Thursday, December 17, 2009

QUICK AND EASY CHICKEN TACOS

1 can (12.5 oz) chicken breast meat, drained
1 tbsp dry taco seasoning mix
1 tbsp canola oil
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1/2 cup sliced red onions
1/2 cup yellow bell pepper strips
1/2 cup red bell pepper strips
4 flour tortillas (6-in size), warmed
fresh cilantro, chopped

Sprinkle drained chicken meat with 1 teaspoon of the taco seasoning mix; set aside. In a 10-inch non-stick frying pan, heat the oil on medium heat. Add the onions and peppers to the oil; sprinkle with the other two teaspoons of the taco seasoning mix. Stir-fry over medium heat until the vegetables are crisp tender. Carefully toss the chicken into the onions and peppers until heated through. Stir about 1/2 cup of the chicken mixture onto one side of each of the warmed tortillas; fold over. Garnish with fresh cilantro, if desired.

Monday, December 14, 2009

ORANGE TERIYAKI GLAZED SALMON FILET

1/3 cup orange marmalade
3 tbsp teriyaki marinade
1/8 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1 lb salmon filet, approximately 1-inch thick

In a small saucepan combine the orange marmalade, the teriyaki marinade, and the fresh pepper. Stir the mixture together over low heat until the marmalade is melted and the mixture is well combined. Allow mixture to cool to room temperature. Take out 3 tablespoons of sauce and set the rest aside.

Place the salmon with the skin side down in a glass baking dish. Brush the 3 tablespoons of the sauce of the top of the salmon. Marinade in the refrigerator for 20 to 30 minutes.

Prepare the grill for direct cooking by oiling the grid. Grill the salmon over medium-high heat for 5 minutes on each side or until the salmon begins to flake with a fork. Serve with the remaining sauce.

Yield: 4 servings at 283 calories, 23 g protein, and 19 g carbs per serving.


Monday, November 30, 2009

CHINESE VEGETARIAN NOODLES

1 1/2 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp minced fresh ginger (1 tsp ground ginger)
1 1/2 tbsp curry powder (or less to suit your taste)
1/4 cup vegetable broth
3 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp sugar
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1 1/2 tbsp corn oil
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 green bell pepper, thinly sliced
4 cups thinly sliced cabbage
1/2 lb rice stick noodles (ethnic food section), softened in hot water and drained

Make a curry seasoning by mixing together the following:, garlic, ginger, curry powder; set aside.

Make a basic Chinese sauce by mixing together the vegetable broth, soy sauce, sugar, salt, pepper; set aside.

Heat a heavy skillet over high heat; add the oil and heat until hot, about 30 seconds. Add the curry seasoning and stir-fry until fragrant, about 10 seconds. Add the onion lices and stir-fry for a minute or until barely tender. Add the red and green peppers; stir-fry for another minute. Add the cabbage and cook for 2 or 3 minutes until everything is crisp tender. Add the Chinese sauce and the noodles. Carefully toss to mix. Cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Best served hot.

Monday, November 23, 2009

UPDATED VERSION OF GRANDMA'S CHICKEN POT PIE

1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
2 tbsps Italian salad dressing
2 cups frozen mixed vegetables
1 can (10 3/4 oz) cream of chicken soup
1/4 lb Velveeta cheese, cubed
1 sheet frozen puff pastry dough, thawed
1 egg, beaten

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Put the Italian salad dressing into a large skillet and add the cubed chicken. Cook the chicken over medium heat for 5 minutes or until cooked through. Stir in the vegetables, soup, and the cheese. Put the mixture into a 9-inch square baking dish that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.

Unfold the pastry sheet and place over the chicken mixture; fold the edges of the pastry under and press down onto the edges of the baking dish. Brush the pastry with the beaten egg. Cut slits in crust to vent. Set baking dish on a cookie sheet (to catch any boil-over that might happen). Place casserole in oven and bake for 30 minutes or until the crust is browned and mixture is bubbly. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.
Yield: 6 servings

Thursday, November 19, 2009

CINDY'S CRAB TOASTS

1 small can flaked crab
1 stick butter or margarine
2 tbsp mayonnaise
1 small jar Old English Cheese Spread
1 pkg English muffins
seasoning salt to taste
lemon pepper to taste
garlic salt to taste

In a mixing bowl, combine the butter, mayonnaise, cheese spread, and seasonings well. Add the crab to the mixture. Split the muffins and spread the crab mixture on the muffins. Freeze on an open pan and then store sealed in zip-top freeze bags. When ready to use, cut into fourths and broil until bubbly, being careful not to burn.

Note: Keeps well in freezer.

Yield: 48 appetizers

Monday, November 16, 2009

SPIRITED EGG NOG

1 can or carton (32-oz) egg nog, chilled
1/2 cup of rum or brandy
whipped cream
ground cinnamon

In a glass pitcher, combine the egg nog and the rum or brandy; stir to combine well. When serving, garnish with whipped cream and a sprinkle of ground cinnamon. Be sure to refrigerate any leftovers!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

ROMAN STYLE CAULIFLOWER and BROCCOLINI

1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
8 oz broccolini
4 leaves of chard, torn
2 tbsps olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
8 oz tofu, cut into small cubes
zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1 lemon
salt to taste

Bring saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add cauliflower florettes; cook 2 to 3 minutes. Add the broccolini flowers and cook for another minute. Add the chard leaves and cook another minute. Remove mixture from heat, drain, and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.

Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium heat, add the garlic and cook about 3 minutes, until lightly browned. Add tofu; cook for a minute. Turn heat to high; add the drained vegetables. Season to suit your taste. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly, until the vegetables start to brown. Add the lemon zest; cook for two minutes. Add the lemon juice and cook for one minute.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Sorry, Folks!

I apologize for the lack of new postings on this site. We are currently out of state and I am taking my turns staying at my mother-in-law's bedside during her final days of life. We are in the country and have some trouble getting good laptop computer time and internet access. Be patient as things should be back to normal before much longer.

Linda

Sunday, October 11, 2009

AGGIE'S HOMEMADE BROWNIES

1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
8 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp salt
2 cups sugar
4 beaten eggs
1 cup butter, melted
2 tsp vanilla extract
chopped pecans or walnuts, if desired

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine the sugar and eggs; mix well. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt into the mixture. Stir to blend. Stir in the cocoa, then the melted butter, vanilla, and nuts, if using. Bake in a baking pan that has been lightly sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.

Friday, October 9, 2009

DELIGHTFUL FRUIT SALAD

1 pkg (4-serving size) lemon pudding and pie filling mix
1 pkg Dream Whip
1 can (approx. 16-oz) fruit cocktail, drained
1 can (approx. 16-oz) mandarin oranges, drained
1 can (approx. 16-oz) can peach slices, drained
2 cups miniature marshmallows

Make the pie filling mix according to package directions but using 1 3/4 cups water; cool.

While pie filling cools, make the Dream Whip according to the package directions (or whip 1/2 pint whipping cream.) Fold the whipped mixture into the cooled pie filling. Gently fold in the fruit cocktail, oranges, peaches, and marshmallows.

Friday, October 2, 2009

WE ARE BEEF EATERS!

In our recent poll "Which do you cook most often?", we proved that we are still beef eaters! Only 1 voted poultry, no one voted for pork or seafood, all the rest voted for beef.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

QUICK BROILER APPETIZERS

1 cup shredded Swiss cheese
1/3 cup Mayonnaise-style salad dressing
1/4 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
dash of garlic powder
18 slices party rye bread, lightly toasted

Combine the cheese, salad dressing, bell pepper, and garlic powder. Spread the mixture on the toasted bread slices. Broil until lightly browned and the cheese is melted. Watch carefully and do not burn.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

MICROWAVE RANCH DIJON HALIBUT STEAKS FOR 2

1/2 cup ranch salad dressing
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
2 halibut steaks (at least 1-inch thick)

In a small bowl, combine the salad dressing mustard. Brush 1/4 cup of the sauce on the fish, covering both sides. Reserve the remaining sauce.

Arrange the halibut on a microwave-safe baking dish. Arrange so the thickest portion of the fish is toward the outer edge of the dish. Cover with plastic wrap and cut a vent slit. Microwave on high for 4 to 7 minutes or until the fish flakes easily with a fork. Serve with the reserved sauce.

RICE AND TOMATOES WITH CREAM CHEESE

3 cups minute rice
8-oz cream cheese, softened
1 can diced tomatoes, drained (save juice for another use)

In a saucepan, cook the rice as directed on the package. Cut the cream cheese into small pieces. When the rice is done, stir in the cream cheese until melted. Add the tomatoes, gently fold in and serve.

Yield: 8 servings

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

HOMEMADE CARAMELCORN

28 vanilla caramels, unwrapped
2 tbsp cold water
2 1/2 quarts freshly popped corn

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Lightly butter a cookie sheet that has sides; set aside.

In a large glass measuring cup, put the caramels and water. Microwave on high for 1 1/2 minutes; stir. Continue microwaving on high for another 30 seconds to 1 minute or until the sauce is smooth and the caramels melted. Immediately pour the caramel mixture over the popcorn; toss until popcorn is well coated. Spread onto the prepared cookie sheet. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Break into bite-sized pieces.

EASY SPINACH-PARMESAN DIP

1 pkg (10-oz) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well drained
1 cup mayonnaise style salad dressing
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 can (8-oz) water chestnuts, drained & chopped
1/8 tsp ground red pepper

In a medium bowl, blend the salad dressing and sour cream together. Stir in the Parmesan cheese and red pepper. Add the spinach and water chestnuts, stir to blend well. Cover and chill. Serve with assorted crackers and/or fresh vegetables.

Yield: 4 cups

Monday, September 28, 2009

QUICK PIZZA CASSEROLE

6 oz fettucine, broken up
1 pkg (3 1/2-oz) sliced pepperoni
1 jar (15 1/2-oz) pizza sauce
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 can (4-oz) sliced mushrooms, drained
1 can (2.25 oz) can sliced pitted ripe olives, drained
1 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

Bring 8 cups of hot water to boiling. Add the fettucine, boil gently for 8 to 10 minutes until tender. Drain; return to the pan. Cut the pepperoni slices in half and add to the fettucine. Stir in the pizza sauce, 3/4 cup of the mozzarella cheese, mushrooms, olives, and the Parmesan cheese. Transfer the mixture to a baking dish that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Sprinkle the remaining mozzarella cheese over the top. Bake in a 400 degree oven about 15 minutes or until heated through.

QUOTES WE CAN APPLY TO COOKING

Here are a couple of quotes that aptly apply to cooking. Especially when we have to hurry to prepare meals. So remember these when you are worried to try something new or think feeding your family fast food would be easier!

The first quote is from Mary Tyler Moore. I doubt she was talking about cooking but I believe it certainly applies. "Take chances, make mistakes. That's how you grow."

The second quote is from actor George Clooney. Again, I doubt he was talking about cooking but it definitely applies. "The only failure is not to try."

Sunday, September 27, 2009

MARY'S BANANA MUFFINS

1 egg
1 cup mashed bananas
2 cup biscuit baking mix
1/4 cup sugar
2 tbsp milk
2 tbsp canola oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease the bottoms only of 12 muffin cups.

Beat the egg slightly; stir in the bananas, baking mix, sugar, milk, and oil just until moistened. Evenly divide the batter among the 12 muffin cups. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 to 17 minutes.

EASY TUNA NOODLE CASSEROLE

1 pkg (about 8 oz) egg noodles, cooked
1 can tuna
1 can cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
1/2 stick butter, softened
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup milk
crushed potato chips, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the tuna, soup, butter, salt, and milk; whisk until smooth. Fold in the noodles and pour the mixture into a casserole dish that has been lightly sprayed with nonstick vegetable oil spray. Sprinkle crushed potato chips on top, if desired.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes until bubbly and heated through.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

ASPARAGUS AND TOASTED ALMOND CHICKEN SALAD

2 1/2 cups 1-inch cut pieces asparagus
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup plain low-fat yogurt
1 tsp curry powder
1 tsp lemon juice (fresh preferably)
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
2 cups chopped roasted chicken breast
1/3 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 tbsp sliced almonds, toasted

Steam the asparagus for a couple of minutes until crisp tender.

Combine the mayonnaise, yogurt, lemon juice, curry powder, salt, and pepper in a large bowl using a wire whisk. Add the asparagus, bell pepper, parsley, almonds, and chicken; toss to coat.

Yield: 4 servings

Friday, September 25, 2009

LINGUINE PASTA CARBONARA

8 oz linguine
4 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup milk
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
4 slices bacon, fried crisp and crumbled
1/4 cup chopped parsley

Cook linguine as directed on the package. Drain but do not rinse; return to the pan. Whisk together the eggs, butter, and milk; toss with the linguine. Add the remaining ingredients and heat thoroughly, stirring occasionally. Serve sprinkled with additional cheese, if desired.

Yield: 4 to 6 servings.

QUICK AND EASY FILLO PEANUT BUTTER CUPS

1 box (15) mini-fillo shells
15 miniature peanut butter cups
1 small can whipped cream
chopped peanuts for garnish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place 15 paper baking cups on the foil putting a fillo cup into each one, if desired. Fillo cups do not have to be put in paper cups. Place a peanut butter cup into each shell. Bake for 5 minutes or until the chocolate softens. With a small spatula, flatten and even out the chocolate in the cup. Let stand at room temperature until cooled. Top each with whipped cream. Sprinkle with chopped peanuts.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

MEDITERRANEAN CHICKEN AND VEGETABLE KEBABS

1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tsps dried oregano
2 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into 24 strips
18 slices zucchini, (1/2-inch thick)
1 fennel bulb, cut into 12 wedges
12 garlic cloves, peeled
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
Nonstick cooking oil spray

In a plastic ziptop bag combine the lemon juice, oregano, olive oil, chicken, and zucchini. Be sure bag is sealed, shake well to coat, and refrigerate for 20 minutes to marinate. Remove from the refrigerator and remove the mixture from the bag. Discard the marinade.

Prepare the indoor or outdoor grill.

Cook the garlic cloves in some boiling water for 3 minutes. Drain and allow to cool.

To prepare kebabs: Thread 4 chicken strips, 3 zucchini slices, 2 fennel wedges, and 2 garlic cloves alternately onto each of 6 (12-inch) skewers. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place kebabs on grill rack coated with cooking spray. Cook 8 minutes, turning once, or until chicken is done.

Yield: 6 kebabs

THYME FOR BASMATI PILAF

2 tsp olive oil
1 tsp bottled minced garlic
1 cup basmati rice
2 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup chopped green onion
1/2 tsp dried thyme

In a medium saucepan with a lid, heat the olive oil over medium heat; add the garlic and saute for a minute. Add the rice and saute 2 minutes. Stir in the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat, simmer for 20 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed. Remove from the heat, stir in the green onion and thyme.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

EASY VEGETABLE STIR-FRY

1 cup chicken broth (vegetable, if you prefer)
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 cup baby carrots
1 1/4 cup broccoli flowerets
1 1/4 cup cauliflowerets
1/2 cup sliced celery
1/8 tsp ground ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
Toasted sesame seeds, optional

In a small bowl, stir the broth, cornstarch, and soy sauce until the mixture is smooth.

Heat the vegetable oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat. Add the carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, celery, ginger and garlic. Stir-fry until the vegetables are crisp tender. Add the broth mixture to the skillet and cook, stirring, until the mixture boils and thickens. Sprinkle with the toasted sesame seeds, if desired.

VEGGIE STUFFED MUSHROOMS

1 lb (approx 20) large white mushrooms
1/2 cup finely chopped broccoli
1/4 cup finely chopped or grated carrot
1 tbsp finely chopped onion
1/2 cup crushed seasoned croutons
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/8 tsp salt
2 tbsp butter, melted

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Clean mushrooms and cut a thin slice off the stem and discard it. Remove the stems from the mushrooms and chop enough stems to make a fourth of a cup. Place chopped stems in a small mixing bowl.

Place mushrooms, cap side down, in a deep baking dish. With the stems in the mixing bowl, combine the broccoli, carrot, and onion. Stir in the crushed croutons, salt, and cheese. Add the butter and mix well. Spoon the vegetable mixture evenly into the mushroom caps. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes or until the stuffing is light golden brown. Serve warm.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

PORK WITH CURRIED ORANGE SAUCE

4 (1 lb total) boneless center-cut loin pork chops
3/4 tsp curry powder, divided
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup orange marmalade
1 1/2 tsp prepared horseradish
1 1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
1/8 tsp crushed red pepper
nonstick cooking oil spray

In a small bowl, combine the paprika, salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of the curry powder. Sprinkle the mixture over the pork chops.

In another small bowl, combine the remaining curry powder, orange marmalade, horseradish, vinegar, and red pepper.

Heat a skillet that is coated with nonstick cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add the pork to the skillet and cook three to five minutes on each side or until the pork loses its pink color. Remove from pan and set aside to keep warm.

Add the marmalade mixture to the pan and cook for a few seconds while scraping pan to loosen the browned bits. Spoon sauce over the pork chops.

CHEESY SALSA DIP

1 lb Velveeta-style cheese, cubed
1 jar (8-oz) your favorite salsa
2 tbsp chopped cilantro

In a microwave-safe bowl, put the cubed cheese product and salsa. Microwave on high for about 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated and cheese is melted. Stir after 2 1/2 to 3 minutes. Add the cilantro; stir in to mix well. Serve dip with tortillas and/or corn chips.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Quick and Easy Noodles Romanoff

8-oz pkg egg noodles
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

Cook the noodles according to package directions. Drain noodles well and return to the pan. Add the sour cream and Parmesan cheese. Toss noodles lightly to coat with the sour cream and cheese. Serve immediately while still hot.

CHEDDAR SLOPPY JOES

1 lb ground beef
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 small carton Velveeta cheese, cubed
1 can (14 1/2-oz) can diced tomatoes
6 hamburger buns

In a large skillet brown the ground beef and drain. Add the onion and bell pepper, saute until tender. Stir in the cheese and tomatoes; stir and cook over medium-low until the liquid cooks out. Serve on the buns.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

QUICK AND EASY CHICKEN FAJITA PIZZAS

4 (6-inch) flour tortillas
1 1/2 cups Mexican-style shredded cheese
1 cup shredded cooked chicken
1/2 cup salsa
1/2 cup chopped bell pepper*
1/2 cup chopped tomato
1/4 cup ripe olive slices

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place the tortillas on a cookie sheet. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the shredded cheese on each of the tortillas. Bake 4 to 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted.

Toss the chicken and salsa together; spread on the warm tortillas. Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the chicken mixture. Bake 7 to 10 minutes or until heated through and cheese is melted. Top the pizzas with the chopped bell pepper, chopped tomatoes, and ripe olives.

TURKEY AND VEGETABLE WRAPS

2 cups diced smoked turkey breast (or leftover turkey)
2 cups salad greens
1/2 cup canned corn, drained
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
3 tbsp ranch dressing
4 (8-inch) flour tortillas

In a large bowl, combine the turkey, salad greens, corn, bell pepper, green onions, and ranch dressing. Toss the mixture well to coat. Warm the tortillas according to the package directions. Top each of the tortillas with a cup of the turkey mixture; Tuck in one end of the tortilla then roll up.

Friday, September 18, 2009

YOUR OWN BACON, EGG, & CHEESE ENGLISH MUFFIN SANDWICH

1/4 cup egg substitute
1 Whole-wheat English muffin, split and toasted
1 slice low-fat cheese
1 slice already cooked bacon; halved

Spray a small skillet with nonstick cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Add the egg substitute and cook until set, stirring or turning occasionally. Spoon mixture onto 1/2 of the English muffin. Top egg with the cheese slice and bacon. Place other half of the English muffin on top to form a sandwich.

EASY SEAFOOD SALAD

1 lb medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/2 lb sea scallops
1/2 lb lump crabmeat, all shell pieces removed
1 1/2 cups diced seeded tomato
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
3 tbsp minced green onions
3 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tbsp minced jalapeno pepper, seeded
6 cups gourmet salad greens

Steam shrimp and scallops, covered, for 6 minutes or until done. Allow to cool. Cut the shrimp and scallops into quarters. Combine shrimp, scallops, crabmeat, tomato, cilantro, green onions,lime juice, and jalapeno pepper in l bowl. Serve the mixture over the salad greens.

WEEKEND WAFFLES

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup soy flour
1 1/2 tbsp ground cinnamon
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups low-fat milk
1/4 cup canola oil
2 large egg yolks
2 large egg whites
dash of sugar
nonstick cooking spray
1 1/2 cups maple syrup
Fresh fruit, optional

Lightly spoon the flours into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine the flours, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl; stir with a whisk. Combine the milk, oil, and egg yolks; add to the flour mixture, stirring until smooth.

Place the egg whites in a large bowl, and beat with a mixer at high speed until foamy. Add the sugar, beating until soft peaks form. Fold the egg whites into the batter.

Coat waffle iron with the nonstick cooking spray; preheat. When hot, spoon 1/3 cup batter per 4-inch waffle onto the iron. Spread batter to the edges. Cook until the steaming stops; 5 to 6 minutes. Repeat with remaining batter.

Serve with syrup and fresh fruit, if desired.

Yield: 8 servings of two waffles

Thursday, September 17, 2009

APPLE GLAZED CHICKEN BREASTS

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 cup apple jelly
3 tbsp chicken broth
2 tbsp thinly sliced green onions, including tops

Preheat broiler. Line pan with aluminum foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.

In a small saucepan, blend the jelly and broth. Heat the mixture, stirring constantly, over medium heat until the jelly melts. Reduce the heat and add the green onions, salt and pepper; stir to mix well. Remove 1/3 of the mixture and set aside.

Put the chicken breasts on the foil lined broiler pan and brush with the apple jelly mixture. Broil for about 20 minutes or until the juices run clear. Turn frequently while cooking and baste with the jelly mixture.

Heat the reserved jelly mixture in the microwave. Drizzle over the cooked chicken before serving.

PEANUTTY OKRA

1 cup all-purpose baking mix
1/2 cup finely chopped dry-roasted peanuts
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 lb fresh okra, cut into 1/4-inch pieces OR 1 pkg (16-oz) frozen cut okra, thawed
Peanut oil for frying

In a large bowl, stir together baking mix, chopped peanuts, salt and pepper. Add the okra, tossing to coat; gently press the mixture onto the okra.

Pour oil to 2-inches deep in a cast iron skillet or use a deep fryer. Oil should reach 375 degrees. Fry the okra in batches for about 4 minutes or until golden. Drain okra on paper towels on a cookie sheet.

Yield: 4 servings

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

LIGHT AND DARK BEAN SALAD

1 can light red kidney beans
1 can dark red kidney beans
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped onion
1 chopped dill pickle
4 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
1/2 cup mayonnaise

Drain the beans and save the liquid. Place beans in a large bowl and add the celery, onion, pickle, and eggs. Stir to mix. Add the mayonnaise and any of the reserved liquid you need to mix well.

MICROWAVE CHOCOLATE AND JAM BARS

TOPPING:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
3 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 stick butter
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate mini-chips, divided
2 tbsp chopped pecans

BASE:
1/2 stick butter, softened
2 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp firmly packed brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 cup jam

To make topping: In a small bowl, combine the flour, sugar, and brown sugar. With a pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in the butter until fine crumbs form. Stir in 1/2 cup of the chocolate mini-chips and the pecans. Set bowl aside.

To make base: In a small mixer bowl, combine butter, sugar, and brown sugar; beat until creamy. Beat in egg. Gradually beat in the flour and salt. Stir in the remaining chocolate chips from the topping list. Spread the mixture into a greased 8-inch square microwave-safe dish. Microwave on High power for 4 minutes. Rotate dish after 2 minutes (if microwave doesn't have a turntable). Top with the jam. Sprinkle the topping over the jam. Microwave on High 3 to 5 minutes longer, rotating once, until the jam bubbles around the edges. Cool completely by setting on the counter. Cut into bars.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

MOCHA PUDDING

This pudding goes together in minutes. However, it does need to chill for a couple of hours.

1 container (15-oz) fat-free ricotta cheese
1 cup low-fat vanilla yogurt
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp espresso powder
12 chocolate-covered coffee beans

Combine the ricotta cheese, 3/4 cup of the yogurt, cocoa powder, powdered sugar, vanilla, and espresso powder in a food processor or blender container. Process just until smooth. Divide the pudding evenly into 4 dessert dishes, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or until set.

Before serving top each dish of pudding with one tablespoon of the remaining yogurt. Top the yogurt with 3 of the chocolate-covered coffee beans per dish.

HOMEMADE SPICE RUB

1 tsp oregano
1 tsp cumin
1 tbsp chili powder
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp onion powder
1 tbsp paprika
1 tbsp salt
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar

Mix the brown sugar and the spices together. Seal in a jar with a lid or an airtight container. Use on chicken, beef, pork, or fish before grilling, broiling, or baking.

Friday, September 11, 2009

MICROWAVE CHOCOLATE OATMEAL MUFFINS

1 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup quick oats, uncooked
6 tbsp sugar, divided
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups milk chocolate baking chips
2 eggs
1/2 cup canola oil
3/4 cup applesauce
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
powdered sugar for garnish, if desired

In a large bowl, combine the flour, oats, half the sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Add the chocolate chips.

In a small bowl, combine the eggs, canola oil, applesauce, vanilla extract, and the remaining half of the sugar. Stir the mixture to blend. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir just until the flour mixture is moistened.

Spoon the batter into paper lined microwave muffin cups. Fill each cup about 2/3s full. Microwave on high for 2 to 3 minutes or until done. Sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired.

Yield: 15 muffins

Thursday, September 10, 2009

HONEY-PECAN CHICKEN

2 tbsp lite soy sauce
2 tbsp honey
2 cups wheat cereal squares, crushed
1/3 cup finely chopped pecans
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
6 skinless boneless chicken breast halves
Vegetable oil cooking spray

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

In a small shallow bowl, stir together the soy sauce and honey; set aside.

Line a baking sheet with sides with aluminum foil and spray with the vegetable oil spray; set aside.

Combine the cereal crumbs and pecans in a pie plate or shallow dish. Sprinkle the chicken breasts with the salt and pepper. Dip chicken in the honey mixture then dredge in the crumbs mixture to coat. Place chicken on the prepared baking pan. Bake at 425 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

QUICK AND EASY BROCCOLI CHOWDER

1 pkg (10-oz) frozen chopped broccoli
1 tbsp dried minced onion
1 can (10 3/4-oz) condensed cream of chicken soup
1 cup milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/8 tsp ground red pepper

In a medium saucepan bring 1/2 cup water to boiling; add broccoli and onion. Cover and simmer about 5 minutes or until the broccoli is crisp tender. Stir in the soup, milk, cheese, and red pepper. Cook and stir about 4 minutes or until heated through.

EASY CHEESY TORTELLINI

7-oz pkg cheese filled tortellini
1/2 lb pasteurized process cheese spread, cubed
1/4 cup milk
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

Cook tortellini according to the package directions and drain.

In a saucepan, over low heat, combine the milk, nutmeg, and the cubed cheese. Cook the mixture until the cheese spread is melted. Toss the tortellini with the cheese mixture.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

BUTTERED CITRUS CIDER

6 cups apple cider
1/2 medium unpeeled orange, sliced
8 whole allspice
8 whole cloves
2 cinnamon sticks
1 orange peel strip
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

In a large saucepan, combine the cider and orange slices. Place the allspice and cloves, cinnamon sticks and orange peel on a double thickness of cheesecloth. Pull cheesecloth up to form a bag and tie with kitchen string; add to the cider. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat to simmer and cook, uncovered, for 15 to 20 minutes. In a small bowl combine the brown sugar, butter and cinnamon. Discard the spice bag from the cider saucepan. Pour cider into mugs and dot with the butter mixture. Use extra cinnamon sticks as stirrers, if desired.

BANANAS FOSTER

4 firm bananas
lemon juice
6 tbsp butter
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
3 tbsp banana liqueur
3 tbsp rum
whipped cream
ground cinnamon for garnish, optional

Peel bananas and brush with lemon juice. Melt the butter in a skillet. Stir the brown sugar into the butter and cook, stirring until sugar is melted. Add bananas in a single layer. Saute about 3 or 4 minutes; turn once. Pour the liqueur over all. Over low heat, heat rum in a small saucepan until warm. Pour over the bananas and then remove the skillet from the heat.

Carefully ignite the mixture in the skillet using a long stemmed match or fireplace lighter; shake pan back and forth. Spoon the flaming liqueur over the bananas until the flames die out. Serve immediately with the whipped cream. Sprinkle with cinnamon.

Caution: Be care to remove pan from heat before igniting. Always be cautious when working with live fire.

Friday, September 4, 2009

CINNAMON AND SUGAR BISCUITS

2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
3 tsp double-acting baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/3 cup shortening
1/2 cup milk
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp cinnamon, or more as desired

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

In a bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, and salt together. Cut the shortening into the flour mixture using a pastry blender or two butter knives until the mixture looks like coarse meal. Add milk and stir just enough for the dough to hold together. Place dough on a lightly floured surface and knead lightly. Roll the dough out to a 3/4-inch thickness. Cut with a floured biscuit cutter or a glass, cutting straight down without twisting. Place biscuits on a parchment-lined baking sheet, sprinkle with the cinnamon and sugar that has been stirred together in a small bowl. Bake at 425 degrees for 6 to 9 minutes.

SPICY SHRIMP WITH REMOULADE SAUCE

SAUCE:
1/4 cup low-fat mayonnaise
1/4 cup plain fat-free yogurt
1 tsp grated lime rind
1 1/2 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tsp capers, chopped
dash of ground red pepper

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk together until combined. Set aside or refrigerate.

SHRIMP:
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1 1/2 lbs large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tbsp olive oil
Cilantro sprigs for garnish, if desired

In a medium bowl, combine cumin, paprika, coriander, garlic powder, salt and black pepper. Add shrimp and toss well. Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons of the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add half the shrimp to the skillet. Cook about 3 minutes on each side or until done. Do not overcook. Remove shrimp and keep it warm. Repeat the procedure with the remaining oil and shrimp. Serve shrimp with the Remoulade Sauce. Garnish with the cilantro sprigs, if desired.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

DEBBIE'S SPICED CIDER

8 cups apple cider or juice
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3 3-inch cinnamon sticks
1/2 tsp ground allspice
dash of salt
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
Additional cinnamon sticks for garnish, optional

In a large saucepan, combine the cider or juice, brown sugar, 3 cinnamon sticks, allspice, salt, and nutmeg; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes. Discard the cinnamon sticks. Use the additional cinnamon sticks as stirrers in the mugs, if desired.

Yield: approximately 1/2 gallon

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

SNOWCAPPED INDIVIDUAL BROCCOLI & HAM

1 pkg (10-oz) frozen cut broccoli
2 cups fully cooked ham, chopped
1/4 cup onion
3/4 cup mayonnaise
3 egg whites
1 tsp dry mustard
2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

Thaw broccoli in a colander under hot running water. Drain well and evenly divide among four 10-oz custard cups. Combine the ham with the onion and 1/4 cup of the mayonnaise; spoon over the broccoli in the custard cups.

For the topping, in a small mixer bowl with mixer on high beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Stir the remaining half cup of the mayonnaise and the mustard together. Fold the mayonnaise mixture into the egg whites. Spoon the egg whites over the ham. Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese over the egg whites. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 15 to 18 minutes or until the topping is golden brown.

CHICKEN VEGGIE STIR-FRY

3 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1 tbsp canola oil
2 green onions, sliced
1 tbsp minced garlic
3/4 tsp salt
1 tsp ground ginger
1 pkg (16-oz) frozen Oriental mixed vegetables
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tbsp water

Slice the chicken breasts into 1-inch strips. Heat a large skillet or wok over medium heat until a drop of water sizzles when dropped onto pan. Add the oil. Place chicken in skillet and stir-fry about 5 minutes. Add the green onions and garlic; cook while stirring for 2 minutes. Stir in the salt and ginger. Add the mixed veggies and the chicken broth. Bring to a boil and cook until vegetables are heated through. This will take about 3 to 4 minutes.

Blend the cornstarch and water together until smooth. Add to the skillet and bring to a boil. Boil until the sauce is thickened. Remove from the heat and serve while hot. Serve over white rice.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

TORTELLINI BROCCOLI SALAD

1 pkg (7-oz) cheese tortellini
1 cup broccoli florets
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 jar (6-oz) marinated artichokes, drained
2 green onions, chopped
1/2 cup Italian salad dressing
2 1/2 tsp chopped fresh basil
3 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
6 cherry tomatoes, halved

Cook tortellini according to package directions; drain. Rinse and drain again. In a large bowl, combine the tortellini with the broccoli florets, parsley, artichokes, and green onions; toss lightly to mix. Pour the Italian dressing over the tortellini mixture and sprinkle with the fresh basil. Toss gently to coat. Cover salad and chill until serving time. Toss gently again just before serving. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over the salad and garnish with the cherry tomatoes.

Note: This is an excellent make ahead salad as it can be prepared 6 to 8 hours before serving, if need be. Also, you can add leftover, cooked chicken to make an excellent entree salad.

Friday, August 28, 2009

TURKEY LETTUCE WRAPS

2 large leaves of leaf lettuce
2 slices turkey bacon, cooked
6 thin slices smoked turkey breast
2 thin peeled avocado slices
2 thin tomato wedges
1 tbsp Blue Cheese salad dressing

Top the lettuce leaves evenly with the bacon, turkey slices, avocado slices and tomato wedges. Drizzle the dressing over the meat and vegetables. Roll each lettuce leaf up tightly, securing it with a toothpick, if desired.

Yield: 2 wraps

Note: Be careful with the toothpicks to prevent choking. Toothpicks should be removed before you start eating.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

QUICK AND EASY SPANISH RICE

2 tbsp olive or canola oil
1 cup chopped yellow onion
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 can (4-oz) chopped mild green chiles, drained
1 cup minute rice
2 cups canned tomatoes
2 tbsp white vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
dash of chili powder

Heat oil in a large skillet, over medium-high heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, green chiles, and rice. Saute until rice is browned and vegetables are tender; about 5 minutes. Add the undrained tomatoes and the vinegar to the skillet; stir to mix well. Cook, stirring frequently, until liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender, about 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper; mix well.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

TURKEY & MACARONI CASSEROLE

1 pkg (14-oz) pkg macaroni and cheese dinner mix
1 pkg (10-oz) frozen mixed vegetables
1 lb bulk turkey sausage
1/2 small onion, chopped
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup butter
1 pkg (3-oz) cream cheese, cut-up

Cook macaroni from mix in a large amount of boiling salted water for 5 minutes. Add frozen vegetables. Cook for 5 minutes longer. Drain the mixture and return to the saucepan.

Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, cook turkey sausage and chopped onion until the sausage is cooked through and the onion is tender. Drain, if needed.

To the hot macaroni-vegetable mixture, add the cheese sauce from the boxed mix, milk, butter, and the cream cheese. Stir until the butter and cream cheese have melted. Stir in the turkey-onion mixture and heat through.

Yield: 4 servings

SESAME VEGETABLES

2 red bell peppers
2 green bell peppers
2 medium zucchini
4 carrots
1 tbsp olive or canola oil
1/2 small head red cabbage, thinly sliced
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
4 tsp vinegar
1/4 cup water
1 tbsp sesame seeds

Cut bell peppers, zucchini, and carrots julienne-style. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat; add oil. Add bell peppers, zucchini, and carrots. Stir-fry for 5 minutes. Add cabbage, salt and pepper. Stir-fry for 1 minute. Mix the vinegar and water in a measuring cup; add to the skillet. Stir-fry for 3 minutes. Add sesame seeds to the mixture. Stir-fry for another minute. Using a slotted spoon, remove the vegetables to a serving bowl. Serve immediately while hot.

Monday, August 24, 2009

CREAMY SPAGHETTI WITH TURKEY SAUSAGE

6 oz uncooked whole wheat spaghetti
3/4 pound Italian turkey sausage links, remove casings
2 tsp olive oil
1 sweet onion, thinly sliced
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil, thinly sliced
1/2 cup half-and-half cream
Parmesan cheese

Cook spaghetti according to the package directions.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, heat olive oil and add the sausage. Cook for 5 minutes. Add onion and cook an additional 10 minutes or until the sausage is no longer pink and the onion is tender. Add the tomatoes and basil, heat through. Add cream and bring the mixture to a boil. Drain the spaghetti and toss with the sausage mixture. Garnish with the Parmesan cheese.

GRILLED ZUCCHINI WITH CHEESE

1 lb zucchini, sliced 1/4-inch thick
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
salt to taste
pepper to taste
1/2 tsp oregano
1/4 lb shredded mozzarella

Preheat broiler or prepare indoor or outdoor grill.

Brush the olive oil on the zucchini slices. Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, and oregano over the oil. Top with the shredded mozzarella cheese. Grill or broil for about 5 minutes until zucchini softens and cheese melts.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

MICROWAVE PIZZA DIP

1 jar (8-oz) pasteurized process cheese spread
1 can (8-oz) pizza sauce
8 to 10 slices pepperoni, diced

In the microwave heat the cheese spread about 30 seconds for more easy removal from jar. In a small microwave safe bowl, mix the cheese spread and pizza sauce together. Microwave on high for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes or until heated thoroughly, stirring halfway through cooking. Stir the diced pepperoni into the dip and stir to mix in well. Serve with bread sticks, fresh vegetables, or crackers.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

TROPICAL CHEESE SPREAD APPETIZER

1 pkg (8-oz) cream cheese
1 can (8 1/4-oz) crushed pineapple with juice
2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/2 cup flaked coconut
1/2 cup diced dried apricots
1/2 cup chopped pecans or macadamia nuts
Assorted crackers and party breads

In a small mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese and pineapple with juice; mix until well blended. Add the cheese and blend in well. Stir in the coconut, apricots, and nuts; mix well. Chill until serving time. Serve with an assortment of crackers and/or miniature party breads.

ITALIAN TOTE ALONG SANDWICH

1 loaf (1 lb) Italian bread
1 pkg (3-oz) cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup basil pesto
4 oz thin sliced provolone cheese
1/2 lb sliced salami
8 bottled banana peppers, stemmed, seeded, sliced
1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup sliced ripe olives, drained

Split loaf of bread in half horizontally. Scoop some of the soft bread from the bottom half but leave at least a half inch thick bottom. Spread the cream cheese on each cut side of the bread. Spread the pesto over the cream cheese on the bottom half of the bread. On the bottom half, layer the provolone cheese, salami, banana peppers, red onion slices, and sliced olives. Drizzle a little Italian dressing on sandwich over the olives if desired. Place the top half of the bread atop the sandwich and press down lightly.

Wrap sandwich tightly in plastic wrap for toting to a picnic, etc. Before serving, cut in six sections and top each with a cherry tomato on a long pick, if desired. If taking for lunch, cut into sections of desired size and wrap each separately. Store extras in refrigerator.

Monday, August 17, 2009

QUICK AND EASY CHICKEN SKILLET

1 tbsp canola oil
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 can (10 1/4) condensed cream of chicken soup
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups uncooked instant brown rice
2 cups fresh broccoli broken into small florets

In a heavy 10-inch skillet, over medium heat, heat the canola oil. Add the chicken until well browned on both sides; remove from skillet.

Stir the soup, water, paprika, and pepper together in the skillet. Heat to a boil. Stir rice and broccoli into the soup mixture in skillet and reduce heat to low. Return the chicken to the skillet. Sprinkle additional paprika and pepper over the chicken. Cover and cook 5 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the rice is tender.

SWIRLY CHOCOLATE MILKSHAKES

3 cups vanilla ice cream
3 cups milk
3/4 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup chocolate fudge syrup, divided
4 maraschino cherries with stems attached

In a blender container combine the ice cream, milk, and vanilla. Process until thick and smooth, about 1 minute.

Divide fudge syrup among four parfait glasses, covering the bottom and drizzling syrup in a spiral pattern around the inside of each glass. Divide the ice cream mixture evenly among the four parfait glasses. Swirl some chocolate fudge syrup over each serving. Place a maraschino cherry atop each milkshake.

NOTE: In a hurry, stir the fudge topping into the glasses rather than swirling the insides of the glass.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

BARBECUE CHICKEN GREEN SALAD

1/2 lb chicken strips or tenders
1/4 cup your favorite barbecue sauce
4 slices ready to serve bacon
1 large tomato
1/2 small yellow onion
8 cups mixed salad greens
1 cup whole-kernel corn, drained
1/3 cup ranch salad dressing

If using an electric stove, preheat broiler. Gas broiler does not need to be preheated. Spray broiler pan with nonstick cooking spray.

In a bowl, pour the barbecue sauce over the chicken and toss to coat. Broil 10 minutes or until cooked through, turning once during cooking process. Cut strips into thirds.

Heat bacon in microwave, crumble; set aside.

Coarsely chop the tomato. In a salad bowl, combine the tomato, onion, salad greens, and corn. Toss to mix ingredients. Pour the ranch dressing over the salad and toss. Divide salad among serving bowls or plates and top with chicken and sprinkle with bacon.

SAUTEED ZUCCHINI AND YELLOW SQUASH

1 lb zucchini
1 lb yellow squash
2 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp salt
dash of garlic powder
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 tbsp snipped chives, optional

Slice zucchini and squash into 1/4 inch thick slices. In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the squash, zucchini, salt, garlic powder, and pepper. Cook 5 to 8 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in chives before serving, if desired.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

HERBED BAKED TOMATOES

3 large tomatoes, halved
3 tbsp unflavored bread crumbs
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp minced garlic
1/2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly oil a baking pan. Place tomatoes in pan, cut side up. In a small bowl, combine remaining ingredients; spread on tomatoes. Bake 15 minutes.

Friday, August 14, 2009

ROTEL NACHO CHEESE DIP

1 can Cheddar cheese soup
1 can Rotel chilies and tomatoes
1 small box Velveeta cheese
1 lb ground beef

Brown ground beef and drain. Mix soup, chilies and tomatoes, cheese, and beef in a crockpot. Let cheese melt and get hot. Serve over tortilla chips.

ARKANSAS DOWN-HOME FRIED CORN

1 tbsp bacon drippings or butter
4 cups whole-kernel corn (6 to 7 ears cut from the cob)
4 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup water

In a large skillet, heat the bacon drippings or butter over medium heat. Add corn, sugar, salt, and water; saute 5 to 7 minutes. Serve hot.

Yield: 8 servings

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

EASY GRILLED VEGETABLES

1/2 cup mayo style salad dressing
1/2 cup Italian salad dressing
2 zucchini, cut in half lengthwise
2 yellow squash, cut in half lengthwise
2 bell peppers, cored, seeded, and cut into fourths

If using an electric broiler, preheat. If using an outside grill, cook over hot not flaming coals. No need to preheat a gas broiler.

Mix the mayo style salad dressing and the Italian dressing until they are well blended. Lightly score the cut sides of the vegetables and brush one side with the salad dressing mixture. Place, salad dressing side up, on broiler pan about 4-inches from the heat. Broil 6 minutes. Turn vegetables, brush second side with the dressing mixture and return to broiler for another 5 to 6 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

MAYO-PARMESAN BREAD

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tbsp snipped chives or parsley
8 to 10 slices French or Italian Bread, about 1/2-inch thick

In a small bowl combine the Parmesan cheese and mayonnaise. Stir in the chives or parsley; set aside.

Place bread slices on the rack on an unheated broiler pan. Broil 3 to 4 inches from the heat about a minute or until toasted. Turn bread over and spread with the remaining mayonnaise mixture on the untoasted side. Broil, 3 to 4 inches from heat for 2 to 3 minutes or until lightly browned.

Yield: 4 to 5 servings.

Friday, August 7, 2009

BREAKFAST WRAPS

3/4 lb sausage, crumbled
4 green onions, sliced
2 apricots or peaches, pitted and sliced
4 eggs, beaten
4 burrito-size flour tortillas

In a greased medium skillet over medium-high heat, cook sausage until browned, stirring to break up. Drain meat and wipe skillet of excess fat. Return meat to skillet; add onions and fruit. Cook another minute and remove from the skillet. Again, wipe skillet with paper toweling. Spray skillet with nonstick cooking spray and add the eggs. Cook eggs, stirring constantly until thoroughly cooked. This will take a couple of minutes. Heat tortillas by wrapping in paper towels and heating for a few seconds in microwave. Divide the egg mixture and sausage mixture evenly between the four tortillas. Roll tortillas to wrap around sausage and eggs.

ITALIAN TORTELLINI SALAD

1 pkg (7-oz) cheese filled spinach tortellini
8 oz provolone cheese, cubed
1 small tomato, coarsely chopped
1/2 small green bell pepper, cut into thin strips
1/2 cup sliced pitted ripe olives, drained
4 green onions, sliced
1/2 cup Italian salad dressing
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Cook tortellini according to package directions. Drain tortellini in a colander. Place colander in a large bowl of ice cold water. Let stand for 5 minutes. Drain well. Transfer tortellini to a serving bowl. Add cubed provolone cheese, tomato, pepper strips, olives, and green onions. Pour dressing over the mixture. Toss gently to coat. Top with grated Parmesan and toss lightly.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

PAN GRILLED SALMON with BEANS-SPINACH SAUTE

3/4 cup chopped onion
1 tbsp minced garlic
2 tsp sage
2 tsp canola oil
1 can (cannellini beans, rinsed and drained)
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4 tsp salt, optional
3 cups baby spinach
4 (about 3-oz each) skinless salmon fillets
red pepper flakes, optional

In a deep wide skillet, heat half the canola oil. Add the onion, garlic, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of the sage. Cover the pan and cook over medium heat, stirring often, for approximately 5 minutes until the onion starts to soften. Add the beans, broth, and salt,if using. Simmer mixture approximately 10 minutes. Stir the spinach into the beans mixture and cook another 2 to 3 more minutes. Remove from heat.

Rub the salmon with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon sage. Heat the remaining half of the oil in a skillet. Place salmon fillets in the skillet and cook 3 to 4 minutes. Carefully turn the salmon and cook another minute. Remove to serving plates and spoon the spinach-bean mixture evenly over each fillet. Sprinkle with red pepper flakes, if desired.

FRUIT-GLAZED CUSTARDS

3 large eggs
1 can (14-oz) sweetened condensed milk
1 cup hot water
1 tsp vanilla
dash salt
1/2 cup red-current jelly
2 tbsp orange juice
1 tbsp cornstarch
Fresh strawberries, raspberries, peaches, etc

Beat eggs slightly in a medium mixing bowl. Add the milk, hot water, vanilla, and salt; mix thoroughly. Arrange six 6-oz custard cups on a rack in a wok that has 1 1/2 to 2 inches simmering water. Pour custard mixture evenly into the custard cups. Cover with a sheet of waxed paper and add the wok cover. Simmer for 15 minutes or until the custards are firm and knife inserted near the center comes out clean.

Remove custards from wok and sit on a wire rack to cool. Chill in refrigerator while making fruit glaze.

To Make Glaze:

In a small saucepan combine the jelly, orange juice, and cornstarch. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until smooth and thickened. Allow to cool.

To serve, unmold the custards onto individual serving dishes. Pour the glaze over tops of the custards and garnish with the fresh fruit.

Friday, July 31, 2009

TURKEY AND CHEESE WRAP

1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 tsp chili powder
4 whole wheat wraps
2 cups alfalfa or bean sprouts
1/2 lb cooked turkey, cut into strips
4-oz cheddar cheese, cut into strips
1 small red onion, cut in half from top to bottom then sliced into thin slices
1 firm ripe avocado, cut into thin strips

In a small bowl, mix the chili powder into the mayonnaise. Spread 1 tablespoon of the mixture onto each of the four wraps. Layer over the mayonnaise mixture on each wrap, 1/2 cup of the sprouts, 1/4 of the turkey strips, 1/4 of the cheese strips, 1/4 of the red onion, and 1/4 of the avocado. Roll up the wraps and enjoy!

GRILLED NACHO PIZZAS

4 pocketless pita rounds
olive oil nonstick cooking spray
1 1/3 cups canned fat-free refried beans
sliced pickled jalapeno peppers, optional
1 cup shredded Mexican-style cheese
4 tbsp whole-kernel canned corn
salsa, for garnish
fresh chopped cilantro, for garnish

Spray one side of the pita rounds with the olive oil spray. Grill on a hot grill for about a minute or until bottoms are lightly charred. Remove from grill and arrange on a platter or cookie sheet with the grilled sides up. Divide the refried beans evenly between the 4 pitas and spread over top. Add some jalapeno peppers, if using. Top with 1 tablespoon of corn kernels per pita. Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the corn. Return to the grill and cover. Grill for a minute or until the cheese melts. Top with the salsa and cilantro, if desired.

Note: You could add a small amount of cooked diced or shredded chicken or some browned ground beef, if you want meat on your pizza.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

QUICK AND EASY TUNA STUFFED PEPPERS

2 to 3 bell peppers, depending on size
1 can (12-oz) chunk light tuna, drained
2 tbsp mayonnaise
2 tbsp Italian salad dressing
1/4 cup finely diced celery

Cut peppers in half from the top to bottom; remove seeds and veins. In a small bowl, combine the tuna, mayonnaise, salad dressing, and celery. Divide the tuna mixture evenly among the pepper halves.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

QUICK BAR COOKIES

This old recipe is from Indiana cook.

1 can (15-oz) sweetened condensed milk
1 cup flaked coconut
3/4 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans
17 graham crackers, crushed
1 tsp vanilla

Combine all the ingredients and mix together well. Pour into a well greased 9 x 9-in pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. Cut into bars.

Georgia Delicious Punch

This is an old recipe from Good Hope, Georgia.

7 pkg gelatin (pick a flavor to coordinate with your party, etc color scheme)
7 cups sugar
7 cups boiling water
1 cans (1-qt each) pineapple juice
2 small cans frozen lemonade concentrate
2 qt ginger ale

Dissolve gelatin and sugar in boiling water; add the pineapple juice. Prepare lemonade as directed on package and add to the punch mixture. Add the ginger ale just before serving.

Yield: 2 gallons

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

PEG'S LINGUINE IN FRESH TOMATO SAUCE

10-oz linguine noodles
2 tbsp olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
2/3 cup fresh basil, chopped (reserve 1 tablespoon)
1 pint small tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 tsp sugar
1/2 cup halved, pitted kalamata olives, optional
Grated Parmesan cheese

Cook linguine according to the package directions; drain and set aside.

In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the garlic, basil, and tomatoes. Cook for 2 minutes; add the sugar and chicken broth. Cook 3 to 4 more minutes to soften the tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper, if desired. Stir in the linguine and olives, if using. Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese and the reserved tablespoon of fresh basil.

Yield: 4 servings

Saturday, July 25, 2009

OH-S0-EASY CHEESY CHICKEN MACARONI

1 pkg (14-oz) Deluxe Macaroni and Cheese Dinner
2 cups chopped cooked chicken
1/2 cup sour cream

Prepare the macaroni and cheese as directed on package. Add the chicken and sour cream to the macaroni and cheese. Mix well, heat thoroughly, adding a tablespoon or two of milk, if needed.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

ITALIAN SKILLET DINNER

1/2 cup chopped onion
2 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp garlic salt
2 tbsp olive oil
1 can (15-oz) crushed tomatoes
1 cup hot water
1 pkg (9-oz) refrigerated cheese tortellini
1 carton (15-oz) lowfat ricotta cheese
1 egg
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 pkg (10-oz) frozen chopped spinach, thawed, squeezed dry
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

In a large skillet, cook onion, basil, oregano, and garlic salt in oil for two minutes. Add the tomatoes and hot water; bring to a boil. Add tortellini; cover and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir together the ricotta cheese, egg, and Parmesan cheese. Drop spoonsful of spinach and then ricotta mixture over the pasta. Top with mozzarella. Cover; cook 10 minutes longer or until the ricotta mixture is set. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

HONEY PARTY PUNCH

2 cups boiling water
3/4 cup honey
4 cups cranberry juice
2 cups orange juice
1 cup lemon juice
1 quart ginger ale
Ice cubes
Sliced lemons, limes, oranges, and or strawberries, optional

Combine the boiling water and honey. Stir to dissolve honey. Chill mixture. In a large punch bowl, combine the juices. Stir in the honey water. Just before serving add the ginger ale and ice cubes. Float fruit slice garnishes on top, if desired.

Yield: Serves 12

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Mom's Watergate Salad

1 can (large) crushed pineapple, well drained
1 pkg (4-serving size)pistachio instant pudding mix
1 carton 8-oz frozen whipped topping, thawed
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 cup colored miniature marshmallows

In a large bowl, add the pineapple to the dry pudding mix. Mix very well. Add the whipped topping and mix well. Fold in the nuts and marshmallows. Chill until serving time. Keep any leftovers refrigerated.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

MICROWAVE ZUCCHINI AND TOMATOES CASSEROLE

1 1/2 lb thinly sliced zucchini
2 cups whole cherry tomatoes
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp basil
1/4 tsp oregano
1 tbsp butter
1 tsp minced onion flakes
1/2 tsp parsley flakes

Mix all ingredients together in a 1 1/2-quart microwaveable dish. Cover and microwave 12 to 14 minutes.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

TOFU TACO DIP

1 box (10.5-oz) silken tofu, softened
1 pkg (1.25-oz) dry taco seasoning mix

Put both ingredients into the blender or food processor; mix until smooth. Chill prior to serving. Serve with corn chips or tortilla chips.

NOTE: Variations: Replace taco seasoning mix with dry Ranch Dressing Mix or Dry French Onion Soup Mix. Serve with chips and/or fresh veggies.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

GERMAN SKILLET DINNER

1 tbsp butter
1 can (16-oz) sauerkraut, undrained
1/2 cup uncooked rice
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 lb lean ground chuck, lightly browned and drained
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 can (8-oz) tomato sauce

In a large skillet, melt the butter. Spread the sauerkraut out evenly over the bottom of the skillet. Sprinkle the rice over the sauerkraut and the onion over the rice. Top rice with the ground meat, salt, pepper, and tomato sauce. Cover skillet and cook over low heat 25 to 30 minutes or until the rice is tender.

PECAN STICKY MUFFINS

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

TOPPING:

1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup chopped pecans

Grease 12 muffin cups; set aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. In another bowl, beat the eggs, milk, oil, brown sugar, and vanilla until smooth. Stir into the dry ingredients just until moistened.

Into each of the muffin cups, spoon 1 teaspoon of the butter, 1 teaspoon of the brown sugar, and 1 heaping tablespoon of the pecans. Top each with 1/4 cup of the batter. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes or until muffins test done with a wooden toothpick. Invert pan onto a piece of aluminum foil and let stand for 2 minutes. Remove the pan. Serve the rolls warm.



Tuesday, July 14, 2009

TOSSED TUNA SALAD

9 1/4-oz can tuna, chilled and drained
3 cups torn fresh spinach and/or lettuce
1 can (16-oz) bean sprouts, drained and rinsed
1 can (5-oz) water chestnuts, drained and sliced
2 tbsp sliced green onions, separated into rings
1/2 cup Italian salad dressing
1 medium tomato, cut into 6 wedges

In a large salad bowl, using a fork, break tuna into large pieces. Combine all ingredients except tomato and toss to mix well. Garnish with the tomato wedges.

Yield: 6 servings

Sunday, July 12, 2009

SUPER CHEF'S SALAD WITH HAM

2 large eggs
2 hearts of romaine lettuce (or other lettuce) cut into thick shreds
1 can (1 lb) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 med cucumber, sliced
2 tomatoes, cut into wedges
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
4-oz fully cooked ham cut into strips
Your favorite salad dressing

Put eggs in a small saucepan with enough water to cover them. Bring to a boil, lower heat to simmer and simmer for 1 minute. Remove the saucepan from the heat, cover and let stand for 10 minutes. Drain eggs, rinse with cold water, and peel. Cut peeled eggs into wedges.

In a large salad bowl, put the romaine lettuce. Top with the chickpeas, cucumber, tomatoes, cheese, and ham. Add the egg wedges and your favorite dressing.

Yield: 4 servings.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

FIZZY CHAMPAGNE SORBET COCKTAIL

Assorted sorbets such as lemon, coconut, peach
Champagne

Place 6 martini glasses in the freezer for 30 minutes or until quite cold. Remove from freezer right before serving and add 5 to 6 mini scoops of the sorbets to each glass. Top with champagne for a pretty, tasty, and cool cocktail.

QUICK AND EASY THAI BEEF SALAD

1 bag (16-oz) coleslaw mix
1 small cucumber, thinly sliced
1/3 cup rice vinegar
3 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tbsp sugar
2 tsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
3/4 lb thick sliced deli roast beef
fresh mint chopped, if desired for garnish
fresh chopped cilantro, if desired for garnish

In a large salad bowl, combine coleslaw mix and cucumber.

In a small saucepan, combine vinegar, oil, sugar, and soy sauce. Bring mixture to a boil. Pour boiling dressing over the coleslaw mixture and toss to coat thoroughly.

Cut beef crosswise into strips. Add to coleslaw mixture and toss to combine. Top with garnishes, if desired.

Note: This salad is also a good salad for diabetics. This recipe divided into 4 servings contains 19 g carbs and 17 g protein per serving.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

FROZEN PEANUT BUTTER PIE

This pie is in the Quick Fix Recipes because it only takes 10 minutes to prepare. It does, however, need to be frozen before serving.

8-oz cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup extra chunky peanut butter
1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup milk
8-oz carton extra creamy frozen whipped topping, thawed
9-inch graham cracker crust

In a medium mixing bowl using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese on low speed until soft and fluffy. Mix in peanut butter and sugar until incorporated. Slowly add milk, beating until well blended. Fold in thawed whipped topping. Spoon mixture into the graham cracker crust mounding in center. Freeze until firm. When solid enough, cover with foil.

Note: This pie will keep in the freezer for several weeks.

FLOUNDER IN A BAG DINNER

1 tbsp flour
1 large size (14 x 20-inches) Oven Cooking Bag
8 to 10 (2 lb) flounder fillets
seasoned salt
1 cup shredded Colby cheese
2 medium zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch diagonal slices
1 medium tomato, seeded and chopped
1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
1/4 cup chopped green onion
1 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp garlic powder
2 tbsp butter, diced
paprika

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Shake flour into cooking bag and place bag in a 13x 9 x2-inch baking pan. Sprinkle fish with seasoned salt and cheese. Roll each fillet starting at the narrow end. Place fish rolls, seam side down in the center of the bag, forming two rows. Combine zucchini, tomato, mushrooms, and green onion; add basil, pepper and garlic powder. Mix vegetables and spices to blend. Arrange the vegetables around the fish rolls.

Sprinkle the fish with paprika and dot with the butter. Close bag with it's tie. Make 6 small slits in the top of the bag to vent. Bake about 25 minutes or until the flounder flakes easily with a fork.

COFFEE CARAMEL NUT TART

This tart is quick to assemble but does need to refrigerate for about an hour before serving.

1/2 cup whipping cream
2 tbsp instant coffee granules
1 pkg (14-oz) caramels, unwrapped
4 cups toasted pecans
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 9-inch prepared graham cracker crust

In a large microwavable bowl, stir together the cream and coffee granules; add caramels. Microwave mixture on high 2 to 3 minutes, stirring every minute. Cook and stir until caramels are completely melted. Stir in pecans and cinnamon. Spoon mixture into the prepared crust. Refrigerate for about an hour or until firm. Drizzle with melted chocolate or chocolate ice cream topping, if desired, before serving.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

QUICK AND EASY FIESTA TACO SALAD

6 (6-inch) flour tortillas
1 lb ground beef
1 can (15-oz) chili beans
1 head iceberg lettuce, chopped or shredded
1 bunch green onions, chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 medium pkg tortilla chips, crushed
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese (pepper Jack is even better)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with foil. Invert 3 6-oz custard cups on each of the baking sheets; place about 3-inches apart. Spray the tortillas with nonstick cooking spray and drape one tortilla over each inverted cup. Bake at 425 until lightly browned and crisp, about 8 minutes. Let stand until cool.

Meanwhile, brown the beef in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir meat to crumble. Drain the meat to remove excess fat. Return meat to the skillet and add the chili beans. Simmer mixture, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes.

Invert the tortilla bowls and layer with lettuce, beef mixture, green onions, and tomatoes. Sprinkle with chips and cheese.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

ITALIAN SHRIMP AND VEGETABLE FETTUCCINE

8-oz cooked spinach fettuccine (or other favorite pasta)
1/2 cup Italian salad dressing
1 1/2 tsp lemon zest
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
12-oz shrimp, uncooked, peeled, deveined
3 cup frozen broccoli heads, thawed and cut into small clusters
1 1/2 cups fresh zucchini, sliced thin
2 tbsp water
8 cherry tomatoes, halved
8 ripe olives, halved
8 fresh basil leaves, chopped
grated Parmesan cheese, if desired

Cook pasta according to package directions; drain and keep warm. Meanwhile, mix together the Italian dressing, lemon zest, and garlic; set aside. In a large nonstick skillet, over medium heat, heat the oil. Add shrimp to oil and cook about 2 to 3 minutes until pink and firm. Remove shrimp from the skillet using a slotted spoon. Increase heat to medium-high and add broccoli and zucchini to skillet; saute about 1 minute. Add 2 tablespoons of water; cover and simmer about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until crisp-tender. Stir in the dressing mixture and cook another 30 seconds. Stir in the tomatoes, olives, basil leaves, shrimp, and fettuccine. Serve with grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Note: This is also a great recipe for diabetics.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

INDIVIDUAL HAM & MACARONI CASSEROLES

Preheat broiler. Spray 5 ramekins with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

2 cups small shell macaroni
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 cups milk
1/4 cup flour
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1/4 cup + 5 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup diced cooked ham

Cook pasta according to package directions. During the last minute of macaroni cooking, add the peas.

Whisk the milk and flour together in a large saucepan. Stir mixture together over medium heat until simmering. Remove from heat and stir in the cheddar cheese and the 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese. Add the pasta and peas to the mixture. Stir in the ham.

Spoon 1 cup of the mixture into each of the prepared ramekins. Top each with 1 tbsp of the grated Parmesan cheese. Place ramekins on a baking sheet and broil until the tops are lightly browned.

Note: This is a great way to use leftover ham.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

CHEESY PARTY MIX

4 cups corn bran cereal
1 1/2 cups thin pretzel sticks, broken into halves
1 cup salted peanuts
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp onion powder

Heat oven to 325 degrees.

In a large bowl, combine the cereal, pretzel sticks, and peanuts. Pour the butter over the cereal mixture, mixing well. Sprinkle the cheese and onion powder over the mixture and toss well to thoroughly coat. Spread mixture into an ungreased 15 x 10-inch jelly roll pan and bake at 325 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

CHOCOLATE TURTLE CHEESECAKE

1 pkg (7-oz) caramels
1/4 cup evaporated milk
3/4 chopped pecans, divided
1 (9-inch) chocolate crumb pie crust
2 (3-oz each) pkgs cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sour cream
1 1/4 cups milk
1 pkg (3.9-oz) chocolate instant pudding mix
1/2 cup fudge topping

Place caramels and evaporated milk in a heavy saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat, stirring continually, until smooth, about 5 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup of the chopped pecans. Pour into the pie crust.

Combine the cream cheese, sour cream, and milk in a blender. Process mixture until smooth. Add pudding mix and process about 30 seconds longer. Pour mixture over the caramel layer, spreading to cover evenly. Loosely cover and chill until set, about 15 minutes.

Drizzle the fudge topping over the cheesecake and top with the remaining pecans. Chill, loosely covered, until serving time.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

TOASTED BACON, TOMATO, AND CHEESE DELIGHTS

3 English muffins, split and toasted
6 slices cheddar cheese
3 thick tomato slices
12 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

Preheat oven to 350 minutes.

Place muffin halves, cut side up, on a baking sheet. Top each half with a slice of the cheese topped with a tomato slice. Divide bacon evenly over the six halves. Place in the preheated oven and bake for 10 to 15 minutes until cheese is melted.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Quick and Easy Tuna and Greens Salad

1 bag (12-oz) mixed salad greens
1 small cucumber, sliced thin
1 cup fresh steamed green beans (or 1 can whole green beans, drained)
1 cup grape tomatoes
12-oz can tuna, drained
1/2 cup feta cheese
1/2 cup ripe olives
Your favorite vinaigrette

Combine all ingredients, except vinaigrette, in a large salad bowl. Drizzle with vinaigrette. Serve with whole wheat crackers or a crusty bread.

Monday, June 22, 2009

TURKEY AND FRUIT ROLLUPS

1 lb cooked turkey breast, chopped
1 pkg (8-oz) cream cheese, softened
2 green onions, chopped
1 apple, cored and chopped
1/4 cup raisins
2 celery ribs, chopped
6 whole wheat sandwich wraps
lettuce leaves

In a medium bowl, mix the turkey, cream cheese, onions, apple, raisins, and celery together to blend. Season with some salt and pepper, if desired. Lay the wraps out on a flat surface and top with lettuce leaves. Spoon about 1/3 cup of the turkey and fruit filling down the center of each. Tightly roll each and cut in half. May be served immediately or wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerated until serving time.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

MEXICAN STYLE CHICKEN AND RICE WRAPS

1 tbsp canola oil
1 lb boneless skinless chicken
2 cups water
1 cup chunky salsa (heat to suit your taste)
1 pkg (1 1/4-oz) Taco Seasoning
2 cups minute rice, uncooked
Flour tortillas
Shredded cheddar cheese

Cut chicken into 1/4-inch thick strips. Heat the oil in a large skillet, add chicken and cook until lightly browned. Add the water, salsa and taco seasoning. Stir to mix and heat to boiling. Stir in the rice. Cover and cook over low heat for 5 minutes. Spoon mixture into warmed tortillas. Top with cheese. Wrap tortilla around filling tucking in one end to enclose the filling.

GREEN BEAN POTATO SALAD

1 lb small red skin potatoes
1 lb fresh green beans
1/4 large red onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1 cup sour cream
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 tsp paprika, for garnish

Wash and quarter the potatoes; cook in a large pot of salted water until tender. Drain potatoes and cool to room temperature.

Blanche the green beans in boiling water for 4 to 5 minutes until crisp tender. Place in a colander and run cold water over beans to stop the cooking and preserve the dark green color. Set aside to drain well.

In a large bowl, combine the potatoes, red onion, green onion and green beans. In a separate bowl, blend together the sour cream, mustard, mayonnaise, and vinegar; season with the salt and pepper. Pour mixture over the vegetable mixture and toss gently to combine. Place salad in a bowl and garnish with paprika.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

RAISIN-MARSHMALLOW SQUARES

1 pkg (10-oz) marshmallows
1/4 cup butter
4 cups crispy rice cereal
2 cups corn flakes cereal, slightly crushed
1/2 cup raisins

Line a 9-inch square pan with foil allowing foil to extend over the edges. Butter the foil and set aside.

In a large heavy saucepan, melt the marshmallows and butter over low heat, stirring constantly. Remove the pan from the heat. Add both cereals and raisins, stirring until combined. Press mixture evenly into the prepared pan and let stand until firm. Lift foil out of the pan. Peel away foil and cut mixture into squares.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Quick and Easy Chocolate Berry Parfaits

These parfaits take only about 15 minutes to make. However, they do need to refrigerate for about an hour.

1 1/2 cups cold milk
1 pkg (4-serving size) chocolate instant pudding mix
1 cup frozen whipped topping, thawed
32 vanilla wafers
2 cups mixed fresh berries ie blueberries, raspberries, strawberries

Pour the milk into a large bowl and add the dry pudding mix. Beat with a wire whisk for 2 minutes or until well blended. Gently stir in half the whipped topping.

To assemble spoon half of the berries evenly into 8 parfait glasses. Using half the pudding, place a dollop of pudding over the berries. Reserve 8 of the vanilla wafers for garnish. Stand 3 of the remaining wafers over the berries around inside edge of each glass. Using the remaining berries and pudding, repeat layers. Refrigerate at least one hour for pudding to set. Right before serving, top with the remaining whipped topping and stand the remaining vanilla wafers, 1 each per glass, against the whipped topping.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

CHICKEN ROLLATINI

8 thin sliced chicken breast cutlets
1 cup garlic-and-herb cheese blend
4 jarred roasted red peppers, cut into strips
nonstick cooking spray
3/4 cup bread crumbs (I prefer 1/2 cup whole-wheat bread crumbs mixed with 1/4 cup panko (Japanese)bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Spread 2 tablespoons of the cheese blend on each chicken cutlet. Top cheese blend with red pepper slices. Starting at the short end, roll the chicken up and secure with wooden picks. Coat the chicken with nonstick spray and roll in the bread crumbs. Place chicken rolls, seam side down, in a foil-lined baking pan. Bake for 20 minutes or until the chicken juices run clear.

NOTE: These chicken roll-ups can be frozen after being breaded. To freeze, wrap each roll separately very tightly in plastic wrap, then put into a zip-top freezer bag. Remove from freezer and allow to thaw in the refrigerator overnight before proceeding to baking instructions.

Monday, June 15, 2009

BEER-CHEESE DIP

1/3 cup beer (or apple juice for us teetotalers)
several dashes hot pepper sauce (to suit taste)
1 cup cubed pasteurized process cheese spread (4 oz) (Velveeta type)
2 tbsp canned diced green chili peppers
1 tbsp flour
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1 to 2 tbsp milk (for thinning)

Serve with assorted vegetables and whole-grain crackers for dipping.

In a 1-quart microwave-safe bowl, combine beer or apple juice and hot pepper sauce. Microwave on high, uncovered, 1 to 2 minutes until very hot. Meanwhile, combine cubed cheese, green chilies, flour, and mustard. Stir into the hot mixture. Cook, uncovered, on high an additional 2 to 4 minutes or until cheese starts to melt and mixture is heated through, stirring every minute. Stir in enough milk to make dip of dipping consistency.

Yields about 3/4 cup.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

CRAB NEWBURG

1/3 cup butter flavored shortening
1/3 cup chopped green bell pepper
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp paprika
3 cups half-and-half cream
1/4 cup sherry, optional
3 egg yolks, slightly beaten
2 cans (6-oz each) crab meat, rinsed and drained
2 tbsp chopped pimento

In a 2-quart saucepan, melt the shortening. Add bell pepper to melted shortening; cook, stirring, over medium heat until tender. Stir in flour, salt, and paprika. Blend in the cream and sherry, if using. Cook, stirring, over medium heat until mixture thickens; remove from the heat. Blend a small amount of the hot mixture into the egg yolks. Return to the hot mixture, stirring to combine well. Add crab meat and pimento. Cook and stir mixture over low heat until heated through. Serve over toast points.

Friday, June 5, 2009

RASPBERRY SURPRISE BARS

1 pkg Butterscotch Slice and Bake cookies
8-oz cream cheese
2 tbsp milk
1/2 cup raspberry preserves (or other flavor to suit your taste)

Slice cookies and place close together in a 9 X 13-inch cake pan. Bake cookies at temperature instructed on cookies package for 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown. Meanwhile mix the cream cheese with the milk. As soon as you remove the cookies from the oven, spread the cream cheese mixture over the top of the cookies. Spread the preserves over the cream cheese. Cool before cutting into squares.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

BERRIES AND COOKIE DESSERTS

2 cups quartered fresh strawberries
1 1/4 cups fresh raspberries
1 1/4 cups fresh blackberries
2/3 cup fresh blueberries
4 tbsp sugar, divided
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
4-oz reduced fat cream cheese
1 1/2 cups fat-free frozen whipped topping, thawed
Dash of ground cinnamon
12 miniature meringue cookies, quartered

In a large bowl, combine all the berries, half of the sugar, lemon juice; let stand at room temperature about a half hour.

In a small mixing bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Beat in the whipped topping, remaining sugar, and cinnamon until combined. Just before serving, divide the berries evenly between six dessert dishes. Top with the whipped topping mixture and sprinkle with the cookie pieces.

Friday, May 29, 2009

CHICKEN VERONIQUE

6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp nutmeg
4 tsp butter
2/3 cup white wine or chicken broth
2 tbsp orange marmalade
3/4 tsp dried tarragon
2 tsp all-purpose flour
1/2 cup half-and-half cream
1 1/2 cups green grapes, halved

Sprinkle the salt and nutmeg over the chicken breast halves. Coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Melt butter in skillet and add the chicken pieces. Cook chicken 3 to 5 minutes per side until lightly browned. In a small bowl, combine the wine or chicken broth, marmalade and tarragon. Add the mixture to the skillet and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 7 to 11 minutes until the chicken juices run clear. Remove the chicken and keep it warm. Combine the flour and half-and-half until smooth. Slowly stir the cream mixture into the skillet. Bring mixture to a boil and cook for 2 minutes or until thickened. Stir in the grapes and heat through. Serve sauce over the chicken.

Note: This recipe is great for diabetics as 1 breast half with 1/3 cup sauce =226 calories, 13 g carbs and 24 g protein.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

HAWAIIAN HAM SALAD POCKETS

1 1/4 cups fully cooked ham, cubed
3/4 cup unsweetened pineapple tidbits
1 large carrot, chopped
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 tbsp honey mustard
2 pita breads (6-inch), halved
4 lettuce leaves

In a small bowl, combine the ham, pineapple, and carrot. Stir in the mayonnaise and mustard until well blended. Line each of the pita halves with a lettuce leaf and fill with the ham salad.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

GARLIC-MUSHROOM TURKEY SLICES

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp paprika
3/4 tsp salt, divided
1/4 tsp pepper, divided
1 pkg (17.6-oz) turkey breast slices
1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
1/2 lb sliced fresh mushrooms
2 garlic cloves, minced

In a large zip-top plastic bag, combine the flour, oregano, paprika, 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/8 tsp pepper. Add the turkey to the bag, one piece at a time, shaking to coat evenly. In a large heavy nonstick skillet coated with nonstick cooking spray, cook turkey in the olive oil over medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes on each side or until no longer pink. Remove from skillet and keep warm.

Add broth to the skillet turkey was cooked in. Stir in the mushrooms, garlic, and remaining salt and pepper (to cut sodium in this recipe, omit the salt). Cook, stirring, approximately five minutes until mushrooms are tender. Return turkey to the pan and heat through.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

HERO HAM SANDWICHES

1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, sliced
1 red bell pepper, sliced into rings
1 green bell pepper, sliced into rings
1 lb Honey Baked ham slices
1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
2 French baguette loaves, cut into thirds
6 tsp Dijon mustard

Heat a skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil. Add the onions and bell peppers; saute, stirring until vegetables are tender. This will take about 5 minutes. Cool slightly. Preheat the broiler.

Lay the baguette sections on a cutting board and slice each horizontally. Spread each bottom part with the Dijon mustard. Layer the ham slices and the onion mixture over the bottom baguette slice and sprinkle a generous tablespoon of cheese over the top. Place the open-face baguette slices on a baking sheet and broil for 3 to 4 minutes until cheese is melted. Replace the top slices and serve warm.

Serves 6.

Monday, May 25, 2009

QUICK AND EASY CHICKEN VEGGIE PIZZA

1 ready-made pizza crust (12-inch)
1 can reduced-fat cream of mushroom soup
1 tbsp olive oil
3 cups frozen California blend veggies
1/2 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp chopped onion
1 pkg cooked, refrigerated chicken strips
1 cup shredded low-fat mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Spread the soup evenly over the pizza crust. Bake at 450 degrees for 5 minutes. Heat oil in a large skillet and add veggies, bell pepper, onion, and garlic. Cook until the vegetables are are crisp tender; spoon onto the pizza crust over the soup. Top veggies with the chicken and sprinkle the cheese over the top. Bake for 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the chicken is hot.

Monday, May 18, 2009

EASY TUNA SPREAD

1 pkg (8-oz) cream cheese, cut-up into pieces
3 tbsp medium hot salsa
1 tbsp dried parsley flakes
1 tsp dried minced onion
1 can (6 1/2-oz) can water packed tuna; drained and flaked

In a mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese, salsa, parsley, and onion. Mix the ingredients together until well blended. Fold in the tuna. Serve with whole-wheat crackers or party rye bread.

Friday, April 24, 2009

FRUITY HAM AND PASTA SALAD

1 can (11-oz) mandarin orange sections
1 (8 1/4-oz)can pineapple chunks
1 (6 3/4-oz) can chunk-style ham
1 cup corkscrew macaroni, uncooked
1/3 cup salad dressing OR mayonnaise
1 tbsp honey
2 tsp vinegar
1/4 tsp celery seed
2 cups torn salad greens
1 stalk celery, sliced
2 tbsp sunflower seeds, optional

Chill unopened cans of oranges, pineapple, and ham in the freezer for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, cook macaroni according to package directions; drain. Turn macaroni into a bowl of ice water. Let stand for 5 minutes. Drain well.

To make dressing: In a small mixing bowl, stir together salad dressing or mayonnaise, honey, vinegar, and celery seed. Stir to blend well.

Drain fruits and ham. Flake the ham into chunks. In a large bowl, toss together macaroni, orange sections, pineapple, ham, salad greens, and celery. Pour dressing atop the salad. Toss well to coat. Sprinkle with sunflower seeds, if desired.

Friday, March 27, 2009

FESTIVE SALAD WITH HONEY-LIME DRESSING

1 pkg (10-oz) romaine lettuce blend
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 pint tiny tomatoes, halved
1 pkg (10-oz)frozen whole kernel corn, microwaved and cooled
3/4 cup thinly sliced radishes
1/2 small red onion, peeled and sliced
1 ripe avocado, peeled, cored, chopped
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
Freshly ground black pepper

Put frozen corn in a microwave-safe bowl, cover and cook about 10 minutes stirring halfway through cooking. Toss corn with remaining ingredients in a large bowl just before serving. Pour Honey-Lime Dressing over the salad and serve.

HONEY-LIME DRESSING

1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup Canola oil with Omega 3 DHA
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tbsp honey
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh cilantro
2 tsp minced garlic

Using a wire whisk, mix all ingredients together in a small bowl until well combined. Pour over salad at serving time.

This recipe serves 8 to 10 people.

MARZETTI'S BROCCOLI SALAD

2/3 cup Marzetti's Roasted Garlic Italian Vinaigrette
4 cups broccoli flowerets
1 pkg (6-oz) sliced button mushrooms
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
3 scallions, 4-in green and white parts, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1/2 red bell pepper, cut into small pieces
1/2 yellow bell pepper, cut into small pieces

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook broccoli for 2 minutes. Drain. Rinse and cool under cold running water. Combine the mushrooms, parsley, and scallions in a bowl. In a serving bowl, combine the broccoli, mushroom mixture, and red and yellow peppers. Toss with the vinaigrette.

Friday, March 13, 2009

EASY MEATBALL SANDWICHES

This recipe is quick and easy because it uses meatballs from the grocer's freezer.

24 frozen meatballs
1 jar spaghetti sauce with garlic and onion
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
4 (6-inch) hoagie rolls
shredded lettuce, optional

Thaw meatballs in the microwave for 1 to 2 minutes. In a medium saucepan, heat the meatballs with the spaghetti sauce for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Open hoagie rolls and lay out on platter. Place 6 meatballs on the bottom of each roll. Add a little sauce over the meatballs. Top with the shredded mozzarella cheese and add lettuce, if desired.

Note: File Photo

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

BUTTERMILK FUDGE

3 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups fresh buttermilk
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Mix soda into the buttermilk and let stand for 3 minutes. Cook all ingredients, except pecans, together to the soft ball stage. Cool slightly, add nuts and beat until creamy. Spread into a dish or pan that has been sprayed with nonstick spray. Allow to cool and cut into squares.

Note: File Photo


Monday, March 9, 2009

ZUCCHINI CONTINENTAL

1 lb zucchini
1 can (12-oz) whole kernel corn, drained
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 jar (2-oz) chopped pimento, drained
1 tsp garlic salt
1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded

In a large skillet, lightly sprayed with cooking spray, combine the zucchini, corn, salt, pepper, pimento, and garlic salt. Cover and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes or until the squash is crisp tender. Stir in the cheese; heat thoroughly and serve.

Friday, March 6, 2009

HONEY RICE PUDDING

1 1/2 cups water
1 tbsp butter
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups pre-cooked rice
2 cups milk, divided
1/2 cup golden raisins
1 egg, beaten
4 tsps cornstarch
1/4 cup honey
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp orange peel, grated

In a heavy saucepan, bring the water, butter, and salt to a boil; stir in rice. Cover and remove from the heat; let stand 5 minutes. Stir in 1 1/2 cups of the milk and the raisins. Cook over medium heat about 15 to 20 minutes or until thickened, stirring constantly. Mix together the remaining milk, egg, and cornstarch; slowly stir the mixture into the rice mixture. Cook another 2 minutes. Stir in honey, vanilla, and orange peel. Cool to warm, stirring occasionally. Serve while warm.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

BRAT-CHEESE SOUP

1/4 cup butter
2 carrots, shredded
1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
1 tsp dried onion flakes
1/4 cup flour
1/8 tsp fresh ground black pepper
4 cups milk
8-oz smoked bratwurst, sliced
2 cups cubed Velveeta-style cheese

In a large saucepan, melt the butter. Add the carrots and celery to the butter and cook until tender; add the onion flakes. Stir in the flour and pepper until blended. Add the milk, stirring while you pour it in. Add the bratwurst to the mixture. Cook and stir soup over medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes until thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir another minute. Add the cheese to the mixture and continue to cook, stirring constantly, until the cheese is melted.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

GOURMET ARTICHOKES AND SPINACH

1 cup sour cream
1 tbsp cheesy Italian dry salad dressing mix
2 pkg (10-oz each) frozen chopped spinach
1 jar (6 to 8-oz) marinated artichoke hearts
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes

Combine the sour cream and the dry salad dressing mix; set aside.

Place frozen spinach in a 1 1/2 to 2-quart casserole dish, cover and microwave 6 minutes until thawed. Fold the undrained artichoke hearts into the spinach along with the sour cream mixture. Replace the cover. Continue to microwave another 8 minutes. Remove from the microwave and stir the mixture. Top with 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes that have been halved. Cook another minute or two.

Note: To serve as an appetizer, omit the tomatoes. Cover the top with sharp cheddar cheese instead of the tomatoes. Serve with an assortment of whole-wheat crispy crackers or bread sticks.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

PERFECTLY CHOCOLATE CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES

1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 pkg (12-oz) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped nuts

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla together until creamy. Add eggs to the sugar mixture and beat well. Stir together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add the flour mixture to the sugar mixture, beating until well blended. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Drop by rounded teaspoons onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until set. Cool slightly on cookie sheets then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Yield: About 5 dozen cookies

Saturday, February 28, 2009

BUTTER RUM SAUCE

1/2 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar, packed
2 egg yolks, beaten
1/2 cup cream
1/8 tsp salt
2 tbsp rum

Cream butter thoroughly and add sugar gradually, beating well after each addition. Add egg yolks, cream and salt, mixing in well. Cook over boiling water until creamy and thickened. Remove from the heat and cool slightly; add the rum. Serve warm or cold.

MANDARIN WALDORF SALAD

2 cups chopped apples
1 1/2 cups miniature marshmallows
1 can (8-oz) mandarin oranges, drained
1 cup diced celery
1 tbsp honey
mayonnaise to moisten

Combine the apples, marshmallows, oranges, celery, honey, and enough mayonnaise to moisten. Toss lightly. Serve on a bed of lettuce.

Friday, February 27, 2009

MINI CINNAMON TWISTS

1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 can (8 count) refrigerated crescent rolls
3 tablespoons melted butter
8 large marshmallows, halved
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1 tbsp milk

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

Mix sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Separate dough into 8 triangles; cut each triangle in half lengthwise. Brush each dough triangle with melted butter. Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place a marshmallow half at the wide end of each triangle.

Roll up each triangle, starting from the wide end, to enclose marshmallow; pinch edges of dough to seal. Place twists on the prepared baking sheet, seam-side down, about 2-inches apart.

Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Blend confectioners' sugar and milk in a small bowl. Drizzle over warm twists. Remove twists; place on a wire rack to cool.

TOMATO-BASIL SQUARES

1 pkg (10-oz) refrigerated pizza crust
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
1/4 cup fresh Parmesan cheese, grated
2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped (OR 2 tsp dried basil)
2/3 cup mayonnaise
1 garlic clove, pressed
4 plum tomatoes, thinly sliced

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly spray a cookie sheet, that has sides, with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.

Lightly flour the pizza dough for easy handling. Using a pizza roller, roll out the crust on the prepared cookie sheet. Sprinkle the crust with 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese; set aside.

Snip the fresh basil into small pieces. Grate the fresh Parmesan cheese. In a small mixing bowl, combine the remaining 1 cup of mozzarella cheese, Parmesan cheese, basil, and mayonnaise; mix well. Press garlic over the cheese mixture; mix well. Arrange tomatoes in a single layer over the mozzarella cheese on the crust. Place mozzarella cheese mixture over the tomatoes; spread to cover evenly. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until top is golden brown and bubbly. Serve warm.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

COFFEE CAKE MUFFINS

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar, divided
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 egg, beaten
3/4 cup milk
1/3 cup butter, softened
1 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup melted butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 12-cup muffin pan; set aside.

In a medium bowl, mix the flour, 1/2 cup of the sugar, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg. Beat egg and milk together in a small bowl. Beat the softened butter in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add flour mixture and egg mixture alternately to the butter, mixing with a wooden spoon after each addition. Do not over mix! Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pan, filling each cup about 2/3 full. Bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Mix the remaining sugar and the cinnamon in a small bowl. Remove the muffins from the pan and dip the muffin tops into the melted butter then into the sugar and cinnamon mixture. Place right side up on a wire rack. May be cooled or served warm.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

MOM'S MICROWAVE PIZZA CHICKEN

1 fryer, cut-up into 8 pieces
1 can (10-oz) condensed tomato soup
1 can (6-oz) tomato paste
1/4 tsp onion salt
1/4 tsp garlic salt
1/4 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp basil
1 can (4-oz) mushroom pieces, drained
8-oz shredded Mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese

Remove skin from chicken pieces and arrange pieces in a lightly greased 12 x 8-inch microwave-safe dish. Stir together the tomato soup, tomato paste, onion salt, garlic salt, oregano, basil, and the mushroom pieces. Generously spoon the sauce over the chicken pieces. Place dish in microwave and cook for 19 to 20 minutes. If you are not using a microwave turntable, turn chicken 1/2 turn after 10 minutes. Sprinkle cheeses over the chicken and continue to cook for 2 to 4 minutes, until cheese is melted and chicken is done.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

AMBROSIA WITH HONEY-CREAM DRESSING

1/4 cup honey
2 tbsp lime juice
2 med oranges, peeled and sliced
2 bananas, peeled and sliced
1 red apple, cored and cubed
1 green apple, cored and cubed
1 cup shredded coconut
Honey-Cream Dressing, recipe follows

Combine honey and lime juice; toss with the fruit, except coconut, in a large bowl. In a pretty glass serving bowl, layer the fruit with the coconut. Top with the Honey-Cream Dressing.

Honey-Cream Dressing:

1/2 cup whipping cream
2 tbsp honey
1 tsp grated lime peel

Beat the whipping cream until fluffy. Drizzle in the honey and beat until stiff. Fold in the lemon peel. Pour over the above Ambrosia.

Serves 4