Hatch-2013-4

It’s been 5 years since I first posted our tradition of putting up green chile for the freezer.  Time to update and revisit my favorite time of year.  It’s the time when the big trucks drive up, the roasters come out and they start to unload those fresh Green Chiles from The Land of Enchantment.  It’s Green Chile season and I’m in heaven.  I’ve lived away from NM over 20 years and other than my family, chile season is the time I miss most with the aroma of roasted chile in the air.  There’s nothing like it and the chile is so delicious right after it’s been roasted.  Several years ago they started bringing in truckloads of Hatch Chile to one of the grocery stores here in the Kansas City area and roasting it outside on the weekends.  Always before I had to ask my family back home to please put up some chile in the freezer for me.  They always came through but it’s really special to be able to put up my own and experience the aroma and taste firsthand.  This year they were especially meaty and hot.
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Peach-Fried-Pies-30

There’s nothing better than a ripe juicy peach in the summertime, at least I think so.  The only thing better is maybe a peach pie.  This summer I made fried pies and they couldn’t have turned out better. Smelling the freshly fried pastry dough with vanilla glaze took me back in time to when my Mom used to make glazed doughnuts.  She would fry them up and while they were still warm dip them in a glaze which tasted out of this world!!  I remember stuffing my face with them as fast as she could make them.  I don’t mean to say fried pies are like doughnuts but the aroma is very similar. I found some locally grown peaches that were ripe and so sweet, perfect for a pie filling.  I can’t wait to make more, maybe try some with berries, cinnamon apples or lemon curd.
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Calypso-Cookies-13

I made these cookies for a good friend of mine.  On a recent trip to Florida she found these delectable Calypso cookies at Publix Bakery which is a popular chain in the South.  They are oatmeal based with coconut and pecans.  She wanted to recreate these cookies and asked if I would give it a try.  After researching online I found many copycat recipes with which to work with.  Now I have to say I’m not really a coconut person and usually avoid it but after trying these cookies I was pleasantly surprised.  The flavors are well balanced without the strong coconut flavor that usually overwhelms me.  I think they taste pretty close to the original Publix cookies.  Let me know what you think!
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Enchilada-Burgers-12

I love burgers, all kinds of burgers, even burgers that take on a different identity.  Occasionally I come across a menu that serves a burger with a fried egg on top.  I’m not sure an ordinary burger with a fried egg  is that appealing to me but I did start to consider the possibilities.  The burger that kept coming to mind was an enchilada burger with a fried egg dripping yolk over the sides with melting cheese and a ground beef patty drenched in chile.  I’m partial to red chile enchiladas, but Joe prefers green so I made one of each.  There’s no way to pick these up and take a bite without something good dripping from you chin so it’s best to eat with a knife and fork.  I promise, these burgers taste delicious and are by no means ordinary!
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Espresso-Tres-Leches-Cake-22

Ever since I made my first Tres Leches Cake I’ve dreamed of a coffee infused version.  I’m a big fan of coffee flavored desserts and this tops my list.  The three milks that are soaked into the cake have been infused with Espresso beans to give it that coffee taste. Unless you’ve had it you just can’t imagine how cool and moist this cake is.  It’s a little slice of heaven with a cloud of whipped cream over top.  Enough said . . . Enjoy!
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Pork-and-Veggie-Potstickers-15

Today marks 5 years of An Inspired Cook!  I never thought this venture would be so rewarding, but it has truly been a lifesaver for me.  I love that my favorite recipes will forever have a place for my kids and family to go to for inspiration and bring back memories of our time together around the kitchen table.  I look back on the past 5 years as a labor of love, one that I have enjoyed so much more than I would have ever imagined.  I’ve been on an Asian food kick lately, partly because it’s so easy to make especially on these hot summer days when it’s just too darn hot to turn on the oven.  These potstickers are so good I made extra to put in the freezer.  I found that making fresh potstickers take only a few minutes to prepare and frozen take about 2 to 3 minutes more. What could be better than that!  I packaged 18 dumplings per freezer bag and thought we’d have enough for several weeks.  Turns out they are more popular than I thought and are just about gone.  I guess it’s time to make some more!
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Pan-Fried-Tacos-with-Ground-Beef,-Potato,-and-Green-Chile-13

Last fall Joe and I went to Old Settlers Day which is a local festival here in Olathe.  The streets are blocked off for a few days as people gather for concerts, arts and crafts, an old car show and a parade.  As we were walking through the streets checking out the arts and crafts, we saw a lot of folks eating tacos that caught our eye.  I could tell that they were made with flour tortillas but they were crisp and browned on the outside.  As we neared the food vendors we found a group of boy scouts selling “Pan Fried Tacos”.  I watched as they prepared them with taco meat and then placed them in a skillet with a little bit of oil to crisp and brown them, first on one side, then the other.  Before they handed them over they topped them with shredded lettuce, chopped onion, tomato and grated cheese.   I had to try one and it was love at first bite!  Flour tortillas aren’t usually my first choice for tacos however the pan fried method gives the tortillas a crisp and crunchy texture which also makes them taste so good.
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