Thursday, January 15, 2009

Tortilla Soup

This is a good soup for a cold day. It is a cold day on Beaty's Creek, so I made this soup. It is not hard at all.

2 chicken leg quarters
1 large can Rotel
1 can corn
2 cans black beans-rinsed
salt and pepper to taste
1 T cumin
2 T chili powder
2 garlic cloves-minced
1 carton chicken broth

Boil chicken quarters in 2 quarts of water with garlic, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper. Once chicken is done remove from broth and add Rotel, corn with liquid, rinsed black beans and additional chicken broth. Bring to a low simmer and add boned chicken back to soup. Simmer for 30 minutes and serve. We like to add cheese, avocado, sour cream, the juice from a line wedge and chips but it is up to you what you add.

Coconut Cake

Coconut cake, what could be any better on a cold winter’s day? Coconut cake makes me think of spring. I had a friend in school whose mother made a coconut cake every spring in the shape of a bunny rabbit. I thought this girl had the best mom in the world just because she made this cake and had fried French fries from a bag. Okay I was easily impressed. My mom did not fry french fries from a bag she made homemade steak fries and she NEVER made a cake in the shape of a bunny rabbit. Although she did buy some fabulous cakes when I was growing up. This recipe is a little complicated but so worth the effort. I hope you will give it a try very soon!

Needed for the cake:
3 cups all purpose flour (I use unbleached)
1 t salt
1 t baking soda
1 T baking powder
1 cup of sweetened shredded coconut
2 sticks of unsalted butter at room temperature
3 eggs (I use free range)
2 t vanilla
2 cups of sugar
1 can coconut milk-not sweetened coconut milk

Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together. Mix in a stand up mixer eggs and sugar until creamy at this time add butter, vanilla, and coconut milk. Now is the time to gently mix in the flour mixture a cup at a time. When all is mixed in fold in the coconut. Bake in 2 –8 inch round cake pans. Cook for 20-25 minutes at 350’. Be careful not to over cook cakes. When they turn golden remove from oven and place on a cooling rack. Cook completely. Remove from pans and slice in half so you will have 4 layers of cake. I was going to do this but Raven took the cakes out of the pans a little to early and one cracked. Could not get upset with her she was helping me out. Raven likes to cook and how sad would it be to discourage her by getting upset. So I have a 2-layer cake. Eats the same.


Needed for icing:

Whipping Cream
2 bricks of cream cheese at room temperature
2 sticks of salted butter at room temperature
4 pounds of powder sugar (You may not need this much but I like to be prepared)
2 t vanilla
2 cups of sweetened shredded coconut

Place cream cheese, butter and vanilla in a stand mixer and mix until completely mixed. Meaning they are smooth. Now is the time to add powder sugar a cup at a time until very thick. Add cream ¼ cup at a time. Mix well. You will most likely need to add more powder sugar at this time. You will have a total of ½ cups of cream in the icing total. I do it ¼ cup intervals because I think it mixes better with the powder sugar. Make sense?? I use almost all of the powder sugar give or take a cup. You know how icing should feel. Thick but not too thick. If it is too thick it will tear your cake and if it is too thin it will run off of your cake. Both not good. When your icing feels like it will spread well fold in the coconut. Ice each layer of your cake whether it is a four or two layer. We like a lot of icing so we go heavier on the top of the cake.

Company Casserole

This is one of our favorite casseroles to eat. The word "casserole" brings to mind different things to different people. Some good and some not so good. Casseroles to me mean comfort and warmness. Company Casserole is so good on its own you don't have to have anything else with it but I either make a really great salad or sour cream and chive mashed potatoes with homemade hot rolls. Yummy! This is "what's cookin" tonight on Beaty's Creek.

2 pounds of ground turkey-browned
1-29 ounce can tomato sauce
2 garlic cloves-minced
1 bag egg noodles-boiled and drained
1 bunch green onions-top and bottoms chopped
1 brick of cream cheese-cubed
1 container cottage cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Add tomato sauce, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste to your browned turkey. Stir well. Mix cottage cheese, cream cheese and green onions together. I pepper this pretty good but we like pepper. Cover bottom of casserole pan with this mixture, then layer noodles, cottage cheese mixture and repeat making the meat sauce your last layer. Bake covered in a 350' oven for 30-40 minutes.