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.


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

Red Grapes
Vanilla Yogurt

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.

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.