Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Snicker Doodles

cream together:
1 cup shortening (I use half butter)
1 1/2 cups sugar

2 eggs and beat until light and fluffy

Stir in:
2 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 3/4 cups flour.

Rolls into balls the size of walnuts

Mix 2 T. cinnamon and 4 T. sugar in a small bowl.
Roll cookie balls in the cinnamon sugar mixture and place on cookie sheet.

Bake at 400 for 8 minutes

Easy Cookies

1 box any flavor cake mix

1/2 cup oil

2 eggs

Place cake mix, oil and eggs in mixing bowl. Mix until well blended. You can use an electric mixer but a wooden spoon does the trick too.

Drop by rounded teaspoon onto a greased cookie sheet. (cookie scoops and parchment paper save time and cleanup)

Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 8-10 minutes.

Cool 3 minutes on cookie sheet then transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.

The cookies are puffed and full when they first come out of the oven. While cooling they will flaten a bit.

Makes about 3 dozen single cookies

Easy Caramel Dip

1 8 ounce package cream cheese
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla

Cream together all ingredients. Can be heated in crock pot.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011



5-1/3 cups (16 oz.) AMERICAN BEAUTY PENNE RIGATE, uncooked (sure you could use about any pasta)
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 large cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (I used corn starch & a bit extra)
3/4 cup ready-to-serve chicken broth or beef broth*
3/4 cup milk or light cream (I used 1% milk but used about 1 cup)
2 teaspoons dried parsley flakes
Salt and ground black pepper to taste
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

(sure this would taste great with chicken added to it)

Cook pasta according to package directions; drain. Meanwhile, in small saucepan, melt butter; add garlic. Cook over medium heat 1 minute. Add flour; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in broth and milk. Cook, stirring frequently, until sauce boils and thickens. Add parsley, salt, pepper and cheese; stir until cheese is melted. Toss hot pasta with sauce; serve immediately. 8 servings (1 cup each). *Or, 1 chicken or beef bouillon cube dissolved in 3/4 cup water.

Sunday, February 13, 2011


1 (12 fluid ounce) can frozen orange juice concentrate
3 cups water
1 (46 fluid ounce) can pineapple juice
1 liter ginger ale (I just used sprite)
1.In a punch bowl, combine orange juice, water and pineapple juice; chill. Stir in ginger ale just before serving.

Sweet and Sour Meatballs

1 pound ground beef
1 egg
1/4 cup dry bread crumbs (I often add in some oatmeal)
1 onion, diced
(sometimes add chopped celery/carrots)

1 cup packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1.In a medium bowl, combine the ground beef, egg, bread crumbs and onion. Mix thoroughly and shape into golf ball-sized balls.
2.In a large skillet over medium heat, gently brown the meatballs and set aside. (sometimes I just bake these in the often until cooked)
3.In a large saucepan, combine the brown sugar, flour, water, white vinegar and soy sauce. Mix thoroughly. Add meatballs and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring often, for 30 minutes.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie

1 unbaked 9-inch pie crust, homemade or store-bought.
2 large eggs
1/2 C flour
1/2 C white granulated sugar
1/2 C packed brown sugar
3/4 C real butter, softened (1 1/2 sticks)
1 C chocolate chips (semi-sweet or dark works best, you might find milk too sweet)
1 C chopped pecans (you are welcome to make it without nuts)

Vanilla ice cream, or sweetened whipped cream for serving (a must! I prefer ice cream)
optional: chocolate sauce (honestly, doesn't really need chocolate sauce, but it looks pretty!)

Preheat oven to 325° F.

Beat eggs in large mixer bowl on high speed until foamy. Beat in flour, granulated sugar and brown sugar. Beat in butter. Stir in morsels and nuts. Spoon into pie shell.

Bake for 55 to 60 minutes or until knife inserted halfway between edge and center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack or serve slightly warmed. Serve with ice cream or whipped cream.

Hawaiian Chicken Recipe

2 pounds skinless boneless chicken breast halves (I used 3 pounds)
1 can pineapple chunks, drained
1 can mandarin oranges, drained
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
Cut the chicken into large bite-sized chunks. Put everything into your crockpot and stir it around until everything is mixed up. Cover it and cook on high for 3 hours or low for 5 to 6 hours.

I like to serve this Hawaiian chicken over white rice. Fix a simple salad to add on the side and dinner is done.

Breadsticks & Pizza Dough

(Recipe from OurBestBites.com)
1 1/2 c. warm (105-115 degrees) water

1 Tbsp. sugar

1 Tbsp. yeast

1/2 tsp. salt

3-4 1/2 c. flour

In a large bowl (the bowl of your mixer, if you have one), combine water, sugar, and yeast. Let stand for 10 minutes or until yeast is bubbly.
Add salt and stir. Add 1 1/2 c. flour and mix well. Gradually add more flour (usually between 3-4 cups, depending on your elevation and your humidity) until dough starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl and it barely sticks to your finger.
Spray a glass or metal bowl with cooking spray and place dough in the bowl. Cover and allow to rise for 45 minutes or until doubled in bulk.
Remove from bowl and place on a lightly-floured surface. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray. Roll into a rectangle and cut into 12 strips with a pizza cutter.
Roll out each piece of dough into a snake and then drape over your forefinger and twist the dough. Place on baking sheet and repeat with remaining 11 pieces of dough. Try to space them evenly, but it's okay if they're close; pulling apart hot bread is one of life's greatest pleasures.
Cover pan and allow dough to rise for another 30 minutes. When there's about 15 minutes to go, preheat your oven to 425. When done rising, bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Rub some butter on top of the breadsticks (just put a ziploc bag on your hand, grab some softened butter, and have at it) and sprinkle with garlic bread seasoning or the powdery Parmesan cheese in a can and garlic salt. Or you could sprinkle them with cinnamon sugar.

Tortellini Sausage Soup

I have fallen in love... the leftovers are mine! Seriously the best soup I have ever made - love this yummy stuff!

3 links Italian sausage  (I just used a tube of ground pork)

4 cloves pressed garlic

1 onion, diced

½ c. water

2 cans chicken broth

½ c. apple cider (I heard this is a must have for this recipe!)

1 16-oz. can diced tomatoes

1 8 oz. can tomato sauce

1 c. sliced carrots

1 tsp. dried basil

1 tsp. dried oregano

2 medium zucchini, grated (I had some I had frozed a few months ago - this worked perfect to use it in)

8-10 oz. package cheese tortellini (check the freezer section of your grocery store; if you can find it there, it will almost always be way cheaper than fresh tortellini. Also, Barilla makes a great dry cheese tortellini)

2 Tbsp. dried parsley (yep that is two tablespoons)

If you're using link sausage, remove the casings and crumble into a large soup pot.
Begin cooking sausage over medium heat, stirring frequently. If your sausage is pretty fatty, you'll want to drain it when it's about halfway cooked. Meanwhile, chop onions and garlic and add to the sausage. Continue cooking until onions are translucent and your sausage is cooked.

Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, juice, water, chicken broth, carrots, oregano, and basil. Cover and simmer for 1/2 hour. Add parsley and zucchini and simmer for another 15 minutes or so.

Add the tortellini and cook until tender, and then serve with bread.