Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Pineapple Fried Rice

This is a VERY good recipe.  Try it and you will like it.  I used white rice in place of brown and omitted the ham.  We served this with General T'sos Chicken.
Pineapple Fried Rice

3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoons sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon ginger powder
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
2 carrots, peeled and grated
1/2 cup frozen corn
1/2 cup frozen peas
3 cups cooked brown rice--or white
2 cups diced pineapple, canned or fresh Beth used a 20 oz can and cut the pineapple small
1/2 cup diced ham
2 green onions, sliced

In a small bowl, whisk together soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger powder and white pepper; set aside.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet or wok over medium high heat. Add garlic and onion to the skillet, and cook, stirring often, until onions have become translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in carrots, corn and peas, and cook, stirring constantly, until vegetables are tender, about 3-4 minutes.

Stir in rice, pineapple, ham, green onions and soy sauce mixture. Cook, stirring constantly, until heated through, about 2 minutes.

Serve immediately.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Crock Pot General Tso's Chicken

I made this recipe to go with the crockpot rosemary bread.  It was very good, but may have been a bit spicy.  I may put less cayenne in the next time.

Crock Pot General Tso's Chicken

2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts (cut into 1” pieces)
¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons cornstarch, divided
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
½ cup sugar
½ cup low sodium soy sauce
½ cup unsweetened pineapple juice
cup vinegar (white distilled or apple cider)
4 cloves garlic, minced
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper**can use less
¼ teaspoon dried ginger
Green onions, chopped, to top
Rice and broccoli, to serve

1.   Combine ¾ cups cornstarch, the salt, and the pepper in a shallow dish. Dip the chicken pieces in the cornstarch mixture to coat, shake off excess, and set aside.

2.   Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Brown the chicken pieces. It should take less than 2 minutes per side. Remove the chicken and set aside.

3.   In the slow cooker, combine the sugar, soy sauce, pineapple juice, vinegar, garlic, ginger, and cayenne. Stir to mix well.

4.   Add the chicken to the crock pot and cook on low for 4 hours. Check 20 minutes before serving and make sure your sauce is thick enough. If not, take the remaining 2 tablespoons of cornstarch and mix it with 2 tablespoons cold water until a slurry forms. Then, gently mix a bit into the chicken and sauce, being careful not to scrape the cornstarch coating off of the chicken. If it's very thin, you'll need more, if it's not too thin, use is sparingly. It thickens significantly as it cooks, so you may not need the whole ¼ cup. Cook for another 20 minutes, and then serve over broccoli and rice. Top with chopped green onion.

If you cannot use pineapple juice in the sauce, orange juice will work fine for a slightly different (but still delicious) flavor!


Monday, September 28, 2015

Rosemary Olive Oil Crock Pot Bread

We love the bread that is served at Macaroni Grill.  I have made a similar recipe, but when I saw you could make it in the Crock pot, I was sold!  I love, love, love the crockpot!  We served the bread with this dipping mix.  Very good.  See my notes in bold.
Rosemary Olive Oil Crock Pot Bread

3 ½ cups all purpose flour
1 packet dry active yeast (2¼ teaspoons)
1¼ cups warm water
¼ cup fresh rosemary, chopped, divided Beth used dried IN the bread and fresh on top
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon sea salt or kosher salt, divided

You will also need:

Parchment paper
Paper towels
Crock Pot

In a large bowl, mix together the water, yeast, and sugar. Let sit 10 minutes. The mixture should become bubbly.

Stir in half of the salt (1/2 teaspoon), half of the rosemary (2 tablespoons), the 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, and all of the flour. Mix until fully combined. Work it together with your hands, if necessary.

Lightly grease a large bowl and place the dough in. Cover it with a kitchen towel and leave the dough in a warm, draft-free area. Let it sit and rise for 1 hour.

Remove the dough from the bowl and gently roll it into a ball on a floured surface. Let it sit for another 20 minutes. Beth suggests to let it sit IN the crockpot on parchment paper.  It deflated when I tried to put it in the crockpot to cook.

Set the crock pot to high. Line the crock pot with two pieces of parchment paper, leaving at least 2 inches hanging out of each side of the crock pot. Place the dough in the crock pot and sprinkle it with the remaining salt and rosemary.

Drape paper towels over the top of the crock pot and then place the lid on. This should capture any moisture that would sit on the lid and prevent it from dripping back onto your bread.

Cook the bread for 2 hours, and remove from the crock pot. It will most likely still be a bit pale on the outside. It tastes great this way, but I like to put mine on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and put it under the broiler for a quick 3 - 5 minutes to get a crunchier, darker crust.

Let cool before slicing. Serve with extra olive oil drizzled on top.


To line the crock pot with parchment paper, tear off a long piece and place it in the crock pot in a U-shape, and then take another piece and do the same perpendicular to the first piece, so four sides come to the top of the crock pot in different directions and the majority of the inside of the pot is covered with parchment paper.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Baked Blueberry Lemon Donuts

Jenna also took these to her breakfast last weekend. They were very good. We did find that next time we will cut back on the lemon juice in the glaze. We just added more powdered sugar.

Baked Blueberry Lemon Donuts

1 1/2 C + 1 Tbsp all-purpose flour, divided
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 C fat free vanilla greek yogurt
1 C sugar
2 large eggs, 2 egg whites
1 tsp grated lemon zest (approx 1 lemon)
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 Tbsp canola oil
1 1/2 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen
Lemon Glaze:
1 C confectioners’ sugar, sifted
2 to 3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Coat donut pan or muffin tin well with cooking spray. We used 2 large donut pans and 2 mini
Reapply cooking spray between each batch, if needed.

In a large bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the yogurt, sugar, eggs, lemon zest,1 T lemon juice, vanilla, and oil.

Make a well in the center of dry ingredients.  Add wet ingredients into the well.  Mix to 80 % incorporated.

In a separate bowl, mix the blueberries with the remaining tablespoon of flour, and fold them very gently into the batter.

Scoop batter into a large ziplock freezer bag, zip closed, and snip end of one corner big enough for the blueberries to move thru with the batter.

Fill each donut or muffin mold 2/3rd’s the way full.

Bake 10-12 minutes or until springs back with a light touch.(do not want to brown)
Rest 2 minutes in pan, invert to remove, cool on cooling rack.

Lemon Glaze:
In a small bowl, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and 2-3 tablespoons of the lemon juice.
The mixture should be thick but pourable.  Add up to another tablespoon of lemon juice if the mixture is too stiff.

Drizzle glaze over the top of each donut and let it drip down the sides.  Let the lemon glaze harden, about 15 minutes, before serving.


Saturday, September 26, 2015

Pumpkin Nutella Cookie Bars

I made these bars to take to church for treats.  I doubled the recipe and these were very well liked.  I took the picture when the bars were still warm.  They DO firm up after cooling.

Pumpkin Nutella Cookie Bars

1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/3 cup pumpkin puree
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup Nutella (or other chocolate spread)

1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9x9” pan with foil and spray with cooking spray.

2. Place melted butter, pumpkin, and both sugars in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. You can also use a hand mixer, if you prefer. Mix until smooth, about 30 seconds. Mix in egg yolk, baking soda, salt, spices, and vanilla. Mix in flour until batter is smooth. It’ll be a soft batter.

3. Press half the batter in the bottom of the pan. The batter is sticky so you may want to spray your hands with cooking spray. It’ll be a thin layer in the bottom of the pan. Bake for 8 minutes.

4. Place Nutella (or other chocolate spread) in a microwave safe bowl. Heat for just a few seconds until pourable. Pour evenly over the top of the partially baked crust. Spread it carefully so it doesn’t rip the cookie bars. Scoop tablespoons of batter over the top and carefully spread with your fingers. It won’t be a smooth layer but will mostly cover. Beth sprayed her hands and patted out the topping and placed over nutella.

5. Bake an additional 17-20 minutes until the top is no longer glossy and the edges are golden brown. Cool completely before slicing.

6. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month.

Beth's notes:  I doubled this and cooked in 9 x 13 pan.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Banana Pudding Cake

 Jenna had brought home a bunch of ripe bananas from work and I had to take treats to church that weekend.  This recipe was easy to put together and all but a few pieces were eaten.
Banana Pudding Cake

2 very, very ripe medium bananas, roughly mashed
1 box yellow or butter-yellow cake mix (Betty Crocker Super Moist turns out best)
1 (4-serving size) package Jello banana cream instant pudding powder
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup water
¼ cup olive oil
Optional Simple Icing: 1 TB warm milk + 1 cup powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350F, with rack on lower-middle position. Grease and flour a bundt pan and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine cake mix and instant pudding powder. Whisk to loosen any lumps. Add eggs, water, and oil. Whisk just until incorporated. Using rubber spatula, fold in bananas just until combined; don't over-mix.

Pour into prepared bundt pan, lightly shaking to even out the batter.

Bake 35-45 minutes, or just until a toothpick inserted in center comes out with a few tender crumbs attached. Don't over bake.

Cool completely in pan on rack. Once cool, use very thin knife to separate cake from pan edges, if needed. Invert and remove cake.

Optional: Garnish with powdered sugar, sliced bananas, whipped cream, or fresh fruit. If desired, whisk together Simple Icing ingredients and drizzle over cake.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

S'mores Crescent Rolls

 Jenna wanted to take some sweets to a breakfast she was going to.  We made these, but didn't drizzle with the extra Nutella.  Very good
S'mores Crescent Rolls

1 can refrigerated crescent rolls (8 count)
¼ c. Nutella
64 mini marshmallows
40 chocolate chips
2 graham crackers Beth used graham cracker crumbs and used about 1/2 t per roll

Unroll crescent dough into triangles.

Top each with 1 tsp. Nutella, 8 mini marshmallows, 5 chocolate chips, and ¼ graham cracker (broken into pieces).

Carefully roll dough into crescent shape, starting at the wide end and working your way to the point.

Bake at 375 degrees for 10 minutes or until golden brown.

Drizzle with remaining Nutella (you may have to heat it slightly to make it the right consistency)

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Enchilada Sloppy Joes

I made these for dinner the other night and everyone liked them.  I used only 1/2 of this Texas jalapeno and used a medium enchilada sauce.  It had a bit of a kick, so you can easily tone that down with less spice!


Enchilada Sloppy Joes

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup diced onion
1 small jalapeño, seeds and ribs removed, diced
1 lb ground beef
1 can (10 oz)  Enchilada Sauce
½ cup cilantro, chopped
1 cup shredded pepperjack cheese Beth used Monterrey jack
4 hamburger buns

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and jalapeño and cook, stirring often, until softened, 5-7 minutes. Add in the ground beef and cook, breaking it up as it cooks, until browned and cooked through, about 8 minutes. Drain off any excess grease. Pour in the enchilada sauce, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Stir in the cilantro.

Turn the oven on to broil. Place the bun bottoms on a baking sheet and lightly toast. Top the buns with the meat mixture, then the cheese. Place the bun tops on the baking sheet, cut side up (to toast) and place the baking sheet in the oven. Broil just until the cheese is melted and the top of the buns are toasted.

Place the top of the buns on the mixture and serve.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Warm Bean Dip

I made this the other night to serve with enchilada sloppy joes.  I halved the recipe and put it in an 8 x 8 pan.  Don's only complaint was that the cheese formed a hard 'crust' after it sat.  When I reheated, I stirred the cheese in and there was no complaints!
Warm Bean Dip
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 cup sour cream
2 cans (16 ounces, each) refried beans
1 packet taco seasoning
2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
2 cups monterey jack cheese, shredded
DIRECTIONS:  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together cream cheese and sour cream in a large bowl. Mix in refried beans until combined. Stir in taco seasoning.
Spray a 9×13 baking pan with cooking spray. Spread mixture evenly into the bottom of the baking dish. Sprinkle the top with both cheeses.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until cheese in melted and slightly browned. Serve with tortilla chips.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Crunchy Sweet Apple Chicken Salad

I had some left over chicken in the fridge, so I made this for me for lunch one day last week.  I was a little leary of the lemon juice, but with the cinnamon, it really works!  Try this if you want a mayo free chicken salad!
Crunchy Sweet Apple Chicken Salad
serves 1
4 oz chicken, cooked and chopped
1 apple, diced
2-3 stalks celery, diced
2 Tbsp. sweet onion, chopped
Juice from 1/2 lemon
1/8 tsp. cinnamon
Sprinkle of these spices as desired: Nutmeg, cardamom, curry, sea salt & pepper
sweetener or your choice.  Beth used 1/2 packet of sweet and low

Mix ingredients together, then sprinkle with sweetener and cinnamon. Chill for 20 minutes.  Beth ate this right away and it was great!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Hamburger with Spinach(mock low carb veggie lasagna)

I was home alone for dinner one night and had a half pound of ground beef in the fridge.  I have been trying to eat low carb, and with enough seasoning this tastes a bit like lasagna---at least like an Italian dish.  This makes two servings.
Hamburger with Spinach(mock low carb veggie lasagna)
serves 2

1 8 oz can Tomato Sauce
1/2 pound extra lean ground beef

1/4 c diced onion
1 box frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeeze dried
1/2 t. Italian seasoning

1/2 t. oregano
Salt, garlic powder, pepper to taste

Brown the beef and onions.  Add seasonings to the meat.  Stir in the spinach and then add the tomato sauce.  Heat until warm and adjust seasonings.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Italian Dressing Caramelized Chicken

I saw this easy recipe on a day I needed a quick dinner. This was a tasty dish.


Italian Dressing Caramelized Chicken

2.5 lbs-3 lbs Chicken Breast
1 packet (.7 ounce) of dried italian dressing mix
1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2.Spray a 9 x 13 pan with cooking spray.

3. Combine the packet of dried Italian dressing mix and 1/2 cup of brown sugar.

4. Dip each piece of chicken into the mix on each side. Any extra coating that remains can be sprinkled over.

5. Place chicken in oven for 15-20 minutes (depending on the size of the chicken breasts) and flip each piece over. Bake for an additional 15 minutes.Beth lightly pounded the chicken to make it even in size.  This was the perfect amount of time for my chicken breasts. Turn oven on broil for 2 minutes, flip chicken and broil for another 2 minutes. Beth did not broil.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Frosted Flakes Cookies

I saw this recipe and made sure I bought Frosted Flakes when I went to the store.  On Crazy for Crust website, she says once you make these cookies, you won't make any other again.  Jenna agreed with that statement!   I doubled the recipe, since it said it made 27 cookies.  Well, since I used a regular scoop, I got 71 cookies when I doubled the recipe!  Try these, you WILL like them!

Frosted Flakes Cookies

Yield: 24-27 cookies

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup quick cooking oats
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups Frosted Flakes cereal

Note: this dough requires chilling.

Cream butter and sugars in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. You can also use a hand mixer. Add oil and stir until smooth. Add egg and vanilla, mix until smooth, then stir in the salt and baking soda.

Mix in oats and flour until just mixed. Stir in chocolate chips and Frosted Flakes cereal. There is no need to crush the cereal; a stand mixer will do that for you. If you’re using a hand mixer, you may want to crush the cereal into large pieces before adding it to the cookie dough.

Scoop 2 tablespoon balls of cookie dough onto a cookie sheet covered in wax or parchment paper.**Beth used a cookie scoop, so got smaller cookies. No need to spread the balls out, you’re just going to chill them. Cover with plastic wrap and chill at least one hour. (If you chill longer than 4 hours you may need to let them warm up a few minutes on the counter before baking.)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or silpat baking mats. Place cookies 2” apart on prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 9-11 minutes or until the bottoms just start to turn golden brown. Cool at least 5 minutes on cookie sheet before removing to rack to cool completely.

Serve as is or make ice cream sandwiches with vanilla ice cream and crushed Frosted Flakes!
Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 1 month.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Sour Cream Banana Bread

I made this recipe after my mom told me about how good it was.  I doubled it and added walnuts to one loaf.  I sent these loaves to work with Jenna and everyone loved them.
Sour Cream Banana Bread
Yield: 1 loaf

1/2 cup butter - room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 cup mashed, very ripe, bananas
1/2 cup full-fat sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)

Preheat over to 350°.
Cream butter and sugar until well combined. Add vanilla. Blend well.  Add eggs, one at a time, combining well after each.

Sift dry ingredients and combine with butter mixture, adding 1/2 cup at a time until mixed thoroughly. 

Add bananas and sour cream. Stir well.  Stir in nuts.  Pour into generously buttered 9x5x3 loaf pan. 
Bake 1 hour.

Test for doneness by inserting toothpick into the middle of pan. If it comes out clean, the bread is done! If not, bake a few minutes more and check again.

Turn out on rack to cool.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Shrimp Jambalaya for 1

I was home for lunch by myself and had some shrimp in the freezer.  This was perfect and tasted great!  I used celery and frozen all ready cooked shrimp.

Shrimp Jambalaya for 1

4 oz shrimp (chicken, beef, or chicken sausage can be used)
1 c celery chopped(can used tomatoes)
1 cup vegetable broth or water Beth used just a pinch of tomato bouillon in water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon chopped onion
1 clove garlic crushed and minced
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
Dash of hot sauce
Dash of liquid smoke (optional)
Pinch of cayenne to taste
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon onion powder
Pinch of thyme
Salt and pepper
Water as needed

Lightly sauté shrimp or chicken with celery or tomatoes, garlic and onion in
lemon juice until cooked or lightly browned. Deglaze the pan with broth
and add seasonings. Simmer on low for approximately 20-30 minutes until
liquid is slightly reduced adding additional broth or water to achieve desired

Makes 1 serving

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Swedish Brownies

This is a recipe that come from my friend Vicki from church. Janet also makes them. I doubled this recipe and made it in a jelly roll pan. I then packed up the brownies in Ziploc containers and took them on the plane to Wisconsin for the reunion. I LOVE these!

Swedish Brownies

2 c. Sugar
4 eggs
Pinch of salt
2 c. Flour
1 c. Melted butter
2 tsp. Almond extract

 Mix by hand and put in a 9x 13 pan. Sprinkle a small amount of sugar and slivered or sliced almonds on top. Bake at 325 for 30 min. (Top should still be kind of white or it will be overdone)


Monday, September 14, 2015

Captain Crunch Peanut Butter Puppy Chow

I made this to take on the plane on our trip to a family reunion in Wisconsin.  It fit(tightly) in a gallon zip loc bag. YUMMY!
Captain Crunch Peanut Butter Puppy Chow

4.5 cups Peanut Butter Captain Crunch
4.5 cups Captain Crunch, regular
½ cup peanut butter chips
½ cup milk chocolate chips
4 Tbsp butter
½ cup peanut butter
2 cups powdered sugar
½ cup peanut butter chips

Melt peanut butter chips, milk chocolate chips and butter together in a double broiler or in the microwave on 50% power until chips are melted and butter is fully incorporated.

Stir in peanut butter.

Place cereal in a large bowl and pour chocolate mixture over. Gently stir to coat all of the cereal. Once all coated add the powdered sugar and stir gently again to fully coat all the cereal. (You can also do this in a large plastic bag.)

Once cooled add in extra peanut butter chips (Beth used the rest of the bag of chips)and serve!

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Take Along Cake

I made this for our Labor Day get together.  I also was able to serve it with our beloved Blue Bell ice cream.  Don't know what everyone liked the best, the tasty cake or the ice cream!  I used the German Chocolate Cake mix, but devils food would work well.


1 package chocolate cake mix - Use your favorite  (I used a German chocolate cake mix)
1 package (12 ounces) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup miniature marshmallows
1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 9 x 13 - inch pan.

Prepare the cake mix following the package directions.

Add chocolate chips and marshmallows to the batter.  Pour into pan.  Drizzle the melted butter over the batter.  Sprinkle with brown sugar and top with nuts.

Bake for 45 to 55 minutes.

Cool on wire rack.

Cut into squares 12 - 16.


Saturday, September 12, 2015

Beat the Heat Pizza

Kathleen was coming home last weekend and sent me the description for this pizza.  I whipped up two pizza crusts and made this up.  I only put the hot sauce on part of the pizza and it was HOT.  Otherwise, it was quite a tasty pizza.

Beat the Heat Pizza
adapted from a description on the Halls Pizza Kitchen food truck

pizza crust--use your favorite, par baked
1-2 roasted jalapenos, chopped
6-8 oz cream cheese softened(depending on pizza pan size)
4-6 sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled
cooked chicken(we used blackened) chopped
mozzarella cheese
sriracha hot sauce

Roll out pizza crust to the size of your pan.  We used a 17 inch pan and use this recipe.  I like to par bake the crust for 5-8 minutes.

Spread the softened cream cheese over the crust. Sprinkle the mozzarella cheese over the crust.  Top with chicken, bacon, and jalapenos.  Drizzle sriracha over all or part of the pizza--it is HOT.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Caramel Oatmeal Cookies Recipe

These were easy to put together and everyone liked them. I would suggest using parchment paper(I just sprayed the pan) since they did tend to stick.
Caramel Oatmeal Cookies Recipe
(Makes 5 dozen cookies)  Beth got 4 dozen
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups quick or old-fashion oats, uncooked
1 package Kraft Caramel Bits
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt.  In a large bowl, cream together butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, eggs and vanilla extract.  Gradually beat in flour mixture.  Fold in oats and caramel bits.   Drop by rounded Tablespoons onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper.  Cook for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Texas Dirty "Rice" (Beef and Cabbage)

I had a half a pound of ground beef to use so I made this(doubled the recipe) and it was SO very good!
Texas Dirty "Rice" (Beef and Cabbage)

4 oz lean ground beef
2 C cabbage finely chopped into rice sized
1 C chicken broth or water
1/2 t cumin
1/2 - 1 T chili powder
2 T minced onion
2 clove garlic crush and minced
Salt and Pepper
Serve with Frank's hot pepper sauce, optional.

In a large frying pan, brown beef over medium high heat. Add the rest of ingredients and cook until cabbage is tender adding more water or broth as necessary. Cook down until no liquid is left. Serve hot.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Low Carb Creamy Ranch Dressing

Here is a great low carb salad dressing. 
Low Carb Creamy Ranch Dressing

1 c cottage cheese
1/4 c milk with 1/2 t apple cider vinegar
1/2 t dried chives
1/2 t dried parsley
1/2 t dill weed
1/4 t garlic powder
1/4 t onion powder
1/8 t salt
1/8 t pepper

Cream the cottage cheese in a food processor or hand blender until lumps are gone.   Add all ingredients and let rest 1 hour to let flavors meld.  Can thin with milk.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Chocolate Caramel Apple Crumb Bars

I made these and took them to a church fellowship.  These bars tasted like mini apple pies.

Chocolate Caramel Apple Crumb Bars

Apple Filling:

4 to 5 cups Granny Smith Apples, peeled and diced (about 4 to 5 large apples)
½ cup brown sugar
2 tsp cornstarch
2 tsp cinnamon
3 Tbsp lemon juice
6 Tbsp butter

Crust and Crumb Topping:

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1 cup (2 sticks) cold butter, cut into Tablespoons
1 large egg


24 soft caramels, quartered; about ¾ cup of quartered pieces Beth used caramel bits
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 tsp course sea salt

1. In a large bowl, toss the diced apples in brown sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, and lemon juice. Let macerate (release juices) for 5 minutes.

2. Melt 6 Tbsp of butter in a large sauté pan, add the apples with their juices, and cook for 10 minutes or until desired softness. Allow to cool slightly.

3. While the apples cook, prepare the crust: Using the paddle attachment fitted on a KitchenAid mixer, stir flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt together.

4. Add cold butter one Tablespoon at a time, while the mixer is running, until the mixture resembles fine crumbs. Add egg and mix until the dough comes together, in large crumbs.

5. Press ⅔ of the crust onto the bottom of a 9×13-inch baking dish.

6. Spread the cooked apples on top of the crust. Sprinkle with the remaining crumb dough.

7. Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 to 35 minutes or until golden on top.

8. Meanwhile, cut up 24 soft caramels into fourths, and measure ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, and 1 tsp sea salt.

9. Once the crust is golden, sprinkle the cut-up caramels and chocolate chips on top.
10. Return pan to the oven for 3 to 5 minutes more until the chocolate and caramels are melty.

11. Remove the pan from the oven and immediately sprinkle with sea salt.

12. Allow to cool slightly before cutting and consuming.



Monday, September 7, 2015

Radish Chips

I was looking for a low carb crunchy snack and found these.  They were great--just do not over season them.

Radish Chips

1 bundle of radishes (8-10 radishes)
Sea Salt

Oven to 375º. Line a baking sheet with parchment Rinse radishes and trim tops and tails. Thinly slice each radish.

Place the radishes  in a single layer on the parchment lined baking sheet. Sprinkle to taste with sea salt, pepper, or your own seasonings!Do not oversalt(ask me how I know)

Bake for 10 minutes, then flip what you can.  Bake for 6-10 more minutes, checking every 2 minutes or so to avoid burning (these suckers go from close to overdone very quickly). Remove from the oven and enjoy warm!

Beth ended up having to bake them for 30 minutes total to get them crunchy.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Ice Cream Chocolate Chip Cookies


I doubled this recipe so I had some to send with Don when he flew out for business.  I ended up with 74 cookies using a cookie scoop.  Everyone liked these and the flavor matches are endless!

Ice Cream Chocolate Chip Cookies

1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup ice cream (use your favorite flavor, see note)Beth used Pecan Pie Ice Cream
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups chocolate chips (or a combination of white and chocolate chips)

Note: this dough requires chilling!

Melt butter in a microwave safe bowl. Pour into an electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment. While still hot, add both sugars and mix on low until combined. Add ice cream and mix until smooth.

Add egg and vanilla extract, mix for just a few seconds, then add baking soda and salt. Mix until smooth, then mix in flour slowly. Mix dough just until it comes together, then stir in chocolate chips.

Scoop 2 tablespoon balls of dough(Beth used a cookie scoop and got 74 cookies when doubled) onto a cookie sheet covered with wax paper. You’re going to chill the dough balls so there is no need to space them out. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Place cookies 2” apart on cookie sheets covered with parchment paper or silpat baking mats. (If you've chilled them longer than 4 hours you might want to press them down slightly with the palm of your hand otherwise they won't flatten totally.) Bake for about 9-11 minutes, until they start to get golden around the edges. Cool at least 5 minutes on cookie sheets before moving to a rack to cool completely.

Cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to 4 days or frozen for up to 1 month.


Use your favorite flavor of ice cream. The cookies will have a slight flavor from the ice cream but it won’t be overwhelming. For best results, use regular full-fat ice cream, not reduced fat, fat-free, or frozen yogurt.

To measure the ice cream, just scoop it from the freezer into your (dry measure) measuring cup.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Granola {Without Oil}

This was a hit at our house.  Very crunchy and best of all, no oil!
Granola {Without Oil}
4 cups whole oats (DON'T use quick oats)
1 cup sliced or slivered almonds
1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
1/4 cup honey
2 Tbsp water
1 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 pinch ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 cup dried berries such as blueberries, cranberries, or raisins*, optional

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, toss together oats and sliced almonds, set aside.

In a medium saucepan, combine brown sugar, honey, water, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt, bring mixture to a boil stirring frequently. Once mixture reaches a boil, allow to boil for 1 minute whisking constantly. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla and baking soda and whisk until mixture is foamy, about 10 seconds. Beth did this in the microwave.

Carefully pour hot sugar mixture over oat mixture and toss to evenly coat. Spread mixture into an even layer on a Silpat or parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven, about 36 - 40 minutes until golden brown, removing from oven and tossing twice during baking (when tossing, I tossed the oat mixture near the edges into the center and spread the mixture in the center out to the edges for more even cooking). Remove from oven, toss in dried fruit and allow to cool completely. Store in an airtight container (note that granola wont be crisp until cooled).

*Beth used craisins

Friday, September 4, 2015

Garlic Chicken for 1

I made this recipe times 4.  I only used 1 1/2 lemons, but thought that was too much.  Next time I will use less.  Good, but tart.
Garlic Chicken for 1

4 oz chicken
onion flakes
4 garlic cloves
1/2 lemon, juiced
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 350.  Place chicken in an oven proof pan.  Sprinkle with seasonings and bake for 30-45 minutes.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Roasted Asparagus

We love roasted vegetables and really liked the seasonings in this recipe.
Roasted Asparagus

1 bunch asparagus
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 t parsley
1/4 t oregano

Preheat oven to 400.

Place asparagus on foil, add seasonings.  Wrap up the asparagus into a foil packet.  Roast for 15-20 minutes.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Roasted Balsamic Cauliflower

We love balsamic vinegar, so when I saw this, I knew we would try it.  We really liked the flavor the vinegar added!
Roasted Balsamic Cauliflower

1 head cauliflower, chopped
2 TBSP coconut oil or olive oil
4 TBSP balsamic vinegar

Preheat oven to 425.

Spread chopped cauliflower onto a baking sheet.

Mix the oil and balsamic vinegar in a bowl

Pour the mixture onto the cauliflower and stir to coat well

Roast in the oven for 45 minutes. Turn every 15 minutes so that it is golden brown all over.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Cheesy Cajun Beef and Potato Bake


I made this for Jenna and me last week.  Since it was just the two of us, I halved the recipe and made it in a 9 x 9 pan.  This was very good.  See my changes in bold.
Cheesy Cajun Beef and Potato Bake
adapted from

20 oz bag of refrigerated shredded hash brown potatoes Beth used frozen, thawed
2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon of olive oil, divided
1 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
½ cup chopped onion
1/3 cup diced bell pepper
1 lb uncooked lean ground beef
1 tablespoon Cajun or blackened seasoning
3 tablespoons butter, sliced
3 tablespoons flour
1 ½ cups skim milk
8 oz Pepper Jack cheese, shredded Beth used slices and just tore them up

Pre-heat the oven to 375. Lightly mist a 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.

Place the shredded potatoes in a large mixing bowl and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the oil. Add the salt and pepper and stir together until ingredients are well mixed. Transfer the potatoes to the baking dish and press them down across the surface of the dish and partially up the sides to form a “crust” along the bottom of the pan. Place the dish in the oven and bake for 35 minutes.

While the potatoes are baking, bring the butter over medium-low heat in a medium saucepan until melted. Add the flour a little at a time, whisking it into the butter until combined. Add the milk a little bit at a time, whisking it into the flour mixture until smooth and well combined. Turn the heat up to medium for a few minutes until the milk is warmed. Add the shredded cheese to the mixture and whisk the mixture together. Continue to heat for another 3-5 minutes, whisking periodically, until the cheese is melted into the sauce. Set aside to thicken .

Pour the remaining teaspoon of oil into a skillet and bring over medium heat. Add the onion and bell pepper and cook for a few minutes until both are softened. Add the ground beef and continue to cook, breaking the beef up into small pieces with a cooking spoon until the beef is cooked through. Add the Cajun or blackened seasoning and stir together until well combined.

When the potatoes are done, remove them from the oven (edges will be starting to brown). Pour the meat mixture into the potato crust and spread across the surface. Pour the cheese sauce over top of the meat and return the dish to the oven to bake for another 15-20 minutes.