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Saturday, August 2, 2008

I won an Apron!

I entered into some of the Bloggy Giveaways - and I won an apron!


Saturday, April 5, 2008

Super Yummy Sloppy Joes/ 4 WW points

3/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
3/4 lb ground round
2 cups no-salt added tomato sauce
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 teaspoons worchestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
12 light wheat hamburger buns

Over medium heat, cook beef, peppers and onion until beef is browned. Stir in remaining ingredients and reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and cook 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Spoon 1/4 cup beef mixture onto bun.

The 4 weight watcher points are obviously calculated specifically using these ingredients and these amounts. (I don't do weight watchers but I though someone might find this info useful)

The whole family really loves these. The turkey sloppy joes are still at the top of our faves but these have a different taste and we love these too.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Broccoli Wild Rice Soup

1 package (6 ounces) chicken and wild rice mix
5 cups of water
1 package (10 ounces) frozen chopped broccoli, thawed
1 medium carrot, shredded
2 teaspoons dried minced onion
1 can (10 3/4 ounces) condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, cubed
1/4 cup slivered almonds, optional

In a large saucepan, combine rice, contents of seasonings packet and water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring once. Stir in the broccoli, carrot, and onion. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in soup and cream cheese. Cook and stir until cheese is melted. Stir in almonds if desired.

Another winner with the family. I leave out the almonds because Kylee Anne is allergic to nuts. I also usually add a can of mushrooms for some chunkiness. We love mushrooms. I buy the can of chopped portabello.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Southern Barbecued Brisket

1 fresh beef brisket (5 pounds)
1 large onion, chopped
1 cup ketchup
1/4 cup water
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon Liquid Smoke, optional
2 teaspoons celery seed
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground mustard
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Place brisket on a large sheet of heavy-duty foil; seal tightly. Place in a greased shallow roasting pan. Bake at 325 for 2 to 2 1/2 hours or until meat is tender.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat.

Carefully open foil to allow steam to escape. Remove brisket from foil; let stand for 20 minutes. Thinly slice meat across the grain. Place in an ungreased 13 in x 9 in x 2 in baking dish. Spoon sauce over meat. Cover and bake for 1 hour or until meat is heated through.

I don't know about you guys but I have always been a little intimidated by brisket. So, I tried this recipe and it was super easy. It turned out FABULOUS!! Big family hit!!!

Recipe from Taste of Home Simple & Delicious, March/April 2008 issue.

Easy Dinner Salad

Just a combination we like:

Goat cheese
Orange slices
Toasted Pine Nuts
Raspberry Vinaigrette

Mix the first four to your liking and top with the vinaigrette. It is a great combination!

Friday, January 25, 2008

Polenta Italiano

1 roll basil/garlic polenta
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can tomato paste
Extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp. butter
Small onion, finely diced
1 lb. italian sausage
Shredded mozzerella cheese

Brown garlic and onion in 2 tbsp. olive oil - add tomatoes and tomato paste. Season with salt, pepper, basil ,oregano to your liking. Brown sausage, slice thinly and add to sauce.

Slice polenta. Warm butter and olive oil in pan. Brown polenta.

Place polenta on plate, cover with sauce and sprinkle cheese.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Ham, Pepper, and Onion Calzones

1 T olive oil
1 med onion, sliced
1 gr bell pepper, seeded & cut into thin strips
1 red bell pepper, seeded & cut into thin strips
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 t dried oregano
4 oz deli-thin-sliced lean ham, cut crosswise into thin strips
1 lb refrigerated or thawed frozen pizza dough (or use the full recipe of the pizza dough I just posted, do not use those pop-open tubes of pizza dough, does not give enough dough)
1 c shredded part-skim mozzarella

Preheat the oven to 400F. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray.
Heat a lg nonstick skillet over med-high heat. Swirl in the oil, then add the onion, bell peppers, garlic, and oregano; cook stirring occasionally, until softened, 5-7 min. Stir in the ham and cook 3 minutes; remove from heat and let cool slightly.
Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and divide in half. Stretch or roll each dough half into a 10-in circle. Spread half the ham mixture over 1/2 of each circle, leaving a 1-in border, then top each 1/2 with of the cheese. Fold the dough over, making a 1/2 circle, and firmly pinch the edges together to seal. Using a spatula, transfer the calzones to the baking sheet. Bake until tops are golden brown about 20 minutes. Cool 5 minutes, then cut each calzone in half, crosswise, to make 4 portions.
1/2 calzone:10pts.

I made these tonight for diner and one of my girlfriends wanted me to send her the recipe, so I posted it. Eric loves these and they are pretty big. It is one WW recipe that he doesn't eat 2 portions even if I am lazy and don't make a side.

Pizza dough

3 c all-purpose flour
2 t quick-rise yeast
1 t salt
1 c warm (105-115F) water
4 t olive oil
2 T cornmeal

Pulse the flour, yeast and salt in a food processor 2 or 3 times to blend. With the machine running, add the water and oil through the feed tube; process until the mixture forms a ball, about 10 seconds. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface; knead a few minutes until it forms a smooth ball and is lightly coated with flour.
Spray a large bowl with nonstick spray; place dough in the bowl. Cover lightly with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until it doubles in size, 45-60 minutes. Or let the dough rise in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours or o/n. (At this point, the dough can be frozen. To reuse thaw o/n in refrigerator.)
Turn the dough out onto a slightly floured work surface divide it in half, and knead each half until it just forms a smooth ball and is lightly coated with flour. Spray 2 large bowls with nonstick spray; put a dough ball in each bowl. Cover lightly with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm spot until they puff up a little, 10-15 minutes.
To assemble the pizza(s), preheat the oven to 500F. For each crust, lightly spray a nonstick pizza pan with nonstick spray; dust each pan with 1 T of the cornmeal.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and shape it into a round flat disk; place it in the pizza pan. Pat and gently stretch it to the desired thickness and shape. I roll it out with a floured rolling pin. Sprinkle with the toppings of your choice, and bake until the crust is crisp and golden brown, about 15 minutes.
This makes 2-12 in. crusts 4pts for 1/4 pizza crust.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Wine Tip

Just thought I'd share this. Whenever we drink wine we never finish the bottle because Brad isn't a big drinker and I'm nursing, so there's always some left. I pour the unused wine into an ice tray and freeze it. Then, whenever I'm cooking an italian sauce or a casserole, I just pull out a chunk of wine and throw it in the sauce. It really adds to the flavor.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Taco-Filled Pasta Shells

2 lbs ground beef
2 envelopes taco seasoning
1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, cubed
24 uncooked jumbo pasta shells
1/4 cup butter, melted

Additional ingredients (for each casserole)
1 cup salsa
1 cup taco sauce
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack or mozzarella cheese
1 1/2 cups crushed tortilla chips
1 cup sour cream
3 green onions, chopped.

In a skillet, cook beef until no longer pink, drain. Add taco seasoning; prepare according to package directions. Add cream cheese; cover and simmer for 5-10 minutes or until melted. Transfer to a bowl; chill for one hour. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain. Gently toss with butter. Fill each shell with about 3 tablespoons meat mixture. Place 12 shells in a greased 9 in square baking dish. Cover and freeze for up to 3 months.
To prepare remaining shells , spoon salsa into a greased 9 inch square baking dish. Top with stuffed shells and taco sauce. Cover and bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Uncover; sprikle with cheeses and chips. Bake 15 minutes longer or until heated through. Serve with sour cream and onions.
To use frozen shells: Thaw in the refrigerator for 24 hours (shells will be partially frozen). Remove from dish. Add salsa to dish; top with shells and taco sauce. Cover and bake at 350 for 40 minutes. Uncover and continue as above.

We really like this. It's a combination of two other dishes we all love. Tacos and stuffed shells! I always love the opportunity to make 2 meals at once. I love recipes that I can freeze half to use later.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Aunt Allie's Fried Chicken

8 to 10 Chicken breast
2 cups milk
2 eggs
hot sauce to taste
2 to 3 cups flower
Salt to taste
pepper to taste

First you will need to turn on the fry daddy to 375 then to wash the chicken cold water then set it to the side (or in sink that what I normally do with it) then get out 2 bowls and a plate and some paper towels. In the first bowl break open the 2 eggs then pour in the 2 cups milk and hot sauce to taste then mix with a fork. In the second bowl put in the 2 to 3 cups flour then add salt and pepper and mix with fork. Then put some paper towels on the plate to absorb some of the grease. Then take your first piece of chicken and dip it in the liquid bowl then in the dry bowl and repeat once then in to the fry basket and repeat until all chicken is battered and in the fryer let cook until golden brown and scoop up the basket and dump on plate and repeat until all chicken is fried. You might want to take off your rings and put them to the side. You can also make the little crunchies by dropping little bits of dough off of your fingers in to the grease. People always love the crunchies.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Turkey Sloppy Joes

1 T canola oil
1 md onion, finely chopped
1 gr. bell pepper, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 t chili powder
1/2 t dried oregano
1/2 t dry mustard
1 lb gr skinless turkey breast
1 c prepared barbecue sauce
4 mulitgrain hamburger rolls

Heat a lg nonstick skillet over medium heat. Swirl in the oil, then add the onion, pepper and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5. Stir in the chili powder, oregano, and mustard, let cool 1 minute.
Add the turkey and cook, stirring to break up the meat, until no longer pink, 3-4 minutes. Stir in the BBQ sauce and cook until slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and serve on hamburger rolls.
1roll w-3/4c meat 7pts.

I find that that this makes a more than 4 servings. But the hubby and I think it is yummy and I like to serve w/sweet potato fries.

Saturday, January 5, 2008


I was thinking that maybe we could start labeling our posts as to main dish, side dish, etc. It might be easier to find a meal if we could look into an archive of all chicken dishes or soups or whatever if we want to eventually search our menu options and say we have some chicken that we need to cook up. What do you think?

Zucchini Corn Bread

To discount the massive calorie intake of Carol's chili, I make a WW cornbread to go with...4 pts/wedge serves 12. The extra wedges can be wrapped in plastic wrap and put into a ziplock freezer bag and defrosted in the microwave. Also a good way to sneak in veggies, for those of us who have kids that don't eat them regularly...or at all!

1.5 bacon slices
1c zucchini, coarsely shredded (about 1.5 sm)
1c low-fat buttermilk
1-80z can creamed corn
1/2 c shredded ex sharp cheese
2 lg eggs, RT
2 scallions, minced
1 T butter, melted
1.5 t salt
1/4 t cayenne
1-1/4c yellow cornmeal
1c all-purpose flour
1 T baking powder
1/2 t baking soda

Cook bacon in a large cast-iron skillet over medium heat until crisp; remove and finely chop, leaving the drippings in the skillet. Preheat oven to 375
Combine the bacon with zucchini, buttermilk, creamed corn, cheese, eggs, scallions, sugar butter, salt and cayenne in a large bowl with a wooden spoon. Toss together cornmeal, flour, baking powder and baking soda on a sheet of wax paper; stir into zucchini mixture until just combined.
Heat the skillet until very hot, about 2-3 min., then remove from the heat. Scrape the batter into the skillet and even the top with a spatula. Bake until lightly browned around the edges and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Use a knife to loosen the bread around the edges of the skillet, and carefully transfer the bread to a rack Let cool at least 10 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve warm or at RT.

From WW Greatest Hits

Friday, January 4, 2008

Potato Soup

Since the deep south is finally getting some weather for eating hot soup, I thought I would share my favorite potato soup recipe. It is a big hit with my family!

4 cups cubed potatoes
1 medium onion, chopped
1 stick of butter
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 can cream of chicken soup
3/4 lb. Velveeta cheese (cut into small cubes)
2 cups milk
1 tsp garlic salt

In Dutch oven, saute onion in melted butter. Add potatoes. Barely cover with water. Season with salt, pepper, and garlic salt. Cook until potatoes are done. Stir in chicken soup and add cheese. Stir until cheese melts. Add milk and heat through. May be served hot or cold and can be made a day before serving.

OK, I never said that it was figure friendly. Perfect for a cold winter night as an indulgence!!

Creamed Onions


6 large onions, sliced
1 cup butter
2 teaspoons all purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
2 cups milk

What to do:

  • In a large skillet or Dutch oven, saute onions in butter until tender and golden brown, about 25 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon.
  • Add flour, salt and pepper to skillet; stir until smooth.
  • Gradually stir in milk until blended.
  • Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened.
  • Reduce heat to medium.
  • Return onions to pan; heat through

NOTE: I have not tried this recipe. Brannon brought it home one night and said he wanted to try it, I just haven't yet! I will try and make within the next week and let you guys know what he thinks (I don't care for onions, so I won't be trying)!

Recipe from Denise Bitner, Reedsville, Pennsylvania (I have no idea who this is or what cookbook this was in, but thought I'd give credit).

See, now isn't this fun!??!

This is great!

Carol's chili

Since it has been hovering around 32 here for the high, I am going to post my chili recipe. No idea who Carol is, but I have made this Chili several times, it serves 10 and is very meaty! All the meats can be subbed with turkey meats.

6 slices of bacon
1.5 lbs Kielbasa sausage cut in to slices and halved
1.5 lbs ground turkey
1 lg onion cut into chunks
1 bell pepper cut into chunks
1/2 jalapeno pepper, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2c dark red wine
1/2 c Worcestershire sauce
1 t mustard
1 t celery seeds
1.5 t chili pepper
1/2 t salt
1.5 t pepper
4 15oz cans Italian tomatoes
15oz can pinto beans
150z can kidney beans
15oz can garbanzo beans

Brown bacon and sausage. Set aside. Brown turkey and drain. Cook onion, gr pepper, garlic and jalapeƱo pepper over low hear 2-3 minutes. Stir in wine and Worcestershire sauce, and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes. Mash tomatoes, add tomatoes and juice all meats and onion mixture to a lg kettle. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes covered. Stir in all beans. Cover and simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
I serve with cornbread, and is yummy with cheese also. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Shrimp & Grits

I made this dish the other night and John loved it - best part, VERY easy...
1 lb. shrimp
6 pieces of bacon
1 cup grits (not instant)
4 cups of water
2 cups shredded sharp cheddar (I didn't use quite that much)
4 tbsp butter
1/3 cup lemon juice
Handful of chopped parsley
1 cup minced green onions
1 tbsp. minced garlic

Bring water to boil, add grits, 1 tbsp butter and simmer till water is absorbed - 25-30 minutes. Add the rest of the butter and the cheese.

Cook bacon in skillet. Remove bacon when crispy and chop. Cook shrimp in the bacon drippings until pink. Add lemon juice, bacon, parsley, green onion and garlic.

Put the grits in a bowl and add shrimp/sauce on top. As Rachael Ray would say - YUMMO.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

1-2-3 Chicken

This is something that just came about one night. I wanted something creamy with chicken and noodles. David and DJ don't eat rice ( I love it) so this is a compromise.

6-8 boneless chicken breast tenders (You can use 3-5 whole boneless chicken breasts)
1 can (small) cream of mushroom soup
2 cans (small) or 1 can (family size) cream of chicken soup
1 small can of milk
egg noodles (I use half a package -- it depends on how "noodley" you want it)
2 cans French style or Fresh cut Green beans
Other favorite veggies (if you want)
salt and pepper
olive oil or Pam

Have your skillet heating up on medium heat while you prep the chicken. Start the water to boil the egg noodles. When you put the chicken in the skillet, put the noodles in the boiling water.

Cut the chicken tenders into small pieces (usually each tender comes out to 3 pieces each). Don't be exact on this... just do a rough chop -- As Rachal Ray says. Have a skillet (fairly deep on) on medium heat. When you have finished chopping the raw chicken, pour about a tablespoon or so of oil in the bottom of the skillet. It should bubble a little since it has been getting hot while you cut the chicken. Add a little salt, pepper, and garlic (fresh is always best, but whatever you have works too). Now add the chicken pieces to the skillet. You have to watch this. Turn the skillet to about medium low now. If your chicken is browning too fast, add a little water to the bottom of the skillet -- just enough to cover the bottom of the skillet.

Once your chicken is cooked (it will be white and a little golden brown), add the three cans of soup mix right to the skillet. Mix the soups and the chicken. It is very thick right now. Add the milk. Stir well. Now add the green beans. Stir well. (This is when you add the favorite veggies you have -- I add carrots, corn,and peas. DJ will eat them that way!) Cover and let simmer on low about 10 minutes. Now add the noodles, stir well.

Of course fresh everything is best, but as a busy teacher, I do resort to frozen or canned veggies! I like broccoli in it too, only no one else in my house eats it, so I add it to my plate only! Yummmmmmieeeeee!

My guys love it with homemade bread or crescent rolls! A salad on the side is nice, but all your veggies are there!

Santa Fe Soup


2 lbs ground chuck
Conecuh sausage (or sausage of your choice) - optional
1 large onion, chopped
2 (1-ounce) packages ranch dressing mix
2 (1.5 ounce) taco seasoning mix
2 (11 ounce) cans white shoepeg corn, drained
2 cups water
1 (16 ounce) can pinto beans
1 (14 ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 (16 ounce) can black beans
1 (10 ounce) can rotel tomatoes with chiles

What to do:

  • In a dutch oven, brown ground chuck and onion until meat is brown and onion is tender, drain
  • Add remaining ingredients (do not drain the liquid from the canned ingredients - except for corn)
  • Stir well, bring to boil, reduce head, cover and simmer for 2 hrs
  • ENJOY!

NOTE: This can also be done in a crock pot. You, of course, have to cook the meat prior to putting in crock pot.

Poor Man's Caviar


2 cans black-eyed peas, drained
2 cans white shoepeg corn, drained
2 cans diced tomatoes & green chiles, drained
1/2 bell pepper
12 small green onions
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon parsley salt
1 16 oz bottle Italian salad dressing

What to do:

  • Dice bell pepper and green onions
  • Add canned ingredients, drained first, and other ingredients
  • Add Italian salad dressing to taste - not necessarily the entire bottle
  • Serve with tortilla chips and ENJOY!

I got this recipe from a relative and it is yummy! Great for parties and get togethers...

Vegetable Beef Soup


Stew Meat (I use ground round cut for stew)
Onion (as many as you like - I use one)
Bell Pepper (as many as you like - I used half of one)
Canned vegetables of choice (I use green beans, lima beans, corn, black-eyed peas, okra, carrots, diced potatoes)
2-3 cans Diced Tomatoes
Beef Bouillon

What to do:

Stove Top Directions

  • Brown meat in oil until no longer pink
  • Add chopped onion and bell pepper and cook until soft
  • Drain meat, onion and bell pepper and add to pot
  • Add canned vegetables - drained, tomatoes and beef bouillon
  • Add water if necessary
  • Let simmer and ENJOY!
Crock Pot Directions
  • Place meat in crock pot and cover with water, add bouillon cubes - let cook overnight
  • In the morning, add all vegetables
  • Cook all day
  • Come home and ENJOY!

Easy Breaded Chicken

Got this from allrecipes.com, it's called Angela's Easy Breaded Chicken. I cooked it the other night - it was so unbelievably easy, and yet it was very tasty and delicious. We had it with pasta and tomato sauce.


4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1 cup Italian-style salad dressing
2 cups seasoned dry bread crumbs


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Dredge chicken breasts in salad dressing, then coat completely with bread crumbs. Place coated chicken breasts in a lightly greased 9x13 inch baking dish and bake in the preheated oven for about 30 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and juices run clear.

Monkey Bread


3 packages of buttermilk canned biscuits
1 cup sugar (divided)
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar

What to do:
  • Take 3 packages of buttermilk canned biscuits and cut each biscuit into 4 pieces
  • Drop pieces into 1 cup sugar and 2 teaspoons cinnamon mixture
  • Drop sugar coated pieces into a well buttered Bundt pan (don't squish the pieces when placing them into Bundt pan)
  • Put 1/2 cup of the left-over sugar/cinnamon mixture and 1/2 cup packed brown sugar and 1 cup butter (that's 2 sticks) into a small saucepan
  • Bring this mixture just to a boil and remove from heat immediately
  • Carefully drizzle over the roll pieces
  • Bake at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes
  • Cool slightly in an upright position, then tip pan over onto a plate to remove monkey bread
  • Pull apart and ENJOY!
Printed from cooks.com