Category: recipe

This is really good-I make an almost identical recipe with a can of cranberries.

Apricot Chicken:

1 C apricot jam

1 8 oz bottle of french dressing

1 pkg onion soup mix

Mix together.  Pour over chicken and cook in crockpot 2-3 hours until juices run clear.  Serve over rice.  (This made enough that I put half of it in the freezer for an easy meal).


Vegetarian Lasagna-I love this…it’s a little time consuming but a great thing to do to use up some of the produce in the fridge that needs using.

Herb Cheese Sauce-

3 T butter

3T flour

1/4 t salt and pepper

1 1/2 C milk

1 1/2 C mozzarella cheese

1/2 C fresh parsley

3 T parmesan cheese

1-2 cloves garlic minced

Filling-if you don’t have these exact veggies-use what you have!  I put spinach in the last one I made!

1 C mushrooms chopped (opt)

1-2 cloves garlic

1 med zucchini or broccoli chopped

1 med bell pepper

1/2 C onion

2 C tomatoes diced

1 carrot peeled and shredded

2-4 T butter

2 T basil

1 t oregano

1/2 t salt

Cheese mixture:

1 egg beaten

1 C mozzarella cheese grated

1 1/2 C parmesan cheese (I like fresh)

15 oz cottage cheese.

For herb cheese sauce, melt butter, sauté herbs and flour, salt, and peper.  Add milk, stir until gravy consistency, and add cheese.  For filling-saute veggie and herbs in butter, remove from heat .  Combine ingred for cheese mixture and layer in following order:  Noodles, cheese sauce, veggie mix, cheese mixture and end with herb cheese sauce on top.  Place all of it in a 9×13 pan and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.



I wish I had taken a picture of this but I didn’t….nonetheless…I thought the result of my leftover concoction was pretty great.  I had planned a little jambalaya for dinner yesterday and looked in the fridge and saw a bunch of leftovers peering at me saying “eat me.”  I bought some mushrooms at the market for .25 and had made some mushroom chicken and had some mushroom gravy.  My jambalaya become of jumble of leftovers…but it actually turned out good.  Because of the mushroom concentration–I thought maybe I’ll make some tater tot casserole.  I had a little leftover hamburger and veggies from the last time I made it.  I added my leftover mushroom chicken and my mushroom gravy.  Sprinkled it with cheese.  Topped it with tots and 30 minutes later Dinner was served!  Amazing.  Leftovers never tasted so good disguised!   How have you recycled your leftovers?


Here is the original tatertot casserole recipe and the original mushroom chicken with sour cream sauce recipe:

Tater Tot Casserole

1 lb ground beef/turkey

1 onion, chopped

1/2 cloves minced garlic

salt and pepper to taste

Cook groundbeef/turkey with onions and garlic.  Strain and rinse off excess grease.  Salt and pepper tt (I didn’t add salt/pepper).  Stir in 1 big 16 oz bag mixed veggies.

1 can cream of mushroom soup

1 can water (original recipe also calls for 1 can cream of celery soup)

Add soups and water to meat and veggies.  Pour into 9 x13 cass dish.  Sprinkle cheese on top and layer tater tots on top of cheese.

Sam LOVED this which I thought was interesting because he hates all but pizza but said that this was a little better than pizza.  Maybe it was his inclination towards processed foods.  Uggh….at any rate….combining leftovers with the hamburger was good.

Mushroom chicken in sourcream sauce

¼ t salt

¼ t pepper

½ t paprika

¼ t lemon pepper

1 t garlic powder

6 chicken breasts

1 can cream of mushroom

½ C chicken broth

½ lb fresh mushrooms


Combine all spices and mix with broth and mushroom soup.  Pour over chicken in crockpot and cook for 2-4 hours until juices run clear in chicken.  Add sourcream about ½ hour before serving.

Barbie cake-our youtube wonder!

I usually try to post a couple things every day. Yesterday, I was crazily trying to get ready for Lydia’s (my oldest daughter’s) party and it didn’t happen. Her cake, was by far the most time consuming. Baby woke up at 6 am and I worked like crazy until about 1 pm getting it done. If I wasn’t so amateur–it probably would have gone faster! She isn’t really crazed about any one thing. We looked at a variety of cakes and she thought the Barbie one looked fun. I actually remember my aunt Gail making one of these for one of my siblings long ago. I thought it was so pretty….so I found my cake decorating tips and turned to youtube for some cake decorating tips. You really can learn to do anything on youtube. I loved the flower making tutorials and how to make a ribbon.

We ran into a few problems while making the cake. First, the pyrex bowl cake stuck even after ample PAM spraying and flouring the thing. Then, Barbie’s legs were too long–and I probably should have done another 9″ round cake to make it taller but didn’t want to as I had already invested 2 cake mixes in the project. Then, I ran out of frosting.

Solutiions: We kind of stuffed the broken cake back onto the other part of the cake and frosted over it. Barbie’s dress became a mermaid style dress and I made some buttercream frosting to supplement the frosting I had purchased. I was planning to half this recipe but then I halved everything but the milk–curses! And had to go with the original size of frosting–which makes a ton btw.

Buttercream frosting
2 cubes butter at room temperature
8 C powdered sugar
2 t vanilla
1/2 C milk

Beat together and there you have some frosting yumminess-

It was actually a blessing in disguise that I had so much frosting because I needed it. I had to make the roses several time because although the ones near the bodice of the stayed put nicely–Newton’s law of gravity worked on the ones pasted to the sides (I can’t imagine why the exclusion I petitioned for didn’t come through) and they kept falling (even after carefully freezing them and using more frosting as glue).

All in all, it was fun to make. Lydia was happy with it and her little friends thought it was SO silly that Barbie was a cake and that I frosted her! My youtube wonder was a success–how did moms make it before the onslaught of the internet?

Yummy recipes we made this week

Here are a couple of recipes I tried this week that were really yummy.  These aren’t my recipes.  They came from my new “between friends” cookbook–recipes from a bunch of friends here in Kansas City.  I gifted myself this cookbook for Christmas and it keeps on giving!  🙂

Zucchini, corn, and black bean quesadillas

1 T virgin olive oil

1 small red onion

½ jalepeno pepper seeded and minced (left this out)

1 c corn kernels

1 small zucchini finely diced

1 t chili powder

Salt and pepper to taste

1 can black beans drained and rinsed

Fresh cilantro, chopped + extra for garnish

8 tortillas

12 oz pepper jack cheese grated ( I used cheddar)

Sourcream/salsa for serving

1. heat oil and add onion/jalepno until softened. Stir in corn and zucchini. Season with chili powder salt and pepper. Cook until zucchini is tender about 5 minut4es. Stir in the black beans to warm through.

2. Preheat a large skillet or griddle over med heat. Place a tortilla on the skillet and sprinkle with cheese. Spread several spoonfuls of the filling over the cheese. Sprinkle with cilantro. Top with more cheese and a second tortilla. Cook, flipping halfway through, until the tortilla is crisp and golden brown and the cheese has melted. Repeat with the remaining ingred. Slice and serve with sourcream/salsa and garnish with fresh cilantro.

Taco banditos

2 lbs ground beef

1 onion, diced and sautéed

2 small cans tomato sauce

2 cans tomato paste (I used about ½ can—I first halved this recipe than I put in half of the tomato paste…I don’t really love tomato paste)

3 C water

1 t oregano

2 t salt

2 t chili pwder

2 t cumin

2 T sugar

Simmer 40 min. Serve over corn chips with 2 c cooked rice

2 cans black beans (heated), lettuce, tomatoes, sliced olives, shredded cheese, sour cream, and guacamole.

Yummy vegetable side dish

We got some summer squash and zuchinni at the market that needed to be used. I tried this recipe and YUM! It was amazing!

Summerly Squash-in the winter!


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 2 medium tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 small zucchini, cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • 2 small yellow summer squash, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil


1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook and stir the onion about 5 minutes, until tender. Mix in the tomatoes, and season with salt and pepper. Continue to cook and stir about 5 minutes. Mix in the zucchini, yellow squash, bay leaf, and basil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove bay leaf before serving.

Black bean salsa–I’m addicted

This is definitely not a holiday exclusive recipe but we made this around Christmas and I made it again yesterday and might make it again today because it’s addicting-it doesn’t have a cube of butter and wow–it’s so good.

Black Bean Salsa

2 T lime juice (I’ve used both lemon/lime and it was still good)  Original recipe calls for avocados…I didn’t use them but added about 1/2 the citrus juice it called for)

1 can black beans (if you don’t love black beans like me…just use 1/2 the can)

1 med red pepper

5 green onions

3 Roma tomatoes diced

2 T cilantro

3 T garlic cloves

2 T olive oil

1 t red wine vinegar (or another kind of vinegar)

1/2 t salt

1/4 t pepper

tortilla chips

In a large bowl, combine corn beans red peper onions cilantor and garlic.  In a small bowl whisk the oil venegar salt and pepper.  Drizzle over the corn mixture; toss to coat.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or until chilled.  Serve with tortilla chips.

Crockpot refried beans–Yum!

I’m not pregnant–so I’m sure that is not why I’m loving Mexican food right now but…wow…it is super yummy to me right now!  and given the right Mexican food–pretty healthy.  Here is one of my new lunch favs!  Refried bean burritoes.  i make my refried beans in the crockpot and save myself the time and the fat of refry-ing them.  Recipe is courtesy of


  • 1 onion, peeled and halved
  • 3 cups dry pinto beans, rinsed
  • 1/2 fresh jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 5 teaspoons salt
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin, optional
  • 9 cups water


  1. Place the onion, rinsed beans, jalapeno, garlic, salt, pepper, and cumin into a slow cooker. Pour in the water and stir to combine. Cook on High for 8 hours, adding more water as needed. Note: if more than 1 cup of water has evaporated during cooking, then the temperature is too high.
  2. Once the beans have cooked, strain them, and reserve the liquid. Mash the beans with a potato masher, adding the reserved water as needed to attain desired consistency.
  3. ENJOY!

Old fashioned Christmas food! Yummy!

Holiday food isn’t necessarily the healthiest but it is yummy!  I’m kind of a sucker for things old fashioned.  All of the classic christmas tunes talk about popcorn and this year, I decided to make some popcorn balls to give to friends.  I used this recipe and it turned out awesome!  It was really fun to make!  We added a little green food coloring and used red hot cinnamons to decorate it.

Another old fashioned holiday treat is puddin’.  After asking for figgy pudding most of my life in the tune “we wish you a merry Christmas” we have started giving pudding to the kids while making a Christmas carrot pudding–since I don’t like figs–it’s more like a spice cake.  Here is this recipe.  I love this very old fashioned recipe of my 95 yo grandma:

Christmas Pudding
1 C grated carrots
1 C grated apples
1 C grated potatoes
1 C raisins (opt)
1 C dates (opt)
¾ C butter
1 C sugar
2 c flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cloves, cinnamon, and allspice
½ tsp nutmeg
½-1 C walnuts
Mix dry ingredients. Mix butter with all fruits. Add to dry ingredients and mix well. Traditionally you are supposed to cook this in a soup or coffee can by steaming it for 2 hours in a saucepan filled with water. We did that the first time and you are welcome to do so but we threw it in the greased crockpot and cooked it for about an hour and a half and it worked just as well and you didn’t have to think about it.
There are 2 different sauces on the original recipe…the first uses brandy. We used this one:
Caramel sauce
1 C sugar
½ C water
2 Tbsp cream (heavy)
Stir and heat sugar really slowly. Stir constantly and after brown add boil water very slowly (if you add it too fast the sugar will recrystalize). Take off heat and add cream. If you did add the water too fast you can filter the sugar crystals out with a colander.  You can poke your puddin with a straw and then pour the sauce over it.  It’s yummy!

What do you like to eat?

Roasted Broccoli-my new craze

Last week @ Aldi-Broccoli was on sale for .99/lb.  I kind of decided my new strategy for produce is purchase a lot of what is cheap and bulk up our produce consumption.  While @ a wonderful retreat in UT with my friends from Buckeye land, I was introduced to the idea of roasted broccoli. Here’s how you make it:

Chop up broccoli-

Drizzle a tiny bit of olive oil over it. 

Salt and pepper it.  Put it in the oven at 350 for 25 minutes.  Add freshly grated parmesan and put it in the oven for 5 more minutes.  This is seriously AMAZING!  I’ve eaten about 3 1/2 lbs of broccoli in the past 2 days!  I think it’s my new craze!

Menu October 31-November 6

I strayed from my menu a bit.  Last Saturday, I pulled out some left over shredded beef and we had beef and cheddar flautas and moved Saturday’s menu to Sunday.

Sunday-Grilled chicken (marinade in the freezer) /w parmesan potato wedges with salad and biscuits.

Monday-sweet and sour meatballs

Tuesday-green chili enchiladas-this is a new recipe.  If it’s good-I’ll post it.

Wednesday-Navajo tacoes (meatless chili)

Thursday-hashbrown/egg casserole–recipe below

Friday-Pizza Waffles-last week again-I strayed a bit.  We were watching some of our friends’ children and bought some pizzas @ Walmart.  I think we’ll go for some pizza waffles this week.

Saturday-Eat out

Hash Brown Sausage Bake

1 pkg shredded hash brown potatoes (or I just boil some potatoes and grate them)

½ lb sausage

1/3 C chopped onion (opt)

1 C cottage cheese

3 eggs

½ C cheese 

I’ve simplified this recipe to about as simple as you can get it and my kids eat every bite EVERY time I make this.  I layer this in a 10” pie pan or pyrex square pan.  I put the hashbrowns down first.  I mix the eggs, cheese, browned sausage, cottage cheese, and onion and spread it over the hashbrowns.  Cook @ 350 for 25-30 minutes until lightly brown.  Voila dinner!  (This is a great one for when your going out on a date and only need enough for the kids.)