TaraAnne Recipe Reviews (Pg. 9) - Allrecipes.com (1505129)

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Black Magic Cake

Reviewed: Jan. 4, 2009
I have a friend's "secret family recipe" for black magic cake which I seemingly misplaced, so I found this one on Allrecipes. I then found my recipe and surprise surprise, it's the same recipe except for one thing ... the "secret family recipe" calls for 2 tsps of vanilla instead of one. Other than that, EXACTLY the same. SO, I can say with no hesitation that this is the BEST chocolate cake ever. It is so chocolately, so yummy, so moist, so yummy, that it's unbelievable. I make it in a bundt pan and use homemade cream cheese frosting which offsets the chocolate perfectly. Try it (if you can get a piece before everyone else eats it up!).... you won't be sorry!
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Joelle's Famous Hot Crab and Artichoke Dip

Reviewed: Jan. 4, 2009
I really really wanted to love this recipe. I love crab dip and I love artichoke dip, so I figured this couldn't go too wrong. Also, my daughter's name is "Joelle" so I took that as a further omen and made this for Christmas to bring to a friend's house. Way too rich with hardly any crab taste. I did not care for this recipe.
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4 users found this review helpful

French Beef Stew

Reviewed: Jan. 4, 2009
I have made this stew two times..... the first time I didn't review it so I really had forgotten the problems that I had had until I was reminded the second time. One of the main problems was the stew meat which MUST cook for quite a while before it's edible. So while it's cooking away the potatoes are turning to mush and eventually disappearing (even though I quartered them this time, hoping that they'd retain some sort of presence in the stew). But despite this problem, which is mainly my fault (I'll never use stew meat again!) I'm still not crazy about the taste. The mustard does lend a unique flavor but the end result is just not what I consider to be "stew." I won't be making this a third time. EDIT: I had leftovers of this today and they were good! I still don't think I'll make this stew again, but I'm changing my 3 stars to 4. If you're going to try to make this, I'd definitely suggest using a better cut of meat than "stew meat."
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Gourmet Sweet Potato Classic

Reviewed: Dec. 13, 2008
This was okay but, based on all the glowing reviews, I expected better than "okay." I did cut the sugar but maybe I shouldn't have. It just didn't really have any "wow." Further, it was BARELY eaten at Thanksgiving dinner. Of course, it was hardly the only dish on the table so i'm not sure that that was any indication. The topping was good but I kinda missed the gooey marshmallows of my other recipe. SO, thats why only 4 stars.
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Acorn Squash Soup

Reviewed: Nov. 22, 2008
OMG! I made a double recipe of this tonight and WOW! I pretty much followed the recipe except that I used another reviewer's suggestion and used the fat free half and half instead of evap. milk. I also completely forgot the bullion, added another dash of cayenne pepper and added a couple more dashes of curry. The soup was DELICIOUS (a little heat but not too much .. remember I did add more curry/cayenne). A definite keeper and totally worth the work!
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2 users found this review helpful

Moroccan Tagine

Reviewed: Oct. 21, 2008
Well, I don't know what a "Tagine" is supposed to taste like, which is why I'm giving this recipe 4 stars instead of 3. Personally I wasn't crazy about this recipe; although the tastes were okay I wasn't crazy about the TEXTURES of these foods mixed.
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1 user found this review helpful

Unbelievable Chicken

Reviewed: Jul. 20, 2008
This was really good, and a good base to work with if you're missing some ingredients (like I was!). I used chicken thigh/leg value-pak combo, so I then doubled the recipe so I had enough marinade. I didn't have lime juice so I sub'd frozen limeade concentrate in and cut down a bit on the sugar because of it. I used "Brat Mustard with Horseradish" as the mustard. Even with those changes the marinade was very good. I marinated for only about 6 hours but the chicken still had a good taste. I did 'em on the grill and they really retained their moistness. The skin crisped beautifully and was delicious. "Unbelievable?" No. Very very very good? Yes.
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Chicken Scampi II

Reviewed: Jun. 26, 2008
I made this using others' suggestions... I doubled the sauce (actually only used 3/4C of butter instead of 1) and used a 1/2 cup of white wine. I also used fresh herbs instead of dried. The sauce really was delicious... of course very rich, but delicious. My problem had nothing to do flavor but more with the combination of that rich sauce and chicken. The recipe SOUNDED like it would be really good but in reality the combination of the super-rich sauce and the chicken just didn't do it for me. For lack of another word, the chicken seemed too HEAVY for such a rich sauce. For leftovers i'll use the sauce over pasta alone and probably cut the chicken up into a salad. Would be willing to try it with shrimp ... if I made it again I'd add more spices as well as it was a bit bland. Maybe more salt/wine/lemon/basil. Not more garlic!
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Simple But Awesome Lemon Pepper Pork Chops

Reviewed: Oct. 14, 2007
The pork came out tender. Thats the only nice thing I can say, unfortunately. I know this sounds stupid, but it was way too peppery for us! I guess that should be a given, but NOBODY else said it but me. And I LOVE pepper. Also, despite the extreme pepper taste the chops were bland. I poured on the salt but still... maybe adding garlic would have helped? Well, at least I have a new way of cooking chops, I could see doing them the same way with the butter, oil, garlic, seasoned salt, etc,.. just not lemon pepper! Sorry.
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Braised Beef with Barley

Reviewed: Sep. 16, 2007
I gave this 4 stars because the taste was GOOD and I will be making it again ... with changes. First of all, the barley did NOT cook for just 45 minutes... it took at least double that time and by then all the liquid was cooked out of it (or sopped up by the barley?)so I had absolutely no gravy to put on the roast. Next time I'll use 2 cans of broth and just plan for longer cooking time. The other thing I will do differently is NOT put the peas in at the end. Serve peas as a side, but do NOT put it in. It just "cheapened" the otherwise delicious meal. Like I said, with my changes I will be making this again!
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12 users found this review helpful

Easy Pesto

Reviewed: Sep. 16, 2007
I kind of messed up with this recipe by doubling (!) the garlic. I strongly suggest you do NOT do that! 6 cloves of garlic was WAY too much!!! SO, I then tried to dilute the garlic taste by adding more of the other stuff, therefore by the time I was done I had barely followed the recipe. However ... I like pesto with parm cheese in it, and this recipe didn't call for it. Also, although I love pesto and was aware that pesto had oil in it, making this recipe myself with all that oil kind of grossed me out! I'll never look at pesto the same way again! SO, i'm going to keep looking for the perfect pesto recipe which to me would have parm cheese in it and, if possible, less oil. Oh, the almonds did actally work okay, which surprised me.
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2 users found this review helpful

Classic Red Beans N Rice

Reviewed: Sep. 3, 2007
I made this dish as written except for one thing... I did NOT do ground beef but instead used smoked sausage, and I used smoked ham hocks. (I kept thinking that the ground beef would make it more like chili instead of beans and rice.) Everything else was the same (oh, I cooked it about 45 mins longer, too) and the end result was a smokey, yummy meal!
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37 users found this review helpful

Easy Chicken Enchiladas

Reviewed: May 5, 2007
Wow.. this is really super yummy! I made the recipe exactly to specs EXCEPT I used shredded Mexican blend cheese for all the cheese, which was fine. I think if I were making it for just me and my husband I MIGHT use more chilis, or maybe hotter chilis (I bought the "mild") but since I'm also feeding a 7 year old that is out of the question. These are EXTREMELY filling... even my husband could only put away 2 ... so I have another full meal for another night! I made Mexican rice as a side which NOBODY ate ... these are a meal in themselves!!! Thanks Cheryl!
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38 users found this review helpful

Authentic German Potato Salad

Reviewed: Apr. 9, 2007
This turned out great and very authentic! I made some minor changes; I cooked 5 lbs of red potatoes in their skins and then, after cooking, I removed the skins and sliced them. Since I estimated that I doubled the amount of potatoes in the existing recipe, I doubled the rest of the ingredients .. but then it still seemed dry so I made another single serving of the vinegar mixture and added that. I would suggest that the liquid be poured ON the potatoes instead of adding the potatoes to the liquid because a lot of my potatoes broke while I was trying to stir the liquid off the bottom. I let it sit overnight in the refrigerator and took it out in the morning to bring it to room temperature before serving so the bacon fat didn't congeal. The end result was worth the trouble .. it really was yummy!
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27 users found this review helpful

Blarney Stones

Reviewed: Mar. 24, 2007
I had already made up my mind to make these, sorta, when I found this recipe. I had just tried a "Blarney Stone" from a bakery and decided it was too good to not try to make ... I used a vanilla box cake (and it was GOOD and who could tell with all the yummies on top?) and I made my homemade cream cheese frosting (for you people who thought the frosting w/this recipe was too sweet). Im glad I looked up this recipe because I never did take into account how I was going to actually execute the frosting part, but obviously freezing the cake, already cut, did the trick. Thanks to the reviewer who suggested freezing in sections... I froze mine separated w/pieces of waxed paper and after frosting the first few I realized that even taking out two at a time was too much ... the easiest way was to take out one at a time from the freezer (they really thaw out quickly and the frosting/rolling part took some time). Anyway, the result was absolutely GREAT, these Blarney Stones are worth the trouble!!! The end result was far from "flavorless" and the icing was far from "too sweet."
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23 users found this review helpful

Malidzano Eggplant Spread

Reviewed: Feb. 25, 2007
I have had an eggplant spread at a Romanian friend's house ... this was not even close to as good. First of all, WAY too garlicky..and I like garlic. Secondly, and maybe most importantly, the presentation of this dish is poor... the color of the finished product was a dark greenish gray... luckily I didn't have company to feed it to! I did ask my Romanian friends how they made theirs and basically it was the same, without the cheese and nuts. But for whatever reason this just didn't cut it for me. Sorry.
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32 users found this review helpful

Creamy Spinach Soup

Reviewed: Jan. 23, 2007
My husband made this soup and it turned out delicious! The taste reminded me of my mother's homemade creamed spinich, just more "soupy." My only suggestion is, if you're making it for more than two adults, double the recipe. 2 adults and one 7 year old finished this off in one sitting. We will make it again and we WILL double the recipe. Thanks!
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30 users found this review helpful

Meatball Bread Pudding

Reviewed: Jan. 23, 2007
My husband made this recipe and followed it exactly. It smelled really really good while it was cooking but we had a few complaints about the taste. It needed more meat (or less bread)and it just seemed as if something was missing. Maybe some shredded mozzerella cheese? I'm not sure but I'm not going to find out because I don't plan on making it again. Sorry.
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13 users found this review helpful

Jam Filled Butter Cookies

Reviewed: Dec. 26, 2006
I made this cookie exactly as written and it was "okay" at best. I like jam-filled cookies but the cookie itself was underwhelming. Kinda bland, missing something... maybe the vanilla other reviewers added, or salt? Dunno... would try again, however, with the added vanilla and salt. They WERE easy to make and fun.
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Award Winning Soft Chocolate Chip Cookies

Reviewed: Dec. 17, 2006
I messed up making these cookies by putting only HALF the butter in ... I used 2 sticks instead of 4... despite that they were still pretty good and for people wondering if you need that much butter I'd say no, you don't. If I make them again i'll put in 3 sticks and see how that is, just for health reasons. My biggest complaint though, and I can't believe I'm the only one mentioning this, is that there are too many chips!!! I would def cut the chips in half next time. I had so many chips at the bottom of the bowl that wouldn't even fit in the dough that I had to throw out! I know part of that problem is that I didn't have enough butter, but still... my husband won't eat them, said they're too "chippy"... this is coming for a bonified choc-a-holic so that means something...Thats the reason for the 4-stars instead of 5.
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