepared pan.  Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until golden brown.  

Bad News:  70 calories per serving, 2 g. protein, 9 g carbohydrate, 3 g fat, 215 mg sodium, 0 g fiber 

Happy Cooking, 

The Teacher Cooks

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Filed under Biscuits, Bread, Cinnamon Rolls, Cooking, Recipes, using refrigerated biscuits