Thursday, December 8, 2011

Creamy Jambalaya Pasta

I am not a huge Jambalaya fan, but this was VERY good!  Zach and I both LOVED it.

Creamy Jambalaya Pasta
adapted from Steamy Kitchen
(Printable Recipe)
1/2 pound Farfalle pasta
1/2 lb smoked sausage, cut into bite-size pieces
1 cup heavy cream (or half & half or evaporated milk)
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1/4 cup chopped onion or 2 Tbsp minced onion flakes
1 1/2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup white wine
4 tablespoon tomato sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped parsley
Parmesan cheese

In a large pot, boil water for pasta. Salt water.  Boil pasta and cook until al dente.  Set aside.

Brown sausage in a small skillet over medium heat. Once browned, add onion and saute for two minutes. Add garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds or until fragrant.  Add white wine to skillet, making sure to scrape up any brown bits from the bottom.  Let wine reduce by half, about two minutes.
Stir in Cajun seasoning, paprika, salt, pepper and tomato sauce. Add cream and heat to almost bubbling, then reduce heat to low. Allow the cream mixture to reduce by half, about 5 minutes. Drain pasta and add to skillet. Toss with parsley and freshly grated Parmesan.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

French Pancakes

2 eggs
1/3 c. water
1 tsp. baking powder
2/3 c. milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 tbs powdered sugar
2 tbs lemon juice
3/4 c. flour
1/2 tsp salt

Mix everything but flour and salt in a bowl.  Once creamy add in flour and salt.  The consistency is very runny!  Pour onto a griddle to desired size.  Flip when bubble start to form on the surface.  Sprinkle with powdered sugar or butter/cinnamon sugar.  Roll up and enjoy!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Asparagas Chicken

2-4 Chicken Breast halves, cut into bite size pieces
4 tbs oil
1 c. sliced celery
1 tbs cornstarch
4 c. diagonally cut pieces asparagas
1/4 c. chopped onion
2 tbs soy sauce
1 clove garlic
1 c. water
2 c. orange juice
1 tsp ginger
1/2 c. cashews
cooked rice

Put 2 tbs. oil in fry pan.  Add celery, cook 1 minute, add onion and asparagus.  Stir fry 3-5 minutes. Remove vegetables from pan.  Add chicken, garlic and ginger.  Stir fry until chicken is cooked, about 5 minutes.  In a small bowl combine cornstarch, water orange juice and soy sauce.  Return vegetables to chicken in fry pan.  Add cashews and mix.  Add cornstarch mixture, reheat, stirring quickly until sauce thickens.  Serve over hot rice.

Chicken Devan

1 lb. chicken, cut up and brown in 1 tbs oil
1 c. water
1 pkg frozen broccoli
1 can (10.75oz) condensed cream of chicken soup
1 1/2 c. minute rice, uncooked
grated cheese

After chicken is browned in oil, add water, broccoli and soup.  Bring to a full boil, separating the broccoli pieces. Stir in rice.  Cover and remove from heat.  Let stand 5 minutes.  Sprinkle with cheese and cover til cheese is melted.

Ramen Noodles Recipes

Ramen Beef
(This can be cut in half for smaller servings)
1 lb hamburger, browned and drain
-Sprinkle 1 ramen season packet over beef, set aside.

2 c. water
2 c. frozen vegetables
1/4 tsp. ginger
2 pkg. ramen noddles
1 ramen season packet
-Boil, then simmer 3 minutes.  Drain.  Add to beef

Chicken Broccoli
Cook 2 ramen packets according to instructions, drain.

1 can cream of chicken soup
1 c. cooked, shredded chicken
1 - 1 1/2 c. broccoli
Heat through in casserole dish.

Chicken Ramen Soup

Cook 2 pkg ramen noddles in 1 can chicken broth and 3/4 cup water.

Add 1/2 tsp basil, 1/2 tsp pepper and ramen seasoning.

Add 1 pkg frozen vegetables (suggested to use peas with onions) and 1 can shredded chicken.

Serve with sprinkled paprika.

Mexican Casserole

From Mom

1lb hamburger, browned and drained
1 can enchilada sauce
1 can chili w/o beans
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can stewed tomatoes
1/2pt (1 cup) sour cream
1/2lb cheese, grated
2 bags tortilla chips

Mix everything but cheese and chips together. Layer with cheese and chips in a 3 qt casserole dish.

Bake at 350*F for 45-60mins or until hot and bubbly.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Adirondack Flapjacks

2 c. buttermilk
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 c. flour
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 c. canola oil
2 eggs, separated
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1/2 c. melted butter
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 c. sugar
Maple syrup warmed

Pour buttermilk, egg yolks and vanilla in a large bowl and whisk.  Continue whisking while gradually adding melted butter.  Set aside.

In small bowl whip egg whites until frothy; gradually add powdered sugar and beat  to soft peaks.  Set aside.

Add dry ingredients to wet and stir.  Fold in egg whites. Brush griddle with oil and pour butter on griddle.  Cook 1 minute or until air bubbles form.  Serve with warm syrup.

Tater Tot Casserole

1 bag frozen tater tots
1-2 can cream of mushroom soup
1 lb hamburger, ground and drained
1-2 soup can of milk

Mix soup and milk together (I like more sauce so I do 2 cans of soup and milk).  Put a layer of tater tots on the bottom of a 9x13 greased pan.  Layer hamburger on top and then spread half soup mix on top.  Repeat the layers.  Bake at 350*F for about 1 hr or until hot and bubbly.

*Can freeze entire casserole or half before baking.  Baking time will vary when frozen.

Quick Stir Fry

1/2 lb pork tenderlion or chicken breast, sliced
1/2 c. red onion, sliced
3/4 c. sliced carrots
1/2 c. red peppers, sliced
1 c. water
1/4+ c. Good Seasons Asian Sesame with Ginger dressing
1 pkg. Chicken ramen noodles, uncooked
3/4 c. sugar snap peas, trimmed
(We cheat and just buy a frozen vegetable medley that has similar vegetables!)

Heat large nonstick skillet strayed with cooking oil on med-high.  Add meat and onions, cook 3 mins or until meat is not longer pink. (Or cook meat if using frozen veggies).  Add snap peas, carrots, and peppers. (Or add frozen veggies.)  Stir in water and dressing; bring to boil.
Break up noodles; add to veggies.  Add contents of ramen flavor packet; stir to combine.  Cover; cook 2 mins or until noodles and veggies are softened.

White Sauce Chicken Enchiladas

1 lg. onion, chopped
1 tsp. ground coriander
2 tbsp butter
8oz sour cream
2 c. cheddar cheese, grated
1 c. jack cheese, grated
2 cans sliced olives
1 tsp garlic salt
1/4 tsp pepper
3 Tbsp flour
2 c. chicken broth
2 lg. tomatoes, chopped
4-5 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
1 can black beans, drained & rinsed (opt)
12 flour tortillas

(My mom always doubles the sauce)
Saute butter, onion, garlic, salt, pepper and coriander until onion is tender.  Stir flour into sour cream and add to onion mix.  Add chicken broth and cook until bubbly. Add 1 cup of cheddar cheese and 1/2 cup Jack cheese; stir to melt.

In separate bowl, add chicken, 1 can olives, and 1/2 tomato (keep some olives and tomatoes to top enchiladas).  Add 1 c. onion sauce mix to chicken.  Add in black beans. Fill tortillas with chicken mix.  Spray pan.  Place enchiladas in 9x13 pan and pour remaining sauce on top.  Cover and bake 35mins at 375*F.  Uncover; add remaining tomatoes, olives, and cheese.  Bake 5 more mins.  Serve.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Chicken Pasta Salad

1 box bowtie pasta
1 bag spiral pasta
4-5 c. cooked, cubed or shredded chicken
2 c. diced celery
4 green onion, sliced
2 c. grapes, halved
1 lg can mandarin oranges
1 sm can mandarin oranges
1 lg can pineapple tidbits
1 bag raisins or craisins
1 can water chestnuts (opt)
1 can cashews
1 bottle coleslaw dressing
1 1/2 c. mayonnaise

Cook 3/4 bag and box of pasta according to package directions.  Drain & rinse; set aside.  Mix all ingredients together, except mandarin oranges, coleslaw dressing and mayo, in large bowl.  Toss gently.

Combine coleslaw dressing and mayo together and pour over salad until all ingredients are coated.  Gently stir in oranges and chill.

*Can omit chicken for a salad only*

Lasagna Crockpot

12 lasagna noodles, uncooked
1 lb ground beef, browned and drained
1 tsp italian seasoning
1 jar (28oz) spaghetti sauce
1/4 c. water
1 (16oz) cottage cheese
2 c. mozzarella cheese

Break noodles in half.  Place half of the noodles in bottom of 4qt. slow cooker. (I usually only use 6-8 noodles.)  Stir italian seasoning into meat and spread half over noodles.  Then layer half of the sauce, half the water, half the cottage cheese, and half the mozzarella cheese over beef.  Repeat layers.  Cover and cook on low heat 4-5 hrs.  Do not cook more than 5 hrs.

Minestrone Soup

From Mom:

1lb Hamburger or sausage, browned
1 (28oz) can tomatoes, blended or 1qt tomato juice
16oz tomato sauce
1/4 tsp pepper
1 1/2 tbsp italian seasoning
2 lg carrots, peeled and sliced
2 beef bullion cubes
Combine above ingredients in large pot.  Bring to boil.  Cover, simmer 20 minutes.

Add (drain):
1 (16oz) can green beans
1 (15oz) can kidney beans
1 (15oz) can garbonzo beans
Bring to a boil. Add:
1 1/4 c. mostaccioli macaroni, uncooked

Cook 15-20 minutes until macaroni is tender.
Garnish with Parmesan cheese.

*Recipe can be halved or can freeze half before adding mostaccioli*

Fiesta Chicken Pasta

2 c. rotini pasta, uncooked
1 tbsp oil
2-3 boneless, skinless chicken, cut into bite-size pieces
2 c. chopped red peppers
1/4 c. zesty italian dressing
1 tbsp chili powder
1/2 c. salsa
1/2 c. sour cream
1/2 c. shredded cheddar cheese

Cook pasta as directed on package.

Meanwhile, heat oil in large skillet on med-high heat.  Add chicken, cook and stir 6 minutes.  Add peppers, dressing & chili powder.  Cook 3 minutes or until chicken is cooked through, stirring frequently.  Stir in salsa and sour cream.  Toss pasta with chicken mixture.  Sprinkle with cheese to eat.

German Pancakes

6 eggs
1 c. milk
4T. butter
1/2 tsp salt
1 c. flour

Whip eggs until thick and lemon colored.  Add milk, flour and salt.  Heat butter in a 9x13 pan. (Or but smaller amounts of butter in 3-4 pie pans for individual pancakes).  Once butter is melted pour batter into pan.  Bake at 450*F for 15-20 mins.

Top with syrup or fresh fruit & whipping cream.

Chicken Pot Pie

1 can cream of chicken soup
1 cup shredded cooked chicken
1 pkg (8-10oz) frozen vegetable mix, thawed
1 egg
1/2 c. milk
1 c. bisquick

Preheat oven to 400*F.

In 9" pie plate mix soup, veggies, and chicken.

In bowl mix egg, milk, & bisquick.

Pour bisquick mix over chicken mix, spread evenly.

Bake 30mins or until golden brown.

Chicken Cordon Blue Casserole

5 c. chicken, cooked and shredded
2 c. ham, cubed
1 1/2 c. swiss cheese, shredded
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 cup milk
3 c. bread crumbs or 1 pkg. stuffing mix
1/2 c. butter (opt)

Preheat oven to 350*F
Layer 9x13 with ham, chicken and cheese.
Blend soup & milk, then pour evenly over casserole.

Mix stuffing/bread crumbs with butter, sprinkle crumbs over casserole evenly.
Bake 45mins or until brown.

Red Sauce Chicken Enchiladas

2 c. cooked shredded chicken
1 1/4 c. shredded Jack cheese
1/2 c. gr. onion, sliced
1 (2.2oz) sliced olives
1/3 c. sour cream (or enough to make mixture moist)
1/4 tsp each: gr. cumin, garlic salt, garlic powder
1/8 tsp pepper
1/2 c. cheddar cheese
flour tortillas
1 (20oz) enchilada sauce

Combine 3/4c. jack cheese, 1/4 c. gr. onion, 1/3 c.olives & remaining ingredients except sauce, tortillas and cheddar cheese.

Fill tortillas with chicken mixture and place in a 9x13 greased and/or sauced pan.

Pour sauce over top.  Bake at 350* for 30minutes.

Put remaining cheeses, olives & gr. onions on top, then bake 3 more minutes or until cheese is melted.

Chili - Crockpot

1 lb ground beef
2 can (8oz) tomato sauce
1 can (15oz) red kidney beans, undrained
1 pkg chili seasoning
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
chopped onion (opt)

1. Cook ground beef, drain.
2. Put hamburger in crockpot.  Stir in tomato sauce, beans, & seasoning.
3. Cover & cook on low for 1-2hrs.  or high for 45mins-1hr.
4. Stir chili before servings. Top with cheese & onion if desired.

Chicken Salad in Croissant

4 c. sliced celery
1 c. slivered almonds
4 tsp. grated onion
2 c. green grapes, halved
1/2 c. mayo
4 c. cooked chicken, shredded or chopped
1 tsp. lemon juice
salt & pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients together and fill croissant rolls just before serving.

Taco Soup

1lb ground hamburger, browned
1/2 onion (mix in with hamburger

Mix in soup pot:
(do not drain anything)
1 can corn
1 can kidney beans
8oz can tomato sauce
1 pkg. taco seasoning
1 qt or 2 cans tomato chunks
2 can veggies with beef broth

Add in hamburger/onion mix.

Heat until hot.
Serve with tortilla chips, salsa, sour cream, cheese, etc.

Breakfast Casserole

**I am cleaning out and organizing my reicpes, so there might be a recipe overload...Sorry!

12-14 eggs
1lb sausage
8 hashbrown patties
1tsp salt
2 c. milk
8oz cheddar cheese, grated
1 tsp dry mustard
pepper to taste

Brown sausage, drain fat.  Beat eggs in bowl until creamy, add milk, mustard, salt & pepper.
Egg Mixture

Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. (I have made it without doing this.  It just allows the flavors to blend.)  Bake 350*F for 45 minutes and let set for 40 minutes (I have ate within 15mins). Top with sour cream and salsa.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Praline Pumpkin Dessert

From Mom:

1 can (15 oz) pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)
1 can (12 oz) evaporated milk
3 eggs
1 cup sugar
4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1 box yellow cake mix
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans or walnuts ( used pecans would probably decrease to 1 c.)
3/4 cup butter, melted

1.  Heat oven to 350 degrees (325 for dark or nonstick pan).  Grease or spray bottom and sides of 13 x 9 inch pan.  In medium bowl, beat pumpkin, milk, eggs sugar and pumpkin pie spice until smooth.  Pour into pan.

2.  Sprinkle dry cake mix over pumpkin mixtures.  Sprinkle with pecans.  Pour melted butter evenly over top.

3.  Bake 50 - 60 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 30 minutes.  

4.  Serve warm or chilled with whipped cream.  Store in refrigerator.

Makes 12 servings or more.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Tortellini Soup

1 Tbsp. butter
4 cloves fresh garlic
4 cans chicken broth (14.5 oz)
18-20 oz. package fresh four cheese tortellini
1/4 c. frshly grated parmesan
1 can stewed tomatoes (14 oz) not Italian or Mexican
(I put in 2...oops! It was still delicious and I don't like tomatoes!  However I did blend mine up so there wasn't huge tomato chunks.)
1 bunch of fresh clean spinach or 1/2 bunch chopped cilantro
6 fresh basil leaves chopped or 1 tsp. dried crumbled basil

Melt butter in soup pot on medium heat. Add crushed garlic and saute for 2 minutes. Stir in broth; add tortellini and bring to a slight boil. Reduce heat. Add salt and pepper to taste.  Simmer briefly until tortellini are just tender (about 5 min). Stir in tomatoes, spinach, and basil. Simmer 3 minutes. Serve and sprinkle parmesan on top.

To freeze:  I simmered the soup without the pasta in it. Then added the pasta at the end till it was just barely al dente. I can get 2 bags of soup from each pot. When the soup cools add the parmesan to the mix before freezing.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Pizza Pasta Casserole


2 lbs ground beef - I just used one pkg ground beef (a little over 1lb) and it was plenty!
1 large onion chopped
1 clove garlic minced
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 (26 once) jars spaghetti sauce
16 ounces rotini pasta, cooked and drained
5 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
8 ounces sliced pepperoni

Brown ground beef, onion, and garlic in oil. Drain. Stir in pasta, seasoning, spaghetti sauce, and 3 cups cheese. Place mixture in 2 greased 9x13 pans or 2 8x8 pans. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Top with pepperoni (I would mix the pepperoni in when you put the pasta in so it is throughout!). Cover and freeze or bake uncovered at 350 for 25-30 minutes or until heated through.  I froze one 8x8 pan and cooked the other one.  I like to add parmesan cheese too!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Crockpot Barbecue Chicken


4-6 pieces boneless skinless chicken breasts (i threw them in frozen... even easier!)
1 bottle BBQ sauce (sweet baby ray's all the way!)
1/4 c vinegar
1 tsp. red pepper flakes (or less depending on how spicy you like it)
1/4 c brown sugar
1/2 - 1 tsp. garlic powder

mix BBQ sauce with all ingredients listed under it. place chicken in crockpot. pour sauce over it and cook on LOW for 4-6 hours. you pretty much don't even have to stir it... how easy is that!? and please eat it with these.

Zach and I shredded our chicken and ate it on hamburger buns! Very Yummy!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Pumpkin Spice Cookies

1 spice cake mix
1 pkg. chocolate chips
1 egg
1 15oz can pumpkin
1 tsp. pumkin spice

Preheat oven to 350*.  Mix ingredients together.  Grease cookie sheet.  Bake for 10-12 minutes.  Remove from oven and place on cooling rack.  Enjoy!

Biscuits & Gravy

I do not usually like biscuits and gravy because I hate that country gravy in a packet. But I love this recipe for the gravy!

Biscuits Ingredients:
2 c. flour
1/4 c. cooking oil
1 c. milk

Preheat oven to 425*.  Mix all ingredients together with a fork.  This will be too sticky to roll out, so sprinkle a couple tablespoons of flour over the mixture and stir again.  Continue doing this until dough is thick and workable.  Sprinkle some flour on your countertop.  Scrape the dough onto the flour, sprinkle with more flour on the top of the dough.  Pat out with hand and roll until 3/4" thickness.  Cut out with a biscuit cutter or drinking glass.  Bake 10-12 minutes.

Gravy Ingredients:
1/2 c. sausage (I used the whole lb since all you need is the drippings)
1 1/2 c. milk
1 1/2 tbsp flour
salt and pepper to taste

Cook sausage until browned.  Pull sausage out, leaving drippings behind.  Set sausage aside.  (I left a small amount of sausage in the pan to have in the gravy.)  Stir in flour with the fat drippings.  If there is not enough fat drippings to create a paste (roux) with the flour add some butter.  Slowly add half the milk and whisk until all the lumps are gone.  Then add the rest of the milk.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Continue stirring gravy over medium heat until it comes to a boil.  Once it comes to a boil, turn off heat.  If gravy is not thick enough add a small amount of flour. If gravy is to thick add more milk.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Creamy Chicken Alfredo

1/4 c. flour
2-6 Boneless, skinless chicken breasts (Only cook what you will eat)
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp + 1 tsp olive oil, divided
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cup whipping cream
1/3 c. grated parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley

1. Preheat oven to 375*F.  Place flour in a shallow dish.  Sprinkle chicken with salt; coat with flour.  Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until hot.  Add chicken; cook, turning once until golden, 2-4 minutes per side.  Remove chicken from skillet; place in a 9x13 baking dish.

2. heat remaining olive oil in same skillet over medium heat until hot.  Add garlic and onion; cook until garlic is fragrant and onion is tender, 1-2 minutes.  Increase heat to medium-high; add whipping cream, parmesan and pepper.  Cook until sauce is bubbly and slightly thickened, 2-3 minutes.  Spoon sauce over chicken in dish.

3. Bake chicken until an instant-read thermometer inserted in center of chicken registers 180*F, 8-12 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley.

4. I cooked some linguine pasta while chicken was baking.  Place the pasta on the plate and top with chicken and sauce.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Strawberry Bread

3 cup strawberries, chopped or puréed
4 eggs (slightly beaten)
1 cup oil
2 cups sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
3 tsp cinnamon
3 cup flour
1 cup walnuts (opt)

Mix eggs, oil and berries.  (I did a chunky purée.)  Stir in sugar, salt, soda and cinnamon.  Add flour and nuts.  Bake in grease loaf pans on 350* for 50-60 minutes (Test after 50 mins - may need to place a piece of foil lightly on top if browning too much on top.)  Makes 2 large or 4 small loafs.
**I made them into muffins.  Cook for half the time, testing afterwards to make sure they are done.**

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Caramel-Stuffed Snickerdoodles

Jsee sent this recipe to me. They are super easy, but yummy!

Caramel Stuffed Snickerdoodles
Makes 4 dozen cookies


2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
1/2 cup pure vegetable shortening
1 3/4 cups sugar, plus more if needed
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon, plus more if needed
2 large eggs
48 soft caramel candies or Rolos unwrapped


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, with one rack in top third and one rack in bottom third of oven. Line baking sheets with Silpat baking mats or parchment paper; set aside.

Sift together flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine butter, shortening, and 1 1/2 cups sugar. Beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add eggs, and beat to combine. Add dry ingredients, and beat to combine.
In a small bowl, combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar and the ground cinnamon. Use a small (1 1/4-ounce) ice-cream scoop to form balls of the dough. Break the ball into two and place the caramel into the middle. Form one large ball and roll in cinnamon sugar. (I had a problem with the caramel coming out the bottom once cooked. Make sure you have enough dough around the caramel.) Place about 2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Bake until the cookies are set in center and begin to crack (they will not brown), about 10 minutes, rotating the baking sheets after 5 minutes. Transfer the sheets to a wire rack to cool about 5 minutes before transferring the cookies to the rack. Store in an airtight container up to 1 week.  Warm in the microwave for about 10 seconds afterwards to soften caramel again.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Pumpkin Zucchini Bread

*Recipe from


  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 cup butter or margarine, melted
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts (I used choco chips instead!)


  1. In a mixing bowl, combine eggs and sugar. Add pumpkin, butter and vanilla. Combine dry ingredients; gradually add to pumpkin mixture and mix well. Stir in zucchini and nuts. Pour into two greased and floured 9-in. x 5-in. x 3-in. loaf pans (or 6 mini loaf pans). Bake at 350 degrees F for 45-50 minutes or until breads test done. Cool in pans 10 minutes. Remove to a wire rack.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Tortellini Spinach Bake in a Creamy Lemon Sauce

(click here for printable version) - From The Farm Girl Recipes

12 oz  Tortellini (find them in the dry pasta aisle and the only brand my store carried was Barilla Parmesan Cheese but any kind should work)
6 strips bacon 
3 cloves garlic, pressed or finely minced
2 Tbs flour
1 1/2 c. milk
1/2 c. cream
¾ t. kosher salt
⅛ t. black pepper
1 1/2 t. dry basil
¼ t. red pepper flakes, optional
1 medium lemon
2 c loosely packed fresh spinach, roughly chopped
¾ c. grated mozzarella cheese, divided
¾ c. grated Parmesan cheese, divided

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Fill a large stock pot with water and bring to a boil.  Add tortellini and cook according to package instructions.

2.  Place bacon in a medium sized skillet on the stove-top at medium-high heat.  Cook until crisp.  Remove bacon from pan with slotted spoon and set on paper towels to drain.  Reserve two tablespoons bacon drippings in pan and discard the rest.  Add garlic to pan and cook until fragrant and tender, about 1 minute.  Add flour to pan and stir with a whisk for about 1 minute. Slowly add milk and cream continue to stir with whisk until smooth.  Add salt, pepper, basil, and red pepper flakes and bring sauce to a simmer.

3.  While sauce is heating, use a microplane grater or a fine-holed cheese grater to zest lemon--be careful not to get any of the white part in the sauce, it is quite bitter.  Then cut lemon in half and remove juice.  Add zest and lemon juice to sauce.  Continue to stir until thickened, 2-3 minutes.  Remove from heat.

4.  Drain tortellini and place back in stock pot.  Reserve 1 tablespoon of the cooked bacon and add the rest to the pasta mixture.  Add spinach, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese.  Add sauce and gently stir to combine.  Place pasta mixture in an 8×8 or 9×9 baking dish and top with remaining 1/4 cup mozarella and 1/4 cup parmesan and also crumbled bacon.

5.  Cover pan with foil and bake for 20 minutes.  Remove foil and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes, until cheese on top is melted and pasta is bubbly throughout.  Remove from oven and serve.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Homemade Soft Pretzels

1 1/2 cups warm (110 to 115 degrees F) water
1 Tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 package yeast
4 1/2 cups flour
4 Tablespoons butter, melted
10 cups water
2/3 cups baking soda
1 large egg yolk beaten with 1 Tablespoon water

Combine the water, sugar and kosher salt in the bowl of a stand mixer and sprinkle the yeast on top. Allow to sit for 5 minutes or until the mixture begins to foam. Add the flour and butter and, using the dough hook attachment, mix on low speed until well combined. Change to medium speed and knead until the dough is smooth and pulls away from the side of the bowl, approximately 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the dough from the bowl, clean the bowl and then oil it well with vegetable oil. Return the dough to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and sit in a warm place for approximately 50 to 55 minutes or until the dough has doubled in size.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Line 2 half-sheet pans with parchment paper and lightly brush with the vegetable oil. Set aside. (We just sprayed each pan with cooking spray and it worked great)

Bring the 10 cups of water and the baking soda to a rolling boil in an 8-quart saucepan or roasting pan.

In the meantime, turn the dough out onto a slightly oiled work surface and divide into 8 equal pieces. Roll out each piece of dough into a 24-inch rope. Make a U-shape with the rope, holding the ends of the rope, cross them over each other and press onto the bottom of the U in order to form the shape of a pretzel. Place onto the parchment-lined half sheet pan.

Place the pretzels into the boiling water, 1 by 1, for 30 seconds. Remove them from the water using a large flat spatula. Return to the half sheet pan, brush the top of each pretzel with the beaten egg yolk and water mixture and sprinkle with the pretzel salt. Bake until dark golden brown in color, approximately 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack for at least 5 minutes before serving.

We melted some butter and brushed some over the top and added some more kosher salt.
Enjoy with some cheese sauce, cream cheese, or dipping sauce of choice (I love mine with cream cheese, it is what I remember getting at the mall growing up on rare occasions)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Beef Enchiladas

1lb ground beef
1 package taco seasoning
1 cup water
2 cups rice, cooked
1 16 oz can refried beans
2 cups shredded cheese, divided
10, 8 inch, flour tortillas

Red Sauce-
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon onion, minced
½ teaspoon dried oregano
2 ½ teaspoons chili powder
½ teaspoon dried basil
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried parsley
¼ cup salsa
1 6 oz. can tomato sauce
1 ½ cups water 

 * My suggestion is to just buy canned red sauce.  This took a lot of time and wasn't that great...but the overall meal was YUMMY!

To make enchilada sauce- Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add the onion, chili powder, oregano, basil, ground black pepper, salt, cumin, parsley, tomato sauce and salsa. Mix well and then stir in the water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

In large skillet, brown ground beef over medium heat. Drain. Stir in taco seasoning and water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 5 minutes. Stir in the rice. Cook and stir until the liquid is evaporated. Spread 2 tablespoon refried beans, ¼ cup ground beef mixture, and 1 tablespoon of cheese down the center of each flour tortilla. Roll up and place seam side down in a greased 9x13 baking pan. Repeat until all tortillas are filled.  Top enchiladas with red sauce and with the remaining cheese.

Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until heated through and the cheese has melted.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Zucchini Meatloaf

So Zach and I have a TON of Zucchini so I have been trying to find recipes for it...We tried this tonight.  I only put the topping on half.  It was not as sweet as Zach thought it would be.  He said it tasted just like normal meat loaf.

2 eggs, slightly beaten
2 c. shredded zucchini (1 large or 2 small)
1/3 c. plain bread crumbs
1/3 c. chopped onion
1 t. salt
1/2 t. dried oregano leaves
1/4 t. pepper
1 1/2 lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef

2 T. packed brown sugar
1/4 c. ketchup
1 t. yellow mustard

1.  Preheat oven to 350°F. In large bowl, mix all meat loaf ingredients until well blended. Press mixture into ungreased 9 1/2-inch deep-dish glass pie plate. Bake 35 minutes.

2.  Meanwhile, in small bowl, mix brown sugar, ketchup, and mustard.  Remove meat loaf from oven; pour off drippings. Spread topping over meat. Return to oven; bake 10 to 15 minutes longer or until thoroughly cooked in center (at least 160°F in the middle). Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Muddy Buddies

I know everyone knows how to make these, but I made them with Laryssa and she had so much fun!

9cups Corn Chex®, Rice Chex®, Wheat Chex® or Chocolate Chex® cereal (or combination)
(I do not suggest the wheat chex!)
1cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2cup peanut butter
1/4cup butter or margarine
1teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2cups powdered sugar

  1. 1Into large bowl, measure cereal; set aside.
  2. 2In 1-quart microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate chips, peanut butter and butter uncovered on High 1 minute; stir. Microwave about 30 seconds longer or until mixture can be stirred smooth. Stir in vanilla. Pour mixture over cereal, stirring until evenly coated. Pour into 2-gallon resealable food-storage plastic bag.
  3. 3Add powdered sugar. Seal bag; shake until well coated. Spread on waxed paper to cool. Store in airtight container in refrigerator.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Cheesy Bread

I made this with our pizza tonight and everyone loved it!  

2-1/2 c. flour
1 t. salt
1 t. sugar
1 T. yeast
1 c. warm water
1 T. oil

1/4 c. prepared Italian salad dressing
1/2 t. sugar
1/8 t. salt
1/4 t. garlic powder
1/4 t. ground oregano
1/4 t. dried thyme
dash pepper
1-2 T. grated Parmesan cheese
1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese

1.  Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  In a bowl combine water and yeast.  When frothy add sugar, oil, and salt.  Add enough flour to form a soft dough. Turn onto a floured surface; knead for 1-2 minutes or until smooth and elastic.  Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place for 20 minutes.

2.  Punch the dough down; place on a greased 16″ pizza pan and pat into a 16″ circle. Combine salad dressing and seasonings, brush evenly over dough, all the way to the edges. Sprinkle with cheeses.

3.  For a fluffier cheese bread, at this point, allow the bread to rest for 15 minutes or so. If you’re in a hurry, just skip this rise. (The bread will rise while it bakes, too.)  Bake for 11 minutes or until golden brown. Slice. Serve warm.

Pork Tacos with Chili Verde

Another one of Zach's favorites!

2-3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 lb pork sirloin roast, rinse, trimmed of fat, & cut into 1/2" cubes
2 1/2 salt, divided
1/2 tsp black pepper, divided
1 lg onion
5-6 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 1/2 lb tomatillos, husked and quaretered
2 green peppers, chopped
1-2 jalapenos, seeded and membranes removed, if desired
1/2 bunch cilantro, coursely chopped
4 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 tsp cumin
2-3 tbsp sugar

1. In a large saucepan or stockpot, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add the pork cubes and season with 1 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper. Add onion and garlic.  Cook, stirring frequently, until everything is tender and fragrant.

2. While onions are sauteing, combine tomatillos, green peppers, jalapenos, and cilantro in your blender.  Process until smooth; you may have to do it in baches and/or add some chicken broth to make the sauce easy to blend.

3. Pour the tomatillos mixture over the pork and add chicken broth, salt, pepper, cumin and sugar.  Simmer for 30 minutes to 1 hour, depending on the consistency you want.  You can also turn the heat to high and boil the chile verde uncovered until the desired consistency is reached.  Just be sure to stir frequently to avoid scorching.

4.  Serve in flour tortillas with guacamole and pico de gallo.

**Slow cooker instructions:  combine sauteed pork, onions garlic, tomatillo mixture and chicken broth in slow cooker and cook on low all day until desired consistency!!

Brazilian Lemonade

Zachs FAVORITE drink!!  We seriously have a large supply of limes in the fridge at all times.
4 juicy limes (try and find ones with thin, smooth skins; they’re the juiciest and the thin skin cuts down on the chance of your drink being bitter)
1 c. sugar
6 c. cold water
6 Tbsp. sweetened condensed milk
Mix cold water and sugar very well and chill until ready to use. This step can be done ahead of time.
Wash limes thoroughly with soap (I just use hand-dishwashing soap or regular hand soap); you need the soap to get the wax and pesticides off of the limes because you’re using the WHOLE lime, baby. Cut the ends off the limes and then cut each lime into 8ths.
Place 1/2 of the limes in your blender.
Add 1/2 of the sugar water, place the lid on your blender, and pulse 5 times. Place a fine-mesh strainer over a pitcher (the one you’ll serve the lemonade in) and pour the blended mixture through the strainer and into the pitcher. Use a spoon to press the rest of the liquid into the pitcher. Dump the pulp and stuff in the strainer into the trash. Repeat with remaining limes and sugar water. Add sweetened condensed milk; DO NOT leave this step out unless you will die of a horrible sweetened condensed milk allergy because this is the secret ingredient! You may want to taste test it at this point; I used giant, thick-skinned limes tonight and didn’t test it and it came out a little bitter. If it’s bitter, just add some more sugar and maybe a little more milk.
Serve immediately over lots of ice. This does not keep well, so don’t make this in advance (although you can cut the limes, mix the sugar water, and measure the sweetened condensed milk in advance). Serves 4, although I can pretty much guarantee you that people will want more; I usually plan on 1 1/2 servings at LEAST per person.