Thursday, August 13, 2009

Mexican Chicken Hotdish (Kathleen)

This was super easy to make and pretty yummy. I halved the recipe and it provided 4 adult servings.

4 oz can diced green chilies
2 cups shredded Jack cheese (8 oz)
2 cans (14 oz each) diced tomatoes
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
2 cups uncooked rice (I used brown)
2 packages Taco seasoning
3 cups cubed cooked chicken
1 can (14.5 oz) chicken broth
1/2 cup cold butter (1 stick)
2 cups fritos corn chips
2 cups (8 oz) shredded Mexican cheese

Preheat the oven to 350.

Spray a 9 X 13 baking pan with cooking spray. In the greased pan, mix together the diced green chilies, Jack cheese, 2 cans of diced tomatoes, chopped onion, bell pepper and uncooked rice.

Sprinkle the taco seasoning over the top and add the chicken. Add the chicken broth and stir everything again.

Cut the butter into 8 pieces and place on top. Cover the pan with heavy duty foil (or a double layer).

Bake for 90 minutes @ 350 degrees.

Remove the foil and sprinkle the fritos and cheese over the top. Bake for another 10 minutes or until the cheese melts.

Let sit for at least 10 minutes before serving.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Cheesy Chicken Enchiladas


2 1/2 cups chopped cooked chicken breast
2 cups (8 ounces) preshredded reduced-fat 4-cheese Mexican blend cheese
1 2/3 cups plain low-fat yogurt
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 (10 3/4-ounce) can condensed reduced-fat, reduced-sodium cream of chicken soup, undiluted
1 (4.5-ounce) can chopped green chiles, drained
8 (8-inch) flour tortillas
Cooking spray
1/2 cup (2 ounces) finely shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup chopped green onions


1. Preheat oven to 350°.

2. Combine first 9 ingredients in a large bowl. Remove 1 cup chicken mixture; set mixture aside.

3. Arrange 1/2 cup chicken mixture down center of tortilla. Roll jelly-roll style; place filled tortilla, seam side down, in a 13 x 9–inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Repeat procedure with remaining 7 tortillas and remaining chicken mixture. Spread reserved 1 cup chicken mixture evenly over enchiladas.

4. Cover and bake at 350° for 20 minutes.

5. Uncover; sprinkle evenly with cheddar cheese and green onions; bake an additional 5 minutes or until cheese melts.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Oatmeal Craisin Cookies

Preheat the oven to 350, rack in the middle position.

2 cups melted unsalted butter (4 sticks)
2 cups brown sugar
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs - beaten
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 tsps vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
4 cups flour ( I used half whole wheat flour and half white flour)
3 cups craisins
3 cups rolled oats

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in a large microwave safe bowl. Add sugars and let cool a bit. Add eggs, baking powder, baking soda, salt, vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Add flour and mix. Then add cranberries and oats and mix everything up. The dough will be quite stiff.

Drop by teaspoon onto a greased cookie sheet, 12 to a sheet.

Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes. Cool on cookie sheet for 2 minutes. Remove to rack until cool.

Yield: about 10 dozen depending on cookie size.

This dough freezes well if you roll it in foil and put the rolls in a freezer bag.

This is another recipe from the mystery series I'm reading. I added chocolate chips to half the batch and though I couldn't taste any myself, the rate at which they disappeared makes me confident they were very tasty.

Cinnamon Crisps

Preheat oven to 325 with rack in middle position.

2 cups melted unsalted butter (4 sticks)
2 cups brown sugar (loosely packed)
1 cup white sugar
2 beaten eggs
2 tsps vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp salt
4 1/4 cups flour (I used half whole wheat flour and half white flour)

dough-ball rolling mixture
1/2 cup white sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

In a large microwave safe bowl, melt the butter. Add the sugars and mix. Let the mixture cool to room temperature while you beat the eggs, and then stir them in. Add the vanilla, cinnamon, baking soda, cream of tartar and salt. Mix well. Add flour in incrememnts, mixing after each addition.

Roll the dough into walnut-sized balls. If dough is too sticky, chill for an hour before rollling.

Combine the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl to make the dough-ball rolling mixture. Roll the dough balls in the mixture, then place them on a greased cookie sheet, 12 to a standard sheet. Flatten the dough balls with a greased or floured spatula.

Bake at 325 for 10-15 minutes. They should have a touch of gold around the edges. Cool on the cookie sheet for 2 minutes and then remove the cookies to a rack to finish cooling.

Yield: aproximately 6 dozen, depending on cookie size.

I've been reading a mystery series where the main character owns a bakery. Recipes are sprinkled throughout the book and low and behold I've been on a huge cookie making spree. These were really good.

Buttermilk Oven-Fried Chicken with Coleslaw

Cracker meal gives the coating more crunch; look for it on the baking aisle of your supermarket. If you can't find cracker meal, make your own by pulsing 10 saltine crackers in a food processor until they're finely ground. Or place them in a zip-top plastic bag and crush them with a rolling pin.

Yield 4 servings (serving size: 1 chicken breast half and 3/4 cup slaw)

4 cups packaged cabbage-and-carrot coleslaw
3 tablespoons fat-free mayonnaise
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon celery seeds (I used 1/8 tsp celery salt instead)
1 1/2 teaspoons cider vinegar
1/8 teaspoon salt (I omitted this because of above celery salt)

1 cup low-fat buttermilk
4 (8-ounce) bone-in chicken breast halves, skinned
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cracker meal
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons butter

1. To prepare coleslaw, combine first 6 ingredients; toss to coat. Cover and chill.
2. Preheat oven to 425°.
3. To prepare chicken, combine buttermilk and chicken in a shallow dish, turning to coat.
4. Combine flour and cracker meal in a shallow dish. Transfer chicken from buttermilk to a work surface. Sprinkle chicken evenly with 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Working with one chicken breast half at a time, dredge chicken in flour mixture, shaking off excess; set aside. Repeat procedure with remaining chicken and flour mixture.
5. Melt butter in a large ovenproof nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken to pan, meat side down; cook 4 minutes or until golden brown. Turn chicken over, and bake at 425° for 32 minutes or until a thermometer registers 165°.

This Cooking Light recipe was so good and easy to make - I'll definitely be adding this to our summer meal rotation!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Tex-Mex Bean Salad with Creamy Salsa Dressing (Lindsey)

Tex-Mex Bean Salad with Creamy Salsa Dressing

1/3 cup fat free salsa
3 Tbsp sour cream
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
3 cups canned black beans drained and rinsed (about 2 15.5 oz cans)
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
3/4 cup canned yellow corn or fresh cooked kernels
1/2 cup diced avocado
1/2 cup sliced scallions
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
6 cups shredded lettuce
2 oz pepperjack cheese, cubed or shredded

In a large bowl, stir together salsa, sour cream and vinegar until blended. Add beans, tomatoes, corn, avocado, scallions and cilantro. Serve over shredded lettuce.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Cranberry-Blue Cheese Ball (Kathleen)

4 ounces sharp white cheddar cheese, cut into cubes (I use shredded Hunter Cheddar)
1 8-ounce hunk reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
4 ounces crumbled blue cheese
1 6-ounce bag sweetened dried cranberries

Place cheddar cheese in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Pulse until cheese is coarsely chopped. Add remaining ingredients and process until well combined. Lay a large piece of plastic wrap on a flat surface. Scoop cheese mixture out onto plastic wrap, gather up the corners of the plastic wrap and form into a ball. Refrigerate overnight. Let sit at room temperature 30 minutes before serving.

This makes a HUGE cheeseball. I normally halve the recipe unless I'm making it for a sizable crowd.

Tortellini Soup (Colleen)

This is so easy, healthy and yummy.

5 1/4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 clove garlic, minced ( I used the already minced from the store)
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1 (16 ounce) package prepared cheese tortellini, thawed
1 package frozen spinach
I used chicken from a rottiserie chicken cubed up.

Saute garlic in a little oil, add chicken broth and can of tomatoes and bring to boil. Once the broth is boiling, throw in the frozen spinach and boil about 5 min. Add tortellini and boil 7 minutes. Throw in chicken at last minute. sprinkle w/ parm cheese.

Tomato Soup (Carla)

If you have only tasted Campbells, you haven't had tomato soup! This stuff is amazing!

1 large or 2 small onions, chopped
2 stalks of celery, chopped
1 tbsp dried basil

2 large cans of tomatoes (diced, stewed whole, whatever you have)
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt (I usually leave it out because the stock is salty enough)
Pepper to taste

2 cups vegetable stock

1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk (or soy milk)

Saute the onions, celery and basil until soft.

Add tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar, salt and pepper. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes

Add stock, bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Puree this mixture.

In a small pot, melt butter, mix in flour and then slowly add milk, until smooth and thickened.

Add milk mixture to tomato soup puree, and serve!

Taco Soup/Chili (Stephanie)

Taco Soup/Chili

2 lb ground beef (I use only 1 lb)
1 envelope taco seasoning
1 1/2 cupswater
1 can chili with beans
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
1 can stewed tomatoes (I usually use diced with oregano, basil, and garlic)
1 can rotel original
1 can chopped green chilies
1 envelope ranch salad dressing
1 can pinto beans, rinsed and drained

In a Dutch oven or large kettle brown beef; drain. Add taco seasoning and mix well. Stir in remaning ingredients. Simmer, uncovered for 15 min. or until heated thru out. Stirring occasionally.

Sweet Potato and Sausage Soup (Amy B)

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 10- to 11-ounce fully cooked smoked Portuguese linguiça sausage or chorizo sausage, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices (I subbed spicy Italian sausage)
2 medium onions, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
2 pounds red-skinned sweet potatoes (yams; about 2 large), peeled, quartered lengthwise, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1 pound white-skinned potatoes, peeled, halved lengthwise, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
6 cups low-salt chicken broth
1 9-ounce bag fresh spinach

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add sausage; cook until brown, stirring often, about 8 minutes. Transfer sausage to paper towels to drain. Add onions and garlic to pot and cook until translucent, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Add all potatoes and cook until beginning to soften, stirring often, about 12 minutes. Add broth; bring to boil, scraping up browned bits. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until potatoes are soft, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Using potato masher, mash some of potatoes in pot. Add browned sausage to soup. Stir in spinach and simmer just until wilted, about 5 minutes. Stir in remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Season with salt and pepper. Divide among bowls and serve.

Spicy Squash Soup (Carla)

2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 onions, chopped
1 clove garlic minced
1 stalk celery, chopped
1/4 cup minced ginger root
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp salt and pepper
1/4 tsp grated lemon rind
1/4 tsp tumeric
1/4 tsp hot pepper flakes
8 cups cubed peeled butternut squash (I usually use a large acorn instead - usually it isn't quite 8 cups - or a combination of squash)
1 tomato, chopped
4 cups vegetable stock
1 can coconut milk
1/2 cup fresh cilantro

In a large heavy saucepan heat oil over medium heat. Add onions, garlic, celery, ginger, first amount of cilantro, ground coriander,cumin, salt, pepper, lemon rind, tumeric, and hot pepper flakes. Cook, stirring often, for about 5-8 minutes or until aromatic and onions are softened.
Stir in squash and tomato; pour in stock and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for about 20 minutes or until squash is tender.
In blender or food processor, puree soup, in batches until smooth. Return to saucepan and reheat until steaming. (Or use a hand blender and leave it in the pot the whole time! Can you tell I like mine??) Stir in coconut milk and heat through. Serve garnished with cilantro leaves.

Slow cooker Tortilla soup (Colleen)

Slow cooker Tortilla soup. It is healthy too.

1 pound shredded, cooked chicken
1can black beans undrained
1 (15 ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, mashed
1 (10 ounce) can enchilada sauce
1 medium onion, chopped
1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chile peppers
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups water
1 (14.5 ounce) can chicken broth
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 bay leaf
1 (10 ounce) package frozen corn
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
7 corn tortillas
vegetable oil

Place chicken, tomatoes, enchilada sauce, onion, green chiles, and garlic into a slow cooker. Pour in water and chicken broth, and season with cumin, chili powder, salt, pepper, and bay leaf. Stir in corn and cilantro. Cover, and cook on Low setting for 6 to 8 hours or on High setting for 3 to 4 hours.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
Lightly brush both sides of tortillas with oil. Cut tortillas into strips, then spread on a baking sheet.
Bake in preheated oven until crisp

Potato Leek Soup (Carla)

2 or 3 leeks, (chop off the dark green tops, then slice the bottom white and 2 inches of light green part), put ina colander to get all the sand out (easier to get the sand out when it is chopped).
1 tbsp oil
4 medium potatoes
3 cups broth
1.5 cups soy milk (or milk)
pepper to taste

Saute the chopped leeks in oil until soft. Add broth and chopped potatoes. Bring to boil and simmer about 20 minutes.
Then add 1.5 cups soy milk and heat through. Blend about 2/3 of the soup until smooth. (I used a hand blender - I love that thing for soup!)

Potato Chowder - Crock Pot (Stephanie)

8 cups diced potatoes (can be unpeeled or peeled - whichever you prefer)
1/3 cup chopped onion (I usually use a whole one)
3 cans (14-1/2 oz each) chicken broth
1 can (10-3/4 oz) condensed cream of chicken soup
1/4 tsp pepper (I usually use 1 teaspoon of both pepper and salt)
1/2 lb sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled
Snipped chives, optional
Garlic powder, optional (to taste)
Oregano, optional (to taste)
1 pkg (8 oz) cream cheese, cubed
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
grated cheese, optional (I usually top each bowl with some shredded colby jack cheese)

In a slow cooker, combine the first nine ingredients. Cover and cook on low for 8-10 hours or until potatoesare tender.
Add cream cheese; stir until blended. Stir in one can of drained whole kernel corn. Heat until corn warmed and cream cheese melted.
Garnish with cheese if desired.

Mexican Chicken and Cheese Soup (Brenda)

Mexican chicken and cheese soup

1 pound of cubed chicken (browned)
1 can Fiesta nacho cheese soup
1 can Cream of Chicken soup
1 soup can of milk
1 can enchilada sauce (mild only)
Crushed tortilla chips
shredded cheddar cheese.

Brown chicken. Combine chicken with soups, milk, enchilada sauce. Bring to a boil over low heat - it burns quickly so stir often and watch closely. Serve with crushed chips and cheese on top!!

Melinda's Cream of Mushroom soup!


If you LOVE mushrooms you just HAVE to try this soup. We have soup days at work every year and my cream of mushroom soup is requested each year. This ain't no canned cream of mushroom!!! Next week is our soup days and they said I better not show up without my cream of mushroom soup. Soooo, of course I have to share. I liked to serve this with some big crusty rolls and freshly ground pepper.

1 pound mushrooms. (I use 1/2 white and 1/2 Shittake)
1/4 cup Margarine or Butter
3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup whipping cream (heavy)
1 can ready to serve chicken broth

Slice enough mushrooms to measure 1 cup. Chop the rest.

Melt butter in 3- quart saucepan over medium heat. Cook all the mushrooms in butter for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms are golden brown. (It will seem like tons of mushrooms, but they really cook down).
Sprinkle with flour and salt. Cook, stirring constantly, until thickened.

Gradually stir in whipping cream and broth, heat until hot.

Recipe makes 4 - one cup servings. I usually double or triple recipe, depending on how many I'm feeding.


French Onion Soup (Andrea)

5 Pounds Unpeeled Onions
1/2 Cup of butter
1 1/2 tsp pepper
2 TBS Paprika
1 Bay leaf
7 Cans of beef broth divided (I use Swanson's)
1 Cup dry white wine
3/4 Cup of flour
2 tsp salt
French Bread
Shredded swiss cheese

Peel onions and slice 1/8 inch thick. Melt butter in a 6 quart or larger stockpot. Add onions; cook uncovered over low heat for one and a half hours stirring occasionally. Stir in pepper, paprika and bay leaf; saute over low heat for 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Pour in six cans of broth and cup of wine. Increase heat and bring to a boil. Dissolve flour in remaining can of broth. Stir into boiling soup. Reduce heat and simmer at least for three hours. (I generally let it cook all day) Top with bread and cheese and place under broiler for cheese to melt.

Chicken Noodle Soup (Brenda)

4 chicken breasts cut in pieces - uncooked
1 bag of cut carrots (if you are lazy like me)
2 stalks of celery chopped
4 medium size potatoes
1 small zucchini chopped
1 small yellow squash (about the same size as the zucchini) chopped
1/2 tsp garlic (more if you like garlic)
1/2 tsp dehydrated onion flakes
1 large can of chicken broth (I use the low sodium kind)

Just chop it all and throw it in there. I put it on low all day and then about 30 minutes before we want to eat I put in noodles (our favorite is the frozen noodles). You might have to add some water or more broth after you add the noodles.

I have a really big crockpot. You might have to adjust the amount of veggies you put in accordingly. I have been known to run out of room for the noodles because I put too much other stuff in there...

Carrot Ginger Soup (Carla)


2 cups carrots, peeled and chopped (about 6 medium)
2 cups vegetable broth (or chicken broth if you must)
1 cup milk (or soy milk)
1.5 inches of fresh ginger, minced.

Boil carrots, ginger and broth until carrots are soft, add milk. Puree in food processor or with a hand blender. I usually at least doublethis recipe. Today I tripled it and ended up with 3 quart jars full.

Bean Soup

1 med Onion finely chopped
1 can chicken broth
1 can black beans
1 can kidney or pinto beans
1 can refried beans
1 can mexican stewed tomatoes

Cook onions in pot until tender, add all the canned ingredients, salt and pepper to taste. Sometimes I garnish with shredded pepper jack cheese.

Popsicles (Carla)

Fruit of your choice
Applesauce or Fruit Juice
Spinach, kael, carrots, or beets - if desired

A little tip for getting fruit and veggies into your kids...
If you make your own popsicles it is simple. If you don't make your own popsicles, it is worth it to try!

This week I made popsicles and I used my canned apple sauce as the base and then added fruit from my freezer (strawberries blueberries, banana) and put it all in the blender. THen I added fresh spinach leaves and purree it til you can't see the leaves anymore. Sounds gross but you can add a LOT before you can taste the spinach. And if you use berries in it, then it won't even be green. The kids will never know. You can also add kale, carrots (they are sweet), cooked beets (also sweet).

Angela has always had homemade popsicles so she didn't notice the difference. My niece was here once though and I offered her a popsicle and she was thinking astro pop or whatever those multi coloured things are called - she wouldn't eat mine that was basically just strawberries and orange juice! I didn't try the spinach on her. :)

You can get popsicle molds at the dollar stores or probably in Target at this time of year. I'm sure tupperware sells them, but they wouldn't cost just a dollar there. I have about 3 of them so that I have a good stash of them in the freezer. Sometimes angela will eat a few a day in the summer.

Peppermint Coated Pretzels (Lindsey)

1 16 oz. package pretzel nuggets( they used Snyder's Sourdough)
2 16 oz. packages vanilla bark coating squares, coarsly chopped.
2 cups (12 oz package) white chocolate morsels
1 4 oz package white chocolate baking bars broken into pieces.
1 16 oz package hard peppermint candies crushed and divided (about 2 cups)
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract

* combine first 4 ingredients in slow cooker
* cover and cook on LOW 2 hours. Stir chocolate mixture; add 1 1/4 c. crushed peppermint candies and extreact, stirring well to coat.
*drop pretzel mixture by heaping tablesppons onto wax paper. Sprinkle remaining 3/4 c.crushed peppermint candies evenly on pieces before they set. Let stand until firm.

Granola Bars (Carla)

And if you want to make the yummiest granola bars you've ever had...

Granola Bars

1 cup of the above granola
1 cup coconut, shredded
1 cup rolled oat flakes
1 cup flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup raisins
1 egg (or egg replacer)
1/2 cup oil
2 tbsp sesame seeds

Preheat oven to 350F. In a large bowl stir together the granola, coconut, oat flakes, flour, baking powder and salt. Stir in the sugar, raisins, egg (or egg replacer) and oil. Mix together well. Spread mixture into an 8x8 pan. Sprinkle top evenly with sesame seeds. Bake for 18-20 minutes. Cut into bars.

Sweet Potato Souffle (Danielle)

1 large can sweet potatoes, drained OR 3-4 large fresh sweet potatoes
1/2 C butter
1 t vanilla
3/4 C sugar
2 eggs
1/3 C sweetened, condensed milk

1/2 C brown sugar
2 1/2 T butter
1/4 C flour
1/2 C pecans

Place the sweet potatoes, butter, vanilla, sugar, eggs and sweetened, condensed milk in a large mixing bowl and mash. Mix topping ingredients like pie crust and place on mashed sweet potato mixture. Bake at 350 for 20- 30 min.

Everyone always requests that I make this dish for holiday dinners. We also like it with Amy B's oven fried pork chops. It is sinful but DELICIOUS!!

Sweet Potato Hash with Bacon (Amy B)

1/2 pound sliced bacon, cut into 1/4-inch strips
2 medium onions, chopped
1 large red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
2 pound sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

Cook bacon in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp. Transfer to paper towels, reserving fat in skillet.Add onions, bell pepper, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper to skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened. Stir in potatoes and 1/2 teaspoon salt and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are tender and starting to brown, 10 to 14 minutes. Stir in thyme, bacon, and salt and pepper to taste.

* Could be a holiday side dish

Sunday's Best Fruit Salad

1 can pineapple chunks (20 ounce) juice reserved
2 apples, peeled and cored
1 can peach pie filling (21 ounce)
2 bananas, peeled and diced
3 kiwis, sliced
1 pint strawberries, sliced
** I also throw in grapes halved sometimes.

1. In a small bowl, toss the chopped apples in reserved pineapple juice
2. Allow to sit for 5 to 10 minutes
3. In a large salad bowl, combine the peach pie filling and pineapple chunks.
4. Remove apples from pineapple juice and add to pie filling and pineapple mixture.
5. Add chopped bananas to reserved pineapple juice and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes.
6. Peel and slice kiwi and 1/2 of strawberries.
7. Chop the other 1/2 of strawberries and set aside.
8. Remove bananas from pineapple juice and add to pie filling mixture.
9. Add chopped strawberries; toss together.
10. Arrange kiwi slices around the edge of the serving bowl and alternate with strawberry slices.
11. Chill and serve.

*** When making at home I don't garnish the bowl with the kiwis or half the strawberries I just throw them all in. When I have grapes I half them and throw them in as well. I have had very good luck when leaving the chopped apples and bananas in the pineapple juice for 10 min with them not turning brown.

Sugar and Spice Roasted Squash (Betsy)

(the recipe calls for 2 large Acorn squash but I used 1 small acorn and 1 small "buttercup" squash when I made it the first time and it was fab. The 2nd time I made it, I used butternut squash and it was even better!)

cut your squash in half and then in quarters (if using butternut, just cut in half)
cream together the following ingredients:
(ALL measurments are approximate, I'm a very bad direction follower!)
6 T softened butter
1 ~ 3 Generous T brown sugar
1~2 generous T maple syrup (I didn' thave any of the "real" thing so I just used the tacky ol Log Cabin and it worked fine)
2 generous tsp cinnamon
2 generous tsp ground cloves
1 generous tsp allspice
1 generous tsp nutmeg
GENEROUS pinch of red pepper

cream those things together and put about a tablespoon or so onto each of the quarters or halves of squash. Put in a casserole dish and cover tightly with foil. Bake at 350 for 45min, uncover and baste with the yummy juice that has by now dripped everywhere, recover tightly and bake for another 45 min or so. Serve individually or scrape out the "skin" and sort of mush up the squash. I also used this as a base for butternut squash soup that was simply AMAZING and FABULOUS if you like spicey/savory/sweet stuff. Hope you enjoy as much as I've been enjoying it all week! I'm on a seriously scary squash kick here!
Bon Appetite!

Squash (Emily)

Acorn squash into half and de-seeded. Place each half on a baking sheet. Put 1-2 TBSPs butter into center of squash and sprinkle salt around the top. Bake about 2 hours at 400 degrees or until browned around the edges.

Squash & Apple Bake (Kathleen)

2 lbs butternut or buttercup squash, peeled and chopped
2 apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted
1 tbs flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350

Arrange squash in an ungreased baking dish and top with the apple slices.

Mix the rest of the ingredients and drop over the squash/apple mixture.

Cover with foil and bake for 50 minutes.

Uncover and continue to cook until the juices are syrupy (approx another 20 minutes).

Potato Casserole (Kathleen)

½ cup chopped onion
1 can cream of celery soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
8 oz. Container sour cream
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
30 oz. bag of frozen country-style hashed brown potatoes

Stir together first five ingredients to blend in a large bowl. Add potatoes and toss together
Spread in a 13” x 9” baking pan. (Spray pan with Pam for easy clean-up.)
Bake at 350 degrees for 1 ½ hours (until top is lightly browned and potatoes are bubbling.)

Note: I've started adding some cauliflower puree to this to up the nutrient quotient - can't taste a difference at all!

Grilled Calabacitas - Zucchini and/or or Yellow Squash (Amy B)

Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper

For the grilled veggies, all you would do is slice the squash lengthwise into 1/4-1/2" slices, toss with olive oil, salt & pepper, and grill until tender. (Just takes a few minutes!)

Green Bean Casserole with a twist (Kari)


2 TBSP. butter
2 TBSP. flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp sugar
1/2 onion diced
1 C sour cream
3 (14.5 oz) cans french style green beans (drained)
2 C shedded cheese (marble/cojack/cheddar)
1/2 C crumbled buttery crackers or french onions

1. Preheat oven to 350
2. Melt 2 TBSP. butter in skillet over med heat. Stir in flour until smooth and cook for 1 minute. Stir in salt, sugar, onion and sour cream. Add green beans and stir to coat.
3. Transfer to casserole dish. Spread cheese over the top. Toss crackers with butter and put on the top of the cheese. Or french onions (nummy)
4. Bake for 30 minutes covered or until top is bubbly.

Voila! A nice change from the regular- very tasty.

Chipotle Mashed Potatoes (Amy B)

2 lbs of potatoes
4 oz. of cream cheese/neufchatel
1/4-1/2 cup milk or half and half
About 2 chipotle chiles, chopped (the kind packed in adobo sauce)
1-2 tablespoons of the adobo sauce from the chiles (you can add more if you desire)
A bit of garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste
Some chopped fresh chives

Prepare about 2 lbs. of potatoes as you would for typical mashed potatoes. When potatoes are tender, mash and then fold in: 4 oz. of cream cheese/neufchatel; 1/4-1/2 cup milk or half and half; about 2 chipotle chiles, chopped (the kind packed in adobo sauce); 1-2 tablespoons of the adobo sauce from the chiles (you can add more if you desire); a bit of garlic powder; salt and pepper to taste. A good garnish is some chopped fresh chives.

Broccoli-Raisin Salad

Small red onion chopped
Large bunch of broccoli cut into florets
1 package sunflower seeds (3.75 oz)
1 cup golden raisins
1 cup mayo
5 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
3 Tablespoons red wine vinegar

Mix all ingredients and chill for at least 2 hours before serving.
*** I've also used a pre-made cole slaw dressing instead of mayo and vinegar.
*** Also, I have used cauliflower with the broccoli.

Broccoli with Smoked Almonds

1 pkg frozen broccoli florets, thawed
1/2 t minced garlic
1 T olive oil
1/2 C water
1/4 t salt
1/3 C smoked or raosted salted almonds, coarsely chopped
1 jar (2oz) sliced pimento

In a large skillet, saute broccoli and garlic in oil for 2 minutes. Add water and salt; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and cooktill broccoli is tender.

Add almonds and pimento and cook uncovered until water has evaporated.

Broccoli Casserole (Jen)

(best side dish ever :)
1 1/2 lbs fresh broccoli
salted water
2 tbsp melted butter
2 tbsp flour
1/4 tsp salt
dash of pepper
1 cup milk
1 tbsp grated onion
3/4 cup mayo
3 eggs beaten

Trim fresh broccoli, cook until tender but slightly crisp. Drain and chop coarsely
In another pan, blend butter w/ flour salt & pepper, cook until bubbly. Gradualy stir in milk, cook until THICK & SMOOTH (takes a while).
Remove from heat & stir in onion, mayo & eggs. Mix in broccoli
Turn into a 2 qt. casserole dish.
Place casserole dish inisde another container with water at bottom, about 1 inch up the side when casserole dish is inside.
Bake at 350 for 30 min (knife should come out clean)
Can be doubled to 4 qt, bake 45+ min, until knife comes out clean.

Baked Potato (Emily)

Instead of your traditional baked potato...rub with olive oil and bake on the rack about 2 hours at 400 degrees.

Aphrodisiac Green Beans (Carla)

Fresh green beans
3 or 4 cloves of garlic, minced
a few table spoons of butter
a few tablespoons of sliced and toasted almonds

Melt the butter, add the minced garlic and saute the green beans until tender crisp. Sprinkle with almonds and saute a little longer

Ramen Salad (Kari)

1 Cup Oil (canola is good)
1/2 C. sugar
1/3 C. White vinegar
2 pkgs. ramen soup seasoning (we use mushroom beef)

1 lb. package cole salad mix
2 packages mushroom beef ramen noodles
1 cup salted sunflower seeds
1 cup slivered toasted slivered almonds
1 cucumber chopped

Prepare the dressing a day in advance by combining ingredients for dressing. Refrigerate overnight.
Break up noodles, mix all dry ingredients together, pour dressing over dry ingredients; mix well and chill before serving.
I've known people to add broccoli to this as well.

Pink Grapefruit, Avocado and Crabmeat Salad (Carla)


THis is my all time favourite salad, and I don't think I have posted it here before! (I leave out the crabmeat now, but it is still really yummy!)

1 large head of lettuce
1 pink grapefruit
1 ripe avocado
1/2 lb (250 g) crabmeat or 1 pkg artificial crabmeat chopped

1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp liquid honey
salt and pepper to taste

Peel and section grapefruit, remove all pith and peel. Peel and cube avocado. Tear lettuce into bite-size chunks.

Vinaigrette: In large salad bowl whisk ingredients together.

In a bowl, put lettuce, topped with avocado, crabmeat and grapefruite pieces. Pour vinaigrette over top and toss just before serving.

Mommy's favorite salad (Brenda)

Mommy's favorite salad - (we have this alot)

Mix together and refrigerate overnight:
1/2 cup unsalted almonds
1 cup unsalted sunflower seeds
2 pkgs Raman noodles (put them in uncooked and put in seasoning pkts, too)
1 cup veg oil
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup vinager

The next day add:
1 pkg broccoli slaw
1 cup diced onion (optional)
1 red pepper (optional)
1 green pepper (optional)

Katey's Salad

Ok, here's my salad....

Lettuce ( I like Baby Romaine)
Dried Cranberries
Pumpkin seeds
Apple slices
Feta Cheese

As far as dressing goes, I like a Balsamic Vinaigrette, but I'm sure any will do.

Greek Salad (Carla)

I usually chop up a green pepper (I like big chunks - like about an inch),
half a purple onion,
2 or 3 tomatoes,
a cucumber (I peel the field cucumbers, but leave the English with skin on)
some kalamata olives,
and a hunk of feta cheese.

I never put lettuce in mine, becaues I always thought traditional Greek salad didn't have lettuce, and restaurants just added lettuce becuase it was cheap filler. But now I'm not so sure that is right because I went to a traditional Greek restaurant and there was lettuce in it... So who knows!

Then the dressing is:

3/4 cup olive oil (I always use less - more like 1/2 cup)
1/4 cup red wine vinegar (I use a little more than that)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp oregano
2 or 3 cloves garlic

It makes a lot of dressing, so you can just put on what you'd like and save the rest for another time. I let it sit for a few hrs before serving, if I have the time.

Exquisite Rice Salad (Carla)

1 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp mustard seeds
2 tsp cumin seeds (I just used cumin)
2-4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1 tsp turmeric
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
2.5 cups water
1 cinnamon stick
1 cup long-grain brown rice
3 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp dark sesame oil
2 tbsp soy sauce
1/4 cup olive oil
1 medium carrot finely chopped
1/2 cup raisins
4 stalks green onion chopped
1/2 cup peas

In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the mustard seeds, cumin, garlic, ginger, turmeric, and cayenne. Stir until mustard seeds begin to pop (about 30 seconds), then add water and cinnamon. Cover and bring to a boil.
Add rice to the boiling pot and cover. Reduce heat to low and simmer about 35 - 40 minutes, until rice is done. Remove the pot from heat and let stand 10 minutes. Remove the cinnamon stick.
In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, sesame oil, Soy sauce and olive oil until combined. Pour onto the rice, add the carrots, raisins, peas, onions. Stir until well mixed. Transfer to bowl and chill before serving.

Broccoli Salad (Kari)

10 slices bacon
1 head fresh broccoli, cut into bite size pieces
1/4 cup red onion, chopped
1/2 cup raisins
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons white sugar
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup sunflower seeds
1 small apple (granny smith is good)

Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, crumble and set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine the broccoli, onion and raisins. In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, sugar and mayonnaise. Pour over broccoli mixture, and toss until well mixed. Refrigerate for at least two hours.
Before serving, toss with crumbled bacon and sunflower seeds.
Make a day or so before you wish to serve to meld the ingredients.

Slime (Beth)

So much fun for toddlers/preschoolers. And not as messy as playdough!! Watch the little ones that they don't consume it.

Great fun for Halloween or anytime!
1/2 cup white glue
6 Tbsp. water
Food coloring
1-4 tsp. Borax
1-4 Tbsp. water

Mix the glue, 6 tablespoons water and food coloring until it is dissolved.
In a separate bowl, dissolve 1 teaspoon borax into 1 tablespoon water. Add to the glue solution. You will get a very thick clump of slime when the two mix. Pull the clump of slime out of the glue mixture and put it in a separate bowl.
Mix another batch of the borax solution and add to the remaining glue mixture. Repeat until all the glue mixture is used (about 3-4 times).
With clean hands, knead the slime to mix. This will take about 10 minutes and is not very difficult as the slime easily separates between your fingers.
If a looser, more slimy texture is desired knead in a bit more water. The more water you add, the slimier it gets.
The slime doesn't leave a residue and doesn't get stuck on anything.
Store in an airtight container. This can easily be doubled, tripled or quadrupled.

Brought to you by Chef Mom - http://ChefMom.comPrint for personal use only. Copyright © 1999-2005 by Coincide Media, Inc.
Recipe submitted by: Tawra KellamNot Just Beans: Fifty Years of Frugal Family Favorites

Playdough (Brenda)


2 1/2 cups flour (unsifted)
1/2 cup salt
3 Tbls. veg. oil
1 Tbls. powdered alum

food coloring

Pour 2 cups boiling water over ingredients. Add food coloring to desired look. Mix well and keep in air tight container.

Zucchini Crisp (Crystal)

6-8 cups zucchini (peel skin off, take out all the seeds and cut in slices(like apples))
2/3 c. lemon juice
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 cup sugar
1 tbs. butter

Crumb mixture
4 C. flour
1 C. sugar
2 1/2 sticks margarine/butter

Mix together crumb mixture and place 1/2 of it on a greased cookie sheet (I just used a glass baking dish instead). Pat down. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes Place zucchini in sauce pan with lemon juice. Simmer till soft and then add cinnamon, nutmeg, butter and sugar. Cook 5 minutes more and let cool. Place zucchini mixture on crust. Add 1/2 cup brown sugar to remaining crumb mixture. Crumble over top. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes or until brown

Yummy Bars (Kari)

1 package German Chocolate cake mix
1 pkg caramels (50 or so)
3/4 C melted butter
2/3 C evaporated milk
1 C chocolate chips
1 C chopped nuts

1 package German Chocolate cake mix
3/4 C melted butter
1/3 C. evaporated milk

Mix above ingredients and pat half of mixture in 9X13 pan (lightly greased). Bake for 6-10 minutes at 350.
Melt together 50 caramels (1 package) and 1/3 C evaporated milk. I do this in the microwave. 2 minutes at high, stir, 1 minute, stir, 1 minute, stir. Should be melted by then.
Sprinkle 1 C chocolate chips, 1 C nuts, and melted caramel mixture on cake mixture. Put rest (other half) of cake mixture on top. (Use fingers). Bake 20 minutes at 350.

Yogurt Salad (Brenda)

We had this yummy (and super easy) dessert at my SIL's last weekend. She used raspberries and all fat free ingredients. I'm not a huge fan of filling my kids w/artificial sweetners, so I bought all low fat stuff. The kids love it so much! We all just had some for breakfast!

Yogurt Salad
2 large tubs of strawberry yogurt (we used low fat)
1 small box fat free white chocolate pudding mix
1 8 oz tub of Cool Whip (we used low fat, she used fat free)
1 bag of frozen strawberries (defrosted a little)

Mix pudding and yogurt together. Fold in Cool whip and berries.


Yogurt Cake with Marmalade Glaze (AmyB)


This recipe came from the February 2005 issue of Bon Appetit. It is suggested to be served with a marmalade glaze, which I have never actually used since I usually serve the cake with fruit and whipped cream. I'm sure the glaze would be good, though, so I'm including that portion of the recipe as well. Enjoy!

Yogurt Cake with Marmalade Glaze
1-1/2 C. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 C. plain yogurt (magazine called for whole-milk yogurt, but I used low-fat with success)
1 C. sugar
3 large eggs
1 tsp. (packed) finely grated lemon peel
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 C. vegetable oil

1/4 C. lemon, orange or grapefruit marmalade (for glaze)
1 tsp. water

Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350. Generously butter metal loaf pan. Sift flour, baking powder and salt into medium bowl.Combine yogurt, sugar, eggs, lemon peel and vanilla in large bowl; whisk until well blended. Gradually whisk in dry ingredients. Using rubber spatula, fold in oil. Transfer batter to prepared pan. Place pan on baking sheet.

Place cake on baking sheet in oven and back until cake begins to pull away from sides of pan and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 50 minutes. (I would check the cake at around 45 minutes, just to be safe.) Cool cake in pan on rack 5 minutes. Cut around pan sides to loosen cake. Turn cake out onto rack. Turn cake upright on rack and cool completely.

Stir marmalade and 1 tsp. water in small saucepan over medium heat unitl marmalade melts. Brush hot mixture over top of cake. Let glaze cool and set. Cut cake crosswise into slices.

Buen provecho,

Utterly Deadly Southern Pecan Pie (Jeni)


This is incredibly easy and VERY delicious!

4 eggs
1 1/4 c. southern cane syrup (or dark Karo)
11/2 c. broken or whole pecans
1 c. sugar
4 tbsp. butter
1 tsp. vanilla

Boil sugar and syrup together 2 or 3 minutes. Beat eggs, not too stiff. Pour hot syrup in slowly, stirring. Add butter and vanilla. Put pecans in pie shell, pour syrup over top. Bake in moderate oven (we use 350 degrees) about 45 minutes or until set.

Tree Bark - AKA Poor Man's Crack (Crystal)

1 1/2 packages of graham crackers (can substitute with saltines)
1 c. butter
1 c. light brown sugar
6oz. of semi-sweet chocolate chips
6 oz (or half a package) of toffee crunched - like heath bar
1/2 cup chopped almonds
Jelly roll pan
Aluminum foil

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line the bottom of the jelly roll pan with aluminum foil (make sure you have enough foil to cover sides). Placea single layer of graham crackers in bottom of lined pan. Combine the butter and brown sugar in a saucepan on the stovetop. Stir constantly, allowing the butter and brown sugar to mix. Then let mixture boil (medium heat is good) for 3 minutes. Pour mixture over the crackers. Sprinkle with toffee and almonds. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Remove from oven. Sprinkle chocolate chips over top. Allow to melt for a few minutes. Put in freezer. When frozen, peel away aluminum foil. Break into pieces and enjoy! (You don't need to keep it frozen or in the fridge after initial freezing).

*Let me warn you that this stuff is addictive!

Strawberry-Rhubarb Cobbler (AmyB)

2 C. cubed rhubarb (about 1 lb.)
2 C. halved strawberries
1-1/4 C. sugar
1-1/2 Tbsp. quick-cooking tapioca
1/8 tsp. salt
2 T. butter

Pastry for one 8-inch pie (I use Pillsbury refrigerated crusts, but that's just me )

Combine first five ingredients in a medium bowl; toss gently. Spoon into a lightly greased 8-inch square baking dish. Dot with butter.

Roll dough to 1/8-inch thickness on a lightly floured surface (or spread out the crust the good folks at Pillsbury rolled out for you); cut into 1/2-inch-wide strips with a knife or pastry wheel (pizza slicer works, too). Arrange in a lattice design over rhubarb mixture.

Bake at 375 for 40-45 minutes or until pastry is golden brown.


Sam's Oreo Truffles (Amy M)

2 packages of Oreo cookies
2 packages of Philidelphia Cream Cheese
1 package of Milk Chocolate Bark

Blend the oreo cookies and cream cheese-making sure the cream cheese is soft prior to blending. Then, scoop into balls with an ice cream scooper. Put on a tray and put in fridge to cool for 1 hour. Then, melt the chocolate in microwave or on stove. Dip each oreo ball in the chocolate and put back on tray, let chocolate get hard in fridge for 1 hour and serve.

Rustic Apple Pie (Amy B)

2½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
3⁄4 cup vegetable shortening
6 to 7 tablespoons ice water

4 pounds tart apples (such as Granny Smith), peeled, cored and sliced
½ cup all-purpose flour
1½ cups sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
Cinnamon-sugar (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 375F.
2. To prepare the crust, mix flour and salt in a large bowl. Cut in shortening using a pastry blender or two knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add ice water 1 tablespoon at a time. Stir gently and gather into two balls, one about twice as large as the other.
3. Roll out larger ball on a lightly floured surface until it is large enough to cover the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan, with about 2 inches of overhang. Roll the smaller dough ball into a 9-inch circle.
4. To prepare the filling, combine apples, flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt; toss well. Spoon into prepared crust. Sprinkle pieces of butter on top. Place top crust over filling. Fold overhang evenly around the top crust. Cut 10 to 12 slits in top crust. Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar if desired. Bake about 1 hour or until crust is deep golden and the filling oozes through the slits. Serves 12.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars (Jen)

(sinfully good)
1 box pound cake mix
3 eggs
2 tbsp melted butter
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 8oz pkg cream cheese softened
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 16oz can pumpkin
1/2 tsp salt

preheat oven to 350in large mixer bowl on low speed combine cake mix, 1 egg, butter, 1/2 cinnamon and all nutmeg until crumbly. Press into bottom of greased 13x9 pan. In large mixer bowl beat cream cheese until fluffy, gradually beat in sweetened milk, then 2 eggs, pumpkin, rest of spice and salt, mix well. pour over crust and bake for 30-35 min or until set. Cool, chill and cut into bars. store in refrigerator.

Pumpkin Cheesecake (Kari)


This is sooooooo simple. Plus- I've had people who didn't like Pumpkin Pie love this. You could use a homemade crust too. I usually do a Nilla wafer/Graham cracker combo with butter.

Pumpkin Cheesecake
2 (8oz.) pkg. cream cheese softened.
1/2 C sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1 (9 inch) prepared graham cracker crust
1/2 C pumpkin puree
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 pinch cloves
1 pinch nutmeg
1/2 C. CoolWhip

-Preheat oven to 325.
-Large bowl- Combine CCheese, sugar and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Blend in eggs one at a time.
-Remove 1 C. batter and spread into bottom of crust. Set aside.
-Add pumpkin, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg to the remaining batter and stir gently until blended. Carefully spread over the batter in the crust.
-Bake for 35-40 minutes until center is almost set. Allow to cool. Refrigerate for 3 hrs or overnight.
-Top with coolwhip and serve.

Peppermint Bark (Danielle)

Crushed candy canes, to yield 1 cup
2 pounds white chocolate
Peppermint flavorings, optional

Place candy canes in a plastic bag and hammer into 1/4-inch chunks or smaller. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler. Combine candy cane chunks with chocolate (add peppermint flavoring at this point if desired.) Pour mixture onto a cookie sheet layered with parchment or waxed paper and place in the refrigerator for 45 minutes or until firm. Remove from cookie sheet and break into pieces (like peanut brittle.),,FOOD_9936_24773,00.html

Pecan (or Peanut) Brittle (AmyB)

Brittle is one of my all-time favorite candies this time of year, and this recipe was my Mammo's.

Pecan (or Peanut) Brittle

2 cups sugar
1 cup water
1 cup white corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons butter flavoring
1-1/2 cups raw shelled peanuts or pecans
1 teaspoon soda

Cook sugar, water and corn syrup in a large saucepan until a small amount tested in cold water forms a soft ball. Add salt, butter, butterflavoring and nuts. Continue cooking, stirring often, until mixture is a golden brown color. (Keep a CLOSE eye on this, because I have learned the hard way that it can burn awfully quickly!) Remove from heat. Add soda; stir up well and pour immediately onto well-greased platters. When cool, break into pieces.

Peanut Butter Pie (Kathy)

2 cups Powered Sugar
1 1/2 cups of Peanut Butter
8oz Cream Cheese
16oz Cool Whip
9 inch graham cracker pie crust

Blend powered sugar, peanut butter, and cream cheese in a bowl. Add cool whip. Pour into pie crust. Chill at least 2 hours.

I usually pour into two pie shells, b/c it is really rich!!

Old Fashioned Lemon Ice Cream (Carla)


3 cups milk
2 cups whipping cream
1.5 tsp lemon rind
2/3 cup lemon juice
2 cups sugar
1 tsp lemon extract

Chill all ingredients, mix them together, put in ice cream maker. I had to refrigerate half of the mixture while the other half was in the ice cream maker but you could cut the recipe in half quite easily.

Old Fashion Apple Cake (Jen)

This is a Patrick Family favorite!!!!! And being the betty crocker baker I am, not the cook, here's my first contribution :)
Old Fashion Apple Cake
4 cups of apples, peeled, sliced in 16ths (golden delicious apples, about 4)
2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1/2 cup oil
2 tsp vanilla extract

Beat eggs well, add other ingredients.

Sift following, then gradually stir in:
2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup nuts (optional)

Grease and flour 9x13 panBake at 350 for 45-50 min.

Cream cheese frosting
1/2 cup butter or margarine
8 oz cream cheese
2 cup powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla

Beat at high speed until creamy. Spread on slightly cooled cake.

Cake is very moist! Make the day before serving and refrigerate!!!! Its really really good!!!

Mammo’s German Chocolate Cake (AmyB)

1 (4 oz.) package sweet baking chocolate
½ C. water
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 C. butter, softened
2 C. sugar
4 eggs, separated
2-1/4 C. flour
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
1 C. buttermilk (that is what makes this SOOOO good)

Coconut-Pecan Frosting
1-1/3 C. evaporated milk
1-1/3 C. sugar
4 egg yolks, beaten
2/3 C. butter
1-1/2 tsp. vanilla
1-1/3 C. flaked coconut
1-1/3 C. chopped pecans

Combine milk, sugar, egg yolks, and butter in a heavy saucepan; bring to a boil and cook over medium heat 12 minutes, stirring constantly. Add vanilla, coconut and pecans; stir until frosting is cool and of spreading consistency.

Combine chocolate and water; bring to a boil and stir until chocolate melts. Cool; stir in vanilla and set aside. Cream butter; gradually add sugar, beating well at medium speed of an electric mixer. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add chocolate mixture; beat until blended. Combine flour, soda, and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat egg whites (at room temperature) until stiff peaks form; fold into batter. Pout batter into 3 greased and floured 9-inch cake pans. Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes; remove from pans and let cool completely on wire racks. Top with frosting of choice or traditional coconut-pecan frosting.

Lemon Cheesecake Bars (Jen)

Lemon Cheesecake Bars
1 1/2 c. graham cracker crumbs
1/3 c. sugar
1/3 c. melted butter

Mix well and press 2/3 of mixture into greased 13x9 pan.
Bake at 325 for 6 min.

16 oz. cream cheese
1 14oz can sweetened condensed milk
2 eggs
1/2 cup lemon juice

Beat cream cheese, mix in sweet. milk, eggs. Stir in lemon juice. Spoon over crust. Spoon remaining crumbs on top (I like to make a diamond or checkered pattern)Bake at 325 for 30 min. Cool 1 hour on wire rack, then refrigerate.

Lemon Bars (AmyB)


1 cup butter
1/2 cup sifted powdered sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 beaten eggs
1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons finely shredded lemon peel (set aside)
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
Sifted powdered sugar

In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add the 1/2 cup powdered sugar and beat until combined. Beat in the 2 cups flour until crumbly. Press mixture into the bottom of a greased 9x13 baking pan. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned.

Meanwhile, beat together eggs, granulated sugar, and lemon juice. Combine the 1/4 cupe flour and the baking powder; stir into egg mixture along with the lemon peel. Pour over baked crust.

Bake at 350 for 25 minutes more or until lightly browned around edges and center appears set. Cool in pan on wire rack. Sprinkle with additional powdered sugar. Cut into squares or diamonds. Store, covered, in the refrigerator.

(I have also tried the Krusteaz variety that Lorie mentioned, and they turn out very well, too!)

Layered Peppermint Crunch Bark (Amy B)

17 ounces good-quality white chocolate (such as Lindt or Baker's), finely chopped
30 red-and-white-striped hard peppermint candies, coarsely crushed (about 6 ounces)
7 ounces bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped
6 tablespoons whipping cream
3/4 teaspoon peppermint extract

Turn large baking sheet bottom side up. Cover securely with foil. Mark 12 x 9-inch rectangle on foil. Stir white chocolate in metal bowl set over saucepan of barely simmering water (do not allow bottom of bowl to touch water) until chocolate is melted and smooth and candy thermometer registers 110°F. (chocolate will feel warm to touch). Remove from over water. Pour 2/3 cup melted white chocolate onto rectangle on foil. Using icing spatula, spread chocolate to fill rectangle. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup crushed peppermints. Chill until set, about 15 minutes.
Stir bittersweet chocolate, cream and peppermint extract in heavy medium saucepan over medium-low heat until just melted and smooth. Cool to barely lukewarm, about 5 minutes. Pour bittersweet chocolate mixture in long lines over white chocolate rectangle. Using icing spatula, spread bittersweet chocolate in even layer. Refrigerate until very cold and firm, about 25 minutes.
Rewarm remaining white chocolate in bowl set over barely simmering water to 110°F. Working quickly, pour white chocolate over firm bittersweet chocolate layer; spread to cover. Immediately sprinkle with remaining crushed peppermints. Chill just until firm, about 20 minutes.

Lift foil with bark onto work surface; trim edges. Cut bark crosswise into 2-inch-wide strips. Using metal spatula, slide bark off foil and onto work surface. Cut each strip crosswise into 3 sections and each section diagonally into 2 triangles. (Can be made 2 weeks ahead. Chill in airtight container.) Let stand 15 minutes at room temperature before serving.

*Some reviewers cut back on the cream in the dark layer and the peppermint extract

Lasy Day Cake (Lorie)

4 eggs
2 cups flour
2tsp baking powder
1tsp vanilla
1 cup boiling hot milk
2tbs butter
pinch of salt

2 tbsp butter
2 tbs milk
3/4 cup brown sugar
pinch of salt
1/2 cup chopped nuts

Directions for cake:

beat eggs well, add sugar and vanilla and beat with mixer. Add flour, pinch of salt, baking powder. Stir together by hand. Boil milk, melt butter in the milk. When all melted, add to mixture. Mix by hand. Put in 9 x 13 pan, greased and floured. Bake at 375 for 30 mins.

Directions for topping:

mix all together, and stir into a paste. When cake is done and still hot, spread mixture over the top of the cake, and return to the oven until it bubbles. I usually stick it on broil for a few minutes to get it nice and bubbly.

Key Lime Pie (Kari)

4 egg yolks, beaten
2 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup key lime juice
1 (9 inch) prepared graham cracker crust

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
Combine the egg yolks, sweetened condensed milk and lime juice. Mix well. Pour into unbaked graham cracker shell.
Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes. Allow to cool. Top with whipped topping.
Hint**If you can not find any key lime juice then just use equal parts lemon and lime juice (best if fresh).

Piece of cake. Or pie as it were.

Indoor S'Mores Bars (Lisa)

5 cups mini marshmallows
1/3 cup light Karo syrup (warning - this stuff is terribly sticky!)
6 tablespoons butter
1 and a half cups MILK chocolate chips
8 cups Golden Grahams cereal
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup mini marshmallows

Coat 9 x 13 cake pan with Pam spray (might also be helpful to spray the spoon you'll be using to mix it). Melt mini marshmallows, karo syrup, butter and choc. chips, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add vanilla and pour over Golden Grahams. Add remaining marshmallows. Mix until cereal is completely coated (the spoon, your fingers and the counter will probably also be completely coated). Press into the cake pan and try to let it cool before you eat it.

*When I make these, I just dump in an entire bag of mini marshmallows and an entire bag of milk chocolate chips. I don't save out the one cup of mini marshmallows to add afterwards.

Hershey's Special Dark Chocolate Layered Cheesecake (AmyB)


Oh...and here's a link to the triple-layer chocolate cheesecake I made for our anniversary. Nummers!!

I used the dark chocolate, but it is definitely not for the faint of heart! I would say it wouldn't hurt a thing to use semi-sweet chocolate instead, if that's what you tend to prefer.

CHOCOLATE CRUMB CRUST (recipe follows)
3 packages (8 oz. each) cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup sugar
4 eggs
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) HERSHEY'S SPECIAL DARK Chocolate Chips, divided
1/2 teaspoon shortening(do not use butter, margarine, spreads or oil)

1. Prepare CHOCOLATE CRUMB CRUST. Heat oven to 350° F.
2. Beat cream cheese and sugar in large bowl until smooth. Gradually beat in eggs,heavy cream, vanilla and salt, beating until well blended.
3. Set aside 2 tablespoons chocolate chips. Place remaining chips in large microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at MEDIUM (50%) 1-1/2 minutes; stir. If necessary, microwave at MEDIUM an additional 15 seconds at a time, stirring after each heating, until chocolate is melted when stirred.
4. Gradually blend 1-1/2 cups cheesecake batter into melted chocolate. Spread 2 cups chocolate mixture in prepared crust.
5. Blend additional 2 cups plain cheesecake batter into remaining chocolate mixture; spread 2 cups of this mixture over first layer in springform pan. Stir remaining cheesecake batter into remaining chocolate mixture; spread over second layer.
6. Bake 50 to 55 minutes or until center is almost set. Remove from oven to wire rack. With knife, immediately loosen cake from side of pan. Cool to room temperature.
7. Place reserved chocolate chips and shortening in small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at MEDIUM 30 seconds; stir. If necessary, microwave at MEDIUM an additional 10 seconds at a time, stirring after each heating, until chocolate is melted and smooth when stirred. Drizzle over top of cheesecake. Cover; refrigerate several hours until cold. Cover; refrigerate leftover cheesecake. 10 to 12 servings.

CHOCOLATE CRUMB CRUST: Stir together 1-1/2 cups vanilla wafer crumbs (about 45 wafers), 1/2 cup powdered sugar and 1/4 cup HERSHEY'S Cocoa; stir in 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) melted butter or margarine. Press mixture onto bottom and 1-1/2 inches up sides of 9-inch springform pan.

Georgia's Fudge (AmyB)

Oh, fudge (no pun intended...hehe) – I can't post without included our dear family friend Georgia's fudge recipe. I have to say that for an insanely easy candy recipe, this fudge is to die for: perfectly creamy and not grainy in the slightest!

4-1/2 cups sugar
1 stick butter
1 large can evaporated milk

Bring to a boil. Cook until small amount tested in cold water forms a soft ball. Remove from heat. Add:
1 12-oz. package chocolate chips
1 1/2-lb. Hershey bars
1 10-oz. jar marshmallow cream
2 cups chopped pecans
2 tablespoons vanilla

Stir until well mixed. Pour into greased 9x13 pan. Let cool and cut into pieces.

Fruit Pizza (Emily)

...The Pampered Chef recipe is a little different, so I kinda do a little bit of my own thing, but I enjoy it and the boys LOVE it! It is super easy, too!

Either make a sugar cookie recipe you like or use premade sugar cookie dough and spread on a pizza pan. I bake it at 425 for only 8 minutes or so. Let it cool. Take cream cheese and add powdered sugar. Mix until fluffy, and I add a little vanilla (because I like the taste but you don't have to...the Pampered Chef recipe uses almond extract I believe). Spread on the sugar cookie. Add whatever fruits you like! I use mandarin oranges for the "crust" and then fill the pizza with strawberries and blueberries. Let it cool for a while then serve. It's so easy and tastes wonderful!

Favorite Pecan Pie (AmyB)

Now, the other day in chat, I was FLOORED to hear that pecan pie isn't a staple recipe in all parts of the country!? Y'all are missing OUT.

Favorite Pecan Pie
(A staple at big meals around the holidays, and one for which my mom is truly famous in her neck of the woods. )

1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
4 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 unbaked 9-inch pastry shell (make your own or cheat and buy the readymade)
1-1/4 cups pecan halves

Combine butter, sugar and corn syrup. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until sugar dissolves. Let cool slightly. Add eggs, vanillaand salt to mixture; mix well. Pour filling into unbaked pastry shell, and top with pecan halves. Bake at 325 for 50-55 minutes.

Dump Bars (Brenda)

Dump Bars

2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups flour
5 eggs
1 tspsalt
1 cup oil
1/2 cup cocoa
nuts (optional)
1 cup chocolate chips

Dump all together (except chips). Mix until moist. Pour into greased and floured 9x13 pan. Sprinkle chips on top. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes.

Death by Chocolate Cake (soooo easy!!) (Fran)

4 eggs
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup oil
8 oz. sour cream
1 box chocolate pudding (instant)
1 box Devil's Food Cake mix
1-12 oz. package semi-sweet morsels

Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray with Pam. Combine eggs, water, oil and sour cream. Beat on medium until fluffy. Add cake mix and dry ingredients, mix, beat until well blended. Stir in chocolate morsels. Pour into pan, bake at 350°F for 1 hour and five minutes. Cool completely, remove from pan and enjoy.

You can use any type of chocolate cake mix you'd like. It's important to mix all the wet ingredients well before adding the dry!!

Date and Nut Balls (Crystal)

1 stick butter
8 oz chopped dates
2/3 cup of sugar
1 egg

2 cups rice crispies
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1tsp vanilla and mix well.

1 stick butter
8 oz chopped dates
2/3 cup of sugar
1 egg
Cook above for 10 minutes in saucepan until golden and thoroughly incorporated (MIL's words)
2 cups rice crispies
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1tsp vanilla and mix well.
Form into balls and roll them in powdered sugar.

Dark Chocolate Mousse (AmyB)


Here is the chocolate mousse recipe I used. I've just copied and pasted from the Epicurious website, but I'll also post a link in case you'd like to take a look. I also thought I'd post a photo of how mine turned out! Please, please pardon the terrible photo quality. My camera is dying, almost dead. Poor, poor camera!

Regarding the recipe, bittersweet chocolate is typically considered anything between 60-72% cocoa. The bar I used was 85%, so I added a fudge more sugar than called for.

Mousse au Chocolat Noir
Chocolate mousse is a standard bistro dessert, in part because it's so easy and quick to serve. Here it is in its classic form: chocolate and butter melted together, cooled slightly, and combined with egg yolks; then whipped cream and sweetened egg whites are gently folded into the mixture.
In France, they would serve chocolate mousse from a big bowl, scooped onto a plate with some cookies. At Bouchon, we serve it in lidded pot de crème molds with langues de chat cookies.

4 1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
2 tablespoons (1 ounce) unsalted butter, diced
2 tablespoons espresso or hot water
1 cup cold heavy cream
3 large eggs, separated
1 tablespoon sugar

Combine the chocolate, butter, and espresso in the top of a double boiler over hot, but not simmering, water, stirring frequently until smooth. Remove from the heat and let cool until the chocolate is just slightly warmer than body temperature. To test, dab some chocolate on your bottom lip. It should feel warm. If it is too cool, the mixture will seize when the other ingredients are added.
Meanwhile, whip the cream to soft peaks, then refrigerate. Once the melted chocolate has cooled slightly, whip the egg whites in a medium bowl until they are foamy and beginning to hold a shape. Sprinkle in the sugar and beat until soft peaks form.
When the chocolate has reached the proper temperature, stir in the yolks. Gently stir in about one-third of the whipped cream. Fold in half the whites just until incorporated, then fold in the remaining whites, and finally the remaining whipped cream.
Spoon or pipe the mousse into a serving bowl or individual dishes. Refrigerate for at least 8 hours. (The mousse can be refrigerated for up to a day.) Makes 8 servings.

Cream Cheese Braids (AmyB)

(Cream cheese braids are as essential to a Kiker family Christmas as the treeor Mexican food on Christmas Eve. Absolutely delicious, these make the perfect accompaniment to coffee or tea. They also wrap up beautifully to give as gifts, and they freeze well, too!)

1 8-oz. carton sour cream (full fat, thank you!)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
1 teaspoon salt
2 packages dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water (105-115 degrees)
2 eggs, beaten
4 cups flour

Combine sour cream, sugar, butter and salt in a saucepan; heat until butter melts. Cool to 105-115 degrees. Dissolve yeast in warm water in a large bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Stir in sour cream mixture and eggs. Gradually stir in flour (dough will be soft). Cover dough tightly and chill at least 8 hours. Divide dough into 4 equal portions. Turn each portion out onto a heavily floured surface, and knead 4 or 5 times. Roll each portion into a 12x8-inch rectangle. Spread 1/4 of filling over each rectangle, leaving a 1/2 inch margin around the edges. Carefully roll up dough jelly-roll fashion, starting at long side; pinch the seams and ends to seal. Carefully place loaves, seam side down, on greased baking sheets. Make 6 equally spaced x-shaped cuts across top of each loaf. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85 degrees), free from drafts, about 1 hour or until doubled in bulk. Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes. Spread loaves with glaze while warm.

2 8-oz. packages cream cheese, softened
3/4 cups sugar
1 egg beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla

Combine all ingredients. Process in food processor or mixer until blended.

2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla

Combine all ingredients, stirring well.

Chocolate Pots de Creme (Amy B)

2 cups whipping cream
1/2 cup whole milk
5 ounces bittersweet (not unsweetened) or semisweet chocolate, chopped
6 large egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 325°F. Bring cream and milk just to simmer in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Remove from heat. Add chocolate; whisk until melted and smooth. Whisk yolks and sugar in large bowl to blend. Gradually whisk in hot chocolate mixture. Strain mixture into another bowl. Cool 10 minutes, skimming any foam from surface.
Divide custard mixture among six 3/4-cup custard cups or soufflé dishes. Cover each with foil. Place cups in large baking pan. Add enough hot water to pan to come halfway up sides of cups. Bake until custards are set but centers still move slightly when gently shaken, about 55 minutes. Remove from water. Remove foil. Chill custards until cold, about 3 hours. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and keep chilled.)

Chocolate Peanut Butter Frosting (Brenda)


1/4 cup margarine
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup cocoa
1 cup sugar

Bring all ingredients to a boil while stirring continually. When it comes to a rolling boil, quit stirring and time forone minute. Add one heaping Tbls peanut butter. Set pan in cool water and stir until it is thick enough to spread.
Serving Information

Chocolate Chip Toffee Bars (Jen)

(these are soooooooo good)
2 1/3 cups flour
2/3 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup butter
1 egg slightly beaten
2 cups choc. chips
1 c. nuts chopped
1 14oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 3/4 cup toffee bits

Mix flour& brown sugar. Cut in butter until crumbly. Add egg. Stir in 1/2 cups choc chips & nuts. Reserve 1 1/2 cups mixture. Press remaining crumb mix into bottom of 13x9 greased pan. Bake at 350 for 10 minPour sweetened milk over hot crust, top with toffee bits (reserve 1/4 cup first), remaining crumb mix & 1/2 cup choc chips.Bake another 20-25 minSprinkle remaining toffee bits over top.Cool completely on wire rack.

Cherry Cream Cheese Pie

1 - 8 oz pkg cream cheese
1 - can sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla
Baked pie shell or graham cracker crust (we prefer graham cracker crust)
1 can cherry pie filling

1. Soften cream cheese.
2. Beat the cream cheese with the condensed milk until smooth.
3. Beat in lemon juice and vanilla.
4. Pour into baked pie shell or graham cracker crust.
5. Refrigerate for hours until set.
6. Top with cherry pie filling.
7. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Cheesecake Pudding (Lisa)

1 package cream cheese (probably should be softened, but I didn't wait)
1 box sugar free jello pudding (I used White Chocolate)
2 cups heavy cream

Blend cream cheese and 1 cup of cream until smooth.
Add pudding mix and blend until thoroughly mixed.
Slowly add remaining cup of cream and mix on high until light and fluffy.

I saw online where someone piped this out onto a cookie sheet in cookie sized circles and then froze it, but we ate ours like you would eat pudding or mousse (in a bowl with a spoon). It tastes like cheesecake flavored pudding, but thicker. So good!!!!

Blueberry Grunt (Crystal)

1 1/2 containers of blueberries (rinsed and de-stemmed)
1/2 cup of sugar
1/3 cup flour
dashes of cinnamon
4-5 pads of butterJ
iffy mix
1/2 cup milk

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

Mix the first four ingredients and place in a greased casserole dish. Put pads of butter on top. Cover and bake for 20 minutes.
Take one cup of Jiffy mix (like bisquick) and mix with 1/2 cup of milk. Spoon on top of blueberry mixture. Bake for 10 minutes covered, then 10 minutes uncovered.Let cool a bit before serving - it should be a little warm. You can use a dab of cool whip/whipped cream/ice cream with it.

Blueberry Crumble (Danielle)


I made this yummy blueberry crumble last night. It was EASY and FAST!

3 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
3 T sugar
1 T cornstarch
1/3 cup oats
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
3 T flour
2 T chopped almonds
sprinkle of cinnamon
3 T cold butter
Vanilla ice cream (we used low fat Cool Whip)

In a microwave safe 9 in pie plate combine blueberries, sugar and cornstarch. Cover and microwave on high 7-8 min or until thickened, stirring twice.

In a small bowl combine oats, brown sugar, flour, almonds and cinnamon. Cut in butter until mixture forms course crumbs. Sprinkle over blueberries. Microwave uncovered 2-3 min on high.
Serve with ice cream or cool whip.

Apple Cake

1 3/4 c.sugar
3 eggs
1 c. oil
2 c. flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 c. thinly sliced apples, peeled

Mix sugar and eggs until light and fluffy (Do not use an electric mixer) add oil and stir. In a separate bowl combine flour, salt, cinnamon and baking soda. Add to the sugar/egg/oil. Add apples and bake in greased 13x9 pan @ 375 for about 30-35 minutes.
*** I had to bake a little longer so the batter around the apples set up***

Friday, January 30, 2009

Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies (AmyB)


(Now, this isn't a holiday recipe, per se, and it isn't a family original. This recipe came from the Crisco box, and I have to say, these are the BEST chocolate cookies you will ever make. Using shortening in lieu of butter helps them keep their shape. This is one of the first recipes I can remember making on my very own!)

3/4 cup butter flavor Crisco
1-1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 egg
1-3/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup chopped pecans (optional, but I highly recommend them )

Heat oven to 375. Combine Crisco, brown sugar, milk and vanilla in large bowl. Beat at medium speed of electric mixer until well blended. Beat egg into creamed mixture. Mix flour, salt and baking soda into creamed mixture just until blended. Stir in chocolate chips and pecans. Drop rounded tablespoonfuls of dough 3 inches apart onto greased baking sheet. Bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes. DO NOT OVERBAKE! Cool 2 minutes on baking sheet. Remove cookies to cooling racks to cool completely. Yield: 3 dozen cookies, minus a few since this dough is about the most delicious cookie dough I've ever encountered. :)

Thumbprint Cookies (Danielle)

1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
jelly or jam of your choice

In large bowl of mixer with mixer at medium speed, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg yolks and vanilla. Gradually add flour and salt until well blended. Refrigerate dough 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350. Work with only 1/4 of dough at a time; keep remaining refrigerated. Roll dough into 1-inch balls. Place on ungreased cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. Using your thumb or the end or a wooden spoon make a depression in the center of each. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove cookies from oven. make the depression again. Fill each depression with 1/4 teaspoon jelly or jam and return to oven to bake 5 more minutes. Cool on wire rack. Makes about 4 dozen.

Snickerdoodles (Jen)

1 cup shortening
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 or 2 tsp vanilla
2 3/4 cups flour
2 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp soda
1/2 tsp salt
cinnamon & sugar mix.

Combine all ingredients. Chill dough 1 hour.Roll into little balls. Roll balls into a mixture of cinnamon & sugar
Bake at 400 8-10 min.

Santa Claus Cookies (Melinda)

2 packages (6 oz. each) white baking Chocolate, chopped
1 package Nutter Butter Sandwich Cookies
Red Colored Sugar
32 Vanilla or White Chips
64 mini Chocolate Chips
32 red hots, or use mini chocolate chips (for nose)

**In heavy saucepan over low heat, melt white chocolate, stirring occasionally. Dip one end of each cookie into the melted chocolate. Place on wire racks. For Santa's hat, sprinkle red sugar on top part of Chocolate. Press one vanilla chip off-center on hat for pom-pom; let stand until set.
**Dip other end of each cookie into melted chocolate for beard, leaving center of cookie uncovered. Place on wire racks. With a dab of melted chocolate, attach semisweet chips for eyes and red hot candy or another mini chip for nose. Place on waxed paper until chocolate sets. Makes 32 cookies

Pecan Tassies (Danielle)

1/4 lb butter
3 oz cream cheese
1 cup flour

3/4 cup light brown sugar
1 tablespoon melted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg beaten
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Crust Ingredients:

Mix like pie crust. Roll into small balls and press into tassie baking pan. Fill halfway with the following mixture.

Filling Ingredients:

I always melt the sugar and butter together on the stove and stir in the vanilla, egg and nuts.

Bake at 350 for 15 min.

*Aside from my Gram's sugar cookies these are my favorite! They are like a tiny pecan pie, yummy!

Ginger Crinkles (AmyB)

(This was one of my Mammo's – Mama Reita's Mama's – favorite recipes)

2/3 cup oil
1 cup sugar
1 egg
4 tablespoons molasses
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Mix all ingredients together. Roll into 1-inch balls and dip in sugar. Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes.

Dish Pan Cookies (Beth)

Makes 7+ dozen
Preheat oven to 350degrees

2 C vegetable oil
2 C Sugar
2 C Brown Sugar

Add to mix one at a time:
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
4 C flour
4 C Corn Flakes
1 1/2 Cups quick oats

Mix in Chocolate Chips and nuts (optional) by hand.

Drop by spoonful.

Bake at 350 for 8-10 min

The dough freezes well too :)

Cranberry Hootie Creeks (AmyB)

Cranberry Hootie Creeks
(I have no idea why we call them this...I come from interesting stock )

2/3 cup butter, softened
2 large eggs
1-1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
1-1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 6-oz. package Craisins
2/3 cup white chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar together in a medium mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add eggs, mixing well. Combine oats, flour, baking soda and salt in a separate mixing bowl. Add to butter mixture in several additions, mixing well after each addition. Stir in craisins and white chocolate chips. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto greased cookie sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on wire rack. Makes approximately 2-1/2 dozen cookies.

Cake Mix Cookies (AmyB)


Here's the recipe for those cake mix cookies I was talking about earlier...

1 package devil's food cakemix
1/3 C. water
1/4 C. butter, softened
1 egg
1 C. white chocolate baking chips
1/2 C. chopped pecans or walnuts

On low speed of electric mixer, combine cake mix, water, butter and egg. Beat just until moistened. Beat 1 minute more on medium speed. (Dough will be thick.) Stir in chocolate chips and nuts.

Drop heaping teaspoonfuls onto greased cookie sheets. Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes. Cool 1 minute then remove to rack to cool completely.

Like I said, I was skeptical about how these would turn out, but they are SO yummy and easy!

Amy B.

Butterscotch Apple Cookies (Jen)

2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/3 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup butter
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 egg
1/2 cup apple juice
3/4 c. grated apple
butterscotch morsels - 1 bag

Combine all ingredients
Bake at 350 10-12 min.

Banana Oatmeal Cookies (Crystal)

1 cup all purpose flour (half whole wheat/white works too)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp butter, very soft
1/2cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup mashed banana (1 small/medium)
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups oats
3/4 cups raisins (or chocolate chips if you want to be bad!)

These are easy to put together and, because the recipe is both low-fat and fairly small, you don't have to have any guilt about keeping them around the house. They'll stay fresh for several days when stored in an air-tight container. I just made a batch for my cousin who had her baby 2/29 to have around for a healthy snack (and possibly boost her milk supply!)

Preheat oven to 350F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and the sugars. Beat in egg and banana, followed by the vanilla extract. Gradually, on low speed or by hand, add in the flour mixture. Stir in the oats (either whole rolled oats or "quick cooking") and raisins/chocolate chips. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto prepared baking sheet. Bake for 11-14 minutes at 350F, until set and lightly browned. Let cookies cool for about 5 minutes on the pan before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely. Makes 2 dozen cookies.

"Healthy" Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies (Carla)

1/2 cup Margarine
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
1 & 1/4 cup rolled oats
1 cup flour (I usually use whole wheat flour)
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp Baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda1 cup chocolate chips

Combine margarine, the sugars egg and vanilla. Add the rest (chocolate chips last). Bake for about 12-15 minutes at 350. The top should be soft but not gooey.

Sugar and Cinnamon French Toast (Hillary)

2/3 c milk
2 eggs
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
6 thick pieces of bread
1/2 cup sugar (amount can vary)
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon (amount can vary)

In one small bowl mix together the milk, eggs and vanilla. In another bowl mix together the sugar and cinnamon. Dip bread into egg mixture and then cover both sides with the sugar/cinnamon mixture (might find it easier to sprinkle the sug/cin mixture on each side rather than trying to dip it). Fry bread until brown on both sides.

* So good plain you may not need syrup

Rise N Shine Granola (Carla)

(from cookbook "How it all Vegan: Irresistable recipes for an Animal-Free Diet" by Tanya Barnard and Sarah Kramer)

3-4 cups rolled oat flakes
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/2 cup chopped almonds
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/4 cup flax seeds
1/2 cup oil
1 tbsp carob powder or cocoa (optional)
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4-1/2 cup sugar (you decide how sweet)
1/2 tsp salt

* set aside the following
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped dates
1/2 cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 350F. In a large bowl, mix together the oat flakes, sunflower seeds, almonds, sesame seeds, and flax seeds. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the oil, carob powder, cinnamon, sugar and salt. Add this mixture to the large bowl and combine well. In a lasagna pan or on 2 flat cookie sheets, spreat mixture evenly and bake for 15-20 minutes, until the top layer is browned (if you use cookie sheets, bake 12-15 minutes). Flip over with spatula and bake for another 8-10 minutes, then remove from oven. The mixture will be moist, but will dry and harden as it cools. mix in dried fruit ingredients and let cool, stirring every 10 minutes to prevent clumping. Store in air-tight containers.

Green Onion Hash Brown Potatoes (Erika)

2 or 3 large leftover baked potatoes
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 tablespoons butter
5 scallions, finely chopped, whites and greens
Salt and pepper or steak seasoning blend

Scoop cooked potatoes from shells and coarsely chop. Heat a medium nonstick skillet over moderate heat. Add oil and butter to the pan. When butter melts into the oil, add green onions and cook 1 minute. Add potatoes and cook, turning occasionally, until potatoes are crusted and golden and onions begin to brown at edges.

EASY Baked French Toast (Beth)

1/4 c. butter
4 eggs
2/3 c. milk
1/3 c. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
8 slices bread
Vanilla, optional

Melt butter in 10 x 15 pan in oven. Mix sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle evenly into pan. Mix eggs and milk. Dip bread, soaking well. Bake at 400 degree oven for 10 to 15 minutes. Let stand 1 minute. Lift out sugar side up on serving platter.

NOTE: Use thick sliced French bread or Texas toast for best results.

Creme Brulee French toast (Carrie)


Wonderful breakfast food! A favorite for Christmas morning!

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 tbsp corn syrup
1 (8-9") loaf challah bread
5 large eggs
1 1/2 cups half and half
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp Grand Marnier (optional)
1/4 tsp salt

-In small heavy sauce pan, melt butter with brown sugar and corn syrup over moderate heat; stirring until smooth
-pour into 13 x 9 x 2" baking dish
-cut 6 (1" thick) slices from center of bread and trim crusts (I really do not trim too much though)
-arrange bread slices in one layer in baking dish, squeezing them slightly to fit
-in a bowl, whisk together eggs, half and half, vanilla, Grand Marnier and salt until combined
-pour evenly over bread
-chill bread mixture, covered, at least 8 hours and up to one day
-preheat oven to 350 and bring bread mixture to room temperature
-bake bread mixture, uncovered, in middle of oven until puffed and edges are pale golden (35-40 mins)


Chile Relleno Breakfast Casserole (Erika)

1 lb. Jack Cheese shredded
1 lb. Cheddar cheese shredded
3 7oz. cans whole green chilis, rinsed, split, patted dry
4-5 beaten eggs
1med can evaporated milk
2 T. flour
1/2 - 1 cup Salsa

1 - Grease or Pam spray lasagna size pan
2 - Layer - 1/2 chilis1/2 cheese1/2 chilis1/2 cheese
3- Beat eggs with flour and milk
4 - Pour over cheese
5 - Bake at 350 for 35 minutes or until top is solid
6 - Top with Salsa
7 - Bake 10-15 min more
8 - Let it sit for at least 5 minutes before you cut it, or it will be runny.

Baked French Toast Casserole (AmyB)

1 loaf French bread (13 to 16 ounces)
8 large eggs
2 cups half-and-half
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Dash salt
Praline Topping, recipe follows
Maple syrup

Praline Topping:
1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup chopped pecans
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and blend well.

Slice French bread into 20 slices, 1-inch each. (Use any extra bread for garlic toast or bread crumbs). Arrange slices in a generously buttered 9 by 13-inch flat baking dish in 2 rows, overlapping the slices. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, half-and-half, milk, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt and beat with a rotary beater or whisk until blended but not too bubbly. Pour mixture over the bread slices, making sure all are covered evenly with the milk-egg mixture. Spoon some of the mixture in between the slices. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.
The next day, preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Spread Praline Topping evenly over the bread and bake for 40 minutes, until puffed and lightly golden. Serve with maple syrup.

Autumn Apple Cakes (Molly)

2 apples
2 cups pancake mix
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup cooking oil

1. Wash apples. Leaving skins on, either grate them or chop them finely. (If you wish, you may substitute 1 cup of chunky applesauce for the grated apples.)
2. Mix all the ingredients except the oil. Mix until smooth. Children can help with the mixing process.
3. Heat an electric skillet to about 325 degrees. Coat the cooking surface with about 1 tsp. of the oil.
4. Drop two tablespoons of batter for each apple cake into the skillet. Fry two minutes on each side, or until golden brown. Recoat cooking surface with oil and make the next batch.
5. Drain apple cakes thoroughly on paper towels. They should be eaten while warm.
6. Serve with applesauce, if desired.

Three Cheese Garlic Bread

1 loaf unsliced italian bread
1/4 C butter softened
1/2 C shredded mozzarella
1/2 C shredded cheddar
1 T grated parmesan
1/4 t garlic powder
1/8 t Worcestershire sauce

Cut bread in half widthwise; cut one portion in half lengthwise. Save remaining bread for another use. In a small mixing bowl, combine thereamining ingredients. Spread evenly over the cut side of bread.

Place on baking sheet. Bake at 400 until cheeses melt.

Soft Italian Breadsticks

1 c warm water
3 T soft butter
1 1/2 tsp salt
3 c bread flour
2 T sugar
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp garlic powder
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast

1 T melted butter
1 T grated parmesan cheese

**Stephanie's Notes: I just spread a little butter on each stick and then shake some parmesan cheese and garlic salt on the top of each. These are super yummy!! My kids love these

Place all dough ingredients in bread machine pan according to manufacturers directions.
Select dough setting.
When dough cycle is complete, turn out onto floured board and divide dough in half.
Cut each portion into 12 pieces and roll each piece into a 4 to 6" rope.
Place 2" apart on greased baking sheets.
Cover and let rise in a warm place for about 20 minutes or until doubled.
Bake at 350 F for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
Immediately brush with butter and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.
Note: Be careful not to overbake or they will become tough

Pumpkin Bread (Kathleen)

4 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup water
1 small can pumpkin

3 1/3 cups flour
3 cups sugar
2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp ginger

Preheat oven to 350

Grease and flour pans. I find this recipe makes two good size loaves of bread as well as half a dozen muffins.

In a medium size bowl mix together the moist items. In a large bowl mix together the dry ingredients and then add the previous mixture. Stir until combined.

Pour into pans and bake for about an 1hr 15 or until toothpick emerges clean. For muffins I bake for approx 25 mins.

The baked loaves/muffins freeze really well. I often make this for neighbors as part of their holiday gift.

Pesto and Parmesan Cheese Scones (Carla)

2 cups flour
2 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup butter, chilled
1 large egg
1/4 cup milk
pine nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 400F
In a large bowl stir together first four ingredients. Cut in cold butter. In a glass measuringcup measure 1/4 cup milk. Whisk in egg. Add enough pesto to make 3/4 cup. Add to flour mixture and mix slightly. The trick to making these is to not overmix them. Mix it slightly, then dump onto the counter. Kneed only until dough just comes together - it will still be pretty crumbly. Shape into an 8 inch circle. Cut into 8 triangles. brush the top with some milk and press in a few pine nuts to the top of each scone. Place on baking sheet and bake for 7 minutes. Turn sheet and bake another 7 minutes. They should be slightly brown and firm to the touch. Serve warm.

Orange Cranberry Bread (AmyB)

1-1/2 C. all-purpose flour
1 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
1/4 C. milk
1/4 C. orange juice
Zest of 1 small lemon
Zest of 1 orange
6 T. (3/4 stick) butter
2/3 C. sugar
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
2/3 C. chopped pecans
1/3 C. dried cranberries, finely chopped

Sweet Vanilla Butter
1-1/2 sticks butter
3/4 C. confectioner's sugar
1 T. vanilla

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease loaf pan.

In medium bowl, mix flour, baking powder and salt. In small bowl,combine milk, orange juice and lemon and orange zests.

In large mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar on high speed until light in color and texture, 2-3 minutes. Beat in eggs. Add flour mixture in 3 parts, alternating with milk mixture, beating on low speed or stirring with a rubber spatula just until incorporated, scraping the sides of the bowl if necessary. Fold in pecans and cranberries.

Scrape batter into prepared pan and spread evenly. Bake until golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 45-50 minutes. Unmold and cool completely.

Serve with vanilla butter.

Vanilla Butter
Beat together butter and sugar. Slowly beat in vanilla, scraping down sides of bowl. Chill and remove from refrigerator 30 minutes before serving.

(The warm bread and vanilla butter are absolutely delicious!!)

Monkey Bread (AmyB)

1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
3 (10-oz.) cans refrigerated buttermilk biscuits
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted

Sprinkle pecans evenly in bottom of a well-greased 10-inch Bundt pan. Set pan aside.

Combine sugar and cinnamon. Cut biscuits into quarters; roll each piece in sugar mixture, and layer in pan.

Combine brown sugar and butter; pour over dough. Bake at 350 for 30 to 40 minutes. Cool bread 10 in pan; invert onto serving platter.