Thursday, September 24, 2009

Hot Fudge Sauce/Fondue/Dip

Another great recipe from a lady I used to work for. This is not good for you, therefore it tastes divine.


1 stick butter (1/2 cup)
1/2 cup cocoa powder
2 cups sugar
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
1 tsp. vanilla (optional)

Use a large saucepan to prevent boiling over. Melt the butter over medium heat. Whisk in remaining ingredients except vanilla. Bring to a rolling boil and boil for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla, if desired.

If sauce is not creamy and smooth, poor hot mixture into a blender and blend for 2-4 minutes, with the lid vented to allow steam to escape. Store in the refrigerator.

This is great hot fudge sauce for ice cream. Warm, it's a great fondue for fruit and pound cake. Cold, it's a great dip for fruit. Or whatever else needs some chocolate!

Making Rice-a-Roni Go Farther

Just a few suggestions to get more out of your box of Rice-a-Roni. You can do one, some, or all of the following:
  • Add 1/3 - 1/2 cup chopped onion while you saute the rice in butter.
  • Add 1/4 cup sliced or slivered almonds while you saute the rice in butter.
  • Add 2-3 stalks of celery, chopped, when you add water to the rice.
  • Add 2 cups diced cooked chicken or browned ground beef when you add water to the rice.
  • Add 1 cup fresh broccoli florets during the last five minutes of cooking.
You may have to adjust cooking time when adding the celery - sometimes I've found that it needs a couple more minutes to simmer.

I haven't tried adding carrots yet, but I bet if you chopped them small enough or shredded them it would work.

Please comment with any tricks you have used with the San Francisco Treat and I'll add them to this post so we can all benefit from your excellent wisdom!


My friend, Becky, suggested browning the rice minus the butter to save on calories. Good tip!

Easy Black Forest Cake

Okay, so I need to work on my presentation skills. Clearly I don't know how to drizzle glaze like Martha Stewart. The cake still tastes wonderful. I found this recipe online (as is the case with most of my recipes - I'm not that gifted, myself). I'll be bringing this beaut to the family party on Sunday, in case any of you were wondering.


1 pkg. any flavor chocolate cake mix (preferably one with pudding in the mix)
3 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup water
1 Tbsp. almond extract
1 (21 oz) can cherry pie filling
1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided
1 Tbsp. butter
2 Tbsp. milk
1/2 cup powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together cake mix, eggs, water, almond extract, pie filling, and 1 cup chocolate chips. Stir until just combined. Pour batter into a greased 9x13 baking dish. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove cake from oven and let cool.

Heat 1/2 cup chocolate chips, butter, and milk in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once chips are melted and mixture is combined, stir in powdered sugar. Drizzle glaze over cake.

  • Now I made this in a bundt pan and I only baked it for 40 minutes and it was just right. If you do go the bundt route, make sure you grease the pan well with shortening. Nobody likes their cake to stick to the pan!
  • I didn't put the 1 cup of chocolate chips in the cake because I accidentally forgot on purpose (I don't like chips in cake). Still tasted delish. I'll put them in for the family party, though.
  • Do make sure you add the full tablespoon of almond extract because that is what makes this cake!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Soft Drop Sugar Cookies


2/3 cup shortening
2/3 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
3 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/3 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl or mixer, cream together the shortening, butter, and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla. In another bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt; stir into the creamed mixture until well blended.

Roll dough into 1 1/2 inch balls and roll in remaining 1/3 cup sugar. Place on ungreased cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. (To make the cookies look like mine above, flatten balls with a glass).

Bake 10 -12 minutes. Allow to cool on cookie sheet for 3 minutes before transferring to wire rack.

Barbecue Meatballs

This is one of Caralie's all-time favorites. Probably because ketchup is involved.


2 lbs lean ground beef
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup quick cooking oats
7 oz. evaporated milk
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 Tbsp. chili powder
1/4 cup dried minced onion

2 cups ketchup
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
2 Tbsp. liquid smoke

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix beef, egg, oats, evap. milk, and spices. Form into 2 inch balls (I just use an ice cream scoop) and arrange in a single layer in a shallow baking dish (I usually need one 9x13 and one 8x8 glass baking dish). Bake in oven for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare sauce. Mix all ingredients in a small bowl. When meatballs are finished baking, pour sauce over meatballs. Return to oven for 15 more minutes.


So here it is - my new blog in all it's resplendent glory. I've copied all of my recipes from The Tall Family blog and put them over here. Every recipe is labeled and if you look to the right of the screen, you'll find your search criteria.

More recipes to come soon!

Thanks for stopping by.

Black Bean Soup

Tonight I tried a new recipe for Black Bean Soup that I found in the March issue of Good Housekeeping. Here is the recipe as printed in the mag:


1 Tbsp. olive oil
2 med. carrots, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 lg. onion, chopped
1 med. red bell pepper, chopped
2 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
2 c. water
2 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (14-14.5 oz) reduced sodium chicken broth (1 3/4 c.)
1/4 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice

In 6-qt. saucepot, heat oil on medium until hot. Add carrots, garlic, onion, and pepper; cook 12 - 15 minutes or until vegetables are lightly browned and tender, stirring occasionally. Add cumin, crushed red pepper, and 1/2 tsp. salt; cook 1 minute.

Stir in water, beans, and broth; heat to boiling on med-high. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, 15 minutes to blend flavors.

Ladle 3 cups soup into blender; cover, with center part of cover removed to allow steam to escape, and blend until pureed. Stir puree into soup in saucepot; heat through on medium. Stir in cilantro and lime juice, serve. Makes 6 servings.

I had more than 6 people to serve so I used 3 cans of beans, more carrots, more water and broth, more spices. I also added 3 cups of diced cooked chicken after making the puree to beef it up a bit, and the juice of one whole lime. I recommend adding a tsp. of chili powder. This is a good soup, and apparently it's good for you - it's part of Good Housekeeping's "Anti-Aging Diet."

German Pancake

This next recipe is not like a fluffy buttermilk pancake, but is dense and almost custard-like. It expands up the sides of the baking dish, making this a fun recipe to make with kids:


1/4 cup butter, melted
6 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup flour
4 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spread melted butter in bottom of 9x13 baking dish. Combine remaining ingredients in a blender and pulse until well mixed (you may need to scrape the sides of the blender with a rubber spatula to get all of the flour mixed in). Pour batter into 9x13 and bake for 20-25 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Serve warm, sprinkled with powdered sugar.

Angel Chicken Pasta


3-4 cups cooked diced or shredded chicken
1/4 cup butter
.7 oz package Italian dressing mix (such as Good Seasons)
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/4 c. chicken broth
1/2 c. milk
8 oz. cream cheese with chives, cubed*
1 lb. angel hair pasta (or spaghetti)
Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Arrange chicken in bottom of large casserole dish. In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in Italian dressing mix, soups, broth, and milk and bring to a boil. Add cream cheese and stir just until melted. Pour sauce over chicken in casserole. Bake for 30 minutes.

While sauce is baking, prepare pasta according to package directions. Serve sauce over pasta and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Makes 8 servings.

*You could also use regular cream cheese and add 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh or dried chives.

Grilled Bruschetta Chicken

I have made it many times now and love it more and more each time. Nothing beats fresh basil! It's so refreshing in the summertime. Find the recipe here.

Apple Cake

recipe courtesy of the town of Ellijay, Georgia

3 eggs
2 cups sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup vegetable or canola oil
3 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
3 cups peeled, diced apples

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Beat eggs well. Add sugar 1/2 cup at a time, beating well. Add vanilla and oil. In a medium bowl, sift dry ingredients together. Add flour mixture 1/2 cup at a time, until fully incorporated. Fold in apples. Bake in a greased bundt or tube pan for 1 hour. Cool in pan for 15 minutes and then transfer to wire rack.

Margherita Pizza

Margherita Pizza!

You will need:
  • A 1 lb. bag of pizza dough from Fresh & Easy (or check the refrigerated section of the bakery in your local grocery). Much better than that Pillsbury junk. Just make sure to let the dough come to room temp before trying to roll it out.
  • pizza sauce
  • 2-3 Roma tomatoes, seeded and sliced
  • sliced fresh mozzarella
  • 3-4 fresh basil leaves, torn (or if you can't find fresh basil, use pesto instead of pizza sauce)
Just follow the pizza dough directions for baking temp and time. If you want it a little heartier, add some diced chicken.

Next time I'm going to try grilling it!

Peanut Butter Cookies - Improved

Want to know an easy way to fancy-up some plain-jane peanut butter cookies? Well, too bad - I'm going to tell you anyway.

Dip 'em in chocolate!

I just melt semi-sweet chocolate chips with a little shortening an dip half the cookie. Then I place them on a parchment lined cookie sheet and sprinkle chopped nuts on the chocolate. Refrigerate the cookies to get the chocolate to set faster.

Ta-da! Fancy schmancy cookies! You'll look so gourmet.

Roasted Chickpeas


2 cans garbanzo beans (chick peas) rinsed, drained, and dried with a paper towel
2 tsp. olive oil
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. garlic powder

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a jelly roll pan with aluminum foil. In a medium bowl combine all ingredients until chickpeas are well coated. Spread evenly in pan. Roast for 30 minutes. Remove pan from oven, stir chickpeas, and return to oven and drop temperature to 375. Stir again after 15 minutes. Roast 15 minutes more (total of 1 hour) watching carefully to make sure peas do not burn; remove from oven and allow to cool completely before storing in a Ziploc or other airtight container.

  • You will most likely have a couple of exploding peas. Just be sure to pick them out of your oven once it is cool.
  • The peas start to lose their crunch after the first day (especially in a humid climate), so eat fast.
  • These are like corn nuts and are a great topper for salads. High in fiber and protein and not a lot of fat - excellent healthy snack.
  • If you live in a humid climate I would recommend omitting the oil or only using 1 tsp.
You can use whatever seasoning you prefer. Online people have suggested cinnamon sugar, cajun seasoning, sea salt, etc.

Easy Peach Cobbler


4 Tbsp. butter
3/4 c. flour
3/4 c. sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla
3 c. fresh peaches, peeled and sliced (about 4 peaches)
1 Tbsp. sugar

Move oven rack to upper middle position. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Melt butter in 8x8 or 9-inch round baking dish in oven. Mix dry ingredients in medium bowl then whisk in milk and vanilla until well blended. Pour batter in dish and scatter fruit on top. Sprinkle with 1 Tbsp. sugar. Bake 50-60 minutes or until batter browns and fruit bubbles. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.


Double the ingredients to make a 9x13 pan.

Use 3 cups any fresh fruit such as blueberries, raspberries, nectarines, etc.

Could also use frozen or canned fruit. Thaw frozen fruit before baking. Drain liquid from canned fruit.

Loaded Potato Salad

This is my favorite potato salad (and I don't like potato salad).


6 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 1/4 cup sour cream
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup chopped green onions or chives
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup real bacon bits or chopped, crisp-cooked bacon
ground black pepper to taste

Place potatoes in a large pot and fill with enough water to cover. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and cook for about 8-10 minutes or until potatoes are fork-tender. Drain, then cool potatoes in fridge.

In a large bowl, combine remaining ingredients. Fold in the potatoes. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Can be garnished with a sprinkling of cheese, bacon bits, and chopped green onions.

Best Big, Fat, Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

Recipe submitted to by "ElizabethBH"
(posted here with some alteration by me).
Photo submitted by "Linda."

These are the best chocolate chip cookies I have ever had. They look like the ones you buy at the bakery but taste better. They are good for the first three days, but shouldn't be kept longer than that (they probably won't last past day two). I highly recommend using parchment paper on your cookie sheets - cookies won't stick and you don't have to wash your cookies sheets after baking. Less dishes - yay!


2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (or 2 cups if you like a lot of chocolate)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Grease cookie sheets or line with parchment paper.

Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt; set aside.

In a medium bowl, cream together the melted butter, brown sugar and white sugar until well blended. Beat in the vanilla, egg, and egg yolk until light and creamy. Mix in the sifted ingredients until just blended. Stir in the chocolate chips. Refrigerate dough for 15 minutes. Drop cookie dough 1/4 cup at a time (or use a large cookie scoop) onto the prepared cookie sheets. Cookies should be about 3 inches apart.

Bake for 15 to 17 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the edges are lightly toasted. Cool on baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely. Makes about 18 large cookies.

Play Dough Cookies

Here is a recipe that Caralie and I made for her preschool class. You can make them into cookie-pops if you want to by inserting lollipop sticks into the cookies before you bake. Mostly these are cool-looking cookies, not the most tasty ... though I haven't met a kid yet that doesn't like them!


3/4 cup butter, softened
3 ounces cream cheese
1 cup white sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
assorted colors of paste or gel food coloring
(optional: lollipop sticks or sugar sprinkles)

In a large bowl cream butter, cream cheese and sugar until fluffy. Add egg and almond extract; beat until smooth.

In a medium bowl combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Add dry ingredients to the creamed mixture. Stir until soft dough forms. Divide dough into fourths. Tint each with a different food color.

"Mommy! I'm stirring with all my might!"

Roll each color into small, 1 inch balls. Combine balls into batches of four and press together to make one large ball. Cover and refrigerate for 1-2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll each ball into a 12 inch long rope and, starting at one end, coil rope to make a 3-inch round cookie. Place cookies 3 inches apart on a lightly greased baking sheet (or use parchment paper). Sprinkle with sugar sprinkles or insert lollipop sticks.

Caralie used sugar sprinkles to make them "pretty."

Bake cookies for 8 - 10 minutes or until centers of cookies are set. Cool on a wire rack and store in an airtight container. Makes a dozen cookies.

Pumpkin Bread

Since it's officially fall I decided to make my favorite autumn treat. The sisters I visit teach will be enjoying this tomorrow. I've always received many compliments on this bread, but I can't accept them because the recipe is not my own. It is from the original Joy of Cooking cookbook.


1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 1/3 cups sugar
1/3 cup shortening
2 eggs
1 cup cooked or canned pumpkin
1/3 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
(optional: 1/2 cup coarsely chopped nuts
and/or 1/3 cup raisins or chocolate chips)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan. In a medium bowl sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and cloves. In a large bowl, beat sugar, shortening and eggs until light and fluffy. Add and beat in pumpkin. Add the dry ingredients alternately with the milk and vanilla. Do not over-beat between each addition. Fold in the optional nuts/raisins/chocolate chips. Pour batter into pan and bake about 1 hour or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Remove loaf from pan and wrap with plastic wrap to prevent drying out.

Fudgy Oat Drops

I got this recipe out of The Friend magazine a couple years ago. These are my favorite no-bake cookies. Use only milk chocolate chips, not semi-sweet. For some reason these only turn out with milk chocolate.


1 cup milk chocolate chips (no substitutions)
1/3 cup butter or margarine
16 large marshmallows*
2 cups quick-cooking oats
1 cup flaked coconut
1 tsp. vanilla

Place chips, butter, and marshmallows in a large sauce pan and melt over low heat, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Mix in oats and coconut. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls (I use a cookie scoop) on waxed paper and cool. Store in an airtight container.

*16 large marshmallows = 208 miniature marshmallows (or approximately 2 1/2 cups)

Mandarin Orange Cake

Caralie says this cake smells even better than my armpits.

She likes my "armpit cleaner" (deodorant).



1 (18.25 ounce ) box yellow cake mix
3 eggs
1/2 cup oil
2 (11 ounce) cans mandarin orange segments, drained, with juice reserved
1 tsp. orange extract (optional, but recommended)

1 (8 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 (20 ounce) can crushed pineapple, with juice
1 (3.5 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2 9-inch round cake pans.

In a large bowl, combine cake mix, eggs, oil, orange extract, and juice from mandarin oranges. Beat with an electric mixer at low speed for 30 seconds, then medium speed for 2 minutes. Fold in mandarin oranges. Pour batter evenly into 2 pans.

Bake for 35 - 40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Allow to cool. Remove from pans.

To make topping: In a large bowl, beat pineapple with juice and dry pudding mix until well blended. Fold in whipped topping. Spread between cake layers and on top and sides of cake. Store in refrigerator.


Popcorn Balls


5 quarts popped popcorn
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup margarine or butter
2 tsp. cold water
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 5/8 cups powdered sugar
1 cup marshmallows
food coloring (optional)

Here's what I do: I use my air popper and a large bowl. A quart of popcorn is 4 cups. Typically a 1/4 cup of kernels will yield 4 cups of popped popcorn. As the popcorn falls into the bowl, I scoop it loosely with my fingers (to remove un-popped, tooth cracking kernels) and place the popcorn in my 4-cup Pyrex measuring cup. Then I dump that into my large roasting pan. Once I have all 5 quarts, I put the roasting pan in the oven on "warm."

In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the corn syrup, butter, cold water, vanilla, powdered sugar, and marshmallows. Heat and stir until the mixture comes to a boil (stir in food coloring, if desired).

Take roasting pan out of the oven (use mitts!) and pour syrup mixture over popcorn. Stir until every kernel is coated.

Spray a 1-cup measuring cup and your hands with cooking spray. Fill measuring cup with coated popcorn (mine were heaping cup-fulls). Remove from cup and firmly press to form a ball. (This way, they are all the same size). Place on waxed paper to cool. Repeat (adding cooking spray as needed). Makes 15 - 20 popcorn balls, depending on size.

Caramel Apples

This is a recipe for REAL caramel apples. As in, you make the caramel vs. melting a bunch of hard little cubes. Don't get me wrong, I'm all for the cubes ... but for me I only use them when I make my "gourmet" caramel apples (ie: caramel, chocolate, and peanut apples) because the caramel hardens faster. But when it comes to plain caramel apples, I like home-made because you get a stronger butter and vanilla flavor. Mmmmm!

I got the idea to make them after someone at the family Halloween party (was it you, Kim?) made some killer home-made caramel apples. I ate two in one sitting. I only had 1 cup of cream, so I halved the recipe, but if you follow the recipe as is you can get 8 - 10 apples out of it (depending on size).

Now, when it comes to choosing apples, I prefer Fuji apples for their crispness and almost cinnamon-y flavor. I typically don't like Granny Smiths because they can be too tart for me, but I understand why many people prefer them - the tart of the apple cuts the sweet of the caramel. I am tempted to try Golden Delicious because they have the thinnest skins and would therefore be the easiest to eat. But ultimately, just use whatever apple floats your boat.

To spear the apples you can use several different things: popsicle sticks, lollipop sticks, wooden dowels, etc. When taking a gourmet caramel apple class, I was taught to use wooden dowels (you can buy them in the cake decorating section) that were sharpened into a point with a pencil sharpener. This time around all I had were extra-long lollipop sticks. Whatever your weapon of choice, make sure the apples are:

1. Clean and dry
2. Room temperature
3. Padded underneath (place the apple on top of a folded towel, for example) to prevent bruising

I use a meat mallot to tap the dowel/stick into the center of the apple. Tap it gently and try not to go further than half-way into the apple. Now you're ready to make the caramel!


8 - 10 impaled small-medium sized apples
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1 tsp. salt
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup butter at room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla extract

In a large, heavy saucepan, combine the sugar, syrup, and salt. Over med-low heat, bring mixture to a boil and heat to 240 degrees.

Stir in butter and cream (the mixture will bubble up). Add vanilla.

Return to a boil and continue cooking until mixture returns to 240 degrees (soft-ball stage).

Remove from heat and let cool to 200 degrees before coating apples.

Place apples on heavily buttered dish or cookie sheet. Refrigerate until firm.

I later cut the sticks because they were much too long and looked pretty dumb. Don't you love how "straight" they are? This is why I prefer dowels!

I only had 4 Fuji apples, so I poured the leftover caramel into a bowl and used it as a dip. Super yummy!

Triple Chocolate Cookies

These are the best chocolate chocolate chip cookies I've found. I usually don't put in as many chocolate chips as the recipe calls for because 1. I don't really care for white chocolate and 2. I don't like a lot of chips in my cookies.

These cookies are awesome the day they are baked, but they stay soft for a few days after (a real plus). Pop 'em in the microwave for 5-8 seconds and they taste like they just came out of the oven.


1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour
2/3 cup cocoa powder
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
2 cups various chocolate chips: milk, semi-sweet, and white
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, beat butter, shortening, sugars, eggs, and vanilla until light and fluffy.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt; stir into the butter mixture until well blended. Mix in the chocolate chips and walnuts. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls (or use a med-sized cookie scoop) onto ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake for 8-10 minutes or just until set. Cool slightly on the cookies sheets before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

Chicken Casserole


3-4 cups diced cooked chicken
2-3 cups cooked white rice
3 stalks celery, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
3/4 cup (6 oz.) sour cream
1/4 cup milk
salt and pepper to taste
2 sleeves Ritz crackers, crushed
1/2 cup butter, melted
3/4 tsp. garlic powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Saute celery, onion, and garlic in olive oil on medium heat until softened.

In a large bowl, combine soups, sour cream, milk, and salt and pepper to taste. Add chicken, rice, and sauteed veggies. Stir until well mixed. Pour mixture into 13x9 dish.

In a medium bowl, combine crushed crackers, butter, and garlic powder. Spread over chicken mixture.

Bake for 30 - 35 minutes.

Sour Cream Chicken Enchilada Casserole

These are the same ingredients used to make chicken enchiladas, but easier than rolling up a bunch of tortillas. Great for lazy people like me!


4 cups diced cooked chicken
1 can cream of chicken soup
8 oz. (1 cup) sour cream
2/3 cup milk
1 (4 oz.) can diced green chiles
2 Tbsp. dried minced onion
1 tsp. garlic powder
pepper to taste
12 corn tortillas
2-3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Spray a 13x9 dish with cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, combine soup, sour cream, milk, chiles, onion, garlic, and pepper.

Line bottom of 13x9 with 6 tortillas. Sprinkle with 3 cups of chicken and pour 1/2 sauce over top and spread to cover. Sprinkle with 1/2 of the cheese. Repeat.

Bake for 30 - 40 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Let stand 10 - 15 minutes before serving.

Whole Wheat Muffins

This makes very moist muffins -- I got this recipe from a wonderful lady I used to work for.


1 cup applesauce
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 cup canola oil
1 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tsp. cinnamon

In a small bowl, combine applesauce and baking soda.

In a medium bowl, combine remaining ingredients. Add in applesauce mixture and stir with a wooden spoon, just until blended.

Divide into 12 lined or greased muffin cups. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

Ranch Marinated Chicken


6 - 8 chicken breasts
1 packet (1 oz.) dry ranch mix
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar (or other vinegar)

Combine all ingredients in a gallon-size Ziploc. Marinate in fridge for 2 hours.


So yummy!!!

Sweet Potato Casserole

I got this one from a friend I worked for (where I got the Whole Wheat Muffin recipe). She has so many amazing recipes. I don't like sweet potatoes much, but I like this. It's flavor is very rich, so you won't want a huge portion.


3 cups cooked and whipped sweet potatoes
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup butter or margarine

1/3 cup butter or margarine
1/3 cup flour
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup finely chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, beat potatoes, sugar, eggs, vanilla, milk, and 1/2 cup butter with an electric mixer until smooth. Pour into a 2 quart shallow casserole dish.

Combine topping ingredients in a medium bowl and cut with a pastry cutter to make streusel-like topping. Sprinkle over potato mixture.

Bake for 30 minutes.

Cranberry Jell-o Salad

This is very simple, but my favorite Jell-o salad for Thanksgiving. I got it from my mom-in-law, Cindy. I actually prefer making it with raspberry.


2 boxes cranberry or raspberry Jell-o
1 can whole cranberry sauce
1 can crushed pineapple, drained

Dissolve Jell-o in 1 1/2 cups of boiling water. Add 1 1/2 cups of cold water, pineapple, and cranberry sauce. Mix well and refrigerate until set.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies


3/4 cup butter, softened
2 1/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 can pumpkin
3 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. ginger
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. cloves
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 bag semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and pumpkin and mix well.

In another bowl, combine remaining dry ingredients (except chocolate chips). Slowly add to pumpkin mixture until well blended. Fold in chocolate chips.

Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls (or use a medium cookie scoop) on parchment lined cookie sheet, 2 inches apart. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until set.

This makes a LOT of cookies. Good for cookie-swaps.

Chicken Enchilada Casserole


18 corn tortillas
1 big can enchilada sauce (I recommend Old El Paso)
3 cups diced, cooked chicken
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can corn, drained
1 can Rotel, drained
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro, optional
shredded cheddar or Mexican cheese blend

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Layer 6 tortillas in bottom of 13x9 casserole. In a large bowl, combine chicken, beans, corn, Rotel, and cilantro*. Stir in half of enchilada sauce. Layer half of mixture over tortillas. Sprinkle with cheese. Layer 6 more tortillas, then remaining chicken mixture and sprinkle with cheese. Place remaining 6 tortillas on top and spread last half of enchilada sauce on top.

Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes.

Remove foil, sprinkle with cheese and bake for an additional 10 minutes.

Serve with sour cream.

*I have also added a drained can of sliced olives before.



This cornucopeia is made with refrigerated breadstick dough. It makes a great centerpiece and is edible, should you choose to eat it. Fill it with fruit, veggies, anything you like. You can find the recipe here.

Cookies and Cream Chocolate Fudge


This stuff is really good. I found the recipe here.


1 pkg. (8 squares) Baker's semi-sweet chocolate
1 can (300 mL) sweetened condensed milk
2 tsp. vanilla
10 Oreo cookies, chopped (strain out crumbs)

Line an 8x8 pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over the sides.

Microwave chocolate and sweetened condensed milk in large microwaveable bowl on MEDIUM for 2-3 minutes or until chocolate is almost melted, stirring after each minute. Stir in chopped cookies. Spread in pan.

Refrigerate 2 hours or until firm. Use foil handles to lift fudge from pan before cutting into 1-inch squares. Store between wax paper in an airtight container at room temperature up to 1 week.

Microwave Oven Peanut Brittle


You will find the recipe here.

Cranberry-Kissed Cookie Bark


You can find the recipe here.

Marinated Pretzels


1 (15 oz) bag mini pretzel twists
3/4 cup vegetable or canola oil
1 (1 oz) package dry ranch dressing mix
1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. dried dill weed

Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Place pretzels in 13x9 (or larger) baking dish. In a medium bowl, whisk oil, ranch, garlic powder and dill until well blended. Pour over pretzels. Stir to coat.

Place in oven and bake for 1 hour, stirring every fifteen minutes.

Let cool before serving or storing in an air-tight container.

Okay I finally did it

I'm finally getting around to making this recipe blog. Not sure I'm lovin' the background yet, so things may change as we go along. I will transfer the recipes from my other blog to this one in order to make it easier for y'all to find what you want.

Wish me luck!