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Sunday, March 31, 2013

Walnut Raspberry Muffins

Recipe from Taste of Home magazine

You can't go wrong with cream cheese.  I have yet to make this with fresh raspberries but the frozen work great.  I have also made this with a gluten free flour blend...the muffins turned out really moist and it didn't affect the flavor one bit.  If you don't have buttermilk on hand you can sour milk by using lemon juice or vinegar.  The ratio is 1 Tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar to 1 cup of milk.  Let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes and it will be good to go to use in place of the buttermilk. 

Walnut Raspberry Muffins

18 Servings

Prep: 25 min. 
Bake: 20 min./batch

2/3 cup cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup butter, softened
1-1/2 cups sugar
2 egg whites
1 egg
1/2 cup buttermilk
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries
1/4 cup chopped walnuts

In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and sugar until light
and fluffy. Add the egg whites, egg, buttermilk and vanilla; mix
well. Combine the flour, baking powder and baking soda; add to
creamed mixture just until moistened. Fold in raspberries and

Fill paper-lined muffin cups three-fourths full. Bake at 350° for
20-24 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes
out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wire
racks. Serve warm. Yield: 1-1/2 dozen.

Editor's Note:  If using frozen raspberries, do not thaw before adding to batter.

© Taste of Home 2012

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Flank Steak with Couscous

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Decadent Brownie Pie

Recipe from

In this recipe I half the walnuts.  One time I was making this for a friend and ended up not greasing the springform well enough.  Needless to say the end result wasn't pretty.  Here is what I did to save my mistake.  I took the mangled brownie and put it in the food processor.  I pulsed it until it was smooth.  I then rolled the brownie mixture into balls.  I placed them on a jelly roll pan and let them harden up in the freezer.  I then dipped them in milk chocolate(you can use whatever chocolate you have on hand.  The brownie bites tasted great.

Decadent Brownie Pie

10-12 Servings

Prep: 20 min. + cooling 
Bake: 55 min. + cooling

2/3 cup butter, softened
1-1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
2 eggs
1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup baking cocoa
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons 2% milk
2 cups chopped walnuts

1 cup heavy whipping cream
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
Mint Andes candies, fresh raspberries, fresh mint leaves, caramel ice cream topping and whipped cream, optional

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat
in corn syrup. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each
addition. Combine the flour, cocoa and salt; gradually add to
creamed mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each
addition. Fold in walnuts.

Spread into a greased 10-in. springform pan. Bake at 325° for
55-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted 1 in. from side of pan
comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack.

Taste of Home 2012

Creamed Eggs on Toast

Easter is coming up and you know what that means...eggs and ham galore!  We have a tradition in our family that we use the eggs from Easter to make creamed eggs on toast.  Growing up sometimes the dye would soak through so we would have multi-colored eggs in the sauce.  I have never written down this recipe because it's something that I've always known using a simple white sauce.  In an attempt to give my family ALL my recipes that means taking the ones I make from my brain and writing them down.  I'll do my best because on these recipes I wing it and throw it in until it looks right.  I'll skip the part of explaining how to make boiled eggs...I'm hoping that you know that already.

Creamed Eggs on Toast

1/4 cup butter

5 Heaping Tbl flour
2 to 2 1/2 cups milk
salt and white pepper to taste
powdered garlic(optional)
6-8 boiled eggs
buttered toast

In a medium sauce pan melt 1/4 cup butter.  Once butter is melted, add flour to make a paste.  Using a wire whisk to stir, slowly add in milk over medium heat.  Continue to stir until sauce thickens up.  Add salt and white pepper to taste.  If you feel dangerous, you can throw in a dash of powdered adds a nice kick.  Take your hard boiled eggs and peel off the eggs shells.  With a paring knife, roughly chop eggs into white sauce.  Let it heat through for a few minutes after adding the eggs.  Serve over buttered toast.  My kids like to break up their toast into a mound so it looks like a volcano.  If you're missing you're breakfast meat you can always add ham, sausage or bacon to the mix or even have it on the side.  Enjoy!

*Reminder* Be sure to send me your lovely pictures of the food if you try it for my scrapbook to:

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Jumbo Streusel-Topped Blueberry Muffins

Recipe from

Jumbo Streusel-Topped Blueberry Muffins

Streusel Topping:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter
1 cup fresh or frozen (unthawed) blueberries
2 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
To Make Topping: In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, cinnamon, and brown sugar. Cut the butter into the mixture with a pastry blender or fork until mixture is crumbly. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Generously grease six 8-ounce jumbo muffin cups.
If using fresh blueberries, rinse and thoroughly dry the berries. In a small bowl, toss the fresh or frozen berries with the 1 tablespoon flour.
To Make Batter: In a large bowl, stir together the 2 cups flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Make a well in the center.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg and buttermilk until combined. Whisk in the vanilla and melted butter.
Pour the buttermilk mixture into the well. Stir the liquids,into the dry ingredients until they are almost, but not quite, combined. Add the blueberries and fold in just to distribute evenly. Do not over mix.
Evenly divide the batter among the 6 prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle the streusel topping evenly over the muffins (about 1/4 cup for each muffin).
Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes before removing from pan. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

Makes 6 jumbo muffins.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Jumbo Bananas Muffins

Recipe from

I drizzled a caramel type frosting on top after they were finished cooking.  I know it's not the healthiest but it tasted yummy.


1/2 c. butter (1 stick), softened
1 c. sugar
2 eggs
3 ripe bananas, mash with fork and a dash of lemon juice
2 c. all-purpose flour
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1/2 c. chopped nuts, optional
In medium mixing bowl, combine butter and sugar, mix together until smooth and creamy. Add eggs, mixing well after each. Stir in mashed bananas. Gradually stir in dry ingredients, just until moistened. Add nuts, mixing gently.

Bake 20 to 25 minutes at 350°F. Fill muffins cups about 3/4 full. Use toothpick to test for doneness. Tilt each muffin on its side inside the hot muffin pan cups so they will cool without becoming soggy. They need air all around to cool properly. May be removed to a wire rack if pan is needed for refilling.

Makes approximately 12 to 14 jumbo or 18 to 24 medium sized muffins.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Real Italian Calzones

Recipe from

The only change I do with this recipe is I use cottage cheese instead of the ricotta.  The dough is really easy to work with.

Real Italian Calzones

Prep Time: 1 Hour
Cook Time: 30 Minutes
Ready In: 1 Hour 30 Minutes
Servings: 8


1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
1 cup warm water
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
1/2 cup diced pepperoni
1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
1 tablespoon dried basil leaves
1 egg, beaten

1. To Make Dough: In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Add the oil, sugar and salt; mix in 1 cup of the flour until smooth. Gradually stir in the rest of the flour, until dough is smooth and workable. Knead dough on a lightly floured surface for about 5 minutes, or until it is elastic. Lay dough in a bowl containing 1 teaspoon olive oil, then flip the dough, cover and let rise for 40 minutes, or until almost doubled.
2. To Make Filling: While dough is rising, combine the ricotta cheese, Cheddar cheese, pepperoni, mushrooms and basil leaves in a large bowl. Mix well, cover bowl and refrigerate to chill.
3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
4. When dough is ready, punch it down and separate it into 2 equal parts. Roll parts out into thin circles on a lightly floured surface. Fill each circle with 1/2 of the cheese/meat filling and fold over, securing edges by folding in and pressing with a fork. Brush the top of each calzone with egg and place on a lightly greased cookie sheet.
5. Bake at 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) for 30 minutes. Serve hot.


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Jay's Signature Pizza Crust

Photo by Bri L.

Photo by Deb
Recipe from

Our family has a sign in our kitchen that reads "Friday's Special PIZZA".  Everyone always asks if that is really what we're having and the answer is YES.  90% of the time we have pizza on Friday.  Pizza and root beer are a perfect combination.  We've also had variations of different pizza calzones, egg roll pizzas, pocket pizzas, pita pizzas, egg muffin pizza, pizza strudel...the options are endless.  I'll put a list below of different pizza combinations that we have done.  Also, I like to throw in garlic powder into the dough when I'm mixing it up.  If you have pizza combinations not listed share with us what your family likes in the comments. 

Jay's Signature Pizza Crust

Prep Time: 30 Minutes
Cook Time: 20 Minutes
Ready In: 1 Hour 50 Minutes
Servings: 15


2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1/2 teaspoon brown sugar
1 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 1/3 cups all-purpose flour

1. In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast and brown sugar in the water, and let sit for 10 minutes.
2. Stir the salt and oil into the yeast solution. Mix in 2 1/2 cups of the flour.
3. Turn dough out onto a clean, well floured surface, and knead in more flour until the dough is no longer sticky. Place the dough into a well oiled bowl, and cover with a cloth. Let the dough rise until double; this should take about 1 hour. Punch down the dough, and form a tight ball. Allow the dough to relax for a minute before rolling out. Use for your favorite pizza recipe.
4. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). If you are baking the dough on a pizza stone, you may place your toppings on the dough, and bake immediately. If you are baking your pizza in a pan, lightly oil the pan, and let the dough rise for 15 or 20 minutes before topping and baking it.
5. Bake pizza in preheated oven, until the cheese and crust are golden brown, about 15 to 20 minutes.


Different pizza combinations:

Barbecue Chicken - grilled chicken, barbecue sauce in place of pizza sauce, mixture of gouda and mozzarella cheese, cooked bacon crumbled, red onion slices

Supreme - Italian sausage, green peppers, lightly sauteed mushrooms, olives

Garlic Chicken Pizza - garlic and parmesan cheese sauce in place of pizza sauce, mozzarella cheese, grilled chicken, red onion sliced, sun dried tomatoes

Canadian Bacon and Pineapple
Cheese Pizza

Friday, March 15, 2013

Country Cousin Potatoes

Recipe from Mom Murdock

I put my changes in parentheses below.  As for warming up the soup I skip that step and just melt the butter. You can replace the onion for dried onion.  I just throw in a handful...I'm not sure what the ratio from fresh to dry is.  If you don't have corn flakes you can sprinkle parmesan on top.  The fresh finely shredded parmesan tastes the best.

Country Cousin Potatoes

Boil 6-7 medium potatoes in skin (2 lb bag of frozen shredded hash browns thawed)
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup diced onion
4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup grated cheese
1 cup sour cream (plain yogurt)
1/2 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon salt

Peel and grate potatoes and onion.  Combine soup and butter and warm.
Add sour cream, cheese, salt and pepper layer potatoes and cream sauce in casserole.  Place in 9 x 13 pan.

Sprinkle with
1 cup crushed corn flakes
2 tablespoons melted butter

Cook at 350 degrees for 45 minutes

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Simple and Creamy Tortellini Alfredo

Recipe from

Simple and Creamy Tortellini Alfredo

1 can (14-1/2 oz.) fat-free reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 cup water
2 pkg. (9 oz. each) refrigerated cheese tortellini
4oz. (1/2 of 8-oz. pkg.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, cubed
1 cup frozen peas
3/4 cup KRAFT Finely Shredded Italian* Five Cheese Blend
6 slices OSCAR MAYER Bacon, cooked, crumbled

BRING broth and water to boil in large saucepan on medium-high heat. Add pasta; stir. Cover; simmer on medium-low heat 8 to 9 min. or until pasta is tender. (Do not drain.)

STIR in cream cheese and peas; cook, uncovered, 2 to 3 min. or until cream cheese is completely melted, stirring occasionally.

STIR in shredded cheese and bacon.

Makes 6 servings.  1 cup each

Monday, March 11, 2013

Everyday Waffles

Recipe from Old Better Homes and Garden Cookbook.

Everyday Waffles

1 3/4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 beaten egg yolks
1 3/4 cups milk
1/2 cups salad oil or melted shortening
2 stiffly beaten egg whites

Sift together dry ingredients.  Combine yolks, milk and oil; stir into dry ingredients.  Fold in white, leaving a few fluffs.  Bake.  Makes three 10-inch waffles.

Mom's Best Macaroni Salad

Recipe from

This is great for your potlock summer dinner and it makes A LOT!  I don't like the texture of the shredded carrots so I dice them.  Or if you want to leave them out all together that's fine too.

Mom's Best Macaroni Salad 

Prep Time: 30 Minutes
Ready In: 30 Minutes
Servings: 16


16 ounces uncooked elbow macaroni
4 carrots, shredded diced
1 large red onion, chopped
1/2 green bell pepper, seeded and
1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 cup chopped celery
2 cups mayonnaise
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup white vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add macaroni, and cook until tender, about 8 minutes. Rinse under cold water, and drain.
2. In a large bowl, stir together the carrots, red onion, green pepper, red pepper and celery. Mix in the mayonnaise, condensed milk, sugar, vinegar, salt and pepper. Add the macaroni, toss gently, cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours. I usually make this a day ahead of time, and stir it occasionally to blend the flavors. The macaroni will absorb some of the liquid.


Friday, March 8, 2013

Chicken Burgers with Pineapple Salsa

Recipe from Better Homes and Garden

I'll be honest I only use this recipe for the chicken burger.  The pineapple salsa is so-so.  Maybe I would like it better if I let all the flavors marinate longer.  There is however a really good Mango salsa from the store that I've tried that would work lovely with this.  We make this during the summer and it's wonderful on the grill.  The mixture is very soft so it may seem a little hard to work with..  For the ease of cooking I'll make the patties up and put them in between wax paper then throw them in the freezer just for a little bit to firm up.  It makes it easier to work with on the grill.

Chicken Burgers with Pineapple Salsa

Prep: 25 min 
Cook: 14 min 
4 servings


1 8-1/4-ounce can crushed pineapple, drained
1/2 cup chopped red or green sweet pepper
1/2 cup sliced green onion
2 tablespoons snipped fresh cilantro or parsley
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small jalapeno or serrano pepper, seeded and finely chopped*
1 large egg
1/4 cup fine dry bread crumbs
1 teaspoon dried basil, crushed
1/2 teaspoon ground sage
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 pound uncooked ground chicken or turkey


1. Preheat grill. For salsa, in a medium bowl combine crushed pineapple, sweet pepper, half of the green onion, the cilantro or parsley, garlic, and jalapeno or serrano pepper. Cover; chill until serving time.

2. In another medium bowl combine the egg, bread crumbs, remaining onion, basil, sage, seasoned salt, and pepper. Add ground chicken or turkey; mix well. Shape into four 3/4-inch-thick patties. Grill patties on the grill rack of an uncovered grill directly over medium coals for 14 to 18 minutes or until juices run clear and an instant-read thermometer inserted in side of burger registers 165 degrees F, turning halfway through grilling. (Or, preheat broiler. Broil 4 to 5 inches from heat on an unheated rack of broiler pan for 10 to 12 minutes.) Serve burgers with salsa. Makes 4 servings.

*Note: Because hot peppers contain oils that can burn your eyes, lips, and skin, protect yourself when working with peppers by wearing plastic gloves or bags. Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly before touching your eyes or face.

Make-Ahead Tip: Prepare salsa; cover and chill up to 8 hours.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Chicken and Rice Bake

Recipe source Unknown

Chicken and Rice Bake

This was a freezer meal that someone gave me.  It doesn't take much time to throw together if you choose not to use it as a freezer meal.  I make sure that my chicken is not too thick.  If you have big chicken breasts I suggest to cut them up so they'll cook all the way through.  Also, cream of chicken soup works great!  In all the times I have ever cooked this I have NEVER cooked in 45 minutes.  Check it at 45 but you're looking more like 60 minutes of cooking time.  No one wants uncooked chicken and crunchy rice.

Chicken and Rice Bake
1 can Cream of Mushroom soup
1 cup water
¾ cup uncooked regular white rice
¼ tsp. Paprika
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

To freeze: Dump all ingredients into 1 gallon Ziploc freezer bag. Lay flat in freezer.

To cook: Thaw in refrigerator. Place all ingredients in a 2 quart shallow baking dish. Cover. Bake at 375 degrees F for 45 minutes or until chicken and rice are done. 

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Oven Roasted Potatoes

Recipe Source Unknown

It says to put it in a 9 x 13 pan but I always double the recipe and use a foil lined jelly roll pan.  I've also tried this with red potatoes and russet potatoes.

Oven Roasted Potatoes

1 1/2 pound new potatoes, quartered
2 tablespoons olive oil or vegetable oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper

Combine all ingredients in a plastic bag; toss to coat.  Pour into an ungreased 9 x 13 baking pan.  Bake, uncovered at 450 degrees F for 35 minutes or until potatoes are tender.