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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Jello Cookies

These were a quick easy cookie my mom use to throw together when we were young. We always loved them as kids and loved that they could come out with all different colors each time we made them, they are super simple and kids love them!

3/4 C. Shortening
1 tsp. Vanilla
3/4 C. Sugar
3 Eggs
1 3oz pkg of Jello
3/4 tsp Salt
1 tsp. Baking Powder
2 3/4 C. Flour

Cream Butter and Sugar together, then add remaining ingredients and mix well. Roll into balls, then flatten balls using the bottom of a glass that has been dipped in sugar. Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes.

Caramel Walnut Bars

This is a recipie my mom found on the back of a can of Eagle Brand condensed milk years ago. They are gooey and delicious.

2 c. flour
3/4 c. brown sugar
1 egg-beaten
3/4 cup margarine or butter
3/4 c walnuts-chopped
24 caramels-unwrapped
1 can sweet condensed milk

Preheat oven to 350. In large bowl combine flour, sugar and egg. Cut in 1/2 cup margarine until crumbly. Stir in walnuts, reserving 2 cups crumb mixture, press remainder firmly on bottom of greased 9x13 pan. Bake 15 minutes. In saucepan, over low heat melt caramels with sweet condensed milk and remaining margarine. Pour over prepared crust. Top with reserve crumb mixture. Bake 20 minutes or until bubbly. Cool. Cut into bars.

Rainbow Cupcakes

I have seen different renditions of this posted all over the many cooking blogs I follow, I've seen the diet version for Weight Watchers, and the cake form, but when I first saw these adorable cupcakes over at The Girl Who Ate Everything, I knew I would need to try them out. And so today for pre-school/playgroup we made a round of them, and the kids absolutely loved them! They thought it was so cool that all of the colors were there, that was the talk around the table.

Rainbow Cupcakes
1 white cake mix
2 eggs
1 C sour cream
1/2 C milk
1/3 C vegetable oil

Combine all ingredients until incorporated (about 30 seconds). Scrape sides of bowl and then beat on med-high speed for 3 minutes.

Divide batter according to how many colors you are using. I used 5 colors and it worked out to a little over 1 cup for each color.

Use food coloring to color batter to desired intensity. Gel colors have the brightest colors and wont thin your batter. They can be found at Walmart or Michaels in the cake decorating section.

I found a number of ways to spread the batter out some used a spoonful of each color in the cupcake one at a time. The batter is thick, so it won't spread on it's own. A great tip is to set out a little bowl of water where you're working. Dip your finger in the water and then gently spread the batter out. The water will make it so the batter doesn't stick to your fingers. However I chose to use the Ziplock bag method, by putting the colors into Ziplocks and then piping the colors into the liners. It worked out great. Layer each color on top of the next.

Bake them according to the package directions, until a toothpick comes out dry.

Frost with your favorite frosting. Fancy it up by putting the frosting in a ziplock bag, cut off the corner of the side of the bag and you have an instant frosting decorating bag. You could top with some fun rainbow sprinkles on top of your frosting.

The only thing I didn't love was that 1- they were really crumbly when the kids ate them. I think it has to do with the ingredients I used. I only ended up getting 12 cupcakes out of all of the batter, perhaps because I added to much to each cupcake? I think I would try either adding a little more liquid to thing them out or making the cupcakes as specified on the box, or per your usual white cake recipe. Though the sour cream makes them moist, they were super thick to spread! I love the colors and ideas of these cupcakes, and I think that is what drew me to them initially, they are just happy!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

4-H Waffles

This is the recipie my mom used for waffles growing up. It comes right from my old 4H book. They take a little more time than a mix you just add water to, but they are worth the couple extra steps! My mom would cook and crumble bacon right into the batter making them even more tasty. They are light, fluffy & delicious. The next time you have a slow Saturday morning try them out, you won't be disappointed.

2 C. Flour
2 tsp. Baking Powder
1/2 tsp. Salt
2 Tbsp. Sugar
3 Eggs separated
1 1/2 C. Milk
4 Tbsp. Oil

Pre-heat Waffle Iron. Mix dry ingredients together and set aside. Combine egg yolks, milk and oil and mix well. Add liquid ingredients to dry ingredients and beat until smooth. Beat egg whites until stiff but not dry. Carefully fold beaten egg whites into batter. Pour batter into the center of a hot waffle iron. Bake for 3-5 minutes or until steam stops escaping.

Cook and crumble 8 strips of bacon and add to batter right before cooking, if desired.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Chocolate Chip Muffins

These are a favorite after school snack at our house.  Very quick and easy!

2 cups all-purpose flour,
1/2 cup white sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
3/4 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
3 tablespoons white sugar
2 tablespoons brown sugar

Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Grease bottoms only of 12 muffin cups or line with baking cups.  Combine flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, chocolate chips, and salt; mix well.  In a separate bowl, combine milk, oil, vanilla and egg; blend well.  Add dry ingredients all at once; stir just until dry ingredients are moistened (batter will be lumpy.) 

Fill cups 2/3 full. Sprinkle tops of muffins before baking with a combination of 3 tablespoons sugar and 2 tablespoon brown sugar. 

Bake for 18 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 1 minute before removing from pan. Serve warm.

Baking Powder Biscuits

Growing up we each had a night of the week that we were responsible to cook dinner on. My mom helped us of course, but this allowed us to learn to cook and plan meals. My older brother loved making these simple but delicious biscuits when it was his turn.

3 C. Flour
4 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
6 Tbsp shortening
2 Tbsp. Sugar
1 c. milk

Mix flour, salt & baking powder in bowl. Mix shortening into flour mixture with hands. Add milk quickly until dough cannot move with a spoon. Roll out on a floured surface, cut using a round cutter. Bake at 425 for 15 minutes.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Sweet and Sour Pork

This is another great recipie we did growing up on Chinese night.

1 lb pork cubes


1 tsp Cornstarch
1/2 tsp Salt
1 tsp Sesame Oil
1 Tbsp. Soy Sauce


1 large Green pepper diced
1 medium yellow onion diced
2 sliced Carrotts
1 clove garlic
2 Tb oil
1 C. Chicken Broth
1/2 C. Sugar
1/3 C. Red Wine Vinegar
2 tsp. Soy Sauce
1 tsp. chopped Ginger
1 can Pineapple Chunks


1/4 C. Cold water
2 Tbsp. Cornstarch


2 Eggs -beaten
2 Tbsp Flour
4 Tbsp Cornstarch

Combine pork with ingredients in group A and let it sit for 30 minutes or more to marinade. Then bread meat using ingredients in group D, doing an egg dip and then into the flour and cornstarch. Fry meat in a deep fryer or in a small amount of oil in a frying pan, then drain meat after frying. Stir fry the carrots, garlic and ginger until carrots are starting to get soft, add the rest of the ingredients in group B except green peppers and pineapple. Once combined add group C to veggies and boil mixture until thick and bubbly. Add green peppers and meat till warm. Add Pineapple just before serving. Serve over rice.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Broccoli Salad

This dandy gets devoured at 3-4 family parties every summer.
I get special requests for it from my father in law. It's delish!

1/2 lb bacon cooked and crumbled
4 C. finely chopped fresh broccoli
1/2 c. chopped red onions
1 c. sunflower seeds
1/4 c. sugar
1 c. mayo
1 Tbsp. sour cream
2 Tbsp vinegar

The first four ingredients are the salad makings. Mix the second four together for the dressing. Toss salad and dressing together and enjoy!!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Ham Cheese Ball

This one is a family Tradition for us on Christmas Eve, and often times on New Years as well. it's delicious and oh so easy.

8oz Cream Cheese (at room Temp.)
1/4 C. Mayo (not light)
1/4 tsp. hickory Smoke
1/2 tsp. Season Salt
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce
2 green onions chopped fine
1/4-1/2 C. Finely Chopped Thin Sliced Ham

Mix all ingredients well, then place mixture into the center of a piece of saran wrap and place it in a cup or small bowl to shape. Place in refrigerator for several hours. Unwrap and place on serving tray. Serve with crackers.

Egg Rolls

When I was a kid we often had oriental night at my Grannies house. The adults went to town preparing all sorts of dishes from scratch, egg rolls being one of them. I loved helping roll them up tight, like an envelope before they were fried. My kids enjoy doing that now too. They are good, very good in fact, especially when dunked in a little sweet and sour sauce. This is the recipie we've used for generations.

1 C. Chopped Shrimp(optional)
1/2 lb ground sausage/pork
2 C. Chopped Cabbage
1 small can shredded bamboo shoots
2 small cans Water Chestnuts - diced
1/2 bunch Green onions Chopped
2 Carrots grated

1 Egg beaten
2 Tbsp. Sesame Oil
2 Tbsp. Soy Sauce
Salt & Pepper to taste
1 tsp. Ginger
2 Cloves Garlic chopped
1 Package Egg Roll Wrappers

Fry sausage, garlic and ginger until cooked, then drain. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. Roll 1-2 Tbsp of mixture inside each egg roll wrapper, seal according to package directions. Deep fry until golden brown. Serve with Sweet and Sour Sauce.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Earthquake Cake

With ingredients like butter, cream cheese, german chocolate, coconut & chocolate chips how can you go wrong? You can't, this is a must try.

2/3 C. Chopped Nuts
2/3 C. Coconut
2/3 C. Chocolate Chips (an additional 1/3 cup is reserved for sprinkling on top)
1 German Chocolate Cake mix
1/4 lb Butter
8 oz Cream Cheese
1 lb Powdered Sugar

Sprinkle first 3 ingredients into a greased 9x13 cake pan. Mix cake mix according to package directions, once fully mixed pour over nuts and chocolate chips in pan. Next mix butter, cream cheese and powdered sugar together and then pour that mixture over the cake mix in the pan. Run a butter knife through the cake mix and cream cheese layers to make marbled effect Three lines length wise and four short-ways. Cook at 350 for 45-50 minutes. Remove cake and cool for 15-20 minutes garnish with remaining 1/3 c. chocolate chips.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Waikiki Meatballs

These are a crowd pleaser, especially for the men. When I've been in a time crunch I've even bought the frozen meatballs from Costco and just made the sauce, shhhh don't tell.

1 1/2 lb Hamburger
2/3 . crushed Ritz crackers
1/3 c. minced onion
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp salt
3/4 tsp ginger
1/3 C. milk

Mix these items and form balls. In a fry pan add a little oil and cook until browned.

2 Tbsp. cornstarch
3/4 C. Brown sugar
Juice from a 20 oz can of pineapple
1/2 C. apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 Tbsp. Soy sauce

Bring to a boil in a sauce pan.

1 Green or Red Pepper-diced
Pineapple from 20 oz. can.

Add to sauce and serve over meatballs and rice.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Black Bean Salsa

With Cinco De Mayo right around the corner, this is perfect way to start things off.
I dare you to only eat one bite. It's impossible.

1 can rinsed black beans
Frozen corn- (same amount as 1 can black beans)
1 finely chopped purple onion
2 chopped tomatoes
1 finely chopped bell pepper
1 finely chopped hot green pepper (anaheim or jalapenos work well)
1 small bunch cilantro finely chopped.
1 Good Seasons Italian dressing packet prepared

Mix all ingredients and chill in fridge for a couple hours before serving.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Tam's Chicken Pasta Salad

This pasta salad is delicious, it also makes enough to feed an army. It's perfect for family gatherings or showers. If you're making it for a smaller group make sure to half the recipe.

4 c. chicken, cooked & diced
2 c. purple grapes-halved
2 c. celery diced
20 oz can pineapple tidbits
4 green onions sliced
1 c. slivered almonds
12 oz bow tie pasta-cooked
12 oz cork screw pasta -cooked

1 c. mayo
16 oz Kraft coleslaw Dressing

Mix all salad ingredients together. Add dressing right before serving. Start with 3/4 of dressing and see if you need the rest. This makes enough salad to feed 20-30 so half it for a smaller group.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Poppy Seed Bread

This is my Mom's recipie, it's so moist it melts in your mouth.
I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

1 Lemon or Yellow Cake Mix
1 small lemon instant pudding
4 eggs
1/2 C. Oil
1/4 C. Poppy Seeds
1 C. Boiling water

Combine all ingredients, and pour into 2 greased loaf pans and bake at 350 for 50 minutes.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Cracker Jacks

This popcorn is as good as it looks, trust me!
1/2 c. dark karo syrup
1 c. margarine
2 c. brown sugar
4 Tbsp. Molasses
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp. soda
6 qt popped corn
1 c. salted peanuts

Mix karo, margarine, brown sugar and molasses in sauce pan. Bring to a boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat add vanilla and soda. Pour over popcorn and nuts. Bake at 300 for 1 hour on cookie sheet stir 3 times while baking. Remove from oven and cool.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Whole Wheat Honey Bread

My friend Jules gave me this recipie a few years ago and I must say it's a keeper! The goal is light, soft and delicious bread that resembles professionally baked bread.

6 C HOT water (as hot as you can get it out of the tap)
2/3 C oil
2/3 C Honey
2 tsp liquid lecithin
8~9 C freshly ground whole wheat flour (hard white spring wheat with high protein count)
1/2 C powdered milk
3 Tbsp SAF instant yeast
3 Tbsp vital wheat gluten
2 Tbsp dough enhancer
2 Tbsp ground flaxseed meal

Combine in Bosch mixer, pulse until blended. Set timer for 10 min and turn on mixer. Within two minutes add:
2 Tbsp Real Salt
8~9 C freshly ground whole wheat flour (until dough just starts to pull away from the sides)
Allow mixer to knead dough for remaining 8 min.

Turn out onto greased counter. divide into 4-6 loaves. Let rise uncovered ~1 1/2 hrs. Place into cold oven. set to 350 for 35 min. When baked, immediately remove from pans and let cool.