Sunday, April 24, 2011

What To Do With Leftover Cereal

Gosh I cannot believe I have not posted this yet. I was telling a friend Bill about how I came up with ways to use the last crumbs of cereal in the box, and how they are keeping hubby from the candy machines at work.

I could not believe hubby told me when during late afternoon hunger moments he was getting junk food out of the machines in the break room. He never does that! Never! He feels why waste calories on bad chocolate or chips. If you cannot eat the good stuff don't bother with the rest.

So I have been taking the left over cereal in the bottom of our boxes, dumping them in a container, or freezer bag and once every two weeks combing them with either fresh or frozen fruit to make this recipe below. This particular recipe has some left over whole grain pancake mix added, so this batch came out a bit like cake.

Here is the recipe I found, but below is how I changed things...

Cereal Bars

1 cup white sugar
1 cup light corn syrup (sugar is sugar)
1-1/2 cups peanut butter
7 cups high protein crisp rice and wheat cereal
1 cup peanut butter chips
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

You are suppose to heat up the sugar and peanut butter, then pour it over the cereal in a greased pan. I figure why dirty another pan!

My version...

1/2 cup honey (or half/half corn syrup, or half brown sugar)
4 melted tablespoons butter
1 cup peanut butter (also used almond or cashew butter, but also left it out)
3 cups left over cereal (now most have some kind of sugar and it sinks to bottom of boxes, but if yours is sugar free you will have to add the above, but cut sugar by 1/2 above)
3 cups rice krispy style cereal or granola (you can substitute 1/2 with whole grain pancake mix)
1 cup frozen or fresh fruit (I have found frozen release moisture into mix and they turn out better)
1 cup white chocolate or regular chocolate chips
3 ounces chopped nuts of your choice

Mix cereal well in bowl; add fruit, chocolate, butter and peanut butter, and choice of sweetner above. Press down FIRMLY into oiled pan, and bake in 350 degree oven for 20-30 minutes (depends on thickness of mixture). Do not over cook or it will be too hard to cut. Cool and then turn onto a cutting board to slice.

I have played with many cereals and ingredients in making this recipe, and the have all turned out fine. I cut them into squares and wrap for freezer. Hubby said they are great frozen, or you can take a few out that morning.

Do not forget to comment on my facebook page if you want to receive a free filter water pitcher!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Inspired Water?

Because I am losing weight, fighting high blood pressure and kidney stones requires me to drink lots, lots, lots, lots, and lots of water. So much so we keep bottles upstairs. Then I thought about how many water bottles, even after we recycle, they still end up in waste sites. We bought a large counter top water filtering system. We once used tap filters, but after spending so much on new ones, because they are not one size fit all as we have moved from Texas to Saint Louis, then to New Jersey, we decided to go the counter top route.

What!!! Did I just post about filtering water? Oh yes I did. Okay I said there would be no more corporate shilling on here, but I could not help it. I discontinued answering the dozens of request CookAppeal gets for "Your time and efforts will be appreciated and well compensated"...yeah right!

Well a company contacted me about testing out a sleek new water filtering system. This is one thing we do in my house. We use a large ten gallon system that sits on my counter. If you have seen my galley kitchen, well counter space is vastly over used, because I have none! Their verbage and description of 'Sleek' got my attention, and the fact we could use another one upstairs and for traveling. Outside of designing hamster bottles for the wall, this was the next best thing.

So, I said yes to the 'MAVEA', the North-American division of Brita Germany, just came out with a sleek, new design for a premium water filtration pitcher called the Elemaris'. I saw they retail for about $30 or so on-line.

We followed the directions and voila! I know have a nice water picture sitting upstairs, actually you can carry it all around. Spring is here, so I imagine it will end up on the patio with me and friends! *hint hint* I can see Velva @ Tomatoes on the Vine or Greg @ Sippity Sup using the fresh filtered water for one of their cocktail recipes! Want one for yourself? Let me know on facebook you are interested and we will see what we can do!

Winners will be announced May 2nd! You can find them on facebook 'Inspired Water', comment on my facebook page 'CookAppeal', if you want to enter to win your own pitcher!

Come on, do your part in helping the planet and try a water filtering system...yeah! I am water shilling...

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Spinach and Ricotta Pie

Bo @ Bo's Bowl a while back made a Spinach and Ricotta Pie that looked so good, I had to make one. Of course when it was all said and done, his looks much prettier.

One reason being...I could not find my pie pan, so I used a tort pan; it was over flowing with the spinach mixture. Oh well, it still tasted wonderful!

Go check out his blog and look at some of his latest tasty creations. There are so many of you I wish were my neighbor. *Knock knock* I'm on my way over!

PS- After careful consideration of comment issues and with my busy cooking, teaching, writing schedule lately I am finding it harder and harder to monitor and reply to comments.  I also am taking a few months in the summer to travel down to Texas. Some of you will be seeing me in person! I will still be visiting those of you out there when I can. I began this blog to document my foodie adventures so family and friends could look for recipes or ideas, and have enjoyed doing so. In a recent blog etiquette site I read that comments are really only a percentage of readership (I do take time to read every word of the blogs I follow. I hope you do too).

If you do not agree with my choice, then what can I say, I do have the right to run this blog the way I see fit, Dealing with the death of my daughter and many other issues over the course of the past years, I have decided to put the negative issues on here behind me. However, I will never stop blogging, no matter what is said or done to me. Those of you that know me personally, know me on facebook.

Thank you.

Elizabeth Akin Stelling (facebook name as requested)

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Chili Shrimp With Goat Cheese and Potatoes

I have been craving Indian food so much lately. Not sure why, because I make lots of spicy food. But one dish I have not had in a while is something my chef friends Naveen and Amarjet would make- Chili Shrimp and Potatoes. Often we would make them separately, but now and then I make them together.

Not having all the ingredients for the original dish, I decided to re-create it with a twist of goat cheese.

Frozen  or fresh shrimp (12 or more) works- rinsed, and pat dry. Juice of half a lime. Chop cilantro, about a hand full; six scallions, up past their greens, and a teaspoon full of grated ginger. Mix with a teaspoon of chili paste, and mix all ingredients with shrimp; then let sit for about 15 minutes.

Heat your pan to medium high, add 1/4 chopped onion in three tablespoon oil; saute onion until they become translucent, remove from heat and add shrimp. The heat of the pan will continue to cook shrimp mixture. Add a splash of white wine, and shrimp mixture; then stir in a handful of goat cheese (I added 1/4 cup and feel it was too much). The goat cheese will melt to a degree, but that is okay since I had no yogurt which is more typical for this dish.

Toss five medium potatoes with olive oil, salt, pepper, lemon zest, and a squeeze of half lemon. Roast in 375 degree oven until tender and begins to brown.

Serve with shrimp mixture over potatoes and with a green salad or in our case I made collard greens.

Watch the chili paste, this was a bit too hot for even me!

Chili Paste- Grated Ginger, Thai Chili Paste (you also can use Harissa, I like the flavor better) , Minced Garlic, Mix in extra olive oil and place in container. I often freeze this mixture, and use as needed.