Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Lemon Pepper Cornflake-Crusted Tilapia Recipe

Can I just say that I am totally impressed?! Tonight, Krista Kooks' Sous Chef cooked dinner, and I am completely impressed by his ability to find the recipe on his own, used ingredients we already had in the house, and made an absolutely delicious meal. I am so so proud!

We had tilapia that we wanted to cook, and I must say that my sous chef is much better at cooking fish than I. With this recipe, he amazed me even more. We both highly suggest this recipe. We even used egg whites only for the breading process, so it was even healthier! Thus, I will inlcude this dish as a diet option for Krista Kooks.

Please go try this fish! You will love it!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Mini Cheesecakes

Yet another creative dessert from Krista Kooks! Well, that’s not entirely true; I actually go this recipe from CooksRecipes.com. All I really did to change it up was make them mini cheesecakes as opposed to one regular sized cheesecake. Thanks to my Mini Cheesecake Pan from Williams Sonoma, I was able to create this little bites of heaven! I mean, don’t you want to hold a piece of cheesecake, bite into the center, and then be surprised with warm chocolate chip cookie dough in the center? If you don’t, you must be one of those people that doesn’t like chocolate, in which case I will forgive you.

Another little creative idea that I did with these mini cheesecakes was to alter the crust ever so slightly. Normally, as you might know, when making a cheesecake, you use crumbled graham cracker crumbs, butter, and sugar. Now, I know these yummy cookies we all love called Oreos, and those little oreos are just the right size for the base of a mini cheesecake. So, rather than mix the crumbs, butter, and sugar, I choose to have fun twisting open oreos, scraping the cream off, and using the cookies as the base for my mini cheesecakes! I also melt about a tablespoon or two of butter and drizzle a few drops over each cookie once they are placed into the mini cheesecake pan.

After this cookie bottom process is complete, I proceed with making the cheesecake filling and chocolate chip cookie dough mix for the cheesecakes. You can view this recipe to see the original.
Having made these yummy little bites and several other cheesecakes, I’m beginning to wonder if I might be able to come up with my own cheesecake recipe that perhaps doesn’t use a full 3 8 oz. packages of cream cheese. I know there are recipes out there that use sour cream that seems to replace some of the cream cheese. So I ask this question for anyone who might have some sort of answer: is there some ratio or proportion to follow when replacing cream cheese with sour cream? Are there rules that make this process easier? Enlighten me, please!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Graduation Cupcakes Recap

So, Graduations are coming around the corner again, and I wanted to take a look back at post that I helped you all out with a few months ago; Graduation Cupcakes.

There are probably different types of chocolate or other types of candy that you can use as your cupcake topper, but I explain in the post how you can create the ones I made.  It also might be easier now for any of you who might be needing a white graduation cap on top of your cupcake as Ghirardelli is now making White Chocolate Squares!  I saw them at Bed, Bath & Beyond one day :)

In these times of recession, save money for graduation and show you care by making your graduate these yummy cupcakes!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Pampered Chef Chicken Club Ring

Krista Kooks Pampered Chef Chicken Club Ring Every bit of an awesome chicken club wrapped up in crescent rolls for brunch, lunch, or, in my case, a great main dish for event showers! This past weekend I threw a bridal shower for one of my great friends (yey Jordan!), and I made two of these rings as part of the food spread.

Several years ago, Courtney Mayfield (whom you've already seen recipes from below) was a Pampered Chef consultant. She had a party at her duplex (which I later lived in) and showed us all how to make this recipe. I still remember her mixing all these ingredients together on her dining room table in her Pampered Chef Classic Batter Bowl.

Anyway, as you can see from the picture above, I used the stoneware that I cooked the Club Ring on to display the food as well. I think it adds to appetizing appeal!

Below is the recipe that I used to create this yummy masterpiece!


3 cups coarsely chopped cooked chicken
4 slices bacon, crisply cooked, drained and chopped
3/4 cup shredded Swiss cheese
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons snipped fresh parsley
1 garlic clove, pressed
2 plum tomatoes, sliced
2 cans of Crescent rolls (8 count)
1 egg white, lightly beaten
1/4 cup shredded Swiss cheese

To Cook:
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In Classic Batter Bowl, combine chicken, bacon, 3/4 cup of the Swiss cheese, mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, parsley and garlic. Mix Well.

2. Arrange the crescent rolls around the stoneware in alternating directions. If your first crescent roll points to the outside of the stone, then have the next one point to the inside of the stone.

3. Using the large scoop, scoop filling evenly over desired shape. Top with tomato slices and finish by folding shape together (I took the corners of each piece of dough and folded them into the middle). Brush with egg white and sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup cheese.

4. Bake at 375 degrees for 11- 13 minutes or until the crescent rolls are cooked through.

Yield: 8 servings

I also found several other variations of this recipe, so feel free to check out these as well. Some of them seem to also use bell pepper and/or lettuce.

Alternate Recipe #1

In order to make life easier, I actually didn't cook bacon...drain it....wait for it to cool...and then chop them. I bought prepackaged bacon pieces, but not bacon bits. Nonetheless, take this recipe and use it for lunch or dinner and even when guests come over! People love the creative idea of this ring. Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Crispy Chicken Costoletta with Mashed Potatoes and Asparagus

Krista Kooks Crispy Chicken Costeletta with Mashed Potatoes and Asparagus Well, apparently this is the best meal I've ever made. It's already been reordered. That means you have to try it!

I absolutely love that this chicken is so thin and tender, as do my tastetesters, Henry, Kevin and Melissa! This chicken only takes about 10-15 minutes to actually cook, but be sure to use a large skillet in order to get all of this chicken to cook together at one time.

The recipe doesn't call to cook the sauce in the same skillet as the chicken, but I did do this similar to a gravy. That definitely added some GREAT flavor. You can do it either way, but I just wanted to include that as your option.
The Chicken
4 chicken breasts, cut horizontally, and pounded to about 1/4 inch thick or chicken cutlets
Zest of 2 lemons
1 1/2 cups plain breadcrumbs (Try Panko Breadcrumbs)
2 tablespoons freshly grated parmesan cheese (optional)
2 eggs
2 tablespoons water
3 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon ground pepper
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Lemon Sauce
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, plus 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/8 cup chicken stock
kosher salt
fresh ground pepper
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
For the chicken:.
Preheat oven to 200°F.

Zest two lemons. Bake zest for about 5 minutes until dry.

On one paper plate combine flour, pepper and salt. On another paper plate combine eggs and water, whisk until combined. On another paper plate combine dry lemon zest, bread crumbs and cheese.

Place pounded chicken in the flour, coating well, followed by the egg mixture and the bread crumbs.

Heat 2 Tablespoons olive oil and 1 Tablespoon butter in a large frying pan over medium heat.
Place chicken in pan and cook on each side about 5 minutes until middle is no longer pink. You will need to work in batches, adding more oil and butter as needed.

Keep chicken warm in oven at 250°F.

For the lemon sauce:
Over medium heat in a fairly large saucepan heat canola oil. Add minced garlic and sauté about 3 minutes.  Add whipping cream and boil until reduced by one-third.  Add Dijon, lemon juice, chicken stock and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer about 5 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in butter until melted.
Serve chicken with lemon sauce and mashed garlic potatoes.
These were just...awesome. They need no other words. Just make them and eat them!  Here is my adaptation:
4 cups red potatoes
2 tablespoons horseradish
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon salt, and to taste
3/4 cup gouda cheese, shredded
Cut away blemishes in potato skins, and cube.  Boil potatoes until very soft and drain off water.  Add butter and salt, and whip with a rotary beater until butter melts.  Whip in remaining ingredients.  Adjust seasoning.
Lastly, the Asparagus:

This is something that I learned several years ago, and I don't know where. When I make asparagus, I lay them out across a jelly roll pan and sprinkle olive oil all over them. I then sprinkle tarragon leaves on the asparagus. Put them in the oven on a high heat, such as 375 or 400 for about 10 minutes. Just make sure they are cooked!
You should all enjoy this fantastic meal!Krista Kooks Crispy Chicken Costeletta with Mashed Potatoes and Asparagus 4
Note: This post was edited on June 9, 2010.  This is STILL the most searched meal on Krista Kooks and still the sous chef’s favorite to come out of Krista’s Kitchen.


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