Posts Tagged ‘cream cheese’

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Chicken Queso Pockets

August 6, 2018

Who doesn’t like a flaky crust filled with savory chicken and cheesy yumminess? This is especially great if you need to pack a picnic meal for lunch or dinner, because you won’t need any silverware. They are great warm and equally delicious at room temperature. You could shape them in smaller pieces if you wanted more of a snack-size than a meal-size.

You will need:

  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1/2 lb chicken breast
  • 1 t cumin
  • 1 t chili powder
  • 1/2 t pepper
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 4 oz reduced fat cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 can (4.5 oz) diced green chiles
  • 1 small bunch scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 c shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 package refrigerated pie crust, both circles of dough (if you want extra lusciousness, try it with two sheets of puff pastry)

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the olive oil over medium high heat.
  3. Saute the chicken, sprinkled with the cumin and pepper and salt, until cooked through to 165 degrees (about 4-5 minutes per side).
  4. Remove from the pan and shred.
  5. In a large mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese with the chiles, scallions, and cheese.
  6. Mix in the shredded chicken.
  7. Cut both pie crusts into 8ths.
  8. Place 1/4th of the filling onto eight of the dough pieces.
  9. Top with the remaining eight dough pieces after stretching them slightly.
  10. Use a fork to seal around the edges.
  11. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet.
  12. Optional: gently sprinkle the tops with a little salt and pepper.
  13. Bake 15-18 minutes, until the dough is cooked through and golden.
  14. Allow to cool 5-10 minutes before serving (the wait is tough, but they will hold up better and be tastier).

20180716 Queso Pockets 02

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Instant Pot Creamy Sun-dried Tomato and Spinach Pasta

June 14, 2018

20180525 Sundried Tomato Pasta 02

We are still exploring the wonders of our Instant Pot. D and R seem to particularly enjoy the noodle dishes, including this one. It is full of sun-dried tomatoes and mushrooms, and then you stir in fresh spinach at the very end. It also has a bunch of cheese to make it creamy and amazing.

You will need:

  • 2 c unsalted chicken stock
  • 3 T Dijon mustard
  • 1 t garlic powder
  • 1 t dried basil
  • 1 lb dried noodles, preferably something spiraled like cavatappi or rotini
  • 3 T sun-dried tomato oil (from the jar of tomatoes)
  • 8 oz low fat cream cheese, cut into chunks
  • 8 oz sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped (oil saved per above)
  • 8 oz baby bella mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 1.5 lb chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 3/4 c milk
  • 1 c grated Parmesan cheese
  • 3 c fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Then you will need…

  1. In your Instant Pot, mix together the stock, mustard, garlic powder, and dried basil.
  2. Stir in the noodles and sun-dried tomato oil.
  3. Top with the cream cheese, sun-dried tomato and mushrooms.
  4. Top with the chicken pieces.
  5. Close your Instant Pot and cook on manual (or pressure) for 10 minutes.
  6. Allow to rest for 10 minutes after done before doing a quick release.
  7. Stir the milk and cheese into the noodle mixture.
  8. Stir in the fresh spinach and allow to wilt.
  9. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
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Citrus Cream Cheese Cake

May 18, 2018

Lemon and limes are extra special as the weather moves from winter to spring and summer. They are bright and wonderful additions to your dishes. The cake itself reminds me of a pound cake, and you get lots of citrus sunshine through the glaze in particular.

IMG_0035

You will need:

  • 1 c + 1 T unsalted butter, at room temperature (divided)
  • 8 oz reduced fat cream cheese (or regular), at room temperature
  • 2 c sugar
  • 4 eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 t vanilla extract
  • 2 limes, zested and juiced (divided)
  • 2 lemons, zested and juiced (divided)
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 c all purpose flour
  • 1 c whole wheat flour
  • 1 3/4 c confectioners’ sugar

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Prepare a Bundt pan or cake pan by greasing with a nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Beat together 1 cup of the butter and the cream cheese until smooth, light and fluffy.
  3. Add the eggs and sugar. Beat until well combined with the butter-cream cheese mixture.
  4. Beat in the vanilla, half of the citrus zests, and a pinch of salt.
  5. Mix in the flours until just combined.
  6. Spread the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick in the center comes out clean, about 45 to 60 minutes.
  7. Allow to cool 10 minutes before removing from the pan.
  8. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar with the remaining of the citrus zests and juices until smooth.
  9. Melt the remaining tablespoon of butter and whisk into the glaze.
  10. Drizzle over the top of the cake until you have as much as makes you and your taste buds happy.
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Instant Pot Cordon Bleu Noodle Casserole

May 10, 2018

D gifted me an Instant Pot this winter, so we’ve been playing around with it at dinner time for the past few months. We are still figuring it out but this dish is one of his new favorites (and our toddler loves it too!). We also enjoy how easy it is to put together, since we have an infant at home these days.

You will need:

  • 3 c unsalted chicken stock
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 T Dijon mustard
  • 1 lb shaped pasta (we’ve tried penne and orecchiette)
  • 8 oz reduced fat cream cheese, cut into large segments
  • 8 oz cubed pancetta
  • 1 lb chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 3 T olive oil
  • 2 t garlic powder
  • 1 c breadcrumbs
  • 6 oz of shredded Swiss-Gruyere mix
  • 1 c grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 c heavy cream
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

IMG_0013 2

Then you will…

  1. In your Instant Pot, mix together the stock with the garlic and mustard.
  2. Stir in the dry pasta.
  3. Put the cream cheese segments on top of the pasta.
  4. Sprinkle the pancetta on top of the pasta.
  5. Sprinkle the chicken on top of the pancetta.
  6. Close your Instant Pot and cook on manual (or pressure) for 10 minutes.
  7. Allow to rest for 10 minutes after done before doing a quick release.
  8. Meanwhile, warm the olive oil over medium heat in a nonstick skillet.
  9. Mix in the garlic powder and breadcrumbs and toast until golden, about 3-5 minutes. Set aside.
  10. Stir the cheeses and cream into the noodle mixture.
  11. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  12. Serve with a sprinkling of the toasted garlic breadcrumbs on top.

 

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Bacon & Ranch Chicken Pizza Roll

April 3, 2017

This is a very simple meal or snack, and we loved that you could pick it up with your hands! We loved the gooey cheese, the savory chicken and, of course, all the bacon.

20170311 Chicken Roll 02

You will need:

  • 1 can refrigerated pizza dough
  • 4 oz light chive and onion cream cheese, softened until spreadable
  • 3 c cooked and shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
  • 2 c shredded chicken
  • 1 packet dried Ranch seasoning
  • 1/2 lb thick cut bacon, cooked until crispy and roughly chopped
  • 2 T butter, melted
  • ΒΌ t garlic powder

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Lightly roll the pizza dough into a 12×16 rectangle.
  3. Spread the cream cheese on the dough.
  4. Sprinkle 1 1/2 cups of the shredded cheese on top of the cream cheese.
  5. In a small mixing bowl, combine the chicken with the Ranch seasoning.
  6. Sprinkle the chicken on top of the shredded cheese and top with the chopped bacon.
  7. Reserve a handful of the cheddar cheese for on top of the pizza roll.
  8. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top of the bacon.
  9. Roll up the pizza dough so it is a long roll.
  10. Place seam side down on the prepared baking sheet.
  11. Gently tuck the ends under to loosely seal the roll.
  12. Bake for 20 minutes.
  13. Remove from the oven.
  14. Combine the butter and garlic powder.
  15. Brush the top with the garlic butter and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.
  16. Bake another 5 or so minutes until cooked through and golden.
  17. Allow to rest for at least 5 minutes before cutting.
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Deconstructed Pierogi Lasagna

March 17, 2017

Pierogi are filled dumplings that often have some combination of potato, cheese and meat inside. Rather than making individual dumplings, we decided to try it in the style of a lasagna. This is a rich and hearty dinner, so consider a light salad alongside for freshness.

20170301 Pierogi 01

You will need:

  • 1 package fresh lasagna noodles (or 9 boxed noodles, parboiled)
  • 12 oz thick cut bacon
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 lb red skinned potato
  • 3 T butter
  • 8 oz reduced fat chive and onion cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 small bunch scallions, trimmed and chopped
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3 c shredded cheddar cheese

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Lightly grease a 9×13 baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Spread the bacon on the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until starting to crisp up. Remove from the oven. Transfer the bacon to a paper-towel lined plate and set aside. Crumble once cool.
  3. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees.
  4. Cut the potatoes into 1 inch chunks. Put them in a large pan and cover with cold water. Add some salt.
  5. Bring the potatoes to a boil and allow to cook until able to be easily pierced with a fork, about 7-10 minutes.
  6. Drain the potatoes and return to the pan. Add the butter and cream cheese, and mash the potatoes until mostly smooth.
  7. Mix in the scallions and half of the bacon.
  8. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Line the baking dish with 1/3 of the lasagna noodles.
  10. Spread 1/3 of the mashed potatoes and sprinkle with 1/3 of the cheese.
  11. Repeat two more times with the remaining noodles, potatoes and cheese.
  12. Sprinkle the top with the remaining bacon.
  13. Cover lightly with foil.
  14. Bake for 30 minutes.
  15. Remove the foil and continue baking until warmed through, bubbly and golden, another 15 minutes or so.

20170301 Pierogi 02

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Chai Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

February 28, 2015

I love my book club. We rotate around to people’s houses and get together every few weeks to talk about a new book over food and laughter. It is always a most excellent way to spend an evening. Our latest hosts cooked up an Indian feast, so I decided to try my hand at some chai-inspired cupcakes. These spicy little cakes are balanced out by a delicious cream cheese frosting (plus a surprise filling)!

20150130 Chai Cupcake 04

You will need:

  • 2 t ground cinnamon, divided
  • 1/2 t ground ginger
  • 1/2 t ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 t ground cardamom
  • 1/4 t ground allspice
  • 1/8 t ground black pepper
  • 1 c (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, divided
  • 1 c granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 t vanilla extract, divided
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1 3/4 c flour
  • 2/3 c milk
  • 8 oz light cream cheese, room temperature
  • 3 1/2 c powdered sugar
  • OPTIONAL: caramel sauce (I picked up a 10 oz Fleur de Sel version from Trader Joe’s)

20150130 Chai Cupcake 02

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Add paper liners to a tray for 12 cupcakes.
  2. In a small bowl, mix together 1/2 teaspoon of the cinnamon with the ginger, nutmeg, cardamom, allspice and pepper. Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, cream 1/2 of the butter into the granulated sugar.
  4. Mix in the egg and 1/2 teaspoon of the vanilla until well combined and fluffy.
  5. Mix in the salt, baking powder, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of the spice mixture.
  6. Mix in the flour and the milk, alternating between the two. Stir just until combined.
  7. Fill each cupcake cup 2/3s full of batter.
  8. Bake 15-20 minutes, until slightly golden. A toothpick or tester in the middle should come out clean.
  9. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes.
  10. Remove from the cupcake tin and cool completely on a wire rack.
  11. In a stand mixer or using an electric mixer, beat together the cream cheese with the remaining 1/2 cup of butter.
  12. Beat in the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons of cinnamon, 1/4 t of the chai mixture and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
  13. Slowly mix in the powdered sugar on low speed until combined. Then increase the speed to medium until fluffy and smooth.
  14. OPTIONAL: Use a cupcake or apple corer to remove a small part of the top of the cupcake. Fill with the caramel sauce.
  15. Frost the cupcakes as liberally as desired.
  16. Share with friends (and there will be no leftovers)!
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