Monday, March 19, 2012

Mini Frozen Limeade Pies

We had these for our St. Patrick's Day treat. These are a good summer treat. I love lime, so these are my kind of  dessert. You can make these as is, or make one big pie in a normal pie pan. Either way, your friends, neighbors, family will love it. This is also the graham cracker crust I use anytime I need one. So yummy.

Mini Frozen Limeade Pies
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup sugar
4 tablespoons melted butter

Mix cracker crumbs and sugar together till well blended. Add in melted butter and mix till crumbs have "absorbed" the butter moisture. Line cupcake pan with liners and scoop about 1 1/2 tablespoons crumbs into each liner. Press crumbs down to form solid crust. Or press crumbs into a slightly greased pie pan and press down till solid crust is formed. 

1 {8 oz cream} cheese ~ softened
1 {14 oz} can sweetened condensed milk
3/4 cup frozen limeade concentrate
2 tablespoons lemon juice

Mix cream cheese in mixer to "fluff" it. Very slowly add in sweetened condensed milk. Continue mixing till smooth. Add in limeade and lemon juice. Continue beating and you can also add in green food coloring to desired shade. Scoop about 1/8-1/4 cup of filling into cupcake liners over crumb crust. Smooth out limeade mixture and freeze for about 1 hour, or until firm. 

1 cup heavy whipping cream
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

In mixer bowl, whip cream till peaks/stiffens. Add in sugar slowly and then vanilla. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of whip cream over top of each cup, {or whole pie} just before serving. 

Twice Baked Potato Casserole

Be prepared to make this when others are around. It make a ton and is super filling. You can put this with just about any type of main dish. Chicken, Steak, Beef, Pork, or even Fish. You can't go wrong with it. I like twice backed potatoes, but sometimes the process can take a little longer then the time I have. So this is a nice spin on it.

Twice Baked Potato Casserole
5 pounds red potatoes
1/3 - 1/2 cup crumbled bacon 
8 ounces cream cheese ~ softened
1 cup sour cream 
1/4 cup chives ~ minced
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 teaspoon salt
pepper to taste

Peel potatoes {I never peel mine fully, there are always little pieces of skin here and there} and cut into pieces. Boil potatoes till they are tender. Drain and return to previous pot. mash potatoes with either a masher, mixer or fork. Don't mash too much. You want it to be chunky and not as creamy as normal mashed potatoes. 

Add in cream cheese and blend well. Then add in sour cream. Once mixed, add in bacon, chives and 2 cups cheese.  Season with salt and pepper to taste. Dump potatoes into a greased 9x13 baking dish and sprinkle top with remaining cheese. You can also add more chives and bacon to top if you would like {mainly just for looks}

Bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes till cheese is melted and potatoes are fully heated through.

Banana Orange Pineapple Slush

Oh.My. This is by far one of my favorite summer treats. It is so refreshing on a warm day. Has the tropical taste to it. Can be eaten completely by it self or even with a little vanilla ice cream mixed into it. Either way, it is amazing. Always pleases the taste buds.

Banana Orange Pineapple Slush 
3 cups water
4 cups mashed ripe bananas
1 cup sugar 
1 {20 oz} can crushed pineapple with juice
1/2 of a 12 oz can of frozen orange juice concentrate ~ thawed 

Mix all ingredients together and freeze in a covered container for about 5 hours of over nights. Remove from freezer 15-20 minutes before serving.

If wanting to make this on a shorter notice/time frame. Put all ingredients into ice cream maker and let it spin! It will be done in about 30 minutes depending on ice cream maker.

Chicken Alfredo Biscuit Casserole

This is a good recipe to have that you can pretty much change it up each time. You can either have as is, serve it with noodles, serve it with rice or even use a refrigerated pie crust instead of many options with it!

Chicken Alfredo Biscuit Casserole
1 tablespoon butter
2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 jar {16 oz}Alfredo pasta sauce 
1/4 cup milk
2 cups chopped cooked chicken
2 cups frozen broccoli florets ~ thawed
1/4 teaspoon dried basil leaves
1 can refrigerated buttermilk biscuits
1 tablespoon butter ~ melted 
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese

In skillet, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat. Cook mushrooms and onion in butter, stirring occasionally,  until tender. Stir in Alfredo sauce, milk, chicken, broccoli and basil. Cook until mixture is thoroughly heated and bubbly and till chicken if fully cooked, stirring constantly. Spoon into sprayed 8x11 or 9x13 baking dish.

Separate dough and Cut each biscuit in half crosswise. Arrange around edge of baking dish, overlapping slightly. Drizzle biscuits with melted butter; sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. 

                                Bake at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes or until biscuits are golden brown 

Breakfast Pizza

This can go for breakfast or even dinner. You can really add whatever "toppings" you like to it or just keep it simple as the recipe. It is also yummy dipped in a little syrup.

Breakfast Pizza
2 can crescent rolls 
{or frozen rolls ~ thawed and place rolls close together on pan and flatten out with hand}
1 pound sausage of choice
1 cup shredded hash browns
1 cup shredded cheese of choice
4 eggs
1/4 cup milk
salt and pepper to taste

Brown sausage and drain drippings, set aside. On a greased cookie sheet, Unroll crescent rolls from can, but keep them attached together. {Or lay rolls out}. Sprinkle hash browns over top of desired dough. Then in a small mixing bowl,  whisk eggs milk, salt and pepper together. Sprinkle cooked sausage evenly over hash browns. Then pour egg mixture evenly over top of meat. Sprinkle top of pizza with desired shredded cheese. Bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes, until dough is cooked and browning. 

Other topping ideas:
chopped green pepper
diced onion
chopped red pepper
crumbled bacon 
chopped ham 

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Peach Crunch

This is so delightful. It is one dessert that can be enjoyed warm, cold and with or with out ice cream and still be delicious. It is easy to throw together, but tastes like it took so long to put together. You will definitely please the crowd with this one.

Peach Crunch 
29 ounce can sliced peaches in syrup
1 yellow cake mix 
1 stick butter ~ cut into pieces
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped walnuts ~ optional 

Layer all ingredients in a sprayed 9x13 baking dish. Starting with peaches. 

Bake at 350 degrees for 45-50 minutes. Let stand for about 5 minutes before serving.

Crock Pot Scalloped Potatoes

I like scalloped potatoes, but I don't make them too often. These are a nice way to have them and not have to worry about getting them in the oven on time. These only take about 15 minutes {If that} to prepare and then you can set the crock pot and go on with your day.

Crock Pot Scalloped Potatoes
1 cup sour cream
1 can condensed cream of potato soup
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
3 pounds red potatoes
1 1/5 cups shredded cheddar cheese
chives to taste

Thinly slice potatoes and set aside in large bowl. In separate bowl, Mix sour cream, can of soup and worcestershire sauce together.Pour cream mixture over potatoes and mix well till all potatoes are evenly coated.  

Spoon half of potatoes into sprayed crock pot and sprinkle cheese and chives over top. Repeat till potatoes are all used, having top of layers ending with cheese and chives. With 1 batch I get about 2-3 layers. 

Cook on high for 4 1/5 hours or on low for 7 hours. Cook till potatoes are tender.

Two Ingredient Strawberry Cake

This is one of the best ways to make a cake. I have only used this method on Strawberry and Lemon. But give it a try on any other flavor. The cake ends up being so light, fluffy and super moist.  For my daughters 6th birthday, she wanted a Strawberry Cake. But she wanted it to have a Strawberry Cream Filling. So, that is just what I did for the sweet birthday girl. It was a hit and everyone loved it.

Two Ingredient Strawberry Cake 
1 strawberry cake box mix
12 oz diet 7-up

Combine both ingredients together in a bowl. Mix till well blended. Pour batter in desired cake pans that are sprayed with cooking spray. Bake as directed on cake box. Let cake cool completely and frost with desired frosting. 

Strawberry Cream Filling
Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
1 jar strawberry jam ~ I used one of my homemade ones, but store bought is just fine. 
make a batch of the Vanilla Buttercream Frosting (below). Divide the frosting in half. In one bowl add in strawberry jam to half of frosting. Mix well. Refrigerate both bowls of frosting for about 30 minutes. Then frost cakes to liking.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting
8 tablespoons {1 stick} ~ room temperature
3 3/4 cup powdered sugar ~ sifted
2 tablespoons milk or cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Place butter in large mixing bowl. Beat until light and fluffy, about 30 seconds. Stop mixer and add powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons milk/cream and vanilla extract. Beat frosting on low and slowly increasing speed until frosting is nice and creamy. Add more milk/cream slowly if frosting is too thick.

Spaghetti Sauce

All though homemade spaghetti sauce is by far better than store bought, sometimes store bought is the only option at the time or all that is in food storage. But, don't worry. There are a few little things you can do to "spice" up a simple store bought spaghetti sauce. Here are things that I have done in the past.  Sometimes it even tastes a little like homemade after adding everything.

 A can of diced tomatoes.
Sprinkle in some seasonings that sound good at the time. 
 -Italian Seasoning, Etc.
Some freshly chopped red, yellow, or green peppers.
Thinly sliced zucchini or any other squashes.
Some freshly chopped mushrooms.
Chopped or sliced black olives.

Hopefully that gives you some ideas on things you can add in.  Once you have your extras added to your sauce, be sure to heat it through at a slow and steady temperature. You don't want it to boil and you don't want it to heat so fast it pops everywhere.

Ranch Chicken & Broccoli Foil Dinner

I love Tin Foil Dinners in the summer. We have a fire pit in our back yard and are always roasting marshmallows, tin foil dinners, cooking hot dogs, enjoying woof-ums, etc. But since winter doesn't allow that as much, ya have to do what with ya can. These are so filling and full of flavor.

Ranch Chicken & Broccoli Foil Dinners
1 package chicken-flavored stuffing mix
1 1/4 cup water
4 6-ounce boneless skinless chicken breasts ~ cut into bite size or halved.
4 cups fresh broccoli florets
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
real bacon bits
4 tablespoons ranch dressing
salt & pepper to taste

Spray 4-6 sheets of heavy-duty aluminum foil with cooking spray.  Combine stuffing and water. Spoon about 1/4 of the stuffing mixture onto the center of each foil sheet.  Top stuffing in each packet with chicken, season with salt and pepper, then add 1 cup of broccoli. Sprinkle with about 1/4 cup of the cheese and bacon, then drizzle with 1 tablespoon of ranch dressing. Repeat with all packets.

Bring up foil sides and fold to seal, leaving room for heat circulation inside.  Place packets on a cookie sheet and bake at 400 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes, till chicken is fully cooked. Remove packets and let stand 5 minutes.  

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Oven Baked Frito Pie

If ya are in a need of a quick meal that ya can throw together, this is one of those. Left overs are also good in a tortilla wrapped up. {sorry picture got deleted off of camera before uploading to computer}

Oven Baked Frito Pie 
1 pound ground beef
1 can {16 oz.} chili beans 
1 can {8 oz.} tomato sauce
1 can {15 oz.} diced tomatoes
taco seasoning
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
3 1/2 cups Frito corn chips
1 1/4 cup sour cream

Cook ground beef until meat is browned, drain drippings. Add chili beans, tomato sauce, taco seasoning and 1/4 cup cheese to cooked ground beef. Mix well. In a greased 9x13 dish, sprinkle about 1 cup of Frito chips on bottom of dish. Cover with meat mixture. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove dish from over and spread sour cream over top of dish. Add remaining chips and cheese to top. Bake for another 5-10 minutes longer. 

Taco Cups

These are a good meal to try. These can be made by recipe or you can modify them to personal liking. They are a different spin on tacos. Plus people think you spent tons of time doing them {Which is not the case}

Taco Cups
1 pound ground beef
1 packet taco seasoning
3/4 cup black beans ~ drained
3/4 cup pinto beans ~ drained
corn tortillas ~ small 
medium queso dip 
chunky salsa
shredded cheese
sour cream for garnish 

Cook ground beef till fully done. Drain drippings and add taco seasoning to meat. Mix till well blended. Add in black and pinto beans. Heat through and set aside. Warm up corn tortillas for about 10 seconds, just so they are more bendable and don't rip. Push 1 tortilla at a time into a lightly greased muffin cup. Put one school full of queso dip in bottom of tortilla. Then top with spoonful of meat mixture. Then add spoonful of salsa and top with a little shredded cheese. Repeat steps to all cups.

Bake at 375 degrees for 10-15 minutes, till tortillas are a little crispy. Once removed from over and getting ready to serve, top with a little sour cream. You can even sprinkle a few chives on top to give a little pop of green.

Fruit Kabobs

Simple, Quick, Yummy and Variety.

My kids love to make these, especially in the summer. We just use a variety of fruits that we like {or have at the time}, give everyone a couple skewers and we all have fun making our own little treat. It is always fun to have them helping and they love that they got to create apart of the meal. You can also use vegetable slices and have a tray with dip on it. Also fun for during the summer. I am pretty sure we all know how to do these.

Fruit Kabobs
Wood Skewers
Variety of fruit

Slide fruit pieces onto skewer in any order and Enjoy!