Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Salt Dough Ornaments

I found this idea on a craft site and remembered doing this as a kid!
The kids had a lot of fun doing this (and a great activity since the kids are out of school!) and they turned out really great! These ones aren't all the way decorated yet, but so far so good!
The best is that they got to decorate how ever they wanted and I loved how they turned out! I put there initials on the back with the date and they will be fun to find through the years!
Salt Dough Ornaments
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup salt
  • 1 cup water

Mix salt and flour

Add in 1/2 cup water and mix together (I did this all in my mixer). Gradually add the remaining water and knead dough until smooth. I did this with my dough hook and then in the end kneaded it with my hands in the mixing bowl to incorporate all the flour and salt.

Roll out the dough on baking paper or floured counter top. Cut out shapes with cookie cutters or design your own.

Bake at 250 for 1hr-1 1/2 hours, making sure you don't burn them. It took me the full 1 1/2 hrs, but check them at an hour. Let cool and paint! We made ours the night before and then decorated the next day!

Use paint, modge podge and glitter, spray paint, whatever you have on hand!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Blue Cheese and Dried Cranberry Tossed Salad

Yum Yum Yum!!!
Yes all I can say is this is super yummy and so good!!! Did I say that already!
I had a salad with blue cheese at a friends house and went looking for something similar and came across this one!
I really like blue cheese and adding it to a salad is genius and I can't believe I didn't think of adding it to a salad sooner!
So if you like blue cheese and need a salad for the holidays try this one you wont be disappointed! I didn't use the balsamic vinegar and used my favorite raspberry vinaigrette, so I will add that at the end too!
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Blue Cheese and Dried Cranberry Tossed Salad
  • 4 hearts of romaine lettuce, chopped (I just used any lettuce on hand)
  • 1/2 half an English cucumber, sliced
  • 3/4 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
  • 3/4 cup balsamic vinaigrette (or try the raspberry vinaigrette)

Layer the romaine lettuce with the cucumber, grape tomatoes, pecans, cranberries, and blue cheese in a large bowl. Dress the salad with the vinaigrette before serving.

Raspberry Vinaigrette

  • 3 ounces raspberry vinegar (1/4 cup + 2 tbsp)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3-4 tbsp grated red onion
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • pinch of dry mustard
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 3/4 tbsp poppy seeds

Mix all together and pour over favorite green salad!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Blackberry Cobbler

I ordered blackberries this last Saturday and spent some time searching for recipes to make things with them for fear of them going bad too quick! I shouldn't have spent soo much time doing that because I have only made this cobbler and we ate the rest! Yes we have almost eaten all 13 baskets of blackberries (I only have 2 left!)!!!
I did get this cobbler made and I thought it turned out really good! My husband thought it was a little sweet, but vanilla ice-cream seemed to help! I ate mine without the ice-cream and thought it was great!
So if you have any blackberries, try this cobbler out, I am sure it will be a hit!
Blackberry Cobbler
(All recipes.com, 4 1/2-5 star rating)
  • 1 cup butter or margarine, divided
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour (or 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour plus 1/4 tsp salt and 2 1/4 tsp baking powder)
  • 1/3 cup milk, room temp
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen blackberries
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp sugar

Melt 1/2 cup butter in a 10 inch round or oval baking dish. Set aside.

In a saucepan, heat sugar and water until sugar melts. Set aside

Place flour (or flour mixture) in a mixing bowl; cut in remaining butter until fine crumbs form. Add milk, stirring with a fork until dough leaves side of bowl. I kneaded dough a little in the ball to get all the flour incorporated.

Roll out to an 11x9 inch rectangle about 1/4 inch thick. Spread berries over dough; sprinkle with cinnamon. Roll up jelly roll style. Cut into 1/4 inch thick slices. Carefully lay slices in baking dish over butter. ( I read reviews and a few people simplified this part, which is what I did. I split the dough in half. Take one half and take chunks and flatten it out with your fingers until you get a thin layer and place in the butter dish. Do this until the bottom is covered of the dish. Then spread berries on top, sprinkle cinnamon on top. Next do the same as you did on the bottom to cover over the top.)

Pour sugar syrup over the top if you made a sort of pie crust, or pour around the slices if you cut up the dough with the berries.

Bake at 350 for 45 minutes. Take out and then Sprinkle the sugar on top. Bake now for 15 more minutes. Serve warm or cold and enjoy!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Peppermint Candy Cane Brownies

I found this on http://www.ourbestbites.com/. which is a site I frequent and absolutely love a lot! I made these brownies the other day and they are sooo good I haven't been able to leave the leftovers alone! Yes, bad couple of days!
I didn't have the peppermint extract to make the frosting layer, but I really like the brownies just like this! I would make these again and again and again!
Super moist and irresistible is how I would describe these brownies and they look very festive to even bring to a Christmas party!
Peppermint Candy Cane Brownies
(Our Best Bites)

Brownies:
4 squares unsweetened chocolate (4oz)
1 C butter (2 sticks)
4 eggs
2 cups sugar
1t vanilla
1 1/4 C flour
1/2 t baking powder

Frosting:2 C powdered sugar
4 T butter, softened
1 1/2 t peppermint extract
1 T milk
pink food coloring

Chocolate Glaze:
6 oz (about a cup) semi-sweet chocolate chips ,you could also use dark
6T real butter

Additional:1/2-1 C crushed candy canes (Use Bob's NOT Spanglers!) --I used whatever brand I had and they were good, but I bet the Bob's kind are great!

First, the Brownies:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
The chocolate you want is baking chocolate, which is sold in bars by the chocolate chips (you can also substitute cocoa powder. Just follow the directions on it for how many tbsp and oil equal a 1 oz bar. That is what I did.). Make sure it is unsweetened.
Give those squares a rough chop so they'll be easier to melt. (or when using the cocoa powder, I always find it easier to melt the butter and then add the cocoa powder and oil. This way you don't burn the chocolate)
Melt in 30-45 second intervals in your microwave, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Set aside. (I melted my butter in a pan on the stove and then added the cocoa powder as I described above)
In a stand mixer or with electric beaters, beat eggs for about 3 minutes until thick and frothy.
Add sugar and vanilla and beat to combine. Then add in the melted chocolate and butter that you set aside. Combine flour and baking powder and whisk into brownie batter by hand until just combined. Pour into a lightly greased 9x13 pan.
Bake for 20-25 minutes (I found this time frame way off for my oven! I probably cooked them twice as long as it says! So give yourself more time to bake than you think, you might need it!). Test with a toothpick and don't over bake! When brownies are done, cool on a cooling rack. When completely cool, pop in the fridge to chill. (makes the frosting spreading easier)
Next layer is the frosting:Combine all frosting ingredients and beat until light and fluffy. Add extra milk by teaspoonful if you need a little more. Spread evenly over cooled/chilled brownies and place back in the fridge to chill again while you do the final step. (I didn't have any peppermint extract so I omitted this part)
Chocolate Glaze:
Place chocolate chips and butter in a microwave-safe bowl and cook in 30 second intervals until smooth. (Since my microwave is broken!!!! I did this on the stove too! Make sure to melt butter first so chocolate doesn't burn if you go this route!)
Set aside for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, so it can cool off just a bit. Quickly spread on top of brownies. Remember the Frosting is cool and the chocolate is hot, so work fast! I didn't have frosting on my brownies, so I took my time and spread out the chocolate nicely!
Sprinkle the crushed candy canes on top and return to the fridge until chocolate is set on top.
Remove from fridge a few minutes before serving. Cut into squares.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Rich Chocolate Brownie Cake

I made this for a party I went too and it was super good! I didn't get a picture of it (and my star design didn't look half as good as this one) so I took a picture of it from my cookbook! It says in the book "The secret to this rich brownie cake is good-quality chocolate with a high cacao content" So buy some good quality chocolate and try this out! I found some ghiradelli chocolate at my local store that was 60% cacao!
Rich Chocolate Brownie Cake
(Williams Sonoma Holiday Entertaining Cookbook)
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temp.
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 4 oz good quality semisweet or bittersweet chocolate (at least 61% cacao)
  • Powdered sugar for dusting
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8 inch round cake pan with aluminum foil, allowing the edges to overlap the pan. Using a pastry brush, lightly butter the foil (I did this step, but thought to try spraying the foil next time).
In your mixer, beat butter until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Add the sugar and beat until well blended. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat again until well blended. Add the salt and flour, about 1/4 cup at a time. Beat well after each addition of flour.
Break up the chocolate, or chop it. Place in the top of a double boiler set over (but not touching) gently simmering water. Melt chocolate and then remove from pan and let cool slightly, about 2-3 minutes. Add it to the cake batter and beat until well combined and creamy. Pour batter into prepared pan.
Bake until the cake is puffed and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 20-25 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.
Using the edges of the foil, lift the cooled cake out of the pan. Invert the cake onto a cake stand or cake plate and peel off the foil. Turn the cake right side up. Place a stencil of your choice on your cake and sift the powdered sugar over the stencil to create your design.
Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Caramel Thumbprints

I found this recipe in the December/January issue of Family Fun! I just love baking and nothing better than baking at Christmas time!
These were a great treat and very easy! I have made the thumprint cookies with hershey kisses but have never tried chocolate with rolos!
They were a great simple cookie, that the kids all loved!
Caramel Thumbprints
(December/January Family Fun magazine)
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • /14 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 large egg,separated
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • rolos

In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking powder and set aside (I didn't do this, I just added the dry ingredients after all the wet were mixed)

In a mixer, cream butter and sugar until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg yolk, milk, and vanilla and mix until blended, about 1 minute. Add the flour mixture in two batches and beat until combined, about 1 minute.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Heat oven to 350. Roll 1 tbsp of the dough into a ball and place on a cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining dough. With your thumb, make indentations in each ball in the center of it.

Bake for 10 minutes. When you remove from oven, immediately place a rolo on each cookie. Then place back in the oven for 4 minutes.

Grease the tines of a fork. When cookies are done, pull them out of the oven and use the fork to press each candy down a little to flatten. Place cookies on a wire cooking rack to cool and then enjoy!!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Cheesy Chicken, Bacon & Avocado Quesadillas

I found this recipe on a blog I stumbled upon and thought it looked like a great and easy dinner idea! It made a quesadilla a little more exciting and yummy!
Cheesy Chicken, Bacon & Avocado Quesadillas
  • 4 medium sized flour tortilla shells
  • 1 lb chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • salt and pepper
  • 8 strips of bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 avocado, diced (or I used guacamole)
  • mild cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 2 tbsp butter

Cook bacon until desired crispiness. I like to cut mine up before it is cooked with kitchen scissors so it is already crumbled. Drain bacon on a paper towel and get rid of grease.

Use the same skillet as you cooked the bacon and add your chicken. Cook in bacon grease until chicken is done. Remove chicken from skillet when browned and cooked through.

In a clean skillet, melt about 1/2 tbsp butter over medium heat. When foamy, add a tortilla and swirl it around to get it nice and buttery. Layer one side of tortilla with chicken, bacon, avocado and a little cheese. Use tongs (or I used my fingers carefully) to flip other half of tortilla over and press down. Cook tortilla for about 1-2 min. or until golden brown and crispy.

Repeat with rest of tortillas, adding a little more butter to the pan to brown the tortillas. Eat and enjoy with salsa and sour cream!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Celebrity Chicken

I am super surprised this recipe isn't on the blog yet! This came from our Wards cookbook and I haven't made it in forever! It is easy and very good!
Celebrity Chicken
(Sharon, Ward Cookbook)
  • 1 pkg lipton onion soup mix
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup water

Mix these ingredients together and set aside.

Line a cookie sheet with foil. (I sprayed the foil) Lay 6-8 chicken breasts (I just use what I need, last night I used 4 chicken breasts) on foil and top with mixture.

Cook for 1 hour on 350 or 2 hours on 325 or 275 for 3 hours.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Wild Rice Soup

I found this recipe on Sisters Stuff blog and had to try it! There is something about soup in the winter, the comfort and warmth of it that is super inviting!
This recipe is very easy, but one step gave me a little trouble! Don't burn the onions! I used dry onions and they got a little toasty and gave the soup a little bit of a burnt taste! So be careful and maybe add them a little later!
All in all it was a great soup and I loved that there were carrots added, but you really don't notice them if you have picky eaters! Also, the rice gave it a different taste and yum yum!!
Wild Rice Soup
(Sistersstuff.blogspot.com)
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 medium onion or 2 tbsp dried onion
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 4 cups chicken broth (I am going to add 5 cups next time for more liquid)
  • 1 cup cooked wild rice
  • 1 cup cooked white rice
  • 1 cup diced ham or chicken (I used chicken but she said both are excellent)
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded carrots
  • 1/2 tsp salt (I think it needs more salt, so maybe 1 tsp)
  • pepper to taste

Saute onion in butter. (Be careful with this step and make sure to not burn the onions!) Blend in flour and cook for 5 minutes. (I am going to do less time, this might have been where I burned the onions) Add ham or chicken, rice, carrots, and salt and pepper. Simmer for 10-20 minutes and enjoy!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

One Ingredient Caramel Dip

Brenda made this up at Scout Camp this summer! I had no idea caramel could be soooo easy! I know we have a lot of caramel recipes, but each one has different ingredients. So if you don't have an item from one recipe you can try another! They are all really good, just taste a little different!
  1. First off you need a can of sweetened condensed milk. Take the paper off of the can so it wont become floating mess in your pan.
  2. Place your can in a pot and cover the can with water.
  3. Next bring the water to boiling and then let it simmer for 3 hours. Make sure to check on it periodically, because you will have to keep adding water as it boils
Once the 3 hours are up, open it up and enjoy!
My kids loved this easy treat! I was able to make it with one ingredient and got many other things done at home while it cooked!
So go out and enjoy some good crisp apples and caramel!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Pumpkin Haystack Cookies

I found this recipe on JackandJillskitchen. I am always on the lookout for a good pumpkin recipe, especially this time of year. She found this recipe in a Lion House cookbook.

I thought the cookies were moist and scrumptious! I do think maybe too much coconut and I might add less next time! But I will say these turned out really good and I will keep this recipe!


Pumpkin Haystack Cookies

(from JackandJillskitchen, and Lion House Bakery)
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Dash nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups butter, softened (I used 1 cup butter flavored crisco & 1/2 cup real unsalted butter)
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 (16 oz) can solid pack pumpkin
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups flaked coconut
1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts or pecans (I made these optional)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, oats, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt and set aside. Cream together the butter and sugars until fluffy. Add egg and vanilla and mix well. Add pumpkin, then gradually add the dry ingredients. Fold in chocolate chips, coconut, and nuts. Scoop batter onto lightly greased cookie sheets and bake 15 to 20 minutes, or until cookies are firm and lightly browned. Cool on wire racks.
Makes 4 dozen cookies

Monday, November 8, 2010

Poppy Seed Chicken

I found this recipe on Sisters Stuff and it had rave reviews from her and many other commenters. I am always loving a new idea to do with chicken!
This was a very good recipe, my children were a little skeptical because of all the poppy seeds, but they did eat it! I did saute the chicken in a skillet instead of poach it, and I like the taste of the chicken better that way~
Poppy Seed Chicken
  • 4-6 chicken breasts, boiled and cubed (or browned in a skillet)
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • Ritz Crackers (I used about 1/2-3/4 of a sleeve)
  • 1/2 cube butter, or 1/4 cup
  • 1 tbsp poppy seeds

In a casserole dish, place cubed chicken.

Heat soup and sour cream together, but not to boiling. Pour over chicken.

Melt butter. Crush crackers. Add crackers and poppy seeds into melted butter and mix together. Sprinkle on top of soup mixture.

Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Serve over rice!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Sugar Cookies

I don't have a picture of these cookies, but they were soft and very yummy!
While I was in Utah, we wanted to decorate sugar cookies with the kids. My dad has a milk allergy so I couldn't use my favorite Sour Cream Sugar Cookie recipe.
My sister's friend gave us this recipe and they were super good too! These are a great alternative to my favorite recipe, especially if you have a milk allergy at your house! (Also there is no putting in the refrigerator time either!)

Sugar Cookies

(a friend in Utah!)

  • 3 cups sifted flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Sift ingredients all together.

Cut in 1 cup butter with a pastry blender or fork. I would recommend cutting your butter up in small pieces to make this easier. Next put in your mixer and add:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Blend in mixer until incorporated. Bake at 375 for 7-8 minutes.

Frost and enjoy!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Trick or Treat Popcorn Balls

I know it is too late for Halloween this year, but I had to post this for thoughts on next! I also think that candy corns are great through Thanksgiving, so why not give this a try now (if your sugar high is starting to lower!!)!
I found this last year, but didn't get a chance to try until now! I am not a huge candy corn fan, but really liked these. I also think I may try these again with M&M's in it instead!
Trick or Treat Popcorn Balls
(Cooking Light)
  • 8 cups popped light butter microwave popcorn - about 1 bag (I used the full butter!)
  • 1 cup candy corn (or try M&M's)
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 (10 ounce) bag marshmallows
  • Cooking Spray

Combine popcorn and candy corn in a large bowl.

Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat; stir in salt and marshmallows. Reduce heat to low; cook for 7 minutes or until the marshmellows melt and the mixture is smooth, stirring frequently.

Pour marshmallow mixture over popcorn mixture, stirring well to coat. Lightly coat hands with cooking spray; shape popcorn into balls and place on a wax paper lined cookie sheet. You may need to reapply the cooking spray to your hands as you go!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Streusel-Topped Pumpkin Bread

I love Pumpkin and especially love the smell of it as it bakes! I found this recipe on the Pioneer Womans Tasty Kitchen blog and was really enticed by the streusel topping.
The streusel was super good! I wasn't sure if the pumpkin bread was pumpkiny enough the first day, but I really really liked it the second day! Maybe it just needed time to meld together!
Streusel-Topped Pumpkin Bread
(Tasty Kitchen blog)


•¾ cups Butter, Softened
•¾ cups Granulated Sugar
•¾ cups Dark Brown Sugar
•1 teaspoon Vanilla
•4 whole Eggs
•2-½ cups Pumpkin Puree
•3 cups All-purpose Flour
•3 teaspoons Baking Powder
•¾ teaspoons Baking Soda
•1 teaspoon Salt
•1-½ teaspoon Cinnamon
•¼ teaspoons Ground Ginger
•¼ teaspoons Allspice
•¼ teaspoons Grated Nutmeg
•⅛ teaspoons Cardamom
•½ cups Buttermilk
•_____
•FOR THE STREUSEL TOPPING:
•¼ cups Butter, Softened
•½ cups Brown Sugar
•¼ cups Oatmeal
•¼ cups All-purpose Flour
•1 teaspoon Cinnamon
•3 Tablespoons Ground Flax Seed
•¼ cups Chopped Pecans (optional)
Preparation Instructions
Preheat your oven to 350º F. Grease and flour the bottom of two 8″ loaf pans. To make the topping, mix together all the topping ingredients using a fork or pastry cutter until combined thoroughly.

In a large bowl or mixer, cream together butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar. Add vanilla and eggs and mix until incorporated. Stir in pumpkin puree.

In a separate bowl, add flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ground ginger, allspice, nutmeg and cardamom. Whisk together until no lumps remain. Add half of the flour mix to the pumpkin mix, blending well. Beat in buttermilk. Add remaining flour mix and beat lightly until smooth.

Pour batter evenly into the two prepared 8″ pans. Cover each with half of the topping mix. Bake at 350º F for 70-80 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Slice and enjoy.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Black Cat Cookies

I found this on the Taste of Home site. I needed a quick treat for a RS mtg and these seemed to be a fun Halloween idea and they got the kids involved. The boys put the candy corns and M&M's on and had great fun doing it!
One thing, make sure not to over bake! Them need to firm up and not be doughy, but I would watch the time!
Great fun idea to give the kids at school!
Black Cat Cookies
(Taste of Home)
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tsp vanilla
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 cup baking cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 24 wooden craft or Popsicle sticks
  • candy corn
  • red-hot candies (or I used M&M's)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

In a bowl cream butter and sugar. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Combine the dry ingredients and gradually add to the butter mixture.

Roll dough into 1 1/2 inch balls. Place about 3 inches apart on a lightly greased cookie sheet.

Insert the wooden stick into each ball. Flatten the ball with a glass dipped in sugar. Pinch the top of the cookie to form the ears. For whiskers, press a fork twice into each cookie.

Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes or until cookies are set. Remove from oven and immediately press the candy corn in for the eyes and a red hot or M&M in for the nose.

Remove to wire racks to cool!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Brunch Casserole

I found this recipe on Tracey B. blog and had to give it a try. It is one of those breakfast casseroles, but it uses potatoes instead of bread.
It was really good and Todd enjoyed it even more the next 2 days as left overs for breakfast. We ate it for Breakfast Wednesday dinner and super good! I will admit that I forgot about the whole make it the day before and cook it in the morning or it would probably work to make it in the morning and let it sit all day and make it at night. But it still was really good even if it only sat for an hour!
Brunch Casserole
(from Tracey B. Blog)
  • 4-6 cups frozen shredded hashbrowns - 1 24oz bag (I didn't have any hashbrowns, so I cubed up some potatoes really small and then boiled them until tender and they worked great!)
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar or colby-jack cheese
  • 2 tbsp chopped onion or dry minced onion
  • 1 lb mild sausage
  • 4 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced (which I left out because of the kids!)
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 tsp salt (it seemed to need more salt, I may add more here or just know to add when eating!)
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 tsp dry mustard

Brown and drain sausage. Set aside. Thaw potatoes (or cut up and boil real ones) and place 1/2 of the potatoes in the bottom of a 9 x 13 pan (I sprayed my pan, but don't know if you have to do this). Add 1/2 cheese and 1/2 sausage and mushrooms and then repeat layers one more time.

Beat eggs, salt, pepper, onions, mustard and milk. Pour liquid over the top of potatoes and cheese mixture. Cover and leave in refrigerator overnight.

Bake, covered at 350 degrees (I didn't bake mine covered because I didn't read this very well and it turned out fine!) for 45 minutes. Let set for 10 minutes before serving and enjoy!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Caramel Apple Dip

Here is another great dip! I know there are now so many to choose from!! But the nice thing is, that if you don't have all the ingredients of one, you can try one of the others!
This one has ingredients that are simple and I seem to have on hand all the time! This recipe was brought to a RS mtg. and it was a hit!
___________________________
Caramel Apple Dip
  • 1 pkg cream cheese (she said you could use the less fat version, but the real cream cheese is better!)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Soften the cream cheese slightly and blend together with brown sugar and vanilla. Refrigerate and serve with apple wedges! How simple is that!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Mint Chocolate Delights

I was grocery shopping last week and found a bag of Dark Chocolate and Mint chips (Nestle) and couldn't pass up buying some! I am a succor for dark chocolate and mint!
I finally made the cookies (using the recipe on the back of the package) and they were super good! They say on the package that these chips are limited edition, so go snag up some before they are all gone and try these!
Mint Chocolate Delights
(Nestle)
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2/3 cup baking cocoa
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 10 oz package dark chocolate and mint morsels

Preheat oven to 325 degrees

Combine four, cocoa, baking soda and salt in a small bowl and set aside. Beat butter and both sugars until creamy. Add vanilla and mix. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in morsels. Drop by tablespoons onto ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake for 11-13 minutes or until cookies are puffed and centers are set. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Japanese Fried Rice w/ Pork medallions

this recipe is SOOOO easy and really good!!

2 cups pre-cooked rice (I used half brown rice half white rice)
2 eggs, fried and diced
1 - 2 cups frozen vegetables, cooked
1/2 cup diced onion
2 TBSP butter
2 TBSP soy sauce
pepper and salt

*cook rice and pour into large bowl to cool
*fry (or scramble) eggs, dice and add to bowl
*let vegetables cool, then add to rice, egg mixture and carefully toss together
*Melt the butter in a large frying skillet over med/high heat
*Dump rice mixture into pan, add soy sauce and salt and pepper to taste. Cook for 10-20 minutes, depending on desired crispyness, stirring often.

ENJOY!!

I grilled pork chops, and cut them into chuncks to serve on top, but you could also do cubed ham, chicken or beef :)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Pizza Sauce

I did a little canning on Friday and made pizza sauce with some tomatoes I had!
I am taking it on good recommendation that this is great sauce, since I haven't yet tried it!
But I trust the advice and have made 12 pints already and may do a few more later!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Caramel Apple Dip

Here is another caramel apple dip! I made it all in the microwave and then transferred to my small crock pot to keep it warm on low!
It has a different flavor because it has marshmallows in it, and I will say it turned out quite good! It was easy and yummy, in fact we almost ate the whole thing the first day!
Caramel Apple Dip
(taste of home)
  • 1 package (14 ounces) caramels
  • 20 large marshmallows (or 2 cups mini marshmallows)
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
  • apple slices

Place caramels in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave uncovered, on high for 1 minute. (I followed some reviews advice and microwaved the butter with the caramels. It helped the caramels not stick to the bowl. I ended up microwaving it for 1 min. then stirred and then 30 seconds more)

Add marshmallows; microwave for 1 minute or until marshmallows are melted, stirring occasionally. Whisk in cream and stir until combined. Serve with apples and refrigerate leftovers!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Outrageous Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Skookie

I have had this recipe for a while and finally decided it was time to use it! I found it on the everyday food storage site maybe a year ago and I don't know why I have waited so long to make them! They were super yummy and even made great cookies too!
She described these as a family tradition to make while her boys and husband were at conference meetings. She tops hers with ice-cream and sundae toppings.
We topped ours with whipped cream and caramel and loved every bite! We did share them, because your eyes are usually bigger than your stomach!
Outrageous Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Skookie
Suzanne Eliason-Utah's Down Home Cook Off Winner
  • 2 cup oats
  • 1 1/4 cups flour (she used wheat flour)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs (2 tbsp dehydrated eggs + 1/4 cup water)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup (or 2 bars) milk chocolate bar - broken into chip size pieces (we both used chocolate chips)

In a medium bowl combine oats, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a large bowl, combine butter and peanut butter and mix until smooth. Beat in sugars until well blended. Add eggs and vanilla. Add dry ingredients and mix until well combined. Stir in chocolate pieces and then refrigerate dough for 1 hour or more.

Preheat oven to 375. Spray a Camp Chef Skookie pan (or whatever small pan you have) with cooking spray (if you are just making cookies, make as usual and cook for 8-10 minutes)

Add a handful of dough to pan and press to about 1/2 inch thickness and leaving dough about 1/2 inch from side of pan. You can see from my picture how much the cookie moves, so make sure to follow this direction. Fill your pans and bake for 10-15 minutes or until cookie becomes light golden brown. (She recommended putting your smaller pans onto a cookie sheet)

Top with ice cream, caramel sauce and hot fudge and enjoy!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Blueberry Sour Cream Pancakes

I found this recipe on Sisters cafe and it is definitely a keeper! They were really moist and whipped up really quick for a school breakfast!
Blueberry Sour Cream Pancakes
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. In another bowl, beat the eggs. Add milk, sour cream and butter; mix well. Stir into dry ingredients just until blended. Fold in the blueberries.

Pour batter by 1/4 cupfuls onto a greased hot griddle and enjoy!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Peach Preserves

I found this on Allrecipes.com. It had a 5 star rating and I had a bunch of peaches that needed something done to them!
This turned out really good. I tried it warm and thought this would be really good warmed up on vanilla ice-cream and as always good on toast or waffles!
Peach Preserves
  • 12 fresh peaches, pitted and chopped
  • 4 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 pkg dry pectin

Crush 1 cup of the chopped peaches in the bottom of a large saucepan. Add remaining peaches, and set pan over medium-low heat. Bring to a low boil and cook for about 20 minutes or until peaches become liquid (maybe leaving a few peach chunks!)

Add sugar and bring back to a boil over medium heat. Gradually stir in dry pectin, and boil for 1 minute.

Remove from heat after 1 minute and transfer to sterilized jars. Process in hot water bath canner for 10 minutes. Let cool and store and eat!!!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Slow Cooker Beef Stroganoff

I found this recipe on Jack and Jills kitchen and had to try it! It took me a while to do it, but it was a complete success! Todd loves Beef Stroganoff and I hate to make it! It seems to be a lot of standing at the stove, so when Jill posted this recipe and said how good it was at her house I had to try it!
Even better was when I got mushrooms from Bountiful Basket this last week and had a recipe ready to use them! This was a simple recipe with great flavor and best of all I used my crock pot! I next time will use the low fat cream cheese, not to say it wasn't great with the real deal, but I kept thinking about that whole thing of cream cheese in there!
All I can say is I got a big thumbs up from the hubby and that makes it a keeper for me!
Slow Cooker Beef Stroganoff
  • 2 lbs cubed stew meat, cut into smaller pieces
  • 2 (10.75 oz) cans cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 chopped onion (I cheated and used dry chopped onions)
  • 1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 packet lipton onion soup mix

Spray your crock pot with non-stick spray and add all the above ingredients. Combine together and cook on LOW for 8 hours or HIGH for 5 hours. (mine seemed to be done about 1 1/2 hours early cooked on low, keep an eye on it in the end)

Just before serving add:

  • 8 oz cream cheese (regular or low fat works)
  • 1/2 to 1 cup sour cream
  • fresh mushrooms - sauted in butter before adding

Serve over wide egg noodles or rice! We did the noodles and really like it that way! The beef came out shredded and I really really liked it that way! YUMMY!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Homemade Cinnamon Bread

I made this cinnamon bread the other day and it was yummy!! It was simpler than cinnamon rolls and helped overcome a craving for the real thing! Next time I may try even making a little glaze to pour over the top of the bread!
If you have a favorite bread recipe, you could skip the bread making part and just see how the cinnamon and sugar part is done and still have super yummy bread (and great breakfast, snack etc. bread at home! It wont last long!)
Homemade Cinnamon Bread
  • 1 cup milk
  • 6 tblsp butter
  • 2 1/2 tsp yeast
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cups sugar (I might add just a little more next time!)
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cups sugar
  • 2 tbsp cinnamon
  • egg and milk mixed together for brushing
  • softened butter

Melt 6 tbsp butter with milk. Heat until very warm, but don't boil. Allow to cool until still warm to the touch, but not too hot! (very important because you don't want to kill the yeast!) Sprinkle the yeast over the top, stir gently and allow to sit for 10 minutes.

Combine the flour and salt.

In the bowl of an electric mixer, mix sugar and eggs with your paddle atachment until combined. Pour in milk/butter/yeast mixture and stir to combine. Add half the flour and beat on medium speed until combined. Add the other half and beat until combined.

Switch your mixer attachment to the dough hook and mix for about 10 minutes on medium speed. If dough is overly sticky, add a little flour at a time and beat again for 5 minutes.

Place bread in a warm bowl that has been greased. Turn the dough around in it so it is all greased up. Cover with plastic wrap (and spray wrap or my mom always covered with a clean kitchen towel!) and let rise in a warm spot for 2 hours at least!

Turn dough onto a work surface and roll into a rectangle no wider than the loaf pan you are using! (I made 2 loaves with my dough, I think my pans are not as big!) Now do your cinnamon roll thing, smear melted butter on bread and then add cinnamon and sugar, lots of cinnamon and sugar!

Next roll the dough up and make sure to pinch your seams together! Make sure you grease your loaf pans really well. My bread leaked a little and it was hard to get the loaf out! Place dough seam side down into pan and then cover and let rise for 2 hours!

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix a little egg with milk and when done rising, brush this mixture on the bread! This makes a great golden brown crust! Bake for 40 minutes on a middle/lower rack in the oven (my bread took about 30 minutes, so keep an eye on it!) Remove from pan and allow bread to cool!

Eat this yummy bread warm out of the oven, as yummy toast or even make french toast with it!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Waffles of Insane Greatness

I couldn't resist trying this recipe, especially since it is Breakfast Wednesday at our house tonight! I found this on Real Mom Kitchen and they did turn out really great! You don't have to beat your egg whites (which saves a step from my other recipe) but you do have to make sure and have time to wait 30 minutes (the batter has to rest!)
So try some waffles for breakfast or have your own breakfast dinner!
_________________________
Waffles of Insane Greatness
(She doubled the recipe and said she would triple next time for her family of 5)
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 cup whole milk (I only have 1%, which seemed to work fine)
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 1 large egg, slightly beaten
  • 3/4 tsp vanilla

In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar. Whisk together to blend.

In another mixing bowl, beat together the milk, buttermilk, oil, egg and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients to the bowl with the wet ingredients and whisk until just incorporated and few lumps remain. Set aside to rest for 30 minutes.

Preheat waffle iron. Fill waffle wells and cook according to your normal waffle iron instructions!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Peach Cobbler

I didn't get a picture yet (because my camera has not been returned!) but I made this last night and it was truly scrumptious!!
It had good flavor and was very easy. Next time I am planning on adding more peaches! This is a great way to use some of the peaches you have!! (IF you got some from your Bountiful Baskets last week!)
________________________
Peach Cobbler
    • 1/2 cup butter
    • 1 1/2 cup flour
    • 1 1/2 cup sugar, plus 2 tbsp.
    • 2 tsp baking powder
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 1 1/2 cups milk
    • 1 tsp almond extract, divided
    • 2 lbs peaches, peeled and sliced - about 4 cups (I will try 5+ cups next time)
  • Adjust oven rack to lower middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Put butter in a 9 x 13 pan baking pan; set in oven to melt.
  • Meanwhile, whisk flour, 1 1/2 cups sugar, baking powder, and salt in small bowl. Whisk in milk and 1/2 tsp almond extract until smooth.
  • Toss peaches with remaining 2 tbsp sugar and 1/2 tsp almond extract.
  • When butter is melted, remove pan from oven. Pour batter into pan; arrange fruit over batter. Bake until batter turns golden brown, 45-50 minutes. Serve warm or at room temp.!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Ranger Cookies

I can't believe this cookie isn't on here yet! Todd is going hunting and made a special request for this cookie! I thought sure, everyone loves it. Then someone asked me if it was on the blog, and I thought sure I have made these lots!
Well I guess I haven't made them enough because the recipe wasn't on the blog!
So here it is and it is a great recipe and one of our favorites!
Ranger Cookies
(my sis in CA who got it from a lady in her ward!)

Cream together:

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup butter (may use 1/2 butter and 1/2 shortening)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Add:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt

Mix together well with cream mixture.

Add:

  • 1 cup chocolate chips (I used 1/2 chocolate and 1/2 butterscotch)
  • 1 cup coconut
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup cornflakes (I didn't have any so I used rice krispies and they still turned out great!)
  • Chopped walnuts (optional)

Bake on Greased (which I forgot to do and they didn't stick on my cookie pans) cookie sheet at 350 for 10-12 minutes. (I used my small cookie scoop and mine were done in about 9 minutes)

ENJOY!!!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Dehydrated Apples

This last Saturday I bought a case of apples from Bountiful Baskets. Our family has loved the apples! They have been sooooo good! I have been really impressed with the fruits/vegies I have gotten from them!
With all the apples (which we love to just eat too!) I have started my dehydrator again! I have come to love this thing again! We have had it for over 10 years and have used it more in the last few weeks than ever! They are super yummy!
So when you are canning, you might think about dehydrating too!
The dehydrator at work on my island! It may stay there for a while!

Dried Apples
  • Peel and Core apples. Slice them uniform about 1/4-1/2 inch thick (I have a mandolin which is awesome for cutting uniformly). You can pretreat the apples, but I didn't and they didn't brown.
  • With the thickness I had, it took my apples about 4 hours to dry. Start them in the morning and then go about your day and you will find a yummy treat!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Roasted Red Potatoes with Cheese

This is the second roasted red potatoe recipe I have tried! I found them both about the same time and my family loved both kinds. I think it just depends on if you are in the mood for cheesy potatoes or not, or maybe if you have breadcrumbs or not!
Try them both and let me know! Both are simple and great to be able to just stick in the oven and not have to worry!
Roasted Red Potatoes
  • 8 medium sized red potatoes (about 10 cups chopped)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil (I am going to try less next time)
  • 1 pkg Onion Soup mix
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese

Chop up the potatoes and try to make them about the same size so they cook evenly.

Pour potatoes into a 9 x 13 pan (she didn't mention to spray, but I did). Add the oil and onion soup mix. Stir it around to incorporate.

Bake at 425 for 35 minutes. Give them a few stirs during baking to prevent it sticking to the bottom. I stirred them about half way and then again. They do tend to start to stick if you don't stir.

Sprinkle the cheese on the top of the potatoes when done. Turn your oven to Broil and let the cheese get melted and bubbly! This should take less than 5 minutes. Don't forget to watch and make sure they don't burn!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Oreo Cookies from Sisters Stuff

I printed this recipe a long time ago and just finally got around to trying them.
They turned out great and were a great treat!
Oreo Cookies
  • 2 pkg devils food cake mix (I just used whatever chocolate cake mixes I had)
  • 1 1/2 cups shortening
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 4 eggs

Mix together and roll into balls (I used a tsp to measure small balls). Bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes. Don't over cook!!!

Cool and frost between 2 cookies to make Oreo sandwiches!

Frosting

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 8 oz cream cheese (brought to room temp)
  • 1/2 cup butter (brought to room temp)
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Mix thoroughly and spread between cookies!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Roasted Red Potatoes

I found this recipe on sisterscafe. I am always looking for new easy ways to do potatoes with a meal. I found this recipe to be super easy and very very good! The prep is easy and then they just bake in the oven!
They have great flavor and my whole family loved them!
Roasted Red Potatoes
  • 4 red potatoes
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp bread crumbs
  • 1 tbsp parmesan cheese
  • Various seasonings (salt, garlic powder - I used fresh garlic -, onion powder, parsley)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slice potatoes into wedges and place in bowl. Toss in olive oil until coated and then add all remaining ingredients and toss until evenly coated. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until desired degress of crispness. Turn potatoes over about halfway through baking!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Congo Bars

Another yummy treat we made this Labor Day weekend!
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Congo Bars

  • 2 3/4 cups flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2/3 cup softened butter
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 12 oz pkg chocolate chips, or whatever combo you feel like! (we used white chocolate, peanut butter, chocolate and toffee chips!)
  • 1 cup chopped pecans (optional) - we added these and the kids didn't even know they were there!

YOU MUST MIX BY HAND!!!

Sift flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl (we didn't sift). Set aside.

Stir brown sugar into softened (not melted) butter into another large bowl until butter disappears. You can use the back of the spoon to help incorporate the 2 together.

Add eggs one at a time to butter mixture and stir well after each egg.

Add vanilla, chocolate chips and nuts. Mix well.

Add dry flour mixture and stir well until combined.

Coat a 9 x 13 pan with spray and spread batter evenly into dish. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until top is golden brown. Make sure you don't overbake. Start checking at about 28 minutes and add time as needed!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Fresh Salsa

We had friends here for Labor Day Weekend and we were able to try a few new recipes!! I didn't get any pictures (too busy playing) but they were super yummy! Shellee and I ate this for lunch a couple days it was soo good!
__________________

Fresh Salsa

  • 2-3 tomatoes
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 can chopped olives
  • 1 can diced green chilies
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro
  • 1 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 1/2 tbsp oil
  • 1 tbsp vinegar
  • juice from 1 lime
  • salt and pepper to taste

Dice and chop the tomatoes, onion and cilantro. Combine all ingredients and enjoy with tortilla chips! Tastes really good after sitting in the refrigerator for a while to let everything combine!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Grillled tomato linguine

Another Martha Stewart tomato recipe. It was simple, quick and yummy. Just my style! Hope you like it to.

Serves 4o 6

  • grilled tomatoes
  • 1 pound linguine (I just used regular noodles)
  • Salt
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving

Directions

  1. While preparing grilled tomatoes, cook linguine in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente, according to package instructions. Drain; return to pot.
  2. Add olive oil, 1/2 cup Parmesan, and grilled tomatoes. Divide among bowls, and serve immediately with more grated Parmesan, as desired



Tomato and Grilled Bread Salad

This is from Martha Stewart and is a take off of an Italian bread salad called panzanella. With the abundant of tomatoes lately I've been trying everything with tomatoes in it! My girls loved this and it was a great dinner salad on a hot night.

Serves 4

  • 1/2 pound country bread, cut into 3/4-inch-thick slices
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 large beefsteak tomatoes, cut into 3/4-inch dice (about 4 cups)
  • 1 cucumber, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch dice (about 2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh basil, torn into bite-size pieces
  • 1 tablespoon red-wine vinegar
  • Salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Heat grill to medium. Brush bread slices on both sides with 2 tablespoons oil. Grill until lightly charred on both sides, 3 to 4 minutes. Let cool slightly, then cut into large cubes.
  2. In a large bowl, toss bread cubes with tomatoes, cucumber, and basil. Drizzle with vinegar and remaining 1/4 cup oil, and season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine, and serve.

Cherry Chicken Salad

Cherry Chicken Salad

I got this recipe from my sisters kitchen. I loved that it was quick, simple and didn't require much planing ahead! Sorry no pictures, my camera is broken at them time. I added and substituted were I used italic.

  • 3 poached, boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized chunks (I actually grilled mine)
  • 1/2 c. dried cherries (I didn't have cherries so I used crasins)
  • 1/2 c. chopped pecans, lightly toasted in a dry skillet
  • 3 green onions, finely chopped
  • 1/3 c. mayonnaise, regular or low fat or plain yogurt
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • I added a handful of sliced grapes and sliced celery
  • lettuce leaves

Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and gently mix together. Refrigerate before serving. Serve on lettuce leaves, garnish with a sprig of parsley and a few pecan halves. Fresh fruit and crescent rolls make a nice accompaniment. We actually eat all our chicken salad on croissants these days. I only had it in my refrigerator for about 45 minutes and it still tasted yummy!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Dried Pears

The Bountiful Baskets had pears in them! I am planning on canning some, but decided to try and dry a few!
They turned out really good, and what a great snack!
I always forget I had a food dehydrator and I am going to have to try this again.
I even have a tray to make fruit leather!
Dried Pears
(from Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving)
  • Choose any variety of pear and allow to ripen. Wash, peel and core. (I actually got lazy and didn't peel all of them and thought they were fine!)
  • Cut into 1/2 inch slices, quarters or halves. (I used my mandolin, so great!)
  • You can pretreat by dipping if desired. (I didn't do this, but you dip the fruit in a lemon or lime juice. 1 cup juice to 1 quart water. soak no longer than 10 minutes, drain.)
  • Dry at 130-135 degrees until leathery with no moisture pockets.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Sloppy Joes - Pioneer Woman Style

This is now my new favorite Sloppy Joe recipe!! It was very flavorful and it was very simple. I even made it ahead of time and put it in my small crock pot on warm so it was ready after the soccer game! I halved the recipe for my family and had plenty!
The boys loved them and this is definitely my new keeper recipe!
Sloppy Joes
(the pioneer woman)
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 1/2 lbs ground beef
  • 1/2 whole large onion, diced (I cheated and used dried onion flakes)
  • 1 whole large green bell pepper, diced (I didn't add this because of the kids)
  • 5 cloves garlic minced (I only had 1 clove, so I added some garlic powder too!)
  • 1 1/2 cups ketchup (I added a little more than that)
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 tsp chili powder (or more to taste)
  • 1 tsp dry mustard
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (or more to taste)
  • worcestershire sauce to taste (I didn't add this)
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste (optional, I didn't add this)
  • tabasco sauce (optional, I didn't add this either)
  • salt to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Kaiser rolls, or whatever buns you have
  • butter

Add butter to large skillet over medium high heat. Add ground beef and cook until brown. Drain most of the fat and discard.

Add beef back to the skillet and add onions, garlic, and green pepper. Cook for a few minutes, or until vegies begin to soften.

Add ketchup, brown sugar, chili pepper, dry mustard, and water. Stir to combine and simmer for 15 minutes, adding salt and pepper to taste. Also add the tomato paste, worcestershire, and tabasco if desired. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.

Spread rolls with butter and brown on a griddle or skillet. Spoon meat mixture over the rolls, topping with a slice of cheese if desired. ( I did this and it was really good!)

Serve hot with chips!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Pepperoni Pasta Salad

I found this on Jamie Cooks it Up and it turned out really good! Sometimes I think pasta salads lack flavor, but this one had good flavor and was a great summer meal. My kids ate hot dogs, but I think they would have liked this if they tried it!
Pepperoni Pasta Salad
  • 1 16oz pkg multicolored pasta
  • 1 small can olives
  • 3 large carrots
  • 1 green pepper (I didn't have one so I cut up a cucumber)
  • 1/2 bunch green onions (I didn't add these because I didn't have any)
  • 2 tomatoes (or 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes)
  • 3/4 cup pepperoni
  • 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp Johnny's Garlic Seasoning (I just minced 1 clove of garlic)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 bottle Kraft Zesty Italian Dressing (I just used the Italian I had on hand)

Boil up your pasta and cook according to directions. Rinse in cool water and set it aside in a large bowl.

Chop up your vegies and pepperoni and add to your pasta bowl.

Add all other ingredients except your Italian dressing to the pasta and mix well.

Refrigerate for at least an hour.

Just before serving, pour the Italian dressing on to taste! (I sprinkled mozzarella cheese on top of the individual bowls too!)

Saturday, August 14, 2010

No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

I was surprised to find in the cookie section we had no recipes for no-bakes! These cookies are not always my favorite, but are great when it is summer and you don't want to use your oven! I found this recipe on http://www.jamiecooksitup.blogspot.com/ and they looked so yummy I had to make some! They are just as good as I remember and a great easy treat for the kids and all their friends!
No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies
Jamie Cooks it up!
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 6 tbsp cocoa
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup crunchy peanut butter (I only had creamy and used that)
  • 6 cups quick oats (add 7 cups if using regular oats)

Put the sugar, cocoa, butter, milk, and salt in a large saucepan. Over medium high heat, bring it to a boil, stirring occasionally. When it comes to a boil, start stirring constantly for 3 minutes.

Remove from heat and add your vanilla, peanut butter and oats. Stir in around until it is all incorporated. (I added the vanilla and peanut butter and then stirred until the peanut butter was melted. Then I poured this on top of the oats in a bigger bowl and stirred it all together.) It might be a little thin at first, but it will set up!

Drop by large spoonfuls onto wax paper. If you don't have wax paper, just spray cooking spray on cooking sheets and that will work too! Let the cookies cool and set up for about 20 minutes, then you are ready to eat!!

Makes 36 large or 70 small cookies!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Oatmeal Crispies

I thought these were very good oatmeal cookies! They were great because you can freeze or refrigerate the dough. I always love cookies when they come out of the oven and then they just are not as good! This ensures that you can make a few and then make more later when you want that hot cookie again!
Oatmeal Crispies
(from the pioneer woman cookbook)
  • 1/2 cup pecan halves
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1 cup packed dark or light brown sugar
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3 cups rolled oats

Finely chop the pecans. Use a knife and with a rocking motion cut them, or I just used my food processor.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the shortening and sugars. Beat together until combined.

Lighting beat the eggs and vanilla in a separate bowl.

Add the egg mixture to the shortening/sugar mixture. Beat to thoroughly combine.

In a separate bowl combine the flour, salt, and baking soda.

Add the flour mixture to the wet mixture, stir until combined.

Dump in the oats and pecans and stir to combine.

(Variations - add dried cranberries and white chocolate chips, or add chocolate chips)

Divide the dough in half. Place each half on a sheet of waxed paper and form a roll 1 1/2 inches in diameter, wrapping the waxed paper tightly around the roll.

Chill the rolls until ready to use, up to one week. (or in the freezer for up to 3 months)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Unwrap the dough and slice the rounds about 1/2 inch thick. If dough is frozen, you don't need to thaw, just add 1-2 minutes to baking time.

Place on cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Enjoy!!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Honey Jelly

Ever heard of Honey Jelly??? I hadn't until this week when we went to the Dentist and we were shared this jar!
It tastes just like honey but spreadable! I had it on toast and it was great! My boys had it on their peanut butter sandwiches and they didn't know any different!
I found this recipe on the internet and I am planning on trying it sometime soon!
Honey Jelly
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/8 cup liquid fruit pectin

Heat honey and water to boiling, stirring constantly. Add liquid fruit pectin and bring back to boil. Allow to cool in jely jars.

(from a Homemaking Booklet, Mormon Church, 1978)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Citrus Salad and Sugared Pecans

After a long adventure up in the mountains this summer, I am officially back and ready to try new recipes again!
I made this salad a few nights ago and it is one my mom makes that we enjoy!
It is light and fresh for summer time and my most favorite part about it is....
putting the sugared pecans on top! They are sooo yummy that I always make extras to just eat! I don't know why I don't make these more often, probably because I would sit and eat them all day!
Citrus Salad
(from my mom and ???)
  • 8 cups lettuce
  • 8 cups romaine
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 pint strawberries, halved
  • 1 orange, peeled and cubed
  • 2 avocados, sliced

Citrus Salad Dressing

  • 2/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp orange juice
  • 1 tsp lime zest
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp orange zest

Sugared Pecans

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup pecan halves

Mix sugar and pecans, cook over low heat until sugar melts, stirring to coat - spread on tin foil to cool.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Chicken Lo Mein

I found this recipe on the Pioneer Womans site, Tasty kitchen. I didn't get a picture when I made it a while ago, but I really liked it! It was a great leftover for lunch too! I didn't use as much cabbage mix, simply because I bought 1 bag and it wasn't exactly 3 cups. It was fine for me though! I will use less chicken next time, I like more noodles than chicken in my pasta!

Chicken Lo Mein

www.thepioneerwoman.com/tasty-kitchen

  • 1 pound Boneless Chicken Breasts
  • 2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Ginger
  • 2 teaspoons Corn Starch
  • 3 teaspoons White Sugar
  • 8 ounces, weight Thin Spaghetti
  • 4 Tablespoons Peanut Oil, Divided Use
  • 3 cups Bagged Cabbage Mix
  • 2 whole Green Onions, Sliced


Preparation Instructions
Remove all fat from chicken breasts, and fillet them if they are very thick. Cut each breast into equally sized small cubes and place in a large bowl.
In a small, separate bowl, mix together the soy sauce, ginger, sugar and cornstarch until fully blended. Pour this over the chicken, stir well to combine and allow to marinate in the refrigerator for up to an hour.
When the chicken is marinated, remove it from the refrigerator and place to the side.
In a large stock pot, bring 2 quarts of well salted water to a boil. Break the spaghetti in half and place into the boiling water, stirring often to prevent it sticking together.
You can use a wok if you have one, or do like I did and use a large and deep non-stick frying pan. Set the temperature on the stove to high, and heat up 2 Tablespoons of peanut oil.
Dump in the chicken and immediately being stir frying it and moving it around constantly. It should get browned, but not overdone. Once done, remove it to a plate, cover and set it to the side to keep warm.
Once the pasta is cooked to al dente, immediately drain it and rinse well under cool water. Drain and place to the side.
Add the other 2 Tablespoons of peanut oil to the hot pan and pour in the shredded cabbage and the sliced green onion. Again, moving constantly, sauté until the cabbage softens and browns slightly. Once this is achieved, add the chicken and the drained spaghetti back to the pan and toss until heated through and evenly coated.
Immediately place in a serving platter and enjoy with some sweet and sour sauce or additional soy sauce.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Easy White Cake/Cupcakes

This is probably one of the yummiest white cake recipes I have found. I saw this on ourbestbites.com. They turned out super moist and had great flavor.
I made these in May (just getting around to post) and then again for the 4th of July. We layered the batter in red, white and blue!

Easy White Cake (our best bites)
  • 1 box white cake mix(or yellow)
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 1/3 cups water
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract (use clear vanilla if you want a pure white cake)
  • 1 tsp almond extract

Mix all dry ingredients with a whisk, then add wet ingredients. Beat for 2 minutes until fluffy.

For cake: Pour into greased, floured pans (fills two 8 or 9" rounds) and bake according to cake pkg. directions.

(Tip: When cakes come out, cool for 5 minutes on wire rack, then cover with 2 sheets of plastic wrap ( in a + sign), turn them out and wrap the plastic around them. Allow to cool all wrapped up (keeps the moisture from evaporating out) then pop into the freezer on a cutting board to keep them flat. Once they are frozen, they are super easy to frost and defrost in about 30 minutes.)

For cupcakes: Fill paperliners about 3/4 full and bake according to pkg. directions. Makes 36 cupcakes.

Friday, May 28, 2010

French Bread Pizza

With Summer here and Baseball, T-Ball and all other sorts of activities going on, quick and easy meals become a necessity! This is one my mom used to make when we were kids and it is simple and quick!

French Bread Pizza
  • 1 loaf french bread (I used a loaf I had made for dinner a few nights ago)
  • pizza sauce (great homemade recipe on this site!)
  • mozzarella cheese
  • pizza toppings

Preheat your oven to 475 degrees. Cut your french bread loaf in half lengthwise. Place on a cookie sheet.

Then place your sauce, cheese and toppings. Your kids can help with this too!

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until browned the way you like!