Sunday, September 27, 2009

Hoagie Buns

Hoagie Buns from Taste of Home
(printable recipe)
These homemade buns provide a excellant way to serve my Italian Meatball Subs.


TIME: Prep: 30 min. + rising Bake: 15 min.

2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
3 cups warm water (110° to 115°), divided
2 tablespoons sugar, divided
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon salt
7 1/2 to 8 cups all-purpose flour
In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in 1/2 cup warm water. Add 1 tablespoon sugar; let stand for 5 minutes. Add the remaining warm water and sugar. Beat in the oil, salt and 4 cups flour until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 45 minutes.
Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide into 18 pieces. Shape each into an oval. Place 2 in. apart on greased baking sheets. With a scissors, cut a 1/4-in.-deep slash across the top of each. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 20 minutes.
Bake at 400° for 13-18 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool. Yield: 1-1/2 dozen.

Hershey's Peanut Butter Blossom's

I can't believe I haven't posted these family favorites before now. It is an easy no fail recipe as long as you don't use too much dough. I have done that before and ended up with some pretty interesting looking cookies. I use a small cookie scoop to get the perfect amount of dough. I ended up with 56 cookies.

Peanut Butter Blossoms from Hershey’s
(printable recipe)

• 48 HERSHEY'S KISSES Brand Milk Chocolates
• 1/2 cup shortening
• 3/4 cup REESE'S Creamy Peanut Butter
• 1/3 cup granulated sugar
• 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
• 1 egg
• 2 tablespoons milk
• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
• 1 teaspoon baking soda
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• Granulated sugar


1. Heat oven to 375°F. Remove wrappers from chocolates.

2. Beat shortening and peanut butter in large bowl until well blended. Add 1/3 cup granulated sugar and brown sugar; beat until fluffy. Add egg, milk and vanilla; beat well. Stir together flour, baking soda and salt; gradually beat into peanut butter mixture.

3. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Roll in granulated sugar; place on ungreased cookie sheet.

4. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Immediately press a chocolate into center of each cookie; cookie will crack around edges. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely. About 4 dozen cookies.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Zucchini Bread

Here is another great zucchini recipe. This bread is great and easy to prepare. I added nuts but left out the cranberries or raisins. The Family loved it.

Zucchini Bread Recipe from Simply Recipes
(printable recipe)

2 eggs, beaten
1 1/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups grated fresh zucchini
2/3 cup melted unsalted butter
2 teaspoons baking soda
Pinch salt
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)
1 cup dried cranberries or raisins (optional)

1 Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). In a large bowl, mix together the sugar, eggs, and vanilla. Mix in the grated zucchini and then the melted butter. Sprinkle baking soda and salt over the mixture and mix in. Add the flour, a third at a time. Sprinkle in the cinnamon and nutmeg and mix. Fold in the nuts and dried cranberries or raisins if using.

2 Divide the batter equally between 2 buttered 5 by 9 inch loaf pans. Bake for 1 hour (check for doneness at 50 minutes) or until a wooden pick inserted in to the center comes out clean. Cool in pans for 10 minutes. Turn out onto wire racks to cool thoroughly.

Makes 2 loaves.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Zucchini Whoopie Pies

Got Zucchini? Then you MUST make these. I spotted this recipe over at Real Mom Kitchen they are very moist and kid friendly. They are definitely worth trying.

Zucchini Whoopie Pies
(printable recipe)

2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1 cup finely chopped nuts (optional, I didn't use)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1 large egg
1 cup grated zucchini-squeezed
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract

1. Mix shortening and sugar. Add in egg. Mix. Add milk and mix.
2. Add in dry ingredients and stir.
3. Blend in the zucchini and vanilla.

Bake on a greased cookie sheet at 350* for about 12-15 minutes, until the bottom gets browned.
Cool and sandwich cookies with cream cheese filling.

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened
2 1/4 cups confectioners sugar
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Scant 1/4 teaspoon salt

Beat all ingredients together until light and fluffy.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Easy Sugar Cookies

Easy Sugar Cookies from Real Mom Kitchen

(printable recipe)
2 3/4 C all-purpose flour
1 t baking soda
1/2 t baking powder
1 cup butter, SOFTENED
1 1/2 C white sugar
1 egg
1 t vanilla extract

1. Preheat to 375 degrees. In a small bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in egg and vanilla. Gradually blend in the dry ingredients. Roll rounded teaspoonfuls of dough into balls, and place onto ungreased cookie sheets.

3. Bake 8-10 minutes, or until golden. Let stand on cookie sheet tow minutes before removing to cool on wire racks. (I think it made around 2-3 dozen)

Frost with your favorite frosting if desired.

Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup
( printable recipe )

4 cups chicken broth

2 cups water

2 cooked, boneless chicken breast halves, shredded or 1 large can chicken with juice

1-6.2oz. Rice a Roni or Uncle Ben’s quick cooking long grain and wild rice with seasoning packet

½ t. salt

½ t. black pepper

¾ cup all purpose flour

½ cup butter

2 cups heavy cream

In a large pot over medium heat, combine the broth, water and chicken. Bring just to boiling and then stir in the rice, reserving the seasoning packet. Cover and remove from heat. In a small bowl combine the salt, pepper and flour. In medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Stir in the contents of the seasoning packet until the mixture is bubbly. Reduce the heat to low, then stir in the flour mixture by tablespoons to form a roux. Whisk in the cream a little at a time until fully incorporated and smooth. Cook until thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir the cream mixture into the broth and rice mixture. Cook over medium heat until heated through, about 10-15 minutes. Do not boil once the cream has been added. Makes 6 servings.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Home Canned Salsa

This is my old stand by recipe. I got it from one of the local cookbooks that are sold in area. I changed it a bit and have been canning it for years.Hope you like it as much as we do.

(printable recipe)
makes 3 quarts or 6 pints

* 8 cups tomatoes, peeled, chopped and drained
* 2 1/2 cups onions, chopped
* 1 1/2 cups green peppers
* 1 cup jalapeno pepper, chopped
* 6 garlic cloves, minced
* 2 teaspoons cumin
* 2 teaspoons pepper
* 1/8 cup canning salt
* 1/3 cup sugar
* 1/3 cup vinegar or lemon juice
* 1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
* 1 (12 ounce) can tomato paste

1. Mix all together and bring to a slow boil for 30 minute.
2. Seal in jars and cook in hot water bath for 30 minute.
3. This is a medium salsa. This is also a chunky salsa so if you want a smoother salsa cut your veggies into smaller pieces.

Baked Taquitos

This is a perfect Game day meal!!! I used the southwestern beef I posted a few days ago for the filling.....They turned out great.

Small corn tortillas (and actually, flour ones are really good as well)
kosher salt
cooking spray ( used olive oil cooking spray)

Heat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with foil and lightly coat with cooking spray.
1. Work with a few tortillas at a time and heat in the microwave until they are soft enough to roll without cracking. It helps to place them between damp paper towels. Usually 20-30 seconds will do it. If you find yours are cracking when you roll them or are coming unrolled right away, just try heating them longer and try the paper towel thing.

Place 2-3 T of meat mixture on the lower third of a tortilla, keeping it about 1/2 inch from the edges.Then roll it up as tight as you can.
2. Place seam side down on the baking sheet. Lay all of the taquitos on the baking sheet and make sure they are not touching each other. Spray the tops lightly with cooking spray or an oil mister and sprinkle some kosher salt on top.
Place pan in oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until crisp and the ends start to get golden brown.
Looking for a freezer meal idea
Freezer instructions:!
Taquitos are definitely best right after cooking, so if you're not going to use all of them, plan ahead and freeze some. I bake just enough for my little family to eat for a meal and then freeze the rest in dinner-sized portions. Then you can pull them out for a quick meal, appetizer or snack any time! To freeze Make as noted above through the step where you sprinkle the tops of the taquitos with salt. Place in a dish a single layer, not touching each other and set in the freezer. After frozen, place in zip-top bag, foodsaver bag, or any other air tight container. To cook, preheat oven to 425. Place frozen taquitos on a baking sheet in a single layer and bake until edges are golden brown. (Usually about 30 minutes)

Heidi's Amazingly Easy Salsa

Heidi’s Amazingly Easy Salsa
(Printable Version)

14 lbs. tomatoes
3-4 large white onions, chopped
3 Cups white vinegar (If you prefer you can use lemon juice instead of vinegar)
10 jalapeƱos seeded
4 Cups green peppers (chopped)
1/2 Cup Salt ( I use canning salt)
1/2 Cup Sugar
12 cloves garlic pressed
1 can, 12 oz. tomato paste
2 bunches cilantro

1. Blanch tomatoes, peel the skins, and put into your cooking pot whole.
2. Add all ingredients - except tomato paste and cilantro
3. let boil for 1 hour(I smashed the tomatoes as they cooked to get rid of any big chunks)
4. Add tomato paste, & stir well.
5. pour into canning jars.
6. Add cilantro to each jar.
7. Water bath, pints = 30 minutes / quarts = 45 minutes
I made 2 quarts and 15 pints ( plus a little extra to taste)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Southwestern Beef

Okay.. I made this for dinner tonight and it was GREAT!! It is going to definitely be ranked among my favorite go to meals. For step by step photos and directions click on our best bites won't be disappointed.
Southwestern Beef from Our Best Bites
1 onion, chopped
2 1/2-ish lb. beef roast, trimmed of fat but left whole
1 heaping tsp. chili powder
1 heaping tsp. garlic powder
1 heaping tsp. cumin
1 heaping tsp. Kosher salt
2 bell peppers (you can use 2 green bell peppers or mix it up a little with red, yellow, or orange; just make sure one is green), chopped
1 14 1/2 oz. can Mexican-style diced tomatoes OR 1 can of Rotel tomatoes (regular or mild, depending on your preference)
Small flour tortillas
Desired toppings: salsa or pico de gallo, guacamole, sour cream, shredded cheese, chopped cilantro, etc.
. Place chopped onion in the bottom of the slow cooker.
Combine seasonings in a small bowl and then rub seasoning mixture all over the roast.
Place roast over onions, top with chopped peppers,
and then pour the canned tomatoes on top of everything.
Cook on high for 5-6 hours or low for 8-9 hours , the meat shreds easily with two forks.

Shred meat and then serve with desired toppings!

FREEZER MEAL INSTRUCTIONS: Place tomatoes in the bottom of a freezer safe container. Place green peppers on top of tomatoes, then the seasoned roast, then the onions. When ready to cook, invert the container so the tomatoes are on top and cook 1-2 hours longer than the original recipe states.

Pioneer Woman Texas Sheet cake

I made this great cake for an after school snack for the kids it was super easy and tasted great. It is another great recipe from the Pioneer Woman
Pioneer Woman Chocolate Sheet Cake
Combine in a mixing bowl:
2 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
In a saucepan, melt:
2 sticks butter
Add 4 heaping tablespoons cocoa. Stir together.
Add 1 cup boiling water, allow mixture to boil for 30 seconds, then turn off heat. Pour over flour mixture, and stir lightly to cool.
In measuring cup, pour 1/2 cup buttermilk.
2 beaten eggs
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla
Stir buttermilk mixture into butter/chocolate mixture. Pour into sheet cake pan and bake at 350-degrees for 20 minutes.

While cake is baking, make icing:

Chop 1/2 cup pecans finely (I left these out this time)
Melt 1 3/4 sticks butter in a saucepan.
Add 4 heaping tablespoons cocoa, stir to combine, then turn off heat.

6 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 lb minus 1/2 cup powdered sugar
Stir together.
Add pecans, stir together, and pour over warm cake.

Cut into squares.....Enjoy

Raspberry Pound Cake

Raspberry Pound Cake
1 C. Butter Softened
2 C. White Sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp almond extract
3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tsp.cinnamon
1 1/2 cups fresh raspberries

Preheat oven to 325 *. Cream butter and Sugar. Add eggs on at a time beating well each time. Add the vanilla and almond extracts and then add flour,baking powder,salt and cinnamon. Gently fold in raspberries(I usually coat my raspberries with flour to keep the berries from sinking in the dough).Grease 2 standard bread pans, Coat with a mixture of cinnamon sugar. Divide batter between pans. Bake for about 1 hour or until a toothpick comes out clean( you can cover the pans with foil about halfway through baking so that the top does not get too dark )Remove from oven and cool 10 minutes. Remove pan onto wire rack . Glaze while still warm.

Carmel Glaze

1/2 C Butter
1/2 C brown sugar
1/2 C. heavy cream
Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan until warm and bubbly. Pour over warm bread.

Sunday, September 6, 2009



Time: 1 hour
Yield: 48 cookies 

Cookie Dough:
1 C butter, softened
1 1/2 C sugar
2 eggs
3 C flour
2 t cream of tartar
1 t baking soda
2 t baking powder
1/8 t salt
Cinnamon Sugar Coating:
3 T sugar
1 1/2 t cinnamon
1. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes folks.  Add the eggs and cream for about 2 minutes more. This is a really important step. Creaming the dough at this point will give you soft chewy cookies later on in the game. 
2. In a separate bowl combine the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add it to your creamed mixture. Mix until all ingredients are combined.
3. In a small bowl mix together the cinnamon sugar coating. Roll the dough into balls and roll it around in the coating.
4. Place the cookies on a cookie sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Don't set them too close to each other. You want them to have room to spread out and not have to touch each other while they bake.
5. Bake at 375 for 8 minutes. You only want to bake them until the outsides crack. Then take them out and let them finish cooking on the hot cookie sheet. Enjoy!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Shepherd's Pie (using pantry items)

Here's a kid friendly food storage recipe using canned foods found in your pantry.
My kids actually enjoy this and it is super easy. It is even easier when topped with frozen Tatar tots instead of mashed potatoes.......( It is not very photogenic but you get the idea).

Shepherds Pie

2 lbs of lean ground beef browned with 1 small yellow onion( you could substitute dehydrated onion from your food storage here)
1 can of whole kernel corn ( or use the ones you canned yourself)
1 can of creamed corn
1 can of cream of mushroom soup

Drain the browned hamburger and add in the corns and soup. Place the mixture in a 9 x 13 baking dish. Mash 6 to 8 potatoes ( add milk and butter to your liking) top the beef and corn mixture with the mashed potatoes top with shredded cheese and place in a 350 * oven until cheese is melted and it is warmed through. This also freezes well.