Beef Satay With Peanut Sauce

another real simple fav

Ordering take-out Thai food isn't the only way to eat beef satay at home. With precut meat, dry salad-dressing mix, and sesame oil, you get all the flavor without having to wait. The salad-dressing mix eliminates the chopping and mixing required for a complicated marinade; combined with oil, it flavors the beef in minutes. The mix also lends a savory edge to a peanut butter-based dipping sauce. Stick the beef onto some skewers, pop them under the broiler for a couple of minutes, and serve.

1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 .92-ounce package Good Seasons Roasted Garlic salad-dressing mix
1 pound presliced sirloin
1 tablespoon sesame oil
Wooden skewers soaked in water

In a small bowl, stir together the peanut butter, soy sauce, vinegar, lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of the dressing mix, and 3/4 cup water and set aside.

If the beef strips have not already been flattened, gently pound them flat with a rolling pin. In a bowl, toss together the beef, oil, and remaining salad-dressing mix. Coat each strip of beef well and thread a skewer through it. Broil 2 to 3 minutes per side. Serve the satays hot with the dipping sauce.

If you made it from scratch: 1 hour

Yield: 4 servings

CALORIES 485(1% from fat); FAT 29g (sat 7g); CHOLESTEROL 65mg; CALCIUM 23mg; CARBOHYDRATE 23g; SODIUM 5825mg; PROTEIN 32mg; FIBER 2g; IRON 3mg

Bean and Sausage Stew

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 13-ounce package chicken sausage links, sliced 1/4 inch thick
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 19-ounce can white beans, drained
1 14.5-ounce can low-sodium chicken broth
1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 bunch kale
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Crusty bread (optional)

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook, without stirring, until browned, about 3 minutes. Turn, add the garlic, and cook for 2 minutes more. Add the beans, broth, and tomatoes and their juices. Increase heat to medium-high and bring to a simmer.

Fold each kale leaf in half lengthwise and remove the stem by ripping or cutting it. Tear each leaf into large pieces. Add the kale to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until wilted, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Season with the salt and pepper and spoon into individual bowls. Serve with the bread (if using).

Yield: Makes 4 servings

CALORIES 495(28% from fat); FAT 14g (sat 3g); CHOLESTEROL 65mg; CARBOHYDRATE 43g; SODIUM 1,020mg; PROTEIN 36g; FIBER 9g; SUGAR 11g

peanut butter blossoms

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
8 oz. pkg. milk chocolate kisses
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 egg
2 Tbsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1-1/4 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
more granulated sugar
Heat oven to 375 F. Remove wrappers from chocolate. Beat butter and peanut butter in large bowl until well blended. Add 1/3 cup sugar and brown sugar; beat until light and fluffy. Add egg, milk and vanilla; beat well. Stir together flour, baking soda and salt; gradually beat into peanut butter mixture. Cover tightly and chill for 4-8 hours in fridge.
Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll in granulated sugar; place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Immediately press a chocolate piece into center of each cookie; cookie will crack slightly around edges. Let stand on cookie sheets for 3-4 minutes, then remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely. Makes about 48 cookies

To freeze, shape dough into balls but do not roll in sugar. Place on waxed paper lined cookie sheets and freeze until firm. Pack into hard sided freezer containers; label, and freeze up to 3 months. To bake, roll frozen dough into sugar, then bake as directed, adding 3-6 minutes to the baking time.

Autumn-Spiced Sweet Potatoes

Whipped sweet potatoes are a great side dish for South Beach Dieters (Phases 2 and 3). They're nutrient-dense, flush with fiber, and rich in beta-carotene and vitamin C. Most importantly, they won't set off cravings like traditional mashed potatoes can. Plus, they're absolutely delicious for Thanksgiving dinner — or any time at all!

2 Servings

1/2 pound sweet potatoes
2 tablespoons low-fat buttermilk
1/4 tablespoon trans-free margarine
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon white pepper
Pinch of nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon allspice
2 tablespoons chopped pecans (optional)

Peel potatoes and chop into medium-sized chunks. Cover with water in large pot and boil until pieces are easily pierced with a fork. While sweet potatoes cook, toast pecans on rimmed cookie sheet. Remove sweet potatoes from water, add buttermilk, margarine, and spices, and mash together. With hand mixer or immersion blender, whip potatoes until smooth. Transfer potatoes to serving dish and top with chopped pecans. Serve immediately, or keep warm, uncovered, in a 200° F oven.

Chicken Meat Loaf

from my fav... real simple

2 eggs
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons tomato paste
3 garlic cloves, peeled
1 small yellow onion, quartered
1 small carrot, peeled and cut into large pieces
3 steamed chicken-breast halves pounded to 1/4-inch thich
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1/2 Golden Delicious apple, peeled and grated
1 cup bread crumbs
1/3 cup shelled pistachios
3 tablespoons maple syrup

Heat oven to 400°F. Lightly coat a 9-by-3-inch loaf pan with cooking spray and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, mustard, oil, salt, pepper, and 1 tablespoon of the tomato paste. In a food processor, chop the garlic, onion, and carrot until finely chopped. Transfer to the bowl. Finely chop 2 chicken-breast halves (about 1/8-inch dice), and cut 1 chicken-breast half into 1/2-inch pieces. Add to the bowl along with the scallions, apple, and bread crumbs. Using your hands, mix to combine well.
Place half the meat-loaf mixture in the pan. Sprinkle on the pistachios in 1 layer. Top with the remaining meat-loaf mixture, pressing gently. Bake for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, whisk together the maple syrup and remaining tomato paste. Brush the glaze over the meat loaf and return it to the oven for 10 minutes. Remove and let rest, covered with foil, for 10 minutes before serving.

Yield: 4 servings

CALORIES 490(0% from fat); FAT 17g (sat 3g); CHOLESTEROL 196mg; CALCIUM 132mg; CARBOHYDRATE 41g; SODIUM 1095mg; PROTEIN 43mg; FIBER 4g; IRON 4mg

Nonna's Shrimp

16 colassal frozen shrimp (1/2 lb) (thawed)
4 cloves of garlic minced
1 tbsp olive oil
3/4 c white wine
red pepper flakes to taste
1/4 c heavy cream
2 tbs butter

heat olive oil and garlic on simmer about 5 minutes

add shrimp, wine and pepper flakes (if desired) saute about 2-3 minutes until shrimp is pink.

remove shrimp and add butter, when butter is melted add cream and a pinch of salt

reduced by half

served over rice... we used wild, place shrimp on rice and sauce over top

grandma's easy quiche

no cust quiche

1/2 c biscut baking mix
4 eggs
1 c shredded cheddar cheese
1/3 c onion, finely chopped
1/3 c mushrooms and or green peppers
2 c milk or half and half
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9" pie pad

put all ingredients ino the blender and mis for 30 seconds, pour in to prepared pan.

bake for 5-55 minutes, or until golden brown

let stand 5 minutes before cutting

serves 6 - compliments of madison junior leagued (mad about food)

irish cream

1 c brandy
1/2 c milk
1 tbs chocolate syrup
1 tsp instant coffee
1 pint whipping cream
1 can sweetened condensed milk

blend all ingredients together in a blender. Pour in to decorative bottle and refrigerate. will keep up to 3 weeks

serves: 6

compliments of Madison Junior League cook book (mad about food)

Tortilla Soup

Recipe created by Cristina Ferrare

Try this tortilla soup on with Christine's Chicken Enchiladas recipe—your kids will love it!


Tortilla Soup

2 Tbsp. corn oil
3 corn tortillas , cut into 1/2-inch strips
2 garlic cloves
1/2 cup onions , chopped
1 jalapeño , seeded and chopped
16 ounce can chopped tomatoes
2 quarts roasted chicken stock (see recipe below)
1 Tbsp. ground cumin
1 avocado
Shredded sharp cheddar cheese
Salt and pepper
Chicken Stock:

Bones from Roasted Chicken
6 peeled and halved carrots
1 bunch fresh parsley
2 large onions with skins, halved
2 Tbsp. kosher salt
To make chicken stock: Place all ingredients in a stockpot along with 8 quarts of water. You can use the bones from Cristina's Roasted Chicken recipe. Simmer until all vegetables are soft (approximately 45 minutes). Strain the vegetables. Cool and refrigerate overnight.

To make the soup: Heat corn oil in a stockpot and sauté 3 corn tortillas, cut into 1/2-inch strips.

In a food processor, chop the garlic, onions and seeded jalapeño.

Add the onion, garlic and jalapeño mixture to the pot and sauté for 10 minutes. Add the can of chopped tomatoes along with 2 quarts of chicken stock. Bring to a boil.

Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Add ground cumin and simmer for 10 more minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Transfer soup to a blender and puree until smooth. Strain into a clean pot. Garnish with chopped avocado and shredded cheese.

Chicken Enchiladas

Recipe created by Cristina Ferrare

These chicken enchiladas make a great family meal—and they're simple to make!


16 ounce bottle or can enchilada sauce
6 low-fat or fat-free tortillas
1 jar salsa
2 cans refried beans
1/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup shredded sharp Monterey Jack cheese
1/2 cup low-fat sour cream
1/4 cup kalamata olives , pitted
1 jalapeño , chopped and seeded
Roasted Chicken
Heat oven to 400°.

Pour the can of enchilada sauce into a pie dish. Dip tortillas in the sauce to soften them.

On a cutting board, gently spread refried beans on one side of each tortilla. Add enough diced Roasted Chicken to cover the beans. Sprinkle with cheddar and Monterey Jack cheeses. Add olives, chopped jalapeño and salsa (optional).

Roll up the tortillas and place seam-side down in a 9" x 13" baking dish.

Blend the sour cream into the remaining enchilada sauce in the pie dish. Pour over enchiladas and sprinkle remaining cheese.

Cover and bake for 25-30 minutes until hot and bubbly.

Pesto with Farfalle Pasta with Roasted Chicken

Recipe created by Cristina Ferrare

Try this delicious pasta dish from Cristina Ferrare. It's the perfect solution for when you have leftover chicken.



4 cups fresh basil leaves
4 cups Italian parsley springs
4 large cloves garlic
1 1/2 cups olive oil
1/4 tsp. salt
Roasted Chicken Salad:

1 cup diced Roasted Chicken
1 cucumber , peeled, seeded and diced
2 cups mixed greens
1/4 cup roasted pine nuts
1/2 lemon , juiced
Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup sliced black olives
1/2 pound farfalle pasta
Handful pomegranate seeds
To prepare the pesto: Chop basil, parsley and garlic in a food processor. Slowly add olive oil and keep chopping. Add salt.

To prepare the chicken mixture and final dish: Place Roasted Chicken, cucumber, pine nuts, 1 Tbsp. of pesto and olives in a bowl and mix together. Cook pasta until al dente. Add 2 tablespoons of pesto to the pasta and mix well. Top off with 2 cups of mixed greens and the juice of 1/2 a lemon. Add the chicken mixture to pasta and toss. Garnish with Parmesan cheese and pomegranate seeds

Chicken Pot Pie with Cornbread Crust

Recipe created by Cristina Ferrare

This is a feel-good meal! It's traditional without a catch but very satisfying—not to mention easy and fast.



1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1 medium Onion , chopped
1/4 cup flour
2 cups chicken stock
2 cups chopped Roasted Chicken
1/2 cup frozen sweet petite peas
1 potato , diced and boiled
1 1/2 cup chopped, cooked carrots
1/2 tsp. salt
Cracked pepper
Dash of Tabasco® sauce

3/4 cup white or yellow cornmeal
3/4 cup flour
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1 1/2 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 cup milk
1 large egg
2 Tbsp. canola oil
To make filling: Preheat the oven to 400°. Spray a 2-quart casserole with cooking spray. In a large sauce pan, heat olive oil and unsalted butter together. Add onion and sauté until tender, about 4 or 5 minutes. Add in flour until blended. Slowly stir in 2 cups of heated chicken stock, whisking well. Cook mixture over medium heat until thickened and bubbly, about 4 minutes. Stir in chicken, peas, potato, carrots, salt, pepper and Tabasco®. Pour into a 2-quart casserole dish coated with cooking spray and cook until heated and thickened. Spread evently into an ovenproof dish.

To make crust: In a bowl, stir cornmeal, flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Stir milk, egg and canola oil until well combined. Stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Spoon the batter evenly on the filling. Bake until the top is golden brown, about 22 to 25 minutes.

Roasted Chicken

Recipe created by Cristina Ferrare

This classic roasted chicken is great on its own and in countless other recipes. This recipe calls for two chickens so that you have leftovers!


Roasted Chicken:

2 chickens , 4 1/2 to 5 pounds each
6 lemons
A poultry mix of fresh herbs: Rosemary, sage, thyme, parsley and oregano work well
Marinade for one chicken:

1 cup Dijon mustard
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup juice from fresh lemon (don't discard lemon rinds)
To make marinade: Place all ingredients in a nonreactive bowl. Whisk with a wire whisk until ingredients are incorporated well—the marinade should have a smooth and creamy consistency.

To make roasted chicken: Preheat oven to 425°.

Clean chickens well and pat dry. Place each chicken in its own baking dish.

Stuff cavities with lemon rinds and fresh herbs. A poultry mix is fine, usually consisting of rosemary, sage, thyme, parsley and oregano.

Pour marinade over chicken. Add cracked pepper and remaining herbs to the top of each chicken.

Place an oven thermometer in each chicken and cover with aluminum foil. Place on the lower rack of the oven. Bake for 1 1/2 hours, then remove the aluminum foil. Baste with a basting bulb. Keep basting often, ever 15 minutes until the thermometer reads 180°.

Amanda's Clalm Dip

soon to be sister in law's special dip...

3 cans of snow's clams (drain half the juice from each can)
1 1/2 stick of butter
onions (1/2 onion)
red and orange peppers (1/2 of each pepper)
5 cloves of garlic chopped
saute all of the above until onions are translucent
1/4 tsp basil (fresh)
1/4 tsp oregano (dried)
pinch of nutmeg
take off stove,
add bread crumbs until you like thickness
Parmesan cheese and mozzarella

optional: sausage, bacon bits

bake at 425 for about 8 minutes, if still not quite right broil for 2 minutes until cheese is melted.

serve with crostini

optional: sausage, bacon bits

Turkey Potpie with Biscuit Crust

I haven't tried this one yet... but looks like it could be good for turkey day left overs which will be here before we know it...

1 to 1 1/2 cups leftover turkey meat
1/2 cooked sweet potato, cut into 1-inch pieces (about 1 cup)
1 medium zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 large carrot, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
3 scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, or 1 teaspoon dried leaves
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 1/4 cups turkey gravy
1 17.3-ounce package refrigerated corn biscuits

Heat oven to 350º F. In a 2-quart baking dish, combine the turkey, sweet potato, zucchini, carrot, scallions, thyme, salt, and a few grinds of pepper and toss well. Pour the gravy on top. Bake in the oven, uncovered, for 25 minutes. Gently roll out 4 biscuits individually and overlap them to make a crust that will cover the baking dish. Bake until the top is golden brown, about 15 more minutes.

Yield: 4 servings

CALORIES 565(0% from fat); FAT 24g (sat 6g); CHOLESTEROL 35mg; CALCIUM 124mg; CARBOHYDRATE 63g; SODIUM 2245mg; PROTEIN 24mg; FIBER 4g; IRON 5mg

Feta Chicken with Zucchini

weekly recipe from Real Simple...

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 lemon
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 medium zucchini
1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/3 cup (about 2 ounces) crumbled Feta

Heat oven to 400° F.

Drizzle 1/2 tablespoon of the oil in a roasting pan. Remove the zest from the lemon in thin strips; set aside.

Thinly slice the lemon. Place half the slices in the pan. Rinse the chicken and pat it dry with paper towels. Place it on top of the lemon slices and season with 1/8 teaspoon of the salt.

Slice each zucchini in half lengthwise, then slice each half into 1/4-inch-thick half-moons. In a bowl, combine the zucchini, parsley, pepper, and the remaining oil, lemon slices, and salt; toss. Spread the zucchini mixture around the chicken and sprinkle the Feta over the top. Roast until the chicken is cooked through, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer it to a cutting board and cut each piece into thirds. Divide the chicken, zucchini mixture, and lemons among individual plates and sprinkle with the zest.

Tip: For an almost effortless side dish that can cook while the chicken is in the oven, make boiled new potatoes, white rice, or couscous.

Yield: Makes 4 servings

CALORIES 270(27% from fat); FAT 8g (sat 3g); CHOLESTEROL 110mg; CARBOHYDRATE 5g; SODIUM 378mg; PROTEIN 42g; FIBER 2g; SUGAR 3g

Aunt Julie's To-Die-For Cheesecake

I'm stalking veggie mom this week... it's recipe week overthere..
so i figured i should post them here as well...

For the crust, mix in a small bowl:
¾ cup softened butter
1 ¼ cup flour
¼ cup sugar
1 egg yolk
Grated lemon peel
Preheat oven to 400*. Press 1/3 of the dough in bottom of large (very) springform pan. Bake 8 minutes, watching carefully not to get too brown.
Cool. Turn oven up to 475 degrees. In large bowl, beat 'til smooth:
Five 8 oz. softened packages of Philly Cream Cheese.
Beat in 1 ¾ cup sugar slowly, 'til mixed in. On low, add:
3 Tbsp. flour
5 eggs
2 additional egg yolks
¼ cup whipping cream
¼ tsp salt
Lemon zest
Beat 5 minutes on high, scraping bowl well.
Press remaining dough on sides of pan. Pour cream cheese mixture into crust. (Bake in a water bath, so cheesecake won’t split.)
Bake 12 minutes. Leave in oven, and turn heat down to 300 degrees. Bake 35 more minutes. Turn oven off. Leave in the oven 30 more minutes. Remove.
Cool in pan. Remove sides, loosen. Slide onto serving plate.
Best served with mashed strawberries (which you froze this summer with this dessert in mind!).

okey-Gnocchi with Pancetta

first things first... you'll need trader joes to do this one... if you don't know if you have one near by...

this is like mac and cheese that grown-ups and kids will eat...

1 (16oz) frozen gnocchi alla gorgonzola
2 oz pancetta mini-cubes (half the package or 1/2 c chopped ham)
1/2 c frozen peas, or more for extra veggies in the meal

cook pancetta over med-high heat until browned. place on a paper towel to drain grease

pour entire package of gnocchi in a medium sauce pad and cook for 5 minutes or until cheese is almost melted. add pancetta and frozen peas, continue to cook for 3 more minutes


takes 10 minutes serves 2-3

Spice up your tailgating

I snagged this one from Adcock Circus

With football season here I have to share one of my favorite football snacks.
My hubby and I love hot wings and now Gage does too!
Thanks to my friend Summer we can enjoy the taste of hot wings without the messy bones.
And it saves your lips from the burn of biting off the bone!

Spicy Chicken Dip
Qty - 3 chicken breasts (i have used canned before and taste just as good, whatever your personal preference is)
Qty - 1 small bottle of hot sauce (I like Franks)
Qty - 1 bottle Ranch dressing - small bottle will work fine or about 2/3 of a large bottle
Qty - 1 package of cream cheese
Qty - 1 package mozzarella cheese (2 cup size)

Boil chicken until done. Drain water and shred the chicken into small
pieces. Wash the pan and place shredded chicken back in pan and add bottle
of hot sauce. Simmer this mixture for about 45 minutes. Spread the cream
cheese into the bottom of a 9x9 or 8 1/2 x 11 pan and pour the chicken
mixture on top and level out. Pour the ranch dressing and smooth over the
top. Place mozzarella cheese on top and bake at 350 degrees until the cheese
melts and boils around the sides.

Serve with "Scoop" style chips or corn chips and a nice icy beverage of your choice. I prefer LandShark but again personal preference! Curl up and enjoy an afternoon of college football!

Sideline note:
** do not add the ranch dressing and mozzarella cheese if you are making
ahead of time to refrigerate overnight.

soccer night dinner

quick... no cook dinner from my favorite real simple

Chicken and Peaches Platter

2 heads romaine lettuce, cut crosswise into 1-inch strips
1 store-bought rotisserie chicken, meat thickly sliced
2 ripe peaches (peeled, if desired), roughly chopped
3 ounces (3/4 cup) blue cheese, crumbled (i'm using cheddar)
1/2 cup (2 ounces) almonds, roughly chopped
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Arrange the lettuce, chicken, peaches, cheese, and almonds on a platter.

In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, oil, salt, and pepper. Drizzle the vinaigrette over the salad and toss.

Yield: Makes 6 servings

turtle bars

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1 cup unsalted butter
1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
1 large egg, beaten
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup pecans, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup toffee-and-chocolate baking pieces (such as Heath or Skör)

Heat oven to 350° F. Combine the flour, confectioners' sugar, and butter in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until a crumbly dough is formed. Press the dough firmly into a greased 9-by-13-inch pan. Bake until just golden, about 13 minutes. Whisk together the condensed milk, egg, and vanilla. Pour the filling over the baked crust. Sprinkle the pecans, chocolate chips, and toffee pieces evenly over the filling. Bake until the filling is set, the edges are golden brown, and the toffee is melted, about 25 minutes. Cool completely in the refrigerator, about 2 hours. Cut into 32 bars.

Yield: Makes 32 bars

CALORIES 211(55% from fat); FAT 13g (sat 6g); CHOLESTEROL 28mg; CALCIUM 43mg; CARBOHYDRATE 22g; SODIUM 49mg; PROTEIN 3mg; FIBER 1g; IRON 1mg

compliments of Real Simple

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 cup green olives, pitted and halved
2 medium navel oranges, peeled, separated into segments, and membranes removed
1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 pounds halibut, skin removed, cut into 2-inch pieces
1/4 cup fresh dill, chopped

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the olives, orange segments, and tomatoes. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the salt, pepper, and halibut to the pan. Spoon the sauce over the halibut. Cover and simmer until cooked through, about 7 minutes. Divide the halibut and sauce among individual plates and sprinkle with the dill.

Tip: Try this bold combination of flavors and colors with other seafood, including cod, shrimp, and salmon.

Yield: Makes 4 servings

CALORIES 339(32% from fat); FAT 12g (sat 1g); CHOLESTEROL 54mg; CARBOHYDRATE 23g; SODIUM 1038mg; PROTEIN 38g; FIBER 5g; SUGAR 13g

Rum Cake

it wouldn't be a pak christmas without this favorite...
i got it from my mom many moons ago...

preheat oven to 325

1 pkg yellow cake mix
1 pkg (3 3/4 oz) vanilla instant pudding
4 eggs
1/2 c cold water
1/2 c dark rum (i use mount gay)
1/2 c vegetable oil

mix cake mix, pudding eggs water rum and oil until smooth in mixer.
pour in to bunt pan sprayed with cooking oil
bake for one hour

cool 25 minutes and remove from pan... invert from pan and poke holes in top with chopstick. spoon and brush glaze over cake. I find it useful to place the cake on a cooling rack over a plate so the extra glaze will drip off and not make the cake to soggy.

1/4 lb butter
1/4 c water
1 c sugar
1/2 c dark rum (again i use mount gay)

melt butter in sauce pan. sir in water and sugar. boil 5 minutes, remove from heat and add rum... use immediately.

neiman marcus famous cookies

2 c of butter
4 c of flour
2 tsp soda
2 c sugar
5 c oatmeal
24 oz chocolate chip
2 c brown sugar
1 tsp salt
18 oz grated Hershey bar
4 eggs
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp vanilla
3 cups chopped nuts (optional)

measure oatmeal and blend in Cuisinart to fine powder.

cream butter and both sugars
add eggs and vanilla
mix with flour, oatmeal salt baking powder and soda
add chocolate chips Hershey bar and nuts

roll into balls and place 2 inches apart on a cookie sheet.
bake for 10 minutes @ 375

mom's banana bread

1 c sugar
1/4 c butter, softened
1 2/3 c mashed banana (about 3 bananas)
1/4 c fat free milk
1/4 c low fat sour cream
2 large egg whites
2 c all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
cooking spray

preheat oven to 350

combine sugar and butter in a bowl. beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended. add bananas milk, sour cream, and egg whites... beat well

lightly spook flour into dry measuring cups, level with knife. combine flour baking soda and salt...stir well. add flour mixture to banana mixture...beating until blended

spoon batter in to 4 mini loaf pans or one 2 regular loaf pans.

bake 45 minutes @ 350 or until wooden pick comes out clean. cool 10 minutes on wire rack and then remove from pan.

tangy pork with tomatillos, tomatoes and cilantro

takes 30 minutes

1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground red pepper
1 lb pork tenderloin trimmed and cut into 1" cubes
1 tbsp olive oil divided
cooking spray
1 c walla walla or other sweet onion
1 tsp minced garlic
2 c choppped tomatillos's (about 8 oz)
2 c halved cherry tomatoes (about 8 oz)
1/4 c chopped fresh cilantro
4 c hot cooked rice

start rice... brown...white...minute... whatever you like

combine the first 4 ingredients in a medium bowl. add pork, toss well. heat 1 1/2 tsp oil in a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray. add pork, saute 3 minutes. remove pork from pan keep warm

heat 1 1/2 tsp oil in pan over medium high heat. add onion and garlic, saute for 30 seconds. add tomatillos, saute 1 minute. add pork cover and cook 10 minutes or until pork is done. add tomatoes and cilantro, cover and cook for 1 minute. serve with rice

feeds 4

beef stew

this is the perfect meal for school season and or winter
i do it in the crock pot... dump in all the ingredients in the morning, put on low and by dinnner you'll be good to go...

2 lb stew meat
1 c each - carrots, celery and onions (sometimes i also use mushrooms)
1 tbsp sugar
1/4 c red wine
1 tsp beef extract
2 tbsp tapioca
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black peper
1/4 tsp thyme, dill or basil
1 c sausage and pepper spag sauce

stir together and dump in crock pot or heavy casserole dish

cover tightly and cook 4-6 hours @ 250, or 8-10 hours @ 200 if you have to be gone all day, or if you are in a hurry 2-3 hours @ 325.

Monday Night Special

the kids LOVE this one...

1 can whole green chiles drained
cooking spray
1 lb ground turkey
1 c chopped onion
2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp salt
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 (10oz) can diced tomatoes and green chiles, undrained
2 c frozen whole kernel corn thawed, or canned
1 (16 oz) can refried beans
1 can black beans
1 1/2 c (6oz) shredded cheddar cheese
1 c chopped tomato
1/2 c chopped green onions

preheat oven to 375
cut green chiles in half lengthwise arrange chiles in a single later in a 8" square pan sprayed with cooking spray

heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. add turkey, onion, chili powder, cumin, salt, and garlic, saute 5 minutes stirring to crumble. add diced tomatoes cook 5 minutes or until liquid evaporates

spoon turkey mixture over chiles top with corn, carefully spread both kinds of beans over corn. sprinkle cheese over beans. bake 375 for 30 minutes. let stand 5 minutes, top with chopped tomato and green onions

yields 6 servings.


a family christmas time favorite...
excellent cold in sandwhiches

1 lb chopped meat (1/2 beef, 1/2 pork)
1/2 c flour or bread crumbs (or half of each)
1 egg
1 samll onion or 3 green onions finely chopped
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/2 ts all spice (optional)
1/2 milk or creak
1/2 c chiken broth
2 tsp parsley fresh or dried

mix together all ingredients (like you would meatloaf)
melt a stick of butter in a non stick skillet over medium high heat

form meat into flat meatballs cook on both sides until brown
drain on paper towel

orzo with chicken and asiago

this is a favorite last minute one pot meal of super hubby
prep time - 5 minutes
total time - 25 minutes

1/2 c water
1 c chicken broth
12 oz skinned boned chicken breast cut in to bite sized pieces
1 1/4 c uncooked orzo
1 c frozen peas
1/2 c asiago cheese divided
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp black pepper

combine water and broth in dutch oven bring to boil
add chicken and pasta bring to a boil
reduce heat and simmer for 12 minutes
stirring occasionally
remove from heat stir in peas 1/4 c cheese, salt and pepper

top each serving with t tbsp of cheese

yields 4 servings

Dilled Pork Strogonoff

found in 2002 Cooking Light
total time 30 minutes

3 c uncooked medium egg noodles (6 oz)
1 lb pork tenderloin trimmed and cut into 1/2" strips
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 1/2 tsp butter, divided
cooking spray
1/2 c fat-free chicken broth
2 c chopped walla walla or other sweat onion
1 (8oz) package presliced mushrooms
1 c low-fat sour cream
1 tbsp chopped fresh dill
1 tbsp dijon mustard
1 tsp all-purpose flour

cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat

sprinkle pork with salt and pepper. melt half the butter in large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add pork, saute 4 minutes or until pork loses its pink color. remove pork from pan, keep warm

add broth to pan, cook 30 seconds. add 1 tsp butter, onion, and mushrooms. cook 8 minutes or until lightly browned. remove from heat

combine sour cream, dill dijon and flour in small bowl. add pork and sour cream mixture to pan, stir well. serve pork mixture immediately over noodles.

serves 4

Orange Roughy on Rice with Thai-Spiced Coconut Sauce

Prepared Thai curry paste helps a dish develop complex flavor in no time. If you have red paste and would like to use it in place of the yellow, add only one-and-a-half teaspoons.

1 cup jasmine or other long-grain rice
1 1/2 cups water
1 2/3 cups canned unsweetened coconut milk
2 teaspoons yellow Thai curry paste (see Notes)
1/3 cup canned low-sodium chicken broth or homemade stock
1 tablespoon Asian fish sauce (see Notes) or soy sauce
1 teaspoon brown sugar
Pinch turmeric
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
1 1/2 pounds orange-roughy fillets, cut to make 4 pieces
2 tablespoons cooking oil
1/3 cup cilantro leaves (optional)
4 lime wedges, for serving

Rinse the rice until the water runs clear. Put the rice in a small saucepan with the water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, and cook, covered, for 15 minutes.

Remove the pan from the heat and let sit, without removing the lid, for 10 minutes.

In a medium saucepan, heat the thick coconut milk from the top of the can over moderate heat. Add the curry paste and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Whisk in the remaining coconut milk, the broth, fish sauce, brown sugar, turmeric, and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring frequently, until slightly thickened, about 7 minutes.

In a shallow bowl, combine the flour, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, and the pepper. Coat the fish with the flour mixture and shake off any excess. In a large nonstick frying pan, heat the oil over moderately high heat.

Put the fish in the pan, skinned-side down, and cook until golden, about 3 minutes.

Turn and continue cooking until just done, about 2 minutes longer for 1-inch-thick fillets. Mound the rice on plates and top with the fish and the sauce. Sprinkle with the cilantro, if using, and serve with the lime wedges.

NOTES Thai curry paste and Asian fish sauce are available at Asian markets and many supermarkets

The perfumed heat of this dish with its full-bodied coconut sauce makes a cold beer a great companion. If you prefer wine, experiment with a moderately priced sparkling one from California.

Washington Apple Cocktail

the first time i read this recipe i was certain it would be gross...
i was oh so wrong...

2 oz Crown Royal® Canadian whisky
2 oz DeKuyper® Sour Apple Pucker schnapps
2 oz cranberry juice

Pour DeKuyper sour apple pucker and Crown Royal canadian whisky into a highball glass filled with ice. Add cranberry juice, more to taste if desired, and serve.

chicken sauteed with apples

this is a fall favorite... yummy with the WA Apple cocktail

4 boneless, skinless chicken-breast halves
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 firm apple, such as Braeburn, cored, halved, and cut into 1/2-inch slices
1 cup apple juice
1 large onion, thinly sliced
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoon Dijon mustard

Place each chicken-breast half between 2 sheets of wax paper and pound with a meat mallet until about 3/4 inch thick.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and saute the chicken until golden, about 3 minutes per side. Add the apple slices, apple juice, onion, garlic, thyme, and salt. Cover and simmer 6 to 8 minutes or until the chicken is fork-tender. Remove the chicken, apple slices, and onion to a serving platter and keep warm.

Bring the sauce to a boil for about 5 minutes or until slightly reduced. Whisk in the mustard. Pour the sauce over the chicken and serve.

Yield: Makes 4 servings

CALORIES 255.7(26% from fat); FAT 7.52g (sat 1.45g); CHOLESTEROL 78.31mg; CALCIUM 43.96mg; CARBOHYDRATE 17g; SODIUM 551.89mg; PROTEIN 29.61mg; FIBER 1.59g; IRON 1.76mg

Jane Kirby and Kay Chun
Real Simple, OCTOBER 2002

Smores trail mix

stumbled upon this one...

2 C honey grahams cereal
1 C tiny marshmallows
1 C peanuts
½ C chocolate chips
½ C raisins

Add all ingredients to a medium paper sack. Close the end of the bag and shake well! Store the mixture in a sealed container. Makes about 5 cups.

Ugly Dumplings

stumbled upon this one...

1 medium apple, or pear
1 package of extra large refrigerated biscuits
2 T sugar
¼ t ground cinnamon
2 T butter or margarine
1 T butter or margarine, melted

Peel and chop fruit.

Separate biscuits, on a lightly floured surface, pat or roll each biscuit into a 4 inch circle. Place about 1 T fruit in the middle of each biscuit.

Stir together sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle over fruit. Dot each with some butter.

Shape into bundles and seal by moistening and pinching the edges. Place in a greased muffin pan. Brush with melted butter. Bake at 375 for 11-13 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve warm. Makes 10.

Brownie Cobbler

Picked this one up while I was blogging around the world in Alabama

(10-12 servings)
2 cups (1 lb.) unsalted butter
10 oz. semisweet chocolate chips
4 cups sugar
8 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 2/3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray. Melt butter and chocolate together. Stir until melted and smooth. Whisk sugar and chocolate mixture. Whisk in eggs one at a time. Whisk in vanilla, flour, then salt. Transfer batter to prepared baking dish. Bake until top is crisp and tester inserted into the center comes out with wet crumbs attached, about 50 minutes. Serve warm with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Homemade Whipped Cream

1 small carton heavy cream
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
Add all ingredients to a bowl. Whisk, on high, until fluffy (at least 2 minutes). Keep in refrigerator until time to use.

Pot Sticker Salad with Snap Peas

From the good people of Real Simple

1 1-pound bag frozen pot stickers
3/4 pound sugar snap peas, trimmed (about 4 cups)
2 medium carrots, sliced
1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1/4 pound bean sprouts (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/4 cup roasted peanuts, chopped
2 scallions, sliced

Fill a large saucepan with 1 inch of water and fit with a steamer basket (or fill a large skillet with 1/2 inch of water). Bring the water to a boil.

Place the pot stickers in the basket (or skillet), cover, and steam for 4 minutes. Add the snap peas and carrots, cover, and steam until the pot stickers are cooked through and the vegetables are tender, 4 to 6 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the soy sauce and sesame oil. Divide the bean sprouts among bowls and top with the pot stickers and vegetables. Sprinkle with the peanuts and scallions. Serve with the sauce.

Yield: Makes 4 servings

CALORIES 507(46% from fat); FAT 26g (sat 8g); CHOLESTEROL 20mg; CARBOHYDRATE 45g; SODIUM 1155mg; PROTEIN 21g; FIBER 5g; SUGAR 7g

yummiest blackberry cobbler

if you live in WA you know blackberries are almost like weeds... so why not pick some and make something yummy...

I got this from Jenn and Jenn's Pen
Take five cups of blackberries and mix them with 1/3 cup of sugar and 1 tablespoon of flour. Then add 1 teaspoon of lemon zest and mix.

Pour into a 2 quart baking dish.

Mix together:
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1 egg
1/2 cup buttermilk (I used heavy cream)
6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Blob on top of berries. Bake for 40 minutes at 375 degrees.

Add ice cream or, like I did, whipped cream, and enjoy.

puppy chow for humans

Printed from COOKS.COM
I like to take this to football parties...

1 lb. chocolate almond bark
1 6 oz package chocolate chips
1 6 0z package butterscotch chips
3/4 c. peanut butter
8 c. Crispix cereal
1 c. peanuts
3 c. powdered sugar

Melt almond bark (or chips) and peanut butter together in microwave. Pour over the cereal and peanuts in a clean ice cream pail or other large container. Mix until the cereal and peanuts are well coated. Put 1 cup of the powdered sugar in a clean grocery bag and pour in the cereal mixture. Add another cup of the powdered sugar on top. Close the top of the bag and shake. Open the bag and break apart any big clumps. Add the last cup of powdered sugar, shake and break apart again. Looks just like Puppy Chow and tastes wonderful. Kids love this!

Turkey and Bean Chili

This is hands down my favorite chili ever... I make this several times a month in the winter....

Serves 8
4 bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
3 pounds ground dark-meat (7 percent fat), turkey
4 cups chopped onions
1/4 cup minced garlic cloves
2 medium fresh jalapeno chiles, ribs and seeds removed for less heat, if desired, minced
3 tablespoons chili powder
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
4 teaspoons ground cumin
2 cans (28 ounces each) whole tomatoes in puree
2 tablespoons unsulfured molasses
Coarse salt
3 cans (15 1/2 ounces each) pinto beans, drained and rinsed
Fresh cilantro leaves, sliced pickled jalapeno chiles, reduced-fat sour cream, crumbled cornbread, grated cheddar cheese

Heat a Dutch oven (or other heavy 5-quart pot) over medium heat. Add bacon; cook until crisp and brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Raise heat to high; add turkey. Cook, stirring and breaking up meat with a spoon, until no longer pink, 8 to 10 minutes.
Add onion, garlic, and jalapenos; cook until soft, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Stir in chili powder, cocoa powder, and cumin; cook, stirring, until fragrant, 1 minute.

Break up tomatoes with a spoon or your hands, and stir them in along with the puree. Add molasses, 1 cup water, and 4 teaspoons salt; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer; cook, partially covered, 30 minutes.

Add beans; continue cooking, uncovered, until meat and beans are very tender, and chili is thick, about 30 minutes more. Serve with desired toppings. we like it with fritos, cheddar and sour cream....

white chicken Chili

my brother lives in Madison, WI with his wife and family... this came from the junior league cookbook....

3 c chicken broth
2 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts (4 halves)
1 tbs vegetable oil
2 large onions, sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 c dry white wine
2 (15 oz) cans cannelloni beans, rinsed and drained
1 (14.5 oz) can white corn
1/4 c lime juice
1 (4 oz) can diced green chilies
1 small jalapeno chili, stemmed, seeded and minced(optional)
1.4 c minced fresh cilantro
1 tsp dried oregano
3/4 ts ground cumin
1/4 ts ground cinnamon
1 c shredded jack cheese

condiments -
diced peeled plum tomatoes
shredded jack cheese
sliced ripe olives
cilantro sprigs

in a large stock pot, bring broth to boil over high heat. Add the chicken breasts, reduce hear and cover. simmer 15-20 minutes, until the breast is cooked through, remove the chicken from the broth, and tear into bite-sized pieces.

continue boiling the broth on high until reduced to 2 cups, about 7 minutes.
transfer to bowl.

in cleaned stock pot, heat vegetable oil oer medium-high heat. add the onions and garlic sauteing until the onions are golden and sweet, about 15 minutes. Add the chilies, cilantro, cumin and cinnamon and saute an additional 5 minutes. Add the broth, wine, beans and lime juice. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat to simmer covered for 15 minutes

stir the reserved chicken and cheese. heat until hot and ladle into bowls add condiments to taste

serves 6

Mar-a-Lago Turkey Burger

Oprah says this is the worlds best turkey burger... it's pretty darn good...

1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
3 Granny Smith apples , peeled and diced
1/8 cup canola oil
4 pounds ground turkey breast
2 Tbsp. salt
2 Tbsp. black pepper
2 tsp. Tabasco® chipotle pepper sauce
1 lemon , juiced and grated zest
1/2 bunch parsley , finely chopped
1/4 cup Major Grey's Chutney , pureed
Sauté the scallions, celery and apples in the canola oil until tender. Let cool.

Place the ground turkey in a large mixing bowl. Add sautéed items and the remaining ingredients. Shape into eight 8-ounce burgers. Refrigerate for 2 hours.

Season the turkey burgers with salt and pepper. Place on a preheated, lightly oiled grill. Grill each side for 7 minutes until meat is thoroughly cooked. Let sit for 5 minutes.

Serve with a side of Mar-a-Lago Pear Chutney and your favorite toasted bread, pita or hamburger roll.
Ingredients:Serves 6 - i think more like 12...
Recipe courtesy of Jeff O'Neill

Turkey Taco Salad

Your kids won't even notice that they're — gasp! — eating vegetables with this fun and flavorful Mexican dish.

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound ground turkey
Kosher salt and pepper
1 16-ounce container store-bought refrigerated fresh salsa
2 tablespoons sour cream
1 head romaine lettuce, cut into pieces (about 8 cups)
1/2 9-ounce bag tortilla chips
1 15.5-ounce can pinto beans, rinsed
1 avocado, diced
1 cup grated Cheddar
1 6-ounce can sliced black olives (optional)

Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the turkey and season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Cook, breaking up with a spoon, until no longer pink, 5 to 6 minutes. Pour off any excess liquid. Stir in half the salsa and cook until heated through, about 1 minute.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the remaining salsa and sour cream.

Divide the lettuce, chips, turkey mixture, beans, avocado, Cheddar, and olives (if using) among bowls. Serve with the salsa-and-sour-cream dressing.

Yield: Makes 4 servings

CALORIES 602(43% from fat); FAT 29g (sat 8g); CHOLESTEROL 80mg; CARBOHYDRATE 47g; SODIUM 1560mg; PROTEIN 43g; FIBER 12g; SUGAR 6g

Kate Merker and Sara Quessenberry
Real Simple, REAL SIMPLE FAMILY 2008

Italian Cream Cake

I stole this one from one of my brothers neighbors in Madison...
Oh, here's a recipe that will KILL if you don't have any of those bizarre nut/coconut haters in the crowd. It seems like a lot of work, but it is actually a pretty easy, from scratch cake:

1 stick butter
1/2 cup shortening
2 cups sugar
5 egg olks
2 cups cake flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. vanilla
3 1/2 oz toasted coconut
1 cup chopped fine pecans, toasted
5 egg whites, beaten to stiff peaks

1. Cream butter and shortening until fluffy, add sugar and continue creaming until sugar is dissolved and very fluffy and smooth. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
2. Sift flour. Add baking soda and salt to flour and sift again.
3. Beating slowly, alternately add flour and buttermilk. Stir in vanilla, coconut, and pecans.
4. Fold in the beaten egg whites.
5. Pour mixture into THREE-8" or 9" cake pans (greased and floured, or generously sprayed with my fave, Baker's Joy). Bake at 350-degrees for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool.
Cream Cheese Frosting

1 8 oz. package of cream cheese (room temp.)
1/2 stick of butter
1 lb. box of powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla

1. Beat cream cheese and butter together. Add sugar and mix well. Add vanilla.
2. Whip for a couple minutes.

To assemble Cake:

1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted
3/4 cup toasted coconut

1. Place first layer on cake stand, spread frosting on top and then sprinkle with some of the pecans.
2. Repeat for second layer.
3. Place top layer on and then frost the entire cake (top and sides).
4. Sprinkle remaining pecans on top.
5. Press coconut onto the sides of the cake.
I stole this one from one of my brothers neighbors in Madison...

Spinach Salad with Shrimp and Feta

More Rachel Ray

1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 shallot, finely chopped
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon spicy mustard
1 tablespoon honey
Salt and pepper
8 ounces spinach
1/2 cup feta cheese

1. In a medium skillet, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp and stir-fry until opaque, 2 to 3 minutes.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the shallot, vinegar, mustard and honey; season with salt and pepper. Pour in the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil in a slow stream, whisking constantly until thick. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the cooked shrimp to the dressing and toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
3. Arrange the spinach on a platter or individual plates. Place the warm shrimp on top and drizzle with any remaining dressing. Scatter the feta on top.

watermelon Sorbet

Rachel Ray...

5 pounds seedless watermelon, cut into small chunks(6 cups)
1/4 cup sugar
Grated peel of 1 lime
Pinch salt
1/2 cup light corn syrup

1. Using a blender, puree the watermelon; you will need 4 cups watermelon puree.
2. In a large saucepan, bring 1 cup watermelon puree, the sugar and lime peel to a simmer over medium-low heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves; season with the salt. Pour in the remaining 3 cups watermelon puree, then whisk in the corn syrup until incorporated. Pour the watermelon mixture into a 9-inch metal cake pan and freeze until firm, about 4 hours or overnight.
3. Let the frozen watermelon soften at room temperature for 5 minutes. Using a butter knife, break up the frozen puree into 2-inch pieces. Transfer the pieces to a food processor in batches and pulse until smooth. Store the sorbet in a freezer-safe container for up to 1 week. Let stand for 5 minutes before scooping.

Salmon Grill Packets

another one from Rachel Ray

1 cup couscous
1/3 cup roasted cashews, chopped
5 scallions — 3 chopped, 2 cut into matchsticks for garnish
Grated peel and juice of 1 orange
1/4 cup dry sherry
2 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 1/2 tablespoons mirin (sweetened rice wine)
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil, plus more for brushing
1 1/2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
4 cups baby spinach
Four 6-ounce skinless salmon fillets
Salt and pepper

1. Build a charcoal fire or preheat a gas grill. In a small bowl, combine the couscous, cashews, chopped scallions and orange peel; set aside.
2. In a measuring cup, whisk together the orange juice, sherry, soy sauce, mirin, 1 tablespoon sesame oil and the ginger; set aside.
3. Tear off four 2-foot-long sheets of heavy-duty foil and fold each in half to form a rectangle; brush the center of each lightly with sesame oil. Divide the couscous mixture evenly among the 4 rectangles and top each pile with 1 cup baby spinach and a fish fillet; season with salt and pepper. Fold the edges of the foil up and inward to start forming a packet. Whisk the grilling sauce and pour about 1/4 cup into each packet. Roll up the edges of the foil together to seal.
4. Grill the packets over indirect medium heat, with the lid down, for 25 minutes. Let the fish rest for 3 minutes before opening the packets. Garnish with the remaining scallion matchsticks.

BLD Carbonara Pizza

Found this one in Rachel Ray Everyday Magazine...

Cornmeal, for sprinkling
1 pound pizza dough, at room temperature
Extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO), for drizzling
1/4 pound pancetta, chopped
1 cup ricotta cheese
1/4 cup grated pecorino romano cheese
2 large egg yolks, beaten
1 clove garlic, grated
1 1/2 to 2 cups shredded provolone cheese
1/3 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley (a generous handful)

1. Preheat the oven to 450°. Sprinkle a little cornmeal on a pizza pan or baking sheet. Place the pizza dough on the pan and stretch into a large round or rectangle. Drizzle the dough with EVOO and partially bake until puffed and golden, about 8 minutes.
2. In a small skillet, heat a drizzle of EVOO over medium heat. Add the pancetta and cook, stirring often, until crisp, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and let cool. Add the ricotta, pecorino romano, egg yolks and garlic to the pancetta; season with pepper and stir to combine.
3. Spread the ricotta mixture over the partially baked pizza dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border all around. Top with the provolone. Bake until the crust and topping are golden and cooked through, about 12 minutes. Scatter the parsley on top and cut into wedges.

Baked French Toast

We LOVE this one... but remember it is a make the night before thing...


1 (1 pound) loaf French bread, cut diagonally in 1 inch slices
8 eggs
2 cups milk
1 1/2 cups half-and-half cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup butter
1 1/3 cups brown sugar
3 tablespoons light corn syrup

Butter a 9x13 inch baking dish. Arrange the slices of bread in the bottom. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, milk, cream, vanilla and cinnamon. Pour over bread slices, cover, and refrigerate overnight.
The next morning, preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). In a small saucepan, combine butter, brown sugar and corn syrup; heat until bubbling. Pour over bread and egg mixture.
Bake in preheated oven, uncovered, for 40 minutes.

Tuscan White Beans with Sausage and Sage

As hearty as chili and with flavors of old-world Italy, this classic never gets old. Prepare this easy recipe for the family ‑- the perfect dish for lunch or dinner!

Serving: 6

1 pound dried cannellini or great northern beans, washed and soaked overnight
(or cheat with 2 cans of canned beans)
2 quarts fresh water
2 medium onions, 1 cut in half and the other chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped sage
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 pound Italian sweet sausage, casings removed and crumbled
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 celery, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley
1 cup canned chopped tomatoes, drained

Drain the beans. Combine the drained beans with water in a large pot. Bring to a boil. Skim off the foam, reduce the heat to low and add the halved onion, 2 of the minced garlic cloves, half the sage and the bay leaf. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and cover. Allow to simmer for 1 1/2 hours, until the beans are very tender. Drain over a bowl and measure out 2 1/2 cups of the broth. Discard the halved onion and bay leaf.

While the beans are cooking, heat a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the sausage. Stir until the sausage has browned lightly, about 7 to 11 minutes. Add the chopped onions, carrots, celery and parsley. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add the remaining garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes, the remaining sage, reserved beans and reserved broth, and continue cooking for 30 minutes. Adjust seasoning as desired with salt and pepper. Serve hot with passed grated Parmesan cheese and country bread.

Mexican Layered Dip

Prep Time:
10 minTotal Time:
1 hr 10 minMakes:

5 cups or 40 servings, 2 Tbsp. each1
pkg. (8 oz.) PHILADELPHIA Neufchatel Cheese, softened
1 Tbsp. Taco Seasoning Mix
1 cup Chunky Salsa
1 cup drained canned black beans,
rinsed 4 green onions, chopped
1 cup Cheddar Cheese
1 cup shredded lettuce
2 Tbsp. sliced black olives
3 pkg. (13 oz. each) baked tortilla chips

BEAT Neufchatel cheese in medium bowl with electric mixer until creamy. Add seasoning mix; beat until well blended. Spread onto bottom of serving plate or 9-inch pie plate.

TOP with all remaining ingredients except chips; cover.

REFRIGERATE at least 1 hour before serving. Serve with the chips.

Monkey Smoothie

1/2 c soy milk
2 tbsp. protein powder
2 tbsp. peanut butter
2 tbsp. honey
2 ripe med bananas cut up
1 c ice cubes

place all ingredients in blender, cover and blend until smooth, makes 2 1/2 cups

Chocolate Scotcheroos

Prep Time: 20 Minutes
Yield: 48 Bars
Servings: 24

o 1 cup light corn syrup
o 1 cup sugar
o 1 cup peanut butter
o 6 cups of Rice Krispies OR Cocoa Krispies
o 1 6oz package of semi-sweet chocolate morsels
o 1 cup butterscotch chips


1. Place corn syrup and sugar into 3-quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until sugar dissolves and mixture begins to boil. Remove from heat. Stir in peanut butter. Mix well. Add cereal. Stir until well coated. Press mixture into 13x9x2-inch pan coated with cooking spray. Set aside.

2. Melt chocolate and butterscotch chips together in 1-quart saucepan over low heat. Stirring constantly. Spread evently over cereal mix. Let stand until firm. Cut into 2x1 inch square bars when cool.

Chicken with Provencal Sauce

I haven't tried this one out yet... but when I shared with Lisa that she inspired me she sent this...

Oh my…no you didn’t. All ‘cause of little o’ me. Well shucks, that is one of my “lower” ranking recipes to boot. Hang on sista, you gotta give me another shot. The next one is one of my favorites, for kids and adults. What’s even better about it is that it is good cold the next day on a salad or somethin’…

I made the chicken (see below)

Bought the Ore-Ida oven roasted potatoes, Garlic and Parma

Then made just bow-tie pasta

and poured a little sauce on it and broccoli for a green and poof,

there is dinner gourmet very-fast. Chicken with Provencal Sauce

A heady combination of dried basil, thyme, marjoram, rosemary, lavender, and sage, herbes de Provence is a classic French seasoning. Try it in other Mediterranean dishes, such as pasta sauce or baked black olives. Serve with roasted potato wedges.

4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 teaspoons dried herbes de Provence
1 teaspoon butter
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Fresh thyme sprigs (optional)

Place each chicken breast half between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap; pound to 1/2-inch thickness using a meat mallet or rolling pin. Sprinkle chicken evenly with salt and pepper.
Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add chicken; cook 6 minutes on each side or until done. Remove chicken from pan; keep warm.
Add garlic to pan; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add broth and herbes de Provence; bring to a boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Cook until broth mixture is reduced to 1/2 cup (about 3 minutes). Remove from heat; add butter and lemon juice, stirring until butter melts. Serve sauce over chicken. Garnish with thyme sprigs, if desired.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 chicken breast half and about 2 tablespoons sauce)

CALORIES 248 (30% from fat); FAT 8.2g (sat 1.8g,mono 4.5g,poly 1g); IRON 1.5mg; CHOLESTEROL 101mg; CALCIUM 32mg; CARBOHYDRATE 1g; SODIUM 376mg; PROTEIN 40.2g; FIBER 0.3g

Cooking Light, JANUARY 2005

Tropical Itch

a pizza night favorite

1 oz - light run
1 oz - vodka
1/2 - oz triple sec
3-4 oz passion fruit juice

stir and serve over ice...

I like to make it by the pitcher and pour over ice as needed...


I may not be a big fan of "O" but I do love margaritas!

The Girlfriend
4 parts The Margarita King ready-to-serve margarita
A splash of pomegranate juice
Directions: Shake ingredients together with ice. Pour strained into a martini glass and serve.

The Pink Drink
3 parts The Margarita King ready-to-serve margarita
1 part peach liqueur
1 part dry champagne
A squeeze of pink grapefruit juice
Directions: Shake ingredients together with ice. Pour strained into a champagne glass and serve.

Lazy Mojito
4 parts The Margarita King ready-to-serve margarita
1 part rumCrush mint leaves
Directions: Shake together ingredients. Pour into a highball glass and serve on the rocks.

The Margarita KingGiovanni's award-winning signature margarita is sold in bottles,
ready to serve. It's made from premium double-distilled blue agave tequila, double-distilled orange liqueur, real lime and lemons, and real sugar cane.Directions: Shake with ice. Pour strained into a martini glass and serve.

dinner tonight - faking it real simple style

Speedy Sloppy Joes

1 7.5-ounce tube refrigerated buttermilk biscuits

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 pound ground turkey

Kosher salt and pepper

1 cup store-bought refrigerated fresh salsa

Bake the biscuits according to the package directions. Let cool before slicing each biscuit in half. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the turkey and cook until no trace of pink remains, about 7 minutes. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Stir in the salsa and cook until heated through, about 2 minutes more. Place the bottom halves of the biscuits on a plate. Top with the meat mixture and sandwich with the remaining biscuit halves.

Yield: Makes 4 servings

CALORIES 419(47% from fat); FAT 22g (sat 5g); CHOLESTEROL 90mg; CARBOHYDRATE 32g; SODIUM 1,402mg; PROTEIN 24g; FIBER 0g; SUGAR 6g

Prosciutto-wrapped Scallops...

I turned to my new favorite cookbook... cooking with with all things trader joe's...this cookbook rocks... all the ingredients can be found at Trader Joe's and it's a great way to find new uses for some of you favorite things...

I've made a few things, and this time i hit the appetizer section and drinks... YUMMY stuff... the big winner was the Prosciutto-wrapped Scallops...

  • 1 (1-lb) bag frozen New England Wild jumbo Scallops, thawed
  • 6 slices of Prosciutto cut lengthwise in half
  • 2 tbsp green olive tapenade or mixed olive bruschetta.
  1. preheat oven 375
  2. lightly pat scallops dry with a clean paper towel. Season scallops with the tapenade, making sure to coat all sides evenly.
  3. wrap each scallop with a bank of prosciutto. Place seam side down in the buttered baking dish or cookie sheet. Spread
  4. scallops 2 inches apart so that they roast and don't steam.
  5. bake for 15-16 minutes. Do NOT overcook, scallops are done when they are opaque and no longer translucent.
** Asian twist use mandarin chef sauce instead of tapenade...

My other favorite are the Peanutty Sesame Noodles... to die for... and my kids gobble it up....

If you love trader joe's... you must get this BOOK. Click on photo to go directly to amazon and buy... If you already have it tell me what you favorite is.

cowboy caviar

2 chopped avocados
1 chopped tomato
1 small chopped onion
1 jalapeno pepper, chopped finely (to taste)
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 Mexican (or fiesta) corn, rinsed and drained
1/4 to 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped (to taste)

Mix the above ingredients together.

1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 cup oil (I used olive oil, which was yummy, and I would use less the next time)
1/2 t. salt
hot sauce to taste

Pour dressing over other mixture, stir together and chill. Serve with the scoopy kind of tortilla or corn chips.

All-In-One Spaghetti

I'm always looking for an easy dinners I can serve my kids and my friend Lisa sent this one to me... modified slightly from a recipe found in Southern Living...

1 lb. ground turkey
1 large onion chopped
2 garlic cloves minced
1 - 8 oz. can tomato sauce
1 - 6 oz can tomato paste
32 oz V8 juice
2 c. water
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
2-3 tsp chili powder
1 tsp dried oregano
dash of pepper
1 box of elbow macaroni
grated Parmesan cheese

it also calls for a garnish... but who are we kidding... kids don't care about garnishes of parsley sprigs....

cook first 3 ingredients in dutch oven, stirring until turkey crumbles and is no longer pink; drain if needed. return to pad and stir in tomato sauce and next 8 ingredients;bring to a boil.
cover reduce heat, and simmer, stirring often for 30 minutes

add pasta; cover and simmer , stirring often for 20 minutes or until pasta is tender.
serve with cheeses and the garnish if you so choose...

I added mushrooms and julienned carrots because I had them in the fridge...
I also think you could add 12-14 oz of spag sauce from a jar instead of tomato sauce and paste...
and it says it is for 6... but I'm thinking 6 teenage boys!!! there was a lot of food.



I was making dinner tonight and thinking... so nice of my friend Lisa to share this recipe with me... should I share it on the blog??? oh I know I'll start a new one with recipes... that way when people ask me about the things I make I can send them there...