Friday, May 12, 2017

Pasta Bolognese


Honestly, this is one of the best ways I like to cook pasta.  My husband nor I like marinara sauce...(I know all you marinara lovers are saying WHAT???)  True..we prefer a white sauce.  So, I came up with this wonderful Bolognese that is really fresh and I think you will love it.

Pasta Bolognese

1 lb. lean ground beef
2 small sweet yellow peppers, diced
1/4 green bell pepper, diced
1 heaping Tbsp. Basil Pesto
4 Tbsp. Tomato paste
3 green onions, diced
4 Tbsp. chopped red onion
1 tsp. garlic
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground pepper
water as needed

2 - 3 cups wide egg noodle pasta. 

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Brown ground beef with all of the ingredients except the pasta.  Boil the pasta in 2 quarts of water with 1 tsp. salt.  Bring to a boil and cook until al dente'.   Drain all of the water from the pasta.  Add to the ground beef mixture and gently stir together to combine.  If the mixture is too dry, add a couple Tbsp. of water. 

Serve topped with shredded mozzarella cheese and some garlic bread on the side.

Enjoy!




Friday, May 5, 2017

Best Ever Guacamole


In honor of Cinco de Mayo I made my Guacamole last night... It is always a hit.  Easy and tasty!  In fact, I won't eat anyone's guacamole except mine!

Best Ever Guacamole

5 to 6 ripe Avocados
1/4 cup diced red onion
4 Roma tomatoes, chopped
1 tsp. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. lime juice
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. tobacco sauce (optional)
1/2 tsp. ground pepper

Remove insides of Avocados and place in a food processor.  Add remaining ingredients.  Pulse just enough to coarse chop.  Chill for at least 2 hours and serve.  Serve with chips or Pita bread.

HINT:  Easy way to cut open an Avocado:  Using a sharp knife, cut long ways all the way around the Avocado.  Use your hands on each side of the cutting and twist.  If the Avocado is ripe enough, it should just twist apart then you can remove the pit with a spoon. 

Be sure when you remove the meat from the Avocado that you don't dig down into the dark green.  It will be bitter.

Enjoy!





Thursday, May 4, 2017

Shrimp & Crab Pasta Salad


Cold salads are wonderful for picnics and a quick lunch on a hot summer day.  With summer coming up, I thought I would share one of my favorites:

Shrimp & Crab Pasta Salad

2 cups small shell pasta, cooked and drained
1 stalk celery, finely diced
1/4 of a small red onion, finely diced (you can substitute any onion)
1 can of chopped crab meat (drained)  (can be omitted if you don't like crab)
1 can of tiny shrimp (drained)
1 tsp. dill
1/2 to 3/4 cup real mayonnaise
2 Tbsp. sour cream
1/8 cup evaporated milk (more or less)
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Pre-cook the pasta in salted water, drain and set aside to cool for about 10 minutes.  Dice the celery and red onion, very finely.  Open the cans of tiny shrimp and crab meat and drain.  Mix all of the ingredients into the pasta and stir well.  If it is too thick, add a little more evaporated milk until it is a creamy consistency.

Serve with crackers.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Egg Drop Soup with Crispy Wonton Noodles



 
 
Egg Drop soup is one of my very favorites.  It is so simple to make and I always make myself some crispy won-ton noodles to go along. 

Egg Drop Soup

2 15.5 oz. cans of Chicken Broth
1 tsp. soy sauce
1/4 tsp. ginger paste
1/4 tsp. basil pesto
1 tsp. pepper

Bring all ingredients to a boil.  How simple is that!

Crispy Wonton Noodles
Oil for frying
Garlic Sea Salt (or regular sea salt)

Buy a package of premade Wontons and pull out enough to make a good many noodles.  Slice them about 1/4" thick with a knife.  Using your fingers, toss them over and over again until all of the layers are separated.  Drop noodles a few at a time into hot oil.  Test 1 noodle first to make sure it is hot enough.  They take just a few seconds to cook.  Toss them once and then remove to paper towels.  I like to sprinkle mine with Garlic Sea Salt.

Serve the soup and drop some of the Crispy Wontons into the soup.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

BBQ Cocktail Weenies


These are great little appetizers that you can just make in a crockpot and leave.  Your guests can help themselves.

BBQ Cocktail Weenies

2 or 3 pkgs. Beef or regular Smokie Links (I use Echrich)
1 cup. catsup
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground pepper
2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup water

Place all ingredients in a crockpot and heat on high until they are boiling.  Cook for 30 minutes.  Reduce heat to low and allow to heat until your guests arrive!

These will be a big hit!

Monday, April 10, 2017

Ground Beef Patty Melt


Sometimes a good ole hamburger is just what you want.  This patty melt, kicks the hamburger up a knotch!  You'll love it!

Ground Beef Patty Melt

1 lb. lean ground beef
1 whole small onion, sliced
4 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp. ground pepper
1 Tbsp. salt
8 slices Texas Toast
4 Tbsp. real butter
4 Tbsp. real mayonnaise
8 slices Provolone cheese
4 tsp. Basil Pesto
8 slices of cooked bacon.

Shape ground beef into patties.  Salt and pepper the patties and place in a pan to fry.  Add 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce to the top of each patty.  Flip and cook to desired consistency.  Add sliced onions when burgers are almost done.  Place onto a paper towel to drain grease.

Use a flat griddle or pan to build the sandwiches.  Spread both sides of each slice of bread with butter.  Place onto the griddle.  Lightly toast one side and then flip.  Spread real mayonnaise on 4 pieces of bread then top with 1 slice of the cheese.   Top with the bacon and then the burger onto the slices with the mayonnaise.  Ladle some of the grilled onions on top of the burger and then top with another slice of cheese and the other piece of bread.  Flip again to make sure both sides are done.

Cut in half and serve.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Cheesy Potato & Ground Beef Casserole


Don't you love cooking with cast iron?  I often use my cast ironed skillet to bake a one-pot meal.  This is hearty and so good.  It combines my cheesy potatoes with some ground beef to make a complete meal.

Cheesy Potato & Ground Beef Casserole

6 medium potatoes, peeled and sliced
1/2 lb. lean ground beef
1/4 small white onion, finely diced
1 Tbsp. basil
1 Tbsp. real butter
3" block of Velveeta cheese
1/4 c. evaporated milk (more or less)
1 Tbsp. salt
1 Tbsp. ground pepper

Melt 1 Tbsp. butter in cast ironed skillet (or baking dish).  Peel and slice potatoes.  Layer 2 potatoes on the bottom of the pan, in the melted butter.  In a skillet, brown the ground beef, onion, salt, pepper and basil.  Drain completely and put on top of the 1st layer of potatoes.  Layer with the rest of the potatoes.  In a small sauce pan, mix the cheese and the evaporated milk.  Heat until it is melted and pourable. Pour all of the cheese mixture over the top (evenly). 

Bake at 375 degrees for approximately 40 minutes.  Top will become brown and bubbly.  Test a potato to make sure they are done.

Serve and Enjoy!

Monday, April 3, 2017

Easy Apple Roll-Ups


These are so great and kids love them because they are easy to handle.  Who would think you make these with regular loaf bread!

Easy Apple Roll-Ups


6 to 8 slices of white bread (fresh)
1 can of apple pie filling
1 tsp. melted butter
1 cup powdered sugar
2 to 4 Tbsp. water
Cooking Spray


Set out slices of bread and cut off crusts.  Using a rolling pin, roll out the bread until it is flat.  Brush with melted butter.  Place about 2 Tbsp. apple pie filling on top of bread and butter and roll up.  Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray and place the rolled up bread with the end part down so that it doesn't come unrolled during baking.  Bake at 350 degrees until browned (approximately 12 to 15 minutes). 


Meanwhile, beat together powdered sugar and enough water to make it thin enough to drizzle.  Drizzle over the top of the apple roll-ups as soon as they come out of the oven. 

Serve and Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Chicken & Potato Skillet


When I made this, my husband thought Hmmmm...but it was good...really good.  Try this one, it's easy and delicious!

Chicken & Potato Skillet

4 medium potatoes, peeled and diced small
3 baby carrots, finely diced
2 stalks of celery, finely diced
3 green onions, finely diced
2 Tbsp. salt
2 Tbsp. ground pepper
1 large boneless chicken breast
2 Tbsp. real butter
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil

I use my cast-ironed skillet to make this, but you can use any good skillet that won't stick:

Peel and dice potatoes and chop vegetables.  Add oil to the skillet and then add potatoes and vegetables.  Saute' until potatoes and veggies are nearly done.  Remove from skillet and set aside.
Dice the chicken into small pieces.  Add the butter to the skillet and the chicken.  Salt and Pepper.  Saute' until chicken is done.  Readd the vegetables into the skillet and saute' for another few minutes until all is combined.

Serve and Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Fresh Corn


Whether you freeze your corn or you buy your corn, how you season makes it or breaks it.  I'm going to give you my freezing corn recipe, but also tell you how to season it when you cook it for the best corn ever!

Fresh Corn

12 to 14 ears of corn
2 Tbsp. sea salt (per bag)
1 cup water (per bag)
1 tsp. sugar

Boil corn for 5 to 8 minutes.  Remove and immediately place in ice water for 5 minutes.  Pull the corn out of the water and cut it off the cob.  To freeze, add corn in a quart sized freezer bag - 3/4 way full. Add 2 Tbsp. sea salt, 1 tsp. sugar and 1 cup of water to each bag.  Press out the air and seal.  Freeze immediately.

2 Tbsp. real butter
2 tsp. ground pepper
more salt if needed

Now to cook the corn.  Remove from the freezer and cut away the bag.  Place corn in a deep pot and add 2 Tbsp. real butter, and more salt if needed to taste.  Slowly bring to a boil over medium heat, until all of the corn has thawed and is boiling.  Boil for about 8 more minutes and serve.

Enjoy!

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Sliders


Who doesn't love a little slider?  Kids do, that's for sure.  These are so easy and your entire family will love them.

Sliders

1 pkg. Hawaiian small rolls
1 lb. lean ground beef or ground chuck
6 or so slices of your favorite cheese
1 small white onion, finely chopped
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire
1 tsp. ground pepper
1 tsp. salt

Mix ground beef, Worcestershire, pepper and salt.  Shape into small square patties with your hands and cook over medium heat until they are desired consistency.  During the last 6 or 8 minutes of cooking, toss the onions into the pan and continue to cook until they are translucent. Leave burgers in the skillet and place 1/2 slice of cheese on top of each burger when it is done.  Add some of the onions on top of the cheese.  Immediately top with the bun top to allow it to soften.  Remove entire burger onto the bottom bun on a plate.  

Serve and Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Easy Apple Turnovers


Last night I wanted something sweet.  Hmmm, what to make?  Well, I had a can of apple pie filling..why not!

Easy Apple Turnovers

1 can Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
1/2 can apple pie filling
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 - 3 Tbsp. water
Cooking Spray

Spray a cookie sheet or baking pan with cooking spray.  Open the can of crescent rolls and separate them.  Using your fingers, press each triangle onto the baking pan so they are spread out somewhat.  Add about 2 Tbsp. of apple pie filling to 1/2 of the crescent rolls and top with the other crescent rolls.  Pinch the edges together using a fork so that they are enclosed completely, all the way around.

Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 12 to 15 minutes, or until golden brown.  Remove from oven and top with glaze.

Glaze:

1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 to 3 Tbsp. water (more or less)

Mix until slightly thin.  Pour over warm turnovers.

Enjoy!  PS:  you can use any type of pie filling to make these...

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Mexican Twice Baked Casserole



This is another one of those..hmmm I wonder what this would taste like...recipes.  Well, it was good!  It was really good!  Give this one a try!

Mexican Twice Baked Casserole

6 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
1/4 stick real butter
1/4 cup evaporated milk (more or less)
1 1/2 lbs. lean ground beef
1/2 packet Taco Seasoning
6 packets of Taco Bell Mild Sauce (or 6 Tbsp. of your favorite sauce)
1/4 small white onion, rough chopped
2 green onions, chopped
1 Tbsp. salt
1 Tbsp. ground pepper
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 tsp. Basil
1/2 tsp. Oregano

Brown ground beef and white onion.  Drain.  Add back in skillet and add the taco seasoning, mild sauce, salt and pepper.  Cook for another couple of minutes to combine and remove from heat.   

Peel, and cut potatoes into chunks.  Cover with water and boil until done.  Drain water and mash potatoes with 1/4 stick real butter, 1/4 cup evaporated milk, salt and pepper to taste.    Mix the ground beef mixture into the potatoes and stir to combine.

Spray a 9x9 baking dish with cooking spray.   Scoop the potato/ground beef mixture into the baking dish and top with 2 cups mozzarella cheese.  Bake for 20 minutes on 350 degrees, or until cheese on top starts to brown and is bubbly.

Serve and Enjoy!


Thursday, February 23, 2017

Cool Ranch Fried Chicken


Wow!  Tried this last night and it was fantastic....  I used Cool Ranch Doritos to make this fabulous fried chicken.

Cool Ranch Fried Chicken

4 to 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (pounded flat and cut in 1/2)
1 bag Cool Ranch Doritos, in food processor  (about 4 cups when processed)
2 cups buttermilk (or evaporated milk)
1 egg
2 cups all purpose flour
1 Tbsp. ground pepper
1 Tbsp. salt
Oil for frying (Canola)

Crush all of the Doritos in a food processor until crumbly. 

Bowl 1:  Flour, salt and pepper

Bowl 2:  Beat together buttermilk and 1 egg

Bowl 3:  Cool Ranch Doritos (crumbles)

Cut chicken breasts in 1/2 and place in a plastic bag.  Remove air from bag and seal.  Using a mallet or back of a cup, slightly pound out the chicken breasts to flatten them a bit.  Dip into the flour to coat both sides.  Immediately dip into the buttermilk/egg mixture and then into the Doritos, pressing down to coat both sides well.

Place oil into an electric skillet (300 degrees) or deep skillet on medium heat on the stove.  Make sure grease is hot by dropping a little flour into it.  If it immediately sizzles, it is hot.  Place coated chicken breast halves into the oil and fry until brown and crispy on both sides, about 4 minutes per side.  Remove and drain on a paper towel.  You can add some additional salt while chicken is hot if you like it a little saltier.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Taco Pie


This was one awesome meal!  I saw a recipe on Facebook the other day for Taco Lasagna.  Of course, I had to make it MY WAY!  Easy and good!

Taco Pie

1 1/2 lb ground beef
1- 2" block of Velveeta cheese
1 can petite diced tomatoes (use Rotel if you like it spicier)
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1/2 small onion, finely chopped
8 to 10 10" flour tortillas
1 Tbsp. salt
1 Tbsp. pepper
1/2 pkg. Taco Seasoning mix.
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (or mozzarella)
Sour Cream for garnish

Saute' ground beef, salt, pepper, taco seasoning mix and onion until cooked through.  Drain completely when done.  Open the can of petite diced tomatoes and drain off the juices.  In a sauce pan, combine cheese and evaporated milk.  Stir until combined.  Combine the ground beef, tomatoes and cheese sauce in one pan and mix well.

Spray a large casserole dish with cooking spray.  Add tortillas to the bottom of the pan, cutting them with scissors as necessary to cover the bottom.  Add a thin layer of the ground beef mixture.  Add another layer of tortillas / sauce, etc. until you have used all of the sauce.  Top with shredded cheese.

Bake at 375 degrees for approximately 20 minutes.  Remove, cut and serve with a dollop of Sour Cream.

Enjoy!


Monday, February 20, 2017

Salted Caramel Donut Holes


The grandkids were over this weekend.  Kaitlyn always likes to help me cook, so on Saturday morning I was making donut holes, bacon and eggs.  She had a great idea to make Salted Caramel Donut Holes and they were fabulous.

Salted Caramel Donut Holes

1 can Grands biscuits
Oil for frying (peanut oil or canola)

Cut the biscuits into about 6 even pieces.  Drop into hot oil (about 1 quart) in a deep stock pan over medium heat.  Turn so they brown on both sides.  Should only take 1 or 2 minutes to get them done.  Remove and drain on a paper towel.  Immediately glaze and sprinkle with  coarse Sea Salt.

Glaze:
1 heaping Tbsp. Caramel Ice Cream Topping
2 1/2 cups Powdered sugar
1 to 2 Tbsp. of water as needed
Coarse Sea Salt

Mix Caramel into the powdered sugar and add enough water to make it thin enough to drizzle.  Drizzle over hot donuts and immediately sprinkle with the Sea Salt.

Enjoy!

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Iron Skillet Ground Beef Casserole


I love my iron skillet...I especially love when I can make something as wonderful as this casserole.  If you don't have an iron skillet, I encourage you to buy one!

Iron Skillet Ground Beef Casserole

1 lb. lean ground beef
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 can Evaporated milk (about 7 oz.)
1 Tbsp. Basil
1 Tbsp. ground pepper
1 Tbsp. salt
2 cups mozzarella cheese
1 Tbsp. butter
2 cups cooked Kluski Noodles (homemade style)
2 quarts of water + 1 tsp. salt
1/2 white onion, finely diced

slurry:  1/4 cup water + 2 heaping Tbsp. cornstarch

In a separate skillet, brown the ground beef, onion, basil, pepper and salt.  In separate pan, boil the noodles in 2 Quarts of water + 1 tsp. salt until they are done.  Drain noodles and drain ground beef mixture separately.

Stir 1 Tbsp. butter into the noodles until it melts.  Add evaporated milk and ground beef.  Stir well to combine.  Add 1/2 cup of the mozzarella cheese and stir.  Spray the cast ironed skillet with cooking spray (or lightly butter).  Pour the mixture into the skillet.  Top with the remainder of the mozzarella cheese.

Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 20 minutes, or until the cheese is bubbly and starting to brown on top.  Serve and Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Easy Tomato Soup


So, the other day we had grilled cheese made out of crescent rolls.   Well, this is the tomato soup that went along with those grilled cheese sandwiches....

Easy Tomato Soup

1 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
1/2 small white onion, finely chopped
1 Tbsp. Basil
1 Tbsp. Salt
1 Tbsp. Ground Pepper
1/4 cup Evaporated milk
1 Tbsp. real butter
* If you like your soup spicy and chunky, add 1 15 oz can of Rotel tomatoes.

In a deep stock pot, melt butter and add the diced onions.  Saute' until onions are translucent.  Add 1 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes and all of the seasonings (add can of Rotel tomatoes if desired).  Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to medium.  Heat for about 15 minutes.  Add 1/4 cup of evaporated milk and bring back up to hot.

Serve and Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Crescent Roll Grilled Cheese


So, the other day, I fixed some tomato soup and wanted some grilled cheese.  Well, we aren't big bread eaters and I was completely out of bread!  Oh, no what to do?  Well, I had a can of Crescent Rolls, so I did this:

Crescent Roll Grilled Cheese

1 roll Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
3 to 4 slices of cheese
Butter

Heat griddle or flat skillet and melt some butter in the pan (about 1 Tbsp).  Open the Crescent Rolls and separate the triangles.  Place 2 triangles in the butter on the hot pan.  Fry on both sides until crispy and browned.  Place the cheese on one of the triangles (cutting to make it fit) and top with the other triangle.  Grill another couple of minutes, just to melt the cheese.  Continue with the rest of the Crescent Roll triangles.   Serve

These are Amazing!  I may never go back to bread.

Enjoy

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Stuffed Crust Cheeseburger Pizza


This is one big-ole pizza!   I had never attempted a stuffed-crust pizza before and this one turned out fabulous!

Stuffed Crust Cheeseburger Pizza

1 lb. lean ground beef
1 2" block of Velveeta cheese
1 pizza crust (the roll-out kind like a biscuit)
3 Tbsp. evaporated milk
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 Tbsp. Italian Seasonings
1 tsp. taco seasoning
1 tsp. sea salt
melted butter
1 can petite tomatoes completely drained of juices
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
6 to 8 cheese straws (or sliced long-thick chunks of mozzarella)
1/2 diced onion

Brown ground beef with onion and salt.  Drain completely and add taco seasoning.  Put back in pan and add the Velveeta cheese (cut in chunks) and 3 Tbsp. evaporated milk.  Stir constantly until cheese is completely melted.  Cool for 15 minutes.

Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray and roll out the crust.  Be sure to roll it out past the edges of the baking sheet so you can loop it over.  Place the straws or long slices of mozzarella all around the edges and pull the edge of the dough up and over and pinch the edges together.  Brush entire crust edge with melted butter.

Once you have drained the tomatoes, add the garlic and stir.  Drop the tomatoes evenly over the bottom of the crust (inside the cheesy edges).  Add cheeseburger mixture and top with Italian Seasonings and the entire 2 cups of mozzarella cheese. 

Always be sure not to put any toppings on the outside crust. 

Bake at 425 degrees for about 15 minutes.  When outside crust is browned and cheese is bubbly, it is done.

Enjoy!






Monday, February 6, 2017

Sausage Pancake Poppers


I made these little sausage pancake poppers for the grandkids last weekend.  They loved them!  And they couldn't even tell that I used Turkey Sausage links.  Were they a hit?  Well, let's just say there weren't any left!

Sausage Pancake Poppers

2 cups pancake mix (instant kind)
1/4 cup water (more or less)
1/4 tsp cinnamon
6 sausage links cut in 1/2
Oil for frying
Syrup

Mix 2 cups of pancake mix,1/4 tsp. cinnamon and enough water to mix it, but it should be a little thicker than your normal pancake mix.  Bet until well combined.  Heat oil until it is hot.  It should be deep enough so that the poppers don't stick to the bottom and will float to the top.

Cut the sausage links in half and dip them completely in the pancake mix.  Drop into the hot oil.  Turn so that both sides get done and when they are golden brown, remove onto paper towels to drain.

Serve with Syrup.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Baked Chicken



Well this picture didn't take very well, but let me assure you this is one HOT baked chicken!  This recipe is sure to please.

Baked Chicken

1 whole chicken (remove heart/etc)
1/2 stick real butter at room temperature
Seasonings
     1 Tbsp. sea salt
     1 Tbsp. ground pepper
     1 tsp. Rosemary
     1 tsp. garlic powder
     1 tsp. Basil
     1/2 tsp. lemon pepper seasoning

Place chicken on a deep roasting pan.  *I use my cast-ironed skillet*
In a small bowl, mix all of the seasonings and dump them into the butter.  Mix well with a spoon. Using your hands, rub the entire chicken with the butter and put what's left over inside the chicken. 

Bake in a 325 degree oven for 1 hour.  Every 15 minutes turn the chicken so that it is on a different side, ending with the breast up.  Turn up the heat to 400 the last 10 minutes of baking.

Be sure to check the chicken to make sure it is done.  Place a knife between the leg and thigh.  If it is not pink, the chicken is done.  Let rest for about 15 minutes before slicing so that it stays juicy.  This is key!

Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Lemon Almond Chicken Salad with Avocado


So, once again I am trying different ways to get veggies into my diet.  This, so far, is one of my favorites.  I love to make homemade chicken salad and adding Avocado just made it fabulous!

Lemon Almond Chicken Salad with Avocado

3 chicken breasts
1 Avocado
2 Tbsp. onion, finely diced
1 stalk celery, finely diced
1 tsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. dill
1/8 cup sliced almonds
2 Tbsp. real butter
1/2 c. real mayonnaise (can use light) - more or less
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (optional)

Cut chicken breasts into small pieces and saute' in skillet with 2 Tbsp. real butter.  Add salt and pepper.  Cook until chicken is done.  Remove, drain any juices and cool completely.  While chicken is cooling, cut the meat out of the Avocado and mash it with a fork.  

Once chicken is cook, add to a large bowl.  Mix in Avocado, lemon juice, onions, celery, dill and almonds.  Stir to combine.  Start adding mayonnaise a couple Tbsp. at a time. You want it creamy and not stiff.  Mix in the cheese if desired.  After mixing in the cheese, you may need to add a little more mayonnaise.  Stir in the almonds.  Chill and serve!

Enjoy!




Monday, January 30, 2017

Chocolate Toffee & Almond Bark


So, last weekend I was craving some chocolate and there was nothing in the house except a bag of Nestle Tollhouse Morsels...so....  this was fabulous by the way!

Chocolate Toffee & Almond Bark

1 bag Nestle Tollhouse Morsels (Chocolate or White Chocolate)
1/2 cup of almonds, sliced
1/4 cup of Heath Toffee Bits

Mix all 3 together and heat in the microwave until it is easily stirred.  Remove and immediately pour out onto parchment paper on a cookie sheet and spread out.

Allow to completely cool (or put in refrigerator).  Break into pieces.  Soooo good!

Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Sausage and Rice Dinner


Don't you just love one-pot meals?  Well this one is an easy one that I'm sure you will love.

Sausage and Rice Dinner

1 box Jambalaya Rice (Rice-a-Roni or something like that)
1 stalk celery
1/2 onion, diced
Smoked Sausage
3 baby carrots (more or less)
2 Tbsp. butter
water

Dice carrots, onion and celery and saute' in butter in a large skillet until tender.  Add box of rice and the seasoning packet and water (according to packet).  Throughout the cooking process you will need to add more water.  Simmer the rice mixture in the covered pan for about 20 minutes.  Check it now and then because you may need to add more water.  Once the rice is tender, add the sausage and cook for another 10 minutes or so.  Still be sure to keep an eye on the water.  You don't want the liquid to cook down until the last few minutes of cooking.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Cheesy Potato and Ground Beef Casserole



This casserole is so easy and such a hearty meal.  I make my cheesy potatoes often, but this time I kicked it up a notch by adding some lean ground beef!  Yummy

Cheesy Potato and Ground Beef Casserole

6 to 8 medium potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
1 lb. lean ground beef
1/2 medium onion, diced
3" block of Velveeta cheese
1 cup shredded cheese
1 Tbsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. oregano
1/4 cup evaporated milk

Peel and thinly slice potatoes.  Spray the bottom of a baking pan with cooking spray.  Layer the potatoes in the pan.

In a skillet, brown the ground beef with the diced onion, salt, pepper and oregano.  Drain and add to top of the potatoes.

Melt Velveeta cheese in a pan with the evaporated milk.  If it is too thick, you can add a little more milk. It should be pouring consistency, but not too thin.  Once cheese has melted, pour over top of the potatoes/ground beef.  

Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 45 minutes to an hour.  Top with an additional cup of shredded cheese during the last 15 minutes of baking.  Potatoes should be fork tender and cheese should be bubbly on top.

Enjoy!

Friday, January 20, 2017

Taco Wrap



I love wraps.  Mostly I eat chicken salad wraps, but last night I decided to try something a little different.  I started out making ground beef for some nachos, but then decided to change it up a little bit.  This is the result

Taco Wrap

1 lb lean ground beef
1/2 pkg. taco seasoning
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
2 Tbsp. salsa
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded lettuce
Ranch Dressing 
2 green onions, chopped
4 to 6 12" flour tortillas
Crispy Won Ton noodles (see recipe from 1-16-2017)

Brown ground beef with taco seasoning, salsa, salt and pepper.  Drain well.  Add green onions and mix together.  Place about 1/2 cup of the meat mixture on a flour tortilla.  Pull it to the end and add green onions, shredded lettuce and drizzle with ranch dressing.  Begin to roll the tortilla up, tucking in the sides as you go.  Cut in 1/2 with a knife and serve with extra Ranch Dressing.

Enjoy!

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Amazing Fruit Salad


My husband loves fruit salad.  Me, not so much...but this one is pretty awesome. 

Amazing Fruit Salad

1 15.5 oz. can of peaches in their natural juices
1 pomegranate
1 apple
1 banana
1 orange

Place the peaches into a large bowl, juice and all.  Peel and dice the apple into small chunks.  Add to the peaches.  Peel and slice 1 banana into thin slices and add.  Peel and remove as much as the rind as you can from an orange.  Cut into small chunks and add to the bowl.  Cut the pomegranate in half and using a spoon, remove all of the seeds and add it to the mixture.  Gently stir to combine all ingredients.

You can serve this immediately or leave in the fridge for a couple of hours to chill. 

Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Baby Red Potatoes with Dill Ranch Dressing


I love making my own dressing.  These baby red potatoes are the perfect place to drizzle some of this yummy dressing on top.  It really kicks the potatoes up a notch.  It is fantastic on salads too!

Baby Red Potatoes with Dill Ranch Dressing

Potatoes:

6 to 8 baby red potatoes, cut into quarters
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. real butter
1 Tbsp. sea salt
1 tsp. pepper

Place olive oil and butter into a skillet.  Once the butter melts, add the baby red potatoes, peels on, that have been cut into quarters.  Sprinkle sea salt and pepper on top.  Over low/medium heat, fry the potatoes, gently tossing them now and then.  Once they are fork tender, remove from the pan and drizzle with Dill Ranch Dressing

Dill Ranch Dressing:

1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 cup real mayonnaise
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
A pinch of salt
1 1/2 tsp. Dill

Mix well.  Is best if you can chill it for about an hour before you use it.  Will keep in the fridge 4 to 5 days if covered.

Enjoy!



Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Sugar-Free Banana, Pecan & Date Bread


I love banana and zucchini breads, but they are high in calories.  I came up with this recipe as a way to reduce the sugar, yet have the breads I love.  This is fantastic!

Sugar-Free Banana, Pecan  & Date Bread

3 eggs
2 cups Truvia Sugar Substitute
1 cup canola oil
1 tsp. vanilla
3 bananas
2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 cup chopped pecans
6 dates, chopped

Beat eggs.  Add oil, Truvia, vanilla and salt.  Mix well.  In separate bowl, mix flour, baking soda & baking powder.  Slowly add to the wet mixture.  When all is combined, stir in the pecans and dates.  Mix well and pour into muffin tins or mini baking loaf pan that have been sprayed with cooking spray.  If you choose, you can grease and flour the pans instead.

Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 25 minutes, or until the tops bounce back. 

This is so wonderful and so much better for you than adding sugar!  Enjoy



Monday, January 16, 2017

Crispy Won Ton Noodles


I love adding these crispy Won Ton Noodles to any of my soups.  Especially when I make Egg Drop Soup.  This recipe is only for the noodles.

Crispy Won Ton Noodles

1 pkg. Won Tons
2 quarts canola oil
3 Tbsp. sea salt

I use about 1/3 of the package of Won Tons.  Pull them apart and using a pizza cutter or small knife, cut them into thin strips...about 1/4 of an inch.  Using your fingers toss them until they come part into individual noodles.

Bring 2 quarts of canola oil up to hot.  Test 1 noodle to make sure the oil is hot enough.  Fry them in batches.  Scoop them out onto a paper towel, and as soon as they are done, sprinkle them with Sea Salt.

Serve!

Friday, January 13, 2017

Beef Cubes over Mashed Potatoes



Talk about your hearty meal!  This is a favorite!  I'll even add some tips on making creamy and not lumpy mashed taters!  Enjoy!

Beef Cubes

1 round steak
2 Tbsp. real butter
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
4 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 can beef broth
Water


Slurry:  1/4 cup water + 2 heaping Tbsp. cornstarch

Cut round steak into small cubes.  In a deep pot or skillet, melt butter and saute' steak pieces until browned.  Add soy sauce, Worcestershire and beef broth.  Simmer over medium heat for approximately 1 hour.  As the meat starts to cook down and the beef broth dissipates, add water 1 cup at a time.  During the last 10 minutes of cooking, when the beef is really tender, make sure you have at least 2 cups of broth on the meat.  Bring to a boil and add the slurry above, stirring constantly until it thickens.  Drizzle the slurry in a little at a time, because you may not need it all.

Creamy Mashed Potatoes

6 medium potatoes, peeled
2 quarts water + 1 tsp. salt
1/4 stick real butter
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1 tsp. ground pepper
1 Tbsp. sea salt

Peel and cut potatoes into small chunks.  Boil in salted water until the potatoes are fork tender.  Make sure they are tender because if you try to mash them before they are all the way done, you will get lumpy mashed potatoes.  Drain water and put back into the pan.  Add butter to the pan so that it starts to melt and dump the potatoes back in.  Add salt and pepper and begin to beat with a hand mixer, while slowly adding the evaporated milk.  It should take 1/4 cup more or less.  Most people get lumpy or thick mashed potatoes because they don't add enough milk, so make sure they are creamy and not thick.

Place mashed potatoes on a plate and top with the beef cubes and some gravy!

Enjoy!

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Cheesy Orzo



Many people think Orzo is rice.  Orzo is, in fact, pasta.  Little tiny morsels of pasta.  I love Orzo.  It is a great filler for soups and can be a stand-alone side dish.  This easy Cheesy Orzo is one of my favorite ways to cook it.

Cheesy Orzo

1 cup Orzo pasta
1" piece of Velveeta Cheese, cut into chunks
1 Tbsp. sea salt
1 tsp. ground pepper
1/2 can evaporated milk (more or less)
2 Tbsp. real butter
2 quarts of water

Bring 2 quarts of water to a boil and add the Orzo.  Boil for about 10 to 12 minutes, or until Orzo is tender.  I generally spoon out a couple of pieces, cool it and taste it to make sure it is tender.  Drain all the water off of the Orzo.  Reduce heat and add butter, chunks of Velveeta cheese, evaporated milk, salt and pepper into the Orzo.  Stir well until all cheese is melted and it is creamy.   

Pasta sets up thicker as it cools, so be sure to add enough evaporated milk so it is creamy and not sticky.

Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Turkey Bacon & Avocado Flatbread


I have been trying to get more veggies into my life in creative ways.  This flatbread turned out wonderful and will definitely be on the menu again!

Turkey Bacon & Avocado Flatbread

8 slices of turkey bacon
1 Avocado
1 tsp. minced garlic
1 small tomato, thinly sliced
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 tsp. prepared pesto (or basil)
2 flatbreads (your choice)

Chop and saute' the turkey bacon in a skillet.  Remove the Avocado meat and place into a food processor with the minced garlic and pesto.  Puree until chopped, but still a little chunky.  Thinly slice the tomato.  

Place the flatbreads onto a pan.  Spread the Avocado/Garlic mixture onto the bottom of the flatbread. Top with the thinly sliced tomatoes.  Add the turkey bacon on top and then the mozzarella cheese.  

Bake in a 400 degree oven until cheese becomes bubbly and starts to brown.  Remove and Serve!

Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Sweet & Sour Steaks



These steaks are slow cooked and delicious.  They fall apart, so you won't even need a knife!  They are fantastic with some mashed potatoes or steak fries!

Sweet & Sour Steaks

3 or 4 Ribeyes (or your favorite steaks)
1 bottle Kraft Sweet & Sour Sauce
1/2 bottle water
1 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. ground pepper
1 Tbsp. real butter

Preheat oven to 275 degrees.  In a oven-proof dish, melt 1 Tbsp. real butter.  Add steaks.  Mix the Sweet & Sour sauce with 1/2 bottle of water, salt and pepper.  Pour over steaks and turn them once so both sides are coated. 

Bake at 275 degrees for approximately 2 hours.  You want them to cook slowly so that they get tender.  Test them with a fork.  If they are not fall-apart tender, give them another 30 minutes.  About half way thru the cooking process, turn the steaks once to coat the other side.

Enjoy!

Monday, January 9, 2017

Cheesy Cauliflower Bites



These little crispy bites are really good and very cheesy!  Try them and see if you aren't sold!

Cheesy Cauliflower Bites

1/2 head cauliflower
1 cup shredded mild cheddar cheese + 1/4 cup
1 Tbsp. low fat Mayonnaise
1 tsp. light Ranch Dressing
2 Tbsp. Panko Bread crumbs
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground pepper
cooking spray

Pull off florets of cauliflower and add to a food processor.  Process until it is fine.  Add mayonnaise, Ranch Dressing, Panko, salt, pepper and 1/4 cup of the cheese.   Puree until all is just combined.

Spray a muffin pan with cooking spray (bottom and sides).  Place about 2 Tbsp. of the cauliflower mixture into each cup and top with about distribute the remaining cup of shredded cheese to the tops.  Bake in a 375 degree oven until cheese is bubbly and starting to brown.

Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes.  Using a spoon, remove the bites to a serving dish.  Enjoy!

Friday, January 6, 2017

Mozzarella Cheeseburger Bread


This bread is easy and really great.  It is easy to slice and take as a leftover in your lunch. 

Mozzarella Cheeseburger Bread

2 cans Crescent Rolls
1 lb. lean ground chuck
1/2 small white onion, finely diced
1/2 pkt Taco Seasoning
2 Tbsp. Salsa
6 to 10 slices Mozzarella cheese (or shredded)
2 Tbsp. real butter, melted

Brown ground chuck and onion in a skillet until done.  Drain meat and replace in skillet.  Add salsa and taco seasoning and combine well.  Remove from heat and set aside.

Spray a baking sheet (or use parchment paper) and roll out the 1st pkg. of Crescent rolls.  Pinch all of the edges together so they are one long rectangle.  Layer the bottom with Mozzarella Cheese.  Spread the ground chuck mixture onto the cheese and top with another layer of cheese.  Roll out the second pkg. of Crescent rolls and pinch all edges together.  Place on top of the ground chuck and pinch the edges of the log all the way around, so that it is fully-closed.

Brush the top of the rolls with melted butter.  Bake in a 375 degree oven until the top is browned.  Remove and Enjoy!


Thursday, January 5, 2017

Cheesy Tortellini


If you love macaroni and cheese, you will certainly love this recipe.  It makes a great side dish, or add a little smoked sausage to it for a one pot meal.

Cheesy Tortellini

1 pkg. cheese stuffed Tortellini
2" block of Velveeta cheese
1/4 cup evaporated milk (more or less)
1 Tbsp. ground pepper
1 tsp. sea salt
2 Tbsp. real butter
1 tsp. Basil

Boil Tortellini in 2 quarts of water until tender.  Drain completely and add back into the pan
Reduce heat and add butter, evaporated milk and Velveeta cheese, salt and pepper.  Gently stir until cheese is melted and all is combined.  If it is too thick, you can add more evaporated milk.  

Serve and Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Saute'ed Cauliflower


Okay, so like everyone else, I'm trying to get some healthier foods into my diet.  I'm not saying I don't throw in some butter, but at least the foods themselves are healthier!  I tried this the other night and my husband really liked it...Enjoy

Sautéed Cauliflower

1/2 head of cauliflower
2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
2 Tbsp. real butter
1 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. seasoned salt

Break the Cauliflower into pieces.  Melt 2 Tbsp. butter in a saucepan and add 2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce.  Add Cauliflower and pepper and seasoned salt.  Over medium/low heat, sauté the Cauliflower, tossing occasionally until all florets are coated and it becomes tender.  (about 10 to 12 minutes).

Drain on a paper towel and serve.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Peach Tart


Well, the holidays are over and I'm back to blogging!  It was a nice break, but I missed sharing all of my recipes with everyone.  This is such an easy and delicious dessert...and I made it with reduced calories because I used Stevia instead of Sugar.  Try this one!

Peach Tart

1 roll out type pie shell
1 can peaches in natural juices
1/4 cup Stevia or your favorite sweetner (or sugar)
1 Tbsp. real butter, melted

Spray baking sheet and lay out 1 round pie shell (the type that comes in a box that you roll out).  Drain the juice off of the peaches and add about 3/4 of the sweetner to them in a bowl and gently stir.

Place them in an even arrangement around the center and outward, leaving about 2" from the edge all the way around.  Fold up the edges of the pie crush and brush the top of the shell with melted butter.  Sprinkle lightly with the rest of the sweetner or sugar. 

Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 20 minutes or until top of the pie shell begins to brown.  Remove and Enjoy!