This is the day the Lord has made, rejoice and be glad in it!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Pumpkin Bread

Here is a Pumpkin Bread I have made a few times this holiday season. This picture is of one I made today for friends coming up for coffee and dessert. I made a cream cheese frosting and put chopped nuts on top. I like it better than the Streusel topping.

Stir together until well combined:
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup water
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/4 tsp ginger
1 cup pumpkin puree
3/4 tsp salt
2 eggs lightly beaten
Streusel topping:
Sift together:
1/3 cup flour
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 2/3 cups flour
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp firm margerine
Stir pumpkin mixture and flour mixture together just until mixed. Pour into greased loaf pan. Combine streusel ingredients together with a fork until crumbly and pea-sized. Sprinkle over loaf. Bake at 350f for 45 or 50 minutes.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

stuffed jalapenos

7 whole jalapeno peppers
1 8 oz block cream chesse softened
2 green onions sliced thinly
garlic powder to taste
7 slices bacon cut in half

WEAR RUBBER GLOVES! Cut peppers in half, scrape out seeds and white skin from the inside of the peppers.
Mixed the creamcheese, onions and garlic powder and stuff each pepper with the mixture. Wrap a half slice of bacon around each one. Bake at 450 until bacon is done. The longer they bake the milder the pepper taste will be. Let cool a few minutes. Dip in ranch dressing if desired.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Turkey gravy

The gravy I made this year was alittle different that I usually make. I kinda used Tyler Florence's and added a twist of my own to it. It was easy and turned out great. And I did have plenty of it. Here's a link to Tyler's video showing how he did his gravy:
Here's what I used:
2 turkey wings
4 ribs of celery
4 carrots
2 onions
1 whole head of garlic
1 bunch of green onions
corn starch
bay leaves
pepper, salt, celery seed, sage

Here's what I did:
I baked the wings until dark golden brown. I rough chopped everything-just cut the head of garlic in half. You will strain the broth so none of the garlic peels will get in. I put all the veggies, seasonings and wings along with the drippings in a large pot and put in about a half gallon of water. I let it simmer until the veggies were tender. Pour through a collander. At this point, you could save and freeze half if it seems too much. I saved the garlic which was like a plaste and added some to the gravy and my dressing. I pulled the meat off the bones of the wings and put it in my dressing too. I put the broth back in a pan and brought it to a boil and added corn starch mixed with a little chicken broth to the pan wisking it in to thicken and make it smooth. The gravy came out great.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

How to: Roux or gravy

Many folks won't make gumbo because they are afraid of the roux (ru). It's really not hard and once you get the hang of it, you won't think twice about it again. So here's a few pictures that may help:
Start with oil, or bacon grease and flour. I don't measure, sorry but you'll get the hang of it. This was enough oil to be about 1/2" deep in a normal size iron skillet-which I can't live without-and about 1 cup flour:
use a whisk so there will be no lumps. Not quite thick enough so I added more flour, about 1 cup:
and some moreabout 1 cup again:
staring to get brown now-keep stirring:
at this point, you could make gravy by adding water, chicken or beef broth or tomato juice and died tomatoes for tomato gravy:
but for roux, we want it darker
you want it as dark as you can get it without burning it. Do not walk away from it now, no matter what or it will burn! and don't splash any on yourself-it's really hot at this point
ok finally got it! see how thick it got and how dark? This is perfect. Let it cool some and then start stirring big spoonfuls into your gumbo. Gumbo should be dark and THICK!
Chicken and sausage Gumbo
If you have a really big pot of gumbo, you may have to make another batch of roux. Let the first batch simmer in for awhile and see how thick it gets. If it ever starts to burn while you're making it, pitch it and start over.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Fried rice

We love all kinds of rice dishes, but I had never tried making Fried Rice. This is a great dish and one of those that you can use whatever you have on hand. But there are a few ingrediants that you MUST have:
2-4 cups leftover COLD rice. This is important. The cold rice keeps your dish from coming out too starchy.
green onions-that least a whole bunch, chopped
garlic several pods, minced
eggs 2-3, beaten
Then, any vegetables that you choose or have on hand can be added: Celery, bell peppers, peas, carrots, diced
Any meat you may have either already cooked or un-cooked-chicken, pork, shrimp, diced into small pieces. Here's what you do:

Heat the oil in a wok or large nonstick pan. Cook the veggies for about 5-6 mins. Move to the side of the pan and add the meat, if un-cooked cook until done. Move to the side and put the cold rice in and stir until brown and heated. Mix all together. Make a "well" in the middle of the pan(move everything around the outside of the pan) and pour the beaten eggs in and scramble. Add any spices you like: salt, pepper, ginger, soy sauce, and mix everything throughly together. Serve immediately!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Pecan Pie

I have a new receipe for pecan pie. I found it in this month's Southern Living and they got it from It is easy and so delish:

• 1/2 (14.1-oz.) package refrigerated piecrusts
• 1 tablespoon powdered sugar
• 4 large eggs
• 1 1/2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
• 1/2 cup butter, melted and cooled to room temperature
• 1/2 cup granulated sugar
• 1/2 cup chopped pecans
• 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
• 2 tablespoons milk
• 1 1/2 teaspoons bourbon*
• 1 1/2 cups pecan halves
• 1. Preheat oven to 325°. Fit piecrust into a 10-inch cast-iron skillet; sprinkle piecrust with powdered sugar.
• 2. Whisk eggs in a large bowl until foamy; whisk in brown sugar and next 6 ingredients. Pour mixture into piecrust, and top with pecan halves.
• 3. Bake at 325° for 30 minutes; reduce oven temperature to 300°, and bake 30 more minutes. Turn oven off, and let pie stand in oven, with door closed, 3 hours.
• *Vanilla extract may be substituted.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Shrimp and Rice

I'm linked to Stonegable's On the Menu Monday!
This is a twist on my Mexican Rice and Shrimp Creole. Made in one skillet (cast iron for me), with a salad and garlic bread--you're good to go.
Here's what you need:
1 T olive oil
1 cup rice un-cooked
1 onion chopped
1/2 of each-red, green and yellow bell peppers (you can use just one color pepper but the different colors really make a pretty dish)
2 cloves garlic chopped
1 can chicken broth
1 can diced tomatoes with the juice
1 bay leaf, dash celery seed
2 lbs small shrimp-peeled-fresh or frozen
salt, pepper, cajun seasoning (I like Old Bay), dash cumin, couple dashes hot sauce--all of these to your taste
Here's what you do:
Brown rice in oil, stirring to keep from burning. This really makes nice rice dishes-rice won't be sticky or starchy. When the rice is brown, add the chopped veggies and stir in letting them cook for a few minutes. Add broth and tomatoes with the juice. Throw in the bay leaf and spices, adjusting to how spicey you might like it. Stir, and simmer on low covered until almost all the liquid is gone and the rice is done, about 10 minutes. Add the shrimp and let steam on top of the mixture, with the lid on until pink, then mix well together, taste and adjust any spices if you might like it hotter. Turn the heat off and let it sit with the lid on a few minutes to let the flavors blend. Yummy and easy!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Buffalo or Hot wings

I have made buffalo or as we call them hot wings for years. My kids love them and so do the grands. I first had these when my friend Judy made them. She just deep fried the plain wings and rolled them around in a mixture of melted butter and Texas Pete hot sauce. Very yummy! But I have made a few changes over the years. When my kids were little, I would just buy a bag of frozen cut up wings. I would thaw, and sprinkle with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Then I would spread them out on a sprayed cookie sheet and cook in the oven at about 400 degrees until cooked through and crispy. I would then toss them in a mixture of melted butter and Crystal hot sauce. Pop them back in the oven to crisp up some more. I would serve these with Blue Cheese dressing until Lisa asked why was it called blue? When she got the answer, she quit eating it for awhile even tho she loved it. Ranch is really good too. This is how both my kids make them too.
Hubby and I ate some Buffalo Chicken Bites at a steak house and really loved them. So I came home and had to make some. Here's what I did:
cut up 3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breats in small pieces. I then rolled them in flour-just a light coating and fried them until done. I then tossed them in a store bought Buffalo sauce to which I had added a spoon of sugar and some ketchup to cut the "hot" some. I then spread them in a baking dish at 400 for about 10 minutes. Yummy as can be. I have made wings the same way a couple of times, too.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Pink Lemonade Pie

This is so good and easy. I used to have Eric mix it up for me when he was a teenager. Very good on a hot summer's day.
1 graham cracker pie crust (large one)
1 sm. can (6 oz.) frozen pink lemonade, thawed (can use limeade)
1 sm. container cool whip
1 can condensed milk
Mix together thawed pink lemonade, cool whip, and condensed milk. Beat until smooth and pour into pie shell. Freeze until firm. Garnish with lemon slices.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Memorial Day Weekend 2011

Went ahead and cooked my "big" meal on Saturday so we could have leftovers all weekend. Baked ham, green lima beans with ham hocks, and Au Gratin Potatoes. Going to add Angel eggs to the mix tomorrow. Here's the taters I made. Nothing is exact, so just give them a try and add or leave out.
6 med potatoes
1 can cheddar cheese soup
1 cup shredded sharp cheese
1 cup Italian 3 cheese blend
1 onion diced and 2 green onions (more green the next time I make them)
2 T garlic flavor cooking cream (Philly)or add some garlic powder to the cheese soup.
Peel and boil potatoes until almost done. Cook diced onion in butter. Cool potatoes and carefully slice half of them. Layer in baking dish that has been sprayed with Pam. Spread ½ the onion over and ½ the shredded chedder and 3 cheese blend. Slice and layer remainder of potatoes top with onions, and shredded cheeses. Warm the cheese soup and cooking cream adding some milk until its “pourable”, and pour over. Bake at 350 for 1 hour until potatoes are done completely. Can easily be doubled for a pot luck. Diced ham or fried bacon can be added for a complete meal.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Ham n Cheese Quiche

I have a neighbor who is keeping us supplied with green onions this summer. I love to cook with green onions and I had been thinking about what to use them in and I thought of quiche. I haven't had any for years and never have made it so I started looking at reciepes and of course there are many. So here is what I used tonight and it was very easy and really good:
1 pastry shell
1 c. diced cooked ham (or turkey or sausage)
1 c. Cheddar, grated
1 c. Swiss cheese, grated
4 eggs
1/2 c. half & half
1/2 c. milk
1/2 tsp. salt
3 green onions white and green parts sliced thin
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spread diced ham over the bottom of pastry shell. Sprinkle with about half the cheese reserving several tablespoons of each cheese for the top of quiche.
Lightly beat the eggs with a wire whisk. Add the cream and seasonings and onions and blend until smooth. Set the shell on a cookie sheet, carefully pour in the mixture. Sprinkle with reserved cheeses. Bake at 375 degrees in center shelf for 30 minutes or until top is puffed up and browned or a knife inserted in the center of custard comes out clean.
Remove from oven and carefully slide onto a wire rack for 5-10 minutes. Garnish and serve hot.

This turned out really good and I fixed some roasted brussel sprouts to go with it:
1 bag baby brussel sprouts thawed and cut in half.
4 slices of bacon
fry the bacon until almost crisp. Spread the sprouts in a oven safe pan and drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper and some old bay and few spoons of the bacon grease. Crunch up the bacon and mix in with the sprouts. Roast in 375 deg. oven about 20 min. or until done. Serve hot.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter lunch April 2011

Here's what we had for Easter lunch:
grilled ribeyes and chicken breasts
Roasted new potatoes with garlic, rosemary and olive oil
Cauliflower Au Gratin (recipe follows)
Bill's Angel eggs (recipe follows)
Homemade pimento cheese stuffed celery sticks

Here is the recipe I used for the Cauliflower, but I'm not going to use the flour roux next time. I will just heat the milk and add a spoon full of corn starch stirred in a bit of cold milk and added to thicken the milk. I like to thicken with corn starch better than flour. I think some bleu cheese crumbles on top would be good too.

Cauliflower Gratin
1 head cauliflower cut into large florets
5 tablespoons butter, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1 c grated Swiss or other white cheese
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1/2 of a small onion or 1/4 of a large onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup fresh bread crumbs

Blanch cauliflower florets in boiling salted water for about 2 minutes and then drain and set aside.

While the cauliflower is cooking melt three tablespoons of butter on low heat. Remove two tablespoons of the melted butter to reserve for your topping. Then stir in flour to the remaining butter in the pan and continue cooking on low heat for 1-2 minutes to get the flour taste out of the roux.

Add milk and gradually increase the heat stirring constantly and continue cooking until the white sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon.

Stir in pepper and nutmeg. (Do not add salt. There is enough salt in the Parmesan cheese for the entire recipe).

Remove from heat and slowly add about ¾ c of the Swiss cheese and about ¼ cup of the Parmesan cheese a little at a time making sure the cheese is all melted before going on to the next step.

Pour half of the white sauce into the bottom of either a 9X9 baking dish or a 8X13 depending on how many florets you have. Place the cauliflower florets on top of the sauce and sprinkle the onions on top. Pour the remaining half of the sauce on top of the cauliflower.

Top with the remaining Swiss cheese, the bread crumbs, and the remaining Parmesan cheese, in that order. Drizzle the top with the butter you had set aside.
Bake in a 375 degree oven for about 25 minutes or until the top is nicely browned.

Bill's Angel eggs
This is one of those "no measure" recipes but it's a great flavor combo.

Boiled eggs-yolks removed to a mixing bowl
about 5 slices bacon fried and crumbled
shredded pepper jack cheese
chopped jalapenos
green onion sliced fine
mix all, stuff egg whites, sprinkle with more shredded pepper jack

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Ranch Potatoes

This is an easy one and one of my favorites. I first had these at a funeral. I am pretty good at identifying ingredients, but thought it was sour cream. Come to find out it was bottled ranch.
Dice and boil several potatoes. Drain and put in a casserole dish in a single layer while they are still hot. Drizzle ranch dressing over them generously. Sprinkle with shredded cheese, bacon bits and green onions or chives. Cover for a few minutes to melt the cheese. Serve immediately.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

White Chicken Chili

I found this stuff called Philly Cooking Cream in several flavors. I looked at their reciepe for White Chicken Chili. Then I studied a few more and came up with my own. I have made it twice and it is pretty good. Here's what you need:

3-4 boneless chicken breasts, cubed
1 onion chopped
2 garlic cloves chopped
1 can each drained: Great Northern beans, Chick peas, green chilies, shoepeg corn
1/2 can chicken broth
1 tub Santa Fe cooking cream
1/2 cup sour cream
cumin and chili powder to taste
Saute chicken, onion and garlic add all other stuff. Simmer about 20 minutes.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Shepard's pie

I had never made this and saw a reciepe on the internet and realized how easy this is and how good it sounded. Totally comfort food and you probably already have everything to make it or something you can sub with,

Start with about 3-4 cups mashed potatoes--we like garlic taters or you could add shredded cheddar cheese. You will want enough to cover your casserole dish an inch or 2 thick (at least)
Dice an onion and 2 stalks of celery and cook in a little oil until done.
add 1# to 1 1/2# hamburger meat and brown. You can add some whole kernal corn and/or english peas or diced cooked carrots. Season to taste--salt, pepper, garlic powder.

To the hamburger mixture add one cup of gravy--jar, mix or leftover beef gravy. Add 2 T ketchup. Simmer until heated through.

Spray a casserole dish with Pam. Put the hamburger mixture in and top with the mashed taters. Bake at 375 from 30 minutes and let rest 10 minutes.

If you don't have any gravy you could use mushroom soup. Some people like diced tomatoes also.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Mexican Rice

This is SO easy and very good. Browning the rice first gives it a nice texture and nutty flavor. I added diced chicken one night to make a whole meal.

Brown 1 cup raw rice in 3 T oil until golden brown
Add ½ cup onions and ½ cup bell pepper-green, and/or red, 1 clove garlic minced
Add ½ can diced tomatoes and ½ the juice or 1 whole fresh tomato diced
Sauté until onions are clear-stirring to keep rice from burning
add 1 can chicken broth, salt and pepper and a dab of chili powder
cover and simmer until rice is done and liquid absorbed—about 20 min

Chicken Tortilla Soup

This receipe called for corn tortilla strips to be added but we liked the flour ones best. They are kind of like a dumpling. Very good and very filling.

Bill’s Chicken Tortilla Soup #2
4 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion minced
2 cloves garlic minced
2 tbsp cumin
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 salt and pepper
3 cups chicken broth
1 1 8oz. can enchilada sauce
1 1 8oz. can diced tomatoes
8 Flour tortillas cut into strips
1 1 8 oz. can black beans
1 cup frozen corn
8 skinless chicken tenders
1 cup orange juice
Mix together orange juice, tsp each of salt and pepper, and tbsp cumin and marinate chicken for 15 minutes. Heat grill pan to medium-high, coat with 1 tbsp olive oil and sear chicken on both sides. Remove from heat and diced into cubes.
In a heavy pan, sweat onions, and garlic on medium-low heat until onions are translucent. Add cumin, paprika, salt and pepper. Stir in chicken broth, and enchilada sauce. Increase heat to medium and simmer for 15 minutes. Then add the tomatoes, black beans and corn. Simmer for another 10 minutes. If soup becomes too thick, add more chicken stock or water. Add strips of tortilla and serve


Hubbie fixed this one night as a side dish and it quickly became my favorite main dish with some garlic bread--yummy!

from JustaDumbBlond
1/2 cup butter
1 onion, chopped
1 lb. chopped broccoli
3-3/4 cups chicken broth or stock….3 cans
1 lb. Velveeta cheese, cubed
1 cup milk (anything from 2% up to heavy cream) used evaporated milk
1-1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/3 cup corn starch
In a large, heavy bottomed pot, melt butter over medium heat. Cook onion in butter until softened.
Stir in brocolli and cover with 3-1/4 cups chicken broth or stock. Simmer until broccoli is tender (10 - 15 minutes).
Reduce heat and stir in cheese cubes until melted. Mix in milk and garlic powder.
In a cup or small bowl, stir corn starch into remaining 1/2 cup chicken broth or stock and cook, stirring constantly, until thick.