Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Holiday Chex Mix

Those of you who know me know that there's nothing I love more than Christmastime. Maybe that's a bit of an overstatement, but seriously. I. love. Christmas. And I also know there are people out there who don't want to think about or see anything Christmas related until after Thanksgiving, and I can respect that. That's why I decided to do this recipe as a pre-holiday post, because although it represents holidays in my mind, it isn't necessarily a holiday recipe. But it's an all time favorite of my family thanks to my Nana. And I hope to keep it going for many generations. ok, here it is:

  • 5 cups chex cereal
  • 3 cups pretzels
  • 1 cup peanuts
  • 3 Tbsp butter melted
  • 1/4 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/4 tsp onion salt
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1. Combine the cereal, pretzels, and nuts into a 9x13 inch baking pan. Set aside.
2. In a small bowl, mix the remaining ingredients and pour over cereal mixture, making sure to evenly coat the mix. Use a spoon to mix ingredients well with the "sauce." Bake at 250 degrees for 45 minutes, pausing every 15 mins to stir the mixture.

(The recipe actually calls for 7 cups chex cereal, 1 cup pretzels and 1 cup peanuts. I prefer more pretzels in mine, so as long as you have 9 cups total mix, feel free to change the proportions up as desired!)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Secret to Baking Powder biscuits...

and the secret is... BAKING POWDER! Ok, so your saying to yourself that is not quite a secret. Well, I beg to differ.

Commercial, double acting baking powder loses its effectiveness with age. And how fast do you really use a can of baking powder? So mine is always old and less effective. So to save your pocketbook and make your biscuits extra light and fluffy, mix your own baking powder before you use it!

DIY Baking Powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
1/4 tsp. cornstarch
= 1 tsp. baking powder

You can also make it in larger batches (although still small enough you will use it quickly).
**Hint: cornstarch soaks up moisture so the mixture will store well. You can leave it out if you are mixing it up to use immediately.**

I used it in my last batch and even with whole wheat flour they were light and fluffy!

Baking Powder Biscuits
2 C. flour (I like to use at least 1/2 whole wheat)
1 Tbp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/3 C. shortening
3/4 C. milk

Mix dry ingredients. Use a pastry cutter, fork, or your fingers to "cut" the shortening into the dry mix. Add the milk and mix until wet. Knead the dougha few times and roll out on a floured surface until 1/2" thick. Cut with a biscuit cutter or something else to make them nice and round. Bake on 450 degrees F for 10-12 minutes or until browning.

Baking Powder Drop Biscuits
Use the same steps as above but increase the milk to 1 C. and drop by spoonfuls onto a greased baking sheet. Cook the same.

Next time I will give you something extra yummy to eat them with!