"Food is our common ground, a universal experience." - James Beard

Sunday, August 29, 2010

100th Post!!! ...and the first cookbook giveaway!!

This is my 100th blog post since starting Recipes from Newlyweds last August. I have had so much fun collecting and sharing recipes. Writing the blog has given me a great excuse to try new recipes and keeps me motivated not to just fall back into the same old things!

I truly appreciate all of you who have sent recipes for me to post on my blog! I have loved trying them! When I started the blog last year, I wanted to create a way that I could trade recipes with friends who were trying fun, new things in their kitchens - so please keep them coming! You can e-mail them to me at recipesfromnewlyweds@gmail.com.

I'm hoping to have a few updates, like having an easy-access recipe index. Until then, the label cloud and search bar to the right can help you find past recipes by keywords or ingredients. If you haven't been following from the beginning, please go back and check out the older recipes. I occasionally go back and update recipes as I remake them and have new ideas. If you've made any of the recipes, I would love to get your thoughts and ideas about them in the comments section (I love comments!).

To celebrate my 100th post, I'm having my first giveaway! I hope that I will be able to have more in the future and have been talking with some folks about getting some promotional copies of really great cookbooks! The cookbook that I will be giving away this week is called, Mmmm Casseroles. In talking with some of you before, I know we’ve said that good nightly dinners can be difficult to find. So this cookbook features great casseroles and other one-dish meals, like stews and savory cobblers. Each person is allowed two entries in the giveaway. You can enter by leaving a comment on this post and by becoming a follower of the blog. If you are already a follower and would like two entries, let me know in your comment. Having more followers means that I will probably be able to get more companies to give us promotional cookbooks in the future! Please enter before Friday, September 3rd at 8:00 am. I will then be using a website to randomly pick a winner and will ship the cookbook. I hope you will all be part of my first giveaway!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Thelma's Cake - from Melissa

This is a recipe for a wonderful chocolate chip bundt cake. It is so yummy and really easy to make! The hardest part is definitely grating the chocolate - but it's worth it! Melissa and Ryan have brought it to several family functions (it's one of his family's recipes). But, I finally got the chance to make it for get-together with friends a few weeks ago. It's super moist and great for any time of the year!

Thelma's Cake
1 box yellow cake mix
1 box vanilla pudding mix
4 eggs
1 cup oil
1 cup milk
1 German Chocolate bar (grated)
1/2 bag chocolate chips

Mix the first 5 ingredients well. Then fold in chocolate (grated and chips). Cook in a well greased bundt pan at 350 degrees for 50 minutes or until well done. Sprinkle with powdered sugar after cooking, if desired.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Chocolate Chip Cheese Ball - from BLC

My friend, BLC, mentioned this wonderful appetizer several times. I finally got the chance to taste it... and oh my goodness!!! It is amazing! I'm so glad she shared the recipe!

Chocolate Chip Cheese Ball
1 pkg. (8oz.) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/4 tsp. vanilla
2 Tbs. brown sugar
3/4 cup confectioners sugar
3/4 cup mini chocolate chips
Graham Crackers or Teddy Grahams

Combine cream cheese, butter, & vanilla until creamy. Add in sugars and mix until blended. Finally, stir in the chocolate chips. But the mixture into the fridge to cool for a little bit. Then form it into a ball. Serve with Graham Crackers or Teddy Grahams.

*BLC is such a sweet friend and so much fun! Click on the link if you'd like to see her super stylish blog, The Company She Keeps. She originally got this recipe from her friend, Hopsy. Visit Hopsy's fun blog at Monograms and Manicures.*

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Tuesday's Tips - Grilled Chicken

Whenever I feel like it's time to start eating healthier, I always go straight to grilled chicken. But, I know it can get tiring to eat the same grilled chicken every time. Kent and I have a few different ways that we marinate chicken. We usually salt and pepper two chicken breasts and place them in a ziplock bag along with some seasoning to marinate for about 30 minutes before cooking. The chicken can be grilled on an outdoor grill, grilled on an indoor grill pan, or simply cooked in a skillet. These are some of our favorite ways to marinate chicken that we've found so far. Please feel free to share if you have any ideas! I'm always looking for new ways to cook chicken!

Lemon and Thyme Chicken
Just squeeze one lemon over the salted and peppered chicken in the ziplock bag. Then put several teaspoons of thyme leaves into the bag (either fresh or dried). Make sure to evenly distribute the thyme. Then put the chicken back in the refrigerator until it's time to grill. Be careful not to leave the chicken too long after you've put lemon juice on it - the acids in the lemon juice can start to precook the chicken! (A variation of this marinade would be to use rosemary in place of the thyme.)

Mexican Beer Chicken
Squeeze the juice of one lime over the salted and peppered chicken in a ziplock bag. Add several teaspoons of cilantro and and several teaspoons of taco or fajita seasoning to the bag and distribute evenly. Then add a few splashes of beer. Let the chicken sit for at least 30 minutes before grilling.

You could always use a premade seasoning, like Dales, or create a similar marinade by combining Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Cheesecake - from Kate W. B.

Kate brought this wonderful cheesecake to our graduation cookout last weekend. This is a great recipe because you don't have to bake the cheesecake in a waterbath like some cheesecake recipes - and it still has the great cheesecake texture! She brought cut strawberries to top off her cake - yum!
*If you want to hear more from Kate, check out her fun blog, "Bookworm to Bombshell.*

You need two 9-inch graham cracker crusts(Keebler).

3 packages (8oz.) cream cheese
1 cup of sugar
3 eggs
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Whip cream cheese(softened), adding sugar. Beat until smooth. Add eggs one at a time while beating. Add vanilla. Pour into pie shells. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes.

1 pint sour cream (16oz.)
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Whip sour cream. Mix in sugar and vanilla. Pour over baked pies. Bake for 5 minutes at 500 degrees. Cool and enjoy! Refrigerate.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Southwestern Pasta Salad

This weekend Kent and I hosted a cookout for the folks that I graduated with from graduate school this summer. Sheree brought this amazing Southwestern Pasta Salad (recipe from allrecipes.com). It's a perfect side dish for summer cookouts and would make a great lunch with added grilled chicken. I will definitely be making this soon!

Southwestern Pasta Salad
1/2 (16 ounce) package rotini pasta
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons chili powder, or to taste
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 1/2 cups whole kernel corn
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
1 cup chopped roma (plum) tomatoes

1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.
2. In a large bowl combine oil, lime juice, chili powder, cumin, salt and garlic. Stir in pasta and set aside to cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally.
3. Stir in corn, beans, green pepper, red pepper and 1/2 of the cilantro leaves. Spoon onto a platter and garnish with tomatoes and remaining cilantro. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Cream Cheese Mints

I made these mints for a baby shower this weekend. I found the recipe in Southern Lady Magazine a few months ago and had been waiting for a good excuse to make them! They tasted so great and are really easy to make - no cooking required!

Cream Cheese Mints
1 (3 oz) package cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 teaspoon peppermint oil*
4 cups confectioners' sugar
1 -2 drops of food coloring (optional)

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or wax paper. In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese, shortening, and peppermint oil with a mixer until smooth. Gradually add confectioners' sugar, beating until well combined. (Dough will be soft and elastic.) Add in food coloring, if desired. Roll dough into small balls, and place each ball on prepared baking sheet. Press fork into each ball to flatten. Cover baking sheet with plastic wrap, and chill mints overnight.

*I didn't have peppermint oil, so I used 1/4 teaspoon of peppermint extract instead.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Cookbook Sale!!!

I found this wonderful website the other day called, One Kings Lane. They have different home goods on sale each day. They have great things for decorating, serving, and traveling. Each day they release new items from a company/designer for sale. Each sale last 72 hours, but they always have different sales going on at the same time. One of the sales going on right now is for Random House Publishing. They have cookbooks from great chefs and writers (like Mark Bittman, Ina Garten, and Julia Child) on sale for up to 70% off. If you're looking for a new interesting cookbook, you should definitely give this website a look... but hurry!! The sale ends Monday!!
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