Friday, February 28, 2014


This recipe comes from the Capitol Cookies cookbooklet that features a cookie from each state capitol. This one comes from Denver, Colorado and was the favorite cookie of the late dad of a lady there. She wanted to share this recipe so others could enjoy dunking these cookies in coffee or milk as her daddy did.

1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup shortening
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
4 cups flour
2 tbsp cream

Cream shortening and sugar. Add eggs, then cream and vanilla.  Sift in dry ingredients. Mix well. Pinch into 1-inch balls and press with flour-dipped tines of fork onto well-greased cookie sheet. Bake at 400 degrees just until edges are light brown. Don't brown whole cookie.

Thursday, February 27, 2014


I am not someone who enjoys jambalaya and I am not interested in Mardi Gras but I know many of you are. For those who are I pulled this recipe from Johnsonville Sausage for your Fat Tuesday celebration.

1 package (13.5 ounces) Johnsonville® Andouille Dinner Sausage, cut into 1/4-inch coins

1/2 pound medium raw shrimp, peeled and deveined OR boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1- inch cubes

  • 2 teaspoons Creole seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 box (8 ounces) jambalaya rice mix
  • 1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
  • In a bowl, toss Johnsonville® Andouille Dinner Sausage, shrimp or chicken and Creole seasoning. In a skillet, cook the sausage mixture in oil over medium heat until shrimp or chicken is fully cooked; set aside.
  • Prepare jambalaya rice mix according to package directions, adding half of the tomatoes.
  • About ten minutes before the rice is done and while it is still firm, add the remaining tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce and parsley. Partially cover and finish cooking. Stir in sausage mixture.
  • To serve, taste and adjust seasonings, adding a little additional Creole seasoning if you want it more spicy. Spoon into large bowls.


1 cup thinly sliced mushrooms
1/3 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups half-and-half or light cream
2 tbsp butter, softened
3 egg yolks
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp dry onion flakes
1/2 tsp paprika
3 cups chopped cooked chicken
2 tbsp diced pimiento, drained
8 baked pastry shells

Melt the 2 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet and stir in the mushrooms and bell pepper; cook over medium heat just until tender. Stir in the flour and salt.  Add the cream all at once; cook, stirring, until thickened and bubbly.

Stir the softened butter and egg yolks together; add the lemon juice and paprika. Stir a cup of the cream mixture into the egg mixture; add to the cream mixture in the skillet. Stir in the onion flakes.  Cook, stirring, over medium heat until bubbly. Stir in the chicken and pimiento; heat through.

Serve over the pastry shells.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014


1 can (20-oz) crushed pineapple, divided
1 pkg (20-oz) ground chicken or turkey
2 cups Minute brown rice, uncooked
3/4 cup green onions, sliced thin and divided
1/2 cup teriyaki sauce, divided
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
2 tbsp orange marmalade
Additional brown Minute rice, cooked, for serving
Pineapple chunks for garnish, if desired.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Drain 1/2 cup crushed pineapple for meatballs. Reserve remaining pineapple and juice for sauce.

Combine ground poultry, rice, the 1/2 cup drained pineapple, 1/2 cup green onions, 1/4 cup teriyaki sauce, egg, and spices in a large bowl; mix together well.  Form mixture into meatballs of desired size and place on a foil-lined baking sheet with sides.  Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes or until meatballs are cooked through.

Meanwhile make the sauce by combining the remaining pineapple and juice, teriyaki sauce and the orange marmalade in a medium saucepan; get to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the remaining green onion.

To serve, place meatballs over cooked brown rice and top with the sauce. Garnish with pineapple chucks, if desired.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014


1 lb ground beef
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/3 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup finely crushed saltines
1/4 tsp ground sage
1/2 tsp salt
freshly ground black pepper
3 tbsp butter
1/2 lb sliced mushrooms
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
3 tbsp white whole-wheat flour
2 1/2 cups hot water
1 1/2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
Hot buttered egg noodles or mashed potatoes for 4, for serving

In a large mixing bowl, using your hands, gently mix the beef, egg, onion, saltine crumbs, sage, 1/2 tsp salt, and about 3 grinds of pepper. Divide the mixture into 4 equal parts and form each part into a patty about 1/2-inch thick.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Brown the patties in the butter, 4 minutes per side; remove to a plate.

Add another tablespoon of the butter to the skillet along with the mushrooms; cook until the mushrooms are lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Stir in the Worcestershire sauce, and salt and pepper to taste, if desired. Scrape up any browned bits on bottom of skillet.  Sprinkle the flour overall and stir in. Stir in the hot water and simmer until the sauce begins to thicken, about 2 minutes.  Add the remaining tablespoon of butter and swirl to combine.

Return the meat patties to the skillet; simmer until the sauce thickens and the patties are cooked through. Sprinkle with the fresh chopped parsley.

Serve with the noodles or mashed potatoes.

Monday, February 24, 2014


2 lb ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
2 tsp minced garlic
1 can (2 oz) sliced black olives
1 can (4-oz) diced green chilies
1 can  (10-oz) diced tomatoes with green chilies
1 jar (16-oz) taco sauce
2 cans (16-oz each) refried beans
12 (8-oz) flour tortillas
9-oz shredded Mexican-blend or Colby cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a large skillet brown the ground beef with the onion and garlic until beef is no longer pink; drain any excess fat from the meat.

Add the olives, green chilies, tomatoes, taco sauce and beans to the meat stirring to blend. Reduce the heat to low and simmer 15 to 20 minutes.

In the bottom of a 4-quart casserole dish spread a thin layer of the meat mixture. Top with a tortilla and sprinkle with cheese. Repeat the process until all the tortillas are used, ending with a layer of meat and sprinkled cheese.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes until the cheese is browned and casserole is bubbly.

Serve with additional olives, diced tomatoes, sour cream, or other desired toppings.

Thursday, February 20, 2014


Duff says his great-grandmother Mamo made the best latkes in the whole world! Here is his adaptation of her recipe.

5 large or 6 small firm Yukon gold potatoes (about 2 1/4 lbs)
1 large onion, halved
1 large egg
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour or matzo meal
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Vegetable or canola oil, for frying
Applesauce or other toppings, for serving

Peel the potatoes, immediately immersing them in very cold water as you finish each one.

Remove the potatoes from the water. Grate the potatoes and onion with a food processor fitted with the grating blade. Don't press too hard on the potatoes going in, just enough to get them through.

Transfer potatoes and onion to a fine mesh strainer; squeeze out all the water into a bowl. Let the potato starch settle, then pour out as much water as possible, leaving the starch in the bowl. Add the potato-onion mixture to the bowl and mix in the egg, flour, 1 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste.

Heat a well seasoned cast-iron skillet with a thin layer of vegetable oil over medium heat. Scoop large spoonfuls of the potato mixture into the pan and flatten them out (thin pancakes yield crispy ones). Fry until golden on the bottom, then gently flip and fry the other side, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels. If you have to wait to serve, re-crisp them on a baking sheet lined with clean paper towels in a 350 degree oven.

Serve with applesauce, cinnamon applesauce, sour cream, etc.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014


2 cups Rice Krispies type cereal
1 cup butterscotch morsels
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
1/2 cup broken pecans, toasted
3 tbsp butter
2 cups miniature marshmallows or 20 regular marshmallows
1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla

In a large heat-proof bowl, combine the cereal, morsels, raisins, apricots, and pecans.

In a medium saucepan set over low heat, melt the butter; add marshmallows and peanut butter.  Stir until completely melted! Remove mixture from the heat and stir in the vanilla.

Pour the marshmallow mixture over the cereal mixture; stir until well coated.

Press mixture evenly into an 8-inch square baking pan or dish that has been coated with nonstick cooking spray.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes then cut into squares.

Notes: Best if served the same day they are made. Also best to use fresh marshmallows.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014


2 pkg (11-oz each) pie dough mix
1 can (9.5-oz) white chicken meat, drained OR 1 1/2 cups cooked chicken
1 cup chunky salsa
1 can (3-oz) sliced ripe olives
1 cup shredded Mexican-blend cheese
flour for dusting

Prepare pie dough according to the package instructions for a double crust pie.  Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a medium saucepan, combine the chicken, salsa, and olives; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer mixture for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the cheese.  Allow to cool slightly.

On a flour-dusted surface, roll out the dough to a 1/8-inch thickness.  Using a 3-inch round cutter, cut out 36 circles, rerolling scraps as needed. Place about 1 tablespoon of the mixture in the center of each circle. Moisten the edges with water and fold the circles in half; pinch edges to seal. Make some small piercings with a fork on the top.

Place empanadas on a baking sheet and bake 15 minutes or until golden.

Serve hot.

Monday, February 17, 2014


DISCLAIMER: This is not really a quick fix recipe since it has to sit for the dough to rise. But it doesn't require much work and I wanted to save it on one of my blogs. Since it is definitely not a diabetic, slow cooker, vintage, or sweets recipe it ended up here. I got it from a friend on facebook.

Olive Garden Breadsticks Recipe


2 tablespoons granulated sugar
3/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon warm
water (105 to 115 degrees F)
16 ounces bread flour (3 cups)
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, softened
On top:
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt


Dissolve the sugar and yeast in the warm water in a small
bowl or measuring cup and let the mixture sit for 5 minutes,
or until it becomes foamy on top.
Combine the flour and salt in a large bowl. Use the paddle
attachment on a stand mixer to mix the softened butter into
the flour. If you don't have a stand mixer, use a mixing spoon
to combine the butter with the flour. When the yeast mixture
is foamy, pour it into the flour mixture and use a dough hook
on your mixture to combine the ingredients and knead the
dough for approximately 10 minutes. If you don't have a stand
mixer, combine the ingredients and then knead the dough
by hand on a countertop for 10 minutes.
Place the dough in
a covered container and let it sit for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, until it
doubles in size. When the dough has doubled, measure out 2-ounce portions
and roll the dough between your hands or on a countertop
to form sticks that are 7 inches long. Place the dough
on parchment paper-lined baking sheets, cover and set aside
for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until the dough doubles in size once
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Bake the breadsticks for 12 minutes, or until golden brown.
When the breadsticks come out of the oven, immediately
brush each one with melted butter and sprinkle with a little
garlic salt.
Makes 12-13 breadsticks

Thursday, February 13, 2014


4 cups sliced carrots
4 slices bacon, chopped
1 medium-size onion, chopped
1 can cream of mushroom soup, undiluted
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp pepper
2 cups herb-seasoned stuffing mix
1/4 cup butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Lightly spray an 11 x 7-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.

Cook the carrots in just enough boiling water to cover for 10 to 12 minutes until tender. Drain well; set aside.

In a large saucepan, cook the bacon until crisp; remove, drain on paper toweling; reserve 2 tablespoons of the drippings in the pan.

Add the onion to the hot bacon drippings in the pan; saute until tender.  Stir in the bacon, soup, cheese, and pepper until the cheese is melted. Stir in the carrots.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared baking dish.

Combine the stuffing mix with the melted butter; spoon evenly over the carrot mixture.

Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014


1 1/2 lbs broccoli, trimmed
1 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 cup water
salt to taste

Cut the tops off broccoli and break into 1 1/2-inch florets.

Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a 12-inch skillet.  Add the garlic and red pepper flakes; cook 15 to 30 seconds, stirring until fragrant.

Add the broccoli to the skillet and cook, stirring, for a minute. Stir in the water, cover and cook 3 to 5 minutes until the broccoli is tender and the water has evaporated.  Season with the salt before serving.

Yield: 4 servings.
Note: File Photo

Monday, February 10, 2014


This is a quick to put together recipe and is a great make-ahead dish.  It does, however, need to chill for 4 hours for the flavors to blend.

1 can condensed broccoli cheese soup
1 pkg (10-oz) frozen chopped broccoli, thawed & drained
1 medium tomato, chopped
1/2 cup sour cream
2 tsp Dijon-style mustard
Assorted crackers for serving

Combine the soup, broccoli, tomato, sour cream, and mustard in a medium bowl.  Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.

Serve with the assorted crackers.

Saturday, February 8, 2014


2 eggs
2 tbsp milk
2 tbsp shredded Cheddar cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Coat a 12-ounce microwave-safe coffee mug with butter-flavored cooking spray.

Add the eggs and milk to the mug and beat with a fork until blended; stir in the salt and pepper.  Microwave on high for 45 seconds; stir.  Microwave another 30 to 45 seconds until eggs are almost set.

Top eggs with the shredded cheese.

Friday, February 7, 2014


lb.  red potatoes (about 2), cut into 1-inch chunks
cups  small fresh cauliflower florets
small  boneless skinless chicken breasts(1 lb.)
cup  KRAFT Lite Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing
pkg.  (8 oz.) sliced fresh mushrooms
 each green and yellow pepper, chopped
can  (14.5 oz.) Italian-style diced tomatoes, undrained
cup  (1/2 of 8-oz. tub) PHILADELPHIA Chive & Onion 1/3 Less Fat than Cream Cheese
cup  chopped fresh basil

COOK potatoes and cauliflower in boiling water in large saucepan 20 min. or until tender.
MEANWHILE, cook chicken in large nonstick skillet sprayed with cooking spray on medium heat 3 to 4 min. on each side or until golden brown. Transfer to plate; cover to keep warm.
ADD dressing, mushrooms and peppers to skillet; cook and stir 6 min. Add tomatoes; simmer 8 min. Return chicken to skillet; spoon sauce over chicken. Simmer 3 min. or until chicken is done (165ºF).
DRAIN potato mixture; return to pan. Add reduced-fat cream cheese; mash until potato mixture is fluffy. Serve topped with chicken, vegetables and basil.

Note: This is a Kraft Foods recipe and picture.