Chew This! Make Ahead Streusel Coffee Cakes

Happy “Chew This!” Sunday! As many of you know, I write a food column for “The Courier-Times” on the first and third Sundays of each month called “Chew This!” I absolutely love it and love sharing my family recipes, stories and memories. If you are in the Henry County, Indiana area – pick up a copy of the newspaper today and let me know what you think! If you are not, but would still like to take a look, sign up for an online subscription at http://thecouriertimes.com Need help with the online signing up!? Write to me and I will be happy to help! blaisethebaker@gmail.com

My newest recipe is a make ahead wonder! Make my “Make Ahead Streusel Coffee Cakes” TODAY and have them all week for a quick grab and go breakfast or snack! They are deliciously easy to whip up and store beautifully in an air tight container at room temperature. These are portable, flavorful and lets be honest – fun to make! I love making streusel and how bad could it be really – sugar and butter!? 

Also my “Ask and Answer” feature is about the use of coffee with chocolate and how it brings out all the flavors of the chocolate without any flavor of the coffee! 

Pick up a copy of “The Courier-Times” TODAY and let me know what you think!


Make Ahead Streusel Coffee Cakes

http://www.thecouriertimes.com/neighbors/neighbors_features/article_34e59df5-812e-5e50-97da-4d0f076ba4ec.html

Enjoy! 

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Chew This – Make Ahead Breakfast Peach Muffins

I have heard from so many of you, wanting and asking for a quick, flavorful and easy breakfast recipe. There are so many things that come to my mind – what about a “breakfast casserole”? Or what about my “Lemon and Butter Oven Pancakes” that I posted awhile back!? Recipe here – https://blaisethebaker.com/2014/10/19/chew-this-lemon-and-butter-oven-pancakes/

I really think the real secret is making something ahead of time… And how easy and simple would making muffins be? Stir them up the night before, and bake them off as you need them – or you could bake them all at once, place them in a covered container, and keep them at hand for a quick “grab and go” breakfast treat, that is fast, easy and delicious! Perfect with coffee…

These are delicious with fresh, local peaches – but just as good with canned.

Try these for your breakfast this week…

Breakfast Peach Muffins Chew This Blaise Doubman

Make Ahead Breakfast Peach Muffins

http://www.thecouriertimes.com/neighbors/article_34f80dfe-1e80-11e5-b2b1-ff1918d56600.html

Enjoy!

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Double Batch Lasagna

I am telling you – this is the BEST lasagna recipe, and the only one you will ever need! Seriously – it is absolutely incredible! And you know what? The best part is it makes a DOUBLE BATCH! This means, one for now, and one for later! Yes, I am using a lot of exclamation points!!! See – here are more!!!

You COULD half this recipe, and only make one pan of lasagna, but why? Let us be honest – you will have the mess anyways, why not make TWO – one for now, and one for later!? Pop the other one in the refrigerator (for up to 3 days), or freezer (for up to 3 months) and throw the other one in the oven for one of the best lasagnas you have ever had! I promise…

Now, this lasagna is very “classic” in flavor. There is not any veal, and there is not any fire roasted tomatoes in this version. It is just a clean, classic and simple version that my family and friends LOVE! Anytime someone is sick, or happy, or pregnant, or divorcing, or ANYTHING in life – I always make and deliver this lasagna! (I took this to my friend Judy – who LOVED it and has requested it at least twice a month…) I typically serve this with garlic cheese bread and a salad. It is also good the next day – cold…or on bread…or toast…or battered and deep fried… Ha! Perfect anyway you slice it…

TRY IT! (You can thank me later…)

I got the inspiration from this recipe from my Aunt…Ree Drummond. You all may know her as “The Pioneer Woman”, but to me, she’s my “Aunt Ree Ree”.

Ok – so I stretched the truth a little. She’s not my Aunt…and I do not know her…but I tell people she is my Aunt just to get a reaction! Ha! Anyways, her recipe can be found here – http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2007/06/the_best_lasagn/ – but honestly, I DO like mine better. I have changed it to fit what works for ME. MY taste, what I like, how I like to make it and mine makes a DOUBLE batch – DOUBLE the fun!

Before you start – it is easier to get everything together in bowls, sections, however you lay out ingredients before hand…and then start and follow the recipe. Chop the fresh parsley, the basil, beat the eggs, etc. It will be SO much easier. Also – use foil pans. Seriously – it will be so much easier for storage, refrigerating, freezing, etc. Keep in mind though that you really need to keep the foil trays on a baking sheet while in the oven, cutting, etc. – just for safety reasons, spillage, etc. Carry on…

Double Batch Lasagna Blaise the Baker

Double Batch Lasagna

2 pounds ground beef
2 pounds hot sausage
4 tablespoons minced garlic
4 cans crushed tomatoes (14.5 oz each)
4 cans tomato paste (6 oz each)
6 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
4 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
2 teaspoons fine sea salt
2 teaspoons black pepper
7 cups cottage cheese
4 eggs, beaten
1 cup grated parmesan cheese
4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
2 packages lasagna noodles (10 oz each)

Start by spraying 2 13×9-inch foil baking pans with non-stick cooking spray.

Fill a large pot with water, bring to a boil, and salt the water heavily with Kosher salt, or in a pinch, regular table salt.

Once the water is boiling, put in both packages of lasagna noodles, and coax them all down into the boiling water. Be careful not to break them – in a few minutes time, the noodles will all fit – as long as your pot is big enough – I promise.

Boil them just until firm to the tooth – about 10 minutes. Read the package instructions just to double check on the time for your particular brand.

Drain them, allow to cool slightly, and arrange the noodles individually side by side (over lapping is fine) on your strainer. This is the best way of “laying out the noodles”.

Next, in a large skillet brown the ground beef and hot sausage, over medium-high heat. About half way through the cooking process, add in the minced garlic, and continue cooking the meat until fully cooked and no longer pink. Drain a little of the fat, and then add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, 4 tablespoons of the fresh parsley, the fresh basil, salt and black pepper. Stir, carefully, to combine and allow to simmer on medium heat for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally – and tasting occasionally.

In a large bowl, combine the cottage cheese, beaten eggs, grated parmesan cheese, and (why not?) a little more salt and black pepper.

Now – you are ready to layer! The fun part…

Start by arranging four noodles on the bottom of each pan. Layer like this…

About 4 noodles first – on the bottom. Then, a little of the cottage cheese mixture, then the shredded mozzarella cheese, then the meat mixture. Layer and layer in BOTH PANS like this, until you are out of ingredients, and END with the meat mixture on top. Sprinkle on more grated parmesan cheese all over the top of both.

IF BAKING – Place in preheated 350-degree oven for 30-40 minutes on a flat baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes for a “softer” edge lasagna, 40 minutes for a more “crunchy” edge lasagna… I prefer the 40 minute option…

IF FREEZING – Snap on plastic lid that comes with foil container, and place in freezer for up to 3 months.

IF REFRIGERATING – Snap on plastic lid that comes with foil container, and place in refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Enjoy!

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Chew This – Eggplant and Tomato Casserole

Happy Sunday! Where are you reading from? Today in Indiana looks like this…

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(thanks to my friend Terri Smith for posting the photo – that way I wouldn’t have to leave the house! Ha!) 

Want something that will warm you up!? (No matter where you are) – why not try my newest “CHEW THIS!” column featured in today’s edition of “The Courier-Times”?

This recipe is PERFECT for vegetarians, make-ahead meals, “Meatless Mondays”, Lent…and more! Trust me – you will NEVER know there is eggplant in this dish – and you (or your guests) will not miss the meat…I promise!

When I first served this (to my meat loving family) I did not tell them the “secret” (eggplant) until they were finished eating. They raved and raved about how delicious the meal was…and were flabbergasted when I told them it was actually an EGGPLANT casserole.

I am so excited to be sharing this recipe with everyone! Check it out – email me and let me know what you think! (blaisethebaker@gmail.com)

Eggplant Casserole Blaise Doubman Chew This

Eggplant and Tomato Casserole

http://www.thecouriertimes.com/neighbors/article_0a4715ac-bb9b-11e4-8751-330349ee9616.html

AND remember – TRUST ME…nobody will ever guess this is a “meatless” dish. Eggplant takes on the flavors of anything it’s cooked with, and gives the texture of meat. It is truly delicious!

Blaise

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