Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Sweet and Sour Chicken or Pork

4 (smaller) chicken breasts cut into bite sized pieces
1 beaten egg
1 c. cornstarch
2 tsp garlic salt

Mix cornstarch and garlic salt in a small bowl. Dip meat in egg and then in the cornstarch mix, until the meat is coated. Brown in a little oil. Place meat in 9x13 and cover with sauce (below). Bake at 350 covered for one hour. Uncover and bake for another 1/2 hour. (or at 375 for 45 min. and then uncovered for about 20).

1/2 c. chicken broth
1/2 c. vinegar (I used apple cider)
1/2 c. ketchup
1 1/2 c. sugar (I only used 1 c)
1 tsp salt

Yum yum yum! This made a lot, and I ate it about four times. I still want more! It's worth frying it first, but I think it would still be good if you eliminated that step. The sauce is great! This would be great for Chinese New Year's! We ate it over rice.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Hot Citrus Drink

Sometimes on Sunday evenings, rather than fixing another big meal (we usually ate earlier after church), mom would pop popcorn and make Hot Citrus Drink.

2 C sugar (or 1 C if you want to be healthier)
2 quarts water (8 C)
2 C orange juice
3/4 C lemon juice
1 t vanilla
1 t almond extract

Heat all ingredients together on the stove.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Easy Yummy Breadsticks

I got this recipe at RS, from Elizabeth Reimann.  This woman can bake delicious for an army.  I was amazed at how simple these were.

1 T yeast
3 1/2 C - 4 C flour
1/2 t salt
2 T sugar
1 1/2 C warm water

Soften yeast in warm water.  Mix sugar, salt, and 3 1/2 C flour.  Add to yeast mixture.  Blend well, adding remaining flour to form soft dough.  Knead 3 minutes.  Cover and let rest for 10 minutes.  Grease 12 x 17 cookie sheet.  Put dough in middle of pan and press out to edges. 

Combine and spread on top of dough:
1/4 C butter
1/4 C Parmesan
1/4 C Mayo
1/4 t parsley
1/4 t garlic salt

Cut down middle and across dough with pizza cutter.  Clip with scissors at the edges.  Let rise about 30 minutes or until almost double. 

Bake 350 for 20-25 min.  Cool in pan.  Makes 32 breadsticks.

I used SAF instant yeast and just combined all my dry ingredients then added the water and mixed for 3 minutes with my kneading paddle.  I only used 3 1/2 C flour and the dough was just right.  I used a pint mason jar to roll my dough to the edges.  I didn't have any Parmesan cheese, but I did have some Swiss I needed to get rid of, and it worked just fine.  I'm tempted to try cutting the topping ingredients in half to make a slightly healthier option.  I think these would still turn out great.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Hearty Chicken Noodle Soup

This is from the Lion House Recipes cookbook.  Mom used to make this growing up, and it has always been a hit.  I'm blogging my "simplified version."

3 C chicken broth (3 C water + 3 bouillon cubes)
2 C chopped carrots
2 C chopped celery
3/4 C chopped onion
2 cans cream of chicken soup (10.5 oz)
1/2 C milk
2 C cooked, diced chicken
2 1/2 oz (about 4 cups) cooked noodles

Simmer the carrots, celery, and onions in the chicken broth until tender.  Add cream of chicken soup, milk, chicken, and noodles.  Makes about 10 cups.

"Grandmother's Saffron Rolls"

I made these rolls for a presentation on Christmas in Sweden for Eli's second grade.  They were a hit.  I left the saffron out, since it costs $20-22/jar.  Saffron comes from a crocus.  So next spring -- save the centers of your crocus and you can cook with them in the winter!  I got the recipe from a Swedish cookbook Mom has.  I have clarified one part of the instructions below.

45 rolls
Oven temp 450
Convection 400

3 T margarine/butter
2 C milk (I used powdered)
2 T active dry yeast
1 t salt
2 t sugar
6 1/4 C flour
1/8 t saffron
1 sugar cube or 1 t cognac
1/2 C margarine/butter, softened
2/3 C sugar
1 egg

Brushing and garnish:
1 egg, lightly beaten
Pearl sugar, if desired

Melt the butter in a saucepan.  Add the milk and heat to 100.  If using active dry yeast, heat to 115.  Crumble the yeast in a large bowl and add some of the milk, stirring until dissolved.  Add the remaining liquid, salt, sugar, and enough flour so the dough no longer sticks to the sides of the bowl (about 5 cups).  Sprinkle with a little flour, cover, and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.

Crush the saffron with the sugar cube in a mortar or mix with the cognac.

Beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add the saffron and the egg.  Knead this mixture into the dough.  Add the remaining flour, reserving a little for later.  Form into shapes.  Place on a greased or parchment-lined baking sheet.  Cover and let rise until almost doubled.

Brush with beaten egg and garnish with raisins and pearl sugar.  Bake on the center oven rack for 8-10 minutes, until golden on top.

If you don't have them touch, you'll have a nice crust on each roll.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Pork Enchiladas

I got this recipe from my friend Natalie.  It tastes a lot like the sweet pork meat you can get at those Mexican places -- you know the ones.

In a slow cooker combine:
6 lb. pork roast
1 C brown sugar
1 C Worcestershire sauce
1 T dried oregano
2 t ground ginger
2 t salt
1 T chile powder
1 T garlic powder
1 T onion powder

Cook overnight on low.  Remove roast, cool, and shred.  Drain liquid and place shredded pork back in slow cooker.  Add 28 oz. enchilada sauce and 1 1/2 C brown sugar.  Mix and cook on low for several more hours.

In a baking dish place corn tortillas filled with shredded pork, enchilada sauce, and cheese.  Roll tortillas as best you can and line them in rows in the pan.  Pour more enchilada sauce and cheese on top.  Bake about 25 minutes at 350 or until heated through.

When I made this I cut the recipe in half, used a bunch of random pork I had in the freezer (cubes, chops, whatever), and decreased my sugar.  Still tasted sweet enough.  I made enchiladas, and we also made taco salads with beans, cheese, Spanish rice, lettuce, Ranch dressing.

Mild Turkey Sausage

You know how sometimes you go to the store to buy turkey sausage and they don't have it?  Well, my friend Heather makes it herself:
  • 2 pounds ground turkey
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (opt)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper
You can shape them into patties or leave it as ground sausage, but if you shape them, cook them for about 6-8 min. each side over medium heat in a greased skillet.

(As the title suggests, this makes a mild sausage.  I think I'll bump up my cayenne next time!  Yum!)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

What to do with all that apple pie filling?

I bottled some apple pie filling, but wasn't up to making a pie today with the extra.  Instead, I made some sweet-roll dough, dropped the pie filling in the middle, sealed the edge with a fork and made empanadas! I also plopped some in some muffin tins just to see what would happen.  I baked them at 350 for 20 minutes.  When they were done, I brushed some melted butter on top and then sprinkled on some cinnamon-sugar.

After all the work, I'm sure pie would have been about as difficult.  Plus, it would have been good practice for Thanksgiving.

I've also used my apple pie filling in the past for apple crisp.  I've sprayed a casserole dish, dropped in the pie filling, then added my topping:
1/3 C oats
1/3 C sugar
1/3 C flour
1/4 C butter
All mixed up together and sprinkled on top.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Macaroni and Cheese

Chad and I really like this!

1 ½ c. cottage cheese
1 (8 oz) sour cream (sometimes I think it's too sour creamy so I often just do ¾ c) or do half plain yogurt and it's good
4 c. cooked elbow macaroni (2 1/2 c uncooked)
1 green onion, chopped (I usually just use regular onion, quite a bit like half-a whole onion)
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
2 c (8 oz) shredded Cheddar cheese
½ c milk
1 large egg
bread crumbs (opt)
Process cottage cheese and sour cream in the blender until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides (can skip this step)
Combine cottage cheese mixture , macaroni, and next 6 ingredients; spoon into a 2- quart baking dish covered with cooking spray. Top with breadcrumbs and paprika.
Cover and bake at 400 for 20 min. Uncover and bake 5 more.

Chicken Penne with Asparagus

8 oz of penne pasta (I didn't have any so I used macaroni noodles)
2 T olive oil, divided
2 skinless, boneless, chicken breast halves, cut into cubes (or chicken tenders) (2-3 c)
2 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste
½ c chicken broth
1 bunch of asparagus
¼ c parmesan cheese
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add pasta, and cook until al dente. Drain and set aside.
Warm 1 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in chicken and season with salt and pepper. Cook until chicken is cooked through and brown. Remove chicken.
Pour chicken broth into the skillet. Then stir in asparagus, garlic and pepper. Cover and steam until the asparagus is just tender. Return chicken to the skillet and warm through.
Stir chicken mixture into pasta and mix well. Drizzle with 1-2 T olive oil, stir, and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

I got this recipe from my friend Janeen. It's more of a summery meal, but we really like it. It's very mild and good. The recipe really calls for 16 oz of pasta. But we personally like more meat and veggies, so I halved the noodles.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Megan's Famous Award Winning White Chicken Chili

I kind of change it up every time, but here is the gist of it:

1 tbsp olive oil
1 med. onion, chopped
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp ground cumin
2-3 large chicken breast halves cut into small pieces

4-6 cans drained (depending on size of batch) beans I tend to use a mix of Great Northern, pinto (they aren't white but I always use them), Navy beans, or whatever other white beans but NOT GARBONZO as they are disgusting and will ruin the chili. It changes every time with what I have or find at the store.

1 small bag of frozen sweet white corn
2 (4 oz) can chopped mild green chilies
3 chicken bouillon cubes
1 1/2 to 2 cups water
Hot pepper sauce (optional, I've never used it)
1-2 c Monterey Jack cheese, shedded

Cook oil, onion, garlic, cumin and chicken until browned and onion is tender. Add everything else minus the cheese and hot sauce. bring to a boil then turn down and simmer for as long as you wish. I usually do it anywhere from 30-60 minutes.
Add hot sauce to taste. The cheese can be used as a garnish, or you can dump it all in, which is what I do and I use a lot because I heart cheese a lot.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Spaghetti (Squash) Pie

If you have a spaghetti squash you want to get rid of, here's a great recipe from my friend Jamie Smith.  The kids will even eat this.

Cut the spaghetti squash in half and seed it.  Bake at 350 for an hour to soften (or bake however you like).  Rake out the strings with a fork.  Mix 1/2 C mozzarella, 1/2 C sour cream, and 1 egg.  Combine the dairy mix with the "noodles."  Place in bottom of sprayed casserole dish.  Spread whatever spaghetti sauce you usually use on top.  You can also throw a little ground beef into your sauce if you want.  Sprinkle Parmesan on top.  Bake 375 for 30 minutes.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Apple Syrup

Here's a recipe from Haily Roberts.  This is fantastic on apple pancakes (you can use a real recipe or just grate some apples into your favorite pancake recipe and add some cinnamon and/or other spices). This would probably also taste good on ice cream.

Combine in a pan:
1 C sugar
3 T cornstarch
1/2 t cinnamon
1/4 t nutmeg

Add 2 C apple juice. Boil. Remove from heat and add:
1 T lemon juice
1 T margarine or butter

Friday, October 15, 2010

Cabbage Tacos

Heat tortillas on both sides on a griddle.  Put cheese down the center and let it melt.  Remove from the griddle and top with meat, 1/2 sliced cabbage, and salsa. 

12 Roma tomatoes
1 green bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
1/4 yellow onion
1 t. garlic salt

Put tomatoes, peppers, onion, and cilantro in a food processor, salsa maker, or dice by hand.  Drain excess liquid from salsa, transfer to a bowl and add garlic salt.

Cook a 2/3 lb. roast in the crock pot with a can of green enchilada sauce on low overnight.  Shred the meat in the morning and let it continue to cook on low all day.

Adapted from a recipe shared by Tiffany Litster, but she puts the cabbage in the salsa.  I thought I'd leave it out so we could also eat our left-over salsa with chips.
Cook a 2/3 lb. roast in the crock pot with a can of green enchilada sauce on low overnight.  Shred the meat in the morning and let it continue to cook on low all day.  (Also works just to cook it all day on low then shred it with forks, can also use mild red enchilada sauce.)

12 Roma tomatoes
1 green bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
1/4 yellow onion
1 t. garlic salt
1/2 chopped cabbage

Put tomatoes, peppers, onion, and cilantro in a food processor, salsa maker, or dice by hand.  Add cabbage. Drain excess liquid from salsa, transfer to a bowl and add garlic salt.

To Serve:
Heat tortillas on both sides on a griddle.  Put cheese down the center and let it melt.  Remove from the griddle and top with meat and salsa. (We didn't use the cheese this last time and they were really awesome.)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Fish Tacos

Breaded Fish Fillets
Coleslaw (I try and make a KFC clone, can't find the recipe on-line tonight)
Cilantro-Lime Vinaigrette

I had some tilapia I needed to do something with.  Our Best Bites recommended a Breading:

1 lb white fish such as cod, halibut, or tilapia
1 Tbs canola oil
1-2 eggs
6 Tbs flour
1 tsp seasoned salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 C panko bread crumbs
1/2 C unseasoned breadcrumbs

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Brush canola oil on a rimmed baking sheet and set aside.

Crack egg(s) into a shallow dish and beat lightly (start with one egg and crack another if you run out). In a separate shallow dish combine flour, seasoned salt, pepper, and paprika. In one more shallow dish combine panko and bread crumbs.

Cut fish into sticks about 3-4 inches long and 1/2-1 inch tall.

Working with a few pieces of fish at at time, dredge first in flour and then shake off excess. Then dip each piece in the beaten egg, and finally the bread crumb mixture. Make sure all sides are well coated with bread crumbs and then place fish on the baking sheet.

When all pieces are on baking sheet, place in oven and cook for about 10 minutes. Cool for a few minutes and then serve with tartar sauce for dipping.

I, of course, cheat a little and just do fish fillets (who wants to cut up all that fish anyway?).  I also didn't have regular bread crumbs, just the Panko ones.  My tilapia fillets turned out great!

Our Best Bites also has a recipe for Cilantro-Lime Vinagrette:

1/4 c. fresh lime juice (about 2-3 juicy limes)
1/4 c. white wine vinegar or rice vinegar
4-5 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp. Kosher or sea salt
2 tsp. sugar
1 c. canola oil
1/2 c. roughly chopped cilantro, stems removed

In the jar of your blender, combine lime juice, vinegar, garlic, salt, and sugar. Blend until ingredients are completely combined. With the blender running, add the oil in a steady stream. Add cilantro and blend until the cilantro has broken down but still maintains some of its texture. Serve with greens, on any type of Mexican salad, or use as a marinade.

FYI:  They also have a tartar sauce that is REALLY yummy:

Tartar Sauce
1/2 C mayonaise
2 Tbs sour cream
1/4 tsp dried dill
1/2 tsp dried parsley
1/2 Tbs finely minced onion
1 T minced dill pickle
1 pinch seasoned salt
1 tsp fresh lemon juice

Tartar Sauce: Mix all tartar sauce ingredients and stir well to combine. Chill for at least one hour before serving. (The longer the better, make ahead if you can!)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Fruit & Nut Bar (Larabar)

The Ten Cow Chick posted these Larabars, and I thought they'd make a great alternate to a sandwich since my kids aren't big on sandwiches.  I think they are delicious.  I'm trying to get them to grow on Eli. 

The Ten Cow Chick put all her ingredients in a food processor for about 30 seconds.  I couldn't find the blade to my food processor so I just put the ingredients in my blender until it looked good.  Then, I put a small amount of the mix in a baggie and formed it into a ball, then flattened it into a cookie shape.  Lunch cookie, anyone?

Recipes from the Ten Cow Chick:

Very Cherry: 1/4 cup dates, 1/4 cup dried cherries, 1/3 cup pecans, almonds or walnuts, 1/8 t. cinnamon.

Cashew Cookie dough: 1/3 cup dates, 1/2 cup raw cashews.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough: 1/3 up dates, 1/2 cup cashews, 1/2 t. vanilla, cinnamon, 1/2 oz. finely chopped semisweet chocolate.

Blueberry Bliss: 1/4 cup dried blueberries, 1/4 cup dates, 1/3 cup almonds, 1/2 t. lemon zest, 1 drop almond extract.

I bought my dried fruit in the bulk section at Smith's.  I didn't bother buying the different kinds of nuts because I had some salted, mixed nuts on hand.  Yummy.

Dutch Babies

When I was a kid, we used to make this at Aunt Bonne and Uncle Ken's house when we had sleep-overs.  I don't know why we couldn't get Mom to make them for us -- probably because they don't work so well with whole wheat flour!  I'm not sure what the difference is between this and a German Pancake; although, I do know I like these better.  The ingredients are pretty much the same as for crepes (just way easier).

2-3 qt dish (9x13 works)
1/4 C butter
3 eggs
3/4 C milk
3/4 C flour

3-4 qt dish (9x13 works)
1/3 C butter
4 eggs
1 C milk
1 C flour

4-4 1/2 qt dish (9x13 okay)
1/2 C butter
5 eggs
1 1/4 C milk
1 1/4 C flour

4 1/2 - 5 qt dish (9x13 not big enough)
1/2 C butter
6 eggs
1 1/2 C milk
1 1/2 C flour

Melt butter in oven at 425.

In glass bowl, mix eggs, add flour and milk.  Blend until smooth.  Pour in pan with melted butter.  Bake for 15-20 minutes.

I always cut the butter in half.  Seems to work fine if I just mix all the ingredients all at the same time until smooth.  The 2-3 qt and 3-4 qt recipes work beautifully if baked in 2 glass pie dishes.  Make sure you bake them lower in the oven so they won't burn on top.

Eggplant Parmesan

This is how my mother-in-law's "boss" at LDS Employment makes eggplant parmesan.  I think he has some Italian blood in him.  Well, maybe he's just a good cook.

Peel the eggplant, cut into 1/2" slices, dip in egg, dip into Italian breadcrumbs, fry in oil on low. 
Layer in dish: eggplant, ricotta, mozzarella, then marinara sauce.  Repeat layers.  15 min.  350.


Cheater Method

When I make Eggplant/Zucchini/Chicken Parmesan, in a 9x13 I layer the 1/2" sliced vegetable, brush on some olive oil (optional), sprinkle some breadcrumbs, layer some ricotta/cottage cheese, mozzarella, parmesan, marinara, repeat.  Sprinkle some parsley on the very top for color.  Bake 30 minutes or so at 350 covered.  Uncover for 10 more minutes to toast the cheese.

I didn't have any marinara sauce this last time, so I just dumped a can of Italian tomatoes on top and it was delicious!  I also didn't have Italian bread crumbs, so I sprinkled garlic bread seasoning on my bread crumbs.

Fruit Lassi

We fell in love with the Mango and Strawberry Lassis at the Bombay House and at Royal India.  We've tried a couple recipes that called for 3 C yogurt and 1 C fruit and they just weren't right!  Then, I saw a drink recipe in a kids' cook book proportioned this way, and it tasted so much better!

3 1/2 C fruit*
1 C yogurt (full-fat tastes best!)
1/4 C sugar*
1/2 - 1 C milk
ice cubes (8?)

Put all ingredients in a blender except for ice.  Blend.  Add ice, blend.

I use 1/4 C sugar for apricots, a little less sugar for sweeter fruits.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Mexican Bean Dip

This is my favorite 7-layer bean dip (sorry, the picture doesn't have the tomatoes).  If I make this with tamales or tacos or whatever, this gets eaten, not the other food. So, I've just turned this appetizer/side dish into a main dish at our house.  I got the recipe from someone in Evan's mom's ward when we got married.

Layer 1:
2 10 1/2 oz cans jalapeno bean dip

Layer 2:
Mash together:
3 medium-ripe avocados
3 T lemon juice
1/2 t salt
1/4 t pepper

Layer 3:
8 oz sour cream
1/2 C mayo
1 1/4 oz package taco seasoning

Layer 4:
1 large bunch green onions

Layer 5:
3 medium tomatoes chopped

Layer 6:
2- 3 1/2 oz chopped, drained olives

Layer 7:
8 oz sharp shredded cheese

I usually cut the lemon juice in half -- I use enough so that the avocados don't turn brown, but not so much that you taste the lemon.  I use regular refried beans because I almost always have them on hand.  I leave off the onions.  I usually cut the recipe in half, but keep the avocado measurements the same!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Oatmeal Crisps

I got this recipe from Evan's Aunt Karma when we first got married.  I haven't tried it until now -- and boy, have I been missing out!

1 C butter
1 C brown sugar
1 C sugar

Add & beat:
1 t vanilla
2 eggs

Stir in:
1 1/2 C flour
1 t baking soda
1 t salt

Add by hand:
3 C oats
3/4 C coconut

Bake at 350 10-15 min.

I used 1/2 C WW flour.  I ran out of coconut, so I used about a cup of chocolate chips and an additional 1/4 C oat bran.  I couldn't stop eating the cookie dough!  This would be really good with the coconut AND chocolate chips!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Curry Chicken

1/4 c plus 2 Tbs butter (I use half oil)
1/2 c minced onion (I chop up a whole onion and put in)
2 carrots chopped finely (optional-this isn't in the recipe, I added it)
1 Tbs curry powder
1/4 c plus 2 Tbs flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp ginger
2 c chicken broth
2 c milk or coconut milk (I've never tried the coconut milk)
1 Tbs lemon juice
4 c cooked chicken (I only use 3 c)

Melt butter over low heat. Saute onions (and carrots). Add curry powder. Blend in flour, seasonings, chicken broth, and milk. Heat until smooth (It won't get very thick). Stir constantly until boiling. Add lemon juice and chicken.

Serve over rice

**I got this recipe from my friend Carrie. We REALLY like this meal! It's easy, mild, and tastes great. Chad says it's one of his favorites and he would like it on his birthday :)

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Zucchini Brownies

2 C grated zucchini, packed
2 C flour
1 1/2 C sugar
1 t salt
1 1/2 t baking soda
1/2 C vegetable oil
1/4 C cocoa

Sift ingredients, add oil and the zucchini, spread in greased, but not floured 9x13. 350, 25 min.  Put a can of frosting on top, or some ganache.

from Rochelle Barrett

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Ranch Dressing

I've failed a couple times at ranch dressing until I found this recipe for Creamy Lemon Ranch Dressing on the back of a bag of Dole iceberg salad.  I modified it a bit for regular ranch.  It reminds me of the ranch dipping sauce at Arella's Pizzeria.

Creamy Ranch Dressing
1/2 C mayo*
1/4 C sour cream*
1-2 T milk (use 1 T for lemon ranch (below) and up to 2 T for regular ranch)
1 1/2 t white wine vinegar
1/2 t dried minced onion (I think I just used onion powder)
1/2 t garlic powder
Pinch of dried dill weed
Salt to taste (I used 1/2 t seasoned salt)
1/2 t pepper (omit if doing Lemon Ranch (below).  I actually didn't have any pepper, so I left it out.)

*If you use light products, you may need to adjust (lessen) your milk.

Creamy Lemon Ranch Dressing
To the above add:
1/2 t lemon pepper
1 T fresh lemon juice

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Cowboy Caviar

I got this recipe from my friend, Winona.  I could eat the stuff plain. Delish!

1 can black beans (rinsed and drained)
1 can white corn (drained)
1 bunch cilantro
1 bunch green onions or chives (optional in this house)
3 - 4 large tomatoes
1 package Good Seasons Italian Dressing (yes, I always use the brand Good Seasons), made per directions

Cut everything up and put in a bowl, pour the dressing over the top and mix.  For the dressing, I use Balsamic Vinegar and I don't ever put in the total amount of oil.  I probably only use 1 - 2 Tablespoons.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Slow-Roasted Potatoes

For dinner tonight I made the Slow-Roasted Potatoes found on page 147 of our Best-Loved Slow Cooker Recipes cook book.  They were really easy and really yummy.  Evan still prefers them in the oven because they get crispy, but all that turning the potatoes gets old.  I did switch the 1/2 t salt to garlic salt and the 1/4 t garlic powder to onion powder.  I didn't have small new potatoes, so I just cut up 5 red potatoes.  I'll definitely make these again!

Chocolate Lover's Chocolate Mousse Pie

This is what we made for Evan's b-day.  He first had it from Dave Smith's mom; she however, makes it with Hershey's syrup in the bottom rather than melted chocolate chips.  Nestle Chocolate Lover's Chocolate Mousse Pie.

PREHEAT oven to 350° F.

COMBINE graham cracker crumbs, cocoa and granulated sugar in 9-inch pie plate. Stir in butter until moistened; press onto bottom and up side of pie plate.

BAKE for 8 to 10 minutes. Sprinkle 1/2 cup morsels over bottom of hot crust; let stand for 10 minutes or until all morsels are shiny. Spread chocolate over bottom and up side of crust. Cool to room temperature.

MICROWAVE 2 cups morsels and 3/4 cup cream in large, uncovered, microwave-safe bowl on HIGH (100%) power for 1 minute; STIR. The morsels may retain some of their original shape. If necessary, microwave at additional 10- to 15-second intervals, stirring just until morsels are melted. Cool to room temperature.

BEAT remaining cream, powdered sugar and vanilla extract in chilled small mixer bowl until soft peaks form. Fold 2 cups whipped cream into chocolate mixture. Spoon into crust; swirl top. Garnish with remaining whipped cream. Refrigerate until firm.

MICROWAVE remaining 1/4 cup morsels in heavy-duty plastic bag on HIGH (100%) power for about 30 seconds; knead until smooth. Cut tiny corner from bag; squeeze to drizzle chocolate over pie. Llet stand a few minutes before serving.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Chutney Curried Chicken with Yogurt Sauce

I made the above-mentioned recipe from our Crock-Pot book for dinner tonight (found on page 197).  Honestly, I thought it was kinda gross.  Evan and Eli kinda liked it.  I will not be making this one again!  (. . . and I even followed directions!)

Jamaica-Me Crazzy Chicken Tropicale

I made the above-mentioned recipe the other night for dinner from our Crock-Pot book (page 194).  I really enjoyed the mix of flavors.  I might make it again, but I didn't LOVE it.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Carrot/Zucchini Cake

Everyone LOVES my mom's carrot/zucchini cake.  Especially with cream cheese frosting.  Here's the recipe.  Uh, works great in a 9 x 13, not so great as cupcakes.  Had to post the picture for some comic relief.

Mix together:
4 eggs
2 C sugar (1 brown, 1 white)
3/4 C oil (half applesauce works, too)
1 t cinnamon

2 C flour (1 wheat works well)
2 t baking soda
2 t baking powder
1 C chopped nuts
3 C grated carrots/zucchini

Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes in a greased and floured 9 x 13 (or two 8 x 8s -- NOT cupcakes).

Cream Cheese Frosting
1 cube butter
8 oz soft cream cheese (or nufchatel cheese)
4 3/4 C powdered sugar (I use 3-4 C, usually -- makes it a little softer)
(sometimes I throw in a little vanilla, too)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

No (Bake) Cookies or Annie's Oatmeal Munchies

The reason I put parenthesis around "Bake" in the title is that as you can see in the picture, there are No Cookies -- we ate them all (mostly)!  These are a family favorite!  In college I ate many, many delicious no bake cookies, but I could never reproduce them until Annie shared this recipe from school with me.

In a saucepan combine:
1/4 C butter
3/4 C sugar
1/4 C brown sugar
1/4 C milk
1T+1t cocoa powder
Dash of salt

Bring mixture to a boil over medium heat for one minute.  Remove from heat and add:
1/4 C peanut butter
1 1/2 C quick oats
1/4 C flour
1/2 t vanilla

Scoop by spoonfuls quickly onto waxed paper and let cool.

This recipe is doubled from Annie's Home Ec. class, you should probably double it again!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Peanut Butter Cookies

I was amazingly impressed by this recipe!! It's from the "Set for Life" cookbook, which has healthier recipes in it. Look at the ingredients...! (yes it still has lots of sugar though) But Chad and I really liked the cookies (esp. the dough!) Chad doesn't even know that they're made with whole wheat flour or oats!! I've learned not to say anything, or else he'll say they'd be better with just white flour.

1/4 c. margarine
1/2 c. white sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 c. peanut butter
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 Tbs. water
1 c. whole wheat flour
1 c. quick oats
1 tsp soda

Cream margarine, sugars, egg, peanut butter, vanilla, and water. Add dry ingredients, and mix well. Drop by spoonfuls onto ungreased baking sheets. Press thumb or forks into center of each cookie. Bake in a 350 oven for 8-10 min. or until starting to get a little brown, but still soft when you touch the middle. Cool for a few min. on pan, then move to wire racks.

Makes about 22 cookies

Chicken/Eggplant Parmesan (prevention)

1 lg. eggplant cut in ¼”-thick pieces, or enough chicken pieces to fill a 9x13 pan
1 ½ Tbs. olive oil (or dip in milk)
¼ tsp. garlic salt
1 c. Italian bread crumbs (2 c. whole croutons then crush in blender)
1 ¾ c. spaghetti sauce (I like to use whole big bottle for more sauce)
1 jar (13 oz) roasted red peppers drained, or better fresh red peppers (3/4 large one)
1-2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
¼ grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat the broiler. Brush eggplant or chicken slices with olive oil (milk). Coat each slice with the breadcrumbs and garlic salt. Broil about 4 to 5” from the heat, 5 min. on each side (check to make sure they're not burning!)
Remove from the oven, set aside, and set the oven temperature to 325 F.
Combine sauce with red peppers, spread ¼ cup of the sauce on the bottom of a 13” x 9” baking dish. Top with eggplant/chicken slices and add the remaining sauce. Sprinkle with the cheeses.
Bake for 40 minutes, or until cooked through and the cheese is browned.
I like to serve it over noodles.

This is another one of my most favorite meals (that my mom introduced me to)!!! I love it better than restaurant chicken parmesans because it's not greasy. YUMMY YUMMY!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Chinese Chicken Salad. THE BEST!!!

1 head lettuce (romaine, leaf lettuce, iceberg, or combination)
4 green onions sliced (opt...i've never used)

½ c. sliced and toasted almonds (325 degrees until toasted...or you can cook them in the fry pan after the chicken on medium)
2 Tbs. toasted sesame seeds (same toasting as above)
1 c. Chinese noodles (1/2 pkg. Ramen broken)

1 can mandarin oranges, drained

1 can sliced water chestnuts, drained

1 cup chicken pieces (best when marinated...I like to marinate them in a little soy sauce and zesty Italian dressing)


2 Tbs. sugar
¼ c. salad oil

1 tsp. salt
3 Tbs. Japanese wine vinegar (rice vinegar)

I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE this!!! The dressing is SOOO good! I could almost drink it. This is one of my most favorite meals ever! (This is one of mom
's recipes)

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Turkey Tacos with Avacado-Corn Salsa

1 firm, ripe avocado, chopped
1 c sweet corn, drained (cooked or canned)
1 c cherry tomatoes, halved (or any)
1 Tbs lime juice
12 oz (1 1/2) c cooked turkey breast, sliced in thin strips (we've also done ground turkey and they're still great)
1 pkg taco seasoning
3/4 c water
1 pkg tortillas (flour or corn)
Cheddar cheese grated (recipe doesn't call for it, but we like it)

Mix avocado, corn, tomatoes, and lime juice in medium bowl. Set salsa aside. In medium skillet, combine turkey, seasoning, and water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Heat shells. Spoon turkey mixture into shells. Top with salsa. Makes 6 servings.
This is from Prevention Magazine

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Frozen Reece's Peanut Butter Pie

3/4 c. creamy peanut butter
3 oz. softened cream cheese
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 c. powdered sugar
1/2. c. milk
8 oz Cool Whip
1 oreo crumb crust
Reece's PB cups, chopped (optional)

Beat PB, cream cheese, and vanilla until smooth.

Gradually, alternating, add the powdered sugar and milk to mixture until smooth.
Fold the Cool Whip (and PB chunks) into mixture. Pout into crust. Freeze 6 hours or until firm.
Serves 8

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Tortilla Pizzas

The picture isn't so great, but we really like it

1 can (10 oz) chunk white chicken in water, drained (I use one cup cooked, shredded chicken)
1 can (14 ½ oz) Mexican-style stewed tomatoes, drained (I usually just do regular diced tomatoes or the lime and cilantro kind gives it extra spice)
1 green onion, minced *red onion is also good (or regular)
2 tsp cumin, divided
½ tsp garlic powder
1 cup refried beans
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro, divided
2 large or 4 small flour tortillas
1 cup (4 oz) shredded Monterey Jack cheese with jalapeno peppers (or any)
Sour cream(opt)
1. Preheat broiler. Combine chicken and tomatoes in medium bowl. Add green onion, 1 tsp cumin and garlic powder. Mix well; set aside.
2. Mix refried beans, remaining 1 tsp cumin and 2 Tbs cilantro in small bowl. Set aside. ( I usually put a little salsa (1/4 c.ish) in with this mixture to make it more spreadable and yummy)
3. Place tortillas on baking sheet. Broil 30 seconds to 1 min. per side or until crisp but not browned. Remove from oven. Decrease oven temperature to 375. Spread each tortilla evenly with bean mixture. Spoon chicken mixture over beans; top with cheese. Bake 8 minutes.
4. Reset oven temperature to broil. Broil tortillas 2 to 3 minutes or until cheese melts. Do not let tortilla edges burn. Remove from oven; top with remaining cilantro. Serve immediately. Top with sour cream if desired.

It's fun to try different onions, etc. on this. Cilantro is key though! I have been making it into 3 regular size tortillas and really like it- more hearty. We had them with taco meat the other day. that was great!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Home-made Twinkies

They also have one for Twinkies!

Vanilla Sponge Cakes Recipe from Family Circle.

  • 1- 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1- 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • Filling:
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons milk


1. Heat oven to 350°. Grease and flour Canoe pan; set aside.

2. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a small bowl. Whisk to blend. Heat 1/2 cup water and the butter in a small sauce pan until the water just boils and the butter melts. Remove from heat.

3. Beat the eggs with an electric mixer on high for 2 minutes. Gradually add the sugar and beat until thick and golden, 4 to 5 minutes longer. Fold in the flour mixture until just blended. Add the water and melted butter and stir until just blended.

4. Divide half of the batter evenly among the prepared pan indents, a scant 1/4 cup per cake.

5. Bake until cakes are golden and a toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean, about 15 to 17 minutes. Invert cakes onto a wire rack to cool. Wash pan and repeat with the remaining batter. Transfer to a wire rack and cool completely.

Filling: Beat butter in a medium-size bowl until light and fluffy. Gradually add confectioners' sugar. Add 1 tablespoon of the milk and beat 5 minutes until almost white and light and fluffy. Add extra milk if filling is too stiff. Spoon frosting into a pastry bag fitted with a small round tip (or use the decorating set supplied with pan). Remove cakes from pan. Insert tip of the pastry bag into the center of the flat side of the cakes and squeeze. Repeat on either side for a total of 3 spots of frosting piped into the base of each cake, resembling the classic cream-filled treats. Flip over, so cake sits flat-side down. Repeat with all cakes and filling and serve.

Look for the Canoe pan plus 9-piece decorating kit from Norpro at kitchenstoreon10th.com or amazon.com; $25.

Home-made Hostess Cupcakes

Cream-Filled Cupcakes Recipe from Family Circle magazine.

I went to our RS b-day party in March and someone had brought home-made Hostess Cupcakes for dessert! I just about died. I loved those when I was a kid! They're a little too terrible for me now and they have a weird aftertaste, but these were great. I had the hardest time finding who made them, just to find out it was my good friend, Winona! I'm going to try and make them tomorrow for FHE.

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1- 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1- 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1- 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • Filling and Swirl:
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1- 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons milk
  • Glaze:
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips


1. Heat oven to 350°. Line 24 muffin cups with paper liners.

2. Combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk to blend. Combine the buttermilk and the vanilla in a measuring cup.

3. Beat the butter and the sugar in a medium mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium high speed until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the flour mixture alternating with the buttermilk mixture, starting and ending with the flour mixture.

4. Divide the batter between the prepared muffin pans. Bake until a toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and cool 10 minutes. Invert and cool completely.

5. Filling and Swirl: Beat butter in a medium-size bowl until light and fluffy. Gradually add confectioners' sugar. Add 2 tablespoons of the milk and beat 5 minutes until almost white and light and fluffy. Add additional milk if mixture is too thick. Spoon frosting into a pastry bag fitted with a medium-size plain round tip. Remove cakes from pan. Insert tip of pastry bag into top of cakes, about 1/2 inch deep, and squeeze.

6. Meanwhile, make the Glaze: Heat the cream and corn syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat until it just comes to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in the chocolate chips. Cover and let stand 5 minutes. Whisk until smooth.

7. Dip the tops of the filled cupcakes into the chocolate glaze. Place on a cooling rack to set for 10 minutes.

8. Change the piping tip for the vanilla frosting to a smaller round tip. Pipe decorative swirls on top of the glazed cupcakes.

Saucy Tropical Turkey

We had the Saucy Tropical Turkey on page 193 of the Best-Loved Slow Cooker Recipes book (I used chicken, though). It was good, but I like the Polynesian Chicken Recipe better in the Lion House Lite Recipes cookbook on page 68. It's a bit more tangy.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Super Tasty-Good Granola (Southern Living)

Combine in large bowl:
2 c uncooked regular oats
3/4 c. uncooked hot oat bran cereal (I use wheat bran)
1/2 c. sliced almonds
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt

Combine in small bowl:
1/2 c. honey
2 Tbs oil
1 Tbs water
1/2 tsp vanilla

Stir honey mixture into oat mixture.
Spread onto a 15" x 10" jellyroll pan.
Bake at 350, stirring often (about every five minutes) for 20 min (I do 18min) or until dark brown. Cool in pan on wire rack.

Combine and stir into above, cooked mixture:
3/4 c raisons
1/2 c dates, chopped
1/3 c craisons
1/4 c sunflower seeds
*I haven't ever used dates. I add about 1/2 c. raisons and 1/2 c craisons with the sunflower seeds.

Store in airtight container

Monday, April 12, 2010

Macaroni Grill Sourdough Bread Clone

The starter is in the back. The no-knead loaf is on the right (almost gone). The loaf on the left is a standard sourdough loaf that I added baking soda to to see if it would really take out the sour taste (and it did!).

I was experimenting with my sourdough starter and decided to make bread with it the no-knead way. It was good, but it was more of an experiment than anything.

When Evan got home from work, he tried it and said it tasted like the bread at the Macaroni Grill! We pulled out the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and dipping spices, and, well, that was dinner. Yummy!

Here's what I did:

2 1/2 C flour*
1/2 C starter
1 T sugar
1/2 t salt
1 C warm water*

Mix the ingredients together in a glass bowl. Cover. Let sit for 18 hours.
Scrape dough onto a dish towel dusted with flour/bran. You can also use plastic wrap stuck to a damp counter and then spray the plastic wrap.
Shape dough into a ball.
Transfer the dough to a sprayed/sprinkled round casserole dish by gently putting your hand under the towel/plastic wrap. Pick up the dough and plop it carefully into your dish.
Put the lid on your dish and let the dough double in size (a couple hours?).
Preheat oven to 400.
Bake covered for 30 minutes.
Remove lid and bake for another 15-20 minutes, or until golden.
Serve with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and dipping spices.

*(next time I might try 3 C flour and 1 1/2 C water. Update: I tried this and the dough is a little too soft. Maybe 3 C flour and 1 1/4 C water next time?)

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Best-Ever Barbecued Ribs

Our very most favorite recipe in the Crock-Pot Best-Loved Slow Cooker Recipes book is the Best-Ever Barbecued Ribs found in page 190. We LOVE this recipe. I've used it on pork ribs as well as some other cuts of meat.

Chicken Fiesta Soup

I made the Chicken Fiesta Soup found on page 115 of the Crock-Pot Best-Loved Slow Cooker Recipes for dinner tonight. It was really good and was similar to my taco soup recipe. I'd definitely make it again.

I had to modify a little. It called for a yellow squash and a zucchini. I didn't have the yellow, but I had some grated zucchini in the freezer that I threw in. No one noticed it was there! I also added some beans. It also has corn, tomatoes, green chiles, and onion in it!

Simply Delicious Pork

ItalicI was trying to find a recipe in in my Crock-Pot Best-Loved Slow Cooker Recipes book and saw a note on page 143: Simply Delicious Pork. Evan really loved it, but I thought it was kind of dry. I don't know how anything made in a crock-pot could be dry, but that's what I wrote!

Cream Cheese Chicken with Broccoli

Annie said that the Cream Cheese Chicken with Broccoli on page 128 in the Best-Loved Slow Cooker Recipes book was really good, so we tried it. Evan really liked it, but the kids wouldn't really eat it (they don't really eat anything, so that doesn't say much). I liked it, but I guess I've gotten a little tired of chicken, broccoli, and cream of chicken soup recipes! It was nice that it had quite a few veggies in it.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Home-made Asphalt Pie

We love Asphalt Pie from Wingers, so I thought I'd save a few bucks and make my own.  It's even better!

1 block of graham crackers crushed (you know 3 blocks come in a box ... smash it in its own bag)
1/4 C melted butter
2 T sugar

Combine above ingredients in a bowl.
Press almost all of it into a small rectangular casserole dish.
Bake 350 for 5 minutes.

1/2 gal. softened Private Selection Mint Moose Tracks (or mint chocolate chip)

1/2 jar caramel topping

Top 2 (optional):
Whipped cream

Top 3:
Remainder of graham cracker crumbs sprinkled on top.

Re-freeze the dessert, but do pull it out before serving to soften up a little.

Chewy Granola Bars

These are sooo good! (and easy!)

1 C brown sugar
2/3 C peanut butter, crunchy
1/2 C corn syrup
1/3 C butter, melted
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 1/4 C oatmeal
1 1/4 C oat bran
1 1/4 C wheat bran
2 T sesame seeds
1/2 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease a 9x13 pan. In a large bowl, combine brown sugar, peanut butter, corn syrup, butter, and vanilla; blend well. Stir in oatmeal, oat bran, wheat bran, sesame seeds, and salt. Press mixture evenly in prepared pan. Bake 15-20 minutes or until light brown. Cool completely before cutting into bars. Makes 24 bars.

I got this recipe from the back of my Hodgson Mill Wheat Bran box. I added 1 C mini chocolate chips. I'm not a sesame seed fan, so I think next time I'll either replace them with flax seeds or just omit the seeds all together. I pressed the bars flat into the pan using a piece of waxed paper. I wonder if you could replace the melted butter with olive oil and the corn syrup with honey?

I've e-mailed the company to see if I can get the nutrition info (can you guess, I want to know how much fiber is in them!).

They are soooo good!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

No-Knead Bread

This is seriously amazing.  We had it for Easter dinner, too.
Sullivan Street Bakery

Here's how I make it:
3 C flour
¼ t yeast
1 ¼ t salt
Mix above together
Add 1 ½ C water
Stir it together until it makes a lump
Cover and wait 12 hours
Dump out stringy dough onto a dish towel sprinkled with wheat bran
Lightly pat dough, fold sides in to make a ball
Spray Pyrex casserole dish with a lid and sprinkle in some wheat bran.
Pick up dough in dish towel and plop it into a hot Pyrex* (seam side down on bran)
Wheat flour or bran on top
Bake at 500 (says you can use cast iron)
30 minutes with cover
15-20 no cover
Golden color on top

*I let mine raise 1-2 more hours after putting it in the Pyrex

Hot Fudge Cake

For Easter today I made the "Hot Fudge Cake" found on page 214 of Best-Loved Slow Cooker Recipes. The recipe said to pour 3 1/2 cups boiling water over the batter in the Crock Pot, so that is what I did. When I went to invert the cake, however, out came about 2 cups excess water all over the counter. Didn't get my clothes, though!

So, next time 1 1/2 cups boiling water would probably be sufficient.

The cake tasted good; although, I accidentally added at least twice the cocoa powder in the cake (read the recipe wrong). Hmmm, maybe all the extra cocoa caused the cake not to absorb 2 extra cups of water . . . . Just kidding.

Yes, I will make it again (with less water) because I like the ease of the hot Crock-Pot cake!

New Blog

Annie and I were talking tonight about my Crock-Pot cake mishap, so I thought I really would start a blog for us to comment on recipes (especially when we have the same cookbook) and post a recipe when we say, "Mom, I want a copy of that recipe!"

Sound good?

Now, all the future generations will know what cooking was like in the family in 2010.

We all probably have at least some of the Lion House books, maybe the Johnson Family Cookbook, and maybe the Best-Loved Slow Cooker Recipes.

We can label the entries by things like Crock-Pot, Desserts, Main Dishes, Side Dishes, etc.

Also, if we remember, we can comment on if we would make it again.

Oh yeah, I also want a clever name.  At first I thought the Baking Barker Babes, but don't want any creepos finding the blog by searching for babes.  For now it's just The Baking Barkers, but if you think of something clever, let me know and I'll change it.