Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Feaux Mimosa

Feaux Mimosa
Courtesy of John

Orange Juice (we used orange pineapple)
Sparkling Grape Juice (white or red... we used red)

Mix 2 parts orange juice with 1 part of the sparkling grape juice... pour over ice into your favorite glass and enjoy! It was a special treat as a part of our first Christmas breakfast as a family.
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Sunday, September 26, 2010

Amish Friendship Bread

Amish Friendship Bread


1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
3 cups all-purpose flour, divided
3 cups white sugar, divided
3 cups milk

In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Let stand 10 minutes. In a 2 quart container glass, plastic or ceramic container, combine 1 cup flour and 1 cup sugar. Mix thoroughly or flour will lump when milk is added. Slowly stir in 1 cup milk and dissolved yeast mixture. Cover loosely and let stand until bubbly. Consider this day 1 of the 10 day cycle. Leave loosely covered at room temperature.

On days 2 thru 4; stir starter with a spoon. Day 5; stir in 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar and 1 cup milk. Days 6 thru 9; stir only.

Day 10; stir in 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar and 1 cup milk. Remove 1 cup to make your first bread, give 2 cups to friends along with this recipe, and your favorite Amish Bread recipe. Store the remaining 1 cup starter in a container in the refrigerator, or begin the 10 day process over again (beginning with step 2).

To make bread on Day 10:
To the balance (a little over one cup) of the batter, add the following ingredients and mix well.
1 cup oil
1/2 cup milk
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla

In a separate bowl combine the following dry ingredients and mix well:
2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1-1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon (we left this out of ours)
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 - (5.1 oz) box instant vanilla pudding
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup nuts

Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Mix and pour into two well greased and sugared bread pans. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour.

** We made banana nut bread by using banana pudding mix instead of the vanilla... and we made the chocolate chocolate chip bread by adding chocolate pudding and chocolate chips to the batter. You can make this in any combination you can think of - use any flavor pudding... and add all sorts of mix-ins! 

Next time we might just add chocolate chips to the version with the vanilla pudding - that would be YUMMY too!
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Monday, September 6, 2010

Snickerdoodle Muffins

Snickerdoodle Muffins
Adapted from a recipe on Tasty
Yield - 24 muffins (for me)

2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 whole eggs
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 pinch salt
3/4 teaspoon ground or grated nutmeg (I used pumpkin pie spice)
1 1/4 cups sour cream
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350. Grease muffin tins or use paper liners.

Cream the butter, sugar, and cinnamon until soft about 3 to 5 minutes. Add in the vanilla. Add in the eggs one at a time and mix until well incorporated. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cream of tartar, and nutmeg (or pumpkin pie spice in my case).

Add about 1/2 cup of the flour mixture to the butter & sugar - mix to incorporate... then add in 1/4 cup of the sour cream - mix to incorporate. Alternate these into the mixture until all are combined - start with the flour and end with the flour... scrape the bowl occasionally.

In one final bowl, mix the sugar and cinnamon for the topping. Pour the muffin batter into your muffin pans - I used a cookie scoop to make sure that all of my muffins were roughly the same size. Sprinkle the tops with the sugar topping. Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until golden brown.
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Saturday, August 21, 2010

Coconut Chocolate Delights

Coconut Chocolate Delights
Courtesy of
Yield: 20 cookies

3/4cup Fisher® Roasted and Salted Almonds
1 1/2  cups coconut
1/2cup Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk (from 14-oz can)
1package (16 oz) Pillsbury® Ready to Bake!™ refrigerated sugar cookies (24 cookies)
1/3cup Hershey’s® baking cocoa
1/3cup Hershey's® milk chocolate baking chips

Reserve 20 almonds; set aside. Chop remaining almonds. In medium bowl, stir chopped almonds, coconut and milk until well blended. Refrigerate mixture 25 minutes for easier handling. Let cookie dough stand at room temperature for 10 minutes to soften.

Meanwhile, heat oven to 350°F. In large bowl, knead cookie dough and cocoa with hands until well blended. Cover with plastic wrap; set aside.

For each cookie, press 1 rounded tablespoon dough into 3-inch round. Place 1 tablespoon coconut mixture on center of each round. Wrap dough around filling, pressing edges to seal; shape into a ball. Place balls 3 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Press each ball with fingers into 2 1/2-inch round. Press 1 whole almond on each cookie.

Bake 9 to 12 minutes or until puffed and edges are set. Immediately remove from cookie sheet to cooling rack. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.

In small microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate chips uncovered on High 10 to 20 second, stirring every 10 seconds, until smooth. Place in resealable food-storage plastic bag; cut small tip from corner of bag. Drizzle chocolate over cookies. Before storing, let cookies stand at room temperature until chocolate is set. Store in airtight container.
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Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Best Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

The Best Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 cup Crisco Butter Flavor Shortening (1 stick)
1 cup Sugar
1 cup Light Brown Sugar (firmly packed)
3 eggs
2 tablespoons Milk
1 1/2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
1 1/2 cups All-purpose Flour
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 teaspoon Salt
4 cups Quick Cooking Oats
1 cup Chocolate Chips
1 cup Pecans (or Walnuts)

Heat oven to 375 degrees F.  In a large bowl (we use the Kitchen Aid mixer), blend the Crisco with the sugars, adding the sugar gradually.  Add the eggs (one at a time), milk and the vanilla; beat well until mixture looks somewhat fluffy.  I use the paddle mixer on the Kitchen Aid for this - not the whisk.  In a small bowl, mix together your flour, salt and baking soda. Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture in the bowl 1/2 c. at a time; beat well.  Add the oats 1/2 c. at at time.  If you are using a Kitchen Aid or any other heavy duty stand mixer - this is the reason you will want to use the paddle attachment.  Otherwise, if you are using a hand mixer, you will want to mix the oats and the remainder of the ingredients in by hand.  Once the oats are incorporated, add your chocolate chips and finally your nuts (pecans or walnuts).  Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls, about 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.  Back for 13 to 15 minutes or until golden brown.  Be very careful to not let the cookies brown too much or they will be very crisp after cooling - especially the next day.  Remove the cookies and let stand for 5 minutes.  Transfer cookies to a plate or some other surface to finish cooling.  Of course make sure to taste one while they are still hot and gooey - YUM!

Makes about 42 cookies
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Sunday, August 1, 2010

Slow Cooker Chicken Marsala

I made this last Sunday, but completely forgot to take a picture of mine - because I wasn't feeling very well. 

Slow Cooker Chicken Marsala
Courtesy of

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
8 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 jars (6 ounces) sliced mushrooms, drained
1 cup sweet Marsala wine or chicken broth (I used 1/2 a cup of each)
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup cornstarch
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Spray 4-5 quart slow cooker with cooking spray. In cooker, place garlic and oil. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper; place in cooker over garlic. Place mushrooms over chicken; pour wine over everything.

Cover; cook on low heat setting about 5-6 hours.

Remove chicken from cooker; place on plate and cover to keep warm. In small bowl, mix water and cornstarch until smooth; stir into liquid in cooker. Increase heat setting to high; cover and cook about 10 minutes or until sauce is thickened slightly.

Return chicken to cooker. Cover and cook on high heat setting 5 minutes longer or until chicken is hot.

To serve, spoon mushrooms mixture over chicken breasts and sprinkle with parsley.

In the photo - they served it over white rice, but we chose to have ours over egg noodles instead. This makes a simple easy dinner when served with a salad.
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Friday, July 16, 2010

Creamy Lime Squares

Oh sweet heaven... YUM! Somehow being pregnant has kicked into a weird love of limes... especially key lime yogurt!

Creamy Lime Squares
Courtesy of:
Yield: 24 servings

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 cup cold butter or margarine
3/4 cup frozen (thawed) limeade concentrate (from 12-oz can)
2 containers (6 oz each) Yoplait® Thick & Creamy Key lime pie yogurt
1 box (4-serving size) French vanilla instant pudding and pie filling mix
1 1/2 teaspoons grated lime peel
1 container (8 oz) frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 to 4 drops green food color
Extra whipped topping, if desired
Lime slices, if desired
Fresh mint leaves, if desired

Heat oven to 350°F. In large bowl, mix flour and powdered sugar. With pastry blender, cut in butter until mixture looks like fine crumbs. In bottom of ungreased 13x9-inch pan, press mixture evenly. Bake 20 to 30 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool completely, about 40 minutes.

In large bowl, mix limeade and yogurt with wire whisk until blended. Beat in pudding mix until well blended. Let stand 5 minutes to thicken. Stir lime peel into yogurt mixture. Gently stir in whipped topping and food color until desired green color.

Pour yogurt mixture over cooled crust; spread evenly. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.

For squares, cut into 6 rows by 4 rows. Serve each square topped with extra whipped topping, lime slice and mint leaf.

High Altitude:
Bake 23-28 minutes

Nutritional Information:

1 Serving:
Calories 200 (Calories from Fat 90)
Total Fat 10g (Saturated Fat 6g, Trans Fat 0g)
Cholesterol 20mg
Sodium 125mg
Total Carbohydrate 25g (Dietary Fiber 0g, Sugars 13g)
Protein 2g
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Saturday, May 1, 2010

Fruity Spinach Salad

(Photo from Taste of

Yet another salad that makes me drool right now... pregnancy might just be VERY good for my diet! Because protein is important to me right now - I'd likely either have a side of grilled chicken with this, or toss it into the salad.

Fruity Spinach Salad
Courtesy of Taste of
Servings: 8
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon grated onion
  • 1 teaspoon ground mustard
  • 1 package (12 ounces) frozen unsweetened strawberries, thawed and undrained
  • 1 teaspoon poppy seeds
  • 1 package (9 ounces) fresh spinach, torn
  • 1 cup sliced fresh strawberries
  • 1 large banana, sliced
  • 1 medium ripe avocado, peeled and sliced
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced

  • In a large bowl, whisk the first five ingredients until the sugar is dissolved. Stir in thawed strawberries and poppy seeds.
  • Place spinach on individual salad plates. Arrange the fresh strawberries, banana and avocado over spinach. Top with green onions and dressing. 
Nutrition Facts: 1 cup equals 214 calories, 13 g fat (2 g saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 29 mg sodium, 25 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 2 g protein.
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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Mixed Berry Cheesecake

(excuse the photo - all I had when it was served was a cell phone)

Mixed Berry Cheesecake
Courtesy of Ina Garten

For the crust:
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 tablespoon sugar
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted

For the filling:
2 1/2 pounds cream cheese, at room temperature (5 8oz packages)
1 1/2 cups sugar
5 whole extra large eggs, at room temperature
2 extra large egg yolks, at room temperature
1/4 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest, about 2 lemons (I only used 1 lemon)
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract (I used my vanilla bean paste)

For the topping:
1 cup red jelly (not jam) such as currant, raspberry, or strawberry
1/2 pint sliced strawberries
1/2 pint raspberries
1/2 pint blueberries
** I opted just to use sliced strawberries mixed with a little sugar and lemon juice for our topping

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

To make the crust, combine the graham crackers, sugar and melted butter until moistened. Pour into a 9-inch springform pan. With your hands, press the crumbs into the bottom of the pan and about 1-inch up the sides. Bake for 8 minutes. Cool to room temperature.

Raise the oven temperature to 450 degrees.

To make the filling, cream the sugar and cream cheese in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Reduce the speed of  the mixer to medium and add the eggs and egg yolks, 2 at a time, mixing well. Scrape down the bowl and beater, as necessary. With the mixer on low, add the sour cream, lemon zest, and vanilla. Mix thoroughly and pour into the cooled crust.

Bake for 15 minutes. Turn the oven temperature down to 225 degrees and bake for another 1 hour and 15 minutes. Turn the oven off and open the door wide. The cake will not be completely set in the center. Allow the cake to sit in the oven with the door open for 30 minutes. Take the cake out of the oven and allow it to sit at room temperature for another 2 to 3 hours, until completely cooled. (I left the cake in the oven the whole time - I just opened the door for the 30 minutes, and then closed it again for the 2-3 hours.) Wrap and refridgerate overnight.

Remove the cake from the springform pan by carefully running a hot knife around the outside of the cake. Leave the cake on the bottom of the springform pan for serving.

To make the topping, melt the jelly in a small pan over low heat. In a bowl, toss berries and the warm jelly gently until well mixed. Arrange the berries on top of the cake. Refridgerate until ready to serve.
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Saturday, February 6, 2010

Kimmy Bean Cupcakes


Kimmy Bean Cupcakes 
(aka Vanilla Bean Cupcakes) 
Courtesy of Tasty

Cupcakes: (yield 12 cupcakes)

1/2 cup butter
1 cup sugar
2 whole eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon scraped vanilla beans (I used 2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste)
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup milk

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cream butter, sugar, and eggs together until fluffy. Add vanilla and scraped vanilla beans. Make sure vanilla is mixed into the batter well. Combine dry ingredients (flour and baking powder) in a bowl. Add half of the dry ingredient mixture to the wet batter, mixing until just combined. Add the milk. Once mixed, add remaining dry ingredients. Pour into cupcake tins and bake for 20 to 25 minutes at 350 degrees. Let cool. Then frost.

Frosting: (yield 24 cupcakes)

1 cup
2 pounds powdered sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon scraped vanilla beans (I used 4 teaspoons of the vanilla bean paste)

Mix butter and powdered sugar together, adding sugar gradually to the mix. Add milk gradually, then the vanilla extract and vanilla beans. Continue to add milk and sugar until it reaches the desired consistency. I used AmeriColor Gel Food Coloring to make my Super Bowl themed cupcakes.

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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Chicken & Spinach Casserole

Chicken & Spinach Casserole
Unknown source

1 whole rotisserie chicken, shredded (I used 2 chicken breasts that I pre-roasted instead)
2 packages frozen spinach, thawed
1 cup sour cream
1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup Parmesan, shredded or grated
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 whole onion, diced
1 head garlic, minced (I used about 5-6 cloves)
1 box pasta shells, cooked (I used spirals instead because I had them)

Preheat oven to 420 degrees. Saute onion and garlic until translucent. Add spinach and cook until all liquid has evaporated. Mix chicken, pasta, spinach, sour cream, mayonnaise, mozzarella, and season to taste with salt & pepper. Pour into ovenproof casserole dish. Mix Parmesan and breadcrumbs and sprinkle on top of casserole. Bake 25-30 minutes.
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Sunday, January 17, 2010

Awesome Party Punch

Awesome Party Punch
Courtesy of Tara and Staci

The color alone on this punch is amazing!!

1 large bottle of Minute Maid Pomegranate Blueberry juice
2 large bottles of Simply Lemonade
2 bottles of club soda
lots of ice

Mix the ingredients in the order that they are listed with the exception of the ice - fill the punch bowl or serving jug with the ice and pour the ingredients over the top starting with the pomegranate blueberry juice.

It is super yummy!

I just made some to take to a Women's Ministry meeting for our church, and it's a half batch which made about a gallon.... I didn't put it over ice because of the traveling - and I'd say that if you do it this way - you might want to put a tiny bit of water in the glasses with the ice and pour the punch over the top. The ice as it melts dilutes the punch just a bit and makes it really refreshing!
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Saturday, January 9, 2010

Cathi's Turkey Burgers

Cathi's Turkey Burgers
Courtesy of my sister Cathi

1tbls dijon mustard
8-10 oz of spinach (thaw and squeeze dry)
minced onion
1 lb ground turkey
1 egg (added by John to a double batch)
1/4 cup bread crumbs (added by John)

Mix all ingredients together. Grill them until they are done, or you could pan fry them. Serve with your favorite hamburger toppings... we also put them on whole wheat hamburger buns.

** This recipe could be used with ground beef, ground pork, ground white meat turkey, or even ground chicken... I don't know if you can get ground seafood - but try it with your favorite ground meat!
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