Monday, February 27, 2012

Mexican Chop Salad

This is so refreshing and light. I love it. It kind of reminds me of a Taco salad, but yet totally different. It is easy and you can just have a bar of salad items lined up and everyone can make their own.

Mexican Chop Salad
lettuce& romaine ~ chopped
2 cups rice ~ cooked in chicken broth
3-4 chicken breasts ~ cooked and cubed. 
1 tomato ~ diced
1 cup corn 
1 cup olives ~ chopped
1 can black beans
1 can pinto beans
2 cups shredded cheese
salad dressing of choice

Season chicken when you cook it. {I cook mine in a little butter with lemon pepper on it} If you are wanting to make one big salad, toss all ingredients together and add chicken to top. If you choose to have it as a salad bar, set our all ingredients and create salad to liking. Top with desired dressing. {Ranch, Salsa, Honey Mustard, etc.}

Bacon, Egg and Biscuit Muffins

What a fun change to breakfast or having breakfast for dinner! My kids enjoy these because they are different and easy. You can also eat these plain or dip them in a little syrup.

Bacon, Egg and Biscuit Muffins
2 refrigerated biscuit rolls
5 eggs
4 tablespoons milk
1/3 cup shredded cheese
6-8 slices of bacon ~ cooked
salt and pepper to taste

Cook bacon, crumble and set aside. Whisk eggs, milk, salt and pepper together. Roll out 1 biscuit at a time until it is slightly bigger than the size of individual muffin tin. Grease muffin tins with cooking spray. Push one biscuit into each cup being sure to it all the way down and against sides. Leave the ridge hanging over edge. sprinkle a little cheese in bottom and then pour a LITTLE egg mixture into biscuit. They will/SHOULD look empty. *Don't pour too much egg in, or it will spill over edges while cooking.* Sprinkle bacon crumbs on top of egg. Repeat steps to all biscuits. 

Bake at 400 degrees for 10-12 minutes

Sweet & Salty Caramel Snack Mix

This is such a fun little treat for kids. You can make it to go with really any holiday that have holiday M&M's. Or you can make them with normal M&M's and enjoy all the colors. We made these for a Valentine treat.It does make a ton, so be prepared to share some with family, friends, or neighbors. My girls took a little bag to their church leaders and friends for Valentines.

Sweet & Salty Caramel Snack Mix
6 cups Golden Graham cereal 
1 cup honey roasted peanuts
1 cup salted cashews or macadamia nuts
1/2 cup butter
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup karo syrup 
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups cheerios 
3 cups M&M's of choice

line baking sheet with foil or wax paper and lightly spray with cooking spray. Set pan aside. 

In large bowl, Toss cereals and nuts together and set aside. 

In medium saucepan, combine butter, brown sugar, and karo syrup. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently until it begins to boil. Allow sauce to boil for 2-3 minutes and remove from heat. Add in vanilla and stir until well combines. Drizzle sauce evenly over cereal and nuts. Stir quickly and make sure all is even coated. Let sit for a couple seconds. When sauce has a cooled a little, pour in M&M's and toss gently to combine. Spread out on baking sheet and let cool completely.

Ham & Cheese Crescent Rolls

This is one recipe that you will definitely get your hands a little dirty. Totally worth it though. They also take a little longer to prepare then most recipes on here, but don't let that scare you away. Give them a try and you will enjoy them!

Ham & Cheese Crescent Rolls
3 cans Crescent Rolls
Deli Honey Ham
Swiss Cheese slices

Unroll crescent rolls, 1 tube at a time as you use them. Divide the rolls in half leaving two triangles together, making a rectangle. Lightly flour them or counter top and a rolling pin. Flatten rectangles out some. Place on a greased cookie sheet and top each with slice of cheese, then couple pieces of ham and then another slice of cheese. Once filled, roll or fold rectangles up. Bake according to package. Continue till all crescent rolls are filled.

Mexican Pizza

These are so yummy. Very filling, but delicious. The nice thing with this these is, you can really customize them to your own liking. Makes for a fun meal prepping as a family.

Mexican Pizza
1 pound ground beef
taco seasoning
1 package small tortillas
2 tablespoons water
1 {16 oz} refried beans
2/3 cup salsa
2 cups shredded cheese
1/4 cup tomato ~ diced
1/4 cup green onion ~ chopped

Mix together ground beef, taco seasoning and water. In large skillet brown ground beef till fully cooked. Drain drippings. Set ground beef aside. 

Add oil to medium frying pan. Heat and fry tortillas (both sides) for about 30 seconds or until lightly browned. Pop any bubbles that form while frying. Keep tortillas as flat as possible. Remove from pan and set on plate lined with paper towels. 

Warm refried beans. Stack each pizza first by spreading a layer of refried beans, then layer of meat followed by layer of salsa. Now stack another tortilla on top. Layer with cheese and top with tomatoes and green onions. Repeat for all pizzas. 

Place on a baking sheet lined with foil and lightly sprayed with cooking spray. Bake at 400 degrees for 8-10 minutes. 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Baked French Toast

This is one thing that all kids will love. My kids think it super yummy. They think it is pretty fun to eat it for dinner but also have it for breakfast as well. You can either eat it plain, with a little syrup or with a powdered sugar glaze drizzled on top. All options taste great!

Baked French Toast
1 loaf sourdough bread
8 eggs
2 cups milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons vanilla

Cinnamon Strusel Topping
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar ~ packed
1 teaspoon cinnamon {I always add just a little more}
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick butter ~ cold and cut into pieces

Grease a 9x13 baking dish and tare bread into bite sized chunks. place bread chunks evenly in greased pan. Mix together eggs, milk, cream, sugar and vanilla. Pour evenly over bread chunks. Cover and refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight. 

In medium mixing bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt together. Mix till well blended. Cut in butter with fork or pastry blender and blend till well crumbly. Cover and refrigerate as well. When ready to bake, sprinkle strusel topping evenly over top of bread chunks. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 1 hour to1 hour 15 minutes.

Chocolate Marshmallow Cookies

These are such a fun cookie. Totally different from other cookies out there. My girls wanted to make these for a  friend who was having his birthday. So, we whipped them up and took some over and sang Happy Birthday to him. He thought they were the best cookies. They are very rich, but they sure are yummy.

Chocolate Marshmallow Cookies
1 chocolate cake mix
1/2 cup shortening butter-flavored
2 eggs
12-18 large marshmallows ~ cut in half

In a large mixing bowl combine cake mix, eggs and shortening.  Mix till well combines. Drop batter by the tablespoon onto a non-greased baking sheet.  Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until cookies appear done, but centers are still soft. 

While cookies are baking, cut marshmallows in half. When cookies have baked for the 8-10 minutes, remove pan from oven and place a marshmallow half on top of each cookies. Press down gently.. Return pan to over and back for 2-3- more minutes. Till marshmallows are puffy. Remove pan and let cookies sit on baking sheet for 2 minutes. Right after pulling from over, press marshmallows down a little to flatten them. Repeat precess to all cookies and marshmallows. 

When cookies are fully cooled, frost with Chocolate Cream Frosting.

Chocolate Cream Frosting
1/2 cup butter ~ melted
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1/3 cup evaporated milk
1 1/2 pounds powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

Combine powdered sugar and cocoa powder. Mix till well blended. Slowly add in melted butter, vanilla, and evaporated milk. Beat on medium high till smooth, light and fluffy. Add more powdered sugar if necessary. Add frosting to piping back or frost with knife.

Marshmallow Fruit Dip

This is one fruit dip that people love. It is so yummy with fruit and secretly, it is yummy plain. It can be a little addicting at times too. So quick.

Marshmallow Fruit Dip
1 small jar marshmallow cream
1 block cream cheese ~ softened
1/2 cup - 1 cup powdered sugar

In a small to medium mixing bowl, mash up softened cream cheese. Then add in marshmallow cream and blend that together. Once it is lump free, slowly add in powdered sugar small amount at a time. blend together till smooth. Put in serving dish and refrigerate till ready to use.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Chicken Tortellini Soup

Over the weekend, we had my sister and her family visiting. It was great to see them. Friday night dinner had to feed us all. So, with is being a little chilly at night and I wanted to do something simple. I had come up with this recipe in the past, and decided to make this soup again. It was perfect! Everyone enjoyed and it was a fun evening at home with family.

Chicken Tortellini Soup 
2-4 chicken breasts ~ cut in bite sized pieces
1 tablespoon butter
2 cups water
1 small package cheese tortellini
1/2 teaspoon basil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon oregano
black pepper to taste
paremsan cheese
1/2 cup onion ~ chopped
1/2 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup frozen corn 
1 cup carrots ~ chopped

Chowder Blend:
1/4 cup butter ~ melted
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk

Cook chicken chunks in 1 tablespoon butter.  Cook till fully done. Set chicken aside. In saucepan or soup pot, Boil 2 cups water and add in carrots and onion, Cook till tender. Also add in salt, basil, oregano, and pepper. Then add in tortellini, peas and corn. Cook till tortellini is done. Remove from heat. In separate saucepan, combine melted butter, flour and milk. Slowly bring to a boil and boil till it thickens a little. Constantly Stirring. 
Once chowder blend has thickened, add into soup pot with veggies. Add in chicken, and mix well. You can either add cheese to whole pot or to individual bowls. Add cheese to desired amount.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Cheese & Herb Drop Biscuits

These biscuits seriously taste a little like Red Lobster Biscuits.  But they are better! My family makes these disappear when I make these. They are even good reheated the next day. {of course if there are any left.}Sorry for the picture. It is from my phone.

Cheese & Herb Drop Biscuits
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons shortening
3 tablespoons butter, cold
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/4-2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese {depends on how much cheese you want}

Buttery Topping:
3 tablespoons melted butter
1/4 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
pinch of salt
In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, garlic powder and salt. Cut in shortening and butter until coarse crumbs are formed. Lightly mix grated cheese in. Mix in buttermilk just until moist. DO NOT OVER MIX {dry spots here and there are ok}. Drop the biscuits onto a greased or lined baking sheet.  Bake at 425 degrees for 12-14 minutes, until browned and golden. While biscuits are baking, in a small bowl combine butter, parsley, garlic powder and salt. Right when the biscuits come out of the oven, brush the butter/herb mixture over the biscuits evenly

Banana-Sour Cream Cake

Thinking about this cake, kind of makes me want a piece. It is super moist. It is like banana bread turned into cake. So delicious. The chopped walnuts are totally for looks. You can either forgo all of them or just sprinkle them on the top or on each individual piece.

Banana-Sour Cream Cake
1 package {2-layer size} yellow cake mix
1 cup mashed ripe bananas {about 3}
1 cup sour cream
3 eggs
1/4 cup oil
1 pkg. {8 oz.} cream cheese ~ softened
1/2 cup butter ~softened
1 pkg. {16 oz.} powdered sugar
1 cup finely chopped walnuts ~ optional

Beat cake mix, mashed bananas, sour cream, eggs, and oil with mixer on low speed just until moistened, stopping frequently to scrape bottom and side of bowl. Beat on medium speed 2 min. Pour into greased and floured 13x9-inch pan.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35 min. or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely. 

Beat cream cheese and butter with mixer until well blended. Gradually beat in sugar.

Remove cake from pan. Carefully cut cake crosswise in half using serrated knife. Place 1 cake half, top-side down, on plate; spread with some of the frosting. Top with remaining cake half, top-side up. Spread top and sides with remaining frosting. Press nuts into sides. Keep refrigerated.

Cookies & Cream Dream Cupcakes

If ya are a chocolate fan, This is the cupcake for you. I usually love chocolate, but with this pregnancy ... I am not a fan of it. But family & friends sure enjoyed these. For garnish on cupcakes I did 2 things - Sprinkle crushed cookies on top or place a mini Oreo cookie in frosting. Both look great!

Cookies and Cream Dream Cupcakes
1 box chocolate cake mix
1 cup sour cream
3 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
18-24 whole oreo cookies
12 oreo cookies ~ crumbled and set aside {For frosting}

Mix together cake mix, sour cream, eggs, and vanilla.  Place a spoonful of batter in bottom of cupcake liners. Add cookie to each liner.  Make sure it is lying flat and pressed down just a little. Cover all cookies with remaining cupcake batter. 

Bake at 350 degrees for 15-18 minutes. Allow cupcakes to cool slightly and remove to cooling rack to cool completely.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
8 tablespoons {1 stick} ~ room temperature
3 3/4 cup powdered sugar ~ sifted
3-4 tablepsoons milk or cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
12 crushed oreo cookies

Place butter in large mixing bowl. Beat until light and fluffy, about 30 seconds. Stop mixer and add powdered sugar, 3 tablespoons milk/cream and vanilla extract. Beat frosting on low and slowly increasing speed until frosting is nice and creamy. Add remaining milk/cream if frosting is too thick. Add crushed cookies to frosting. Fold in with mixing spoon and then frost cupcakes.

I'm Back!

So sorry for the HUGE lack of posts lately. Not going to get into too many details, but wanted to let all of you know that the posts will be coming again! 

During that holidays it got extremely crazy and busy. Lots of time was spent (and still is, which I am glad) devoted to helping family with somethings that happened. I am so glad that both sides of the family are close and strong. Very grateful for our families family! We also, have a little cute little bundle of joy that is joining my family this spring. So, that has played a part as well. 

Enjoy the recipes and posts that are coming!

Chicken Dijon in Pastry Shells

This in one recipe that my husband loves. It is very simple, some what quick and different from a lot of recipes out there. We always double it for our family. The recipe posted is for a normal serving. We usually eat these with some type of fresh fruit.

Chicken Dijon in Pastry Shells
1 package {10 oz} frozen Puff Pastry Shells
2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1 pound {about 3 large} skinless, boneless chicken breasts ~ but into bite sized pieces
1 1/2 cups broccoli flowerets
1 1/2 cups sliced muchrooms
1 can cream of chicken & broccoli soup
1/4 cup milk 
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

Prepare pastry shells according to package directions. Meanwhile, in skillet over medium-high heat, melt 1 tablespoon butter/margarine and cook chicken until fully done.  Remove and set aside. In same skillet, melt remaining butter/margarine and cook broccoli and mushrooms till tender and liquid is evaporated.  Stir often. Then add in soup, milk and mustard.  Mix well and heat to a light boil.  Add chicken back into skillet and heat through. Pull centers of pastry shells out. Spoon chicken mixture into center of shells. Add as much mixture as desired.