Monday, April 27, 2009

Marble Cookies

These are my favorite cookies, I think. It is a hard choice, because I am a cookie nut, but these are so divine, I think I may come out and say that they are my favorite. You have never tasted a cookie like this! I think that's what is so fantastic about them! The presentation is absolutely beautiful as well. The marble effect is so pretty and unique that it draws people to pick them right up and scarf. Please don't take this recipe for granted! Don't just cut and paste the recipe and print it out and never make them! You probably have all of the ingredients already... so get bakin'!

For a beginner, this recipe may be a little challenging. It's not really hard, but care is required when folding the chocolate into the dough, so if you have never had to do anything like this before, try it! I am sure you will do fine. You just don't want to over mix... try to slice your rubber spatula through the places where there is the most unmixed chocolate.

From the Mrs. Fields' Cookie Book & introduced to me by my SIL, Marta.

2 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. white sugar
1/2 c. butter, softened
1 large egg
1/2 c. sour cream
1 t. vanilla extract
1 c. chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In bowl, sift flour, baking powder and salt. In mixer, cream sugars and butter until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down bowl. Add egg, sour cream and vanilla and beat at medium speed until fluffy once more. Scrape bowl.

Add flour mixture and mix on low speed until just combined. Do not over mix.

Place chocolate in glass bowl and microwave on high in 30 second intervals, stirring in between, until melted. Let cool for 3-4 minutes. Pour evenly over batter in a drizzling-like fashion. Using the edge of a rubber spatula, fold in chocolate. Do not mix chocolate completely into the dough. It is OK to have larger streaks of dough and chocolate throughout. Drop by rounded tablespoons onto greased cookie sheets, about 1 1/2 inches apart.

Bake for 20-24 minuted until there is a faint hint of brown around the bottom edges of cookies. Move to a cool surface, such as a baking rack immediately. Makes 2 1/2 dozen.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Buffalo Pico Quesadillas with Black Beans

How the heck do you take a good picture of quesadillas? Anyway... these were GREAT. I absolutely loved them!! I had some pico de gallo left over from Sunday's Cafe Rio dinner that we had, so I thought I would use it up in some quesadillas. My husband and I always dip our quesadillas in Frank's Hot Sauce, so I included that spicy stuff right inside the 'dilla. For some added flavor, texture and protein, the black beans were the perfect choice.

My husband really doesn't care for leftovers. He doesn't usually like to eat the same thing 2 or 3 days in a row, or in the same week. However, I caught him, the very next day, making these quesdadillas for himself for lunch! That means he really liked them! I was proud.

8 large flour tortillas
2 large chicken breasts, cooked and shredded or chopped
1 can black beans, drained
2 c. pico de gallo*
1/4 c. Franks hot sauce (original or buffalo flavor is fine)
~1 c. monterrey Jack cheese, shredded
~1 c. cheddar, shredded

Heat a large, heavy skillet over med-high heat for 3-4 minutes until hot. Place 1 tortilla on skillet and, working quickly, sprinkle 1/4 c. (or more) monterrey jack over tortilla. Spread a handful of chicken, about 1/2 c. black beans, 1/2 c. pico de gallo, 1 T. Franks and 1/4 c. cheddar evenly as well. (Amounts are approximate... use your eye to judge how much of everything to put on.) Place another tortilla on top and check the bottom to see how brown it is. If the bottom tortilla is nicely browned already, then flip the quesadilla, swiftly, since you will have falling beans if it is flipped too slowly. Cook on the other side for 3 minutes or so until lightly browned. Slice with a pizza slicer into 6 or 8 slices. Serve hot with sour cream and/or guacamole for garnish.

Makes 4 quesadillas.

*For pico de gallo, chop up 3-4 roma tomatoes, 1 jalapeno and 1 small red onion and add ~1/3 c. chopped cilantro (more or less, depending on your taste) and about 2 T. lime juice. Toss.


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