Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Fudge- the fake way


1 (7 ounce) jar marshmallow creme
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2/3 cup evaporated milk
1/4 cup butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups milk chocolate chips
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped nuts
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Line an 8x8 inch pan with aluminum foil. Set aside.
In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine marshmallow cream, sugar, evaporated milk, butter and salt. Bring to a full boil, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
Remove from heat and pour in semisweet chocolate chips and milk chocolate chips. Stir until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Stir in nuts and vanilla. Pour into prepared pan. Chill in refrigerator for 2 hours, or until firm.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011



2 cups white sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup corn syrup
1 cup evaporated milk
1 pint heavy whipping cream
1 cup butter
1 1/4 teaspoons vanilla extract


Grease a 12x15 inch pan.
In a medium-size pot, combine sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup, evaporated milk, whipping cream, and butter. Monitor the heat of the mixture with a candy thermometer while stirring. When the thermometer reaches 250 degrees F (120 degrees C) remove the pot from the heat.
Stir in vanilla. Transfer mixture to the prepared pan and let the mixture cool completely. When cooled cut the Carmel into small squares and wrap them in wax paper for storage.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Mexican Stuffed Shells

Mexican Stuffed Shells

1 lb. ground beef
1 package low-sodium taco seasoning ( or better yet use this Taco Seasoning!)
4 oz. cream cheese
14-16 jumbo pasta shells
1.5 cup salsa
1 cup taco sauce
1 cup cheddar cheese
1 cup monterey jack cheese
3 green onions
Sour cream

Preheat oven to 350°.

In a frying pan cook ground beef; add taco seasoning and prepare according to package directions. Add cream cheese, cover and simmer until cheese is melted. Blend well. Set aside and cool completely. While ground beef is cooking, cook the pasta shells according to directions; drain. Set shells out individually on cutting board/baking sheet so that they don’t stick together.

Pour salsa on bottom of 9×13 baking dish. Stuff each shell with the meat mixture. Place shells in 9×13 pan open side up. Cover shells with taco sauce. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes, add shredded cheese and bake for 10-15 more minutes, with the foil removed. Top with any condiments you’d like (green onions, black olives, etc.) Serve with sour cream and/or more salsa.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Gingerbread House Dough

5 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ginger
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cloves
1 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 ¼ cups molasses (corn syrup works if you want lighter gingerbread)
2 eggs, beaten

In large saucepan, melt shortening on stove over low heat. While shortening is melting, in a separate bowl stir together flour, salt and spices (if using for cookies, add 1 tsp. baking soda). When shortening is half melted, remove from heat and continue to stir until completely melted. Add sugar, molasses and beaten eggs. Mix well and quickly (to prevent eggs from cooking). Add molasses mixture to flour mixture. Mix well. Dough will be soft. Cover and refrigerate until firm enough to handle.
Roll dough out onto parchment paper to about 1/8-1/4" thick, then cut into shapes. Bake at 350 for 9-15 minutes depending on size of piece.

Allow to completely cool and harden before assembling house.

*1 recipe makes about 2 houses.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Cinnamon Rolls

1/2 c. milk
1/2 c. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 c. butter
1/2 c. warm water
2 pkg yeast (1 1/2 Tbsp)
2 eggs, beaten
4 1/2 c. unsifted flour

Scald milk, stir in sugar, salt, and butter; cool to lukewarm. Measure warm water in large warm bowl. Sprinkle in yeast; sit until dissolved. Stir in lukewarm milk mixutre, beaten eggs and half of the flour. Stirk in remaining flour to make a slightly stiff dough. Turn dough out on floured board, knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Place dough in greased bow, turning to grease top. Cover; let rise until doubled (about one hour). Punch down, turn out onto lightly floured board and roll out VERY thinly into a long rectangle shape. Let dough rest a minute or two after each rolling so it relaxes, this makes it easier to get it super thin.
After dough is as thin as you want it, spread dough generously with softened butter. Sprinkle with cinnamon (lots, and use Penzey's if you can get it). Then sprinkle generously with brown sugar and roll tightly. Use a string to cut dough into 1" sections.

Cinnamon Roll Caramel
1 c. heavy cream
1/2 c. butter
1 1/2 c. brown sugar
1/2-3/4 c light corn syrup

Bring to a rolling boil for 2-4 minutes.
Cool a bit, then pour into the bottom of a circular pan. Place roll sections into caramel, leaving room between each (they'll expand quite a lot as dough raises again)
Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes- take out just as the edges start to brown a bit.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
1/2 block cream cheese, softened
1/4 c. butter, softened
powdered sugar (at least a pound)
1 tsp. vanilla
cream or half/half to thin frosting if it gets too thick

Mix cream cheese and butter together until smooth, then add powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time until it tastes and feels right (Usually at least half a bag). Add cream if it gets too thick.

Notes: This seems to work best for me in a circle pan- if I use a 9x13, either the middle ones are not cooked enough or the edges get a little darker than I want. Also, if you can get ahold of GOOD cinnamon, that makes a huge difference. Penzey's blend is my favorite for this.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Banana Bread

1/2 c butter
1 c sugar
2 eggs
2 bananas
(blend together in blender)
Then add:
2 c flour
1 tsp bkg soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 Heaping T sour cream

350 deg 55min

Monday, October 24, 2011

Apple Pie Caramel apples

1 (14oz) bag of caramels

2 T cream or half/half

1 (12oz) bag of white chocolate chips

1 T cream or half/half

1/2 c. sugar

1 T. cinnamon

pinch nutmeg

dash cloves

5-6 apples and sticks to stab them on

1. Unwrap caramels and melt with cream in a small saucepan.

2. Melt cream and white chocolate chips at 30 second intervals in the microwave, stirring every 30 sec.

3. Mix cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and sugar in a small bowl.

4. Wash apples well- this is important because they have stuff on them from the store that will keep the caramel from sticking well.

5. Stab each apple with whatever stabbing device you choose (I used bamboo skewers, I've heard popsicle sticks also work)

6. Swirl each apple in caramel until it's completely coated. Set on parchment or waxed paper, then refrigerate until they're cold (15-20 minutes or so)

7. Heat white chocolate mixture so it's pretty runny, but not too hot.

8. Dip the cold apples into the white chocolate, then immediately shake the cinnamon mixture over them. Refrigerate for a few minutes until the chocolate solidifies.

*Don't use oil to thin the chocolate chips, it makes it run off the caramel.

Monday, September 19, 2011

French Vanilla Ice Cream

2 eggs
3/4 c. sugar
2 c. cream
1 c. milk
2 tsp vanilla
1. Whisk the eggs in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes.
2. Whisk in the sugar, a little at a time, then continue whisking until completely blended, about 1 minute more. Pour in the cream, milk, and vanilla and whisk to blend.
3. Transfer the mixture to an ice cream maker and freeze following the manufacturer's instructions.
4. Makes 1 Quart **Variation: add 1 cup coarsely chopped Reese's Peanut butter cups, after ice cream stiffens (about 2 minutes before it is done) let it continue processing.

Read more:

Molasses Cookies

2 1/4 c. flour
2 tsp ginger
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cloves
3/4 c. margarine
1 c. sugar
1 T orange juice
1 egg
1/4 c molasses

1. cream together margarine and sugar, add egg
2. Mix in OJ & molasses
3. Gradually add dry ingredients
4. Roll into balls, dip in sugar, and bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes.

Fudge Jumbles

1/2 c. margarine
1 c. brown sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
2 c. oatmeal
1 egg
3/4 c. flour
1/2 tsp bkg soda

6 oz milk chocolate chips
1 T butter
1 can sw. cond milk
dash salt
1/2 tsp vanilla

1. Mix first 8 ingredients until well blended. Set aside 1 cup, spread the rest in an 8x11 dish.
2. Melt chocolate chips and butter, add cond milk, salt, and vanilla, blend well.
3. Pour chocolate mixture over oats in pan.
4. Make "patties" out of remaining oatmeal mixture and place on top of chocolate
5. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes.

Caramel Ice Cream Topping

3/4 c brown sugar
1/4 c. corn syrup
1 T butter

Boil until 230 degrees on candy thermometer, then add:

1/4 c. warmed half/ half
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Cinnamon Roll Goop

1 c. heavy cream
1/2 c. butter
1 1/2 c. brown sugar
1/2-3/4 c light corn syrup

Bring to a rolling boil for 2-4 minutes.

Bacon Ranch Mac & Cheese

Recipe: Chicken Ranch Macaroni and Cheese

16 oz. dried pasta, I prefer whole wheat elbow macaroni or shells

4 Tbsp. unsalted butter

1/4 c. all-purpose flour

1/2 package of bacon

1-2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces

3 c. milk, any fat content

1 pkg. Italian blend shredded cheese; divided

1 c. Monterey Jack shredded cheese or Colby-Jack blend, divided

1 tsp. onion powder

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. dill

1 tsp. salt

pepper, to taste

Cook pasta according to package directions; drain.

Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat, until crisp. Remove bacon from pan, leaving some drippings in the pan. Drain bacon on a paper towel. Add chicken to drippings, increase heat to medium-high and saute for until no longer pink. Set aside.

Melt butter in the same pot you made the pasta in. Whisk in flour. Cook and stir 2 minutes. Add milk to saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Boil for 2 minutes. Stir in most of the cheese. (Reserve a handful of each cheese blend to sprinkle on top of casserole.) Add spices and chicken and stir to combine.

Spray 9×13″ baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Transfer pasta to baking pan. Sprinkle with crumbled bacon

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Sausage Cheese Balls

Sausage Cheese Balls
Source: Tablespoon

3 cups Original Bisquick® mix or Healthy Start Bisquick® mix
1 pound pork sausage
4 cups shredded Cheddar cheese (16 ounces)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary leaves, crushed
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley or 1/2 teaspoon parsley flakes
Barbecue sauce or chili sauce, if desired

Heat oven to 350ºF. Lightly grease bottom and sides of jelly roll pan or use parchment paper.

Stir together all ingredients, using hands or spoon. If your mixture is too dry add a little more milk. Shape mixture into 1-inch balls. Place in pan.

Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until brown. Immediately remove from pan. Serve warm with sauce for dipping.

Crockpot Italian Chicken

Crockpot Italian Chicken

4 chicken breasts
1 packet dry Zesty Italian dressing (Regular is fine but I like zesty better. Sometimes I use a packet and a half.)
1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, softened
1-2 cans cream of chicken soup (depending how cream cheesy you want it)

Place the chicken in a crockpot and sprinkle Italian dressing over it. Combine cream cheese and cream of chicken soup in a small pot over low heat and pour over chicken. Cook on low for at least 4 hours. You can leave it in there all day. Once chicken is done you can leave the chicken breasts whole, cube it, or even shred it. I always cut the breasts into tenderloin size strips.

If you feel the sauce is too thick you can thin it to your preferred consistency with a little milk. Serve over pasta or rice.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Mall Pretzels

1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 1/8 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees F
/45 degrees C)
3 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup bread flour
2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45
degrees C)
2 tablespoons baking soda
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons coarse kosher salt
1. In a large mixing bowl, dissolve the yeast, brown sugar and salt in 1 1/2 cups warm water. Stir in flour, and knead dough on a floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, and turn to coat the surface. Cover, and let rise for one hour.
2. Combine 2 cups warm water and baking soda in an 8 inch square pan. Line 6 baking sheets with parchment paper.
3. After dough has risen, cut into 12 pieces. Roll each piece into a 3 foot rope, pencil thin or thinner. Twist into a pretzel shape, and dip into the baking soda solution. Place onto parchment covered baking sheets, and let rise 15 to 20 minutes.
4. Preheat an oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).
5. Bake in the preheated oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Brush with melted butter, and sprinkle with coarse salt, garlic salt or cinnamon sugar.

Amish White Bread

2 c. warm water
1/3 c. sugar
1 1/2 T dry yeast
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 c veg. oil
6 c flour

1. Dissolve sugar in water, add yeast, and let proof
2. Mix in salt and oil, add one cup of flour at a time. Knead until smooth, allow to rise for 1hour.
3. Punch down, knead, divide in half. Place in 2 loaf pans, allow to rise again for 30 minutes.
4. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Light Oat Bread

1 1/4 cups water
2 tablespoons margarine
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup rolled oats
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1. Add ingredients to bread machine pan in order recommended by your manufacturer. Use regular light setting.

Orange Julius

1 c milk
1 c water
1/4 c. sugar
1/4 c. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 can frozen OJ (is that right? Maybe add a bit at a time to see if it tastes ok)
Ice cubes

Blend all and enjoy

Vodka Slush

12 c water
2 c sugar

1 can OJ
1 can lemonade
1 can cranberry juice
500 mL vodka

Boil water with sugar, then add all juices. Freeze, stirring occasionally to keep from solidifying.

Taco Bell Quesadillas

1/4 c mayo
2 tsp jalapeno juice
3/4 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp paprika
1/8 tsp cayenne
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1 cup shredded chicken breast
American and cheddar cheeses
4 tortillas

Mix mayo w/ spices, then stir into shredded chicken. Spread on tortilla and top with cheese, then fold over.

*I usually double the amount of mayo mix. This also freezes in baggies really well. I've tried the Philly cooking creme in place of mayo- I liked it but Matt didn't.

Best Lasagna Ever

1 pound sweet Italian sausage
3/4 pound lean ground beef
1/2 cup minced onion
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
2 (6.5 ounce) cans canned tomato sauce
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds

1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
12 lasagna noodles
16 ounces ricotta cheese
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 pound mozzarella cheese, sliced
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1. In a Dutch oven, cook sausage, ground beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water. Season with sugar, basil, fennel seeds, Italian seasoning, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
4. To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese slices. Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella, and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil: to prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray, or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
5. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Pizza Crust

1 cup warm water
1 tablespoon white sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1.Stir water, sugar and yeast together until dissolved. Add the olive oil and the salt. Stir in the flour until well blended. Let dough rest for 10 minutes.
2.Pat dough into pan or on to a pizza stone using fingers dipped in olive oil. If desired sprinkle basil, thyme or other seasonings on crust. Top with your favorite pizza toppings and bake for 15 to 20 minutes in a preheated 425 degree oven.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Champagne cupcakes

Champagne Cupcake Ingredients:

2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2/3 cup butter
1 1/2 cups white sugar
3/4 cup champagne (the sweeter the better – even strawberry would be great!!)
6 egg whites

Sweet Champagne Buttercream Frosting Ingredients:

3 1/4 cups powdered sugar
1 cup butter, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons champagne, at room temperature


To Make The Cupcakes:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Prepare a cupcake pan with liners. (This recipe yielded about 20 for me.)

In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until very light and fluffy. Sift flour, baking powder, and salt together, and then blend into creamed mixture alternately with champagne.

In another large clean bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold 1/3 of the whites into batter to lighten it, then fold in remaining egg whites. Fill the cupcake liners about 2/3 full.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.

To Make The Frosting:

With an electric mixer, beat together sugar and butter. Mix on low until well blended, and then on medium for another two minutes. Add vanilla and champagne, beating on medium for another minute.

Saturday, September 10, 2011


1 lb ground beef
1/4 onion, chopped

2 cans enchilada sauce (or one recipe)
1 can cream of mushroom soup
2 cups cheddar or colby-jack cheese
8 flour tortillas

Brown ground beef with onion until well cooked. Add in one can of enchilada sauce and mushroom soup. Simmer until it starts to bubble. Turn off heat, add half of cheese.

Spread half can of enchilada sauce in bottom of 9x13 pan.
Roll up 1/2 cup of hamburger mixture into each tortilla and lay in pan.
Top all with remaining cheese and enchilada sauce.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 15-20 minutes.

Enchilada Sauce


3 tablespoons chili powder
3 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon oregano
3 cups water
1 (8 ounce) cans tomato sauce


Combine all dry ingredients in a small bowl.
Stirring constantly, slowly add enough of the water to make a thin paste.
Pour into pan and add rest of water.
Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens.
Stir in tomato sauce.

Coca-Cola Cake

2 c. sifted flour
2 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
2 sticks butter or margarine
2 1/2 T. cocoa powder
1 1/2 c. miniature marshmallows
1 (12-oz.) can Coca-Cola
1/2 c. buttermilk
1 tsp. baking soda
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. butter
3 T. cocoa powder
6 T. Coca-Cola
2 lbs. powdered sugar


Sift flour, sugar, and salt in a bowl.
Heat butter, cocoa and Coca-Cola to boiling point.
Pour over flour mixture and mix well.
Add buttermilk, baking soda, eggs, and vanilla.
Stir in marshmallows. Batter will be thin and marshmallows will float.
Grease and flour a 9x13 pan and bake at 350° for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick in the center of the cake comes out clean of cake batter.
Combine butter, cocoa, and Coke in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
. Pour over about 5 cups powdered sugar and stir (if you use a fork rather than an egg beater, it makes the frosting very fluffy).
Add powdered sugar by the half-cup until you reach a desired consistency. If frosting becomes too thick, add Coca-Cola 1/2 tsp. at time. Spread frosting on warm cake.

Sugar Cookies

1 1/2 cups butter, softened
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt


In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour (or overnight).
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Roll out cold dough on floured surface 1/4" thick. Cut into shapes with cookie cutter. Place cookies 1 inch apart on parchment paper (on cookie sheet).
Bake 8-10 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely.

*The trick to getting the dough rolled out without adding tons of extra flour is to roll out small sections directly from the refrigerator onto a lightly floured surface.


8oz cream cheese
1/2 c. butter
1 tsp almond flavoring
1 bag powdered sugar
2-3 T half and half (milk works too)

Cream together butter, cream cheese, and almond flavoring. Slowly stir in powdered sugar until it tastes right. Half and half to get the right consistency.

Alfredo Sauce (the easy way)

1/2 cup butter
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 cups milk
6 ounces grated Parmesan cheese
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper


Melt butter in a medium, non-stick saucepan over medium heat. Add cream cheese and garlic powder, stirring with wire whisk until smooth. Add milk, a little at a time, whisking to smooth out lumps. Stir in Parmesan and pepper. Remove from heat when sauce reaches desired consistency. Sauce will thicken rapidly, thin with milk if cooked too long. Toss with hot pasta to serve.

Tiramisu Cheesecake

1 (12 ounce) package ladyfingers
4 tablespoons butter, melted
4 tablespoons coffee flavored liqueur
3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
1 (8 ounce) container mascarpone cheese
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 (1 ounce) square semisweet chocolate


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Place a pan of water on the bottom of oven.
Crush the package of ladyfingers to fine crumbs. Mix the melted butter into the crumbs. Moisten with 2 tablespoons of the coffee liqueur. Press into an 8 or 9 inch springform pan.
In a large bowl, mix cream cheese, mascarpone, and sugar until very smooth. Add 2 tablespoons coffee liqueur, and mix. Add the eggs and the flour; mix SLOWLY until just smooth. The consistency of the mascarpone can vary. If the cheesecake batter is too thick, add a little cream. Do not overmix at this point. Pour batter into crust.
Place pan on middle rack of oven. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until just set. Open oven door, and turn off the heat. Leave cake to cool in oven for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, and let it finish cooling. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours, or overnight. Right before serving, grate the semi-sweet chocolate overtop.

Bacon Ranch Potato Salad

1 (1 ounce) package ranch dressing mix
2 cups mayonnaise
3/4 cup chopped green onion
1 pound bacon slices
5 pounds unpeeled red potatoes


Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add whole potatoes, and cook until tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drain, run under cold water to cool, and chop into 1 inch cubes. Transfer to a large serving bowl, and refrigerate until completely chilled, about 2 hours.
In a small bowl, stir together the ranch dressing mix, mayonnaise and green onion. Cover, and refrigerate for about 2 hours to blend flavors.
Wrap bacon in paper towels and place on a plate. Cook in the microwave until crisp, about 15 minutes depending on the power of your microwave. Cool.
Stir the mayonnaise mixture into the bowl of potatoes. Crumble bacon into the bowl, and stir to distribute. Serve.

Molten Chocolate Cakes

4 (1 ounce) squares semi-sweet baking chocolate
1/2 cup butter
1 cup powdered sugar
2 eggs
2 egg yolks
6 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup whipped cream


Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Butter 4 (3/4-cup) custard cups or souffle dishes. Place on baking sheet.
Microwave chocolate and 1/2 cup butter in large microwavable bowl on HIGH 1 min. or until butter is melted. Stir with wire whisk until chocolate is completely melted. Stir in sugar until well blended. Whisk in eggs and egg yolks. Stir in flour. Divide batter between prepared custard cups.
Bake 13 to 14 min. or until sides are firm but centers are soft. Let stand 1 min. Carefully run small knife around cakes to loosen. Invert cakes onto dessert dishes. Serve immediately each topped with 1 Tbsp. of whipped topping.

Baked Macaroni

8 ounces elbow macaroni
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
8 ounces cubed processed cheese food (Velveeta)


In a large pot with boiling salted water cook elbow macaroni until al dente. Drain.
In a medium saucepan, over medium heat melt butter or margarine. Whisk flour and stir vigorously. Add milk and cook until thick and bubbly, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add cheeses and stir until completely melted.
In a large bowl mix together the drained pasta and cheese sauce mixture. Toss to coat evenly.
Pour into a greased 2 quart casserole dish. Bake in a preheated 350 degree F (175 degrees C) oven for 30 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Cake Batter Ice Cream

2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 cup milk
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup cake mix, sifted
2 egg yolks, beaten
1 tsp. vanilla


Whisk all ingredients except cake mix into a medium saucepan until well blended. Heat on medium-low until mixture reaches 160 degrees with a thermometer, stirring frequently. When mixture reaches proper temperature, remove from heat. Stir in cake mix and blend until smooth. Place in refrigerator or freezer until liquid is cold. Follow the instructions on your ice cream machine to turn it into ice cream!


1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9x9 inch baking pan.
In a medium bowl, mix together the oil, sugar, and vanilla. Beat in eggs. Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt; gradually stir into the egg mixture until well blended. Stir in walnuts, if desired. Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the brownie begins to pull away from edges of pan. Let cool on a wire rack before cutting into squares.

Buttermilk Pancakes

3 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons white sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
3 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup milk
3 eggs
1/3 cup veg oil


In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, beat together buttermilk, milk, eggs and melted butter. Keep the two mixtures separate until you are ready to cook.
Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. You can flick water across the surface and if it beads up and sizzles, it's ready!
Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture, using a wooden spoon or fork to blend. Stir until it's just blended together. Do not over stir! Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/2 cup for each pancake. Brown on both sides and serve hot.

To make pancake mix: Double dry ingredients and mix well. Use one heaping cup of mix, add one egg, one cup buttermilk, and a little vanilla and mix well.

Bubble Pizza

2 12-oz cans refrigerated biscuits
1 jar prepared alfredo sauce (or leftover alfredo sauce)
3/4 cup bacon crumbles
2 chicken breasts, diced, seasoned w/ onion powder
2 T butter
2 cups italian-style cheese shreds


Preheat oven to 400. Grease a 9x13 pan. Dice up onion, cook in butter until pieces are clear. Add diced chicken and cook. Cut up biscuit into smaller pieces, toss with the alfredo sauce, then dump into pan. Cover biscuit mixture with bacon and chicken pieces.
Bake for 20-25 minutes, then spread 2 cups cheese on top and place back in oven until melted.

Lone Star Sweet Bourbon

1/4 cup pineapple juice

2 T. soy sauce

2 T brown ugar

1 tsp. Kentucky bourbon (any brand will do.)

1/4 tsp cracked black pepper

1/8 tsp. garlic powder (more if you are into garlic)

_ cup vegetable oil

2 tps snipped fresh chives (mostly for looks)

Two 8 oz salmon filets (Recipe can be doubled)

1. Combine the pineapple juice, soy sauce, brown sugar, bourbon, garlic powder and pepper in a medium bowl. Stir to dissolve the sugar. Stir in the oil.

2. Be sure all of the skin is removed from the salmon. Place the filets in a shallow dish and pour the bourbon marinate over them, saving a little to brush on the fish as it cooks. Put a lid over the fish and refrigerate for at least one hour. A few hours is even better.

3. Start your barbecue coals; ready when they are all white ash in color.

4. Throw on the soaked mesquite chips to start the smoke (most any other smoking chips are acceptable as well).

5. Cook the fish on a tin foil base (with holes punched in to drain the moisture) 5-7 minutes a side-regularly brush the fish with the marinate.

Arrange the filets on each plate with the chives sprinkled over the top (optional).

Baked Ziti

1 pound dry ziti pasta
1 onion, chopped
1 pound Italian sausage ( or ground beef...I like sausage better)
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons Italian seasonings
2 (26 ounce) jars spaghetti sauce ( I used one Garlic and Onion and one Sausage)
6 ounces provolone cheese, sliced ( 9 rounds)
1 1/2 cups sour cream
8 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded
grated Parmesan cheese

1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add ziti pasta, and cook until al dente, about 8 minutes; drain.
2. In a large skillet, brown onion and sausage (or beef ) over medium heat. Add minced garlic and cook for a minute or so. Add spaghetti sauce and Italian seasonings, and simmer 15 minutes.
3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9x13 inch baking dish. Layer as follows: 1/2 of the ziti, 1/2 sauce mixture, Provolone cheese, sour cream, remaining ziti, remaining sauce mixture and then mozzarella cheese. Top with grated Parmesan cheese.
4. Bake for 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until cheeses are melted. You may want to cover it for the first 20 minutes with foil and then let the cheese melt and brown for the last 10 minutes.

Homemade Hot Pockets

Makes 6 pockets, I usually double this and freeze a bunch.

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

8 oz ham
3 slices american cheese
1 cup cheddar cheese

Dissolve the yeast, sugar, and water together, let yeast proof (bubbles will form). Stir in the oil, salt, and flour until you have a smooth dough. Allow dough to rest for 10 minutes.

Roll out dough to about 1/2 inch, cut into 6 pieces. Layer cheeses and ham on a slice of dough, then roll it up, sealing the edges. If you have asiago cheese around, it's really good sprinkled on top.

Bake at 400 for around 10-12 minutes.

Creamy Tomato Basil Tortellini Soup

This is from here- it tastes just like the soup they serve at Grisanti's. It's amazing with garlic bread.

olive oil
2 garlic cloves (chopped)
1 small onion (chopped)
2 (15 ounce) cans diced fire roasted tomatoes
2 (10 3/4 ounce) cans campbell's tomato soup
2 (10 ounce) cans milk (use soup can)
10 fresh basil leaves, chopped or 1 tablespoon dried basil
1 (14 1/2 ounce) can chicken broth
3 tablespoons Italian-style tomato paste
1/2 cup light cream or 1/2 cup half-and-half
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 (9 ounce) package cheese tortellini

Coat soup pan with olive oil. Add onion and garlic and saute till soft.

Add canned diced tomatoes, basil, tomato soup and two cans milk. Stir till blended.

Add chicken broth and stir in tomato paste till blended.

Simmer for 20 minutes

Add light cream and parmesan cheese.

Add tortellini and cook till tender (at least 15 minutes).

My changes: I use about double the amount of tortellini they use and puree the tomatoes before I add them.

Ranch Potato Casserole

6 to 8 medium red potatoes (about 2 to 2-1/2 pounds)
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup prepared ranch-style dressing
1/4 cup bacon bits or crumbled cooked bacon
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese

1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups coarsely crushed cornflakes
1/4 cup butter, melted


Cook the potatoes until tender; quarter (leaving skins on if desired) and set aside.
Combine the sour cream, dressing, bacon, parsley and 1 cup cheese. Place potatoes in a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish. Pour sour cream mixture over potatoes and gently toss. Top with 1/2 cup of cheese. Combine cornflakes and butter; sprinkle over top. Bake at 350° for 40-45 minutes. Yield: 8 servings.

Potato Hollandaise Casserole

Potato Hollandaise Casserole
1/2 lb chicken breasts or tenderloin
olive oil
1 bell pepper
1/2 medium onion
4-5 large russet potatoes
8 oz monterey jack cheese

1/2 c. butter
3 egg yolks
1 tsp lemon juice
pinch cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp mustard powder (or a squirt of mustard)

1. Slice up the potatoes, bell pepper, and onion into 1/4" slices, place them in a large frying pan coated with olive oil. Wait to add onion unless you like them cooked well. Season with onion powder, pepper, salt to taste. Cover and cook until they are soft enough to cut with fork (about 10 minutes). In the last couple minutes, add the onion slices
2. Cut chicken into 1/2-3/4" slices (or leave tenders whole), season with mild seasoning (I like Paula Deen's House season recipe). Sear chicken in pan until completely cooked.
3. Blender Hollandaise: Add eggs, lemon juice, mustard powder, and cayenne to a blender and mix. In microwave, melt butter until it's boiling. Turn on blender, pour boiling butter into moving mixer (through hole in lid) and blend until thickened.

Layer potatoes, chicken in a 10x13 casserole dish, then pour Hollandaise over all. Top with cheese and bake or broil until cheese is melted.

*Notes: Real Hollandaise tastes best, but the packets you can buy aren't too bad and they're a lot easier.

Homemade Hamburger Helper

Homemade Hamburger Helper
1 lb ground beef
1 1/2 cups dry elbow noodles
2 cups milk
1/2 cup water
8 oz tomato sauce
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
salt and pepper to taste
4 oz cream cheese
1 cup cheddar cheese

1. Brown hamburger and drain
2. Mix milk, water, tomato sauce, and spices into hamburger, add dry noodles. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat, let simmer until noodles are tender, about 10-15 minutes. Stir occasionally.
3. Add cream cheese and cheddar, stir until melted.

This is also great with a can of veggies drained and thrown in- corn, mixed vegetables, peas.

Lactation Cookies

1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
4 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons flax seed meal
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups oats
1 cup chocolate chips
2 -4 tablespoons brewer's yeast


Preheat oven to 350°.
Mix the flaxseed meal and water and let sit for 3-5 minutes.
Beat butter, sugar, and brown sugar well.
Add eggs and mix well.
Add flaxseed mix and vanilla, beat well.
Sift together flour, brewers yeast, baking soda, and salt.
Add dry ingredients to butter mix.
Stir in oats and chips.
Scoop onto baking sheet.
Bake for 12 minutes.
Let set for a couple minutes then remove from tray.

A FEW NOTES: *More yeast= more milk. Also, from what I've read, nutritional yeast has the same effect on production as brewer's yeast, and you can find it in the bulk section at Whole Foods. *I adjusted it to 2 Tbsp water *Makes about 4-5 dozen cookies *Freezes well as dough and baked.