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Easy Chicken Enchiladas with Ultra Gel

Every evening I’m feeding a pretty full household. Teenagers, not toddlers, husbands, cats…the kitchen is always busy, and, let’s be honest, I like it that way. Usually. But sometimes I feel less inspired than others and I like having a file of easy go-tos which I add to upon occasion.

This is one such occasion and one such recipe. I love these Easy Chicken Enchiladas, and the power of Ultra Gel makes them even better. These Chicken Enchiladas are great with either chicken breasts or thighs, you just want a pile of cooked, boneless meat to start with and everything goes from there.

Because of the Ultra Gel these Chicken Enchiladas can be made days ahead of time and frozen, then baked for about an hour before dinner time. Viola! Easy, tasty, yum.

Easy Chicken Enchiladas with Ultra Gel

1 can (10-12 ounces) red enchilada sauce (You can make this, but this is the way easy version)

1 can (15 ounces) chicken broth (homemade will also work well here)

2-3 Tablespoons Ultra Gel

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1-2 pounds cooked, diced boneless chicken

1/2 medium onion chopped

1-2 Tablespoons minced garlic

1/2-3/4 cups sour cream

1 small can diced green chiles

1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed

salt and pepper to taste

1-2 Tablespoons Ultra Gel

2 cups cheese

8-10 corn tortillas

In a small pan combine enchilada sauce, chicken broth, Ultra Gel and black pepper and bring to a boil. Turn down and simmer for 1 minute. Set aside.

In a medium pan combine 1 Tablespoon oil, chopped onion and minced garlic. Cook on medium heat until onion is transparent. Don’t over cook or garlic will burn. Add chicken, sour cream, green chiles and rinsed beans and mix until well combined and warmed through. Add salt and pepper and Ultra Gel.

Line the bottom of a 9×12 inch pan with 1 cup of the enchilada sauce. Place 2 Tablespoons chicken mixture in each tortilla and roll up. Place each roll into enchilada sauce in baking pan, seam side down. When pan is full cover all tortilla rolls with remaining enchilada sauce. If you want to freeze the batch cover with a layer of plastic wrap and a layer of tin foil and move to the freezer. Otherwise, cover with cheese and bake for 35 minutes at 375 degrees until bubbly and amazing.

For frozen batches: Remove from freezer and allow to sit at room temperature for 10 minutes. Top with cheese. Bake at 375 degrees for 45-50 minutes until cooked all the way through.

Homemade Pop Tarts with Cornaby’s Jams

Here at Cornaby’s we’ve been whipping up some amazing new jams including Apple Pie and Cherry Pie gourmet jams. I had a bottle of the Apple Pie jam sitting in the fridge and in a moment of dessert inspiration decided to make homemade pop tarts. How hard could it be?

The answer? VERY simple. This is a recipe anyone can do and it would be perfect to make with your kids as well. All you do for these homemade pop tarts is buy a box of puff pastry dough (available in your grocer’s freezer section) and let it thaw. Cut each sheet into nine squares. Fill the squares with a generous dollop of Apple Pie (Or Cherry or Raspberry…or…) jam and cover with a second square. Seal the edges and bake.

Store bought pop tarts are on notice…this homemade version is amazing!

Homemade Pop Tarts with Cornaby’s Jam

1 box (2 sheets) puff pastry dough, thawed

1 bottle Cornaby’s Apple Pie Jam

Roll out puff pastry and cut into nine squares per sheet. Dock squares with a fork to allow for steam to escape. Put 1-2 teaspoons, or a little more, of Cornaby’s Apple Pie jam in the center of 9 squares. You want the center to look full, but not so full that you can’t seal the edges. Place a second square on top of each pop tart and seal edges with your fingers. Move to a baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes until brown and puffy.

Top with a powdered sugar glaze if desired.

Vanilla Peach Freezer Jam – With Jam in a Jiffy

Around here this was a good year for peaches, but also a very busy fall. Therefore, I ended up freezing off some of my peaches for use later. Well…yay for later! A big bag of peaches, I sliced them and weighed them out in two pound bags, one bag of jam in a jiffy and a teaspoon of very good vanilla extract. So easy and here’s a jam that elevates everything it goes on. It’s a particularly good dessert jam to pour on cakes, waffles, crepes and to fill breads with. Who says you can’t have fall flavors in the middle of January?!?

Vanilla Peach Freezer Jam

2 pounds frozen peaches

1 bag Cornaby’s Jam in a Jiffy

1 teaspoon vanilla

Let frozen peaches thaw and drain off the liquid. DON’T discard it. Crush fruit and add Jam in a Jiffy. Stir well. Add vanilla and mix to combine. Allow mixture to sit for 3-5 minutes. As needed add back in peach juice until you reach the desired consistency.

Jam can be refrozen for up to 3 months. Refrigerated for 1-2 weeks. Or eaten immediately. We won’t judge.

Refrigerator Lemon Rolls with Ultra Gel

January can sometimes be a hard time of year. It’s full of new beginnings, but also tend to be a little grey and cold and pregnant with that feeling that you’re really waiting for the new year to get started.

When I’m feeling this way one of the comfort foods I reach for are lemon rolls. I love this particular recipe for lemon rolls because it can be made and baked all in one day, or it can be refrigerated for up to five days after adding the first batch of flour. I’ve even been known to split the batch and bake some now and some later, and I love that flexibility!

Ultra Gel plays a leading roll in these rolls as it holds the moisture in the sponge (refrigerator state) stage and in the baked rolls to keep them soft longer. Use a fresh lemon in the lemon sugar for an amazing punch of flavor. Citrus is on sale this time of year and the lemons you get are fresh and just a little sweet and beautiful.

Refrigerator Lemon Rolls with Ultra Gel

1 (12 ounce) can evaporated milk

1 cup hot water

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup soft butter

2 teaspoons salt

4 eggs

4 Tablespoons Ultra Gel

2 Tablespoons yeast

2 teaspoons sugar

1/2 cup warm water

8-9 cups bread flour

Lemon filling:

1 cup sugar

grated rind of one lemon

1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Combine yeast and 2 teaspoons sugar in 1/2 cup warm water and allow to proof for 10-15 minutes. Combine evaporated milk, hot water, sugar, butter and salt in a large bowl. Add 4 cups flour and mix well. Add eggs, Ultra Gel and yeast mixture and combine. At this point you can cover the sponge with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 5 days. When ready to use (or immediately) remove from refrigerator and bring to room temperature. Add additional flour until you have a soft, slightly sticky dough.

Let rise until double.

Divide into 4 portions and roll out as desired, filling with lemon filling or cinnamon and brown sugar. Shape as desired.

Let rise until doubled.

Bake at 400 for 10-15 minutes.

Top with powdered sugar icing.

Cinnamon Spice Cheese Ball

Happy Holidays to all our friends and followers! No matter how you celebrated we hope you had a Merry Christmas and a brilliant holiday season, though it’s not over just yet! And we’re glad because New Years is a great time for appetizers and we have a great recipe to share.

Most appetizers are savory, but there are times you want something which has a sweeter leaning without being as sweet as candy or cookies. This Cinnamon Spice Cheese Ball is a favorite of mine and fills the gap nicely. Here we combine Cornaby’s Cinnamon Spice* gourmet jam with cream cheese for a cheese ball that will surprise and delight your party guests.

* Cornaby’s Cinnamon Spice jam used to be called cinnaberry. This is a new formulation but still combines raspberries, cranberries, cinnamon and cloves to create an amazing holiday spread. Perfect with turkey, ham, on a fresh roll or in a cheese ball!

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Cinnamon Spice Cheese Ball

12 ounces low-fat cream cheese, softened

2-4 Tablespoons powdered sugar (Depending on how sweet you want the final product)

1 Tablespoon Ultra Gel

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons vanilla

8 ounce Cornaby’s Cinnaberry Spice jam

Combine ingredients in the order listed with an electric or stand mixer. Refrigerate cheese ball for at least 30 minutes before serving. For extra crunch roll in pecan pieces. Serve with graham crackers or vanilla wafer crackers.

Grownup Gingerbread Cookies with Ultra Gel

Of the many things that say it’s Christmas time to me Gingerbread Cookies rank right up there with Frosty and Rudolph. I love ginger and gingerbread and, to be honest, my absolute favorite gingerbread cookies are these Ginger Snaps by Alton Brown. However, those are a ginger drop cookie, and as good as they are sometimes you need a lovely gingerbread that can be shaped, but isn’t so dry and hard that you can use it as construction material.

Enter my Grownup Gingerbread cookies. Why Grownup? Because these are serious gingerbread, people. They are made with dark brown sugar, and black strap molasses and a whole tablespoon of powdered ginger. We are not messing around with flavor here, but they are flavors that sometimes small children don’t care for. But fear not, the kids can still be involved in all the rolling and shaping and decorating (which my daughter thinks is the best part anyway) and then you can enjoy a wonderful ginger and molasses treat with your hot chocolate.

These start out as a nicely chewy cookie. If you want a bit more snap, just leave them on the counter to dry out for a day versus packing them into an airtight container.

Don’t forget to leave a few out for Santa. You know he knows his gingerbread!

Grownup Gingerbread Cookies with Ultra Gel

3 cups flour

1 Tablespoon ground ginger (The good stuff people!)

1 Tablespoon pumpkin pie spice (or 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, and 1/4 teaspoon each ground cloves, nutmeg and allspice)

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

2 Tablespoons Ultra Gel

3/4 cups dark brown sugar

12 Tablespoons butter, softened

1 large egg

2 teaspoons vanilla

1/2 cup molasses (blackstrap if you want a dark cookie, non blackstrap if you don’t like the flavor)

1-2 Tablespoons milk (as needed)

Royal Icing

2 pounds powdered sugar

1 Tablespoon Ultra Gel

5 egg whites*

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla

Cookies:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine dry ingredients and set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer combine butter and sugar and whip until well combined. Add egg and mix well. Add vanilla and molasses and beat, scraping down sides at least once. Sift in dry ingredients and milk as needed to bring together into a soft dough.

Refrigerate for 15-20 minutes.

Roll dough into a sheet 1/4 inch thick. Punch out Christmas shapes with cookie cutters. Move shapes to a baking sheet, spacing 1 inch apart. Reroll scraps until they’re all used up or dough begins to toughen.

Bake for 8-9 minutes. Cool and set aside.

For icing:

Pour powdered sugar into the bowl of a stand mixer or a large bowl with an electric mixer on hand and mix lightly with salt and Ultra Gel. Make a well in the center. Separate eggs (Keep the yolks for pound cake! or custard!) placing whites in the middle of the dry ingredients. Mix just to combine then turn to full speed and whip for 3 minutes. You don’t want to over whip the icing because that can trap bubbles and make it hard to pipe later. Scrape down sides at least twice during this process. Add vanilla and mix.

Icing can then be colored (gel or powdered colors work better) and used immediately. Alternatively move to an air tight container and press plastic wrap against the icing before lidding and move to the fridge. This will generally keep in the fridge for upto a week.

*I recommend using pasteurized eggs and don’t fret at all about the fact these are raw. If you are concerned you can use pasteurized egg white mix or meringue powder in place.

Happy Preparing for Thanksgiving Day

For our friend out of the US I know that tomorrow is just another Thursday, but for those in the US it’s Thanksgiving and here at Cornaby’s we certainly have a lot to be thankful for.

Today I’m making pies. I love baking and I love how much easier Cornaby’s products have made it to accomplish a lot of pie making in a short period of time. All this baking is not only fun, but it gives me a connection to a lot of people who won’t be with us this year. Those who are far away, and those who are close only in our hearts. So we’re thankful for them, and for good food and for family.

Now…on to the pies. Today has started with pumpkin, Black Forest pie and caramel apple cheesecake. Pumpkin cake is next on the list, followed by pecan bars and a couple of chocolate ganache pies. We’ll see if custard pies happen, just depends on how the rest of the afternoon goes.

So that gives us a lot of recipes to choose from as far as what I’m sharing today, but I think I’ll go with my take on the classic pumpkin pie.

Pumpkin Pie with Cornaby’s Ultra Gel

30 ounce can of Libby’s pumpkin (Or any other good quality pumpkin puree)

3/4 cups sugar

3/4 cups brown sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1 Tablespoon pumpkin pie spice

4 Tablespoons Ultra Gel

2 eggs

2 cans evaporated milk

2 unbaked 9 inch pie shells (I use this no fail recipe, which gives me 4 single crusts!)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Line glass pie tins with crust, trim and flute edges. Set aside.

In a large bowl combine all filling ingredients in order listed. Whisk well after each addition. The final custard should be smooth and sweet. Divide custard between pie shells and put into the oven. I don’t often get over flow, but I do put a cookie tray on the rack under my pies to catch any drips during baking. Bake for 15 minutes. Then drop temperature to 350 degrees and bake for an additional 40-50 minutes until the custard sets and a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Remove from oven and allow to cool. Serve with Ultra Gel whipping cream, ice cream or just eat it plain.

Yum!