Sunday, November 30, 2008

Ginger Cookies


3/4 cup shortening (or 1/2 cup shortening and 1/4 cup butter)
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1/4 molasses
2 cups flour

1 Tb ginger
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt

1. Mix wet ingredients first.
2. Then mix in dry ingredients.
3. Form into small balls and roll in sugar.
4. Bake 10-12 minutes at 400 degrees.

This recipe was passed on to me from the wonderful Bethanie May Cooke! :)

Monday, November 24, 2008

Chicken Divan

This is one of those classics that a lot of people make, but I never had a good recipe. That is until our friends, the Shanks, had us over for lunch after church a few months ago. This one is soo yummy! Even my husband, who despises broccoli, says it's okay for me to make it! (you don't realize how huge this is, unless you've heard my husband talk about broccoli) Enjoy--we do!!

Chicken Divan

3 cups rice, cooked
1 pound bag of frozen broccoli
3 cups of chicken, cooked and cubed
2 cans of cream of chicken soup
1 cup of mayonnaise
1 tsp of lemon juice
1 tsp. curry powder
¾ cup shredded cheddar
¾ cup breadcrumbs (actual pieces of bread works best)
2 Tbsp butter

1. After cooking rice and chicken, in a 9 x 13 baking dish layer: rice, broccoli, then chicken.
2. Combine soup, mayo, lemon juice, and curry powder. Pour over chicken. Sprinkle with cheese then breadcrumbs. Dot with butter.
3. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes, until bubbly and bread crumbs look golden.

From my friend, Bonnie Shank

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Tuscan Mac n' Cheese

My friend, Kim, sent me this recipe and it was quite yummy. It made way more than our little family needed--I think next time I'd make half and freeze or give away the other half. Enjoy!!

Tuscan Mac n’ Cheese

8 ounces sweet or hot Italian sausage or uncooked turkey Italian sausage
8 ounces gemelli or elbow macaroni (2 cups), cooked and drained
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, cut into cubes and softened
4 ounces crusty Italian bread, cut into 1-inch cubes (about 2 cups)
1 cup pitted kalamata olives, halved
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (4 oz.)
1 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon snipped fresh sage or 1 teaspoon dried leaf sage, crushed
1 teaspoon snipped fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1-1/2 cups milk
1 medium tomato, sliced
2 ounces shredded Asiago, Parmesan, or Romano cheese (1/2 cup)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degree F. Remove casings*, if present, from sausage. In a skillet cook and crumble sausage; drain. In a very large bowl combine sausage, cooked pasta, cream cheese, bread cubes, olives, and mozzarella cheese. Set aside.
2. In a medium saucepan melt butter over medium heat. Stir in flour, sage, thyme, salt, and cayenne pepper. Add milk all at once. Cook and stir until slightly thickened and bubbly. Pour sauce over pasta mixture. Stir gently. 3. Transfer mixture to a 2-quart casserole. Bake, covered, for 35 minutes. Uncover; top with tomato slices and Asiago cheese. Bake, uncovered, 15 minutes more or until heated through. Let stand 15 minutes before serving. Sprinkle with additional fresh thyme, if desired. Makes 6 to 8 servings.
*I bought sausage that had casings and it was quite time consuming to remove them. Kim told me later that she buys the kind without casings--definitely the way to go!! :)
This recipe was passed to me from Kim Brown.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Eclair Recipe

Éclair Recipe


2 sleeves of graham crackers*
2 boxes of vanilla pudding
3 cups of milk
1 (8 oz) container of cool whip
1 can of chocolate frosting
1 heath bar (crushed)

1. Combine pudding and milk, mix. Fold in cool whip.
2. Line 9 x 13** pan with graham crackers.
3. Pour mixture over crackers. Place another layer of crackers on top gently.
4. Melt chocolate frosting and pour over top layer of crackers.
5. Sprinkle crushed heath bar on top.
6. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours before serving.

From Leigh Bryant

*for a fun twist, try using cinnamon graham crackers and french vanilla pudding mix, it's yummy!! :)
**I have made half of this recipe once in an 8x8 dish and it worked great!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Taco Bake

Terra sent me a link to her site. It's loaded with tasty recipes. Go on over and check it out. We're going to try this one tomorrow night:

Taco Bake

1 tube of crescent rolls
2 cups (divided) corn chips
1 ½ lb. ground beef
1 can tomato sauce
1 envelope taco seasoning
1 cup sour cream
1 cup shredded mexican cheese

1. Unroll crescent rolls into 9×13 inch greased dish, seal seams by pressing together
2. Sprinkle with 1 cup corn chips
3. Brown beef, drain, stir in tomato sauce and taco seasoning and bring to boil. simmer about 5 minutes
4. Spoon meat mixture over the chips, add sour cream, cheese & more chips
5. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes

From Terra,
Thanks, Terra! :)

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Sour Cream Pound Cake

This is great with strawberries--fresh or frozen--poured over top! Yum! I might have to go make it right now! :)

Sour Cream Pound Cake


2 sticks butter, softened
3 C sugar
6 eggs
3 C flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
3/4-1 C sour cream (I used 1 C)
1/4 tsp vanilla

1. Cream butter and sugar with mixer.
2. Add eggs, one at a time mixing after each.
3. Combine dry ingredients and add a little at a time. It will be thick.
4. Blend in sour cream & vanilla.
5. Pour in greased and floured tube pan or 2 loaf pans. Bake at 350.
Tube pan for 1 1/2 hrs or 2 loaf pans 60 min.
( I baked it in an angel food cake pan one time for 1 1/2 hrs and thought it was too done. That's when I switched to loaf pans).

From Sharon Webb

Friday, November 14, 2008

Pizza Dough

I got this recipe from my dear friend, Tina, and it's now a favorite around here. This is a bread machine recipe, so if you don't have one...well, check out Craigslist or garage sales or something! :) Mine was given to me by a sweet friend who got a bread machine that makes two loaves--who knew!--and no longer needed(or should I say kneaded...heehee) her single loaf machine. Anyway, one last tip and then the recipe...don't try to double this recipe in the doesn't work! I speak from experience.

Pizza Dough

Put the ingredients in bread machine in this order:
1 Cup warmish/hot water
2 Tbsp olive oil (or you can use veg. oil if you don't have olive oil)
3 Cups flour1/2 tsp salt
*Make a little well in the top of the dry ingredients and put in 1 1/2 tsp. active dry yeast

Set bread maker on dough cycle (mine is 1 hour 40 minutes long)
After you spread it out on the pan, and top with toppings, bake at 400 degrees for 16 minutes.

This recipe is from Christina Gathany

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Spanish Rice Bake

Okay, skeptics, this one is definitely one to try. It's easy and it's fairly cheap and it's tasty! I mean, really, what more can you ask for? And my husband, the guy who doesn't dig casseroles, loves it! Also, in case you needed anything else to convince you, it makes a lot. (2-8 x 8's or 1-9 x 13) Today, I made it to give to a friend who just had a baby and I put the other 8x8 in the freezer for later. Not really sure that an 8 x 8 will feed your family? I made a 9 x 13 of this when we had my pastor's family over--they have 3 teenage boys and 2 other kids. There were 9 of us eating it, seconds were had, and there were leftovers. And like I said, it's yummy. Enjoy!

Spanish Rice Bake:

prep time: 30 minutes bake time: 30 minutes


1 pkg. Spanish Rice/Vermicelli mix (I use the Rice-a-roni (sp?)brand)
1 can corn (drain)
1 can tomotoes (either with or without green chilis)
However much cubed, cooked chicken breast you would like
1 med. container sour cream
1 pkg. (16 ounches) shredded cheddar cheese

1. Prepare rice/vermicelli as directed.
2. Combine with other ingredients, including half of the cheese.
3. Sprinkle the rest of the cheese over the top, in a casserole dish.
4. Bake at 350 F until melted and bubbly. (usually 30 min)

Enjoy. I served it with tortilla chips and a salad.

From Christa Manahan*

*Several years ago, when I was blogging on xanga, I started a recipe swap and Christa gave this one to me...and now, it's a favorite around here and I give it to you! :) Thanks, Christa!!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Chicken Corn Soup

Chicken Corn Soup


3 pounds of chicken Revels:
1 onion, chopped 1 cup flour
½ cup of celery 1 egg
1 tsp of white pepper salt
1 can of whole kernel corn pepper
2 cans of creamed corn
1 can of chicken broth
1 tsp salt

1. Boil chicken with the chopped onion, celery, white pepper and enough water to cover the chicken for approx. 1 hour.
2. Remove chicken and let cool enough to handle. Cut into small pieces and return to the pot.
3. Add the corn (all three cans) and the chicken broth and bring to a boil.
4. Mix the revel ingredients together with a fork and slowly add to the soup while stirring constantly. (they thicken the soup and taste like mini dumplings)

From Linnea Ross

Monday, November 10, 2008

Raspberry-Balsamic Chicken

My husband just reminded me that I hadn't made this one in a while. So it will probably hit the menu sometime next week. Pete doesn't request food very often--he just doesn't care, this is evidenced in the fact that he has a 30 inch waistline!! Crazy man. I wish I didn't care, but alas, I love food!! In fact, I think I'm going to go eat a cookie! :) Happy cooking!

Raspberry-Balsamic Chicken

Time: approx. 30 minutes

1 tsp vegetable oil
½ cup chopped onion
½ tsp dried thyme
½ tsp salt
4 skinned, boned chicken breast halves
1/3 cup seedless raspberry preserves
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
¼ tsp black pepper

1. Heat oil in a non-stick skillet over med-high heat. Add chopped onion and sauté for 5 minutes.
2. Sprinkle thyme and salt over the chicken, then add the chicken to the pan. Saute for approx. 6 minutes on each side (or until chicken is done clear through).
3. Remove chicken from the pan. Reduce heat to medium.
4. Add preserves, vinegar and pepper stirring constantly until the preserves melt. Spoon the sauce over the chicken and serve.

Another recipe from my mother in law (I believe it's a Cooking Light recipe)

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Sugar Cookies/Cut-Out Cookies

I know it may be a little early to start thinking about holiday baking, but I LOVE baking, so it's never too early in my book! My friend, Jen, gave me this recipe and it makes cookies like my mom used to make. (I can't her recipe-must have lost it!) I love them. I might make some turkeys w/ Jon one day soon. If I do, I'll post some cute pics of my little helper--he loves "cooking in the kitchen with Mom." I haven't found a frosting recipe that I love, so please share yours with me. I'm always up for trying new things. :) Thanks! Enjoy!

Cut-Out Cookies

prep time: 10 minutes + at least 1 hour of 'chill time' + 10-20 minutes of cutting out cookies
bake time: 8-10 minutes each

1c. margarine
2 eggs
2/3 c. sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. salt
3 c. flour

Combine margarine, sugar, salt, eggs and vanilla in a bowl and beat with mixer until smooth and fluffy. Add flour and mix well. Divide in half. Form each half into a ball and wrap in waxed paper. Chill in refrigerator at least one hour - you can do it overnight too. Roll out 1/8 inch thick and cut with cookie cutters. (Lightly flour board or counter and rolling pin to prevent sticking.*) Bake on greased cookie sheet one inch apart at 350 for 8 to 10 minutes. Frost with icing or sprinkle with colored sugar.
This makes about 4 cookie sheets worth of cookies--I know that's a vague way to describe the amount, but I figured no matter what size your cookie cutters, you're all using approximately the same sized cookie sheets right??

From Jen Hooper

*My mother in law got me a thin fabric cover for my rolling pin and a pastry cloth sheet that I use--it's wonderful. I still use flour on it, but then I shake it out and throw it in the washer. I highly recommend them. They also help if you make pie crusts from scratch--although I must confess, I usually just by the Pillsbury ones now!! (time is money people!!)

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Pumpkin Bread

I'm actually not a fan of all things pumpkin, like others I know. But I heart this bread. It's REALLY good. I don't think I've met anyone who's tried it and doesn't feel the same. My husband, who sadly doesn't get excited about food, even really likes it. It makes 3 full sized loaves or 8 mini-loaves. (I usually make 2 full-sized and 3 minis) It freezes well and is a great gift for a neighbor or a friend. Try it--you won't be disappointed!

Pumpkin Bread

prep time: 10 minutes cook time: 40-50 minutes


3 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
16 oz. can of pumpkin
3 ½ cups of flour (I use half wheat/half regular)
2 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. vanilla
2/3 cup water

1. Mix sugar, oil, eggs and pumpkin.
2. Add flour, baking soda, salt, spices alternately with water.
3. Pour into 3 greased 8 x 4 loaf pans.
4. Bake at 350 for approx. 45 minutes.

From Valerie Cook/FCS Cookbook

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Sweet and Sour Pork

Sweet and Sour Pork

prep time: 20 minutes cook time: approx. 1 hour


1 ½ pounds boneless pork
Flour, salt and pepper
2 Tbsp oil
½ cup barbeque sauce
¼ cup vinegar
¼ cup water
1 green pepper cut in strips
½ cup apricot preserves
1 small can chunk pineapple drained of juice
½ can of water chestnuts (optional)

1. Coat meat with seasoned flour and brown in oil in large skillet.
2. Add barbecue sauce, vinegar, and water.
3. Cover and simmer for one hour, adding green pepper and apricot preserves during the last 10 minutes.
4. Just a few minutes before serving, add the pineapple and water chestnuts.
5. Serve over rice.

Serves 4 - 6

*I skip the water chestnuts and sometimes the pineapple and it still turns out great! :)

Another good one from my mother-in-law

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Dump Cake

Dump Cake

prep time: 5-10 minutes bake time: 30 minutes

1 can blueberry pie filling
1 large can of crushed pineapple
1 french vanilla cake mix (you can use yellow cake mix, but I prefer the f.v.)
1 stick of butter

1. Preheat oven to 350
2. Pour the blueberry pie filling into a 9 x 13 pan and spread it out with a spatula
3. Pour the crushed pineapple, with its juice, over top of the blueberry
4. Sprinkle the cake mix (dry—don’t make it or anything) over top of the pineapple
5. Cut the butter into slices and put evenly over the cake mix
6. Bake for approx. 30 minutes or until golden

From Pam Catlin

Monday, November 3, 2008

BBQ Ribs

I actually got this recipe out of a mystery novel! There's this series of fun, clean mysteries by Joanne Fluke that I've enjoyed reading. The first one was The Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder and then they continue on in the same theme of baked good murders. The main character owns a cookie shop--which would be very cool!--and inevitably finds dead bodies--which would not be very cool!--and then proceeds to try to solve the mysteries. They're fun and light-hearted and always have at least 5 recipes. Most of the recipes are for baked goods, but in one of the books there are several main dish ideas. This one sounded good and easy--which are my main criteria when cooking, so I gave it a whirl. It was quite delicious! Enjoy!

BBQ Rib Recipe

4-5 pounds of ribs, cut in to 2 rib servings
1/2 cup of ketchup
2 Tbsp of brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup of steak sauce
1/4 cup of prepared mustard
2 Tbsp wine vinegar (or apple cider vinegar)
1/2 tsp of seasoned salt
1/2 tsp of liquid smoke
1/2 onion, minced (or some onion powder)

1. Preheat oven to 400.
2. Place ribs on a broiler pan and cook for 15 minutes on each side.
3. Combine the sauce ingredients in a large bowl.
4. Place the ribs in a crock-pot and pour on the sauce.
5. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.

from Joanne Fluke in The Sugar Cookie Murder

Things worth noting: the amount of sauce you might want/need will vary depending on your preferences and the size of your crockpot. My crockpot is large, so I doubled the sauce to get the best outcome. Enjoy!! :)