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Avocado Feta Salsa

Reviewed: Dec. 26, 2011
My family gave this 5 stars. It was THE hit of the appetizer table!! Very good with Tostitos Black Bean Chips.
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4 users found this review helpful

Apricot Brown Sugar Ham

Reviewed: Dec. 26, 2011
I made this recipe last year and everyone loved it so much I used it again this year. I thin it down a tad with a small splash of O.J. I'm pescatarian so I didn't actually eat the ham but again, rave reviews. What I love is how juicy the meat is when it comes out. The glaze tastes amazing but it also caramelizes nicely and locks in the juices. P.S. I had the glaze over a piece of Salmon and it was amazing!
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7 users found this review helpful

Butternut Squash Soup

Reviewed: Dec. 26, 2011
This is a huge hit with my family both at TG and Christmas. I peel, core and cube my squash, toss it in EVOO, sprinkle with salt and roast about 45 minutes in 350 for a deeper flavor. I chop a large Vidalia onion and mince up 4 cloves garlic and saute in EVOO. Add 4 to 5 cups veg stock (Instead of water) and leave the spices the same. I add in my squash + a peeled and chopped honey crisp apple and bring to a boil for a minute or two. I omit the cream cheese altogether. Blend in small batches and be sure to always cover top of blender with hand towel to prevent getting burned. I pour from blender to crock pot for parties. I've made this soup 3 days in advance and it only gets better. I also use it as a sauce over cheese ravioli and it's AMAZING! I'm a vegetarian and just love good recipes that don't call for artificial ingredients.
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19 users found this review helpful

Ultimate Party Meatballs

Reviewed: Dec. 19, 2011
Great recipe for those who don't have all day to wallow in their kitchens. I'm a vegetarian and only use meatless meatballs. Can I still play? Okay, now that's off my chest, my mother passed the original version of this recipe down to me years ago which calls for red currant jelly with the chili sauce. I've also used grape jelly for equally amazing results. If you love a hint of spice, try a pinch of cayenne, it's amazing. I put everything into my slow cooker on low early in the morning and by mid afternoon they're ready. Never any left overs.
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4 users found this review helpful

Brooke's Best Bombshell Brownies

Reviewed: Dec. 18, 2011
These are awesome. My only changes were using Milk Chocolate chips (WIHOH), using a glass 8x11 pyrex (Increased cooking time 10 minutes) and not melting the butter first. I dumped the butter, vanilla, sugar an eggs in to my kitchen-aid with the paddle attachment and creamed till smooth. Than I added sifted ingredients and chips. The batter was THICK but just press into the prepared pan best you can. They are for those who like them rich and sweet but if you don't, try them with a scoop of vanilla ice cream to cut the sweet! =D
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Curried Butternut Squash and Pear Soup

Reviewed: Dec. 7, 2011
I made this soup this afternoon. It turned out amazing. Peel your squash, poke with holes and bake at 350 for an hour for a much easier time cubing. I roasted another 1/2 hour on foil lined sheets. I doubled the garlic and used vegetable broth and olive oil instead of chicken and butter (vegetarian). I also used two honey crisp apples instead of the pears. I kicked it up a bit with a pinch of cayenne. I can say enough about how awesome this turned out. Making french bread to go with it tonight. The perfect Winter time comfort food.
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7 users found this review helpful

Ginger Glazed Mahi Mahi

Reviewed: Jan. 31, 2011
I was looking for a way to cook Mahi Mahi that would step things up a bit and this fit the bill perfectly. I had all the ingredients on hand. I only made one minimal substitution and that was organic blue agave for the honey, I thought this recipe was fantastic. My only caution is that when I placed the fish from the marinade to the hot pan, I found the residual marinade on the fish began to burn before the fish was ready to flip. For this reason, I would recommend heating the pan to just medium rather than medium high. Regardless the fix was easy. Vinegar deglazes pans on the spot and since the marinade has balsamic i went ahead and poured my marinade into the pan with the fish and allowed the marinade to deglaze and reduce simultaneously. The end result was perfection. The Fish was juicy, tender and flaky. The glaze was amazing. Can't wait for the left overs tomorrow. This one is a keeper!!
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4 users found this review helpful

Balsamic-Glazed Salmon Fillets

Reviewed: Apr. 20, 2010
I made this tonight and thought it was a nice alternative to the other ways I've prepared salmon. I made a few slight changes using stone ground mustard instead of Dijon because its what I had open, blue agave honey, a pinch of red pepper flakes to ensure the flavor we like, and a pinch of corn starch to get the thickness needed to keep the glaze from running of the fish during the baking process. The flavor of the glaze was great and the flavor of the fish was still prominent but there was something a little off for me and I think it was that I felt like I should have grilled the salmon. With the honey and balsamic, it would have created a caramelized coating to the fish that would have been out of this world. By baking it there was an abundance of residual juices that melded with the glaze and did not improve the quality of the final product though I had no complaints except from a six year old who would eat nothing but peaches and ice cream if he had his way so he doesn't count :) I will definitely make it again but next time I'll grill it and let the fire do its magic. I think that would have made it a five star recipe, at least in my book.
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2 users found this review helpful

Butternut Squash Risotto

Reviewed: Apr. 18, 2010
This was Amazing!! I've only had risotto in restaurants a few times and this recipe topped all of them. I've recently gone on a gluten free diet and this works for that too I was thrilled. I did make some changes I'll list here. I used 2 TBS Smart Balance in place of the butter, I added 3 cloves of minced garlic a minute before I added the rice. I used 1 cup white wine; use a wine you'd drink, not a cooking wine (cheap and full of salt), and (2)14oz cans reduced sodium chicken broth. I added my chicken broth 1 cup at a time and when I was down to less than a cup of broth left, I added the remaining broth with a carton of Campbell's V8 Butternut Squash Soup . I'm always tempted to add more cheese than a recipe calls for but as it turned out I only had 1/4 cup of parm on hand and it was perfect. The parm is a great accent without competing with the delicate flavors of the butternut squash. I seasoned to taste at the end with S&P. This risotto is just the perfect comfort food. Rich, a touch of sweet balanced with savory. To die for!
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2 users found this review helpful

Apple Crisp IV

Reviewed: Dec. 31, 2009
Everyone loved it paired with vanilla ice cream. I dumped all ingredients into my food processor and pulsed till I got the consistency I liked. Then I dumped that on to my peeled, cored, and sliced apples and delish! One tip. I used red delicious because it was what I had on hand (rookie mistake) Granny smith is what I'll use when I make this again and again!! The tart of the Granny Smith against the brown sugar and cinnamon should be perfect. P.S. I doubled the cinnamon and added a teaspoon of real vanilla extract to appeal to my families taste. Thanks for the great recipe.
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3 users found this review helpful

Apple Crisp II

Reviewed: Jun. 13, 2009
Made this tonight and as others have said, it was fabulous. I followed the recipe except after peeling and slicing my apples, I squeezed the juice of a whole lemon over them and tossed to coat; I added a pinch of salt to the dry ingredients to bring out the flavors and I omitted the water from the recipe. The natural juices from the apples and lemon lend enough liquid to the recipe to turn out sweet, crisp, and delicious. My search for an excellent apple crisp recipe is over!!
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3 users found this review helpful

Amish White Bread

Reviewed: May 12, 2009
Tried this bread tonight. First homemade bread I ever made without a bread machine and I think it came our pretty good. My husband liked the crust, nice and crispy. I like the sweetness of the bread. The bread has a medium density.Very delicious. I plan on surprising my Mom with some. Thanks for a keeper!
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1 user found this review helpful

Key Lime Pie VII

Reviewed: Apr. 11, 2009
I just made this for Easter tomorrow and it turned out awesome!! I used mini graham cracker pie crusts and doubled the recipe. I filled 18 mini pies and had enough filling left over for an 9" pie which I will probably make and freeze Monday. I only needed 15 so we got to sample it before tomorrow and it was fantastic! A definite keeper! Delicious and a cinch to make. Note: I did omit swirling in the grated rind based on other reviewers comments. I'll let you know later how well it freezes.
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2 users found this review helpful

Special Buttercream Frosting

Reviewed: Feb. 9, 2009
Used half butter, half vegetable shortening and I added 3 teaspoons coconut extract and it was phenomenal. I added an extra ounce of cream which made mine VERY easily spreadable.
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1 user found this review helpful

Fruited Curry Chicken Salad

Reviewed: Feb. 9, 2009
I made this recipe for my sister's baby shower with the following changes... I used halved seedless red grapes, Craisens, and green apple. I added 2 teaspoons of white wine vinegar to really meld all the flavors. I also used fat free mayonnaise because the curry is a great spice blend for masking the unpleasantness of low fat or fat free mayo and make the dish virtually fat free. This was a great dish to make the day before. My only recommendation would be to cut the onion a bit to please a larger crowd. I personally thought it came out great and got many compliments but I could see it wasn't for everyone. I also had a lot left over. Curry isn't for everyone so if preparing it for a large crowd you may want to have an alternative dish for non-curry fans. Other than that I thought it was a great spin on chicken salad and if you are a curry fan, you'll love it.
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Artichoke & Spinach Dip Restaurant Style

Reviewed: Feb. 9, 2009
Made this dip for my sister's baby shower yesterday and it was very good. I used half the spinach called for which was plenty and Trader Joe's Alfredo. I will try it with Bertoli Alfredo next time as several other reviewers stated good results with that. The dip had a great texture and consistency. UPDATE: I have made this recipe twice more since my first review and have gotten rave reviews from my guests both times. I now use the Roasted Garlic Bertoli Alfredo. I roast 5 garlic cloves drizzled with olive oil in my oven on 350 for 30 minutes, than mince those and add them to the mixture. To prepare I blend all my cheeses first. I lightly pulse the artichoke w/ 8 to 10 marinated sun dried tomatoes in the Food Processor taking care to get small chunks, not a paste. I stir the artichoke and cheese mixtures together and add about 2 handfuls of torn, fresh baby spinach omitting the frozen spinach all together. I stir to incorporate the spinach well and spoon it into a prepared, glass 8x8 dish. I add additional shredded Parm. to the top and bake as directed. One last note: I personally don't like the look of the oils floating to the top when I pull the dip from the oven. I blot with paper towel to remove most of the excess oil and stir the dip into a serving bowl garnishing it with a bit more shredded parm making it picture perfect.
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7 users found this review helpful

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake V

Reviewed: Feb. 3, 2009
I made this for my Mom's birthday and it was a HUGE hit. I did change up a few things. I bought the pineapple cake mix and added a teaspoon of butter extract and the flavors were phenomenal. I rubbed down my 2 x 9" pans with cold unsalted butter to get a nice coating of butter. On the top tier of the cake I used pineapple rings, maraschino cherries and flake coconut. On the bottom tier, crushed pineapple (which I squeezed excess juice from as to not add to much additional liquid.) I used 1 1/3 cup reserved pineapple juice rather than water in the cake mix itself. I un molded both tiers immediately upon removing from the oven and had no sticking. My top tier did split a little but I came up with a cool fix. While the cake cooled a bit, I toasted some coconut on a baking sheet on 400 for 8 minutes; I melted a 1/4 cup brown sugar and 1 Tbs. unsalted butter in a small skillet and brushed that glaze over the cake and it's crack, than sprinkled toasted coconut over that. Once the cake was 2/3 cooled, I was able to gently press the sides together and they held perfectly. This cake definitely makes the rotation from hear on out!!
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3 users found this review helpful

Curried Hummus

Reviewed: Feb. 2, 2009
I'm giving this recipe 5 stars but I changed it quite a bit to fit my own taste, I just don't thinks it's fair to ding a recipe that wasn't followed. My changes were meant to make a smaller batch and to match my tastes and it turned out fantastic. 1 - 16oz can "Bush" Chick Peas, 1 Tablespoons Tahini, 2 to 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil, 3 garlic cloves, 1 Teaspoon yellow curry powder, 2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice, 1/8 to 1/4 cup filtered water, dash salt, 2 dashes hot sauce. This turned out magnificent. The amount of curry was flavorful but not overwhelming. The garlic was VERY notable so if you want to reduce the garlic you can, I just love garlic and loved this so much I will make it over and over again! Update; I made this again for a party and this time I followed the recipe exactly and while I still enjoyed it, I think it was just so so for my guests. There was a lot left at the end of an eight hour party with 23 people in attendance :( my son who loves Indian food and who loves hummus thought it was just so so for him. I think this would be good in a hummus sampler type serving tray with a variety of other flavors to sample but on its own as the main hummus dip, not so much.
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3 users found this review helpful

Butternut Squash with Onions and Pecans

Reviewed: Dec. 26, 2008
I cooked this tonight as a side with chicken. I added an extra half onion, omitted the pecans (didn't have any on hand), and used Smart Choice at half the amount called for of butter. I did microwave my squash cubes twice for four minutes each time and with 1/4 cup water in the bottom of the bowl to soften them a bit before saute. Everyone complimented me on them except my five year old but he only eats PB&J so we won't count him :)
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Key West Penne

Reviewed: Dec. 26, 2008
I brought this as a contribution to a potluck Christmas dinner and it was demolished. What I loved the most is that I made it 5 hours before which took the pressure off the rest of the day. Some things I changed a bit. I sauteed sun dried tomatoes, julienne d from a packet(couldn't find them in a jar) w/ 1lb scallops, & what I thought was a 14oz jar of marinated artichokes but what turned out to be a 14oz jar of marinated Mediterranean Blend, a blend of artichokes, roasted red / green peppers, & baby corns. I removed the baby corns & added everything else. I could only find the size shrimp I wanted (medium) precooked so I added that to the saute at the end just long enough to take on the flavors. I added my cream & cheese and simmered till it thickened, than turned my pasta in to that. I moved it to my crock pot and let it set on the counter unplugged till just warm. About an hour before we left I plugged it in on low, added a splash of milk, and gently turned it with a lg spoon. I repeated that when we got there. I never had to turn it up past low. It was creamy and delicious. The only suggestion I would make is to spice it up. The recipe doesn't address spice & it felt right to add freshly ground sea salt & pepper, 1 tsp garlic powder, & 2 tsp ea. dried basil / oregano.
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