Saturday, December 27, 2008

Loaded Potato Soup

2 cans chicken broth
2 pound bag frozen hash browns
1 tsp black & red pepper
1 tsp salt mix
3-1/2 cups milk
2 cups meat (usually use bacon but used leftover ham from Christmas this time)
2-3 cups cheese

Mix chicken broth, hash browns, salt, and pepper in a slow cooker.

Cook on low for 4 hours.

Use an immersion blender to blend the potatoes.

Add milk, meat, and cheese. Stir.

Heat on low an additional 3-4 hours.

Serve with favorite potato toppings.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Peanut Butter Granola

Southern Living January 2009
3 cups uncooked regular oats
1/2 cup dry-roasted peanuts
1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350°.

Toss together oats, peanuts, coconut, and in a large bowl.

Cook peanut butter, brown sugar, butter, corn syrup, and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat 3 minutes or until smooth.

Stir peanut butter mixture into oat mixture until blended.

Spread mixture in a single layer on a lightly greased, aluminum foil-lined 17- x 12-inch jelly-roll pan.

Bake 20 minutes or until lightly golden, stirring after 10 minutes.

Transfer to wax paper, and cool completely (about 20 minutes).

Coconut Banana Mini Muffins

2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed ripe banana (about 3 bananas)
1/4 cup applesauce
3 tablespoons dark rum
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup flaked sweetened coconut
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350°.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt, stirring with a whisk.

Place granulated sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add banana, applesauce, rum, and vanilla; beat until blended. Add flour mixture; beat at low speed just until moist. Stir in 1/2 cup coconut.

Spoon batter into mini muffin pan.

Bake 15-20 minutes or until tester inserted in the middle of a muffin comes out clean.

Cool in pan 5 minutes, then flip out and cool on wire rack.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Baked Artichoke Dip

1 can artichokes, drained & chopped
1 block fat free cream cheese, softened
1 8oz container fat free sour cream
1/2 tsp granulated garlic
1 cup hard cheese, divided

Preheat oven to 350. Spray baking dish with cooking spray.

Combine artichokes, cream cheese, sour cream, garlic, and 1/2 cup cheese. Spread in baking dish. Top with remaining cheese.

Bake 20 minutes.

Serve with crackers or tortilla chips.

Double Peanut Butter Pound Cake

3 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1 cup Splenda blenda brown sugar
1 cup reduced fat peanut butter
1 cup fat free buttermilk
1 tbsp vanilla
1-1/2 cups Splenda blend sugar
5 eggs (I use liquid egg substitute)
1/3 cup apple sauce
1 cup peanut butter chips

Preheat oven to 325. Spray a bundt pan generously with cooking spray.

Sift together flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Set aside.

In mixing bowl combine butter, Splenda blend brown sugar, and peanut butter. Slowly add in buttermilk and vanilla. Next add eggs and applesauce. Then add in Splenda blend sugar. Slowly add flour mixture. Fold in peanut butter chips with a spatula.

Pour into prepared pan. Tap pan gently on counter to work out air bubbles. Bake 50 minutes or until cake tester inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean. . Let cool 5 minutes in pan. Flip onto serving plate.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Praline Pumpkin Pie

Adapted from Charlotte Observer Wednesday, November 26

Dough for a single-crust 9-inch pie (homemade or purchased)

1 cup packed brown sugar

3 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

few dashes of ground cloves

1 (15-ounce) can plain pumpkin puree

1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk

2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Praline topping:

1 cup pecans, chopped coarsely

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

2 teaspoons brown sugar corn syrup

ADJUST rack to middle and heat oven to 375 degrees. Roll out dough, if necessary, and it fit it into a pie pan. Line the pan with foil, cover with pie weights or dried beans to hold the dough in place and bake 15 to 20 minutes, until the crust beneath the foil dries out and sets.

BEAT the sugar into the eggs with an electric mixer until it dissolves. Beat in cornstarch, salt and spices. Stir in pumpkin puree, evaporated milk and vanilla by hand until thoroughly blended.

TAKE the pie shell out of the oven, remove foil and weights, poke dough with a fork in several places to vent steam and bake about 10 minutes longer, until lightly browned.

HEAT the pumpkin mixture in a saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring, just until it is steaming hot; do not boil. Pour hot filling into hot pie shell and return it to the oven for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake 25 minutes.

TOSS pecans, brown sugar in a bowl. Add corn syrup and blend well with a rubber spatula. Remove pie from oven, scatter topping evenly over pie. Bake until topping is bubbling around the edges, about 10 minutes.

COOL pie completely on a wire rack. Serve at room temperature.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Basic Beer Cheese Bread

Recipe adapted from Cooking Light November 2008
1/4 teaspoon Black & Red Pepper (from Penzey's can sub 1/8 tsp black, 1/8 cayenne)
1 clove garlic, minced
3 cups flour
3 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup cheese (I used smoked swiss)
1 bottle beer
cooking spray
2 tablespoons melted butter, divided

Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk; make a well in center of mixture. Add garlic, cheese, and beer to flour mixture, stirring just until moist.

Spoon batter into a 9 x 5–inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Drizzle 1 tablespoon butter over batter. Bake at 375° for 35 minutes. Drizzle remaining 1 tablespoon butter over batter. Bake an additional 25 minutes or until deep golden brown and a wooden pick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool in pan 5 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pan. Cool completely on wire rack.

Alternate recipes:
Apple-Cheddar Beer Bread: Place 1/2 cup shredded peeled Gala apple in paper towels; squeeze until barely moist. Cook apples in 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat for 7 minutes. Use 1 cup shredded extra sharp white cheddar cheese. Use bottle hard cider in place of beer.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Chicken/Turkey Tortilla Soup

1 carton chicken broth
1 pound chicken or turkey, cooked and diced
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 can corn
2 cups salsa

1 can chicken broth
1 cup rice (equals 1 large boil bag)

Bring can of chicken broth to a boil in saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low add rice; cover. Cook 15 minutes or until rice is done.

Combine all ingredients in slow cooker.

Cook on low 6-8 hours.

Serve with shredded cheese and tortilla chips.

Peanut Chews

Recipe adapted from Lowes Foods Daily Recipe Email

1 cup brown sugar corn syrup
1 cup sugar
1 cup smooth peanut butter
1-1/4 cup peanuts
5 cups Special K

Spray a 13 x 9 x 2 pan with cooking spray.

Mix corn syrup and sugar in 3-quart heavy saucepan.

Bring to a full boil, stirring constantly.

Remove from heat; quickly stir in peanut butter.

Add peanuts and cereal, stirring to coat.

Using wax paper press into pan.

Cool and cut into 48 pieces.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Butterscotch Peanut Butter Pretzels

Recipe from Lowes Foods Daily Recipe Email
11oz package butterscotch chips
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter

MICROWAVE morsels and peanut butter in medium, microwave-safe bowl on MEDIUM-HIGH (70%) power for 1 minute; stir. Microwave at additional 10- to 20-second intervals, stirring until smooth. Dip about 3/4 of one pretzel in butterscotch mixture; shake off excess. Place on wire rack. Repeat with remaining pretzels. (If mixture thickens, microwave on MEDIUM-HIGH (70%) power at 10- to 20-second intervals, stirring until smooth).

REFRIGERATE for 20 minutes or until set. Store in airtight containers or resealable plastic bags.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Turtle Pumpkin Pie

Kraft Food & Family Holiday 08
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp. caramel ice cream topping, divided
1 graham cracker pie crust
1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp. pecan pieces, divided
1 cup cold milk
2 pkg. (3.4 oz. each) JELL-O Vanilla Flavor Instant Pudding
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tub (8 oz.) COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, thawed, divided

Pour 1/4 cup caramel topping into crust; sprinkle with 1/2 cup pecans.

Beat milk, pudding mixes, pumpkin and spices with whisk until blended. Stir in 1-1/2 cups COOL WHIP. Spread into crust.

Refrigerate at least 1 hour. Top with remaining COOL WHIP, caramel topping and pecans just before serving.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Breakfast Bake

Recipe from Kraft Food & Family Magazine Holiday 08
1 can crescent rolls
1 cup bacon or ham
6 eggs (I use All Whites)
1/2 cup milk
1/2 tsp pepper
2 cups shredded cheese

Preheat oven to 350

Spray a 9x13 dish with cooking spray. Unroll dough in bottom of pan; press to cover bottom of dish. Pinch seams together.

Sprinkle meat over crust. Beat eggs, milk, and pepper with whisk until blended; pour over meat. Top with cheese.

Bake 25 minutes or until center is set.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Pumpkin Cake

1 box spice cake mix
1 can pumpkin
3 eggs
1/2 cup apple sauce

Preheat oven to 350. Spray a bundt pan with cooking spray.

Combine above ingredients. Pour into greased pan.

Bake 35-40 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Cool five minutes. Flip out of pan onto serving plate.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Vanilla Bean Buttercream Frosting

3/4 cup butter, softened
1 vanilla bean, sliced and seeds scraped
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup milk
5-6 cups confectioners sugar

Cream butter in mixing bowl. Add in vanilla bean seeds, salt, and milk. Slowly add in confectioners sugar. Mix to desired consistency.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Crock Pot Apple Crisp

Recipe from That's My Home
8 apples, peeled and sliced

1 ¼ tsp. ground cinnamon

¼ tsp. allspice¼ tsp. nutmeg

¾ cup milk

2 tbsp. butter, softened

¾ cup sugar

2 eggs

2 tsp. vanilla

1 ½ cups Bisquick, divided

1/3 cup brown sugar

3 tbsp. butter, cold

Toss apples in large bowl with cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg. Place apple mixture in lightly greased slow cooker.

Combine milk, softened butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and ½ cup of the Bisquick. Spoon over apples.

Combine the remaining Bisquick with the brown sugar. Cut cold butter into Bisquick mixture until crumbly. Sprinkle this mixture on top.

Cover and cook on low 6 to 7 hours or until apples are soft.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Caramelized Apple Grain Waffles

Adapted from Good Things Catered1/3 c. sugar
1 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 tsp vanilla bean paste
2 apples - peeled, cored, and diced
1 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1/8 c. wheat germ
1/8 c. golden flax seed, finely ground
1 Tbsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
2 large eggs, well beaten
2/3 c. applesauce
1 1/2 c. milk

In medium saucepan over medium-low heat, cook sugar until it begins to melt. Reduce to simmer and cook until syrup turns pale amber color. Swirl in butter and vanilla and stir to dissolve any clumps of sugar. Add apples to the pan and stir to coat. Cover pan and cook on low heat about 5 minutes or until apples are soft. Uncover and continue cooking until syrup is slightly thick. Set aside and let apples cool.

In a large bowl whisk together dry ingredients. Add in eggs, applesauce, and milk; gently whisk. (The batter should have a pebbled look, similar to muffin batter) Fold in cooled apple mixture gently.

Spoon 1/2 c. of batter (or the amt recommended by waffle iron manufacturer) on hot iron. Bake until golden brown.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Apple Bread Pudding

7 cups soft bread cubes
4 cups apples, peeled and chopped
1 cup brown sugar
2-1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup margarine
1-1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 eggs, beaten

Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9x13 inch baking dish with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, combine bread, and apples. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine 1 cup brown sugar, 2-1/2 cups milk, and 1/3 cup margarine. Cook and stir until margarine is melted. Pour over bread mixture in bowl.

In a small bowl, whisk together cinnamon, vanilla, and eggs. Pour over bread mixture; stir.

Spread bread mixture evenly in pan.

Bake in preheated oven 40 to 50 minutes, or until center is set and apples are tender.

Broccoli Dip

1 package frozen chopped broccoli, cooked
8 oz velveeta, cubed
1 block cream cheese
1 tablespoon garlic salt
1 can cream of mushroom soup

Combine above ingredients. Heat in crock pot until warm.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Pepperoni Crescent Rolls

1 can crescent rolls
16 slices pepperoni
Parmesan cheese

Divide crescent rolls into 8 triangles. Place two pepperoni pieces on each triangle. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Roll crescents. Bake according to directions on can.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Meaty Pasta Bake

1 box pasta, cooked & drained according to directions on box
1/2 cup pepperoni, chopped
1/2 cup bacon, crumbled
1 large jar pasta sauce
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
2 cups shredded mozzarella

Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 9 x 13 pan with cooking spray.

Combine pasta, pepperoni, bacon, pasta sauce, and Parmesan. Spread evenly in pan.

Top with cheese.

Bake 25-30 minutes or until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbly.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

From Scratch Pancakes

Adapted from All Recipes

Pictures from top to bottom: Peanut Butter & Banana Pancakes for me, Mickey Mouse Pancakes for the kids, Bacon Pancakes for Andrew

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 1/4 cups milk
1 egg
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 tablespoon vanilla

Combine above ingredients.

Cook pancakes for 2 to 3 minutes, or until tops are covered with bubbles and edges look cooked. Add fillings.

Turn and cook the other side.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Cake Mix Fruit Crisp

4 cups fruit
1 vanilla bean, sliced and seeds scraped

1 box reduced sugar cake mix
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup milk

Preheat oven to 350.

Combine fruit and vanilla bean in square baking dish.

Combine cake mix, butter, and milk until crumbly.

Sprinkle cake mix evenly on top of fruit.

Bake 35-40 minutes.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Chicken Bacon Cheddar Orzo

1 tablespoon minced roasted garlic
1 tablespoon dried minced onion
2 cans chicken broth
1 cup white wine
2 cups orzo pasta
1 package chicken sausage, cooked and diced (the one I use is a 4 pack)
1 package bacon pieces
1/2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese

Combine garlic, onion, chicken broth, and wine in a pot. Bring to a boil. Add orzo to broth. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 10-15 until the broth is absorbed; stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat stir in chicken, bacon, and cheese.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Red Rice

Recipe adapted from My Recipes
1/2 cup salsa
1 can chicken broth
1 cup long-grain white rice

In a saucepan, bring the salsa and broth to a boil.

Add the rice; stir.

Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender, about 15 minutes.

Stir and serve.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Buttermilk Cobbler

4 cups fruit
1/3 cup Splenda sugar blend
1/3 cup Splenda blend brown sugar
1 1/2 cups Heart Smart Bisquick
1 1/3 cups fat free buttermilk
Cinnamon Sugar

Preheat oven to 350.

Combine fruit with Splenda sugar blend. Pour into 8 inch round or square baking dish.

In a separate bowl, combine Splenda brown sugar blend and Bisquick. Stir in buttermilk until smooth. Pour over fruit.

Sprinkle top with cinnamon sugar.

Bake in preheated oven 50 minutes, or until lightly browned and bubbly.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Graham Cracker Mixed Fruit Crisp

Recipe adapted from Remax mailing

4 cups fruit (I used 1-1/2 cups peaches, 1-1/2 cups blueberries, 1 cup apple)
1 cup Splenda Blend Sugar
6 teaspoons cornstarch

1 cup flour
1/4 cup Splenda Blend Sugar
1/4 cup Splenda Blend Brown Sugar
1/2 cup pecans
1-1/2 cups graham crackers
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, cubed

Preheat oven to 350.

Combine fruit, sugar, and cornstarch. Pour into 9 x 9 baking dish.

Combine topping ingredients, except butter, in food processor. Pulse until well combined. Add butter using a pastry blender or fork until topping is lumpy. Put topping evenly over fruit.

Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Unfried Fried Chicken

1/2 cup fat free sour cream
Italian Style panko bread crumbs
Old Bay Seasoning
Cayenne Pepper
Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts

Preheat oven to 350. Spray a baking dish with cooking spray.

Pour sour cream in a coating dish.

In a separate coating dish pour about a cup of panko bread crumbs, 1/2 tsp Old Bay Seasoning, and a few dashes of cayenne pepper. (May need to add more depending on how many chicken breasts you use.)

Rinse chicken in cold water, dip in sour cream, then in bread crumb mixture coating both sides of chicken.

Place in baking dish. Repeat with remaining chicken breasts. Spray the top of the chicken with cooking spray.

Bake 40 minutes; turning after 20 minutes.

Lemon Pasta

Adapted from Rachel Ray

1 pound pasta
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
2 lemons, zested and juiced
3/4 cup fat free half and half
1 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Salt the water and drop the spaghetti into the pot.

Heat a large deep skillet over low heat. Add extra-virgin olive oil and garlic and crushed red pepper flakes.

When the pasta has been cooking about 5 minutes, add lemon juice, a ladle of the cooking water from the pasta and the cream to the garlic and oil. Raise heat a bit to bring sauce to a bubble.

Drain pasta when it done. Add lemon zest and half of the cheese to the cream sauce. Season the sauce with salt, to taste. Add pasta to pan and turn off heat. Toss the pasta with sauce a minute or 2, allowing it time to soak up the sauce.

Top the plates of pasta or platter with remaining cheese, parsley and basil.

Pasta topped with Unfried Fried Chicken.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Peach Streusel Crisp

Recipe adapted from Penzey's

9 good-sized ripe peaches
1/3 Cup Splenda sugar blend
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
2 TB. flour (for juicy peaches; 1 TB. for firm peaches)

1 stick cold butter (8 TB.)
1 Cup flour
1/3 Cup splenda sugar blend
1 tsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350°. Grease the bottom only of an 8x8 glass pan or medium casserole dish.

Peel and pit the peaches, slice and place in a large bowl. Top with sugar, flour, cinnamon, and vanilla, toss to coat. Set aside while preparing topping.

Make the streusel by cutting the cold butter into a bowl, adding flour, sugar and cinnamon, and rubbing it through your fingers until the streusel is a coarse, sandy/pebbly texture. Put the seasoned peaches into the pan, top generously with the streusel,.

Bake at 350° about 30 minutes, until the streusel is golden brown and the peach juice is starting to bubble up through the topping.

Thursday, July 24, 2008


1 tablespoon minced roasted garlic
1 tablespoon dried minced onion
1 32 oz box chicken broth
2 cups orzo pasta
1 can peas, undrained
1 cup ham, diced
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

Combine garlic, onion, and chicken broth in a pot. Bring to a boil. Add orzo to broth. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 10-15 until the broth is absorbed; stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat stir in peas, ham, and cheese.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Pineapple Pork Chops

1 package boneless pork chops
Pineapple slices, cut in half
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons lite soy sauce
bell pepper, diced (optional)
Tin Foil

Combine honey and soy sauce.

Lay pork chops on large sheet of foil. Brush with sauce mixture. Turn over and brush other side.

Lay pineapple slices on top of pork. Brush pineapple slices with sauce.

Top with bell pepper if using. Pour any additional sauce on top.

Wrap tightly in tin foil.

Grill 10 minutes on each side.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Caramelized Vanilla Bean Peach Cobbler

1/2 cup Splenda Sugar Blend
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
dash of ground nutmeg
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon I Can't Believe It's Not Butter Spray
3 cups peaches (5 large peaches), peeled and diced
2 vanilla beans, sliced in half & seeds scraped
Turbinado Sugar
Kitchen Torch
Vanilla Ice Cream

Preheat oven to 350.

Combine peaches and vanilla bean seeds in a small bowl. Toss to coat peaches evenly with vanilla.

Mix Splenda, flour, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a bowl. Add in milk and butter. Stir until well mixed.

Pour batter in 8 x 8 pan. Put fruit on top.

Bake 35-40 minutes.

Spoon serving into bowl. Sprinkle turbinado sugar on top. Use kitchen torch to caramelize.

Top with vanilla ice cream.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Easy Chicken Pie

From First's Favorites Church Cookbook recipe by Jane Armstrong

3 lbs chicken, cooked and diced
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can chicken broth
1/2 tsp onion salt

1 cup self rising flour
1 cup milk
1 stick butter, melted

Preheat oven to 400.

Spread chicken on bottom of casserole dish.

Combine soup, broth, and salt. Pour over chicken.

Combine butter, milk, and flour. Pour over chicken.

Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Monday, July 14, 2008


Sliced Bread
Butter Flavored Cooking Spray

Preheat oven to 325. Line a baking sheet with non stick foil or parchment paper.
Spray both sides of bread with cooking spray. Cut bread into cubes. Place on lined baking sheet.
Sprinkle with seasoning.

Bake 15-20 minutes. Cool and store in a Ziploc bag.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Banana Bread Pudding with Caramelized Bananas & Rum Sauce

For the Bread Pudding:
1 loaf banana bread, cubed
1/3 cup All Whites (2 eggs)
12 ounce can fat free evaporated milk
1/3 cup packed Splenda brown sugar blend
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
vanilla ice cream

Spray 6 ramekins with cooking spray.

Fill ramekins almost to the top with bread cubes.

Combine eggs, evaporated milk, brown sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon; whisk until sugar dissolves. Divide mixture evenly into ramekins. Push down bread with the back of a spoon to make sure all of it is soaked with the egg mixture.

Place ramekins in a 9 x 13 pan. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour.
When ready to bake, boil water and pour in casserole dish half way up the sides of the ramekins.

Bake at 350 degrees 30 -35 minutes or until puffed and set in center.

Invert on a plate.

For the Caramelized Bananas:
turbinado sugar
kitchen torch
banana, peeled and sliced

Place banana slices on a plate. Sprinkle sugar on banana slices. Use kitchen torch to caramelize.

Divide banana slices evenly on top of each bread pudding.

For the Rum Sauce:
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons dark rum

Melt butter in sauce pan over medium high heat. Add cornstarch, brown sugar, and milk. Bring mixture to a boil stirring constantly. Boil until the mixture starts to thicken; about 5 minutes. Stir in rum.

Put vanilla ice cream on top of caramelized bananas. Top with rum sauce.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Maple Brown Sugar Granola Cookies

Adapted from Cascadian Farm Maple Brown Sugar Granola Box
1 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
4 cups Cascadian Farm organic maple brown sugar granola
3/4 cup almonds

Heat oven to 350. In large bowl beat butter, sugars, vanilla and eggs with electric on low speed until light and fluffy. Beat in flour, baking soda and salt until well mixed.

Stir in granola and almonds. Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto parchment paper lined cookie sheets.

Bake 11 - 13 minute or until golden brown. Cool on cooling rack.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Spiced Madeleines

Recipe from Baking From My Home to Yours
5 tablespoons light butter, melted and cooled
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
dash of nutmeg
dash of ginger
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
6 tablespoons All Whites (2 eggs)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons honey

Whisk together the flour, baking powder,salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger.

Working in a mixer bowl, or in a large bowl, rub the Splenda blend sugar and lemon together with your fingertips until the sugar is moist and fragrant. Add the eggs to the bowl. Working with the whisk attachment, or with a hand mixer, beat the eggs and sugar together on medium-high speed until pale, thick and light, 2 to 3 minutes. Beat in the vanilla and honey. With a rubber spatula, very gently fold in the dry ingredients, followed by the melted butter. Press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the batter and refrigerate it for at least 3 hours, or for up to 2 days. This long chill period will help the batter form the hump that is characteristic of madeleines. (For convenience, you can spoon the batter into the Madeleine molds, cover and refrigerate, then bake the cookies directly from the fridge; see below for instructions on prepping the pans.)

Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Butter 12 full-size Madeleine molds, or up to 36 mini Madeleine molds, dust the insides with flour and tap out the excess. Or, if you have a nonstick pan (or pans), give it a light coating of vegetable cooking spray. If you have a silicone pan, no prep is needed. Place the pan(s) on a baking sheet.Spoon the batter into the molds, filling each one almost to the top. Don't worry about spreading the batter evenly, the oven's heat will take care of that.

Bake large madeleines for 11 to 13 minutes, and minis for 8 to 10 minutes, or until they are golden and the tops spring back when touched. Remove the pan(s) from the oven and release the madeleines from the molds by rapping the edge of the pan against the counter. Gently pry any recalcitrant madeleines from the pan using your fingers or a butter knife. Transfer the cookies to a rack to cool to just warm or to room temperature.If you are making minis and have more batter, bake the next batch(es), making certain that you cool, then properly prepare the pan(s) before baking.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Banana Butterscotch Crepe Cups

2 Crepes
1 package sugar free butterscotch pudding
1 cup Marshmallow Cream
2 cups whip cream
1 banana, peeled and thinly sliced

Preheat oven to 325.
Turn two juice glasses upside down on a baking sheet. Spray the glasses with cooking spray. Place crepes over the cups evenly. Press sides gently against glass. Spray crepes lightly with cooking spray.

Bake 6-8 minutes, until browned. Carefully remove crepe cups from glass. Cool on wire rack while preparing filling.

In a small bowl combine pudding mix, whip cream, and marshmallow cream.

Put a layer of banana in the bottom of each crepe cup. Spoon filling over bananas. Top with more bananas.

Cheesy Taco Rapid Risotto

Adapted from Basic Microwave Risotto Southern Living June 2008
1/4 cup dried chopped onion
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon roasted minced garlic
1 cup Arborio rice
2 cans chicken broth
1/4 cup white wine
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons taco seasoning
2 cups ground meat (I used chicken and turkey sausage)

Combine onion, butter, garlic, and rice in a microwavable bowl. Microwave on high 2 minutes.

Brown meat with taco seasoning. Drain and set aside.

Stir in 2-3/4 cup chicken broth and wine. Cover tightly with plastic wrap. Microwave on high 9 minutes. Carefully swirl bowl without uncovering, and microwave on high 8 minutes. Carefully remove and discard plastic wrap.

Stir in cheese, meat, and 1/4 cup broth; stirring 30 seconds to 1 minute until creamy. Add 1/4 cup broth, 1 tablespoon at a time, if necessary to reach desired consistency.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Buffalo Hummus

1 can Garbanzo Beans, rinsed and drained
1 tablespoon Penzey's Northwoods Seasoning
2 tablespoons Lemon Juice
2 tablespoons Frank's Red Hot Sauce
2 tablespoons water
1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles

Combine above ingredients in food processor. Process until smooth.

Serve with raw veggies, crackers, or pretzel crisps.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Caramel Apple Crepe Cups

2 Crepes
1 can apple pie filling
1 cup caramel bits
Whip Cream
Cinnamon Sugar

Preheat oven to 325.

Turn two juice glasses upside down on a baking sheet. Spray the glasses with cooking spray. Place crepes over the cups evenly. Press sides gently against glass. Spray crepes lightly with cooking spray.

Bake 6-8 minutes, until browned. Carefully remove crepe cups from glass. Cool on wire rack while preparing filling.

In a small sauce pan combine apple pie filling and caramel bits. Heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally until caramel melts.

Spoon filling into crepe cups. Top with whip cream and cinnamon sugar.

Serve immediately.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Chicken Taco Bake

1 pound ground chicken
1 package taco seasoning
2/3 cup water
1 can fat free refried beans
1 can biscuits
6 fat free cheese slices

Preheat oven to 350.

Brown chicken. Stir in water and taco seasoning.

Spray a square baking dish with cooking spray. Place biscuits in bottom of pan. Press them together with your fingers so the bottom of the pan is completely covered.

Spread beans over biscuit dough.

Spread chicken taco meat on top of beans.

Top with cheese.

Bake 25-30 minutes.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Impossibly Easy Banana Custard Pie

Recipe adapted from Betty Crocker

2 bananas, mashed
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/2 reduced fat Bisquick mix
1/8 cup Splenda blend sugar
1 tablespoon applesauce
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup All Whites (2 eggs)
1 can (14 oz) fat free sweetened condensed milk
fat free/sugar free Caramel topping

Heat oven to 350ºF. Grease 9-inch glass pie plate with cooking spray. In small bowl, mix bananas and lemon juice; set aside.

In medium bowl, stir remaining ingredients except whipped topping and caramel topping until blended. Add banana mixture; stir until blended. Pour into pie plate.

Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown and knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely, about 1 hour. Cover and refrigerate about 2 hours or until chilled.

Drizzle with caramel topping before serving. Store covered in refrigerator.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Honey BBQ Beer Butt Chicken

1 whole chicken
1 tablespoon BBQ seasoning
1/4 cup honey + 1 tablespoon, divided
1 tablespoon water
1 can beer
1 tablespoon butter spray
Preheat oven to 350.

Line a dish with foil. Pour about 1/2 the beer in the pan.

Loosen skin of chicken. Combine BBQ seasoning, 1/4 cup honey, and water in small bowl. Rub under skin of chicken. Pour remaining honey mixture in the beer can.

Stand chicken on can.

Combine 1 tablespoon honey with butter spray. Brush on skin of chicken.

Bake 1 hour 30 minutes, or until white meat reaches 170 degrees and dark meat reaches 180.

Root Beer Pulled Pork

Adapted from All Recipes
1 Boston Butt
12 oz bottle Root Beer
bbq sauce

Place the boston butt in a slow cooker; pour the root beer over the meat. Cover and cook on low until well cooked, 8 to 10 hours.

Drain well. Shred meat and discard fat.

Stir in barbecue sauce. Cook an additional 1-2 hours on low.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Grilled Italian Broccoli

1 head broccoli, cleaned and cut
1/2 cup fat free Italian dressing

Place broccoli on a large sheet of foil. Pour Italian dressing on broccoli. Wrap tightly in foil.

Grill on top rack for 30 minutes.