Hello Country Pulse Readers!


Can you all believe it's Spring 2014!!!  Personally 2013 flew by so quickly for me.  It was a year of challenges, growth, lessons, change, and most of all GREAT TIMES teaching me just how precious life is.  I am sending you all lots of love and well wishes for this new year hoping it's a year full of growth, fun, and of course Simply Delicious food.

As always a HUGE THANK YOU to Doug Smith for providing such an AMAZING publication and to you the readers, without you all there would be none of this!!

Valentines Day marked exactly one year for me here in NYC and again WHERE DID THE TIME GO?!  

I encourage you all to get into those kitchens with your family and friends and enjoy the art that is cooking.


Enjoy life to the fullest and let this be a year of great moments, reflecting on all the blessings life has given you.


Lots of Love & Happy Cooking!! ❤️


~Andrew Michaelsen~


**Still feel free to email me personally with questions or recipes.

andrew.michaelsen@aol.com

Fried Pickles

These pickles are a great starter for a spring or summer picnic. They are incredibly easy to make and are a great accent to any fun meal. They are even better when they are dipped in ranch or thousand island dressing.


~INGREDIENTS~

- Dill Pickle Chips

- 3/4 to 1 cup of beer

- 2 eggs

- 1 -2 cups of flour

- Cholesterol free oil

~DIRECTIONS~

1. Pour oil in a large skillet until the oil is about 1-2 inches up the side of the pan. Heat oil to 350 degrees.

2. Strain pickles in a small colander.

3. In a mixing bowl, whisk the yolks and 3/4 cup of the beer. Season the mixture with salt and pepper. Whisk in enough flour to form a batter. If the batter is too thick add the remaining beer to thin the batter.

4. Dip pickles one at a time using tongs into the batter and then place in the heated oil.

5. Fry pickles for about 2 minutes flipping the pickle after about 1 minute.

6. Place pickles on a plate lined with paper towel and then season with salt. Serve with Ranch Dressing.

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Chicken Florentine

This Chicken Florentine Casserole is super easy, quick & can be adapted for fish, pork or whatever meat you fancy.  You can also cook down your own fresh spinach if you don't like canned.

Also add your favorite 2cups cooked pasta to make this a main course dish.

~INGREDIENTS~

- 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves 

- 1/4 cup butter 

- 3 teaspoons minced garlic

- 1 tablespoon lemon juice 

- 1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup 

- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning

- 1/2 cup half-and-half 

- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese 

- 2 (13.5 ounce) cans spinach, drained 

- 4 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced - 2/3 cup bacon bits or fresh 

- 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

~DIRECTIONS~

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).  Place the chicken breast halves on a baking sheet; bake 20 to 30 minutes, until no longer pink and juices run clear.  Remove from heat, and set aside.  

2. Increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).  Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat.  Stirring constantly, mix in the garlic, lemon juice, cream of mushroom soup, Italian seasoning, half-and-half, and Parmesan cheese.  

3. Arrange the spinach over the bottom of a 9x9 inch baking dish.  Cover the spinach with the mushrooms.  Pour half the mixture from the saucepan over the mushrooms.  Arrange chicken breasts in the dish, and cover with the remaining sauce mixture.  Sprinkle with bacon, and top with mozzarella cheese.  

4. Bake 20 to 25 minutes in the 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) oven, until bubbly and lightly browned.

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Creamsickle Cake

This is a recipe submitted by Doug Smith, Editor of Country Pulse.... He got jealous that I was getting all the attention with my recipes, so I let him slip one of his in this month.... LOL!


~INGREDIENTS~

- 1 Pkg Yellow Cake Mix

- 2 Pk Orange Gelatin

- 1 Pk Vanilla Instant Pudding

- 1 Cup 2% Milk

- 2 Grade A Large Eggs

- 2 Tsp Imitation Vanilla

- 1 Tub Whipped Topping


~DIRECTIONS~


 Bake the cake as directed in a 9 x 13" pan. Let cake cool completely. Poke holes in cooled cake. Mix 1 package orange gelatin dessert with 1 c. boiling water and 1 c. cold water. Pour over cake. Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours. Mix pudding mix with cold milk the other package of orange gelatin dessert and vanilla. Beat by hand with a whisk until thickened. Fold in the whipped topping. Frost the cake with the pudding mixture.


For a layered Creamsicle Cake: Make the cake batter as directed, then batter pour evenly into 3 round 9" cake pans. Bake cakes as directed and let cool


Then, make the orange gelatin as directed on the package — but with this version, you'll let the gelatin set up instead of pouring it into the cake. We recommend using your round cake pans, or using a 13 x 17" jelly roll pan (1" deep cookie sheet with edges). Once you pour the liquid gelatin mixture into the pans, it will need to be refrigerated for about 4 hours. Meanwhile, make the pudding mixture according to the original recipe. Finally, layer in this order: cake, gelatin pudding mixture. Repeat once more for a 6-layered Creamsicle Cake. —


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Walnut Cake with

Warm Vanilla Honey Sauce


Had this several years ago at a potluck and just had to share the recipe for this simple yet delicious cake.  You will definitely be wanting seconds of this.


~INGREDIENTS~


- 3 1/2 cups self-raising flour, sifted

- 1 cup and 1 tbsp butter

- 3tbsp sour cream (replaced with plain yogurt)

- 1tsp pure vanilla extract

- 3/4 brown sugar

- 5 eggs, lightly beaten

- 8 small bananas, mashed

- 3/4 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped

 

~Vanilla Honey Sauce~

 

- 1/3 cup honey

- 3 tablespoons butter, melted

- 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla 



~DIRECTIONS~


1. Pre-heat oven at 350 F (180 C)  

2. Cream butter, sugar and yogurt until light and fluffy.  

3. Add in vanilla and beat well.  

4. Dribble in eggs, about 1 tablespoon at a time, until all used up.  

5. Fold in the flour gently, then add the mashed bananas.  

6. Add in walnuts and stir gently to mix well.  Leave some walnuts for the toppings.  

7. Pour batter into lined cake tin and bake for 40 to 50 mins or until golden brown.  Sprinkle some chopped walnuts on top of the batter. 

8. About 10 minutes before your cake is ready, prepare sauce by melting together honey, butter and vanilla.  

9. Let cake cool slightly, and then top with warm honey vanilla sauce before serving.

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