Recipe Box

Here, you'll find all of the recipes that I have posted on my blog over the years, all compiled into one page...they are all Tried, True, and yours truly!

I have tried to group them so that they are easy to find...just scroll down the page to find what you're looking for...and, when you do try a recipe, let me know how you like it!

Esn Gezunt!
Eat Well!

I'm starting with my pie crust recipe, as I use it for everything!

Perfect Pie Crust:
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) very cold unsalted butter
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon sugar
1/3 cup very cold vegetable shortening
6 to 8 tablespoons (about 1/2 cup) ice water

Dice the butter and return it to the refrigerator while you prepare the flour mixture. Place the flour, salt, and sugar in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse a few times to mix. Add the butter and shortening. Pulse 8 to 12 times, until the butter is the size of peas. With the machine running, pour the ice water down the feed tube and pulse the machine until the dough begins to form a ball. Dump out on a floured board and roll into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Cut the dough in half. Roll each piece on a well-floured board into a circle, rolling from the center to the edge, turning and flouring the dough to make sure it doesn't stick to the board. Fold the dough in half, place in a pie pan, and unfold to fit the pan. Repeat with the top crust for a while pie, and follow the baking directions in my recipe...

Beverage Recipes...

Old-Fashioned Lemonade
Juice of 6 freshly-squeezed lemons (1 cup)
4 cups cold water
1 sliced lemon, for garnish
Ice cubes
Prepare Simple Syrup in advance and refrigerate.
In a large pitcher, combine lemon juice and sugar and cold **Simple Syrup.
Add water, lemon slices, and ice cubes
Stir until well blended and serve in tall glasses over ice.
Yields approximately 6 cups.
Simple Syrup Recipe:
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup water
In a medium saucepan, combine sugar and water. Boil for 5 minutes, without stirring. Remove from heat and let cool before using. Store in the refrigerator.
Lemonade Variations:
Lavender Lemonade - Add 1 tablespoons dried culinary lavender buds. Add lavender to the hot Simple Syrup and let steep for 10 minutes. Strain the Simple Syrup and discard the lavender buds. Refrigerate Simple Syrup until cool.
Limeade - Substitute fresh lime juice for the lemon juice.
Strawberry Lemonade - In a blender, puree 1 pint of fresh strawberries (hulled and halved); add to the pitcher with the lemon juice and Simple Syrup.

Breakfast Recipes...

Stuffed French Toast
2 slices of egg bread
filling of choice...We use either seedless raspberry jam & cream cheese or  Nutella and bananas.
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
a pinch of salt
1 teaspoon butter
1 tablespoon powdered sugar

Spread filling on one slice of bread and make a sandwich.
Mix the egg, milk, vanilla and salt.
Dip both sides of the sandwich into the egg mixture.
Melt the butter in a pan.
Cook the sandwich in the pan until it is golden brown on both sides, about 1-2 minutes per side.
Top with powdered sugar, and top with butter and syrup or enjoy it naked.

Homemade Granola
3 cups Old Fashioned Oats
3/4 cup sliced or slivered almonds
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons oil
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 cup dried fruit (apricots, and any or all of cherries, cranberries, raisins, dates) added after granola has cooled.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Place baking rack in the center position and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl combine the rolled oats, nuts, sunflower seeds, cinnamon and salt, set aside.
In a small bowl, stir together the oil and maple syrup until combined and pour over the dry ingredients only...not the dried fruit
Toss mixture until dry ingredients are fully coated with the oil/syrup mixture.
Spread on cookie sheet and bake for 30 to 45 minutes or until golden brown, stirring occasionally to ensure even baking.
Place on a wire rack to cool, breaking up any large clumps while it's still warm.
Granola becomes crispier as it cools and air drys.
Once cooled, mix in the dried fruit and place in an airtight container. Will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.

Homemade Oatmeal 
3 1/2 cups milk
2 cups Quaker Old Fashioned rolled oats
pinch of salt
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
Bring milk and salt to boil over medium heat, stir to avoid scalding. When milk just begins to boil add vanilla, cinnamon and oats, stir well.
Turn burner to low and simmer for 5 minutes.
Remove from heat and serve.
Oatmeal will be slightly creamy, but will thicken upon sitting.
Top with butter, raisins and brown sugar or blueberries...Enjoy!

Bread and Roll Recipes...

next up - dinner rolls from scratch #thanksgiving
Bread Machine Scratch Rolls
2 eggs
1/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
6 tablespoons butter
1 cup plain mashed potatoes
2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
3/4 cup water (I use the potato water)
4 1/4 cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

I use my Bread Machine for this part....Place all the ingredients into the pan of your bread machine in the order recommended by the manufacturer (in mine I add liquids first, then the dry ingredients and my yeast last).
Program the machine for dough, and press Start.
When the machine completes its cycle, I leave the dough in the machine until it's doubled in size, about 30 minutes or so.
I turn the dough out onto my floured counter and divide it into 10 balls (the original recipe called for 16 but my family likes them large). Gently roll the dough balls under your cupped fingers till they're nice and round.
Place the 10 dough balls into a lightly greased 9 inch cake pan, starting on the outside and the last 2 in the center. I Cover the pan with a kitchen towel and let it sit in a warm place to rise for about 2 hours, till they're pretty puffy and touching (or almost touching) one another.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Bake the rolls for 20 to 25 minutes, until they're golden brown. Remove them from the oven, carefully turn them out of the pan...they will come out all in one piece...just break them apart before serving.

 Hunky Monkey Bread
2 cans (16.3 oz each) Pillsbury Grands buttermilk biscuits
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
3/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350°F.
Lightly grease a 12-cup fluted tube pan with cooking spray. In large Ziploc bag, mix granulated sugar and cinnamon.
Separate dough into 16 biscuits; cut each into quarters, shake in bag to coat, arrange in pan.
In a small bowl, mix brown sugar and melted butter; pour over biscuit pieces.
Bake 28 to 32 minutes or until golden brown and no longer doughy in center.
Cool in pan 10 minutes. Turn upside down onto serving plate; pull apart to serve.
Serve warm with a tall glass of cold milk and enjoy!

Irish Soda Bread
4 cups all-purpose flour
4 tablespoons white sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup margarine, softened
1 cup buttermilk
1 egg
1 cup dried currants + 1 tablespoon flour
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup buttermilk for brushing on top

*I have also used golden raisins and they taste awesome, but it is worth buying a small amt of currents for the flavor.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Lightly grease a large baking sheet.
In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and margarine. Stir in 1 cup of buttermilk and egg. Combine the currants with 1 tablespoon of flour and mix into the dough.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead slightly. Form dough into a round and place on prepared baking sheet. **In a small bowl, combine melted butter with 1/4 cup buttermilk; brush loaf with this mixture. Use a sharp knife to cut an 'X' into the top of the loaf.
Bake in preheated oven for 40 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.
Enjoy it warm with a slather of butter...ohhh so good...

1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 1/4 cups milk

Preheat oven to 450 degrees
Spray a large muffin tin with Pam.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour and salt.
In a separate, medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, and 1 tablespoon warm butter.
Pour over flour mixture, and fold until just blended.
Fill large muffin pan two-thirds to three-quarters full.
Transfer to oven, and bake for 15 minutes.
Reduce the temperature to 350 degrees, and bake 20 minutes more, until well browned and crusty. DO NOT PEAK.
Remove popovers from the oven and serve warm with butter.
Makes 6

Soup and Salad Recipes...

Homemade Croutons:
1 loaf potato or egg bread, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp butter, melted
1 pkg dry Italian dressing
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 300 degrees

Place the oil, butter, dressing, and Parmesan cheese in a large bowl, and mix well. Add the bread and coat well. Pour onto a greased cookie sheet and spread to form a single layer. Bake for approx. 30 minutes, until the edges are browned and the croutons are no longer moist, but not hard.

Broccoli Summer Salad
5 cups fresh broccoli florets
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1/2 cup cooked, crumbled bacon
1/4 cup of red onion, chopped
1 cup of frozen peas, thawed

1 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons vinegar
1/2 cup sugar

Combine broccoli florets, raisins, sunflower seeds, crumbled bacon, chopped onion, and peas in a large serving bowl.
In a separate bowl or large cup, whisk together mayonnaise, vinegar and sugar. Add dressing to the salad and toss to mix well.
Chill thoroughly before serving.
The more who gather, the tastier the meal...

Chicken Cesar Salad
1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts (3 to 4)
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 extra-large eggs
1 cup seasoned bread crumbs
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided in half
Olive Oil
4 heads of Romaine lettuce, washed well and torn into bite size pieces
Chopped green onion
Caesar dressing (I like Marie's brand)

In a large bowl combine the lettuce, chopped green onion, 1/2 cup Parmesan and set aside.
Lay the chicken breasts on a cutting board and slice each diagonally into 4 or 5 large strips.
Combine the flour, salt, and pepper on a dinner plate. Beat the eggs with 1 tablespoon of water on a second plate. Combine the breadcrumbs and 1/2 cup Parmesan on a third plate. Dredge the chicken breasts on both sides in the flour mixture, then dip both sides into the egg mixture and roll in the bread-crumb mixture, pressing lightly to coat.
Heat 1 tablespoon of butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large saute pan and cook the chicken strips on medium-low heat for about 3 minutes on each side, until just cooked through. Don't crowd the pan. Add more butter and oil and cook the rest of the chicken breasts.
Add the Caesar Dressing to the bowl and toss until coated well. I serve the chicken on a platter by itself so that my family can choose the amount of chicken they want in their salad, but you can also serve it on top of the salad, or tossed in.

Taco Salad
2 ripe tomatoes, diced
1/2 pound sharp Cheddar, shredded
1 large onion, diced
1 head iceberg lettuce, washed, drained and shredded
1 pound lean ground beef, browned, crumbled and drained
1 cup Kraft Catalina salad dressing* mixed with 1 cup taco sauce
1 (7-ounce) bag Nacho Doritos,  set aside a large handful of whole chips for on top and crush the rest
2 avocados, sliced

Combine the tomatoes, cheese, onion, lettuce, and ground beef in a large bowl. Add the salad dressing and mix well. Just before serving, add the taco chips and avocado, tossing to combine with other ingredients.
Top with the whole tortilla chips and serve with sour cream on the side.

Turkey Club Salad
1 lb Smoked Turkey Breast, cubed
1 lb Swiss Cheese, cubed
Chopped green onion
4 heads Romaine lettuce
Creamy Ranch dressing (I like Marie's brand)
8 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled
Home made croutons (Recipe below)

Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and toss.

Broccoli Potluck Salad
1 head broccoli
6 to 8 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/2 cup raisins, optional
8 ounces sharp Cheddar, cut into very small chunks
1 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons white vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup halved cherry tomatoes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Trim off the large leaves from the broccoli stem.
Remove the tough stalk at the end and wash broccoli head thoroughly.
Cut the head into florets and the stem into bite-size pieces.
Place in a large bowl. Add the crumbled bacon, onion, raisins if using, and cheese.
In a small bowl, combine the remaining ingredients, stirring well.
Add to broccoli mixture and toss gently.

Corn Chowder
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 small onion, diced
1 small carrot, finely diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
 3 cups white corn kernels, fresh or frozen
 3 cups chicken stock
 2 cups half-and-half
 Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
 Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Melt 1 stick of butter in a large pot over medium heat, add the onion, carrot, and garlic, and saute for 2 minutes. Add the flour and stir, cook until the the entire mixture is lightly browned; Add the corn and chicken stock (I stir it real well while I add the chicken stock so it doesn't lump) and bring it to a boil. Simmer for 10 minutes. The mixture should become very thick.
In a small saucepan, gently heat the half-and-half but don't let it come to a boil, stir it into the thick corn mixture. Add the nutmeg and salt and pepper, to taste.

Sandwich, Wraps, and Burger Recipes...

Turkey Reuben 
For One Reuben
4 slices Honey Roasted Turkey (I use Boar's Head but any brand will do)
2 slices Swiss Cheese (Boar's Head again)
2 slices Jewish Rye (seeded or seedless)
1/2 cup Fresh Sauerkraut
2 tablespoons Thousand Island Dressing (I use Marie's brand but any type will do)

Begin by mixing the dressing and sauerkraut in a small bowl until well blended, set aside.
Spread Butter and Mayonnaise on first slice of Rye Bread and set, butter side down, on cold griddle pan. Turn the stove on to medium heat and allow bread slice to sit on griddle, as griddle warms up. While your griddle is warming, place the following items on the bread in this order, Swiss cheese, sliced turkey, coleslaw-dressing mix and second slice of bread with the buttered and mayo'd side up.
About this time the Sammie will be ready to flip, go ahead and flip sides (don't worry about any sauerkraut that falls into the pan, it will just pop around while hot).
Keep checking the bottom slice of bread to prevent burning and continue flipping Sammie as needed (but don't over flip).
When the Sammie is done, browned on both sides and the cheese is melted and gooey, give it a nice press with your spatula and turn off the heat, but don't remove it from the burner. Slice your Sammie in half and then remove it to a don't forget to move your pan away from the heat once your Sammie is gone :)
Serve with chips or sweet potato fries and a nice half sour pickle and enjoy.

Crunchy Garlic-Lime Chicken Wraps
Garlic Mayo Ingredients:
3 eggs
1 1/2 tsp vinegar
3 large garlic cloves
1 Tbsp lime juice
2 pinches salt
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
Garlic Mayo Directions: In a blender add eggs, vinegar, lime juice and salt. Blend on medium/high. While mixing, pour in the 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil slowly through the blender cap until mayo becomes thick and resists any more blending.
Pour into seal-able container and refrigerate, until ready to use.

Wrap Ingredients:
3 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, thinly sliced width-wise
3 limes, juice and zest
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup green onions, chopped
1 cup cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted
3 Tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 cups garlic mayo (recipe follows)
4-6 burrito size flour tortillas (12-inch)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

Wrap Directions: In a bowl, add chicken pieces, lime juice and zest, minced garlic, salt and pepper. Marinate in refrigerator while you prepare the garlic mayo (directions below).
On the stove over high heat, add olive oil in a large skillet.
When hot, add chicken pieces and allow to sear, about 5 minutes on each side, or until the juices run clear and chicken is golden brown.
Remove chicken pieces and allow to rest and cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes.
Once cooled, dice chicken into small pieces, toss with cilantro, green onions, almonds and 1 cup of the garlic mayo.
Spoon mixture down center of tortillas, fold up, fold in the ends, and roll up until sealed.
In a non-stick skillet over med/high heat, spray a little cooking spray and place chicken tortillas 1-2 at a time. Brown on each side.
Cut the wraps at an angle and serve with remaining 1/2 cup of garlic mayo as a dip.

Teriyaki Burgers
Teriyaki Marinade Ingredients:
3 1/2 cups water
2 cups soy sauce
2 cups light brown sugar
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder I know it sounds like a lot but you will use it all later.

Burger Ingredients: 
1 1/2 lbs ground beef (formed into 4 5oz patties)
1 can pineapple rings
4 slices cheddar cheese
4 sesame seed burger buns
1 sliced tomato
4 tbsp mayonnaise
1 cup shredded lettuce

Combine the Teriyaki sauce ingredients in a small saucepan. Heat over medium high heat, bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes or until the sauce thickens. Cover and chill marinade in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
Form the ground beef into 4 beef patties
Empty and drain the pineapple slices.
Pour 1/2 of the chilled marinade into a container big enough to hold the 4 beef patties, and set each patty into the container coating each side thoroughly. Pour 1/2 the remaining marinade over the patties, making sure not to touch the container to the beef...cover.
In a large Ziploc bag place the pineapple rings and the other half of the remaining marinade over them and place in the fridge next to the patties.
Refrigerate both for 4 hours.
When you are ready to cook your burgers, preheat your grill or BBQ to medium heat. I spray the grate with Pam to keep these from sticking. Cook your burger as you normally would, doneness wise. When you flip the burger, place the pineapple slices on the grill, they take half the time the burgers do. The pineapple slices are done when you can see grill marks on both sides. 1 minute before the patty is done, place the cheese on top to melt. Remove the patties and pineapple from the grill.
Turn on oven to broil, and butter the inside top and bottom of each bun and place on a cookie sheet, with the sesame side down. Watch closely as they toast really quick ( I've burned more buns!). Remove from oven.
Build your burger by placing about 2 tsp mayonnaise on the toasted faces of the top and bottom bun. Stack the hamburger patty on the bottom bun, and arrange the tomato slices on top of the patty. Follow with a pineapple slice on top of each tomato and finish with shredded lettuce.
Replace the top bun and serve with Sweet Tater Fries.

BBQ Sliders
1 lb. lean ground beef or turkey
2 Tbsp. finely chopped red onions
4 American singles, halved
8 slider buns, toasted (I use Martins potato dinner rolls)
1/2 cup coleslaw
4 slices of bacon, cooked, cut in half
1/3 cup BBQ sauce (We are a Sweet Baby Rays family)
Start with a Medium High heat grill...
Mix the meat and onions, and shape into 8 small patties...
Grill 3 min. on each side or until done (160ºF), topping with the cheese singles for the last minute...
Fill your buns with burgers and the remaining ingredients.

Fluffernutter Sandwich
2 slices fresh whole wheat bread
smooth peanut butter
marshmallow fluff

Lay the slices of bread open on a plate and spread one slice with peanut butter to cover the bread and leave a layer.
On the second slice spread the marshmallow fluff as you did the peanut butter (be sure to stir the fluff before spreading on bread).
Put the two slices of bread together in sandwich form, and take a huge honkin' bite!
Enjoy with a big glass of milk.

Appetizer Recipes...

Auntie Mare's Cheese Bread
1 French bread, sliced in half, lengthwise
10 ounces shredded Cheddar cheese
4 green onions, chopped
1 cup mayonnaise


Preheat broiler
Chop the green onions, I use my food processor until they are diced. In a large bowl combine the cheese, green onion and mayonnaise, until mixed completely.
Open the bread and lay both sides flat on a foil covered cookie sheet, with the cut sides up. Spread the cheese mixture on both halves of the bread, covering to the edges.
Place in the broiler for 2 minutes, watch closely as it will go from perfect to burned very quickly.
Slice it up and share with a friend or two...
***Be careful as the cheese is very hot and as we have all learned in my family, it can burn the roof of your mouth, thus ruining any further cheese bread enjoyment.

Chicken Taquitos
Chicken boneless breasts or your choice.
1 teaspoon Cumin
3 tablespoons Chili powder
2 Garlic cloves or 1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 medium Onion
2 medium Bell peppers
3 tablespoons Cooking oil your choice
1 Canned whole tomatoes or chopped 2 cups chicken broth
Salt to taste
12 to 24 Soft tortillas


In a four quart pan add chicken breasts.
Salt cover with water, bring to boil, loosely cover.
Cook over medium low heat for 1 hour, drain saving broth.
Set chicken aside to cool.
When cooled, chop in small pieces. In same pot add oil, saute` onion and bell peppers, diced. Cooking over low heat until lightly sauteed. Add chicken cooking 3 or 4 more minutes.
In blender add can tomato's, chili powder, garlic, cumin, oregano.
Pour mixture in pan along with 2 cups of broth. Bring to boil, cover and simmer over medium heat about 15 or 20 minutes, salt to taste.
Heat oil in skillet. Cook corn tortillas, one at a time, in hot oil until soft, about 5 to 10 seconds; drain.
Strain liquid, then spoon 1 tablespoons of the chicken meat in center of each tortilla Roll the tortilla around the chicken filling into flute shape. Use a toothpicks to hold the tortilla in shape.
* At this point I will often freeze them until I am ready to fry them, this seems to help the meat from overcooking and getting tough. :)
Fry chicken taquitos approximately 2-3 minutes or until tortilla holds its shape. Better taquitos are on the softer side, not crispy. You need to turn them only once.
Remove the toothpicks and serve 2-3 taquitos on a plate.
Serve with fresh salsa, sour cream and guacamole on the side.

Southwestern Egg Rolls
2 cooked skinless/boneless chicken breasts, diced (I use my food processor with the metal blade)
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 red pepper, chopped fine
2 green onions, chopped fine
1 can (5 oz) canned corn, drained
1 small can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can (3 oz) jalapeno peppers, drained and diced (optional)
1/2 tbsp minced fresh parsley
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp salt
dash cayenne pepper
1 1/2 cups shredded Monterrey jack cheese
six 7 inch flour tortillas
vegetable oil for frying


Preheat the 1 tbsp vegetable oil over medium-high heat in a skillet.
Add the red pepper and onion, and saute until tender.
Add the diced chicken, corn, black beans, spinach, jalapeno peppers, parsley, cumin, chili powder, salt, and cayenne pepper to the skillet and cook for another 5 minutes, stirring well.
Remove the pan from the heat and add the cheese. Stir until the cheese is melted.
Wrap the tortillas in a moist cloth and microwave on high, for 1 1/2 minutes or until hot (make sure your towel is moist or you will have a fire)
Spoon the mixture into the center of each tortilla, dividing it up evenly between the 6, fold each end inside the open tortilla and roll each one up very tight. Pierce it with a toothpick to hold it together. Repeat until you have 6 filled and rolled "egg rolls."
Arrange the egg rolls on a large plate and cover with plastic wrap, FREEZE for 4 hours or up to overnight.
Prepare the Avocado-Ranch Dipping sauce as follows:
1 small, ripe avocado
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream
1 tbsp buttermilk
1 1/2 tsp white vinegar
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp dried parsley
1/8 tsp onion powder
dash garlic powder
dash pepper
Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl and refrigerate until ready to fry the egg rolls, allow it to sit at room temp until the egg rolls are ready.
Preheat the oil until it reaches 375 degrees.
Deep fry the egg rolls in the hot oil until they become golden brown all over (12 to 15 minutes), and remove to paper towels to drain for a couple of minutes.
Slice each egg roll diagonally lengthwise and arrange on a plate around the dipping sauce.
Garnish the dipping sauce with chopped tomato and onion, and enjoy!

Side Recipes...

Sweet Tater Fries
3 sweet potatoes, washed
2 tablespoons canola oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degree, and I put the empty baking sheet in the oven.
Slice the sweet potatoes in half lengthwise.
Slice each half into 6 wedges.
Place wedges in a large bowl, add olive oil, season with salt and pepper, to taste, and toss to coat.
Remove the baking sheet from the oven.
Place the fries onto the baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.
Turn the fries and bake for another 15 minutes until brown and crispy.
Transfer to a serving bowl and serve.

Gulliver's Creamed Corn 
2 (20-ounce) packages frozen corn
1 cup (8 ounces) whipping cream
1 cup (8 ounces) milk
1 teaspoon salt
6 teaspoons sugar
Pinch of white or cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons melted butter
2 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Combine all ingredients, except butter and flour, in a pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.
Blend melted butter with flour in a small saucepan, add to the corn pot, mix well and remove from heat.
Pour corn mixture into a heat proof casserole, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and place under a broiler until evenly browned, watch carefully as it will brown quickly.
A Thanksgiving staple in  our house!

Main Dish Recipes...

Chicken Pot Pie

4-6 boneless and skinned chicken breasts
1 can Campbell's cream of chicken soup
1 bag frozen peas and carrot
1 bag frozen pearl onions
1 8 oz can mushrooms (optional)
1/2 cup of half and half (fat free is fine)
salt and pepper
1 9 inch pie crust (I use Pillsbury ready pie crust when time is limited) or recipe for "Perfect Easy Pie Crust" below my recipe.


Either prepare your crust using my recipe or let the Pillsbury package sit on the counter for 15 minutes while you prepare the filling.
Preheat oven to 375.
Cut your chicken up into 1 inch chunks and spray a large pot with Pam. Add the chicken chunks and cook until no longer pink. Add the chicken soup, salt, pepper, and half and half and simmer over low heat 5-7 minutes, being careful not to burn the bottom. Add the frozen vegetables and stir gently to mix the ingredients. Continue to simmer on low heat for 10 minutes. While your filling is simmering, roll your bottom dough out into your pie pan, and when your chicken filling is ready,  pour the hot ingredients into your bottom crust.  Roll the top crust to cover and seal the edges. Make a hole in the top middle and 4 slits around the top of the pie. Brush the entire top of the pie with a small amount of half and half to cover.
Bake at 350 for 45 minutes to 1 hour.

***Caution...the inside of the pie will be HOT so let it cool on your plate before taking a heaping fork full. Many burned tongues later I can vouch for this!

Fireside Winter Chili
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 teaspoons chopped garlic
2 pounds ground beef (ground turkey or venison works too)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons Tabasco
2 (16 ounce) cans kidney beans
1( 29 to 32-ounce) can diced tomato

Heat oil in a large skillet or dutch oven and saute onions until soft and translucent.
Add garlic and saute until it begins to turn golden, be careful not to burn it.
Add ground beef and cook until browned, drain off any fat.
Add the cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper. Add tomato paste, hot sauce, beans, cilantro, and tomatoes, simmer on low for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Sometimes I serve it over spaghetti with a slice of American cheese on top....but more often I just serve it up in hearty bowls with shredded cheddar cheese and chopped onions, and a hunk of cornbread.

Gooey Lasagna
8 ounces lasagna noodles
1 pound lean ground beef 
1/2 cup chopped onion 
8 ounces mushrooms, optional 
1 jar (about 16 ounces) spaghetti sauce, I use Prego 
1 teaspoon garlic powder 
1/2 teaspoon salt 
1 teaspoon dried leaf oregano, crumbled
1/2 teaspoon dried leaf basil, crumbled 
1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese 
2 cups shredded Monterrey Jack cheese 
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese 

Cook lasagna noodles according to package directions; drain and set aside. 
In a large skillet, brown beef, onion, and mushrooms; drain well. 
Stir in spaghetti sauce, garlic powder, salt, oregano, and basil. 
In a 2-quart buttered baking dish (about 11x7x2-inches), layer 1/3 of the lasagna noodles, 1/3 of the sauce and 1/3 of the ricotta cheese, Monterrey Jack cheese, and Parmesan cheeses. Repeat layers twice.
Bake at 350 for 1 hour, let stand for 15 minutes.

Hoppin' John Skillet
2 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, chopped
1 small red bell pepper, chopped
Garlic powder
2 cups black-eye peas, cooked
2 cups cooked rice
Salt and pepper to taste
8 sprigs fresh parsley, for garnish

Directions: Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.

Add onion, bell pepper, and garlic powder, to taste, and cook for 5 minutes.
Add peas and rice and cook an additional 10 to 15 minutes.
Be careful not to overcook; this dish is best if the bell pepper and onion still have a crunch to them. Add salt and pepper, to taste.
Serve hot and enjoy!

Hearty Hungarian Goulash
2 lbs boneless beef chuck stew meat (I cut each piece into 3rds)
1/4 cup sweet Hungarian paprika
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 onions
6 cloves garlic minced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup sour cream
Salt and ground black pepper to taste
Adjust an oven rack to the lower-middle position and heat the oven to 300 degrees.
Dry the beef thoroughly with paper towels, then season with salt and pepper and 1 tablespoon of the paprika.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat until just smoking.
Add the meat and cook until well browned on all sides, about 10 minutes, tossing gentle to cook all sides.
Transfer the browned meat to a plate.
Add the remaining tablespoon oil to the empty pot and return to medium heat until shimmering.
Add the onions, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and the remaining 3 tablespoons paprika.
Cook until the onions have softened, about 5 minutes.
Stir in the garlic and tomato paste and cook for 30 seconds.
Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute.
Slowly stir in the broth, scraping up any browned bits. Stir in the browned beef along with any accumulated juices.
Bring to a simmer, cover, and transfer the pot to the oven.
Cook for 1 hour and 20 minutes.
Remove the pot from the oven and remove 1/2 cup of liquid.
Whisk the stewing liquid into the sour cream and add the sour cream mixture to the stew, season with salt and pepper to taste before serving.
We love it over buttered egg noodles or mashed potatoes.

Fried Cabbage and Noodles

1 head green cabbage, shredded fine
2 sticks salted light butter
1 package wide egg noodles
Salt to taste


In a pasta pot boil egg noodles according to the package, drain and set aside.
Melt butter in a large saute pan.
Add shredded cabbage to pan and mix to coat completely.
Continue to cook the cabbage until it is soft and translucent.
When the cabbage is soft, translucent and no longer bright green, add the cooked and drained noodles to the cabbage pan.
Continue to fry the cabbage and noodle combination for about 5 minutes.
Serve Hot and Enjoy!

Dirty Rice and Blackeye Peas

1 box Zatarans "Dirty Rice"
1 15 oz can Blackeye Peas, drained and rinsed
1 lb ground beef (any ground meat works)...optional
Sometimes I leave out the meat all together and just begin cooking from the rice boiling directions.


Cook the Dirty Rice according to the box directions.
When the timer on the boiling rice gets to 5 minutes left in cooking time, I add the rinsed Blackeye Peas and Mix well.
Continue cooking to the end of the time and serve.

Spinach and Swiss Quiche
My recipe revolves around two pre-made items...Seabrook Farms Frozen Creamed Spinach  and Prepared pie crus (I use frozen Oronoke Orchards from Ralphs), but you could use any pie crust. I have even made them into 24 mini quiches using a mini-muffin I'm making two full sized quiches...

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

2 (prepared) pie crusts unbaked
1 pkg Seabrook Farms frozen creamed spinach, thawed
1 cup sour cream
2 cups Swiss cheese, grated
4 stalks green onion, chopped
6 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper

Beat eggs with heavy cream
Add remaining ingredients to mix
Pour into pie crusts, dividing evenly, do not overfill.
Place filled pie shells on a foil lined cookie sheet
Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour
Remove from oven and allow to sit for 5 minutes before slicing.

I'm serving it with a green salad
Let me know how you like it !

Dessert Recipes...

All American Flag Cake
1 box white or yellow cake
1 tub of cool whip
1 1/3 C of blueberries
2 pints of strawberries


Mix up and bake your cake according to the box's directions.
Wash your strawberries and set aside, on a paper towel to dry.
Top cake (in pan) with all of the whipped topping. Arrange strawberries and blueberries on whipped topping to create a flag design.
Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Enjoy it with family and friends.

Jam Print Cookies
3/4 pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
7 ounces sweetened flaked coconut
Raspberry and/or apricot jam
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until they are just combined and then add the vanilla. Separately, sift together the flour and salt. With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture to the creamed butter and sugar. Mix until the dough starts to come together. Dump on a floured board and roll together into a flat disk. Wrap in plastic and chill for 30 minutes.

Roll the dough into 1 1/4-inch balls. (If you have a scale they should each weigh 1 ounce.) Dip each ball into the egg wash and then roll it in coconut. Place the balls on an ungreased cookie sheet and press a light indentation into the top of each with your finger. Drop 1/4 teaspoon of jam into each indentation.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the coconut is a golden brown.
Cool and serve.
I store them in an airtight container for up to a week, if they last that long!

Red Velvet Cookies
1 Box Duncan Hines Red Velvet Cake Mix
2 eggs
1/3 cup oil

Mix all ingredients together to make the cookie dough.
Roll into balls and place on a lightly greased cookie sheet.
Flatten down slightly.
Bake at 375° until the tops crackle (about 8-10 minutes) or until desired doneness.
Cool completely and prepare the frosting...
Cream Cheese Frosting:
1 8 ounce package cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup stick butter, softened
2 teaspoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups powdered sugar
Beat cream cheese, margarine, milk and vanilla in medium bowl with electric mixer on low speed until smooth.
Gradually beat in powdered sugar on low speed, 1 cup at a time, until smooth and spreadable.
Once coolies are fully cooled...frost and enjoy!

Butterball Cookies
2 sticks butter, room temp
1 TBS real vanilla
3/4 Cup powdered sugar (confectioners), sifted
2 cups all purpose flour, sifted
2 cups chopped pecans 

Preheat oven to 325 degrees and grease cookie sheets.
Cream the butter and add the vanilla.
Gradually add the flour and the sugar.
Add the pecans and blend into dough gently.
Roll dough into 1/2 inch balls and place on greased cookie sheets. Bake for 10 minutes, watching closely.
Finish by dusting the cookies with powdered sugar, using a sifter.
Makes 4 dozen "melt in your mouth" cookies.
A Totally Fab Favorite From My Childhood!


1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons white sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
Cream together butter, shortening, 1 1/2 cups sugar, the eggs and the vanilla. Blend in the flour, cream of tartar, soda and salt. Shape dough by rounded spoonfuls into balls.
Mix the 2 tablespoons sugar and the cinnamon. Roll balls of dough in mixture. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets.
Bake 8 to 10 minutes, or until set but not too hard. Remove immediately from baking sheets.
3 dozen cookies.
Banana Split
1/2 cup scoop vanilla ice cream
1/2 cup scoop chocolate ice cream
1/2 cup scoop strawberry ice cream
1 large ripe bananas
2 tablespoons chocolate syrup ( or Hot Fudge)
2 tablespoons strawberry ice cream topping
2 tablespoons crushed pineapple
2 tablespoons chopped nuts
abundant whipped cream
3 maraschino cherries


Line up ice cream scoops next to each other in an oval deep dish or a banana boat.
Cut the ends of the banana off (about 1/4 inch) while still in the peel.
Slice in half longways.
Pop each half of the banana out of the peel onto each side of the ice cream row, pressing down and in a little so it'll stay put.
Top the vanilla ice cream with the pineapple, the chocolate with the chocolate syrup and the strawberry with the strawberry sauce.
Top each scoop with a nice round top of whipped cream and a cherry.
Spoon the nuts over all three scoops of ice cream.
Enjoy every bite!

Easter Hay Stacks
8 ounces milk chocolate, chopped
2 - 2 1/2 cups chow mein noodles
12 -18 small jelly beans, speckled malted milk eggs, or other egg shaped candy

Line a baking pan with a piece of aluminum foil, smooth the foil, and then butter or spray the foil with a non stick vegetable spray.
Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Gently fold in the chow mein noodles, being careful not to break them.
Spoon six mounds of the mixture onto the prepared pan and, using your fingers, form each mound into a 4 inch (10 cm) nest shape. Make a small indentation in the center of each nest.
Place the pan, with the chocolate nests, in the refrigerator to set (about 30 minutes). Just before serving, remove the nests from the refrigerator and place 2-3 small jelly beans or other egg shaped candy in the center of each nest.
Makes about six - 4 inch nests.

Cherry Buckle
Streusel Topping Ingredients:
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated white sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
Cake Batter Ingredients:
1 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/3 cup granulated white sugar
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
Filling Ingredients:
2 cans cherry pie filling (your favorite recipe)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Butter, or spray with a non-stick vegetable spray, an 9 x13 baking pan.
For the Streusel Topping: In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugars, and ground cinnamon. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or fork until it resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside while you make the cake batter.
For the Cake Batter: In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
In the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, cream the butter. Add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until incorporated. Add the flour mixture (in three additions), alternately with the milk (in two additions), and beat only until combined. Spread about 1/4 cup of batter into the bottom of the pan.
Place cherry pie filling on top of the batter and cover with about 1/3 cup of the streusel topping.
Place the baking pan in the oven and bake for about 25 - 30 minutes or until the streusel is browned and the filling starts to bubble. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool about 20 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Very Berry Pie
7 1/2 ounces water
6 1/2 ounces granulated sugar
Dash of salt
1 tablespoon corn syrup
1 teaspoon lemon juice
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 ounces water
1 (16 ounce) bag frozen boysenberries (DO NOT THAW)
2-crust pie shell (Recipe Below)

In a saucepan, combine water, sugar, salt, corn syrup and lemon juice. Bring to a boil.
Combine cornstarch and water, blending thoroughly and add frozen boysenberries.
Pour boysenberry combo into unbaked 9-inch pie crust, ladle saucepan syrup over berrys. Cover with second top crust and seal well around the edges. Make several slashes in the top to release steam.
Bake in a preheated 400 degree F oven for 40 minutes or until top is golden brown.
Cool on a rack.
Serve with vanilla ice cream and Enjoy!

Fresh Strawberry Pie
1 (9 inch) pie crust, baked
1 cup white sugar
3 tablespoons strawberry flavored gelatin
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup boiling water
2 pints strawberries, cleaned and stemmed
2 cups whipping cream

Combine sugar, gelatin, cornstarch, and salt in a medium saucepan.
Stir in boiling water.
Boil mixture for 3 minutes over high heat, stirring constantly.
Cool completely
Arrange whole strawberries in pastry shell. Pour gelatin mixture over berries.
Chill before serving.
Top with whipped cream.

Chocolate White Chocolate Chunk Cookies
1/2 pound unsalted butter (room temperature)
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 cup granulated sugar * 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract * 2 extra-large eggs
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 pounds white chocolate, coarsely chopped


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
Cream the butter and both sugars until light and fluffy in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.
Add the vanilla, then the eggs, 1 at a time, and mix well.
Add the cocoa and mix again.
Sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt and add to the chocolate with the mixer on low speed until just combined.
Fold in the chopped white chocolate.
Drop the dough on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, using a 1 3/4-inch ice cream scoop or a rounded tablespoon.
Dampen your hands and flatten the dough slightly.
Bake for exactly 15 minutes (the cookies will seem underdone).
Remove from the oven and let cool slightly on the pan, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Enjoy!

Chocolate Truffles
1/2 pound good bittersweet chocolate
1/2 pound good semisweet chocolate
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon prepared coffee
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Unsweetened Cocoa powder
Crushed Heath Bar


Chop the chocolates finely with a sharp knife, and place them in a heat-proof mixing bowl.
Heat the cream in a small saucepan until it just boils. Turn off the heat and allow the cream to sit for 20 seconds. Pour the cream through a fine-meshed sieve into the bowl with chocolate.
With a wire whisk, slowly stir the cream and chocolates together until the chocolate is completely melted. Whisk in the coffee, and vanilla. Set aside at room temperature for 1 hour.
With 2 teaspoons, spoon round balls of the chocolate mixture onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Refrigerate for 30 minutes, until firm.
Roll each dollop of chocolate in your hands to roughly make a round ball.
Roll in cocoa powder or crushed Heath bar crumbs.
These will keep refrigerated for weeks, but serve at room temperature.

Banana Pudding

Pudding Ingredients:
1 4oz pkg Jello Vanilla cook & serve pudding
3 medium bananas, sliced thin
1 (12-ounce box) vanilla wafers

Meringue Ingredients:

3 egg whites (I save the yolks for a nice egg bread)
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/4 cup sugar
Begin by preparing the vanilla pudding, according to the directions on the box.
Once the pudding has cooled to room temp, layer in a 9 by 9-inch oven proof baking dish, alternating the pudding, bananas, and wafers, beginning with pudding and ending with pudding.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Prepare the topping, by beating the egg whites and cream of tartar until soft peaks form.
Gradually add sugar until stiff peaks form, then spread onto top of pudding mixture.
Place into a preheated 350 degrees F oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until the peaks of the meringue brown.

Remove and let sit for about an hour, before serving.
I like to sprinkle a handful of crushed wafers over the top, just before serving.

Pecan Pie
1 whole Unbaked Pie Crust
1 cup White Sugar
3 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
1/2 teaspoon Salt
2/3 cup light Corn Syrup
3/4 teaspoons Vanilla
1/3 cup Melted Butter (salted)
3 whole Eggs, Beaten
11/2 cups (heaping) Chopped Pecans (your choice pre-baked or unbaked)

I find that pre-baking my pecans makes it so much richer (but it is not necessary)...if you chose to pre-bake the pecans, lay them out in a single layer on a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, turning your cookie sheet halfway through baking. Let the pecans cool, and then pour them into the bottom of your unbaked pie crust.
Next, mix the sugars, salt, corn syrup, butter, beaten eggs, and vanilla together in a bowl.
Pour the syrup mixture over the top of the pecans, into the pie shell. You'll notice the pecans will slowly rise to the top...this is normal.
Lay the whole pie on a cookie case it drips over the edge while baking (this is a night mare in your oven).
Cover top and crust lightly/gently with foil...I just lay a flat piece over the whole pie.
Bake pie at 350º for 30 minutes. Remove foil, then continue baking for 25 minutes, being careful not to burn the crust or pecans.
Special Note...This is a fussy pie, but so worth the effort...I have never had it take less than 50 minutes total baking time, however it has ranged in total baking time from 55 minutes to 75 minutes on different occasions, without any reason for the additional time. So, my rule is that I follow the original instructions, but after the 25 minutes uncovered, I check it for a firm (non-jiggly) pie center, and then I continue baking in 5 minute increments until it is all set.
Let cool completely and serve with vanilla ice cream or fresh whipped cream...heaven!

Sweet Potato Pie
4 ounces butter, softened
3 cups cooked and mashed sweet potatoes
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 small can (5 ounces, about 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons) evaporated milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 prepared pie shells, unbaked
I begin by baking the sweet potatoes, just as I would for supper and once they cool just peel off the skins and mash.
Next mix into the mash...butter, sugars and evaporated milk until well blended. Add vanilla, eggs, and cinnamon; mix well.
Pour into the prepared pie shells.
Bake in a 350° oven for about 1 hour, until set.
I let the pie cool completely before I cut into it, as this seems to allow the filling to set...then I top it with cool whip.
Makes 2 pies.

Peppermint Bark
Crushed candy canes, to yield 1 cup
2 pounds white chocolate (I use "Tollhouse" white morsels)

Place candy canes in a plastic bag and hammer into 1/4-inch chunks or smaller.
Melt the white chocolate.
Combine candy cane chunks with melted white chocolate.
 Pour mixture onto a cookie sheet layered with parchment or waxed paper and place in the refrigerator for 45 minutes or until firm.
Remove from cookie sheet and break into pieces (like peanut brittle).