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Strawberry-Basil Lemonade

I had to tweak this recipe once I made exactly as written. I used bottled lemon juice, but with no extra sugar and using up all the strawberry basil syrup, it was tart on lemon flavor and weak on the syrup. Thankfully I had some Torani's raspberry and huckleberry syrup on hand as I didn't have enough strawberries to make more, nor the desire to make another batch.

This has potential, but instead of plain lemon juice, I'll sub a can or two of frozen lemonade concentrate and double the strawberry basil sugar mixture.

Final note: The basil flavor came through and made a nice twist on regular strawberry lemonade.

May 07, 2013
cozybug in Recipes

Buttermilk Biscuits and Sausage Cream Gravy

Both my southern grannys used evap milk for their gravy and it's the only milk I use when I make gravy. The flavor is far superior to regular milk. Also, as others have stated, if you have bacon or bacon grease on hand, use it instead of butter.

Dec 04, 2012
cozybug in Recipes

Roasted Garlic and Smoky Greens Soup

This is horrid. I like just about every kind of green including kale, but this soup was inedible. Yuck, yuck, yuck!!! The flavor was completely off. Not sure if the roasted garlic ruined it? Needless to say, I won't be making this again. Not even for my most hated enemy. On second thought, maybe I would... :-D

Mar 05, 2012
cozybug in Recipes

Basic Chicken Fajitas

I made the fajitas last night and they were terrific! I highly recommend the purchase of a grill pan for those who don't own one and plan to make this recipe. That's what I did--a Lodge 10 1/2 inch cast iron grill pan for around $20. As an owner of various cast iron cookware I can tell you I would not have achieved the same results without this grill pan. My husband was raving about how good the chicken was and I had no problems with my chicken sticking to the pan. Lightly spray it with oil and you're good to go. Now, to the recipe. I used 1 1/2 lbs of boneless chicken breasts, a total of 2 healthy sized half breasts(which is what most stores carry and don't bother to clarify what they are selling is actually chicken breast halves). I upped the seasonings for the increased chicken amounts and marinated 24 hours--another thing I recommend strongly. There was absolutely nothing I changed with the exception of increasing recipe amounts and the result is worth repeats. Just one thing I want to mention about grilling the breasts: Even though I allotted 12 minutes per side and they had nice grill marks, the interiors were not completely cooked when I sliced the chicken up. I promptly returned the slices back to the pan to finish cooking. Lastly, if you are planning to feed a family of four, it will be a stretch to fill 8 tortillas satisfactorily with the above recipe amounts.

Feb 06, 2012
cozybug in Recipes

The Basics: How to Make Grilled Chicken Fajitas

I wasn't going to add anything until I read Chef Benwa's comment. So right on. I was very disturbed to see the picture above of the raw chicken touching the veggies. Indeed, it was the first thing that struck me. To me, it reveals a shameful lack of concern for food waste and with starvation a very serious problem in this world, Chow should not encourage these kinds of photo presentations.

Feb 01, 2012
cozybug in Features

Chiles Rellenos Strata

Wow. My family and I loved this!!! I added the optional shredded pepper jack right before it went into the oven and used bottled roasted tomatilla salsa, but otherwise religiously stuck to the recipe. I timed it for 55 minutes on the middle rack in my finicky oven and it came out perfectly done--the cheese topping appeared to be a little too brown, but oh! it added a wonderful crunchy texture to the strata. Looking forward to leftovers tomorrow night!

For those of you who don't have questions about the recipe or have no intention of making this, please zip your whiny, negative comments. All most of us care about is whether a person has made the recipe and their resulting opinion after the fact.

Jan 01, 2012
cozybug in Recipes

Amaretto Pound Cake

I really want to make the pound cake, but I don't want to make the amaretto. Which leaves me with this question: Do I substitute a good quality store purchased amaretto syrup or amaretto liqeuer?

There must be a way to query and discuss the recipe without rating it for those of us who haven't yet tried the recipe.

Dec 07, 2011
cozybug in Recipes

Smoked Barbecue Baby Back Ribs

I don't normally comment on a recipe I haven't tried, but while on vacation I made baby back ribs according to an online recipe. Per the recipe, I simmered (I used beef) ribs in a crockpot with water, garlic, onions and peppercorns (on high since I doubled the recipe) for 5 hours. Afterwards I combined my fave bottled bbq sauce with plum sauce and more than a dash of Franks hot sauce, slathered it on the ribs and grilled them on medium for 10 minutes. I had never in my life made these before and they were an absolute hit with my family. Depending on the bbq sauce one uses, this could be a win or fail. Mine was a win, win, win. Because of the success of this recipe I won't even bother trying any other method. However the recipe for the bbq sauce on here does look promising. I may try it out just for curiosity sake but otherwise stick to the crockpot and grill method. For anyone who is curious to try it this way, check this recipe out here, http://allrecipes.com/recipe/baby-bac...

Jul 07, 2011
cozybug in Recipes

Best Tasting Canned Nacho Cheese

Thanks for the laugh. I was able to totally imagine a boxer doing this--staring at you with those intelligent eyes with his head tilted to the side.

Jun 22, 2011
cozybug in Cheese

Best Tasting Canned Nacho Cheese

For those of you who requested my fave homemade cheese sauce, you can find the recipe here:

http://www.food.com/recipe/nacho-chee...

No, it's not mine but I've tried it a couple times and loved it. Of course, after reading the reviews that the sauce came out a little thick I did modify it including adding jalapenos and it's juice for a little kick. As others have said that have made it, It's a good base to kick off from and to personalize. Hope this helps!

Jun 22, 2011
cozybug in Cheese

Best Tasting Canned Nacho Cheese

Unfortunately, I won't have time to mail order anything as I waited til the last minute to draw up a menu. But I will check your suggestion out in the future. Thanks for responding.

Jun 22, 2011
cozybug in Cheese

Best Tasting Canned Nacho Cheese

Walmart, right? I also picked up a couple jars of Newman's cheese sauce for that price. To be honest, I wasn't blown away by it and it left a chemical processed aftertaste in my mouth. The other jar sits untouched in my cupboard. However, it does make me feel better that my money did go to helping the kids with extra heads :-D.

Jun 22, 2011
cozybug in Cheese

Best Tasting Canned Nacho Cheese

Hey all!

I'm hoping to get some feedback on great tasting canned nacho cheese. I have a great recipe for it, but the fam and I are going on vacation and I want to keep cooking extremely simple--it's a vacation, right? I have nachos on the menu but really don't want to destroy our dinner with some bad tasting canned cheese sauce. I've tried tostitos and like it but am wondering about other brands. A little spicy is OK. I hate, HATE velveeta type sauces so just rule suggesting out any of those. Also, I live in the Seattle area and need to be able to find your suggestions locally. Thanks in advance for any input!

Jun 21, 2011
cozybug in Cheese

Boneless Beef Short Rib Recipes

Well, I never thanked you for your original reply but you're the one who inspired me to make these tacos. So thank you tremendously!!!

Feb 23, 2011
cozybug in Home Cooking

Boneless Beef Short Rib Recipes

By the way, I simmered the beef ribs on the stove top with the lid slightly covered in a normal pot--no special equipment needed.

As far as the query about using beer, I've done that one too--even white wine when I didn't have beer on hand which I usually don't. There is a recipe on food.com--it is a BBQ sauce style ribs using beer---and I've made it a number of times. Very good. Check it out:

http://www.food.com/recipe/beer-n-bbq...

Feb 23, 2011
cozybug in Home Cooking

Boneless Beef Short Rib Recipes

I actually did use beef broth to make tacos and it certainly didn't hurt. I brought the beef ribs to a boil in the beef broth, cumin, oregeno and other spices and simmered for three hours. They were melt in your mouth fork tender--I did have to trim off a little fat but it was no big deal. I lightly fried my corn tortillas in oil and stuffed them with the beef, cilantro, chopped white onion, sliced radishes, and topped them with mexican fresco cheese. Squeezed some fresh limes on them and some cholula hot sauce and they were divine!!! The next day I fried the leftover beef lightly in a little oil to have more of a crispy carnita taste. Lovely. One thing I always do, but forgot this time is to brown the ribs in a mixture of salt, pepper, and garlic before I simmer in broth. Not sure if it really matters though. Now, if I were to experiment getting away from anything mexican, I would certainly use beef broth again. Personally, I think it just enriches the flavor of the ribs.

Feb 23, 2011
cozybug in Home Cooking

German Chocolate Cake

I finally began making this today and assembled the final product this evening after dinner. Wow! As in a little too rich for my blood! I've never been a fan of buttercream frosting and this recipe is no exception. When it's all said and done, the cake and frosting amounts to a little over a pound of butter! It is incredibly rich, so much so that I felt a little sick after eating it. However, my family really enjoyed it--my oldest didn't care for the frosting though.

I also thought in light of the outcome it was a little too much effort involved. I wasn't able to find toasted unsweetened coconut and had to toast my own along with the pecans. I didn't reduce the sugar in the filling and maybe I should have because I used sweetened coconut flakes. I also discovered, as did another poster, that it doesn't take any more than 25 minutes to bake the cake. Even at 25 minutes I felt my cake was a little overdone--just a tad. This is probably not a recipe I will be making again.

Feb 12, 2011
cozybug in Recipes

Boneless Beef Short Rib Recipes

So funny you should reply to this after all this time! I have a package of boneless ribs in my freezer and was just thinking of trying some of mamachef's suggestions before you posted. I especially like the idea of braising them for shredded beef tacos. Hmmm, I think that settles it for tomorrow's din din. As far as the braising liquid though, I might forgo enchilada sauce or salsa and use a seasoned peppery beef broth for braising--to bring out the flavor of the beef rather than covering it up. Something tells me this beef cut will be perfect shredded with a bit of cilantro and onion sprinkled with fresco cheese inside a toasted corn tortilla.

Feb 01, 2011
cozybug in Home Cooking

German Chocolate Cake

I'm going to be another one of these annoying posters that will have contributed nothing towards rating the actual recipe. I will redeem myself however and come back after I've made it and let all know my thoughts on this cake. But first I want to say, "Who cares whether or not it originated in Germany?" It seems there are people on here who have a real need to show off their knowledge of a thing without being in any way helpful as to their own experience related to making this cake or the final results which is frankly all I give a flip about.

Feb 01, 2011
cozybug in Recipes

Boneless Beef Short Rib Recipes

Hi fellow foodies,

I'm interested in expanding my recipe file for "Country Style" boneless beef ribs--preferrably getting beyond the usual ribs smothered with bbq sauce recipes. In what other ways can these ribs be prepared and cooked?

Nov 13, 2010
cozybug in Home Cooking

Olive Oil Cake

We really liked this cake. As another reviewer said, it has a moist but firm eggy center and outwardly very crusty. Very different from anything I've ever eaten before or prepared. Unlike some reviewers, I didn't have any problems with prep or baking. It came out beautifully. I did add a heaping tablespoon of lemon zest in addition to the orange zest it called for.

However, because I read all reviews before deciding to make it, I will say that it is understandable there was confusion in the beginning. I was a little put off by the uncertainty the person who posted this recipe seemed to have about this recipe. Either you know your recipe or you don't.

Ok, besides the added lemon zest, here are some very minor changes I made. I had all ingredients on hand so no changes were made regarding this. Where the recipe warns that you should beat everything by hand lest you overbeat the batter when combining the flour and egg mixture, I found it very difficult to even mix it to the point that it had even little lumps. I tired of this quickly and used the hand mixer and beat it to a smooth texture. However,I did previously follow the instructions to beat the egg mixture by hand and found this to be doable. I also only had a 8 inch cake pan, but in the end it all turned out beautifully.

Oct 08, 2010
cozybug in Recipes

Burmese Prawn Curry

This was just ok. I found the curry mixture completely overwhelmed the shrimp with a strong bitter flavor. Spicy but bland. A suggestion from my hubby was maybe it needed to have some sweetness to it. I won't make this again. However, I think the coconut rice has potential.

Feb 04, 2010
cozybug in Recipes

Differences in Curry Powder

Thanks for all that great information. I especially like the idea of making my own, so I searched and found what looks like a great madras curry recipe on recipezaar AND I don't need to go out to buy anything to make it because I have everything it calls for. To be honest, I began to wonder if my tastes towards curry were changing because the only curry I have is Jamaican style and yes it is CHEAP. Time to throw it out I guess.

Jan 25, 2010
cozybug in General Topics

Differences in Curry Powder

I just saw a recipe for Prawn Curry that calls for Madras Curry Powder. In my spice shelf I only have Jamaican style curry that I've had for years and don't really care for it the times I've cooked with it. However I do like curry dishes so I'm wondering if maybe the different curry varieties vary significantly? Is there a particular curry powder that can be used well for all dishes worldwide?

Jan 25, 2010
cozybug in General Topics

Help With Rutabagas

Thanks for your replies mona and bushwick. I can't wait to try out a new vegetable tonight!

Jan 11, 2010
cozybug in Home Cooking

Help With Rutabagas

Hi all, I'm new to rutabagas and I bought some last night for a new recipe. My question of the moment is: If I cut them up ahead of time to roast in the oven later, will they turn brown like potatoes? What I'm referring to is the discoloration potatoes get if not cooked immediately after cutting them.

Jan 11, 2010
cozybug in Home Cooking