Meatloaf Stuffed Potato Balls with Dragon Sauce

Recipes in this PostMeatloaf Stuffed Potato Balls with Dragon Sauce

Meatloaf Stuffed Potato Balls with Dragon Sauce

One of my favorite things is to go to Porto’s in Glendale and get Papas Rellenas (Cuban Potato Balls).  They are very tasty, and make for a quick bite.  One day, I had left over meatloaf, and left over mashed potatoes, so I decided to try my hand at making them.  It’s pretty simple, and a good way to use up your left overs.  You could use other stuffing, I just happen to really like my Three Pepper Spicy Meatloaf.

A few words about mashed potatoes

Please use real ones, not the ones in the box, or the ones that are already made. Take a little time to make mashed potatoes.  I usually use one medium sized potato per person, unless I want extra for something like this, and then I add an extra potato. For this recipe, you will need to peel the potatoes. Unpeeled potatoes are great, but the peels would get in the way when trying to keep the shaped correctly.  I cut my potatoes in half lengthwise, then cut each half into quarters.  I keep the cut, peeled potatoes in cold water until they have all been prepped, this keeps them from turning brown.  Rinse the potatoes and put them in clean, salted water. Always use a good amount of salt in the water, about a half a teaspoon per potato. Bring the water to a boil, then cover and reduce the heat to medium. Check the potatoes at about 15 minutes.  They are done when you can easily stick a fork or tip of a knife in them.  Don’t let them get over cooked, or you will have a soggy mess. Drain them in a sturdy colander immediately so they will stop cooking.  I like to add butter at this point, and mash them with a masher so the butter really gets in there, then I add milk and depending on how fluffy I want them, I either whip them by hand, or use a hand mixer.

Meatloaf – It’s all up to you!

To make this you will need about 2 cups of left over mashed and a few slices of left over meatloaf.  You can use your favorite meatloaf recipe, you are not tied to mine. You can even use – gads! – store bought meatloaf if you like it.

The Dragon Sauce

You don’t have to have a dip for these, they’re good plain.  But, if you like a extra zip, please try this Dragon Sauce. If you don’t like spicy foods, then you could always use Ranch or onion dip if you wanted.  This is one of those recipes that’s really up to you.  Use what you enjoy!

Continue reading

Apple Streusel Bundt Cake

Apple Streusel Bundt CakeRecipes in this Post

I found this recipe on the back of the Zulka brown sugar bag.  The cake looked great on the package, I happened to have apples in the refrigerator, and I wanted to try something new.

The instructions on how to make the cake on the bag make no sense, therefore, I changed it to the traditional method of creaming the butter and then creaming the butter and sugar together.  Okay, so you don’t know what creaming is?  It’s very simple.  Put room temperature butter into a large bowl, and then beat it with an electric beater until it is nice and smooth.  If you don’t have room temperature butter, you can cut the butter up into small pieces and then cream it.  The best way to beat is with a stand mixer, but a hand mixer will do just fine.  Don’t try this with a whisk, it’s too difficult.

This is a very moist cake, and may take quite a while to bake. The original instructions said 40-55 minutes, mine was in over 80 minutes, your mileage may vary.

Continue reading

Walnut Coffee Cake

Walnut Coffee Cake like Porto's

Recipes in this Post

So, a few months ago, I wanted a piece of coffee cake, specifically the coffee cake at Porto’s in Glendale. Instead, I got out my wonderful American Woman’s Cookbook, copyright 1942, and had a look in there. I found a recipe that looked good but didn’t have the ingredients. By the time I got the ingredients, I had forgotten about the cake, and just put them in the cupboard. Today, I remembered they were there, and decided to make the cake.

I was surprised at how easy it was to make, but what really blew me away was how it was almost exactly the same cake as Porto’s in Glendale! Porto’s cake is larger, but that just means increasing the ingredients if I want one that large, but since we have a small family, this works out perfectly.
Continue reading

Apple Streusel Microwave Mayonnaise Coffee Cake

Apple Streusel Microwave Mayonnaise Coffee CakeRecipes in this Post

Too Hot to Handle!

It’s the middle of July here in Glendale, California, and it was 88 degrees in my house. My house is pretty cool because I face north, and there is a nice awning over the windows, so it doesn’t get that hot inside. Our kitchen has the stove tucked in a corner, with no ventilation except the regular fan. The heat does not dissipate, and once the oven is turned on, it stays hot in there for hours. That’s great in the winter, but not when it’s 92 outside. What do you do when you want to have cake and it’s just to darned hot? You use the microwave.

This was my first time baking in the microwave, too, but armed with toothpicks, I was able to tell right away when the cake was finished. The texture is not quite the same as a regular cake, it is very dense, but actually quite good.

Mayonnaise is your Friend

I know you think that sounds yucky to put mayonnaise in a cake, but it truly keeps it nice and moist, after all, when you look up the ingredients in your head, you will see that it is mostly eggs and oil, both of which make cakes moist. Egg whites also bring airiness to the table. So, it’s a good thing.

This is my first mayonnaise cake. I looked around for recipes, and they all had chocolate, but I wanted coffee cake, and the landlord gave me apples from his tree, so chocolate was out. I followed standard recipes, omitting the chocolate, and it turned out just fine.

Continue reading

Coconut Pineapple Upside Down Cake


Coconut Pineapple Upside Down CakeRecipes in this Post

My mother used to make this cake, and I loved it. After my mother died when I was 15, I really missed her, and the cake, so I made one, but I added coconut and I used a yellow cake mix in the box. I remember my grandmother was quite impressed at how well it turned out.

I didn’t think about that cake until recently when I was at a Von’s and they had one for sale. I remembered how much I liked it, and bought one so Spane could try it, too. It was delicious, and then I was on a pineapple upside down cake craze!

I fully intended to make my own, but before I could, one was on sale at the local Ralph’s, and I bought it. Oh my goodness, it was AWFUL! The store’s recipe used cornstarch and pineapple FLAVORING which was bitter and tasted like chemicals. I knew I could do a lot better than that.

I had intended on making this cake many times, and would buy maraschino cherries, only to start my mis en place and find that Spane had already eaten the cherries. No cake without cherries, I say. Well, the next time I bought them, I put them way up in the top of the pantry, behind a can of coffee. I also had left over coconut from making the Fantasy Island Bars, so I could make the cake I hadn’t made since I was 15 years old. The only difference was I made my own yellow cake and added crushed pineapple to the batter. It was delicious!

Please understand, if you are going to make this, it is not for those on a diet. This cake is very, very rich, and although is sized at 12, will probably feed quite a bit more.

Continue reading

Chocolate Chip Fruit Muesli Cookies

Recipes in this Post

Chocolate Chip Fruit Muesli Cookies

It was so cold and windy today that even with the windows closed I could still feel the wind! These are insulated windows, too. In Glendale, California, where we live, the wind sometimes whips up a storm as it comes across the valley. and then gets caught in our little bowl surrounded by Griffith Park in the west, Eaglerock in the south, the San Gabriels in the east, and the Verdugo Mountains in the north. As the wind squeezes itself out to Pasadena, it can start howling and really whirl itself into a frenzy.

That’s okay! It means that the oven can go on and have something to do. I know I’ve talked about this in the past, and I’ll say it again. I just don’t feel right lighting a heater on the wall when it does nothing but heat the room and dry out the air. At least an oven produces something for its efforts.

I wanted something a little healthy, and we have dried cranberries, organic chocolate and Blueberry Muesli from Trader Joe’s. I thought using that for cookies would a) make them better for you, and b) taste/feel similar to oatmeal cookies. I don’t like oatmeal, so I never have it on hand. I wouldn’t even have the little packets around, as those are GMO. Yes, you heard it right, Quaker Oats from General Mills are genetically modified. I think if that nice Quaker gentleman on the box knew about that he’d jump straight off the container.

Continue reading