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Saturday, July 17, 2010

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

3/4 cup butter flavored shortening
1 cup peanut butter
1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup water
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
3 cups quick or old fashioned oats, uncooked
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
granulated sugar

Beat the first three ingredients until creamy. Beat in the water, egg, and vanilla. Add the combined dry ingredients. Mix well. Cover and chill about 2 hours. Heat the oven to 350 F. Shape into 1-inch balls. Place onto ungreased cookie sheets. Flatten with the tines of a fork dipped into granulated sugar to form a crisscross pattern. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until the edges are golden brown. Cool for 1 minute on cookie sheets. Remove to wire rack. Cool completely. Makes about 7 dozen
yahoo group frienly recipe swap
Kitchen Cook

Cheesy Green Beans

Cheesy Green Beans

- 1 lb fresh green beans, rinsed & cut into bite size pieces
- 1 envelope dry onion soup mix
- 1 cup water
- 3 tbsp butter or margarine
- 1 small package (about ½ cup) slivered almonds, toasted
- 3 tbsp freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 1/8 tsp paprika
Combine green beans, water and onion soup mix in saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until tender – about 15 minutes Drain beans Stir in butter, almonds and cheese and mix well Spoon into serving dish and sprinkle with paprika

Ham Divan

Ham Divan

1 10 ounce package frozen broccoli spears
4 slices bread
4 large thin slices baked ham
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon prepared mustard
1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese

Cook broccoli according to package directions: drain well. Toast bread
slices: spread with butter. Place in single layer in large shallow baking
dish or individual dishes. Cover each slice toast with 1 slice ham, folding
ham to fit toast, if necessary. Top with hot broccoli. Blend sour cream with
mustard: spoon in to ribbons over broccoli. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake in a
400 degree oven for 15 minutes or until heated threw and cheese is melted.

Serves 4

Supper Muffins


1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup cheddar cheese, grated
1/4 cup onion, chopped
1 tablespoon butter or margarine
1 (14-ounce) package corn muffin mix

Mix sour cream and cheese in a small bowl, set aside. Saute onion in the
butter over low heat until limp. Prepare corn muffin mix according to
package instructions, stir in onion. Spoon batter into greased muffin tins,
filling 2/3rds full. Top each with 1-1/2 teaspoons of the reserved cheese
mixture. Bake as directed on package until tops are bubbly and edges
golden, 15 to 20 minutes. Makes 1 dozen.


Nacho Cheese Popcorn

Nacho-Cheese Popcorn

1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 or 4 dried chilies
1 large clove garlic, cut into quarters
1 teaspoon cumin seed
1/3 cup unpopped popcorn
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
Place vegetable oil, chilies, garlic and cumin seed in a small saucepan. Cook over low heat for 3 minutes; let stand 10 minutes.* Strain. Use only 3 tablespoons of seasoned oil for popping corn; reserve the rest. Pour reserved seasoned oil over popped popcorn, tossing to coat. Mix
Parmesan cheese, paprika and salt. Sprinkle over popped popcorn, tossing to mix.

Makes 2 1/2 quarts.

World's Best Old Fashioned Apple Pie with Spicy Streusel Topping

World's Best Old Fashioned Apple Pie with Spicy Streusel Topping

1 frozen 9 inch deep dish pie shell
6 apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1/4 inch slices
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup apricot jam.
1/2 cup yellow raisins
2 T. grated lemon, use fruit, juice and peel
1 T. melted butter
1 T. flour
1 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. nutmeg
1/4 t. ground cloves

Place pie shell on cookie sheet. In a bowl, toss together remaining ingredients until nicely mixed. Place apple mixture evenly into crust. Sprinkle Spicy Streusel Topping (recipe follows) over apples Bake at 350 for about 1 hour or until crust is cooked through and apples are tender. Allow to cool in pan.
When pie has cooled, drizzle top with Creamy Lemon Glaze (recipe follows) serves 8
Spicy Streusel Topping:
1/2 cup flour
1/3 cup butter
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 t. cinnamon
1/8 t. nutmeg
1/8 t. ground cloves
Cut butter into flour until mixture resembles coarse meal. Toss in the remaining ingredients until blended
Creamy Lemon Glaze:
1 T. sour cram
1 T. cream
1 t. lemon juice
Sifted powdered sugar
Stir together sour cream, cream and lemon juice. Add enough powdered sugar to make glaze a drizzling consistency.

Easy Peach and Cream Cobbler

Strut Your Stuff Weekly Blog Meme

Easy Peaches and Cream Cobbler

5 cups peeled and sliced peaches
18 oz. box yellow cake mix
1 box powdered sugar
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 stick butter, cut into pats
1/2 pint heavy cream; sweetened and whipped

Lighly butter or spray a 9x13 inch shallow baking dish or pan. In a
medium size bowl cream the sugar and cream cheese together. Place sliced
peaches in baking dish or pan, then spread the creamed mixture over the
peaches. Sprinkle the cake mix over all. Sprinkle the cinnamon over the
top, the arrange the pats of butter on top of the mix. Bake at 350 for
25 to 40 minutes. Remove, cool and serve. Top with sweetened whipped
cream or ice cream.

Malted Milk Ball Ice Cream Dessert

Malted Milk Ball Ice Cream Dessert
3-1/2 cups malted milk balls {10-1/2 oz.}
12 oz. Cool Whip
12 frozen rectangular ice cream sandwiches
1 cup hot fudge sauce, warmed if desired
Place malted milk balls in re-sealable plastic bag. Tap with rolling pin or meat mallet until coarsely crushed. Reserve 1/3 cup. Mix 3 cups crushed malted milk balls and whipped topping.
Arrange ice cream sandwiches on bottom of 13x9 pan, cutting sandwiches if necessary to cover bottom of pan. Spread whipped topping Mixture over ice cream sandwiches. Sprinkle with reserved crushed malted milk balls. Cover and freeze about 2 to 3 hours, until firm. Cut into squares. Top with fudge sauce. Cover and freeze any remaining dessert. Makes 12 servings.

Almond Brickle Cheesecake

Almond Brickle Cheesecake
1/4 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup almonds, chopped
1/4 cup butter, melted
1-1/2 cups shortbread cookie crumbs
24 oz. cream cheese softened
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 eggs
2/3 cup sour cream
1/4 cup butterscotch schnapps
1 Tbs. flour
6 oz. almond brickle chips

CRUST: Mix all ingredients together and reserve 1/2 cup of the mixture. Press remaining mixture in bottom of a 9" springform pan.

FILLING: Beat cream cheese and sugars until blended. Add eggs, one at a time, then sour cream and butterscotch schnapps. Toss brickle chips with flour, then add to cream cheese mixture. Pour into prepared crust; sprinkle with reserved crumbs. Bake at 325~ for 1 hour and 10 minutes.

Georgia Peach Bread


1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup shortening
2 eggs
2 1/4 cups pureed peaches
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup finely chopped pecans
Pit, slice enough peaches to make required amount of puree. Cream sugar, shortening together. Add eggs; mix thoroughly. Add peach puree, dry ingredients. Mix thoroughly. Add vanilla, chopped pecans; stir until blended. Pour into 2 loaf pans approx. 5x9" that have been well greased, floured. Bake at 325 for 55 minutes-1 hour. Let bread cool a few minutes before removing from pan.
Recipe source: Exchanging Recipes yahoo group, submitted by Susie Reifenrath.

Six Word Saturday

You Can Call Me Grandma Again.

I know that I have posted on my blog once before but with news like this who can resist saying it again? That is right I will be grandma again. This will be my second grandchild. I do need to ask you all a favor though and keep my daughter in your prayers it seems that there may be a small problem. Her blood showed positive for anibody E. I am not familiar with this and would like to ask any of my readers if they are familiar at all with it would they share with me some information. Thanks

win $25 gift card

Grammy Janet's Place is hosting a giveaway sponsored by Cheerios and BlogSpark where the winner will receive a "What Do You Love" prize pack made up of a box of cheerios and a $25 American Express Gift Card. Now I am not sure about you but I can tell you that I would love to have $25 extra dollars to spend on the ones I love. If you want to enter head over to Grammy Janet's blog and enter before July 29, 2010.

Friday, July 16, 2010

The Easy Lunchbox System Review and Giveaway

Summer time is filled with days that are long, hot and sometimes busy but often times ones filled with peace and leisure. Soon the days of fall will be here and with it will bring school time. If you are like most you have either started back to school shopping or you will be doing it rather soon. One thing that you may be looking for when back to school shopping is that back to school lunchbox. You want the perfect kids lunch box that will make the perfect impression after all you want this to be the best year ever. Just take a look at what all you can pack into the Easy Lunchbox System.
With the Easy Lunchbox System lunches can be packed at night and stored in the fridge for morning. We all know those busy mornings the ones where we are in a hurry to make sure permission slips are signed, homework has been done, breakfast needs served and the baby is crying. With the Easy Lunchbox System lunches can be quickly packed with healthy lunches. Taking lunch to work or school can help us save money and using the Easy Lunchbox System helps save time, paper or plastic. The Easy Lunchbox System was started by a mother who had grown tired of unhealthy school lunches. The idea of packing nutritious lunches for her children was something that she desired. The problem was that she wanted to do this with little to no mess as eco friendly as possible. Thus she created the Easy Lunchbox System for both kids and adults alike. The Easy Lunchbox System which is

The two piece lunchbox container with the bottom having three sections allows the lunch to be packed with the entree, and two side dishes not touching. The lid fits tightly on the bottom and comes in 4 different colors. Storage is easy as well. The Cooler Bags are ready to hold up to the adult in the break room or the child on the playground Choose the perfect cooler bag from a variety of wonderful colors.

The Easy Lunchbox System started in December, 2009 and is quickly becoming the new favorite among affordable and green lunch box solutions! It has been named on the 'top 5 Eco-Friendly Mommy Must Have" by Parents Easy Lunchbox System supports the waste free lunch movement and makes it possible for others to share in this movement as well.

Buy: you can purchase The Easy Lunchbox System from their website located at

Win: a complete Easy Lunchbox System including the cooler bag and sectionals.

Enter Giveaway by (1) letting me know what color you would choose for the thermos bag and (2) let me know something about The Easy Lunchbox System I did not share in review

Extra Entries:

You can not win this giveaway if you have won in the past 3 months. Open to only those in U.S. and Canada. Email must be on blog profile or in comment. Ends August 1, 2010

  • we did recieve a complete The Easy Lunchbox System for review purposes. Thoughts and opinions are those of my own

Chocolate Milk Shake Perfect for Hot Day

While many fast food restraunts serve milkshakes, frosties, smoothies, blizzards and the list goes on there is only one for me. For me the old fashioned chocolate shake will do.

Penne Perfection

Penne Perfection

2 Tbls. olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup diced onion
3 cups sliced mushrooms
1 cup diced green pepper
1 tsp. Italian seasoning 1 can (28 oz.) crushed or chunky tomatoes
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
2 tsp. sugar
16 oz. penne pasta, cooked as directed on package

In skillet with olive oil, saute garlic, onions, mushrooms, green peppers and Italian seasoning. Stir in remaining ingredients. Cover and heat through.
Serving Suggestions:
Serve with tossed salad and fresh Italian bread.

Broccoli Italienne

Broccoli Italienne

2 10 ounce package frozen broccoli spears or 2 pounds fresh broccoli
1/2 teaspoon oregano crushed
1/2 cup mayonnaise or salad dressing
1/4 cup shredded sharp process cheese
1 tablespoon milk

Cook broccoli till tender in boiling salted water to which oregano has been added; drain. In top of double boiler, mix mayonnaise, cheese, and milk; heat over hot, not boiling water, stirring till cheese melts and mixture is hot. Serve with broccoli

Source Better Homes And Gardens Vegetable Cookbook

Seafood Lasagna

Seafood Lasagna

4 ounces light cream cheese, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups low-fat cottage cheese
1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup sliced green onions, including some tender green tops
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
9 lasagna noodles, cooked and drained
Seafood Sauce (recipe follows)
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium bowl, blend cream cheese and cottage cheese. Stir in mozzarella, onions, and parsley. Place 3 noodles side by side in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish lightly coated with cooking spray or oil. Add 1/3 of the cheese mixture and cover with 1/3 of the seafood sauce (It will not cover completely.) Repeat layers two more times. Top with Parmesan cheese. Bake uncovered, until bubbly, about 45 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.



1 lb. ground beef
1/2 c ketchup
1/2 c water
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp salt
1 small onion
1/4 tsp chili powder
1 tsp mustard
Brown beef. Dice onion in water. Add ketchup,salt,pepper,and chili powder. Bring to boil. Add beef and boil for 5 minutes. Add mustard last. Stir well.
Additional Comments:
I like to brown beef and then add all ingredients in crock...makes for easy supper!

Potato Ham Bake

Potato ham bake

1 package hashbrown potatoes
1 Large onion diced
1Tsp cajun seasoning or [seasoning salt plus Red pepper and black pepper to
8 oz sharp chedder cheese 1/2tsp Red hot pepper flakes [optional]
Pam spray 1/2 red bell pepper diced
1/2 green bell pepper diced
8 oz sour cream
1 can Cream of chicken soup
I cup diced ham or Spam
1C Spicy potato chips crushed
Spray Baking dish with Pam Mix onions.Bell peppers,soup Seasoning salt,pepper flakes[optional] and hashbrowns Layer potato Mix with sour cream ,chedder cheese. and ham End with topping of crushed spicy chips and sharp chedder cheese Bake @ 350F till cheese Melts and slightly browns About 10 to 12 Min

Serving Suggestions:
Good for covered dish parties.Makes a good side dish

Fresh Tomato Vinaigrette

Fresh Tomato Vinaigrette

The Spicy Pecan Vinegar is really good. It is great with a healthy
oil on salads such as spinach with fruit.
Servings: 4

1 cup tomatoes, seeded & chopped
1 Tbsp spicy pecan vinegar
1 Tbsp celery leaves, finely chopped
2 Tbsp parsley, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 tsp hot sauce
2 basil leaves, fresh
1 few Oregano leaves, fresh

Blend chill & serve over greens.

Cajun Coleslaw

Cajun Coleslaw

5 Tablespoons Mayonnaise, (heaping)
1 Teaspoon Louisiana hot sauce
2 Tablespoons Yellow mustard (heaping)
2 Tablespoons Ketchup
2 Tablespoons Olive oil
1 Tablespoon Wine vinegar
1 Teaspoon Garlic salt
1 Tablespoon Lea & Perrins
1 Each Juice of medium-sized lemon
3 Teaspoons Salt (to taste)
4 Each Bell peppers, sliced
2 Each Onions, medium, shredded
1 Each Large cabbage, shredded

Put mayonnaise and mustard in a bowl large enough to hold complete mixture, but shaped so that the mixture can be beaten with a fork. Beat mayonnaise and mustard until combined. Add olive oil slowly, beating all the time. Beat until mixture has returned to the thickness of original
mayonnaise. Add Louisiana hot sauce, continuing to beat. Add ketchup and keep beating. Add salt and garlic salt, beating all the time. Add wine vinegar (this will thin the sauce down). Beat this thoroughly, adding the lemon juice as you do so. Taste for salt and pepper. Place shredded cabbage, peppers, and onions in a large salad bowl. pour sauce over and toss well. This should be done about an hour before serving. Tastes even better the next day.
Source: Justin Wilson’s “Outdoor Cooking With Inside Help”

Breakfast Casserole

Breakfast Casserole

1 lb sausage
8 eggs
2 c milk
1 c Bisquick
1/2 c Monterey Jack cheese
1/2 c cheddar cheese
1 red bell pepper diced

Cook sausage and drain well. Beat eggs, add milk , bisquick and bell pepper . Spray a 13x9-inch dish with non-stick spray. Layer sausage, sprinkle grated cheese on sausage. Strain egg mix over sausage. (Must strain or will be lumpy.) Bake at 325 degrees for 50 minutes or until set.

Sweedish Ginger Cookies

Swedish Ginger Cookies

1 cup margarine, softened
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten
2 tbsp dark corn syrup
1 tbsp water
1 1/2 tbsp orange zest
3 1/4 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
Garnish: sugar

Beat together the margarine and sugar in a large bowl.
Add the egg.
Beat until light and fluffy.
Add the corn syrup, water, and zest.
Set aside.
Sift together the flour, baking soda, and the spices.
Gradually add to the margarine mixture.
Roll the dough into walnut-size balls.
Place on ungreased baking sheets.
Press a fork dipped in sugar onto the cookies to flatten.
Bake at 375 F for 8 to 10 minutes.

Gooseberry Patch - Lisa Ashton

Oatmeal Carmelitas

Oatmeal Carmelitas

1 cup 3tbsp flour, divided
1 cup quick-cooking oats, uncooked
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup butter, melted
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans
3/4 cup caramel ice cream topping

Combine one cup of the flour, the oats, brown sugar, baking soda, salt, and the melted butter.
Blend using an electric mixture on low speed to form a crumbly mixture.
Press half of the mixture into an ungreased 11 x 7 inch baking pan.
Bake at 350 F for 10 minutes.
Remove from the oven.
Sprinkle with the chocolate chips and pecans
Set aside.
Combine the topping and the remaining flour.
Drizzle over the top.
Sprinkle with the remaining crumb mixture.
Bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes until golden.
Chill for 1 to 2 hours.
Cut into the bars

Gooseberry Patch - Joyce LaMure

Honey Peach and Blackberry Cobbler

Recenty I had a friend send a message on facebook in search of how to create a delicious blackberry cobbler. I got a chuckle out of one of the women when they responded with the answer that there are as many different blackberry cobbler recipes as there are berries that go in it. Here is a great one for you from Cooking Light 2003

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
8 cups chopped peeled peaches (about 4 pounds)
1/4 cup honey
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
3 cups blackberries
Cooking spray
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon grated lemon rind
1 teaspoon baking powder
6 tablespoons chilled butter, cut into small pieces
1 1/4 cups low-fat buttermilk
2 tablespoons turbinado sugar
Preheat oven to 400°.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife.

Combine 1/4 cup flour, peaches, honey, juice, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a large bowl; toss gently. Let stand 15 minutes. Fold in blackberries. Spoon mixture into a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.

Combine 2 cups flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, granulated sugar, rind, and baking powder in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add buttermilk, and stir just until moist.

Drop dough onto peach mixture to form 12 mounds. Sprinkle mounds with turbinado sugar. Bake at 400° for 40 minutes or until bubbly and golden.

Grilled Steak, Mushroom and Green Bean Salad

I can remember many times snapping beans in the swing in the back yard. Mom would cook up many delights and the beans would keep me quite busy. Here is a great recipe for those garden green beans.

1/2 pound large white mushrooms, halved
1/2 pound green beans, trimmed
1 red onion, cut into 1⁄2-inch-thick rounds
3 tablespoons olive oil
kosher salt and black pepper
1 pound skirt steak, cut crosswise into 4 pieces
4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 bunch watercress, thick stems removed (about 4 cups)

Heat grill to medium-high. In a large bowl, toss the mushrooms, green beans, onion, 1 tablespoon of the oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Season the steak with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Grill the vegetables (place the beans on the grill perpendicular to the grates to prevent them from falling through), turning occasionally, and removing them as they become tender, 8 to 12 minutes. At the same time, grill the steak, brushing occasionally with 2 tablespoons of the vinegar, 3 to 5 minutes per side for medium-rare. Let rest for 5 minutes before slicing. Divide the watercress, grilled vegetables, and steak among bowls. Drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 2 tablespoons of vinegar

Chunky Tomato Fruit Gazpacho

Chunky Tomato Fruit Gazpacho

2 cups finely chopped tomatoes (about 3/4 pound)
2 cups finely diced honeydew melon (about 3/4 pound)
2 cups finely diced cantaloupe (about 3/4 pound)
1 cup finely diced mango (about 1 medium)
1 cup finely diced seeded peeled cucumber (about 1 medium)
1 cup finely diced nectarines (about 3 medium)
1 cup fresh orange juice (about 4 oranges)
1/2 cup finely chopped Vidalia or other sweet onion
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely chopped

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Cover and chill at least 2 hours.

Source: cooking light 2006

No Bake Strawberry Cheese Cake

To hot to bake? Try this Strawberry Cheesecake and other great no bake cake recipes on the Womans Day website
No Bake Strawberry Cheese Cake

6 whole lowfat honey graham crackers (2‑squares each), crushed to fine crumbs
2 Tbsp butter, melted, and mixed with 1 Tbsp honey
1 box (3 oz) strawberry-kiwi flavor gelatin
2⁄3 cup boiling water
1 tub (16 oz) 1% fat cottage cheese
2 bricks (8 oz each) fat-free cream cheese, softened
2 Tbsp sugar
2 tsp strawberry extract or 1 tsp vanilla extract
1 pt (about 12 oz) fresh strawberries
2 Tbsp strawberry jelly, melted
Garnish: small mint leaves

Coat an 8 x 3-in. springform pan with nonstick spray. Crust: Mix crumbs with butter mixture until evenly moistened. Press firmly over bottom and 3⁄4 in. up side of prepared pan. Place in freezer.
Filling: Dissolve gelatin in boiling water in a 1-cup measure. Purée cottage cheese in food processor until creamy. Add gelatin, cream cheese, sugar and extract; process until smooth. Pour into prepared crust; smooth top. Cover and refrigerate 4 hours, or until set.
Topping: Wash and dry berries; remove stems. Quarter each lengthwise and place in a bowl; add jelly and gently toss to coat. Remove sides of springform pan; place cheesecake on serving plate. Spoon on berry mixture; sprinkle with mint leaves.

Planning Tip: Can be made, without the strawberry topping, up to 3 days ahead. Refrigerate covered. Prepare Topping just before serving

Thursday, July 15, 2010


12 to 15 tomatoes
3 to 4 hot peppers
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbs. garlic powder
1 Tbs. parsley flakes
3 medium onions
3/4 cup vinegar
1 Tbs salt
1 Tbs. black pepper

Remove skins from tomatoes. Add all ingedients together and bring to
boil; simmer for about 2 hours. Makes 4 to 5 pints.

Easy Steak Dianne

Easy Steak Dianne

6 pieces fillet steak
6 cloves garlic
6 tablespoons oil (olive preferably)
Butter for frying
Salt & Pepper
French Mustard

2 desert spoons worcestershire sauce
8 tablespoons cream
8 tablespoons claret/dry sherry
8 tablespoons tomato sauce

Crush garlic and mix oil and salt in rub into fillets cover and marinate 2 hrs. Heat frypan and place butter in for frying cook steaks 2min to seal season uncooked side with a little salt and pepper to taste. Turn steaks and smear sealed side with mustard cook 2min or till cooked to liking. Remove steaks and let rest. Reduce temperature and add to pan the wine and sauces bring to boil turn off heat and stir in cream. DO NOT ALLOW TO BOIL AT THIS STAGE. Serve sauce over steaks and serve with jacket potatoes and greens

Chocolate Shortbread

Chocolate Shortbread

1 cup butter, softened
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
2/3 cup confectioners' sugar
Dash of Salt
1 1/2 cups flour

In a large bowl, cream the butter until light and fluffy. Blend in the remaining ingredients. Cover and refrigerate for one hour. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls 2 inches apart onto greased baking sheets. Bake at 300 for about 20 minutes or until the cookies are set. Remove to wire racks to cool. Makes about 4 dozen cookies

Taste Of Home - Katherine Both

Cajun Potato Skillet

Cajun Potato Skillet

1 pound bacon, chopped
1 medium onion
1 green bell pepper
1 large stalk celery
1/2 bunch fresh parsley
1 bunch green onions
3 pounds potatoes, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp, about 10 minutes. Do not drain. Meanwhile, chop onion, bell pepper, celery, parsley and green onions. Add onion, bell pepper and celery to skillet. Cook, stirring frequently, until slightly tender, about 5 minutes. Add parsley, green onions, potatoes, salt, thyme and cayenne to skillet. Reduce heat to low. Cook, stirring frequently, until potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes.

Serving Suggestions:
These zesty potatoes make a great side dish or, topped with poached eggs, a
tasty brunch entree.
shared on foodie friday @ Designs by Gollum

Pour Pizza

Pour Pizza
1 lb. ground beef
1 chopped onion
1 cup flour
1 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper 1/8 tsp. oregano
2 eggs
2/3 cup skim milk
15 oz. can pizza sauce
1 1/2 - 2 cups grated mozzarella cheese
Lightly brown ground beef and onion. Season with salt & pepper to taste. Combine flour, salt, pepper, oregano, eggs and milk, making a soft batter. Grease a 9 x 13 pan and sprinkle lightly with cornmeal. Pour batter into pan, sprinkle meat over batter. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 - 20 minutes. Remove from oven, spread pizza sauce over meant and sprinkle with cheese. Put back in oven and bake for 15 minutes.

Honey Ginger Fruit Dip

Honey-Ginger Fruit Dip -
From: The American Heart Association's Patient Education program
Fresh ginger adds the "wow" factor to this dip. It is especially
good with crisp apple or pear slices.
Serves: 12
1 8oz can crushed pineapple in its own juice, drained
1/2 cup fat-free sour cream
1/2 cup fat-free vanilla yogurt
2 tsp honey
1 tsp grated peeled ginger root
1/2 tsp poppy seeds

In a small bowl, stir together all the ingredients.

Serves: 12

Easy Strawberry Preserves

Summertime offers so many delicious opportunities to enjoy the bounty of fruit and vegetables. Here is a wonderful recipe for Strawberry Preserves. Delicious and while the recep says it will last up to 1 month. I have to tell you that in our house the preserves did not even last one week. I guess thats what you get when raising 3 teenage boys. I hope you all enjoy as well.


Place 3 containers 16 oz each strawberries, hulled, sliced, 3/4 cup sugar, 2 tbs lemon juice in a saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 45 min. stirring to make sure the mixture doesn't burn.
*Store in an airtight container in refrigerator for up to 1 month. Good on toast, biscuits, pancakes, etc.

Smoky Mac & Cheese

macaroni and cheese often is all that it takes to make a bad day better. Here is a great one that includes bacon


1 tsp smoked paprika
8 oz each shell macaroni or mini wheels and mild Cheddar cheese, shredded
6 slices American cheese
1/2 cup milk
6 slices bacon, crisply fried, broken into pieces
1 1/2 tsp smoked sweet pepper seasoning blend
1/4 tsp mesquite flavoring

Cook macaroni in pot of lightly salted water according to package directions. Drain and put in a baking dish. Mix in cheeses, mesquite flavoring, paprika and sweet pepper seasoning. Stir until cheese melts, adding milk for desired creaminess.
*Sprinkle bacon on top. Cover and vent in the corners. Microwave 3 min. at 50% power. Serve warm.

Pork Tenderloin with Blueberry Sauce


12 oz green beans, ends trimmed
1/2 tsp each salt, pepper and dried thyme
1 1/4 pounds pork tenderloin
1 1/2 cups frozen blueberries, thawed
1 tsp sugar
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1 onion, chopped
1 tbs oil
2 tsp sodium free chicken grilling blend

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Rub pork with chicken seasoning and 1/4 tsp each salt and pepper and place in a roasting pan. Roast 25 min. or until temperature registers 155 degrees. When 10 min. of cooking time remain, remove pan and spread green beans around pork, drizzle with 1/2 tbs oil. Stir beans and return pan to oven.
*Heat remaining oil in a saucepan. Cook onion 3 min. Add blueberries, vinegar, sugar, thyme and remaining salt and pepper to saucepan, cook 5 min. or until thickened. Serve pork with sauce.

Mexican Tea Cookie

Mexican Tea Cookies

1 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp water
2 cups flour
1 cup chopped pecans
Garnish: powdered sugar

With an electric mixer on medium speed, blend together the butter and powdered sugar. Add the vanilla, water, and flour. Stir in the pecans. Shape the dough into walnut-size balls. Arrange on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 300 F for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven. While the cookies are still hot, roll in additional powdered sugar. When cool, roll again in powdered sugar. Makes 3 dozen

Gooseberry Patch - Kimberely Pfleiderer

BuyGreenWare Review and Giveaway

I grew up in Greene County Illinois where corn is king and farming is a way of life. That is where I first gathered my love for the outdoors and respect for taking care of it. is a source where you can find quality green products. only carries eco - friendly, non toxic, bio degradable products. So know you may be wondering exactly what this material is. BuyGreenWare makes products from corn plastic. Corn Plastic products are all biodegradable. Like traditional plastics corn plastic products are easy to use like traditional plastics but they are environmental friendly as well. Mother's corn products are free from environmental hormones and are safe for even babies to use and safe to clean simply by using hot water. Pictures printed on the Mother Plastic products are created using non toxic inks. So now that you know how great Mother Plastic products from are you may want to see a few things that they sell.

Princess received a few different items from and I have to say they are all very nice pieces. The one thought that I had is that while they are toddler size they remind me greatly of the type of plates that my mother had when we were growing up. I also love the fact that Princess can dine without me worrying about what the products are made from etc...

Buy: You can shop at and find a great variety of products. Save 20% on your purchase using the Discount Coupon code scc01. Hurry as this sale will expire 7/30/2010.

Win: The fine folks at would love to give three of Annies Home readers the two piece plate and cup set shown above.

Enter Giveaway: visit the BuyGreenWare website and let me know what product you like the best

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Giveaway starts now and ends July 30, 2010. Good Luck Email must be in comment or blog profile

we received a few pieces of from for purposes of this review. Thoughts and opinions are those of mine alone

Homemade Cleaning Recipes

Creating your own household cleaners can be safer as you know exactly what is in them as well as frugal by saving you money.

½ cup ammonia
½ cup homemade laundry liquid
½ cup water

Mix all these ingredients well, and store in marked spray bottle.
Make sure you mark all your bottles so you know what they contain. If you reuse a bottle that previously contained other cleansers, make sure the bottle is completely clean and marked before you fill it with your homemade cleanser.

¼ cup borax or washing soda
2 cups cold water

Sponge on and let dry, or soak the fabric in borax mixture before washing in soap and cold water.

¼ cup hydrogen peroxide
¼ cup water

Mix together and dab onto stain. Leave two hours and repeat if necessary. Good on white clothes.


ALL-PURPOSE CLEANER #1 - do not use on aluminium
1 tablespoon ammonia
1 tablespoon liquid soap or homemade laundry detergent
2 cups hot water
Combine in a spray bottle. Pour in hot water, screw on the spray bottle top and shake until completely dissolved. This cleaner can be stored in this spray bottle, so mark it “HOMEMADE ALL PURPOSE CLEANER” with a permanent marker.
Spray the cleaner on surfaces you wish to clean. Use your terry cloth to rub on as you go. For hard to move grease or dirt, leave the cleanser on for a few minutes before wiping it off.

½ cup washing soda
2 litres warm water
Mix together and store in a sealed plastic container that is marked with the name.
Can be used as a floor cleaner – tiles, laminate or vinyl or for general cleaning of walls, counter tops or sinks.

Combine equal parts of bicarb soda and course salt to scrub hard to move dirt and grease. This is an abrasive but it will make the sink shine. Finish off with a litre of water in the sink, add a cap full of liquid bleach and remove the plug. You’ll sanitise and clean the pipes at the same time. Wipe with a dry terry cloth.

¼ cup ammonia
2 cups of warm water

Be careful of the ammonia fumes.

Turn on the oven and leave to heat up for 5 minutes. Pour ammonia and warm water in a baking dish and leave in the warmed oven overnight. This will loosen the grime in the oven, which you can then clean with an ammonia-based cleaner or soap and water. You can also scour with a paste of bicarb soda and water.

This method works by a chemical reaction of the aluminium, salt and bicarb soda. Put the plug in the kitchen sink. Lay a piece of aluminium foil on the base of the sink and add your silverware. Pour in enough boiling water to cover the silver.
Add one teaspoon of bicarb soda and one teaspoon of salt to the water. Let it sit for about ten minutes. The tarnish will disappear without you touching it.

Simply pour about ½ cup of bicarb into a bowl, and add enough liquid soap to make a texture like very thick cream. Scoop the mixture onto a sponge, and start scrubbing. This is the perfect recipe for cleaning the bath and shower because it rinses easily and doesn’t leave grit.
Note: Add 1 teaspoon of vegetable glycerin to the mixture and store in a sealed glass jar, to keep the product moist. Otherwise just make as much as you need at a time.

¼ - ½ teaspoon liquid or grated soap
3 tablespoons vinegar
2 cups water
spray bottle
Put all the ingredients into a spray bottle, shake it up a bit, and use as you would a commercial brand. The soap in this recipe is important. It cuts the wax residue from the commercial brands you might have used in the past.

Vinegar and newspapers

Pour a little vinegar onto a sheet of newspaper and wipe windows. Remove all the grime and polish the window with a clean sheet of newspaper.

½ teaspoon olive oil
¼ cup vinegar or fresh lemon juice

Mix the ingredients in a glass jar. Dab a soft rag into the solution and wipe onto wooden surfaces. Seal in the glass jar and store indefinitely.

FLOOR CLEANER – tiles, vinyl or laminate
½ cup white vinegar plus 2 litres hot water in a bucket and a clean mop will clean up all but the worst floor. If you have a really dirty floor to deal with, add a squirt of homemade laundry liquid to this mix.

A clean mop is a necessity when cleaning floors. If you start with a dirty mop you’ll just loosen the dirt on the mop by making it wet again and then spread that on the floor. When you finished your cleaning jobs, rinse the mop out to get rid of the loose dirt then let it soak in the bucket half filled with water and a ¼ cup of bleach. Let the mop soak for 30 minutes, rinse the bleach out and dry the mop in the sun.

WOODEN FLOOR CLEANER - Ammonia will strip floor wax (one cup to a bucket of hot water)
2 tablespoons homemade vegetable soap - grated
½ cup vinegar
500 mls strong black tea
bucket warm water
Combine all the ingredients in the bucket and apply with a cotton mop.

Add a few drops of water to some bicarb and make a thick paste. Wipe over the crayon marks and scrub off with a terry cloth.

Making Vintage Wedding Invitations

So many of my friends have been getting married as of late with a few more weddings to still happen i thought I would share with you how to create vintage wedding invitations.

You can create great wedding invitations on your home computer using script or old english style fonts. Print the invitations on double sheets of heavy lustreless white paper, which are to be folded once to fit in the envelope. Address the envelope with the full name of the person to whom it will be sent. Slip this envelope into a slightly larger one and fully address to who you would like invitation sent. Each member of the invited party must receive an invitation to the wedding. Each of the envelopes can be placed inside of the slightly larger envelope. Couples can share an invitation.The larger envelope for the family should be addressed to the leader of the family.

Pati Grady and Cooperstown Cookie Co. featured on this site + contest information

Pati Grady and her delicious Cooperstown Cookie Co. was featured on the website Fab over Fifty. Visit her find a bit about the Lady behind the Cooperstown Cookie Co. and enter the giveaway she is sponsoring for $75 worth of cookies from the baseball themed cookie company. Don't forget about the giveaway right here on Annies Home for the All Star game cookies.

Bit of History

In today's modern times it is hard to imagine life without a refrigerator. How did they keep their food from spoiling? How much of a difference did not have a refrigerator make on a family? Before refrigerators were present in homes to keep food cold ice boxes were used. What is an ice box? An ice box was a wooden box that was lined with zinc and other insulators to keep the inside of the box cool. The ice box was smaller than refrigerators and were less efficient as well. The ice box required ice on a constant basis. The ice box was delivered by the iceman. I remember reading about the icemen in the book A Tree Grows in Brooklyn It seems the business of an iceman was very important and demandive at this time in history. The family would buy a big chunk of ice and normally the ice would last approximately 1 week kept inside of what is now reffered to as the freezer. The ice boxes of yesterday are the refrigerators of today. The actual furniture piece of the ice box sometimes have been turned into cupboards which decorate homes.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Cangles Review and Giveaway

I have shared with you a few different times how my family recycles cans. I was very impressed when I found Cangles Jewelry I loved their beautiful creations they make out of recyclable cans. They not only care about the earth and recycle soda cans but they also make beautiful jewelry out of them. They are not only recycling cans to make a better earth but they are upcycling in a new way that is great for the earth and looks good on us. Eco Jewelry seems to take the top spot in the way that materials are recycled and used. Cangles jewelry is handmade using recycled and sanitized aluminum cans. Each piece of jewelry is under $25 Cangles is creating jobs as well as making affordable jewelry available to everyone. Buying Cangles Jewelry allows you to give back as well. Cangles donates to the Ronald McDonald house, contributes to scientific research and education through the Save the Earth Foundation and helps improve eco environment for future generations. Just take a look at what Cangles has to offer.

I received a lovely pair of butterfly shaped Arizona Lemonade earrings as well as an airforce bracelet. I loved both pieces as they were quite beautiful. One of you will also get a chance to shop for some beautiful jewelry as Cangles wants to give one of Annies Home readers a $30 gift certificate.

Buy: order Cangles directly from their website located at
Win: Enter this giveaway by visiting the Cangles website and letting me know what piece of jewelry you like
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Giveaway starts now and ends July 29, 2010. Good Luck Email must be in comment or on blog profileor entries do not count

We recieved 2 pieces of jewelry for review purposes. The thoughts are those of mine

Pound Cake Brownies


3/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
2 1-ounce squares, unsweetened
chocolate, melted and cooled
1 tsp vanilla
1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup chopped nuts

Cream butter and sugar; beat in eggs. Blend in chocolate and vanilla. Stir
flour with baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Add to creamed mixture; mix
well. Stir in nuts. Spread in greased 9 x 9 x 2 inch baking pan. Bake at 350
F for 25 to 30 minutes. Cool. If desired, sift powdered sugar over top. Cut
into bars. Makes 24.

Vegetable Calzones

Vegetable Calzones

1 loaf frozen bread dough (1 lb.)
1 package frozen chopped broccoli (10 oz.) -- thawed & well drained
1 cup Sargento® Light Ricotta Cheese (8 oz.)
1 cup Sargento® Classic Shredded Mozzarella Cheese (4 oz.)
1 clove garlic -- minced
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1 egg beaten with 1 tbsp. water
1 jar spaghetti sauce (16 oz.) -- heated (optional)
Sargento® Grated Parmesan Cheese -- (optional)

Thaw bread dough; let rise according to package directions. Combine broccoli, ricotta and mozzarella cheese, garlic and pepper. Punch down bread dough; turn out onto lightly floured surface. Divide into 4 equal pieces. One at a time, roll out each piece into 8-inch circle. Place about 1/4 cup cheese mixture on half of circle, leaving 1-inch border. Fold dough over to cover filling, forming semi-circle; press and crimp edges with fork tines to seal. Brush with egg mixture. Place on greased baking sheet; bake at 350F. 30 minutes or until brown and puffed. Transfer to rack; cool 10 minutes. Top with hot spaghetti sauce and Parmesan cheese.

Cream Soda Toffee Cupcakes

Cream Soda Toffee Cupcakes
18 cupcakes

* 2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
* 1/2 tsp. baking soda
* 1/2 cup butter, softened
* 3/4 cup granulated sugar
* 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
* 3 eggs
* 1 Tbsp. molasses
* 1-1/2 tsp. vanilla
* 1/2 cup buttermilk
* 1/2 cup cream soda (not diet)
* 3/4 cup toffee pieces
* 1 recipe Brown Butter Frosting
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line eighteen 2-1/2-inch muffin cups with paper bake cups; set aside. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; set aside. In large bowl beat butter with electric mixer on medium to high 30 seconds. Add sugars; beat until well combined. Beat in eggs, one at a time, on low until combined. Beat in molasses and vanilla.
Alternately add flour mixture, buttermilk, and cream soda to butter mixture, beating on low speed after each addition until combined. Stir in 1/2 cup of the toffee. Fill cups 3/4 full. Bake about 18 minutes or until tops spring back when lightly touched. Cool in pans on racks 5 minutes. Remove from pans; cool. Frost; top with remaining toffee. Makes 18 cupcakes.

Brown Butter Frosting: For brown butter, in saucepan heat 1/4 cup butter over medium-low heat until lightly browned, about 8 minutes; cool. In bowl beat 1/4 cup softened butter with mixer on medium 30 seconds. Add cooled brown butter; beat until combined. Add 2 cups powdered sugar, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg, and dash salt. Beat in 1 to 2 tablespoons buttermilk until spreadable. Use immediately. If frosting begins to set up, stir in a small amount of boiling water. Makes 1 1/4 cups frosting.

Source: Better Homes & Gardens cookbook

Summer Vegetable Soup

Summer Vegetable Soup
From: The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook, published by Mayo Clinic Health
Information and Oxmoor House, and winner of the 2005 James Beard award.
serves: 8

1 Tbsp olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
4 plum (Roma) tomatoes, peeled and seeded, then diced
1 Tbsp chopped fresh oregano OR 1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp ground cumin
4 cups vegetable stock or broth
1 bay leaf
1 carrot, peeled, halved lengthwise, and thinly sliced crosswise
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 zucchini, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced crosswise
1 Tbsp grated lemon zest
2 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro (fresh coriander)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until soft and translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for 30 seconds; don't let the garlic brown. Add the tomatoes, oregano and cumin and saute until the tomatoes are softened, about 4 minutes. Add the stock and bay leaf and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat
to medium low and bring to a simmer. Add the carrot and bell pepper
and cook for 2 minutes. Add the zucchini and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 3 minutes longer. Stir in the lemon zest and cilantro. Season with the salt and pepper. Discard the bay leaf. Ladle into individual bowls or mugs and serve immediately.

Serves: 8

Chips Galore Cookies

Chips Galore Cookies

1 cup butter-flavored shortening
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup milk chocolate chips
3/4 cup English toffee bits or
almond brickle chips
3/4 cup flaked coconut
2/3 cup vanilla or white chips

In a large bowl, cream the shortening and both of the sugars. Add the eggs, one at a time. Beat well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla.. Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add to the creamed mixture. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Drop by 1/4 cupfuls 2 inches apart onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 350 F for 12-14 minutes or until golden brown. Remove to wire racks to cool.
Makes 2 dozen

In a Pinch Make Your Own Brown Sugar

We often run out of brown sugar and do not always have the time to run to the grocery store. here is a recipe to make your own brown sugar

To make your own brown sugar, mix one tablespoon of molasses with a cup of white sugar. Add more for darker and less for lighter. I worked as a professional food taster for several years and discovered that brown sugar is just white sugar with molasses. This works like a charm.
Source: Sandra from St. Paul MN

Johnny Marzetti Casserole

I saw someone on one of the blogs I dropped by was looking for a great recipe to serve a group. Here is a great one that I found sounds delicious

Johnny Marzetti Casserole
* 2 lb. lean ground beef (like sirloin)
* 2 lb. ground chuck (fat gives lots of flavor)
* 2 lb. fresh Italian sausage (fat links)
* 2-3 very large onions, chopped
* 3-4 ribs celery, chopped
* 4-5 large Italian sweet peppers, chopped
* 6 Tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped
* 1 lb. fresh button mushrooms, halved
* 6 cloves garlic, minced
* 2 tsp. dried fennel seeds
* 1 tsp. black pepper
* 2 tsp, salt (or to taste)
* 2 tsp. Italian seasoning
* 3 (24-28-32) oz. jars spaghetti sauce (can all be different)
* 8 oz. elbow macaroni
* 8 oz. thin spaghetti (broken into inch long pieces)
* 8 oz. Ziti
* 8 oz. small seashell macaroni
* 12 oz. mozzarella cheese, shredded
* 16 oz. large-curd cottage cheese
* 16 oz. ricotta cheese
* 16 oz. extra-sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
* 1 cup Parmesan or Romano Cheese, fresh grated if possible
* 1/2 cup olive oil (for pastora)
* 1/2-2/3 cup Parmesan / Romano Cheese, fresh grated if possible (for pasta)
* 1 (12 oz.) jar Manzanita green olives - stuffed with pimento,drained)
* 2 large cans (15 oz.) medium black olives, drained
* 1 (8 oz.) jar pickled Italian peperoncini peppers (drained)
* 3-4 cups seasoned Italian bread crumbs
In a medium skillet, cook Italian sausage until it's brown, beginning to caramelize and thoroughly done. Drain on paper towel, squeezing to remove as much grease as possible and cut into bite-sized pieces. Set aside In a very large pot, brown lean ground beef and ground chuck together. Drain all fat off and add chopped celery, Italian peppers, and onions. Add salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, fennel seeds, parsley, and garlic. Stir constantly until meat
is almost done. Add mushrooms and continue to stir until they are starting to turn dark. Lower
heat, cover and allow to simmer for 5-6 minutes. Add the 3 jars spaghetti sauce, Italian sausage, green and black olives, and peperoncini. Mix all together well and cover. Keep hot. Boil water for pastas. If you have a really large pot, you may cook them all at once by adding the ziti first, the elbow macaroni 5 minutes later, seashell pasta 2 minutes after that. and the thin spaghetti last. Allow to boil in salted water for 8-10 more minutes. Remove from heat, drain carefully, and put it all back into the large pot. I have to cook each pasta separately, then mix them
together in a large plastic dishpan. Stir in the 1/2 cup of olive oil, and the 1/2-2/3 cup of Parmesan / Romano cheese (doesn't have to be exact). Cover with foil and set aside. In a very large mixing bowl, mix the cottage cheese, ricotta cheese, shredded cheddar, and mozzarella cheeses together as evenly as possible. To assemble all the prepared ingredients, begin by greasing the large baking pan with olive oil. Add a thin layer of the mixed pastas. Add a layer of the meat and sauce mixture so that the pasta is covered. Add a layer of the mixed cheeses
and sprinkle on Parmesan / Romano Cheese. Repeat until you have used all the pasta, meat mixture, and cheese. You'll want to make the final layer cheese, then sprinkle evenly with bread crumbs. Cover pan tightly with foil and bake in preheated 350 degree F oven for 1 hour.
Uncover the pan and continue baking until top is lightly browned and food is all hot and bubbly. (Another 30-45 minutes depending on your oven. Serve with green salad and loaves of crispy garlic bread or hot Italian bread baguettes.

Call in all the family, friends and neighbors. This may be the most "Italian"
dish I've ever made. The aroma when it's baking is just heavenly and the flavors
only get better if you should have leftovers the next day.

Servings: 40

Pina Colada Chicken

Pina Colada Chicken
Drink in the spirits of the tropics with this flavorful chicken dish that gets
its pizzazz and inspiration from the tastes of a popular pineapple and coconut
concoction! They'll beg you for this recipe!
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
* 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 1-1/2 pounds total)
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
* 1 can (8-1/2 ounces) cream of coconut
* 1/2 cup heavy cream
* 1 can (8-1/4 ounces) pineapple tidbits, drained
* 10 maraschino cherries, cut in half
* 1/4 cup sweetened flaked coconut, toasted
In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Season the chicken with the salt and pepper, and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes per side, or until no pink remains and the juices run clear. Remove to a platter and cover to keep warm. Add the cream of coconut and heavy cream to the skillet; cook for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring until well combined. Stir in the pineapple and cherries, and return the chicken to the skillet. Cook for 2 to 4 minutes, or until heated through. Sprinkle with the toasted coconut, and serve.

Creamy Summer Salad

Creamy Summer Salad
Four ingredients, no cooking, and easy to change up flavors to your liking.
* 1 (9 oz.) container of Cool Whip (may use the Lite version)
* 2 large tubs of cottage cheese
* 1 large pkg. lime jello (or your choice of flavors)
* 1 large can chunk pineapple (or other fruit), drained

Combine Cool Whip, cottage cheese and dry Jello. Mix in drained pineapple. Pour
into mold or bowl and refrigerate until set.

Chocolate Mousee

Chocolate Mousse
I just tried this and it is so good.
* 1 envelope unflavored gelatin (knox)
* 1/4 cup cold water
* 1/3 cup boiling water
* 1 cup sugar
* 2/3 cup Hershey's Special Dark Cocoa
* 2 cups whipping cream
* 2 tsp. vanilla
Sprinkle gelatin over cold water, let stand for 2 minutes. Add boiling water stirring until gelatin dissolves. Cool slightly. Combine sugar and cocoa in large bowl. Add whipping cream and vanilla; beat on medium speed, scraping bottom and sides, until stiff. Pour into pretty wine glass or dish; layer with whipping cream if desired. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes.
Source: Hershey's Dark Cocoa box.

Christmas in July Crafts 2


Using cookie cutters like the ones I shared with you from Sweet Shapes here Trace around the cookie cutter and create a pattern for which to create the shapes of your ornament. Sweet Shapes has a large variety of cutters so you should be able to find the perfect one for you. You can use the fabric of your choice I think plaid of green and red makes the perfect fabric for these ornaments. You can use beads, bells, buttons, or whatever you want to decorate. These are super cute gift to make during Christmas in July .
Shared on Show & Tell Wednesday @ Blue Cricket Design

Meet Me At The Chapel

This is my dear friend on her wedding day. She makes a beautiful bride. What do you think?
shared on Faded Charm for white wednesday

Bouncing Around

Winning Wednesday

Two giveaways ended this week they were the Swimway and Sweetshapes.

Swimway winner:
Trisha D. said...
my kids would love the Tony Hawk "Huck Jam" Subskate!!!

SweetShapes 3 winners:
grandprize winner American Glory set
Julie said...
I would also love a cookie press.

Star Stencil Winners
ruthhill74 said...
The dinosaur cookie cutters would be great!


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Shining it up and Making it look Pretty

Here is a good friend and his baby. He is polising her off. One thing that him and his wife love to do is to joy ride in this beauty.
shared on Ruby Red Tuesday @ Work of the Poet

Keep Produce from Going Bad

Produce is fragile and can go bad quickly if not taken care of. Produce can also be expensive or seem expensive if you do not get to use it before it goes bad. To keep your produce fresher longer here are some quick tips:

  • one of the best ideas is to incorprate fresh produce into the meal plan and stick to it

  • most produce should be stored at room temp rather than in the fridge. If you live in a super hot area then the best resort is the fridge

  • buying fruit that needs to ripe will also extend the freshness of it

  • ripened fruit should be kept in cool dark place til time to use it.

Ant Problem?

Everyone I know has an ant problem of some sort this time of year. There may be a few lucky people but none that I know of. One trick to get them to stay away is to use chalk. Draw a line in an area you don't want ants to cross. While some may cross the ants will not be able to develop a path because the chemicals in the chalk messes up the senses of the ant.

Kitchen Safety Tip: Home Canning Tip To Check Seal

When canning and preserving it is very important to make sure that the lid is sealed properly to the jar. It is important to allow the jars to cool between 12 to 24 hours before removing the screw band and testing the seal. There are a couple of ways to do this the first way is to simply press the middle of the lid with a finger or thumb to see if the lid springs up when you release your finger the lid is unsealed. The second way is to tap the lid with the bottom of a spoon. If it makes a dullsound the lid is not sealed. The dull sound is caused by food being in contact with the lid. If the jar is sealed it will make a ringing high pitched sound. The last thing to do is to hold the jar at eye level and look across the lid. If the lid is curved in the center it is sealed propersly. If flat or bulging then not sealed.

Almond Rhubarb Coffee Cake

Almond Rhubarb Coffee Cake

1-1/2 cups packed brown sugar
2/3 cup canola oil
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup milk
1-1/2 cups finely chopped fresh or frozen rhubarb
1/2 cup sliced almonds

1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1/4 cup sliced almonds
In a large bowl, beat the brown sugar, oil, egg and vanilla until smooth. Combine the flour, salt and baking soda; add to sugar mixture alternately with milk. Beat until smooth. Stir in rhubarb and almonds. Pour into two greased 9-in. round baking pans.
For topping, in a small bowl, combine sugar and butter; stir in almonds. Sprinkle over batter. Bake at 350° for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on wire racks.
Yield: 12-14 servings.

Recipe source: Share Alike Cooking yahoo group, submitted by Dorie

Pineapple Walnut Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Pineapple Walnut Cake W/Cream Cheese Frosting

2 eggs, well beaten
2 cups sugar
20 ounces crushed pineapple in juice
2 cups flour 1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup walnuts or pecans, chopped
Beat together eggs, sugar, oil, and pineapple with juice. Mix together flour, soda and salt; add to egg mixture beating well. Fold in nuts. Pour into greased and floured 13x9 pan. Bake ate 325 for 30-45 mins.


Cream 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter and one (1) 8 oz package cream cheese. Slowly beat in 1 box (1 lb) confectioners sugar until smooth. If too thick add a few drops of milk.

Toasted Butter Pecan Cake

Toasted Butter Pecan Cake
2 cups pecans
1 1/4cup margarine
3cups sifted plain flour
2teaspoonbaking powder
1/2teaspoon salt
2cups sugar
4eggs[ unbeated]
1 cup milk
2teaspoon vanilla

Toast pecans in 1/4 cup margarine in 350 degree oven for 20-25minutes.Sift flour,salt&baking powder.Cream 1cup margarine&sugar.Blend in eggs,beat well after each addition.Add all dry ingredients with milk.Stir in vanilla.Add 1 1/3cup pecans,Bake in floured layer pans at 350 for 20-25 minutes. Frosting:Cream 1 cup margarine,1 lb box powdered sugar,1 teaspoon vanilla,4-6
Tablespoon evaporated milk&stir in remaining pecans

Cream Cheese Turtle Cake

1 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted
1 cup chopped pecans, lightly toasted
1 18.25-ounce box German chocolate cake mix
1 1/4 cups water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, cut into pieces, room temperature Icing
1 3/4 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
5 tablespoons whole milk
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup purchased caramel-flavored topping or dulce de leche topping
Cooking Instructions:
For cake:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour 13x9x2-inch metal cake pan.
Sprinkle 1/2 cup almonds and 1/2 cup pecans over bottom of pan.
Combine cake mix, 1 1/4 cups water, oil, and eggs in large bowl.
Using electric mixer, beat at low speed until mixture is moistened,
about 30 seconds. Beat at medium speed 2 minutes. Pour batter into

Melt butter in medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Gradually stir
in powdered sugar (mixture will form clumps); stir in cream cheese.
Whisk until smooth, about 1 minute. Pour cream cheese mixture in
large ribbons atop cake batter in pan. Using knife, swirl mixture
into batter (do not overmix).

Bake cake until tester inserted into center (in cake part only) comes
out clean, about 50 minutes (bottom of cake will be very moist). Cool
cake in pan on rack. Sprinkle remaining 1/2 cup almonds and 1/2 cup
pecans over cake.

For icing:
Mix sugar and cocoa in medium bowl. Bring milk and butter to simmer
in heavy medium saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low; add powdered
sugar mixture and whisk until melted. Add chocolate chips and whisk
until smooth. Mix in vanilla.

Drizzle warm icing over cake. Let stand until set, about 2 hours.
Drizzle caramel topping over. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; store
at room temperature.)

Candy Bar Cookies

Candy Bar Cookies

2 cups plus 2 tbsp butter, softened and divided
3 cups powdered sugar, divided
1/4 cup milk
3 tsp vanilla, divided
1/2 tsp salt
4 cups flour
14 oz. pkg. caramels, unwrapped
1/2 cups plus 1/3 cup evaporated milk, divided
1 cup chopped nuts
6-oz. pkg. semi-sweet chocolate chips

In a large bowl, blend together 1 1/2 cups butter and 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar. Stir in the milk, 2 teaspoons vanilla, salt, and flour. Blend well. Chill for 2 hours. On a lightly surface, roll the dough to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut with a 2 1/2 inch round cookie cutter. Arrange on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 325 F for 12 to 16. Let cool. Prepare the caramel topping by combining caramels and 1/2 cup evaporated milk in the top of a double boiler. Stir until the caramels have thoroughly melted. Remove from the heat. Stir in 1/2 cup butter, one cup powdered sugar and the chopped nuts. Top each cookie with one teaspoon of the caramel mixture. Set aside. In a medium saucepan, combine the chocolate chips and the remaining evaporated milk over medium heat. Stir until the chocolate chips have melted. Remove from the heat. Stir in the remaining butter, vanilla, and powdered sugar. Spread the chocolate
mixture of each cookie over the caramel topping. Makes 3 dozen

Gooseberry Patch - Lori Graham

Cornmeal Crusted Catfish

Blessed with Grace

Cornmeal-Crusted Catfish

* 1 egg, lightly beaten
* 2 tablespoons lemon juice
* 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
* 1/4 cup yellow cornmeal
* 1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
* 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 4 (6 ounce) fillets catfish
* 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
In a shallow bowl, combine the egg and lemon juice. In another shallow bowl, combine the flour, cornmeal, Cajun seasoning, garlic powder and salt. Dip catfish into egg mixture, then coat with cornmeal mixture. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Fry fillets, two at a time,
for 5-6 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

Grilled Catfish with Chipotle Fruit Salsa

Grilled Catfish with Chipotle Fruit Salsa
* 1 Tbsp. (15mL) Mrs. Dash® Southwest Chipotle Seasoning Blend
* 1 medium orange, peeled, sectioned and chopped
* 1 cup (240mL) fresh pineapple, chopped
* 1/4 cup (60mL) sweet onion, chopped
* 1/4 cup (60mL) cilantro, chopped
* 3 Tbsp. (45mL) SugarTwin® Granulated White
* 4 4 Oz. (115g) catfish fillets
* Olive oil spray
Prepare salsa by combining orange, fresh pineapple, onion, cilantro, Mrs. Dash® Southwest Chipotle Seasoning Blend and SugarTwin® Granulated White in a bowl. Cover and chill. Spray catfish lightly with olive oil spray. Preheat grill and cook catfish, 3- 4 minutes, turn and continue cooking 3 - 4 minutes. Serve catfish with the salsa.
Recipe Summary: Serves: 4

Fish and Veggie Dish

Fish and Veggie Dish

* 2 zucchini, sliced
* 1 large potato, sliced
* 1 bunch green onions, chopped
* 2 large carrots, sliced
* 4 (4 ounce) fillets cod
* 1 tablespoon dried dill weed
* 2 roma (plum) tomatoes, sliced
* 1 fresh red chile pepper, seeded and chopped
* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
* sea salt to taste
* coarsely ground black pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9x12 inch baking dish.
In the baking dish, arrange the zucchini, potato, green onions, and carrots. Place the cod on top of the vegetables, and sprinkle with dill. Arrange tomato slices over the cod, and sprinkle with red chile pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice, and season with sea salt and pepper. Cover dish with aluminum foil, and bake 30 minutes in the preheated oven, until vegetables are tender and fish is easily flaked with a fork.

Grilled Asparagus

Grilled Asparagus

* 1 Tbsp. Mrs. Dash® Original Blend
* 1 lb asparagus, washed and trimmed
* 2 Tbsp. olive oil

1. Place asparagus in large bowl, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with Mrs.
Dash® Original Blend to taste. Toss to coat evenly.
2. Place vegetables in grilling basket. Grill over medium-high heat for 8
minutes, turning periodically, until asparagus is tender.
Recipe Summary:
Serves: 4
Prep Time: 5 min
Cook Time: 7 min to 8 min

Chinese Chicken Skillet Dinner

Chinese Chicken Skillet Dinner
* 2 boned chicken breasts
* 1 Tbsp. soy sauce
* 1 Tbsp. water
* 1/2 tsp. ginger
* 1/2 clove garlic, crushed
* 2-3 Tbsp. oil
* 1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
* 1/2 cup thin sliced celery
* 1/4 cup chopped scallions
* 1/2 pkg. (6oz. size) frozen snow peas
* 1 can water chestnuts, drained and sliced
Stir together soy sauce, water, ginger and garlic. Remove skin from chicken and
cut into bite size pieces. Marinate chicken in soy sauce mixture while cutting
other ingredients. Heat oil in skillet over medium heat. Add drained chicken,
mushrooms, celery, and scallions one at a time, stir frying constantly. Saute 5
minutes, stirring. Add thawed snow peas and water chestnuts and cook and stir
until heated through. Serve immediately with rice.

Random Tuesday Thoughts


Random Thought Tuesday is where we get to share what we are doing, whats on our mind, and little statements that we are not sure would fill up a post on its own.

  • I'm going to be a grandma again Yeah!!! My daughter goes to get an early ultrasound today and I can not wait to hear the results. This is such a very special time. I am not sure however, how her two year old daughter will feel when the baby is born and comes home.
  • My sons took it upon their selves to lead devotion last night. I am so proud of them. It is my job as a parent to support and try not to let this great fire go out. I am proud of them all for joining together and having a great time
  • In less than two weeks bible school will start and I will once again be a craft leader. This year it is fairly simple as we will be making salvation bracelets. However, easy is not always good as there needs to be something to hold control of the situation and keep their attention. I will be searching for any and all ideas, if you have any to share would love to hear them.
  • Have somehow fallen behind on my work for the blog. At times that is what it seems like work. It began as a place to share my ideas and now has turned in to work. I enjoy reviewing and hosting giveaways I just sometimes fall behind. Don't worry I will catch up again.

What is going on where you are at? Have any random thoughts? Share them here

Gortons review and giveaway (5 winners)

Recently I was contacted by Gortons to review a few of their great products. I jumped at the chance as one of the meals that I often turn to when in a hurry is Gorton's fish. There are so many great varieties and now with their new resealable bag it makes meal time easier. My teens do not always eat at the same time every night and thus we are cooking a couple of different time s a night. The resealable bag allows me to cook what I need when i need to.

Gorton's was founded in 1849 and is one of America's oldes continuously operating companies. Since that time Gorton's from Gloucester, Massachusetts has been a leader in the seafood industry. Gorton is committed to offering the best tasting, highest quality seafood meals. To me and my family there is a difference between Gorton's and other frozen fish companies. The Gorton's Fisherman has become the image of great tasting seafood from the Gorton's company. After all you can "Trust the Fisherman".
Want to try some of the great products from Gorton's? Gorton's would love to give five (5) of my readers two (2) free coupons each. Use these coupons to get your old favorite and try a new one as well.
Enter giveaway: Let me know which Gorton's fish product is your favorite and what Gorton's fish product you want to try .
Extra Entries:
  • follow my blog
  • subscribe to my blog
  • place my button on your blog
  • subscribe to Gorton's newsletter
  • fan Gorton's on facebook
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  • tweet about the giveaway (1 entry per tweet as often as 3 times per day)
  • share on your blog, giveaway sight, facebook etc... (give me link or let me know where you shared 5 entries each)
  • enter any of my other giveaways (1 entry per giveaway)

Giveaway starts now and will end August 2, 2010. Good Luck Email must be in comment or on blog profile or entries will not count.