Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Coconut Cake with the Best Frosting Ever! (An Easter Dinner Recipe)

Coconut is one of those flavors.  You either love it or hate.  My family is split down the middle.  Girls love it, boys hate it.  But something about Easter just SHOUTS COCONUT! I decided to try a new Paula Deen recipe from her March /April magazine.  I would type it out for ya, but REALLY the only part that is amazing is the FROSTING.  Oh so yummy.  You will love it.
Paula's recipe for cake was such a pain in the butt.  It had you separate all the eggs, beat them all separately, fold them in, blah blah blah.  It took SO LONG to make!  Here is an easier coconut cake that tastes the same.  No joke. Use a white cake mix and instead of the water, use coconut milk.  If you really like coconut flavor, add a tsp of coconut extract in.  That's it! Here is the part you have all been waiting for!!! Luscious Lime Frosting 1 cup butter (super healthy, I know) 1 tsp lime zest 1/4 cup lime juice 5 cups powdered sugar 1 8 oz container of Cool-Whip In a large bowl, beat butter, lime zest and lime juice until combined.  Gradually add powdered sugar, beating until smooth.  Add whipped topping, beating until combined.
What I did:  I made this a 3 layer cake by baking it in 3 8 inch pans until tested done.  (about 25 minutes.)  After it was cooled, I frosted it all and patted flaked coconut all around the cake.  Decorate with peeps and all done!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Pork Tenderloin w/ a Peach Twist

With Easter coming up, I really wanted to share a few of my favorite holiday recipes. I know pork tenderloin isn't what you first think of for Easter, but my husband hates turkey and I hate ham! So this is a great alternative! Easter is so late in the year this time around, it is already getting too hot to cook something all day in the oven. So BBQ it is! Again, this is a family favorite, even the kids love it! Peachy Pork Tenderloin (source: a ripped out page of an old Family Fun Magazine) Ingredients: 1/4 cup salt 3/4 cup brown sugar 2 cups boiling water 3 cups ice cubes 2 pork tenderloins, about 2 lbs total 1/4 cup peach preserves 1/2 cup dijon mustard (but don't tell my kids or they will never eat it again!) pepper
1. Pour the salt and sugar into a glass baking dish. Add boiling water and stir until dissolved. Stir in ice cubes to cool the brine. Add tenderloins and marinate for 30 minutes in the refrigerator.
2. While they marinate, prepare grill for cooking. In a small bowl, mix together peach preserves and mustard. Set aside 1/2 of mixture.
3. Remove meat from brine and rinse. Pat dry with paper towel and season with pepper.
Place tenderloins on grill and cook them, turning occasionally, until their internal temperature reaches 145 degrees, about 20 minutes. About 5-8 minutes before the meat is done, brush on the peach-mustard glaze.
Move to cutting board, cover them with foil, and let them rest for 5 minutes. Serve with the reserved glaze.
Serves 6 I used one smaller tenderloin and it served our whole family with about 2 medallions left over. This means: 2 adults, a 10 year-old that eats well, an 8-year-old that doesn't eat much, and a 3 year-old that hardly eats at all. :) Enjoy!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Bathroom Art

Many of you have heard I am re-doing my bathroom.  So when I saw these signs in the Land of Nod catalog I HAD to copy cat.   
Here's my version:
Here is your sneak peek at my bathroom, too!
TEETH isn't centered vertically.  I did that on purpose, but it drives my husband crazy!
Their versions
All I did was take canvas, paint it, and apply vinyl cut from my Silhouette.   I was a little nervous applying the vinyl to the canvas.  It stuck just fine.  The red is Cricut brand, but the other colors are Silhouette.  My only problem was getting the letters perfectly straight and aligned.  I wish the Silhouette people would print lines on their transfer paper.  hint hint. In case anyone is wondering, I used medium yellow Folk Art acrylic paint and Sherwin Williams Riverway (the same color as my newly painted cabinets).  See my paint post here.    I absolutely LOVE how it turned out and you can't beat the price!  $5 for 3 canvases at Jo-Ann's and about $5 for the red vinyl (with a coupon.).  That's it!  Not bad compaired to $89 a piece at the Land of Nod. I was going to wait to post this with the rest of my bathroom, but with the big I Heart Nap Time event going on, I thought I would jump into the party!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Creamy Chicken Taquitos (Healthy Version!)

My family love love loves the baked creamy chicken taquitos recipe from Our Best Bites.  They will devour the entire pan in about 10 seconds.  I am trying to incorporate more whole grains and less fats in our diets, so I decided to doctor these babies up a little.  I left out the cheese (who needs it!), replaced the cream cheese with non-fat greek yogurt and switched the corn tortillas for wheat ones. The result?  Easy, fast and DELICIOUS!
Baked Creamy Chicken Taquitos Recipe  by Our Best Bites (altered a bit by me) 1/3 cup non-fat greek yogurt 1/4 C green salsa (I used Herdez in a can) 1T fresh lime juice 1/2 t cumin 1 t chili powder 1/2 t onion powder 1/4 t granulated garlic, or garlic powder 2 T sliced green onions 2 C shredded cooked chicken (I cooked 3 chicken breasts in the crock pot all day and then shredded them) Whole Wheat Flour Tortillas (12-16) Kosher salt cooking spray Preheat oven to 425 F
 Mix the first 9 ingredients into a bowl.
Place 2 - 3T of chicken mixture onto bottom third of tortilla, then roll them up tightly.
 Place on a cookie sheet covered in aluminum foil.  Spray all the taquitos with non-stick cooking spray and sprinkle with salt.  (OK, you caught me.  I didn't have any kosher salt so I used regular.)
Bake at 425 F for 15 - 20 minutes and they are a nice golden brown color.
We like them served with guacamole and salsa
I have to be honest here.  I was a little nervous to try the whole wheat tortillas on my family.  My older two don't really care for anything that resembles healthy or has the word whole wheat in it.  And YES, they were a little wheaty.  The corn tortillas (and even the white flour tortillas) are probably a little tastier in my opinion.  But these were more filling and the kids said they were still really really delicious!  I promise!
Give them a try and tell me if your family loves them as much as mine!