Thursday, August 27, 2015

Sopapilla Cheesecake Bars

I first had these at a pool party years ago, same great pool party that I discovered the magic sausage swirls.  I joined a fantasy football league this year, first time ever.  The amazing Confections of a Foodie Bride hosted the draft, complete with her famous margaritas and a nacho bar that was to die for.  I decided to bring these desserts because I could make them a day ahead and they transport easily.  They couldn't be any easier to make and they are completely addictive to eat.  I am glad I had somewhere to take them, or else I might have eaten the whole pan.
Sopapilla Cheesecake Bars

2 cans 8-ounce refrigerated crescent rolls
2 packages 8-ounce cream cheese, softened
1 ½ cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ cup butter, melted
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Unroll one can of the dough and place in the bottom of a 9x13 glass baking dish, stretch the dough to cover and press the perforations to seal. Beat together the cream cheese, 1 cup of the sugar and the vanilla. Spread the cream cheese mixture over the top of the crescent rolls in the pan. Unroll the second can of dough and place on top of the cream cheese layer, stretching and pinching the seams to cover the cream cheese completely. Pour the butter over top. Mix the remaining sugar with the cinnamon; sprinkle over the melted butter. Bake for 30 minutes. Cool for 20 minutes, refrigerate and cut into bars when ready to serve.
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Monday, August 24, 2015

Poogan’s Porch Biscuits

I must confess that I have never cooked with shortening before. I have used it to grease the griddle when making pancakes, but that is the only thing I have ever used it for. We spent a week in Beaufort and Charleston, one of the best things I ate was the biscuits at Poogan's Porch.  And I also loved that they had braised short ribs on the kids' menu, which made Miss F quite happy.  I was so excited to try to make them at home, but I was quite nervous to use shortening.  I was nervous for no reason.  These biscuits were perfect, exactly like the ones in the restaurant.  C was a huge fan, which was surprising since he was quite wary of a new biscuit recipe.  Thanks to Katherine Ave for the recipe.
Poogan’s Porch Biscuits

2 cups sifted self-rising flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar
½ cup shortening
1 cup buttermilk

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Stir together the flour, baking powder and sugar. Cut in the shortening with a pastry cutter until coarse crumbs are formed. Stir in the buttermilk until just combined. Pat the dough into a ½ inch thick rectangle on a floured surface. Cut using a biscuit cutter and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until golden brown.
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Thursday, August 20, 2015

Corn Chowder

I am somewhat obsessed with corn chowder. It has about all my favorite things in it: corn, potatoes, bell peppers and bacon. I saw a recipe that started out by making a corn infused stock on Spoon Fork Bacon.  I used the infused stock from the recipe, but not much else.  I simplified things a bit so that Miss F could help me make it.  She is an excellent corn shucker, except that it always ends up in corn silks in every nook and cranny of the kitchen.  I loved this soup.   This may be my new go to corn chowder, I am not sure I will make it again without making a corn stock.  It was so incredibly simple, but added so much sweet corn flavor to the soup.
Corn Chowder

3 ears corn, kernels removed from cob
4 cups chicken stock
2 cups water
4 slices bacon, diced
½ medium yellow onion, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 poblano pepper, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
3 red potatoes, diced
¼ cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup heavy cream

Place ½ of the corn plus the cobs in a pot with the chicken stock and water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 40 minutes. Remove the cobs from the pot and discard. Puree the corn and stock, set aside.

In a large pot, sauté the bacon until crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove from the pan and drain on paper towels. Drain all but 1 tablespoon of the grease from the pan. Add the onion, garlic, poblano, bell pepper, potatoes and remaining corn to the pan. Saute for 5 to 7 minutes, until the vegetables begin to soften. Add the flour and stir, sautéing for 3 minutes more. Add the stock to the pan, stirring constantly and simmer for 5 minute to thicken. Stir in the oregano, salt and cream. Simmer for 5 minutes more , serve.
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