Saturday, November 30, 2013

Caramel Cinnamon Sticks

This recipe is something sweet and easy for the bread lover in you.  It uses one of my favorite ingredients, frozen Puff Pastry sheets.  Almost all the work is done for you. You only need 5 ingredients and people will think you fussed for hours.

1 Box of frozen Puff Pastry Sheets
1 cup caramel sauce
1 tsp. Kosher salt
2 tbs. cinnamon and sugar mix (4 parts sugar and 1 part cinnamon)
1 egg

Roll out each thawed pastry sheet so they’re the same size.  On one of the sheets, pour about 1 cup of the caramel sauce.  Brush the caramel evenly onto the pastry sheet and top it with the other pastry sheet.

Brush with egg wash (one beaten egg and a bit of water).

Sprinkle a tiny bit of Kosher salt on top of the egg wash and then sprinkle the top with the sugar and cinnamon mixture.  Spread it out evenly with your hands.

Slice the sheets into about 1/4″ slices and twist together.  I use my pizza cutter.

I always have cinnamon and sugar mixture already made for my cinnamon toast lover Sal (made cinnamon toast for him yesterday for breakfast) and since Sal is with me this weekend, decided to make these with him today.  Easy enough for an 8 year old to do.

Bake them at 350 degrees for about 12 to 15 minutes, until they’re golden and puffed.

Your house will smell wonderful and your family will have a treat warm out of the oven that they will love you for. 

Have a great day, be happy and may God bless you and yours.  

PS.  Sal says it would be better if we had caramel dipping sauce to dip them in.  We only had a 1/2 a jar so didn't have any more for dipping.  Next time I will make sure we have a full jar.  

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

Taking a break today since I'm busy in the kitchen.  I hope you have a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving.  May God bless you and yours on this day that we give thanks for all that we are blessed with.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Fluff It Up

One more day until Thanksgiving.  Here are some other simple salads you can make for Thanksgiving.  You get to pick what flavor you like best.


New vs. old.  What to do?  

The one above is very old and a little different than what I call a fluff but has the same ingredients.  It is just assembled different.

1 pkg. of red raspberry Jello
1 cup of hot water
1 pkg. frozen raspberries
1/2 cup whipped cream
1/2 cup small marshmallows
3 oz. whipped cream cheese

Dissolve the gelatin in hot water.  Add the raspberries and their juice. Pour into a 5 x 8 inch loaf pan and chill until firm.  Whip together your cream, marshmallows and cream cheese until stiff.  Spread over gelatin mixture and chill.  

The following is a more contemporary recipe for raspberry fluff. 

1 pkg. of red raspberry Jello
1 cup of hot water
1 pkg. frozen raspberries
1 cup whipped topping 
1 cup small marshmallows
1 pkg. whipped cream cheese

Dissolve the gelatin in hot water.  Add the raspberries and their juice.  Let it set until it is semi firm.  Fold your cream cheese and whipped topping together.  Add it to your Jello and fold in until uniform color through out.  Fold in your marshmallows.  Refrigerate it until you serve.

Take the same recipe and turn it into your own by simply changing the fruit.  You can start with the Raspberry Fluff Salad recipe above and change the Jello to orange and put Mandarin oranges in it making an orange fluff salad. 

Change it to a strawberry fluff salad by using strawberry Jello and fresh or frozen strawberries. 

Use an instant vanilla pudding to replace the Jello (only use 1/2 the milk called for) and use a can of drained fruit cocktail and add some Marciano cherries and Mandarin oranges and make a mixed fruit fluff.  You can also add bananas if you like. 

You can take any of these salads and add other flavors such as coconut or walnuts.

Just start with a simple base of Jello or pudding, add whipped cream, cream cheese, marshmallows and your favorite fruit or fruit combinations.  It will be hard to pick your favorite fluff.  

Have a great day, be happy and may God bless you and yours. 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Stove Top Mac with Broccoli

Do you serve macaroni and cheese at Thanksgiving?  Many do.  This is a great recipe because you can fix it on your stove top and not have to use oven space.  You can pick any pasta you like and add additional flavors also.  For those who do not like the broccoli, you can leave it out.

16 oz. macaroni
4 tbs. butter
1/3 to ½ cup flour
2 ½ cups milk or heavy cream
4 oz. American cheese
8 oz. extra sharp cheddar
1 tbs. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. Kosher salt
Pinch of pepper
1 pkg. thawed frozen broccoli
¼ tsp. hot sauce (optional)

In a large stockpot, cook pasta according to package directions. Drain well.

While the pasta cooks, melt the butter in a small sauce pan over medium heat. When the butter has melted and has started to bubble, whisk in the flour; cook for 1 ½ minutes whisking constantly.  Gradually whisk in the milk until no lumps remain. Reduce the heat to low and cook milk mixture, whisking frequently, until it thickens and bubbles, about 8 minutes.

Remove sauce pan from the heat and by the handful, stir in the cheeses allowing all of the cheese to melt into the sauce before adding more. Stir in the thawed broccoli, mustard, salt, pepper and hot sauce if you desire. Return the sauce pan to the heat and stir in the pasta. Be sure to stir up the sauce from the bottom of the sauce pan and thoroughly coat all of the pasta with sauce. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes over low heat until heated through. 

Variation – For other meals, make it a complete meal by adding lean cooked ground beef or ground turkey.  Add a little onion to your ground meat when you fry it (make sure you season the hamburger with a little salt and pepper while cooking).

Hope you have a great Tuesday, be happy and may God bless you and yours.  

Monday, November 25, 2013

Homemade Sage Sausage and Sausage Dressing

This year why not make your own sage sausage for your sausage dressing for Thanksgiving.  You get to control the seasoning then.  You can tell everyone you made everything in the dressing, including the sausage. 

Homemade Sage Sausage

1 lb. ground pork
½ tsp. Kosher salt
½ tsp pepper
¼ tsp. red pepper flakes (optional)
¼ tsp. sage (flakes or ground)  Double if you are using fresh 
¼ tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. brown sugar
¼ tsp. thyme
¼ garlic powder

Mix all ingredients until well combined.  Use your hands.  Make sure all spices are incorporated.

Fry a small sample of it and taste it to see if you need to adjust the seasoning.  You may wish to add a little more sage since it is sage dressing.  It is easier to have too little and add since you can’t take it out.  I love sage so add more (1/2 tsp. sage total).  I dried my sage in the microwave in the fall and have lots of sage to use up.  I then put it in a mortar and pestle and grind it.

Double the recipe and make up a double batch to set aside for Sunday brunch.  Make biscuits and gravy or sausage patties.  You can fry and freeze the patties and have them ready to reheat in the microwave for a breakfast. 

Variation  - You may make this with ground turkey using the same spices.

Sage Sausage Dressing

Now is the time to pick great day old rustic bread up.  Walmart usually has some in the back of the store for sale.  The crustier the better.  If you want to go the easy route, buy unseasoned dressing croutons that are dried and cut for you.  I have been known to do this (I did it this week).

1 lbs. sage sausage
2 tbs. butter
1 small onion
2 stalks celery
1 large carrot
4 cloves garlic
1 tsp. dried sage
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 egg
6 cups of 1″ bread cubes, from stale crusty bread
Kosher salt and pepper
1 cup chicken stock plus

Preheat oven to 425º.  Pulse onion, celery, and carrot in a food processor until finely chopped.

Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat.  Add the sausage and break it up into small, bite sized pieces, cooking until browned.  Remove the sausage with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with paper towels. 

Add butter to the grease remaining in the pan, and scrape up the drippings.  When the butter is melted, add the onion, celery, and carrots from the food processor.  Cook until soft and add the garlic.  Cook for one minute.  Remove from heat and fold in the sage and thyme. 

Scrape the mixture into a large bowl and let cool slightly.  Add the sausage to the bowl.  Pour the slightly beaten egg over the mixture, add the bread and mix to blend everything evenly.  Pour the chicken stock over the stuffing and mix well.  Season the dressing with a little salt and pepper. I like my dressing wet, so I add more broth.  You can decide how wet you want yours. 

Grease a casserole dish and scrape the stuffing into the dish.  Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until golden brown.

My mother has always made the sausage dressing for Thanksgiving so I love it, but I also love oyster dressing so since it is Thanksgiving, I put a little of both on my plate.  I’m lucky because my daughter-in-laws mother brings both. That is one of the so many things I am very thankful for on Thanksgiving.

Hope you have a wonderful Monday, be happy and may God bless you and yours.  

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Pumpkin Chimies

Do you want to try a pumpkin recipe for Thanksgiving that is a super simple and has few ingredients?  Make sure you get the pumpkin pie filling, not plain pumpkin.  The filling is seasoned and sweetened and ready to use.  These are great served warm or room temperature. 

Pumpkin Chimichanga

Small flour tortillas
1 can of pumpkin pie filling
Caramel topping
Powdered sugar

Lay out one tortilla and spread the filling evenly down the center.   Turn the ends in like your would making a burrito and then roll the chimi up and secure it with a tooth pick so it does not fall about when you fry it.

Heat your oil on medium until it is hot.  Fry the chimies in hot oil up until they’re evenly golden.  Flip them over when they are golden on one side.  Drain them on some paper towel and take out the toothpicks.

Sprinkle them with some powdered sugar.  Serve them with caramel sauce and let everyone drizzle the sauce over their chimies or top with a caramel whipped cream. 

Caramel Whipped Cream

Combine 1/4 cup caramel sauce and ¼ cup cold heavy cream in a large chilled bowl; beat with an electric mixer on medium speed to loosen, then add ¾ cup cold heavy cream and beat to soft peaks.

If you are tired of the pumpkin pie, you need to try these.  Kids will love them.

Have a great Sunday, be happy and may God bless you and yours.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Turkey Dressing Sandwiches

In Iowa, to extend turkey for large groups of people like a wedding reception or anniversary party, we make turkey dressing sandwiches on a bun.  It is another starch on starch recipe like our chicken and noodles on mashed potatoes.  If you grew up on it like I did, you’ll love it.

I’m not cooking the turkey this year for Thanksgiving so I’m not going to have left overs.  I bought myself a small turkey breast today and roasted it up, so I can have left overs to make dressing sandwiches. Here is the recipe if you can’t wait for turkey like me or to use your left over turkey after the big day. 

Small cooked full turkey breast
1 medium onion, chopped (1/2 cup)
1 medium stalk celery, chopped (1/2 cup)
1 medium carrot, chopped (1/2 cup)
1 package (14 ounces) sage and onion stuffing mix
2 cups chicken broth
Kosher salt and pepper to taste
Hamburger buns

Chop your onion, celery and carrot in a food processor. 

Toss all ingredients except buns into a 4 quart slow cooker.  When you pick your turkey, you will want 50% turkey and 50% dressing.  Cover and cook on low heat setting 8 to 9 hours.  To serve, scoop about 1/2 cup turkey mixture into each buttered bun. You can also speed things up and roast in the oven at 350 degrees until toasted on top (about 30 minutes).

The recipe makes it a little easy on you because it uses a premixed sage and onion stuffing mix.  I like the Brownsberry but there are many out there right now.  You can also use stale left over bread (toast it under the broiler a little) and add some sage, salt and pepper.

Variation – A great cook that I worked with years ago liked to add cream of mushroom soup to hers and would put some turkey gravy on top.  I loved hers.  She also left out the carrots and celery.  If you want to try hers, just add the soup and slowly add the broth to make sure it is not too wet.  You may not end up needing all of it.  Save your demi glace from your roasted turkey and make gravy by adding a little chicken broth, seasoning (I just season with salt and pepper) and a slurry of cornstarch and water.  When you put it in the crock pot or oven, put a layer of gravy on top to seep down into the dressing.

The juice in the bottom of the pan is your demi glace and makes the best gravy because of the bone in.

I’ll be using some of this for another starch of starch recipe of turkey and noodles on mashed potatoes.  Yum. 

I can’t wait for Thanksgiving.  Be happy and may God bless you and yours.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Cranberry Apple Fluff

You will need to plan ahead on this cranberry salad recipe because you need to let the cranberries sit over night with sugar.  This salad has been a staple at many of our Thanksgiving dinners and goes perfect with the turkey, potatoes and gravy.  I’m happy with just those on my plate.  I’ll take this over green bean casserole any time. 

1 bag of fresh cranberries
1 cup sugar (you can cut down the sugar if you like)
2 red apples
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
2 cups small marshmallows
1 cup of grapes or maraschino cherries (you pick)
8 oz. whipped topping like whipped topping

Chop cranberries in a processor until they are finely chopped.  Add the sugar and let set overnight in the refrigerator.  

Cut up apples in small pieces and add to cranberries.  Add walnuts, grapes or cherries and marshmallows.  Cut your grapes or cherries in half.  I prefer the cherries for the red color, but green grapes or red grapes are great also.  Fold in the whipped topping.  

Garnish with some cherries and walnuts on the top. 

Variations:  You can add 2 stalks of celery for more color or crunch.  I'd use it instead of the grapes or cherries.  It becomes a whole new salad.  You can use pecans if you like in place of the walnuts. 

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Cranberry Salad

A Thanksgiving meal is not complete without cranberries.  Here is a new twist on a cranberry salad.

1 (6 oz) pkg. cherry Jello
2 cups boiling water
2 large golden delicious apples (you can use any apple you have)
1 cup chopped pecans
1 can cranberry sauce 
1/2 jar of Marciano cherries cut in half 


1 (8 oz) pkg. whipped cream cheese
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
8 oz. whipped topping
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Chop your apples finely or grate.  You can peel them if you like.  The recipe calls for a golden delicious for color, but if you want to use a red apple that would be just as pretty.  The original recipe called for peeling the apple so it would not matter.  I'm leaving the skin on.

Cut your cherries in half.

Dissolve Jello in boiling water, stir to mix, set aside to cool. Add apples, pecans, and cranberry sauce. Turn into a 13 x 9 inch dish and chill until firm.
Blend whipped cream cheese with powdered sugar until smooth.  Add vanilla to whipped topping and fold with wooden spoon. Gradually add whipped topping mixture to cream cheese mixture. Spread evenly over firm set Jello mixture, sprinkle toasted pecans on top. Keep chilled until serving time.

  • Add some of the cherry juice to the whipped topping for red color. 
  •  Replace the cherries with pineapple.
  • You can use walnuts or your favorite nut 
  • You can use fresh cranberries.  I just put them in a food processor, chop finely, and add sugar to taste.  I let them set over night for the cranberries to absorb the sugar before making the recipe.   
Don't forget the cranberries.  You can't have turkey without them.

Have a great day.  Be happy and may God bless you and yours.  

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Carrot and Apple Salad

Here is another possible salad for Thanksgiving or any time.  I love the fall colors and think it would go great with the turkey.

½ cup mayonnaise
1 tbs. lemon or lime juice
1 tsp. lemon or lime zest
1 tbs. cider vinegar
2 tbs. honey
Pinch of cinnamon and/or nutmeg to the dressing
5 carrots, peeled and sliced thinly
1 unpeeled Granny Smith apple
¼ cup walnuts
¼ cup onion
Kosher salt and pepper to taste
Peel and slice your carrots thinly. Slice your unpeeled apple.  Grate your onion.  Chop the walnuts.

Combine mayo, citrus juice, citrus zest, vinegar, and honey in a small bowl.  Add a pinch of cinnamon and/or nutmeg to the dressing.  Taste to adjust seasoning.  Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the carrots, apple, onion, and walnuts. Mix well. Pour the dressing over and mix until all ingredients are evenly incorporated. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Variation – Do you like raisins?  Add a ¼ cup of raisins to the salad.  Or chop some celery and add it to the salad for additional color and nutrition.  

It is also gluten free and dairy free.

Hope you have a great day.  Be happy and may God bless you and yours. 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Corn Bread Pudding

While having a test run last week at the hospital, the tech asked me what I was doing for Thanksgiving and what was my favorite dish.  He said he looked forward to the green bean casserole and could hardly wait to bite into the crispy onion rings on top.  I never eat the green bean casserole and told him he could eat mine.  That has got me on a quest to look for something new and different for Thanksgiving.  How about a corn puddin'?

2 cups yellow self-rising cornmeal mix
1 can drained corn (you may use thawed frozen corn if you like)
1 cream style corn
2 eggs
1 stick butter
¼ cup green onion
1 tsp. salt
½ cup buttermilk
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Mix cornmeal with the corn.  Add eggs and butter and mix.  Add onion (you may substitute the green onion with regular grated onion if you like), salt, buttermilk and 1 cup of the shredded cheese.  Pour into a sprayed casserole dish.  Sprinkle the remaining cup of shredded cheese on top.  Bake in preheated 400 degree oven 35 to 40 minutes until brown on top.  Makes about 12 large servings.

Note:  If you can’t find self-rising cornmeal mix, you can make your own using regular cornmeal. 

For 1 cup self-rising cornmeal mix combine:
¾ cup cornmeal
3 tablespoons flour
1 tbs. baking powder

½ tsp. salt

I get off easy this year because I only have to carry a couple of side dishes.  Only problem with that is, I won't have turkey left overs though.  I'll still put a turkey breast in the oven for left overs just for me.  What are you having?

Just a little over a week away.  I can hardly wait.

Have a great day, be happy and may God bless you and yours. 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Mashed Potatoes 101

Thanksgiving mandate is mashed potatoes and gravy.  I thought I’d share a new secret I just found that makes a huge difference in lighter potatoes.

There is a secret to mashed potatoes and how light and fluffy and airy they can be.

6 medium russet potatoes
2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 cup soft butter
1/2 cup warmed half and half cream

Peel and quarter your potatoes.  Russets make the best mashed potatoes, but you can also use Yukon Gold.

Place potatoes in a large pot with just enough cold water to cover them.  Never put in warm water.  You potatoes will cook evenly if you start with cold water.  Add 1 teaspoon of the kosher salt to the water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer about 20 to 25 minutes.

Drain the boiled potatoes until all water is removed.  Put back in the warm pot after draining them in a colander and let them sit a minute to evaporate any water still on them.  The drier they are the better.  Leaving too much water on the potatoes ruins a lot of mashed potatoes.

Add the salt, pepper, baking powder, butter and half and half and beat with an electric mixer just until they are light and fluffy until no longer lumpy (I like to leave a few lumps in to let everyone know they are real mashed potatoes).  Don't over beat them, because that is what turns your mashed potatoes to that gluey texture.
The baking powder is the secret ingredient.  It reacts with the warm potatoes and the cream and this is what gives them the extra lightness and fluffiness.  Also, the half and half cream is another key.  It has just the right amount of fat.  Heavy cream tends to have too much fat and whole milk, not enough, but half and half is just right.

Variation – Sometimes I like to leave some of the potato skins on for extra nutrition and texture.  I use red potatoes for the color if I’m leaving skins on.   For even more flavor add 1 tsp. of garlic powder when you are adding the half and half and butter.  You can also add some Parmesan cheese or Cheddar cheese and/or a bit of chopped bacon. A bit of sour cream will make them even better.  My brother Dion likes to add onion sour cream dip to his. 

Save that potato water for the gravy.  It will add more nutrition to your drippings from the turkey when you are making turkey gravy.

Have a great week, be happy and may God bless you and yours.  

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Copy Cat Bisquick Recipe

I love copy cat recipes when it means saving money or not having to run to the store for something.  I found quite a few of these and some had powdered milk in and some did not.  This one does not.  Believe this one is very close to the real one though.

8 cups flour
4 tablespoons sugar
4 tablespoons baking powder
4 teaspoons salt
1 cup shortening

Combine all of the dry ingredients into a large bowl, whisking them together to blend.

Using a pastry fork or blender mix in the shortening till the mixture looks like coarse crumbs.

Store the mix in plastic bags or an airtight container for up to 1 month at room temperature; or longer in the freezer.

Recipes Using The Mix:


2 cups mix
1/2 cup cold milk

Preheat the oven to 450°F.

In a large bowl, stir together the baking mix and milk to make a soft dough.  Turn the dough out onto a work surface sprinkled with baking mix, sprinkle the top of the dough with a bit more mix, and knead a few turns, until cohesive.  Pat the dough about 3/4" thick, and cut with a 2" to 2 1/2" biscuit cutter. Place the biscuits on an ungreased baking sheet.

Bake the biscuits for 8 to 12 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from the oven, and serve hot.
Yield: about a dozen biscuits, depending on size.


My mother always made her dumplings with Bisquick.  This is what I know as a dumpling.

2 cups mix
2/3 cup milk

Stir ingredients until soft dough forms.  Drop by spoonfuls onto boiling stew or chicken and reduce heat.  Cook uncovered 10 minutes. Cover and cook 10 minutes.


3 cups Mix
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup dried fruit or nuts, cinnamon chips, lemon chips, or the flavored chip of your choice
1 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
2 large eggs
1 cup milk
Cinnamon-sugar or coarse sugar, for the tops of the muffins (optional)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.  Prepare a muffin pan by lightly greasing the 12 muffin cups.

In a large bowl, whisk together the All-Purpose Mix, sugar, dried fruits or nuts or chips, and cinnamon.   In a separate bowl or cup, whisk together the eggs and milk, then stir these liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients.

Use a muffin scoop or 1/4-cup measure to fill the muffin cups 3/4 full. Sprinkle the tops with cinnamon-sugar or coarse sugar, if desired.

Bake the muffins for 18 to 22 minutes, till they're golden. Remove them from the oven, and allow them to cool in the pan for 5 to 8 minutes. Rap the pan on the edge of a counter sharply to loosen the muffins, and turn them out onto a rack. Serve them warm. Yield: 12 muffins.

Cinnamon Rolls

4 cups mix
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup + 1 to 2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla

3/4 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons milk
1/2 cup diced pecans or raisins (optional)
1/2 cup cinnamon chips (optional)

1 cup confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons cream or 2 to 3 tablespoons milk

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Dough: In a medium-sized bowl whisk together all of the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, the milk, and vanilla. Combine the dry and wet ingredients, and mix to form a slightly sticky dough. Flatten the dough into a rectangle, cover it, and let it rest for 15 minutes.

Filling: In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients, then cut in the butter. Add milk to form a spreadable paste; reserve the nuts and chips for later.

Assembly: Generously flour your work surface, and roll the dough into a 12 x 15 inch rectangle, sprinkling both sides of the dough with flour if it's very sticky. Spread the dough with the filling, and sprinkle it with the nuts or raisins, and cinnamon chips, if you're using them. Starting at a short edge, carefully roll the dough into a log. Cut the log into 12 1 inch slices.

Lay the rolls in a lightly greased 9 x 13 inch pan. Bake for 22 to 25 minutes, until they're golden brown. Let them cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then spread or drizzle them with the glaze, which you've made by whisking together the sugar, vanilla, and cream or milk. For best flavor and texture, serve the rolls warm. Yield: 12 rolls.


2 1/2 cups mix
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
3/4 cup raisins, currants, or the dried fruit of your choice
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg
1/3 cup whole milk or cream
Coarse white sugar or cinnamon-sugar, for topping (optional)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Whisk the sugar, dried fruit and nutmeg into the mix. Whisk the vanilla, egg and milk/cream together, and stir them into the dry ingredients. Mix until evenly moistened.

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface. Gently fold it over until it holds together. Place it on a lightly greased baking sheet, pat it into an 8 inch circle, and cut it into 8 wedges. Pull the wedges apart slightly. Brush the tops of the scones with a bit of milk, and sprinkle them with coarse sugar.

Bake them for 18 to 22 minutes, until lightly browned. Yield: 8 scones. 

Pancakes or Waffles

1 to 1 1/4 cups  milk
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
2 cups mix

In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the milk, egg and vanilla, if you're using it. Mix these liquid ingredients into the All-Purpose Mix and stir gently until only a few small lumps remain.

Heat a griddle or cast iron pan over medium heat. Brush it with oil or melted butter.  When the griddle is the proper temperature a drop of water will bounce across the surface. Use a 1/4-cup measure or muffin scoop to ladle the batter onto the griddle. Turn the pancakes over when the bubbles that appear on the surface remain open. Cooking the other side of the pancakes will take a much shorter time, perhaps only 30 seconds or so, depending on the heat of the griddle and the thickness of the pancakes. Remove the pancakes from the griddle, and serve them hot. Yield: 1 dozen 3-inch pancakes.

Variations -  You can add chocolate chips, blueberries and even fresh corn to make corn cakes.

The same batter may be used for waffles; however, add a tablespoon of vegetable oil to the batter to make a crisper waffle. Be sure to grease the waffle iron, and preheat it. Waffle irons differ considerably, but most will cook waffles in 2 to 4 minutes.  Yield: 3 or 4 large waffles.

Corn cakes made by adding corn to the batter.  Pour maple syrup on them.  Yum!

You can go wild with Sunday brunch.  

Hope you have a great Sunday.  Be happy and may God bless you and yours. 

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Peanut Butter Health Bites

I'm making these and taking some to mom.  We both love peanut butter and are trying to increase having it in our daily diet because of the health benefits.  These have other healthy ingredients in it but they taste wonderful. I was able to purchase everything a Fareways except the local honey.  I picked that up at The Trading Post.

3/4 cup chucky peanut butter 
1/3 cup local honey
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup certified organic rolled oats
½ cup of coconut
2 tsp. of  flax seed (you can substitute sesame seeds)
½ cup mini dairy free chocolate chips (I can now get in the health food section of Fareways)

Combine peanut butter, honey and vanilla; add remaining ingredients. Add more peanut butter if needed to get a good consistency. Refrigerate for 30 min. then roll into bite sized balls. Keep refrigerated. You can be stored them in freezer also.

Variation -  Saylor and I make a similar peanut butter ball and we add a little cocoa powder to it and roll it in powdered sugar.  You can make so many variations of this.  Add raisins, craisins or some chopped nuts (use creamy peanut butter if adding nuts) to make it even more nutritious.

Enjoy your day, be happy and may God bless you and yours.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Peanut Butter and Jelly Truffles

It is National Peanut Butter Month.  Did you know the following about peanut butter?

A 2 tablespoon serving of peanut butter contains 7 grams of protein. Your body uses the amino acids found in protein to build and repair muscle tissue. In addition to building metabolism-boosting muscles, protein-rich foods like peanut butter keep you feeling fuller for longer.

Healthy Fats
Peanut butter contains the same ratio of saturated to unsaturated fats as olive oil.  The poly and monounsaturated fats in the spread lower your risk of developing heart disease.

Excess sodium in your diet puts stress on your cardiovascular system, but potassium can counter the negative effects of sodium. It also helps your nerves function properly and aids in heart function.

A 2 tablespoon serving of peanut butter contains about 2 grams of dietary fiber. Fiber helps regulate your digestive system by promoting healthy bowel movements, and like protein, fiber keeps your hunger at bay between meals. The fiber in peanut butter also fights heart disease, type 2 diabetes and obesity.

Anti-cancer Effects
A number of studies have shown that nutrients found in peanuts, including folic acid, phytosterols, phytic acid (inositol hexaphosphate) and resveratrol, may have anti-cancer effects. A good source all these nutrients—including the phytosterol beta-sisterol, which has demonstrated anti-cancer actions—peanuts have long been considered a likely
candidate as a colon cancer preventive food.

It also:
  • Help Prevent Gallstones
  • Lowers Risk of Weight Gain
  • Protect against Alzheimer's and Age-related Cognitive Decline
  • Potentially Reduced Risk of Stroke Based on Preliminary Animal Studies
  • Peanuts Rival Fruit as a Source of Antioxidants

Peanut Butter and Jelly Truffles

8 ounces semisweet dairy free chocolate chips
1 ½ cup crunchy peanut butter
2 cups powdered sugar
¼ cup oil
¾ cups crushed Rice Chex Cereal
¼ cup grape jelly

Place chocolate chips in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Place in a bowl and set aside.

Place the Rice Chex in the food processor and pulse until finely chopped.  Set aside. 

Mix peanut butter, sugar, oil, and crushed cereal together. Form into 1 1/2 inch balls. Make a deep depression in the ball with your thumb and fill it with 1/4 teaspoon jelly. Smooth over to enclose the jelly in the ball. Roll each ball in chopped chocolate, pressing lightly until well coated. Place on waxed paper and chill 15 minutes. Keep chilled until served.

Your kids are going to love this.  This is also dairy free and gluten free.

A Few Quick Other Serving Ideas to Add Peanuts to Your Diet

  • Sprinkle peanuts onto tossed salads.
  • Add peanuts to healthy sautéed chicken and vegetables.
  • Make a simple southeastern Asian salad by combining sliced green cabbage, grated ginger, Serrano chilies and peanuts. Toss with olive oil, peanut butter and soy sauce dressing.
  • Instead of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, try peanut butter and banana, peanut butter and honey, or peanut butter and chopped apple, pear and/or raisins.
  • You can add peanut butter to any stir fry.
  • I’ve shared this before, but if you burn or scorch something, add 2 tsp. of peanut butter to it and stir in well.  The burnt taste goes away (provided you have not burnt it terribly).

Make them a part of your diet.

Have a great day.  Be happy and may God bless you and yours.  

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Taking a Short Break

I seem to have a stomach flu or virus and am living on broth right now.  Because of it, I'm taking a short break until I can eat.  I'll be back sharing as soon as I'm feeling better and want to cook again.

Stay healthy, be happy and may God bless you and yours.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Egg Drop Soup

I’m a bit under the weather and thought egg drop soup would settle my stomach so making some today with the chicken broth I made last night.  I’m just going to goose it up a bit.  Maybe the turmeric will bring me back to good health.  It also gives it that nice yellow color.  I consider this comfort food.  I love this soup as plain as it is. 

4 cups chicken broth
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon Kosher salt
1 ½ tablespoons cornstarch
Pinch of white pepper (Optional)
2 eggs
1 egg yolk

Reserve 3/4 cup of chicken broth, and pour the rest into a large saucepan. Stir the salt, turmeric, garlic powder and ginger into the saucepan, and bring to a rolling boil. In a cup or small bowl, stir together the remaining broth and cornstarch until smooth.  Add to the boiling broth and stir until thick.    

In a small bowl, whisk the eggs and egg yolk together using a fork. Take broth off of heat.  Add eggs slowly, stirring soup slowly but constantly with wooden spoon. A pinch of white pepper.  It adds depth of flavor. Egg should cook immediately.  You may wish to use more eggs.

You may serve with crisp noodles.  I like mine plain. 

Hope you have a great day, be happy and may God bless you and yours.