Sunday, December 16, 2012

Ranch Cheese Ball

1/2 C. Mayo
1/4 C. Milk
6 oz. Cream Cheese
1 Ranch dressing packet
8-12 oz. Shredded Cheddar Cheese (I use shredded cheddar jack cheese from Costco)
5 oz. Sliced Almonds (I leave these off, my family isn't a fan of the almonds)

~Let the cream cheese set out at room temperature for 1 hour before making your cheese ball~

 Mix mayo, milk, softened cream cheese, and ranch dressing packet together and beat well with mixer. Add cheddar cheese and blend together. Cover and freeze for 30 minutes, roll ball in almonds. Serve with your favorite crackers.

Carrabba's Bread Dipping Spices

2 Tbsp. Dried parsley
1 Tbsp. Minced garlic
1 tsp. Dried thyme
1 tsp. Dried oregano
1/4 tsp. Dried basil
1/8 tsp. Dried rosemary
1 tsp. Ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. Kosher salt
1/8 tsp. Ground red pepper (or 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes)
1/2 tsp. Extra virgin olive oil
1/8 tsp. Fresh lemon juice

Combine all spices, garlic, salt and pepper. Stir in olive oil and lemon juice. Makes 1/4 cup.

For Serving:
In a small dish, place 1 1/2 tsp. of spice mixture. Pour 3-4 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil over the top of the spice mixture. I also add balsamic vinegar, you can add as little or as much as you like. Serve with french, sourdough, or other favorite bread for dipping.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Sugar Cookies or Bars

4 C Flour
1 tsp Baking powder
1/2 tsp Baking soda
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
1 C Butter, softened
1 1/2 C Sugar
1 Egg
1/2 C Sour cream
1 tsp Vanilla

Cookie Cutouts:
Mix dry ingredients in a small bowl and set aside. In a larger bowl, beat butter, sugar, and egg. At a low speed add sour cream and vanilla until smooth. Slowly add dry ingredients until combined. Wrap in foil and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes or overnight. Take out of fridge, roll out dough to 1/4-1/2" thickness and cut into cookies. Bake at 350º until light brown on bottoms each oven is different so just time the first batch. Let cookies cool and apply frosting.

Alternative Cookie Bars:
Follow the same instructions as above, but instead of rolling out the dough, press it down evenly into a lightly greased jelly roll pan and bake at 350º until toothpick comes out clean in the center (7-10 minutes), let cool, apply frosting, and cut into cookie bars.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
1 8oz Cream cheese, softened
1 Cube butter, softened
3 C Powdered sugar
1 tsp Almond extract

Monday, August 6, 2012

Med Salad

Med Salad
  • 3 cups dried fusilii or cavatappi pasta, cooked, drained, and cooled
  • chopped green leaf lettuce
  • 1/2 bag of pre-washed spinach
  • 1 halved and sliced cucumber
  • 1 orange bell pepper sliced and cut into small pieces
  • 1/4-1/2 of a red onion thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups of grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 jar of kalamata olives, drained
  • sprinkle of feta cheese, crumbled
  • Toss all the salad ingredients & add desired amount of spicy yogurt salad dressing to your portion.
Spicy Yogurt Salad Dressing
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 4 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoon crumbled feta cheese
2-5 teaspoons sriracha hot sauce (depends on how spicy you want the dressing)
  • salt and pepper to taste
I combine these ingredients in my blend-tec blender on the sauces/dressings setting and it works perfect.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Taco Chicken Bowls

I'm making this for dinner tonight!

2-3 chicken breasts
12 oz. salsa
4 oz. salsa verde
1 can black beans, drained
8 oz. frozen corn
1 T chili powder
1/2 T cumin
1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
juice from one lime
1/4 tsp salt
pepper, to taste
2 cups dry rice
Optional toppings:
8 oz cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
sliced olives
diced tomatoes
avocado, diced

STEP 1: Add everything except the rice & toppings to the slow cooker along with 1/4 cup of water. Give everything a good stir and make sure the chicken is covered in the mixture.

STEP 2: Secure the lid on your slow cooker and cook on low for 8 hrs.

STEP 3: Near the end of the cooking time, cook the two cups of rice according to the package directions.

STEP 4: After 8 hours of cooking, carefully remove the lid of the slow cooker. Stir with a fork to shred the chicken (it should be super tender and will shred easily). Build the taco bowls by placing rice on the bottom, then the taco chicken mix, shredded cheese, fresh cilantro, olives, tomatoes, and avocado.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Pineapple, Banana, Coconut Smoothie

Doesn't this look refreshing & delicious?! Yum!

2 cups fresh pineapple, cut into chunks
1 large banana
1/2 cup light coconut milk
1/2 cup ice

Combine all ingredients in a blender and mix until smooth. Serve immediately.
Makes 2 smoothies

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Freezable Lemon Bars

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 1 1/2 packages of graham crackers)
1/3 cup sugar
5 Tbsp butter, melted
3 egg yolks
14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (juice from 2 lemons)
8 oz whipped cream

Preheat the oven to 325˚F

In a small bowl, mix the graham crackers, sugar and butter. Press firmly into a 9 x 9 x 2-inch ungreased foil pan. In another small bowl, beat the egg yolks, condensed milk, and lemon juice on low-medium speed for one minute. Pour evenly over the crust and bake for about 30 minutes or until set.

Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack. Once completely cooled, spread the whipped cream over the top.

Cover the pan with plastic wrap and place in a freezer bag. Freeze up to a month.

Before serving, let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Cut into bars. If not freezing, this can also be kept in the fridge for several days.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Penne Pasta Bake

1 lb ground turkey or beef
1/2 onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 cans diced tomatoes
1 6oz can tomato paste
1 8oz can tomato sauce
1 tsp. italian seasoning
salt/pepper to taste
any other desired seasonings
1-16oz bag penne pasta
6 oz sliced provolone cheese
8 oz. shredded mozerella cheese
8 oz. sour cream or cottage cheese

1- Cook pasta as directed on package
2-In skillet saute onion & garlic, then add ground turkey or beef and cook until browned.
3-Combine diced tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, & seasonings in blender and blend until combined. Then add the sauce to the meat and heat until warm.(Approx. 2 jars of store bought spaghetti sauce may be substituted here)
4-Preheat oven to 350º & lightly oil a 9" x 13" baking dish.
5- Layer as follows: 1/2 pasta, sour cream or cottage cheese, sliced provolone cheese, 1/2 sauce mixture, remaining pasta, 1/2 of mozzarella cheese, remaining sauce, remaining mozzarella cheese.
5- Bake uncovered for 30-40 minutes at 350º or until cheese melts, cover with foil near end to prevent top cheese from burning.

Serve with homemade bread-sticks or garlic bread.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Easy Chicken Pot Pie

(Makes 2 Pies)

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (boiled/shredded) or 1 shredded rotisserie chicken
1 cup frozen peas
1 cup frozen corn
2 potatoes, cubed
sliced carrots
(Add or subtract any veggies you want in your pie!)
1 sticks butter
1/2 cup flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 tsp. celery salt
3 cups chicken broth
1 cup milk
4 deep dish pie shells (2 packages)

Preheat oven to 375º. Boil & shred chicken (or shred 2 rotisserie chickens). In another saucepan, boil peas, corn, and potatoes (or whatever veggies you choose) until mostly done. Drain and set aside. In a large saute pan, over medium heat, melt the butter. Stir in the flour, salt, garlic salt, celery salt, and black pepper. Slowly stir in chicken broth and milk. Boil then simmer over med-low heat until thick. Add the chicken and veggies to the gravy. Place bottom pie shells on sheet pans. Pour gravy to fill up shell. Place extra shells on top of bottom shells (upside-down). Make slits in the top of each pie shell to allow steam to escape. Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes or until crust is slightly golden.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Strawberry Shortcake w/ Almond Glaze

Strawberry Shortcake
1 yellow cake mix
1 cup sour cream
4 eggs
1 small vanilla pudding mix
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup water
2 tsp almond extract
Mix all the above ingredients together for a few minutes until well combined. Pour the batter into 2 round cake pans. Bake in a preheated 350º oven for 45-50 minutes. Let cool for a few minutes and then gently remove from pans and allow to cool on a wire rack.
Almond Glaze
2 cups powdered sugar
3 Tb butter, melted
2 tsp almond extract
1-2 Tb milk, if needed
Mix the glaze ingredients together while the cake cools. Once semi cooled, prick the cake with a large fork or the back of a wooden spoon. Spoon the glaze over the two round cakes letting it sink in. Save about 1/3 or so of the glaze and set aside.
1 pint whipping cream
powdered sugar to sweeten
1-2 pounds of fresh strawberries, sliced
Whip cream with 2 Tb powdered sugar, using a mixer. Wash dry and slice the starwberries and set aside.
Place one of the glazed cake rounds on a cake stand or large plate. Top with freshly whipped cream and a layer of strawberry slices. Follow with the second cake, more whipped cream and arrange more fresh sliced strawberries on top in a pretty pattern. Next drizzle the more of the almond glaze over the top and down the sides. Store in fridge until ready to serve. Enjoy!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Spinach, Fruit, & Nut Salad

Thanks Steph! ;)

Pecans or Almonds (pecans are my favorite)
Brown Sugar
Fruit - cut into small pieces (see picture above)
(you can use any kind you would like! For this salad I used: crasins, tangelos, kiwis, strawberries, and apples)
Red Onion (if desired - I usually leave it on the side so people can choose)

1. Roast the pecans or almonds in a pan with brown sugar and cinnamon. Roast slowly while stirring so the sugar and cinnamon liquefy somewhat. Then remove from heat.
2. Put spinach, fruit, red onion (if desired), and nuts in bowl and toss.
3. Serve with Briannas Home Style Rich Poppy Seed Dressing - pictured below.
4. Enjoy - trust me, you will.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Pizza Crust

1 T Yeast
1 tsp Salt
1 1/2 C Warm Water
2 1/2 C White Flour
2 C Whole Wheat Flour
3 T Olive Oil

Dissolve yeast in warm water. Add oil, salt, and knead in the flour. Let rise 30-40 minutes. Add sauce & desired toppings. Bake pizza at 425 for 15-20 minutes. You can also use all white flour if you prefer. (Makes 2 12 inch pizzas or 1 larger one)


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Cheesecake Bites

1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts or pecans

1/4 cup sugar
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 T milk
1 T lemon juice
1 egg

Heat oven to 350º. In a small bowl, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Lightly spoon flour into measuring cup; level off. Combine flour and walnuts or pecans with creamed mixture. Reserve 1 cup for topping. Press remainder into bottom of ungreased 8" or 9" square pan. Bake for 9-11 minutes or until lightly browned.

In a small bowl, blend sugar and cream cheese until smooth. Add milk, lemon juice, vanilla, and egg. Beat well. Spread over baked crust. Sprinkle with reserved crumb mixture. Bake at 350º for 23-27 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool. Cut into bars. Store in refrigerator.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Homemade Salsa

I have so many tomatoes in my garden that I don't know what to do with them...this seems to use them up pretty fast! It is very easy & SO delicious:)

5-6 Ripe Tomatoes, quartered
1 Anaheim pepper(whole thing)
1/2 an Onion
1/4 C. Cilantro
2 Cloves of Garlic, minced
1 tsp. Lime Juice
1 tsp. Vinegar
1 tsp. Salt

I make mine in a blendtec blender, but any salsa maker would work. Just add all the ingredients and chop until it is the consistency you like.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Crockpot French Dip Sandwiches

3 1/2 lbs beef chuck roast
16-oz. beef broth
1 10.5-oz. can condensed French onion soup
6-oz red wine
1 tsp garlic powder
salt and pepper, to taste
4-6 French rolls
sliced provolone cheese

1. Trim excess fat off of beef roast and season meat all over with salt and pepper.

2. Pour beef broth, condensed French onion soup, red wine and garlic powder into slow cooker and place beef roast into liquid.

3. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. Depending on how the settings on your slow cooker work, the time will vary. Mine took 7 hours and was falling apart tender.

4. Take beef out and cover with aluminum foil, for about 15 minutes.

5. Slice beef and return to slow cooker on low or very low for 30 minutes.

6. Lightly toast the bread and evenly distribute cheese between rolls. Divide beef onto rolls and eat while it is hot. Serve each sandwich with its own dip.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Grilled Lemon Chicken

3 T fresh lemon juice
3 T extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Cooking spray

1. Prepare grill to medium-high heat.
2. Combine first 4 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag; seal. Marinate in refrigerator at least 30 minutes(longer is better), turning occasionally. Remove chicken from bag; discard marinade. Sprinkle chicken evenly with salt and pepper.
3. Place chicken on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 6 minutes on each side or until done.

Baked Lemon Pasta

This pasta is delicious!
It can be served plain or with grilled lemon chicken.

1 pound Thin Spaghetti
4 Tablespoons Salted Butter
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 cloves Garlic, Minced
1 whole Lemon, Juiced And Zested
2 cups Sour Cream
½ teaspoons Kosher Salt, Or More To Taste
Plenty Of Grated Parmesan Cheese
Flat-leaf Parsley, Chopped
Extra Lemon Juice

1. Preheat oven to 375ºF. Cook pasta following package instructions until al dente.

2. In a skillet, melt butter with olive oil over low heat. When butter is melted, add minced garlic, lemon juice, zest, and salt. Turn off heat.

3. Add sour cream and stir mixture together.

4. Pour mixture over drained pasta, mix well and then pour into an oven safe dish.

5. Bake, covered, for 15 minutes. Then remove cover and bake for an additional 7 to 10 minutes.

6. Remove from oven and top with Parmesan cheese. Squeeze more lemon juice over the top if desired.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Delicious Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 Cubes Butter
2 Eggs
1 C Brown Sugar
3/4 C White Sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla
Mix well, then add
3 C Flour
1 tsp. Soda
1 tsp. Salt
1 bag of Milk Chocolate Chips (I use the Guittard brand)

Heat oven to 350º bake for 8-10 minutes.