Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies

This recipe is courtesy of Misty Stratton. Danielle brought them to Young Women's one night and they were to die for!

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 1/4 Cups Flour
1 tsp. Baking soda
1 Cup Butter or Margarine, softened (I used butter flavored Crisco for my first batch)
1/4 Cup Sugar
3/4 Cup Brown Sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla
1 3.5oz Instant Chocolate Pudding Mix
2 eggs
1 12oz Package Mint Chocolate Chips (Wal-Mart doesn't have just the plain green ones, but they do have the Andes Mint chips. I found the green mint ones at Harmons)
1 Cup nuts (optional)

Combine flour and baking soda and set aside. Cream butter, sugars, vanilla, and pudding in bowl. Beat in eggs and gradually add flour mixture. Stir in mint chips and drop onto cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes.

You can use any variety of pudding and chips. Maybe Vanilla Pudding and Butterscotch chips will be my next experiment!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Recipe Request

I have never made a roast in a crock pot before. I would like to try it this weekend. (Let's hear it for 9AM church!) Would you please share with me your recipes, techniques, tips, anything you may have to help me with this new task? I appreciate it.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Cranberry Pear Cake

This picture doesn't have the sauce on it yet. And I used the same recipe but filled three 8x8 disposable pans instead of one 9x13.
Cranberry Pear Cake
2 c flour
2 c sugar
2 eggs
2 t baking soda
1 large can pears, with juice, mashed
1 bag cranberries

Combine all ingredients. I like to add everything except the cranberries and then use my hand mixer, which effectively mashes the pears, then stir in the cranberries with a wooden spoon. Pour the batter into a greased 9x13. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. (My mom swears hers bakes in 40 minutes, but mine always takes infinitely longer.) Do a toothpick test to be certain it is done.

3/4 c cream
1 c sugar
3/4 c butter
1 t pure vanilla extract
Combine in a sauce pan and bring to a boil.
Drizzle (liberally) over individual pieces of cake and top with a hefty dollop of freshly-whipped cream.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Coconut Bread

Hi Ladies!

Thanks, Kelly, for sending me the invite to contribute. You all have very yummy recipes which I cannot wait to try. As an introduction, I'll share a recipe that I've recently discovered. Maybe all of you have experienced the decadence of Coconut Bread many, many times, but it is fairly new to me. My college buddy, Anne Jackman, shared this recipe with me.

Baking this bread makes your whole house smell like a coconut cream pie. That alone would be enough except that the taste is divine. So moist and sweet. The clouds part and angels sing when you taste the buttery glaze. Are you salivating yet?

Here's the recipe:


2 cups white sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs
2 tsp coconut extract
3 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup shredded coconut

Glaze- (Optional, and this makes a liberal amount of glaze, fyi)
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
2 tbsp butter
1 tsp coconut extract

Preheat oven to 325. Lightly grease two 9x5 bread pans.

In a large bowl, mix together sugar and oil. Add eggs one at a time, mixing after each one. Add coconut extract.

In a separate bowl, sift together flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Stir flour mixture into egg mixture alternately with buttermilk and shredded coconut. Pour into prepared bread pans.

Bake in preheated oven 60-75 minutes until crust is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

To make glaze mix together sugar, water and butter in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and add coconut extract. Pour over loaves while both bread and glaze are still warm. Sprinkle with additional shredded coconut as a garnish, if desired.

The best Chicken Soft Tacos.....ever!

So y'all have probably heard about the Food Nanny, Liz Edmonds. She has lots of simple recipes, and everything she makes is delicious! She has a great idea of having a certain type of food on each night of the week. I need to practice that more. I'm excited to watch her new show, starting in February of 2010 on BYUTV.
So she made these on Good Things Utah one day. I have to tell you, they are the tastiest chicken soft tacos I've ever had! There are just a few simple natural ingredients. They're pretty healthy too! The butter is the only semi-bad thing. So here it is:

2 Tbsp. Butter or Margarine
2 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil (although the recipe calls for Canola Oil for frying, I just use EVOO.)
2 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
1/2 of a small onion, chopped
2 to 3 garlic cloves, minced
2 vine-ripened tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
Salt, Ground Black Pepper, Garlic Salt
Corn Tortillas

Heat the butter and oil in skillet over medium high heat. Add the chicken and onions and cook and stir until the onions are soft and the chicken is tender and no longer pink. Add the garlic and cook about 1 minute more.

Decrease the heat to low and stir in the tomato and cilantro. Add water or chicken broth if the mixture seems too dry. Season generously with salt, pepper, and garlic salt. Continue cooking about 2 more minutes. Serve w/ corn tortillas, and top with cheese, lettuce, sour cream, fresh spinach, fresh salsa, or whatever you'd like. Although I never need to top them with anything. They are always moist and delicious straight out of the pan. Enjoy!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Stuffed Potatoes

This is a great recipe for any leftover baked potatoes. When I bake potatoes for a meal I will throw in a couple extra and plan on making these that week. Plus, this is the only way Dallin will eat a baked potato.
When the potatoes are baked, cut in half and dig out all the potato, reserving the skinMash the potatoes the way you like them. I like to add sour cream, it makes them really creamy. When they are smooth, I add garlic salt, salt, pepper and a little parsley flake.

Spoon the mashed potatoes into the skins and top with cheese. (sidenote: two seconds after this picture I dropped the pan upside down in the oven! I no longer have fingerprints)

Bake at 350 until heated through, about 20 minutes. They are a little worse for the wear because of their fall, but delicious.
This is our main dish and I usually serve with cottage cheese, fruit, and a vegetable.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


We started a new tradition making doughnuts this year! The batch is huge, I am not sure how many dozen....but you should half or third the recipe if you are only making it for your family. They turned out yummy, so I thought I would share.

7 pks dry yeast
3/4 cup water
1 cup + 1 TBS sugar
1/2 cup shortening
1 TBS salt
4 beaten eggs
2 cups mashed potatoes (we made the ones from the box)
1 qt. scalded milk, cooled
15 cups flour

1/2 batch fit in my Kitchen Aid Mixer.

Dissolve yeast in 3/4 cup lukewarm water with 1 TBS. sugar. Cream shortening and sugar. Add salt, eggs, and mashed potatoes (no lumps). Mix in yeast mixture and milk alternately with the flour. Let rise until doubled(about 1 hour), roll out on floured surface 1/2 inch thick and cut with donut cutter (or a cup and a smaller circle). Place on greased wax paper. Let rise again until doubled(about 1 hour).

12 cups powdered sugar
1 1/3 cup milk
3 tsp. vanilla

Mix and adjust until somewhere in between runny and thick. Put in a shallow bowl for dipping.

Heat oil to 375 in an electric skillet pan. Fry raised doughnuts in oil. Place on paper towels to cool a bit and drip. While still warm, dip doughnuts in the frosting on both sides. Place on cooling rack (with pan beneath). Enjoy warm or cool.

Holiday Wassail

Here's a simple recipe for yummy holiday wassail. I didn't really measure the spices, just adjusted to taste.

1 qt. apple juice or apple cider
1 qt. orange juice
2 cups cranberry juice cocktail
2 cups pineapple juice
2 tsp. lemon juice
1 cup sugar
cinnamon (about 1 Tab.)
cloves (maybe a tsp.)
allspice (about 1 tsp.)
navel orange slices from 1 orange

Put all ingredients in a crockpot and heat through until warm.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Beef N' Noodles

Cube up a steak, brown the cubes in a little oil, add dash of salt, a little minced garlic, and a little minced onion.
After the meat is browned, drain oil, add 4 cups beef broth, 1 tsp. marjoram or basil, and 1 tbsp. vinegar. Bring to boil, then lower to a simmer. Cover and simmer slightly for about an hour- or until meat is tender.

Add 1 package frozen noodles. (Follow directions on noodles, some require thawing) I usually use the Grandma's Frozen Egg Noodles and that requires 60 sec. in microwave then put into boiling broth for about 15 min. If you don't have enough liquid to boil the noodles add some water. Cook until noodles are done.

I added a little cornstarch/water mix to thicken. It's done.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Chicken Tetrazzini

This recipe is from Kim Mullins family cookbook. I really like this recipe, it is a quick fix and tastes great!
Chicken Tetrazzini
4 raw chicken breasts (I don't use that many, maybe 2)
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup milk
1 (7 oz) pkg. spaghetti, cooked
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
In a saucepan, melt butter, add flour, salt and pepper. Mix well. Stir in broth and milk; bring to a boil; stirring constantly until thickened.
Spray a 9x13 glass pan with spray and put cooked and drained spaghetti in the bottom. Put raw cut up chicken on top of spaghetti. Pour sauce over chicken; sprinkle parmesan cheese on top. Bake uncovered at 350 for 45 min -1 hour.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Gyoza aka potstickers

Another Asian dish. I combined this with the meal of Yakisoba last week. Here's how to make it. You can buy these wraps in the produce section right by the yakisoba noodles. Walmart does carry these, FYI.
Here is when you get to smoosh raw meat...a favorite ;)
Then fill the wrappers and fold.
The folding can be a lot of work, this recipe makes 60 gyoza. I don't go through that much work for one meal, so I freeze nearly all of them. My family eats between 8-12 with our meal, therefore I freeze them on a cookie sheet overnight, then the next morning throw them into a freezer bag and pull them out all month long as a light lunch or to add with a meal for dinner.
The finished product:
This is Tia Chapman's recipe from recipe swap. If Dallin makes it he makes his Japanese mission ones, but I like this one because there is no ginger.
One packet of gyoza skins
Mix Well:

1/2 head cabbage finely chopped (use food processer)
1 pound ground pork (you can use whatever meat you like best)
2 bunches green onions
2 shakes salt
10 shakes garlic powder
1 1/2 tsp sesame oil
1 TBSP soy sauce
Put a spoonful into each skin and fold together.
Heat 2 Tbsp oil in frying pan, brown gyoza on both sides. Add 1/4 cup water and cover. Cook on medium heat about 5 minutes or until insides are completely cooked
1 cup water
1/4 cup soy sauce
3 Tbsp sugar
Heat in pan to dissolve sugar.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Mamaw Cole's Spaghetti

Yes, everyone knows how to make spaghetti. This is just the only kind of Spaghetti I am allowed to serve at our house because it's everyone's favorite and just a little different. If you are looking for a think, chunky, seasoned sauce this isn't it. I think everyone in my family likes this because it's very mild for the sensitive stomachs.

1 large can diced tomatoes (or whole tomatoes then just cut them up)
1 small can tomato sauce
1 tsp sugar
salt and pepper to taste
1tbsp butter
1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese (divided-I also use mild if I don't have sharp)

Combine everything except sharp cheddar cheese and heat on stove while the noodles are cooking.
Add 1/2 cheese to sauce, stir and pour over spaghetti. Add the rest of the cheese on top and mix until melted.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

lettuce wraps

While these are not exactly like PF Changs, this is what I make when I'm craving their lettuce wraps. They are so yummy and I wouldn't hesitate to serve them to guests or company. They look fancy, but they're really not that hard.

Any Veggies may be added or omitted, here is how we like it:
1 or 2 chicken breasts depending on desired quantity.
1 green pepper
1 red pepper
1/2 cup shredded carrots (I use more like 1 cup)
green onions or onions as desired
1/2 cup finely chopped water chestnuts
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1 head iceberg or Boston lettuce

Stir Fry Sauce:
1/4 cup cold water
1 tsp corn starch
1/3 cup soy sauce
1/8 cup sugar
1/4 cup vinegar
1/2 T sesame oil
2 tsp sesame seeds
1 tsp red pepper flakes or ground red pepper
1 tsp chili oil -or- 1/2 cup sweet chili sauce (I recomend using sweet chili sauce, it deepens the flavor)
1/2 tsp minced ginger


Finely chop all vegetables in food processor. Finely dice or chop chicken (also in food processor if desired-if chopping chicken in food processor make sure to chop veggies first to avoid cross contamination.) First add chicken to pan with 1T heated oil. Cook chicken. Add chopped add veggies. cook through until slightly crisp. Mix all stir fry sauce ingredients in a bowl or cup and whisk together and add to chicken and veggies. Allow to thicken. Serve in lettuce wraps. These are also good with sesame ginger dipping sauce and peanut dipping sauce. Although we usually just eat them plain. Here's the dipping sauce recipe, sorry, no picture.

I made them last night for dinner and had plenty left over for lunches today.
We don't like super spicy stuff, so I don't put the full amount of red pepper.
Sesame Ginger Dipping Sauce
1/4 cup cold water
3/4 tsp corn starch
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup vinegar
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 tsp minced ginger
1 tsp sesame oil
1.2 tsp sesame seeds
1/4 tsp minced garlic
1 dash red pepper flakes
1 dash parsley

Mix well and heat until thickened.

Peanut Dipping Sauce
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/3 cup water
2 T vinegar
1/2 tsp ginger
1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp minced garlic
1/2 tsp chili oil or chili sauce
1/2 tsp sesame oil
1 T brown sugar

Mix well and heat until thickened.

breakfast cups

These are really easy! It's basically just like an omlette all mixed up and baked in muffin cups. For our family of four this is what I did:

5 Eggs Scrambled with a little milk, salt and pepper as desired.
chopped green pepper
chopped red pepper
chopped orange pepper (just because I had them on hand.)
chopped spinach
chooped canadian bacon or ham
a little bit of grated cheddar cheese
I also had a bit of grated Parmesan on hand so i topped each cup with a tiny bit.

mix it all up in a bowl and then spoon the mixture into muffin cups or sprayed muffin tin. -Bake until they're done... sorry, I didn't time it.-
Note: Eggs puff up when they cook, so leave some room in the cup for it to grow as it cooks. This made 8-10 breakfast cups. 2 for each person plus a few extra, in our house the "few extra" usually goes to Owen. I don't know why he's not chubby. He eats a lot!


This is a favorite dish at our house. I made it last night with some gyoza, I'll add that recipe too, but it turns out great every time. You can switch it up and make it with whatever vegetable you have/like. I like to make it vegetarian much to Dallin's dismay, but it's nice to have a couple vegetarian dishes. Last night I did add a little pork that was left from the gyoza though.

You can find these noodles in the asian section of the produce at a grocery store. For some reason Walmart doesn't carry them in Burley, but Smith's does.

This is a picture of the vegetables I used, but it was before I added the carrots. We had bean sprouts, mushrooms (shitake), cabbage, carrots and onion. Again just use whatever vegetables your family would like.
I use the instructions on the back of the noodle package, you stir fry your vegetables for 2-3 minutes, then add the noodles. Stir fry the noodles for a 1-2 minutes and add powdered sauce packet and 1/4 cup water and you have this:

Absolutely delicious. Similar to the 'mall noodles' we call them. The noodles you get at chinese restaurant's in the mall. We make it in our electric skillet, this was one package of noodles, but I usually make two. I have made up to four when we have had guests and the electric skillet handled it just fine. I think with just one or two packages you would be fine in a skillet on the stove or a wok would work great too.

Pizza Balls

I found this recipe on another blog earlier in the week but I can't remember where it was. When I went back to look for it I swear it disappeared.
These turned out so fun and tasty.

I remember the original recipe called for the Pillsbury refrigerator Pizza Dough. I don't like that so I used two boxes of the Jiffy Pizza Dough mix. I would rather have made homemade dough, but I didn't have time. Make the dough according to directions and roll out into a rectangle (it's supposed to be a rectangle).
Cut into squares with a pizza cutter.

Make your filling. This is mozarella cheese, ham, and mushrooms. Do whatever you like on your pizza.
Place the filling in the middle of each square. Bunch up the edges and form into a ball. Place in a greased baking dish, seam side down.

Here they are getting ready to bake. I sprinkled garlic salt on top. I also wanted to top with parmesan cheese, but I was out. This pizza dough box said to bake at 425 for 12-15 min. This time worked out well.
Here is the finished product with Pizza sauce on the side to dip- this is the kids favorite part.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Avocado Tortilla Soup

I LOVE this soup! I don't usually even use the tortilla chips, because it's so good on it's own. My kids don't love this recipe, but oh well. I still love to make it, it's de-lish to me!

Avocado Tortilla Soup

3 cans (14 oz. each) fat free, less salt (or lower sodium) chicken broth
2 cans (10.75 oz. each) condensed tomato soup
1/2 bunch cilantro, chop as fine as possible
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 ripe California avocado, seeded, peeled, and cubed (I usually use 2 avocados though!)
Shredded or chopped chicken (I shred a small rotisserie chicken)
Shredded cheese
Corn tortilla chips, crumbled

1. In a large pan, combine chicken broth, soup, cilantro, garlic, and pepper
2. Bring to a boil, decrease heat, and simmer for 10 minutes
3. Add chicken and avocado, heat through
4. Ladle into soup bowls and garnish with shredded cheese and crumbled tortilla chips