Friday, December 31, 2010

Cranberry Relish Muffins

UPDATE: I've since revised this recipe into a tastier and moister Cranberry Relish Muffin recipe. Click here for the new and improved recipe!

This is another recipe I concocted this afternoon. I wasn't sure how well it would turn out, but they are DELICIOUS!! The different flavors are really apparent in every bite. Yum!

·1½ cups GF all-purpose flour
·1 tsp xanthan gum
·½ cup sugar
·½ tsp salt
·1½ tsp baking powder
·½ cup canola oil
·2 eggs
·1½ tsp cinnamon
·¼ tsp nutmeg
·1 TBS orange zest
·1½ cup homemade cranberry relish or sauce (I used my Grandma's recipe at the end of this post)
                               
Preheat oven to 350˚. Line 12 muffin cups with liners or coat with non-stick spray. In a large bowl, mix all ingredients except cranberry relish until well-blended. Fold in cranberry relish. Spoon batter into muffin cups and bake 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Cranberry Relish

·1 naval orange
·1 apple (Gala, Braeburn, or Fuji)
·1 bag of fresh cranberries
·½ cup sugar
                               
Chop orange and apple – leave skins on but remove seeds.  Rinse cranberries and remove any mushy berries.  Pulse fruit together in a food processer  Add sugar and pulse until well blended.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Lauren’s Apple-Pear Cranberry GF Pie


I'm home with my family for the holidays and tonight we baked an Apple-Pear Cranberry Pie tonight. I improvised a recipe I created a few weeks ago - Apple Cranberry Pie - and it turned out DELICIOUS!! We are a big family, and we are all wishing I would have made two pies!


·1 GF Super Easy Pie Crust
Pie Ingredients
·3 medium sized red apples, peeled, cored, and sliced
·2 medium sized pears, peeled, cored, and sliced
·1 cup fresh cranberries, chopped
·½ cup sugar
·1 TBS GF all-purpose flour
·1 tsp ground cinnamon
·1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
Topping Ingredients
·½ cup GF all-purpose flour
·½ cup packed brown sugar
·3½ TBS butter
·1 tsp flaxseed meal
·½ tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 400˚. Prepare GF pie crust recipe and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine all pie ingredients until apples and pears are well coated. Spoon mixture into pie crust.


In a food processer, combine topping ingredients and pulse until crumb mixture forms. Sprinkle crumb topping over apple mixture. If desired, sprinkle with additional cinnamon.

Cover pie crust edges with pie crust shield and bake for 30-40 minutes. Let cool completely before serving.


I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sundays

Monday, December 27, 2010

GF Pigs in a Blanket


Pigs are a family favorite, tradition, and a must-have for breakfast on all holidays. My mom's been working hard trying to make the best GF pig dough. The recipe below is the latest and best tasting GF batch yet. You can also use this dough recipe to make GF crescent rolls.

·¾ cup warm water                            ·4 TBS butter
·2 packages of yeast                          ·1 TBS shortening
·½ cup sugar                                        ·2½ cup – 3 cups GF all-purpose flour
·Pinch of salt                                        ·3 tsp xanthan gum
·2 tsp baking powder                         ·1 tsp unflavored gelatin
·2 eggs                                                ·36 sausage links                                 

Boil sausage links in water for 30 minutes. Drain sausage links, let cool slightly, and pull casings off sausage links.

To make the dough, proof the yeast in water and sugar (mix and let sit in a bowl until bubbly). Combine dry ingredients and cut in butter and shortening into 2½ cups GF flour mix. Add yeast mixture and mix until it forms a stiff dough (add more flour if necessary to form a firm, but workable, ball of dough). Let dough rest for 10 minutes then roll out and brush with 2-4 TBS of melted butter.

Roll out dough on a recycled cereal bag and cut dough into rectangles. Wrap sausage links in dough and place on a greased cookie sheet. Let pigs rise for 20 minutes, then bake at 350˚ for 8-15 minutes until pigs are slightly golden brown. Be careful not to overcook. Remove from oven and butter tops of pigs immediately.

Note: One of my mom's tricks to rolling out gluten-free doughs is to use recycled cereal bags. They hold up better and are sturdier than wax or parchment paper. You can use wax or parchment paper, but we've found recycled cereal bags to work a lot easier.


I've also shared this recipe on: A Gluten-Free Holiday

Sunday, December 26, 2010

GF Snickerdoodles


Mike helped me make GF Snickerdoodles for my dad for his birthday today. I took my grandma's recipe for Dad's favorite cookie and turned it GF. These As Good As Gluten cookies aren't going to last too long - we're scarfing them down quickly.

·1 cup shortening (½ butter, softened & ½ cup Crisco)
·1 ½ cups sugar
·2 eggs
·2 cups GF all-purpose flour
·2 tsp xanthan gum
·2 tsp cream of tarter
·1 tsp baking soda
·½ tsp salt
Sugar Mixture
·⅓ cup sugar
·2 tsp cinnamon

Mix first 8 ingredients and roll into balls size of a walnut. Roll in sugar mixture. Place 2” apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 8-10 minutes at 400˚ until slightly brown and still soft.

Makes 48-60 cookies.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Crockpot Peanut Clusters


These are SO incredibly easy to make and taste SO delicious! Mike and I split one and had to immediately start bagging them up to resist the temptation to keep eating. We're adding Christmas treat bags of peanut clusters to some of our Christmas gifts this year. I cooked on high and when the 1 ½ hours were up, the chocolate chips still had their original shape. There isn't a need to cook any longer because the chocolate chips have reached their melting point. They will start melting together with the rest of the ingredients once you begin stirring.

·3 lbs. lightly salted peanuts
·3 lbs. chocolate flavored almond bark
·12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
·4 oz. bar of Baker’s German chocolate

Use a 6-quart crockpot. Spray the inside of the crock with cooking spray. Place almond bark and Baker’s German chocolate in the bottom. Add all of the peanuts and pour the chocolate chips on top. Cover and cook on high for 1 ½ hours or on low for 3 hours. While the chocolate is melting, lay out parchment paper on the countertop.

When time has elapsed, stir well and remove from heat. Use a tablespoon to place bite-sized piles of peanut clusters onto parchment paper. Let cool before eating.

Makes over 100 peanut clusters and it does take hours for them to cool.

This is another recipe I originally found at A Year of Slow Cooking (can you tell she's one of my favorite GF bloggers). Instead of using the recipe listed at A Year of Slow Cooking, I used the original one linked up to in a vlog post.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Puppy Chow


We've been baking and cooking up a storm this weekend. This is another childhood favorite recipe! It's from my mom's recipe box and is slightly different than the recipe for Chex Muddy Buddies on the back of the Rice Chex box. Enjoy! :)

·9 cups Rice Chex
·½ cup peanut butter
·2 cups chocolate chips
·4 TBS margarine
·1 cup powdered sugar

Measure cereal into a large bowl. Melt butter, chocolate, and margarine in a pan over medium heat until melted – stir often. Pour over cereal. Mix gently to coat. Allow to cool 10 minutes. Put powdered sugar into a bag (brown paper) and add Chex mix. Shake until well coated (add more sugar if needed). Pour on wax paper until cool. Store in a covered container.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Peppermint Fudge Cookies


Two months ago, I made these Flourless Fudge Cookies. I have some candy canes at home, so I decided to crush up a few and add it to the recipe to make GF Peppermint Fudge Cookies. This recipe is AMAZING - crunchy cookie on the outside, chewy and fudgy cookie on the inside - with a hint of peppermint! I think I'm going to have to tell Mike they flopped so I can save them all for myself! :)

·2 ¼ cups powdered sugar
·¼ tsp salt
·1 cup cocoa powder
·2 egg whites
·4 tsp cold water
·2 tsp vanilla extract
·2 candy canes, crushed into fine pieces/dust

Preheat oven to 350˚. Lightly grease two baking sheets. Using a kitchen stand mixer, mix together all ingredients, except candy cane pieces, until well-blended. Add crushed candy canes and mix briefly until they are well dispersed. (The flourless dough will be sticky). Use a greased tablespoon to place cookie dough onto baking sheet in 1 inch balls.

Bake for 10-12 minutes. The cookies should spread out with slightly cracking tops. Remove cookies from oven and let them cool on cookie sheet. Makes 16-24 cookies.

Original Chex Party Mix

After my Crockpot Chex Mix failed a few weeks back, I decided to stick to my Grandma's recipe. In her recipe below, I omitted the Wheat Chex and pretzel sticks, and added more Rice and Corn Chex in replacement. This turned out just like I remember it and the way Chex Mix should be - enjoy!!

·6 TBS butter
·2 TBS Worcestershire sauce
·1 ½ tsp seasoned salt
·¾ tsp garlic powder
·½ tsp onion powder
·3 ¼ cups Corn Chex
·3 ¼ cups Rice Chex
·3 ¼ cups Wheat Chex
·1 cup mixed nuts
·1 cup pretzels

Heat oven to 250˚. Melt butter, stir in seasonings. Mix remaining ingredients then pour butter mixture over – coat evenly – in large roaster.  Bake 1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Spread on paper towels to cool. Store in airtight container.

*GF substitution: use more Corn and Rice Chex for Wheat Chex and pretzels.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Salsa Chicken and Black Bean Soup (Crockpot)



Yet another delicious recipe adapted slightly from one of my favorite GF bloggers, A Year of Slowcooking. This soup was really quick to prepare and tastes great; Mike and I both loved it!

·2 frozen chicken breasts (medium to large in size)
·2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
·4 cups chicken broth
·1 bag frozen corn (12 oz.)
·1 jar salsa (16 oz.)
·1 ½ tsp cumin
·Sour cream, shredded cheese, and/or cilantro (optional)

Use a 6-quart crockpot.  Add the beans to the crockpot then add the chicken, chicken broth, and salsa. Pour in the corn and add the cumin. Stir, but don’t disturb the beans too much – let them stay near the bottom of the crockpot. Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours or on low for 6-8 hours. Stir in sour cream, shredded cheese, and/or cilantro to each bowl when serving.

I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sunday

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Lauren’s Apple Cranberry GF Pie


I saw a magazine picture a few weeks ago for double-crust apple cranberry pie. It looked delicious and I had to have it! So, I created my own GF recipe for it by combining bits and pieces of different recipes I found various cookbooks I own. This pie turned out really good and is definitely one of our new favorites!

·1 GF Super Easy Pie Crust (click here for recipe)
Pie Ingredients
·4-5 medium sized red apples, peeled, cored, and sliced
·1 cup fresh cranberries, chopped
·½ cup sugar
·1 TBS GF all-purpose flour
·½ tsp ground cinnamon
·1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
Topping Ingredients
·½ cup GF all-purpose flour
·½ cup packed brown sugar
·3 TBS butter
·1 tsp flaxseed meal
·½ tsp cinnamon, plus extra to sprinkle on top

Preheat oven to 400˚. Prepare GF pie crust recipe and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine all pie ingredients until apples are well coated. Spoon mixture into pie crust.


In a food processor, combine topping ingredients and pulse until crumb mixture forms. Sprinkle crumb topping over apple mixture. If desired, sprinkle with additional cinnamon. 


Cover pie crust edges with pie crust shield and bake for 40 minutes. Let cool completely before serving.


I've also shared this recipe on: Gluten Free Wednesdays

Crockpot Cheeseburger Soup

Another delicious recipe adapted slightly from A Year of Slowcooking! I try not to use Velveeta unless I have to, so I only had about 4-6 oz. of it in the house. It was a blizzard outside yesterday, so I substituted the rest with shredded cheddar cheese and it still turned out fine. The taste of the peppers really cook out, so even my pepper-hating husband ate this soup without picking out the peppers! :)

·4 cups of chicken broth
·½ onion, finely chopped
·1 lb ground beef
·1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
·2 potatoes cut in 1 inch cubes
·1 tsp minced garlic
·1 cup skim milk
·4 oz. Velveeta, cubed
·16 oz. shredded cheddar cheese

Brown the meat on the stove top with the onion and drain grease. In a 6 quart crockpot, pour in chicken broth. Add garlic, bell pepper, and potatoes (unpeeled). Stir in browned meat and onion. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours, or until potatoes are tender. Stir in milk and cheese 20-30 minutes before serving.

I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sunday's

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

GF Pasta with Pumpkin and Sausage

I've been wanting to try this Rachael Ray recipe for a long time, and I'm so glad I did! It actually turned out quite well. It's a good and surprisingly creamy pasta dish without being drenched in sauce. And, there is only a hint of pumpkin/autumn flavors. The recipe below is my improvised recipe to make it GF and reflect what ingredients I had in the house.
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 lb. penne pasta (I used Hodgson Mill Brown Rice with Golden Milled Flax Seed)
  • 1 drizzle EVOO
  • 1 lb. maple flavored pork sausage
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 14 ounces chicken broth
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 2 ½ TBS butter, melted
  • ¼ plus 1/8 cup skim milk
  • 1 ½ tsp cornstarch
  • 3 pinches of cinnamon
  • 3 pinches of nutmeg
  • Parmesan-Romano cheese, grated
Cook pasta noodles according to package directions until al dente. Drain.

In a medium-sized pan, brown sausage. Remove to paper towel-lined plate to drain and return pan to heat. Add EVOO to pan and sauté onion and garlic 5 minutes. Add bay leaf, thyme, and wine to pot. Reduce wine for 2 minutes. Add broth and pumpkin and combine, stirring sauce until it comes to a bubble. In a small bowl, whisk together milk, butter, and cornstarch. Return sausage to pan, reduce heat, and stir in milk mixture. Season with cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and pepper and simmer 5 minutes.

To serve, return drained, cooked pasta to the pot you cooked it in. Remove bay leaf from sauce and pour sauce over pasta. Toss pasta and sauce 2 minutes over low heat so pasta can absorb flavors. Top bowls of pasta with Parmesan-Romano cheese, and serve with a green salad on the side.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Roasted Garlic Spoonbread (Crockpot)


I modified this recipe from A Year of Slow Cooking to reflect what ingredients I had at home. It is has a little kick to it but it is really good - and went great with Steak 'n Shake Chili! I love garlic, so I think you could add more garlic and not be overwhelmed with garlic flavor. Mike, on the other hand, is not a big fan of garlic - so this was just the right amount for him.

·¾ cup yellow cornmeal
·1 TBS cornstarch
·1 TBS sugar
·½ tsp cayenne pepper
·2 cups milk
·2 TBS melted butter
·3 eggs
·¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
·2-3 tsp minced garlic

Use a 2-quart slow cooker. In a mixing bowl, combine and whisk cornmeal, cornstarch, sugar, pepper, milk, melted butter, and eggs until it forms a nice batter and no big lumps remain. (It will be runnier than pancake batter). Stir in cheese and garlic. Pour batter into greased slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 4 to 5 hours, or on high for 2 to 3. Spoonbread is finished when the center is set and a knife inserted comes out clean.

I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sundays

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Crockpot Chex Mix


Chex Mix is a family favorite of mine, so when I found this recipe at A Year of Slow Cooking I thought I'd try it. It turned out okay, but I'm sticking to the old fashion way of making Chex Mix in the oven.

This crockpot version didn't have as much flavor as the oven version and some pieces were chewy. This is probably a fault of mine - I must have messed something up - since I know this recipe has turned out well for so many.

It's definitely easier to make in a crockpot than in the oven, so give if you give it a try let me know how it turns out for you. I omitted the pretzels, I've always liked my Chex Mix with just cereal and nuts. I also used a combination of Rice and Corn Chex.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Slow Cooker Vegetarian Stuffed Bell Peppers


This is another delicious recipe adapted from one of my favorite bloggers - A Year of Slow Cooking. Mike did all the prep work (he hates peppers) and I did all the eating. :) He really is a good hubby!

·3 bell peppers (any color)                                ·¼ tsp paprika
·¼ cup pasta sauce                                            ·Dash of salt
·½ (15-oz.) can black beans, drained              ·¼ tsp pepper
·½ (8-oz.) can corn                                         ·½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
·1 small onion, diced                                          ·¼ cup water
·1 cup cooked long grain brown rice

Use a 6-quart crockpot. Cut the tops off of the peppers and remove seeds and membranes. In a mixing bowl, combine pasta sauce, beans, corn, onion, rice, spices, and cheese. Mix well to combine – it will be quite gloppy. Shove as much of this concoction as you can into each of your cored peppers. Carefully nestle the peppers into the pot. Pour water around the pepper bases.

Cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or on high for 3 to 4. The pepper will wilt a bit, but still be intact. Carefully remove them with serving spoons.

I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sundays

Thursday, December 2, 2010

I have a confession...

...I'm new to blogging (reading, following, and writing) too! (Yes, I know, it's not a juicy secret.)

I was a "secret" blog reader until I started my own blog. There were a few blogs that I read, but never commented or actually followed. I didn't know how or why I should. Since my blog has brought in a few new blog readers (and some of you have asked for this post), here's why and how you should follow As Good As Gluten.

Why should I comment or follow your blog?
1. I want to know what you think. Why you are reading, your thoughts on a recipe, your experience with a recipe, anything!
2. No, I won't think you're a cyber-stalker. Hi, my name is Lauren and I was afraid if I followed blogs or left comments the blogger would think I was a cyber-stalker. But, I've quickly learned that bloggers love followers and comments! No matter if we're close family & friends, coworkers, haven't talked in ages, or if we're complete strangers!
3. I'll find more great blogs to read by looking at your blog (if you have one) and seeing what blogs you follow.
4. It'll make me happy! :)  

The great thing about blogging is that you can follow/comment publicly or anonymously. You can use your email account, Gmail account, AIM account, blog, name, anything!

Ok, you've convinced me! What do I do now?
You can comment on any post by clicking the word "Comments" below each post. Add your thoughts, select your profile to comment under (yep, you can click anonymous or just type in your name), and press post comment. You might be prompted to enter some funny numbers or letters to make sure it's not spam.

And, you can follow As Good As Gluten by clicking "Follow" on the right-hand column of my blog under the header "Followers". Then you can choose how you'd like to follow a blog.

I have a lot of great recipes I'm planning on trying this weekend, so expect a lot of new posts this weekend! :)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Cheeseburger Rice

We were in need of a quick, easy dinner tonight and Mike found this recipe in a church cookbook we had. The picture doesn't look that appetizing, but it tastes great, is easy to make with simple ingredients from the pantry, and only took about 20 minutes start to finish! We served it with a salad.
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 1/2 cup water
  • 2 TBS mustard
  • 1 cup shredded cheese
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1 1/2 cup Minute Rice, uncooked
Brown meat; drain. Add onion. Stir in water, ketchup, mustard, and bring to a boil. Stir in Minute Rice and cover until rice is tender. Remove from heat. Allow to stand for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese and mix together until cheese melts.

I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sundays

Friday, November 26, 2010

Pumpkin Pie Mousse


Happy Thanksgiving!! Here's a photo from yesterday's
Pumpkin Pie Cook-Off (my winning pie
 on the right)


I made this mousse tonight for my brother, improvised from a recipe at Iowa Girl Eats. It's super easy and quick to make and tastes like pumpkin pie heaven!

·1 package vanilla instant pudding
·1 package butterscotch instant pudding
·2 cups skim milk
·¾ tsp ground cinnamon
·1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
·1/8 tsp ground ginger
·1/8 tsp ground cloves
·1/8 tsp ground allspice
·1 15-ounce can pumpkin purée
·1 8-ounce container light whipped topping

Whisk pudding mixes and milk in a large bowl for 2 minutes. Mixture will be very thick. Stir in pumpkin purée and spices, then fold in whipped topping. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving.

I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sundays

Monday, November 22, 2010

Lauren’s Turkey Cranberry Meatballs (Crockpot)


I threw together this recipe last night based on what ingredients we had in the fridge. Mike was really hesitant about it, but his quote sums up the dish well: "I really didn't think I was going to, but I really like these. Good job!"


·1 lb ground turkey
·½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
·1 egg
·½ cup green onions, chopped
·1 tsp salt
·1 tsp pepper
·¼ tsp thyme
·1 cup fresh cranberries

Using your (husband's :)) hands, combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Form meatball mixture into the ball-size you desire and place in the crockpot. It’s okay if the meatballs are touching or if you have to layer them in the crockpot. Cook on low for 5-9 hours or on high for 4-5 hours.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Lauren’s GF Pumpkin-Banana Bread



I've been wanting to make GF Pumpkin-Banana Bread for awhile, but I didn't have a recipe for it. So, I took a chance and created this recipe. I used my mom's banana bread recipe I loved as a child and turned it into a gluten-free version. Then, I added the pumpkin and spices to turn it into GF Pumpkin-Banana Bread. This was the first time I've created my own recipe and turned a regular recipe into GF. This recipe is definitely a keeper!

·2¼ cup GF all-purpose flour                            ·¼ tsp allspice
·1 tsp xanthan gum                                            ·¼ tsp cloves
·½ cup sugar                                                        ·¼ cup cooking oil with omega-3
·½ cup brown sugar                                           ·⅓ cup skim milk
·1 tsp baking soda                                              ·2 eggs
·1 tsp salt                                                             ·1 tsp vanilla
·1 tsp cinnamon                                                  ·2 bananas, mashed
·¼ tsp nutmeg                                                     ·1 cup pumpkin purée
·¼ tsp ginger                                                        ·¼ cup walnut pieces

Preheat oven to 350˚. Combine all ingredients, except walnut pieces, in a large bowl using an electric mixer. Then, fold in walnut pieces. Pour bread mixture into a greased loaf pan. Bake for 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool slightly then loosen sides of loaf and remove from pan. Cool completely before slicing. Store in the refrigerator.

I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sundays

Autumn Sausage Casserole


I am in love with this dish!! It is full of autumn flavor. I'm so glad I substituted maple-flavored ground pork sausage, it really makes the dish. I used Gluten-Free Hormel (made for Hy-Vee) Maple-Flavored ground pork sausage.

·2 cups cooked brown rice                               ·1 TBS brown sugar
·1 lb ground maple pork sausage, cooked         ·1 TBS dried parsley flakes
·1 medium onion, chopped                              ·½ tsp ground allspice
·1 large apple, chopped (no need to peel)    ·½ tsp ground cinnamon
·½ cup chopped carrots                                    ·¼ tsp black pepper
·½ cup raisins                                                       ·⅓ cup chicken broth or water

Use a 4-6 quart crockpot. Put the rice into the stoneware crock and add the ground sausage. Add the onion, apple, carrots, raisins, brown sugar, parsley, allspice, cinnamon, and pepper. Pour in the broth or water. Stir to combine. Cover and cook on low for 5-7 hours or on high for 3-4 hours.

(I adapted this recipe slightly from A Year of Slowcooking).

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Orange-Apricot Pork Chops in the Crockpot

Another delicious crockpot recipe (modified from A Year of Slowcooking). I'm not a big fan of pork chops as I think they are usually bland and dry. This recipe adds SO much flavor to the pork chops and they are moist. Next time, I'll use thicker pork chops. Mike liked the recipe, but it isn't one of his favorites since he thought it was too sweet. I only had 5 pork chops, so maybe if I had 6 larger sized pork chops it'd spread the sweetness around more. I, on the other hand, found it delicious!

·6-8 boneless pork chops         
·1 cup apricot jam                   
·3 TBS brown sugar                
·½ tsp salt                    
·½ tsp pepper
·½ tsp cinnamon
·¼ tsp ginger
·¼ tsp cloves
·1 - (11-oz.) can mandarin oranges (and juice)

Use a 4-6 quart crockpot. Put pork chops into your crockpot. In a small bowl, combine jam, brown sugar, and spices. Spoon over pork chops. Add the entire can of mandarin oranges evenly over the top. Cover and cook on low for about 8 hours or on high for about 4 hours.

Serve with rice to soak up the juice.

I've also shared this recipe on: Seasonal Sundays

Friday, November 19, 2010

Crockpot Peppermint Hot Chocolate/Peppermint Mocha

This is another amazing recipe I got from www.crockpot365.blogspot.com! Since I made this for just the two of us, I think we'll have Peppermint Mochas tomorrow morning. I used 2 tsp of peppermint extract, even though the recipe said 2 tsp was pretty strong and I might want to opt for 1 tsp. It is strong with 2 tsp, but I love peppermint! Just 1 tsp or 1½ tsp of peppermint would probably be strong enough for most.

·3 cups nonfat dried milk                                  ·½ cup chocolate syrup
·1 cup powdered sugar                                     ·1-2 tsp peppermint extract
·¾ cup cocoa powder                                         ·7 cups water
·¼ tsp salt

Use a 6 quart crockpot. Combine the dry ingredients into your crockpot and stir with a spoon. Squeeze in chocolate syrup and add peppermint extract. Add the water, a cup at a time, and stir well. The chocolatey mixture will be bubbly and look powdery. It’s okay – it will cook together.

Cover and cook on high for 2-3 hours, or until completely hot. If serving to guests, keep the pot on low with the lid off and provide a ladle.

*Variations: For a “mocha” pour the cooked hot chocolate over a shot of espresso or a half-cup of very strong coffee. For an “adult drink” omit the peppermint extract and pour the hot chocolate over a shot of Peppermint Schnapps.