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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Pumpkin Bundt Cake

Pumpkin Bundt Cake
1 box spice cake mix
1 small package instant butterscotch pudding
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
4 eggs
¼ cup water
¼ cup oil
1 cup canned pumpkin

Combine all ingredients and mix for 2 to 3 minutes. Put in a greased and floured bundt pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes or until a toothpick tests done.

I made a glaze with some melted butter, powdered sugar and milk. Drizzled it over the top and roughly chopped the pecans --ALL because the cake stuck to the bundt pan and I had to disguise it somehow- I think that I did a pretty good job! The cake can stand alone it doesn't need the icing/glaze because it tastes so good!

Toffee Fruit Dip

Why oh WHY do things that taste so good very often start with a whole package of cream cheese???

Toffee Fruit Dip 
8 oz pkg Cream Cheese, softened
½ cup Brown Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla
½ pkg toffee bits
Mix together with hand mixer. Serve with choice of fruit.  We like apples mostly!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Pineapple Cheese Ball

Here is another idea for NYE yummy-ness because as soon as that clock strikes midnight I'll be a completely reformed woman as far as my eating goes.  Just think of this as another way to savor those last few moments of naughty behavior...

Pineapple Cheese Ball
2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
1 can (8 ounces) crushed pineapple, drained
1/4 cup finely chopped green bell pepper, or mixture of green and red bell pepper
3 tablespoons finely chopped green onion
2 teaspoons seasoned salt, or to taste
2 cups chopped pecans, divided

Combine cream cheese, drained crushed pineapple, chopped bell pepper, chopped green onion, seasoned salt, and 1 cup chopped pecans. Chill in refrigerator until firm then shape into a ball. Just before serving roll pineapple cheese ball in remaining cup of pecans. Serve pineapple cheese ball with assorted crackers. Pineapple cheese ball makes about 3 cups of cheese spread.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Cranberry Salsa

So, I'd venture to guess that about now you've thought at least once "What should I make to take to the New Years Party?"  I have the solution!! Well I recently tried this wonderful salsa when my friend and fellow good food lover (Kim) made this at  a craft night. IT's just perfect for ringing in the New Year: Fresh, Yummy and most importantly Different from the usual!

Cranberry Salsa
 1 (12 ounce) bag cranberries, fresh or frozen
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
1 bunch green onions, cut into 3 inch lengths
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
2 limes, juiced
3/4 cup white sugar or splenda to taste
1 pinch salt

Combine cranberries, cilantro, green onions, jalapeno pepper, lime juice, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a medium blade. Chop to medium consistency. Refrigerate if not using immediately. Serve at room temperature, over cream cheese or neufatchel cheese (to save some fat) with whole grain crackers or hearty tortilla chips.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Gingerbread Men Cookies

My first time making gingerbread cookies: Beginners Luck? I sure hope not because these worked out wonderfully!
Gingerbread Men Cookies
2 cups wheat flour
1 cup white flour
2 teaspoons Ginger, Ground
1 teaspoon Cinnamon, Ground
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg, Ground
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/3 cup molasses
1 egg
Mix flour, ginger, cinnamon, baking soda, nutmeg and salt in large bowl. 

Beat butter and brown sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. 
Add molasses and egg; beat well. 
Look at my cool green egg!

Gradually beat in flour mixture on low speed until well mixed. Press dough into a thick flat disk. Wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate 4 hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Roll out dough to 1/4-inch thickness on lightly floured work surface. Cut into gingerbread men shapes Place 1 inch apart on ungreased parchment lined baking sheets.
Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until edges of cookies are set and just begin to brown. Cool on baking sheets 1 to 2 minutes. Remove to wire racks; cool completely. Decorate cooled cookies as desired. Store cookies in airtight container.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Grandma Smout's Green Beans

I don't have a single holiday meal memory from my childhood that doesn't involve this delicious bean dish. The smell of them cooking in the oven brings back all sorts of memories. They are so easy to make too!

Grandma Smout's Green Beans
4-5 Cups of green Beans Canned Frozen or fresh
1 Green or Red bell pepper sliced into circles 
1 tomatoes sliced into rounds
1/2 sweet yellow onion sliced into circles
1 Tbsp Yellow mustard
1-2 Tbsp horseradish depending on your taste
1/2 cup Butter
Salt and pepper
In a casserole dish layer the green beans first. Layer the onion then the peppers followed by the tomato's. Salt and pepper everything. 
In a microwave safe bowl melt the butter and then stir the horseradish and the yellow mustard.  Stir it well and then drizzle the butter mixture over the contents of the casserole dish. Bake covered with tinfoil at 375 degrees until the peppers are done (about 20 mins.) Uncover and bake an additional 7-10 minutes to let the tomatoes get some color. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Cinnamon Honey Butter

Cinnamon Honey Butter

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup honey
1/4 tsp Cinnamon

Whip softened butter until light and fluffy. Add vanilla, cinnamon and honey gradually. Whip for 10-15 minutes. Makes 1 cup.

Lion House Rolls

This recipe is the only recipe that I've found that the rolls work out every single time! They always taste and look wonderful. The recipe is also very versatile-- I use this dough when I make cinnamon rolls and orange rolls as well.

Lion House Rolls

2 cups warm water (110 to 115 degrees)
2/3 cup nonfat dry milk (instant or non-instant)
2 tablespoons dry yeast
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1/3 cup butter, shortening, or margarine
1 egg
5 to 5 ½ cups all-purpose flour

In large bowl or electric mixer, combine warm water and powdered milk. Add yeast, then sugar, salt, butter, egg, and 2 cups flour. Mix on low speed until ingredients are wet, then for 2 minutes at medium speed.
Add 2 cups flour; mix on low speed until ingredients are wet, then for 2 minutes at medium speed. (Dough will be getting stiff and remaining flour may need to be mixed in by hand).
Add ½ cup flour and mix again, by hand or mixer. Dough should be soft, not overly sticky, and not stiff (It is not necessary to use the entire amount of flour). If the dough is still sticky  add the remaining 1/2 cup of flour.
Scrape dough off sides of bowl and pour about one tablespoon of vegetable oil all around sides of bowl. Turn dough over in bowl so it is covered with oil. (This helps prevent dough from drying out). Cover with plastic and allow to rise in warm place until double in size, about 45 minutes.

Scrape dough out onto floured board. Turn dough over so it is floured on both sides; gently flatten to about 1 inch thick. With rolling pin, roll out to a rectangle about 18 inches long, 8 inches wide, and ¼ inch thick. Brush with melted butter. With pizza cutter or very sharp knife, cut dough in half to make two strips about 4 inches wide. Make cuts through strips of dough every 2 inches, making about 18 pieces of dough.

Starting with short end, roll up one piece of dough, with butter on the inside. Place roll on parchment-lined pan with other short end down on the paper. Repeat with remaining pieces of dough. Be sure all rolls face the same direction on baking pan. Cover lightly with plastic wrap and allow to rise until double in size, about 1 to 1 ½ hours. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 to 18 minutes, or until light to medium golden brown. Brush tops of rolls with melted butter. Serve with Honey Butter. Makes 1 to 1 ½ dozen rolls.

Helpful Tips for Making Rolls

Always add flour gradually and keep dough as soft as you can handle. Soft dough will produce a lighter roll.

It is not necessary to use the entire amount of flour called for in this recipe—add only enough flour to make dough manageable.

 ** I often make these rolls and after they are shaped instead of letting them rise and baking them-I freeze them on a cookie sheet first and transfer them to a zip bag to use them later. When I am ready to use them I just pull them out of the freezer and place them on a baking sheet and then allow them to defrost and rise. I brush them with butter and then bake them. It takes a little longer to rise but it's totally worth the wait!

Monday, November 23, 2009

What are your Thanksgiving Plans?

Well I just want to document what I am bringing to thanksgiving dinner for both sides of my family also I will post the recipes for all of the dishes throughout the next couple of day's so watch for them......

Wall- We (by we I mean my Mother-in-law and sisters in-law) are doing the whole shebang for both sides of my husband's family all at once, and I am excited to get to help.

Mashed Potatoes for 20 No One makes them quite like the Pioneer Woman.
Dinner Rolls and Honey Butter
Mini Cornucopia place-settings for 100
Apple Pie
Ginger cookies for the little kids to decorate.

My Parents and family are planning to spend the day skiing as usual, without me darn it! But they will be home in the afternoon and we will have dinner that evening. I am bringing--

Grandma Smout's Green Beans (nothing like Campbell's version)
Apple Pie
Cranberry Sauce

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Bliggity Bloggity Boo!

So this week I have Disney on the brain due to the fact that the Disney Princesses on Ice were in town --So I owe the title of this post entirely to that Mogul Mouse we all love!

On a totally cool but completely unrelated note....
My close friend/BFF Desiree wrote a Cookbook as a joint venture with The Green Smoothie Girl. The recipes are not only sooo yummy they healthy to boot. Check out the teaser on GSG's blog.

You are not familiar with The Green Smoothie Girl- well then I recommend that you get to know her because Robyn Openshaw is one with it woman when it comes to eating healthy, growing healthy gardens and children. I am able to sneak all sorts of things into my girls diets in one simple smoothie. Thanks A MILLION Green Smoothie Girl!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Stuffed Green Peppers

This dish happens to be my husband's favorite. Wait now that I think about it he tells me that about everything I make! How Lucky am I :) ?

Stuffed Green Peppers 
½ cup brown rice, cooked
6 medium sized green peppers
2 1/2 cups spaghetti sauce
1 lb. lean ground beef
½ cup water
¼ cup chopped onion
½ tsp salt
4 oz. cheese, grated

-Cut off top of green peppers and clean out. For softer peppers, precook in boiling water for five minutes. For crunchier peppers, skip the precooking.
-In a skillet, cook ground beef and onion until meat is no longer pink; season with salt and pepper. Drain.
-Add spaghetti sauce and cooked rice to the meat mixture. Remove from heat.
-Stir in cheese and stuff the green peppers.
-Stand upright in a 10”x6½” baking pan.  Sprinkle with additional cheese if desired.
-Bake uncovered at 350° for 30-40 minutes. This dish freezes quite well.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Apple Orange Cranberry Sauce

Apple Orange Cranberry Sauce

1/2 orange
1 tart apple
3 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves

Squeeze the juice from the orange and set the juice aside. Zest the bright orange just off of the Orange. Peel, core and quarter the apple. Cut into 1/2-inch dice and place in a saucepan. Sort the cranberries, discarding any soft ones. Add to the apples along with the orange juice, orange zest, sugar, cinnamon and cloves. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to low and cover the pan partially. Simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens, the apple is tender and the cranberries have burst, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer the cranberry sauce to a heatproof bowl and let cool for 1 hour before serving. Or cover and refrigerate; bring to room temperature before serving. Makes 3 1/2 to 4 cups.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Pumpkin Cheesecake

I am not a huge fan of the classic pumpkin pie that everyone serves after Thanksgiving dinner so about 7 years ago I started making a pumpkin cheesecake instead. Now my husband requests it every year. 

Pumpkin Cheesecake
1 1/4 cups crushed gingersnap cookie crumbs (in a pinch I'll substitute graham cracker crumbs)
1/4 cup sugar
4 Tbsp melted butter
4 8oz pkgs cream cheese, very soft
1 1/4 cups sugar
3 Tbsp flour
1 1/4 cups pumpkin puree
2 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
4 large eggs, room temp

Oven 350 degrees
Make the crust: In a medium bowl, mix cookie/cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter until moistened; press firmly into bottom of nonstick 9" spring-form pan. Bake until golden around edges, 10 to 12 minutes.
Make the filling: With an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar on low speed until smooth; mix in flour (do not overmix). Add in pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice, vanilla, and salt; mix just until smooth. Add eggs one at a time, mixing until each is incorporated before adding the next one.
Place the pan on a rimmed baking sheet. Pour filling into springform, and gently smooth top. Transfer to oven; reduce oven heat to 300 degrees. Bake 45 minutes. Turn off oven; let cheesecake stay in oven 2 hours more (without opening)
Take out of the oven; cool completely. Cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate until firm, at least 4 hours. Unmold before serving. 
*Drizzle with caramel sauce or serve with a dollop of whipped cream garnished with a pecan and a shake of cinnamon.

Notes**In order to prevent the top from cracking, be careful not to overmix the batter. As tempting as it may be,  do not open the oven door while the cake is baking or cooling inside the oven!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Taco Soup

We made this for dinner tonight and it's going to be in my dinner rotation for winter. My hunk claims it's addictive and the girls just gobbled it right up!

Taco Soup
1 lb hamburger
1 yellow onion diced
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can Pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups frozen corn
1 can dice green chili's
3 Tbsp taco seasoning
3 pints of crushed tomatoes

In a large pot brown the hamburger with the chopped onion. Drain off any excess fat. Add the taco seasoning. Add black and Pinto Beans, Corn, green chilies and tomatoes. Stir and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until hot and bubbly.
Serve with shredded cheese, sour cream and Frito's chips.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Halloween Pumpkin Chocolate Chip cookies for a Crowd

This Recipe makes many many cookies but they are so good that I didn't mind having plenty to share. But it is easily halved. They are just like the ones you can buy at the store but Madison reassured me that they are even better!

Halloween Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

for a Crowd
1 1/2 cups butter
3 cups granulated sugar
1 29oz can of pure pumpkin
6 Eggs
6 cups flour
3 tsp baking powder
3 tsp baking soda
3 tsp cinnamon
3 tsp vanilla
3/4 tsp salt
1 and 1/2 bag milk chocolate chips
-Cream butter and sugar together in
stand mixer.
-Add eggs, pumpkin and vanilla, mix well.
-Add all dry ingredients and mix well,
remember to scrape the bowl as it will
be very full at this point.
-Chocolate chips will need to be stirred
in by hand to make sure that they are evenly
distributed through the dough.
-Bake on a cookie sheet lined with parchment
at 365 degrees for 10-12 minutes. You'll know
that they are done when they look like the top of a
cupcake and they don't dent when lightly touched.
Don't over-bake!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Perfect Clam Chowder- Market Street style

Perfect soup for this time of year! I can't believe that I used to hate clam chowder!

Clam Chowder-Market Street
(Serves 12)
1 cup potatoes, diced ½ inch
1 cup celery, diced ½ inch
1 cup onion, diced ½ inch
1 cup green pepper, diced ½ inch
1 cup leeks, thoroughly washed and diced ½ inch
¾ cup chopped clams (canned or fresh)
¾ tablespoon coarse ground black pepper
1 ½ tablespoon salt
¾ tablespoon whole thyme
6 bay leaves
1 teaspoon Tabasco
¾ cup sherry wine (optional)
2 cups water
¾ cup clam juice (drained from canned clams or purchased separately in can)
¾ cup butter, melted
1 cup flour
2 quarts half-and-half

Combine melted butter and flour in oven-proof container and bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes. In large saucepan, combine remaining ingredients except half-and-half. Simmer until potatoes are thoroughly cooked. Stir butter-flour mixture into chowder and stir until thick. Mixture will be slightly less thick than cookie dough. Remove chowder from heat. Stir in half-and-half until blended. Heat to serving temperature, stirring occasionally. Serve immediately.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Butternut Squash Bisque

Butternut Squash Bisque
1 tbsp Canola oil
1 tbsp Butter
1/2 cup Diced onion
1 cup sliced carrots
4-5 cups butternut squash
4 cups Chicken Broth or Vegetable stock
2 Cloves of Garlic minced
1/8 tsp Cayenne Pepper
Salt and ground black pepper to taste
Ground Nutmeg to taste
Optional: 3/4 cup of cream

Wash the outside of your butternut squash and poke holes with a knife into the flesh all over. Place the whole squash into a baking dish. Fill the bottom of the dish with an inch of water, and cover it with tinfoil. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-65 minutes until the skin starts to sag. When it done allow it to just sit and cool so that it's easier to handle.

Heat the oil and melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Cook and stir the onion in the butter and oil until tender. Add the minced garlic for the last couple of minutes.

Mix the carrots into the pot. Pour in vegetable stock, and season with salt, pepper, cayenne and nutmeg. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until vegetables are tender.

Cut the squash in half and remove the seeds. Scoop the flesh away from the skin and then add the flesh to the pot.

In a blender or food processor, puree the soup mixture until smooth. Return to the pot, and stir in the heavy cream. Heat through, but do not boil. Serve warm with a dash of nutmeg.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Citrus Tequila Chicken (Non-alcoholic of course! : )

Oh the weather outside is (almost) frightful but the BBQ is so delightful,
and since we've not put ours away (yet)
let us play
let us play
let us play!
If this is the last thing you use your BBQ for this year before it's put away for winter,
you'll be sorry.
SO make sure you keep it out for a while because you'll want to make this recipe at the very least
a couple of times or more - yes it is THAT GOOD!
Thanks for this recipe goes to Christel who made it a long time ago
when we were over for dinner. It has become another favorite!

Tequila Chicken (Non-alcoholic of course! :)

1/2 cup White grape juice
1 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (5-6 limes)
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (2 oranges)
1 tbsp chili powder
1 jalapeno pepper chopped and seeded
3 cloves garlic, peeled
2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground pepper
6 boneless skinless chicken breasts

In your blender canister Combine white grape juice, lime juice, orange juice,
chili powder, jalapeno, garlic, salt and pepper. Blend just until the jalapeno
and garlic look nicely chopped.
Place chicken in one layer in a container and pour the marinade over the
chicken to coat it. Let the chicken marinate in the fridge over night.

Heat the grill and brush the rack with olive oil to prevent sticking.
Remove the chicken breasts from the marinade and sprinkle with salt and
pepper and grill them on one side for 5 minutes until nicely browned . Turn
the chicken and and cook for another 10 minutes or until cooked through.
Remove from the grill to a plate and let them rest for 5 minutes .
Serve hot or at room temp- I even like it cold.

Home made Spanish rice is a great side dish accompaniment.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Ziti Con Pollo

My friend likely doesn't even remember this but I owe all my thanks for this recipe to her - so thanks Shannon! I've made this over and over and changed things to suit my liking! We just can't get enough of this recipe- next time I make it I'll add some pictures...

Ziti Con Pollo
4 Boneless Skinless chicken breasts uncooked but sliced
1 Med Yellow Bell Pepper Sliced into strips
1 Med Red Bell Pepper Sliced into strips
1/2 Med Green Bell Pepper Sliced into strips
3 Green Onions Sliced
1 1/2 Cups sliced fresh mushrooms
1 tbsp sage
2 1/2 tsp Basil
3 Cloves garlic minced
1 tsp Salt
1 lb Ziti noodles
EVOO (Olive Oil)
Optional add In's- cooked bacon, diced fresh tomatoes, cooked Italian sausage.

Cook the pasta according to the package directions drain and rinse in cold water and set aside.

While the noodles are cooking, coat a large skillet with olive oil (approx. 3-5 tbsp.)
Add chicken. Cook on medium-high heat until chicken is no longer pink. Add the peppers, mushrooms and Garlic continue cooking until tender.

When the vegetables are halfway done add the noodles , Sage, Basil, Salt, any of the optional add In's and enough Olive oil to coat about 2-3 tbsp.

Cook for 7-9 more minutes to heat the noodles and enjoy

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Ganache and Ganache Frosting


3 tablespoons corn syrup

6 ounces heavy cream

12 ounces chocolate, chopped into very small pieces

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a small saucepan combine the corn syrup and heavy cream. Bring to a simmer and add the chocolate. Stir until smooth. Remove from the heat and add the vanilla extract.

Ganache Frosting

16 ounces chocolate, chopped fine (bittersweet chunks to milk chocolate chips you pick! I prefer milk choc.)

16 ounces (2 cups) heavy cream

Place the chopped chocolate into a glass bowl. In another bowl heat the heavy cream in a quart-sized, microwavable container and microwave for 3 to 4 minutes on high, or until it just begins to simmer; be careful not to allow cream to boil over. Pour the cream over the chocolate and let stand for 2 minutes. Stir until chocolate mixture is smooth. Use as is for glazing. If you want to make a fluffy/lighter frosting, allow it to cool completely. Place the ganache mixture in the bowl of a stand mixer and whisk on high for 2 to 3 minutes.

Apple Crisp

Apple Crisp

8 cups firm tart apples(Granny Smith), peeled and sliced

4 tablespoons sugar

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2/3 cup sifted all-purpose flour

2 cups uncooked oats
1 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2/3 cup butter, melted

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
In a 9 by 12-inch glass baking dish, combine apples, sugar, and lemon juice. Set aside. In another bowl, combine flour, oats, brown sugar, salt and cinnamon. Toss with melted butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbles. Top apples with oat and sugar mixture. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until apples are tender. Serve warm topped with heavy cream, or cool to room temperature and serve with ice cream, if desired

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Zucchini Carrot Muffins

Another yummy way to use of some of that plentiful produce from your garden!

Zucchini Carrot Muffins

3 eggs
1/2 cup oil
½ cup unsweetened applesauce
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups coarsely grated zucchini
1 ½ cup grated carrots
1 can (8oz) crushed pineapple, partially drained
3 cups whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon nutmeg
Opt- 1 cup chopped walnuts and or 1 cup raisins

Preheat oven to 350°F.
In a bowl, beat eggs. Add oil, applesauce, sugar, and vanilla; Fold in the zucchini, carrots and pineapple.
In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, and nutmeg. A third at a time, add dry ingredients into wet and gently stir (by hand) after each addition (do not over stir or the muffins will be tough). Add the optional walnuts and raisins, blend gently.
Bake for 19-20 mins or until a wooden pick inserted in to the center comes out clean. Turn out onto wire racks to cool thoroughly.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

I have a feeling that this year I'm going to be needing all the good Zucchini recipes that I can get my hands on!! This is just one such recipe and it is an absolute winner for sure. My girls would like to replace dinner with this cake tonight, I guess that's what you get for baking in the afternoon instead of after dinner!!

Chocolate Zucchini Cake PERFECTION!

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups white sugar
1 scant cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 eggs
3/4 cups vegetable oil
3/4 cups unsweetened applesauce
3 cups grated zucchini
Optional: 3/4 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9x13 inch baking pan.
In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.
IN your mixer add the eggs and oil, applesauce, sugar and Cocoa mix well. Combine flour mixture and cocoa mixture, stir until combined- but don't over mix. Fold in the zucchini and optional nuts until they are evenly distributed. Pour into the prepared pan.
Bake for 50 to 60 minutes in the preheated oven, until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean.
Frost with your favorite frosting chocolate or vanilla butter cream both work nicely but if you are in the mood for something really rich go for the cream cheese- You won't be sorry:)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Strawberry Danish Dessert aka Ryan's Birthday Cake

My hunk of a husband asks for this cake every year when his birthday rolls around so of course I make it! -- but each year I seem to be making more and more for everyone who comes to his birthday which just happens to coincide with our city's celebration and fireworks . This year I tripled it and baked the cake in two Jelly roll pans! That was a lot of cake!

Strawberry Danish Dessert
Ryan's Birthday Cake

1 white cake mix (plus ingredients to make cake)
1-2 pints strawberries, sliced
Strawberry Danish Dessert
1 1/2 cups cool whip
8 oz. cream cheese
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla

Make cake mix according to pkg. directions. Bake in 9 x 13. Cool completely. Make Danish dessert according to pkg. directions. Let it cool. Mix Cream Cheese and Powdered sugar until smooth, then fold in the cool whip. Mix cream cheese mixture until smooth, then spread on cooled cake. Add strawberries to Danish Dessert and spread on top. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Brazilian Lemonade

I was first introduced to this drink by friend Kim and have been hooked completely ever since I tasted the amazing goodness that is Brazilian Lemonade! Hope you like it too!

Brazilian Lemonade
2 Lemons or Limes (maybe the next time I make this I'll try grapefruit or Pineapple Mmm)
1/2 cup of sugar
3 Tbsp sweetened condensed milk
3 cups water

Slice off the ends of the lemons/limes, then cut into wedges (do not peel.) Put lemon and the other ingredients in a blender and blend until liquefied. Strain through a wire mesh strainer to get rid of pieces of rind and seeds, and serve over ice. You may want to double this since we always seem to run out too quickly!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Saah-weet Sweet Potato Fries

As of late we at the Wall house have fallen in love with a new vegetable (the Sweet Potato) this is just another version of oven fries. YUM YUM!

Saah-weet Sweet Potato Fries

4 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch wide strips
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons brown sugar

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. In a large bowl, mix together olive oil, paprika and cinnamon. Toss the potato strips into mixture, to coat well, and spread onto a large baking sheet in a single layer. Sprinkle with salt and brown sugar. Bake for 35 minutes, turning every 10 minutes until crisp on the outside and cooked through.

Frozen Lemonade Pie

Maybe I'm strange but I like this more than cheesecake!

Frozen Lemonade Pie

For the Crust:
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup sugar
7 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
OR do as I do and purchase the pre-made graham cracker crust at your grocery store!

For the Filling:
2 cups heavy cream
1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk, chilled
1 6-ounce can frozen lemonade concentrate (do not thaw)

For the Topping:
2 cups mixed frozen or fresh berries (Raspberries, Blackberries, Blueberries)
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Crust: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Make the crust: In a medium bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter. Press firmly on the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate. Bake for 7 minutes; cool completely.

Make the filling: In a cold medium bowl, whip the cream until stiff peaks form. In another bowl, stir together the condensed milk and frozen lemonade. Gently fold the lemonade mixture into the whipped cream. Pour the filling into the crust; freeze overnight.
About an hour before you serve the pie, make the topping: Toss the berries in a medium bowl with the sugar and lemon juice. Set aside until ready to serve.
Let the pie come to room temperature for 10 minutes before cutting. Top each slice with berries.

Sun-dried Tomato Pasta Salad

This salad is the one I chose to make for the 4th of July weekend and my nephew's baby blessing. It turned out great!

Sun-dried Tomato Pasta Salad
1 7-oz jar sundried tomatoes, drained
4 cloves fresh garlic
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 lb radiatore pasta
1 jar Kalamata or regular olives chopped
1 pint ripe cherry tomatoes, halved
4-5 green onions thinly sliced
Several (10 to 15) basil leaves, chopped or julienne
1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Opt garnish with fresh chives snipped

Prepare dressing by blending sundried tomatoes, garlic, salt, pepper, and vinegar until tomatoes are chopped. Blend while drizzling in olive oil; continue blending until mixed together.
Cook pasta according to package directions, drain, and rinse with cold water until no longer hot. Pour 2/3 of the dressing over the pasta, add olives and onions, and toss together. Add remaining ingredients, tossing together and adding more dressing until the salad is coated to your liking. Serve on a big platter with an extra sprinkling of Parmesan cheese and optional chives.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Mele Kalikimaka Mix

I Love this stuff when I make it (which is rarely) I eat so much that I get cankers, it's just so good that I can't resist!

Mele Kalikimaka Mix
4 cups Corn Chex
4 cups Rice Chex
4 cups Golden Grahams
1 1/2 cups sweetened shredded Coconut
1 1/2 cups Pecans
Mix in a big bowl.
For the syrup in a saucepan combine
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups Karo syrup
1 1/2 cups butter
boil for 3 minutes
add 1 tsp vanilla
Mix syrup with Chex mixture and spread onto a greased cookie sheet to cool.
*Have fun trying to resist this one! Your Welcome!!*

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Easy Creamy Enchilada Soup

My Sister in Law Cary gave me this recipe from her Brighton Girls Camp recipe book, and we all love it a lot. Thanks Cary!

Easy Creamy Enchilada Soup
1 4oz green chili's
1 can Evaporated milk
1 can cream of chicken soup
4 Pre-cooked Chicken breasts diced

Mix everything in a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Serve with Sour Cream, Cheese, and Chips.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Creamy Slow Cooker Chicken with Mushrooms

Creamy Slow Cooker Chicken with Mushrooms
4-6 Chicken breast Halves
1 Can Cream of Mushroom Soup
2 Cans 4 oz Mushrooms
1 Cup Milk
8 oz Cream Cheese
1 Packet Italian salad dressing seasoning
Sun Dried Tomatoes diced

Layer all ingredients in order in the crock pot.
Cover and cook on Low for 6 Hours.
Serve over egg noodles or brown rice.

Chicken Chili

Chicken Chili

1Tbsp Cooking Oil
1 Medium Onion diced
2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1 Tsp Cumin
6 Medium Chicken breasts diced

Brown the Chicken in afrying pan. Then saute Onion and Garlic and put all the above ingredients into a slow cooker.
Combine with
3 15oz northern white beans drained plus 3 cans of water
1 1/2 Cups frozen corn
1 15 oz Pinto beans drained and rinsed 
1 1/2 cup water
2 4-oz green chilies, partially drained
2-4 Tbsp chicken bullion or chicken base to taste
5 Dashes of Tabasco
1/2 Lime use the juice and zest

Cook in slow cooker on high for 4 hours or Low for 6 hours.

Serve with Sour cream Monterrey Jack cheese, Tortilla chips and Jalapenos.

I love this Chili! This is hands down the best I've ever tried. I've changed the recipe a little to suit my tastes but we originally acquired it from a co-worker of Ryan's- Thanks Tanya!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Super Easy Salmon

I tried this recipe out the other night and it was met with rave reviews from my hunk! I really enjoyed it too! As an added bonus it cooks up really fast!!

Super Easy Salmon
4 salmon fillets skin removed and completely thawed
1/4 cup mayo (I like the olive oil kind)
2 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
a scant 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1 fresh Lemon halved
1/4 cup slivered almonds or 10 Ritz crackers work in a pinch

Preheat the oven to 400. Mix Mayo, cheese, juice from 1/2 the lemon, and cayenne pepper. Place the salmon in a shallow glass baking dish, drizzle with the juice of other half lemon. Dollop cheese mixture onto the top of each fillet. Sprinkle with almonds. Bake for 15 minutes or until Salmon flakes easily with a fork.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Mandarin Macadamia Nut Pudding Bars

I love these right now!

Mandarin Macadamia Nut Pudding Bars

1/2 cup powdered sugar
2/3 cup chopped macadamia nuts
1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup cold butter
1/4 tsp almond extract

2 (11 oz) cans mandarin oranges in light syrup, don't drain.
1/4 cup sugar
24 oz sour cream
2 (3.4 oz) boxes of coconut cream instant pudding
1 (8 oz) container of whipped cream

Crust directions:
In the food processor, pulse dry ingredients until well blended.
Cut butter into small pieces and add to the processor along with the almond extract.
Blend all together until a sandy consistency is reached. Press into bottom or 9X13" pan.
Bake at 350 for 15-19 minutes or until crust is LIGHTLY browned. Remove from oven and cool.

Filling Directions:
Drain mandarin oranges and reserve the liquid.
Combine 1/2 cup of syrup with sugar, sour cream, and both pudding mixes.
Fold oranges into pudding mixture and spoon over the cooled crust.
Top with whipped topping.
Chill for at least 2 hours.