Thursday, December 27, 2007

Christmas Recipes

Rachel C., as soon as I can get all the recipes from our Christmas meals, I'll post them here. I'll have to call my grandma for her dinner roll and cinnamon roll recipes. I'm pretty sure she'll share them. Maybe. lol.

Homemade Hot Chocolate

1 cup Hershey's cocoa
2 cups sugar
1 1/3 cups hot water
1 gallon whole milk

Combine cocoa, sugar, and hot water in pot. Bring to a boil and boil for 2 minutes. Stir in milk and heat until warm throughout. Do not boil once milk has been added. Serve with marshmallows ... the mini ones work best, obviously, but we didn't have them. I absolutely HATE hot chocolate and all hot drinks ... and I love this!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Crockpot Beef Stew

To help you stay warm this winter season...and it freezes well for future use! Also, this is a great one to start before church and enjoy at dinnertime.

 1 lb beef stew meat, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
 1 medium onion, chopped
 1 package (8 oz) baby-cut carrots
 1 can (14 1/2 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
 1 can (10 1/2 oz) condensed beef broth
 1/2 C flour
 1 T Worcestershire sauce
 1 t salt
 1 t sugar
 1 t marjoram leaves
 12 new potatoes (1 1/2 lbs), chopped

1. Mix all ingredients except beef in crockpot.
2. Add beef; do not stir.
3. Cover and cook on low heat setting 8 to 9 hours or until vegetables are tender.
4. Stir well before serving

I have never made this in the oven, but if you are limited on time, here you go...

Oven directions:
**Additional ingredient: 8 oz can tomato sauce**
1.Heat oven to 325°.
2. Mix all ingredients except potatoes in ovenproof 4-quart Dutch oven.
3. Cover and bake 2 hours, stirring once.
4. Stir in potatoes.
5. Cover and bake 1 hour to 1 hour 30 minutes or until beef and vegetables are tender.

Chicken Caesar Pitas

This is so easy and soo good. You can make the salad from scratch if you want, but it really is better right out of the kits.

1 Caesar Salad Kit (found in salad aisle)
2 chicken breasts, cooked and seasoned
Pitas (or tortillas), warmed- I use the microwave.

After cooking chicken, cut it up into bite-size pieces. Mix the caeasar kit together as directed, and then mix chicken in with it- toss altogether. Spoon into warmed pitas and enjoy.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Mint Julep Brownies

These are the only mint brownies that my husband likes. They are different than most mint brownies. Promise.

 Fudge brownie mix (I like Betty Crocker.)
 1/2 C mint chocolate chips
 1/2 C chopped pecans, optional
 2 C confectioner sugar
 1/4 C margarine
 2 T mint jelly (I have found mint flavored apple jelly.)
 1-3 t milk

Glaze ingredients:
 1 C mint chocolate chips
 1/4 C margarine

1. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. Grease bottom of 9 x 13 pan.
3. In large bowl, make brownie mix according to the directions.
4. Stir in mint chocolate chips (and pecans).
5. Spread batter in 9 x 13 greased pan.
6. Bake according to package directions.
7. Cool 2 hours
8. In small bowl, beat confectioner sugar, butter, mint jelly, and enough milk to bring mixture to spreading consistency; spread over cooled brownies.
9. In small saucepan, over low heat, melt glaze ingredi-ents, stirring constantly until smooth.
10. Remove glaze from heat; cool slightly.
11. Spoon glaze over the filling, spreading to cover.
12. Refrigerate until glaze hardens.

Easy Snickerdoodles

Okay, I know everyone probably has a snickerdoodle recipe, but you should try this one out. I made a bunch for some friends and have been receiving multiple emails asking for the recipe. I am sure they think that I have some super secret ingredient and I am sure they are surprised to discover that it is just a cake mix! I loved making these for everyone because they were so easy and made a lot! (By the way, I forgot to flatten the cookies, but they were still great!)

 3 T sugar
 1 t ground cinnamon
 1 box yellow cake mix
 2 eggs
 1/4 C oil

1. Preheat oven to 375°.
2. Grease cookie sheet, if needed.
3. Combine sugar and cinnamon in small bowl.
4. Combine cake mix, eggs, and oil in large bowl; stir until thoroughly blended. (If there is still some dry cake mix left after stirring, you may need to add just enough oil to make it moist. It will be thicker so that you can form balls.)
5. Shape dough into 1 inch balls.
6. Roll in cinnamon-sugar mixture.
7. Place balls 2 inches apart on cookie sheet.
8. Flatten cookies with bottom of glass.
9. Bake 9-11 minutes.

Peppermint Chocolate Bark

This is an easy holiday treat.

-Hershey chocolate bars (the large ones)

1. Line cookie sheet with wax paper.
2. Unwrap and crush the peppermints into small pieces.
3. Melt the chocolate on low heat, stirring constantly. (Be careful not to burn the chocolate.)
4. Stir in crushed peppermint.
5. Pour onto lined cookie sheet and spread into a thicker than 1/4 inch.
6. Put in freezer until solidified.
7. Break into pieces and keep refrigerated or frozen until you are ready to serve.

If you want to be more festive, you can put the chocolate in candy molds.

Chicken Milano

If you are really good at multi-tasking, this dish can be put together in about 15 minutes.

 1 T margarine
 2 cloves garlic, minced
 1/2 C sun-dried tomatoes, chopped (get the bag kind, NOT the kind in olive oil)
 1 C chicken broth, divided
 1 C heavy cream
 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast
 Salt
 Pepper
 2 T vegetable oil
 2 T fresh basil, chopped
 8 oz dry fettuccini pasta

1. Cook the pasta according to the package directions.
2. In a large saucepan over low heat, melt margarine; add garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
3. Add the tomatoes and 3/4 C of the chicken broth; increase to medium heat and bring to a boil. 4. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes or until the tomatoes are tender.
5. Add the cream and bring to a boil; stirring.
6. Simmer over medium heat until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
7. Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper on both sides. In a large skillet over medium heat, warm oil and sauté chicken; press on chicken occasionally with a slotted spatula.
8. Cook for about 4 minutes per side or until the meat is no longer pink inside. Remove from heat.
9. In the same skillet, over medium heat, bring 1/4 C chicken broth to a boil; stirring the pan juices.
10. Reduce slightly and add to the cream sauce; stir in basil and adjust seasonings to taste.
11. Cut each chicken into 2 to 3 diagonal slices.
12. Toss pasta with 3-4 tablespoons of the sauce; top with chicken and coat with the cream sauce.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Asian Lettuce Wraps

This is a simple recipe as long as you get the chicken marinating ahead of time. (I actually throw the marinade into the bag with the frozen chicken and then throw it in the refrigerator to thaw.)

 1/4 C water
 1 T cornstarch
 1/2 C teriyaki sauce
 1 lb chicken, cubed
 1 (8 oz) can water chestnuts, slivered
 1 T vegetable oil
 Cooked white rice
 Shredded carrots
 Iceberg lettuce leaves

1. Whisk together water and cornstarch.
2. Stir in teriyaki sauce.
3. Add chicken and water chestnuts. Stir to coat.
4. Marinate 30 minutes.
5. Cook chicken in skillet.
6. Serve with rice, etc.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Baked Rigatoni

This is one of the best things you will ever put into your mouth. It feeds a bunch of people... I usually make it when the missionaries come over for dinner. They've even asked for the recipe to send home to their moms. I got this recipe from my friend Rebecca Lee.

Baked Rigatoni

16 oz Rigatoni
1 pkg. Italian Sausage, cooked (ground or finely sliced)
1 1/2 Tbsp. dried Thyme
2 cups whipping cream
1 can sliced olives
1 (14 oz) can diced tomatoes (Italian or garlic flavored; use the whole can, juice and all)
1 1/2 Tbsp. Italian seasoning
1 1/2 cups crumbled Feta Cheese (one small container)
2 cups Mozzarella cheese, grated

Bake at 375. Butter large casserole dish. Cook pasta, drain and put in dish. Cook sausage and drain fat. Mix everything, except cheese; add dash of salt and pepper. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove and mix in cheeses and bake for an additional 25 minutes. Let cool for approximately 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

Chicken Broccoli Quesadillas

This makes a ton and its one of my hubby's and kids' favorites. Its very, very easy and so yummy. Two suggestions to make it even better: Jack's salsa (only at Costco) and Wal-Mart (the neighborhood market off exchange and angel pkwy) fresh tortillas- delicioso!!

2 breasts chicken, cooked and cut into bite-size pieces
1 box Chicken-Broccoli flavored rice (Lipton or Rice-a-Roni)
1 can black beans (drained and rinsed)
Shredded cheese

Cook the rice as package directs. When completely done, add black beans and cooked chicken. Mix altogether. Warm a quesadilla-sized skillet and place one soft-taco-size tortilla on it and then layer cheese, rice mixture, and then a final layer of cheese and put one more tortilla on top (thus, forming a quesadilla). Cook until crispy. Flip and cook other side til crispy. Serve with sour cream and preferably, Jack's salsa.

Egg Salad

2 hard boiled eggs
1 TBS mustard
2 TBS mayonnaise
dash of salt
dash of pepper

Dice hard boiled eggs into a bowl. Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Serve on bread for a sandwich ... or feed it to your 16 month old, straight out of the bowl. Every kid I've ever fed this to loved it. I loved it as a kid. Especially when we used the Easter eggs because the salad was multi colored. I was easily amused as a kid.

**I make this 2 eggs per sandwich ... and usually Gary isn't home in time for lunch. lol.

Do y'all cook?

Ever? Even once a week? You don't have to post pictures, you know. Don't be recipe hogs. And quit laughing at my "recipes" ... I know they all contain something from a bottle, jar, or can. I can't help it. I'm a ghetto cook. That's why I need your recipes. I'm running out of ideas. And cans. And jars. And bottles. Thanks.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Teriyaki Steaks

Not to be confused with Steak Teriyaki, lol.Beef tenderloin filets
Yoshida's Original Sweet & Savory Sauce
Frozen French style green beans
Sticky Rice (I use the Calrose brand)

Sprinkle filets with garlic salt and pepper. In a screaming hot skillet with olive oil, sear filets on both sides for 1 minute. Add about 1/2 - 1 cup of Yoshida's and reduce heat to MEDIUM. Simmer filets in sauce for 2-3 minutes, each side. Please do not over cook these ... if you like well done steaks, I have no idea how this will turn out for you. Remove filets from skillet and place them on a bed of sticky rice. Add frozen green beans and cook in sauce for 2-3 minutes. Pour green beans and a little sauce over the filet and rice. You're going to love this steak!!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Spaghetti & Meatballs

1 lb ground sirloin
1 egg
handful of oats (I like the texture of the old fashioned oats best)
garlic salt
1/2 small onion, chopped

Spaghetti sauce (I like the Classico Traditional Sweet Basil) OR make your own ... I'm no Martha
Spaghetti noodles

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, except for the sauce and noodles, and mix well, until uniform. I use about 1 tsp of garlic salt IN the meat mixture and then lightly sprinkle some on top when their all in the skillet. Roll mixture into TBS sized balls and place on a hot skillet. (I used the Pampered Chef cookie dough/ice cream scooper thingy ... it worked great!) Allow the meatballs to cook thoroughly on all sides; approximately 1-2 minutes per side (there were about 4 sides to each of my meatballs). Once meatballs are cooked through, add your favorite spaghetti sauce and allow meatballs to heat an additional 3-5 minutes after sauce begins to bubble. Serve over spaghetti noodles ... or whatever your favorite spaghetti noodle is.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007


2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup fine yellow cornmeal
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon orange zest
1/2 cup shopped Craisins
1 3/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Stir the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat the eggs and sugar in another large bowl until pale yellow and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the orange and lemon zests to the dry ingredients. Add the flour mixture to the eggs and sugar and beat just until blended (the dough will be soft and sticky). Let stand for 5 minutes.

Using a rubber spatula, transfer the dough to the prepared baking sheet, forming two mounds spaced evenly apart. Moisten your hands with water and shape the dough into two 11 by 4-inch logs. Bake until lightly brown, about 35 minutes. Cool the logs for 5 minutes. Using a serrated knife, cut the logs crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick diagonal slices. Arrange the biscotti cut side down on the same baking sheet. Bake until the biscotti are pale and golden, about 25 minutes. Cool the biscotti on the baking sheet for 5 minutes. Using a metal spatula, transfer the biscotti to a rack and cool completely.

Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave, stirring every 20 seconds, about 1 1/2 minutes total. Dip 1 cut side of each biscotti into the melted chocolate. Gently shake off the excess chocolate. Place the biscotti, chocolate side up, on the baking sheet. Refrigerate until the chocolate is firm, about 35 minutes. Dip a pastry brush in the cocoa, then lightly brush the cocoa over the chocolate on each biscotti.

The biscotti can be made ahead. Store them in an airtight container up to 4 days, or wrap them in foil and freeze in resealable plastic bags up to 3 weeks.

These are really yummy and so fun to make. And they will make your house smell DELIGHTFUL as they bake. Enjoy!