Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Vegetable Ranch Dip

I had all the ingredients to make this, so this was another appetizer we made for Thanksgiving. It was very good.
Vegetable Ranch Dip

2 bars (8 oz each) cream cheese or use a 7.5 oz tub of chive and onion spread + 1 bar of cream cheese
1 can (15 oz) corn, drained
1 red pepper, chopped
1 can (2.25 oz) chopped olives
1 packet (1 oz) ranch seasoning mix, regular or buttermilk

Combine softened cream cheese  with all the other ingredients in a mixing bowl. Stir to combine.

Place in the fridge for at least 6 hours before serving. Overnight is best.

Serve with your favorite crackers

    Monday, December 11, 2017

    Slow Cooker Cheesy Spinach Artichoke Dip

    We made this for an appetizer on Thanksgiving day. Jenna especially liked that there is NO mayo in this recipe. It is excellent!
    Slow Cooker Cheesy Spinach Artichoke Dip

    1 bag (10 oz) fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped
    1 can (13.75 oz) artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
    1 bar (8 oz) cream cheese, cut into 1-inch cubes
    1 cup sour cream
    2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
    1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
    4 garlic cloves, minced finely
    1/4-1/2 teaspoon pepper
    1/4 teaspoon salt

    Line a slow cooker with a bag for easy cleanup.

    Put all ingredients into the slow cooker and cook on low for 3-4 hours. Stir before serving and season with extra salt and pepper, if necessary.

    Serve with triscuits, wheat thins, baguette slices, tortilla chips, etc.

    Sunday, December 10, 2017

    Poor Man’s Burnt Ends

    My mom called a few weeks ago to tell me we HAD to try these. I found a few different recipes and came up with this to smoke on Thanksgiving. They are delicious!

    Poor Man’s Burnt Ends 

    adapted from https://heygrillhey.com/recipe/poor-mans-burnt-ends/

    3 pound chuck roast
    1/2 cup BBQ sauce
    1/4 cup brown sugar

    Simple Beef Rub

    1 Tablespoon coarse Kosher salt
    1 Tablespoon coarse ground black pepper
    1 Tablespoon garlic powder

    1. In a small bowl, combine the salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Season your chuck roast liberally on all sides with the rub mixture. Put in fridge to marinate overnight

    2. Preheat your smoker for indirect grilling at 275 degrees F. Use hickory or oak wood for the most complementary smoke flavor.

    3. Smoke the roast until the internal temperature reaches 185-190 degrees.(about 5 hours)

    4. Remove the roast from the grill and allow to rest for 15-20 minutes. Cut into 3/4 inch cubes and transfer to a foil baking pan. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup brown sugar and drizzle with most of the BBQ sauce, reserving a couple of tablespoons for later. Toss gently to coat all of the pieces in a little of the sauce.

    5. Place the pan on the grill, close the lid and cook for an additional 1 1/2 to 2 hours, or until the sauce is bubbly and the cubed bits of beef are falling apart tender.

    Saturday, December 9, 2017

    Smoked Whole Turkey

    We smoked a turkey for Thanksgiving this year. It was very easy to do and tasted great!

    Smoked Whole Turkey
    Adapted from http://blackberrybabe.com/

    Dry Brine

    1/3 cup kosher salt
    1 T cracked black pepper
    1 T brown sugar Beth used brow sugar twin

    1 17 -20 # Turkey, thawed, neck and giblets removed

    1/4 cup olive oil
    1 T ground black pepper
    1 T garlic powder
    1/2 T paprika
    1 T onion powder
    1/4 cup butter, softened

    Rinse turkey under cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Place on a baking sheet.

    Combine dry brine ingredients in a small bowl and rub on exterior and internal cavity of the turkey. Place turkey in refrigerator for two hours or up to 24 hours. This will form the crust on the turkey

    Preheat smoker to 300°F.

    Loosen the skin around the turkey breast by inserting your hand. Use your hand to rub the softened butter under the skin. Then, use a paper towel to wipe some of the dry brine from the turkey skin. Brush on olive oil. Mix the rest of the seasonings together and lightly sprinkle on the turkey.

    Smoke at 275-300°F for about 4 hours or until internal temperature reaches 165°F when measured in the thickest part of the breast.

    Friday, December 8, 2017

    Turtle Bundt Cake

    I made this for Thanksgiving and took the leftovers to church and then to Jenna's work. This was very good. See in bold what I used for the caramel(found in a can by sweetened condensed milk) Very good and easy!

    Turtle Bundt Cake

    Adapted from Betty Crocker


    1 box chocolate cake mix
    1 box (4-serving size) ™ chocolate-flavor instant pudding and pie filling mix
    1 cup water
    1/2 cup vegetable oil
    1/4 cup caramel topping Beth used Dulce De Leche, thinned with heavy cream
    4 eggs
    3/4 cup chopped pecans

    3/4 cup chocolate frosting (from 16-oz container)
    1/4 cup caramel topping Beth used Dulce De Leche, thinned with heavy cream
    1/4 cup coarsely chopped toasted pecans

    Heat oven to 350°F. Generously spray 12-cup fluted tube cake pan with baking spray with flour.

    In large bowl, beat cake mix, dry pudding mix, water, oil, 1/4 cup caramel topping and the eggs with electric mixer on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Stir in 3/4 cup pecans. Pour into pan.

    Bake 38 to 40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let stand 20 minutes; remove from pan to cooling rack. Cool completely, about 1 hour.

    Transfer cake to serving platter. In small microwavable bowl, microwave frosting uncovered on High 20 to 30 seconds on until thin enough to pour over cake. Pour over cake. Refrigerate about 30 minutes or until chocolate is set.

    When ready to serve, pour 1/4 cup caramel topping over chocolate frosting; sprinkle with 1/4 cup pecans. Store loosely covered at room temperature.

    Thursday, December 7, 2017

    Pecan Pie Blondies

    I made these during the Packer game(the one that was a shut out) when I needed to stress bake. This was the Sunday before Thanksgiving. I kept them in the fridge until Thanksgiving. They are the BOMB! Very addicting. Next time I will double them!

    Pecan Pie Blondies


    For the blondies

    ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
    1 cup brown sugar, packed
    1 large egg
    1 tablespoon vanilla extract
    1 cup all-purpose flour
    ¼ teaspoon kosher salt

    For the pecan layer

    ¼ cup (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter
    ½ cup brown sugar
    ¼ cup pure maple syrup
    ¼ cup heavy cream
    1½ cups roughly chopped pecans

    1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8-by-8-inch pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper and spray with cooking spray; set aside.

    2. Place butter in a medium sauce pan and heat over medium heat. Butter will melt, then begin to bubble and foam. Brown specks will begin to form in the bottom of the pan and a white foam will appear on top of the melted butter. Stir the butter very frequently to prevent burning. This process should take 2-4 minutes. Remove the butter as soon as you see brown specks, remove the pan from the heat and continue to whisk for 30 seconds. Transfer butter into large mixing bowl and allow to cool for a few minutes.

    3. Whisk the brown sugar into the browned butter. Add the egg, vanilla, and whisk to combine. Add the flour, salt, and stir until just combined. Pour the batter into prepared pan and smooth it lightly.

    4. Prepare the maple pecan layer. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Once melted, whisk in the brown sugar and maple syrup until brown sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Once it reaches a boil, cook for 1 minute and remove from heat. Add heavy cream and stir. Stir in the chopped pecans. Pour the pecan mixture evenly over the blondie batter and smooth the top.

    5. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until the bars are set. Allow bars to cool completely before slicing and serving into 16 squares. Bars can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 3 month.

    Wednesday, December 6, 2017

    Cranberry Cream Cheese Banana Bread

    Jenna came home with some ripe bananas to use or freeze and I doubled this recipe. I took one to church and we ate one on Thanksgiving. This is delicious!

    Cranberry Cream Cheese Banana Bread
    Adapted from https://www.wellplated.com/cream-cheese-banana-bread/

    1 1/2 cups mashed overripe bananas (about 3 large)
    1 large egg
    1/3 cup sour cream
    2 tablespoons vegetable oil
    1/3 cup pure maple syrup or honey
    2 tablespoons light brown sugar
    1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
    1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
    1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
    1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons dried cranberries, divided

    4 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature
    2 tablespoons sour cream
    1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
    1/2 cup powdered sugar
    1 ounce white chocolate, chopped (about 3 tablespoons) or 1 square white Almond Bark
    1/4 teaspoon vegetable oil

    1. Bake the bread: Place a rack in the center of your oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease an 8×4-inch loaf pan with nonstick spray and set aside.

    2. Mash the bananas in the bottom of a large bowl until mostly smooth. Whisk in the egg, then the sour cream and oil. Whisk in the maple syrup, brown sugar, and vanilla. Sprinkle the baking soda, ginger, and salt over the top, then stir until combined. Gently stir in the flour until barely combined, then fold in 1/2 cup of the cranberries.

    3. Scrape the mixture into the prepared pan. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Check at the 35-minute mark and tent with foil if the bread is browning too quickly at the corners. Place the pan on a wire rack and let cool for 15 minutes. Remove from the pan and place on the wire rack to finish cooling completely.

    4. While the bread cools, prepare the frosting.  In a mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese, sour cream, and vanilla extract on medium speed until smooth. Reduce mixer speed to low, then slowly add the powdered sugar until combined. In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the white chocolate and oil. Microwave, uncovered, for 20 seconds, then stir. Continue microwaving in 20-second bursts, stopping to stir between each.

    5. Spread the cream cheese mixture over the top of the cooled bread. Sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons cranberries, then drizzle with the white chocolate. Allow the chocolate set for a few minutes. Slice and serve.

    · To bake this recipe as 12 muffins lightly grease a standard muffin tin, then divide the batter evenly among the cups. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 to 22 minutes

    · Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

    Tuesday, December 5, 2017

    Spicy Baked Chicken Thighs

    I made these before Thanksgiving for me to have on hand for lunches. I like a bit of spice so used this sriracha powder I had gotten from Sam's. They were quite tasty.

    Spicy Baked Chicken Thighs
    adapted from https://valentinascorner.com/baked-tender-chicken-thighs-recipe/

    9-10 chicken thighs skinless and  boneless
    3 Tbsp olive oil
    3 garlic cloves minced or dehydrated garlic
    2 tsp salt
    1/2 tsp ground pepper
    1 ½ tsp Italian seasoning
    ¾ tsp paprika
    hot sauce or sriracha garlic powder to taste

    In a 9 x 13 pan, combine olive oil and minced garlic.  Add chicken and coat on both sides.

    Prepare the seasoning: In a bowl, combine the salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and paprika.

    Season both sides of chicken with the seasoning. Sprinkle with dry sriracha powder or hot sauce. Set aside to marinate at least 2 hours, if you have the time.

    Bake 45 minutes at 375°F.

    Monday, December 4, 2017

    Chickpea Green Curry

    Kathleen made this. It was very good. Next time we will chop the vegetables into smaller pieces.
    Chickpea Green Curry

    2 tbsp coconut oil
    1/2 of an onion, chopped
    1/2 of a green pepper, chopped
    1 clove of garlic, chopped
    3 tablespoons green curry paste
    1 can of coconut milk
    1 can of garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
    2 cups of mixed vegetables (we used Stir Fry that had green beans, water chestnuts, squash, broccoli and carrots)
    2 tbsp fresh cilantro, minced

    Sweat the onions and green pepper in the coconut oil until translucent. Add the garlic and green chili paste and cook for about 30 seconds.

    Add the coconut milk and mixed vegetables, cook for 5-10 minutes, or until vegetables are soft. Stir in the garbanzo beans and cook a minute more.

    Sprinkle with cilantro before serving over rice.

    Sunday, December 3, 2017

    Sea Salt Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

    I made these for Don's lunches. They taste great! I had to bake them for 18 minutes for crunchy cookies!

    Sea Salt Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

    Adapted from https://www.afarmgirlsdabbles.com/triple-chocolate-peanut-butter-cookies-with-sea-salt-recipe

    1 c. peanut butter—Beth used ½ creamy and ½ crunchy
    1 c. butter, at room temperature
    1-1/2 c. packed brown sugar
    1/2 c. granulated sugar
    2 large eggs
    2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
    2-1/2 c. all-purpose flour
    1 tsp. baking soda
    1 tsp. cinnamon
    1 tsp. sea salt
    1/2 c. dark chocolate chips
    1/2 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
    1/2 c. peanut butter chocolate chips
    sea salt

    Preheat oven to 350° F.

    In a large bowl, cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes, scraping the bowl 2 to 3 times. Add peanut butter and incorporate. Beat in eggs and vanilla.

    In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Add dry ingredients to the peanut butter mixture and mix until fully incorporated. Fold in all three chocolates.

    Drop by tablespoons onto baking sheet, about 2” apart. Sprinkle dough with sea salt. Bake for 11 to 12 minutes, Beth baked for 16-18 minutes for crunchy cookies, or until golden brown.. Let cool on baking sheet for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks to cool completely.

    Saturday, December 2, 2017

    Pralines and Caramel Sheet Cake

    I made this for Jenna to take to work for her " day before her birthday treats" since she was to be out of the office on her birthday.  Everyone loved this!

    Pralines and Caramel Sheet Cake
    adapted from https://www.chef-in-training.com/2016/02/caramel-praline-sheet-cake/


    1½ cups chopped pecans
    ¾ cup brown sugar

    1 cup butter
    1 cup water
    2 cups brown sugar
    ½ cup buttermilk
    ½ teaspoon baking soda
    1/4 t salt
    2 eggs
    2 teaspoons vanilla
    2 cups flour

    Caramel Frosting

    6 Tablespoons butter
    ½ cup heavy cream
    1 cup brown sugar
    2 cups powdered sugar
    2 teaspoons vanilla


    Lay a sheet of parchment paper on flat surface.
    Heat medium size skillet over medium high heat. Place pecans in skillet and cook for 1 to 2 minutes stirring constantly. Add brown sugar and stir constantly until brown sugar is melted, about 5 minutes, and coats the pecans. Dump the nuts onto parchment paper and separate the nuts while they cool.  You will used these on top of the frosting.

    Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

    In a medium sauce pan, combine butter, water and shortening. Bring to a boil. After mixture reaches a boil, remove from heat.  Stir in brown sugar and continue to stir until sugar is dissolved.  Add buttermilk, then baking soda, then eggs, then vanilla in that order, mixing in-between each addition.  Add flour and stir until smooth.

    Pour into a greased 15x10x1 inch cookie sheet and bake at 400 degrees F for 15- 20 minutes.
    Allow cake to cool.
    Caramel Frosting
    While cake is cooling combine butter, cream and brown sugar in medium sauce pan. Stir over medium heat until mixture begins to boil.  Remove from heat and stir in powder sugar and vanilla.
    Pour frosting evenly over top.  Sprinkle with pralines.

    Friday, December 1, 2017

    Chicken with Garlic Herb Butter Sauce

    This was quick and very easy. I will make this again for sure. You could serve this over noodles.
    Chicken with Garlic Herb Butter Sauce
    Adapted from https://www.cookingclassy.com/skillet-chicken-with-garlic-herb-butter-sauce

    4 (6 oz) boneless, skinless chicken breasts or tenderloins—Beth used 8
    1 1/2 Tbsp minced garlic (4 cloves)
    1 Tbsp olive oil
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    1/3 cup chicken stock
    4 Tbsp butter, divided
    1 T chopped dried sage
    1 T chopped thyme
    1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary

    1. Heat a large 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Pound thicker parts of chicken with the flat side of a meat mallet to even their thickness.

    2. Dab chicken dry with paper towels, then season both sides of chicken with salt and pepper. Add oil to skillet, then add chicken.

    3. Cook chicken about 5 - 6 minutes per side or until center registers 165 degrees on an instant read thermometer. Transfer to a plate.

    4. Reduce burner temperature slightly, then melt 1 1/2 Tbsp butter in same skillet. Add in garlic and sage and saute until garlic is golden brown, about 30 seconds.

    5. Pour in chicken broth and scrape up browned bits from bottom of pan. Dice remaining butter into 3 pieces then add to skillet along with thyme and rosemary. Stir until butter is melted.

    6. Return chicken to pan and spoon sauce over top. Serve warm.

    Thursday, November 30, 2017

    Better Than Anything Chex Mix

    Kathleen wanted something sweet the other night. I had pinned this recipe a long time ago and we adapted it to our liking. It is addicting!
    Better Than Anything Chex Mix 
    adapted from https://www.favfamilyrecipes.com/better-than-you-know-what-chex-mix

    8 cups Chocolate Chex cereal
    3/4 cup packed brown sugar
    6 tablespoons butter
    3 tablespoons light corn syrup
    1/4 teaspoon baking soda
    1 cup mini chocolate chips
    1 cup mini marshmallows
    1/2 cup caramel bits
    2 Tbsp heavy cream
    1/2 cup MILK chocolate baking chips 
    1/2 cup white chocolate baking chips
    1 tsp coarse sea salt

    Into large microwavable bowl, measure cereal; set aside. Line cookie sheet with waxed paper or foil.

    In 2-cup microwavable measuring cup, microwave brown sugar, butter and corn syrup uncovered on High 1 to 2 minutes, stirring after 1 minute, until melted and smooth. Stir in baking soda until dissolved. Pour caramel mixture over cereal, stirring until evenly coated. Microwave on High 3 minutes, stirring every minute. Spread on cookie sheet. Cool 10 minutes. Break into bite-sized pieces.

    Make sure Chex mixture is cool to the touch.  Evenly sprinkle mini m and m's and miniature marshmallows over Chex mixture.

    In small microwavable bowl, microwave caramel baking bits and 1 T cream uncovered on High about 1 minute or until chips can be stirred smooth. Use a spoon or fork to drizzle over snack.

    Microwave the milk chocolate baking chips next, with 1 T cream, starting with 20-seconds and stirring, then at 20 second intervals until the mixture is completely smooth. Drizzle over the snack mixture.

    Then microwave the white baking chips in 20-second intervals, stirring until smooth, and drizzle that over the snack mixture. Quickly sprinkle coarse salt over all while candy drizzles are still wet.

    Let cool and then break apart and store in tightly covered container.

    Wednesday, November 29, 2017

    Cinnamon Almond Pancakes

    I was hungry for pancakes the other night, so after putting a few different recipes together, came up with his for dinner! This recipe can easily be cut in half, but fed our family of 4 with a few pancakes left over!

    Cinnamon Almond Pancakes

    2 c almond flour
    4 eggs
    2 T Splenda or other sweetener
    4 T vegetable oil
    2 t vanilla
    2 t cinnamon
    1/4 t salt
    butter for cooking

    Mix all ingredients with a mixer.  Melt butter in a pan.  Spoon in 1/4 c of batter for each pancake.  Cook until you see bubbles form.  Flip and cook on the other side.  Enjoy!

    Tuesday, November 28, 2017

    Corn Soup, Mexican Style

    Jenna made this for dinner one night. It was delicious and Don really liked it!

     Corn Soup, Mexican Style

    4 tablespoons butter
    1 small white onion, chopped
    1 jalapeno, minced
    5 cloves garlic, crushed
    3 tablespoons flour
    2 teaspoons ground cumin
    1 teaspoon chili powder
    4 cups chicken stock
    6 cups frozen corn kernels
    1 tablespoon sugar
    2 teaspoons salt
    1½ cups heavy cream, half and half, or milk
    1 cup freshly chopped cilantro
    ½ lb bacon, cooked and crumbled
    1 jalapeno, sliced
    1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium high heat. Add in the onions and minced jalapeno and sauté for about 5 minutes, then stir in garlic and cook an additional 1 minute.
    2. Stir in the flour, cumin, and chili powder and cook 1-2 minutes. Whisk in the chicken stock until smooth and bring to a boil. Add in the corn, sugar, and salt. Once it returns to a boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer 10 minutes.
    3. Stir in cream and cilantro. Serve topped with crumbled bacon and jalapeno slices.

    Monday, November 27, 2017

    Graham Streusel Coffee Cake

    Jenna and I doubled this recipe and made 2 jelly roll pans for her to take to work. Everyone loved this and some ate more than one piece!

    Graham Streusel Coffee Cake

    adapted from Taste of Home

    1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
    3/4 cup packed brown sugar
    3/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
    1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    2/3 cup butter, melted
    1 package yellow cake mix and ingredients on package.
    1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
    1 tablespoon milk

    1. In a small bowl, combine the cracker crumbs, brown sugar, pecans and cinnamon. Stir in butter; set aside.

    2. Prepare cake mix according to package directions.

    3. Pour batter into a greased jelly roll pan. Sprinkle with graham cracker mixture. 

    4. Bake at 350° for 30-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

    5. For the glaze-combine confectioners' sugar and milk; drizzle over coffee cake.

    Sunday, November 26, 2017

    Apple Pie Cups

    I made these to take to the teachers at my old school a few weeks ago. Simple but very tasty!

    Apple Pie Cups

    adapted from Pillsbury

    1 can (13 oz) Pillsbury™ refrigerated flaky cinnamon rolls with buttercream icing
    1 1/3 cups more fruit apple pie filling (from 21-oz can), coarsely chopped

    Heat oven to 375°F. Spray 16 regular-size muffin cups with cooking spray. Set icing aside. Separate dough into 16 rolls by slicing each roll in half . Press into and up sides of muffin cups.

    Spoon 1- 2 tablespoons pie filling into each dough-lined cup.

    Bake 14 to 18 minutes or until golden brown; cool in pan 5 minutes.

    Transfer icing to small microwavable bowl. Microwave uncovered on Low  8 to 10 seconds or until thin enough to drizzle. Place rolls on serving plate; spoon icing over rolls. Serve warm.

    Saturday, November 25, 2017

    Crock Pot Meatballs with Sriracha and Honey

    I made these for the Monday night Packers game a few weeks ago. They turned out great. I cooked them for 4 hours on low and then turned them on to warm.
    Crock Pot Meatballs with Sriracha and Honey
    adapted from  The Slow Roasted Italian

    2/3 cup sriracha hot chili sauce
    1 cup honey
    2 limes, squeezed
    2 pounds lean ground beef
    3/4 cup bread crumbs
    1/4 cup milk
    1 teaspoon garlic powder
    1 teaspoon onion powder
    1 teaspoon kosher salt
    1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
    2 large eggs

    Combine sriracha, honey and lime juice in a bowl.   Taste and add additional honey or sriracha as necessary to suit your heat preference.

    In a large bowl add remaining ingredients, except eggs. Stir sriracha sauce in slow cooker until combined.  Add 1/4 cup of sauce into meatball mixture, fold mixture together 2 times, then add eggs.

    Mix well, roll into balls and place them into the slow cooker. Once about half of the meatballs are in the slow cooker, spoon sauce over the tops of them. Continue adding meatballs until they are all in the slow cooker.  Top with remaining sauce

    Put crockpot on low, cover and cook for 4-8 hours. Serve and enjoy.

    Friday, November 24, 2017

    Caramel Spice Earthquake Cake With Pumpkin

    I made this with a few changes and took for treats to church. Kathleen took the leftovers to work and everyone really enjoyed them.

    Caramel Spice Earthquake Cake With Pumpkin


    1 box Spice Cake Mix (and ingredients needed on back)Beth used a cinnamon bun cake mix
    1 (8 oz) block cream cheese, softened
    1/2 cup butter, softened
    1/2 cup pumpkin puree
    1 1/4 tsp cinnamon
    1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
    1/4 tsp ground ginger
    1/4 tsp all-spice
    1 tsp vanilla extract
    3-4 cups powdered sugar
    1 1/2 cup Rolo's
    1/2 cup white chocolate chips Beth used pumpkin spice chips

    Preheat oven to 350.

    Spray a 9x13" baking pan with non-stick cooking, set aside.

    In bowl mix together Spice cake with ingredients called for on back and pour into prepared pan.

    In medium bowl with hand mixer, mix together butter and cream cheese until smooth.

    Mix in the pumpkin, spices and vanilla until combined.

    Add the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time, checking taste after 3rd cup, if not sweet enough add an additional cup.

    Drop by tablespoons about 3/4 of your mixture over the cake batter and swirl throughout.

    Sprinkle Rolo's and white chocolate chips over the top of the cake.

    Bake for about 40-50 minutes or until cake is just about set.

    Remove from oven and spread the rest of the pumpkin cream cheese mixture over the top.

    Let cool for about 10-15 minutes before serving.

    Thursday, November 23, 2017

    Spiced Banana Bread with Butterscotch Chips

    This was quick and easy to make. I needed a quick treat for Sunday and this was very good.
    Spiced Banana Bread with Butterscotch Chips

    3 1/2 cups flour
    4 teaspoons baking powder
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon ground allspice
    1 teaspoon cinnamon
    1/8 teaspoon salt
    4 - 5 bananas mashed (about 2 cups) I thawed 5 frozen bananas 
    1 1/2 cups sugar
    2 eggs
    1/2 cup butter, melted and cool slightly
    1/2 cup milk
    12 oz butterscotch chips

    1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt until well incorporated.

    2. Add in bananas, sugar, eggs, butter, and milk. Blend until well combined.

    3. Stir in butterscotch chips. Spread batter evenly into two greased loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees, for 55 - 65 minutes or until a cake tester comes out mostly clean. Cool on wire racks before slicing and serving.

    Wednesday, November 22, 2017

    Chocolate Chip Cookies with Nutella

    I made a double batch of these cookies for Don's lunches and am glad I did! They are delicious!

    Chocolate Chip Cookies with Nutella

    1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
    3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
    1/2 cup granulated sugar
    1 large egg + 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup Nutella, divided  Stir well!   When doubling, use 1 13 oz jar
    2 and 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
    1 and 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
    1 teaspoon cornstarch
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 semi-sweet chocolate chips
    sea salt, to taste

    1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.

    2. In a large bowl using a hand-held mixer or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter for 1 minute on medium speed until completely smooth and creamy. Add the brown sugar and granulated sugar and beat on medium high speed until fluffy and light in color. Beat in egg, egg yolk, and vanilla on high speed until combined. Beat in 1/4 cup of Nutella until combined.

    3. Whisk the flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt together in a large bowl. On low speed, slowly mix into the wet ingredients until combined. Add 1 cup of chocolate chips and mix on low for about 5-10 seconds until evenly disbursed. Turn the mixer off and add the remaining Nutella. Beat for 5-10 seconds so the Nutella streaks through the cookie dough and is not fully mixed. Dough will be a little crumbly, that is OK.

    4. Scoop and roll balls of dough, about 1 Tablespoon of dough each, into balls. The warmth of your hands will help them come together. Bake the cookies for 10 minutes, until slightly golden brown around the edges. The baked cookies will look extremely soft in the centers when you remove them from the oven. Allow to cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheet. Finish each with a sprinkle with sea salt.Beth forgot to do this. Transfer cookies to a cooling rack to cool completely.

    Tuesday, November 21, 2017

    Hungarian Paprika Pork Chops

    I got a good deal on pork chops and grilled these for Don and me. They are juicy, delicious and easy!

    Hungarian Paprika Pork Chops

    4 6 oz. boneless pork loin chops
    1 tsp. paprika
    1/2 tsp. salt
    1/2 tsp. black pepper
    1/4 tsp. ground ginger
    1 tsp. garlic powder
    1/4 tsp. dry mustard

    Remove all visible fat from the chops.

    Combine the paprika, salt, pepper, ginger, garlic
    powder and mustard and rub onto all sides of
    each chop.

    Grill 6 minutes on each side, or until temperature is 140.

    Monday, November 20, 2017

    Spiced Krispie Treats

    My cousin Jimmy said this was his favorite way to make Rice Krispies. I took these to a Halloween get together. They were tasty, but I thought a little dry. I had some patriotic Rice Krispies so I used those.

    Spiced Krispie Treats
    Jimmy Humprey

    6 T butter
    cooking spray
    2 t ground cinnamon
    1/2 t nutmeg
    1/2 t ground allspice
    1/2 t ground cardamom
    1/4 t ground ginger
    1/4 t kosher salt
    1 10 oz bag marshmallows
    6 c Rice Krispies
    1 t sea salt

    Lightly butter an 9 x 13 baking pan.

    In a saucepan, melt the butter over medium high heat.  Cook for 2-3 minutes after it has melted until it is browned and has a nutty aroma.

    Remove the pan from the head and add the spices.  Stir to coat, return to heat and toast slightly.

    Add the marshmallow and cook until they melt.

    Put the Rice Krispies in a large bowl and add the marshmallow mixture to the bow.  Stir well.  Spread the mixture into the pan and press evenly.  Sprinkle with sea salt.  Let cool and cut into pieces.

    Sunday, November 19, 2017

    Baked Chicken Tenderloins

    I made these on Halloween to have for quick lunches. This was easy and very good!
    Baked Chicken Tenderloins
    Adapted from https://www.yellowblissroad.com

    8 boneless, skinless chicken tenders
    1 teaspoon kosher salt
    1/2 teaspoon black pepper
    1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
    1/2 teaspoon onion powder
    1/2 teaspoon paprika

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Pound chicken breasts lightly so they are of even thickness.

    In a small bowl, whisk together salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder and chili powder. Sprinkle the seasoning mixture over both sides of the chicken and pat in with your hands. Place chicken side by side, making sure there is no overlap.

    Bake in a preheated oven for 20-30 minutes, until juices are clear or a meat thermometer reads 160-170 degrees.

    * Cover with foil and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes while the juices settle before slicing.
    Serve hot.

    Saturday, November 18, 2017

    French Bread Rolls

    I made these for Don to have shredded beef on. They were easy to make. I cut the recipe in half and made in the bread maker.

    French Bread Rolls 
    Adapted from http://allrecipes.com

    1 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
    1 tablespoon active dry yeast
    2 tablespoons white sugar
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1 teaspoon salt
    4 cups bread flour
    1 beaten egg white
    1 T water

    1. In a large bowl, stir together warm water, yeast, and sugar. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.

    2. To the yeast mixture, add the oil, salt, and 2 cups flour. Stir in the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until the dough has pulled away from the sides of the bowl. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl, and turn to coat. Cover with a damp cloth, and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour. Beth put all ingredients, except the egg white and 1 T water, into a bread machine and set for dough setting. I also cut the recipe in half.

    3. Deflate the dough, and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Beth took dough from bread machine and then followed the rest of the directions. Divide the dough into 16 equal pieces, and form into round balls. Place on lightly greased baking sheets at least 2 inches apart. Cover the rolls with a damp cloth, and let rise until doubled in volume, about 40 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

    4. Brush rolls with egg white mixed with 1 T water.

    5. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until golden brown.

    Friday, November 17, 2017

    Brownie Monster Cookies

    Jenna made these for a quick dessert. Make SURE to use the parchment paper. We found out the hard way by not using it for the first 2 pans and they stuck! They tasted very good.
    Brownie Monster Cookies

    1 box (1 lb 2.3 oz) Betty Crocker™ fudge brownie mix
    1/2 cup quick-cooking oats
    1/2 cup butter, melted
    1 tablespoon water
    1 egg
    3/4 cup M&M's™ chocolate candies
    1/2 cup peanut butter chips
    1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

    Heat oven to 350°F. Line cookie sheets with cooking parchment paper.

    In large bowl, stir together brownie mix and oats. Add melted butter, water and egg; stir until well blended. Stir in candies and chips.

    Shape dough into 2-inch balls. Place on cookie sheet 3 inches apart. Press each ball slightly to flatten.

    Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until tops of cookies are no longer wet looking. Cool 5 minutes; remove from cookie sheets to cooking rack

    Thursday, November 16, 2017

    Easy Chocolate Fudge

    I made this to take to a Bible study. It was delicious. I took a few recipes and changed a few things.

    Easy Chocolate Fudge

    2 cups dark chocolate chips or semi sweet or 1 c of each
    14 ounces sweetened condensed milk Beth used chocolate Eagle Brand
    ¼ cup butter
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    ½ teaspoon cinnamon
    sea salt for top
    1 cup chopped pecans, plus about 2 tablespoons for topping

    Combine the chocolate, milk, cinnamon and the butter in a medium size glass bowl and heat in the microwave for 90 seconds or over a double boiler on the cooktop. Stir to combine and heat another 15 seconds if needed.

    Add the extract and stir until smooth. Stir in 1 cup of pecans. Scoop into a parchment lined loaf pan, or 8 x 8 pan. Spread with a spatula to approximately 1-inch thickness. Top with remaining chopped pecans. Chill until ready to serve, at least 3 hours. Slice into 1-inch squares and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week

    add ½ c Nutella

    Add ½ c peanut butter—crunchy /delete the pecans and add chopped peanuts

    Wednesday, November 15, 2017

    Pumpkin Pie Bites with Cinnamon Roll Crust

    These were easy to make and tasted like mini pumpkin pies! Yum!

    Pumpkin Pie Bites with Cinnamon Roll Crust
    Adapted from https://southernbite.com/cinnamon-roll-pumpkin-pie-bites/

    1 (12.4-ounce/8-count) tube canned cinnamon rolls
    1 cup canned plain pumpkin
    1 egg
    ¼ c sugar
    ¼ c brown sugar
    1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
    ½ teaspoon vanilla
    whipped cream, optional

    1.    Preheat the oven to 350°F and lightly spray the wells of 2- 12-count muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray.  You will need 16 muffin cups.

    2.    Open the cinnamon rolls and slice each one in half, separating it into 2 biscuits. Press each piece in the bottom of each well in the muffin tin and about of the way up the sides.

    3.    In a medium bowl, combine the pumpkin, egg, sugars, pumpkin pie spice, and vanilla. Scoop a heaping tablespoonful of the pumpkin mixture into the center of each cinnamon roll.

    4.    Bake for 18 to 20 minute or until the cinnamon roll crust is a deep golden brown and the pie filling is set. Cool on a wire rack. Repeat with the remaining cinnamon rolls and filling. Once cool, top with whipped cream or the cinnamon roll icing, if desired.

    Tuesday, November 14, 2017

    Pumpkin Pie Truffles

    I made these after seeing a few recipes on line. They are very good.

    Pumpkin Pie Truffles

    1/4 cup (2 ounces )cream cheese, room temperature
    2 Tablespoons confectioners' sugar
    1/3 cup pumpkin pureé
    1 and 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs 
    1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1 t vanilla


    10 ounces white almond bark
    Sprinkles or graham cracker crumbs

    In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix together cream cheese and confectioners' sugar until creamy. Add pumpkin pureé and vanilla and beat on high until combined. Add graham cracker crumbs, pumpkin pie spice and cinnamon, mix on medium speed until incorporated. Refrigerate dough for at least 3 hours (or up to 24 hours).

    Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.Scoop chilled dough in generous teaspoon amounts and roll into 1-inch balls. Place on parchment-lined cookie sheet and chill the balls for 30 more minutes
    Five minutes before you take the balls out of the refrigerator, melt the chocolate in the microwave for20 second intervals. Let the chocolate sit for a minute or two to cool slightly.

    Remove pumpkin pie truffles from the refrigerator and dip them one at a time into the melted chocolate. Allow excess chocolate to drip off.

    Place balls back onto the baking sheet after you dip each one. Immediately sprinkle with crushed graham cracker crumbs or sprinkles. Allow chocolate to completely set in the refrigerator before serving. Truffles are okay at room temperature for a few hours for serving.

    These stay for up to 1 week in the refrigerator or in the freezer for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.



    Monday, November 13, 2017

    Frijoles Tejanos

    We put this together to cook all night but forgot to turn the crockpot on before bed.......I cooked them all day and they were delicious! We halved the recipe since that made more than enough for us!
    Frijoles Tejanos
    Texas Backroad Restaurant Recipes  Williams Creek Trading Company BBQ

    4 c dry pinto beans
    3 cloves garlic, chopped
    1/2 T black pepper
    1/2 t cumin
    1/2 t paprika
    pinch of oregano
    1/2 bay leaf
    1 t red wine vinegar
    1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes with green chiles
    1 poblano pepper, chopped we used a jalapeno
    3 small ornamental peppers, chopped we used 1 large dried chili d'arbol
    32 oz chicken stock
    12 oz salt pork we used bacon, chopped
    1 large onion, chopped

    In an 8 qt slow cooker, add all ingredients.  Add water as necessary.  Cook on warm or low all night.  Do not add salt until the end, if needed.

    Sunday, November 12, 2017

    Chicken Fajitas on a Jelly Roll Pan

    I put this together for dinner a week or so ago. It was so easy and so flavorful! Everyone enjoyed it!

    Chicken Fajitas on a Jelly Roll Pan

    adapted from https://www.cookingclassy.com/sheet-pan-chicken-fajitas/

    1 tsp chili powder
    1 tsp ancho chili powder
    1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
    1 tsp ground paprika
    1/2 tsp ground coriander
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    2-3 # boneless skinless chicken breasts, sliced into 1/2-inch thick strips
    1 red, green and yellow bell peppers, cored and sliced into strips
    1 medium yellow onion, sliced
    2 cloves garlic , minced
    2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
    3 Tbsp chopped cilantro optional
    Olive oil spray
    flour tortillas
    sour cream, avocado slices or guacamole, diced tomatoes, cheese

    1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a jelly roll pan with non-stick cooking spray.

    2. Mix together chili powders, cumin, paprika, coriander, 1 1/2 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper, set aside.

    3. Spread bell peppers and yellow onion onto baking sheet. Top with chicken strips then sprinkle garlic and seasoning evenly over chicken strips. Spray with olive oil spray and then toss to evenly coat. Spread into an even layer and roast in preheated oven, tossing once halfway through cooking, until veggies are tender and chicken has cooked through, about 18 - 25 minutes 

    4. Drizzle lime juice evenly over top of the chicken fajita filling, sprinkle with cilantro and more salt to taste and toss to coat. Serve filling warm in warm tortillas with desired toppings.

    Saturday, November 11, 2017

    Red Lentil Masoor Dal

    Kathleen made this for her for lunches this week. It is quite tasty and the house smelled wonderful while this was cooking!
    Red Lentil Masoor Dal

    1 lb  red lentils
    1 cup onions, chopped
    3 cloves of garlic
    6 tbsp tomato puree
    1 tbsp fresh cilantro (we were out of cilantro, so ommitted)
    1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated (we used dried powder)
    4 tbsp ghee or butter
    1 tbsp red chili peppers flakes
    1 tbsp whole fennel seeds
    1 tsp whole cumin seeds
    1 tsp whole black mustard seeds (we used normal mustard seeds)
    1 tbsp garam masala powder
    1 tsp turmeric powder
    1 dash nutmeg powder
    1 clove
    to taste table salt

    Mince the garlic and combine with the seeds of fennel, cumin and black mustard, and the peppers flakes, and 1 clove. Now, chop the onions , and peel and grate the fresh ginger. Finally, mix all the powered spices.

    Pour 4 tbsp of  butter into a bottom-thickened heavy pot, and place over medium heat. When the butter is totally melted and hot, pour the garlic and seeds mixture, and stir-fry for 30-60 seconds.

    Keep an eye on the garlic pieces: they have to become golden but not burned. When the garlic is ready, pour the onions and stir well. Cook,stirring occasionally until the onion are smooth and translucent. Meanwhile,while the onions and seeds are cooking, wash and rise the lentils. When the onions are ready, pour the lentils into the pot, and stir fry for a couple of minute.

    Now, add 5 cups of hot water, the mixture of powered spices, the fresh ginger, and the tomato puree to the pot. Stir well, and set the heat to cook gently simmering. Cook 25-30 minute adding more water only if the dal is becoming too thick. When the lentils are starting to be mushy, they are ready. Finally add salt as needed, cook another 2-3 minutes, and add fresh cilantro before serving.

    Serve the red lentils dal with steamed white rice, naan, chapati bread, and all the Indian dishes you prefer. 

    Friday, November 10, 2017

    Angel Biscuits

    My girls got me a new cookbook for my birthday. I tried this recipe and they turned out great. I love that you can make as many or as few as are needed.

    Angel Biscuits
    Tx Backroad Restaurant Recipes  Ted's Restaurant

    1 package dry yeast
    2 T warm water
    5 c all purpose flour
    1/4 c sugar
    3 t baking powder
    1 t baking soda
    2 t salt
    1 c shortening(Beth used 1/2 Crisco and 1/2 butter)
    2 c buttermilk

    Dissolve yeast in water.  in a large bowl, combine dry ingredients and cut in shortening.  Add the yeast and the buttermilk.  Mix well.  Store in airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to use.

    Roll in balls, place on baking sheet and flatten.  Place in a warm spot and let rise for 30 minutes.  Bake at 425 until brown, about 15 minutes.

    Thursday, November 9, 2017

    Smoked Pork Loin

    I smoked this on a Sunday afternoon. It turned out AWESOME! The meat was tender and oh, so good!
    Smoked Pork Loin

    1 2.5-3# pork loin
    1 t ground cumin
    1 t ground coriander
    1 t onion powder
    1 t garlic powder
    1 t smoked paprika
    1 t pepper
    1 t salt

    Mix all the spices together and sprinkle on meat.  Smoke at 225 for 2-3 hours with apple chips,  until internal temperature is 140.  Take out and wrap in foil for 15 minutes.  Slice and serve