Thursday, December 30, 2010

Chicken and Dumplings

Hello, welcome back from your Christmas Cookie Hangover. Let's make something nutritious, ok?

The first thing I made from my new Taste of Home Light Everyday Meals cookbook was their Easy Chicken and Dumplings. The recipes in the ToH cookbooks are usually pretty easy and can actually be made without you being a Master Chef.

Best part of this recipe? (besides the flavor) It only takes two dishes.

Chicken and Dumplings
serves 6

3 ribs Celery, chopped
1 c. sliced, fresh Carrots
3 cans (14 1/2 oz.) reduced sodium Chicken Broth
1/2 t. Poultry Seasoning
1/8 t. Pepper
3 c. cubed, cooked Chicken Breast
1 c. Peas
1 2/3 c. reduced fat Biscuit Mix
2/3 c. fat free Milk

I used a 12" skillet, 3" deep skillet.

Spray skillet with non stick cooking spray and saute celery and carrots for 5 minutes. Stir in broth, poultry seasoning, and pepper. If you want it thicker than your standard soup, put about 4T of flour in a container with a lid and shake well. Stir in and bring to a boil for 2 minutes. Reduce heat; simmer uncovered.

In small mixing bowl combine biscuit mix and milk. Drop by tablespoonfuls into skillet. Cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes -without removing cover- until toothpick comes out of dumpling clean.

When I served these I put a dash of paprika on the biscuits for color.

Nutritional Info (not including flour mixture or peas):
282 Cal
5g Fat
1g Fiber
28g Protien

Bisquick on FoodistaBisquick

Christmas Cookware!

I hope you all had a great Christmas. I loved spending so much time with my family, especially when my mom was in town, visiting from Alabama.

Well, I don't know about you but I sure scored some awesome stuff for Christmas. Right now I am updating from my brand new HP laptop (Thank you Daddy), and I got a Crock-Pot with a locking lid for easy travel (Thank you Sarah), some super awesome Pier 1 Imports "Tasting Party" mini flared cups (Thank you Chelle), and a 2010 Taste of Home cookbook (Thank you Mom)! I used gift money to buy myself a Taste of Home Everyday Light Meals and a 1001 Easy, Short, Inexpensive Meals cookbooks. I am very excited to use all my new stuff and let you know how things turn out.

In return, I got dad a 2c. fat separating measuring cup from It's great for low-fat gravy making. I also got him Knife Block and Cooking Utensil Set from Seventh Avenue. I helped my sister find him a set of trenched cutting boards from Kmart.

All in all, we've got some great kitchen adventures ahead of us : ). Over the past 2 weeks I have made 3 batches of Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Bread and given it to 4 of our neighbors, 5+ friends and families, work, and our own freezer! Bring on something new.

What did you make for the holidays? What did you give and get?

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Sugar Cookies

It's the week before Christmas and all through Crin's house,
not a child is running, nor looking to pounce.
The children are seated 'round the table with cheer
for they know why the babysitter has seated them here.
They saw the pink box that sat hidd'n on the shelf
and felt for a moment just like Santa's elf.
Preparing for Christmas includes lots of cooking,
so into the box they started their looking.
Off flew the lid and amid all the clutter
their eyes open wide and their little hearts flutter.
There was cookies, and icing, and sprinkles, and frosting.
-Little did I realize this could be so exhausting.

Last week I was feeling adventurous and it was my friend Crin's birthday. I watch her kids a few days a week  (Girls - ages Kate 2 and Sophie 4 and Boy - Gavon 1) and I thought it would be fun to let them do some decorating of cookies for their mom's birthday! So the night before, while watching Bones on FOX, my aunt and I found an Alton Brown Sugar Cookie recipe off and we made cookies. The next morning on my way to babysit I picked up frostings, icing, and sprinkles.

The girls were so excited to decorate cookies (and devour them). We ate breakfast, then decorated some, watched some snow white, then finished them. Thankfully I thought to put plates with raised edges down, or the table and floor would have been a mess; for some ages, the wax paper place mat just doesn't cut it. They had so much fun.

I didn't get any picture of the cookies, but I have some of the kids being silly. Note: the looks on their faces have no relation to the taste of the cookie lol.

Sophie (pic #2) took my camera phone and took these pictures. I'm a bit more skilled with a camera, no worries.

Recipe Courtesy of Food Network and Alton Brown.

Sugar Cookies
makes 3 dozen... ish

3 c. All-Purpose Flour
3/4 t. Baking Powder
1/4 t. Salt
1 c. Butter, softened
1 c. Sugar
1 Egg, beaten
1 T. Milk
Powdered Sugar, for rolling out dough

Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

Cream the butter and sugar. Add butter and milk to combine. Put mixer on low and gradually beat in flour until dough pulls from sides of bowl.

Divide dough in half, wrap in cling wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours, til firm.

Preheat oven to 375. Sprinkle flat surface with powdered sugar and roll out one half of the dough to a 1/4". Make sure dough is not sticking to counter.
Use cookie cutters to cut out shapes and place on cooking sheet. HELP: dip cutting edge of cookie cutter in powdered sugar to help with easy release, and spatula for moving dough shapes from counter to cookie sheet.

Bake 375 for 7-9 minutes or until edges just begin to brown. Let cookies sit on baking sheet 2 minutes before transferring to cooling rack.

Wacky Cake (egg-less)

When my mom was little she was allergic to eggs, so my grandma found this recipe for chocolate cake that doesn't require eggs. Wacky, right? : ) It's a very easy cake to make, and bakes up almost the same as the Pumpkin Bread a few recipes down, so, as noted in that recipe, it is great to use for a checkerboard cake, or just baking at the same time.

They make pretty tasty cupcakes.

In honor of National Cupcake Day:

Wacky Cake

3 c. All-Purpose Flour
2 c. Sugar
6 rounded T. Cocoa Powder
2 t. Baking Soda
1 t. Salt
4 T. Butter
2 c. warm Water
2 t. Apple Cider Vinegar (or regular vinegar)
2 t. Vanilla

Combine all dry ingredients in large bowl.

Melt butter and pour into warm water with vinegar and vanilla. Pour into dry ingredients and stir until smooth.

Pour into 9x13 or two 9" round greased pans and bake at 350 for 35 minutes. Cupcakes and Mini-Bundt cakes take 22-24 minutes.

Frost, ice, or dust with powdered sugar and serve.

This cake is so easy to throw together, and it tastes so good and is nice and moist.

Cocoa Powder on FoodistaCocoa Powder


I am on the phone with my mom _right now_ and she just informed me that it is

National Cupcake Day. 

I just thought you should know. Now I have to go bake. Next up: Wacky Cake.

What are you making?

Old Fashioned Pancakes

Pancake breakfast. How hard is it? A scoop of mix and a splash of water (and a scoop of M&Ms or chocolate chips if no one's looking) right? Not anymore. I made pancakes from scratch last week. Did you catch that? FROM SCRATCH! Who does that?

This girl.

I bought one of Dad's Christmas presents from a website you should all become familiar with: . It's awesome. There are so many great cooking utensils, pot&pan sets, measurement items, dish sets, bakeware, etc. I'd say the awesome stuff I got him, but I'm pretty sure he checks my blog.
HI DAD!! : ) 
Anyway, when they mailed the ... device... they sent a mini catalog with, and inside were a couple recipes, such as Old Fashioned Pancakes. I tried them out the next morning and it was a success! I'd never make pancakes from scratch on my own before so it was rather exciting.

Here it is, in all of it's easy glory.

Old Fashioned Pancakes
makes about 7-9 four inch pancakes

1 1/2 c. All-Purpose Flour
2 T. Sugar
1 1/4 c. Milk
3 T. melted Butter
1 T. Baking Powder
1/2 t. Salt
1 large Egg

In large bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt.

In another bowl beat the eggs, whisk in the milk, and add the melted butter. Combine with flour and mix until batter is just smooth.

Heat lightly oiled griddle or frypan over medium-high heat. Ladle about 1/4 c. batter onto griddle. Once bubble break on the surface of the pancakes and edges begin to pull up, flip with spatula and cook an additional minute.

Serve immediately.

-OR- for new fashioned pancakes, add about 1/4 c. M&Ms or chocolate chipsM&Ms make great birthday morning pancakes : )

Chelle had already had breakfast, but when I made these she tried one bite. Then another, and another until a whole pancake was gone. I'll take that as praise.

Cook's Comments

As promised in the December 5th post, Family Reunion Oatmeal Cookies, I made cookies the next day to celebrate National Cookie Day.

Just thought you should know. I made half with just chocolate chips and half with chocolate chips and raisins. I had to make them with all-purpose flour, so they were flat, but I went out last week and bought my very own bread flour so Dad can't tell me I can't use it for cookies : )

Promise Fulfilled.

Did you make cookies? What kind?

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Layered Salad

Here's a simple, pleasing layered salad. I like to make it when we have company because it's less messy and all ready when it's time to eat.

I use a decorative, clear glass bowl. so you can see the colors.

Simply layer, bottom up: Romaine Lettuce, frozen Corn, frozed Peas, (Broccoli optional), shredded Cheese, Iceburg Lettuce, Cucumbers, Tomatoes, shredded Cheese, Croutons.

Top your own serving with whatever dressing you like.

Cookie Salad!!!!

In honor of National Cookie Day, which was yesterday... I am posting my favorite salad recipe. Sorry, no picture yet.

Cookie Salad.
This makes me want to go on a salad diet. 

Happy Day-After-National-Cookie Day!

2 cans Pineapple Tidbits or Chunks, drained
2 cans Mandarin Oranges, drained
16 oz. Cool Whip
1 lg pkg Instant Vanilla Pudding
2 c. Buttermilk
1 pkg Keebler Fudge Stripe cookies.

Dump cookies into a gallon zip locking bag. Break cookies against counter, floor, wooden spoon, sister's head...
Mix pudding with buttermilk, fold in the Cool Whip, add other ingredients.
Add cookies prior to serving to avoid soggy cookies (I actually prefer them with a little less crunch though). Refrigerate until ready.

Enjoy. This is a Fourth of July tradition, but it was National Cookie Day. How could I not share?

I brought this to a work potluck (Eddie Bauer's 91st Anniversary) and everyone loved it. I know of at least two people who clocked out to go home after their shift, then sat down and had another scoop : )

If you've tried it, let me know. If you've made it, tell me what you do differently. 

Family Reunion Oatmeal Cookies

I am such a failure... I failed to make cookies on December 4th, National Cookie Day. How terrible is that from an avid baker/cook? Pretty terrible.

So to make up for it, I am posting a cookie recipe and a promise to bake them this week!

So this recipe is thanks to Kelli Harris. I got it at a recipe swap when I was in YW (Young Womens) in church. It is so delicious!

The name is another story. This past July my mom's side of the family had a family reunion and Grandma volunteered 6 dozen cookies, but ended up not having enough time for all of them, so, being the wonderful person I am, I was voluntold (volunteered by someone else). So I threw this together real quick because these cookies are so easy and I had just made some earlier that week. When we got to the reunion they were such a big hit. I opened the bags of cookies around 9am and they were GONE about 4pm. No joke. 6 dozen cookies gone before you could ask for seconds. My Aunt Diane was so excited for the recipe and she just raves about it.

Family Reunion Cookies

Mix together first:
1 c. Brown Sugar
1 c. White Sugar
1 c. Butter
2 Eggs
2 t. Vanilla

1 t. Baking Powder
1 t. Baking Soda
1/2 t. Salt
2 c. Bread Flour*
2 c. QuickOats

Any of the following, alone or combinations:
coconut, heath chips, chocolate chips, raisins, craisins, etc...

Bake at 350  for 10 - 11 mins.

* I use Bread Flour. If you want a fluffy cookie, use bread flour. If you want a flat cookie that collapses around the chips/raisins (like Tollhouse) use All-Purpose. I think that I used All-Purpose for the cookies in the picture. Dad was home and doesn't like me using his bread flour :(

So this is the fantastic recipe. Hope you like it! What little treat will you stir in?

Aunt Sue's Pumpkin Bread

It's December!!!! That means cold weather and Christmas! Well, here is a Christmas tradition recipe for you.

Every year, Aunt Sue makes/gifts all the family a homemade calendar filled with pictures of her latest adventures abroad, and a loaf or two of Pumpkin Bread. A couple years ago I decided that since I love this stuff so darn much I should probably learn how to make it, so we made the Christmas loaves together. Now, every Christmas season I make it all the time, and often bring it to work. I recently brought it to a Kent FHE (Family Home Evening) and it was a huge hit, with a few recipe requests.

Let's get cooking!!

First, depending on what you are making this for, pick a pan.

Standard Loaf Pan -- 4-6 Loaves -- Bake 55 mins to 1:05 
Mini Loaf Pan -- 6-9 Loaves -- Bake 40 mins
Standard Muffin Pan -- 3+ dozen Cupcakes -- Bake 25-30 mins
Mini Muffin Pan -- ~6 dozen Cupcakes -- Bake 15-20 mins

Ok, are you ready for this? It's SOOO difficult... not. 

Aunt Sue's Pumpkin Bread

3 c. Sugar
4 Eggs
1 c. Vegetable or Canola Oil
1 1/2 t. Salt
2 t. Baking Soda
1 t. Cinnamon
1 t. Nutmeg
1/3 c. Water
2 c. canned Pumpkin (NOT pumpkin pie filling)
3 1/3 c. Flour
12 oz/2 c. Chocolate Chips (optional, but really? Who wouldn't want this?)
1 - 1 1/2 c. chopped Walnuts (optional)

Mix all ingredients together, ending with flour, then stir in Chocolate Chips and/or Walnuts.

Put in sprayed/greased pans and Bake at 350 according to time/pan chart above.

Standard Loaves are good for keeping at home, slicing for events, or gifting to larger families.
Mini Loaves are good for slicing for events, or gifting to smaller families or individuals.
Standard Muffins are good for potluck events, or munching on at home.
Mini Muffins are good for parties, or goodie bags.

Also, one time I made a checker board cake using this recipe and my mom's Wacky Chocolate Cake recipe and it bakes up like a cake just a tad bit more dense, but the WCC batter is thicker than normal cakes, too. If you want me to post further instruction on that, ask me.
This is how it turned out.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Daddy's Cowboy Chili

Cowboy Chili is a family favorite. My dad (thinks he) found the original recipe in the Taste of Home magazine, but has altered it a bit. This is so good for those cool fall nights, or even on a warm, summer day. The BBQ flavor is really strong, but so good.

One time, when Chelle and I lived in Auburn, Alabama, our friend Jono was sick and in need of soup. Michelle and I made some Cowboy Chili and brought it over. Unless he was lying, he LOVED it.

Daddy's Cowboy Chili

18 oz. container Lloyd's Shredded BBQ beef, pork, or chicken
29 oz can Diced Tomatoes, not drained
1 can Black Beans, drained and rinsed
1 can Kidney Beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 c. Beef Broth, OR 1 can Beef Broth + 1/2 can water
1 chopped Green Bell Pepper
1 t. minced Garlic

In large saucepan/soup pot combine all ingredients. Bring to boil.

Reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered for 15-20 minutes.

Before serving, add 1-2 c. FROZEN corn. Either divvy it up and add it to individual bowls, or add to pot. I like to add it to individual bowls because you can take more or less, and it cools your chili down just a bit, so you can eat it sooner : )

Optional: Sprinkle with shredded Mozzarella Cheese.

We cook it until the pepper is more tender than crisp. I've tried it with pork, beef, and chicken. You can really use any BBQ'd shredded meat, but we always buy Lloyd's. It is great with a side of French or Corn bread. This recipe is the double version. Easily feeds 4+ leftovers. I hope you love it. Comment if you do! It is so easy. The hardest thing to do is open all those cans and chop the pepper.

You can do it!!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

7 Up Salad - aka Bring the Green Jello!

Before you read the ingredient list, I insist that you try it before you say "ew" and skip over it. Sure, there is a weird ingredient in it, but that's what makes it tangy. I'd be happy to make it for you, : ) cuz then I'd get some!

It's the Jello dish of the gods. Yum.

So, as far as I know, this recipe comes from my Great Grandma Edwards. If she is the creator, she is a culinary genius. This jello side/dessert is present at almost every Edwards/Baker family gathering, and I recently shared it with my work crew. I have new fans : )

7 Up Salad

Cook until melted:
7 oz. 7 Up (or other clear lemon lime soda)
1/4 lb Marshmallows (mini's are fastest to melt)

3.4 oz pkg Sugar Free Lime Jello (or regular)
12 oz. Neufchatel Cream Cheese (or regular)
Stir until smooth.

20 oz. can crushed pineapple (do NOT drain)
Chill until partially set.

Fold in:
1 c. Heavy Whipping Cream - whipped
2/3 c. Light Mayonnaise (or regular) (that's the weird ingredient)

Chill until set. Grab big serving spoon and 7 Up Salad. Hide from family. Eat all in one sitting. Die of happiness.

I would assume that you could do this with orange soda, orange Jello, and mandarin oranges, but I'm just so in love with the original that I haven't tried.

I hope you enjoy this as much as I do... or not, then I'd get it all to myself : )

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

French Onion Soup

My wonderful aunt stopped by the other day to get the pictures from her recent trip to Germany, and dropped off a cookbook. WeightWatchers New Complete Cookbook has some great and interesting recipes in it, not at all seeming like a diet cookbook!

Tonight I made French Onion Soup.
Now, I've never had French Onion Soup before so I had no idea what to expect, nor did I know it is simply broth and a whole lot of onions. I was slicing a slivering leeks and onions and the pile just kept getting bigger and bigger. That's really all it is. Hmmm...

Well, Dad loved it, Boo loved it, Chelle hasn't tried it yet, and I am unsure. Isn't that lame? That's the second dish I've made where everyone loves it, but I just think it's ok. I know a lot of people love French Onion Soup and all the glorious onions, but I think I was just overwhelmed after not knowing what to expect. Dad and Boo practically licked my cute little ramekins clean, but I just finished the broth and half the onions. Still though, for a diet book's measured-out single serving, I was surprisingly full.

Dinner tonight was simply a small, fresh salad, French Onion Soup, and a slice of French Bread.

French Onion Soup
Serves 2

2 t. Olive Oil
2 small-medium Spanish Onions (or yellow) Slivered
1 small Leek, sliced and cleaned
1 c. low sodium Beef Broth
1/8 t. Pepper
1 c. Water
2 slices French Bread (or 4 slices small baguette)
grated Parmesan Cheese
shredded reduced-fat Swiss Cheese

In nonstick saucepan over medium heat, heat oil. Saute the onions and leek until onions are golden, about 15-20 mins.

Add broth, pepper, and water. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.

Preheat the broiler. Place 2 oven safe/flame proof bowls on baking sheet. Ladle soup into bowls and top with bread. Sprinkle parmesan, then swiss. Broil until cheese melts, about 2 minutes.

Nutritional Information (per bowl)
cal 264
fat 10g
carb 32g
fiber 4g
protein 14g
WW points - 5

So a little something I didn't know how to do was prepare leeks. I've never worked with them before. I had no idea they were so big. Chelle went out to buy them and was looking for 1 SMALL leek. I don't think that's possible... They are monsterous!!
Anyways...  To prep a leek, you cut off the base, but just a small bit, or it all falls apart. Then you remove/cut off the green leaves. The white part of the leek is the only part used, (what a waste). Cut the leek in half the long way, then slice/chop/dice. When you've cut it as your recipe says, place it in a colander under water, or a bowl of cold water, to wash. The was the plant is designed, a lot of dirt is easily trapped between all the layers. Make sure you clean your leeks!!!

The original recipe (above) serves 2 and it was so easy to double, though I only used 3 and 1/2 onions, instead of 4.
I hope you like it!!!

Penne with Polish Sausage and Veggies

Ready in 25 minutes.
This is, simply put, grown up macaroni and cheese. It is so easy and so tasty! It's got your grain, protein, and vegetables. The original recipe called for Kielbasa and frozen Sugar Snap Peas, but I already had Polish Sausage and bagged Snow Peas. Also, I like whole grain pasta. It's really easy to swap out ingredients in this recipe. Feel free to experiment : )

The original recipe is courtesy of the Pillsbury Favorite Casseroles cookbook.

Penne with Polish Sausage and Veggies

Serves 6-8
1 lb uncooked Penne Pasta
1 Red Bell pepper, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 large Onion, cut into small wedges
small bag Snow Peas (the ones found in the produce area with prepared fruits and veggies)
2 Polish Sausages (the ones like footlong hot dogs)
1 c. Milk
16 oz. Velveeta, or similar product, cubed

Cook penne as directed. Drain, and cover to keep warm.

Meanwhile, heat 12 inch skillet over med-high heat until hot. Add bell pepper, onion, and peas; cook 4-5 minutes, or until veggies are crisp-tender. Stir frequently, drain if necessary.

Reduce heat to medium. Add polish sausage, milk and cheese to veggies. Cook for 3-4 minutes, until cheese is melted and sauce is smooth, stirring frequently.

Add cooked penne, stirring to coat. Cook 1-2 minutes longer until thoroughly heated.

estimated Nutritional Information 
(based on the original recipe)
cal 470
fat 19g
carb 48g
fiber 4g
protien 27g

Like I said, I did change the recipe a bit, as well as adding garnish. I topped it with diced tomatoes and some green onion for color.

This is nice and easy, but super tasty!


Friday, October 15, 2010

Citrus Chicken with Rice and Veggies

This is a recipe for the days you know you aren't going to have time for dinner prep later, and your only downtime is between 7 and 9 in the morning. Have you met my friend - Mr. Crock Pot? He really is perfect.

Dad, Boo, and Chelle loved this. Dad just loved the flavors and and tenderness of the slow cooked chicken. I , personally, thought it was good but I wasn't as big of a fan as the family was. I don't know that Citrus flavored meat are really my thing. But don't take my opinion... get your own!

Ok, this recipe is courtesy of 1001 Slow Cooker Recipes with adjustments by me. I made this last night for dinner and got awesome feedback. The lime and thyme really give you a kick of flavor and wake up your taste buds. If you like citrus flavor and are looking for a different way to season your chicken, look no further!

 Citrus Chicken with Rice and Veggies

4-6 bone-in Chicken Thighs
1/4 c fresh Lime Juice (about 1 and 1/2 large Limes)
14 oz can Chicken Broth
1 t. minced Garlic
1/2 t. dried Thyme Leaves
1/4 c. Butter, melted
3-4 c. Instant/Minute Rice
2 c. Frozen Peas, thawed (That's what I used anyway, canned might not hold up)
1 t. Dried Parsley (optional)

Place thawed chicken in sprayed slow cooker.

Combine lime juice, broth, garlic, thyme and melted butter in small bowl and mix well. Pour over all chicken. Cover and Cook on LOW 8 to 10 hours.

Remove chicken to platter. Increase heat to HIGH. Stir in rice and peas, cover and cook 15 minutes.

Serve chicken over rice, sprinkled with parsley.

--So technically the directions say to leave the chicken in the crock pot and stir in rice and peas, and that's what I did, but I think this will work better EDIT 1. The rice ended up on top of the chicken and I couldn't get all the rice cooked evenly, and served a couple crispy kernels. Not Cool : (
--Also, after 8-10 hours of cooking the chicken just about falls apart so remove it carefully.
--The original recipe called for only one cup of rice, but that's just not enough to serve everyone. Also, there is a ton of broth, so you can probably cook about 2 cups of rice if you want it. EDIT 2

I hope you enjoy this. It really is a quick prep, and I just served it with a side of broccoli.

Cook on!

1 - I cooked this again and took the chicken out before adding rice and peas. Wonderful.
2 -  I made this again and used about (unmeasured) 4 cups of rice. The great thing about minute rice is that it only takes a few minutes to cook, so you can tell if you have enough liquid to add more rice. With this much rice, you get cooked rice and no broth/juice. : ) just what I wanted.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Cook's Comments

Hello there!

So my little sister was cooking yesterday, and it inspired me to add a little note... Her Chicken Corn Chowder turned out fabulous, (one day it will appear here) but some moments in the kitchen were almost ...scary.

Things to know before cooking:

" c. " is an abbreviation for cup(s), whereas "cans" will be spelled out. (You want 5 cups of broth... not 5 cans...)

Big T. is Tablespoons, little t. is teaspoons.

You want to know how much a recipe yields before you make it.  A 3-4 serving recipe is not going to be enough for a 4 hungry persons family.

If you have to saute some vegetables in a frying pan, then add them (not drained) to an empty soup pot, you can usually skip the first pan and just saute them in the soup pot, and go from there. Save yourself a dish.

and last but not least...

1 and 1/2 + 1 and 1/2 = 3.. not 5.

Apple Cream Pie

Hello Cooks! Today I present you with a NO-BAKE dessert. I love pie : ) especially apple pies. I've been called crazy, but I am not such a huge fan of traditional pie crust, or all the mush that goes in pie with the fruit. So, when I found this non-traditional Apple Pie, I decided it's better than the rest. You don't have to agree, but at least try it out. It's easy to make and doesn't take much time, so you can throw it together the day you need it. Make it before dinner, and it's ready when you are!

Now, there are a lot of this-or-that's in this recipe, but don't freak out. If you don't like to make decisions when reading recipes, just do the first option, my preference, listed. The ingredients in (parentheses) are from the original recipe.

 Apple Cream Pie

1 9” Graham Cracker Crust (or pre-baked pie crust)
4c. Thinly Sliced Granny Smith Apples (or about 3 Large apples)
2T Sugar
2T Lemon Juice
Dash of Cinnamon (optional)
¼ cup butter
8 oz. Nuefchâtel (or original Cream Cheese)
1c. + ½ c. Cold Milk
3.4 oz pkg Sugar Free Instant Vanilla Pudding Mix (or original)
1t Lemon Peel
¼ c. Apple Jelly (or Strawberry, if you want it topped red)

Sautè apples, sugar, cinnamon, and lemon juice in butter until slices are soft but still hold together. Set aside on paper towel to remove excess liquid, and cool.

Beat cream cheese until smooth. Gradually add 1c. Milk, dry pudding mix, and lemon peel. Add remaining milk. Beat until thick.

Spread into crust and arrange apples on top. Heat jelly in microwave for 20-30 seconds until thin. Brush jelly on top of apples.

Refrigerate at least one hour.

Note: Since I usually have sautèd apple slices left over, I layer about 8-10 on the crust before adding filling.
Sometimes liquid appears on top of pie, around edges, prior to serving. Dab off with paper towel.

I hope you enjoy this! I think it's so great and easy.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Mommy's Chicken Enchiladas

Hello there my Sous Chefs! This is a recipe I love. I got it from my mom and I'm so glad she has it. She's made it, I've made it, but my favorite is when we make it together : ) though, we usually have to have extra chicken because we snack on it while we assemble the enchiladas - oops!

I hope you love it!

Mommy's Chicken Enchiladas

8 pack large Flour Tortillas
Grated Monterey Jack Cheese
Grated Cheddar Cheese
3 cans Cream of Chicken Soup
Whole Chicken's worth of cooked shredded chicken
2 pints Sour Cream
Sliced Olives
Chopped Green Onions
Green Chilies
1 diced Green Pepper
Chopped Tomatoes


Mix Cream of Chicken Soup and Sour Cream


Lay out 1 tortilla.

Layer 2-3 tablespoons of each of the following: Chicken, Cheese, Peppers, Onions, Sauce.

Roll up.

Lightly coat bottom and sides of 13x9 pan with sauce. Place each Enchilada seam side down in dish. Pour remaining sauce so all are covered.

Bake 350° for 25-30 minutes. Remove from oven and top with shredded cheese, olives, onions, tomatoes, and chilies. Bake 10 minutes or until cheese is melted.


Lemon Cream Cheese Cupcakes

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Lemon Cream Cheese Cupcakes

I'm about to go pick up my sister from the airport, but I'm grabbing a cupcake uh, healthy vegetable on the way out the door : )

This recipe is courtesy of

Lemon Cream Cheese Cupcake

1 pkg (2 layer) White Cake mix
3.4 oz Lemon Instant Pudding mix
1 c. Water
4 Egg Whites
2 T. Vegetable/Canola Oil
1 t. Fresh Lemon Zest (optional, enhances lemon flavor)


Beat cake mix, pudding mix, water, egg whites, and oil in mixer on low speed until moistened.
Beat on medium speed 2 minutes. Spoon into 24 lined 2.5 in muffin cups.
Bake at 350° for 21-24 minutes. Cool in pan ten minutes then move to cooling racks.

16 oz. Powdered Sugar
8 oz. Cream Cheese, softened
¼ c. Butter, soft
2-3 T. Lemon Juice
1 t. Fresh Lemon Zest (optional, enhances lemon flavor)


Mix all on low speed until well blended.

Do not attempt to make frosting thicker by adding more powdered sugar. This works for other frostings, but the butter in this frosting makes it a smooth frosting. Additional powdered sugar makes the frosting almost sickly sweet.
Buy a fresh lemon. You will get enough juice and have fresh zest for flavor and garnish.
Substitute : Prepare using PHILADELPHIA Neufchatel Cheese.

Calories 240
Fat 9g
Carbs 40g
Protien 2g
Calcium 6%

Cook's Comments

I breathe. I blink. I sneeze. I cook. I smile. I think. My heart beats.
All this I do without conscience consent or warning. It just happens, and good thing, too!

This is a way for my to share all my recipes and notes with all of you. I'm pretty sure this blog will end up being mostly recipes, but some stories are bound to slip through. You'll be reading a recipe for Mousse and end on a story about cleaning walls. This I guarantee.

Read, comment, question, and inspire. You might end up caught in the kitchen with me someday.