Tag Archives: Six Sisters Stuff

Heavenly Balsamic pot roast

 

 

 

 

 

 

 So this here’s a story a little pot roast that could.  It was a good little pot roast.  It had dreams of being more.  And it was.  It had dreams of being all dressed up in a balsamic sauce and being cooked in a crock pot along with his friends carrots, onions, and celery.  Ok, kidding aside, because I am pretty sure that joking around about balsamic anything is a capital crime.  Because balsamic anything is awesome and should be revered and coddled and loved and praised.  I have posted my mother in law’s excellent pot roast recipe before and that is my go to recipe.  If you have never made it, check it out here~https://cajunmamacookinblog.com/2013/06/17/tonight-is-a-roast-night/.  Making that recipe is like putting on a comfortable pair of jeans, which ironically I find rather hard to do after eating a serving of pot roast and rice and gravy.  ha ha!  But the other day, I was scanning Pinterest and came across a recipe for their balsamic pot roast and thought, “oh my.  that is a super idea.  Big Daddy would love that.”  You can see that post here~ http://www.sixsistersstuff.com/2013/09/slow-cooker-balsamic-pot-roast-recipe.html.   Well, continuing to scan Pinterest (see how I do that?  I scan it.  That makes me feel like I am not wasting time and I am not on Pinterest…just scanning, ya’ll…scanning.  I can quit at anytime I want.  Wait, I think that is what addicts say…oh my.) and I saw another recipe for regular pot roast by PW about her perfect pot roast.  You can check that out here…http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2011/09/2008_the_year_of_the_pot_roast/.  I could not decide which one to make.  Pioneer Woman is always a safe bet because she knows her stuff.  But I love those six sisters too.  And, their pot roast had balsamic vinegar in theirs’, which kind of amps up the yummy a couple of notches.  Plus, theirs was made in the slow cooker.  I know you peeps love a good slow cooker recipe, so I took what I loved about both and combined them into one delightful, fantabulous, knock your socks off pot roast.  You are welcome friends.  I made a batch of mashed potatoes to go with that heavenly thick balsamic flavored gravy and also warmed up some of those Sister Schubert rolls aka they are worth it carbs.  My baby boy can eat nearly the whole pan.  I will add this…use one of those rolls to sop up that ridiculously good gravy and you will be in hog heaven.  But I don’t have to tell ya’ll that, do I?  No.  Because if you are following my blog, you know all about the good stuff in life.  Wink Wink!  See what I did there?  I gave you a compliment and me a compliment at the same.  Because let’s face it.   We both rock!!  Now, on to this pot roast that I have been yammering on and on about.  Is your mouth watering yet?  Let’s get to it baby!!

Heavenly Balsamic Pot Roast 

Stuff you need~

4-5 pound beef chuck roast

2 or 3 small onions (peeled and then cut in half from root to tip)

5 or 6 carrots, not peeled (PW says to maintain their rustic quality and I agree…damn good. Give it a try), just cut them into about 2 inch pieces, discarding the ends

3 stalks of celery, cut into 2 inch pieces

olive oil and a pat of butter

kosher salt and black pepper

2 tsp. dried rosemary

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar (I used 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar and  1/4 cup balsamic glaze my mother in law gave me but I also saw it at World Market aka my mothership the other day just FYI)

1 cup tomato juice

1 can beef broth (reduced sodium)

1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic or 3 cloves if you are going the “I chop my own garlic here me roar!!” route

3 tablespoons cornstarch

3 tablespoons warm water

What to do with the stuff~

Turn the heat under a big ole skillet to medium.  Now, melt the pat of butter (about a Tablespoon if you need that measurement…you little control freak…that’s why we get along because I am one too so I get it!) and about 2 Tablespoons olive oil nice and warm.  Now, add in only your onion .  You want to get the onion lightly browned on one side and then with a pair of tongs, flip it to the other side and do the same thing…a minute or so on each side will do.  Remove them from the skillet.  Add in your carrots and give them a good toss in the olive oil/butter combo.  About a minute or so is perfection.  Good girl.  Or boy.  Now, put the little browned unpeeled, so rustic and lovely carrots in the plate with the onions and tell them to hang tight.  Wait, what?  You don’t talk to your food.  Is that weird?  Then I don’t either.  Now, back to this lovely pot roast.  Yes, yes, I am getting to that.  Now, take that hunk of meat and rub it down with olive oil.  Give it a good rub down on both sides. Now, season the mess out of that thing with good old kosher salt and black pepper on both sides. Now, I took some dried rosemary and sprinkled some of that on each side.  Ok, now if your skillet needs more olive oil, add some because we are going to brown our roast.  With a pair of tongs, place it in the still medium hot oil.  Brown it on every side, about a minute or so each side.  Flip, brown, flip, brown, got it?  Ok.  Remove that roast from the skillet and set it on a plate.  Whisk in the beef broth and make sure to remove any little brown bits from the bottom of the skillet, pan, what have you.  This is your gremille and it makes your gravy richer and just better.  Let this kind of simmer a few minutes and then whisk in the tomato juice, garlic, and balsamic vinegar.  Continue to let this luscious mixture simmer for a few minutes so the flavors can hang out and get comfortable with one another.  They can make friends.  When you are going to hang out in a crock pot for 6 or 7 hours, you want to get to know your tomato juice.  Just saying.  

Ok, now you are going to spray a 6 quart crock pot lightly with some cooking spray.  Put your lovely browned roast in there.  Toss the carrots, onions, and celery in there.  Now, using caution so you don’t burn yourself, slowly pour the balsamic magic liquid on top of the meat and veggies.  Now, cook on low for 7-8 hours.  Your slow cooker may take longer, so add time accordingly. When you can stick a fork in the roast and twist and it falls apart, you are ready.  

Now for the luscious gravy…yes you will want to do this.  Skim as much of the fat off the top of the liquid as you can.  Now, pour about 2 cups of the balsamic magic liquid into a medium sized sauce pan.  Bring it to a low boil over medium low heat.  In a bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water until well combined.  Whisk this into the balsamic liquid.  Let it simmer for a few minutes until it thickens a bit.  You will have some fabulous gravy ya’ll.  Roll soppin worthy gravy.  Spoon this liberally over the meat and the mashed potatoes.  So.  Dang.  Good.  Enjoy.  Take a bow.  Enjoy your moment in the spotlight because YOU are AWESOME!!!~AMB

 

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Oh sweet little onions, I have big plans for you.

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Carrots, unpeeled…carrots gone wild.

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Sit there and look pretty my darlings

 

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Giving my roast a lovely little seasoning rubdown. 

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Remember…brown, flip, brown, flip

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Balsamic magic liquid 

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Ready to be more…ready to become a balsamic pot roast.  MMMMMM

 

 

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Ready to be covered in that lovely gravy.  Mouth watering. 

 

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Loaded nacho casserole

Do you like nachos?  Do you like casseroles?  Do you like the convenience of a one dish meal that serves a crowd?  If you answered yes to these questions, than this casserole recipe is for you.  Oh sorry, I think I have been listening to too much public radio.
This casserole is indeed basically one dish that feeds a crowd and has all you need for a complete meal.  I got the recipe from one of my favorite websites…http://www.sixsistersstuff.com/2014/03/loaded-nacho-casserole-recipe.html. She tells you all about how she came up with the idea. Let me say…she is a genius!!! BD ate it up.  Kiddos, not so much.  Here is the deal though, if I cooked only what my kids liked there would be no Cajun mama cookin blog.  Unless ya’ll wanted me to tell ya’ll how to heat up Eggo waffles, make mac and cheese, heat up a wiener in the microwave or make a PB&J.   My kids, despite my efforts, do not eat everything that I cook.  Sure, there are the nights when there is a fingernail moon and Mercury and Venue are in sync (can you tell I am not an astrologist?) and they all eat what I make.  What I am getting at is that it is extremely rare for them all to just gobble up what I cook.  I decided a while back that I am not cooking for them.  I make what BD and I like or might like, hope that the kiddos will like it or even love it, and usually one or two of them will eat what I make.  But I by no means attest to 1) my kids eat it or starve.  I tried that approach, but I didn’t care for tucking my kids in and hearing their little bellies rumble.  For me, that was too much.  I admire parents who have that ability, but I don’t.  2) my kids gobble up whatever I put in front of them, never complain and they all have perfect table manners.  They don’t.  I don’t front ya’ll.  I tell you like it is, keep it real, show you the ugly.  For example… I got the cutest burlap place mats that have, get this, a cute little table manner written on each one.  So naturally, my kids become well mannered and perfect when they sit down to eat because their plates are on these well appointed place mats.  Negative Ghostwriter.  Half the time, I forget to put them out.  Yeah, that’s right.  Though I totally convinced myself that I would so put these out for every meal and then pick them back up again after each meal, I lied to myself.  Do you ever do that?  I do.  More than I care to mention.  But I will.  So that you don’t feel so bad about it when you do it.  I will admit to you that there are days when I might give Bree Vandecamp from Desperate Housewives a slight pause before she proceeded to kick my ass in the who is most like Martha Stewart category of Mom of the Year pageant.  Now, Roseanne (from the show Roseanne…to be clear) she might be all like “woah, smart ass comment, check this chick out…she thinks she is Martha Stewart!!” but not in a threatened or impressed way but more of a making fun of me for thinking I come close kind of way.  That’s right.  I can buy all the burlap place mats I want, but I will forget to put them out or pick them up half the time until I am so sick of looking at them that I put them back on top of the microwave until the next time I want to play like I am Madame Fancy Pants again.  So, ain’t  nothing over here in CM kitchen perfect or well appointed.  How I manage to get done what I get done escapes me and I am pretty sure I have the good folks at Keurig to thank for that since this girl runs on her coffee.  So…here we are back at where we started before I took ya’ll off on my verbal journey that gave you some insight into just how whacko I really am.  But I mean, have ya’ll missed the part where I told ya’ll I had 4 kids in less than 5 years?  If that didn’t clue ya’ll in to the whole “this chick is a little whack” than you are not real quick on the uptake. Ha ha! But real. 😳
Anyway, back to the recipe. I know, I know, it is hard to follow me at times and I appreciate you trying. I hope somewhere you are laughing at my candor rather cursing my ability to get greatly off track. Here is the recipe for this cheesy, meaty, everything in it but the kitchen sink casserole. It is pretty awesome and if you brown your ground meat ahead of time, it is a cinch to pull together. So on the days y’all have Tball or Spring soccer practice, ballet, teach a classroom full of kiddos all day (I have 2 sisters who are teachers and a bunch of friends who are…shout out to my teachers out there!) you can have supper prepared super fast. Ok ready?

Six Sisters’ Stuff Loaded Nacho Casserole

stuff you need~

1 pound ground beef, cooked and drained
1 small onion, diced fine
1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
2 cans diced tomatoes, undrained
1-8 oz. can tomato sauce
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 small can diced green chiles
1 package reduced sodium taco seasoning
1 10 ounce bag tortilla chips
2 cups shredded cheddar

what to do with the stuff~

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 x 13 inch baking dish. Brown your ground meat if you have not done this already. Now, add in your bell pepper and onion and let them get a little tender. About 5 minutes or so should do you good. Now, just stir in the tomatoes, green chiles, corn, beans, taco seasoning and tomato sauce. Bring this saucy concoction to a boil over medium heat, then reduce heat and let it simmer for about 20 minutes. (You could this the night before so you could throw it all together the next night…just a thought). Now, layer half of the tortilla chips at the bottom of the casserole dish. As suggested, I kind of crushed them a little. Next layer half of your sauce concoction. Now, repeat this. Next sprinkle your cheese all over the top. Pop the casserole into the oven and bake until the cheese is all bubbly and the casserole is heated throughout. Let it cool a few minutes and then dish it up, baby!!
Serving suggestion…this would be divine over a bed of fresh shredded lettuce. Kind of a taco salad of sorts. Also, next time, I will use flour tortillas in place of the chips to see if I prefer it that way. It was delish like this but I think it might be awesome with the soft tortillas in there to soak up that sauce.  Oh and i might use shredded chicken in place of ground beef to change it up.  Yum!!  I will let y’all know. Very good, makes a ton and is quick and easy . Hope y’all enjoy it more than my kids did.  😉 what do they know anyway about good food, the little stinkers. Aw who am I kidding? I work for them. Sigh~AMB
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It’s cheesy, loaded with veggies, all in one dish and ready to please your hungry bunch!

Cherry Danish Cookies aka Little Bites of Heaven

These are little bites of heaven I tell ya’ll.  When I saw this recipe come across my Pinterest feed the other day, I knew I would have to give them a try, even though I am baking impaired and have difficulty with any kind of dessert that requires me to make dough and then roll it out.  I love Six Sister’s Stuff recipes and have had lots of success with them.  If you don’t follow their blog, you should.  They are sisters who share a blog and stay connected through blogging recipes.   Having 3 sisters myself, I can definitely relate.  We all love to cook and when I make a recipe that one of them gave me in the past, or we enjoyed together, I feel a connection with them no matter where they are or how long it has been since I have seen them.  It is funny how a special recipe can do that.  How words written on a page can transcend space and time and bring you right back to a special time?  I love that about recipes.  So I really love Six Sisters’ Stuff and enjoy their recipes.  This is one that they posted and they were dead on about how these taste exactly like a cherry Danish, but in bite sized form.  They are so delicious and not hard at all to put together.  You need to make the dough ahead of time as it is best to let it chill in the fridge for a few hours at least.  It makes it much easier to work with.  After that though, there is not much to it.  And for me, the non Martha Stewart, to say this…you should know I mean that.  I am easily intimidated by dough and this is totally doable.  My two princesses and I were left to our own devices this weekend (heaven forbid) while the boys went hunting.  Somehow, we muddled through.  We made up a batch of these tasty treats and we enjoyed the results.  We did manage to save some for the boys though.  We are sweet like that.  But not nearly as sweet as these little gems.  So, if you love Danish, you definitely want to give these a try.  I think you will be happy with the results!!! ~AMB

Cherry Danish Cookies (adapted from Six Sisters’ Stuff http://www.sixsisterstuff.com

Stuff you Need:

Cookies:

1 cup butter, softened

8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature

1 Tablespoon milk

1 Tablespoon sugar

1 egg yolk

1 1/2 cups flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1 can cherry pie filling

For Glaze:

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

2 Tablespoons milk

What to Do with the Stuff:

For the Cookies:

In a large bowl or bowl of your standing mixer, cream together butter, cream cheese, milk and sugar.  Beat in egg yolk.  In a medium size bowl, combine flour and baking powder.  Gradually add flour mixture into the butter cream cheese mixture, beating after each addition to make a stiff dough.  Cover with saran wrap and allow the dough to chill  in the fridge for a few hours or overnight.  As I said, the dough is easier to work with when it is chilled.

Once dough has chilled, preheat oven to 400 degrees.  On a pasty mat, roll out dough to about 1/4 ” thickness.  Using a 2 ” round cutter, cut out the rounds of dough.  Make an indention in the center of each circle, and add about 1 tsp. of cherry pie filling (I am trying blueberry as well next time…mix it up a bit) to the center.  Place each one on an ungreased cookie sheet and bake for about 10-12 minutes.  Cool completely before drizzling with glaze.

For Glaze:

Whisk together the powdered sugar and milk.  If it is too thin, add a little more powdered sugar.  If it is too thick, add a little milk.  You get the idea.  Now, in the original recipe, they say some nonsense about adding the glaze to a sandwich bag and snipping a little corner off to drizzle the glaze over the cookies.  Ummm…Cajun Mama ain’t got time for that.  Or maybe I am too lazy.  Either way, I got some glaze on my little whisk and then kind of tapped it on the edge of the bowl and then kind of waved my whisk over the cookies like it was a magic wand and the glaze was fairy dust.  I was the powerful Princess Glaze and those cookies were my royal subjects.  Ha ha!!!  Spending all weekend with just my girls has obviously given me a princess complex.  What’s a Mama to do?  Anyway, this method worked just fine for me.  Feel free to do your thing!!  As long as that glaze gets on those little bites of heaven, your work here is done.

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Heaven on Earth I tell you!!!  Little bites of Cherry Danish heaven.