Top 5 Posts In 2016

Lemonies
Except for the order, the top 5 posts in 2016 here at I Sing In The Kitchen are the same as they were in 2015! I guess it goes to show that everyone loves a great dessert.

Here we go.

Coming in at Number 1, up from it’s number 3 place in the top 5 in 2015, are the divine Lemonies pictured above. A fusion of lemon bars and brownies, they’re packed with lemon flavor and sport a tangy glaze that hardens a bit as it sets. Delicious

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Overload Cake
Dropping to number 2 from last year’s number 1 spot is the showstopper of a cake in the photo above. Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Overload Cake was also number 2 in 2014, the year I first made it. Who is not going to love “a super chocolatety cake covered in a not too sweet, silky smooth peanut butter icing and topped with a rich chocolate ganache…. and on top.. a good dose of chopped peanut butter cups.” Yum.
Crunchers
Number 3 this year is last year’s number 2. Crunchers, which have made the top 5 list the past 4 years, are well deserving of all the popularity.

Here’s how I described them: “Crunchers are dessert bars which combine a buttery graham caramel layered between crackers and topped with a chocolate-peanut butter-butterscotch coating.

Incredibly sinful and totally recommended. At once sweet and salty, Crunchers are a butterscotch version of homemade Twix Candy Bars.”
Caramel Cake
Caramel Cake, number 5 in 2015, has moved up to last year’s 4th most popular post. Starting with a boxed mix this very light textured vanilla cake gets “cloaked in an incredibly rich and sweet caramel icing that hardens up into a delectable shell.” Super terrific.

Crunchers Revisited
And last but not least is yet another veteran of the ISITK Top Five.

Number 5 for 2016 is Crunchers Revisited. It’s a careful remaking of Crunchers to try and trouble shoot some of the problems brought to my attention in the comments section. They really are an exceptional dessert.

I think I might do a post this week about some of my favorite recipes that I made in the last year. And some might not even contain sugar. Boo! :)

Onto the music.

How about another kind of Dessert to go along with that top 5 list?

“Player”, from LA-based band Dessert, is weird and wonderful. There is enough electro-pop for dancing but plenty of interesting listening if you are sitting still.

Check out Dessert on the band’s Website which is oddly mesmerizing. You can buy the music here.

Cheers!

Posted in Brownies, Cake, Dessert | Tagged | Leave a comment

Caramel Gingerbread Cupcakes. ISITK Is 6 Today!

Caramel Gingerbread Cupcakes
cupcake-bday-6th

Wow, right?

If it is a blog birthday over here, then gingerbread must be on the menu.

These Caramel Gingerbread Cupcakes are just the ticket to celebrate a birthday or anything else in style. And they are so easy, too!

Just bake a batch of gingerbread cupcakes from a boxed mix. Make the ice cream topping by mixing vanilla ice cream with a little bit of ginger and then sprinkling with a generous amount of chopped toffee candy. Top each portion with a gingersnap and some warm caramel and get ready to swoon.
Caramel Gingerbread Cupcakes
Caramel Gingerbread Cupcakes

Ingredients:

1/2 gallon vanilla ice cream, softened
1 teaspoon ground ginger
3/4 cup chopped toffee (I used 3 Skor bars)
1 (14 1/2 ounce) package gingerbread mix
1 1/4 cups lukewarm water
1 egg
1 (12 ounce) jar caramel-flavor ice cream topping
Gingersnaps, to garnish

Directions:

1. Line a 3-quart rectangular baking dish with plastic wrap, extending the plastic wrap over edges of dish. Set aside.

2. Stir ice cream and ginger together then spread mixture into the prepared dish. Sprinkle with toffee and press lightly into ice cream. Cover and freeze for 4 to 24 hours.

3. Preheat oven to 350℉. Line twelve muffin cups with paper or lightly grease the cups.

4. Prepare gingerbread mix according to package directions using the lukewarm water and egg. Spoon batter into the prepared muffin cups.

5. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until a tester inserted in centers comes out clean. Cool cupcakes in muffin cups on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Remove cupcakes from muffin cups. Cool completely on wire rack.

6. Before serving, heat caramel topping until warm.

7. Place cupcakes on serving plates.

8. Using the edges of the plastic wrap, lift ice cream out of dish. Cut out twelve 2-inch squares of ice cream. (Save the leftover ice cream for eating another time).

9. Place ice cream squares on top of cupcakes. Top with gingersnap pieces and drizzle with warm caramel topping. Serve immediately.

Serves 12

Recipe from Better Homes & Gardens
Caramel Gingerbread Cupcakes
Playing “Reflections” by Birthday Candles to celebrate the day.

Every single line of this fantastic song resonates with me.

“We’ll overcome our biggest fears
regardless of the pain”

Check out Birthday Candles on the band’s Website. You can buy their music on Bandcamp.

Cheers!

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | 2 Comments

Cheeseburger Loaf. Dancing Around To Lovecoast.

Cheeseburger Loaf
pulp-fiction-dance-gif
Make dinner into fun time with this Cheeseburger Loaf. Seasoned ground beef in tomato sauce and smothered in cheese fills crusty French bread. To make it a meal, serve with this Zesty Potato Soup (I substituted cheddar for the Velveeta and it was so good).
Cheeseburger Loaf
Cheeseburger Loaf

Ingredients:

1 pound ground beef
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 can (10-3/4 ounces) condensed tomato soup, undiluted (use pizza sauce if you prefer a less sweet filling)
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 loaf (1 pound) unsliced French bread
1 tablespoon butter, softened
8 ounces cheddar cheese, sliced

Directions:

1. In a large saucepan, cook beef and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink. Drain then add soup, garlic salt, salt and pepper. Simmer, uncovered, for 5-10 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, slice the top third off the loaf of bread. Hollow out bottom half of loaf, leaving a 3/4-inch shell (save the removed bread for another use). Spread butter on cut side of bread. Place loaf on an ungreased baking sheet and broil 4-inches from the heat until lightly browned. (Watch carefully to avoid the bread burning).
hollowed out Loaf

3. Spoon beef mixture into shell and arrange cheese slices on top. Broil 2-3 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Replace bread top.

Serves 6-8

Recipe from Taste of Home
Cheeseburger Loaf
Cheeseburger Loaf
Cheeseburger Loaf

Let’s dance that dinner off. Victoria, BC-based band Lovecoast delivers some fun dance-pop in their song ‘The Floor’. And that sick guitar, yo.

“Do ya wanna dance, baby?”

Check out Lovecoast on the band’s Website where you can learn of an upcoming show in Victoria and link to buy their music.

Cheers!

Posted in Beef, Bread, Soup | Tagged | Leave a comment

One Pot Chili Mac And Cheese. Listening To Katie Burden.

One Pot Chili Mac And Cheese

Q: Did you hear about the two antennas that got married?
A: It was a nice ceremony, but the reception was amazing.

Warm up a cold January night with this easy One Pot Chili Mac And Cheese. Its Tex-Mex flavors and lots of cheese make it a spicy, comforting meal.

If you want to serve Jalapeño Corn Muffins alongside the pasta, there is a really good recipe here.
One Pot Chili Mac And Cheese
One Pot Chili Mac And Cheese

One Pot Chili Mac And Cheese

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, chopped
1 pound lean ground beef
1 (1.25 oz) package chili seasoning mix
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups whole milk
1 (14 oz) can chicken broth
1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes
12 ounces rotini pasta
1 1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons chopped green onion

Directions:

1. Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add garlic, onion, ground beef, chili seasoning and salt. Cook until beef is browned, stirring to crumble the beef as it cooks. Drain excess fat.

2. Stir in milk, chicken broth, and tomatoes. Bring to a boil and stir in pasta. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer until pasta is tender, about 13-15 minutes.

3. Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup Monterey Jack cheese until melted.

4. Sprinkle with cheddar, green onion and remaining 1/2 cup Monterey jack. Cover and let stand until cheese is melted, about 5 minutes.

Serves 6

Recipe from Cooking With Paula Deen Magazine

One Pot Chili Mac And Cheese
One Pot Chili Mac And Cheese

“I Can See It Clear” is some really dark stuff wrapped up in a musically mesmerizing tune. It’s from LA-based artist Katie Burden.

Check out Katie Burden on Facebook. You can buy the music on Bandcamp.

Cheers!

Posted in Beef, Bread, Pasta | Tagged | Leave a comment

Chewy Coconut Brownie Drops. New Music From Gulp.

Chewy Coconut Brownie Drops
chewbacca-piano
These simple Chewy Coconut Brownie Drops are easy to whip up when you want a chocolatey treat. The coconut keeps them super moist.

Chewy Coconut Brownie Drops
Chewy Coconut Brownie Drops

Ingredients:

⅔ cup butter, softened
1¼ cups sugar
1 Tbs water
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
1½ cups all-purpose flour
½ cup dark cocoa or regular cocoa powder
½ tsp salt
⅓ tsp baking soda
3 cups sweetened coconut flakes

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350℉.

2. Beat butter, sugar, water and vanilla in large bowl on medium speed with an electric mixer until well blended. Add eggs and beat well.

3. Stir together flour, cocoa, salt and baking soda. Gradually add to butter mixture, beating on low speed just until blended. Stir in coconut flakes.

4. Drop dough by teaspoons onto parchment lined baking sheets

5. Bake 10-12 minutes or until cookies are set.

Makes about 4 dozen

Recipe from Key Ingredient
Chewy Coconut Brownie Drops
Chewy Coconut Brownie Drops

Gulp, the project of Scottish singer Lindsey Leven and Welsh musician Guto Pryce of Super Furry Animals, will be releasing their second album in 2017. If “Search For Your Love” is any indicator of what the rest is going to be like, then it’s going to be awesome.

Check out Gulp on the band’s Website where you can learn of an upcoming Wales festival date and buy their music.

Cheers!

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Cinnamon Toast French Toast. New Music From Rob Clarke And The Wooltones.

Cinnamon Toast French Toast
happy-new-year-2017-funny-hd-images

Happy New Year friends!

If my 2017 is as good as the breakfast I started it off with then I should be in pretty good shape.

You must try this Cinnamon Toast French Toast soon. Layers of cinnamon toast are baked in a vanilla scented custard. It’s all at once crisp and creamy with the wonderful scent of cinnamon. Bonus: You can assemble it all the day before and pop it into the oven the next morning. I doubled the recipe and made two baking dishes full…good thing since everyone wanted seconds.

Cinnamon Toast French Toast
Cinnamon Toast French Toast

Ingredients:

1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
16 slices (from a 1-pound or 450 gram loaf) white sandwich bread
4 ounces (113 grams) unsalted butter, softened
3 cups (710 ml) whole milk
6 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon table salt
2 teaspoons (10 ml) vanilla extract
Fresh berries and maple syrup, to serve

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 450℉.

2. Whisk the cinnamon and sugar together in a small dish.

3. Line two large baking sheets with foil.

4. Place the bread slices on the baking sheets in one layer. Spread each slice of bread with some butter, then sprinkle each slice with one teaspoon of the cinnamon-sugar mixture.

5. Toast the bread in the oven until it’s golden and the cinnamon-sugar is crunchy, about 7 to 10 minutes. Allow to cool slightly.

6. Reduce the oven temperature to 375℉ degrees.

7. Grease a 9 × 13-inch baking dish.

8. Cut two slices of the cinnamon toast in half horizontally. Arrange the cinnamon toast down in two rows along the width of the pan. Begin with the bottom half of one slice of toast, then fan 7 more slices in a row, finishing with the top half of the slice. Repeat with another 7 full slices and 1 halved slice of cinnamon toast in the second row. (Deb does this so that all of the slices get evenly crisped. Her arrangement also looks really pretty. I followed these instructions, but no matter how you stack them, the baked product is going to be delicious.)

9. Whisk the milk, eggs, salt and vanilla in a medium bowl and pour evenly over cinnamon toast in baking dish. Let sit for 15 minutes. Note: At this point you can cover and refrigerate overnight to bake the next day.

10. Before baking, sprinkle bread slices with any leftover cinnamon-sugar.

11. Bake for 30 minutes (a little longer if you refrigerated overnight), until puffed and golden and custard is set up.

12. Cut into squares and serve plain or with fresh berries and maple syrup.

Serves 8

Recipe from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook by Deb Perelman
Cinnamon Toast French Toast
Cinnamon Toast French Toast
Cinnamon Toast French Toast
Cinnamon Toast French Toast
Cinnamon Toast French Toast

Ok 2017…we’ve got this. Especially when there are songs like “New Year New Day” to get us started. It is a gorgeously retro tune from Liverpool’s Rob Clarke And The Wooltones.

“It’s a new year
and a new day
Here we go”

Check out Rob Clarke And The Wooltones on the band’s Website. You can buy their music on Bandcamp.

Cheers!

Posted in Breakfast | Tagged | Leave a comment

Overnight Pepperoni, Shiitake, Cheese, Challah Casserole. Listening To Skating Polly.

Overnight Pepperoni, Shiitake, Cheese, Challah Casserole
Q: How do you make an egg roll?
A: You push it.

The title of this recipe is a mouthful! That is precisely what you will want when this veg-packed, cheesy dish comes out of the oven.
Overnight Pepperoni, Shiitake, Cheese, Challah Casserole
Overnight Pepperoni, Shiitake, Cheese, Challah Casserole

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup finely diced pepperoni (2 ounces)
1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms, stems discarded and caps chopped
1 medium onion, minced
1 red bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 teaspoons kosher salt (I used just 1 tsp since the soy sauce is salty)
8 large eggs
3 cups whole milk
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon pepper
3/4 pound day-old challah, sliced 1 inch thick and cut into 1-inch dice
6 ounces ham, diced
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup shredded sharp white cheddar cheese
1/2 cup chopped green onions, plus more for garnish
Hot sauce, for serving

Directions:

1. Grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.

2. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the pepperoni and cook over moderate heat for 3 minutes. Add the shiitake mushrooms and cook until lightly browned and tender, about 5 minutes. Add the onion, bell pepper and salt to taste. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and browned, about 7 minutes. Cool completely.

3. In a large bowl, beat the eggs with the milk, mustard, soy sauce, pepper and salt. Add the cooled vegetable mixture, challah, ham, cheeses and the green onions. Mix well and spoon into the prepared baking dish. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

4. Preheat oven to 350°F.

5. Uncover the casserole and bake for about 50 minutes, until just set and the top is browned. Let stand for 10 minutes, then top with sliced green onions. Serve with hot sauce.

Serves 8

Recipe from Food & Wine
Overnight Pepperoni, Shiitake, Cheese, Challah Casserole
Overnight Pepperoni, Shiitake, Cheese, Challah Casserole
Overnight Pepperoni, Shiitake, Cheese, Challah Casserole
I usually think of a more post-punk vibe when I think about Skating Polly. Not so on this stripped down tune. It’s a whole lotta lovely.

Check out Skating Polly on her Website where you can learn of upcoming shows in the Pacific northwest and buy the music.

Cheers!

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