Saturday, December 22, 2007

Magic Bars

INGREDIENTS
  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine
  • 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 (14 ounce) can EAGLE BRAND® Sweetened Condensed Milk (NOT evaporated milk)
  • 1 (12 ounce) package semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 1 1/3 cups flaked coconut
  • 1 cup chopped nuts
DIRECTIONS
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (325 degrees for glass dish). In 13x9-inch baking pan, melt margarine in oven. Sprinkle crumbs over butter; pour EAGLE BRAND® evenly over crumbs. Layer evenly with remaining ingredients; press down firmly. Bake 25 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool. Chill if desired. Cut into bars. Store loosely covered at room temperature.

VARIATIONS

  • 7-Layer Magic Cookie Bars: Substitute 1 cup (6-ounces) butterscotch flavored chips* for 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips and proceed as directed above.
  • Peanut butter flavored chips or white chocolate chips may be substituted for butterscotch flavored chips.
  • Magic Peanut Cookie Bars: Substitute 2 cups (about 3/4 pound) chocolate-covered peanuts for semi-sweet chocolate chips and chopped nuts.
  • Magic Rainbow Cookie Bars: Substitute 2 cups plain candy-coated chocolate candies for semi-sweet chocolate chips.

CINDA'S NOTES:
It's best if you melt the butter int he microwave, mix it all together with the crumbs and then press the sticky crumbs in the dish. You can really add any number of things. I like to make them half and half with butterscotch chips and chocolate. I also prefer without the coconut, but it's really up to you. Regardless, you MUST press the chips, nuts, coconut into the milk firmly - I usually use a glass to press down. If you have more than one-chip-high across the pan, those will fall off. They need to be pressed into the "glue" to stay on.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Easy Peanut Butter Fudge

I just made this!!!

Ingredients:

1/2 Cup Butter
2 1/4 cups of Brown Sugar
1/2 Cup of Milk
3/4 Cup Peanut Butter
1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
3 1/2 Cups Powdered Sugar

Directions:

Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in brown sugar and milk. Bring to a boil and boil 2 minutes---VERY IMPORTANT--- stir frequently.
Remove from heat. Stir in peanut butter and vanilla. Pour over powedered sugar in a large mixing bowl. Beat until smooth. Pour into an 8x8 inch dish. Chill until firm.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Marinated Chicken Wings

1 c. brown sugar
1 c. soy sauce
1 c. water
1 Tbsp. dry mustard
5 lbs. chicken wings

Directions: Mix ingredients pour over wings and marinade
over night. Bake at 325 degrees for 2 hours.

My dad always makes them on Christmas eve. These are one
of our favorite Christmas dishes!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Chex Vanilla Chunks

I haven't tried this yet, but will soon. It sounds like a yummy snack!

1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
3 cups Corn Chex cereal
3 cups Rice Chex cereal
3 cups Wheat Chex cereal
2 cups salted dry-roasted peanuts
2 cups small pretzel twists
2 cups miniature marshmallows
1 package (20 oz.) vanilla-flavored candy coating(almond bark)

Place chocolate chips in freezer to chill. In large bowl, mix cereals, peanuts, pretzels and marshmallows; set aside. In large microwaveable bowl, microwave candy coating uncovered on High 1 minute 30 seconds; stir, breaking up large chunks. Microwave about 30 seconds longer or until coating can be stirred smooth. Gently and quickly fold cereal mixture into coatin with rubber spatula, stirring gently until evenly coated. Stir in chilled chocolate chips. Spread on waxed paper; cool completely, about 30 minutes. Break into chunks. Store in airtight container in refrigerator.

Soft Batch Chocolate Chip Cookies!!!


2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 cup butter, softened

3/4 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 cup white sugar

1 small box of instant vanilla pudding mix

2 eggs

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

2 cups (12oz package) semi-sweet chocolate chips

1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (Optional)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees

SIFT together the flour,& baking soda, Set Aside

In a large bowl, cream together the butter, brown sugar, & white sugar. Beat in the Instant Pudding Mix until blended. Stir in the eggs and vanilla. Blend in the flour mixture.

Finally, stir in the chocolate chips (and Nuts)

Drop cookies by rounded spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 10-12 mintues Edges should be golden brown

Yields about 3 dozen

Monday, December 3, 2007

Pineapple Cheese Ball

2 8oz pkgs. cream cheese
1 8oz can crushed pineapple(drained)
2 c. chopped pecans
1/4 c. finely chopped green pepper
2 Tbsp. finely chopped onion
dash of salt

Let cream cheese stand until soft. Add pineapple,
one cup nuts, green pepper, onion, and salt. Blend
together. Shape into a ball. Let it set up in the
refrigerator for a couple of hours. Roll ball in
remaining nuts. Serve with crackers!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Limeade Punch

1 can of Limeade
2 liters of sprite
1 lime

Empty 1 can of limeade into serving bowl and
then add the 2 sprites. Add lime slices and enjoy!
This is great for parties, because if someone spills
it doesn't stain like red punch.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Strawberry Pretzel Squares

What You Need:

2 cups finely crushed pretzels
1/2 cup sugar, divided
2/3 cup butter or margarine melted
12 oz. (1-1/2 [8 oz] pkg) cream cheese, softened
2 Tbsp. milk
1 cup thawed cool whip
2 cups boiling water
1 pkg (8 serving size) strawberry jell-o
1-1/2 cups cold water
1 qt (4 cups) strawberries, sliced

Preheat oven to 350. Mix pretzels, 1/4 cup of the sugar and the butter. Press firmly onto bottom of 13x9 inch baking pan. Bake 10 min. Cool

Beat cream cheese, remaining 1/4 cup sugar and milk until well blended. Gently stir in whipped topping. Spread over crust. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Meanwhile, stir boiling water into gelatin in large bowl at least 2 min. until completely dissolved. Stir in cold water. Refrigerate 1-1/2 hours or until thickened. Stir in strawberries. Spoon over cream cheese layer. Refrigerate 3 hours or until firm. And enjoy.

Savory Crescent Chicken Squares

I haven't made this one yet, but they were a HUGE hit at a party I was at last weekend. YUM.

This recipe makes 4 squares. Preheat to 350.

3 oz. cream cheese, softened
3T butter, melted
2 cups cooked chicken in pieces or 2 cans (5 oz.) boned chicken
¼ t. salt
1/8 t. pepper
2 T. milk
1 T. chopped onion
8 oz. can crescent rolls
¾ C. seasoned croutons, crushed

In bowl blend cream cheese and 2 T. butter (reserve 1T). Add next 5 ingredients. Mix well. Separate dough into 4 rectangles, firmly pressing perforations to seal. Spoon ½ C meat into each rectangle. Pull 4 corners of dough to top center, twist (the dough, not you) to seal then close any side gaps. Brush top with reserved butter then dip into crouton crumbs. Place on ungreased or parchment covered cookie sheet. Bake 20-25 min.
Option: reduced fat rolls, cream cheese and croutons.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Turkey Enchiladas

2 c. cooked turkey
1 c. sour cream
1 can of Cream of Chicken soup
1 can diced green chilies
3 small green onions, sliced
12 tortillas
1 1/2 c. sharp cheese
1 1/2 jack cheese

Directions:
Mix sour cream, soup, and green chilies together. Put half
of this mixture on the bottom of a pan. Then mix 2 cups of
cheese, onion, and turkey together. Fill tortillas with
turkey mixture. Place filled tortillas, seam side down, on
sauce and then pour remaining sauce over the top.
Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake at 350 for 3o minutes.

We make these a couple of days after Thanksgiving using our
left over turkey. Yum!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Orange Rolls

1/2 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup sugar
1 orange peel, grated
18 frozen dinner rolls

Combine melted butter, sugar, and grated orange
peel in a bowl. Dip rolls in mixture and place in
muffin tins. Allow to rise for three hours. Bake
at 350 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes or until
lightly browned. Frost with Orange glaze while
still warm.

Orange Glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons butter, softened
2 tablespoons orange juice
mix ingredients together

Lazy Betty

This cobbler is called Lazy Betty, simply because of how easy it is! This is one of the standard dishes on my family's Thanksgiving dinner table. I love it and can't wait to have it next week!

2 cans cherry pie filling
1 box yellow cake mix
1 medium bag of walnuts
1 cup melted butter

In a 9 X 13 baking dish or pan, layer as follows: pie filling, dry yellow cake mix, walnuts, then melted butter. Bake at 350* for 45 minutes. Thats it!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Slow-Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

I stole this off my friend, Kristi's, blog. I made it for dinner the other night and it was quite tasty!

1 lb cooked, shredded Chicken( I stuck 3 uncooked chicken breasts in the crockpot with everything and then shredded it with a fork when it was done)
1 can Rotel
1 can petite diced Tomatoes
1 can Black or Pinto beans
1 medium Onion, chopped
2 cloves Garlic, minced
2 cans Chicken Broth
1 (10 oz) pkg frozen Corn
2 c. water
1 Tbsp. chopped Cilantro
A healthy dash of lime juice
Taco Seasoning to taste
Salt & Pepper to taste
Toppings:
Shredded cheese
Sour Cream
Tortilla Chips
Avocado

Place Chicken, Rotel, Tomatoes, Beans, Onion, Garlic, Corn, Cilantro into a slow-cooker. Then add Chicken Broth, Water and Lime Juice. Top it off with the seasonings. Cover and cook on Low setting for 6 to 8 hours, or on High setting for 3 to 4 hours. To serve, sprinkle soup with cheese, tortilla chips, sour cream and avocado.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Super Easy Pumpkin Muffins

INGREDIENTS
1 (18.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix
1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

DIRECTIONS
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 12 cup muffin pan or line with paper liners.
In a large bowl, mix together the cake mix, pumpkin puree, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves until smooth. Spoon equal amounts of batter into the prepared muffin cups.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, until a toothpick inserted in the center of one comes out clean.

And that's it. I didn't forget any ingredients. This recipe is so fast and so easy to make variations to. Use whatever cake mix you have in the pantry (spice cake is extra yummy). Add nuts or raisins, or chocolate chips. Top with a powdered sugar glaze or serve with whipped cream. Or just take them out of the oven and pop them in your mouth. You can't lose with these puppies!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Toscana Soup

This soup recipe is SO delicious! It is similar to Olive Garden's Toscana Soup.

3/4 cup onions, diced 1/8 inch
2 slices bacon, 1/4-inch diced
1 1/4 teaspoon garlic, minced
4 (3.7 g) cubes chicken bouillon
4 cups water
2 medium potatoes, cut in half length-wise, then cut in 1/4-inch slices
2 cups kale leaves, cut in half, then sliced into 1/16-inch strips
2 links spicy Italian sausage cooked(300* for 15-20 minutes) cut in half length-wise, then cut at an angle into 1/2-inch slices
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream

Place onions and bacon into 3 to 4 quart saucepan and cook onions over medium heat until the onions are almost clear. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add chicken bouillon, water and potatoes, bring to a simmer for 15 minutes. Add remaining ingredients then simmer for 5 more minutes. Pour into bowls, sprinkle with parmesan and serve.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Easy Pea Salad

In 9 x 13 casserole dish

Start with head of lettuce (chopped) then layer the following:

Bell pepper (chopped)
3 stalks of celery (chopped)
5 green onions (chopped)
bag of peas--I like to use the sweet english peas-birds eye kind
2 cups of hellman's mayo--spread over the peas, yes they will stick a little
2 tablespoon sugar sprinkled over mayo
1 lb shredded cheddar cheese
4.3 oz hormel real bacon bits

Cathy's Cheesecake (my sister)

1 piecrust (regular or graham-I try to get deep dish)
12 ounces of softened cream cheese (I get what's on sale-either two 8 ounce blocks and use 1-1/2 or 4 3 oz. bars)
1 can cherry pie filling (or blueberry)
2 eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 to 1 tsp. vanilla

Prepare piecrust by adding 1/2 can of cherry pie filling on the bottom and bake about 8-10 minutes or until just a little golden around the edges (if using graham cracker crust, just add the pie filling and put it in the oven after you have completed the cream cheese filling).After pie crust is finished, turn down oven to 325. Mix cream cheese and sugar together thoroughly. Add eggs (add one at a time and wait for one egg to completely mix in before you add second) and then the vanilla. Pour filling into hot pie shell (I wait about 3-5 minutes after taking it out of the oven to pour it on). Bake for about 28-35 minutes (check it starting at 25 minutes). It will be a little jiggly in the center, but pull it out anyway!! After cheesecake cools down, add rest of pie filling in the middle of pie and surround with whatever whipped topping you like.

Tips:I have found the easiest pie crust to use for this recipe is frozen pie crusts-then you don't have to use up a pan. Just let it thaw out a little before you start recipe. I have used ready-made by Pillsbury and they are great, but you MUST not stretch the dough when you put it into pie pan or it will shrink. I think the graham cracker crusts are better for this cheesecake when you just make it plain without the cherry pie filling.Also, your cream cheese must be soft, preferably at room temperature. If you know you are going to make pie in afternoon, then take cream cheese out in the morning and let it sit on the counter (don't worry about it sitting out, it will be fine).One thing that I had to learn was when to take pie out of oven. If you wait until it is not jiggly, it will be very dry. However, don't pull it out if it is jiggly for the entire surface area; it should just be jiggly in the center.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Dinner in a Pumpkin

1 medium pumpkin
1 1/2 -2 lbs. ground beef
1 can of cream of chicken
1 onion chopped
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1 can sliced mushrooms
1 1/2 cups cooked rice
1 cup sour cream
1 to 2 cups of grated sharp cheese

Cut a hole in the top of the pumpkin and clean it out.
Brown ground beef in a large frying pan and add onions

to sauté. When ground beef is no longer pink add the
rest of the ingredients and stir until completely mixed.
When mixed together pour into pumpkin.
Put the top back on the pumpkin and place on a cookie sheet.

Bake at 350 for 1 hour.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Chicken Enchiladas

  • 1 small can of hot chopped green chiles
  • 1 package of cheddar cheese (shredded)
  • 1 large white onion chopped
  • chile powder
  • 1 package corn tortillas
  • approximately 1.5 lbs. of chicken breasts boiled and shredded
  • 1 16 oz. can of enchilada sauce
  • sour cream
  • shredded lettuce

(I don't have exact amounts because I usually just wing it)

  1. Wrap the 4 tortillas in a paper towel and warm them in the microwave.
  2. Take a tortilla and fill it with the chicken, onions, green chiles (small amount), and cheese. Sprinkle with the chile powder (you decide how much of everything).
  3. Pour a small amount of enchilada sauce in the bottom of a 13x9 inch baking dish.
  4. Roll the tortilla and lay it seam down in the pan.
  5. Repeat until you run out of ingredients or room in your pan.
  6. Sprinkle remaining cheese, green chile, and onions on top of tortillas. Sprinkle with chile powder as well.
  7. Pour enchilada sauce on top
  8. Bake in oven at 350 degrees until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbly (about 20 minutes).
  9. Serve with sour cream and shredded lettuce.

Spaghetti Pie

From my friend Beth - she says the kids love it!
  • 6 oz spaghetti noodles
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ¼ c grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 T butter
  • 1/2 c. chopped onion
  • 1 c sour cream
  • 1 lb Italian sausage (ground beef works, too)
  • 6 oz can tomato paste
  • 1 c water
  • 4 oz mozzarella
  1. Break spaghetti in half. Cook till done. Drain.
  2. While still warm, combine spaghetti with eggs and parmesan cheese.
  3. Pour into well greased 10” pie plate and pat mixture up and around sides with spoon.
  4. Melt butter, add onion and sauté until limp.
  5. Stir in sour cream and spoon over spaghetti.
  6. Remove sausage from casing, crumble and cook. (I like to throw in some Italian seasoning too.)
  7. Drain, add tomato paste and water.
  8. Simmer 10 minutes.
  9. Spoon sausage mixture over sour cream mixture.
  10. Bake 350 F for 25 minutes.
  11. Spread mozzarella on top and return to oven until cheese melts.

Crispy Potatoes Au Gratin

from Aunt Patti: All of the following ingredients are estimates
  • extra virgin olive oil (to grease 9x13 baking dish -- or for smaller portions use GLASS pie plate)
  • 3 - 6 potatoes, VERY thinly sliced (I usually use red potatoes but Idahos are good too - clean well but don't peel)
  • salt (little)
  • 2 T (or less) of melted butter
  • shredded cheddar (at least 4 oz), I use more
  • bread crumbs (no more than 1/2 cup or they will be dry)

Preheat oven to 425. Lightly salt potatoes and arrange in even layer. Drizzle melted butter and sprinkle with cheese and bread crumbs. 20 minutes and voila! OR, if you can't use a 425 oven, you can put in @ 350 for 30 minutes or so. But they're crunchier (better) at higher heat.

Buffalo Chicken Wraps

From my friend Beth, who says: "they're not gourmet, but they're easy!"
  • Frozen breaded chicken tenders (the real white meat ones work best)
  • Large burrito-size flour tortillas
  • Louisiana Hot Sauce
  • Tablespoon or two of butter
  • Shredded carrots
  • Mixed baby greens (as is) and/or shredded romaine
  • Blue cheese dressing
Cook chicken tenders according to directions on bag. Depending upon # of tenders, melt one to two tbs. butter and combine w/Louisiana hot sauce. Coat chicken in hot sauce/butter mix. Warm tortillas in oven or better yet, grill in fry pan slightly coated with just a bit of butter or olive oil. Layer greens, shredded carrots, coated chicken tenders on tortilla, top with blue cheese dressing.

Voila, easy dinner!

Pumpkin Muffins

From my friend Sarah, who says: "the absolute easiest recipe ever! And they're REALLY good - especially with Devil's Food."
  • 12 serving spice Cake Mix (can substitute Chocolate, Devil's food or Carrot Cake mix)
  • 3 ½ serving Libby's canned Pumpkin

Mix both ingredients. Will be very dense - best to use mixer. Place in 12 count cupcake pan. Fill each section more than 3/4 full. Bake at 350 for about 22 minutes - use toothpick to check.

Crostini

French Bread, thinly sliced

4 oz. goat cheese
¼ c. pesto

Mix together and spread on bread. Top with sliced Roma tomatoes and shredded parmesan cheese. Bake at 350° until edges are golden and parmesan starts to melt. (10 to 15 minutes) Delicious and very easy.

Applesauce Raisin Cake

From Aunt Wendy Lester:

1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup chilled applesauce
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Cream butter or margarine with sugar. Add applesauce; beat well. Stir in flour, soda, and spices. Add nuts and raisins. Pour the batter into a greased and floured 8 inch. square pan. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 40 minutes, or until done. Cool completely. frost with butter cream or cream cheese frosting.

Mexican Chicken Rice Bake

From my friend Bernie in a recipe exchange. YUM!
  • 1 cup Instant uncooked Rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 chicken Bouillon cubes
  • 1 14.5 oz can diced tomato w/ mild green chiles
  • 1 15 oz. can Black beans
  • 1 cup cooked chicken (cut into small pieces)
  • 1 cup frozen whole kernal corn
  • Toppings: sour cream, shredded cheese, tortilla chips.

In large pot combine all ingredients except toppings. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes. Serve with toppings.

"Fancy" Mac and Cheese

This is from my friend Lamar, who is an incredible cook. No Kraft Dinner for him! It's not quick and easy, but it's fabulous!
  1. Pick your favorite pasta shape (I like the little shell shaped ones)and boil 1 pound in lightly salted water until al dente. Drain, reserving half a cup of the pasta water, just in case.
  2. Grate 1/4 pound each of Fontina, Gruyère, and Smoked Mozzarella (orpick your favorite cheeses)
  3. Make a bechamel sauce as follows:
  4. warm 1.5 cups of milk in the microwave. just enough so it's roomtemperature or so. doesn't need to be hot
  5. preheat the oven to 350°F
  6. mince 2 cloves of garlic
  7. over medium heat, melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a medium saucepan. sauté the garlic for about 1 minute in the melted butter.
  8. *before the butter browns*, add 4 tablespoons of flour. stir until thick and pasty. don't brown the rue.
  9. add 1/2 a cup of the milk, stirring to dissolve the rue. add as much of the remaining milk as you would like to make a sauce that's as think as you want.
  10. Add 1 teaspoon of finely ground white pepper (black is okay, but you get specks in the sauce)
  11. put the cooked pasta into a casserole dish that you've sprayed with non-stick spray and coated with unseasoned breadcrumbs
  12. in the casserole dish, mix the grated cheese, bechamel sauce, and pasta. reserve some of the gruyère to sprinkle on top, or grate more.
  13. if the sauce is too thick, add any remaining milk or some of the reserved pasta water until it thins to your liking
  14. sprinkle reserved gruyere on top and bake at 350° until the cheese on top is bubbly and starting to brown.

Awesome Potato Casserole

From my friend Michelle, in a recipe exchange. She says "I could live off this stuff; It's great for potlucks, too."

  • 2 Lbs Hash Brown Potatoes (thawed, if frozen)
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1 can cream of potato soup
  • 8 oz sour cream
  • 1 cup diced ham
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions, optional

Mix all ingredients in a gigantic bowl, transfer to a 13X9 casserole dish, add whatever topping you wish, Cover and Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

Topping ideas: 2 cups corn flakes mixed with 1/4 cup butter works, but I usually just add about 1 c cheese when there's only 10 minutes left on the timer.

Cajun Pasta

  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 oz. andouille sausage ( i use chicken sausage)
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons Cajun Creole seasoning
  • 8 oz, raw peeled shrimp or crawfish
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 pound linguini pasta, cooked and drained
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped green onion

Heat a large saute pan and add butter, then saute the andouille until lightly browned. Add garlic, shallot, jalapeno, and Cajun seasoning and saute for a minute or 2. Add shrimp and toss for one minute, then add cream and simmer until slightly thickened. Toss with pasta and green onion.

I got this from my friend Julie in a recipe exchange - sounds fabulous!

Friday, October 5, 2007

Ham and Cheese Sandwiches for a Crowd

For 100 sandwiches

  • 100 soft bakery rolls, sliced but not all the way through
    (you can use buttercrust, kaiser, Texas or hamburger)
  • 1-1/2 5-pound Krakus Polish Ham, sliced thin
    other hams work but are too salty, I think)
  • 4-1/2 lbs Swiss cheese, sliced thin

Spread

  • 2 lbs unsalted butter, softened (may need a little more)
  • 1 9-oz jar horseradish mustard (may not want to use that much)
  • 1 1-1/4 oz jar Poppy Seeds
  • 1 cup minced onion or onion flakes

Spread filling on both insides of rolls. Add slice of ham and slice of cheese (if really thinly sliced, then use 2 of each). Wrap sandwiches individually in aluminum foil. Freeze. When needed, thaw and bake at 350* for about 15 minutes. If cooking directly from freezer, you'll need to increase time to approx. 30 minutes. Depending upon what roll you use, and the temperature variation in your oven, you may have to cook longer to get it hot in the middle.

This is another one of Aunt Diana's stand-bys - she always had these in the frezeer. It helps to have help making them (take a couple hours on a Saturday), but then you've got them for the winter - or a really big party.

Easy Chicken Divan

  • 4 chicken breasts, cook then cool and cut up
  • 1 pkg. Chicken Rice-A-Roni prepare as package directs
  • 20oz. frozen chopped broccoli, cooked
  • 1 c. mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp. curry powder (it makes all the difference!)
  • 2 cans cream of chicken soup
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • cheddar or mozzarella cheese, grated
  • fine bread crumbs or crushed croutons/dressing cubes
Spread prepared Rice-A-Roni on the bottom of a 9"x13" pan. Spread cooked broccoli on top of rice. Mix the cut up chicken with mayonnaise, soup, curry powder, lemon juice. Spread chicken mixture on top of broccoli. Top with grated cheese and bread crumbs or croutons. Bake at 350 degrees for 45-55 minutes.

This is straight from Aunt Diana's cookbook. Henri likes more chicken than rice, so I usually add a couple of more breasts...but you can modify for your family's tastes. It's one of my all-time favorites. It freezes well (before or after baking), and it's just as good the next day as leftovers.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Paula Deen's Symphony Brownies

OK, I guess by now y'all know that I love Paula Deen! So I had company over for dinner last night and I made these brownies. They were a huge hit. They are yummy warm and gooey served with French Vanilla Ice cream. We let ours cool so it would set and then we cut them into 2x2 inch squares and heated each square in the microwave for 10 seconds. We served with French Vanilla ice cream. I wish I had taken a picture, but by the time I thought about it, they were gone. I'm not even a big fan of nuts in my brownies, but these are amazing!

Ingredients:
One 17.6-ounce package brownie mix with walnuts
Three 5-ounce Symphony candy bars with almonds and toffee chips

Prepare the brownie mix according to package directions. Line a 13x9 in cake pan with aluminum foil and spray with cooking spray. Spoon in half of the brownie batter and smooth with a spatula. Place the candy bars side by side on top of the batter. Cover with remaining batter. Bake according to package directions. Let cool completely, then lift from the pan using the edges of the foil. This makes it easy to cut the brownies into squares.

Never Fail Sugar Cookies

Ingredients:
4 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup of milk
1 cup shortening

Sift flour, baking powder, and salt. Cut shortening
into flour mixture. Add sugar, eggs, baking soda, vanilla,
and milk to flour mixture. Chill dough before cutting into
shapes. Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes.
Frosting:
1 stick of soft butter
powdered sugar
milk
1 tsp. vanilla
I just add a little bit of powdered sugar, vanilla, and milk
to the softened butter. I just play with it until I get the
thickness I want.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Cake That Kids Can Make aka Easy Cobbler

  • 1 can pie filling
  • 1 can crushed pineapple drained
  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • 1 stick of butter
Preheat oven to 350. Spread pie filling in the bottom of 9 by 13 pan. Cover with crushed pineapple and then with the DRY cake mix. Melt the butter and pour over the top of the cake mix. Bake for about 1 hour or until the top is golden brown.

** I usually use Cherry Pie filling with the yellow cake mix, but Blueberry pie filling with Lemon Cake mix is also a good twist.

I just got this recipe from my cousin's wife Yvonne. It sounds yummy!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Original Ranch Cheddar Chicken

4 chicken breasts
1/2 cup Original Ranch Dressing
1 tablespoon flour
1/4 cup of shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 375. Mix together dressing and
flour. Coat each chicken breast with dressing mixture.
Arrange in a baking dish. Combine both cheeses and
sprinkle on chicken. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Aunt Diana's Christmas Breakfast

Egg Casserole
**must be made the night before
  • 4 slices white bread, torn up (wheat works fine, too)
  • 1 lb. cooked sausage (crumbled) or links (cut into bite-size pieces) - eliminate for vegetarian
  • 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 12 large eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 tsp dry mustard
  • 1 tsp salt
  • dash of pepper
Grease 13x9x2 inch pan. Place bread, cheese, sausage in bottom of pan (in that order). Beat eggs well, in separate bowl. Add milk mustard, salt and pepper to eggs. Pour egg mixture into pan, over bread. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Bake in preheated over at 350 for about 40 minutes or until eggs are set in center. Eggs will be bubbly brown on the top.
Serves 10-12 regular people. Serves 8-10 Lesters.

Hasbrown Casserole
  • 2 lbs. frozen hash brown potatoes, cubed (plain is best, but you can use O'Brien style if you want)
  • 1 can Cream of Mushroom soup
  • 2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 16 oz. container sour cream or sour half-and-half
  • 1/2 stick margarine or butter, melted
  • 1 tsp garlic salt OR 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp salt (optional if using garlic salt)
Topping:
  • 2 cups crushed Corn Flakes, 1 stick melted butter; mix.
Mix all ingredients together in a Big Bowl. Put mixture in an ungreased 13x9x2 inch pan. Add topping. Bake at 375 for 90 minutes. If baking at the same time as the Egg Casserole (at 350), increase baking time for hash browns to approx. 2 hours.
Serves 10-12 regular people. Serves 6-8 Lesters

We usually make one more pan of potatoes than eggs, as people generally take more potatoes than eggs. The potatoes make great leftovers (much better than the eggs), so it's not a problem if there are any left. The eggs must be made the night before to set up. I typically make the hashbrowns the night before, too - just to get them done at the same time. I also really like the potatoes as a side dish for a dinner (it's good with any kind of roast beef, chicken, etc.). You can put less cheese (down to 1 cup) in each of the recipes, if you want. If you don't like mushrooms, you can use cream of chicken, or cream of celery soup instead.

Aunt Diana always made this for the Lester Family Christmas Breakfast...and we still do.

--cinda

Friday, September 21, 2007

Apple Dip

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. cinnamon

Directions: Mix ingredients together and
serve with apples slices.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

My Mom's Lasagna

This is a delicious and easy lasagna recipe that I love!

1-1 1/2 lbs. cooked ground beef
1 package lasagna noodles(I use 9 noodles-3 per layer)
1 (1 lb. 10 oz.) jar of your favorite spaghetti sauce
1 large container of small curd cottage cheese
3-4 c. shredded mozzarella or Italian blend cheese
2 eggs
pepper to taste

Layer in a 9 X13 dish as follows:
-spaghetti sauce and beef combined
-noodles
-cottage cheese,eggs, pepper combined
-shredded Mozzarella or Italian blend cheese

Continue layering (makes 3 layers) and end with a generous layer of the shredded cheese. Bake at 375* for 30 minutes or until cheese/sauce is boiling on the sides.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Rosemary Biscotti


I made this recipe for the County Fair, and I won 3rd place!!! I also entered my brownies recipe and that won 2nd place!!! The browine recipe was posted Aug 15th.

Here is the recipe for the biscotti!!!
Ingredients
1/2 cup butter

3 eggs

3/4 cup sugar

1 tsp vanilla

3 1/2 cups flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

2 1/2 Tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary

3/4 cup dried currants (these are small seedless raisins)

I could not find currants so I used raisins instead.
Directions
Preheat oven to 350 F.

Beat butter until light and fluffy. Add eggs, sugar, rosemary, and vanilla. Add flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix in currants.

Cut dough in half and mold each half into “logs”. They should be about a foot long and an inch high. Bake for 35 minutes and let cool. Cut into slices. Bake 7-8 minutes on each side.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Apple Slices

6 apples peeled, pared, and sliced
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
2 teas. finely grated lemon rind
1 teas. cinnamon
2 tablespoons lemon juice


Combine all ingredients in an 8x8 inch baking
dish and bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until
tender. This makes a good side dish with pork.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Peanut Butter Fingers

1 c. margarine
1 c. sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
1 c. peanut butter
1 tsp. soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 c. flour
2 c. oatmeal

Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and beat until fluffy.
Add vanilla and peanut butter. Mix and add all dry ingredients.
Spread on large baking sheet. Bake at 325 for 10 to 12 minutes.
When cooled, spread with additional peanut butter and then frost

with chocolate frosting.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Baked Chicken Parmigiana


3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 c. Italian seasoned bread crumbs
1/4 c. shredded parmesan cheese
2 eggs, beaten
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
9 oz. linguini, cooked according to package directions
1 jar your favorite spaghetti sauce


Preheat oven to 375*. Cover chicken breasts with wax paper and pound with meat mallet until about 1/2 inch thick or less. Combine bread crumbs and parmesan cheese in a shallow dish(I use a pie plate). Dip breasts in the beaten eggs making sure to coat each side, then dip in the bread crumb/cheese mixture coating both sides. Arrange chicken breasts in a greased 9X13 pan. Drizzle olive oil over breasts. Bake 35-40 minutes or until cooked through. Remove from oven. Pour about a cup of the spaghetti sauce over the breasts, then sprinkle with mozzarella and bake an additional 5 minutes or until cheese is melted. Toss linguini with the remaining spaghetti sauce. Place pasta on dishes and top with the chicken. This is delicious!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Monster Mac and Cheese

Everyone probably has a recipe for mac and cheese, but I think this one's especially delicious.

1 1/2 cup elbow macaroni
1 small onion, diced
1/4 cup red or green pepper, diced
2 cups grated cheese
2 Tbsp mayonnaise
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup bread crumbs or croutons

Boil macaroni about 7 minutes, until done but still firm. Drain and return to pot. Add onion, green or red pepper, cheese, mayo, and condensed soup. Mix well. Pour mixture into greased casserole dish. Sprinkle evenly with the bread crumbs or croutons and the Parmesan cheese. Bake in the oven at 350*F for 30 or 35 minutes. For a twist, add some canned tuna, chopped ham, or cooked chicken.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Pumpkin Muffins

This is the best recipe! My kids absolutely love the mini's and its one of their favorite treats. It is a really easy recipe and takes hardly any time at all. Hope you enjoy it as much as we do!


Pumpkin Muffins

1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup water, milk or juice
2 eggs
1 cup cooked, mashed pumpkin (make sure you don't get the pumpkin pie filling)
1 3/4 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt, cinnamon and nutmeg (I usually use only about 1/8tsp nutmeg)
optional: nuts, dried fruit, chocolate chips, etc.

Topping: 2 tbs flour, 2 tbs brown sugar and 2 tbs butter, cut in

*combine sugar, oil, water, eggs and pumpkin. Blend on low 1 minute
*add flour, baking soda, salt, cinn., nutmeg, nuts, etc. mix on low until moistened
*beat on medium speed for one minute
*pour into muffin cups and sprinkle with topping mixture
*bake at 350 20-25 minutes (usually around 20min, 10 min for 24 minis)

Stove Top Baked Beans

If you like baked beans, I promise you will LOVE this recipe. They are the perfect side dish to any BBQ!!!

Stove Top Baked Beans

1lb sausage (Jimmy Deans Reg or Mild is best)
1 Large Onion
1 Large can pork & beans
1 Cup of Ketchup
1/4 Cup of Mustard
1/2 Cup of Brown Sugar
1 Tsp. Garlic Powder
1 Tbsp. Liquid Smoke ( found near bbq sauce in store)

Cook Sausage and onion together in pan
Add remaining ingredients in a separate pot
Heat thoroughly
Add cooked sausage and onion
Stir occasionally

Really good if cooked the day before and reheated.

Enjoy!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Chicken and Rice Casserole



I got this recipe from Paula's Home Cookin' on the Food Network and I LOVE this casserole. I wish I could send the smell along with the picture because it smells delicious and tastes so YUMMY!

2 (14 1/2 oz) cans whole green beans

1 c. mayonnaise

3 c. diced cooked chicken (I use approx. 20 oz of the canned chicken)

(6 oz) box long-grain and wild rice original recipe

1/2 medium onion

1 c. grated sharp cheddar cheese

1 (8 oz) can sliced water chestnuts (found in the oriental section of grocery store)

pinch of salt

1 (4 oz) can pimentos (usually by the olives and/or peppers in grocery store)

1 can condensed cream of celery soup

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook rice according to package directions. Dice and saute onion. Rinse and drain green beans. Drain and chop water chestnuts. Mix all ingredients together and pour into a greased 3 quart casserole dish (I use a 13x9 baking dish). Bake for 20-25 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

*You may be tempted to leave some ingredients out, but I promise, you should make it with all the ingredients first and try it. I couldn't find pimentos and water chestnuts the first time I tried to make it and it was ok, but then I found them and made it again and now it's my favorite meal. I make it when I have the missionaries over for dinner and they have always said how delicious it is...and they always have 2nd's so I am pretty sure they're being honest. :)

Sansom's Peanut Butter Cup Cookies



I was given this recipe by Sara Bateman while living in Nashville.

1 bag of Reese's Peanut Butter Cup miniatures

1 18-ounce roll of Pillsbury Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (I use the cookie dough that comes on the square tray, for me it's easier)

1-2 mini muffin trays

Cooking spray

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray mini muffin tins with cooking spray. Fill each about 3/4 full with the cookie dough. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown (don't let them get too crispy). While baking, unwrap the needed amount of peanut butter cups. Take cookies out of oven and immediately insert one peanut butter cup in each cookie. Let cool completely before removing. Enjoy!

Sara's note: We don't just use Pillsbury dough because we're lazy, it really does taste better. My family has tried to make the recipe with homemade dough and we all prefer the Pillsbury dough.

Taco Bake

I got this from the Kraft Foods website. I edited out the name brands because it doesn't matter what brand you use. It was surprisingly delicious! Both of my girls said, "I love it!" So, its a keeper for us!

pkg. (14 oz.) KRAFT Deluxe Macaroni & Cheese Dinner
1 lb. ground beef
1 pkg. (1-1/4 oz.) Taco Seasoning Mix
3/4 cup water
3/4 cup Sour Cream
1-1/2 cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese, divided
1 cup your favorite Salsa

PREHEAT oven to 400°F. Prepare Dinner as directed on package. While Macaroni is cooking, brown meat; drain. Add taco seasoning mix and water to meat; simmer 5 min.


STIR sour cream into prepared Dinner. Spoon half of the Dinner mixture into 8-inch square baking dish; top with layers of the meat mixture, 1 cup of the cheese and remaining Dinner mixture. Cover.

BAKE 15 min. Top with salsa and remaining 1/2 cup cheese. Bake, uncovered, an additional 5 min. or until cheese is melted.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Better than Sex Chex Mix

1 1/2 sticks of margarine
1 cup of sugar
1 cup of Karo syrup

Mix, melt and bring to a boil. Boil for 1 minute.
Remove from heat and add 1 1/2 cap fulls of
almond extract. Mix it with a 160z box of rice
Chex cereal and 8 oz of sliced almonds.
Mix and enjoy!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Jessica's Chewy Fudge Brownies



My husband Brad came across this recipe in The New York Times, and since I love to collect recipes he thought I would enjoy this one. I made the brownies on Sunday just for the heck. The recipe was easy to follow and the brownies tasted wonderful! The recipe has a note saying that for the best flavor bake them a day in advance, well on Monday the brownies tasted incredible! They were to die for! In fact I am going to make them again on Friday, because my parents will be visiting on Saturday! Happy Baking!!!


Time: About 1 Hour

2 Sticks (16 Tbsp) Butter, more for pan & parchment paper
8 Ounces bittersweet chocolate
4 Eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup of flour
1/2 cup chopped walnuts- Optional

1. Butter a 13x9 inch baking pan and line with buttered parchment paper.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. On low power in a microwave, melt butter & chocolate together. Cool slightly. In a large bowl or mixer, whisk eggs. Whisk in salt, sugars, & vanilla.

2. Whisk in chocolat mixture. Fold in flour just until combined. If using chopped walnuts, stir them in. Pour batter into prepared pan.

3. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until shiny and beginning to crack on top. Cool in pan on rack.

Yield: 15 large or 24 small brownies.

NOTE: For best flavor, bake 1 day before serving, let cool and store, tightly wrapped.

Easy Barbecue Pizza

1 container(18 oz.) precooked shredded bbq
1/2 c. your favorite barbecue sauce
1 1/2 c. Colby and Monterrey Jack cheese blend
1/2 c. chopped red onion(or however much you like)
1/2 c. chopped dill pickles(or however much you like)
12 inch. prebaked pizza crust

Mix sauce with shredded bbq. Spread on crust. Top with shredded cheese, onion and pickle. Bake ~10 minutes at 425* or until cheese is melted.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Fruit Salad

Apples
Bananas
Strawberries
Red Grapes
Vanilla Yogurt
Cinnamon

Chop up fruits for the fruit salad. Mix up the fruit, add
vanilla yogurt and sprinkle some cinnamon on top and
mix well! It is soooo yummy and refreshing!

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Slow Cooker Bow Tie Pasta Casserole


1 lb. ground beef

1 clove garlic

1 medium onion, chopped

2 (8oz.) cans tomato sauce

1 (14 oz.) can stewed tomatoes

1 tsp. Italian Seasoning
1 tsp. Oregano powder

Salt and pepper to taste

1 pkg frozen chopped spinach, thawed(I use less-I'm not a huge spinach person)

1 (16 pz. ) pkg bow tie pasta, cooked according to package directions

1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese


Brown beef with garlic and onion. Drain. Place in slow cooker. Add tomato sauce, stewed tomatoes, seasonings. Cover and cook on low 7-8 hours. Last half hour, turn on high, add cooked pasta, cheeses, and spinach. Serves 6 or more-it makes a lot!

Monday, August 6, 2007

Easy Mandarin Chicken

4-6 Boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 c. flour
1/2 c. cornstarch
salt and pepper, to taste
2 TBS cooking oil
3 beaten eggs
pineapple tidbits
diced green pepper

Salt and pepper chicken. Cut chicken into bite-size pieces. Drop the chicken in the beaten egg mixture. Combine flour, cornstarch, salt, and pepper in a container with a lid. Remove chicken from egg and drop in the dry mixture. Put lid on and shake until each piece is well coated. Heat oil in skillet to medium heat. Brown the chicken in oil until just golden brown (don't worry about cooking through).
While the chicken is cooking, combine the following in a saucepan and heat through.
1 c. sugar
3 TBS. vinegar
1/2 c. water
4 TBS. ketchup
1 TBS soy sauce
1/2 tsp. garlic salt

(Sauce can be doubled or tripled as desired.)
Place the browned chicken in a baking dish (I use a glass 9x13). Pour the sauce over the chicken. Pour can of pineapple tidbits over chicken. Sprinkle diced green pepper over dish. Bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Sprinkle with sesame seeds when done if desired and serve over rice.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Homemade Oreos

This is a fun treat you can make with your kids.

Ingredients:
1 pkg. chocolate cake mix
2/3 cups shortening
2 eggs
vanilla frosting

Mix cake, shortening, and eggs together. If mixture seems
dry add a little water. Roll into balls on cookie
sheet. Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes. When cooled put
frosting between two cookies.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Lumpia Shanghai/Philippine Fried Egg Rolls

I got this recipe from a friend of mine who is from the Philippines. It is delicious and SO worth the work!

1 lb. ground beef OR
1/2 lb. ground pork, 1/2 lb. finely chopped shrimp

1/2 c. chopped carrots
1/2 c. chopped water chestnuts
1/2 c. green onions, finely chopped
1 egg
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1 tbsp. soy sauce
1 package egg roll wrappers
cooking oil

Combine meat, carrots, water chestnuts, green onions, egg and soy sauce. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Place a level tablespoon of filling on each egg roll wrapper, roll, and seal with a few drops of water or beaten egg. There are different methods of rolling. She showed me to roll a tight thin roll, and cut in three pieces, so each wrapper makes 3 little eggrolls. Freeze overnight(optional). Deep fry in hot oil(350-375*) for about 5-6 minutes and dry on paper towel. Serve with sweet and sour sauce.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Zucchini and Tomato Side

4 Zucchini chopped
4 Roma Tomatoes chopped

Mix in small bowl:
2 tbsp. Olive oil
1 tsp. Basil
1/2 tsp. Thyme
1/2 tsp. Salt
Pour over zucchini and tomatoes and microwave
for 6 to 7 minutes (covered). Sprinkle parmesan
cheese and reheat until cheese is melted.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Easy Goopy Chocolate Cake

Bake 1 chocolate cake mix as directed on box, except
add 1 big handful of chocolate chips. Poke holes in the
cake with a fork while cake is still warm. Pour 1 can
sweetened condensed milk over cake and then pour
1 bottle (6-8oz.) of caramel topping over cake.
Refrigerate overnight or at least a few hours. Spread
with whipped topping and then sprinkle with crushed
Health bar and serve. People think you've spent hours
preparing a fancy dessert but really you've only spent
about 5 minutes!!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Strawberry Whip

2 cups fresh or frozen strawberries
1 cup vanilla or strawberry yogurt
1/2 cup lemonade
1/4 cup sugar
ice cubes

Combine everything in blender. Makes 2 generous servings.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Pizza Lasagna


9 lasagna noodles prepared according to package directions
1 (15 oz.) can pizza sauce
1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes seasoned with green pepper and onion, undrained
1 (15 oz.) container ricotta cheese
1 tsp. dried Italian seasoning
8 oz.(2 c.) shredded mozzarella cheese -I use more like 3 cups, I love cheese!
1-2 (3.5 oz) pkg. pepperoni slices, depending on how much you like
1 (4.5 oz.) jar sliced mushrooms, drained
1 (2 1/4 oz.) can sliced ripe olives,drained
1/2 c. chopped green bell pepper
2 tbsp. shredded(or grated) Parmesan cheese

Heat oven to 350*. Spray 12 x 8 inch glass baking dish(or I even use 9x13) with nonstick cooking spray. In medium saucepan, combine pizza sauce and tomatoes; cook until thoroughly heated. In medium bowl, combine ricotta cheese and Italian seasoning; mix well. To assemble lasagna, spread 1/4 cup sauce mixture in bottom of baking dish. Arrange 3 cooked noodles over sauce. Spoon and spread half of ricotta mixture over noodles; top with 1/2 cup mozzarella, 1 cup sauce, 1/3 each of the pepperoni slices, mushrooms, olives, and bell pepper. Repeat layers once. Top with remaining noodles, sauce, mozzarella, pepperoni, mushrooms, olives and bell pepper. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until lasagna is bubbly. Let stand at least 10 minutes before serving and enjoy!

*you can adjust the ingredients(toppings) to things you like on a regular pizza

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Tastes just like Cracker Barrel's Coca-Cola Cake

This is a seriously yummy cake, but be warned that you will get a sugar high just from making the cake. I mean really, could they add any more sugar?

Double Chocolate Fudge Coca-Cola Cake (like Cracker Barrel's)

Prep Time : 1 hr. 25 mins.
Serves: 18

1 cup real butter - divided
1 1/4 cup Coca-Cola - divided
1 oz. square semi-sweet baking chocolate
3/4 cup miniature marshmallows
2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder- divided
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 tsp. vanilla extract - divided
2 eggs
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup chocolate syrup
3 cups powdered sugar

-In a saucepan, bring 1/2 cup butter, 1 cup cola, and chocolate to a boil.
-Remove from heat and stir in marshmallows until dissolved.
-Set aside and allow to cool to room temperature.
-In a bowl, combine flour, 3/4 cup cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
-With an electric mixer, beat together sugar, shortening, oil, and 2 tsp. vanilla until fluffy; beat in eggs and buttermilk.
-Beat in half of the dry mixture scraping the sides of the bowl often.
-Beat in cooled cola mixture.
-Add remaining dry mixture and beat for 4 minutes. Batter will be thick.
-Pour batter into a greased and floured 13x9x2 baking pan.
-Bake on top rack of a 350 degree oven for 35-40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
Frosting:
-Cream butter with electric mixer.
-Beat in 1/2 cup cocoa powder, 1/4 cup cola, chocolate syrup, and 1 tsp. vanilla.
-Slowly add powder sugar, scraping the sides of the bowl often, while beating with the mixer.
-If frosting seems dry, add small amounts of cola until you reach desired consistency.
-Frost cake while warm.

Serve with natural vanilla bean ice cream.

Note: If you are like me, you want a piece of cake asap. It is really good asap, but it's even better once it has rested for a while and the frosting has set. ENJOY!

Friday, July 20, 2007

Hawaiian Spareribs

Prepare this in the morning and bake it in the evening!
Ingredients
2-3lbs. country style spareribs
1/2 c. Ketchup
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. powdered ginger
1 Tbsp. Worchestershire sauce
1 Tbsp. vinegar
1 Tbsp. flour
1 tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. soy sauce

Put all ingredients except meat into a large bowl
and mix well.Place ribs in bowl with the sauce
and cover completely. Line a 9x13 casserole dish
with foil and arrange coated spareribs in it.
Pour remaining sauce over the ribs. Cover with
foil and refrigerate until ready to bake. Bake
covered for 1 hour at 350 degrees and then for
one more hour at 300 degrees.
Remove excess fat and serve.
Serves 6-8 people (or 2 dogs)!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Cream Cheese Chicken

3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 stick butter
1 pkg. Good Seasons Italian salad dressing mix

Add ingredients to crockpot and cook on low for 4 hours, then on high for 1 hour. Then add:

1 (8oz.) pkg. cream cheese
1 can cream of chicken soup

Cook on high for 30 minutes. Serve over rice.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Fiesta Salad

1 - 2 lb. taco meat
taco seasoning
lettuce (cut in strips)
tomatoes (cut in small cubes)
fritos
white rice
shredded cheese
hot sauce (optional)

Cook meat and season as indicated on instructions. (Use 1 lb. of meat per 3-4 people)
Cook white rice as instructed.
Cover plate with fritos. Place wanted amount of meat and rice over fritos. Top with lettuce, tomato and shredded cheese. We like to put hot sauce on ours, but the kids do not like that.

Grape Salad

This is a perfect treat for the summer, it is easy and light. You can always make it sugar free by using splenda, or low fat by using reduced fat dairy items.


8 oz Whipped Cream Cheese
8 oz Sour Cream
1/2 cup of Sugar
1 lb- 1 1/2 lb Red Seedless Grapes

Combine the first 3 ingredents, and mix together,
fold in the Red Grapes and Chill for 20 mins.

Enjoy!

Monday, July 16, 2007

Sunken Treasure Ice-Cream Pie

4 cups of chocolate ice cream
1 ready to use chocolate pie crust
about 14 chocolate covered peanut butter cup candies
1/4 cup peanut butter chips
1/2 hot fudge topping

Let 2 cups of ice cream sit out about 10 minutes or
until ice cream is soft. Spoon the 2 cups of the softened
ice cream into pie crust. Spread ice cream over pie crust.
Put candies on top of ice cream layer. Cover pie with
plastic wrap and freezer for 1 hour. After it freezes take
out the rest of the ice cream and let it set out until becomes soft.
Spoon the rest of the ice cream over candy layer. Sprinkle
the peanut butter chips over ice cream. Cover with plastic
wrap and put in freezer for 1 hour. Take the pie out of
freezer and drizzle with hot fudge topping.
Serve right away and enjoy!

Friday, July 13, 2007

Baked Potato Soup

3 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
1 can chicken broth
4 medium baking potatoes, peeled, but into 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1 c. half and half

Melt butter in saucepan on medium heat. Add flour and cook for 2 minutes. Gradually add chicken broth. Add potatoes, salt, pepper, basil and garlic salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer 20 minutes. Stir occasionally. Stir in half and half, heat through. Add mixture to blender and blend until smooth. Garnish with crumbled bacon, grated cheese, sour cream, and/or chopped green onion.

Thai Pork with Peanut Sauce

1/4 cup flour
1 tsp red curry powder
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil
4 boneless pork chops, 3/4 inch thick
1/3 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup coconut milk
2 tbsp peanut butter
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 c chopped green onion
1/4 cup coarsely chopped dry roasted peanuts
1/4 cup fresh cilantro

On a plate combine the flour, curry, cayenne and 1/2 tsp salt. Stir to distribute the spices. Coat the pork chops with the flour mixture, and shake off any excess.
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Place the pork chops in the hot skillet and fry for about 4 minutes per side, until cooked through.
While the pork chops cook, stir together the chicken broth, coconut milk, peanut butter, honey, ginger, and 1/4 tsp salt. Remove the pork chops to serving platter, and keep warm
Pour the peanut sauce unto the skillet. Cook, stirring constantly for 2 minutes, or until thickened. Pour peanut sauce over the chops, and garnish with onion, peanuts, and cilantro.

Chicken Carbonara

2 tsp olive oil
4 oz thinly sliced pancetta, chopped (or bacon)
2 tsp minced garlic
2 1/2 c whipping cream (I use half and half)
1 c grated Parmesan
8 large egg yolks
1/4 c fresh basil
1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley
salt
1 lb spaghetti
4 cups coarsely shredded cooked chicken
fresh ground black pepper
1/2 cup toasted walnuts (optional)
1 tbsp lemon zest

Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add the spaghetti and cook until al dente.

While spaghetti is cooking, heat the oil in a heavy large frying pan over medium heat. Add the pancetta and garlic and saute until it is brown and crisp, about 8 mins. Cool slightly. In a large bowl, whisk together the cream, cheese, yolks, basil, and parsley to blend.

Add the chicken to the pan with the pancetta and stir to combine. Add the spaghetti and cream mixture and toss over medium-low heat until the chicken is heated through and the sauce coats the spaghetti thickly, about 4 mins (do not boil or you might end up scrambling the eggs.) Season the pasta with salt and pepper to taste. Top with the walnuts and zest.

Italian Baked Pork Chops

1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
4 pork center loin chops(about 6 oz. each)
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400*F. In a small bowl, whisk together mustard, oil, and Italian seasoning. Season pork chops with salt and pepper, then brush both sides of chops with mustard mixture. Press Parmesan into both sides of chops. Place chops on baking sheet or dish. Bake 25 minutes or until just cooked through(time depends on thickness of chops).

This is simple and delicious. We all love it, even the kids!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Easy Cobbler

Ingredients:
2 cup sugar
3/4 cup milk
1 stick margarine
1 dash of salt
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
3 cups Peaches or Blackberries
1 cup flour

Directions:
Put 1 cup sugar over cut up Peaches or Blackberries

and set aside. Melt margarine in 9x11 baking pan.
Mix 1 cup sugar and dry ingredients. Add milk and pour
over melted margarine. Place peaches on top of batter -
do not stir. Bake 1 hr. at 350 degrees.

We made this tonight with our blackberries we picked
yesterday and it was very easy and yummy.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Taco-Stuffed Pasta Shells

A Mexican spin on an Italian favorite~

16 jumbo dried pasta shells, prepared according to package directions, rinsed, and drained
1 lb. ground beef
1 package taco seasoning mix
1 c. water
1 can(16 oz.) refried beans
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese, divided
1 jar(16 oz.) salsa, divided
1/4 c. sliced green onions
sour cream

Preheat oven to 350*. Cook beef in large skillet until brown; drain. Add seasoning mix and water; cook over low heat for 5 minutes or until thickened. Add beans and 3/4 cup cheese; mix well. Spread 1/4 cup salsa over bottom of a 9X13 baking dish/pan. Fill pasta shells with beef mixture; place shells in baking dish, filled side up. Spoon remaining salsa over shells. Cover dish with foil and bake for 40-45 minutes or until heated through. Sprinkle with green onions and remaining cheese. Serve with sour cream.


Friday, July 6, 2007

Chicken Salad Sandwich

2 C. diced chicken
1 C. diced celery
1/2 C. sliced and chopped almonds
3/4 C. mayo
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. vinegar
1/3 tsp. garlic powder
pepper to taste
Spread on bread or rolls(tastes best if chilled first)

Monday, July 2, 2007

Canadian Bacon and Pineapple Calzone


1 can Pillsbury Refrigerated White Homestyle Loaf OR Pizza Crust
1(8 oz.) can pizza sauce
1(6 oz.) pkg. Canadian bacon
1(8oz.) can pineapple tidbits, well drained
1/2 medium green bell pepper, chopped
2 cups shredded Italian cheese blend
2 tsp. milk

Heat oven to 350*. Spray large cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray. Unroll dough onto sheet. Spread pizza sauce on one half of dough within 1/2 inch of edges. Top with Canadian bacon, pineapple, bell pepper and cheese. Fold other half of dough over filling; press edges to seal. Brush with milk. Cut slits in top. Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Serves 4.

Note: you can also substitute chopped cooked ham for Canadian bacon

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Barbecue Chicken Salad

What you need:
2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 head red leaf lettuce, rinsed and torn
1 head green leaf lettuce, rinsed and torn
1 fresh tomato, chopped
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
1 (15.25 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained
1 bunch of green onions
1/2 cup Ranch dressing
1/2 cup barbeque sauce
What you do:
Preheat the grill for high heat.
Place chicken on the grill, and cook until done. Remove
from heat, cool, and slice. In a large bowl, mix the red
leaf lettuce, green leaf lettuce, tomato, cilantro, corn,
and black beans. Top with the grilled chicken slices
and green onions. In a small bowl, mix the Ranch dressing
and barbeque sauce. Serve on the side as a dipping sauce,
or toss with the salad to coat.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Frozen Fruit Fluff

2 (21 oz.) cans pie filling-flavor of your choice( blackberry, cherry, raspberry or blueberry)
1 (14 oz.) can sweetened condensed milk
1-2 (8oz.) cans crushed pineapple
3-4 bananas, sliced
1 (12oz.) tub whipped topping
Pecan pieces (optional)

Combine all ingredients. Freeze in a 9X13 pan.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Oreo & Fudge Ice Cream Cake

1/2 c. fudge ice cream topping, warmed
1 8 oz. tub of Cool Whip Whipped Topping, thawed
1 pkg(4 serving size) Jell-O Chocolate Flavor Instant Pudding & Pie Filling
8 Oreo Chocolate Sandwich Cookies
12 vanilla icecream sandwiches

Pour the fudge topping into a medium bowl. Stir in 1 cup of the whipped topping with a wire whisk until well blended. Add in the dry pudding mix; stir until well blended. The consistency of fudge topping can vary depending on what brand you purchase. If your fudge topping mixture is too thick to spread easily, stir in 1/4 cup of milk. Chop the oreo cookies roughly into chunks. Stir into the pudding mixture. Arrange 4 ice cream sandwiches side by side, on the center of a 24 X12 inch piece of foil; top with half of the pudding mixture. Repeat the layers. Top the pudding mixture with the remaining 4 ice cream sandwiches. Frost the top and sides with the remaining whipped topping. Bring up the foil sides and fold to seal loosely. Freeze at least 4 hours before serving.

I got this recipe out of the Kraft Food & Family magazine. It is so delicious!

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Yogurt Cake

Cake:
1 white cake mix
Ingredients listed on cake mix
8 ounces flavored yogurt
Topping:
8 ounces cool whip
8 ounces yogurt, same flavor as as used in cake

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Cake: With electric mixer, slowly mix cake mix and
ingredients called for on cake mix box. Slowly stir in
yogurt. Pour batter into a greased 9x13 pan. Bake
30 to 35 minutes until golden on top. Refrigerate cake
at least 4 hours.
Topping: Before serving stir cool whip and yogurt
together. Frost cake. Store any leftovers in
refrigerator.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Mexican Pizza

1 package(12-16oz.) chorizo sausage, casing removed
1/2 c. medium salsa
2 fully baked 12 in. pizza crusts
1 can(16 oz.) refried black beans
1 package(8oz.) shredded Mexican cheese blend
Shredded lettuce
Finely chopped tomatoes
Crushed tortilla chips
Ranch dressing

Preheat oven to 400*. Brown chorizo. Add salsa and simmer 5 minutes. Spread beans over crusts. Top with chorizo. Cover pizzas with cheese. Bake 10-12 minutes or until cheese is melted. Remove from oven and top with lettuce tomatoes, and crushed tortilla chips. Place ranch dressing in a zip-top plastic bag: snip a corner and drizzle over pizzas.

This pizza is so good! My husband especially loves it.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Cold Chicken Satay Noodles

Ingredients:
1 pound whole wheat spaghetti
1/4-1/3 cup smooth or crunchy Peanut Butter Softened
2 Tb. honey
1/4 cup warm water
1/4 cup tamari (aged soy sauce)
1 clove garlic (grated)
zest of 1 lime
juice of 2 limes
1 teaspoon of hot sauce
3 Tb veg. oil
2 cups store bought rotisserire chicken meat
(skin removed and thinly sliced)
A handful of graded carrots
4 scallions thinly sliced
1 cup spinach greens thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped peanuts
2 Tb choppped cilantro or flat leaf parsley

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Salt water and cook pasta
to al dente. Run cooked pasta under cold water to cool. Drain
and set aside. Wisk together peanut butter, honey, and warm
water in a large bowl. Once combined, whisk in tamari, garlic,
zest of a lime and lime juice, and hot sauce. While wisking
pour oil in. Add noodles, veggies, peanuts and toss. Place
noodles in individual bowls and top with chicken and cilantro or parsley.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Brownie Trifle

1 (19.8 oz.) package brownie mix(plus ingredients to make)
1 (3.9 oz.) package chocolate fudge instant pudding mix(plus the milk to make the pudding)
1 package SKOR(or Heath) toffee bits
1 (12 oz.) container Cool Whip
2 (1.4 oz.) SKOR(or Heath) bars, crushed


Prepare and bake brownies according to package directions. When cool, crumble or cut into small pieces. Prepare pudding according to package directions. Place half of crumbled brownies in bottom of a 3 quart trifle bowl; top with half each of pudding, SKOR chips and Cool Whip. Repeat layers with remaining brownie crumbles, pudding, chips, and Cool Whip. Cover and chill at least 8 hours. Garnish with crushed SKOR bars.


This is SO delicious and also looks really pretty.

Spaghetti Salad

1 lb. Spaghetti
1 small bottle Italian dressing(stay mixed kind)
1 bottle salad supreme
4 tomatoes chopped
2 cucumbers chopped
1 red onion diced

Cook spaghetti and let cool. Mix rest of ingredients with
noodles. Cool in the fridge for about 2 hours before
serving.
*This makes a lot of salad. I usually make it for family parties
in the summer. You could probably try cutting it in half.*

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Yummy Dip

1 8oz of cream cheese
1 cup of brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
soften cream cheese (I put in the microwave for 20
sec.) and add brown sugar and vanilla

Dip strawberries and enjoy!

Rhonda's Ham and Cheese Delight

I got this recipe from Sheri Stromness who I'm guessing got it from a lady named Rhonda. It's a really yummy breakfast bake~

1/2 c. chopped onioin
1 T. butter
2 c. chopped ham
3 beaten eggs
1 c. grated cheese
2/3 c. cracker crumbs
1 c. milk
dash of pepper

Cook onion in butter until tender. Add ham, eggs, cracker crumbs, milk, and pepper. Mix well. Bake in greased 7X11 pan. Cook at 350* for 45-50 minutes or until knife comes out clean. Double recipe for a 13X9X2 pan.