Monday, December 28, 2009

A Couple of Links

I haven't been making too many new things lately, but here are a couple of recipes I have tried lately that were a hit. The guacamole bruschetta was SO delicious as an appetizer, and Jen tried the cream biscuits and liked them, so I had to try them too (we had biscuits and gravy with them.)

Guacamole Bruschetta, from Blog Chef

Cream Biscuits, by Smitten Kitchen

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Roast Chicken

I made this a little while ago and I was seriously impressed with myself!! It looked so pretty and tasted delicious. It really is quite easy to do. Katie called and asked me for the recipe tonight, so I thought I would post it on here.

Roast Chicken

1 (3.5-4) pound whole chicken
1 small yellow onion
1 lemon thinly sliced
1/2 cup celery leaves
Salt & Pepper
Softened Butter
1 small onion chopped
1 carrot chopped (I would definitely do more)

Wash chicken in hot water and dry thoroughly. Season cavity with salt and pepper and stuff with onion, lemon and celery leaves (I put celery in there as well). Rub chicken with softened butter and season all over with salt and pepper.

Roast for 15 minutes at 425, reduce heat to 350 and baste chicken and roast for another 15 minutes. Add chopped onions and carrots to pan, baste them and chicken again. Continue roasting for 45 minutes plus an addition 7 minutes per pound.

I made gravy out of the drippings the chicken made. It was super yummy.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Pumpkin Bread

My friend, Melissa, brought me a loaf of this stuff. It's so good. I loved it because it's moist and so delicious. I had to get the recipe and finally made it today. The kids are devouring it quickly.

The good thing is that it made 8 small loaves.

1 (29 oz) can pumpkin (I used two small 15 oz. cans)
1 Cup Oil
4 cups sugar
Mix first three ingredients then add the dry ingredients:
5 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 to 1 cup dates-chopped small (you can buy them already chopped)
3/4 to 1 cup chopped nuts (I used pecans, of course)
Bake at 325 for 40-45 minutes, or til done.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

BOWutiful bows

Hey guys!
There's this company online that makes adorable little bows for kids hair and they're having a giveaway...she's actually the sister of my young women's leader.
thought you might be interested!

Love ya'll

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Toast and Asparagus Gravy

10-12 asparagus spears cut into 1 inch pieces
Salt and pepper to taste

Saute asparagus pieces in butter or oil until tender. Add enough milk to make desired amount of gravy, cook on medium heat until bubbling, stirring occasionally.

Make a roux out of 2-3 Tbs. flour and enough milk to make a 'Elmer's glue-like' consistency.

Add roux to milk/asparagus mixture slowly while stirring. Turn heat off.

Let gravy cool a bit and thicken, stir occasionally. (If you need gravy to be thicker just make another roux.)

Add salt and pepper to taste!

Eat gravy over buttered toast for breakfast. Mmmmmm.

This is one of my favorite breakfasts!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Corn Chowder

This is originally Marsha's recipe. My family loves it. It's especially good with bread sticks or Italian bread to dip in it. Yum!!!

1 ½ C. chopped onion

4 Tbsp. butter
2 C. frozen hash browns

2 C. diced cooked ham
20 oz. frozen corn

2 C. cream-style corn

5 C. milk
2 cans cream of Mushroom soup

salt, pepper, parsley flakes

Combine everything in crockpot and cook on high 4-5 hours, or all day on low.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Pumpkin Rolls

This is for Brooke! They are really easy and most people LOVE them! I always make them in batches of 3 or 5.

PUMPKIN ROLLS - (makes 3)

9 eggs

3 c. sugar

1 sm. can pumpkin

3 tsp. lemon juice

2-1/4 c. flour

3 tsp. baking powder

2 Tbs. cinnamon

1 Tbs. ginger

1 -1/2 tsp. ginger

1- 1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1 -1/2 tsp. salt

3 c. chopped nuts

powdered sugar

Beat eggs on high for 5 minutes. Beat in sugar. Add pumpkin and lemon juice. Add dry ingredients and mix well. Pour into 3 cookie sheets (lined with parchment paper and sprayed with "Pam". Sprinkle 1 cup nuts on each one. Bake 375 degrees for 15 minutes. Loosen edges and dump out onto dish cloth sprinkled generously with powdered sugar. Roll up in towel(from long edge) and let cool. When cool - unroll - frost with cream cheese filling - roll back up (without towel!) and freeze. (roll in aluminum foil to freeze). They freeze very well for a long time!


3 c. powdered sugar

2 - 8 oz. cream cheese

1 -1/2 cubes butter

1 -1/2 tsp. vanilla

Combine and beat until smooth. Divide between 3 pumpkin rolls.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Delicious Breakfast Recipes

Shara, Tawnya, Amy (Jeanie's daughter-in-law), Grandma, and I (Marsha) got to eat a yummy breakfast for lunch at Aunt Jeanie's house a while ago. So of course we had to get the recipes. Thanks for the great food, Aunt Jeanie!
Amish Breakfast

Saute, drain, and then set aside:

1 lb. sliced and diced bacon
1 small purple onion - diced

In a mixing bowl:

6 eggs slightly beaten
4 C. frozen hash brown
2 C. grated cheddar cheese
1/2 C. swiss cheese
1/2 C. small curd cottage cheese - blend
1 green or red bell pepper - chopped
salt and pepper

Add bacon mix and pour into a greased 9 x 13 casserole dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 min. just until set. Cool for 10 min. before serving.

Bobbi's Apple Pancakes

2 medium-size green apples
(Jonathan or Granny Smith),
peeled, cored, and chopped
2 eggs
2 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp butter, softened
2 cups evaporated milk
2 cups Bisquick All-Purpose baking mix

Mix all the batter ingredients in a large bowl. Spoon onto a greased pancake grill or frying pan and cook over medium-high heat. Serves 4.

Cinnamon Syrup

2 cups light corn syrup
4 cups sugar
1 cup water
1 Tbsp cinnamon
2 cups evaporated milk

Combine all ingredients except the milk and bring to a full boil in a medium-size pot. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Let cool a full 5 minutes. Add milk, and serve warm.

Fruit Salad Sauce
Boil for 2 min. and cool:
1 1/2 C. sugar
2 C. water

1/2 tsp orange zest
1/2 tsp lemon zest
1 C. orange juice
1/2 tsp rum flavoring
2 tsp lemon juice

Chill in refrigerator. Serve over any variety of fruit.

Delicious Breakfast Recipes

Shara, Tawnya, Amy (Jeanie's daughter-in-law), Grandma, and I (Marsha) got to eat a yummy breakfast for lunch at Aunt Jeanie's house a while ago. So of course we had to get the recipes. Tawnya took pictures and will add them later. Thanks for the great food, Aunt Jeanie!

Amish Breakfast

Saute, drain, and then set aside:

1 lb. sliced and diced bacon
1 small purple onion - diced

In a mixing bowl:

6 eggs slightly beaten
4 C. frozen hash brown
2 C. grated cheddar cheese
1/2 C. swiss cheese
1/2 C. small curd cottage cheese - blend
1 green or red bell pepper - chopped
salt and pepper

Add bacon mix and pour into a greased 9 x 13 casserole dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 min. just until set. Cool for 10 min. before serving.

Bobbi's Apple Pancakes

2 medium-size green apples
(Jonathan or Granny Smith),
peeled, cored, and chopped
2 eggs
2 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp butter, softened
2 cups evaporated milk
2 cups Bisquick All-Purpose baking mix

Mix all the batter ingredients in a large bowl. Spoon onto a greased pancake grill or frying pan and cook over medium-high heat. Serves 4.

Cinnamon Syrup

2 cups light corn syrup
4 cups sugar
1 cup water
1 Tbsp cinnamon
2 cups evaporated milk

Combine all ingredients except the milk and bring to a full boil in a medium-size pot. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Let cool a full 5 minutes. Add milk, and serve warm.

Fruit Salad Sauce

Boil for 2 min. and cool:
1 1/2 C. sugar
2 C. water

1/2 tsp orange zest
1/2 tsp lemon zest
1 C. orange juice
1/2 tsp rum flavoring
2 tsp lemon juice

Chill in refrigerator. Serve over any variety of fruit.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Tonight was our Young Women in Excellence and I was in charge of refreshments. We served pumpkin rolls and Wassail. This recipe is in Grams Cookbook (pg. 3) by Melanie. I think it's the best Hot Drink (Wassail type) ever!

5 qts. water
1 tsp. ground cloves
2 sticks cinnamon
4 c. sugar
1 large pineapple juice
1 can frozen orange juice concentrate
1/2 c. lemon juice
Boil water, sugar, cloves and cinnamon together for 5 minutes. Add the juices. Heat all together and serve hot.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Apple Cinnamon Buttermilk Cake with Salted Caramel Sauce

Photo courtesy of Pinch My Salt

I found this recipe on the website Pinch My Salt. It was delicious! You must try it with the Salted Caramel Sauce.

Adapted from

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick), at room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 cup peeled and chopped baking apple (I used granny smith)
heaping tablespoon of raw sugar (demerara, turbinado or Sugar in the Raw)
extra cinnamon for sprinkling

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees, butter and flour an 8-inch round cake pan*

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt; set aside. In a separate bowl, beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer until pale and fluffy, about two minutes. Add vanilla and egg and beat well. With the mixer set to low speed, beat in 1/3 of the flour mixture. Add half the buttermilk and continue beating on low speed until incorporated. Scraping down sides of bowl as necessary, beat in another 1/3 of flour mixture then remaining buttermilk. Finally beat in the last 1/3 of the flour mixture until just combined.

3. Scrape batter into the cake pan, smoothing the top with a spatula. Scatter apple pieces evenly over the top of the cake batter then sprinkle evenly with raw sugar. Sprinkle lightly with cinnamon.

4. Bake in a preheated 400-degree oven until cake is golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool in the pan for ten minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool until warm. Invert onto a plate. Serve plain, or with whipped cream and salted caramel sauce.

Salted Caramel Sauce
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  1. Stir together sugar and 1 tablespoon water in a small saucepan, place over medium-high heat, and bring to a boill. Let boil until amber in color, about 3 minutes.
  2. Immediately add butter and stir to incorporate. Remove from heat, add cream and salt, and mix well. Serve immediately or let cool to room temperature, cover, and refrigerate

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Blonde Brownies

Melt 2/3 c. butter in sauce pan
add 2 c. brown sugar and mix in well. Let cool for a minute.

stir in:

2 slightly beaten eggs
1 tsp. vanilla


2 c. flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1 c. chopped nuts (optional)

Spread in greased cake pan.

Sprinkle 1/2 pkg of chocolate chips over top.

Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes

Friday, October 30, 2009

Pumpkin Bliss Cupcakes

Marsha posted a picture of my Halloween cupcakes, I'll re-post the picture. These cupcakes are delish! I love pumpkin anything though. The frosting is good too, but not if you are my mom, Marsha, or Tawnya! Katie and Abby did the decorating of them. (Sorry I've been MIA on this blog, I have a list of 10 things to post, we'll see how long that will take me)
Pumpkin Bliss Cupcakes
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 T plus 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
3 cups sugar
1 15 oz. can pumpkin puree
4 large eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup orange juice

Preheat oven to 350. Line muffin pans or spray them with baking spray. Sift together the flour, spice, baking soda, and salt. In a large bowl combine the sugar, pumpkin, and eggs, whisk until smooth. Whisk in oil and orange juice until the batter is smooth. Add the flour-spice mix to the mixture and fold together until well incorporated, but do not overmix. Bake 20-25 minutes. Frost with cream cheese frosting.

The frosting I use is Anne Strawberry's (Aaron's cousin)

Cream Cheese Frosting

1 package of cream cheese, softened (I like to use Neufchatel, less fat and I don't notice much difference)
1/2 C. butter, softened (one stick)
2 T. milk
2 t. pure vanilla extract
dash of salt
6 cups of powdered sugar (more or less to achieve desired consistency, this is a baseline)
1 T. meringue powder

In a mixer with the whisk attachment, combine the cream cheese and butter until they are light and fluffy. Then add in the milk, vanilla, and salt, and blend.

Next, add the powdered sugar and meringue powder, cover the bowl of the mixer with a dish towel, and turn it on low until everything is combined. Then increase the speed for a minute or so until the frosting is light, fluffy, and delicious. The meringue powder will help set the frosting after it dries so it holds its shape.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

New Orleans Bread Pudding

*** pictures now included***

I was watching GTU the other day and Barbara Smith (4 News anchor) made this bread pudding. It looked so good so I tried it and it is yummo!

Katie took picures of it so she'll have to post them for me.


1 - 10 oz. loaf of stale french bread, crumbled (6-8 cups any type of bread) (My loaf was 16 oz. and I used about 3/4 of it)
(I used french bread that I had bought a few days ago.)
4 cups milk
2 cups sugar
8 TBS. melted butter
3 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
t tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 c. chopped nuts (I used pecans)
1 c. coconut (didn't add)
1 c. raisins (don't like!)
Combine all ingredients in blender. (except bread and optional items). Place crumbled bread in 9x13 buttered (sprayed) pan. Pour mixture over bread. Should be very moist but not soupy. (I used almost all of the mixture) Place in NON-PREHEATED oven. Bake at 350 degrees for approx. 1 hour and 15 minutes until the top is golden brown. Serve warm with sauce.

Cream Caramel Sauce:
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 TBS. flour
1 cup whipping cream
Bring to a boil for 3 minutes then remove from heat and add:
1/4 c. butter
2 TBS. vanilla
Spoon over bread pudding.

Chicken Enchilada Soup

I was talking to Shara and we were both making soup for supper. She was making Chicken Noodle and I was making this. She told me to post it so here it is!
2 cans chicken broth
1 -8 oz. cream cheese
2 c. cooked diced chicken
2 - Lg. cans (28 oz.) Las Palmas Green Enchilada Sauce (mild or medium)-(I would use mild if I could find it.)
3 c. 1/2 & 1/2
1 can corn - drained
1 1/2 c. uncooked rice (can use minute rice also)
Simmer altogether until rice is tender

Sunday, October 25, 2009


I made this ham for dinner last Sunday, and everybody was a little worried because I was experimenting again, but it was so good!

Bake a ham as the instructions say. (It would be best to buy a spiral sliced ham, so then you don't have to cut it yourself)

Then mix the following in a bowl:

1 c. sugar

1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg

1/4 tsp. ground clove

1/8 tsp. paprika

dash of ground ginger

dash of ground allspice

Sprinkle the mixture onto the cooked ham all over it. Then use a blow torch with medium flame and caramelize the sugar. Wave the torch back and forth so the sugar browns and bubbles but doesn't burn. Continue all over the ham until it is well glazed. Then serve it right then or you can put it in the oven to reheat it some more.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Pumpkin Pie Dessert

Here's another crockpot recipe from me (from the same cookbook as the last one):

Also really yummy!

Pumpkin Pie Dessert

Prep Time: 15-20 minutes
Cooking Time: 3-4 hours
Ideal slow cooker size: 5 to 6 quart

19 oz. can pumpkin pie filling
12 oz. can evaporated milk
2 eggs, lightly beaten
Boiling water
1 cup gingersnap cookie crumbs

1. In a large mixing bowl, stir together pie filling, milk, and eggs until thoroughly mixed.

2. Pour into an ungreased baking insert designedto fit into your slow cooker (I don't have this, so I got creative. I used my cups that came with my Corelle dishes. Three of them instead of one baking insert.)

3. Place filled baking insert designed to fit into your slow cooker. Cover the insert with its lid, or with 8 paper towels (I used the paper towels).

4. Carefully pour boiling water into cooker around the baking insert, to a depth of one inch.

5. Cover cooker. Cook on High for 3-4 hours, or until a tester (aka: least in my kitchen) inserted in the center of the custard comes out clean.

6. Remove baking insert from slow cooker. Remove its lid. Sprinkle dessert with cookie crumbs. Serve warm from baking insert.

(We added whipped cream...YUMMY!) Very good fall treat!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Chicken Tikka Masala

The other day I was looking at a flyer from Trader Joe's that had come in the mail and saw a frozen dish called Chicken Tikka Masala that sounded really good. I decided to do a search on All Recipes, once again, and found a recipe for it that had 800 reviews and received 4 1/2 stars, so I figured it should be good. It was! Pioneer Woman has a recipe for it as well -- when I told Jen I had made this, she knew she had seen it somewhere on the food blogs, and sure enough she had.

What I learned from Wikipedia: The origin of this dish is disputed, but is mostly thought to have been created in England as an attempt to create a South Asian dish that would appeal to the British palate. It is served in many restaurants in England and has been voted the favorite dish in these restaurants.

Here's the recipe (one more thing, I didn't grill my chicken. I fried it in a pan)

Chicken Tikka Masala
  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 4 teaspoons salt, or to taste
  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 4 long skewers

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 3 teaspoons salt, or to taste
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

  1. In a large bowl, combine yogurt, lemon juice, 2 teaspoons cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, black pepper, ginger, and 4 teaspoons salt. Stir in chicken, cover, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  2. Preheat a grill for high heat.
  3. Lightly oil the grill grate. Thread chicken onto skewers, and discard marinade. Grill until juices run clear, about 5 minutes on each side.
  4. Melt butter in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Saute garlic and jalapeno for 1 minute. Season with 2 teaspoons cumin, paprika, and 3 teaspoons salt. Stir in tomato sauce and cream. Simmer on low heat until sauce thickens, about 20 minutes. Add grilled chicken, and simmer for 10 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter, and garnish with fresh cilantro.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Italian Sloppy Joes

These are EASY! yummy! Jereld and I bought a book called "Fix-It and Forget-It: 5-Ingredient Favorites--Comforting Slow-Cooker Recipes." It's my new favorite book.

I'm so busy with work and paperwork for our house and stuff that I need easy recipes or it's frozen food for us. This recipe was extremely simple and so GOOD! It's a keeper!

Italian Sloppy Joes (the book calls it Italian Barbecue Sandwiches...I like my title better)

Prep time: 10 Minutes
Cooking time: 2-6 hours
Ideal slow cooker size: 3-qt.

(I doubled this and used my 5 qt. crock pot which could have held a lot more!)

1 lb. ground beef (browned in a non-stick skillet first...which by-the-way is the hardest part)
1 cup tomato sace
half an envelope dry spaghetti sauce mix
salt and pepper to taste
8 oz. Velveeta or American Cheese cubed (I used Velveeta)

1. As it says above, brown ground beef in a skillet first.

2. Place meat in slow cooker. Stir in sauce and seasonings.

3. Cover and cook on Low for 2-6 hours.

4. One hour before serving (I didn't give it an hour...I gave it 20 minutes and it was delicious!), stir in cheese. I cubed the Velveeta so it would melt quickly.

5. Stir before serving.

Obviously we ate this on hamburger buns...but you can use whatever bun or bread you choose.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Grandma's Birthday Lunch

A few of the Clouse Cousins - Jen, Marsha, Katie, and Shara - were able to get together at Shara's house to have a lunch with Grandma for her (late) birthday.

Here's Grandma with Katie's little guy.

Grandma brings food even when you tell her she shouldn't because the party is for her!
Here is her yummy cookie salad - (recipe coming).

Marsha brought Spaghetti Bolognese (no picture)

Shara made a great salad (sorry no picture) hopefully she can hack into this
post and put the recipe on soon!

Jen brought some delicious homemade French Bread
with yummy stuff broiled on top. I'll try to remember to
get the recipe and add it to this post soon.

And Shara and Katie's cute pumpkin cupcakes for dessert. They were good!


When I was young, my dad used to make chilequilas for us when my mom wasn't home or was too busy to cook. I know at least 3 of my sisters have good memories of these as well - I'm not sure if he ever made them when I got older, so my youngest sister and my brother might not remember them.

I decided to try and make them for dinner tonight. They turned out great - I wasn't sure if my dad could tell me exactly how to make them, and I like specific recipes, so I found one that looked like what I remember at All Recipes. The picture of them when they are done is NOT pretty! But they were very good.


I am thinking you could just buy tortilla chips and use them instead of frying corn tortilla strips. That would save a lot of time and oil!

Also, the recipes calls for 30 corn tortillas and 6 eggs - I didn't quite use 30 tortillas and I used 10 eggs. It would have been not so good with less eggs. So, I say either half the tortillas, or double the eggs!

Another thing I did was use Salsa in place of the El Pato sauce and water because the store I went to was out of El Pato. I think either would be fine.

Here are the corn tortillas frying away - I had
to fry them in 3 batches.

And here is the not so pretty picture of when it was almost done.
Don't let the picture scare you - they were good!


  • 2 cups oil for frying
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 30 (6 inch) corn tortillas, torn into strips (I used less tortillas and 10 eggs)
  • 6 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 (7.75 ounce) can Mexican style hot tomato sauce (El Pato sauce)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese

  1. In a large, heavy skillet, heat the oil to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Carefully stir in the onion and tortilla strips. Fry until tortilla strips are crisp and golden brown. Remove from heat, and drain on paper towels. Drain the skillet, leaving only a thin residue of oil.
  2. Over medium heat, return tortillas to the skillet, and stir in the eggs. Season with salt. Cook and stir until eggs are firm.
  3. Mix Mexican style hot tomato sauce and water into the skillet. Reduce heat, and simmer until thickened, about 10 minutes. Top with cheese. Continue cooking until cheese has melted.


I meant to post this a couple of weeks ago, but oh well! I made two different kinds of cupcakes for Erin's birthday and they were both delicious. Strawberry Cupcakes - Jen had made them and gave me a sample, and Coconut Cupcakes - my friend Mary Jo had made and I LOVED them. I'm not a huge frosting fan, so I didn't put much on these and had a ton of leftover frosting.

Instead of putting the recipes on here, I'm just going to put the links. But I highly recommend these cupcakes!

Friday, October 16, 2009


This is my cousin Doreen (my dad's niece). She taught me how to make tamales today so I thought I'd share it! It was so fun to visit and catch up on our family! Thanks Doreen!


Meat Mixture:
Cooked/shredded beef and pork roasts
Old El Paso Mild Enchilada Sauce (Las Palmas works too!)
Jar of Salsa (or can)
Spices - chili powder, garlic, cumin, salt, pepper , etc.
(She didn't really measure - just to taste)

Masa Dough: (we tripled this today!)
1 1/3 c. lard (don't use shortening)
4 c. Masa Harina (it all says instant)
2 t. salt
sprinkle a little chile powder in
3-4 c. warm broth (use chicken bullion to make broth)
Mix lard, and dry ingreds. with hands until mixed well (like pie crust) - add liquid until right consistency to spread (like sugar cookie dough)
Soak corn husks in warm water (about 30 minutes) then spread dough on husks, add meat, wrap and steam.
Freeze any leftovers and then reheat in microwave or on your woodburning stove! (That's what she did as a kid!)
Mixing the meat mixture (she used beef, pork, turkey and venison. I don't like venison but I couldn't tell it was in it.

Showing us how to spread the masa dough on the husks. Make about a 4" long. Spread a thin layer clear to one edge and about 1/4" from other edge. Put a spoonful of meat in the center of the dough then fold like a tamale! (one edge over to 1/4" of other edge - seal and fold up ends)

"Many hands make light work!" It's a great friend/family project!

Ready to steam (I'm sure we made over 100!)

In the pan to steam (she put a layer of jar rings on the bottom to hold the rack off the bottom - then layered the tamales on top criss-crossing each layer -Put the lid on but not tight. Cook for about 30 minutes. You can tell when they're done by unwrapping one and they should fall off the husk easily.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Minestrone Soup

We had this soup in between conference sessions today. Soup is one of our favorite meals and we absolutely love this one!

Here is the recipe....

1 pound bulk Italian sausage
1 large onion, chopped
2 large carrots, chopped
2 celery ribs, chopped
1 medium leek (white portion only) chooped (I bought these and for 1 leek it was $2.64 and you can't even taste I would just for-go it)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 pound fresh green beans, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (I just bought a can of them)
6 cups beef broth
2 cans (14-1/2 ounces each) diced tomatoes
3 cups shredded cabbage
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained (I don't like beans and Landon doesn't like garbanzo so we didn't put these in)
1/2 cup uncooked small pasta shells
3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese

In a soup kettle, cook sausage and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in the carrots, celery, leek and garlic; cook for 3 minutes. Add zucchini and green beans, cook 2 minutes longer.

Stir in broth, tomatoes, cabbage, basil, oregano, and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Cover; simmer for 45 minutes.

Return to a boil. Stir in garbanzo beans, pasta and parsley. Cook for 6-9 minutes or until the pasta is tender. Serve with Parmesan cheese.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Gnocchi (one of Jereld's favorites)

{This is Marsha breaking into Allison's post. I put the picture on, but the gnocchi itself is hard to see (it's the bumps under the sauce, not the chicken on top!) Allison wasn't thinking of posting the recipe, so she didn't take pictures along the way. I LOVED her dinner, and told her she had to post it. I have to take credit for that beautiful salad in the background that mostly came out of a bag - ha ha!}

Marsha and her family just left. We invited them over for dinner and we had GNOCCHI! I'm leaving it up to Marsha to post a picture of the Gnocchi we had tonight. She took the pictures.

So here's the recipe:

GNOCCHI (We multiplied this 5x so we could freeze some and so it would be enough)

This recipe only makes enough for 2 people for 1 meal

2 pounds of potatoes (2 large russets)
1/4 cup egg, lightly beaten
About 1 Cup of flour (I think mine took more)

Cut the potatoes in half or quarters (leave skins on) and put in a large pot of salted water. Boil potatoes until soft (just like making mashed potatoes). Once done, take out of the water with a slotted spoon and cut off skins immediately (try not to burn your fingers...he he). Mash potatoes with a fork until there are no lumps. Add all the egg and a little bit of flour (about 1/4 of the flour or a little less). Fold in. Continue to add flour until the dough is not tacky (it will be somewhat like bread dough but tackier. I got my hands involved because a spoon doesn't work past a certain point). Pinch off a handfull of dough at a time and roll into "snakes." It's easier to make the "snakes" when you have some flour on the counter. Then, cut into 3/4 inch pieces. You can also roll the small pieces in some more flour so they don't stick to anything.

When you cook the gnocchi, drop into a pot of boiling water (make sure you salt the water...I like to add a little bit of garlic). When the gnocchi rise to the top they are done. Spoon them out with a slotted spoon when they rise. (They only take a couple of minutes to cook so watch them carefully).

As an alternative to cooking them right away, Jereld and I made these on Saturday and put the raw gnocchi on cookie sheets lined with foil and put them in the freezer...just ensure that they aren't touching each other or you'll have one big lump of gnocchi when you pull it out.

To cook frozen gnocchi, follow the same directions as raw gnocchi (they just take a minute or two longer).

If you're confused by my instructions (which are much shorter than the ones on the website I got the recipe from, you can visit the website here.

You can do a variety of different things with gnocchi. You can use them with sauces you would normally use with pasta or in soups!

Here's one of our favorites:

Alfredo Gnocchi (this is what we fed Marsha's family too, we've done a couple different versions).

Here's a picture of a previous meal Jereld and I had. With this version, I used alfredo sauce and cut up black forest ham from the deli. In the version we fed Marsha's family we cooked some chicken with some garlic salt, olive oil, and pepper. We also had some shrimp with garlic salt, olive oil, and pepper.

In both the version above and the version we fed Marsha's family, I used this me a cheater if you want. I call myself FAST and SMART! This is yummy and so easy.

If you want to be a BIG CHEATER! You can use the Gnocchi's more expensive, and I would compare the difference to the difference between real mashed potatoes and potato pearls.


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Popcorn Favs

(I know - two posts in one night!)
For our YW activity tonight we had a movie night. We watched FOREVER STRONG (highly recommend) and had popcorn. I made these two kinds. The Peanut Butter was the fav.
1/2 c. butter - melt in microwave
1/4 c. Karo syrup
1 c. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
Cook 2 -1/2 minutes in microwave then add:
1/2 tsp. soda - Stir well
Pop 4 qts. popcorn. Put in brown paper bag (sprayed with Pam). Pour over popcorn. Stir. (Cut off bag to fit in microwave). Cook 2 1/2 minutes - stirring after 1 minute.
Pour out onto cookie sheet to cool.

Caramel on the left - Peanut Butter on the right

1 c. Karo
1 c. Sugar
Remove from heat and add:
1 c. peanut butter - Stir until mixed together.
Pour over big bowl of popcorn.

CANDIED POPCORN (Grandma's Popcorn Ball Recipe)
(This is Mark's favorite)
5 qts. pop corn
Boil together until softball stage or light tan color (I just guess!)
1 1/3 c. sugar
1 c. margarine
1/2 c. Karo
Remove from heat - add:
Add 1 tsp. Cherry flavoring and Red food coloring
Pour over popcorn.
(I never make popcorn balls - just eat it!)

BBQ (Sloppy Joe)

Here's a recipe my friend gave me this summer. I finally got around to trying it today. I asked Mark which he liked better - "Manwich" or these - he likes them BOTH! (These aren't as "tomato-y" as Manwich.)
Cook together:
1 lb. hamburger -
chopped onion (or dry onions)
2 cans Chicken Gumbo Soup (Campbells)
1/2 c. ketchup
celery salt
dry mustard

Monday, August 24, 2009

Hot Dog!

My mother-in-law planned a fun summer party for about 200 people in her yard about a week ago. It was super fun! Don't you love those Chinese lanterns hanging in their yard?

I was in charge of helping with the hot dog toppings -- I really wanted to make a fun hot dog bar so here are the things I came up with (besides the usual ketchup, relish, and mustard!):
  • sauerkraut
  • guacamole
  • pickle spears
  • chopped red onion
  • pickled jalapeno slices
  • my mother-in- law had a pot of chili and a pot of nacho cheese
  • coleslaw (here's a good recipe) --yep, put it right on your hot dog -- DELICIOUS!
  • my brother-in-law Chris's famous cilantro, jalapeno, and onion mix (the bowl right in the middle of the picture below) It was a hit. Here's how you make it:

Chris's Jalapeno, Cilantro, and Onion Mix
(I think that's what you call it!)

fresh jalapenos, diced*
onion, diced
cilantro cut into small pieces

saute the jalapeno and onion in a small amount of olive oil until almost tender, add the cilantro and stir it all together - ta da! (add some salt, too)

*Wear some gloves while you're chopping the jalapenos. I didn't and my hands were burning for hours. (pioneer woman had a warning about this -- Jen told me about it when I called her in pain and misery!)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Jamba Juice Wanna-be

I think I made the best homemade smoothie I've ever had...

I added:

some blueberries
some peaches
some strawberries
a little orange juice
a lot of ice

Blend and serve.

Almost like going to Jamba Juice with out the price!

Saturday, August 15, 2009


Bread and Milk

Grandma's Homemade Bread


Slice of cheese ( on the side)

Fresh Green Chile (on the side)

Dessert - Grandma's Homemade Ice Cream

Happy Birthday Grandpa!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Peanut Butter Apple Dip

If you already like peanut butter on your apples, you'll probably love adding cool whip to it. If you don't like peanut butter on your apples, try this anyways - it's easy! Plus, school is starting and the kids need something yummy when they get home.

Amy and her kids loved it the other week when they were here. Our kids were trying to eat the dip all by itself as well.

Peanut Butter Apple Dip

1/4 C. peanut butter
1 1/2 C. Cool Whip

Grab a spoon and mix it well! If you want more peanut butter, feel free to play around with this recipe until it is the consistency that you like.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Philly Cheesesteak

This recipe is one of our family favorites. Everyone cheers when I make this. It's even a hit with company. It's great with chips, pasta salad, etc. I've been making this for years. I got the recipe from a friend way long ago.

First, Make pizza dough, or buy refrigerated pizza dough. I use my mom's standard pizza dough recipe.
Then roll out, spread almost a pound of deli roast beef on top (sometimes I use ham, too, but we like roast beef best and somtimes I skimp to half a pound), Mozzarella cheese, onions and green bell peppers if you want.

Roll up the dough with the stuffings like it's a snake, or like you would for cinnamon rolls. Place on a buttered cookie sheet and baste with melted butter. Sprinkle generously with garlic salt, parmesan cheese and parsley flakes. You can even add sesame seeds, or whatever you want.
(I use whole wheat flour, that's why it's a little browner than you would think.)

Let the dough rise for about 45 minutes so it's a little fluffier.

Bake according to pizza dough instructions.

Slice up and enjoy! (The one below is ham)

Yummy Yummy Yummy Yummy Yummy Yummy Yummy . . . . . . Happy Family

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Pina Colada Smoothies

Sorry-I didn't take a picture, but these were so good. We had them as an after-swimming-treat, and everyone wanted seconds, and thirds. And finally it was all gone.

I got the recipe off of facebook from a friend (Wendy).

¼ can frozen pineapple juice concentrate (size of can: normal add three cans water size, and it makes just under 2 qts.)
1 can coconut milk (just the normal size you buy on the Chinese food aisle-I don't think there's even a choice of size).
½ to 1 cup sugar, to taste
Ice cubes

Put all ingredients in a blender, then pour milk about 3 inches from the top. Blend until smooth. Serve immediately and enjoy!

Wendy's advice: Buy 2 cans of coconut milk so you can make it'll want more, promise

Thursday, July 30, 2009


I made these kabobs the other night and they were absolutely delicious! I accompanied them by trying some corn on the cob that was also grilled. Everything was so yummy!

You can do any vegetables or meat with the kabobs. I did chicken and pork with zucchini, onions, tomatoes, and peppers. I marinated the meat for about 7 hours and the veggies for about 2.

Landon isn't a fan of teriyaki sauce, but I didn't tell him that's what it was marinated in and he really liked it. I later told him and he said you couldn't tell that it was teriyaki.

Also, I would recommend oiling your grill before you put these on. I didn't and they did stick a bit.


  • 1/2 cup teriyaki sauce
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 pinch ground ginger
  1. In a large resealable plastic bag, mix the teriyaki sauce, honey, garlic powder, and ginger. . Seal, and refrigerate 4 to 24 hours.
  2. Preheat grill for medium-high heat.
  3. Discard marinade, and thread the meat and vegetables onto skewers, leaving a small space between each item.
  4. Lightly oil the grill grate. Grill skewers for 10 minutes, turning as needed, or until meat is cooked through and vegetables are tender.

Grilled Corn

6 ears of corn
6 tablespoons of butter, softened
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat outdoor grill.
Peel back corn husks and remove silk. Place 1 tablespoon butter, salt and pepper on each piece of corn. Close husks.
Wrap each ear of corn tightly in aluminum foil. Place on the prepared grill. Cook approximately 30 minutes, turning occasionally, until corn is tender.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Potato Wedges

These potato wedges were delicious. I have made them twice now. The recipe comes from Pioneer Woman.

She gave different ideas for what to put on them. I used: Kosher salt, olive oil, minced garlic, balsamic vinegar, and seasoned salt.

Potato Wedges

4 potatoes (I tripled it the first time I made this, and doubled it tonight. When I doubled it, it filled one cookie sheet.)
1/4 C. olive oil
fresh herbs
Optional ingredients:
2 Tbsp melted butter, cayenne pepper, paprika, minced garlic, 2-3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

Preheat oven to 450°
Wash potatoes. Cut each potato into 8 wedges. Toss with oil and all the other ingredients you want to use. Roast for 15 minutes. Shake around and stir. Put them back in the oven and check after another 20 minutes to see if they are done. (Mine took longer)