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Sunday, September 30, 2012

Slow Cooker Cinnamon Raisin Chocolate Chip Bread Pudding ala ~DKBB~

Slow Cooker Cinnamon Raisin Chocolate Chip Bread Pudding ala ~DKBB~
(original recipe from

nonstick cooking spray
one pound cinnamon raisin bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/4 cup raisins (optional)
1/4 cup toasted slivered almonds or your favorite nut chopped (optional)
12 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
4 cups milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup sugar
powdered sugar and caramel sauce, or cream for garnish, optional

  • Coat the inside of the crock with nonstick cooking spray. Cover the bottom of the crock with half of the bread, sprinkle with two tablespoons of chocolate chips, one tablespoon of raisins, and one tablespoon of nuts. Repeat.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, vanilla, milk, salt, cinnamon and sugar. Pour the mixture over the layers of bread. Do not stir.
  • Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours. The bread pudding is done when all of the liquid has been absorbed, the egg is cooked through, and the bread starts to pull away from the walls of the crock.
  • Spoon a serving onto a plate and if desired, sprinkle powdered sugar and drizzle caramel sauce, or pour cream over the top.
NOTE: I am not a fan of the chocolate chips in this, though my husband certainly is. If chocolate chips in bread pudding are not your cup o' tea, leave them out of the recipe.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Chilean Salad ala ~CHB~

Chilean Salad ala ~CHB~
(recipe by Chuck Butterfield)

2 tomatoes, sliced
1 avocado, sliced
1 onion, thinly sliced
Kosher salt
Olive oil*
  • Layer tomatoes, avocado, and onions on two small salad plates.
  • Drizzle with olive oil.
  • Add kosher salt (not too much).
Chuck discovered this salad on a trip to Chile. It has become one of our favorites, and is especially yummy when we have fresh garden tomatoes.

*Try it with garlic infused olive oil whisked with Spanish vinegar. Perfection!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Paula's Salsa ala ~DKBB~

Paula’s Salsa ala ~DKBB~
(based on an original recipe by Paula Ensz)
  • 4 cups chopped, seeded peppers – you can use a variety of chilies, bells, Anaheims, jalapenos, and whatever else is growing that year. Approximately 10 jalapenos for this size batch makes it medium heat; leave the seeds in ¼ to ½ of the jalapenos to give it a hotter kick. You can also add 1-3 ghost peppers, sliced open and dropped in whole, to up the heat factor
  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¾ cup white vinegar
Put first 4 ingredients in large stockpot and simmer until veggies are soft; while they are cooking start on your tomatoes (if using fresh).
  • 8 cups peeled, chopped tomatoes – you can use a variety of varieties, or you can use canned (fire-roasted)
  • 1 29 oz. can tomato puree
  • 1 4 oz. can tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. fried basil
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh chopped cilantro
  • 1 tsp. pepper
  • 1 tsp. Mexican oregano
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • ½ t turmeric
Add the rest of the ingredients to softened veggies and simmer 1 hour or more. Taste-test for heat, salt, and herbs/spices. If it is too hot, you can add more tomatoes or sauce.

Fill (sterilized) jars.

Process 10 minutes in a boiling water bath.

This recipe makes approximately 10 half pints (5 pints).

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Butter Garlic Green Beans ala ~DKBB~

Here's a great way to use some of those green beans you garden is producing right now.

Butter Garlic Green Beans ala ~DKBB~
(original recipe by Laura McNeill in Oct. 2006 Simple & Delicious magazine)

2 Tbsp. finely chopped onion
1½ tsp. minced garlic
2 Tbsp. butter
3 cups fresh or frozen (thawed and drained) cut green beans
½ c. chicken broth
⅛ tsp. salt
⅛ tsp. white pepper 
  • In a large skillet, sauté onion and garlic in butter for 2-3 minutes, or until onion is crisp-tender.
  • Add beans, broth, salt, and pepper; bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 8-10 minutes or until beans are crisp-tender.

Yield: 4 servings.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Ratatouille with Polenta ala ~DKBB~

This is a really great way to use some of that abundance of veggies from your garden this time of year.
Ratatouille with Polenta ala ~DKBB~
(original recipe on

1/2 pound small fresh mushrooms, halved
1 medium sweet red pepper, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
4 teaspoons olive oil, divided
2 cups cubed peeled eggplant
1 small zucchini, chopped
1 small summer squash, chopped
3 to 4 roma tomatoes, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1½ teaspoons Italian seasoning
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon white pepper OR cracked pepper
1 tube (1 pound) polenta, cut into 1/2-inch slices
Grated Parmesan cheese, optional
  • In a large skillet, saute the mushrooms, pepper and onion in 2 teaspoons oil until almost tender. Add the eggplant, zucchini, tomatoes, garlic, Italian seasoning and salt.
  • Saute for 8-10 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
  • In another skillet, cook polenta slices in remaining oil over medium-high heat for 3-4 minutes on each side or until lightly browned.
  • Serve with ratatouille; sprinkle with cheese if desired.
Yield: 4 servings.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Eggplant Mariana Sauce ala ~DKBB~

If your garden is anything like mine, right now you are drowning in garden produce. Here's a versatile way to use some of that eggplant and some of those tomatoes and peppers you planted last spring:

Eggplant Marinara Sauce ala ~DKBB~
(original recipe from Krystol Cummings)

Eggplant, thickly sliced
Red peppers, thickly sliced
Garlic cloves, left whole
Olive oil
Kosher salt
Cracked black pepper
Fresh oregano, basil, white pepper, thyme (spices to taste)
  • Lightly coat eggplant slices, red peppers, and garlic cloves in olive oil; roast in oven on medium heat OR grill all (put pepper slices and garlic cloves in grill pan, grill eggplant directly on grill).
  • Remove skin from roasted/grilled eggplant and peppers.
  • Puree eggplant/red peppers/garlic cloves and tomatoes, adding salt, pepper, and spices to taste.
  • Heat puree and serve with bread sticks or use as sauce for pasta.
Amounts depend on how much you want to make; use your own best judgment.