Nico's Mama Recipe Reviews (Pg. 1) - Allrecipes.com (10590820)

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Sweet Potato Pie I

Reviewed: Oct. 9, 2009
This was my first-ever sweet potato pie and I agree with some other reviewers that there was something just not right. I followed the recipe exactly - I then looked at my old "Joy of Cooking" and it notes that for a fluffier, more custard-like texture you'll want to use THREE eggs for this pie rather than two. I will try three in the future. Two rookie mistakes - when I was boiling the sweet potatoes (I used two) I failed to turn them in the water so only one side was fully cooked - make sure to turn them! I will try baking the potatoes in the future as I have heard that brings out the flavor more...finally, I skimped and purchased one of the generic-brand roll-out pie crusts - will not do that again. Either spend the extra buck, if you can, and purchase the Pillsbury brand refrigerator crust (the best) or just make your own. The generic one just tastes...generic....Definitely plan to serve this with whipped cream...
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Chewy Coconut Cookies

Reviewed: Jun. 15, 2009
These were fine - not the best cookies I've ever had...I did add white chocolate chips to the batter. I think next time I would add semi-sweet chocolate chips instead for a little more flavor. My cookies came out quite thin - I read from another review that this might be caused by older baking soda - it might be time for me to get a new box! Also, I would recommend greasing your cookie sheet even though the recipe says "ungreased."
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Strawberry Spinach Salad I

Reviewed: Jun. 8, 2009
WOW. And I'm not even a salad girl at heart. I used balsamic vinegar instead of white and omitted the poppy seeds because I didn't have any. Was totally fine without. Used less sugar than the 1/2 cup listed. Chopped and toasted some almonds. Put chopped red onion into my mini-processor to "mince" it properly so that it was more of a slushy consistency when added to the other dressing ingredients. Added a few turns of black pepper as well as crumbled blue cheese. Served with grilled Italian sausage and corn on the cob - delish.
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No Bake Peanut Butter Pie

Reviewed: Jun. 8, 2009
Cheap, quick, easy and tasty. Nothing too sophisticated here but a definite keeper. Used one pre-made graham crust from grocery store - still used 8 oz. cream cheese and 8 oz. of light cool whip but dropped amount of sugar to 3/4 cup and would use even a little less in future. Used slightly more than one cup of peanut butter. Layered bottom of crust with Hershey's Dessert Fudge but next time will either melt dark chocolate instead or will line bottom with peanut butter M&Ms - the fudge isn't the best. To decorate I used colorful peanut butter M&Ms around the edge. Firmed it up by putting in freezer but then decided to keep it in the fridge - tastes great - not too soft for my taste.
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Delicious Black Bean Burritos

Reviewed: Jun. 1, 2009
I'm a fan! Love burritos but never got around to making them at home. I'll use this recipe as a base from now on. I added half a can of no-salt-added canned diced tomatoes, about a cup of corn, about a cup of brown rice, some scallions, and a mixture of cayenne, cumin and chili powder (I went a little heavy on the cayenne - definitely gave it a punch). Used slightly less than the 3 oz. of cream cheese but had no problem with the flavor - worked perfectly - will add the full 3 oz. in the future. Also cooked four thick slices of bacon and tore them up and added them to the mix. Did not add any other cheese or salsa. Used whole wheat burrito-sized tortillas and made four heaping burritos. Freezed one and will see how it works defrosted and microwaved. In the future will try this with green bell pepper (there was a lot of red going on) and maybe even play with some spinach, avocado, grilled chicken, etc. A BIG fan of this recipe - thanks for posting!
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Key Lime Pie VII

Reviewed: May 27, 2009
I partly fault myself here for not using the highest-end ingredients - I could not find "key lime" juice so just used regular supermarket lime juice. I also used a more generic brand of sour cream which may have had something to do with the flavor - there was something almost metallic about it. I'll try this recipe again as I'm not overjoyed with the other Key Lime Pie recipe that I have...but I'll make sure to use the best ingredients next time...
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Alaska Salmon Bake with Pecan Crunch Coating

Reviewed: May 27, 2009
This was fine but I didn't love the flavors - something about the honey mustard tasted a bit off to me - I used a more expensive "hotter" mustard and just regular honey and even less honey than the recipe calls for. I ommitted any bread crumbs and just used finely processed walnuts (what I had)...I ommitted parsely because I didn't have any handy...
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Peanut Butter Candy Bars

Reviewed: May 7, 2009
I think that this recipe is pretty good for what it is but I realize that maybe I just don't like reese's as much as I thought I did (my tastes grew up!) - even though I much prefer dark to milk chocolate I would recommend making this with milk choc - I used semisweet chips and it just didn't taste quite right. I used less margarine in both peanut butter and chocolate mixes - it just seemed like a lot. My only problem was that the bottom portion, even after much refrigerating, is not quite as hard as I would have liked - it kind of crumbles. Anyway, this is what it is...if you have a serious choc/pb craving this is your recipe. Make a day ahead for best flavor.
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Spinach Quiche

Reviewed: May 3, 2009
This is a great quiche recipe - a base which I'll use in the future for other variations. Next time I will be sure to bake the pie crust for 5-7 minutes as recommended by other reviewers because I did find the sogginess to be a disappointment. I used a refrigerated Pillsbury pie crust and a pie dish that I don't consider to be particularly "deep dish" - however, I found that I did not have "too much" of the mixture as other reviewers have reported. I did only use 1/2 cup of the milk - maybe that made the difference. I also used swiss cheese instead of the cheddar - next time I will use the cheddar - I think, particularly a sharper version, would have packed a nice punch. Omitted the mushrooms because don't love them and used a 10 oz. bag of fresh spinach in place of frozen. I cooked down the spinach in 1 Tbsp. of olive oil. I recommend tearing fresh spinach into smaller pieces for anyone going that route....I also used olive oil in place of butter to saute the garlic and onion - again, only 1 Tbsp. Next time I will use butter for this step in place of the olive oil (but probably only up to 2 Tbsps) - I imagine it adds a nice richness. I covered the edges of the pie crust with foil before baking to avoid over-browning. Thanks!
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Fish Fillets Italiano

Reviewed: May 3, 2009
Yeah, would have to give this a five. I'm not a huge fish person and have never cooked fillets this way (almost poaching them in liquid as opposed to pan-frying, grilling or baking) and my expectations were not only met but exceeded. I used cod fillets that were on the thick side so I ended up cooking them about ten minutes as opposed to the five minutes suggested in the recipe. Like other reviewers I used chicken broth instead of the white wine but I made sure to use a reduced-sodium broth - likewise with the diced tomatoes - no salt added for those. I kept everything relatively salt free because I used brined kalamata olives (the kind you get at the olive bar at the grocery store) and they really pack a salty punch. I also added an extra clove of garlic and dried Italian seasoning to kick up the flavor. A very tasty, relatively healthy & inexpensive dish! Thanks!
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Chantal's New York Cheesecake

Reviewed: Apr. 26, 2009
I don't like overly sweet cheesecakes but next time I'll add a little more sugar to this one and might cut down a little bit on the sour cream...the top of the cheesecake got a little bit too browned - I'm wondering if other people cover the cake with al-foil while baking? I also added chocolate chips to the batter but they sunk straight to the bottom - if I try that again I'll use mini-chips...
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French Leek Pie

Reviewed: Apr. 26, 2009
I thought this was very tasty! Next time I'm going to double the ingredients, though - I found it to be very thin and only filled about half of the 9-inch pie dish. I added three slices of crumbled thick bacon - didn't add any extra salt because the bacon is so salty...and I used swiss cheese rather than gruyere...will definitely make this again - lovely for a brunch or spring lunch....
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Cajun Seafood Pasta

Reviewed: Mar. 30, 2009
I liked the flavors in this but it didn't quite work out for me. I used bay scallops (the big ones) and shrimp (pre-cooked) and I sauteed the scallops in olive oil with garlic, green onions and a diced red pepper, separate from the sauce ingredients. However, I only browned the sides of the scallops, did not cook all the way through. Meanwhile I made the sauce in another pan - I used light whipping cream which may have been a mistake - probably should have used the heavy. The recipe says that it should simmer for 7-8 minutes but really I think that is too long - it should be only about 5. I cooked the scallops the rest of the way through by adding them to the sauce and then added the shrimp at the last minute just to heat through. I did find the dish to be very salty. I had added a pinch of Old Bay seasoning (celery salt, paprika, peppers) but perhaps a little bit too much. I did not add the white peppers to the recipe as other reviewers said that takes it over the edge, heat-wise. I'll try this again - with heavy cream, simmering the sauce at a lower temperature and with less added sauce. I served it over whole wheat penne. BTW -the fresh basil in the sauce is key - gave it a nice flavor.
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Black Bottom Cupcakes I

Reviewed: Mar. 24, 2009
Really great recipe. Mini chocolate chips work out really well - I think the larger ones would just sort of sink to the bottom.
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Apple Bavarian Torte

Reviewed: Mar. 20, 2009
Wow - I was really pleasantly surprised with this recipe. The writing of the recipe - regarding the making of the crust - was a little misleading, however. I am not such an expert baker that I would have known, for instance, that you really need to cream the butter and sugar together FIRST, until light and fluffy, and THEN add the flour in batches. That will be key for the next time I make this (possibly ASAP for an upcoming brunch!!). I would suggest using 5 apples only but it really depends on how heavily you want to layer them. I also agree with other reviewers: cook the apples for 3 min in the microwave first with the sugar/cinnamon to soften them up and THEN, after baking, poor the remaining cinn/sugar water over the top. Very delish!!!
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Fudge Puddles

Reviewed: Mar. 1, 2009
This is a good recipe but next time I'll use semisweet chocolate chips for the fudge - it wasn't quite as dark and rich as I had hoped for. I also think, for presentation sake, it's important to use a melon baller to get the "puddles" to look nice. I didn't have one on hand and they weren't the best looking cookie - I mean, looked fine but not like some of the pictures attached here.
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Chocolate Peppermint Pie

Reviewed: Mar. 1, 2009
A disclaimer is that I realized, the second time I made this pie, that I had used "whipped cream" instead of whipping cream! But overall I am not convinced it made so much of a difference. This is an easy, tasty pie that I make at home but is not quite elegant enough that I would bring it to a party or serve to guests. The first time I used hard peppermint candies and the second time I used some candy I had on hand - similar to a Junior Mint - and it was a lot easier to break up and stir into the mixture. It's a tasty winter pie - and, again, pretty darn easy to make.
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Winter Energy Cookies

Reviewed: Mar. 1, 2009
These are great cookies - like another reviewer said, the thicker ones do have a bit of a "muffin texture." I didn't change much but did not use whole wheat flour (didn't have it) and used a mix of raisins and cranberries. My one complaint would be that on day two they already seem a little hard but that may be because I hadn't stored them as tightly as I could have. Great recipe!
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Herbed Fish

Reviewed: Mar. 1, 2009
Truth be told I did this a little bit differently - I did use cod but to be healthier I baked it (350 for about 25 minutes) and used Japanese Panko bread crumbs mixed with parmesan cheese and Old Bay seasoning (a Maryland specialty!). Good, simple concept.
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Honey Baked Chicken II

Reviewed: Sep. 15, 2008
This is a very easy way to spruce up baked chicken. I would, however, reduce the amount of butter used here. I used less butter than listed in the recipe and even so, it was very buttery. Also, you don't need to add salt (assuming your butter is salted). I used boneless, skinless chicken thighs so reduced the baking time by about 15-20 minutes or so. Next time I'll use this with skin-on chicken - I know it will brown and carmelize nicely.
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