Monday, December 24, 2012


Serves 6

12 potatoes  (Use a couple of different kinds such as small yellow potatoes, and reds, or if there are others available in your store-try another kind)

1/4 cup olive oil
1 yellow onion-chopped
1 bunch of green onions-chopped
2 medium tomatoes (remove skin)-chopped
1 bunch of cilantro-chopped
1 teaspoon of cumin
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of black pepper

3 Chicken breasts-(without skin or bone)

6 corn cobs-cut into 1/3's

1 jar of capers
2 avocados
Heavy Whipping Cream

Directions and Story-
Chop in very small pieces-both green and yellow onions. In a large fry pan heat oil and simmer onions in oil for 10 minutes. Add chopped tomatoes, spices, salt, and whole chicken breasts. Cook until chicken is done and turn off.

In a separate soup kettle ( I use the large cast iron kettle ) cook potatoes in enough water to cover them. The potatoes should be peeled and cut in 1/8ths.

When potatoes are soft add the chicken with the tomatoe mixture. cover and let cook until potatoes fall apart.

The last 10 minutes of cooking, add the corn cobs. they can be frozen.

Cooking the potatoes until they fall apart is what will make the soup thick. If it gets too thick, add water, but be sure to add additional salt if more water is added. Taste the soup, and determine if you want to add more salt, the amount listed in the recipe is the right amount for our family

Take the chicken out and shred it.

Cut avocados in small squares, and serve the avocados, capers, and chicken on the side.

Serve the soup with 1 portion of  the corn cob in each bowl. Each person can add chicken, avocados, capers and 4-5 spoons full of whipping cream to the top of the soup in the individual bowl. Serve with a hard roll, and fruit salad

Story-This was served when we visited Bogota Columbia during Christmas time. Since that time Doug made the soup at our home. This is Marta's recipe and as I understand was made at holiday time. Very good soup and relatively easy to make

Friday, December 21, 2012

No Bake Cookies

from the Murtaugh Community Cookbook
makes about 18 (depending on how much you leave in the pan to lick)

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup milk
1/3 cup baking cocoa
2 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup peanut butter
about 3 1/2 cups quick cooking oatmeal

Notes/Story: Lay out a few pieces of aluminum foil to drop the cookies onto. Melt butter in large sauce pan. Add milk, cocoa, and sugar. Boil for 1 minute and remove from heat (if you boil longer, they will be super crumbly which still tastes good but isn't as good for just snatching one as you happen to walk by later). Add remaining ingredients. Drop onto foil by tablespoons.

This is one of our favorite ways to get a quick chocolate fix in the winter. I think the all-natural, freshly ground peanut butter gives it a slightly moister texture and better peanutty taste, but JIF works fine, too. If you're into coconut, exchange a cup of that for a cup of the oatmeal.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Russian Tea

5 apple cinnamon teabags
3 cups boiling water
2 cups pineapple juice
16 oz. orange juice concentrate
16 oz. lemonade concentrate
9 cups water
1 1/2 cups sugar (can use half splenda)

Directions & Story:  Pour 3 cups boiling water over tea bags and steep for 5 minutes.  Remove tea bags.  Add remaining ingredients and simmer.  You can also add whole cloves and cinnamon sticks while simmering.

I got this recipe from the wife of Dale's commanding officer.  She had us over for dinner while the guys were deployed to Afghanistan and I think I drank the entire pot of this cider (I was pregnant so it's ok).  I then made it a few times throughout the holiday season.  It makes the house smell amazing and is a great addition to any holiday menu.  After simmering on the stove I put it in a crock pot to keep warm.

French Dip Sandwiches

1 (4 pound) boneless beef roast
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 beef bouillon cube
1 bay leaf
3 whole black peppercorns
1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon garlic powder
20 slices french bread

Directions & Story:  Place roast in a slow cooker.  In a medium bowl, combine soy sauce, bouillon, bay leaf, peppercorns, rosemary, thyme, and garlic powder.  Pour mixture over roast and add enough water to almost cover roast.  Cover, and cook on low heat for 10-12 hours or until meat is very tender.  Shred meat and use reserved broth for dipping.  Makes ten servings.

I made these a lot while teaching.  So nice to know a very tasty meal is waiting at home.  Every time I made this for guests they request the recipe which originally came from

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Creamy Tomato Pasta

1 lb ground hamburger
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 (16 ounce) can Italian-style diced tomatoes
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 cup cream
1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
14 ounces penne pasta
grated Parmesan for topping

Notes/Story: Cook the pasta in salted water al dente, according to package directions.
While pasta is cooking, brown the hamburger.
Add the onions and garlic to the hamburger and saute for a couple of minutes.
Pour in the entire can of diced tomatoes and the tomato sauce and heat through.
Pour in the cream and heat through. The longer you cook the sauce the thicker it will get so simmer it until it is the consistency you want.
Add the basil and let it simmer for a few minutes.
Finally, mix the hamburger sauce with the pasta and serve. Top each serving with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese. Serve with garlic bread and side salad.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Creamy Pumpkin Soup

1 (10.75 oz) can condensed cream of potato soup
1 1/4 cups chicken broth
1 (15 oz) can pumpkin puree
2 Tbsp butter
1 cup cream
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp sage
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Notes/Story: Whisk all ingredients together and simmer 15 min. Serve with crusty bread. I made this for Mom when she came down for a healing touch class. It was very tasty but very rich. Could only handle one bowl-full!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Homemade hot chocolate

1.5 cups heavy cream
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 cups bittersweet chocolate chips
6 cups milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

Notes/Story: Add all the ingredients to a crock-pot and let simmer on low for 3 hours. So tasty and creamy! (But also very rich!) It makes quite a I would either halve the recipe or make it when there are a lot of people around.
A couple days ago we were in a winter storm warning (first time this year!) and I was hoping for a snow day so I could make this yummy treat for my roommates and I. There ended up being no snow day (of course) but the weather was still very snowy, blowy, and cold so I decided to make this hot chocolate anyways! Coming home from class to this really was wonderful!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Creamy Enchiladas

8 eight inch tortillas
2 cups cooked, shredded chicken breast (I bought rotisserie chicken and shredded it)
1 medium onion. diced
2 cups low-fat shredded cheddar or colby cheese
1 cup (8 ounces) light sour cream
4 ounces Neufchatel cheese (low-fat cream cheese), cubed
1/3 cup canned green chiles (do not drain)
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 tbsp fresh or dried cilantro
1 tbsp cumin powder (I used a little less)
1 tsp red or cayenne pepper (I used a little less)
Butter flavor non-stick cooking spray 

Notes/Story: Spray 9x13 inch baking dish with cooking spray.
Mix together chicken, onion, and cheese. Fill tortillas with that mixture. Roll and place seam side down, side by side in single layer in baking dish.
In large saucepan heat broth, cilantro, cumin, and red/cayenne pepper until hot. Add sour cream, cream cheese, and canned green chiles. Heat until cream cheese is melted and everything is incorporated well, stirring frequently. (If sauce seems a little thin, you may thicken with a small amount of cornstarch whisked into sauce. Which I did.)
Pour sauce over enchiladas in pan. Bake at 350 degrees F for about 20-25 minutes. Serve and enjoy!
I found this recipe when I was searching for "Creamy Enchiladas." These are SO good. I ate them for 8 days in a row and didn't get sick of them.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Fudgy Brownie Cookies

1 package (18 to 21 oz. box) fudge brownie mix
1-¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cups packed brown sugar
2 whole eggs
½ cups butter, melted and cooled
2 Tablespoons water, or more as needed
1 cup dark chocolate chunks

Whisk together brownie mix, flour, and sugar. Using a heavy spoon, stir in the eggs one at a time, followed by butter and 2 tablespoons water. If the batter appears like there is too much flour, add 1 more tablespoon of water. Batter will be very thick. Fold in chocolate chunks. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a cookie sheet. Drop heaping tablespoons of dough on the cookie sheet. You want pretty thick cookies here to get the brownie feel, about 3 inches apart. Press down slightly. Don’t flatten completely. Bake for 8-10 minutes.
Remove from oven, allow to cool 2 minutes on cookie sheet. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.

I made these for Grandma when Mom and Will went to the farm. Very good and chewy!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Strawberry Salad

1 cup strawberry yogurt
1 package (3 oz) vanilla pudding
1 small can crushed pineapple
1 carton cool whip
1 pint fresh fruit (I used strawberries, but you could use anything)

Notes/Story:  Mix the first three ingredients. Add cool whip and berries and blend together.  This is super easy and super tasty. I think it's actually on the top of my list for favorite salads! Expect me to make it for you all when you come visit!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Fruit Salad

1 can (29 oz) peach slices {undrained}
1 can (20 oz) pineapple chunks {undrained}
1 small box instant vanilla pudding
1 lb strawberries
1 sliced banana
1/2 pint blueberries
1 bunch of red grapes
3 tablespoons sugar (optional)

Notes/Story:  In a large bowl combine peaches, pineapples, and vanilla pudding mix.  Stir until pudding is dissolved.  Stir in strawberries, banana, blueberries, grapes, and sugar.  Let chill.
Fruit tastes so yummy on the hot summer days...and this recipe is superb! also very easy!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Pioneer Woman's Chicken Pot Pie

Make the crust first and then the pot pie filling.
For the crust:
3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups vegetable shortening (I used butter)
1 egg
5 tablespoons cold water
1 tablespoon white vinegar

Notes:  Combine the flour and salt in a large bowl.  Add the shortening and stir it together.  Next lightly beat the egg with a fork and then add it to the mixture.  Add the cold water and vinegar.  Next stir the mixture until it's combined.  When ready, flatten half of it with a rolling pin and put it on the bottom of the pie pan.  The other half of the dough roll out and put on the top of pot pie mixture.  

For the filling:
3 celery stalks
3 medium carrots
1 onion
4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 cups cooked chicken
1 cup all purpose flour
2 cups chicken broth
1 chicken bouillon cube
1 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon salt
black pepper to taste

Notes:  Begin by finely dicing the celery stalks, carrots, and onion.   Next melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat.  Add the onion, celery, carrots, and peas. Saute for a couple of minutes.  Add the chicken and stir to combine.  Sprinkle the flour evenly over the mixture and then stir to combine.  Cook for a couple minutes, stirring gently.  Next pour in the chicken broth and bouillon cube.  Next pour in the cream and stir.  Allow the mixture to cook over low heat so it will gradually thicken.  Season with the salt and pepper.  Finally, pour the chicken mixture into the pie pan and finish by placing the crust on top of the mixture.  Press the crust gently into the sides of the dish and cut small slits in the top.  Bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes.  Cool for 10 minutes before serving. 

Caramel Oatmeal Bars

1 cup flour
1 cup oatmeal
3/4 cup butter, melted
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
32 caramel pieces, unwrapped
1/3 cup half and half
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Notes/Story:  Blend the flour, oatmeal, butter, brown sugar, baking soda, and salt. Pat firmly in a well greased 9 by 13 pan.  Next melt the caramels in the half and half.  (I had to use a beater to mix it all together.)  Pour the caramel mixture over the crumb mixture. Lastly, sprinkle with chocolate chips.  Bake for 20 to 25 minutes at 325 degrees F.
This was a new recipe I made for Elizabeth and Kristin when they came home for a week in June.  It ended up being a big hit! (They sure disappeared faster than the Trix-krispies I made!)

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Hamburger Pie

For the crust:
2 cups of flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup canola oil
2/3 cup milk

For the filling:
1 pound beef
1 can tomato soup
2 tablespoons water
1 clove garlic
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 cup grated cheddar cheese

Notes/Story: Heat oven to 375 and grease a glass pie plate.  Mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, oil, and milk until it forms a ball. Press the crust into the greased pie plate.  Set aside.  Next brown the beef in a large skillet and once it is cooked, add in the soup, water, minced garlic, salt, and pepper.  Bring the mixture to a simmer for a couple minutes or until thick.  Lastly, pour the hamburger mixture into the crust and sprinkle with the grated cheese.  Bake for 20 minutes or until the crust is browned and the cheese is melted.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Chocolate Turtles

1/2 cup butter - melted
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs well beaten
6 Tbsp cocoa or 1 square Bakers chocolate
1 cup flour
1 tsp vanilla

Notes/Story: Combine all of the above ingredients and mix well.  Heat waffle iron and drop a teaspoon of dough on each section of the iron.  Close cover and bake 50 to 60 seconds. Lift off with a fork. For the frosting, combine powdered sugar, butter, cocoa, and water until you get the right consistency.
Mom got this recipe in 1972 from grandma Evanson and said that grandma used to make them a lot. They are so delicious!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cookies

1 cup pumpkin
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
1 egg
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon milk
1 cup chocolate chips
1 teaspoon vanilla

Notes/Story: First, begin by dissolving baking powder in the milk and set aside. Then whisk pumpkin, sugar, oil, vanilla, and egg together.  In another bowl stir together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.  Next add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture. Lastly stir in the baking soda mixture and chocolate chips.  Bake at 375 for 12-15 minutes.  They are very soft and chewy!

Monday, April 30, 2012

Barbecued Pulled Pork Sandwiches

1 pork shoulder roast (about 2.5 lbs)
1 bottle (18oz) barbecue sauce
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp brown sugar
1/2 med onion, chopped
8 hamburger buns
1/2 cup chicken broth if needed

Notes/Story: Place roast in crock pot, cover, and cook on low 10-12 hrs or on high for 5-6 hrs. Remove roast from crock pot and discard cooking liquid. Shred pork with 2 forks. Return pork to crock pot. Add barbeque sauce, lemon juice, brown sugar and onion. Cover, cook on high 1 hr or on low for 2 hrs. Add chicken broth if pork is a little dry. Serve shredded pork on hamburger buns.

I was craving pulled pork and found this recipe in a slow cooker cookbook mom gave me for Christmas I think. Tasted great!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

2 eggs
1 cup sugar
8 oz canned pumpkin
3/4 cup oil
1 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chocolate chips

Directions:  Mix eggs and sugar. Add the pumpkin and oil.  Mix well.  Add the dry ingredients but add the flour last. Fold in the chocolate chips.  Bake at 375 for 15-17 minutes. 
Story:  On Monday Aaron moved a TV for his neighbor (Pat) from Pat's house into the garage. The next day she brought over two loaves of chocolate chip banana bread.  After eating a few slices, it made me really hungry for pumpkin chocolate chip bread or muffins! So on Thursday I went to the store, got the ingredients, and proceeded to make a batch of muffins. They are tasty and moist!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Chicken Rollatini with Spinach

8 thin chicken cutlets, 3 oz each
1/2 cup whole wheat Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese, divided
6 tablespoons egg whites or egg beaters
5 oz fresh spinach (finely chopped)
6 tbsp part skim ricotta cheese
6 oz part skim mozzarella
olive oil non-stick spray
1 cup of your favorite marinara sauce
salt and pepper to taste

Notes/Story: Wash and dry cutlets, season with salt and pepper. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly spray a baking dish with non-stick spray.

Combine breadcrumbs and 2 tbsp grated cheese in one bowl and 1/4 cup egg beaters or egg whites in another.

Shred or finely chop 1.5 oz of mozzarella cheese and combine with remaining grated cheese, spinach, 2 tbsp egg beaters, and ricotta cheese.

Lay chicken cutlets down on a working surface and spread 2 tbsp of spinach-cheese mixture on each cutlet. Loosely roll each one and keep seam side down.

Dip chicken in egg mixture, then in breadcrumbs and place seam side down in a baking dish (no toothpicks needed). Repeat with the remaining chicken. When finished, lightly spray with olive oil.

Bake 35 minutes. Remove from oven, top with sauce then cheese. Bake until cheese is melted and bubbling, about 5 more minutes. Serve with additional sauce on the side and grated cheese.

Made this recipe April 1st, 2012. Mom and I prepared it the night before and then had it for lunch after meeting. Tasted and smelled great!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Crustless Quiche-Low Carb

8 ounces of sausages (I used the pre-cooked because we had some on hand, and it was easy)
8 eggs
Fresh Spinach (About 2 or 3 cups or use as much as you would like)
1 Cup shredded Cheddar cheese - you can use Pepper jack if you like
1/2 Cup whipping cream or half and half

Serve with 1/4 cup Salsa

Directions and Story:  Preheat oven to 400 degrees, Spray 10 inch pie plate with cooking spray
Beat eggs and add crumbled sausage, chopped spinach, cheese, and cream

Bake for 40 minutes or until center is set. Let stand 5 minutes before cutting and serve with a fruit salad.

Story-We are on a low carbohydrate diet, so this recipe is easy and the total carbohydrates per serving is 9 grams. Everyone liked how it tasted, we could add other ingredients that would vary the taste, too. A successful Sunday evening meal.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Cowboy Cookies

Adapted from:

Cream the following indgredrents in a large stand mixer (I use my trusty Bosch )
1 1/2 Cup butter (room temperature)
1 1/2 Cup sugar (granulated)
1 1/2 Cup brown sugar
4 eggs
1 Tablespoon vanilla

Add and mix well
3 Cups all purpose flour
1 Tablespoon Baking powder
1 Tablespoon Baking soda
1 Tablespoon ground cinnammon
1 teaspoon salt

3 Cups chocolate chips
3 Cups oatmeal
2 Cups cocoanut
2 Cups chopped pecans

Bake in a 350 degree oven for 12 minutes. the cookies I make are about 2 inches in diameter when baked.

Story:Will and I are on a serious diet, I reluctantly agreed to NO baking for the first couple of weeks of the diet....One of my top 5 hobbies is baking, so it's been hard to start a sewing project to get me out of the kitchen..(Hurry guests come and visit so I can cook and bake again) I was looking for a recipe that would include indgredients my current customers (Will and Grandma) would like...and I found this 'Cowboy Cookie' recipe that makes a substantial amount of cookies and includes pecans, (Will) homemade (Grandma) and Chocolate (Me).......Plus this week of no baking resulted in Grandma getting store cookies for tea time. Yesterday she said  "I would have thought THEY would have homemade cookies one of these days"
So...I thought it was time again to bake some cookies that can go  into the freezer until Grandma's tea time.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Oreo Dessert

1 pkg of regular Oreos
1/2 c. of butter
1 lg box of instant chocolate pudding
2-8 oz cool whips
8 oz. of cream cheese, softened
1 c. powdered sugar

Notes/Story: Crush the whole package of cookies either with a food processor, or in a bag and a rolling pin. Save a 1/2 c. to sprinkle on top of dessert when it's done. Pour remaining crumbs in a 13x9 pan. Melt butter and pour into crumb mix. Stir it up good and press crumbs in bottom of pan to make a crust. Make chocolate pudding according to package directions and let it setup in the fridge. In a mixing bowl blend cream cheese until nice and smooth and then add powdered sugar, mix. Then fold in 1-8 oz thing of cool whip. Top oreo layer with cream cheese mix, then pudding, then your last 8 oz thing of cool whip, and then sprinkle remaining Oreo's on top. Cover and refridgerate until ready to serve.

I made this for our girls' weekend for Sunday after meeting. It was super!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Dorito Casserole

2 pounds ground beef- browned  (I usually used less, either 1 pound or 1 1/2 pound-whatever we had on hand)
1 medium onion
1 can cream of celery soup
1 can cream of onion (or cream of mushroom soup)
1 can enchilada sauce (mild)
1 bag dorito chips
Shredded cheese
Ripe (black) olives

Directions and Story: Line a 9 X 12 inch pan with 1/2 of a bag of largely crunched Dorito chips.
Brown hamburger with onion and salt and pepper to taste.  Add soups. Add enchilada sauce.
Pour over chips, sprinkle with cheese, olvies and the remainder of Dorito chips
Bake 350 degrees for 25 minutes

I made this quick easy casserole often during the years the kids were busy with activities in high school.
We usually had all of the ingredients on hand and everyone liked how it tasted.

Monster Cookies

1 cup butter
3 cups peanut butter
2 cups brown sugar
2 cups white sugar
6 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
1 Tbsp corn syrup
4 tsp baking soda
9 cups oatmeal
2 cups M&Ms
2 cups chocolate chips

Notes/Story: Mix all ingredients together. Bake at 350 for 6-8 min but depends on how monsterous you make them.

I think this was Kristin's recipe she made in high school a lot. Always a hit!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Raisin Oatmeal Cookies

Mix together in a large stand mixer
2 1/2 Cups brown sugar
1 1/2 Cups shortening  (I use 1/2 cup shortening and 1 cup butter)
3 eggs
Pinch of Salt

Add alternately and mix

1 1/2 Cup buttermilk and
2 teaspoons baking soda

2 1/2 Cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
3 Cups regular oatmeal

1 1/2 Cup raisins (Soak the raisins in boiling water
and drain before adding to indgredients)

Directions and Story:  Wash raisins and bring to a boil with water. Drain before
adding to the other ibgredients.  DO NOT ADD RAISIN JUICE.  Drop from teaspoon on
a greased baking sheet and bake one cookie for a test.
You most likely will need to add more flour.
Bake in a 350-375 degree oven (I use 375 degrees) until they are nicely browned,
About 12 minutes.

Story-Grandma Kay made these as one of her favorate cookies. The recipe came from the Ransom County Gazette in 1981 from a lady who lived and worked in McLoud ND. It makes a huge batch.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Low Sodium Vegetable Soup

Add the following to a medium size soup kettle and brown over medium heat
Olive oil
1 Onion
2 Stalks of celery
2 Carrots

6 Cups of cut vegetables (I used potatoes, broccoli, cauliflower)
4 Cups of liquid ( used water)
1 (15 oz) can low sodium dices tomatoes
1 Tablespoon herbs such as basil

Let simmer until vegetables are tender.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Sunday Dinner-Pork roast

Since we agree that the biggest meal of the day should be called the dinner, the noon meal on Sunday is our biggest Sunday meal-thus our Sunday dinner. Sunday supper is waffles or pancakes......

Roast Pork-
Rice and Gravy
Hot vegetable - Broccoli/Cauliflower
      sprinkled with cheese
Spinach/leaf lettuce salad with
      carrot and celery slices
Home made rolls
Fudge Ice cream dessert

Directions: Fresh pork roast, season with salt and pepper and add about 1/4 to 1/2 inch of water to the bottom of the pan, bake covered in a 325 degree oven from about 9:30 until 12:00 (2 and1/2 hours). There is usually very little fat, so we make a flour based gravy with the drippings in the pan. 

Story:  We are looking for a Sunday dinner that is easy and quick and the dinner preparation can either be done the day before, or early in the morning before leaving for meeting.
This meal is a good 'winter meal', it's almost always good, and fairly inexpensive to make.
We start with a Fresh pork loin sirloin end roast. This is about $2.29 a pound and easily feeds 4-6 people. We plan on left overs for stir fry or pork sandwiches the next day.
This Sunday we
served Fudge Ice cream dessert

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars

1 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Cookie Dough:
5 tablespoons butter, room temperature
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons white sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup flour
2/3 cup chocolate chips

Cheesecake filling:
10 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla

Directions: Preheat oven to 325.  Line an 8 inch square with foil and spray with cooking spray.  In a bowl, mix the melted butter and graham cracker crumbs until thoroughly combined.  Press the mixture into the bottom of the pan.  Bake for 6 minutes.  Proceed to leave the oven on while preparing the dough. 
In a mixing bowl beat the butter, brown sugar, white sugar, salt, and vanilla  until smooth. Mix in the chocolate chips and set aside.
In another mixer, cream together the cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Mix in the egg and vanilla.  Pour the cheesecake batter into the prepared crust.  Sprinkle the cookie dough onto the top of the cheesecake batter and then press it down lightly.  Bake for 30 minutes (or until the top feels dry and firm). Let the bars chill for a couple hours.
Story:  Another recipe that looked awesomely good on Pinterest!  The cookie dough is quite crumbly, not like usual cookie dough. These bars taste superb after being chilled for a couple hours. Next time, though, I don't think I'll make it with a crust.

French Bread - Quick Pizza

1 Loaf French bread
2 Cups spaghetti sauce or less (We like very little spaghetti sauce so I would put very little on bread)
1 Cup mozzarella cheese (grated)
1/4 cup parmesan cheese (or just sprinkle the amount you like on the top)
pepperoni slices

Directions- Slice bread lengthwise, layer sauce, cheeses and pepperoni. Broil in oven until mozarella is melted. (Broil on low - if you have this option- to ensure the bread is heated through when the cheese is bubbling) Cut into serving sizes.  Serve with fresh fruit

Story-I made this from the 'Once a Month Cooking' Cookbook (Wilson & Lagerborg, 1992) and it was given great reviews from my family. It is quick, usually we have the ingredients, and inexpensive to make.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Fruit Slush

4 cups granulated sugar
6 cups water
Bring the above ingredients to a boil and cool 
1 - 46 oz can pineapple juice
2 - 12 oz cans frozen orange juice
1 -12 oz can frozen lemonade
Put in a 5 quart pail and freeze, stir mixture as it starts to freeze every 2-3 hours until frozen.
Scoop out a couple of large spoonfuls of slush into a glass and add ginger ale.

Story: Dianne made this for a New Year's Eve party, Christmas 2011 I made this, but omitted the sugar and water mixture, thus it became a fruit mixture with the ginger ale, Everyone thought it was good this way, too. It didn't make as much, but  was more concentrated. Easy and quick to serve for a cold beverage which ever way you choose to make it.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Cookies

1 cup butter (softened)
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
8 oz cream cheese (softened)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 large egg
2 1/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups chocolate chips

Directions and Story:  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Cream butter and sugars with a mixer until creamy.  Add cream cheese and continue to mix until all the lumps are gone.  Add vanilla and egg and then mix again.  Slowly add the flour (a little at a time).  Proceed to add baking soda and salt.  Stir in chocolate chips.  Bake for 9 to 11 minutes.  (But I ended up baking them for around 15 minutes)
The story for this is that I had been Pinteresting all day, drooling over the good food I had found.  This was a recipe that sounded tasty and it wasn't too hard. Plus, I was feeling like chocolate.  When the cookies were done, there was a slight taste difference between regular chocolate chip cookies but, not too much. The dough sure was good though!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Years Menu 2012

Cornish Game Hens (buy one for everyone-today, we needed 6)
Overnight mashed potatoes (yummm.....)
Cooked corn-frozen from cob
Fresh vegetables (carrots, celery, broccoli, cauliflower)
Mandarin orange salad
Freshly baked biscuits

Cherry tarts with real whipped cream
(Tarts-crust for one pie rolled out, and cut into circles to fit individual tart pans) gently place dough in tart pan and use fork to put several small holes in dough to prevent dough from bubbling up when baking. Bake at 400 degrees for 7 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned.