Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year

To me it seems that the year 2007 flew by, but I know for some it seemed to poke. I wish everyone a safe and healthy 2008. If you go out tonight be safe and enjoy your time with friends or family.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Helpful Hint-Storage Ideas

I am sure that if you have HELOISE in your paper you saw this hint. It is a suggestion for all those owner's manuals we receive when we purchase new products. The hint was to punch them with a three-hole punch and keep the manual in a three ring binder. It also suggested writing the model number and serial number on the inside cover and attach the sales receipt. Then recording problems, dates and solutions could be written down inside the manuals too. It would also be a good place to store warranty information. I am thinking that if the manual is too small maybe get a zip lock storage baggy and punch the holes and put the manual inside to save. The baggy would fit in the binder too.
Another hint in HELOISE that I thought was helpful was to make a digital photo of our shoes and place the photo on the outside of the shoe box so that we could see quickly which shoes we are looking for.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Main Dish-Panhandle Sandwiches

Here's another recipe from my make it and take it meals that I did once upon a time. These freeze and are very tasty. These would be great for a New Year's get together.
1/2 cup softened butter
1-1/2 Tbsp. prepared mustard
1/2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. poppy seeds
3/4 lb. shaved ham
1/4 cup green onions, finely chopped
4 Kaiser buns
4 slices Monterey Jack and /or Swiss cheese
Combine butter, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, poppy seeds and onions. Split rolls lengthwise and spread both halves generously with butter mixture. Place cheese slices on bottom half of roll. Divided shaved ham equally and place on top of cheese. (If desired,you can use both types of cheese and add cheese slices on top of the ham.) Put top half of roll on ham. Wrap each sandwich in foil. Place foil-wrapped sandwiches in freezer bag. To use immediately, you can (if you want a hot sandwich), bake at 350 degrees for 5 minutes. If sandwiches are frozen, bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Bread-Monkey Bread

Found this clipping in a Hints From Heloise and thought it might be just perfect for New Year's morning after staying up late.
You will need:
1/2 cup margarine or butter (don't use diet)
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup finely chopped nuts
1 tablespoon cinnamon
3 cans buttermilk biscuits
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray the inside of a Bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray. Next, melt the margarine in a bowl. Mix sugar, brown sugar, nuts, and cinnamon in a separate bowl. Open the biscuits, separate and cut each into four sections. Roll each section into a ball and put into the sugar mixture to coat. Place the balls into the pan and drizzle a little melted butter evenly over the top of this first layer. which is one can of biscuits. Repeat until all 3 cans of biscuits are used. Sprinkle remaining sugar mixture over the top and bake for 30-35 minutes. Let cool for a minute or two before turning the bread onto a plate and carefully removing the pan. If you leave the monkey bread in the pan much longer, it will stick and be hard to remove.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Brain Games

I came across this web site on Prevention that has a variety of brain games to play. I thought I would share it with others that might want to use their brain like I need to. So play these game for the brain for fun like I am going to do.

Knife Knowledge

I read this article in the paper today about the proper knife for different jobs. Chief Brian Patterson, knife skills instructor at L'Academie de Cuisine in Gaithersburg, Md. recommends five essentials. The 9-or 10-inch chef's knife: This knife chops, dices and juliennes fruits, vegetables and herbs. This is I would think the main knife of the kitchen. The serrated slices: It is used on fruits and vegetables, like pineapples, and delicate vegetables like tomatoes. It is known as the basic knife. The paring knife: This knife peels potatoes, pears, apples, and other fruit and vegetables that you might need to peel. The small filet knife: This knife is used to break down fish and most poultry using a scalpel-like tip. The flexible blade is good to use.
The carving knife: This knife is good to shear meat from cows and turkey. The article mentioned that most home cooks can get by with the first three mentioned. When we shop for a knife it suggested that we get good quality knives. Two things to watch for are good balance in our hand and a tang (the metal blade) that extends fully into the handle. I am not one to have all the knowledge about knives so this information that I read in this article was helpful and I wanted to share it with others.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Dessert-Pecan Kisses

This is an old recipe that I found.
2 cups pecan halves
2 egg whites
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Beat egg whites until very stiff.
Brown sugar and vanilla.
Fold in nuts and coat them well in the mixture
Drop each coated nut separately onto baking sheet that has been slightly greased
Bake 30 minutes at 250 degrees F.

Dessert-Shoneys' Strawberry Pie

This is a strawberry pie for those that like strawberries.
1 cup sugar
1 small 7 Up drink
3 tablespoons cornstarch
Cook until thick and stir
Add 2 drops red food color
Add 1 pint strawberries cut in half
Put in Cooked pie shell
Put whip cream on top

Dessert-Cocoa Fudge

Love chocolate? I really do and found this recipe tucked away in my collection of recipes.
Almost 1/2 cup Hershey's Cocoa
3 cups sugar
1/8 teasp. salt
1 & 1/2 cups milk
1/4 cup butter
1 teasp. vanilla
Combine cocoa, sugar, and salt in a large saucepan (3 quart size). Add milk gradually, mix thoroughly; bring to a "bubbly" boil on high heat, stirring continuously. Reduce heat to medium and continue to boil the mixture, without stirring, until it reaches a temperature of 232 F. or until a small amount of mixture forms a soft ball when dropped into cold water. Remove saucepan from heat: add butter and vanilla to mixture. DO NOT STIR. Allow fudge to cool at room temperature until it reaches 110 F. Beat by hand or with portable electric mixer until the fudge thickens and loses some of its gloss. Quickly pour and spread fudge in lightly buttered 8x8x2-inch pan. Cool. Cut into squares. Yield about 3 dozen squares.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Salad-Quick Fruit Salad

This is a quick and easy salad recipe.
1 can oranges, drained
1 can pineapple tidbits, drained
1 cup small marshmallows
1 cup coconut
1 carton sour cream
Mix together, refrigerate overnight

Appetizer-Cheese Ball

Just in time for tonight or tomorrow. I found this recipe that a friend shared with me years ago.
1 lb. sharp cheddar cheese
1 lb. pkg. cream cheese
1 Jalapeno(chopped fine) medium hot (optional)
6 olives with pimentos (chopped fine)
1 t. Lee & Perrin
salt to taste
1 c. pecans (chopped fine to roll ball in)
Make 1 large ball or 2 medium balls.
You can divide mixture for 2 balls. Put Jalapeno in 1 ball. Make other ball plain. Store in refrigerator or you can freeze. This is a favorite to some.

Vegetable-Celery Casserole

Here's another clipping from the newspaper. It looks easy.
6 cups sliced celery (sliced diagonally)
2 cans cream of chicken soup
1 can sliced water chestnuts, drained
2-ounce jar diced pimento
1 cup breadcrumbs (Some toast some buttered bread to make these)
Cook celery in a small amount of water only until tender crisp, about 8-10 minutes, and drain. Combine all remaining ingredients except bread crumbs. Place in a 2 quart casserole(Some used a 7x11 inch dish) and top with bread crumbs. Bake at 350 degrees, uncovered, for about 25-30 minutes. Makes 4-6 servings.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Salad-Curried Fruit

Just found this on a chat board and I think I am going to try it for Christmas day menu.

1 can (20 oz) chunk pineapple
1 can (20 oz) pear halves
1 can (20 oz) peach halves
1 can (20 oz) apricot halves
1/2 cup raisins
10 maraschino cherries
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon curry powder - more or less to taste
Drain fruit; cut up as desired. Combine fruit in a 2 quart casserole. Melt margarine. Stir in brown sugar and curry powder. Pour brown sugar mixture over fruit. Cook for about 30 minutes in 350° oven.

Bread-Cinnamon Bread Rollups

This may be the recipe for Christmas morning. Most everyone loves cinnamon bread and this one might just be the hit of the morning.
2 loaves bread
2 & 1/2 c. sugar
4 sticks of butter
2 egg yolks
2 (8 oz.) pkgs. cream cheese
Cut crust off of bread. In 1st bowl cream the cream cheese. Add 2 egg yolks, & 1/2 c. sugar. In 2nd bowl melt 4 sticks of butter. In 3rd bowl mix 2 c. sugar & cinnamon to spread cream cheese mixture on bread. Roll up. Dip in butter, roll in cinnamon & sugar, cut into pieces. Place on cookie sheet. Bake 10-15 min. on 350 degrees.

Dessert-Oreo Balls

Here's a shared recipe from a friend. It was yummy then, so I know it will be yummy now!
1 pkg. reg. oreos
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese
1 pkg. white almond bark
Put oreos (whole pkg) in food processor until they are powder. Add cream cheese to food processor when well blended roll into balls. Dip in small pieces of white almond bark & put on cookie sheet. Put in refrigerator for about 20 min. Serve!

Main Dish-Beef-Stuffed Bell Peppers

This is another recipe from the meal make and take that I have had fun doing in the past. This freezes great and wonderful to prepare after a busy day.
1 lb. ground beef
4 med. bell peppers, any color
3/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup uncooked white rice
3 Tbsp. ketchup
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 can (14.5 oz.) Italian style stewed tomatoes, undrained
1 Tbsp. Ketchup
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Cut tops off bell peppers, remove seeds. Combine ground beef, onion, rice, 3 Tbsp. Ketchup, salt, 1/2 tsp. Oregano, and pepper in large bowl, mixing lightly. Spoon into peppers, stand peppers in 8x8" baking dish. Combine sauce ingredients, pour over peppers. Cover dish tightly with foil. Bake 1-1/2 hours until beef is not pink in center and juices show no pink color.

Dessert-Cream Cheese Bars

This is another recipe that uses cake mix as one of the ingredients. I am sure I have made it since it was a shared recipe from a friend, but it has been a while since I did. See what you think about the cream cheese bars recipe.
Mix well and press into 9x13" greased and floured pan:
1 box yellow cake mix
1 stick butter, melted
1 egg
Mix well and pour over cake mix:
1 (8 oz.) cream cheese
2 eggs
1 box powdered sugar
Bake at 325 degrees for 40 min. (Some turned oven to broil for about 30 seconds to brown the top a little when 40 min. is up.)
Variations: 1.Use a lemon cake mix and add a few drops of lemon to the filling.
2. Add nuts &/or choc. chips to the filling.
3. Use a butter pecan cake mix with nuts in the filling

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Last Minute Christmas Ideas

Just found this website that I thought you might find interesting.Click here for some Christmas Ideas

Dessert-Pineapple Cake

My daddy loved pineapple upside down cake. This isn't an upside down cake, but pineapple. It is an old recipe that I discovered this morning in the recipes I have collected.
1-No. 2 can crushed pineapple
1-1/2 cups sugar
2-1/2 cups self-rising flour
1/4 tsp. salt
Mix with spoon. Put in greased and floured oblong pan. Bake 35 minutes at 350 degrees.
2 cups sugar
1 stick oleo
1 small can milk or 1/2 cup milk
1 small can coconut
1 tsp. vanilla
Few Nuts (if desired)
Bring to boil for 4 minutes. Punch holes in cake and pour icing on while hot.

Vegetable-Broccoli/Chicken Casserole

Here's another recipe I got from a make and take meals that I went to. It's great to make ahead, divide into smaller portions if necessary, and freeze for a later meal.
1 (10oz.) pkg. Frozen broccoli, thawed
1 (10.75 oz) can cream of chicken soup
1 (10.75 oz) can cream of mushroom soup
1 (6 oz.) pkg. herb flavored stuffing mix
1/2 c. butter, melted
Place broccoli and soups in a buttered 1-1/2 quart casserole dish, mix well. Toss stuffing with butter in a mixing bowl; add to casserole dish. Stir gently to mix. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes.
Makes 4 to 6 servings.


This is a quick recipe with very few ingredients. That's my kind of recipe when I am in a hurry.
1-lb. box brown sugar
2 cups Bisquick
4 eggs, beaten
2 cups chopped pecans
Mix all ingredients and pour into greased and floured 13x9x2" pan. Bake at 325 degrees for 45 min.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Main Dish-E-Z Enchilada Casserole

I bet everyone will want enchiladas after Christmas, before Christmas, or even on Christmas Eve. Here's an easy recipe that I found to share with you.


1 large can of chili
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 lb grated cheese
1 c. chopped onions
1 pkg. of tortillas
Mix and heat the can of chili and cream of chicken soup (DO NOT ADD WATER). Dip the tortillas in this mixture and add onions and cheese. Then roll up and place in casserole. Repeat until all tortillas are used. Then pour chili mixture over tortillas and sprinkle any cheese or onions over and heat until cheese is melted.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Helpful Hint- Remove Candle Wax From Carpet

I came across this hint from HELOISE and thought I would pass it on since candles are burned often during Christmas. HELOISE shared that this is from the Carpet and Rug Institute and this is now a new and improved method for removing candle wax from carpets. This is what we need to do- Put ice in a metal pan, put the pan on the candle wax and leave it there until the wax is frozen. Remove the pan and hit the candle wax with a blunt object, and the surface wax will shatter. Then vacuum it up. To remove the wax that has gotten down into the fibers, put rubbing alcohol on a white cloth and blot and press until the remaining wax is gone.

Dip or Relish-Pico De Gallo

This is going to be HOT in my opinion and I probably sampled some, but never made it myself. So you be the judge about this recipe.
Makes about 2 & 1/4 cups
3 medium tomatoes, diced
1 cup chopped green onion
1 jalapeno pepper, minced
1 Tbs. minced fresh cilantro
1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
Combine all ingredients in bowl. Cover & refrigerate for 8 to 10 hours before serving.

Main Dish-Italian Style Meatballs

I need something other than Christmas food about now and found this recipe in my recipe collection.
Serves 4
1 lb. Italian Meatballs
1 lb Pomodora Sauce
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
Heat the olive oil in a skillet (preferably non-stick) over medium high heat. When the oil is hot add the meatballs and saute until browned on all sides. Add the Pomodora sauce to the meatballs, reduce heat to medium low and cover. Simmer meatballs in the sauce until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Serve immediately.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Main Dish-Company Beef & Pasta

I wanted to share another recipe from a make and take meal put together. This is one of the meals that I put together and popped in the freezer when I got home for a later meal. Now when I make it, I divide it into smaller portions, freeze, and have it several times which helps after a busy day.
2 lbs. lean, ground beef
2 onions, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
3/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 (15 oz.) can Italian stewed tomatoes
1 (4 oz) can sliced mushrooms, drained
1 ( 8 oz.) pkg. Rotini pasta, divided
1-1/2 pints sour cream, divided
1 ( 8 oz.) pkg. sliced provolone cheese
1 ( 8 oz) pkg. shredded mozzarella cheese
In deep skillet or kettle, brown and cook beef, stirring often to break up pieces. Drain off excess fat. Add onions, bell pepper, garlic powder, spaghetti sauce, stewed tomatoes and mushrooms and mix well. Simmer 20 minutes. Cook rotini according to package directions and drain. Pour half the rotini into buttered deep 11x14" baking dish. Cover with half the meat-tomato mixture and half the sour cream. Top with slices of provolone cheese. Repeat process once more ending with mozzarella cheese. Cover and bake at 325 degrees for 35 minutes. Remove cover and continue baking another 10-15 minutes or until mozzarella cheese melts.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Baked Cake & Bread

Yesterday I made the TURTLE CAKE that I posted earlier. It was delicious. I had one and a half pieces and decided that was all for me. I am working on getting rid of pounds, but had to reward myself for the 17 pounds I have said bye, bye to. Today was Amish Friendship Bread baking day so I have three loaves of that wonderful bread in the oven baking and the smell is drifting into the den as I post. I will be freezing them and getting them out in the future days to enjoy with coffee. Just to let all know that the TURTLE CAKE is a cake that you might want to bake because it is really easy and quick to do and time is precious for most of us.

Dessert -Easy Chocolate Pie

My Aunt Kay gave me this very easy, quick chocolate pie recipe. Every time I make it the pie gets raves from everyone.
1 stick of butter
6 oz. chocolate chips
2 eggs (beaten)
1 can Eagle Brand
nuts or almonds (amount desired)
Melt butter and chocolate chips
Add eagle brand, beaten eggs, & nuts
Mix all together
Pour in a graham pie crust
Cook 40 minutes at 350 degrees

Monday, December 17, 2007

Dessert -Turtle Cake

This is a delicious cake, but I'm warning you it is rich. So if you are watching what you eat just take a few bites of this Turtle Cake.


1 box German chocolate cake mix
1 (14 oz) bag Kraft caramels
1/2 cup Pet milk
3/4 cup butter or margarine
2 cups coarsely chopped pecans
2 cups chocolate chips
Prepare cake mix according to directions on box. Pour 1/2 of the cake batter in a greased and floured 9"x13" cake pan. Bake 15 minutes at 350 degrees then remove from over. In a saucepan, melt the caramels and butter in milk stirring constantly. Pour caramel mixture over cake, sprinkle one cup pecans and one cup chocolate chips. Now pour the rest of the batter over mixture and sprinkle with remaining pecans and chips. Bake for 20 more minutes. Do not overbake. Cool and cut into squares. This recipe came from "The Louisiana Proud Collection of Sweet Things." This I clipped from the newspaper.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Dessert -Humming Bird Cake

I made this humming bird cake many years ago and discovered it once again in my many recipes. Looking at my recipe collections has recalled memories of things years ago. Here is this good cake recipe:


3 cups flour ( all purpose)
2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 teaspoon soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 & 1/2 cups cooking oil
Plus 1 tablespoon oleo
1 (8 oz) can crushed pineapples-juice and all
2 bananas mashed
1 cup nuts & 1 cup coconut optional
Mix by spoon in above order
Bake at 325 degrees in Bundt or tube pan for 1 hour and 15 minutes ( or until done)

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Delicious Cakes

Just last night I heard the front doorbell. When I opened the door I found a box waiting to be discovered. To my surprise inside the container was a cake from Janie's Cakes in Tyler, Texas. Well, to say the least we can't wait to cut it, but decided to keep it for a later date. We have frozen it and will bring it to the table in a couple of weeks. Our friends that sent it know what we enjoy. I have posted the link to this wonderful bakery in the side column under featured places in my area. YUMMY, is the best way to describe these wonderful cakes!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Bread -"Cinch" Cornbread

This recipe was in the same clipping as the soup posted below. They commented that it is easy, but a very good cornbread recipe that works even for beginning cooks. Here it is for anyone to try:
1 box Cinch cornbread mix
2 eggs
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup cream-style corn
1 cup sour cream
1/3 cup cooking oil
Mix all ingredients and pour into greased 7 -by- 11-inch baking pan or dish. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until lightly golden. Makes 6-8 servings.

Soup -Broccoli-Cheese Soup

Love to have soup and salad for a quick, light lunch on a cool day. This is another newspaper clipped recipe.
2 (10-ounce) packages frozen chopped broccoli
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1 quart water
1 teaspoon MSG (or Accent)
1 tablespoon chicken broth granules
1 teaspoon salt
1 (13-ounce) can evaporated milk
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 cup milk
1/2 pound Velveta cheese, cut into chunks
Saute broccoli in butter until soft (you do not have to thaw broccoli first). Add water, MSG, chicken broth granules ( or you may use real chicken broth instead of water and granules) and salt. Simmer for about 30 minutes or longer. Cool to lukewarm, and add canned milk. Mix cornstarch with milk and add to soup mixture. Simmer for about 20-30 minutes. Do not boil, or soup will curdle. Add cheese, and stir until cheese is dissolved. Makes about 2 quarts soup. It may be frozen for later use.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Main Dish-Spinach Lasagna

Okay, so I am still sharing spinach recipes. This is another one from the newspaper. Sounds like one to make over the Christmas holidays when we are tired of that turkey and ham.
12 ounces lasagna noodles, cooked according to package directions, only until slightly done
2 ( 10 oz) packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
1/2 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
4 tablespoons melted margarine, or butter, divided
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
1 & 1/2 teaspoons cajun seasoning
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 (8 oz) cans tomato sauce
1/2 cup water
24 ounces non-fat cottage cheese, drained in strainer
1 pound shredded mozzarella cheese (low or non fat may be used)
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Set aside cooked noodles. Saute spinach in 2 tablespoons margarine or butter until dry, and slightly cooked. Add seasonings to spinach. Remove from pan, and saute mushrooms, parsley and onions in remaining margarine. Mix cheeses. Mix tomato sauce with water, and pour into a greased or sprayed 9-by-13-inch dish or pan. Add a layer of noodles, a layer of cheese mixture, a layer of spinach and a layer of onion mixture. Repeat layers, and top with Parmesan cheese. Bake at 375 degrees uncovered for about 25-30 minutes until bubbly. Makes 8-10 generous servings.

Main Dish-Spinach Enchiladas

I love fresh spinach in my salad and also spinach enchiladas. This is a recipe that I clipped from the newspaper and since it is rainy I have Mexican food on my mind.. Today I would rather go out and eat it instead of cooking in because that way maybe I could finish up my last minute Christmas shopping. Here's the recipe that I want to share today.
1 (10 oz) box of frozen chopped spinach
1 (10 oz) can light chicken soup
1/2 cup light sour cream
1/2 cup non-fat ( or low fat) plain yogurt
1 tablespoon flour
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 (4 oz) can green chilies ( I will probably not put as many)
2 ( or more) green onions, sliced, tops included
1 cup grated Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
8 medium-size flour tortillas
Cook spinach, according to package directions, and drain. Mix with soup, sour cream, yogurt, flour, lemon juice, and chilies. Mix cheeses with green onions. Place 2 tablespoons cheese mixture on each tortilla, and about 1 tablespoon spinach sauce. Roll and place in sprayed ( or greased) 9-by-13 inch casserole. Top with remaining sauce. If desired, add more cheese on top of enchiladas (either Monterey Jack or mozzarella). Bake, uncovered at 350 degrees for about 25-30 minutes or until bubbly. Do not overcook. Makes 4-5 servings, more if you only serve 1 enchilada per serving.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Dessert -Fresh Apple Cookies

Santa will be looking for cookies so we need to start cooking some for him.
1/2 cup shortening
1 & 1/3 cups firmly packed brown sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup finely chopped unpeeled apple
Vanilla frosting (recipe follows)
Cream shortening; gradually add sugar, beating well. Add egg and milk; beat well. Combine flour, soda, salt, and spices; add to creamed mixture, mixing well. Stir in raisins, pecans, and apples. Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls, 1 & 1/2 inches apart, onto greased cookie sheets. Bake at 400 degrees for 12-15 minutes. Cool on wire racks. Frost with vanilla frosting. Yield: 4 & 1/2 dozen.
Vanilla Frosting:
1 & 1/2 cups sifted powdered sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 & 1/2 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon butter or margarine, melted
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Combine all ingredients in a small mixing bowl; beat until smooth. Yield: enough for 4 & 1/2 dozen cookies.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Dessert -Cranberry Date Cake

Sweets are my weakness and that's why it is so hard for me to shed these extra pounds. This is a recipe that I clipped from the newspaper. This one has a glaze.


2 & 1/4 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup cranberries ( Some coarsely chop their cranberries)
1 cup nuts (pecans or walnuts)
1 cup chopped dates
2 tablespoons grated orange zest
Combine all the above and add the following
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup cooking oil
Mix well and pour into a sprayed or greased and floured tube or Bundt pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 50-60 minutes (check with toothpick at 50 minutes). Cool for 10 minutes in pan, remove and cool thoroughly. Make a glaze of :
1/3 cup orange juice
1/3 cup powdered sugar
Pour over cake

Main Dish-5-Hour Stew

It's that time of the year for a bowl of steaming stew. I came across this recipe that a dear friend from Orange, Texas shared with my mother years ago.
1 & 1/2 lb. stew meat
3 or 4 diced potatoes
1 pkg. chopped carrots
1 chopped onion
1 can English peas, drained
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of celery soup
Layer ingredients in a lightly greased iron dutch oven: stew meat that has been salted, peppered, & lightly sprinkled with garlic powder; salted potatoes; salted carrots; onions; salted peas; soups (alternate soup, using a spoonful of each till entire top of pot is covered. Salt & pepper top of soup. Cover with tight-fitting lid. Bake at 225 degrees for 5-6 hours. (I am thinking about using the crock pot and maybe adding some water too)

Monday, December 10, 2007

Bread -Strawberry Bread

My cousin's wife gave me this recipe. I remember baking it years ago.
3 cups flour
1 tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
3 tsp. cinnamon
2 c. sugar
1 & 1/4 cup oil
2 cups frozen strawberries thawed
4 eggs, well beaten
1 & 1/4 cup chopped pecans
Sift together dry ingredients. Fold other ingredients in dry ones. Bake at 3 50 degrees for 1 hour. Makes 2 loaves

Dessert -Mama's Teacakes

This is a clipping from the newspaper. It was submitted by a family that enjoyed their mama's teacakes.


1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
2 or 3 eggs
2 & 3/4 to 3 cups flour
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, beat well. Add vanilla, then dry ingredients. Roll out. Cut in shapes. Bake at 350 to 375 degrees until brown. They said that their mama rolled these out on a floured cloth and cut them with a glass as a cutter. She sprinkled them with sugar, sometimes cinnamon and sugar, before she baked them.

Dessert -Sock it to Me-Cake

This is a great cake and one I know you will want to try.
1 box Duncan Hines Butter Cake Mix
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup of cooking oil
1/2 pt. sour cream
4 eggs, one at a time
1 cup of chopped nuts
Mix above then set aside
Mix 2 teasp. cinnamon
2 Tsp. brown sugar
Pour 1/2 of cake batter into tube pan and sprinkle with brown sugar mixture. Pour in the remaining batter. Cook at 325 about 1 hour.

Vegetable -Corn Casserole

Lots of people love corn and I can say that I like corn, but it isn't my favorite. A friend shared this recipe with me and today I thought it might be the one to post.
1 stick oleo
1 bell pepper -chopped
1 onion -chopped
1 can cream corn
2 eggs
1 cup minute rice(raw)
1-8 oz jar Cheez Whiz-jalapeno
1 small jar pimientos
Grated cheese
Saute pepper and onion in oleo. Add corn and eggs. Salt and pepper to taste. Add rice-melt cheez whiz in microwave-Mix together-cover with grated cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 mins in a 9x13 greased dish.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Appetizer -Crunchy Cheese Biscuits

Posting Christmas party recipes is the goal since we all are looking for something different, quick and easy, or a recipe that we have misplaced. This one is another shared one from a friend.
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 cup all-purpose flour, measured before sifting
1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese, softened
1/2 teaspoon salt
Tabasco & Worchestershire sauce to taste
1 cup rice cereal bits
Blend all ingredients except cereal bits by hand in a bowl until thoroughly mixed. Work in cereal bits. Pinch off into tiny ball about the size of a nickel. Place on ungreased baking sheet, press down with fork, and bake at 325 degrees for about 10 minutes, or until faintly colored. Yield: about 48 balls

Dessert -Tiny Pecan Tarts

I have made these before and they are very good. Great to serve at a party and Christmas party food is on in demand about now.
1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
Combine cream cheese and butter;blend in flour, chill about 1 hour. Shape into balls about 1 inch in diameter and press into tiny ungreased muffin tins.
1 egg
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon butter or margarine, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2/3 cup coarsely chopped pecans
Beat egg with wooden spoon; add brown sugar, melted butter, and vanilla. Mix well and stir in pecans. Pour into prepared shells and bake at 325 degrees for about 25 minutes, cool before removing from pans. Yield about 20

Vegetable -Carrot Souffle

Carrots are one of my favorite vegetables. I found this recipe in the newspaper and wanted to share.
1 pound fresh carrots
1/2 stick margarine, melted
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon vanilla
Cook carrots; drain and combine with melted margarine in mixing bowl. Blend with electric mixer until well blended. Add rest of ingredients and mix well. Pour into greased casserole and bake 45 minutes at 350 degrees.

Drink -Christmas Fruit Punch

Christmas hot drinks are great to serve on a cold December night. My mother served this at many Christmas parties that we had during my years of growing up.


1 qt. cranberry juice
20 oz. pineapple juice
1 (6 0z) frozen lemonade (thawed and undiluted)
1 cup apple juice
1 cup orange juice
4 (3 inch sticks) cinnamon
3 whole nutmeg
1 & 1/2 teaspoon ginger
Pour top 5 ingredients into a 30 cup electric percolator. Place cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger in percolator basket. Perk through complete cycle. Let stand 1 hour. Serve hot

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Made in the USA continued..........

I have added more to the lists under USA made products in the column to the right. If you know of others please comment or if you think that I have added something by mistake, feel free to point it out.

Dip -Long and Difficult Hot Sauce Recipe

This quick and easy hot sauce recipe will be great with corn chips. Soooooooo Simple
1-16 oz. jar Pace's Picante sauce--Medium
1-15 oz. can Hunt's Tomato Sauce Special
Mix-------Chill--------Serve with corn chips

Dip -Layered Nacho Dip

Dips can be a big hit at any party or to munch while watching a game on television. Here's a dip that is sure to be a hit.
1-16 oz. can refried beans
1/2 pkg. (1.25 oz.) Taco seasoning mix
1 carton (6to 8 oz.) avocado dip
1-8 oz. carton sour cream
1-4.5 oz can ripe olives, drained and sliced
2 large tomatoes, diced
1 small onion, chopped
1 & 1/2 cups (6 oz.) grated Monterey Jack cheese with jalapeno peppers
Combine beans and seasonings mix. Spread bean mixture evenly in large, flat, rectangular dish (12x8x2"). Layer remaining ingredients in order listed. Serve with large corn chips.

Bread -Poppy Seed Bread

Christmas baskets can be fun to put together for family and friends. It is fun to find and put together the goodies that fill the basket. This bread would be a wonderful addition to any basket or to serve with coffee.
3 c. flour
1 & 1/2 t. salt
1 & 1/2 t. baking powder
2 & 1/2 c. sugar
1 & 1/2 c. milk
1 & 1/8 c. oil
1 & 1/2 T. Poppy seeds
3 eggs
1 & 1/2 t. vanilla extract
1 & 1/2 t. almond extract
Mix all ingredients and pour into 2 greased loaf pans. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour 15 minutes approximately. Take bread out of pan and place on foil for wrapping and pour glaze over and wrap while hot.
Glaze-Melt 3 T. margarine in small pan and add 3/4 c. powdered sugar, 1/4 c. orange juice, 1/2 t. vanilla, and 1/2 t. almond extract.
For smaller pans it makes 4 loaves-bake 50 minutes.

Main Dish-Beef Enchilada Casserole

This is another recipe from my make and take meal classes. I also think it would be great for a party because it serves 10. It is also nice to have on hand in the freezer to cook after a hard day at work.
2 lbs. extra lean ground beef, browned and drained
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can fiesta nacho cheese soup
1 (8 oz) jar taco sauce
1 (10oz) can enchilada sauce
1 pkg (12 ct) corn tortillas (torn in fourths)
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Combine first 5 ingredients. Layer 1/2 tortillas, 1/2 meat mixture in 13x9 dish. Repeat layers. Top with shredded cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until bubbly. Serves 10
I have also divided this, put in sprayed tins, and placed each tin in a freezer ziplock bag with most of the air removed. I cooled it in the refrigerator before putting them in the freezer.

Main Dish-Chicken Spectacular

I have been to make and take meals where I put together 10 meals at one time. I am sure many of you have done that too. When I came home from work it was great to pull one of these already prepared meals from the freezer and cook. This is one of the recipes. I halved this and had two meals. Hope you enjoy.


1 lb. chicken breast, cooked, diced
1 cup rice, cooked
1/2 can cream of celery soup
1 can French-style green beans, drained
2 Tbsp. Pimiento
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup almonds
Mix together and put in casserole dish.(I divided and put in two separate tins from the grocery store that I sprayed with Pam and then I put each tin in a freezer bag, got most of the air out, and placed it in the freezer for a later meal.)(I first cooled it in the refrigerator before putting it in the freezer.) Cook at 325 degrees for 25-30 minutes.(This may be different time if frozen.) Serves 4

Friday, December 7, 2007

Dessert -Almond Joy Cake

Uh, oh, I am on a roll with chocolate. Here's another one.
STEP 1- 1 chocolate cake mix with pudding in it (bake as directed)
STEP 2-Filling: 1 c. sugar
1 c. Pet milk
24 large marshmallows
Directions: Put this in sauce pan and cook stirring until marshmallows melt.
Add: 14 oz. pkg coconut. Pour over hot cake
STEP 3- Icing: 1 & 1/2 c. sugar
3/4 stick oleo
1/2 c. Pet milk
Mix in sauce pan and cook to a boil.
Remove from heat and add:
1 & 1/2 c. choc. chips. STIRRING until melted.
Add: 1 c. slivered almonds ( 1 3/4 oz. pkg)
POUR over top of cake and let cool.

Dessert -Earthquake Cake

Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate, I found another chocolate recipe this afternoon and wanted to share it with everyone.
1 chocolate cake mix
1 cup coconut
1 cup chopped pecans
1 (8 oz) cream cheese
1 lb. powdered sugar
Mix cake according to directions. Grease and flour a 9 x 12 pan and put 1 cup pecans and coconut in bottom. Pour in cake and top with cream cheese and powdered sugar which has been mixed together. Bake at 350 degree oven for about 45 minutes.
This is a good cake

Dessert -German Chocolate Pound Cake

Do you like chocolate? This cake would serve many and was shared by a friend.
2 cups sugar
1 cup shortening
4 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. butter flavoring
1 cup buttermilk
3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
1 pkg German sweet chocolate
Cream sugar and shortening and add eggs, flavorings, and buttermilk. Sift together flour, soda and salt and add. Mix well. Then add German Chocolate that has been softened in warm oven or in double boiler. Blend together well. Cook in 9"stem pan, that has been well greased and dusted with flour about 1-1/2 hours at 300 degrees. Place cake under a tight fitting cake cover, while still hot and leave covered until cold.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Main Dish-Apricot Chicken

Quick and easy is what this main dish chicken recipe is. I got this at a cooking class that I went to. You can half the recipe or make the whole amount and freeze it for a future meal. It is a favorite from the class I took. Actually, I get 4 meals from this because I put 2 pieces of chicken in the little tins from the grocery store, divide the mixture and pour on top, put each tin in a ziplock freezer bag, remove as much air from the bag as possible, and then freeze. When I want to use it for a meal, I thaw it in the fridge and then cook as directed. Love to serve with rice and steamed veggies.
1 (8 oz) bottle Catalina salad dressing
1 env. dry onion soup mix
1 (18 oz) jar apricot jam
8 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
Place chicken in 13x9 pan. Combine first 3 ingredients and pour over chicken. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.
Makes 8 servings

Dessert -Heath Bar Coffee Cake

Coffee cake with a cup of coffee may be something to serve your friends for a morning get together.
2 cups brown sugar
2 cups flour
1 stick butter(some use oleo)
Mix sugar and flour. Cut or rub in the butter to make crumbs. Remove and reserve 1 cup of this mixture.
1 tsp. soda
1 cup buttermilk
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla
Dissolve soda in buttermilk. Mix in egg and vanilla. Mix with the crumbs left in the bowl. Pour into a greased 13x9x2 inch pan. Mix reserved crumbs, nuts and crushed candy and sprinkle on top. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 min.
1/2 cup minced pecans
6 Heath bars, crushed ( Some use a 6 oz. bag of Heath's Butter Brickle bits from Albertsons instead)

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Martha Stewart-Holiday Wreaths

I noticed this section on holiday wreaths on Martha Stewart's site. These photos are great wreath ideas. I would like to have some talent when it comes to putting things together like wreaths.

Dessert -Martha Washington Candy

Could not resist putting this recipe on this site too. It was also in the newspaper as a winning candy for this month. This Christmas candy sounds like it would be a hit.
1 stick soft margarine
1 (14oz) can sweetened condensed milk
2 pounds powdered sugar
1 cup coconut
1 & 1/4 cups pecans
12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
1/2 block paraffin wax
Stir together margarine and milk until smooth. Add sugar and mix well. Then add coconut and pecans. Chill dough at least 4 hours or overnight in refrigerator. Roll dough into 1 inch balls. In a double boiler melt chocolate and wax. Use a toothpick and dip chilled balls in chocolate. Cool on wax paper. Makes 5 to 6 dozen. Keep refrigerated.

Dessert -Chocolate Pecan Turtles

I feel the urgent need to post as many Christmas recipes that I can now so that they could be enjoyed during this festive time. This one was also in the newpaper as one of the best recipes judged this month.
1 can sweetened condensed milk (1 &1/3 cups)
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1 & 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
Pecans, about 2 to 2 & 1/2 cups, to desired thickness
1 (1 - pound) package of chocolate confectionery coating, semi-sweet or milk chocolate
Combine milk, sugars and corn syrup in a 3-quart sauce pan. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon until all sugar crystals are dissolved. Stir frequently as caramel cooks. Cook to 236 degrees or until it forms a soft ball in cold water. Remove from heat. Stir in butter and vanilla. Cool. Chop pecans coarsely. Add enough pecans to cooked caramel to make caramel firm enough to dip in chocolate. (Stuff caramel full of pecans) Refrigerate several hours or overnight. Melt chocolate confectionery coating in top of double boiler over hot water. Make small flat patties from caramel nut mixture. Drop into melted chocolate. Remove with dipping fork. Cool on wax paper.

Dessert -Almond Crunch

Christmas candies and cookies are so on the front lines now. This one was in the morning paper and looks like my kind of recipe. Easy!
12 double graham crackers
4 ounces sliced almonds (or 1 cup chopped pecans)
2 sticks butter
1/2 cup sugar
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with foil. Place graham crackers on foil. Sprinkle almonds over the graham crackers. Bring butter and sugar to boiling point in heavy pan. Boil for 2 & 1/2 minutes. Pour over crackers and almonds. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Cool and break into pieces.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Dessert -Coconut Pound Cake

Here's a recipe that uses a cake mix. I have made it several times and love it. It is great to take to a Christmas party or for that matter any party.
1 Duncan Hines butter recipe cake mix
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup oil
dash of salt
4 eggs
1 cup coconut
1 (8 oz) carton of sour cream
Mix all ingredients until smooth. Pour into a greased tube pan that has been sprinkled with sugar. NO FLOUR! Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. It might not take a full hour so check cake at 45 minutes.

Appetizer -Vintage Cocktail Smokies

Can't have a Christmas party without the cocktail smokies. These little sausages will be a hit. My cousin's wife, Cindy, shared it with me. This recipe is quick and easy.
1 pkg. (1 lb.) cocktail-size smoked sausages
1 and 1/2 c. red wine
1 c. barbecue sauce
1 c. grape jelly
Place smoked sausages with wine in a bowl-cover and refrigerate overnight. Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan. Heat at a slow boil for 5 min. Serve from chafing dish.

Drink -Spice Tea Recipe #2

My cousin's wife, Tammy, shared this spice tea recipe with me. It is a little different from the other one posted. This would make a sweet little mixture in a jar for a teacher or friend, paired with a teacup and saucer or even a mug.
2 & 1/2 cups sugar
2 cups Tang
1/2 cup Instant Tea
1 & 1/2 cups lemonade
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. ground cloves
Mix the above ingredients together, it makes a lot. Save in a sealed container. When ready to serve add 2 or 3 tablespoons to hot water for a delicious cup of spice tea.

Dip -Shrimp Dip

Christmas gatherings are starting and easy recipes are in need. I have this shrimp dip recipe that will fit the occasion.
1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese
1 (3 oz) pkg. cream cheese with chives
2 or 3 tablespoons mayo. depending on how thin you want this dip
1 can shrimp (devained)
Put in blender and blend
Serve with your choice of crackers

Monday, December 3, 2007

Dessert -Paula Deen's Buttery Pistachio Brittle

I love brittle, it's like popcorn to me. One bite isn't enough. I found this Paula Deen's buttery pistachio brittle recipe. I thought during Christmas it would be a great idea to make some.


Makes about 2 1/2 pounds

3 cups sugar
1 & 1/2 cups water
1 cup light corn syrup
2 cups shelled pistachios
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon orange extract
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
Butter 2 large baking sheets; set aside
In a large Dutch oven, combine sugar, water, and corn syrup. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until mixture reaches 232 degrees F. on a candy thermometer.
Stir in pistachios. Cook, stirring constantly until mixture reaches 300 degrees F. on a candy thermometer. Remove from heat, and stir in baking soda, extract, and butter, stirring until butter melts. Quickly pour 1/2 of mixture onto each prepared baking sheet; spread to 1/4-inch thickness. Cool completely. Break into pieces.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Fitness-Body Works

I found this site that has 4 different routines. I am trying to watch what I am eating during the holidays and it is so hard. So I am trying to keep up my exercising that I hate. These routines might help me and thought others may want to exercise too.

Dessert -Peanut Buttery Chocolaty Cups

Love Paula Deen's recipes and this is one I found in a magazine. It looks good for a Christmas treat.
This makes about 10 dozen
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1 cup creamy or crunchy peanut butter
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
2 cups confectioners' sugar
1 pound chocolate almond bark, melted and divided
In a medium bowl, combine butter, peanut butter, cracker crumbs, and sugar, stirring well. Spoon 1 teaspoon melted chocolate into bottom of a miniature-sized paper baking liner. Let cool. Press 1 teaspoon peanut butter mixture over chocolate, pressing to edges of liner. Spoon melted chocolate over peanut butter to cover. Let cool. Repeat procedure with remaining chocolate and peanut butter mixture.

Dessert -Paula Deen's Pineapple Upside-Down Biscuits

This is Paula Deen's sweet biscuit recipe that she might serve for breakfast or a side to a holiday dinner. I love watching Paula Deen and also trying her wonderful recipes.


1 (10-ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained, juice reserved
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup (1/2 stick)butter, at room temperature
10 maraschino cherries
1 (12-ounce) package refrigerated buttermilk biscuits (10 count)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease 10 cups of a muffin tin.
In medium bowl, combine pineapple, sugar, and butter, and mix well. Divide pineapple mixture among the muffin cups. Place a cherry in the center of each muffin cup. Place one biscuit in each cup on top of pineapple mixture. Pour about 1 teaspoon pineapple juice over each biscuit.
Bake 12 to 15 minutes, or until golden.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Eat Gourmet By Mail-Order

I saw this article that shared many of New York City's gourmet shops that would ship right to our home. What a great holiday gift or to make entertaining easier. I paid attention to several of the ones mentioned and wanted to share them with you. One was Jacques Torres Chocolate Haven which offers all-natural, handmade bonbons with no preservatives. Another one that caught my eye was Zabar's offering distinctive foodstuffs and custom-roasted coffee. One more that I jotted down was Yonah Schimmel Knish Bakery offering handmade knishes filled with potato or other filling. They all sounded wonderful, but I have never experienced any of their foods. This mail order idea sounds rather nice about now.