ladysbeans

Stay at home mom spilling the beans on everyday life!


Leave a comment

Homemade Pierogi

Maybe you’ve bought the Pierogi from your grocer’s freezer… I have, I used to buy them all the time. They are very good. But “very good” doesn’t sit well with me. I mean, I’d eat them anyway. Especially for a quick lunch. You just take them out of the bad, frozen, and throw them in a frying. Done. That’s it.
So I got to thinking one day that this is something I could make myself, and instead of “very good” they could be AMAZING.
I feel like food should make you dance. And giggle. I giggle a lot when I eat. Food excites me, I cant help it. I’m a Foodie.
These homemade pierogi are the the kind of thing that you have to set at least 2 hours aside for. (It used to take me 3 or 4)
Perfect for a rainy day. Just like Chicken and Dumplings.
(Once I make that again, I’ll it too)
The dough for the pierogi is great for other recipes, I plan on using this to make those delicious little Chinese dumplings one day. You can pretty much stuff the dough with anything you want! Ideal, right? Once recipe for multiple things?!

INGREDIENTS: DOUGH

3 1/2c. Flour
3 Eggs
2 Tbsp Sour cream
1/2-3/4c. Water

INGREDIENTS: FILLING

1 1/2 lbs Baking potatoes
2 Tbsp Butter
1 Tbsp Olive oil
1 Small onion, chopped
1 Clove garlic, minced (sometimes I use 2 cloves, but I LOVE GARLIC)
1c. Dried farmer’s cheese (I use fresh Romano or Parmesan)
Salt, pepper, sage, thyme, rosemary and parsley (I dont have exact measurements for these, I just throw it all in)

DIRECTIONS: DOUGH

In a large bowl combine flour, eggs, water and sour cream. Turn dough onto a well flour surface and knead for 3-5 minutes (slightly sticky)
Wrap dough in plastic wrap and let rest 20 minutes.

10487493_10204681717466884_2658093830471323479_n

DIRECTIONS: FILLING

Boil potatoes in salted water for 20 minutes.
Melt butter and oil in frying pan. Add onion, garlic and seasonings. Caramelize. about 20 minutes.
Drain and mash potatoes. Add caramelized mixture, cheese and taste test! Add salt and pepper to taste.

10533737_10204681779308430_6420455127979269207_n

ASSEMBLE AND COOK:

Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
Pinch of Tablespoon size portions of the dough and roll into balls. (About 3 dozen total)
On a well floured surface roll each dough ball into a flat round. Cover with a damp paper towel so the dough doesn’t dry out.
Once dough is rolled out hold each round in the palm of your hand while filling with a generous amount of potato filling.
Fold in half and pinch edges together, set aside.

Drop no more than 6 pierogi into boiling water. Once they float allow to boil for about 3 minutes.

SAUTE AND SERVE:

I put a stick of butter into the frying pan and allow to melt. Add pierogi. Saute until each side is golden brown.

You can top these with a gravy, personally I just enjoy them from the butter! Delicious!!

Before and after:
1897989_10204681728107150_5874987869113026140_n

This recipe usually produces about 3 dozen if you do the tablespoon sized dough ball… Before you fry them (after boiled) you can allow to cool and then freeze them for future meals.
I tend to make mine on the bigger side. I almost never get a whole 3 dozen.
if you’ve frozen them, you can just fry them up like they are fresh and enjoy!


1 Comment

Best Vanilla cake and Buttercream Frosting

I have hunted and hunted for the best vanilla cake recipe that didnt taste like box cake, and that didnt call for expensive cake flour…
Vanilla is my 3 year old’s favorite cake. Thats what she wanted for her birthday. I dont do box cakes. Well box anything really, I am always trying to find recipes that I can make myself.

After *many* failed attempts, I finally have the perfect vanilla cake recipe!

This cake is moist without sticking to your pallet, with a nice crust on top. I know, I know that sounds weird right? WRONG! Its amazing!
Not too sweet, not too bland. OMG, I think I have to have a piece RIGHT NOW.

10500552_10204598936557413_8671873340818017496_n

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 stick of butter (I use salted) Room Temp.
2c granulated sugar
1c milk (WHOLE, it has more flavor)
2tsp. Vanilla extract *
4 lg. eggs
3/4c veg. oil
2 1/2c AP flour
2 1/4 tsp baking powder
*Use PURE vanilla extract, otherwise you’ll get that yucky after taste. It can be pretty expensive. I buy the bulk size at Wal-Mart of the McCormick brand. I think its $9. But it lasts forever. And trust me, I bake A LOT.

DIRECTIONS:

Cream butter, sugar. Add eggs one and a time.
Add milk, vanilla and oil.
Then add your baking powder.
Slowly add in your flour.

10502051_10204598938797469_3052344444505235844_n
Splash guard doesnt really help me… =[ Ha!

10501627_10204598938997474_1740581667929859396_n

Grease your pan with Crisco! It works the best! And then I dust it with flour and the cake just POPS right out!!

10574237_10204598938637465_9182133888010706064_n

Bake at 350 degrees…
If you want to make cupcakes the baking time is right around 20 minutes.
I use two 9″ cake pans and bake for 40 minutes

Okay so I have issues with buttercream. I LOVE it, except when I go to a bakery or restaurant.. It always is either WAAAAY too sweet or tastes like butter… Gross. But here is a buttercream that is sure to knock your socks off. It really is the bees knees! Ha!

BUTTERCREAM:

3c. Conf. sugar
1c. Butter (again I use salted)
1tsp. Vanilla (again PURE vanilla extract)
1-2 Tbsp Heavy whipping cream (more or less depending on desired consistency)

You can also add 1/2tsp-1tsp of other flavored extracts! For this cake in particular I used raspberry! Pairs very well with vanilla..


Leave a comment

Three Ingredient Blueberry Jam

I know I’ve said it a few times before, but i absolutely HATE pectin!!! I only use fresh lemon juice to bind my jams, it’s wonderful!

The family and I went blueberry picking a few days ago, late in the evening since it is so hot here now!! 90*+ is NOT my ideal weather. Any who… We ended up with about 11 pounds of blueberries!

10463056_10204449403979192_297720107960547884_n

10514499_10204449404899215_1896126058006780180_n

All the recipes I’ve found online are loaded with sugar and use pectin. Ugh. Trail and Error it is.
Can you imagine using 6 or more cups of sugar for one mason jar of jam?! People are nuts!

INGREDIENTS:

10c. Blueberries
2c. Sugar
1/4c. Fresh lemon juice

That’s it! I could hardly believe it was so easy! And delicious!!

DIRECTIONS:

I put all 10C of berries in my heavy bottom pot to heat them up, once they starting bursting, I transferred them to my blender to make sure all the berries were busted. (You can use a food processor, it would probably be easier, I just dont have one… yet!)
Once I put it back into the pot I added the sugar and lemon juice. Bring to a boil. Constantly stirring, so it doesn’t burn, allow to boil for about 30 minutes.
This can get tiring. It’s totally worth it!
Remove from heat, ladle into a mason jar and VOILA!
Yields about 3C. I know, I know… after 10C of berries I thought there would be more too. But its so damned delicious all that doesn’t matter!!

blueberry jam

While the jam was still hot, I made biscuits…

10443358_10204510733552393_3766782707445199049_n
I found this cute little heart shaped bowl on clearance at the World Market when we first bought the house. I think I only paid $2 for it! So I grabbed a few ❤


1 Comment

Buffalo Chicken Garbage Bread

IMG_0433

Garbage bread, calzones and stromboli are a couple of my family’s favorite dishes. Especially my mom’s! Every time she comes down to visit me, that’s her request for dinner! Ha! I love to put any thing and everything into my garbage bread. Hence the name! It should be called “Everything but the kitchen sink bread!”

Any way. My brother is here and asked me to make his favorite, buffalo chicken.

**Side note**
Just incase you don’t know the difference between the 3. A garbage bread is characterized by the bread dough rather than a pizza dough, and rolled.
Calzone is basically just a pizza folded in half and then baked.
Stromboli (My personal favorite) uses pizza dough, it is rolled up into itself like a garbage bread, but it’s sauce-less! That’s what I like the best about it!

Back to my point!!

INGREDIENTS:

1lb of chicken breasts cut up into bite sized chunks
2 jalapenos
Ranch dressing
Frank’s Red Hot Buffalo Sauce
Shredded cheddar cheese
Shredded mozzarella cheese

DIRECTIONS:

sauté the chicken in a frying pan. I like to pour in some Frank’s to soak up the flavor. I DONNOT cook the chicken all the way through so it doesn’t dry out in the oven.
IMG_0426

While that is cooking I roll out my bread dough (which you can buy in the freezer section at Wal-Mart)
Pour on some more Frank’s and some Ranch dressing, keeping slightly back from the edges.

IMG_0428

Add the chicken, cheese and the diced jalapenos
IMG_0427

IMG_0429

Roll the garbage bread by pulling the top over first and then fold in the sides as you roll so that nothing drips out!
IMG_0430

Transfer to baking sheet, cut 3 slits to allow for venting. I like to put parsley and garlic powder on top.
IMG_0431
IMG_0432

Bake according to the directions from the bread dough! I baked mine at 425 for 20 minutes.

IMG_0434

ENJOY!


4 Comments

Banana/Pineapple Jam! Pectin Free!!

OOOh yesss you’ve read that right!! Banana and pineapple jam! I have been a jam maniac lately!!

I came across a recipe for Monkey Butter. It looked great..except I don’t eat coconut. So I left it out, altered the ingredients slightly. And came up with my jam 🙂

INGREDIENTS:

1 pineapple chopped up
6 peeled bananas (starting to get spots)
1c. sugar
4-5 TBSP fresh lemon juice

IMG_0423

My bananas are on the really brown side. I feel this allows me to use less sugar! Making it healthier for you!!

DIRECTIONS:

chop up the pineapple and put into a blender or food processor, pour into pot.
peel bananas and also whip them up in the food processor. Add to pot.
Add the sugar and the lemon juice, bring to a boil on medium heat. Boil for about 30 minutes. Until mixture begins to thicken.
Ladle into jars.
Makes about 3 cups of jam.

IMG_0424

I really think the key here is to use fresh lemon juice! DO NOT USE PECTIN. Ha! Lemon juice gives my jam such a nice consistency.
IMG_0425

This recipe doubles very nicely!!

ENJOY!!


Leave a comment

Easy Peasy Peach Jam Pectin Free!!

If I couldn’t stress anything more it would be my loathing for pectin. period. I hate the stuff. Maybe its just me, like some people don’t like using yeast… I don’t know.. Any who.

 

Lemon juice is a natural pectin! It works wonders! I love the consistency it gives my jams.

Ingredients:

3lbs peaches, diced. No need to peel

1/4C fresh squeezed lemon juice, about 1 good sized lemon.

2.5C sugar (or more if your peaches aren’t very sweet, less if they are very sweet)

 

I put my diced peaches in a really big bowl, poured lemon juice on top. Fold to coat. Add sugar. Fold to coat.

Then I covered it and left it on the counter for about 2 hours.

Pour into large sauce pan, bring to a boil. Boil for 25-30. It will start getting thick, no quiet coating the spoon.

Remove from heat and ladle into mason jars.

Mine doesn’t last for very long, the kids burn through it. But you can refrigerate for up to a month or freeze for several months!

Peach jam in winter!!

 

Peach Jam

 


Leave a comment

Lemonade!

The other day my husband and I stopped at a state farmer’s market. Our 8 year old daughter spotted a man selling a crate that contained 115 lemons for $44. Needless to say she talked her dad into buying them for her so she can have a lemonade stand.
That meant that I had to come up with a recipe. So I googled and googled, made variations and here it is!

 

lemonade1

 

I used 2 C. of fresh squeezed juice. About a dozen good sized lemons.

 

In a sauce pan I brought 3C. water to a boil and added 2C. sugar. Waited for it to dissolve and took it off the heat.

 

After it cooled I added a couple ladles of the syrup to the lemon juice in a pitcher and 8C cold water, filled the rest with ice.

If you prefer a sweeter lemonade you can add more of the syrup you made. We like ours on the tart side 😉

 

lemonade2

 

I’m thinking about throwing a cup or so of frozen raspberries to flavor it, I would suppose you could also put some tequila in there too if you were feeling naughty!

 

ENJOY!