Monday, December 7, 2009

Candy Cane Cookies

My FAVORITE Christmas cookie! These are fun for the kids to make too!

1/2 C Butter, softened
1/2 C shortening
1 C powdered sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. almond extract
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 1/2 C flour
1 tsp. Salt
1/2 tsp. Red food coloring

Mix dough in order, EXCEPT for food coloring. Divide dough in half, color one half with the food coloring. Make a 1 inch ball from each color dough. Form into a toosie roll (short and fat). Then lay them side by side together, and roll to form the swirl, until they are about 4-5 inches long. Carefully transfer to cookie sheet, forming the crook in the cane. Bake for 9 minutes at 375. Let cool on sheet 2-5 minutes before moving. (they will break if you move them too soon.)

Tips: The white tends to dry out faster than the red, so if you double the batch keep a damp paper towel over the white to keep it moist. You can also decrease the almond to 1/2 tsp in the red side (when making 2 batches, 1 of each color) to compensate for the extra liquid you will be getting from the food coloring.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Very Vanilla Cake

This is a recipe from Nigella Lawson, who is a wonderful cook because she makes it look like you can do it, too. And I did.
2 Sticks soft butter, plus enough to grease your bundt pan
1 1/2 Cups sugar
6 eggs
2 1/3 Cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 Cup plain fat free yogurt
4 tsp vanilla extract
confectioner's sugar (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 and put cookie sheet in at same time. Butter or spray (use A LOT) bundt pan. Cream butter and sugar in mixing bowl until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, along with 1 TBS flour for each egg. Fold in rest of flour and baking soda. Add yogurt and vanilla. Pour mixture into greased pan and spread evenly. Place cake pan on preheated cookie sheet and bake 45 to 60 minutes, until cake rises and is golden. After 45 minutes, insert knife to test; if it comes out clean, it is done. Remove from oven and let sit for 15 minutes. Gently pull cake away from pan edges, then turn out cake. Let cool, then dust with confectioner's sugar (it tastes great and hides all blemishes). For my son's birthday, we had it with strawberries and whipped cream. Pure heaven.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Italian Chicken

4 boneless chicken breasts
1/2 cube butter
1 package Zesty Italian seasoning (this is found in the salad dressing area, near the ranch dressing packets. Make sure to get Zesty, not just plain Italian.)

Melt butter and add chicken. Sprinkle seasoning over chicken. Cook in crockpot for 6-7 hours on low setting or 3-4 hours on high.

In a saucepan melt 8 oz cream cheese or 8 oz sour cream and one can of cream of chicken soup. Pour into crock pot over chicken and let simmer for about 15 minutes. Serve over noodles, rice, or mashed potatoes.

Pretzel Salad

First Layer-Pretzel Crust
2 cups crushed pretzels
3/4 cup butter
3 T sugar

Mix together and press in the bottom of 9x13 pan. Bake in 350 oven for 10 minutes. Cool.

Second Layer-Creamy Filling
Cream together 8 oz cream cheese, softened, and 1 cup sugar. Then blend in 12 oz Cool Whip. Spread over pretzel crust. Chill.

Third Layer-Jello and Fruit
Dissolve large package raspberry jello with 2 cups hot water. When dissolved add 2 9-ounce packages frozen raspberries. When it starts to set, spread on second layer and chill.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Pumpkin Cheesecake

I make this Pumpkin Cheesecake for my husband's birthday which was October 9th. It was especially fabulous this year. I found the recipe 6 years ago on It is an Emeril Lagasse recipe so make sure to shout "bam" when adding the ingredients. :)

1 1/2 c vanilla wafers, crushed into crumbs
1 cup ground pecan pieces
1 stick melted butter
2 pounds cream cheese, softened and cubed
1 cup brown sugar
6 eggs
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup flour
pinch salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups pumpkin puree

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine the crumbs, pecans, and butter together. Mix well and press into a 12-inch spring-form pan. Mix the cream cheese until smooth. (Don't rush this step, the smoother the cream cheese, the better the cheesecake. Take your time. ) Add the brown sugar and blend. Add the eggs 1 at a time to thoroughly incorporate into the cheese mixture. Add the heavy cream. Add the flour, salt, cinnamon and vanilla and blend until smooth. Add the mashed pumpkin and blend until smooth. Pour into the spring-form pan.

Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until the cake is set. Remove from the oven and loosen the sides from the pan with a knife to prevent the cake from splitting down the center. Completely cool the cake before cutting. Serve with Cool-Whip and/or a drizzle of chocolate sauce.

(I seem to have accidently deleted the pics I took of this. Grrr.)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Kid Friendly {Mini Pizzas}

This is not necessarily a hot new recipe, but one I haven't done in awhile, so thought I might remind you of it too! What kid doesn't love pizza-okay, I actually do know a couple-but this is a sure fire bet for a quick and tasty lunch in most households!
What you need:
~refrigerated biscuits (the cheap ones that make you jump when they *pop*)
~pizza sauce
~any other pizza toppings you like

What you do:

~Using one, two, or three biscuits (depends on how big you want your pizzas to be) flatten dough into a round(ish) thin crust and place on cookie sheet. (be sure to spray cookie sheet-they tend to stick!)
~Spoon sauce on the crust and top with cheese and other pizza toppings.
~Cook for 8-10 minutes or until biscuits are golden brown and cheese is melting.

I let my kids do there own little pizzas and this time we put their first initial on it using string cheese so when they came out of the oven, everyone knew whose was whose! They loved it!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Parmesan Zucchini

I don't know about you, but I'm KINDA getting tired of zucchini and yellow squash cooked the same old ways. I still have lots left, and don't want to throw them out, so I've been searching of other ways to cook them. I have some great cooking blogs I look at a lot, and this recipe is one I found on My Sister's Cafe. I tried it with zucchini, but I bet it is great with yellow squash too!

2-3 zucchini and/or summer squash
Garlic salt
Parmesan cheese (I used powdered)
Freshly ground pepper

Preheat oven to 425. Cut zucchini/summer squash in thin slices and arrange half evenly in baking dish. Place thin slices of butter on top (to taste... I used ~1.5-2 tbsp total or an eaiser healthy idea is to spray a couple spirtz of "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter"). Sprinkle generously with garlic salt, Parmesan cheese, and pepper. Layer the rest of the zucchini and squash and repeat. Cover with foil and bake for 15-20 minutes (until center of zucchini/squash is becoming clear). Uncover and bake 5 more minutes. Enjoy!!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Chicken and Rice Stew

3 cups quartered button mushrooms (8 ounces)
2 medium carrots, sliced
2 medium leeks, sliced (I used green onions, about 5)
1/2 Cup uncooked brown rice
1/2 Cup uncooked wild rice, rinsed and drained
12 ounces boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
1 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3 14 ounce cans reduced-sodium chicken broth (about 5 1/4 Cups)
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup

In a 3 1/2 to 6 quart slow cooker place mushrooms, carrots, leeks, and both rices. Add chicken. Top with spices and pour broth over all.
Cook on low for 7-8 hours or on high for about 4 hours. /stir in condensed soup during last ten minutes.

WONDERFUL dish in colder weather. WARNING: toddlers may not like the thyme and rosemary. You may wish to cut back or add it in about an hour before serving.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

German Pancakes

6 eggs

1 C milk

1 C flour

1/2 Cube butter or margarine (can reduce to 2T)

1 tsp salt

Preheat at 350. Melt butter in 9x13 dish in oven. Blend all other ingredients in blender. Pour into melted butter and bake for 25 min.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Turkey or Chicken Casserole

Turkey or Chicken Casserole

6oz Stove top stuffing
1 can of cream of chicken soup
1 C sour cream
2 to 3 cups of chicken or turkey

Mix stuffing according to package directions and cook.
Mix soup and sour cream in bowl.
In a 9 by 9 dish put 1/2 of the stuffing
Then add all of the chicken
Put sauce mix on top of Chicken
Finish off by adding the last of the stuffing
Put in oven at 350 for 25-30 minutes
Eat and enjoy!

Monday, September 21, 2009


I posted this on my blog, but I wanted to share it here too. I hope you enjoy.

1 lb. ground beef
1.5 tsp salt divided
1/4 tsp pepper
4 med. potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
4 med carrots peeled and cut into slices
1 lg onion chopped (or pureed if you are me)
1 C. ketchup
1 C. water
1.5 tsp vinegar
.5 tsp basil

In a bowl. Combine beef, 1 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper; mix well. Shape into 1-inch balls. In skillet over medium heat, brown meatballs on all sides; drain. Place potatoes, carrots, and onion in crock pot. Top with meatballs. Combine ketchup, water, vinegar,basil, and remaining salt and pepper. Pour over meatballs. Cover and cook on high for 4-5 hours, or until the vegetables are tender.

Stain on Carpet Trick

I had a koolaid stain on my carpet from a baby sitter..... yea, didnt clean it. Three days later I tried to get it out. Red koolaid on my carpet that has white threads in it..... not good. I did NOT think it would come out. But it did!

You will need:
My home made shout found here
Hot iron
Cotton Towel

Spray shout on stain, add water, cover with towel, iron on "Cotton" setting. Move towel to dry section, and repeat.

I thought that it would set the stain worse, but really what did I have to loose? The stain was already there! LOL

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Ranch Breaded Baked Chicken

I just made it. So the amounts are guesstimated.

4 boneless chicken Brsts

Garlic salt to your families taste

Salt and pepper to your families taste

Dry ranch mix about 1 Tbs

2 eggs

Crushed red pepper or cayenne *optional* for a little heat

5 slices white bread (crumbed in food processor)

Mix chicken and eggs with all seasonings. Coat with bread crumbs. Bake for 35-45 Min @ 400 turn over half way to toast the bottom side of chicken.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Summer Pasta

This is a great dinner for using up your summer bounty.
1 zucchini, cut into quarter moon slices
1 yellow squash, cut into quarter moon slices
carrots, sliced
cherry tomatoes (or any kind in the garden)
onion, diced
olive oil
white vinegar
penne or butterfly pasta (just not long pasta)
cooked and cubed chicken (optional)

Start your water for the pasta. Let it come to a boil, add pasta. Heat up about 2 TBS olive oil in a skillet. Add onion and carrots. Wait about 2 minutes, then add zucchini and squash. Let cook till slightly softened. Drain pasta when al dente, add 2 TBS olive oil and 2 TBS vinegar or to taste. Yes, you will like it. Mix in veggies, along with tomatoes that are in bite sized pieces and chicken. This is also good as a cold salad, just drain the pasta in cold water first and then add veggies.

Italian Zucchini

This is a great way to use up some of that zucchini in your garden without getting to the point of stuffing it into any car window that is semi-rolled down.

1 large zucchini, cut into half moons or smaller
diced onion (about 1/4 to 1/3 med onion)
olive oil
1/2 to 1 soft cube chicken bouillon
1 large yellow squash (optional)

Put about 2 TBS olive oil into the pan, let it warm. Next put in your zucchini and onion. When this starts to heat up, crumble about half the bouillon cube over top. In most stores, you can go to the ethnic section and find the Mexican soft bouillon. It will melt in with the oil and cover the veggies much better. If you would like more flavor, crumble more over until to taste. But PLEASE taste first.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Hamburger Cookies

This weekend I tended my grandsons and wanted to have a fun kitchen craft. I remembered a few years back making these cute little hamburger cookies and thought it would be perfect for the boys. They loved every minute of it and all 3, from ages 2-7, helped with the project.


Vanilla wafers
Small chocolate mint cookies (I bought mine at Wal-mart, the Great Value brand)
1/4 cup flaked coconut
Green food coloring
Small tubes of red and yellow "writing" frosting
1 T. sesame seeds
Very small amount of white corn syrup

In a small bowl, combine 4 drops green food coloring with a few drops water. Add coconut and cover the container. Shake until coconut is tinted. Assemble vanilla wafers (buns), chocolate cookies (patty), red & yellow frosting (ketchup & mustard), small amount of green coconut (lettuce).

Then brush a little corn syrup on the top "bun" and sprinkle a few sesame seeds on top. Voila!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Zucchini Cake

Very moist, yummy cake. Makes a lot!

3 C unpeeled grated Zucchini
1 Tbsp vanilla
3 C sugar
1 1/2 C walnuts (optional)
1 C oil
4 eggs
3 C flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt

Combine flour, baking powder, soda, and salt in separat bowl. In mixer, combine zucchini, vanilla, sugar, nuts, oil and eggs. Gradually add dry ingredients and mix well. Pour into greased and floured bundt or angel cake pan, do not fill past 2/3rds. Bake at 350 1 hour. Let cool in pan before turning out.

I found that you need to place a cookie sheet on the rack below the pan because the batter may expand over the top of the pan. This makes a lot of batter, so use as big a pan as you can find. It gets better the more days it sits.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Fresh Basil Pesto

This year I planted a few Basil plants in my garden. They are producing like crazy, so rather than waste the fragrant and wonderful leaves, I found an easy recipie for pesto that can be frozen and kept for winter. If you have basil, this is a wonderful recipie to have.

2 c. fresh basil leaves, packed
1/2 c. grated paramsean or romano cheese
1/2 c. extra virgin olive oil
1/3 c. pine nuts or walnuts (pine nuts can be expensive)
3 garlic cloves minces
salt and pepper to taste.

In a food processor (not a blender), pulse the basil, nuts, and garlic together. Add in a steady stream the olive oil while it is mixing. Add cheese and pulse a few more times. Add salt and pepper to taste.

To freeze:
Mix as directed, omitting the cheese. Freeze in silicone ice cube trays, put into ziploc bags when frozen, and store. To use, thaw, add the cheese and use over pasta, bread etc.

A Summer Shortcut

Our family loves baked potatoes, mostly because they are so easy. But in the summer, we never have them because we can't stand to have the oven on! We've found a new recipe/idea that has become a hit. Grilled Baked Potatoes. These are so quick and easy, I might bake my spuds this way in the winter too! All you have to do is scrub some bakers, poke them with a fork, and put them in the microwave for 6-10 minutes. Then you can either wrap them in foil or put them directly on the grill. Be sure to turn them every couple of minutes, and grill for about 10 minutes. Voila! Baked potatoes minus the baked house! And for toppings, try fresh green onions, sour cream, and bacon bits. Yummy!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Healthy Summer Treats

We've discovered a new favorite way to cool off! Homemade popsicles/smoothies. This is just one recipe, but man is it delicious. You can vary the fruits and flavors to make your own favorite.

We use:
frozen strawberries
harvest peach Yoplait yogurt
white grape juice
frozen blueberries(opt)

Throw the ingredients in your blender and blend until smooth. No measurements, just add a little here, a little there until you get the consistency/flavor you like. Take it easy on the liquid at first, and add it as you need it so they don't get too runny. These are really hard to mess up. Then pour some in a cup and grab a spoon for a smoothie, or use a spoon to fill ice cube trays for popsicles. You can buy mini popsicle sticks at WalMart for less than $2. Make sure you have the flexible, twisty type of ice cube tray so you can get them out. These are not only my kids' favorite treat, but mine as well! Plus, the strawberries have tons of Vitamin C, which is supposed to help you get firmer skin, and blueberries have Vitamin E, which aids in improving your complexion. Two birds with one stone! Enjoy!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Stuffed Pizza Rolls

My friend gave me this recipe and they are so easy, but so good.

Stuffed Pizza Rolls

1 roll refrigerated pizza dough
marinara/pizza sauce
2 T grated Parmesan cheese
1 T olive oil or melted butter
1/2 t garlic powder
1 t dried Italian seasoning
mozzerella cheese
Pizza toppings of your choice

Preheat oven to heat specified on pizza dough package. Usually it's 400 degrees.

Unroll your pizza dough onto a lightly floured surface. Cut the dough into little squares. I think I got about 20 squares from my dough. Cut any size you want.

Place cheese and desired toppings on each square. (Note that you're not putting the marinara sauce on the dough- it's for dipping after)

When all of your dough squares have cheese and toppings on them, carefully lift up each square and wrap the dough around the toppings. Pinch to make sure each ball is sealed shut and then place them seam side down in a lightly sprayed pie pan (or similar sized dish).

Brush the tops of the dough balls with olive oil or melted butter and then sprinkle with the garlic and Italian seasoning and top with Parmesan cheese.

Cook them in the oven for about 15-20 minutes or until golden brown on top.

Serve warm with warmed marinara sauce on the side for dipping.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Best Birthday Cake Website

I found the coolest website for birthday cake ideas a couple years ago and now use it every time I have a birthday coming up!

Here's the link to it:

You can find TONS of pictures of cakes people have submitted, and some of them have step by step instructions, but most are so easy to make, you just need to see the idea and go from there. On the left hand side bar, you'll also see links with ideas for Cool Party, Costume, Showers, etc. It is a great site and hopefully you can find something on it to help your next party be awesome!

Monday, June 29, 2009

How to Cut a Watermelon

As I said on my personal blog, I don't claim to be GREAT at much, but I have finally figured out how to successfully cut a watermelon into perfect bite-size pieces. Every time I take a watermelon to a Summer BBQ, I'm asked how to do this. Here's how:

Make sure you have a long, sharp knife. This is super important!

Quarter your watermelon.

You're going to make a series of cuts in 3 different directions.

The quarter should now look like a grid. Dump watermelon into a large bowl, everything from the middle should fall out easily.

Now cut along the rind of the watermelon. This usually takes 2 passes.

Ta-da...perfect bite-size pieces.

Tisa's Mac n' Cheese

My mother in law makes such a simple mac n' cheese recipe but my kids (and husband) love it, so I thought I'd share. (Don't make this recipe expecting it to be creamy because it's's just noodles and cheese but very kid-friendly and simple.)

You'll need 1 lb elbow noodles (cook as directed on box), 2 cups grated cheddar cheese, 2-4 T macaroni, 6 T milk, salt and pepper.

Layer half of the noodles, half the butter, and half the cheese in a 9x13 casserole dish. Sprinkle 3 T milk over and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Layer remaining ingredients and place in 350 degree oven for 20 minutes.

Easy but delicious.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Crazy Cake

This is the moistest, yummiest cake I've ever had! It is good with any frosting, or just use the recipe found below.

Mix together the following:

3 c. flour
2 c. sugar
6 T. cocoa
2 t. soda
1 t. salt

Then add:

2 t. vanilla
2 T. white vinegar
2 c. water
3/4 c. oil

Mix together.
Pour into a 13 x 9 pan.
Bake at 375 for 30 min.

In a saucepan combine:
1 c. sugar
3 T. cornstarch
3 T. cocoa
dash salt
1 c. boiling water
Bring to boil.
3 T. butter
1 t. vanilla
Frosting will thicken as it stands. Pour over cake and EAT UP!!!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Sami's Super Easy Greek Salad

1 can drained and rinsed garbanzo beans
3 tomatoes (med. size) cut into med. pieces
1 small onion cut into rings and separate the rings
1 cucumber (I like to peel) cut into med. pieces
1/2 c cilantro chopped
1/2 c feta cheese
3 T red wine vinegar
1 t oregano
1/2 t garlic powder

I made this recipe up this weekend and I just HAVE to share it! You'll find this recipe colorful, healthy and tasty! It's super easy to throw together and stays nicely in the refrigerator if you have leftovers.

All you do is put these ingredients in a bowl and mix. You can put it in the fridge so the ingredients and meld together or serve immediately. I served it with grilled chicken breasts and warm pita bread. Hope you love it!

Banana Cake

1 ½ C Flour
1 tsp Soda
1 tsp Baking Pwd
½ tsp Salt
4 bananas
¾ C Sugar
1 Egg
1/3 C Softened Butter
1 C Butterscotch chips

1/3 C Brn Sugar
1/8th C Flour
1 Tbs butter
Sprinkle over cake

Bake 350 25-35 min

½ C Pwd Sugar
2 Tbs Milk
Pour over baked cake.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Jane's Banana Bread

If you've ever had a piece of my mom's banana bread, you know that it's fabulous. If you haven't, make this recipe and see for yourself:

Cream 1 cup vegetable oil
2 cups sugar
4 eggs

Then add 4 cups flour, 2 tsp soda, 1 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp salt, 6 tablespoons milk, 2 tsp vanilla and 4-6 mashed ripe bananas.

Pour in greased loaf pans and bake for 45-60 minutes at 350. (Sometimes the middle ends up not quite done, just cook for a few more minutes.) Makes 3 loaves.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Chicken Enchilladas

Chicken Enchilladas
5 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
1 cup chicken broth
1 medium onion
1 small can green chilies
2 TBSP butter
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 cup sour cream
8 flour tortillas
2 cups grated cheese

Saute onions and green chilies with butter until onion is clear. Add mushroom soup and chicken broth; cook until smooth. Add sour cream. Stir until mixed. Set aside. Dip tortilla in soup mixture (on both sides) then distribute chicken pieces on center of tortillas; add 1/4 cup soup mixture on chicken. Add cheese. Roll tortillas and place in 9x13 pan. Put rest of soup mixture on top and cover with more cheese. Cover; bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes. Top with lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, olives, etc. when ready to serve.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Grandma Baldwin's Chocolate Cake

Grandma Baldwin used to make this fabulous, dense, chocolate cake on Sundays when she knew the family was coming to visit. She'd only spread a very thin layer of frosting on top and I've been craving it. (Maybe it's because I miss her.) So my mom found the recipe and I made it this weekend. It was just as good as Grandma's but I used an entire can of frosting, which made it even better.

2 c sugar
1 c shortening
4 eggs
3 c flour
2 tsp soda
1 tsp salt
1 c milk + 1 T vinegar
1 c boiling water
6 T cocoa

Cream sugar, shortening, eggs. Add dry ingredients. Then blend in milk, vinegar, boiling water, and cocoa. This makes a very large cake. I baked mine in a 9 1/2 x 13 1/2 and it was super thick. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-50 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. So good.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Spicy Chicken Nachos

I tinkered with a recipe I have for chicken tortilla soup (really good, if anyone wants it let me know!) and made spicy chicken for nachos. It turned out really, really good! It's even better on the 2nd or 3rd day, when the chicken has had some time to soak up more flavor. But if you like nachos, these are the way to go. And they're really not that spicy at all. They just have a little kick, and if you add sour cream to the nachos they are perfect for kids.

1 small onion, coarsely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 TB chili powder
2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp dried oregano, crumbled
1 bay leaf
2 cans low-salt chicken broth
1 8-oz can tomato sauce
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground pepper
1 tsp sugar
3-4 large boneless, skinless, chicken breast halves

Optional toppings:
sour cream
salsa (the chile verde is the best!)
chopped fresh cilantro
shredded cheese (any kind will do)
banana peppers
Or pretty much anything you like to have on nachos will do!

In medium stockpot, saute onion in oil until tender. Add garlic, chili powder, ocumin, oregano, and bay leaf. Saute 1 minute. Add broth, tomato sauce, salt, sugar, and pepper, and bring to a boil. Add chicken; cover pot and simmer until chicken is done, about 15 minutes.

Using tongs, transfer chicken to plate and cool slightly. Shred finely and return to broth. Simmer 1 minute minimum (more for better flavor). Place chicken in a serving bowl, and ladle a small amount of broth into the bowl to prevent the chicken from drying out. You can even put the broth on your nachos, if you don't mind it being a bit soggy.

I have started putting all the prepared toppings in a veggie tray (the round kind with dividers). I bought a cheap one in the party aisle at WalMart, and it's perfect. I think this would be a ton of fun to have friends over and have a taco/nacho bar. Also, if you have leftover chicken, store it with the leftover will taste better that way when you reheat it. Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Cafe Rio Pork

Love Cafe Rio's Sweet Pork Tacos or Pork Salads? I found this recipe off one of the recipe blogs listed on the sidebar. Unfortunately, I can't remember which one. I've made this for my family a few times and it is devoured every time. It's so good.

3 lbs boneless pork roast
1 c brown sugar
1 c Worcestershire Sauce
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp salt
1 tsp chili powder
2 T minced onions.

Combine all ingredients and cook in crockpot on low 8-10 hours or on high 4-6 hours. One hour before serving, shred meat and discard juice. Add 1 cup brown sugar and 1 cup red enchilada sauce to meat.

Serve with Spanish rice, pinto or black beans, lettuce, tomato, cheese, guacamole, and any other taco toppings in a large tortilla or as a salad. Both are yummy.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Diet Coke Sloppy Joes

This is a healthier version of the traditional sloppy joe. Recipe is courtesy of Weight Watchers:

1 lb lean ground beef
1 medium onion (I usually just add a little minced onion because it's easier)
1 1/2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
12 oz diet coke
2/3 cup ketchup
2 Tbsp vinegar
1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
2 tsp dry mustard

Brown beef and onion in large skillet. Drain well. Stir in remaining ingredients as listed. Mix well. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes.

Makes 6 Servings; 3 POINTS each

Saturday, April 25, 2009

New Recipe Blog

I've found yet another fabulous source for recipes! You may have heard of her, but I don't think she's been mentioned here so we'll give it a whirl. She's called "The Pioneer Woman", and she's hilarous! She does other stuff too, like photography and home and garden. But her recipes are great, she's much like Bakerella with photos, etc, but she does all types of foods. Anyway, check her out at

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


20 oz. pkg. Oreo cookies
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 stick butter
1 c. powdered sugar
2 sm. pkgs. chocolate instant pudding mix
3 1/2 c. milk
12 oz. Cool Whip or Le Creme

In a blender or food processor, grind Oreos and set aside. In large bowl beat together cream cheese and butter; beat in sugar and pudding and blend. Add milk; blend until smooth. Fold in Cool Whip. Layer in container (I use a special flower pot.) One third Oreos pressed into bottom to form crust, 1/2 pudding mixture, 1/3 Oreos, remaining pudding, finish top with remaining Oreos to look like potting soil. Garnish appropriately with fake ivy, etc. Serve with miniature spade.
NOTE: To make Sand Dessert, substitute vanilla wafers for Oreos and vanilla pudding for chocolate pudding. Serve in sand pail with shovel as serving spoon. Garnish with candy sea shells.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Easter Egg Dye

Mix 1/4 tsp. food coloring and 1 tsp. vinegar with 1 cup boiling water. Let cool before dying eggs.

Yummy Cornbread

This is a super easy recipe that never lasts very long in our house!!! Here's what you'll need...

One yellow cake mix and one jiffy corn muffin mix.

Mix the two, with all the ingredients each one calls for. Bake in 9 x 13 or two 9" rounds or squares (I do this and freeze one for the next dinner we want to eat cornbread). Bake at 350 for 20-30 min. or until toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the middle. Serve warm with honey butter! We love it with chili or soup on a cold day!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Triple Chocolate Bundt Cake

This is a Weight Watcher Recipe. I've listed the point values at the end, just in case anyone cares:

1 box Devils Food Cake Mix
1 small box sugar free instant chocolate pudding
1 small box sugar free instant white chocolate pudding
1 cup egg substitute (I didn't have egg substitute so I used 3 eggs which may adjust the points)
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cups chocolate chips
1 cup applesauce

Mix together and pour into a sprayed Bundt pan or divide into 24 cupcakes. (The mixture is kind of fluffy and does not rise much at all.) Bake at 350 degrees - 45-50 minutes for Bundt or 20 min for cupcakes. Serve with Fat Free Cool Whip.

Bundt Cake = 16 servings @ 3 points each
Cupcakes = 24 servings @ 2 points each

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Sweet and Sour Chicken

Sweet & Sour Chicken

1.5 T. baking powder
1.5 c. flour
1.5 cornstarch
1 tsp. salt
2.5 c. water
.5 tsp yellow food coloring
3. T MSG or Accent

Mix all the ingredients together with water until smooth.

2 lbs of chicken

Slice chicken into slices. Take sliced chicken and dip into the batter. Then fry the chicken in oil for about 5 minutes. Make sure oil isn't too hot or the chicken won't cook all the way through. It will be golden brown.

Sweet & Sour Sauce
2 C. water
1 C. white vinegar
1.5 C. sugar
Dash white pepper
Dash garlic powder
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 red food coloring
2 T cornstarch with cool water as thickener

Bring water boil, then add all the ingredients while stirring slowly. Thickener should be added slowly after the sauce is boiling. Continue to stir. Add sauce to cover chicken as a dip.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Lemon Delight Pound Cake

2 ½ cups flour
1 ½ cups sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoons salt
¾ cups oil
¾ cups orange juice or apricot nectar
2 teaspoons lemon extract
4 eggs

1 ½ cups powdered sugar
½ cup lemon juice

Heat oven to 325. Generously grease and flour 12 cup fluted tube (bundt) pan. In large bowl combine cake ingredients. Blend on low speed until blended; beat 3 minutes at medium speed. Pour into prepared pan.

Bake at 325 for 40-50 min. (I usually have to bake for 60 min) or until toothpick comes out clean. Remove cake from the oven. Prick deeply every inch with fork or skewer. In a small bowl, mix glaze ingredients until smooth. Spoon half the glaze over hot cake in pan. Let stand 10 min; invert onto serving plate. Spoon remaining glaze over cake. Serve cool. 16 servings.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

S'mores In a Pan

8 c Golden Grahams
6 c Marshmallows
1/4 c Corn Syrup
5 T Butter
1 1/2 c chocolate chips
1 tsp vanilla

Microwave corn syrup, butter, marshmallows, and chocolate chips for 2 minutes. Add vanilla, Golden Grahams, and a few more marshmallows and a few more chocolate chips. Press in buttered 9 x 13 pan. Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Vanilla Wafers

1/2 cup butter (no substitutes), softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 1/3 cups flour, all-purpose
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar.
Beat in egg and vanilla.
Combine dry ingredients; add to creamed mixture and mix well.
Drop by teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart onto ungreased baking sheets.
Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes or until edges are golden brown.
Remove to a wire rack to cool.

This is a new recipe I just tried. It is not THE BEST but its good for a change.

Spanish Rice

I learned how to make Spanish Rice for a church dinner. This recipe is so delicious.

1/4 cup of oil2 cloves of garlic crushed.
Brown garlic in oil and then remove.
Add 2 cups of white rice and brown on med. heat.
When rice is brown, add in 1 cup of tomatoes and 1 cup of onions diced.
Then stir in 1/3 cup of tomato sauce.
Add 5 cups of boiling water.
Add 3 tbs of chicken bullion.
Cover and cook on med heat for 20 minutes.

This recipe is so good. I really love it and so do my kids.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Cheesy Beef Bake

My family is odd, in that we like meatloaf. It's easy for my son to eat with his braces, so I try to make it for him at least once a month. This month, I only had 1 lb. of hamburger in my freezer and didn't make it to the store. So, this is what I came up with and it was surprisingly good! They licked the pan clean, so to speak.

1 lb. Hamburger, extra lean
1 box stove top stuffing, prepared with slightly less water
1 egg
1/2 c bread crumbs
2 tbsp worcestershire sauce
1/4c minced onions
3/4 c shredded cheddar cheese
garlic salt to taste
pepper to taste

Mix in a large bowl all ingredients but the cheese. Press into a square glass baking dish. Top with cheese. Bake at 375, 30-35 minutes, or until cooked through. (160 on a themometer)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Chicken Pot Pie

3-chicken breasts, diced and cooked.
1-package frozen peas and carrots thawed
3-medium potatoes, diced
2-cans cream of chicken soup
1-8 oz container sour cream
1 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder

2-9 pie crusts (tops and bottoms)

Mix first ten ingredients together in a large bowl. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Place two bottom crusts in 2- 9 inch pie pans. Divide the chicken mixture and fill the pie pans. Place the top crusts on each pie. Bake at 400 degrees for 40 minutes.

Yields: 2 pies - Bake one and store the other pie in the freezer for up to three (3) months.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Mock Lasagna

This is a family favorite that is also a 2 pot wonder. I love not having to do extra dishes.

1 box Barilla pasta (penne, butterfly or rigatoni are all acceptable)

1/2 box to 1 box frozen spinach

1 lb hamburger

chopped onion, salt and pepper

1 large bottle spaghetti sauce

2 cups grated mozzarella or 1 med. container cottage cheese

Start some water to boil. While that's happening, decide how much spinach you would like to use and thaw it out in the microwave. Drain off the nasty spinach water as you go. Brown hamburger with onion, salt and pepper in a large pan. Drain off grease. Put pasta in the water when it starts bubbling nicely, and add sauce to hamburger when thoroughly cooked. Drain pasta and add sauce and meat.
Now you can decide to be fancy or not. For fancy, turn oven on to 350. Grease a cake pan and pour in half the pasta mixture. Layer on mozz or cottage cheese and spinach, followed by the rest of the pasta. Top with grated mozz and let bake for 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted and bubbly. For quick but dang good, add cheese and spinach to pasta mix. Blend well and serve with a little extra mozz or Parmesan to go on top of each serving.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Best Sugar Cookies Ever!

I have tried for years to find that fool proof sugar cookie recipe and have failed time and time again. Each one is either too sticky, too chewy, to crunchy, too sweet, has too many ingredients, or just doesn't bake up well. I was at my daughter's preschool class, and the student teacher brought in these wonderful sugar cookies for them to decorate. At first, I thought it was "cheater dough" from the store, but it was from scratch! So, of course I had to have it. These are the best sugar cookies I have ever had, or made! They are smooth, tender, flaky, and have just the right amount of sweet to go with your favorite frosting. Okay, enough about them, here's the recipe!

(Thank you Mr. Noles!)

1 C. Sugar
2 eggs
1/2 Tsp. Salt
1/2 Tsp. Baking Soda
1 C Butter, softened (don't melt!)
4 Tbsp. Milk
1 Tsp. Vanilla
4 C. Flour

Mix sugar, eggs, salt, soda, butter, milk, and vanilla with a mixer on low speed. Stir in the flour one cup at a time. Knead the dough to make a smooth consistency. Roll out on a floured surface about 1/4 inch. Cut to desired shapes. Bake at 375 for 9 minutes. Thinner cookies will cook more quickly.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Puerco y Papa (Pig & Potato) Cheese Chowder

3 medium russet potatoes, diced
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon each garlic and onion powder
salt and pepper
3 cups water
2 cups whole milk, 1/2 and 1/2 or cream
3 cups shredded mexican cheese blend
6 slices cooked bacon cut into 1/2 inch strips
3 slices cooked dinner ham, chopped
1 small can diced green chilis

In a large pot (nonstick) melt butter and add potatoes. If you want to use raw bacon, cook it in the pot, leave about 2 tablespoons of the grease in the pot and omit the butter. Add salt and pepper, onion and garlic powder and cook potatoes in butter or bacon grease for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add water and boil until potatoes are almost done. Lower heat to medium and stir in milk and add cheese. Stir until cheese is melted and then add cooked bacon and ham (I used spiral sliced ham I had frozen after Christmas). Add green chilis and cook until meat is heated through.
I just made this recipe up last night so if something doesn't make sense feel free to leave a comment about it and I'll try to help. I'm not a professional :)

Friday, March 6, 2009

The Best Feeling...

Have you ever tried an entirely new meal for dinner and had it turn out crappy? Well, that seems like every other day for me...But have you ever tried something new and had it become an instant favorite! That was my night last night, and I'm still loving it!

There are two recipes for this meal, both were relatively easy. Here they are:

Chicken Tortellini Soup

4 cans Swanson's chicken broth
1 can condensed cream of chicken soup + 1 can water
2 cups cubed cooked chicken
1 cup chopped onions
1 cup sliced carrots
1/2 teaspoon dried basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 package frozen cheese tortellini
2 crowns fresh broccoli
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, if desired

Place broth, soup, and water in large soup pot. Add herbs, onions, and garlic, and bring to a boil. Add chicken and carrots, and cook for 5 minutes. Cut broccoli from the stems; add tortellini, broccoli, and cheese to soup. Let cook until broccoli is tender and tortellini begins to float. Serve and enjoy!

HINT: I don't like to take the time to pre-cook my chicken, so before adding the carrots I throw in several raw frozen chicken breasts and let them cook. Once they are cooked through, I take them out and chop them up, then put back in the soup and resume with adding the carrots. The original recipe suggested using the roasted chickens you can get at the grocery store deli, for a quicker prep.

Overnight Soft Herb Rolls

1 pkg active dry yeast (about 1 TB)
1/4 cup cool water
3 TB sugar
1 tsp table salt
1 TB each minced flat-leaf parsley, fresh dill, chives, and rosemary
2 TB melted butter
1 large egg plus 1 TB lightly beaten egg, divided
1 cup milk or half-and-half
3½-3 3/4 cups flour
About 1 TB coarse salt

In a large bowl, sprinkle yeast over cool water (about 70°). Let stand until dissolved, 5 minutes. Stir in sugar, table salt, herbs, butter, whole egg, and milk; add 3¼ cups flour and stir to moisten.
Knead dough on a lightly floured board until elastic and not sticky, 15 minutes; add flour as needed to prevent sticking. Shape into 12 equal balls; place in a well-buttered 9" square baking dish.
Let dough rise in a warm place until doubled, 45-60 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350°. Brush rolls with beaten egg and sprinkle with coarse salt. Bake until deep golden, 25-30 minutes.
Make ahead: Prepare through step 21; immediately wrap airtight (do not let rise) and chill up to 1 day. Proceed with step 3. Rising may take longer after refrigeration.

HINT: I didn't start these early enough to just let them rise, so I covered them with a papertowel and put them in the oven at 170° for 15 minutes. They still weren't double, but my soup was almost done, so I turned the oven up and let them bake. They doubled just find during baking, and they were pretty good. If you can let them rise, they would probably be a little fluffier.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Top Secret Recipes

My mother in-law sent me an email with TONS of recipes from well known restaurants, like Outback Steakhouse, PF Changs, Pizza Hut, Olive Garden, etc. It also has cool, fun to try recipes like the Gatorade recipe already posted. If anyone would like a copy, please leave a comment with your email address, and I will be sure to pass it along!


1 pack unsweetened Kool Aid (any flavor)
2 quarts cold water
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teas. salt
1/2 cup orange juice
Mix together. This equals the electrolyte replacement found
in many popular drinks on the market. Great for a hot summer!

Oven Vegetables

This recipe is a little different, because it all depends on what YOU want to put into it. Or mix and match for the season (spring veg, winter veg, etc) and family favorites.

The important parts are to have a big mixing bowl, about 2 to 4 Tbs olive oil (enough to coat veg mix), Emeril's Essence seasoning or whatever kind of seasoning you like, and your oven set to 350.

Add veggies that have been cut into bite sized pieces to the bowl, mix in your olive oil and seasoning, then pour them out onto a greased cookie sheet. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes until all veggies are done.

Good veggie choices:

Sweet potatoes
Butternut or Acorn Squash
Tomatoes (I usually wait to put these in, about 10 minutes before it's all done)

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Yogurt Chicken

2 cups plain yogurt
2 cups Ritz crackers, crushed
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 tsp. garlic salt
2 T. Parmesan cheese
6 chicken breasts
1 cube butter, melted

Place plain yogurt in small bowl and set aside. In another bowl, mix cracker crumbs, Italian seasoning, garlic salt, and Parmesan cheese. Coat chicken breast in yogurt, then coat in cracker mix. Place on cookie sheet with sides (I place tin foil in cookie sheet to make clean up easier). After all chicken breasts are coated and on cookie sheet, pour melted butter onto the chicken. Bake at 375 for 40-45 min. or until chicken is done.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Asian Pork & Noodle Skillet

This is a remarkably easy meal. The first time is a little time consuming, just because you don't know what to do or when to do it. If you dice up all the veggies and meat from the first, it goes really quickly, and it's delicious! This recipe is from The Pampered Chef.

Asian Pork & Noodle Skillet

2 medium carrots, peeled
1 medium red bell pepper
5-6 green onions with tops (about 1¼ cups sliced), divided
2 pork tenderloins (about 1 lb each)
2 TB toasted sesame oil
1 1-inch piece of fresh gingerroot, peeled and diced
2 cloves garlic, pressed or diced
4 pkg (3 oz each) oriental-flavor ramen noodles
1 TB vegetable oil
4 cups water

Cut carrots into julienne strips. Cut bell pepper lengthwise into ¼-inch strips. Slice green onions; set aside tops for garnish.

Trim fat and silver skin from pork tenderloins. Slice pork lengthwise into four strips. Thinly slice strips crosswise. Combine pork, sesame oil, gingerroot, garlic, and two of the ramen seasoning packets; mix well.

Add vegetable oil to large skillet; heat over medium-high heat 1-3 minutes or until shimmering. Add half of the pork. Cook and stir 2-3 minutes or until browned; remove pork from skillet and keep warm. Repeat with remaining pork.

Add carrots and bell pepper to skillet. Cook 1-2 minutes or until crisp-tender. Add water and remaining ramen seasoning packets; stir to loosen browned bits from bottom of skillet. Add ramen noodles and green onions to skillet. Cover; bring to a boil and cook 4-5 minutes or until noodles are softened. Add pork; stir to break apart noodles. Remove skillet from heat; let stand, covered, 3-4 minutes or until pork is heated through. Garnish with reserved green onion tops.

Tips: chicken breast can be substituted for the pork, if desired. Also, I used broccoli instead of the bell pepper, and it was great!

Neiman-Marcus Cookies

I received this recipe recently in an email. It was an interesting story about a woman who asked to purchase the recipe, and did so believing she was paying $2.50 for it. When she found out it was actually $250.00, she tried to get her money back, and the company refused. She then emailed the recipe to as many people as she could to "get back at them" for charging her so much. As with most emails, I have no idea if this is a true story, or if this recipe actually comes from Neiman-Marcus. Either way, they sounded delicious, so I decided to try them. I cut the recipe in half and ended up with about 6 dozen small cookies, using my small cookie scoop. They really are as good as they sound!

Neiman-Marcus Cookies

2 cups butter
2 cups brown sugar
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
5 cups oatmeal
4 cups flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
24 oz chocolate chips
1 8-oz Hershey bar (grated)
3 cups chopped nuts

Cream together butter and both sugars. Add eggs and vanilla, mixing well. Meanwhile, place oatmeal in a blender and blend into a fine powder. Add blended oatmeal, flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda to sugar mixture. Mix well. Add chocolate chips, grated Hershey bar (Symphony is best), and nuts.

Roll into balls, place 2-inches apart on a cookie sheet. Bake for 10 minutes at 375°. Recipe makes 112 cookies.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

The BEST cleaner EVER!!!

So, not food, but you will absolutely LOVE this!
1 C Amonia (scented smells better)
1 C Liquid dish soap
2 C Water

Cleans: stains of clothing, hard water spots, oven tops, hairspray residue, carpet stains, blood spots off carpet! and just about anything else I think of! I LOVE IT!!! I used to buy shout, quick and brite, oxy clean, but now I mostly use this.

Homemade Pancake Mix

10 C flour
2 1/2 C instant dry milk
1/2 C sugar
1/4 C baking powder
2 T salt

Combine all ingredients.

2 C mix
1 C water
1 egg
2 T oil (3 for waffles)

Friday, February 27, 2009

Sweet and Sour Pork

1 lb Pork
1 Carrot
2 Green Pepper (bell)
6 Tbs Cornstarch
1 C pineapple

1/2 tsp Garlic Salt
1 egg yolk
1 Tbs Soy Sauce
1 Tbs Cornstarch
1/2 tsp Sugar

3 Tbs Sugar
3 Tbs Vinegar
3 Tbs Ketchup
4 Tbs Water
2 1/2 tsp Cornstarch
Cut pork into cubes. Mix "A" ingredients together and marinate pork for one hour. Remove and coat with 6 tbs cornstarch. Deep fry until done. Mix "B" ingredients together and set aside. Chop carrot and pepper (I added a little bit of diced onion) into chunks. In 2 Tbs oil, stir fry veggies, until tender, add pineapple. Stir in "B" and cook until thick. Turn off heat and add to meat.

Serve with rice or egg rolls.

This recipe has a little more prep time, and sounds difficult. But it is really easy and GOOD!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

30 Min Chicken

This is actually really good for the amount of work! A quick & super easy dinner!
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2- 12 oz can of sprite (not 7up)
1- 18 oz bottle BBQ sauce

In electric frying pan, place chicken. Add BBQ and sprite covered, at 350 for 3o min (hence the name 30 min chicken). Serve over rice with extra sauce.

Chocolate Chip Cookies!

These are my favorite chocolate chip cookies! I'm not sure where the recipe came from...I've been making them since I was in high school. Whenever I make them for people, they call and ask for the I thought I would share. It's a very basic recipe and I'm not sure what makes them soooooo yummy! This recipe can be adapted to fit your favorite cookies: white chocolate chips, macadamia nuts, raisins, chocolate chunks, nuts, peanut butter chips etc. Make what your family likes! I personally like them best with Ghirardelli chocolate chips. They are a little bit larger and taste soooo good!

2/3 cup shortening
2/3 cup margarine (softened not melted)
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
3 cups flour
1 tsp soda
1 tsp salt
1 pkg chocolate chips

I mix all the wet ingrediants together really well. Then I add the dry ingrediants. Bake them at 375* for 8-10 minutes. The dough will be sticky and you will want to add more flour - DON'T! I take them out of the oven just as they start to turn golden brown. They look like their not quite done, but once they cool, they are the softest, almost melt in your mouth cookies! Enjoy!!!

Makes 3 dozen large cookies!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Strawberry Shortcake

If you want a cake that is really soft and sweet (like angel food) then this recipe is not for you. The shortcake tastes a little like a sweetened biscuit which I was a little nervous about but it is great for this recipe. If you want a dessert that's not super sweet then try this.
6 cups sliced strawberries
1/2 cup sugar, divided
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup butter
1 beaten egg
2/3 cup milk
1 cup whipping cream, whipped (I used the stuff from the can and if I'd had any I would have used the stuff from the tub)
In a small bowl stir together the berries and 1/4 cup of the sugar; set aside. Stir together remaining sugar, flour and baking powder. Cut in the butter till mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Combine the egg and milk; add to dry mixture. Stir just to moisten. Spread the batter into a greased 8x1 1/2 in round baking pan.
Bake in a 450 degree oven for 15 to 18 minutes or till a wooden toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan. Split into 2 layers. Spoon half of the berries and whipped cream over the first layer. Top with second layer, remaining berries, and whipped cream. Serve immediately. Makes 8 servings.
This recipe came from my Better Homes and Gardens cookbook.

I didn't have enough strawberries so I made mine like a sandwich.

Barbeque Beef

This is a very mild barbeque sauce that also works great with pork ribs.
3 lb beef roast (the kind that can be shredded)
3 tbsp flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp chili powder
1 tsp dry mustard (I always use 1 tbsp prepared mustard)
3 beef boullion cubes
1 clove garlic
2 tbsp lemon juice
15 oz tomato sauce
Combine all ingredients in a crock pot. Add the roast and cook on low 10-12 hours. Shred roast and mix with sauce. Serve on rolls.

Kitchen Sink Brownies

These brownies have everything except the kitchen sink in them! They are so good & rich. Callie originally called them "Fat Girl Brownies" but I'm changing the name so as not to discourage any skinny cooks from trying them!

You'll need:
Brownie Mix
Kettle Corn
Peanut Butter Chips
Chocolate Chips
Karo Syrup

Make Brownie Mix as directed (fudge or cake-like, whichever you prefer.) Pull brownies out of the oven when there is 3 minutes cooking time remaining. Pour a generous amount of Marshmallows over brownies and return to oven until melted.

Pop 1 bag Microwave Kettle Corn. Measure out 4 cups and try to eliminate any unpopped kernels. In another bowl, microwave entire bag of peanut butter chips, 1 stick butter, and 1 cup karo syrup and stir until smooth. Pour on top of kettle corn and stir gently until popcorn is covered. Pour popcorn mixture on top of brownies/marshmallows. Melt at least 1/2 bag chocolate chips and drizzle over entire concoction. How can you resist?

Friday, February 20, 2009

Twix Bars

1/2 lb Butter
1/2 C sugar
2 C flour

Cream butter and sugar, add flour. Press onto greased cookie sheet for thin cookie crust, or cake pan for thicker cookie crust. Bake @ 350 for 15-20 min.

1/2 lb butter
3/4 C sugar
1 C sweetened condensed milk
4 T karo
2 C choco chips

Bring butter sugar milk and syrup to a boil and cook to light brown coffee color, stirring constantly. Cool slightly and pour over crust. Top with choco chips and spread when melted or leave as chips.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Layer Salad

I usually start this the night before to let the layers "marinate" a bit. I also cook the bacon and eggs ahead of time and let them 'chill out".

1 head lettuce, chopped or shredded
8 oz spinach, washed and drained
1/2 Cup sliced green onions
1 Cup sliced celery
1 pkg frozen peas (about 10 oz)
2 Cups mayo or Miracle Whip
2 tsp sugar
1/2 Cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp Season All
1 Cup grated cheddar
3 hard boiled eggs, chopped
1/2 lb bacon, fried and crumbled
2 med tomatoes, cut in wedges

Mix lettuce and spinach together in large glass salad or serving bowl. Layer on green onions, celery, and uncooked peas. Spread mayo over top. In another bowl, mix up the Parm, sugar, and seasonings. Sprinkle over mayo. Just before serving, layer on the cheddar, egg and bacon. Garnish with tomato wedges. This is a big salad, so have someone over to help enjoy it.

Mimi Chicken

Okay, so basically this is just standard BBQ chicken in the oven with a little twist. It's named after my grandmother who made it all the time.

You will need:

French or Catalina dressing, 1 large bottle
Frank's hot sauce (optional)
drumettes or other dark meat chicken

Drumettes are the larger part of the chicken wing that look like Drumsticks. Some places carry them, some don't. Other good options are wings, drumsticks or even thighs, although these need to cook longer. Do not use chicken that has been skinned. You need the skin to keep the meat moist and protected from the heat. Take it off after if you must. Spray a cake pan, (i prefer a glass one but your choice) put in chicken and douse it with the sauce. You will feel silly, but really, you need to use it all and just pour it on. This will bake into the chicken and infuse the meat with all its saucy goodness. If you are putting on hot sauce, just put it directly on the chicken pieces. Put in oven and bake until chicken is done, about 45-60 minutes at 375 for drumsticks or thighs. Makes great hot wings.
Serve with yellah-rice (NOT yellow or my grandomother will haunt you from the grave) or plain white rice with a pat of butter on top.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Fruit Flowers

This was super easy and it turned out really cute! I didn't get a picture of mine, but it looked very similar to this picture (minus the elephant vase.... I used a basket). Here is a link to instructions on how to make it! You could also use apples, kiwis, or anything else you can think of. Very fun!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Honey Baked Chicken

4 Legs
4 Thighs
1/4 C butter
Garlic (salt or cloves)
1/4 C Honey
Potatoes Quartered
Onion (optional)
Carrots (optional)

In baking pan, chicken and potatoes, pour butter over, season to your tastes. Bake for 40 min @400. Then baste Chicken with the honey and juices from pan a few times for 20 more min. Or until potatoes and chicken is done.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Crunchy Ranch Chicken Fingers

1 Cup of bread Crumbs
1 Tb parsley
1/3 Cup of ranch dressing
1 tsp water
1 lb of chicken breast cut into strips

Preheat oven to 425. In small bowl, combine bread crumbs and parsley. In separate small bowl, combine ranch dressing and water. Dip chicken in dressing mixture, then bread crumb mixture, coating well.
on baking pan lightly sprayed,with nonstick cooking spray, arrange chicken. Bake 8 minutes or until chicken is tender.

Pumpkin Cake

4 eggs
1 c. oil
2 c. sugar
1 lb. or 2 c. pumpkin
2 c. flour
2 t. baking powder
1 t. soda
1/2 t. salt
2 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. ginger
1/2 t. cloves
1/2 t. nutmeg
Bake on a cookie sheet (I made it in two rounds for the picture above, both works great) at 350 for 20-25 minutes.
6 oz. cream cheese
1 and 1/2 cubes butter
2 T. milk
2 t. vanilla
3 and 1/2 c. powdered sugar

Creamy Decorating Frosting

AKA: The Best Frosting EVER!!!

4 c. powdered sugar
3/4 c. plus 2 T soft shortening
2 T. soft margarine
3/4 t. salt
5 T. milk
1 1/2 t. vanilla
1/2 t. almond

Beat til fluffy!

Red Velet Sandwich Cookies

I found this off of It is an awesome website!!! (thanks for letting us all know about it-you should totally check it out) We make this recipe with a Devil's Food cake mix to make Homemade Oreos, which is a family favorite "fat-fat" for Sunday nights, but this is a fun Valentine's Day twist to a great cookie!!! And even better, they are super-easy!

All you need is:

1 Box red velvet cake mix*
1/2 Cup butter, softened to room temperature (I usually use shortening, but both would work fine)
2 Eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix ingredients until combined.
Drop spoonfuls of cookie batter onto baking sheet about two inches apart.
Bake for 10-12 minutes. (you want these to be a little underdone---they stay soft days after and are yummy to eat)

Cream Cheese Filling

1/2 Cup butter, softened to room temperature
1 8 oz. Package cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1 1lb. Box of confectioner's sugar
1 tsp Vanilla
In a mixer, cream butter, cream cheese and vanilla.
Gradually add sugar and mix until smooth.

(I never make my own frosting anymore! I just use a container of Cream Cheese frosting-way easy and we think it tastes exactly the same!)

Makes about 24 cookies or 12 cookie sandwiches* Any cake mix should work.


Okay, I don't have a recipe right now, but I have a great new blog for you all to check out. It's called This woman is amazing! You will feel creative just watching the things she does. If you need a good idea for treats to send with the kids to school, take to a church function, or whatever, this is the place to look. Have fun!

Clam Chowder

2 cans minced or chopped clams
1 c. onions, chopped fine (or dried onion)
1 cube butter
4 c. milk (or part milk, 1/2 & 1/2, or cream)
1 c. diced celery
2 cups diced potatoes
1/2 c. flour
1 1/2 t. salt
Dash of salt, pepper, and sugar

Drain juice of clams and pour over vegetables and cover with water. Simmer until tender. In another pan, melt butter, add flour and then milk, gradually. Bring to a boil. Mix undrained vegetables into the white sauce and add the clams. Makes approximately 8 servings.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Sweet & Sour Chicken

My mom found this recipe while blog-hopping. It is technically called "Tiny Spicy Chicken" but since there isn't anything to make it spicy, I'm calling it "Sweet & Sour Chicken" but I may try it again with a little crushed red cayenne pepper or something to make it spicy. Whatever you want to call's fabulous.

2 1/2 lbs chicken, cut into small pieces

Mix and coat chicken with 1 cup corn starch & 3 tsp garlic salt.

Fry in oil. Then place in 9 x 13 pan and cover with sauce.

Sauce: 2/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup vinegar
1-2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c pineapple juice (I used the juice from a can of pineapple & added the pineapple to the chicken)
4 T ketchup
2T soy or teriyaki sauce

Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Serve over rice.