Saturday, December 30, 2006

Left Over Ham Surprise

Made a ham for Christmas. Had some leftovers. Here's what I did with it:

Bunch of leftover Ham
1 Bottle of Alfredo sauce
1 Pkg of noodles

Cube up ham into bite size bits. Cook Noodles. Drain. Return to pan. Add Alfredo sauce and ham. Warm everything up and serve with veggies and now we have no leftover ham.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Eggnog French Toast

My family loves for me to make this as soon as eggnog is available in the stores. Janet said that she makes this too.

She dips the bread in just eggnog and cooks iton her griddle, but said that this way it never gets that crisp browning on it.

When I make it I use about 1 1/2 cups eggnog, 1/2 cup milk and an egg or two.

When your using eggnog you don't want your bread left in the mixture to long, in fact it's best to just dredge it through enough to just get it covered.

Mine gets crisp on the outside, but if you've accidentally let it soak up too much mixture I will sometimes bake it in the oven for an extra 10 minutes at 350, after cooking it in a griddle.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Island Chicken

Janet I found it!!! This was a recipe I found in college and used to make pretty often, but I thought I had lost the recipe. I'm so glad I found it again.

2 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1/4 tsp dried oregano leaves
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tblsp olive oil
3/4 cup pineapple juice
1 tblsp lime juice
1 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp chopped parsley or cilantro

Pound chicken to 1/2" thickness. Combine oregano and cinnamon. Sprinkle over chicken.

Cook chicken in skillet over medium heat, with hot oil. 10 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove to a plate.

Stir pineapple juice, lime juice and cornstarch in skillet; cook, stirring until sauce boils and thickens. Stir in parsley. Spoon over chicken.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Chocolate Gateau

This cake is sinfully decadent, but actually not hard to make at all.

1 (12 oz) pkg semi-sweet choc chips (*divided)
3/4 cup sugar
2/3 cup butter, softened
3 eggs, separated
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup flour
1/4 cup milk
2/3 cup ground nuts (I use almonds)

3 tblsp butter
2 tblsp corn syrup
1 tblsp water
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips (*reserved from cake)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt 1 cup chips till smooth (either in a double boiler of the microwave), set aside. In large bowl combine sugar and butter; beat until creamy. Beat in melted chips, eggs yolks, vanilla and salt. Gradually add flour and milk, beat well. Stir in nuts. In a different bowl beat egg whites till stiff peaks form. Fold into chocolate batter.

Spread into a greased 9 inch round springform pan.

Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes.

Cool 10 minutes, than remove the sides of the pan. Cool completely.


In a small saucepan , combine butter, corn syrup and water. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat. Add the chocolate chips, stir until all chips are melted and mixture is smooth. Cool to room temp. Pour glaze over cake, covering top and sides.

Garnish as desired. We've either sprinkled with more nuts or our favorite, decorate with fresh strawberries.

Fettucini Primavera

This is what my Dad usually makes for our family on Christmas Eve. It tastes wonderful and it's really pretty easy.

*It used to be made with shrimp, which was delicious , but one I became allergic to shellfish the meat changed to chicken or a sausage like polska keilbasa.

In 1 tablespoon butter and a little olive oil saute your meat (if your having it) remove from pan and set aside.

Add veggies of your choice to pan and saute (zucchini, broccoli, julliened carrots, or red pepper cut in strips) When almost done add 1 clove of garlic to veggies. Remove from pan and set aside, they can be added to the meat.

Alfredo Sauce

In same pan mix 1/2 cup butter, 1 cup cream, 1 cup parmesan cheese, and season to taste with pepper, garlic and nutmeg. Simmer till thickened. It doesn't take long at all so you want to make sure that your fettucini noodles are done when your making your sauce. Add veggies and meat to your sauce and mix to cover, remove from heat.

Serve over cooked, warm fettucini noodles.

Mashed Potatoes: An Authentic Idaho Girl Recipe

I have felt like such a writing slacker, forgive me. I haven't felt much like cooking or eating or even writing about cooking due to my recent quadruple wisdom tooth extraction. BUT today I woke up and didn't feel the need to rush for the pain medication, so I feel honor bound to present the recipe that has kept me alive for the past week and a half. All Idaho girls should have this recipe (or their own variation) etched upon their hearts; here is mine, for a gi-normous batch of creamy, hot, steamy mashed potatoes.

Start out with a pot. Peal a bunch of potatoes, enough to mostly fill the pot (if your pot is the same size as my pot, that will be about 6-8 big old baking spuds). Wash the potatoes in cold water, peel them, and rinse them again (painful, yes). Cut them into same-sized manageable chunks. Put your potato chunks into the empty pot and just cover them with cold water. Add 2-3 teaspoons salt to the water. Cover the pot and bring to a boil. When you can easily pierce the potato with a fork, they are done cooking (20-40 minutes). Take them out, drain all the water out and put the potatoes back into the hot pot to let more liquid evaporate off. Heat up about a cup of milk in the microwave, not boiling hot, but pretty hot (about 1 minute).

Put the potatoes in a big bowl (or your stand mixer) and use a hand beater (off, for now) to give a good mash to the spuds. Now, get some butter or margarine and put about 4 or 5 tablespoon chunks right on the potatoes and a teaspoon sprinkling of salt (I'm currently in love with kosher, coarse salt. Garlic salt is also good in it. Once, we used a bunch of roasted garlic; that was delightful). Next, pour about 1/2 a cup milk onto the potatoes, turn the beaters to low and carefully smash the potatoes; add milk, salt, and butter as needed to the proper taste and consistency (as defined by you). When they are mostly all smashed, whip it up on high to a creamy heaven. When I'm feeling extra unhealthy, I put pats of butter into the finished pile of happiness.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Crockpot Cranberry Chicken

This is what we're having for dinner tonight. It smells really good cooking.
6 chicken breast halves
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped onion
16 oz can whole berry cranberry sauce
1 cup BBQ sauce
Layer all the ingredients in your slow cooker. Cook 6-8 hours on low or 4 hours on high.

Lazy Morning Breakfast Casserole

When I just don't want to mess with cooking but my family wants a warm breakfast we make this easy casserole. I based it on what I remember of Pat's Christmas casserole but made a few changes so that it works when you cook it the same morning you make it. The crust is a little crunchy, a little chewy. Chris particularly likes the peppers with bacon, but ham and broccolli would work just as well.
8 slices coarse sourdough bread, torn
1/4 cup butter melted
12 eggs
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup milk
1/2 onion, chopped
1/2 red pepper, chopped
1/2 cup bacon bits (the real kind) or 4 slices bacon, crumbled
4 oz can green chiles, chopped
1 1/2 cups cheese, grated
Melt the butter in a 9x13 casserole dish. Toss the bread in the butter. Set aside. In a medium mixing bowl beat the eggs and milk. Add the remaining ingredients and mix gently. Slowly, pour the egg mixture over the bread in the casserole dish. Bake at 350 degrees until the edges are brown and the eggs are set, about 30 -45 minutes. Serve with fresh or canned fruit.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Scalloped Celery

This is the most unique use of celery I've ever seen. My grandfather really liked this recipe and requested it for all the holidays. Amy told me I should post this recipe. :-)
4 cups celery, thinly sliced
6 Tbsp butter, divided
3 Tbsp flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 Cup milk
1 can mushrooms
2 Tbsp green peppers, finely chopped
2 Tbsp pimientos
1 cup sharp cheddar, grated
1 cup soft bread crumbs
Saute celery in 4 Tbsp butter until tender. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside. Stir flour and salt in skillet. Add milk and bring to a boil. Cook 2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients except reserved butter and bread crumbs. Stir until cheese melts. Add celery. Pour into 1 quart casserole. Toss bread crumbs with remaining butter. Sprinkle over casserole. Bake 20-25 minutes at 350 degrees.

Holiday Recipes

Janet and I were talking and we thought this would be a great time to share some family holiday recipes, so that we might get new ideas for Thanksgiving and Christmas!

My Mother-in-law has several great jello salads that she makes for the holidays, so I thought I'd share some of my favorites.

Blueberry Salad

2 sm pkgs raspberry jello
1 can blueberry pie filling
1 sm can crushed pineapple

Mix jello with 2 cups hot water, stir in pineapple and pie filling; let set up. She usually uses a 9x13 inch glass pan.


1 8-oz softened cream cheese
1 8-oz container sour cream
1 tsp vanilla
sugar to taste

Whip together until smooth. Spread over set jello.

Eggnog Salad

1 tsp gelatin
¼ cup water
1 can sliced pears
1 pkg lemon jello
1 cup sour cream
¾ cup eggnog
1 can mandarin oranges 11oz, drained

In a small bowl, combine gelatin and water. Set aside. Drain pears, save juice, set aside. Add enough water to pear juice to make 2 cups, bring to a boil in a saucepan. Remove from heat, stir in gelatin mixture and lemon jello, till smooth. Cool 15 minutes.

Stir in sour cream and eggnog. Dice pears and add fruit to jello. Pour into a bowl and refrigerate.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Queso Dip

This is one of our all time favorite appetizers. You can make it with real cheese or processed american cheese. The results will be different depending on which cheese you choose. Cheddar provides exceptional depth of flavor but the dip is a little bit grainy (you can toss the shredded cheese with a couple tablespoons of flour to minimize the graininess). Velveeta is super easy but it lacks some of the character and sharpness you get with the cheddar.
1 pound cheese
1 can cream of chicken or celery soup
1 large can chopped green chiles
1 fresh ripe tomato or 1 15 oz can of Rotel (Diced tomatoes with chiles)
If you're in a hurry microwave all the ingredients in a casserole dish for about 8 minutes. Stir after 5 minutes. If you're not in a hurry, and want an easy way to serve the dip, place the ingredients in a crock pot about 2 hours before you want to serve it. Set the crock pot on warm once everything has melted and keep the lid on as much as possible in order to avoid a skin forming over the cheese. We plug the crockpot in and place it on one of the end tables next to the couch when we have company. Serve with tortilla chips. Leftovers are great incorporated into chicken enchiladas or on tacos.

Mandarin Orange Cake

Yet another recipe from Genaura. I think I'll make this for Chris's birthday at home.
1 box white or yellow cake mix
1 can mandarin oranges, drained
2 eggs
mandarin orange juice + water to = 1 1/3 cups
Mix all the ingredients together. Pour into a prepared 9 x 13 pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes. Frost with:
1/2 pint whipping cream, whipped or 9 oz. cool whip
1 small package instant pudding
15 oz crushed pineapple

Black Bottom Cupcakes

This is another recipe from Genaura. It's great for a chocolate fix!
1 oz cream cheese
1 egg 1
1/3 Cups sugar
pinch of salt
6 oz chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 cup cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup oil
1 cup water
1 Tbsp vinegar
Blend cream cheese, egg, 1/3 cup sugar and salt until smooth. Stir in chocolate chips and set aside. In mixing bowl sift together dry ingredients and 1/2 tsp salt. Stir in liquid ingredients. Mix until smooth. Fill paper cups 1/3 full with batter. Spoon cream cheese mixture on top. Sprinkle with sugar and chopped almonds if desired. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.

Easy Easy Biscuit Mix Cookies

I've made mine with banana creme pudding but you could use any flavor.

Banana Creme Cookies

1 1/2 c biscuit mix
1/2 c milk
1/4 c sugar
1 pkg banana creme instant pudding mix
1 egg
about 1/2 bag candy kisses

Combine all ingredients except kisses. Beat well until mixed. Drop by spoonful onto greased cookie sheet. Put 1 unwrapped kiss in center of each cookie. Bake 8-10 minutes in 400 degree oven until slightly brown. Makes about 3 dozen.

***Janet thought butterscotch pudding with peanuts would be good.

Super Good Rhubarb Upside Down Cake

Cherry Rhubarb Upside down Cake

1 cake mix
5 cups cut rhubarb, about 1/4 inch thick
3/4 cup sugar
3 cups mini marshmallows
3 oz box jello (we use cherry)

Place rhubarb in bottom of a 9x13 inch pan. Sprinkle sugar over rhubarb. Cover with marshmallows. Sprinkle with the jello powder.

Mix up your cake mix according to box directions. Pour batter over the ingredients allready in the pan.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. The top will turn a deep brown early but don't take it out.

When done let set 5-10 minutes, than turn out onto a platter if desired. We don't turn it out, instead we just serve it out if the glass pan and turn each piece as it's put onto the plate.

If you use a metal pan you have to turn it out!!!

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Easiest Chicken Enchilads EVER!

I got this one from my cousin. I make it for new moms and get rave reviews.

2-4 large boneless skinless chicken breast
1 can of refried beans (regular size)
grated cheese
flour tortillas
1 large can of enchilada sauce (red or green)
hot sauce (if desired)
Optional toppings: tomatoes, olives, green onions, sour cream

Boil chicken until fully cooked. Let cool. Shred chicken in bowl and mix in refried beans and some cheese (however much you want of each), just make sure the chicken is coated with the beans. Add hot sauce if desired. Spoon into tortilla and wrap up like a burrito. Place in a 9x13 pan. Cover with enchilada sauce. (make sure all tortillas are covered or they come out crusty).
Bake at 350 degrees for 30-45 minutes. The last 15 minutes of cooking, add the toppings of your choice, except sour cream wait until the end for that. Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Decadently Easy Creme Brulee

Creme Brulee

1 quart heavy cream
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
1 cup vanilla sugar, divided
6 large egg yolks
2 quarts hot water

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Place the cream, vanilla bean and its pulp into a medium saucepan set over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat, cover and allow to sit for 15 minutes. Remove the vanilla bean and reserve for another use.

In a medium bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup sugar and the egg yolks until well blended and it just starts to lighten in color. Add the cream a little at a time, stirring continually. Pour the liquid into 6 (7 to 8-ounce) ramekins. Place the ramekins into a large cake pan or roasting pan. Pour enough hot water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake just until the creme brulee is set, but still trembling in the center, approximately 40 to 45 minutes. Remove the ramekins from the roasting pan and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 3 days.

Remove the creme brulee from the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes prior to browning the sugar on top. Divide the remaining 1/2 cup vanilla sugar equally among the 6 dishes and spread evenly on top. Using a torch, melt the sugar and form a crispy top. (You can use the broiler, but be super careful not to burn it, and if you have a low setting use it. If it does burn you can actually scrape if off after it cools and start over.) Allow the creme brulee to sit for at least 5 minutes before serving.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Bagel Breakfast Sandwiches

Today my husband wasn't feeling well so I let him pick what was for dinner and this is what he picked. We don't have these very often, and I know it sounds more like a breakfast thing, but at our house most breakfast foods (pancakes, omelets etc) actually get fixed for dinner way more often than for breakfast.

Bagel, cut in half and toasted.

Place cooked bacon slices on one side and cheese on the other.

Whisk and egg on a bowl and pour into a heated skillet. I let it run and cook it flat like the beginning of an omelet. When fully cooked I fold it in 1/4s with a spatula, than place on top of the bacon. Topping with cheese and bagel top.

Aunt Jean's Cranberry Chicken

My great-aunt Jean, Grandma Canfield's sister, has made this chicken recipe for years. It's the ace in the hole she pulls out whenever she needs to entertain but just doesn't want to spend the time making something difficult. The appeal to this dish is tri-fold. First, it requires minimal preparation. Second, it dirties very few dishes. Third, it's delicious and so simple that you're never suprised by varied outcomes. It will always taste and look lovely.
6 chicken breast halves (you can pound them flat and roll them into little square bundles if you're so inclined)
2 Tbsp butter
1 can whole berry cranberry sauce
2 Tbsp Worchestershire sauce
1-2 boxes Uncle Ben's Long Grain and Wild Rice Mix
chicken broth
Place the rice and seasoning mix in the bottom of a 9x13 pan. Arrange the chicken on top of the rice. Melt the butter and mix it with the worchestershire sauce and cranberry sauce. Pour the sauce mixture over the top of the chicken (I also add a can of chicken broth/box of rice to the pan before before pouring the cranberry sauce on top). Bake in a 350 degree oven for 30-60 minutes until the chicken is done (time will depend on how big the breasts are and whether or not you flattened them).

Friday, October 20, 2006

Pumpkin Pie variation

My family has a slight variation on pumpkin pie that is a huge hit.

In your basic pie recipes, both for fresh or canned, replace the evaporated milk with egg nog when it's available! It just add that little extra something.

Did You Know You Can Make Pumpkin Pie Out Of Real Pumpkins?

My husband is a pumpkin pie connoisseur. He loves the slimey pastey things. Though I am far from picky, I detest pumpkin pie. However, I have now discovered that a pie made from fresh pumpkin is tolerable to my palate and superb to the rest of my family. I have tried this recipe twice. Once with a regular old pumpkin out of my garden and once with a sweet pumpkin I purchased at the grocery store for $1.09. Both resulted in rave reviews. So, if you like pumpkin pie and have never made it out of a real pumpkin, here is the technique.

And it only takes about 60-90 minutes or so start to finish.

Preheat your oven to 425.

First, cut the pumpkin in half lenthgthwise. Pull off the stem and scrape out the seeds and as much of the stringy stuff as you can get out (an icecream scoop works nicely).

Next, cut the halves into quarters or so and microwave them, covered, for about 10-15 minutes, on high power or until nice and smooshy.

Then, scrape the meat off the rind (those big spoons work nice, the kind you don't use for cereal, I think they are soup spoons, but I don't use them for that either). You will need about 3 cups of pumpkin goo and a pretty small pumpkin does it surprisingly well.

Get out your handy dandy blender or food processor (or a hand mixer if your patient). In it dump:

3 cups freshly cooked pumpkin goop
1 cup sugar
4 large eggs
1.5 cans (12 oz size) evaporated milk
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
pinch of salt

Mix well until smooth. Place pie crust on oven rack and pour pie filling into pie crust (I make the pie crust while the pumpkin is in the microwave, multi-tasking). My husband like it nice and thick, so I fill it up to about a quarter inch from the top. CAREFULLY push the oven rack in - it sloshes. Bake at 425 for 15 minutes then turn the oven down to 250 and bake for another 20-30 minutes (the recipe I went off of said 45-60, but that was too long) - insert a butter knife; if it's done it should come out clean.

I got this recipe off and they had lots of pictures and great instructions. And, my husband said my pie was a 9 out of 10 and he can't give out a 10 until he is dead, thereby having tasted all the pumpkin pie he will taste and able to judge which was the best.

It was fun to make - my four year old got to see the plant life cycle from seed to pie. Worth the effort.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Tonight's dinner!!!

It's been a long time since I've made this but I had to get a new bottle of paprika and it reminded me of this recipe.

Chicken Paprikash

2-2 1/2 pounds skinless chicken
1 tablespoon cooking oil
1 cup chopped onion
3 to 4 teaspoons paprika
1 cup chicken broth
1 8 ounce carton sour cream
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups hot egg noodles or rice

In a skillet cook chicken in oil until slightly browned, turning to brown evenly, about 15 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Remove chicken from skillet; set aside.

Add onions and paprika to skillet, cooking till onion is tender. Add chicken turning pieces to coat with paprika mixture. Add Broth. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer 40 minutes or till chicken is no longer pink.

Transfer chicken to a plate and keep warm. Add water if necessary to juice to get about 1 1/2 cups. Stir flour into sour cream, gradually add to juice mixture in skillet. Cook and stir till thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir for 1 minute more.

Spoon sauce over chicken and noodles or rice.

Question for Janet

Janet what was your recipe for the cranberry chicken that you used to make in the dorms?

Dave's Favorite Acorn Squash

Dave's not terribly fond of squash but even he gets excited when we make this acorn squash. The recipe is deceptively simple, but many of the best things in life are the simple ones. I find it much easier to cook acorn squash this way than to try and cut the skin off while it's still raw.
Acorn squash, cut in half
1-2 Tbsp butter/half
2-3 Tbsp brown sugar/half
Arrange the acorn squash in a pan with the cut sides up. If the halves rock or are unsteady cut a small slice off the bottom to help them balance. Generously salt each half of the squash (about as much salt as you'd use on a raw potato of equal size). Place a pat of butter in each half. Sprinkle the brown sugar into the middle of the squash (don't place on top edge because it will burn away from the butter).Cook these in the oven at 375 degrees for about 45 minutes - 1 hour. They are also good in the microwave.Place a few tablespoons water in the bottom of the pan and then microwave for about 10-15 minutes or until the squash is soft. Serve the squash intact and then use your fork to pull the meat down into the syrup at the base.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Pork Chops with Mushroom Gravy

As I prepared this evening's dinner I was, once again, amazed at the versatility of mushroom soup (which we buy by the case). Today I am cooking in the crock pot (imagine that) but this also works well in a covered skillet if you brown your chops first and then cook for another 45 minutes with the rest of the ingredients, until they're nicely done and not a food poisoning danger any longer (check your thermometer if you're uncertain)
Pork Chops (we like 1" thick, center cut chops)
Cream of mushroom soup (I use 1 can for every 4 pork chops)
Onion, sliced (as much as you like)
Worchestershire Sauce (a few splashes)
Sour cream - 2 Tbsp or so (optional, add at the end)
Layer the ingredients in the crock pot in the order listed. Turn it on and wait 4-6 hours. If you would like your gravy a little bit more rich add the sour cream - we usually don't. I serve this dish with skillet potatoes. Cut the potatoes in half and score them diagonally both directions across the cut surfaces (make a grid). melt about 1/2 stick of butter in your skillet and cook with the lid closed about 30 minutes or until done. Turn the potatoes half way through cooking. Do not layer the potato halves. Works best with small potatoes.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Great Baked French Toast

Crème Brulee French Toast
Works really well for Christmas morning!

1 1/2 C. HALF x HALF


Melt the butter and add the sugar and corn syrup. Stirring constantly. Coat the bottom of a 9 x 13 pan with the mixture. Cut the French bread in 2 "slices and place in the pan.

Mix the eggs, half x half and vanilla with a little salt. Pour this over the top of the bread and refrigerate overnight. Bake for 1 hour in a 350 oven.

Janet I found the carrot recipe!!!

Glazed Carrots

1 lb baby carrots
3 tbls butter
2 1/2 tbls brown sugar
1 tbls dijon mustard

Microwave carrots till crisp tender about 6-8 minutes. I have also done this recipe with cooked frozen carrots.

In a skillet melt butter- stir in brown sugar and mustard to make a smooth sauce, Add carrots and toss. Cook one more minute.

Wild Rice Casserole

You can tell I'm thinking of the holidays. My family tends to make this on semi special occassions, not because it's difficult, but because it can be hard to find wild rice sometimes, so we hoarde our stashes sent from Minnesota.

1 cup chedder grated
1 cup chopped ripe olives
1 cup diced or stewed tomatoes
1/2 lb fresh mushrooms sliced
1/2 cup chopped onions
1 cup wild rice, washed and soaked
1/2 cup cooking oil
1 cup hot water
salt and pepper

Saute mushrooms. Drain water from rice. Mix all ingredients in an ungreased casserole dish, saving a little cheese to garnish the top later. Stir in hot water to keep moist.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

Hot Artichoke Dip (soooo good)

This is a great dip if your having company.

1 can artichoke hearts, drained
1/4 cup minced parsly
dash cayenne pepper (optional)
dash of salt and pepper
3/4 cup mayo or miracle whip
1 cup parmessan

preheat oven to 375 degrees ( we have done this in a little dip crockpot, but you have to watch that is doesn't dry out)

Chop artichokes semi-finely. Mix artichokes and remaining ingredients, except paprika. Spread in a baking dish. Sprinkle with paprika.

Bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes. Serve with sliced bread of crackers.

One of my Favorite Cookies

These are wonderful delicate and flakey little cookies that look really cute if you use cookie stamps.

1 c powdered sugar
1 c white sugar
1 c butter
1 c vegetable oil

In a mixing bowl cream these ingredients.

2 eggs - beat into sugar mixture

4 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp soda
1 tsp cream of tarter
1 tsp vanilla

Add to bowl and mix well.

Roll dough into small balls, and place on cookie sheet. Flatten with a sugared glass bottom of cookie stamp.

Bake at 375 degrees about 10 minutes, until golden.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Thanks for the baked potato soup recipe

It was really yummy!!! First time my hubby liked potato soup:)

Taco Chicken Soup (Crockpot style)

One can each of the following:
red kidney beans
garbanzo beans
black beans
pinto beans
(or mix and match your favs of course)

2 lg cans diced, stewed tomatoes
1 pkg taco seasoning (or if you're like me and you don't buy taco seasoning, see recipe below)
1 pkg dry ranch seasoning mix
Approx. 4 cut-up chicken breasts (either raw or cooked. I never do 4 I do 2 and I never pre-cook either).

Toss it all in the crockpot and cook all day till you're ready to eat!

Taco Seasoning
1 Tbsp Cornstarch
1 Tbsp minced onion
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp chili pdr
1/2 tsp onion salt
1/4 tsp cayenne (i never have this, it's fine without)
1 1/2 tsp oregano
1 Tbsp red pepper flakes
1 Tbsp minced garlic

Pumpkin Cookies

It's that time of year!:)

1/2 C butter
1 1/2 C brown sugar
2 lg eggs
1 C mashed pumpkin (a plentiful cup:)
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 C flour
1 Tbsp baking pdr
1 1/2 C walnuts AND/OR CHOCOLATE CHIPS (hint, hint, nudge)
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Beat first 3 ingredients. Add vanilla and stir in pumpkin. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl and add. Bake in greased pan at 375 for 12-14 min.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Easy, Wonderful Frosting

After taking a cake decorating project in 4-H and getting to eat all my frosting mistakes I've developed an aversion to buttercream frosting. It's ok in small quantities but certainly not anything that I really crave anymore. This frosting is one I really like to pair with white cake and fresh berries, but it's just generally good (although high in fat) and we love it on everything we've ever tried it on (including waffles).
1 pint whipping cream
1 small package instant pudding (usually vanilla or cheesecake flavor, lemon's good too)
Beat whipping cream until soft peaks form. Slowly beat in instant pudding mix. If the whipped cream is too stiff when you add the pudding your frosting will be a little bit lumpy but still good. If the cream's not quite stiff enough let the frosting sit for a few minutes after you add the mix and you'll have really thick, rich pudding.
I've been wanting to try making a chocolate cake with chocolate pudding frosting and topped with cherry pie filling. For Sam's birthday I make white cake and use cheesecake pudding mix; and top the cake with raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries. Jake's birthday cupcakes were strawberry ice cream cone cupcakes with vanilla whipped cream frosting, sprinkles and maraschino cherries.

Great Grandmother Canfield's Kolache

When my mother was a young girl she worked hard to get a written recipe for these kolache. Her grandmother prepared them for special occasions and they are a family favorite. However, like many very old recipes there was nothing written down and the instructions were along the lines of, "add flour until the dough looks like this," "at this point the dough should feel like this," "the prunes should be just this consistency..." So Mom watched and tried to estimate measurements. Then she went home and got her mother to help her experiment until they made Kolache like her grandmother's and had measured quantities and more specific directions. These are a traditional Bohemian treat that has been passed down in our family for generations. Some Americanized versions call for an apricot or cherry topping, but we stick with the traditional prune filling. Many thanks to Mom and Grandma for documenting this lovely roll recipe. The recipe can be halved if you want to make the dough in your bread machine (but the texture is finer if you make it by hand).
3/4 Cup shortening
1 Cup boiling water
1 tsp salt
1/2 Cup sugar
2 eggs
1 Cup cold water
2 packages yeast
6 Cups flour
Mix shortening with salt and boiling water. Let cool. Add sugar, eggs, and cold water (which has been standing for 5 minutes with the yeast and 1tsp sugar dissolving). Add flour. Mix. Let rise in a greased bowl until double in size. Punch down. Turn out onto floured board and let rest 10 minutes. Roll 1/4" thick. Cut with a 2" biscuit cutter (we use a greased drinking glass).
While the dough is rising make the filling.
3/4 pound prunes (cover with water and cook until tender, then chop or grind- reserve liquid to thin filling). Add spices to chopped fruit. Use enough reserved liquid to make a spreadable filling.
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp cloves or allspice
1 Cup sugar
Put the dough circles on a greased pan about 1" apart to rise. Press lightly leaving a small ridge around the edge. Spread with filling. Sprinkle with fresh bread crumbs and dot with butter. Let rise until double. Bake in a 350 degree oven until brown, about 12-15 minutes.

Genaura's Apple Crumble

This is the most amazingly easy and delicious apple recipe I've ever tried. My family is addicted to pie but they have a hard time deciding between apple pie and apple crumble. We grow our own Lodi apples and prepare them for pies by peeling, slicing, and seasoning them(we use flour, sugar, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg and salt). Then we line pie plates with two long strips of foil and pour enough apples into each plate to make a generous pie. Fold the foil over the top of the apples, freeze the "pies", dump the frozen goodies into a gallon freezer bag and then when you need a wonderful desert fast, dump the frozen glob into a prepared piecrust or a casserole dish and make crumble or crisp. For this crumble I place the frozen apples into the skillet that came with my cookware set (I think it's 12"). I double the crumble ingredients when making crumble with one of our prepared pies.
4 Cups sliced, peeled apples
1/4 Cup sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp water
Cook in saucepan until apples soften and sauce begins to thicken (I've never actually done this because I always use our prepared pies from the freezer).
1 Cup flour
1/2 Cup sugar
1 Cup cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 Cup butter, melted
Toss the crumble ingredients together until mixed. Cover the apples with crumble topping and cook until lightly browned (about an hour if you're using frozen apples, I'm sure it will be considerably shorter with fresh, cooked apples... I neglected to write that part of the recipe down). I cook this in a 350 degree oven.

Never Fail Piecrust

This recipe came from my college roomate Genaura Lee. We had an agreement, I would cook and she would clean. She didn't really think she liked cooking but she did come to school with a recipe box full of tried and true recipes from her mother. I thought my piecrust was great, she very nicely asked me to try her mother's recipe. I never again used the recipe from my family. This pastry is rich and flaky (very flaky). It is so forgiving that I've even rolled the dough twice (think dropping rolled piecrust on counter and tearing it apart, then re-rolling) and had it turn out. The original recipe says it makes 4 9" crusts but we really like crust so I get 2 10" crusts and a nice sized cinnamon sugar scrap crust out of this recipe. Dave's very fond of thick edges on the crusts so when I trim the pastry after placing it in the pie plate I leave about a 1" overhang and then turn it under the rest of the dough. This also makes it easier to pinch the crust and make a pretty edge. I also find it easiest to roll the dough between two silicone baking sheets with just a sprinkling of flour. The dough peels right off and you don't have an excess of flour making the pastry tough or dusty.
3 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 1/4 Cups Shortening
1 egg, well beaten
1 Tbsp vinegar
4 Tbsp cold water
Mix flour and salt in large bowl. Cut in shortening with pastry cutter or two knives until coarse crumbs are formed. Combine egg with water and vinegar, drizzle over the flour mixture. Mix lightly until flour is all moistened and holds together in a ball. If too soft to roll, cover and chill for a short while.


I think it would be fun if we had a weekly or bi-weekly challenge to encourage us to try unfamiliar foods. I don't know if we should vote on a particular ingredient or cuisine we'd like to try (think eggplant or asian cooking) or if it should be a more general challenge just to try something new and then report on your results. This could be our opportunity to experiment and justify it to our husbands as being a challenge (they understand dares). Make up your own recipes, find something new to try online, or ask a friend for a tried and true recipe they make. What do you guys think? Is this something you would be interested in?

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Hey My Awesome Contributors

I am compiling all our recipes into Word so as to format them into a cook book more easily (a project I should have started 2 months ago). Can I just make a couple of requests ... please post recipes as posts, not as a comment, feel free to do more than one recipe per post, but keep them up as posts even if they are in response to a recipe request. Also, if after you post, you realize you missed an ingredient or a step or have some alternate serving suggestions or anything that would contribute to the recipe, please take a second to go back to your post and edit it. I'm going to change the archive to weekly instead of monthly and copy the recipes over to the word program once a week and uniformly format them. I have already copied over all the recipes so far and gone through the comments for alternate serving suggestions, etc. So just take these suggestions from now on.

Also, as far as formatting and cookbook stuff goes ... what's your favorite organizational method? By main ingredient, by type of dish (main, side, dessert), random, other? Oh, and try to give your recipes a sassy descriptive yummy name - even if you just call it hamburger and rice-a-roni, adjectives do wonders for me when I'm looking for a recipe. I'll make Super Amazing Chocolate Chips Cookies way sooner than just chocolate chip cookies. And I love the story behind the recipe stuff we get occasionally, makes things more personal. And how concerned are you about being credited for the specific recipes you submit? Is it okay if all contributor names are on the cover and title page, but not on each specific recipe .. or maybe I want to give credit where it belongs so that the story behind the recipes make more sense .. not sure, what do you think?

Anyway, keep up the good work! Feel free to post your less than gourmet, every day meals, too, the fast and easy things you have found to fix. And if you find or hear or try something new that is fabu, make a post.

Finally - how many recipes should a cook book have, do you think? I'm sure the more the better (as long as it's not a bunch of repeats with slight variations, those bug me) but should we work hard and try to get enough to put a book together by Christmas (like a spiral bound kinkos special for friends and family) or be more relaxed and let it be until there are enough?

Did I ever tell you I was a control FREAK about projects? You shoulda seen me in my psych project groups and as primary pres. Yeah, unassuming little brandy .. perfectionist CONTROL FREAK! Forgive me my neurosis!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Pizza dough

I used to run a pizza place back when I could handle a 9am to 3am shift. Those were the days. Sometimes think I could do it again. Then I wake up screaming. But I really really love pizza. Cheese pizza. And pepperoni anchovy. And taco. And just about anything. But a good pizza needs a good crust. So here are the best two I have found (I like 'em bready and not greasy).

Basic White Pizza Dough
(I'm quite lazy so I make the bread machine do all my mixing and kneading, you can do it the old fashioned way if you'd like, I will not support you in that choice, however!)

1 C warm water
2 T olive oil
1 t salt
2 t sugar
2 C flour
1 T yeast

If you do this in the bread maker, put it in in that order, put in on the dough mode and let her go. If you do it oldschool dissolve yeast, water and sugar until foamy (5-10 minutes). Gradually add flour and salt to yeast mixture. Knead 5-10 minutes. Cover bowl and let rise until double (45-1 hour).

Now, either method - Split in half, roll each out and put in greased pan. You can bake it now at 475 for 5-8 minutes for a crispier crust. Add the toppings and bake 8-12 minutes (melty cheese, nice and brown crust).

Whole Wheat (and delicious) Pizza Dough

1 1/2 C warm water
2 T sugar
1 T yeast
1 1/2 t salt
2 T olive oil
3 C bread flour
1 C whole wheat flour

same as above.

BBQ chicken pizza - Use leftover chicken and KC Masterpiece for the sauce, onions, olives, etc.

Taco Pizza - Use taco season ground beef, salsa for sauce, olives, onions. After cooked, top with shredded lettuce and tomatoes - serve with sour cream or ranch.

I just use a can of hunts pasta sauce for regular pizza sauce (my favorite is garden style, 3 cheese is good too).

Both these doughs also work great for breadsticks and cheese bread. Butter 'em up before and after cooking, bake with some garlic and Parmesan, crushed red peppers (if your brave). For dessert sticks, butter before and after then sprinkle cinnamon and sugar on afterwards, dip in cream cheese frosting, mmm.

Now I have revealed my pizza secrets.

Brandy's favorite cookie recipes

These are two freaking awesome cookie bar recipes. I used to be all about the 50/50 chance that my cookies would work or would spread into a mass of grossness. NOW I just make one of these bar recipes and we eat like kings ... big, fat kings.

Little t mean teaspoon. A big T would mean tablespoon, I got lazy when typing this and thought perhaps I should clarify, just in case.

Super Amazing Peanut Butter Cookie Bars From Heaven

2 C flour
2 C oats
1 C sugar
1 C brown sugar
1 t soda
1 t salt
1 C butter (soft)
2/3 C peanut butter
2 eggs
1 bag chocolate chips (I like milk chocolate bestest)

Cream together butter and sugars. Mix in peanut butter. Blend in eggs. In a separate bowl, stir together dry ingredients (flour, oats, salt, soda). Beat dry stuff into creamy stuff. Press into pan (2-9X13s or 1 big old cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 15-20 (toothpick test). Melt chocolate chips (you can use 3 cups chips or 2 cups chips and 2/3 cup peanut butter (I use the peanut butter)) and frost the cookies with melted chocolate happiness. Refridgerate for a while to solidify things faster.

Almond Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars (aka Kristi's To Die For Cookie Bars)

2 C flour
1/2 t baking soda
1 C dark brown sugar (or regular brown)
1 C butter (soft)
1 large egg
2 t vanilla
1 C chopped nuts (almonds are the best, toast them a bit in the oven first)
1 1/2 C chocolate chips (I once went with half white half semi-sweet)

Combine flour and soda, set aside. Cream together sugar, butter, egg, and vanilla until light and smooth. Add flour, nuts, and chocolate chips, do not over mix. Kristi puts it in an 8X8 which make very thick bars, I prefer a 9X13, and I bet a cookie sheet would work too. Bake at 300 for 35-45 in the 8X8, 25-30 in the 9X13 and I haven't tried a cookie sheet, so guess. Use the tooth pick test and you want it to be a little doughy in the middle, but not too much and not too dry.

Banana Snack Cake

Janet said that I needed to post this recipe, which I love to make when I need a sweet fix but want something at least a little better for you!

1 cup margarine, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk ( my family actually uses 1 cup of milk with 1 tablespoon vinegar)
1 cup bananas, mashed
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour (I have also used 1 1/2 cups flour and 1/2 cup wheat flour)
1 cups oats
1 1/2 tsp soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup nuts

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 9x13 pan. In a large bowl, combine margarine, sugar and eggs; mix well. Stir in buttermilk, bananas and vanilla; blend thoroughly. Stir in flour, oats, soda and salt; mix well. Stir in chips and nuts.

Bake 30 - 35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Zuppa Toscana Soup

This recipe is an Olive Garden Clone, that's wonderful. The only other note is that this recipe only makes three servings so you'll probably want to increase it.

1/2 pound hot italian sausage (2 large links)(I have used ground)
3 cups chicken broth
3 cups milk
2 tablespoons minced onion
1 tablespoon bacon bits
1/4 teaspoon salt
dash of crushed red pepper flakes
1 medium russet potato
2 cups kale

Saute the sausage until fully cooked.

Combine th echicken broth, milk, onion, bacon bits, salt and pepper flakes in a medium saucepan over medium/high heat.

Quarter the potato lengthwise then cut into 1/4 inch thick slices. Add to saucepan. When mixture begins to boil, reduce heat an d simmer for 30 minutes.

Cut the sausage at an angle into slaces. Add the sausage to the pan. Simmer for 1 hour, or until potato slices soften.

Add the kale to the soup and simmer for an additional 10 to 15 or until potatoes are soft.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006


I haven't posted for awhile, so I thought I better come up with somethin' good! Okay, here it is...probably the best recipe I have!


Pastry Dough (see recipe below0
10 strips bacon crisped (altho I often just use ham, like the lunchmeat kind cuz I'm lazy)
1 1/4 C Cheese (whatever you like. Swiss, Guyere, Cheddar, whatever)
5 Eggs
1 C whipping Cream or Half and Half (I think I've used all milk when out of cream)
1/2 C Milk
1/4 tsp Salt
Pepper to taste
1/4 of a small Onion (optional)
1/2 C Broccoli finely chopped (optional)

Roll out pastry dough and fit to 10 in. quiche pan. Pinch tears together with a sprinkle of water.
Scatter bacon, cheese, other desired ingredients into the shell.
Beat eggs, cream, milk, salt, pepper just until blended.
Place on lowest oven rack (or the crust will burn, don't ask how I know;).
Bake at 350 for 1 hr.
Quiche is slightly puffed and appears set when shaken.
Let stand 10 min. before cutting or cool adn serve at room temp.
Can be refrig for 2 days and served cold.
8-10 course servings or 6 main dish.

Pastry Dough
1 1/2 C Flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 C + 2 Tbsp Butter
1 egg

Cut butter into flour until it resembles fine crumbs. Add egg and stir with fork until dough holds together. Shape into a ball. Can be refrigerated 3 days. Bring to room temperature before using. Makes 1 1/2 cups (about enough for one quiche, I think).

Pasta e Fagioli

This is a favorite soup at our house. It's fast and tastes just like the soup at Olive Garden!

1 pound ground beef
1 small onion, diced (1 cup)
1 large carrot, julienned (1 cup)
3 stalks celery, chopped (1 cup)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 14.5-ounce cans diced tomatoes
1 15-ounce can red kidney beans (with liquid)
1 15-ounce can great northern beans (with liquid)
1 15-ounce can tomato sauce
1 12-ounce can V-8 juice
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 pound (1/2 pkg.) ditali pasta

1. Brown the ground beef in a large saucepan or pot over medium heat. Drain off most of the fat.
2. Add onion, carrot, celery and garlic and sauté for 10 minutes.
3. Add remaining ingredients, except pasta, and simmer for 1 hour.
4. About 50 minutes into simmer time, cook the pasta in 1 1/2 to 2 quarts of boiling water over high heat. Cook for 10 minutes or just until pasta is al dente, or slightly tough. Drain.
5. Add the pasta to the large pot of soup. Simmer for 5-10 minutes and serve.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Pot Roast Ideas

Hi, sorry I haven't added anything but I've been quilting and sewing, which at my house means I don't really cook. So I decided I owed my family a good meal.

My Aunt gave me these variations for roast, the first is how I do it, but I'll also list her other ideas. I love these recipes since I can just stick the roast in the oven frozen.

Version 1

1 frozen roast (either pork or beef work)
1 quartered onion
1 can soda (I have even used sprite and root beer on pork roasts)
Seasonings to taste (bayleaf, pepper, etc)

Bake st 350 degrees for 4 hours. I add potatoes and carrots for the last 40-30 minutes.

Version 2 (makes it's own gravy)

1 frozen pot roast
1 package Lipton onion soup mix
1-2 cans cream soup (depends on the size of your roast)

Bake at 350 degrees for 4 hours

Version 3 (makes it's own gravy also)

1 frozen pot roast
1 package lipton onion soup mix
1 can cream of mushroom soup
can of soda

Bake at 350 degrees for 4 hours

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Chicken Salad

For lunch today we used last night's leftover roasted chicken and made chicken salad. I love to experiment and when I like the end result I try to write down what went into the mix. Usually I jot notes in my cookbook binder, but today I thought I'd try using our blog instead. Sorry the amounts are so general but I usually just add however much looks good at the time.
1/2 roasted chicken (I sprinkled it with Garlic & Herb Mrs. Dash prior to roasting)
1/2 chopped onion
1/2 chopped red pepper
1 small apple, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
chopped pecans
Mix the ingredients in any order you wish. Toss with mayonaise. Sprinkle salt and sage in to suit your individual taste. Garnish with lettuce and extra apple slices. I think grapes would be good in here too, but we're out!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Horse Club Casserole

This is our favorite casserole. Grandma Canfield came up with it when she needed something to take to a potluck at one of Mom's horse club meetings when Mom was in high school.
1 pound ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 green pepper, chopped
1 can stewed tomatoes
1 can corn
1/2 bottle chile sauce
1/2 package crinkly egg noodles, cooked (about 3 cups prepared...give or take a cup)
Saute onions and peppers. Brown the beef. Add corn, chili sauce and noodles. Pour into casserole dish and top with grated cheese. Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly.

Seasoned Bread

This is one of my favorite bread side dishes. It's perfect with spaghetti but we also eat it by itself for a snack sometimes.
1 loaf french bread
1/4 Cup Butter
Johnny's Salad Elegance
Parmesan Cheese
Soften the butter and sprinkle a generous amount of Salad Elegance and cheese into the spread. It should make a nice thick paste. Spread slices of bread with the spread and reassemble the loaf on a piece of foil. Spread remaining paste over the top of the loaf (make more if you need to) and close the loaf in the foil. Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes. Open the foil and continue baking 5 more minutes until the top is crisp and the loaf is warm throughout. Sometimes I make it without the cheese.

Sam's Salmon

We make this for Sam's birthday every year. It's so easy we also make it whenever we crave fish and don't have much time to make dinner. Even counting thawing the fish we can make dinner in half an hour. I really like the flash frozen fillets you can buy at Costco. That way you have individual servings and can keep the fish on hand all the time.
Salmon fillets (or steaks)
Johnny's Salad Elegance Seasoning
Lemon Pepper
Place a pat of butter on each fillet. Sprinkle liberally with Salad Elegance and lemon pepper. I make a tray out of foil with turned up sides to hold the extra butter when we grill the fish. This also keeps the salmon from sticking to the grill. Dave soaks wood chips while I'm thawing the fish and puts them on the grill. We mostly close the vents on the grill so that the fish cooks slowly and gets a wonderful smoky flavor. It's done when the fish flakes. I also make this in the oven when I'm too lazy to grill. It doesn't get the smoked flavor but is still exceptional. I place the fish in a casserole dish and bake it at about 375 degrees.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Brandy's caramel Popcorn

I'm sure you think caramel popcorn is caramel popcorn, but here is my recipe and I love it and it's gooey and delicious and I think I will make some as soon as I finish my post (when I'm excited my sentences tend to run-on):

2 Cups Brown Sugar
2/3 Cups Maple Syrup (the same stuff you pour on pancakes)
1/2 Cup butter (I prefer butter over margarine, but either works)
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 cups popcorn kernels

Pop the popcorn (I use the glorious air popper or just do 2-3 bags microwave). Bring the sugar, butter and syrup to a rolling boil. Remove from heat, add the soda and stir until nice and foamy. Pour over popcorn, mix, and enjoy.

Ranch CHEESY Chicken by request

This one's a little tricky cuz I lost the recipe and I never measure anything anways, so the GOOD NEWS is that you too can save those measuring cups (less to wash, right!) and you really can't go wrong with this one anyway.

Chicken Breasts (I do boneless, skinless, and I usually do 4 at a time)
Egg Whites
Dry Ranch Dressing packet (I usually use half, so I can use it twice)
*Shredded Cheddar
Saltines, smashed into pieces

Butter casserole dish (I use the square glass kind for this) and preheat oven to 375-ish, I think (don't loose confidence in me now, though, I promise it's worth the experimentation!) Beat egg whites slightly. First dip chicken in egg whites, then sprinkle with Ranch dressing, cover in *shredded cheese, and dip into cracker crumbs and place in dish. Do this for each piece of chicken of course and then bake until it's done:)

*Whoa! I just read over this recipe and realized I forgot to put cheese in it!!! Oh, dear:O)
****I've also discovered that this method of coating is excellent for an Italian Chicken dish. I use the beaten egg whites, then I dip the chicken in Italian seasoned bread crumbs (I just buy these) and then I pan sear (put them in hot oil) to seal in the chicken juices while pre-heating the oven to 375. Then I bake them until they are done all the way through. At the last minute, I pour on a little marinara sauce (again, I just buy this) and a slice of MOZARELLA--yum! And just bake until the cheese is melty.

Monday, October 02, 2006

For Janet

A little different baked chicken.

I don't remember the amounts so it's just what you like.

Mix Miracle Whip (can use mayo), parmesan cheese and whatever seasonings you like. I use paprika, pepper and Mrs.Dash.

In the last 15 minutes of baking spread this mixture over chicken breasts or thighs, it makes a really nice and zesty crust.

More Casseroles

Here's two of my family's favorite casseroles

Chicken Enchilada Hotdish

3 cups chicken/turkey cooked and cut-up
1-2 T margarine
1 large onion, sliced
2 cans cream of chicken soup (or) homemade white sauce
1 cup sour cream
1 cup chedder cheese, grated
1 can green chiles
Seasonings to taste - chili powder, garlic, cayenne pepper
Tortilla chips

Saute meat and onions in margarine. Add remaining ingredients (except tortilla chips)

Place a layer of tortilla chips in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Pour warm meat mixture over chips.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes

Broccoli and Chicken Casserole

Cook and drain broccoli, arrange in a buttered 9x13 pan

Layer 3 cups cooked chicken/turkey (great after Thanksgiving) on top.

In a saucepan mix 2 can cream of mushroom soup, 1 1/2 cups grated cheese. Heat until the cheese is melted. Pour over broccoli and meat.

In a skillet melt 2 tablespoons butter. Stir in 1 1/4 cups bread cubes. Saute till browned. Pour on top of cheese mixture.

Bake uncovered 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes

Caramel Corn

This is our favorite fall treat! It's extra special when you take the easy way out and use microwave popcorn (movie theater butter is good). People always ask for this recipe whenever anyone makes it and it's so easy it's amazing!
8 quarts popped corn or 4-5 bags microwave popcorn, popped
2 Cups Brown Sugar
1 Cup Margarine
1/2 Cup Light Corn Syrup
1 tsp. Vanilla
Mix the sugar, margarine, corn syrup and vanilla in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Add 1/2 tsp baking soda. Stir gently until well mixed, then pour over popcorn in large roaster. Bake 1 hour at 250 degrees. Stir every 20 minutes.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Casseroles Anyone?

Here are my favorite 2 casserole recipes! I'd love you hear your favorites too!

Chicken Curry Casserole

3 chicken breasts, cooked and cubed
4 C cooked rice
1 package of broccoli or fresh cut
1 can cream mushroom soup
1 cancream of chicken soup
1 C mayonnaise (i think i actually skimp a little here cuz i don't love mayonnaise)
1 Tbs lemon juice
1/2 tsp curry (or the more the better at our house:)
Cheddar Cheese (again, the more the better:)

Mix soups with mayonnaise, lemon juice, and curry. Add chicken to mixture to coat. In casserole dish layer half of the rice rice, half of the broccoli, then half of the soup mixture. Then make a second layer and shred cheddar cheese on top. Bake at 350 until warm all the way and it's good and bubbily. Not sure how long....probably 30 minutes-ish?

Arianne's Cheddar Chicken Casserole

2-3 chicken breasts, cooked and diced
1 C macaroni, cooked (I think i end up with 2-3 C cooked, I never measure:)
1/4 lb cheddar cheese, grated
2 cans cream of chicken soup
3/4 C crushed cheez-its (optional, but yummy)

In a pan layer the macaroni, then spread grated cheese, then chicken, mix soup with 3/4ths of a can water and pour over the top. Top with crackers adn bake uncovered 350 for 30 min.

Janet's Easy Red Beans & Rice

Just a warning, Janet showed me how to make this in college and neither of us have written directions so this is a very loose recipe.

My version:

Easy Red Beans and Rice

1 polska kielbasa sausage sliced (Janet also uses ground beef)
1 can individual can of v-8 (can also use stewed tomatoes with juice)
1 can pinquitos, drained (little beans sort of like kidney beans but with additional seasoning)
1/2 cup water (only if using minute rice)
1 1/2 cups Minute Rice (or cooked regular rice)
Chili Pepper
Cayenne Pepper
dash of Tabasco

In a skillet or saucepan (with a cover) brown meat. Add the remaining ingredients and stir. Add spices to your taste. Let simmer covered till most of juice is absorbed. I simmer it for about 10 - 15 minutes, but I'm also high altitude.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Crispy Potato Wedges

Last night we had sloppy joes and these potato wedges. I cheat on the sloppy joes, I use manwich, but I really like this recipe for potato wedges because it's easy to change the spices to suit your mood.

Crispy Potato Wedges

1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp each basil, thyme, oregano
1/4 tsp paprika
4 to 6 potatoes, cut in wedges ( I really like to use the little red or golden butter potatoes. And if you use these little potatoes I increase the # to about 6-8 depending on # of people)
1/2 c parmesan cheese

Mix oil and seasoning in a plastic bag. Place cut potatoes in bag and shake. Dump potatoes onto an ungreased cookie sheet, and arrange in a single layer. Bake at 450 degrees for 15 minutes. Sprinkle parmesan cheese on potatoes and bake an additional 15 minutes. Serve hot.

* I sometimes even skip the other seasonings and just do these with Mrs. Dash.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Amy's Cheesy Broccoli Ham Sandwich

I just made this for lunch today and it was so good I wanted to share it! I made bread using Amy's bread machine recipe but you can also use frozen bread dough (if you're smart enough to get it out early enough to let it thaw and rise). It seemed easier to make fresh dough from scratch.
Once the dough has risen once turn it out on the counter (I use 2 silicone baking sheets on top of counter) and then let it rest for 10 minutes (or else the dough fights back when you go to roll it). Roll it as thin as possible (mine was about 14 inches by 26 inches). I brushed the dough with horseradish mustard (but Amy's recipe doesn't call for it). Then top half the dough with 2 cups finely chopped ham, 3 cups shredded cheese, and 1 package frozen broccoli (thawed). Fold the naked half of the dough over the filling and turn the edge to seal. Bake for about 30 minutes in a 350 degree oven.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

What to do with left over roast - BBQ Sandwich

After spending hours cooking pot roast to perfection, we'd eat it and have like half left over (unless I'd cut it in half, then everyone would want more and I'd run out ...). I used to put the left over meat in the fridge and hope the sandwich fairy would make sandwiches or something, but it'd end up just going bad. And I'd feel bad for wasting it. But NOW, the day after pot roast dinner is BBQ sandwich dinner.

Left over pot roast (beef, pork, it's all good)
Bottle of BBQ sauce, more or less depending on how juicy you like it (KC Masterpiece really is the best)
Cheese slices

Because I'm lazy, I put the meat in the crock pot, pour on the BBQ sauce and just let it go until it's time to eat (if that will be within an hour I warm up the meat in the microwave first). The meat just gets tenderer and tastier. It's so yummy and amazingly the BBQ meat leftovers actually do get made into sandwiches.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Coconut-Chicken Curry

I thought I'd share what I'm planning on cooking tomorrow. This is a recipe I just recently got but I love it!! It's soo easy.

1 1/2 lbs skinless, boneless chicken thighs (I actually use breasts) cut into bite size pieces
1/2 cup (or less if you don't like things as spicy) red curry paste***
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion coarsly chopped
1 1/4 cup fresh coconut milk or (what I use) one 13.5 oz can unsweetened or reduced fat coconut milk
1 1/2 cups matchstick carrots or 3 carrots thinly sliced

***be careful while cooking because this does stain!

In a bowl combine chicken and curry paste, let stand at room temp for 30 minutes.

Heat a 12 inch skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil, onion and chicken mixture. Cook about 8-10 minutes stirring occasionally, or until chicken is no longer pink inside.

Remove Chicken from skillet. Carefully add coconut milk to skillet, scraping up the crusty bits. Add carrots. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 5 minutes. Return chicken to skillet. Simmer uncovered for 3 to 5 minutes or until liquid thickens slightly. Serve over rice.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Green Beans

I was just getting meat out to thaw for dinner and preparing to accompany it with green beans. We love our green beans. They are my favorite vegetable side dish and they look nice enough to serve for holiday meals (we do... right next to the brussels sprouts, yum!). The most important item needed to make truly exceptional veggies of any kind is a steamer basket or if you have a nice cookware set you may be the proud owner of a steamer insert (it looks like the top of a double boiler but has holes in the bottom... you may have wondered how you can dip chocolates if the chocolate all ends up in the water under the pan).
First, put an inch of water or so in the bottom of the pan (otherwise the veggie juices burn onto the bottom of pan, veggies don't cook, and the smoke detector goes off.... we have had that happen). Don't let the water touch the vegetables. Steam actually cooks faster than boiling in water (so says Alton Brown). Next, fill the steamer insert with as many green beans as you would like to eat. Then, top the beans with slices (I use half circles) of sweet onion... we usually use one whole large onion...this makes half beans, half onions our favorite ratio. Cook the beans and onions until they are tender (about 20 minutes for us, I buy frozen petite green beans). Once the beans are cooked lift the steamer insert off the water and drain water. Pour beans and onions into the saucepan. For the final decadent touch I add about a tablespoon of butter (sometimes) and a small handful of prepared bacon bits. Dave and the kids get confused by the bacon bits into thinking this is a bacon dish instead of a vegetable one. It puts Chris off a little and he has to separate the bacon out of the beans. Sam and Dave are tricked into eating the beans.

Monday, September 25, 2006

I Just Want To Say Thanks!

I wanted to tell all the contributing members thanks so much for sharing these recipes ... even if only us four utilize this blog, it has sparked my cooking creativity and increased my desire to cook dinner for my family! We've only been doing this for 6 days and already have over 20 amazing recipes. Let's keep going and when we have oodles and oodles, we'll compile and proof it and (here's my two ideas) take it to kinko's and have them make nice spiral bound copies (as cheaply, but nicely as possible) which we can give to friends and family for Christmas AND/OR see if we can't find some niche to fill in the recipe book industry and publish it and split the millions of profits that are sure to pour in! Wouldn't that be freaking awesome? Collaborate, get published and make money just by compiling what we cook for dinner?! You wanna be rich right? I do ... and if not, at least well fed.

Thank you!


I call it Taco Soup and I love it

Here's a super easy little thing to make when you want the flavor of Mexican food.

1 lb. ground beef
chopped onion, green pepper, garlic
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes (with green chilies is good) (juice and all)
1 can red kidney beans (rinsed)
1 can black or pinto beans, if you like
1 can sliced olives (drained)
1 can corn (with juice) (optional, I don't like corn so much ...)
1 can tomato sauce
1 pkg taco seasoning
1 cup water

Brown the meat with salt, pepper (drain fat). Cook up chopped onions, green pepper, and garlic. Break out your handy dandy can opener and start dumping. Pour in the taco sauce and water and heat it all up. You can eat this as soon as everything is warmed through or throw everything in the crockpot and let it simmer happily for hours on end. Serve with shredded cheese, sour cream, and taco chips. Lots of variation possibilities, someone I know throws in a package of dry ranch dressing mix. Just use what you like and have.

Pork Chops and Peaches

I thought I'd post now what I'll be making tomorrow because my husband has been asking for this. Actually I've been meaning to but I keep forgetting until it's too late to get it in the crockpot. So I figured if I posted it then I'd have a better chance of remembering. It's working so far I even got pork chops out of the freezer and into the fridge to be ready!

5-6 pork chops
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1 - 8oz can tomato sauce
1 - 29 oz can cling peach halves
1/4 cup vinegar
salt and pepper

Brown pork chops in a skillet before arranging in the crockpot. (I have to admit that I have also just thrown them in without browning and there isn't much different) Sprinkle chops with salt and pepper. In a small bowl combine the rest of the ingredients except the peaches. Add 1/4 cup of the peach syrup to the brown sugar mixture. Finish draining peaches, and place them over the chops. Pour the brown sugar mixture over all.
Cover and cook on low 4-6 hours


Katie gave me her mom's bread machine roll recipe and I have been collecting compliments off it ever since. With soups, roasts, just about anything, who wouldn't LOVE some hot fresh rolls?! On Sunday, I throw all the ingredients in the bread machine and set the timer so they are perfectly proofed when I get home, 10 minutes of work, endless familial gratitude!

1 egg
1 cup + 5 TBS warm water
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 tsp salt
4 cups flour
2 tsp yeast

Put in the bread machine in that order, mix on dough mode (oh, how I love my bread machine, I could never make bread products without it!). When done, pound into rolls (you can make 12 big babies in a 9X13 or 16ish more normal sized ones on a cookie sheet), flip-flop then in some melted butter. Cover with some plastic wrap and let rise to about double in size (1/2 hour or so - speed up the process by putting them in a cold oven with a bowl of hot water under them). Bake at 400 degrees for 10-15 minutes. I slather more butter on top when they come out. The thought of these is making my mouth water. They are SO good and SO easy! My eternal gratitude Aunt Pat!!!

My favorite bread!

It must be fall in the last couple days we've had chilli, potato soup, and now beef stew! My recipe for beef stew is pretty basic, but I love to make this quick bread to go with it! Actually I'll make this bread to go with pretty much anything. This sweet bread even works in place of pound cake as a dessert.

Quick Sally Lunn Bread

2 eggs separated
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups flour, sifted
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons butter melted
1/4 cup sugar (for the top of bread)

Preheat oven to 350. Beat egg yolks with sugar. Mix in flour, baking soda and salt, alternating with milk. Add melted butter. Beat egg whites until stiff, fold into batter. Pour into greased loaf pan. Sprinkle top with sugar.

Bake 40-45 minutes.

Brats & Salad

We've been eating brats all weekend, so I decided to post our favorite meal, even though it's very simple.


1 pkg Johnsonville Brats (frozen or fresh)

*If fresh, we just fry them up in a very little bit of oil. If they are frozen, it is sometimes helpful to boil them first to help the center get cooked. They're done when they're no longer pink inside.

*We love to eat them with a slice of sour dough bread or a baguette.
*Also amazing, are the maggi brand spaeztle noodles. they come in a yellow box and cost like $5, but last 2 meals (if you have self control...they really are so so good!) You just boil them.


1/2 avacodo
Romaine lettuce
cheese chunks

Toss with a little bit of nice vinegar (i like rasberry flavored or a good balsamic) and oil, salt & pepper!


Sunday, September 24, 2006

Baked Potato Soup

This was actually last nights dinner, but I love to make a double batch for leftovers and to freeze! This is also a pretty easy recipe since it doesn't need to simmer for long.
( Janet I found my recipe!)

2/3 cup butter
2/3 cup flour
6 cups milk (you can substitute some of this for chicken broth, as long as the liquid = 6 cups)
1 cup bacon, cooked and crumbled
salt and pepper
4 large baked potatoes
1 cup sour cream
5 oz chedder cheese, grated
4 green onions chopped

Melt butter over medium heat, using a whisk blend in flour till smooth. gradually add milk, whisking continuosly. Add salt and pepper to taste. Simmer over low heat stirring often!
Cut potatoes in half and scoop out meat ( set aside). When milk mixture is very hot whisk in potatoes. Stir in green onions, whisk well, then add sour cream and bacon. Heat thoroughly.
Add cheese, a little at a time until melted.

**This can be done in the crock-pot, the only thing I do different is to put the flour in first and whisk in melted butter. When that is mixed well I then gradually add in the milk while I continue to whisk. Then I just dump the rest and give it a stir before I cover it. It's a little thinner this way but still good.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Recipe request

I'm looking for a recipe for sticky pecan rolls. I have several good cinnamon roll recipes (one that you make the night before and refrigerate, then remove the rolls in the morning and let them rise) so what I'm really after is the recipe for the sticky, caramel like, gooey, messy topping that some people put in the bottom of the cinnamon roll pan. Also, has anyone checked out what kind of advertising this blog attracts? Not an undergarment ad among them!

Tuna Noodle Bake

Hi I saw a request for Tuna casserole recipes so I wanted to share this favorite at our house!

1/2 package egg noodles
1 can cream of mushroom soup ( I have used cream of celery when I'm out of the other)
1 1/4 cups milk
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1/4 cup chopped olives
1 can tuna, drained and flaked ( I actually like the taste with two better)
salt and pepper to taste

Heat oven to 350 degrees

Cook noodles according to package directions; drain.

Mix all ingredients together in a buttered 2 qt casserole.

Bake uncovered 25 - 30 minutes

Shepherds Pie

Shepherds Pie (last night and left overs tonight!)

1 1/2 lbs. hamburger
1 can tomato soup
1 can italian stewed tomatoes
1 can french cut green beans
lots of mashed potatoes:)

fry hamburger (you can add onions too, that's yummy) and add tomatoes soup and stewed tomatoes, green beans, salt and pepper to taste. pour into a casserole dish and spread mashed potatoes on top and grate cheese over that. bake 350 until hot through and cheese is melted.

My Dad's twist on Stroganoff

Hi my Dad is a great cook and I kept trying to get my stroganoff to taste like his and it just wasn't working. I finally asked what he added to his and I couldn't believe it. His secret ingredient was ketchup. I love the extra flavor so I thought I'd share his recipe.

1 pound beef tenderloin of sirloin steak
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 8-ounce carton of sour cream (our less if you don't want it quite so rich)
2 tablespoons beef bouillon
1-2 tablespoons of ketchup (depending on taste)
2 tablespoons margarine or butter
1 1/2 cups mushrooms (if you and stand those)
1/2 cup chopped onion
garlic to taste
2 cups hot cooked noodles

Thinly slice meat across the grain into bite size strips. In a large skillet saute meat, mushrooms, onions and garlic in the margarine or butter. Cook till meat is done. Add remaining ingredients to skillet and cook on medium heat till bubbly. Cook one more minute. Serve over noodles

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Grandma Canfield's Hamburger Stroganoff

This has been a quick hamburger stand-by in our family for longer than I've been around. Grandma actually measures everything, so this recipe is much different from any coming from my kitchen. I hate washing dishes and that includes measuring spoons and cups. Of course, grandma can make the same dish several times and have it taste the same every time... that's not a guarantee I can make about anything coming out of my kitchen.

1/2 cup minced onion

1 pound ground beef

garlic salt

2 Tbsp flour

1/4 tsp pepper

1/4 tsp paprika

1 can cream of mushroom soup

1 cup sour cream

Saute (can't find the accent mark) onions until golden. Stir in beef and cook until browned. Stir in flour and seasonings and saute 5 minutes. Add soup and simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes. Stir in sour cream. Heat 10 minutes. Serve over toast, rice or noodles.

Our Version of Stroganoff

Ok, I have no clue how to spell stroganoff, so if I've got it wrong... let me apologize before I go any further. Mommy brain seems to affect (effect?) my spelling horribly! This is what we call stroganoff, I'm not sure if it's even anywhere close to the real stuff, but we like it!
4-5 pounds round roast (I buy the pre-sliced kind)
2 cans cream of mushroom soup (gotta love it)
2 chopped sweet onions (or 1 strong onion)
2 beef boullion cubes
1-2 cups sour cream (depending on how rich you like it)
Place all ingredients except sour cream in a crock pot (and yes, once again, I use frozen roast). Cook for 5-8 hours (depending on crock pot size and speed... ours makes this in 4 hours on high or 6 hours on low heat). Stir the sour cream in during the last half hour of cooking (too early and it gets weird). Serve over buttered krinkly egg noodles. Some people who enjoy eating fungus may want to add additional fresh or canned mushrooms at some point during cooking. Grandma keeps telling me this is good over baked potatoes or toast as well (but we like noodles too much to try other kinds of starchy foods).

Recipe Request

I think I have never had REAL stroganoff .. only hamburger helper stroganoff which is pretty gross. Legend tells of people who make it with like steak and roast and such. If anyone (or everyone) has a good stroganoff recipe, I'd love to try it out on my family ... please include any cooking tips ... after dinner tonight ... I realize how unqualified I am to make up recipes and how desperately I need this blog! Thanks for all your contributions!!!

My Baked Salmon

FYI - salmon is a good source of those Omega 3 fatty acids we need for brain function(and possibly mercury which makes you go crazy). Last week I bought a couple of those vacuum sealed flash frozen filet things - they were on sale 4 for $5. But I had never cooked salmon or any kind fo fish so I referred to a couple recipes and came up this this smashingly awesome and super easy recipe:

This is for two servings (my husband doesn't eat seafood)

2 filets of salmon (thawed in the fridge for a few hours, then open package, wash and pat dry)
1/2 cup of crushed corn flake cerial seasoned up with salt, pepper, lemon pepper, rosemary, season all, and garlic salt ( just use whatever you like)
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup flour
1-2 T butter melted

Preheat Oven to 450 degrees. Dip the fish in the milk, then the flour, then the milk again, then the cornflake mixture, try to coat it pretty evenly. Place in a glass baking dish (I sprayed the pan with Pam). Drizzle on the melted butter and cook for 15-20 minutes or until the fish is "flakey" (4-6 minutes per 1/2 inch thickness). It turned out fabu! And it's healthy - though they recommend pregnant and lactating women eat seafood with caution - farm raised fish is usually a safe bet.

Baked Penne Pasta

JLynn Bailey shared this recipe at a wedding shower and it sounded so easy I made it the next evening. It's been a favorite ever since! You can play with the quantities until you have your own version, here's a guesstimate of what I do with it.
1/2 pound good dry pasta
1 can Hunt's traditional spaghetti sauce (the only brand we buy)
1/2 pound hot italian sausage
1 onion, chopped
1 pepper, chopped
Cook the pasta in salted water. Brown the sausage (or ground beef) add the onions and peppers (I always start with frozen meat, if you have thawed meat it would be better to saute the onions and peppers first, then add meat). Stir in spaghetti sauce and cooked pasta. Top with a whole lot of mozzarella cheese (normal people would probably use about a cup and a half, we use most of a pound). I usually stir in a bag of chopped, frozen spinach too. Bake until your cheese is good and bubbly... usually 20-40 minutes depending on how much cheese you use and how hot the mixture was when you placed it in the oven.

Macaroni and Cheese

1/2 pound good pasta (we use Garafalo)
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk
2 cups shredded cheese (your choice of flavors, we like cheddar but swiss is always a hit too)
Mix flour and butter in large saucepan to make a roux (I use a whisk to avoid lumps). When thoroughly mixed slowly add milk and whisk until smooth (a little milk, whisk, a little more milk, whisk, etc). Bring mixture to a boil while continuously stirring and cook about 2 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat and stir in cheese. Add cooked pasta to cheese sauce. Bake in a moderate oven (325 - 375) for about 45 minutes or until bubbly and a little crunchy along the sides. Dave especially likes it if I sprinkle more cheese on top. We also sometimes add cooked chicken or tuna, pepper and onions, taco meat.... whatever may be cluttering up the fridge that won't make another meal on it's own. Broccoli is very good. The cheese sauce is also the same one I use to make broccoli with cheese sauce, or cauliflower with cheese sauce. Stir in a can of cream of chicken soup and some salsa and you have a great cheese dip too (without the pasta of course).

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Anderson Family Meal List (proposed)

Ok, we got some ideas from Katie's list. Dave's making happy noises abour brats!

  • Bratwurst with peppers and onions (because everything's better with peppers, onions and hot sauce).
  • Stroganoff (made with roast, cream of mushroom soup, onions and sour cream).
  • Beef roast
  • Tuna casserole
  • Baked Pasta (canned spaghetti sauce, sausage, spinach, pasta and cheese)
  • Green Chile Enchiladas
  • Macaroni and Cheese (maybe even the real, baked kind)

Now I'm kind of drawing a blank about what else we might eat. Hopefully I can steal some more ideas from you guys.

Just for Brandy

Leg of Lamb
Remove all the fat and faschia (the tough membrane covering the muscle). Mix 1 qt. of water with 1 Tbsp cider vinegar. Wash lamb in solution, then pat dry.
Poke holes all over the leg and insert slivers of garlic (about 3 cloves). Boil water with sliced lemon and olive oil (just drizzle some in, I'm not sure how much). Rub leg well with lemon/oil/water stuff then rub salt and lots of lemon pepper and leaf oregano over leg. Put in a pan on a rack with 1 cup of water in bottom (If you don't have a rack use thick sliced onions). Baste with broth every 1/2 hour (without any fat on the roast I find that I need to add water in order to baste). Roast at 300-350 degrees about 1 hour per pound.
Cool leg to slice. Pour off and reserve broth. I usually cook the leg in the morning and then remove it from the refrigerator about an hour before dinner. It's best when you carve the roast and arrange it in a casserole dish with the meat covered in broth (I use beef broth instead of the drippings) and then reheat it in the oven. It sounds much more complicated than it is. Never, ever leave the fat on! Yuck! Greasy meat! Yuck! Yuck! Yuck! That would be the reason most people think they don't like lamb. Yuck!


so the Tufts aren't exactly eating gourmet.....

flour tortillas
refried beans
sour cream

fill tortilla with beans, cheese and microwave for less than a minute while preheating the skillet. you want enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan for frying and i like to add a little butter to make it taste really good (hmm...such a healthy meal, no worse than betos though, i'm sure!). roll up your tortillas and fry them . add sour cream and salsa.

what's for dinner encore!

i need to make a list of stuff i like to make to go grocery shopping tomorrow. i thought i'd make my list here and maybe you all will post your lists to give me new ideas???

here goes:

potato soup
roast (thanks janet)
enchiladas (thanks brandy)
chicken and rice (with the crm chkn soup)
stir fry
bratwurst (this is dave's specialty)
alfredo (dave's again)
chicken parmesan (i have a good recipe for this, i'll have to post it)
shepherd's pie
chili cheese chips
chicken divan
vegetable medley with italian sausage over rice

hmmmm...i really need some more casserole ideas, anybody got an easy one?

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Major revelation!

Ok, this is a major revelation. It's my very important secret ingredient for delicious pot roast and also for crock pot chicken.
Italian dressing mix.
For the pot roast you sprinkle the dressing mix over the top of the roast (I prefer round roasts, not chuck), add enough water to come halfway up the roast and cook for 5-7 hours. About half an hour before you're ready to eat mix a few tablespoons flour (I use about a 1/4 cup) and 1 1/2 cups of water (more or less depending on how much gravy you need) in a shaker bottle (the kind with the wagon wheel inside) and pour in with your roast. You don't need to stir or mess with the gravy. Just put the lid back on, turn the pot to high, and when your family's ready for dinner you'll have wonderful roast beef and gravy to serve with the mashed potatoes and green beans you made while the gravy was thickening!
Our version of crockpot chicken is made with italian dressing (the cheaper the better). Arrange whatever amount of chicken you wish to cook in the crock pot and pour italian dressing (already prepared, not the dry mix) in until you mostly cover the bottom layer of meat. I do mess with this a little as it cooks because I rearrange the chicken every couple hours so that all pieces spend time in the dressing. I also start with flash frozen breasts and they seem to cook just fine in about 5 hours (I have a 7qt. pot). I don't use the liquid as gravy because I'm just not convinced that the oil would be healthy in that large a dose.

Cheater Stir Fry

Okay, this is a total cheat b/c I use a seasoning packet from the store...but it's really yummy!!!!

1 pkg Sun Bird Beef & Broccolli Seasoning package (most groceries carry this in the chinese food section incl. Target & Wall-M)
1 pkg of your favorite stir fry veggies or of course fresh ones if your ambitious (I love the generic Wallmart brand, I specifically shop at Wallmart for their frozen veggies. I'm very picky and I don't like any other brands. I use their asparagus stir fry and their "Deluxe" stir fry with baby corn and fresh water chestnuts)
2 tbs soy sauce
1 c rice
Your favorite meat (I use a couple strips of chicken)

follow the directions on the back of the sun bird sauce mix:) okay, so this hardly counts as a recipe, but it really is one of our favorite meals and it's healthy....!

Really Yummy Enchiladas

We're having enchiladas for dinner tonight and it happens to be my favorite thing I can cook. So here's my recipe (technique would be more accurate).

Makes 8 servings (and leftovers are amazing)

You will need:

1 pkg McCormick's Enchilada Sauce mix (I've tried the cans of sauce, I like this powder better)
1 1/2 Cups water
1 can (8 oz.) tomato sauce
1 lb. ground beef (sometimes I use shredded chicken, ground turkey would work, and plain cheese ones are good too)
8 (or so) tortillas (I use flour, corn or wheat would work)
lots of shredded cheddar cheese
1. Stir sauce mix water and tomato sauce in a medium size pot. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until a thickened (5 mins).

2. Brown the meat (I season it with salt, pepper, season-all), drain the fat. Stir in 1/2 cup of the sauce.

3. Grab a tortilla - spread a little sauce on in, put about 1/4 cup meat down the middle, add some cheese. Roll it up and place seam side down in a 9X13 dish (like a cake pan) Repeat for all tortillas. Pour remaining sauce (and any meat if you have it) over tortillas and top with more yummy cheese.

4. Bake in 350 degree oven for about 15 minutes until cheese is bubbly.

Other option: Sometimes I make a box of Rice a Roni Spanish rice and put rice in the tortillas, also, olives are great in and on these. Serve with a dollop of sour cream on top. You can double the batch and freeze a pan, 2 great dinners in one shot.

What's for Dinner?

Ah, the question every women loves to hear. This little blog is devoted to the sharing of tried and true good recipes for good food. Feel free to share and use and enjoy.