Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Honey Crunch

Tammy also introduced us to another cereal treat (using coupons I always have a TON of cereal stocked-up!)

* 6 cups of any cereal (Chex, Cheerios, Corn Flakes)
* 2 cups Quaker Oats (quick)
* 1/2 cup coarsely chopped nuts
* 1/2 cup pretzels (sometimes I use 1 c. pretzels and no nuts)
* 2 teaspoons cinnamon
* 1 cup butter
* 2/3 cup honey
* 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
*1 cup raisin and/or M & M's (optional)

Heat oven to 325 degrees.  In a large bowl, combine cereal, oats, nuts, pretzels and cinnamon.
In a small saucepan, combine butter, honey and brown sugar.  Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until butter is melted and ingredients are well blended.
Pour over cereal mixture and mix until thoroughly coated.
Spread evenly onto a 15 x 10 jelly roll pan/cookie sheet.
Bake 20-25 minutes or until mixture is golden brown, stirring every 5 minutes.
Immediately spread mixture onto a wax paper covered cooling rack.  Stir in raisins. 
Cool completely.  Stir in M&M's at this time.
Store in tightly covered container in a cool dry place.

Good as a cereal or an ice cream or yogurt topping, too!

Crackly Ginger Cookies

Yummy Gingersnap cookies!  These are also very moist  :)

* 4 cups sifted all purpose flour
* 4 tsp. baking soda
* 2 tsp. ground ginger
* 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
* 1 tsp. salt
* 1 1/2 cups vegetable shortening
* 1 3/4 cups sugar
* 2 eggs
* 1/2 cup molasses
* 1/4 cup sugar

Sift flour, soda, ginger, cinnamon, & salt together.
In another bowl, mix shortening and sugar.  Beat in eggs and molasses.
Work flour mixture into the molasses mixture to form a soft dough.
Divide dough in half and wrap each half in waxed paper.
Chill overnight or until firm enough to shape. (1 hour in the fridge always works for me)
Roll into 1" balls. 
Dip tops in the 1/4 c. sugar and place sugar side up about 2" apart on a lightly greased cookie sheet.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes, just until firm.
Let sit on cookie sheet for 2 minutes before lifting off.
Store in a container with tight fitting lid.

Saltine Cracker Toffee

My friend Tammy brought these delicious goodies to our house.  Once we started eathing them, they disappeared super quick!!!  YUM!!!

* Saltine crackers
* 1 cup brown sugar
* 1 stick butter
* 12 oz. chocolate chips
* heath bar toffee chips

1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. on 10 x 15 cookie sheet, arrange saltines in a single layer (salt side down), preferably on parchment
    paper for easy cleanup.
3. Over medium heat, combine butter and brown sugar in a saucepan. Stir until mixture thickens and starts to boil. (if you use dark brown sugar, be sure to boil until butter and sugar are totally combined.)
4. Pour butter and sugar mixture over saltines. Using back of spoon or spatula, spread mixture evenly over all of the crackers. Work quickly for it will start to cool.
5. Place cookie sheet in preheated oven.
6. Bake for 10 minutes, or until bubbly and golden brown. (exactly 10 mins. worked for my oven).Don't over will burn. Don't under will stick to cookie sheet.
7. Immediately upon removing cookie sheet from oven, evenly sprinkle chocolate chips over the crackers.
8. Let sit for 3 to 5 minutes, then smooth the melted chocolate over the crackers using the back of a spoon or a spatula.
9. Sprinkle toffee chips on top of chocolate.
10. Freeze or refrigerate for 2+ hours.  Break apart and enjoy. (I enjoy them most when they are served right out of the freezer.)

***There are variations of this chocolate toffee bar recipe. Some omit the toffee and use chopped pecans instead. 

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Neat Treat

This is one of my favorite little treats to snack on.  Just enough sugar and crunch :)

Mix together:
1 16 oz pkg rice chex  (or use corn chex or a mixture of both)                                                
1 to 2 cups sliced almonds
2 cups coconut                                                           

Cook together:
1 cup light karol syrup                                               
1 cup sugar
¾ cup butter                                                   
Bring to a boil, boil approx. 1 minute, and pour over cereal mix.  Mix well.

Chocolate Banana Bread

Yum!  A fun variety of regular banana bread :)  This recipe comes from my SIL, Cara.

1 cup margarine, softened                                          
2 cups sugar
4 eggs                                                                         
6 bananas, mashed     
2 tsp vanilla extract                                                    
3 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda                                                       
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup light sour cream                                                
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease two 9x5 inch loaf pans.  In a large bowl, cream together margarine, sugar, and eggs.  Stir in bananas and vanilla.  Sift in flour, baking soda, and cocoa; mix well.  Blend in sour cream and chocolate chips.  Pour batter into prepared pans.  Bake in preheated oven for 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into center of a loaf comes out clean.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Cherry Chocolate Bars

These treats remind me of being a child.  My Aunt RaNae would make these yummy cherry chocolate bars.  I've been thinking about them because I've had a can of nuts in my cupboard for awhile.  I didn't find cherry frosting at the store I went to so I just grabbed strawberry and hoped it would work.  It was just as yummy :)

Melt 1 pkg (12 oz) Hershey’s Chocolate Chips in the microwave.  Add ¾ cup peanut butter.  Melt and then add 12 oz salted peanuts, chopped.  Put ½ of chocolate mixture in buttered 9 x 13 pan and set.  Melt 20 marshmallows and add      to 1 can cherry frosting (Betty Crocker) or 1 pkg of Cherry Frosting mixed according to package.  Spread over chocolate layer and set.  Add remaining chocolate mixture.  Set and then cut into squares.    

I cut these into very small squares...they are just rich enough that you don't need much :)

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Apple Spice Cupcakes

This is a recipe from the treat exchange...from Candi Hunter

1 box spice cake mix
1 can apple pie filling

Mix spice cake according to the directons on the box.  Pour into muffin tin 3/4 full.  Add one spoonful of apple pie filling to each cupcake.  Bake at 350 degrees fro 18-23 minutes

1/3 cup butter softened
1/4 cup whippped cream or evaporated milk
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
4 cups powdered sugar

Beat butter until creamy.  Add cream, vanilla, salt, and 1 cup of powdered sugar.  Beat until well blended.  Gradually add remaining 3 cups of powdered sugar and mix until blended.  Add 1 tsp of milk at a time if necessary.  Beat until smooth.

Frost cupcakes when cool.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Soft Gingersnap Cookies

My friend, Michele, introduced these SOFT gingersnap cookies to me several years ago.  I had the recipe and apparently lost it so I had to get again this week so I could take these yummy cookies to a church treat exchange last night.  Love that they are just strong enough ginger....not overpowering and that they are SOFT! 

2 1/4 cups flour
1 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup shortening
1/4 cup molasses
1 egg
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/4 cup sugar

In a large mixing bowl combine about half of the flour, brown sugar, shortening, molasses, egg, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves.  Beat with an electric mixer on medium to high speed till combined.  Beat or stir in remaining flour.  Shape dough into 1-inch balls.  Roll balls in the granulated sugar to coat.  Place balls 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake in a 375 degree oven for 8-10 minutes or till edges are set and tops are crackled.  Cool cookies on cookie sheet for 1 minute.  Transfer cookies to a wire rack and let cool.  Makes about 48 cookies.

Hershey's Perfect Special Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

From treat exchange made by Pam.

Preheat oven to 375.

2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
2 cups (12 oz pkg) Hershey's Special Dark Chocolate Chips
1 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Stir together flour, baking soda, and salt.  Beat butter, sguars, and vanilla until creamy.  Add eggs, beat well.  Gradually add flour mixture, beating well.  Stir in chocolate chips and nuts.  Drop by rounded teaspoons onto ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned.  Cool slightly, remove from cookie sheet to wire rack.  Cool completely.

Pumpkin Bread

From the treat exchange.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease 2 loaf pans.  Mix in order:
3 cups sugar
1 cup oil
4 eggs
2/3 cup water
1 cup pumpkin
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp baking soda
3 cups flour

Pour equal amounts of batter into pans.  Bake at 350 for one hour.

Easy Pumpkin Spice Cookies

From the treat exchange.

1 box spice cake mix
1 small can pumpkin
1 egg

Mix all together.  Add chopped walnuts.  Add chocolate chips.  Drop by teaspoon on cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees about 15 minutes.

Peppermint Bark

From Debbie Douangaphaivong.  Love Debbie's warning on her recipe card at the treat exchange:  "WARNING:  Make at your own may find that you can't stop eating it."

12 oz. semi sweet chocolate chips
12 oz. white chocolate
Crushed peppermint candy (i.e. candy canes)  About 1/2 cup or to your preference
1/2 tsp peppermint extract

Line foil into a 9x12 pan.  Preheat oven to 250 degrees.  Put foil lined pan into oven to warm.  Take out after 5-10 minutes.  Then, pour 12 oz chocolate chips onto the foil to cover the bottom.  Put back into the oven until melted.  Take out and spread melted chocolate chips evenly.  Put into the fridge to cool.  While chocolate is cooling, melt package of white chocolate and 1/2 tsp peppermint extract in double boiler over the stove making sure not to let white chocolate get too hot.  When melted, stir well, birng out the chocolate from fridge and pour white chocolate on top quickly.  Spread evenly, then sprinkle crushed peppermint candy on top.  put back into fridge to harden.  Cut into squares or break with hands and store in a covered container.

Oatmeal Cocoa Macaroons

From the treat exchange.

3/4 cup butter
1/2 cup milk
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup shredded coconut
3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup cocoa powder

In a saucepan over medium heat, combine butter, milk, and sugar.  Stirring constantly, bring mixture to a boil.  Continue to boil and stir for 2 minutes.  Remove from heat and add coconut, oats, and cocoa powder.  Stir until well mixed.  Drop by teaspoonfuls onto waxed paper.  Chill macaroons in fridge.

Chocolate Orange Fudge

From treat exchange...from Clarissa Ludlow.  This recipe reminds me of the orange sticks we ALWAYS use to get at Christmas time when I was a little girl.

2 1/2 cups milk chocolate chips
1 14 oz. can of sweetened condensed milk
1 1/2 tsp. orange extract

Melt chocolate chips and sweetened condensed milk over stove top until blended.  Stir in orange extract.  Pour into 8 inch square pan that's lined with wax paper.  Refrigerate until firm.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Slow Cooker Peach Crisp

I made this DELICIOUS dessert tonight to go with our dinner. Oh my!!!! I will DEFINITELY be making this again. I basically doubled the recipe so I'll give you the amounts that I used. :)
5 large fresh peaches, peeled and sliced
2/3 cup flour
2/3 cup quick oats
2/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp of nutmeg
1/2 cup butter

Place sliced peaches in bottom of a greased crock pot. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, oatmeal, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Cut the butter in with a pastry blender or a fork (I just added these ingredients in my Kitchen Aid). Mixture should be crumbly. Sprinkle over the peaches. Cover the crock pot with a paper towel. Then put the lid over the paper towel and seal the crockpot. Cook on high for 2 hours. I didn't have vanilla ice cream so I just served it with whipped cream...I can only imagine that it would be even more delicious with ice cream!

Friday, October 1, 2010

October Menu

1. Baked Potato Bar (chili, cheese, broccoli, sour cream, butter)
2. Beef Enchiladas
3. Taco Salad (seriously, I can't believe I haven't posted this recipe...I'll work on that :)
4. Western Burgers
5. Honey & Wheat Rolls
6. Beef Stew (I'm using my sister's recipe...I'll post the recipe after I've made it :)
7. Beef & Broccoli Stir-Fry
8. Fiesta Stack
9. Fried Chicken
10. Country Captain Chicken (without the shrimp)
11. Cheeseburger Macaroni
12. Chicken Parmesan
13. Stroganoff
14. Hawaiian Haystacks
15. Chicken Enchiladas
16. Cheesy Chicken
17. Malibu Chicken
18. Crepes
19. Tetrazzini Chicken
20. Omelets
21. Chicken & Dumplings
22. Baked Potato Soup
23. Cafe Rio Meat
24. Kabobs
25. Pigs in a blanket
26. Scalloped Potatoes with Pork Chops
27. Coconut Chicken
28. Fajitas
29. Chili
30. Teriyaki Chicken
31. Witch's Diner (The witch cook hasn't decided what will be on the menu for her diner yet :)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

S'more Cookie Bars

Saturday we went to a birthday party where everyone brought side dishes or dessert. This was one of the desserts served. OH MY!!!!!! It is delicious :) It's AWESOME! I can't wait to make it. Thanks, Debbie!

1/2 c. butter, room temperature
1/4 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. sugar
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/3 c. flour
3/4 c. graham cracker crumbs (approximately 7 full graham crackers)
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 super sized (5 oz.) dark chocolate bars (e.g. Hershey's)*
1 1/2 c. marshmallow cream/fluff

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8 inch square baking pan. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light. Beat in egg and vanilla. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, graham cracker crumbs, baking powder and salt. Add to butter mixture and mix at a low speed until combined. Divide dough in half and press half of dough into an even layer on the bottom of the prepared pan. Place chocolate bars over dough (2 king-sized Hershey’s bars should fit perfectly side by side, but break the chocolate if necessary to get it to fit in a single layer no more than 1/4 inch thick). Spread the marshmallow fluff over the chocolate. Place remaining dough in a single layer on top of the fluff (most easily done by putting the dough in a gallon size ziplock bag or between plastic wrap. Use your palms or a rolling pin to flatten it out and then use scissors to cut down both long sides of the bag, so it will open up book-style. Place the bag, dough side down, on the fluff. From there peel the bag up and spread the dough where it is uneven.) Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until lightly browned. Cool completely before cutting into bars.

*Debbie's Notes - I made this amazing dessert for the first time this past Sat for a BBQ birthday party after first having it at my sister's house. I did not have chocolate bars on hand, so instead used semi sweet Ghirardeli chocolate chips. If you use the choco chips, make sure to press them into the dough so that spreading the marshmallow cream over it will be a little less challenging. I think it turned out great, but then again I am a bit biased to Ghirardeli.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Fruit Leather

I had a lot of peaches...and not enough jars to make jam so I decided to give fruit leather a try. I remember LOVING the fruit leather my mom would make when I was a kid, and my kids go crazy for fruit leather when I buy it so I figured it was a win-win situation. I chose this recipe.

Fresh fruit (apricots, peaches, plums, berries, apples, pears, grapes)
Lemon juice
Sugar (if needed)
Spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg (optional)

Rinse the fruit. Take out the pits, chop the fruit. Taste the fruit before proceeding. Note how sweet the fruit is. If very sweet you will not need to add any sugar. If still a little tart, you may need to add some sugar in the next step.

Place fruit in a large saucepan. Add a half cup of water for every 4 cups of chopped fruit. Bring to a simmer, cover and let cook on a low heat for 10-15 minutes, or until the fruit is cooked through. Uncover and stir. Use a potato masher to mash up the fruit in the pan. Taste the fruit and determine what and how much sugar, lemon juice, or spices to add. Add sugar in small amounts (1 Tbsp at a time if working with 4 cups of fruit), to desired level of sweetness. Add lemon juice one teaspoon at a time to help brighten the flavor of the fruit. Add a pinch or two of cinnamon, nutmeg, or other spices to augment the flavor. (I added about 4 TBL of sugar, 2 TBL fresh lemon juice, 1 tsp cinnamon, and 1/4 tsp nutmeg to my 5 cups of fruit.)
Continue to simmer and stir until any added sugar is completely dissolved and the fruit purée has thickened, another 5 or 10 minutes (or more). Put the purée through a food mill or chinoise. Alternatively purée it thoroughly in a blender or food processor. Taste again and adjust sugar/lemon/spices if necessary. The purée should be very smooth. Line a rimmed baking sheet with sturdy plastic wrap (the kind that is microwave safe). Pour out the purée into the lined baking sheet to about an 1/8 to 1/4 inch thickness. Place the baking sheet in the oven, try to keep any plastic wrap from touch the sides of the oven or the oven racks. Also try to make sure that the plastic wrap hasn't folded back over on top of the purée. If this happens, the purée won't dry out. Heat the oven to a low 140°F. (My oven only went as low as 170°F. I left it in the oven overnight...about 10 hours. The fruit leather is ready when it is no longer sticky, but has a smooth surface.

When the fruit leather is ready, you can easily peel it up from the plastic wrap. To store it, roll it in its plastic wrap, put it in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator or freezer. 4 cups of fruit yield about one baking sheet of fruit leather. I made two pans and put them in the oven at the same time. My bottom pan was too crispy! Next time I'll move my racks higher in the oven or only do one pan at a time in my little, bitty wall oven. Seriously, it's only taken us a day to devour almost the entire pan. My kids LOVE it!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Honey Lime Enchiladas

My friend sent me this link this past week. This blog is filled with lots of YUMMY recipes. My friend suggested this recipe...

Dave and I liked this twist on enchiladas...and it used a couple limes from our lime tree! The kids still prefer regular, ol' enchiladas that I always make...there wasn't enough "stuff" for them to dip their chips in like they normally do :)
1.5 lbs pork or chicken, cooked and shredded (I used chicken)
1/3 c honey
1/4 c lime juice
1 Tb chili powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 (10 oz) cans green enchilada sauce (I used about 3/4 of a 26 oz. can)
equal parts mixed together of:mozzarella cheese, shredded, cheddar cheese, shredded (I used a triple cheddar blend)
flour tortillas

Mix together sauce ingredients then add to shredded pork or chicken. Let the sauce soak into the meat for about 30 minutes. Lightly spray 2 pans with non-stick baking spray. (I just used one 9x13 pan.) Pour green enchilada sauce into pans to coat the entire bottom. Fill tortillas with shredded meat and desired amount of cheese. Roll and place in dish. Pour remainder of sauce over enchiladas and sprinkle more cheese on top. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Then turn on broiler and place enchiladas nearer the top of oven. Let it broil until cheese is slightly brown and crispy.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Soft Pretzels

Last night for RS I provided the recipe for the pretzels the women made. This recipe came from one of my roommates in college. I decided to make them for dinner as well. I let the girls help me make them...we had a great time together :)

1 pkg active dry yeast
1 1/3 cups warm water
1 TBL sugar
½ tsp salt
3 ½-4 cups flour
1 egg
1 TBL water
2 TBL coarse salt

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Grease 2 large baking sheets. In large bowl, sprinkle yeast over warm water; stir with rubber spatula until well blended and yeast is dissolved. With wooden spoon, gradually stir in sugar, salt, and enough flour (about 2 ½ cups) until a soft and slightly sticky dough forms. Turn dough onto well-floured board. To knead, fold dough towards you; with heels of hands push dough away with short rocking motions. Rotate dough a quarter turn and repeat above motion. Continue kneading and turn about 5-7 minutes adding another ½ cup or more flour if necessary, until dough is smooth and elastic. Dough shouldn’t stick to board or hands. Cut dough in half, then cut each half into 6 equal-sized pieces. With floured hands, roll one piece of dough back and forth between palms of hands to form a dough rope. Continue rolling and stretching dough rope until it’s 15 inches long. Place rope on baking sheet, cross left side of rope over to the middle of rope creating a loop. Then fold right side of rope up and over the 1st loop to form pretzel shape. Continue with remaining dough, placing pretzels 3 inches apart on baking sheet. Enlarge holes in pretzels by inserting thumb and index fingers into holes. This will prevent them from completely closing during baking. In small bowl, mix together egg and water, brush on pretzels. Sprinkle with course salt. Bake at 425 degrees 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Pretzels taste best when eaten warm. Makes 12 pretzels. Instead of salt on top, I've added parmesean cheese (pictured) or cinnamon and sugar :) Don't forget you can dip them in cheese sauce or spaghetti sauce.

I learned a new trick to create more of a pretzel shape...loop dough, twist, and fold the ends over the top...perfect pretzel shape that I need a bit more practice at :)

Thursday, September 2, 2010

September Menu

1. Chicken Stir Fry...I added some new veggies this time...cauliflower and fresh red peppers are now a MUST addition :)
2. Hurdsman Grilled Chicken
3. Tin Foil Dinners over the campfire
4. Kabobs
5. Alfredo w/ Breadsticks
6. Labor Day BBQ
7. Spaghetti & Scones
8. Orange Chicken
9. Santa Fe Salad
10. Green Chile Sauce Enchiladas
11. Cafe Rio Meat
12. Chicken Fried Steak
13. Curry Chicken (looking for a recipe still...suggestions?? :)
14. Turkey Pot Pie
15. Garlic Tomato Pasta
16. Salmon Loaf
17. Mini Pizzas
18. New Recipe...suggestion?
19. Lasagna
20. Porkchops
21. Taco Soup
22. Tostados
23. Honey-lime grilled chicken
24. Bread Bowls with Baked Potato Soupo
25. Western Burgers
26. Grilled Fish
27. Tetrazzini Chicken
28. Porcupine Meatballs
29. Taco Salad
30. White Chicken Pizza

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


Tacos are definitely a pretty basic meal at our house but it's one I know EVERYONE will eat.

Brown 1 lb hamburger.  Drain grease.  Add taco seasoning with about ¼ cup water  (although I actually PREFER to just use about 1/2 cup or more of salsa rather than taco seasoning).  Let simmer for 5 minutes.  Place a spoonful of meat on a taco shell or tortilla and add other toppings as desired.   Topping suggestions:  lettuce, shredded cheese, diced tomatoes, sour cream, beans, peppers, pico de gallo.

Can substitute diced or shredded chicken for hamburger.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Strawberry Tart

I was looking for a dessert to use our yummy strawberries in. I remembered this recipe from my SIL.

(Ignore the very cheesy picture...I made this for our anniversary so my hubby took the pic)
Her recipe was for raspberries but strawberries are an easy substitute.

1 ¼ cup flour
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
1 TBL sugar
½ orange rind, grated
1egg yolk
6 TBL cold butter, cut into pieces
3-4 TBL whipping cream (I just used milk)

Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl. Stir in the sugar and orange rind. Add the cutter and cut in with a pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. With a fork, stir in the egg yolk and just enough cream to bind the dough. Gather into a ball, wrap in wax paper, and refrigerate. Prepare the filling.

3 egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar
3 TBL flour
1 ¼ cup milk
1/8 tsp salt
½ tsp vanilla

Beat the egg yolks and sugar until thick and lemon colored. Gradually stir in the flour. In a saucepan, bring the milk and salt just to a boil, and remove from heat. Whisk into the egg yolk mixture, return to the pan, and continue whisking over moderately high heat until just bubbling. Cook for three minutes to thicken. Transfer immediately to a bowl. Add the vanilla and stir to blend. Cover with wax paper to prevent a skin from forming.

1 lb fresh raspberries (strawberries also work well)

Glaze: (I compeletly forgot to make the glaze...we just added whipped cream :)
5 TBL concord grape jelly
1 TBL fresh orange juice

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough about 1/8 inch thick, transfer to a 10-inch tart pan and trim the edge. Prick the bottom all over with a fork and line with aluminum foil. Fill with pie weights and bake for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and weights. Continue baking until golden, 6-8 minutes more. Let cool.

Spread an even layer of the pastry cream filling in the tart shell and arrange the raspberries on top. Prepare the glaze by melting the jelly and orange juice in a pan and brush on top to glaze. DO NOT GLAZE UNTIL SERVING TIME!

Nice and refreshing!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Quick Snack Cake

My SIL passed this fun little recipe on to me a few weeks ago after she got it from a friend. Can't wait to give it a try.

1 box angel food cake mix (one that doesn't require eggs)
1 box regular cake mix - any flavor
Mix dry cake mixes together in a plastic bag or plastic storage container.

Put 1/4 cup dry mix in a microwave safe cup
Add 2 tbsp water and stir
Microwave on high for one minute.

After it's cooked, you could add frosting and sprinkle with powdered sugar.
1 serving, about 100 calories

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Cleaning Tip

While I was away, I learned a cleaning tip from my mom. Polish your bathroom/kitchen crome by spraying rubbing alchol on it and wiping off with a rag. FABULOUS! Spray rubbing alcohol on mirrors/ streaks! AWESOME! Spray rubbing alcohol on sticky spots and rub off with a rag to remove it. AMAZING! I've had a sticker sticky spot on my van front window for over a year now. I've tried razor blades, water, window cleaner, etc. to get it off. Nothing has worked until now. I'm so happy. She claims it works on getting gum off/out of things. Haven't had to try it yet...hope I don't need to :)

August Menu

Finally back on track again...
1. Pasta
2. Grilled Steak
3. French Dip Sandwiches
4. Tacos
5. Baked Potato Bar
6. Beef Enchiladas
7. Chicken & Broccoli Stir Fry
8. Roast
9. Crepes
10. Super Nachos
11. Steak Kabobs
12. Alfredo
13. Chicken Enchiladas
14. Tin Foil Dinners
15. Meatloaf
16. Chicken Parmigina
17. Fried Chicken
18. Pizza
19. Zuchini Casserole
20. Chicken Fried Steak
21. BBQ Chicken
22. Chicken & Rice
23. Baked Fish
24. Tator Tot Casserole
25. Pork Chops
26. Omelettes
27. Chicken & Dressing Casserole
28. Burritos
29. Hurdsman Chicken
30. Taco Salad
31. Orange Chicken

Friday, July 9, 2010

Fruit Pizza

One day a week during the summer, I've committed some time to letting the kids cook something new. This week we tried a fruit pizza. They weren't so sure when I told them about this treat, but the end result met their approval!

1/2 cup margarine, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream butter and sugar. Add egg. Mix flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt. Add to creamed mixture. Press onto a pizza pan (of course I used a pizza stone). Bake for 8-10 minutes or until brown (mine needed to cook for about 15 minutes). Cool.

8 oz. cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla

Beat cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla. Spread on cooled crust. Add fruit and chill.

Thursday, July 8, 2010


I have been craving kabobs lately so I decided to give them a try for dinner tonight. I marinated chicken tenders in our usual marinade (1 can sprite, 1 cup soy sauce, 1/2 cup veggie oil) for the day. I chunked a red pepper, a green pepper, a zucchini, a pineapple, and an onion. I also had a few cherry tomatoes. While the skewers soaked in water for 20 minutes, I cut the chicken in chunks. Then I started assembling the kabobs.

I heated the grill and then topped the rack with a piece of tin foil that I sprayed with Pam. When it was hot, I added the kabobs and rotated them about every 5 minutes for about 20 minutes.

Served them with rice and corn on the cob! Perfect summer dinner even without the sun. YUMMY! The kids even tried each of the veggies...some were a go...others a no-go. I will definitely try these again.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Miguel's White Dipping Sauce

While Dave was at the church last night, a friend brought him this yummy stuff! He brought him a bag of tortilla chips with it, and Dave was in heaven. Miguel's is a restaurant Dave sometimes go to for work luncheons. He thought this was a very close imitation of their dipping sauce. It was pretty tasty!

Makes 3 1/2 Cups

2 cups whipping cream
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon chicken base
1 tablespoon jalapeno juice (from bottled jalapenos)
2 tablespoons clarified butter
1 tablespoon flour
1 tablespoon bottled jalapeno, minced
1 ounce shredded monterey jack cheese
1 ounce shredded cheddar cheese

Heat whipping cream in a heavy saucepan over high heat. When the cream is ready to boil, stir in sour cream. After sour cream dissolves, reduce heat to medium. Stir in chicken base and jalapeno juice and simmer. While cream is heating. Make a roux by warming butter in a saucepan over medium heat, adding flour, and mixing with a wire whisk until mixture is smooth and pale gold in color. Just before cream mixture is ready to boil again, add roux, whisking briskly and constantly until roux is corporated. Remove from heat. Stir in minced jalapeno and the cheeses.

Serve with tortilla chips, veggies, or even on a baked potato.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

BBQ Chicken Pizza

I made this tasty pizza last week. It was nice to have pizza a little differently. Of course, I used my usual pizza dough recipe...
Mix together:
1 ½ cups warm water
1 ½ TBL yeast
1/8 cup sugar

Then add:
1/6 cup oil
1 TBL salt
3 1/3 cup flour

Mix altogether. Let dough rise for approximately 30 minutes to 1 hour. Then knead onto pizza pan. Preheat oven to 400. Cook dough for 6 minutes. Take dough out of oven and then add BBQ Chicken topping and cheese. Cook for an additional 15 minutes.

For the BBQ chicken, I boiled 4 frozen chicken tenders until done. When they were cooled, I shredded them and set aside. In a saucepan, add a bit of oil and saute about 1/4 of a cup onion...use a red onion if you have it...and 1 minced garlic clove. Add chicken and add about 3 TBL of BBQ sauce (your favorite flavor is best :). Mix well and add to top of pizza dough. I added a layer of mozerralla cheese and cheddar cheese mix and finished cooking the pizza. Served with fresh pineapple and fresh veggies.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Alfredo Sauce

Another recipe from a blogger on the fitness blog. I thought it was quite three year old agreed. My older two thought it used too much garlic (but that's what I liked about it :) so next time I'll use a bit less garlic for them :)

3/4 cup milk
2 TBL flour
1 cup cottage cheese
1/2 tsp garlic (I minced a garlic clove)
3 tsp minced onion (I chopped an onion)
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
salt & pepper

Blend in blender or processor until creamy. Cook for 10 mintues on LOW until thickened. Serve over pasta.

Sweet & Sour Chicken

I got this recipe from a fitness blog my cousin started. One of the ladies posted a yummy recipe for sweet & sour chicken. I'm ALWAYS looking for new chinese food type recipes so this was perfect.

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Cube 1 lb. chicken (boneless, skinless) and place in a greased baking dish.

Then combine all the ingredients over the stove and bring to a boil, stirring constantly.

3/4 cup Ketchup
2 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
1 tsp Lemon Juice
1 cup Pineapple Juice (she suggested using a cup of crushed pineapple so that's what I did :)
1/4 tsp Pepper or more if you like (next time I think I'll add a dash of red pepper flakes)
1/2 cup Packed Brown Sugar (light or dark)
1/8 cup flour

Pour the sauce over the chicken, cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Serve over rice. I did double this recipe but I had a lot left over so it became a great freezer meal :)

Friday, April 30, 2010

May Menu

I'm actually getting my monthly menu done early this month :) I'm ready for some new recipes so we'll be venturing out this month with new recipes.

1. Beef Stew w/ leftover roast
2. Meatloaf
3. Sweet & Sour Chicken
4. Crepes (Seriously, my kids ask for this EVERY day!)
5. Taco Soup
6. Pasta with Homemade Alfredo Sauce
7. BBQ Chicken Pizza
8. Chicken Stir Fry
9. Grilled Chicken
10. Rosemary Lime Chicken
11. Crockpot Porkchops
12. Teriyaki Chicken and Hot Rice
13. Mexican Enchilada Casserole
14. Turkey Pot Pie
15. Baked Potato Bar
16. Company Chicken
17. Skillet Parmigiana Chicken
18. Fried Chicken
19. Rice & Sausage Casserole
20. Baked Potato Soup
21. Tostadas
22. Orange Chicken
23. Salmon Loaf
24. Turkey Enchilada Casserole
25. French Toast
26. Chile Verde
27. Chinese Casserole
28. Southwestern Chicken Stir-Fry
29. Slow Cooker Carnitas
30. Hawaiian Haystacks
31. Hamburgers & Hot dogs...YEAH for BBQs on Memorial Day! :)

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Green Chile Sauce Enchiladas

Tonight I needed something I could use avocadoes with so I opted enchiladas. We always have our normal chicken enchiladas so I really wanted to try something different. I really wanted to use a can of green chile enchilada sauce that I've had sitting on the shelf. I looked on-line but couldn't find the perfect recipe so I put a few together and created these enchiladas that were DELICIOUS!

1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
8 oz. cream cheese, cubed
1 can of cream of chicken
1 can of green chilis
1 can of green chile enchilada sauce
flour tortillas
mozz & cheddar cheese

Boil frozen chicken breasts until done. When cooled, shred chicken. Add cream cheese, cream of chicken, and green chilis. Stir together. Add about half the can of enchilada sauce to this mixture. Pour about 1/4 of the can of enchilada sauce in the bottom of a 9 x 13 pan. Spoon mixture into flour tortillas. Roll filled tortilla and place in 9x13 pan. After pan is full, pour rest of enchilada sauce on top of tortillas and top with shredded cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. This is definitely going on our favorite meals list!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Bunny Biscuits

Today in Sierra's class we did a fun spring/easter cooking project. Sierra's teacher had bought the large refridgerated biscuits. I cut them in half. One of the halves became the head and the other half was cut in half again which became their ears. After they shaped the face and ears, they added chocolate chips for their eyes, a pink M&M for the nose, and half of a red jelly bean for the mouth. Cinnamon & sugar was then sprinkled on top. They turned out so cute! The only thing I'll do differently next time is be sure the mouth and nose are pushed into the dough so they don't fall off when they bake. Such a fun change from the usual sugar cookies that we usually do!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Coppertone Sunscreen SALE!!!

Okay, I know this has nothing to do with food...but at our house sunscreen is an absolute MUST most months of the year. Albertson's has a sale on Coppertone products for $6.99 this week. This INCLUDES the twin pack version of the spray-on sunscreen. Print yourself a $1 off coupon here and you're paying $3 for each bottle! GREAT deal! It was a great day at Albertson's for's always nice to hear the cashier compliment you on your shopping but even better when the people behind you in line tell you you're a smart shopper!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Chocolate Peanut Butter Bars

This recipe is from a dear sister from my hometown...Evelyn Findlay. These are similar to Special K Bars but much, much chewier. We took them to the pinewood derby/chili cook-off, and they were a hit! Good thing I ate a couple before we took them or I wouldn't have gotten any...I didn't even come home with the platter I took them on. :) I doubled the original recipe to fit on my cookie here's the recipe doubled...
2 cups sugar
2 cups light corn syrup
2 cups peanut butter (I used creamy)
12 cups Rice Krispies
approx. 1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips (melted) with about 1 TBL of peanut butter.

In a large saucepan, combine the sugar, corn syrup, and peanut butter. Cook over medium-low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat; add cereal and stir until coated. Spread onto a greased cookie sheet; press lightly. Spread melted chocolate/peanut butter over bars. YUM!!!!


This is the recipe I used for tonight's church chili cook-off. I didn't win an award but still got plenty of compliments.
1 lb. ground beef
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 TBL chili powder
1 tsp cumin
2 14 oz. cans stewed tomatoes
2 cans red kidney beans, rinsed & drained
2 cans pinto beans, rinsed & drained
1/2 onion, chopped
1 sm. can tomato paste

Brown hamburger, garlic, and onion. Add chili powder and cumin. Put in crock pot. Add tomatoes, beans, and tomato paste in crock pot. Cook on high for 4 hours...then turn to low until ready to serve. Serve with grated cheese.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Best Ever Chocolate Chip Cookies

This is the name of the recipe in the cookbook. I would have to agree. I really like when cookies are soft even after the first day. These stayed soft and tasty!

3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup shortening (I used I just added 1 cup total)
1/2 cup margarine
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 cup flour
1 tsp soda
1 tsp salt
6 oz. choc. chips
2 cups quick oats

Cream together sugars and margarine. Add eggs and vanilla. Fold in flour, soda, salt, choc. chips, and oats. Bake 9 minutes at 375 degrees. Cool for 5 minutes and then transfer to racks.

Tinfoil Dinner Casserole

My mom gave me an AWESOME cookbook for Christmas. It's a book that was compiled by the women in her church. These are always my favorite kind of from people I know! I have to be first look through the cookbook I looked at who the recipe was from rather than what the recipes were. My sister has raved over this recipe so I thought I would give it a try. Three of the five of us enjoyed this dinner. My son is my pickiest eater and of course refused to eat it since he doesn't eat potatoes (I can he be MY son since I'm from Idaho!) and the littlest is experiencing another ruptured ear drum so her eating habits are all crazy! It's a tasty twist on a tinfoil dinner :)

1 lb. ground beef
4-5 potatoes, peeled and sliced thin
3-4 carrots, peeled and sliced thin
1 sm. onion, chopped fine
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can water
1 TBL Worchestershire sauce
Salt & Pepper to taste
1 cup grated cheddar cheese

Brown beef with onion and Worcestershire sauce. Place meat in 9x13" pan. Layer with potatoes and carrots. Cover meat and veggies with soup, water, salt, and pepper. Mix together slightly. Top with grated cheese. Cover pan with foil. Bake at 375 for one hour. (I have to admit I had to cook it at 400 for 40 minutes...rushed day...and it still turned out tasty). Leftovers were even better the next day in my opinion.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


One of my goals for the year is to be a smarter shopper. Albertson's has had some GREAT deals to help me get stocked up some essentials. I loved the coupons on the back page of their ad last week so when I got the ad for this week yesterday and saw another page of coupons...I was even more excited. They have a good ad this week as well....can't wait for the 8-hour sale on Thursday! :) I'm going to get some GREAT deals. One of those will be the "Tailgate Party Pack Deal" even though we won't be watching the game :) In Albertson's this past week, I got a coupon/recipe book called "Game Day Greats" which included a coupon for $1 off 2 DiGiorno pizzas (which you have to buy 2 for the pack deal anyway)...then I just got the ads today for Family Foods and Food Land...guess what...there's a manufacturer's coupon in there for $2 off any 3 coke I'll be saving another $3 off the Party Pack Deal! :) You can bet that I have coupons also for the General Mills Cereal that is only $1.50 a box anyway when you buy 4...I'll be saving another $2.55! :) What are your great deals for the week?

Monday, February 1, 2010


When I bought this package of ribs, I didn't even pay attention that it was pork ribs. In December I went to a party we had for a friend. We had a of things there was YUMMY ribs. I asked for the recipe and couldn't wait to try it out. Good thing to know it works just as great on pork ribs :) Thanks, Debbie!

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Salt and pepper both sides of ribs. Place on a cookie sheet (I lined mine with foil). Cover ribs with foil. Bake for 3 hours. After 2 1/2 hours, take out of oven and spread one side of ribs with BBQ sauce. Put back in oven for 15 minutes. Take out, flip to cover other side of ribs with BBQ sauce, and put back in oven for last 15 minutes.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Pink Salad

This has always been one of my favorite salads. We had a potluck dinner last weekend so we took this salad.

The size of the ingredients depends on how much you want to make and your liking. I needed a big salad so I used large containers
1 container of cottage cheese
1 8 oz. container of cool whip
1 box of strawberry jello

Mix cottage cheese and a box of jello...adding dry jello a little at a time. If you're making this for a small group you just need the small box of jello. Add cool whip and cut-up strawberries. I made this salad w/ frozen strawberries. It's very delicious with raspberries as well. Change the jello to orange jello and add mandarian oranges. Yum, yum! This salad always reminds me of summertime!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Caeser Salad

The week of Christmas some friends came over for dinner, and they brought salad...fresh Caesar salad. Since then, my hubby and I can't get enough caeser salad. We've eaten a ton of it in the past two weeks. Here's the basic recipe we use:

Romaine Lettuce
Parmesan Cheese
Caeser Salad Dressing

Break lettuce into bite size pieces. Grate Parmesan cheese and add to lettuce. When ready to serve, add croutons and coat with dressing. Mix salad and ENJOY!

We even had leftover green salad from Christmas Day one of our guests brought. We used it just the same as the romaine lettuce, and it was just as delicious! It's been great to reminded of such a yummy salad.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Chicken Tamales

Around Thanksgiving time, the Albertson's ad had a recipe for tamales. I've always wanted to give tamales a try but haven't ever done it. This recipe inspired me so I gave it a try....not too bad considering it was my first attempt :) I halved the original recipe since I wasn't sure I wanted too many tamales leftover.

3 cups Maseca corn flour for tamales
1 can chicken broth (approx. 24 oz.)
1/2 cup veggie corn oil
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp baking powder
shredded chicken (cooked)
1 can chile sauce (about 14 oz.)
1 bag corn husks

Soak the corn husks in warm water until soft. Blend with a mixer Maseca, oil, salt, baking powder, and chicken broth to obtain a consistent mixture (I think I made mine a little too runny). Shred the chicken and marinate in the chile sauce. Spread masa evenly over corn husks and spread a spoonful of marinated chicken on top of the masa.

Fold the sides of the corn husk to center over the masa so that they overlap to make a long package. Fold the empty part of the husk under so that it rests against the side of the tamale with a "seam." Place the tamales in a steamer and cook tamales for 35-40 minutes. Check every 20 minutes. The tamale is cooked when it separates easily from the corn husk.

Photo disclaimer: Don't judge this recipe by my pictures...this was my VERY first attempt at tamales :)

Friday, January 1, 2010

Bread Bowls

Last week I tried a different bread bowls recipe when we had guests over for dinner. They turned out perfectly! I will definitely make these again. I couldn't keep my kids out of the "stuffing" I had pulled out to create the bread bowls. I got the recipe from but I changed it up a bit's my version of the original recipe:

3 packages of active dry yeast (if you buy yeast like I do, you don't get them in individual you'll need about 3 TBL of yeast.)
1 1/2 cups warm water
1 1/2 cups warm milk
3/4 cup shortening
3/4 cup sugar
3 eggs
3 tsp salt
9 cups flour

In a mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, shortening, sugar, eggs, salt, and 3 cups of flour. Beat until smooth. Mix in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough. (Of course, I use my kitchen aid for all the mixing.) Turn onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into eight pieces; shape each into a ball. Grease two baking sheets. Place four balls on each pan. Cover and let rise until doubled (I waited another hour). Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Remove onto wire racks.

Slice off tops and pull out insides. Bake bowls again for 10 minutes to harden the edges to hold up to your soup, chowder, or stew.