Thursday, December 11, 2008

Chocolate Whatever Desert

So we had a stand-by Mormon desert at enrichment night last night. The Whatever is because I have christened many different things. I think my favorite is Louisiana Yum Yum. It is definitely something that we all know about and love. Well, at least I love it. To add a holiday twist to this standard crushed candy canes adorned the top. The best part: I got to scrape the cream cheese filling bowl after making it. The worst part: We had such good attendance (a good part) that there was none leftover. So, if this appears at any holiday type gatherings I would not be offended in the least.

Chocolate Layer Desert

1 c flour
1/2 c butter
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts

Mix and press ingredients in an 8x 11 inch pan and bake at 350 for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool.

8 oz. cream cheese
1 c cool whip
1 c powdered sugar

Beat until smooth and spread over cooled crust.

3 c milk
Large chocolate instant pudding mix

Make pudding according to package directions. Let set then spread cool whip on top. Finish of with walnuts or crushed candy cane on top.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Lemon Drop Cookies

Here is the recipe for the cookies I make every year. My mom requested that I put them on the blog. Just remember that this makes a huge batch. I made some a few weeks ago and froze half the dough. I only use my meat mallet to crush the lemon drops and it works fine.

4 cups flour
1 1/2 t. baking soda
1 1/2 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
2 c. sugar
1 1/2 c. butter-flavor shortening
3 eggs
1 t. lemon extract
2 t. vanilla
Zest of 1 lemon
1 pkg (6 oz.) lemon drops crushed


1 c. powdered sugar
juice of one lemon

Cream sugar, shortening and eggs; add flavorings. Stir in dry ingredients, lemon zest and crushed lemon drops. Roll into balls, flatten slightly and bake on parchment-lined baking sheets at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Let sit on pan 1-2 minutes, then brush lightly with powdered sugar glaze and cool completely. Makes 4-5 dozen.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Shrimp Artichoke Dip

This is one I make for lots of potlucks and I always get a few asking for the recipe

4 oz cheddar cheese shredded
4 oz parmesan cheese shredded
1 (14 0z ) can of artichoke hearts drained
1/4 cup chopped green onions ( i omit b/c I don't like them)
1/2 cup mayo
1/2 t garlic salt
1 cup or more cooked peeled shrimp
paprika for garnish

preheat oven to 350 degrees mix all together and top with paprika bake 20 min can use toasted baguettes or crackers

I ususally double this when bringing it and it's always gone.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

A Bundt?....oh, a Cake.

Sorry about the above reference to My Big Fat Greek Wedding, it was what I was thinking all day long as I baked smelled this amazing cake I made for my Enrichment Committee meeting. This cake will flip your lid. It was so good and I felt like Martha herself when all ranted and raved about it. So, if you need to impress and want an easy way here's one. Sorry, you don't get a picture of the whole cake. I didn't think about posting it untill I saw the reaction.

Orange Juice Cake

Yellow Cake mix
Instant Vanilla Pudding (small box)
1/2 cup Oil
1 cup Orange Juice
4 Eggs
Chopped Pecans (about 1/2 cup, or more if you like)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together. Don't over-mix! Spray bundt cake pan. Sprinkle chopped pecans on the bottom of the pan. Pour cake mix evenly in bundt pan. Bake for 30-45 minutes. You know when it is done when it starts to pull away from the sides and the inside ring. While baking, make your glaze.

1 Stick Butter
1 cup Sugar
1/2 cup Orange Juice

Combine butter, sugar and juice in small saucepan. Bring to a boil and turn off. When cake comes out of the oven, stir glaze well before spooning over hot cake so that the butter gets mixed back in. (When it sits the butter settles to the top.) The glaze will eventually seep through the cake giving it a juicey moistness all over. This is what your cake will look like after the glaze settles in. Let it sit for 1 hour before removing from your pan. To remove from pan, place your plate upside down over the bundt pan and flip.

Friday, November 14, 2008

We did eat in the last month and I did cook.

Except my apology for starting this blog than abandoning it in just as quick. I vow to you that my family didn't starve and I even tried a new recipe or two. So hopefully in the up coming weeks I'll post some of those. So I decided I needed to add a monthly challenge in order to get this blog off its feet. So this month's is: favorite Thanksgiving side dish or dessert. So think of all those delicious recipes you love and post one.

Aaron is accusing me of cooking a lot of soup. Well, not really accusing as much as just saying every time we have soup,"We sure eating a lot of soup." Between you and me he likes it as much as I do. Yes, Aaron and Harris have both told the old boy scout "pea soup" joke at dinner. Very funny. Needless to say, here's another favorite.e soup of ours.

Tomato Soup

2 Tablespoons of butter

2 cups onions chopped

3 Tablespoons flour

1 (15 oz) can of crushed tomatoes

4 cups water (or broth. I use chicken or beef broth)

1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon oregano

1/2 teaspoon cumin

1 Tablespoon olive oil

2 cloves garlic minced

1 can (28 oz.) tomato sauce

3 beef bouillon cubes (if using broth skip this or cut in half)

1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 teaspoon tarragon

Saute onion and garlic in butter and oil; stir in flour and cook until golden brown, stirring constantly. Blend in tomato sauce and tomatoes, crumbled bouillon cubes, water and seasonings. Simmer 30 minutes.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Mexicali Salad

shake and bake seasoning
1 can corn
1 can black beans
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

coat chicken in shake and bake according to directions on box
then drain corn and beans add all ingredients to salad.
use light ranch and its pretty healthy

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Zuppa Toscana

This is a favorite of Aaron's and mine. We now have dubbed it Chelsea Soup, named after our wonderful neighbor. Anna loves Chelsea and so to get her to eat dinner the other night, I told her we were having Chelsea soup. It didn't work perfectly but, I did have her saying "Yum! Chelsea (it kind of sounds like Chatzie when she says it) soup. So, my neighbor came up with this great soup via an Olive Garden soup. Now, I have never had the soup at Olive Garden, but I love this version.

16 oz. package of sausage
4 potatoes sliced with skins
3/4 cup chopped onion
11/2 tsp. chopped garlic
2 cups kale, washed and shredded
2 Tbsp. chicken bullion (I use chicken base..same thing)
1 qt water
1 pint heavy cream (or less)
pinch of red pepper flakes

Cook ground sausage until brown. Place onion and garlic in pot and cook until tender. Add chicken bullion, water and potatoes. Simmer for 15 minutes or until potatoes are soft. Add kale, cream, and pepper flakes. Simmer 4 minutes more.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Crab Stuffed Sole

Here's a recipe I tried tonight. I was a little nervous because when I've tried to make things that are "stuffed" they usually end up being a lot of work and then fall apart and become a casserole when I'm done but this one was great – stuffed, moist and delicious!


1 cup soft bread crumbs
1 cup cooked or canned crabmeat, drained, flaked and cartilage removed (I used chopped up fake crab and it was still good)
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 dash cayenne pepper
4 sole flounder pieces or fillets of any thin white fish
3 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted, divided
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/2 cup chicken broth
Grated parmesan cheese
Sliced almonds (optional)

In a bowl, combine bread crumbs, crab (or krab!), onion, egg, salt and cayenne. Spoon onto fillets; roll up and secure with a toothpick. Place in a greased 2-quart broiler-proof dish; Drizzle with 2 tablespoons butter.

Bake, uncovered, at 350 F. for 20 to 25 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

Meanwhile, for sauce, place remaining butter in a saucepan. Stir in flour until smooth. Gradually add broth. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for two minutes or until thickened and bubbly. Drain liquid from baking dish.

Spoon sauce over fillets; sprinkle with cheese and almonds. Broil 5 inches from the heat until cheese is melted and almonds are lightly browned. Discard toothpicks.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


So, Here is one of my favorite fall treats. This year we have had the pleasure of having apples from our very own tree. They are small and there is only about eight of them but, they are sweet and Delicious. Aaron dubbed last night our apple celebration. We read Robert Frost and took ceremonious first bites of our first-picked apple. Then we had apple crisp. Anyway I thought I'd extend the fun and give a challenge to all to post their favorite apple recipe. To get it started here are my two. My apple crisp is a bit different to what I consider traditional. It is really good, it might be our favorite recipe

Carmel Fondue

1 stick butter

2 Cups brown sugar

1 Cup white corn syrup

2 Tbsp water.

Bring above ingredients to a a boil, then add 1 can sweetened condensed milk (stirring constantly. Stir constantly until thick. Cut up apples and dip in.

Apple Crisp

8 Cups Apples

1/2 tsp salt

2 tsp. Cinnamon

1/3 cup water


11/2 cups flour

2 cups sugar

11/2 Cubes butter softened

Peel , core, and slice apples. Place in a 9x13 inch pan. Sprinkle apples with salt, cinnamon, and water. Combine ingredients for topping until crumbs form. Sprinkle over apples. Bake at 350 for forty minutes or until topping is golden.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Everything is Better with a Breadstick

That is what Aaron and I decided last night as we braved through leftover night. The only disadvantage is the calories. Nonetheless, we all loved leftover night. We had spinach canolli, hamburger soup, and chicken cordon bleu pasta. That soup was even better two days later. So, as promised, here is the best breadstick recipe ever. I really didn't change much except that I brushed a bit of the garlic butter on after they came out of the oven. Another thing I didn't raise them for the full thirty minutes either time (about 20) and they turned out fine. Also, no cheese this batch.

Divine Breadsticks1 ½ cup warm water

1 tablespoon yeast

2 tablespoons sugar

3 ½ cups flour

½ teaspoon salt

Butter for the pan (I used 6 tbsp. and that seemed to be perfect.)

1 tsp garlic salt

Parmesan cheese

Mix first 5 ingredients and knead for three minutes. Let stand 10 minutes. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Melt desired amount of butter and mix in garlic salt . Roll out dough into approximately 9 x 13 rectangle and cut into 12 strips. Roll in butter mixture, twist dough and put on baking sheet. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Cover and let rise 30 minutes. Bake 15-20 minutes at 375 degrees.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Chicken Cordon Bleu Pasta

I made this for dinner last night along with blitz bread. Last week I found this recipe on Real Moms Kitchen blog, this is definitely one of my best finds. She has so many easy and good recipes. In fact, tonight I am making the breadstick recipe I discovered on her blog, again. That is how easy and good it was. Check it out. Anyway, I did make a few adjustments to the recipe because I wanted a bit more flavor. I added about a 1/2 tablespoon of mustard and a shake of garlic and onion powder. Also, this is a huge recipe, we had a lot leftover. Good thing it is leftover night tonight. Aaron (hubby) gave it two thumbs up, Anna (22 months) sang "Pata, Pata" all through dinner while gobbling it up (Anna loves any form or shape of matter the sauce.) Harris( almost 9) liked it o.k., I think, he was in a bit of a hurry to get to scouts. As for the Blitz bread, I think I rushed it and need a do over. The taste was fine but, it was a bit heavy. Aaron and I agree it might have something to do with gluten. Anyway, I'll post that when I perfect it.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Pasta
2 cups cooked, diced chicken
6 oz deli ham, diced
2 cans cream of chicken soup
8 oz sour cream
2 cups shredded Monterrey Jack cheese
cooked pasta (I used a shells)
milk (I needed to add some to make the sauce the right consistency)
if you like: mustard, garlic powder, onion powder
Combine all ingredients in a medium sauce pan until cheese is melted, smooth, and creamy. Serve over whatever pasta you like. I used shellsand tossed the pasta and the sauce together. You can just spoon it over the past if you like.

Savory Chicken Chili

also known as white chili. My kids love this, and it is so easy and healthy.

its 3 15 oz cans great northern or cannellini beans drained
2 cups cooked chicken, chopped
1 med chopped onion
2 medium red peppers seeded and chopped (I never add these cause I don't like them)
1 4 oz can diced green chillis
3 cloves of garlic ( I just sprinkle in some garlic powder)
3 1/2 cups chicken broth ( I buy the lower sodium kind)
2 tsp ground cumin ( I don't add because I don't have it)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dried oregano ( again I dont have this)

Combine all igredients in crosk pot, mix, cover, cook on low 8-10 hours or high 4-5

The way I make it is even easier because I leave out stuff I think is unneccesary but its still good.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

I know that just about everyone has a recipe for these, but they are a fall favorite. Both my kids couldn't wait for Family Home Evening to be over so they could gobble them up. So, here is the recipe I used. The funny thing is that I have to look for a recipe for these everytime I make them. I got this one from all recipies. IT seemed like your average cookie. So tell me if this is what your recipe looks like.

1 cup canned pumpkin
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon (11/2 tsp.)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips (I used dark chips..yum!)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional) (I didn't use them)

Combine pumpkin, sugar, vegetable oil, and egg. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, ground cinnamon, and salt. Dissolve the baking soda with the milk and stir in. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture and mix well.
Add vanilla, chocolate chips and nuts.
Drop by spoonful on greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for approximately 10 minutes or until lightly brown and firm.

Ready, Set, Cook!

Hence the title, I really love to cook and have for a long time. I may mess up from time to time but, it all about the process, right? I also know that my mom, mother-in-law, sisters and sisters-in-laws know their way around the kitchen. After loving the recipe blogs I have found, I decided I needed a place to compile my favorite recipes. Also, I am begging and pleading with all my sisters and moms to join in the fun. Post what you ate for dinner or a new favorite family treat. I am hoping that some of those family favorite recipes will find their way to this blog.