Saturday, December 29, 2012

Mashed Potato Casserole

The beauty of this recipe is that it can be prepared a day ahead...I love being able to prep early!!! Just cover the pan of mashed potatoes with foil and keep in the refrigerator. Baking time will take longer because the casserole is cold, maybe 30-40 minutes. Then add toppings.

4 pounds potatoes, peeled and cubed to be boiled

about 3/4 cup milk

1/2- 3/4 cups sour cream

4 tablespoons butter

2 cups shredded cheddar

1/4 cup plus 2-4 tablespoons freshly snipped chives

2.8 oz. bag Oscar Mayer Real Bacon Recipe Pieces

salt and pepper to taste


  1. Cook the potatoes in salted, boiling water until they are tender. Drain well.
  2. Butter 9x13 glass baking dish. 
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees while preparing the casserole.
  4. Add butter and mash into the potatoes.
  5. Add 1/2 cup milk and 1/2 cup sour cream and beat until incorporated.
  6. Stir in 1 cup of cheese and 1/4 cup chives.
  7. Add more milk or sour cream if needed. Potatoes should be very creamy.
  8. Taste potatoes and season with salt and pepper.
  9. Spoon potatoes into baking pan; evenly smooth potatoes.
  10. Cover with foil and bake in oven for 15-20 minutes until they are hot.
  11. Remove dish from oven and remove foil.
  12. Sprinkle the remaining 1 cup cheese over the potatoes and return them to the oven.
  13. Bake for about 10 minutes, just until the cheese is melted and casserole is hot.
  14. Remove casserole from oven. Sprinkle with all the crumbled bacon and 2 teaspoons of fresh snipped chives.
  15. Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Derby Pie Bars

For the shortbread crust:
¼ cup powdered sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
Pinch of salt
½ cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cubed
For the filling:
12 tablespoons (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1½ cups sugar
3 eggs
¾ cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons bourbon or whiskey (or more to taste)
1½ cups chocolate chips
1½ cups chopped walnuts
To make the crust, combine the powdered sugar, flour, and salt In the bowl of a food processor. Add cubes of butter and pulse until it resembles coarse cornmeal. (You can also use your fingers or a pastry cutter to incorporate the butter. Whatever is easiest for you.) Firmly pat the mixture into the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish. Bake the crust at 350 degrees for about 20 to 23 minutes until just lightly golden.

To make the filling, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, flour, salt , and bourbon and continue to mix until well combined. Fold in the chocolate chips and walnuts. Pour batter over partially baked crust. Bake until filling is set and top is light golden brown, approximately 25 minutes. Allow bars to cool for at least 30 minutes before cutting into 2-inch squares (or desired size).

Bars will keep in an airtight container for at least a week. (Yields 24 2-inch squares.)

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Bacon Crisps

2 sleeves Club crackers
1 pound sliced bacon cut in thirds
  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
  2. Wrap crakcer tightly with a strip of bacon.
  3. Place the wrapped crackers on a broiler rack on a baking sheet, and put the baking sheets on the oven rack.
  4. Bake for 2 hours, oruntil the bacon is done.
  5. Do not turn.
  6. Drain on paper towels.
  7. Serve hot or at room temperature.
P.S. If you are in a hurry, preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake for 40 minutes.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

White Chicken Chili

  • 1 pound boneless/skinless chicken breast
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 TBSP vegetable oil
  • 2 cans (15 1/2 oz. each) great northern beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (14 1/2 oz.) chicken broth
  • 2 cans (4 oz. each) chopped green chilies
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  1. Saute chicken, onion and garlic powder in oil until chicken is no longer pink.
  2. Cut chicken into bite size pieces.
  3. Combine chicken, beans, broth, chilies and seasonings in dutch oven or stock pot.
  4. Bring to boil.
  5. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat.
  7. Stir in sour cream and whipping cream.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Mexican Dip

I have seen this recipe in many different places. It is a quick and tasty appetizer. The beauty of this recipe is that you can vary the layers. My favorite ingredients, though, are:
  • 8 oz. bar cream cheese
  • Hormel chili without beans (either size can will work)
  • 1 can green chilis (I have been known to substitute by chopping jalapenos.)
  • shredded cheddar cheese (or shredded Mexican cheese mix)
  • sliced black olives (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place bar of cream cheese in glass or ceramic pie pan, and microwave on high for 1 minute (if coming right out of refrigerator).
  3. Spread cream cheese to cover bottom of pie pan.
  4. Spread Hormel chili for next layer.
  5. Spread green chilis for next layer.
  6. Top with shredded cheese (as much as you want)
  7. Sprinkle with olives, if desired.
  8. Bake for 10-15 minutes, until cheese has melted thoroughly.
  9. Serve hot with tortilla chips, scoops, or Fritos.

Sunday, September 16, 2012


  • store bought pizza dough (found in deli) ~ we prefer wheat
  • store bought pizza sauce (Ragu)
  • toppings of your choice (we usually use pepperoni, sausage, bacon, onions, green peppers, black olives, mushrooms)
  • Pizza seasoning
  • grated mozzarella cheese
  • olive oil
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. While oven is preheating, assemble pizza in the following order:
    • spread dough on pizza stone
    • spread 1/2 jar of pizza sauce onto dough
    • put grated cheese on top of sauce
    • add all toppings
    • sprinkle with pizza seasoning
    • add more grated cheese
    • drizzle olive oil on top
  3. Bake on bottom shelf of oven for 10 minutes.
  4. Bake on top shelf of oven for 10 minutes or until done.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Simple Southern Peach Cobbler

Nothin' ends a good Southern dinner better than hot peach cobbler topped with ice cream. Being the simple cook that I am, I enjoy making this simple cobbler...sure beats doing it from scratch. This recipe can be easily modified by changing the fruit.

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup self-rising flour
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 (29 oz.) can sliced peaches in light syrup
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Slice butter and place in deep 2-quart baking dish.
  3. Put baking dish in oven to melt butter.
  4. Mix sugar and flour together; then slowly stir in milk until all milk has been added.
  5. Gently pour sugar/flour/milk batter over melted butter.
  6. Carefully spoon peaches and syrup over batter.
  7. Bake in preheated oven 35-45 minutes until crust is puffed and golden.

Fried Pickles

There's nothin' like Southern fried pickles for an appetizer before a good home-cooked Southern dinner! Here is a simple, yet tasty recipe for fried pickles.

  • dill pickles
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 envelope dry Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing mix
  • oil for frying (I prefer peanut oil.)
  • bottle of Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing for dipping sauce
  1. Heat oil on medium heat until it reaches 350 degrees. (I use an electric skillet, but I am sure a fryer/Fry Daddy would be fine.)
  2. Drain pickles.
  3. Mix flour & dry dressing mix in 1 gallon Ziploc bag.
  4. Shake several pickles in flour mixture until well coated.
  5. Drop coated pickles into hot oil. Try not to clump them together.
  6. Pickles are done when they float to top of oil.
  7. Drain on several paper towels before serving with ranch dipping sauce.

Pimento Cheese

This is my favorite pimento cheese spread because it has a little kick to it! Actually, it is Paula Deen's son's recipe (Bobby). I serve it as an appetizer with crackers...especially when I serve a Southern meal. Bill and I also enjoy pimento cheese sandwiches at work. I usually double this recipe....YUMMY!

  • 1 (3-ounce) package cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup grated sharp cheddar
  • 1 cup grated Monterey Jack
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 teaspoon House Seasoning, recipe follows
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons pimentos, smashed
  • 1 teaspoon grated onion
  • Cracked black pepper
  1. Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese until smooth and fluffy.
  2. Add all of the remaining ingredients and beat until well blended.
House Seasoning:
  • 1 cup salt
  • 1/4 cup black pepper
  • 1/4 cup garlic powder
Mix ingredients together and store in an airtight container for up to 6 months.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Chicken Piccata

This recipe is good delicious and so hard easy to make. Everyone will think you are a gourmet cook...even if you're not.
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless chicken breasts (I like to use five 5 oz. chicken breasts from Sam's Club because they are the perfect serving size already. They can be found in the freezer section.)
  • 2 tablespoons grated parmesan
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 3/4 cup lemon juice
  • dash red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1/2 cup brined capers
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley (optional)
  • cooked angel hair pasta
  1. If using the 5 oz. chicken breasts......put them between two pieces of plastic wrap and pound with a meat hammer to 1/4 inch thickness.
  2. If using regular size chicken breasts......cut them horizontally, butterflying them open. Cut in half if chicken breast are still too large, and then put them between two pieces of plastic wrap and pound with a meat hammer to 1/4 inch thickness.
  3. Mix together grated parmesan, flour, salt & pepper.
  4. Rinse chicken pieces in water.
  5. Dredge rinsed chicken pieces thoroughly in flour mixture until completely coated.
  6. Heat olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter in large skillet on medium high heat.
  7. Add half the chicken pieces. Do not crowd the pan.
  8. Brown well, approximately 3 minutes per side.
  9. Remove chicken from frying pan and cook the remaining chicken breasts.
  10. Place cooked chicken in dish covered with foil in warm oven while preparing the sauce.
  11. Add chicken stock, lemon juice and capers to the pan.
  12. Use a spatula to scrape up the brown bits.
  13. Reduce the sauce by half.
  14. Whisk in the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter.
  15. Serve chicken atop cooked angel hair pasta.
  16. Pour sauce over chicken.
  17. Sprinkle with parsley if desired.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Chili's Margarita Grilled Chicken

  1. Marinate chicken breasts in margarita mix for two hours. (I've been known to put frozen chicken breasts and marinade in a ziplock bag and put it in the refrigerator while at work ~ works fine for me! :o)
  2. When ready to grill, pepper each side of chicken breast, and grill or cook in skillet that has been sprayed with Pam.
  3. Serve chicken atop black beans. (Mexican rice is good on the side, of course.)

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Veggie Bars

  • 2 cans Pillsbury Crescent Rolls
  • 2 - 8 oz. bars softened cream cheese
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 pkg. Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing mix
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh broccoli
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped carrots
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped radishes
  • 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine softened cream cheese and mayonnaise. Add powder Ranch mix and blend thoroughly. Refrigerate to allow flavors to blend.
  3. Press crescent rolls on cookie sheet (with lip on sides) and bake in preheated oven for 8-10 minutes. Cool.
  4. Combine all chopped vegetables together.
  5. Assemble:
    • Spread cooled crust with cream cheese mixture.
    • Sprinkle with mixed veggies.
    • Top with shredded cheese.
    • Refrigerate.
    • Slice into bars to serve.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Cranberry Chicken

Last night I made a dinner that was a real success. Bill and Taylor loved both the cranberry chicken and red garlic mashed potatoes...with a tossed salad, we had a complete meal. I mixed a recipe from Katie's husband with some information online to come up with the following recipe. Thanks, Mike!
  • 6 ~ 5 oz. boneless chicken breasts
  • all purpose flour
  • 2 eggs, well beaten
  • seasoned bread crumbs
  • vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 can whole cranberries
  • 8 oz. French dressing
  • 1 envelope of onion soup mix
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Heat oil in frying pan on medium heat (about 1/2 inch deep)
  3. Flatten chicken breasts.
  4. Dredge chicken breasts in flour; dip in egg; dredge in bread crumbs.
  5. Fry coated chicken breasts on each side until browned.
  6. While chicken is in frying pan, blend the cranberries, French dressing and onion soup mix.
  7. Spray 9x13 dish with Pam.
  8. Place browned chicken breasts in 9x13 dish.
  9. Pour cranberries, dressing and onion soup mix over chicken breasts.
  10. Lightly cover dish with foil.
  11. Bake in 350 degree oven for 1 hour 15 minutes.
Absolutely the most tender chicken you will ever put in your mouth!!! Y-U-M-MY!!!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Samoa Brownies

I can't remember where I found this recipe. I wish I could remember, so I could give credit where credit is due. If you like Samoa Girl Scout cookies, you are going TO LOVE this recipe!


1 brownie mix
3 1/2 cups shredded coconut, toasted
(2) 14 oz. package of caramels, unwrapped
1/2 tsp. salt
4 tbsp. milk
3 oz. semi-sweet chocolate (I use chocolate Almond Bark found in the baking aisle at Walmart.)
1. Prepare brownie mix according to box directions and cool.
2. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. To toast coconut, spread shredded coconut in a thin layer on a baking sheet. Bake for about 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes to make sure that the coconut browns evenly.
3. In a large, microwaveable bowl, add unwrapped caramels, salt, and milk and cook on high for 3-5 minutes, stirring occasionally (about every 45-60 seconds). Cook until all caramels are melted and smooth.

4. Add coconut and mix together. Spread over cooled brownies.

5. Drizzle chocolate on top

6. Refrigerate 4-5 hours or overnight.

7. Remove at least 1 hour from the fridge before cutting into bars.

8. Store in refrigerator, but remove 20-30 minutes before serving as the caramel will be hard.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Pink Kiss Cookies

If you like chocolate covered cherries, this recipe is FOR YOU! Chocolate covered cherries is one of my favorite Christmas candies, so I am thrilled with this recipe! I hope you like it too! Please let me know if you like it by commenting below.

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons maraschino cherry juice
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 2 drops red food coloring
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 10 oz. jar Maraschino cherries, drained and chopped
  • 25-30 Hershey Kisses

  1. Cream together butter and powdered sugar.
  2. Add cherry juice, almond extract, red food coloring and salt and beat well.
  3. Add flour 1 cup at a time, scraping bowl.
  4. Fold in cherries.
  5. Place quarter (or a little bigger, depending on how you like them) sized balls of dough on cookie sheet leaving a little room between them to spread.
  6. Bake at 350F degrees for 10-12 minutes.
  7. Remove from oven and immediately top with Hershey Kisses, pressing down slightly.
  8. Let cool completely before storing in an airtight container.
  9. Makes 25-30 cookies.

Mini Strawberry Whoopee Pies

Ingredients for Cookie:
  • 1 (18.25 oz.) pkg. strawberry cake mix
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2/3 cup shortening (I usually use just shy of 2/3 cup.)
Ingredients for Filling:
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups confectioners sugar
  • 2 cups marshmallow cream (That's called Fluff for my Yankee friends! ☺)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Grease cookie sheets.
  3. In a large bowl, stir together the cake mix, eggs and shortening until well blended.
  4.  Roll the dough into walnut sized balls.
  5. Place the cookies 2 inches apart onto the cookie sheet.
  6. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven.
  7. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
  8. Mix all ingredients for filling until well blended.
  9. Match up evenly sized cookies and sandwich them with the filling.

Tuna Salad Sandwiches

  • 1 boiled egg, chopped
  • 3 (6 ounce) cans tuna, drained & flaked (I use white albacore.)
  • 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • pepper to taste
  • rolls, croissants or sandwich bread
  1. Mix together and serve on rolls, croissants or sandwich bread.

Egg Salad Sandwiches

  • 8 boiled eggs
  • 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon mustard
  • rolls
  1. Dice eggs.
  2. Mix all ingredients.
  3. Serve on rolls.

Paula Deen’s Chicken Salad on Croissants

2 tbsps fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
31/2 cups chicken (finely diced cooked)
1 cup celery (finely diced)
1/3 cup slivered almonds
12 slider rolls or croissants

1.     In a small bowl, combine the lemon juice, mayonnaise and salt.

2.    Toss with the chicken, celery, and almonds in a medium bowl.

3.    Serve on mini slider rolls.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Seven Layer Salad

  • 1 large head iceberg lettuce ~ rinsed, dried, chopped
  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • 1 (10 oz.) pkg. frozen peas, thawed
  • 10 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup chopped cauliflower
  • 1 1/2 bags Oscar Mayer bacon pieces (or bits)
  • 1 1/4 cups mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
  1. Layer the first six ingredients in a large flat bowl. (I usually put it in a clear trifle bowl for a pretty display.) Layer in this order ~ lettuce, onion, peas, cheddar cheese, cauliflower & bacon.
  2. Whisk together mayonnaise, sugar and parmesan cheese and drizzle over salad.
  3. Refrigerate until chilled.

Beth's Baby Shower Menu

Chicken Salad on Croissants
Teriyaki Chicken Salad on Croissants
Tuna Salad on Rolls
Egg Salad on Rolls

BLT Pasta Salad
Spinach/Strawberry/Almond Salad
Broccoli Salad
Seven Layer Salad
Strawberry Jello Salad
Blueberry Jello Salad

Bowl of Fresh Fruits

Milk & Cookie Bar
Strawberry Cheesecake Shooters

Pink Lemonade
Strawberry Crush
Bottle Waters


Teriyaki Chicken Salad Sandwich

I had a baby shower for my daughter last Saturday. We enjoyed a variety of salads and salad of which is this Teriyaki Chicken Salad Sandwich. It was a big hit with many of the women, so I thought I would share it with my readers. This recipe can be made a day ahead, refrigerate, and the next day add the fruit and nuts just before serving. Enjoy!

  • 2 boneless chicken breasts or 5-6 chicken breast tenderloins
  • Kikkoman Teriyaki Baste and Glaze
  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup green onions, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted (I use "Almond Accents ~ Original Oven Roasted" found in produce department.)
  • 1 small can pineapple tidbits
  • 1 small can mandarin oranges
  • 1/3 - 1/2 cup light mayonnaise
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • croissants
  1. Marinate chicken for at least 4 hours.
  2. Grill chicken. (Sometimes I cheat and sear the chicken in a frying pan on top of the stove. ☺)
  3. Combine celery and green onions in mixing bowl while chicken is cooking.
  4. When chicken is done, allow it to cool 10 minutes before cutting it into bitesize pieces.
  5. Toss chicken with celery & onions.
  6. Add mayonnaise to chicken, celery & onions. Start with 1/3 cup and continue adding to your likeness. Mix thoroughly.
  7. Add 2-3 tablespoons teriyaki baste and glaze to taste.
  8. Refrigerate for several hours.
  9. Right before serving on croissants, add almonds, drained pineapple tidbits and drained oranges, as well as salt and pepper to taste.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Strawberry Jello Salad

Ingredients for jello:
  • 1 large box strawberry jello
  • 3 large bananas, diced
  • 1 pint frozen strawberries (with juice)
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1 small can crushed pineapple with juice
Directions for jello: Mix jello and hot water until dissolved, and then add everything else.

Ingredients for middle layer:
  • 12 oz. tub of Cool Whip
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 8 oz. cream cheese
Directions for middle layer: Beat Cool Whip, sugar and cream cheese until well blended.

  1. Strawberry Jello
  2. Cool Whip mixture
  3. Strawberry Jello

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Breakfast Sandwiches

Papa Dukes and I have been trying to eat healthier these days. I make multiple breakfast sandwiches at once on Sunday. This is awesome because each workday morning we get one from the fridge, microwave it and eat it before leaving for work. (Well, I do. Papa Dukes microwaves and eats his sandwich at work.) This healthy sandwich also boosts our metabolism and gets our day started off just right. ☺

To make 12 sandwiches...

  • 12 whole wheat English muffins or sandwich thins
  • 15 large eggs (or 24 if you plan on using only the egg whites...want to stay away from that cholesterol!)
  • Birdseye Pepper Stir-Fry (in frozen vegetables aisle)
  • low fat/low salt cheese of your choice (We usually use American.)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spray muffin top pans.
  3. Thaw a half bag of pepper stir-fry. (I usually thaw mine in the microwave.)
  4. Use mixer to whisk this many eggs.
  5. Add pepper stir-fry to eggs.
  6. Pour egg & stir-fry mixture into muffin top pans.
  7. Bake for 10-15 minutes. (until eggs are done)
  8. It's easy to toast the English muffins or sandwich thins while the eggs are baking. Just put them in the oven with the eggs. (10 minutes for muffins/7-8 minutes for sandwich thins)
  9. After eggs and bread have cooled, put together the sandwiches.
    1. bottom of sandwich
    2. egg
    3. cheese
    4. top of sandwich
    5. wrap and refridgerate
    6. microwave when ready to eat

Fresh Broccoli Salad

In my opinion, this is a 5-star salad! The recipe is requested every time I bring it to a get-together. This recipe is for 8  servings, and it can easily be doubled or tripled. I hope you enjoy it as much as I.

  • 2 heads fresh broccoli
  • 1 red onion (sometimes I reduce it to 2/3 red onion)
  • 2.8 oz. bag Oscar Mayer Real Bacon Recipe Pieces
  • 3/4 c. raisins
  • 3/4 c. sliced almonds
  • 1 c. mayonnaise
  • 1/2 c. white sugar
  • 2 TBSP white wine vinegar
  1. Cut broccoli into bite-size pieces.
  2. Cut onion into thin bite-size pieces and add to broccoli pieces.
  3. Combine bacon, raisins, almonds and mix well.
  4. To prepare the dressing, mix the mayonnaise, sugar and vinegar together until smooth.
  5. Mix everything together and chill. (It can actually be made the day before it is to be served. This allows the ingredients times to season together.)

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Best Burger Ever with Secret Sauce

When I found this Best Burger Recipe Ever with Secret Sauce I thought, "Yeah, right. Everybody thinks their burger recipe is the best." I must say I agree with Ashley Lynn Stock on this one! This burger recipe is juicy and delicious! I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as Papa Dukes and I have!

Burger Ingredients:
  • 2 lbs. ground beef 85/15
  • sesame seed buns
  • 1/2 cup of grated Monterrey jack cheese
  • 1/4 cup BBQ sauce
  • season salt to taste
  • cracked black pepper
  • onion powder
 Burger Directions:
  1. Combine the ground beef, grated cheese, bbq sauce, and seasonings.
  2. Shape patties that are about 1 inch thick.
  3. Push a 1/2 inch indent into the center of the patty–this is what prevents the patty from becoming a dome.
  4. Place a thin layer of butter on grill or frying pan.
  5. Cook until done to your likeness.
Special Sauce Ingredients:
  • 1/4 cup + 2 TBSP. of mayo
  • 2 TBSP. ketchup
  • 2 TBSP. sweet pickle relish
  • 1 TBSP. worcestershire
  • seasoned salt
Special Sauce Directions: Combine all ingredients and whisk until well mixed. Taste and adjust ingredients to your liking.

Brush melted butter onto sesame seed buns and sear.
Add burger fixins you like along with hamburger and special sauce.


Baked Fried Chicken

I found this Baked Fried Chicken Recipe and I am so very glad! This recipe is so tasty AND healthy at the same time! Now...that is a rare find!

  • thawed chicken breast tenderloins
  • milk
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • seasoning mix in gallon-size ziplock bag ~
    • 1/2 tsp. salt
    • 1 TBSP. Season All
    • 3/4 tsp. pepper
    • 1 cup flour
    • 2 tsp. paprika
  1. Place thawed chicken breast tenderloin strips in a bowl of milk. Let soak for 20-30 min.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  3. Cut butter into a few pieces and put in 9x13 baking pan.
  4. Melt butter in preheated oven.
  5. Spread melted butter around the bottom of the pan. Lightly spray the pan, if needed, to make sure that there are no dry spots.
  6. Shake excess milk off of chicken and completely coat each piece with the seasoning mix. (I usually shake 3 tenderloins in ziplock bag at a time.)
  7. Place each piece of chicken in the pan.
  8. Cook for 20 min. Turn each piece of chicken and continue cooking for 20 more minutes, or until cooked through.
This is seriously delicious with mashed potatoes, green beans, corn-on-the-cob and coleslaw! YUMMY!

Turtle Brownies

These brownies are to die for! Oh, my goodness! They should be cut into small squares because they are soooooooo rich!

  • Brownies ~ ingredients you need for your personal homemade brownies (sorry...I don't share mine because I bake them for rewards at school...don't want my students to have the recipe because Mrs. Canterbury's homemade brownies will no longer be special treats)
  • 40 Kraft caramels, unwrapped
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 cups pecan halves
  • 2 oz. semi-sweet chocolate (I use chocolate chips)
Step-by-Step Directions:
  1. Toast pecans ~ Bake in 350 degrees oven 8-10 minutes or until lightly brown and fragrant.
  2. Bake homemade brownies of your choice in 9x13 baking pan sprayed with Pam.
  3. Toward the end of the baking time for the brownies, make the caramel ~ Place unwrapped caramels and 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream in sauce pan. Cook on low heat, stirring frequently, until creamy.
  4. Add pecans to smooth, warm caramel.
  5. Pour caramel/pecan mixture on top of brownies shortly after the brownies come out of the oven. Spread over entire pan of brownies.
  6. Let brownies cool to room temperature; then cover and put in refrigerator for one hour or until brownies are firm.
  7. Make ganache ~ Place chocolate chips in heatproof bowl. Heat 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream in small sauce pan on medium heat or in microwave. Bring cream to a boil. Then pour hot cream over chocolate chips, and allow it to stand for 5 minutes. Then whisk chocolate/cream until smooth.
  8. Drizzle ganache over cold brownies.
  9. Cut into 48 squares. This dessert is rich, rich, rich!
  10. Enjoy! This is a little taste of heaven!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Oreo Cupcakes

I found this yummy recipe at
Lemonade Makin' Mama's website
Ingredients for cupcakes:
  • yellow box cake mix
  • Oreo cookies (regular, not double-sstuffed)
Directions for cupcakes:
  1. Line two cupcake tins with paper liners (24).
  2. Place a whole Oreo cookie in bottom of each liner.
  3. Crush remaining cookies and set aside half of cookie crumbs. (I use a food processor.)
  4. Mix yellow box cake mix per package instructions.
  5. Stir 1/2 of cookie crumbs in cake batter.
  6. Spoon Oreo batter into liners.
  7. Bake according to box instructions...will probably have to reduce the baking time because of the cookie in the bottom.
Ingredients for frosting:
  • 2 1/4 sticks butter
  • 3 1/4 cups + 2 TBSP. powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 TBSP. milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • remaining crushed Oreos
Directions for frosting:
  1. Beat butter and 3/4 cup powdered sugar until pale and fluffy.
  2. Gradually add the rest of the powdered sugar.
  3. Add milk and vanilla extract.
  4. Beat until pale and fluffy.
  5. Stir in remaining crushed Oreos.
  6. Store at room temperature until ready to use.
  7. Pipe frosting on cooled cupcakes and place a mini Oreo on top.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Beef Stroganoff

This recipe is an oldie, but goodie! We used to eat this meal with Beth and Aaron's babysitter and family back in the early 1980's. Betty is an excellent cook, and we could always count on her for a delicious meal. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we have for many years.


1 lb. round steak, cubed (I use eye of round.)
1/4 cup chopped onion
2 Tbsp. flour
1 1/2 cups tomato juice
4 oz. can sliced mushrooms
salt & pepper to taste
1 cup sour cream
1 pkg extra wide egg noodles

  1. Cut up steak.
  2. Brown steak and onions in small amount of cooking oil.
  3. Stir in flour, salt & pepper.
  4. Add tomato juice and drained mushrooms.
  5. Cover and simmer 1 hour.
  6. Add sour cream.
  7. Heat, but don't allow to boil.
  8. Stir into noodles cooked according to package directions.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Crash Hot Potatoes

These Crash Hot Potatoes are a nice change from the hum-drum potatoes I always make as a side dish. I didn't want to buy scallions just for this recipe, so I topped them with sour cream and shredded cheddar. They are quite tasty!


•12-15 baby red potatoes
•1 tbsp olive oil
•Sea salt and fresh cracked pepper

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees (PW said 450 but I used 400).
2. Boil the potatoes for 10-15 minutes or until fork tender.
3. Place on a cooking sheet coated with cooking spray or drizzled with olive oil.
4. Place the potatoes on the baking sheet and with a potato masher, gently smash each potato.
5. Drizzle with olive oil, sea salt and pepper (add a bit of your favorite dry herbs if you like).
6. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until crisp and golden brown.
7. Eat plain or top with a little sour cream and green onions.

Stuffed Sole

Tonight I attempted a new recipe to surprise Papa Dukes. I had never made stuffed sole before, but Bill often orders it when we go to a seafood restaurant. So...I attempted this recipe. Thanks to Farmer's Daughter Blog for sharing this recipe. Bill said he really enjoyed it, but I am going to keep revising the recipe until I get it just right.

Ingredients for Seafood Stuffing:

■1 small red or yellow onion, diced
■2 Tbsp butter
■1 Tbsp olive oil
■1 1/2 to 2 cups breadcrumbs
■salt and pepper, to taste
■water, as needed
■2 Tbsp chopped Italian parsley
■1/2 tsp paprika


1. In a large skillet, saute the onion in the butter and olive oil over medium heat for about 10 minutes, until it’s translucent.
2. Add the breadcrumbs, stirring to coat in the butter and oil.
3. Add water, 1/2 cup at a time, until the stuffing holds together.
4. Stir in parsley and paprika and season to taste with salt and pepper.
5. Allow to cool slightly before stuffing fish.

Ingredients for Baked Stuffed Sole:

■4 fillets of sole (or other thin fish fillet)
■stuffing for seafood
■4 Tbsp breadcrumbs, for topping
■1 Tbsp butter, for topping
■sprinkles of paprika, for topping


1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Place 2-3 Tbsp of stuffing in the center of each fillet.
2. Roll the fillet, and place open-end down in a greased baking dish.
3. Repeat for remaining fillets.
4. If there’s stuffing left over, arrange it around the fish or in the center of the dish.
5. Top each roll with 1 Tbsp breadcrumb, and dot with butter.
6. Sprinkle paprika on top, and bake for 20 minutes. Enjoy!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Karen's Peanut Butter Ganache

My friend Karen McInnis is such an AWESOME BAKER! She makes some of the best desserts I have ever eaten! She makes brownies and dresses them up by piping this ganache atop each square...YUMMY!


1 cup confectioners' sugar
1 cup creamy peanut butter
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/3 cup heavy cream


1. Place the confectioners' sugar, peanut butter, butter, vanilla, and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.
2. Mix on medium-low speed until creamy, scraping down the bowl with a rubber spatula as you work.
3. Add the cream and beat on high speed until the mixture is light and smooth.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Buffalo Chicken Cupcakes

Buffalo Chicken Cupcakes isn't the most appetizing name for a recipe, but I am so glad I found this healthy recipe! Papa Dukes and I enjoy them with a salad, but they would also be tasty appetizers...especially while watching a good football game.

2 c cooked boneless, skinless chicken breast, chopped up small
4 Laughing Cow Blue Cheese wedges, chopped
3 T Buffalo wing sauce (I didn't have this sauce, so I used Frank's hot sauce with a little butter)
½ a celery stalk, chopped small
16 wonton wrappers (typically found in the produce section)
4 oz (1 cup) reduced fat 2% shredded cheddar cheese

1. Pre-heat the oven to 375. Lightly mist 8 cups in a muffin tin with cooking spray and set aside.
2. In a microwavable bowl, combine the chicken, cheese wedges and wing sauce. Microwave for 1 1/2 minutes on high. Stir to combine until chicken mixture is fully coated with cheese and wing sauce. Stir in the chopped celery pieces.
3. Push a wonton wrapper into the bottom of each of the eight sprayed cups in the muffin tin. Using about half of the chicken mixture, spoon evenly into the wonton wrappers. Sprinkle about half the cheddar cheese evenly over the top of each cup. Press another wonton wrapper on top and repeat the layering steps with the remaining ingredients.
4. Bake for 18-20 minutes until golden brown. Let cool 5 minutes before removing from muffin tin.

Yields 8 “cupcakes”. Weight Watchers Points Plus: 4 per cupcake (P+ calculated using the recipe builder on
Nutrition Information per "cupcake" from 149 calories, 9 g carbs, 5 g fat, 16 g protein, 0 g fiber

Dieter's Soup

I found this recipe at Christy Jordan's Southern Plate. I was hesitant to make it because it said "Dieter's Soup". I am SO GLAD I did make it! Papa Dukes and I are both enjoying it. This recipe makes a full pot of soup, so I froze some of it for later.


16 ounces frozen green beans
1/2 head cabbage, chopped
4-6 large carrots, peeled and chopped
16 ounces frozen okra
1 cup seasoning blend (you can substitute one chopped onion)
28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 packet Ranch dressing mix (dry)
6 cups water


Combine all ingredients in a pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until vegetables are desired tenderness. Refrigerate leftovers.