Sunday, December 19, 2010
First he placed a 5 lb chicken in brine made of 2 quarts of water, 1/4 cup kosher salt, and 1/4 cup sugar for 10 hours. He pat it dry and rubbed it with a mixture of 2 tsp each of Sage, Thyme, Southwest Seasoning, and Herbs De Provence. He did add a little salt and pepper to the rub. He used Pecan and Applewood chips in the smoker with a temperature of 225. He place the bird about 3/4 of the way up in the smoker away from the heat. He smoked it for about 4 hours until the internal temperature was 160 degrees. We let it rest for about 30 minutes before we cut it.
We will definitely make lots of chicken in the smoker. Our daughter suggested making just the legs since they tasted like the turkey legs at the fair! It is a good idea and we will definitely be trying that idea!
Saturday, December 18, 2010
This recipe goes back about 19 years. My German babysitter always talked about making spinach pie, homemade soups, and German cookies. My sister-in-law gave me a cookbook that her kid's school put together for a fundraiser and the Spinach Pie in the cookbook looked good. I was hesitant since spinach has never thrilled me, but I saw how much cheese was in this recipe and thought, how could this taste bad? It tasted pretty good but I tweaked the original recipe a bit. Over the years, I have found that I have to double the recipe, because one pie plate was not enough! By the way, my babysitter said, This is not pie!". I kind of agreed with her and stopped calling it pie many years ago! Sorry, Carla Beatty from Lines School in Canada, we still love your dish though!!
Spinach Cheese Casserole
2 cups seasoned croutons, crushed
1/4 cup melted butter
6 tbsp Parmesan cheese
1 10 oz package frozen spinach, thawed and drained well
1 cup small curd cottage cheese
8 oz Monterrey Jack cheese, cut in 1 inch cubes
3 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup chopped onion
2 tbsp sour cream
1 clove garlic, crushed
Press croutons and melted butter into a 9 inch pie plate. Combine 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese with spinach, cottage cheese, Monterrey Jack cheese, eggs, onion, sour cream and garlic. Spoon into prepared crust. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese. Bake uncovered at 350 for 35 minutes until lightly brown on top.
This recipe can be doubled and baked in a 13x9 baking dish for 1 hour. Casserole will be bubbly when it comes out of oven and will setup after 5 to 10 minutes.
This recipe has been linked to
Friday, December 17, 2010
Several months later, I came across the recipe and I decided to give it a try. Lo and behold, in an hour and half I was able to make the soup, do two loads of laundry, and clean up the kitchen. I did take a few short cuts but the results were the same.....delicious soup!!
This soup is very good. The flavor is smooth and the soup is hardy so you do not need much else to make it a meal. I have never really cared for spinach, but in the soup it is subtle so I really enjoy it.
Sunday, December 5, 2010
Melt butter in skillet. Add potatoes, peppers and onion. Sprinkle Lowery's to lightly coat all of the potatoes. Add paprika, salt and pepper to taste. Cook until potatoes are soft.
Saturday, November 27, 2010
Sweet Potato Casserole
2 1/2 lbs sweet potatoes (3 medium) Peeled and cut into 2 inch chunks
2 large eggs
1 tbsp canola oil
1 tbsp honey
1/2 c milk
2 tsp freshly grated orange zest
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 c flour
1/3 c packed brown sugar
4 tsp frozen orange juice concentrate
1 tbsp canola oil
1 tbsp butter melted
1/2 c chopped pecans
Place sweet potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to boil. Cover and cook over medium heat until tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Drain well and return to pan. Mash with a potato masher. Measure out 3 cups. (reserve any extra for another use)
Preheat oven to 350. Coat an 8 inch square (or 2 qt) baking dish with cooking spray.
Whisk eggs, oil, and honey in a medium bowl. Add mashed sweet potato and mix well. Stir in milk, orange zest, vanilla, and salt. Spread the mixture in the prepared baking dish.
To prepare topping: Mix flour, brown sugar, orange juice concentrate, oil and butter in a small bowl. Blend with a fork or your fingertips until crumbly. Stir in pecans. Sprinkle over casserole.
Bake the casserole until heated through and the top is lightly browned, 35 - 45 minutes.
Friday, November 26, 2010
8 oz cream cheese
1 pkg dry italian dressing mix
1 c. mayonnaise
1 - 2 cucumbers
Italian baguette, slided thin, or white party rounds
Mix first three ingredients to make the cheese mixture. Slice cucumbers. Spread cheese mixture on bread and then top with cucumber.
If you use the party rounds, you may assemble appetizers the night before the party. If you use Italian baguette, wait to prepare until same day.
Top with fresh dill.
8 oz cream cheese
8 oz shredded cheddar cheese
3/4 cup prepared ranch dressing
Mix first three ingredients and spread or pipe into celery. If you are going to pipe the cheese mixture into the celery, make sure cheddar is finely shredded.
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Simple Macaroni & Cheese
2 (7 1/4 ounce) boxes Kraft macaroni and cheese (Make sure to buy creamy variety)
1 cup milk (plus a little more)
2 eggs, beaten
1 stick of butter
salt and pepper
2 (8-12 ounce) packages cheddar cheese, grated
Boil macaroni until tender, then drain water completely. Put macaroni in a large bowl. While it is still hot, stir in the 2 Kraft cheese packages from the boxes, stick of butter, eggs and 1 cup of milk. Salt and pepper to taste. Macaroni mixture should be creamy and milky. If needed you can add a little more milk. I make sure my macaroni is covered in milk but not floating. This mixes with the eggs and makes a cheesy custard.
Pour half of the mixture into a large baking pan (I use my lasagna pan) and cover with 1 package of shredded cheddar. Pour remaining macaroni mixture into the pan and cover with remaining cheese.
If you like a crumble top, melt one stick of butter and crush a whole sleeve of Ritz or Saltines into the butter and top the casserole during the last 15 or 20 minutes of baking.
Cook on 375° for about 45 minutes, until cheese is golden brown.
Sunday, October 24, 2010
It was so simple to make. I used to be intimated by the pictures of stuffed chicken but once I started to try more recipes I found how simple it is and can't believe I can actually make it look good and taste good.
The flavor of this chicken was incredible! The kids are not really crazy for chicken Parmesan but rolling up the chicken with cheeses and spinach did the trick. I would not have thought about using cream cheese but it made the spinach and mozzarella mixture extra creamy. They ate it up! I served it on a bed of spaghetti with a salad and garlic bread.
I got this recipe out of the Kraft Food and Family cookbook. Click here for recipe. They also have a video on making the bundles and a couple of pictures that people uploaded. If my picture was clear I would have uploaded it. I think it is better than the uploaded pictures. Oh well, next time!
Saturday, October 23, 2010
We really enjoyed these cupcakes. They are rich with all of the peanut butter and fudge. I used ice cream fudge topping around the peanut butter ball but I think the next time I will use a ganache or a fudge frosting because it will hold up better inside the cake. The ice cream topping just soaked into the cake....which was not bad either.
Chocolate cake mix
1 cup of peanut butter
1/4 cup butter
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
Fudge ice cream topping or fudge frosting
Canned chocolate frosting
2 Tbsp peanut butter
Make the cupcakes according to package. Take a small knife and cut a plug out of the top of each cupcake.
Mix 1 cup peanut butter, 1/4 butter and 1 1/2 cups of powder sugar until you get a crumbly mixture. Form into a 1 1/4 inch ball (like the size of a small walnut or a buckeye). Insert a ball into each cupcake. The balls may be larger than the hole you cut, the cake gives as you shove the ball into the center.
Saturday, September 18, 2010
Monday, September 13, 2010
Thursday, September 9, 2010
This is her college room. She worked all summer to save her money to buy the furniture! I only pitched in a little as a birthday present. I am proud that she did not waste her money and she bought some nice furniture that she will have for a long time. (There is a cute little nightstand on the other side of the bed.)
Happy Birthday Lauren!
Friday, September 3, 2010
The island has 30 miles of bike paths, a couple of look out towers, a park and a couple of golf courses. It is lush green with condos, houses and a 5 star hotel.
Since the ride from Ohio to South Carolina is around 12 to 13 hours, we decided this year to break up the ride and stop on the way there and the way back. Our first stop was Chimney Rock North Carolina. This was so neat. We stayed the night at the Mountain Lodge Conference Center in Flat Rock. I was extremely nice, we will stay there again.
When we arrived at Kiawah, this was our view. Terrible right?
On our way home we stopped at the Biltmore Estates in Asheville North Carolina. It is a beautiful estate but it poured down rain non stop for 4 hours. We did not get to see everything and enjoy it as much as we should, but these lovely rain ponchos made the visit a little more bearable.
Thursday, September 2, 2010
The supplies in the garage the night before.
This is the pig during the second basting. He was on the
The girls and I always make a piggy dessert!
The line started around 5:00 pm. There were so many good
We had five tables and chairs setup in the shade.
Thanks to all the sponser families. This roast could not have been such a success without you. Your help with gathering supplies, food prep, setup, and clean up was much appreciated. A special thanks to Dave Mangas for making a great basting sauce and keeping that pig basted all day!
Sunday, August 8, 2010
When we showed up, the couple's large property was covered with about 100 people. Their property is about 10 acres so it was not too crowded but it was amazing to see people spread out over the lawn with blankets, coolers, strollers, and bag chairs. There was plenty for everyone to do. There was a pond for fishing, kayaking, and swimming, a barn that housed the food, a basketball court, several bean bag toss games and some PVC pipes that people put beer bottles on and tried to knock them off with a frisbee. There were also several really nice sitting areas through out the property that included porch swings. Then to top off the evening, there was a large firework display at dark.
I decided to make two recipes to take with us. One was a new recipe and the other an old standby. I found a recipe in the Rachel Ray magazine that looked good but I did not have all of the ingredients. I made a few small changes and they turned out pretty good so I packed them up for the roast. They are a little savory roll that are quick to make and were gone in about 10 minutes. The other recipe is for a tomato, corn and black bean salsa that is addicting. I filled a tin loaf pan up to the rim with the salsa and it was also gone quickly. I like the addition of the corn and beans to salsa. It is refreshing and the flavors go well together along with looking pretty!
2 oz pepperoni, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic. finely chopped
1 13.8 oz tube refrigerated pizza dough
1 egg, beaten
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a baking sheet.
In a small bowl, mix the pepperoni and garlic. Cut the dough by cutting the tube length in half, then cut each piece in half and continue to cut each piece in half until you have 16 pieces. Roll each piece of dough into a 7 inch long rope. Tie each piece into a knot and place on the prepared baking sheet. Brush each knot with egg and sprinkle the pepperoni garlic mixture on top. Add it on thick because as they cook they will rise and the sprinkles will spread out. Top off each roll with coarse salt. Bake until golden, about 18 minutes. These can be served with a spicy mustard or pizza sauce.
1 can black beans (drained and rinsed)
1 can shoe peg corn
1 28 oz can dices tomatoes
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
3-4 green onions, chopped
1 pkg italian dressing mix
Mix together all ingredients.
I am still thinking about the fruit mixed into marshmallow treats......that could be interesting.
Saturday, July 17, 2010
This is a little like Chicken Parmesan but instead of the chicken resting on a bed a spaghetti, the pasta is on the inside of the chicken. It was really good and I am sure I will make it again. It was not difficult to make.....remember I am going through a phase right now, and I was able to make it turn out!!!