Pizza Rolls

We had a friend in who liked my pizza rolls before, so I tried making them a little fancier this time: with a breading type thing.

Rolls:

  • frozen bread dough
  • pepperoni
  • block of cheese

Coating:

  • pasteurized egg mixture (substitute real egg if you have it on hand)
  • olive oil

Topping:

  • parmesan
  • bread crumbs
  • pepper
  • salt
  • garlic powder or salt

The topping should be mixed in a bowl in whatever proportions taste delicious to you, but I suggest lighter on the salt than you think you need because the pepperoni is salty.

So basically, you roll out the bread dough super thin and then cut it into squares – it’s easier than ripping and flattening because then the edges stick together better. Cut up little squares of cheese and put one of those and a pepperoni in each bit of bread dough. Wrap them up, trying to make them as seamless and dumpling-like as possible.

Dip them in the egg mixture, then in the topping. Stick them on a non-stick baking sheet. Start preheating your oven to 375°F at some point while you’re filling a tray – these can take a while, especially the first time you make them.

When the sheet is full stick it in your preheated oven for 15 minutes.

Best served still quite warm.

Blackberry Cheesecake

51rk4txvkal-_ss365_I got a craving for blackberries. But it’s winter in Wisconsin, so blackberry preserves seemed like a better idea. Blackberry preserves, and, because I sometimes pretend to be a civilized adult who wouldn’t eat blackberry preserves straight out of the jar, cheesecake. My first stop, obviously, ended up being The Pioneer Woman, but I don’t actually have a food processor, so I went a little differently.

Ingredients:

  • Oreo cheesecake crust
  • 2 packages cream cheese
  • a jar of blackberry preserves
  • lime juice
  • 2 eggs
  • cinnamon
  • nutmeg
  • sugar

Soften your cream cheese – leaving it on the counter for an hour and then microwaving it for 45 seconds was enough for me – and put it in a large bowl. Add sugar, lime juice, cinnamon and nutmeg to taste, beating well. The ‘to taste’ thing works really well, because it’s safe to eat the batter until you add the eggs. I used a ton of cinnamon and a couple generous splashes of lime juice because I wanted it as a strong counterpoint for the blackberries. Start your oven preheating to 350°F and add your eggs and beat well again, until everything’s well mixed.

Pour or scrape all of that into your Oreo crust, then add the preserves. If you’re feeling ambitious or artistic, heat the preserves a bit, either in the microwave with the lid off or spooned out into a pot and heated on low. Then drizzle the warm preserves over the batter for a marbling effect.

I just kind of spooned room temperature preserves in and then smoothed everything with a spatula, because I didn’t have it in me to care about what it looked like. Bake for 50 minutes at 350°F, then turn off your oven. Let it cool in the oven to close to room temperature, then cool on the counter completely before refrigerating, otherwise the top cracks.

It tastes amazing.

Macaroni and Cheese

We’ve got a guest, so I wanted something quick but still kind of indulgent, and we had the ingredients for mac and cheese.

Ingredients:

  • flour
  • butter
  • taco seasoning
  • salt, pepper, garlic
  • milk
  • cream cheese
  • shredded taco cheese
  • macaroni

Start the water boiling on high and the butter melting on medium. Add as much flour as you used butter, and let that turn into a roux. Let it cook down for a bit so it doesn’t end up tasting like flour. You should be moving on to the next step around the time your pasta water comes to a boil.

Add your spices and a splash of milk, and stir it all together so it makes a thinner paste. Add a chunk of cream cheese for additional flavor and creaminess, add some more milk, and let all of that melt together while stirring frequently.

When it comes just to a boil, turn the heat down and add all of your shredded cheese. Let it melt, stirring constantly, and by the time it’s done your pasta should be ready. Add the pasta to the sauce and serve!

Holiday Hiatus

So, this is wicked late, but I also haven’t cooked anything but bagels in the last several days because of various holiday things. And, starting tomorrow, I’ll be out of town and then be bringing someone into town. My schedule will be returning to normal in the new year, and so posts will resume again then as well.

Happy holidays!

Substitutions

I love the taste of vanilla – especially when there’s tons of it, especially vanilla bean anything. Still! If you’re not fond of vanilla, don’t have some on hand, or just want to try something new, you can substitute most liqueurs for vanilla. Kahlua, creme de cacao, creme de menthe – Rumchata, too, if you’re feeling like an extra cinnamon kick.

I haven’t tried fruit liqueurs, and that’d probably depend on the recipe, but I think I might try raspberry liqueur in my dark chocolate fudge next time I make it.