Carmen Recipe Reviews (Pg. 1) - Allrecipes.com (10680156)

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Oatmeal Peanut Butter Cookies

Reviewed: Oct. 19, 2014
I had high hopes for this recipe. I did substitute butter for margarine (margarine tastes like mayonnaise to me), added 1/2 tsp vanilla, and cut back the salt to 1/2 tsp (I was using a homemade peanut butter that was made with salted peanuts). These cookies are really, as one reviewer said, more of a sugar cookie than a peanut butter cookie- the sugar is more prominent than anything else. After sitting and cooling, the initial greasiness goes away, and you do get a chewy cookie. I think, with less sugar and maybe a little more flour, you could have a stellar cookie. These are certainly edible, but I'm going to keep searching for the perfect chewy peanut butter cookie.
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Downeast Maine Pumpkin Bread

Reviewed: Sep. 26, 2014
It's a solid recipe. You're guaranteed a very moist, flavorful result - the perfect accompaniment to a warm drink on a cool Autumn day. For a healthier loaf, you can substitute applesauce for half the oil and use whole wheat flour for half of the all-purpose flour. I would recommend cutting back the sugar to 2 cups. You can even substitute brown sugar for half the sugar for a deeper molasses flavor. When I'm tinkering with the recipe, I like to use apple juice instead of water and spice things up with 1 tsp cinnamon and 1/2 tsp each of ginger, allspice, cloves, and nutmeg.
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Big Soft Ginger Cookies

Reviewed: Sep. 14, 2014
I added a 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper and threw in about 3/4 cup crystallized ginger nibs that I had sitting around. I didn't even have to refrigerate the dough before I rolled out the balls, as others reviewers mentioned. My issue with this cookie is the margarine. There was an off-putting flavor from the margarine that reminded me why I only make my cookies with butter. With a different type of fat, I'd like these a lot more.
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Amish White Bread

Reviewed: Apr. 1, 2014
This turned out really well. I halved the recipe. I made this with baker's sugar, kosher salt, and olive oil. It smells heavenly as it cooks, and the resulting loaf was fluffy and delicious.
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Boilermaker Tailgate Chili

Reviewed: Dec. 24, 2013
I cut the recipe in half, because I'm only cooking for myself. This is a great, flavorful chili that improves as it sits. It's a tad on the salty side, so I might play with it to figure out how to cut back on the sodium in the future.
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The Best Chicken Fried Steak

Reviewed: Aug. 5, 2013
This was pretty tasty - the coating was perfectly seasoned. I had to use 1 1/2 tsp garlic powder in place of the cloves. I found that I didn't really have to cook the steaks in cups and cups of shortening. Maybe a quarter cup of vegetable oil was all I needed for each steak. When I tried using three cups of fat, the steaks fell apart.
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Chocolate Chip Mini Muffins

Reviewed: Aug. 1, 2013
Aside from the chocolate chips, these didn't have a whole lot of flavor. While the texture was nice, I wouldn't make these again.
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Blueberry Coffee Cake I

Reviewed: Aug. 1, 2013
This cake was delicious. I used almond milk for the milk and used an entire pint of blueberries. My cake wasn't dry at all - no need to substitute oil, increase the milk, add eggs, etc. I find that oftentimes, when people have dry cakes, it's because they're using packed flour and not leveling off their ingredients. I always loosen up the flour before measuring to avoid getting too much in my recipes. Baking is a science, and you have to be precise with your measuring, so always level off. I will suggest that you put half of the streusel in the middle of the bake. This recipe makes A LOT of streusel, and I think that would be too much to handle on the bottom of a cake. Divided this way, this seems to come out better. If you're having trouble with the cake sticking, make sure you're using a BAKING spray with flour already in it and spray it liberally. I also folded the blueberries into my batter before putting it into the bundt pan. Next time, I might put some berry-less batter into the bundt pan before I fold the blueberries into the mixture to avoid the "bruised" appearance on the top of the cake. Toss your blueberries in some of the flour to avoid sinkage. Very good recipe; it's a keeper for sure! Thank you!
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Photo by Carmen

Fresh Rhubarb Pie

Reviewed: Jun. 13, 2013
This was good and super simple. I've never had rhubarb pie before, and I've only tried rhubarb two times in my life, so this was a pleasant surprise. I followed the recipe exactly and used "Cappy's Pie Crust" for the crust (Google it!). I did brush the top crust with milk and sprinkle it with a tiny bit of sugar before I stuck the pie in the oven, because that's my personal preference with any fruit pie. It turned out beautifully. Thanks for the recipe!
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Ginger Pear Bread

Reviewed: Jan. 27, 2013
This is delicious, and it smells amazing, as it's baking. I used somewhere between 1-2 tablespoons of fresh ginger in place of the dried stuff. I replaced the oil with applesauce, eggs with 1/3 cup egg white, and whole wheat flour to lighten the recipe. Thanks for the recipe!
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Caramels

Reviewed: Dec. 7, 2012
I took off one star, because my caramel didn't turn out. That is entirely my own fault. I think I used the wrong pot (used a big Dutch oven pot). At some point, the temperature plateaued at 200, and then it began to drop. It never got up to the hard ball stage, and that was after about an hour of watching this hot, scary, sugary mass boil away. I coddled it like a nuclear device, but it just didn't work out for me. I will say that the results were still tasty. They didn't firm up they way they should've, but again, that was my own fault. I'll try this again some time. Maybe with some practice, I'll get it right. But if you can get the temperature right, I'm sure you'll get some great caramel out of this recipe.
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Photo by Carmen

Aunt Teen's Creamy Chocolate Fudge

Reviewed: Dec. 7, 2012
If satin were edible, it would be like this! This fudge is delicious! As other reviewers said, you have to work quickly! Measure out everything you'll need before you start throwing things into your pot. When the recipe says stir constantly, they mean it! While I was waiting for the mixture to start boiling, I didn't see any bubbles on the surface. I didn't realize that the sugar on the bottom of the pan was cooking away underneath. So even if it looks like it's not boiling, stir your sugary-buttery-marshmallowy goodness to prevent burning. Add the chocolate and vanilla quickly and pour immediately into a pan, as this starts cooling and hardening right away. This made plenty for my holiday cookie tins! Thanks for the recipe!
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Award Winning Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

Reviewed: Sep. 30, 2012
This is my go-to chocolate chip cookie recipe. Soft and perfect every time.
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Golden Sweet Cornbread

Reviewed: Sep. 30, 2012
I've used this recipe for a couple years now, and it has never disappointed me. Since I'm cutting back on calories these days, I replace the all-purpose flour with white whole wheat flour, use 1/3 cup of honey in place of sugar, 3 TB of egg white for the egg, almond milk in place of cow's milk, and applesauce for the veggie oil. I've even baked this batter in muffin tins for perfect small portions. Great with chili on a cold fall day.
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Photo by Carmen

Best Brownies

Reviewed: Sep. 27, 2012
I've tried a number of popular brownie recipes from this site. Between this recipe and Brooke's Bombshell brownies, I'd choose these. Other than using white whole wheat flour in place of all purpose, I followed this recipe- batter and frosting and all. You can prepare these in a snap and get some very sweet, dense brownies (as one reviewer mentioned, it's very important that you not handle the brownies too much - leave the hand mixer out of this). They're not really cake-y and not really fudge-y; they're somewhere in between. I might cut back slightly on the sugar in the brownie - use 3/4 of a cup instead of a full cup in the batter. The frosting doesn't really look like your usual frosting - it's a small, thick, grainy brown glob (appetizing, I know). But miraculously, when it's spread over warm brownies and allowed to dry, it's perfect. I'm not a frosting person, but I enjoyed these. They cut well (no ugly cracked tops), and they were easy to wrap in plastic for a bake sale. Oddly enough, the flavor is VERY similar to the recipe that's used by a local haunt of mine, which adds oreos to their brownies. Overall, I'd say I'm pleased with the result. Thank you for this recipe!
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Fluffy Pancakes

Reviewed: Jul. 28, 2012
These were delicious - light, fluffy, buttery, and sweet! Exactly what I needed, when I woke up with a pancake craving this morning. I was glad to see a recipe written with buttermilk substitute already, since I never have buttermilk on hand. I used almond milk to cut calories and white whole wheat flour in place of the all-purpose, and the pancakes turned out just fine. I also added a teaspoon of vanilla. This recipe's a keeper!
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Chicken Pot Pie III

Reviewed: Jul. 12, 2012
My grandmother's rolling over in her grave, because I made this, but she's gotta understand that her grandbaby's got a 9-to-5 and just doesn't have the energy to chop vegetables, make pie crusts, and butcher a chicken after work. I had a chicken pot pie craving (it's 90 degrees here, so why I'd like to turn the stove on and eat anything heavier than watermelon is beyond me). This really hit the spot, though. It turned out better than some scratch recipes I've made from this site. The flavor of the thyme is very prominent, when the pie comes out of the oven, but after sitting overnight, it's just right. I added both cans of soup, which made for just enough moisture in the pie. I probably could have added the whole bag of frozen vegetables, too, because this doesn't make for a heaping pie filling. I shredded the chicken, because I hate the texture of cubed, and boiled the chicken with a few bouillon cubes for added flavor. I didn't even bother to blanch the veggies (too tired and lazy). Adding some garlic powder or other flavorings wouldn't hurt, but as written, this is a solid recipe, when you're craving chicken pot pie, but you don't have the energy for all the bells and whistles.
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Cold Tuna Macaroni Salad

Reviewed: Jun. 25, 2012
I was skeptical of this recipe, because I wasn't sure about adding tomatoes to my macaroni salad. It was actually very tasty. A wonderful salad for a hot summer day. I used three 5oz of tuna, because I wanted more fish in it. I'd also suggest adding dill. There are probably other additions that could be done to make this even better, but as written, it satisfied my craving for tuna macaroni salad.
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Easy Meatloaf

Reviewed: Jun. 11, 2012
As written, this was okay. It need some seasoning and veggie love. For round two, I sauteed chopped onion, green pepper, mushrooms, and garlic and added it to the meat. I also added a packet of onion soup mix and some pepper to balance out the saltiness of the onion soup. I paired this with parmesan/roasted garlic potatoes. It was so good that I woke up in the middle of the night to pick at the leftovers. My advice to other meatloaf makers is 1) for tender meatloaf, don't squeeze the beef; gently mix together the ingredients until they're just combined, and 2) let the breadcrumbs sit in a bowl with the milk to absorb it, then mix in everything else.
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Janet's Rich Banana Bread

Reviewed: May 16, 2012
With the changes suggested by naples34102, this makes for a wonderful loaf of banana bread. I've also had this turn out successfully after replacing the flour with white whole wheat flour and the sour cream with yogurt. 1/2 tsp of cinnamon and nutmeg adds wonderful warm spice to the bread. Sometimes, the bananas are really sweet, so I can get away with using only 3/4 cup sugar. I have replaced as much as 1/4 cup white sugar with brown sugar at times. Love this recipe; it's a great way to use up brown bananas.
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