Thursday, December 16, 2010

Best Gingerbread Cookie Recipe

This is a great gingerbread recipe I just found.

2 large eggs, beaten
1 Cup brown sugar
1 Cup butter
Cream together.  Then add:
1/2 Cup molasses
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
4 tsp ground ginger
4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cloves
1 tsp nutmeg

Slowly add 5 1/2 C flour 1 C at a time.  WARNING!!!  This recipe is very spice heavy, which isn't every one's cup of tea.  You may want to cut back and slowly add more. Also, this dough gets very stiff very quickly, and it works best if you hand mix after the 2nd cup.  It can do some serious damage to your dough hook if you aren't careful! 
Roll dough out onto flat surface and cut.  Place onto greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes.

For my cookies I used 2 C whole wheat and 3 1/2 C white flour.  My family had no clue and they were very moist and chewy.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Peanut Butter Truffle Brownies

When Sundays roll around, we find ourselves looking for a "fat-fat" recipe. (something gooey, something yummy, something not necessarily healthy) I found this one on The Girl Who Ate Everything, and it sounded good AND I just happened to have ALL the ingredients for them!

Brownie Base
1 box brownie mix

Filling1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter (*I added a smidge more probably 3/4 cup)
2 cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons milk

1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup butter

Heat oven to 350°F. Grease bottom only of 13×9-inch pan with cooking spray or shortening.
Mix brownie batter and bake according to package directions. Cool completely, about 1 hour.

In medium bowl, beat filling ingredients with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Spread mixture evenly over brownie base.

In small microwavable bowl, microwave topping ingredients uncovered on High 30 to 60 seconds; stir until smooth. Cool 10 minutes; spread over filling. Refrigerate about 30 minutes or until set. For brownies, cut into 9 rows by 4 rows. Store covered in refrigerator. (I take it out or the fridge about 15 minutes before serving. This allows the chocolate on top to soften a little)
***I didn't store my in the fridge 'cuz, frankly, there were not that many left to store and we all thought they were all better on Day 2. We will be making these again for sure!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Chocolate Crinkles

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

8 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

1/2 cup granulated white sugar

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking powder


1 cup confectioners (powdered or icing) sugar, sifted

In a stainless steel bowl, placed over a saucepan of simmering water, melt the chocolate and butter. Remove from heat and set aside.

In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the eggs and sugar until thick, pale, and fluffy. (When you slowly raise the beaters the batter will fall back into the bowl in slow ribbons.) At this point beat in the vanilla extract and then stir in the melted chocolate mixture.

In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Add dry ingredients to the chocolate mixture, stirring just until incorporated. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm enough to shape into balls (3-4 hours or overnight).

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (170 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Place the confectioners sugar in a shallow bowl. With lightly greased hands, roll a small amount of chilled dough to form a 1 inch (2.5 cm) ball. Place the ball of dough into the confectioners sugar and roll the ball in the sugar until it is completely coated and no chocolate shows through. Gently lift the sugar-covered ball, tapping off excess sugar, and place on prepared baking sheet. Continue forming cookies, spacing about 2 inches (5 cm) apart on baking sheets. (If you find the dough getting too soft for rolling into balls, return to the refrigerator and let chill until firm.)

Bake cookies for 8 to 10 minutes or just until the edges are slightly firm but the centers are still soft. (For moist chewy cookies do not over bake. Over baking these cookies will cause them to be dry.) Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool.

These cookies are best eaten the day they are baked.
**** I used regular butter and milk chocolate chips*****

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Pig Pancakes

For those of you with young kids (or those who've had young kids) you probably know there are oodles and oodles of ideas of how to make food "fun" for your kids. From the traditional Halloween "mummies" made from biscuits wrapped around hot dogs to the most complex sandwiches designed to look like a monster, you can do just about anything with your kids' food.

However, if you are anything at all like me, you are not willing to spend even more time in the kitchen on your kids' food than you already do! But I felt guilty one day; I decided to google ideas for kids' food. I found the cutest, and most simple, kids' pancake ever! It was an instant hit with my kids, and they always request it when we are having pancakes. The great thing about that is that it's so easy, I readily agree when they ask! So here we go, pig pancakes!

You'll want to start out with making a pancake batter. Any batter will do, whether you like to make it from scratch, or you're good friends with Betty, Bisquik, or Krusteaz. The pancakes in these photos were made from a Quaker Oatmeal mix.

For each pig, pour one "large" circle and two small circles.

You can see these large pancakes are still relatively small...we are making them for little kids, and they can't eat much.

Try really hard not to turn your little piggy in to Humpty Dumpty when you flip them. :-) Luckily, I always pour a few extras...Mom can handle a broken sow.


Start with the large circle on a plate, and place one of the small circles in the center for the nose. (Nose? Snout?)

Next, take another small circle and tear it in half, place these "triangles" under the top of the big circle to form the ears.

And what could make better little pig eyes than a couple of chocolate chips?

And, of course, no self-respecting pig would be without his mud!

Gotta really slather him up...Mmmm!

Viola! Just like that, you have a pig pancake masterpiece; your little ones will rave and you didn't have to slave!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Dilly Beans

Ingredients for Dilly Beans

•2 lbs Fresh Green Beans
•1/4 cup Kosher or Canning Salt (I use Kosher)
•2 1/2 cups White Vinegar
•2 1/2 cups Water
•4 cloves Garlic
•4 heads Dill
•2 large or 4 small Jalapeno Peppers
•2 tsp Black Pepper

Dilly Directions

Step 1: Place jars and lids in the large pot and cover with water, bring to a boil. Alternatively you can use a dishwasher with a sterilize setting to sterilize your jars.

Step 2: Wash and remove ends form the beans. Slice the garlic and chili peppers.

Step 3: Combine water, vinegar, and salt in large saucepan and bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer at least 5 minutes.

Step 4: While waiting for the vinegar mixture to boil pack the jars with beans, 1 head of dill, 1 sliced garlic clove, 1/4 of the sliced peppers, and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper.

Step 5: Pour the vinegar mixture into each jar until nearly full. Place lids on the jars.

Step 6: Process the jars in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes.

Step 7: Store in a cool place for at least 2 weeks prior to eating.

Makes 4 Pints

Monday, June 28, 2010

Shredded Beef Chunk Nachos

There's a fabulous authentic Mexican Restaurant in Blackfoot, ID called Melina's where they serve "Chunk Nachos". I have had extreme craving for all types of Mexican food with my pregnancy and really, really, really wanted Chunk Nachos. However, since we live over 3 hours from Melina's, I decided to make my own.

First, I put a small pot roast in my crock pot, early in the day. I let it cook low and slow for about 6 hours, seasoned only with minced onion and cooked in 2 inches of water. When it was finished cooking and very tender, I shredded the beef and poured in a large can of enchilada sauce (mild).
I used unbaked tortillas and cooked them on my griddle.

I cut them into 8 uniform triangles and layered them on a cookie sheet.

I evenly spread the meat on top of the tortilla triangles and added 2 cups shredded cheese. I broiled them for a few minutes until the cheese was melted and we thoroughly enjoyed them.

I ate mine with diced tomato and sour cream. My husband had salsa on his as well. Both were equally fulfilling. Could also make with shredded pork or chicken instead of the beef.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Greek Pasta

Another non-recipe from me.

You'll need:
Angel hair pasta
Marinated artichoke hearts, chopped, and the liquid it comes in
Sun dried tomatoes
Feta cheese
2-3 cloves garlic

While the pasta is cooking, chop the artichoke hearts (they usually come quartered). Pour some of the liquid from the artichoke hearts in a large skillet on medium-low heat. Add the garlic and sauté until cooked. Drain the pasta and add to the cooked garlic. Mix in more of the liquid from the artichoke hearts and add the sun dried tomatoes, chopped artichoke hearts and salt. Cook until heated through then add the feta cheese just before serving. I didn't measure any of the ingredients, I just added them until I thought it looked and tasted good.
This would probably be good with some grilled chicken but I made this for our "meatless night".

Southwest Sliders

These mini burgers are fun, especially for kids, although you may want to skip the chipotle mayo for the little ones. I don't have a recipe so I'll just tell you what I do.

You'll need:
Ground beef
Pepperjack cheese
Chipotle peppers
Mini hamburger buns
I found mini buns by Sara Lee at the store but if you can't find them you can cut regular-size buns with a round cookie cutter. Or you could just make regular-size burgers, but we think sliders are more fun.

Mix up and cook your ground beef however you like it for hamburgers, but shape it into small patties. I like to season mine with garlic and onion powders, salt, pepper, ketchup and worcestershire sauce. Just before they are done cooking, top them with a slice of pepperjack cheese so it melts.
Mix together 1/4 cup mayo with 1-2 (or more if you like it really spicy) chipotle peppers, chopped. They come in a small can in the "hispanic foods" aisle. I like to take out the seeds so they're not quite so hot.
Spread the mayo on the mini buns and add your sliders. Top with lettuce, tomato and crispy bacon.
Now eat 2 or 3 of them :)

Monday, April 19, 2010

Sweet and Sour Meatballs

I found yet another "keeper" and thought I'd pass it on...
Sweet and Sour Meatballs
Source: My Kitchen Cafe
Serves 4-6
1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef (make sure it's REALLY lean, I use elk meat, and it works great)
3/4 cup quick oats
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup milk1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

Combine all of the ingredients and mix well. Form into about 12 balls, each about 2 inches in diameter. Place in a casserole dish. Cover with sauce (below). Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes. Serve over rice.

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon mustard
1/4 cup barbecue sauce
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

Combine ingredients and blend thoroughly. Heat in a small saucepan until combined and sugar is dissolved and pour over meatballs. (This dish is not overly abundant on sauce so if you enjoy things a bit saucier, double the sauce ingredients. ***I actually triple it, but save about a third to pour on meatballs when there is about three minutes left of cooking time. This way the sauce doesn't get hot enough to caramelize into the yummy stuff that coats the meatball, leaving it a tad bit runny to pour on our rice!)

Friday, April 16, 2010

Chick Parmesan

I found this recipe in one of my brother's cook books. It is so delicious and fairly easy to do, so I thought I would share. It's also pretty healthy.

You will need:
2 chicken breast
2 tsp oil
1.5 C of pasta sauce
.5 C mozzarella cheese
2 Tb Parmesan cheese

Brown chicken in oil over medium heat. Add sauce inn bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cover for 10-15 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese and broil in the oven for 3 minutes.

I put this over the top of some spaghetti squash and I loved it. I am a huge pasta fan, so I am glad that I found a healthy alternative.

To cook a spaghetti squash in the oven, cut in length wise. Scoop out the insides. Place some water in it. Wrap it in tin foil and bake at 350 for until soft.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Perfect One Bowl Brownies

I must admit, after reading the name of this recipe, I was a bit skeptical. Perfect??? I mean, that's a lot to live up to. I had BIG expectations while whippin' these up. And guess what?!?! They are pretty dang near PERFECT!!! (I have no words to describe my devotion to the batter of these babies...I'm salivating just thinking of it....deadly, folks, deadly!!!) Here's how to bake up a batch of these beauties:

Perfect One Bowl Brownies

Source: The Sister's Cafe

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
4 eggs
3/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 cup flour
1 cup chocolate chips (or just sprinkle a handful on top-and the picture posted does not have these on the scrumptious little squares, for some reason I was OUT of them that day!!!)
Preheat oven to 350. In a medium bowl melt butter in microwave, then stir in oil, sugar and cocoa. With a wooden spoon stir in the remainder of the ingredients except for the chocolate chips. Spread into a 9x13 pan sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Sprinkle the chocolate chips over the top. Bake in a preheated oven for 25-30 minutes. If your toothpick comes out clean you have cooked them too long! DO NOT OVERCOOK! ***I have made these probably a dozen times (don't judge me) since finding this recipe and it took me three times to cook them just right. My tip to you is to take them out when you think "they need just a little bit longer...." Don't do it! Take them out then!!! They are way better a little underdone than done or, heaven forbid, over done!!! Good Luck!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Candied Chicken

I am always on the look out for easy and delicious dinner ideas. After trying this one, and seeing the way my husband and kids practically INHALED it, I'm putting it on my "keeper" list!

4-6 boneless skinless chicken breasts

Put in crock pot. In a bowl, mix:

1 1/2 cups brown sugar

1/4 cup mustard

1/2 cup ketchup

1 T. Worcestershire sauce

1/4 c. onion, diced (I didn't have an onion so I used a little minced onion and it was great)

3/4 c. water

1/4 t. salt

Pour over chicken. Cook 3-4 hours on high or 5-6 on low.
I've tried this recipe twice, once served over rice, and once on buns for sandwiches, and they were equally inhaled!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

{Boston Cream Pie Cake}

Look "YUMMY" up in the dictionary...You'll find this recipe! :)
1 yellow cake, baked in 9 in rounds (follow package directions)
1 lg. vanilla pudding (follow package directions)
4 T. butter
6 T. cocoa
4 T. water
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups powdered sugar
In saucepan on low heat, stir constantly until thickened but not boiling. Remove and add vanilla. Gradually add powdered sugar. Drizzle on cake.
Cut each round in half, making four thin rounds. Layer cake and pudding (cake, then pudding, cake, more pudding, cake, even more pudding, cake). Top with glaze. ENJOY!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Quick and Easy Cake Mix Cookies

What more could ya ask for???

2 boxes cake mix

5 large eggs

2/3 cup oil

Pour cake mixes into large bowl, add eggs and oil. Stir until mixed together and batter is moist all through ingredients. Add your extras (chocolate chips, raisins, nuts, etc etc etc see list below for ideas...)

Combination ideas:

Chocolate Cake+Peanut Butter Chips+White Chips

Spice Cake+Raisins+Nuts+Chips

Lemon Cake+Poppyseeds+White Chips

Cherry Chip Cake+Cut Up Drained Maraschino Cherries

Confetti Cake+M&M's+White Chips

Possibilities are ENDLESS!!!

If you try a combination of your own, be sure to let us know how they turn out so we can try it!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Kool-Aid Cookies

I found this recipe in a mystery book, and thought it would be fun for Spring. A lot like a sugar cookie with a blast of flavor!

1 pkg kool-aid (with no sugar) Great with lemonade and watermelon flavors
1 2/3 Cups sugar
1 1/4 Cups butter
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
3 Cups flour
1/2 Cups sugar for dipping

Mix kool-aid with the sugar. Add softened butter and mix until fluffy. Add eggs and mix well. Stir in salt and baking soda. Add flour in 1/2 cup increments and mix well after each addition.
Roll dough into 1 inch balls and roll in the sugar. Place them on greased cookie sheet and into 325 degree oven for 10-12 minutes. Don't overbake! Remove cookies from sheet after 1 minute and let cool.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Granola Mix

10 C old fashioned rolled oats

1 C wheat germ

1/2 lb shreaded coconut

2 C raw sunflower seeds

1 C sesame seeds

3 C almonds, pecans, walnuts or combination

1 1/2 C brown sugar firmly packed

1 1/2 C water

1 1/2 C vegetable oil

1/2 C honey

1/2 C molasses

1 1/2 tsp salt

2 tsp cinnamon

3 tsp vanilla

**rasins nuts or fruit optional

Preheat oven to 300. In a large bowl combine first set of ingredients. Blend well. In a large saucepan combine second set of ingredients. Heat until sugar is disolved. Do not boil. Pour over dry ingredients, mix well. Spread into FIVE 9x13 baking pans. Bake 20-30 min stiring occasionally. Bake 15 min longer for crunchier texture. (Bake until it is dry!!! May take longer.) Cool. **Add raisins or fruit. Store in cool dry place for up to 6 months.

Makes 20 C of granola mix.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Easy Oven Lasagna

I love this recipe because it is quick and easy and then just bake.

1lb hamburger
1/2 C water
48 oz spagetti sauce
6 lasagna noodles uncooked
16 oz container cottage cheese
10 oz mozzarella (or other) grated cheese
1/4 C parmesean cheese

Brown hamburger, add spagetti sauce and water. In another bowl mix cheeses together. Layer 1/2 noodles, 1/2 meat, 1/2 cheese, in 9x13 dish cover with foil, bake in oven @ 375 for 1 hour.