Salted Caramel anything is a down fall for me. I love it in brownies, cookies, cakes, coffee, on ice cream, on biscuits or lets be real honest straight out of the jar…it is just that good. Now I have found a recipe that is perfect in my mind, it is creamy, rich, buttery with just the right amount of salt in each bite. OK, I know what you might be thinking…you want me to make homemade caramel? YES I DO!
I understand how intimidating the idea is, I was nervous about it as well, until I started making it. As I was watching the sugar and water turn into a deep caramel color and then saw it come together with the cream and salt I couldn’t stop smiling…I had just made caramel sauce!!! I couldn’t believe it…I was so excited.
The Hubby was in his office working and I was so excited that I yelled at him and made him stop working just to come see it…it wasn’t cool enough for him to taste just yet, but it was just so pretty I had to show him. Needless to say I am not sure he was as impressed as I was, but that’s ok he loved it once it cooled down and he could taste it.
I have already used the sauce in some Pumpkin Brownies & Banana Pudding (recipes coming soon) for our weekly family dinner and everyone loved it. Some even put extra sauce on the brownies and pudding because it was just that good! Trust me this is one challenge you want to take on…you can do it…trust me!!
Salted Caramel Sauce
A homemade caramel sauce with just the right amount of salt in each bite
In a heavy bottomed medium saucepan combine sugar and water - This is the only time you will be able to stir the mixture until you add in the cream, if you stir while the sugar is cooking it will turn into rock candy
Place saucepan over medium low heat and let sit until sugar starts to dissolve and begins to bubble, 5-7 minutes
Increase heat to medium high and let mixture continue to cook until it begins to turn a deep caramel color, 5-7 minutes - make sure to watch very closely as it can burn very quickly in this step
Remove pan from heat and carefully add in the cream and butter - the mixture will bubble violently but just let it sit until it stops
Return pan to low heat and stir in salt until caramel is smooth and deep in color, about 3-4 minutes
Remove from heat and let sit until it is room temperature
Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator
Use on everything...trust me you will be creating recipes just to use this sauce!!
Congrats you did it...now ENJOY it!!
Each serving (about 2 tbsp.) is 3 WW+ points
Calories 109 Calories from Fat 38 Total Fat 4.2g Saturated Fat 2.6g Cholesterol 15mg Sodium 360mg Potassium 7mg Total Carbohydrates 19.0g Sugars 18.8g Protein 0.2g
Vitamin A 3% - Vitamin C 0% - Calcium 1% - Iron 0%
Nutrition Grade F
The Half Baked Life http://www.thehalfbakedlife.com/
Go ahead…you can do this…your family, friends, neighbors and YOU will be so glad you did, plus it is low in WW+ points!!
Happy (half) Baked Day – MJ
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The Hubby and I have a favorite local Italian restaurant that we like to visit fairly often. When we first started going, over 10 years a go, we would try different things but now we seem to order the same thing again and again. I get a dish that is made with jalapeño fettuccine and cream sauce and The Hubby get chicken parmesan with fettuccine alfredo. OK, I know some of you just had to read that last part again…who pairs chicken parm with fettuccine alfredo? Well, The Hubby does. I have to admit I thought it was a little strange as well, until I tried it one time, everything in one bite, and it was quite delicious. The bit of red sauce with the crispy chicken and the creamy alfredo made for a perfect bite…one that I knew I wanted to recreate at home and surprise The Hubby with.
A few weeks a go we moved my Mammaw into her new home which is just around the corner from us and we wanted to celebrate with an impromptu family dinner. I had all the ingredients for chicken parmesan with alfredo, to surprise The Hubby with, and I knew I could pull it together quickly so I ran home to get started to surprise the whole family. In my haste to defrost chicken I pulled out chicken tenders instead of breasts, so chicken parm tenders it was. I prepared the tenders as I would a chicken breast just didn’t have to cook it as long, which in this case worked out perfectly. I also kinda loved the serving size of the tenders, the ladies ate 2 and then men ate 3 or 4…it was great!
The fettuccine alfredo came together very quickly and everything was ready to go when the chicken was out of the oven. It was creamy, rich and absolutely delicious. This alfredo is going to be a go-to recipe for The Hubby and I.
Chicken Parm Tenders
Chicken tenders are transformed into chicken parmesan, making them more fun to eat and so pretty on the plate
A few weeks a go I was hanging out on Pinterest one evening & The Hubby told me that he had joined Pinterest. I was a little surprised at first but then I got a great idea. I was going to create a shared board between The Hubby and I and that way he could post things to the board that he would like me to make for him.
The very first thing he posted was baked taquitos. I have to be honest I was very intrigued by this idea. The only taquitos I had ever had were the tiny little things at a Mexican restaurant or from the ones from the freezer aisle, and I knew we could make them better and NOT FRIED! So me, being me, I took the idea and ran with it. The first challenge was to figure out what varieties of taquitos we would make. After The Hubby got over the shock that I was actually going to make them, evidently he thought I would never get on the taquitos bandwagon, we decided to do ground beef taquitos, as he said that would be his most favorite, and a then a chicken one as well.
For the ground beef ones you could definitely use ground turkey or chicken, we had lean ground beef on hand so that is what I used. The Hubby layered the seasoned beef with refried beans and cheese, and according to him these were the PERFECT taquitos. You could use black beans if you prefer, or leave the beans out all together. I served then guacamole but salsa would be delicious or queso!!
Beef & Bean Taquitos
Taquitos loaded with ground beef, refried beans & cheese to make a perfect taquito
Add in garlic and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly
Add in ground beef, salt, cumin, pepper and chili powder
Brown ground beef, breaking it up as it cooks, until it is no longer pink
Add in enchilada sauce and let simmer for 5 minutes, stirring often
Remove from heat and let sit for 5-10 minutes
You can either make the taquitos now, or you can store the ground beef for a dinner coming up soon, this is a great make ahead meal
To make the Taquitos
Preheat oven to 400
Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and spray with nonstick spray
Take a flour tortilla and spread 1-2 tbsp. of the beans on one side of the tortilla, about an inch from the side
Top beans with 1-2 tbsp. meat, and almost a tbsp. of shredded cheese
Roll tortilla tightly and lay on prepared pan seam side down
Repeat until all 10 taquitos are complete
Spray taquitos with nonstick spray
Bake for 15-20 minutes or until tortillas begin to brown
Remove from oven and top with your favorite toppings
Each taquito is 3 WW+ points
Calories 136 Calories from Fat 37 Total Fat 4.1g Saturated Fat 1.7g Trans Fat 0.0g Cholesterol 21mg Sodium 543mg Potassium 168mg Total Carbohydrates 15.8g Dietary Fiber 3.0g Sugars 1.2g Protein 9.5g
Vitamin A 17% - Vitamin C 6% - Calcium 7% - Iron 8%
Nutrition Grade A-
The Half Baked Life http://www.thehalfbakedlife.com/
For the chicken taquitos I knew I wanted to make the filling extra creamy so I mixed the chicken with some sour cream, Salsa Verde and some fresh cilantro which made the taquitos creamy but still light and delicious. To make these taquitos even easier you could use some leftover chicken from a dinner earlier in the week.
To add a little more spice you could add in some chopped green chilies or some charred poblano peppers. I served then with some additional sour cream and fresh cilantro but a cilantro ranch dressing would be amazing… you can find my recipe here. Monterey Jack cheese would also be a delicious addition, or pepper jack cheese for some added fun.
Sour Cream Chicken Taquitos
Chicken taquitos with a creamy sour cream filling - and they are low in points and calories