Category Archives: K8e’s Kitchen

Easy Lovin’ Chocolate Lava Cake for Your Valentine

"All you need is love.  But a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt".  Charles M. Schultz.

“All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt”. Charles M. Schultz.

 

Make these individual chocolate “molten lava” cakes and get laid lots of compliments from your loved one for Valentine’s Day.  Trust me.  Nothing says love like burning the roof of your mouth on the melty chocolate center of these little gems.

006

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Serves 4   (or maybe only 2 – one for your sweetie, 3 for you)

1/2 cup butter

4 squares semi-sweet baking chocolate

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar, divided

2 whole eggs plus 2 egg yolks

6 Tablespoons cake flour, sifted

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Fresh berries for garnish (optional)

007

In a medium sized microwave-safe bowl, melt butter (cut into chunks) and chocolate (broken into pieces) for about 1 minute.  Stir.  If butter is not melted, microwave in 15 second increments, stirring after each.

010

When butter is completely melted, add 1 cup sifted confectioner’s sugar and stir until smooth.

.011

Add egg and yolks and stir until batter is smooth.  Add vanilla extract and sifted flour.  Stir until smooth.  Do not over-mix.

014

Pour batter into 4 ramekins sprayed generously with non-stick baking spray.  Bake cakes for 12 minutes.  The sides will be set but the top will still be soft, but should not be runny.   Let cool 3-5 minutes.  Place inverted serving dish over ramekin, and turn over to release cake onto plate.

016

Lightly sift confectioner’s sugar over cake.

025

Decorate with berries, if desired.  Serve warm.

027

Enjoy…but seriously – don’t burn your mouth on the hot, gooey chocolate center.  It’s very hard to make out with burned lips and tongue.  Or so I’m told.

 

Happy Valentine’s Day all you crazy lovers!

 

Photo credits:  All photos property of k8edid.

Advertisements

28 Comments

Filed under General Mumblings, K8e's Kitchen

K8edid’s Top Secret World Famous Soft Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe

Image: Billboard at the Oak Ridge Facility warning workers to keep silent with regards to anything seen or heard while working on the Manhattan Project (© Ed Clark/Life Magazine/Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images)

You know those “World Famous” chocolate chip cookies that everyone raves about?  Yes, the ones made from the recipe on yellow package of semi-sweet chips?  Yes, those.  Everyone loves those, right?  Blech. Pfffft.  Ack.  (Cue screeching brake sounds and audible gasps.)

Yes, you heard me right.  Blech.  Those flattened out, greasy little blobs look like something you might find lying about in a cow pasture.  A colossal waste of raw cookie dough (salmonella, be damned!!!!).  They taste unfinished, somehow, and greasy.  I prefer my chocolate chip cookies to be light, fluffy, and soft.

This top secret recipe has been shared before, but only a few times.  Invariably, everyone with whom I have shared the recipe accuses me of leaving out an ingredient or two, or of not giving good directions.  What is eventually revealed, however, is that the world-class cookie-baker-wannabe has changed up the recipe in an effort to save time, labor, or calories.  DON’T DO IT.  Also, get a meat fork to stab those family members who will invariably be hovering about the kitchen waiting for you to turn your back so they can steal the raw dough from your bowl.  Or stealthily obscond with warm-from-the-oven-cookies until the batch you promised for the office potluck numbers in single digits.

So, here we go.  For those cookie purists who insist on using butter, messing up 3 or 4 bowls in the process of making cookies, and those who insist on making substitutions – if you try this recipe and insist on doing it your way – don’t yell at me.

K8EDID’S TOP SECRET – WORLD FAMOUS SOFT CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Bring ingredients to room temperature.

1 cup margarine (I can hear you cookie “must use butter” purists groaning – Stop it!!)

2/3 cup packed light brown sugar

2/3 cup granualated sugar

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp salt

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

3 large eggs

2 Tbsp water

3 3/4  cups flour

12 oz semi sweet chocolate pieces

Beat room temperature margarine with a mixer until pale and fluffy.  Add brown sugar and beat thoroughly.  Add granualted sugar and beat thoroughly.  (There is a lot of “beat thoroughly” in this recipe – it is important to make the cookies light and fluffy.  The dough will look more like a cake batter at first – just work with me, okay?) 

Add vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, water, and salt.  Guess what — beat thoroughly.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating thoroughly after each egg.  Add flour, one cup at a time. Beat with mixer (Yep, thoroughly) after each addition.  If you do not have a heavy duty mixer you may want to switch to mixing with a large wooden spoon after the second cup of flour is added – I have burned up more than one hand mixer with this recipe.  The dough will be very stiff.  Stir in chocolate chips.

Form cookies by rolling heaping tablespoonfuls of dough into a ball.  Place on ungreased cookie sheet.  Flatten slightly with your hand.  Bake in 350 degree oven for  12-13 minutes.  Cookies should be pale and fluffy, and when touched will leave a slight indentation.  Cool on cookie sheet for 1-2 minutes then cool on rack or clean dish towel.   Makes 24 – 28 good sized cookies, depending on how many vultures swiped your dough when you were bent over taking the cookies out of the oven. 

If you bake the cookies until they are browned, they will be dry and hard and even your dog will not eat them.  Even dunking them in coffee won’t save them.  Go ahead and throw them out or take them to work – someone there will eat them – but don’t admit to making them, you have a reputation to uphold, after all.

Yummy. Just plain yummy.

 Preferred by Armadillos everywhere:

39 Comments

Filed under humor, K8e's Kitchen, Uncategorized

A Post in Which I Answer the Age Old Question – What Has She Been Smokin?

Warning – this post is rated MLO (Meat Lovers Only). This post may contain images that are disturbing to vegetarians.

(Inhaling and holding my breath) Here, you want some of this? It’s good shit stuff…

Don’t you think it is funny when people inhale and try to talk while holding the smoke in their lungs? I do. Think it’s funny, I mean. I don’t actually inhale anything, but I have friends who do.

Over the years (or months if that’s how long you’ve known me) you have undoubtedly asked yourself this very question “What has that girl been smokin’?” Well, today I intend to answer that question because (cough, cough, cough – exhale) inquiring minds want to know.  This, dear ones, is what I am smoking today.

"Rubbed and Resting"

Yep, that’s right.  Pork butt.  Whole chicken.  Beef roast.  Sausages (as in Jimmy Dean pork sausage rolls).  And it smells heavenly.  As does my hair from tending the little square smoker out on the patio.

Shelby watches over the smoker - drooling at the lovely smell.

Every time I smoke something (food – I mean FOOD, people), my husband asks me if I wrote down the recipe for the rub I used.  So I ask him, “When you make love to a beautiful woman do you need a recipe?”  I see him struggle to come up with the best possible answer for that one, (What would the best answer for that question be, anyway?) So I answer the question for him. “Of course, you do”. 

Then I realize that is not a good analogy, since I don’t have a recipe.  So I try again to answer the question for him.  “No, you go to the store and buy something you know will do the trick!”  Again the analogy is not quite right. 

I’m just kidding, folks.  I don’t send him to the store for a dry rub for my meat, I make my own.  Uh, oh, I can see where your minds are going with that one.

Okay, okay.  So smoking stuff does not make me funnier (or even funny, for that matter).  But my rub recipe goes something like this.  Stand in front of the pantry door that is covered with little racks of spices.  Get a bowl and toss in some brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, chili powder, red pepper flakes, oregano, dry mustard, salt, freshly ground black pepper, a dash of cayenne, some allspice and a little cumin.  Don’t measure and don’t even guess how much of each ingredient is added, just add according to your own preference for each.

Flatten out (butterfly) a whole chicken.  What?  You don’t know how to flatten out a whole chicken? Watch this video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kjWtodUmHgw&feature=related

Or, if that link isn’t working (I couldn’t get Word Press to embed the video) – Get your kitchen scissors and cut down both sides of the backbone, pull it out and save it, with the giblets, for making stock.  Then open up the chicken, rinse it off, and dry with a paper towel.  Then rub your special rub all over it,  and all over the pork and beef roasts, as well.  Roll your sausage rolls in the spice rub.  Let them set for an hour or so, basking in their lovely rub, to bring them to room temperature.

Slap everything on the preheated little smoker.  Chicken takes about an hour per pound – keeping the temperature in the smoker between 225 and 250.  So my 5+ pound chicken will be done in about 5 hours.   The roasts will cook a bit longer. The sausages about 3 hours.  I’ll check with a meat thermometer to ensure things are done before I start pulling them off.

Keeping a little fire burning

Sometimes, I have been known to sit on the patio with liquid refreshments because I need to keep track of the smoker, and let’s face it – we all need fluids.  This is work, people.  Serious, hot, smoky work done from my Zero Gravity reclining lawn chair with a drink in my hand.

Margarita cocktail

Image via Wikipedia

Mine is a charcoal smoker, so I add charcoal briquets (without the nasty lighter fuel on it – gack!!), natural charcoal (which is already burned wood – who knew you could buy already burned wood!!), and chunks of hardwood (hickory) throughout the day. 

Supplies needed, in addition to lime juice, tequila, and salt

I check the coals every 1/2 hour or so, and add water to the water bowl as needed.  The water keeps things from drying out.  I keep a pan of water on top of the smoker so it is pretty well heated up when I add it (otherwise, adding cold water lowers the temperature in the smoker box).  There are little vents on the sides of the smoker and every once in awhile I’ll twist one open or closed, depending on how the temperature is holding.  I told you, this is very demanding work…I have to set down my book AND my drink to accomplish all this.

Anyway, if I haven’t passed out from the “refreshments” or managed to give myself a heatstroke from lounging in close proximity to the smoker in the bright Florida sun, I will end up with a delicious array of yumminess like this:

The dark outside is called the "bark" and the pink coloration is the "smoke ring"

Some of which I will serve today with strawberry shortcake for dessert (strawberries I picked yesterday at a friend’s farm).  My beloved husband will do all the clean-up.  And I will not cook for the rest of the week.

So, what have you been smokin’?

54 Comments

Filed under K8e's Kitchen, Uncategorized

Carsyn’s Cheesy Confetti Chowder

This little beauty is my youngest granddaughter, Carsyn.  She will be 5 in a couple of weeks.  She is a little spitfire with a quick laugh and equally quick temper.  She loves this soup.  The colorful diced veggies look like confetti and it is cheesy and tasty.  It is a lot of chopping and peeling, cooking and stirring, but she is worth it!!!

CARSYN’S CONFETTI CHOWDER

1 pound smoked sausage, diced (I’ve used turkey, but regular works well, too)

1 med onion, diced

1/2 each red, green, and yellow pepper, diced

2 stalks celery, diced

2 carrots, diced

1 cup frozen sweet corn

3-4 medium potatoes, peeled and diced

2 14-oz cans chicken broth

1 can evaporated skim milk

1/4 cup all purpose flour

8 oz Velveeta cheese cut into small cubes (or use “real” cheese, shredded, but Velveta melts better)

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine diced sausage, peppers, celery, carrots, corn, potatoes, and onion in soup pot with broth.  Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer until all vegetables are soft.  Combine flour and evaporated milk, and stir (or shake in covered container) until all lumps are gone.  With heat on med-low, add milk mixture, stirring until thickened.  Remove from heat and stir in Velvetta (or shredded cheese).  Continue to stir until cheese is melted.

I’m not sure how many servings this makes – probably 6-8 1 cup servings (or 4 servings if Carsyn is coming over).

29 Comments

Filed under General Mumblings, Soup Nazi

Katy’s Kick Ass Chili –

I’m not really interested in discussing whether true chili has beans or not, or whether it’s spelled chili or chile or chilly.  I’m not a purist – I just know what I like.

Okay, this is probably not for the kiddies or those with weak stomachs.  It is not blazing, kill-your-gut-hot, but you definitely will be aware you are eating chili and your sinuses will be cleaned out.  You are warned.

KATY’S KICK-ASS CHILI

1 pound HOT Italian sausage (I use turkey, usually, but regular will work)

1 diced onion

3-4 cloves chopped garlic

2 16-oz cans chili beans in hot sauce

2 14.5 oz cans petite diced tomatoes

1 14 oz can beef broth (you can use beer, but I usually drink that and use broth instead)

3 tablespoons chili powder

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp cinnamon

2 -3 Tbsp chopped hot jalapeno peppers (pickled), with 1-2 tsp of the juice

Shredded cheese for garnish (optional)

Brown sausage (if using links, remove from casing).  Add diced onion and sautee until onions are soft.  Add garlic and sautee 1-2 minutes longer, taking care not to scorch garlic, because that tastes bad.

Add remaining ingredients, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer gently for about an hour, stirring frequently, again taking care not to scorch – it just tastes bad (can you tell I’ve scorched it a couple of times?).  Garnish with shredded cheese, if desired.

You’re welcome.

If you’d like to share your chili recipe, I’d love that, too.  just put it in the comments or post a link.  If I make it and like it better than mine, I’ll declare you the winner.

30 Comments

Filed under General Mumblings, Soup Nazi