Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

I really do believe that buttermilk makes everything taste better! This dressing is delicious, and there's something about knowing exactly what ingredients go into your food, sans any weird preservatives. Granted, it won't last months in your refrigerator, but if your family uses ranch like we do, that won't be a problem. :) I recommend halving this recipe if you have a smaller family.

-Aunt Kristi

2 cups mayonnaise
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 tsp. parsley
1 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper

Shake and store in a quart-size canning jar. Best if mixed together the day before, but not a must. Refrigerate and discard unused portion after approximately 1 week - depending on how fresh your buttermilk is.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Flour Tortillas

The last time I tried to make tortillas they turned out like flat biscuits. :(
I decided I'd give it another try and these turned out a lot better. I think letting the dough rest for an hour made a big difference. I rolled out the dough on my silpat, rolling it as thin as I could and cooked them in a dry cast-iron skillet on medium-low.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup lard (I used shortening, but I think next time I'll try a combination of bacon fat & shortening
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 cup warm water

Stir together flour with salt in a bowl, then cut in lard with a pastry blender or your fingertips until the mixture resembles meal. Drizzle vegetable oil over and stir in warm water with a fork until a dough forms. Knead on a lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 4 minutes, dusting hands occasionally with flour if dough is sticky.

Form dough into a ball, cover with plastic wrap, and let rest 1 hour. Heat a dry well-seasoned cast-iron comal, regular griddle, or skillet over moderately low heat until hot. Cut dough into 12 equal pieces and form into balls.

When rolling out 1 ball at a time with dowel, use just enough flour to prevent dough from sticking; you don't want excess flour coming off on the comal. Keep remaining dough covered with plastic wrap. Roll out each ball into a 7-inch round, maintaining an even thinness as you roll. Cook 1 tortilla on comal as you roll the next.

Tortilla will bubble and puff, and bottom will be browned in spots in 45 seconds. Turn it over and cook second side in same way, moving tortilla around to compensate for any hot spots on comal if necessary. Transfer to a kitchen towel. Stack and cover tortillas as cooked. They can be frozen (cool thoroughly first). Rewarm thawed tortillas on comal before using.

Green Chile Burros/Soft Tacos

This is a great 'pantry-friendly' meal that comes together quickly. I pulled this recipe from the Mesa Home Storage Booklet because it had the instructions written out :) , but my mom always makes hers almost exactly the same way - yum!

2 pints/large cans beef chunks (home bottled, or Kirkland brand)
2-3 Tbsp. flour
1 cup picante salsa
1 (4 oz) can chopped green chiles
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
Jalapenos, optional
Flour tortillas
Shredded cheddar cheese
Shredded lettuce
Chopped Tomato
Sour Cream

Saute onions in a little oil until soft, not brown. Drain the beef chunks and reserve the liquid. Add the chiles and the salsa to the onions and heat. Add flour to 1/4 cup of the liquid from the beef chunks to make a paste. Add remaining juice to the mixture, add more water as needed. Separate meat with fork and add to the mixture. Add the flour paste to the mixture and heat until thick enough to place on tortillas. You may add jalapenos if you like the extra heat. Garnish as desired.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Peach Bavarian Jello

This is another one of my favorites that my mom made for us growing up. It's now one of our family favorites. I'm pretty sure this one came from Taste of Home too - gotta love it.

- Mom Pulsipher

1 can (16 oz.) sliced peaches
2 pkg (3 oz each) peach gelatin
2 cups boiling water
1/8 tsp. almond extract
1 carton Cool-Whip - thawed
Additional peaches, optional

Drain peaches, reserving 2/3 cup juice. Chop peaches into small pieces; set aside. In a bowl, dissolve gelatin and sugar in boiling water. Stir in reserved syrup. Chill until slightly thickened. Stir extract into whipped topping; gently fold in gelatin mixture. Fold in peaches. Pour into a 6-cup mold (spray with Pam). Chill overnight. Unmold; garnish with additional peaches if desired. Yield: 8-10 servings.