Search This Blog

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Quick and Easy Quesadillas

This recipe came from my dear friend Kristie.  It is one of the simplest meals you can make, and it tastes amazing.  So when you are in a hurry to put dinner on the table keep the following on your pantry shelves to make it seem like you have been busy all day with dinner.


2 C. Shredded cooked chicken, I use Canned
1 can corn, drained
4 green onions sliced (optional)
1can black beans, rinsed
1 C. chunky salsa
1 C. shredded cheese
8 flour tortillas (I prefer the uncooked ones from Costco)

Mix Chicken, Corn, Onions, Beans and Salsa together in a bowl.  Then place 1/2-3/4 C. of the mixture on half of a tortilla and then top with cheese.  Fold the tortilla in half and then heat in a nonstick skillet on medium high heat.for 2-3 minutes on each side until lightly brown on both sides.  Repeat with the remaining mixture and tortillas until it is all gone.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Pad Kee Mao or Drunken Noodles


While in Caifornia a month or so ago, we were introduced to Pad Kee Mao, otherwise known as Drunken noodles.  It is usually called drunken noodles because it can be very spicy and requires you to drink a lot to calm the flavor.  Although this one is generally not super spicy, unless you get out of control on the red pepper flakes.  My kids love this one, and you can add different veggies to change it up or add more variety.  Hope you enjoy it.  





INGREDIENTS
  • 1/2-16 oz box (8 oz)  Wide Rice Noodles
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 cup sliced onions
  • 1 green bell pepper, julienned
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • Optional: 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1-14.4 oz can baby corn, drained
  • 4 plum tomatoes, each cut into 6 wedges
  • 2 tablespoons sweet soy sauce*
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed Thai basil leaves
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar

  • DIRECTIONS
1.Soak Rice Noodles according to directions on box. Stir to separate and set aside.
2.Heat oil in large skillet on a high temperature. Add onion, green pepper, garlic and crushed red pepper. Stir-fry until onion starts to wilt.
3.Add corn, tomatoes, sweet soy sauce, oyster sauce, soy sauce, Fish Sauce and sugar. Mix until combined.
4.Drain noodles and add to skillet. Stir-fry until just tender, test after 3 or 4 minutes. Mix in basil leaves and vinegar. Stir-fry until basil is just wilted. Serve.
*Sweet soy sauce is found in any Asian store. If unavailable, make your own sweet soy sauce by mixing 3 parts soy sauce to 1 part dark brown sugar in a saucepan. Simmer until sugar is dissolved and sauce is slightly thickened. 
(Oyster sauce, sweet soy sauce and Thai basil are common products found in Asian markets)

Crockpot Thai Coconut Curry


We have been on a Thai kick around here, my son has decided it is his favorite thing to eat.  I ran across this recipe the other day and when I say you made it in the crock-pot  I was sold.  I put it in first thing in the morning and forgot about it until dinner time, and it was delicious.  My son normally does not eat anything with peanut butter, but he kept asking for more, I guess that means it was good.  It's a super easy recipe, and with all the peppers i've frozen from my garden it will be an easy one to make this winter as well.





  • 1 can light coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoon(s) natural creamy reduced-fat peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon(s) red or green curry paste (more if you like it spicier)
  • 2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce
  • 4 cloves minced Garlic
  • 1 teaspoon(s) grated ginger
  • 1 1/2 pound(s) boneless Chicken breasts, cut into 1 1⁄2-in. pieces
  • 2 red bell peppers, sliced 3⁄4 in. thick and cubed
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 pound(s) rice noodles
  • 1 cup(s) frozen peas
  • 1/4 cup(s) fresh cilantro leaves
  •  Lime wedges, for serving

  • Directions

    In a 5- to 6-qt slow cooker, combine the coconut milk, peanut butter, curry paste, soy sauce, garlic and ginger; mix in the chicken, peppers and onion.
    Cook, covered, until chicken is cooked through, on low for 5 to 6 hours or on high for 3 to 4 hours.
    Twenty minutes before serving, soak the rice noodles in hot water.  When noodles are soft, pour sauce mixture into a large frying pan and add noodles.  Stir the peas into the mixture, and cook, covered, until noddles are pan fried to desired firmness.   Remove pan from heat and sprinkle with the cilantro; serve with the lime wedges, if desired.


    Friday, September 13, 2013

    Pork Taco's

    I got the recipe from another of my cookbooks, this recipe comes from the amazing Elaine Beardshall, a friend of ours who is an amazing cook.  This is an easy recipe and works great in the crock pot if you don't want to oven roast it.  The flavor is amazing!! Seriously, I can just eat the pork and and care less about the tortilla, which says a lot for me.  My kids loved it as well and that pretty much seals the deal at our house.  This freezes great, so don't worry that it makes a ton, you can cook once and eat for several meals.



    4-7lb pork shoulder
    1 onion, cut into quarters
    1 tsp chili powder
    1/4 cup brown sugar (optional)
    3-4 cloves of garlic
    1 tsp oregano
    1 tsp cumin
    1-2 Tbsp salt
    Pepper to taste
    1/2 Tbsp olive oil
    2-3 Tbsp white wine vinegar

    Blend all ingredients except the pork in a food processor or blender until smooth.  Pour the marinade over the pork and rub it into all the nooks and cranny's of the meat.  Place into a roasting pan or dutch oven, cover tightly and roast at 300 for 4 hours.  About halfway through cooking, check to see if you need additional water added, only a small amount to keep it moist.  When the pork is done cooking, let it set for 15-20 minutes, then shred the meat, and mix it with any remaining sauce in the pan.

    Serve in tortillas with taco fixings, guacamole, salsa, cheese, beans etc..

    Saturday, August 31, 2013

    Easy Chicken Alfredo

    Anyone who knows me, will know that fettuccine alfredo is my favorite all time meal.  There isn't anything better than a good alfredo.  I got this one from our grad school cookbook as well, and it's an easy one, but doesn't go easy on the calories, so beware.  But if you are gonna splurge, go for this one, it's great!!


    3 cloves minced garlic
    8oz of cream cheese
    1/2 tsp onion powder
    1/2 cup butter
    1/2-1 cup milk
    3/4 C Parmesan
    2 chicken breasts
    1 pkg fettuccine

    Cook fettuccine as directed on package.  Slice chicken breasts into thin strips.  Add a small amount of olive oil, onion powder and garlic to a skillet, heat until garlic starts to brown and is aromatic.  Then add chicken to skillet and brown.  Once chicken is brown add butter and cream cheese.  Once they are melted and mixed together, add milk and heat through.  Once the sauce is creamy add the Parmesan cheese, adding more milk if sauce becomes too thick.    Serve over pasta, adding broccoli or other vegetables if desired.

    Friday, August 30, 2013

    Skillet Chicken Parmigiana

    This recipe comes from a dear friend of mine Erica.  It is in a cookbook that I got while we were going to Grad School.  It is a super easy recipe, and it's really yummy!  It's a fast one for those nights you aren't sure what to cook.  Give it a try, and the clean up is pretty quick from this as well.  Enjoy!


    1/4 C. olive oil
    1 C chopped onions
    2 cloves of garlic minced
    1 28 oz can of crushed tomatoes
    2 tsp of sugar
    1/2 tsp salt
    1/4 tsp pepper
    1/2 tsp oregano
    1/2 tsp basil
    4 Boneless skinless chicken breasts
    1/2  C. Italian bread crumbs
    1/3 C. Parmesan cheese
    1 egg, beaten
    1/2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese

    in a 3 qt sauce pan, heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil over medium heat.  Saute onions and garlic in oil stirring occasionally.  Stir in tomatoes, sugar, salt and pepper.  Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally.  Reduce heat and simmer covered.  Between sheets of waxed paper pound chicken breasts to 1/4" thickness.  In a shallow dish mix bred crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Dip chicken into egg, then oat with bread crumb mixture.  In a 12 inch skillet, heat remaining oil over medium heat.  Cook chicken in oil 10-15 minutes, turning once, until no longer pink in the center.  Pour tomatoes sauce around the chicken in skillet.  Sprinkle mozzarella cheese over chicken, cover and heat until melted.  Serve over pasta.


    Monday, August 12, 2013

    Honey Lime Tilapia

    We had this recipe at my mom's last week.  We usually aren't huge fish eaters, but my kids couldn't help but ask for seconds and even thirds.  This was amazing!!! Definitely a staple recipe now!  Hope you enjoy it.



    Marinade:
    Zest and juice from 1 lime
    1 1/2 Tbsp. Honey
    1/2 tsp. Pepper
    1 Tbsp. Olive Oil
    1/2 tsp. Salt
    1/2 tsp. Garlic Powder

    Dredge
    1/2 C. flour
    1/4 tsp. pepper
    1/4 tsp. salt
    2 Tbsp. Olive Oil

    Combine marinade ingredients in a zip lock back or shallow container and place desired number of pieces of tilapia in with marinade.  Leave in marinade anywhere from 1-24 hours

    When ready to cook, combine flour with salt and pepper on a plate, remove each fish fillet from the marinade and dredge lightly with the flour on both sides, just a light coating.

    Heat 2 Tbsp. olive oil in a medium skillet o0ver medium high heat until shimmering.  Cook fillets 2 at a time for 3-4 minutes per side or until opaque and browned.  Try not to disturb the fish so that you get a nice browned layer.  Serve with lime wedges.

    You can freeze the fish with the marinade in zip lock bags, and then thaw and cook as well.

    Raspberry Cheesecake Trifle

    This comes from one of my all time favorite people, Julie.  Anything she makes is amazing, and always a crowd pleaser.  This is so good, it makes a great dessert for a large group, or for a special occasion, or simply just because.  



    2 8oz packages of Cream Cheese
    2 Cups Powdered Sugar
    1 Cup Sour Cream
    2 tsp. Vanilla
    1 Cup Heavy Cream
    1 tsp Vanilla
    1 Tbsp. Sugar
    1 Family size Pound Cake (cut into 1" cubes)
    2 Pkg. Raspberry Danish Dessert
    3 Cups Water
    1 Large pkg. Frozen Raspberries
    1/2 pint Whipping Cream
    1 Symphony Candy Bar

    Mix cream cheese, powdered sugar, sour cream and 2 tsp. vanilla together.  Whip heavy cream, add 1 tsp vanilla, sugar and then fold into cream cheese mixture.  Mix cubed pound cake into cream cheese mixture and set aside.  Mix 2 packages of danish dessert with 3 cups water in a large sauce pan.  Bring to a boil, stirring constantly, then remove from heat.  Add frozen raspberries to the danish dessert.  In a trifle bowl, staring with the danish dessert, alternate layers between the danish dessert and cream cheese mixture.  Using a total of 3 layers of the danish dessert and 2 layers of the cream cheese mixture.  Garnish the top with whipping cream and chocolate curls, or fresh raspberries.

    To make the chocolate curls use a potato peeler on a slightly softened symphony candy bar.

    Tuesday, July 16, 2013

    Curry Cashew Chicken Salad

    I have always loved chicken salad sandwiches, but one day I tried this variety at a party and I fell in love with the recipe.  I had to have the recipe.  So my dear friend Becca gave it to me so I could share it with you.  This is yummy, if you like curry you will never go back, I promise!! these are great as sandwiches, but you can also just stick it on a bed of lettuce and eat it that way.  Both way's are amazing!



    3 c. chicken breast, cooked and diced (I just used canned chicken)
    2 c. celery, chopped
    1 bunch green onions, chopped
    1 can water chestnuts, drained and sliced (if desired)
    1 c. cashews
    2 tomatoes, diced (if desired)
    1 head lettuce, sliced
    Grapes, sliced (red or green)
    Dressing
    1 sm. (8 oz) ctn plain yogurt (I used greek yogurt)
    1 c. salad dressing
    1 Tbs curry
    Salt & pepper, to taste
    Mix salad w/ dressing. 
    either arrange on sliced lettuce, or place on bread for sandwiches
    *If you're putting it on sandwiches, it makes 8-12 servings

    Tuesday, June 25, 2013

    Mint Brownies

    1 cups (2 sticks) butter, softened
    2 cups sugar
    4 large eggs
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    11/4 cup all-purpose flour
    3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
    1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    1 (10-ounce) package Creme de Menthe baking chips (recommended: Andes)
    Shaved Creme de Menthe thins (recommended: Andes)
    Chocolate frosting

    Frosting:

    1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
    1/3 cup cocoa
    2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    2 tablespoons milk


    Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 13 by 9 by 2-inch pan.
    Using an electric mixer, combine butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl; beat at medium speed until creamy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla, mixing well.
    In a separate bowl, combine flour, cocoa, and baking powder. Gradually stir into butter mixture. Fold in mint chips. Spoon into greased pan. Bake for 35 minutes.
    While brownies are baking, prepare frosting. Combine butter, cocoa, confectioners' sugar, vanilla and milk in a large mixing bowl; beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until dry ingredients are moistened. Beat at high speed until spreading consistency.
    Remove pan from the oven and allow brownies to cool in pan on wire rack. Spread with chocolate frosting. Top with shaved mint thins.

    Monday, June 24, 2013

    Crepes

    For fathers day I decided to try a new crepe recipe when I couldn't find my go to recipe.  This one from Alton Brown was yummy.  Though I only got 12 crepes out of a single batch, if your family is like mine this necessitates at least a double batch.  Hope you enjoy this one.  




    2 large eggs
    3/4 cup milk
    1/2 cup water
    1 cup flour
    3 tablespoons melted butter
    Butter, for coating the pan
    Directions
    In a blender, combine all of the ingredients and pulse for 10 seconds. Place the crepe batter in the refrigerator for 1 hour. This allows the bubbles to subside so the crepes will be less likely to tear during cooking. The batter will keep for up to 48 hours.

    Heat a small non-stick pan. Add butter to coat. Pour 1 ounce of batter into the center of the pan and swirl to spread evenly. Cook for 30 seconds and flip. Cook for another 10 seconds and remove to the cutting board. Lay them out flat so they can cool. Continue until all batter is gone. After they have cooled you can stack them and store in seal-able plastic bags in the refrigerator for several days or in the freezer for up to two months. When using frozen crepes, thaw on a rack before gently peeling apart.

    *Savory Variation Add 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 cup chopped fresh herbs, spinach or sun-dried tomatoes to the egg mixture.

    *Sweet Variation Add 21/2 tablespoons sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 2 tablespoons of your favorite liqueur to the egg mixture.

    Sunday, June 23, 2013

    Waffle Cookies

    Another recipe by..... you guessed it, my mother.  These were a fun cookie to make growing up, though I think I like them more when made with the thinner waffle iron, instead of the Belgium waffle irons.  they still taste good either way.  You can frost these with icing, or a glaze or ganache, or just dust them with powdered sugar.  Either way they are a fun treat.



    3/4 C. Sugar
    2 eggs
    6 Tbsp. Cocoa

    Mix well, then add
    1 C. Flour
    1 tsp. vanilla

    Drop by spoonfuls onto waffle iron. Cook for 25-35 seconds each. Frost with favorite recipe.


    Saturday, June 22, 2013

    Hot Caramel Sauce


    Another one of my mother's recipes.  My Sister and I have been trying to save some of our families classic recipes that our mom made while growing up.  This is the perfect recipe to eat over Ice Cream.  It's also fabulous for a fondue party as well.


    1 Tbsp flour
    1/2 c. brown sugar
    1/2 c. white sugar
    1 Tbsp. corn syrup
    3/4 c. water
    2 Tbsp butter
    dash of salt

    Combine ingredients, cook over low heat till sugar is dissolved and mixture has come to a rolling boil and started to thicken. Makes 1 cup.


    Friday, June 21, 2013

    Chicken Posole

    Kevin's dad always makes Posole when we are up  at their house, and I love it.  It is spicy and filling and yummy.  If you have never tried it, you need to!  You won't be sorry you did.  I always love to eat it with raw cabbage and radish, it helps to mellow the spices well.  


    Serves 8
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    2 medium onions, chopped
    8 cloves garlic, minced
    1/3 cup tomato paste
    3 tablespoons chili powder
    1 teaspoon dried oregano
    4 cans (14.5 ounces each) reduced-sodium chicken broth
    4 cans (15 ounces each) white hominy, drained
    6 3/4 cups shredded cooked chicken or turkey meat (2 pounds)
    Coarse salt and ground pepper
    Assorted garnishes: lime juice, oregano, onions, radishes, avocado, cilantro and cabbage.

    DIRECTIONS

    1. Heat oil in a 5-quart saucepan over medium heat. Add onions; cook until translucent, 3 to 5 minutes. Add garlic, tomato paste, chili powder, and oregano; cook, stirring constantly, until evenly distributed.
    2. Add 4 cups water, broth, and hominy. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until fragrant, about 30 minutes.
    3. Stir in chicken; season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cook until heated through. 
    4. To serve, divide among bowls, and garnish as desired. 
    This can be frozen, which makes it easy to make a big batch like this and freeze 1/2 of it and use it on a night when i'm feeling lazy and don't want to cook.

    Wednesday, June 19, 2013

    Chicken Tikka Masala

    Chicken Tikka Masala

    I love Indian food, seriously, it is an obsession some times.  Thankfully my family put's up with my love.  This is a great recipe and is full of flavor.  You can either serve this over plain rice or you can do seasoned rice.  I prefer plain rice so I can enjoy the flavors on the sauce and meat.


    1 C. plain yogurt (I use low-fat)
    1 T. lemon juice
    2 tsp. cumin
    1 tsp. ground cinnamon
    ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
    ½ tsp. black pepper
    1 T. minced fresh ginger
    1 tsp. salt
    3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
    4 long skewers
    1 T. butter
    1 clove garlic, minced
    1 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
    2 tsp. ground cumin
    2 tsp. paprika
    1 tsp. salt
    1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce
    1 C. half and half (I often use Fat Free half and half)
    ¼ c. fresh cilantro, chopped


    1. In a large bowl, combine yogurt, lemon juice and 2 tsp. cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, black pepper, ginger, and 1 tsp. salt. Stir in chicken, cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
    2. preheat grill and lightly oil grill grate. Thread chicken onto skewers and discard marinade. Grill until juices run clear, about 5 minutes on each side.
    3. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute garlic and jalapeno for 1 minute. Season with 2 tsp. cumin, paprika, and 1 tsp. salt. Stir in tomato sauce and half and half. Simmer on low heat until sauce thickens, about 20 minutes. Add grilled chicken and simmer for 10 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter and garnish with fresh cilantro. Serve with basmati rice.

    Tuesday, June 18, 2013

    Sloppy Joes

    I needed a new sloppy joe recipe, I was done with my mom's recipe, I needed something more bold and flavorful.  I found exactly what I was looking for.  These sloppy joes from The Pioneer Woman are savory, yet tangy and yummy. I'm not going to lie when I say that I might have eaten the mixture straight from the container the next day without a bun.  Yep, they were that good.



    Ingredients

    • 2 Tablespoons Butter
    • 2-1/2 pounds Ground Beef
    • 1/2 whole Large Onion, Diced
    • 1 whole Large Green Bell Pepper, Diced
    • 5 cloves Garlic, Minced
    • 1-1/2 cup Ketchup
    • 1 cup Water
    • 2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
    • 2 teaspoons Chili Powder (more To Taste)
    • 1 teaspoon Dry Mustard
    • 1/2 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes (with my kids I added less than this, so it wasn't too spicy for them.)
    • Worcestershire Sauce, To Taste
    • 2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste (optional)
    • Tabasco Sauce (optional; To Taste)
    • Salt To Taste
    • Freshly Ground Black Pepper, To Taste
    • Kaiser Rolls
    • Butter

    Preparation Instructions

    Add butter to a large skillet or dutch oven over medium high heat. Add ground beef and cook until brown. Drain most of the fat and discard.
    Add onions, green pepper, and garlic. Cook for a few minutes, or until vegetables begin to get soft.
    Add ketchup, brown sugar, chili pepper, dry mustard, and water. Stir to combine and simmer for 15 minutes, adding salt and pepper to taste. Also add tomato paste, Worcestershire, and Tabasco if desired. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
    Spread rolls with butter and brown on a griddle or skillet. Spoon meat mixture over the rolls, topping with a slice of cheese if it makes your skirt fly up. Serve hot with kettle cooked chips!

    Monday, June 17, 2013

    Dutch Oven Missisippi Mud Cake

    This recipe comes from Byron's Dutch Oven Recipes.    We always love trying new dutch oven recipes when we go camping, and this one is AMAZING... super rich, but really yummy.  


    1 yellow cake mix; prepared as directed



    Topping

    10 oz. bag semi-sweet chocolate chips

    3/4 cup chopped pecans

    powdered sugar


    Line the bottom and sides of a 12" Dutch oven with heavy foil. To the oven add prepared cake mix.
    Prepare The Mud: In a separate bowl combine all "Mud" ingredients and stir until well mixed. Pour mud mixture over the cake batter.
    Bake: Cover Dutch oven and bake using 8-10 briquettes bottom and 14-16 briquettes top for 60-90 minutes replenishing coals after 60 minutes if cake is not done. Sprinkle chocolate chips and pecans over top of cake about 5 minutes before cake is done.
    Dust top of cake with powdered sugar just before serving.
    Serve warm with whipped cream.

    Saturday, June 15, 2013

    Moo Shu Noodles


    This is another amazing recipe that I got quite awhile ago from Mel's Kitchen Cafe. It is a quick go to recipe.  I often times in a crunch will use coleslaw mix if I have it in the fridge instead of slicing the cabbage.  I also love to add different veggies to the mix.  sometimes bean sprouts, carrots, snow peas, and  bok choy is always great in this recipe.  



    12-ounces fettuccine
    3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
    3 eggs, beaten
    3 medium-sized boneless pork chops, thinly sliced (it is easier to slice thinly if pork chops are slightly frozen)
    Ground black pepper
    3 scallions, thinly sliced
    2 tablespoons ginger (about a 2-inch piece), peeled and grated
    3 to 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
    1/2 pound mushrooms, stems removed and caps thinly sliced
    1/4 cup hoisin sauce
    3 tablespoons soy sauce
    1/2 small head Napa or Savoy cabbage, thinly sliced
    1/2 cup chicken broth

    Place a large pot of water over high heat to boil. When the water comes up to a bubble, add some salt and drop in the fettuccine. Cook the pasta to al dente according to package directions. Drain the cooked pasta and reserve.

    Combine the hoisin and soy sauce together in a small bowl. Set aside.

    In a 12-inch non-stick skillet, heat one tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add eggs and scramble. When done, scrape them onto a plate and reserve.

    In the same skillet heat two tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Season the pork with salt and pepper, add to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and cooked through, about 5 minutes (don't overcook or pork will be tough!). Remove the meat from the pan onto the same plate as the eggs and keep warm.

    Add the scallions, ginger and garlic to the pan, and cook until aromatic and the scallions are tender, about 1 minute. Add the mushrooms to the pan and stir-fry until golden brown, 4-5 minutes.

    Add the cabbage to the pan and stir-fry until tender, about 3 minutes. When the cabbage is tender, add the reserved pork and scrambled eggs back to the pan along with the hoisin-soy mixture and the chicken broth. Stir-fry to fully heat through, about 1 minute, and then toss with the reserved cooked pasta. Cook to heat through and serve.

    Thursday, June 13, 2013

    Carmel Popcorn

    I saw this recipe on Mel's Kitchen Cafe, and since I am a lover of all things ooey and gooey I knew I'd have to try this one, especially since it must be good for you with the whey protein you add to it.... right! This is definitely a keeper when it comes to gooey popcorn recipes, I have a few that I rely on, and this one just joined the ranks. I hope you enjoy it at your next movie or game night at your house, we sure did!



    *Makes 2 large bowls of caramel popcorn

    1 cup butter (2 sticks)
    2 cups sugar
    1 cup powdered vanilla whey protein (found in any health food aisle from Wal-mart to your everyday grocery store)
    1/2 cup light corn syrup
    1/3 cup water

    In a medium saucepan, combine the above ingredients and cook over medium heat until the mixture barely comes to a slow boil. It should still look very light in color. Take the pan off the heat and stir in the following ingredients:

    1 teaspoon vanilla
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    3/4 teaspoon baking soda

    Pour the caramel mixture over two large bowls of popped corn (about 1 cup unpopped kernels that have been air popped) and mix to combine.

    Wednesday, June 12, 2013

    Grapesicles

    This one is so simple, healthy and the kids LOVE them! Forget sugary popsicles give the grapesicles a try. Found these over at the accidental hostess. http://www.accidentalhostess.com/2010/06/stick-it.html


    Step 1: put grapes on stick/skewer
    Step 2: freeze grapes
    Step 3: eat

    Yep its really that simple.

    Tuesday, June 11, 2013

    Coconut Syrup

    While we were in Hawaii I became obsessed with coconut syrup. The hotels we stayed at served it on their breakfast buffets, you could put it on pancakes, waffles or french toast with macadamia nuts, strawberries, bananas or chocolate chips. It was divine! When we got home I knew I needed to find a recipe for those occasional over the top breakfasts. This one from pinterest did not disappoint! I found it over at Cooking a la Mode http://cookingalamode.blogspot.com/2010/03/blender-french-toast-with-coconut-syrup.html. Pair it up with you favorite french toast or pancake recipe!


    Coconut Syrup
    1/2 c. butter
    ¾ c. buttermilk
    1 c. sugar
    ½ tsp. baking soda
    1 tsp. coconut extract

    Place butter, buttermilk and sugar in a medium saucepan. Stir over medium heat until butter melts and sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil and boil one minute.

    Remove from heat and add baking soda and extract, stirring constantly. It will bubble up, so if your pot is small, hold it over the sink to avoid spillage. Continue to stir syrup and let it rest for a few minutes before serving. Serve over almost any breakfast food: waffles, pancakes, French toast, crepes, etc.

    Monday, June 10, 2013

    Parmesan French Fries

    I am on a pinterest roll, can you tell? I would love for you to leave a comment with a link sharing your favorite Pinterest recipe below. These fries pair up well with just about any sandwich or burger out there. I found them over at http://playwithsugar.blogspot.com/2009/07/oven-baked-parmesan-seasoned-fries.html

    Ingredients:

    1 pound of medium russet potatoes (approx 3 medium potatoes)
    1 1/2 TBSP of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
    1/4 tsp Dried Thyme
    1/4 tsp Dried Oregano
    1/8 tsp Dried Rosemary
    1/4 tsp of Garlic Powder
    1/4 tsp of Old Bay Seasoning
    2 TBSP of Kraft Parmesan Style Grated Cheese (I used reduced fat)

    Directions:

    *Preheat oven to 425.
    *Wash and cut potatoes into 1/8ths. 
    *Place on a cookie sheet that has been lined with foil (I used Reynolds Release foil so that they will not stick, but you could also either use non-stick cooking spray or lightly grease the top of the foil with extra virgin olive oil). 
    *Mix all of the spices and the parmesan cheese in a small bowl. 
    *Place all of the potatoes (remember we are talking about one pound at a time) into a gallon size freezer bag, add olive oil and the parmesan cheese/spice mixture to the bag. 
    *Seal the bag and shake until the potatoes are evenly coated.
    *Once thoroughly coated dump onto the prepared cookie sheet and spread in a single layer.
    * Bake 30-45 minutes or until tender and lightly golden brown. (Baking times will vary depending on the amount of fries that you make and the size that you cut them). For the ones shown in the picture they were baked at 425 for 45 minutes.

    Sunday, June 9, 2013

    Scones


    This is a recipe that my mom would make growing up as well.  I remember loving to eat scones and honey butter.  My Grannie Williams made the best honey butter.  She always had it at her house.  Scones is a wonderful memory from my childhood, that I need to make more often for my kids.  Here is to trying to be a  better mom for my kids!



    1 C. Hot Water
    1 package Yeast or 1 Tbsp Yeast
    1 tsp. salt
    1 Tbsp. Sugar
    1 Tbsp. Oil
    2 C. Flour


    Mix water with yeast until active, then mix all ingredients together and roll dough out to desired thickness and cut into desired shape. Deep Fry until golden brown.  Enjoy with whatever toppings you want.  

    Saturday, June 8, 2013

    Carmelitas

    This is by far my favorite dessert recipe I've tried over on Pinterest. They were super Yummo! This devine find came from lulu the baker over at  http://luluthebaker.blogspot.com/2010/10/carmelitas.html

    32 caramel squares, unwrapped
    1/2 cup heavy cream
    3/4 cup butter, melted
    3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
    1 cup flour
    1 cup rolled oats
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    6 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

    Combine caramels and cream in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir until completely smooth; set aside. In a separate bowl, combine melted butter, brown sugar, flour, oats, and baking soda. Pat half of the oatmeal mixture into the bottom of an 8x8" pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. Remove pan from oven and sprinkle chocolate chips over crust. Pour caramel mixture over chocolate chips. Crumble remaining oatmeal mixture over caramel. Return to oven and bake an additional 15-20 minutes, until the edges are lightly browned. Remove from oven and cool completely before cutting.
    *A stint in the fridge will help them cool off if you're pinched for time. They shouldn't be served cold, but all of that molten caramel takes a long time to cool down. They should be stored and served at room temperature.
    **If you want to use homemade or store-bought caramel sauce in place of the caramel/cream mixture, use 1 1/4 cups of sauce.
    ***To make a 9x13" version, simply double the amounts. 

    Thursday, June 6, 2013

    Pepperoni Roll


    This Pizza Roll I found on Pinterest was a huge hit! I found it over at http://whataboutpie.blogspot.com/2010/10/pepperoni-rolls.html.

    3 Loaves Rhodes Frozen Bread Dough
    1 packages Pepperoni
    2 Cups Mozzarella
    1 Cup Shredded Parmesan Cheese
    Italian Seasoning
    3 Tbs Olive Oil
    Garlic Powder
    3 Tbsp Melter Butter
    1 Jar Marinara Sauce

    Loosely cover the frozen bread dough with plastic wrap. Allow dough to thaw for a few hours at room temperature. Roll dough out to approximately 11 x 11 square. One frozen dough log makes one pepperoni roll. Brush dough with olive oil, lay pepperoni on dough covering entire surface.  Sprinkle with shredded mozzarella cheese & shredded Parmesan cheese. Lightly sprinkle with Italian Herbs, (dried oregano, parsley and basil) a little goes a long way. Sprinkle garlic powder over the cheese. Roll up dough starting at one edge of square. Place rolls on baking sheet, leaving space between. Brush melted butter on top of uncooked pepperoni roll. Bake at 375  degrees for 15-25 minutes. They will rise in the oven perfectly. When done, top of roll should be golden brown and you should be able to make a tapping sound on the crust with your fingernail, allow pepperoni roll to cool before serving. Dip in your favorite marinara sauce.


    Wednesday, June 5, 2013

    Cream Cheese Cookies



    This is a recipe that I remember my mom saving and making on special occasions.  I know when you read the ingredients you will seriously question these cookies, they are loaded with butter, cream cheese and sugar.  They are rich, and creamy and utterly to die for.  If you are looking for an amazing recipe to wow people with, this is your recipe.


    2 c. Butter softened
    6 oz cream cheese
    2 c. sugar
    1/2 tsp. salt
    2 tsp. vanilla
    2 eggs
    4 Tbsp. Milk
    4 C. flour

    Cream butter and cream cheese, sugar, salt and vanilla. Add eggs and milk and beat well, then stir in flour. Drop onto un-greased cookie sheet. Bake at 325 for 15-20 minutes.

    Frosting:

    6 oz cream cheese
    2 Tbsp butter
    1 tsp vanilla
    4 c. powdered sugar

    Once cookies are cooled, frost them , then you can cover with slivered almonds or do as I did and just add some sprinkles for fun.

    Tuesday, June 4, 2013

    Baked Potato Soup

    Next up off pinterest is this yummy soup I found over at http://pearls-handcuffs-happyhour.blogspot.com/search/label/soups. My kids ask for seconds with this soup every time.

    1 30oz. bag of frozen, shredded hash browns {I used Ore Ida}
    3 14oz. cans of chicken broth
    1 can of cream of chicken soup
    1/2 cup onion, chopped
    1/4 tsp. ground pepper
    1 pkg. cream cheese (don’t use fat free.  It WON’T melt!!!)

    In a crockpot, combine everything EXCEPT the cream cheese.  Cook for 6-8 hours on low heat.  About 1 hour before serving, cut up cream cheese into small pieces and add to crock pot, keep heated until thoroughly melted.  Serve with cheese, sour cream, bacon bits, green onions, or anything else you think would be good!!

    Monday, June 3, 2013

    Coconut Chews


    This is a recipe that my mom had when we were growing up.  It's a yummy shortbread crust topped with a chewy coconut filling.  If you are a fan of coconut like I am you are sure to love this one!



    1/2 cup butter
    1 cup flour
    2 tablespoons sugar
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    1 1/2 cups brown sugar
    2 eggs
    2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    1 cup coconut flakes
    1 cup pecans chopped


    Cut butter into flour, sugar, and salt with pastry blender. Press into 8x12-inch baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees F. for 15 minutes. While crust is baking, prepare topping: Beat brown sugar and eggs together till smooth. Add vanilla, coconut, and nuts. Carefully spread over baked crust, then return to oven and continue baking for 25 minutes longer. Cut into squares while warm. Cool, then cover pan to store. Makes 24 bars.


    Sunday, June 2, 2013

    Mexican Haystacks


    Pinterest is a great spot to find lots of new recipes. I want to share a few we've tried that my family really enjoys. Here's one, found over at http://www.jensyummyfun.com/2011/12/mexican-haystacks.html

    Mexican Haystacks
    8 oz cream cheese
    2 C milk
    1 C water
    1 C sour cream
    2 tsp cumin
    1 med sweet onion diced
    1 Tbl chicken bouillon
    1/2 tsp pepper
    1/2 tsp garlic salt
    1 pkg Hidden Valley Ranch Dip
    3-4 frozen chicken breasts
    2 Can diced green chilies
    1 bag frozen corn
    2 cans black beans
    2 cans Rotel
    Fresh cilantro
    cheese

    This serves a big group 10+ so 1/2 the recipe if feeding a small family

    In a sauce pan combine all ingredients except  chicken, beans, corn and Rotel. Heat/stir until smooth and  creamy, then add remaining ingredients and let cook in crock pot on low all 6-8 hours. Stir occasionally.  Once chicken is cooked dice or shred it then add back to the sauce. Serve over tortilla chips and rice . Garnish with cheese and fresh cilantro. This is a crowd pleaser!

    Monday, May 13, 2013

    Upjohn Rhubarb Pie

    When I married my husband I was first introduced to Rhubarb Pie, how did I ever make it through childhood without eating this before.  It has quickly become one of my favorite desserts.  Kevin's Grandpa Campbell worked for Upjohn, now named Pfizer.  In the old days there was a woman who would make amazing Rhubarb Pie and serve it in the cafeteria there, and everyone referred to it as "Upjohn Rhubarb Pie".  Once she gave Kevin's grandpa the recipe and this is it.  It really is amazing.  I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.



    4 cups raw Rhubard chopped into 1 inch pieces
    1 1/2 cups Sugar
    1 egg beaten
    pinch of salt
    3 Tbsp. of flour

    Mix all ingredients together and pour into a prepared pie pastry shell.  Place things slices of butter in 4-5 places on top of the filling.  Fit the top crust over the filling, the sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar on the top.  Bake at 360 for 1 hour

    Wednesday, May 8, 2013

    Tortellini Soup


    • Guess what's in my crockpot as I type, this lovely little recipe! I originally found it over at a spoonful.com but have tweaked it to make it my own. My kids love it, especially when I use the celery not the zucchini. It's quick, simple and a healthy recipe! Enjoy.

    • 1 lb Italian turkey sausage browned
    • 1 medium onion, chopped
    • 1 small zucchini, diced or 1 cup celery sliced
    • 1 medium carrot, peeled and diced
    • 5 1/2 cups chicken stock
    • 1 teaspoon dried basil (more if fresh)
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 1 16 oz can diced tomatoes
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 8 to 9 ounces fresh or frozen cheese tortellini
    • Black pepper, to taste
    • Shredded cheese to garnish

    • Brown sausage in pan on stove top. Put sausage, onion, zucchini, carrot, tomatoes, stock, basil, bay leaf  and salt in crock pot. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-6 hours. Add tortellini 30 minutes before serving. Dish up and top with shredded cheese.