Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Campfire Cookies

Start with this:
Then in a bowl mix these:
1 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
Cream together butter and sugar until incorporated
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
Beat thoroughly

2 cups flour
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup chocolate chips, or one giant Hershey's bar, chopped
1 cup mini marshmallows
Stir to incorporate
The most fun part about these cookies is that you actually bake the cookie on top of a whole graham cracker.

Bake at F350°, for no more than 11 minutes (after 11 minutes, the graham cracker will burn).
Some of the marshmallow may toast off the cracker, but simply remove the cracker from your cookie sheet and quickly transfer to a wire rack.
Yields 4 dozen

Friday, November 11, 2011

Chocolate Mousse

Chocolate Mousse
1 large pckg chocolate pudding
(use jello brand, it just works better)
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 c water

1 C whipping cream, whipped (can use cool whip or pastry pride)

Combine pudding, condensed milk and water in a mixing bowl. Wisk until smooth. Let set in fridge for 5 minutes. Whip cream with an electric mixer. Fold whipped cream into pudding mixture. It's ready!

The possibilities are endless. It can be piped (via ziploc bag) into cups, on top of cupcakes, etc. Great party dessert in clear plastic cups with a cake ball and some whipped cream...

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Chicken and Spinach Stuffed Shells

1 (12-ounce) box uncooked jumbo pasta shells (if all of yours survive the boil this is enough, to be safe you may want 1 1/2 boxes)
2 cups chopped cooked chicken
2 cups fresh chopped spinach
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (15oz) container ricotta cheese
2 (8oz) packages cream cheese, softened (I think you could get away with one package)
1 (5oz) package shredded Parmesan cheese (about 1 2/3 cups)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 Tablespoon dried parsley flakes
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
1 (26oz) jar prepared spaghetti sauce (this was just enough. If you like it saucier use more)

1. Cook shells according to package directions. Be careful not to overcook them or they will tear easily when trying to fill them. Drain and set aside.

2. Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly grease two 9x13 baking dishes.

3. In a large bowl, combine chicken and all the rest of the ingredients except mozzarella and spaghetti sauce. Stir in 1 cup mozzarella. Spoon into shells. *Tip: For easier filling, fill a gallon ziplock baggie with the filling and snip a quarter size hole off the corner of the bag. Then you can just pipe the filling into the shells.

4. Spread half of spaghetti sauce into prepared baking dishes. Arrange shells over sauce; top with remaining sauce. Cover tightly with heavy-duty aluminum foil. If you are freezing one of the 9x13 prepared pans, freeze it after this step. Include a baggy of the remaining mozzarella for when you cook it.

5. Bake, covered, for 40 minutes. Uncover, sprinkle with remaining 1 cup mozzarella. Bake for 5 to 10 more minutes.

Makes 8-10 servings.

The Ultimate Twice Baked Potatoes

4 large baking potatoes
8 slices bacon
1 cup sour cream
1/4 to 1/2 cup milk
4 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
8 green onions, sliced, divided

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Bake potatoes in preheated oven for 1 hour. You can just microwave the potatoes instead because it is way faster and they taste just as good. About three minutes per potato, just check for tenderness. Make sure to poke holes in the potatoes with a fork before microwaving so that they don't explode.

Meanwhile, place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain, crumble and set aside.

When potatoes are done allow them to cool for 10 minutes. Slice potatoes in half lengthwise and scoop the flesh into a large bowl leaving about 1/4 inch of flesh so the potato maintains it's shape; save skins. To the potato flesh add sour cream, butter, salt, pepper, 1/2 cup cheese, 1/2 the green onions, and milk (start adding 1/2 cup of milk but you may not need to add it all depending on the consistency you want. You don't want them too runny). Mix with a hand mixer until well blended and creamy. Spoon the mixture into the potato skins. Top each with remaining cheese, green onions and bacon.

Bake for another 15 minutes at 350 degrees.

Loaded Mashed Potato Casserole

5 1/2 cups mashed potatoes (around 6-7 large baking potatoes)
1/2 cup milk
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
2 teaspoons dried parsley
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
8 slices bacon crispy cooked and crumbled

Preheat oven 350 degrees.

Peel, quarter, and boil potatoes for 15-20 minutes or until soft. Drain potatoes and and beat with a mixer until smooth. Add milk, cream cheese, sour cream, parsley, garlic salt, and nutmeg. Beat at a medium-high speed until nice and creamy. Add salt to taste keeping in mind that the cheese and bacon will add a little salt later.

Spoon into a 9x13 baking dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Top with cheddar cheese and bacon. Cover and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until cheese melts.

Serves 12 people.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Mini-Quiche Muffins

Broccoli and Italian Sausage Egg Muffins - -- UMM, I think I will sub fresh SPINACH for the broccoli. Thanks.


1 pound Italian Sasuce (sweet, mild, hot variety depending on your preference)
1 cup broccoli florets
8 large eggs
1/4 cup milk (or half and half depending on how you're feeling that day)
1/2 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp baking powder
salt & pepper to taste
Freshly grated Parmesan Cheese as needed


1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
2. In a large saute pan, over medium high heat, brown Italian Sausage for about 5 minutes, or until the sausage is no longer pink. Remove from heat and stir in broccoli.
3. Whisk together eggs, milk, oil and baking powder.  Season with salt and pepper.
4. Lightly spray a 12-cupcake pan with oil.Spoon out the sausage and broccoli mixture evenly into each cupcake.
5. Ladle the egg mixture over sausage and broccoli.
6. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
7. Bake for 15-20 minutes. 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Chocolate Cobbler

While perusing cobbler recipes I came across this - haven't tried it but WILL FOR SURE this week. How can it be bad? Cobbler? Good. Chocolate? GOOD!  Meat? Good! Custard? Good!  (Oh, sorry, slipped into Joey-mode there)

2 sticks butter
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups self-rising flour

(OR IF YOU DON'T HAVE SELF-RISING FLOUR, just use 1 1/2 cups regular flour, plus 2 teaspoons baking powder, plus 1/2 teaspoon salt instead!)

1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup milk

Chocolate Layer:
1 cup sugar
6 Tablespoons cocoa
2 cups boiling water


Preheat oven to 350. In a 9x13 glass baking dish, melt the two sticks of butter in the oven.
Meanwhile in a bowl, mix together the 1 1/4cups of sugar, flour, vanilla and milk. Once the butter is melted pour the batter over the butter, but do not stir.
In a separate bowl mix the cocoa and remaining sugar together and sprinkle on top of batter. Do not stir.
Pour the 2 cups of boiling water on top of that (don't stir) and bake for 30-45 minutes. I bake mine until I have a nice golden brown crust. In my oven this usually take about 35 minutes. Serve warm. Great with ice cream

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Honey Mustard Dressing

1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 Tablespoon prepared mustard
1 Tablespoon honey
1/2 tablespoon lemon juice

Friday, July 8, 2011

Smoked Chicken, Broccoli, and Black Bean Soup

½ cup unsalted butter
½ cup diced carrots
½ cup diced onions
½ cup diced celery
1 cup broccoli stems, diced
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried sweet basil
¼ cup dry white wine
4 cups chicken stock, hot
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
½ teaspoon Tabasco
1 cup diced smoked chicken (recipe follows)
1 cup cooked black beans
1 cup broccoli florets
2 cups heavy cream
Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons cornstarch mixed with a small amount of warm water (optional)

In saucepan, add ¼ cup butter. Saute carrots, onion, celery, and broccoli stems for 5 minutes. Add thyme, oregano and basil; sauté 5 minutes more. Add wine and deglaze pan. Add hot chicken stock and reduce heat by 1/3. Add Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco, smoked chicken, beans and broccoli florets. Simmer 5 minutes. Add cream, simmer 5 minutes more and season to taste (thicken with cornstarch if desired). Drop in remaining butter, piece by piece, stirring until melted and serve immediately.

Smoked Chicken:
On a covered grill, slightly smoke boneless chicken, cooking to medium rare (about 30 minutes).Do not allow the grill to get too hot.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Cinnamon Sugar Muffins.

Just had these for breakfast. Yummers!   Next time I would replace some or all of the oil with applesauce, though!

Cinnamon and Sugar Donut Muffins

  • 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 cup of flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup of vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup of milk
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat a muffin tin with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, beat together the sugar and egg until creamy. In a small bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg. Pour dry mixture into the egg mixture and stir to combine. Add vegetable oil, milk, and vanilla, stirring until just combined. Divide batter evenly into muffin tin.

I always make mini muffins - so this recipe fills a 24-cup pan perfectly.

Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes clean, about 10-13 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes, then remove muffins from tin. In a small bowl, combine 1 teaspoon of cinnamon and 3 tablespoons of sugar. While the muffins are still warm, roll each one in the mixture, coating all sides with the cinnamon sugar.

Friday, February 25, 2011


  • 1 can (28 Ounce) Whole Tomatoes With Juice
  • 2 cans (10 Ounce) Rotel (diced Tomatoes And Green Chilies) Original or Mild
  • ¼  cup Chopped Onion
  • 1 clove Garlic, Minced
  • ¼ tsps. Sugar
  • ¼ tsps. Salt
  • ½ cup Cilantro (more To Taste!)
  • ½ whole Lime Juice

  • If you like your salsa spicy throw in:
  • 1/2 to 1 Jalapeño, Quartered And Sliced Thin
  • 1/8 tsp ground cumin
Combine whole tomatoes, Rotel, onion, jalapeno, garlic, sugar, salt, cumin, lime juice, and cilantro in a blender or food processor. Pulse until you get the salsa to the consistency you’d like—I do about 10 to 15 pulses. Test seasonings with a tortilla chip and adjust as needed.
Refrigerate salsa for at least an hour. Serve with tortilla chips or cheese nachos.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Sugar Cookies.

Somehow I avoided all frosting-laden sugar cookies (a major weakness) for all of the Valentines season (but there was plenty of Sees, believe me)  but I came across this recipe and just might have to make these for St. Patty's Day.

3 sticks of salted butter softened
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons baking powder
5 cups of all purpose flour

Tip #1: Don't use margarine. Use the good 'ol fattening BUTTER. I like to use salted butter.
Tip #2: Don't use the microwave to soften the butter. Let it sit out on the counter at room temperature until it is softened. If you use the microwave, you may melt it too much, which will impact the texture of your dough and make it too sticky.


*Cream the softened butter and sugar together until it is nice, smooth, and fluffy.

*Next, add the eggs one at a time to the butter mixture. I use a hand mixer on low for this.

*Add the vanilla.

*Gradually add the flour and baking powder. I use my hand mixer for this also. Make sure that all the flour is mixed into the dough.

*Chill dough for 1-2 hours to stiffen up the dough. (very important step)

*When your dough has been chilled for the alloted time, preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

*On a clean counter top, generously sprinkle powdered sugar (yep...not flour) onto the counter and begin rolling the dough with a rolling pin. Make sure to add some powdered sugar to your rolling pin and to the top of the dough to prevent it from sticking. (Keep adding a little powdered sugar as needed throughout this process).

Tip #3: I roll out about a third of the dough at a time so that I can carefully gauge the thickness of the dough. I like mine to be on the thick side (about 1/2 inch thick).

*Use cookie cutters to cut out your desired shapes and set them on an ungreased cookie sheet. Make sure there is at least 1 inch or so in between each cookie.

*Bake at 400 degrees for 6-8 minutes depending on the size of your cookies. As you can see in my pictures, my cookies were extra large (almost as big as the napkin) so I cooked them for 8 minutes.

Tip #4: Do NOT overcook. They may not look done, but they are.

*Let them cool a bit before removing them from the pan.

Tip #5: Chill in the refrigerator before frosting or serving. This helps the cookies to be moist and delicious. :)

1 stick softened butter (1/2 cup) Tips #1 and #2 apply
1 brick softened cream cheese (8 oz) Tip #2 applies
Mix butter and and cream cheese until soft, add 2 tsp vanilla, beat until light and fluffy.
Add 4-5 cups powder sugar, one cup at a time, (I use 4 1/2 cups). Beat until smooth. Add your favorite food coloring to tint it your desired color.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Red Velvet Cheesecake Brownies

1/2 cup butter
2-oz dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp red food coloring
2/3 cup all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
8-oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/3 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8- or 9-inch square baking pan with aluminum foil and lightly grease.
In a small, heatproof bowl, melt butter and chocolate together. Stir with a fork until very smooth. Set aside to cool for a few minutes.
In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, eggs, vanilla extract and red food coloring. Add in the chocolate mixture and stir until smooth. Batter should be red. If a brighter red is desired, add an additional 1/2 tsp food coloring. Add flour and salt into the bowl and stir until everything is just combined and no streaks of dry ingredients remain.
Pour into prepared pan and spread into an even layer.
Prepare cheesecake mixture. In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar, egg and vanilla extract until smooth. Drop in dollops onto prepared brownie batter. Gently swirl two batters with a butter knife.
Bake for 35-40 minutes, until brownies and cheesecake are set. A knife inserted into the cheesecake mixture should come out clean and the edges will be lightly browned.
Cool in the pan completely before slicing and serving, either at room temperature or chilled.
Brownies can be refrigerated, covered, for several days.
Makes 16 large brownies or 24 smaller brownies