Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Nacho Spuds

I also hi-jacked this one off of Celeste's blog: http://www.sugarandspice-celeste.blogspot.com/

But also, this recipe has been floating around the boards on The Nest so I figured it's my turn to try it! As you can see, I couldn't wait to get it in my mouth.

2 large baking potatoes (1.5 pounds total), sliced into 1/2-inch thick rounds
2 1/2 tbsp. E.V.O.O.
Salt & Pepper
1/2 lb. lean ground beef sirloin
One 15 oz. can black beans, rinsed
2 tbsp. taco seasoning
One 8 oz. package shredded sharp cheddar cheese (2 cups)
1 cup grape tomatoes, quartered lengthwise
Sour cream and shredded lettuce, for serving

1. Position a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat to 450 degrees. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the potatoes with 2 tbsp. olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Arrange in a single layer and bake until golden, about 20 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, heat a heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the remaining 1/2 tbsp. olive oil and the ground beef and cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon, until browned, 2 to 3 minutes. Mix in the beans, taco seasoning, and 2 tbsp. water. Lower the heat and simmer, stirring, until heated through, about 10 minutes.
3. Transfer the potatoes to an ovenproof platter. Sprinkle half of the cheddar on top, spoon on the meat mixture, then top with the tomatoes and remaining cheddar. Place in the oven and turn off the heat. Let stand until the cheese is melted, 2 to 3 minutes. Serve with the sour cream and lettuce.
Source: Everyday with Rachael Ray magazine

Holy cow. This recipe is one heck of a man pleaser. I accidentally froze the lettuce, which completely ruined it, so I just served it with sour cream and at the reccomendation of the nesties, Spicy Ranch. As soon as I put it in front of Jason, he inhaled the whole plate in like 5 seconds flat. It actually gave me inspiration to try making some kind of a sauce for it with sour cream, spicy ranch, and maybe a few other things.

How I tweaked the recipe:
I chopped up 1/2 of a medium onion and threw it in with the meat as it started to cook.
I also used a little more evoo than the recipe called for in the skillet, but I didn't put water in with the taco seasoning. It ended up making the beans really, really soft, which fi and I liked.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Red Lobster-esque drop biscuits

I obtained this recipe from a fellow nestie, Celeste. She is the ultimate domestic goddess!

2 cups bisquick
1 cup cheddar cheese
2/3 cup milk
¼ tsp. garlic salt
4 tbsp. butter, melted
¼ tsp. parsley

Preheat oven to 450ยบ F
In a large mixing bowl, combine bisquick, cheese, and milk. Mix together until a soft dough forms then beat vigorously for 30 seconds. On an ungreased baking pan, spoon the dough onto the pan in small balls. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Keep an eye on them though, they tend to bake quickly!While they are baking, combine the melted butter, garlic salt, and parsley. Once the biscuits are done cooking, brush the butter mixture onto the biscuits while they are still on the baking pan. Best served when warm.If you want, mix in a pinch of garlic salt and parsley into the dough before baking. This little addition makes the recipe even better!

I had to tweak a few things because of what I had available in the pantry, and this is what I did:
1) I didn't have parsley, but I did have a jar of italian seasoning. I believe it has dried parsley, oregano, thyme, and others in it. I think that the parsley was the kicker because the biscuits were icredibly cheesy, fluffy, and delicious, but they didn't taste like the ones from Red Lobster. The italian seasoning did, however, give the biscuits a really hearty flavor and would have been great with a cup of steaming minstrone soup.
2) When I brushed on the melted italian garlic butter, afterwords I threw on a pinch of crushed black pepper. This gave them a little extra kick because I like it spicy.
3) I still live at home and my mom hasn't properly maintained her jelly roll sheets, and they have a lot of stuff burnt on them and look terrible. So I covered the cookie sheets with aluminum foil. This posed a bit of a problem because they tried to stick even though they didn't burn.

These biscuits were reaaaally good. I was by myself and feeling the urge to cook so no one was there to enjoy them with me, but I was watching Food Network and felt inspired so I just jumped right into it.
Photos to come!

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