Friday, December 31, 2010

Recipes on the Airwaves

Talk Radio 1370 AM broadens into cooking.

Talk Radio 1370 AM and the Craig Bushon Show proudly announce the addition of Rider on Recipes, a new cooking segment featuring local Austin cook, Stacey Rider.

Launching on Sunday, January 9th, 2011 Rider on Recipes will offer ideas, recipes, time and money saving tips, and introduce unique gadgets that will help build meals for the entire family.   Listeners can email Rider at with requests or suggestions.

“Creating recipes have long been a passion of mine,” said Rider.   “I’ve been able to share my love of cooking through food blogs, catering and local demonstrations but the Craig Bushon Show takes it to a much higher broadcasting level and I’m honored to be working with such a professional team.”

“I am very excited about Stacey Rider joining our team with the Rider on Recipes segment, this is sure to be a big hit with our listeners. Stacey brings a down home but sophisticated perspective to cooking that you don’t want to miss,” said Craig Bushon.

Rider is mother to 5, cook, and local Realtor with the Bartlett Real Estate Group, Keller Williams Realty.  In her spare time, she is also the Four Points Foodie food blogger, where she writes about creating custom cuisine and shares her recipes.

Starting January 9th, you can listen to the Rider on Recipes segment on the Craig Bushon Show airing Sundays from 2 – 4:00 p.m. on Talk Radio 1370 AM. Every week will feature a different recipe and how to break it down so that even the basic cook can prepare it with ease.

“I’m so excited”, said Rider, “and thrilled to share my recipes with Austin”.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Royal Icing without the raw egg white

I love rolled sugar cookies with Royal Icing.   To me, spending an afternoon decorating cookies is pure bliss.   I am, however, suspect of raw eggs and I don't use them in my Royal Icing version.   Meringue Powder works great, it's safely pasteurized and the results are beautiful each time.

Meringue Powder Royal Icing (without the raw egg white)

  • 2 C powdered sugar
  • 4 T water
  • 4 t Meringue Powder (I use Wilton)
  • 1 t fresh lemon juice
  • assorted food coloring
Directions:   In a small bowl, whisk together the water and meringue powder until frothy.   In a mixer, combine the powdered sugar and meringue mixture until smooth, adding the lemon juice to the desired consistency (which should be like heavy cream.   Put into small bowls, add your food coloring of choice and decorate.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Italian Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms

Christmas is the time when neighbors stop by with homemade goodies to share.   I find that a great opportunity to invite them in for an impromptu get-together.   These yummy bites are easy to make, full of flavor and I always have the ingredients on hand.   Perfect for those knock on your door surprise guests!

Italian Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms

  • Small Portabella Mushrooms, wiped clean and stems removed (about 36)
  • 16 oz Italian Sausage
  • 1 pkg cream cheese
  • 1/2 C. Hol-Grain Brown Rice bread crumbs
  • 1/2 C. Parmesan cheese, flaked or grated
  • 1/4 C. fresh Parsley, chopped
  • Salt and Pepper
 cooking the Italian Sausage

 Mixing all the ingredients together

 Into the oven to bake

Directions:   Preheat oven to 375 degrees.   Wipe the mushrooms clean and remove the stems.   Place onto a baking sheet.   In a pan, cook the Italian Sausage, crumbling as you cook, until completely done.   In a large bowl, place the unwrapped cream cheese.   Add the Italian Sausage over the cream cheese so it starts to melt which makes mixing easier.   Add the remaining ingredients and mix well.   Add a large spoonful of the mixture to each mushroom cap, pressing down.   Bake in oven for 35 minutes or until hot.   There may be a bit of liquid in the bottom of the pan from the mushrooms, which is fine.   Just blot the bottom of each mushroom to dry, then serve.


I had so much fun gently unwrapping the Christmas Tree Ornaments this year and hung each one with thought and care.   Here are a few of my favorites from our collections.

 Snowflake Ornament

 Love this Santa!

 Another Santa..

 And another...

 Snowy Gingerbread House

 Swarovski Crystal Snowflake

Gilded Dove


A stately Pheasant

Hand-blown Glass Ornament

Christmas Decorations 2010

I've had several friends ask me how I decorated our home this year and wanted to share... 

 Our stockings hung along the fireplace mantel.

 Our Christmas Tree decked out!

 Red ribbons and holly adorn everything.

 This sits in our breakfast area and welcomes us each morning.

Christmas ornaments hang from our light fixture above the island.

 More red ribbons...

 The collection of Nutcrackers

Our Dining Room table

Friday, December 10, 2010

Melt in your mouth Peppermint Bark

I tweak this recipe every year and I think I've finally gotten it right... as this melts in your mouth!   Instead of using the hard type of peppermint candies, I used the soft, puffy kind.   Now it just gently flavors your mouth with a pleasing taste of chocolates and peppermint but still has a nice texture.  (No cracking the dental work).

Melt in your mouth Peppermint Bark

  • King Leo SOFT Peppermint Candy, crushed to make 1 cup
  • 1 lb white chocolate
  • 1 lb dark chocolate (I of course used Ghirardelli)
  •  Peppermint extract
Directions:    Place the soft Peppermint Candy in a plastic bag and with a rolling pin; break into 1/4-inch chunks or smaller.  Melt the dark and white chocolates separately over a double boiler. Pour the dark chocolate onto a cookie sheet layered with parchment paper and spread out to form a rectangle.

Combine Peppermint chunks with white chocolate, add peppermint extract and stir well.  Next pour the white peppermint mixture onto the dark chocolate and with a knife, spread it out over the dark chocolate.  Using a new knife, gently run through both layers of chocolate to create swirls.

Place in the refrigerator for 45 minutes or until firm then break into small pieces and store in an airtight container until it’s gone!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Carrot Cake

My husband just had a birthday and asked for Carrot Cake to celebrate.   Okay... I have a GREAT recipe that is moist, uses OLIVE OIL and tastes amazing!

  • 1 1/4 C olive oil
  • 2 C brown sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 T dark molasses
  • 3 C carrots, finely grated
  • 2 C flour
  • 2 t baking soda
  • 1 T cinnamon
  • 1 t nutmeg
  • 1 t ground cloves
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 C walnuts, chopped
  • 1/2 C raisins
  • 1/2 C golden raisins  
Cream Cheese Frosting:
  • 2 pkgs. cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 C butter, softened
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 2 - 2 1/2 C powdered sugar
  • 2 T half and half (to thin, just in case)
Directions:   Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.   Butter and flour 2 cake pans and set aside.   In large mixing bowl, whisk olive oil and brown sugar together.   Add eggs and molasses and mix well.   Stir in carrots, flour, soda, spices and salt mixing well.  Add nuts and raisins and stir until incorporated.   Spoon into prepared cake pans and bake for 35 - 40 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean and then cool.

In a separate bowl, beat together cream cheese and butter.   Add powdered sugar 1/2 C at a time until the desired sweetness, adding a bit of half and half if necessary to thin.  Frost cooled cake and enjoy!

In the photo below... I actually have 5 layers.   I increased my recipe to an additional 3rd, baked 3 cakes and once cooled, split them.   I didn't use the last half as the cake towered tall (though it was eaten).   

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Timeless Treasures - Russian Tea Cakes

Whether you call them Mexican Wedding Cookies or Russian Tea Cakes, these treasures will melt in your mouth!   Always on our Christmas Cookie making list, there are so many variations of the recipe.   What I am sharing with you today is the best of my best - tweaked here and there - but with amazing results.

Russian Tea Cakes

  • 1 C butter, softened
  • 1/2 C powdered sugar
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 2 1/4 C all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 C finely chopped pecans
  • 1/4 t salt
  • Powdered Sugar to roll in
Directions: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Cream butter with 1/2 C powdered sugar and vanilla in a large bowl.  Stir in flour, nuts and salt until the dough holds together.   With clean hands, roll dough into 1 inch balls and place about 1 inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.   Bake 10 - 12 minutes or until set but not brown.   Remove from cookie sheet, cool slightly, then roll the warm cookies in powdered sugar.  This makes about 40 cookies.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

It's Chili Time

The weather in Austin, Texas finally is indicative of CHILI!   I've been waiting for months to make my special recipe and here it is!   Trey is making chili and eggs for breakfast right now - leftovers are awesome!   This is the recipe that won the People Choice Award at the Steiner Ranch Chili Cook-off!

Stacey Rider's Rough Shot Chili
  • 4 slices Jalapeno bacon
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 6 fire roasted jalapenos
  • 1, 8 oz pkg turkey chorizo
  • 1, 12 oz pkg sausage
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 3 lbs. Sirloin, ground
  • 3 bottles Shiner Bock Dark Beer
  • 1 C chicken broth
  • 1 jar Dona Maria Adobo
  • 3 T Ancho Chili Powder 
  • 3 T Cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
Frying the jalapeno bacon

Beginning to fire roast my own jalapeno's

peeled, seeds removed and chopped up

I trim the fat and cube the sirloin first

A nice, rough grind

Been simmering for an hour

Directions:  In a heavy duty large stock pot, saute chopped bacon until crisp.   Remove to paper towel for later use.   Using bacon drippings, saute onions until slightly caramelized.   Add chopped fire roasted jalapenos and saute a few minutes more.   Add chorizo and sausage and cook through.   Transfer mixture to a bowl and reserve for later use.    

Add the olive oil to the stock pot and brown the sirloin until cooked through.   Add onion mixture back into pot, stirring well.   Pour in beer and chicken broth and bring to a boil.   Add adobo and spices then season to taste with salt and pepper.   Stir well and reduce to low heat and simmer for an hour or so, stirring occasionally so that nothing sticks to the bottom.

To serve, I garnish with cheese, guacamole, and Crema with toasted cumin seeds.  

Surprise Birthday Luncheon for Sara Pickett

My best friend Sara Pickett turned 45 on the 24th!   She is the person who does it all; juggles a family, a home and a career beautifully.   We surprised her with a birthday luncheon of Roasted Chicken with Rosemary Panini Sandwiches, Salads, custom ice cream cakes from Shakes and Pumpkin Martins!   She was completely caught off guard and we had a blast.


 Sara and her 92 year old grandmother Nana Tutu

Roasted Chicken Panini's with caramelized onions, radicchio and rosemary

 Custom Ice Cream Cakes from Shakes

Happy Birthday MY FRIEND!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Layered Dessert

Peanut butter and chocolate make a great combination.    This frozen dessert takes those two flavors and layers them into deliciousness.   Makes a pretty presentation for fancy parties or for family meals.

Peanut Butter and Chocolate Layered Dessert

  • 12 Nutter Butter Cookies or any other peanut butter sandwich cookie
  • 2 T butter, melted
  • 2 T cream (from pint of cream below)
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1 pkg cream cheese, softened
  • 1 C creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 C sugar
  • 2 t vanilla
  • 1 pint heavy whipping cream
  • 3 T powdered sugar
  • 6 squares (3 oz) Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate
Directions: In a food processor, blend cookies, melted butter, cream and vanilla until crumbly.   Line a large loaf pan with parchment paper and press cookie mixture into the bottom of the loaf pan.

In a food processor, mix cream cheese, peanut butter, sugar and vanilla until well blended.   In a separate bowl, beat heavy whipping cream on high until peaks form and add powdered sugar.   Fold cream into peanut butter mixture.   Reserve about 1 C of mixture in a separate bowl and add melted chocolate, mix well to blend.   Spoon half of the remaining mixture over crust.  Top with chocolate mixture and then add remaining peanut butter mixture.   Freeze for at least 3 hours or until firm.   Dessert will easily lift out of pan so it can be sliced.   I topped mine with a bit of crushed cookie.   This is really, REALLY good!

Images from the Cranberry Demo at Faraday's

Here's a pictorial from my Cranberry Sauce demo at Faraday's Kitchen Store two weeks ago.   Had such a wonderful time and the Faraday's Kitchen is the perfect set up for any cook or chef!

Ready to serve to my clients and customers!

Roasted Chicken with my homemade Cranberry Sauce.

Grilled Medallions of Pork Tenderloin with my homemade Cranberry Sauce.

Brie with my homemade Cranberry Sauce.

Blakely and Sharon from Faraday's Kitchen Store.

Making my homemade Cranberry Sauce and canning it for the customers.