Cooking with Karen (January – April 2018)

Last fall I shared that I’m back into cooking and plan to share my favorite discoveries.

I shared my favorite recipes I found online for 3 months, then got busy with real estate (I’m an agent). This list of recipes too good to not try goes back a few months.

None of these recipes are mine, though I tend to tweak every recipe I make. The pictures are mine and I’ll link to the original recipe to give the chef credit. You can try the original recipe or tweak to your delight.  Just click on the recipe name to see the original recipe. 

Here are the recipes I really enjoyed recently (and remembered to snap a picture).

Sour Cream Eggs

by BabyKato

Sour Cream Eggs | Future Expat

I always have eggs in the house, and am going to start keeping sour cream in the fridge too just so I can make this for dinner when I’m too tired to cook.

My Review:

I know this sounds simple, but it takes eggs over the top. I love eating eggs for a fast/easy meal, and I almost always make scrambled eggs. But this is good enough to be a real main dish for any meal. I was making it just for myself, so I cut the recipe in half. I followed the recipe exactly, not really measuring the spices or bread crumbs…just covering the top lightly. And I used dried parsley. LOVED it! I cooked it for 10 minutes and the eggs weren’t runny, not quite hard boiled. Next time I would try 8 minutes for yolks that are between runny and soft boiled.

Carrot & Caraway Slaw

by BabyKato

Carrot & Caraway Slaw | Future Expat

With summer almost here, I’ll be making this for friends and family soon!

My Review:

I’m not a fan of slaw, but this was a winner for me. I love carrots and caraway seeds. And the other ingredients pulled this together. I only had apple cider vinegar in the house, so that’s what I used. And it’s great how fast this comes together. I’ll definitely be making this for potlucks next summer.

Mexican Cheesecake (Served as Squares)

by ForeverMama

Mexican cheesecake squares

I absolutely loved these company worthy morsels. I’ll definitely be making these again the next time I put together a dessert tray.

My Review:

Absolutely loved this dessert (and I’m picky about desserts!). This reminds me of a cheese stolen, but better. My only issue is that the crescent dough on the top puffed up so much in spots that the butter/sugar/cinnamon mixture pooled thickly into areas and had almost none in others. I think pricking the top dough with a fork before dotting it with the butter mixture would solve that problem. Will definitely be making this again.

Hamburger Cheese Bake

by TeresaS

Wow. I like easy meals that taste good enough to eat the leftovers for a few days. This one made the cut.

My Review:

This is fabulous. And comes together very quickly. The cream cheese takes this recipe over the top. Adding it to my Best of 2018 list!

Spicy Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Orange and Honey

by Ms Pia

Spicy Roasted Sweet Potatoes

I’ve tried a lot of recipes for roasted potatoes and veggies, this one is worth saving.

My Review:

I absolutely LOVED this recipe. I’ve done a lot of roasted veggie recipes, but none that came out so sweet and sticky/caramelized. I only had one sweet potato, so I cut the recipe down to 2 potatoes, 1 sweet and 1 Yukon gold. I left out the cayenne but did use Hungarian paprika. Didn’t measure at all but think I came pretty close. Will definitely make again and going into my Best of 2018 cookbook list!

Jumbo Shrimp Parmesan

by Marie

Jumbo Shrimp Parmesan | Future Expat

I’ll be making these for company!

My Review:

This is really fabulous. I followed the recipe exactly other than using seasoned bread crumbs (what I had) and not having lemon so dribbling some bottled lemon juice over the top before serving. I will definitely be making these again, especially for company. SO EASY! Going into my Best of 2018 file!

Baked Spicy Scallops

by ForeverMama

Baked Spicy Scallops | Future Expat

Scallops are just too expensive to waste them with a bad recipe. Now I can buy them without worrying about wasted money.

My Review:

The scallops were cooked perfectly…and so easy. I did have twice as much breading topping as I needed, and since I like it, I poured it all over the top. I shouldn’t have. Next time I would cut the topping in half as I think it would be better that way. Love the idea of serving this and baked shrimp for company! UPDATED: I made this again with 2/3 lb scallops (5 large) and 1/2 the bread crumb mixture (reg bread crumbs instead of panko)…YUM!

Indian Roasted Cauliflower

by Daily Inspiration

Indian Roasted Cauliflower | Future Expat

Cauliflower is so good for you, but can be so bland. But not this recipe!

My Review:

This is really amazing. And so simple. I did put everything into a bowl and mixed it there before dumping it into my 8×8 glass baking dish (easier to mix it well and no messy hands). I also was cooking something else in the same oven so most of the time it was cooking at 350, but I did raise the temp for the last few minutes. Going into my Best of 2018 Pinterest board!

Banana Blueberry Oatmeal Bake

by TwisSis

Banana Blueberry Oatmeal Bake | Future Expat

Since I almost always let my bananas get so ripe they have to be baked, this will definitely be made again.

My Review:

Loved this baked oatmeal. I was expecting it to be a firm slice you could hold in your hand but it definitely was the scoop and use a spoon type of oatmeal. Still was fabulous and will make it again. Followed the recipe exactly, using coconut milk (in the milk aisle, not the canned version) and frozen almost bad bananas. Yum!

Sour Cream Pilaf

by Breezermom

Sour Cream Pilaf | Future Expat

I’ve already cut back on my potatoes, and this rice will make it easier to cut back on pasta too. Sour cream to the rescue!

My Review:

I’m in love with this rice. It has a strong sour cream taste and it’s sticky like risotto (I did use medium grain rice though). The mushrooms and almonds are perfect. Next time I would add more mushrooms…I used about 5 fresh button mushrooms. Maybe add some sauteed onions to the mushrooms too. I made a full recipe knowing I would be working a lot and wouldn’t have time to cook…this tastes just as great as leftovers as it did right off the stove. Going in my Best of 2018 list! Make for FYC game at FFF forum.

“Beernana” Bread

by TwisSis

Beernana Bread | Future Expat

You really can’t go wrong with a good recipe that combines beer bread and banana bread.

My Review:

This is really fabulous. It has a slightly sticky doughy texture of a typical beer bread, but with a hint of banana flavor too. I used a wheat beer, room temp since that’s the way I always do beer bread. I also used 1/2 white wheat flour and 1/2 regular all purpose white flour. I almost left out the salt on the top since I planned to use this as breakfast bread, but I’m glad I used some kosher salt on the top. I really adds another layer to the flavors. My only issue is that the bottom crust was a bit hard to cut through, but that wasn’t a big deal. Wonderful slightly warmed in the microwave with a drizzle of honey on it.

Cinnamon Tortilla Chips

by TwisSis

Cinnamon Tortilla Chips | Future Expat

Such a simple way to make a snack!

My Review:

I really enjoyed this tasty snack. I made just one tortilla, cut into 8 slices. I used a pizza cutter to cut a flour wheat tortilla on the counter, then laid them on the parchment and sprayed with coconut oil cooking spray. Then I dredged them in my cinnamon sugar, sprayed the other side will in the cinnamon sugar bowl, then flipped them over. Baking time was spot on and in just a few minutes I gobbled them up. I will be making this again!

Fried Apples

by acerast

Fried Apples | Future Expat

These apples taste exactly like apple pie filling. Fabulous on oatmeal. Next time, I want to try it with vanilla ice cream!

My Review:

These apples were really wonderful. I used 3 apples and cut the other ingredients in half (and used slightly less butter than that). It tasted like apple pie filling without the fattening crust. I ate some plain, some over oatmeal, some warm and some room temp. All were winners.