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This roulade, which by the way is just another word for a roll, is devilishly good.

There are countless variations of chicken roulades, in fact. They can be stuffed with basically anything you can imagine. Well, not anything maybe (chocolate chicken roulade might be a little too funky, I guess), but still there are many ingredients that just work perfectly in that lovely rolled up wonder.

Spinach, bacon, cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, shallots – these are just some of the ideas, and the list goes on.

 

What I love about chicken roulades is how cute they look. This is one of those dinners that will elicit a lot of oohs and wows.

And you know what?

They really are easy to make!

 

 

Here’s what we need.
 
 

1. First, preheat the oven to 400 °F (200 °C).

 

2. Place the chicken breast into a Ziploc bag (or between two sheets of plastic wrap).
 
 

3. Beat the chicken breast with a meat mallet until about 1/8 inch (3 mm) thin.

 
 

This is the ham I had on hand.

It’s beyond yummy!

 
 

4. Place two slices of ham lengthwise along middle of the breast.

 
 

5. Then place two thin slices of the cheese over the ham.

I use Edam cheese in this recipe. You can, of course, use any kind you like.
 
 

Blue cheese.

My true love.
 
 

6. Now divide the blue cheese into three equal parts and arrange one third crosswise at the near end of the breast.

We are starting to create the center of our roulade here.

 

 

These are red peppers.

I had some pickled ones in my fridge.

Yum!
 
 

7. If you are using fresh red pepper then place two thin slices over the blue cheese.
 
 

8. And two green pepper slices over the red ones.
 
 

9. Roll the chicken roulade from one end to form a cylinder, securing the seam with a couple of toothpicks.
 
 

11. Secure the ends as well.

We definitely want to keep those flavorful juices inside.
 

12. Repeat the process for each of the two remaining chicken breasts.
 
 

13. Brush a baking pan with some olive oil and place the roulades inside, the seam side down.
 
 

14. In a small bowl, mix the olive oil with salt.
 
 

15. And brush the roulades with the oil mixture.
 
 

16. Place in the oven and bake (at 400 °F – 200 °C) for 30 minutes.

There will be a little juice in the pan when your remove the roulades from the oven.

Keep it please, it’s precious.
 
 

17. Remove the roulades from the pan and let them rest for 5 minutes before doing anything else.
 

18. Then remove the toothpicks and slice the roulades crosswise into 1/2 inch (1 1/2 cm) rounds.

Then sit down for awhile and feast your eyes on that cute structure you’ve just created.

 
 

When serving these cuties, pour a little of that precious and flavorful sauce from the pan over them. That will make them even more moist and delicious.
 

You can serve these roulades warm with toasts.

Or, to create a more satisfying dish, serve them with mashed potatoes.

 

And most importantly, ENJOY, dear friends!

 

(This recipe takes about 1 hour to prepare and makes 3 servings.)
 

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Are you one of those people who, like me, had thought that cheesecake and chocolate are not possible together?

Well, then I have something to tell you.

Something very important.

Something enlightening!

Dear friends, cheesecake and chocolate ARE possible to exist together.

SO possible.

Beyond possible!

Finger-licking possible!

Let me show you…
 
 

These are our lovely ingredients.
 

1. First, place the first three ingredients in the bowl of your electric mixer…
 
 

2. …and beat them at medium-low speed until combined.

Then increase the speed to medium, and beat until well blended and crumbly.
 
 

3. Pat the mixture into a lightly greased 13 x 9-inch (33 x 22 cm) pan.

A good trick is to use the bottom part of a measuring cup or a glass to do that.
 
 

4. Preheat your oven to 350 °F (175 °C) and bake for 13-15 minutes or until lightly browned.

This is a lovely, delicious and easy substitute for crushed wafers that are often used in cheesecake recipes.

Cool, huh?
 
 

5. Now, let’s make the cheesecake filling.

Place the cream cheese and sugar in the bowl of your electric mixer and beat at medium speed until creamy.
 
 

6. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating at low speed just until blended after each addition.
 
 

7. Finally, add the sour cream, vanilla, and one cup of the chocolate chunks.

Beat just until blended.

Of course, you can use chocolate chips instead of the chunks.
 
 

8. Pour the cheesecake mixture over the baked crust.
 
 

9. And using a spoon or an offset spatula, even out the surface.
 
 

10. Bake at 350 °F (175 °C) for about 25 minutes or until set.

 

11. Remove from the oven and let cool completely on a wire rack.
 
 

12. Then melt the rest of your chocolate chunks.

Microwave oven will work just fine.

(Oh, and use microwave friendly dishes, please. The one in the picture hadn’t gone to the microwave oven. If it had, things would have gotten sparkly… I guess. Don’t ask me how I know. Please.)

 
 

13. Stir the melted chocolate until smooth. Then drizzle the chocolate over the cheesecake.

 

14. Cover and chill for at least 4 hours. Then cut into bars.

Also, I’ve found out that it’s fine to reheat the bars in the microwave oven for a little while before serving. That way the chocolate will melt slightly making the whole eating experience even more divine.
 
 

Enjoy, dear friends.

 

(This lovely recipe was adapted from here. The recipe makes about 14 3×1.5-inch (8 x 4 cm) bars. The recipe takes about 1 hour to prepare and about 4 hours to chill. And the whole thing takes about 10 minutes to eat. Funny but true.)
 

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I’d love to reveal a little secret about our monkey household of two.

We love biscuits! All sorts of them!

Unbelievable, huh?

 

Biscuits are especially enjoyed by the male monkey over here.

You should see his smile each time he finds out they are in the oven.

It’s the widest and most content smile I’ve ever seen.

And when the biscuits are done my boyfriend immediately grabs his plate of at least fourteen and hurries to watch his favorite sitcoms.

I love to make biscuits because somehow they make the world a perfect place.

They are magical.
 
 

Here are the ingredients.
 
 

And here’s the bacon.

It’s a crucial part of the magic.
 
 

1. To make your own Bacon and Cheese Biscuits, first preheat the oven to 390 °F (200 °C).

 

2. Then slice the bacon thinly.
 
 

3. In a large pan, fry the bacon over moderate heat until crisp.

This will take a couple of minutes.
 
 

4. When beautifully crispy, remove the bacon from the pan and crumble it finely.
 
 

5. Grab the cheese and grate it.
 
 

Just like this.

This is a lot of cheese.

 

The cheese mostly will constitute the flavor of your biscuits. So choose the one you really like.

It’s completely up to you.

I used Leerdammer. Next time I’ll try Cheddar, I think.

It’s fun because the biscuits can be different every time.
 
 

6. Now we need a large bowl.

Using a pastry cutter (or just a fork), combine the flour, baking powder, salt, cayenne pepper and butter until crumbs form.
 
 

7. Stir in the grated cheese and the bacon.
 
 

8. Then add the milk…
 
 

9. …and stir together just until the dry ingredients are well moistened.
 
 

10. Transfer the dough onto a lightly floured surface and make a Halloween face out of it.

Sorry.

What I really mean is that now you should knead the dough 4 – 5 times.

To make the biscuits perfectly soft, the trick is not to over-knead the dough.

 
 

11. Roll it out to about 1/2 inch (1 cm) thickness.

When it gets sticky use some flour to make the job easier.
 
 

12. Cut out rounds using a 2-inch (5 cm) cutter.

Pat the scraps together, re-roll them and cut out some more rounds.
 
 

13. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Arrange your biscuits on the sheet about 1/2 inch (2.5 cm) apart.
 
 

14. And bake them for about 15 minutes.
 
 

These are so yummy.

Enjoy, dear friends!

 

This recipe makes about 36 biscuits.

(The recipe was adapted from LeitesCulinaria.com.)
 

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Pierogi, pierogi…what an interesting name.

Martha Stewart, for example, likes to make them and talk about them quite often.

Have you noticed?

It’s kind of the national food of the country her parents came from – Poland.

These cute, boiled dumplings with various kinds of fillings are spread and enjoyed over vast regions of Europe and America too.

Well, who knows, maybe also somewhere else.

If you know more, feel free to let me know.

I’d be very thankful.

Now I’m really curious – do you know them?

Do you like them?

Would you give them a try?

Or would you rather hide around a corner scared?

Well, I gave them a try, and not just once, and you know what?

They are yummilicious…
 
 

These are the ingredients I used to make very simple pierogi.
 
 

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour and salt.
 
 

2. Add the egg and the butter.
 
 

3. Using a pastry blender or a fork, incorporate the butter and egg into the flour until crumbs form.
 
 

4. Add the water.
 
 

5. With your hand, gather all the ingredients into a ball and knead until it’s rather smooth (for about 4 minutes).

The dough will be a little sticky. To make the kneading easier, dip your hand in some flour.
 
 

6. Now place the dough ball onto a well-floured working surface and roll it out into about 1/5 inch (0.5 cm) thickness.
 
 

7. Then grab a 3-inch (7.5 cm) cookie cutter – or a glass (see? I like the easier solutions so much – probably because I have no clue where my cookie cutter is right now) and cut out cute circles.

The glass or the cutter cuts into the dough much more easily if you dip it into some flour before.
 
 

8. Now we are going to magically turn the dough circle into pierogi.

For these very special purposes, we need the filling.

There are dozens of recipes for scrumptious pierogi fillings out there – sweet or savory. What I think is that this one might be the easiest of them all. Because all you have to do is just open your cream cheese container.

TA DA!

In case you would like to prepare your own flavored cream cheese filling, just go ahead and combine about 3/4 cup plain cream cheese with 1/4 cup plain yogurt, add about 1/2 cup chopped chives and salt to taste. Easy!
 
 

9. Place a small spoonful of the filling into the center of each circle.
 
 

10. Fold over.
 
 

11. And with your fingertip press the edges together to seal.
 
 

You can also use a fork to crimp the edges.
 
 

I used this gadget.

I love it from the deepest depths of my heart.

One day, I might break loose and write a poem about the pierogi press.

It’s my sweetheart from the first day we met.
 
 

I’m sure you’d love it too…
 
 

…if you saw this.

Amazing.

The best helper ever!
 
 

Hello little cuties.

You are having a bath soon!
 
 

12. To cook the pierogi, fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil.
 

13. Add the pierogi and cook – I recommend cooking them in three batches.

At first, your pierogi will sink. Stir them a little so that they don’t get stuck to the bottom. After a couple of minutes they will rise to the top – from this point on let them cook for additional 2 more minutes.
 
 

14. Using a spoon, remove the pierogi from the pot.
 
 

15.  Drizzle some vegetable oil over a plate or a bottom of a pot and transfer the beauties there.

Toss them around every now and then (while the second and third batches will be cooking) so that they don’t get dry.
 
 

16. Meanwhile, you can prepare the sauce.

Again, it’s unbelievably simple and easy.

But then, I am afraid I am never going to come up with something difficult.

So…in a small saucepan, melt the butter. Add the flour and whisk until the mixture starts to bubble.
 
 

17. Then add the broth, milk…
 
 

…and the cheese.

Stir until combined.

Bring the sauce to a boil, stirring constantly. Then remove the saucepan from heat.
 
 

18. Oh, and then I added the sweet paprika powder.

I just thought it would create a nice color contrast between the pierogi and the sauce.

 
 

Yummy.

Pierogi taste best when served warm (and with love, preferably).

Enjoy, dear friends.

(This recipe makes 22 pieces of pierogi and I guess you won’t spend more than one hour preparing it.)

 

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There’s been a lot of fun in my kitchen this week.

Of course, I will show you all the creations in the upcoming posts.

Among the things that I have made or plan to make this week there’s garlic bread, cauliflower casserole, orange-vanilla popsicles, strawberry cheesecake and also a special surprise that has something to do with Friday’s GIVEAWAY.

So stay tuned!

And now back to the ‘Garlic Cheese Bread’.

Have you ever tried making your own garlic cheese bread?

Well, you definitely need to give it a try.

It’s the best thing ever!

Because it’s easy.

And it has a magical ability to make your soul happy!

And because when you make it you’ll get rewarded by a wonderful crispy piece of fragrant and flavorful heaven.

Need I say anything more?

Please, have a look at how I made this finger-licking treat…
 
 

These are the ingredients I used.

The olives and oregano are optional but if you use them you’ll be glad you’ve done so.
 
 

First, you need two loaves of French bread.
 
 

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

2. Split the loaves in half lengthwise.
 
 

3. Now peel and chop the garlic cloves finely.
 
 

4. Place the garlic into a bowl, add the olive oil…
 
 

5. … and mix.

I love garlic!

Have I told you that once I almost killed my brother-in-law with the amount of garlic I’d served him for dinner?
 
 

These are the olives I used.

You can use any kind of olives you like – I decided to go for the ones with sweet pepper inside.

Just because I liked the way they looked.
 
 

6. Slice the olives.
 
 

This is dried oregano trying to look its best for the picture.
 
 

7. Grate the cheese.

Again, use any kind you like.  Edam, Cheddar,  Monterey Jack, Parmesan.

Or use all of them.

See? I’m so liberal when it comes to cooking – no strict rules really. To me it’s all about having fun and about the current content of the fridge. Because that’s what’s really important, right? To empty the fridge.
 
 

8. Now that we have prepared everything we can start taking care of the bread loaves.

Line a larger baking sheet with parchment paper and place the loaves onto it – cut side up.
 

9. Spread 1/4 of the garlic/oil mixture over each bread.
 
 

10. Scatter the olives over the top.
 
 

11. And sprinkle generously with the cheese and the oregano.
 
 

12. Then pop the baking sheet into the oven for about 10 minutes.
 
 

13. Remove the loaves from the oven and cut them into smaller pieces…
 
 

… and enjoy…
 
 


… and enjoy!
 

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puff-pastry-cheese-twists-final-I

I find these cuties to be a great choice for appetizers.

Your guests will surely love them!

The story of me finding the inspiration to prepare them starts on our recent vacation in Hungary.

Actually, I saw it on TV while trying to fall asleep in a hotel.

Kids were preparing them with a little help from some lovely lady.

But the kids made their own dough.

And I didn’t.

The kids DID.

~~~

So you need:

1 package of  that puff dough I was talking about

as much ketchup as you like

as much hard cheese as you like (the stronger in flavor the better)

as much oregano as you like (fresh or dried)

1 egg to spread on top

~~~

1. Preheat an oven to 350 F (176 C).

2. On a floured surface roll out the thawed dough into a rectangle shape.

puff-pastry-cheese-twists-oregano

3. Spread ketchup over the surface.

Sprinkle with grated cheese and oregano.

puff-pastry-cheese-twists-folding

4. Divide the sheet of dough visually in half and fold it over to form two layers.

Roll gently with a rolling pin to seal.

puff-pastry-cheese-twists-cutting

5. Cut into 1 1/4 inch (3 cm) strips.

puff-pastry-cheese-twists-V

6. Twist the strips.

Place them on a baking sheet, pressing down the ends.

Brush the pastries with the egg mixture and sprinkle lightly with oregano.

7. Bake for 13 minutes or until golden brown.

Remove the pastries from the baking sheet and let cool on a wire rack.

Bon Appetit!

puff-pastry-cheese-twists-last

Enjoy!

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