Saturday, December 27, 2008

Iced Oatmeal Applesauce Cookies

My rule for oatmeal cookies: they must be soft AND chewy. Iced oatmeal is literally icing on the top. I like raisins. I like apples. There you have it. Original recipe came from Martha Stewart's Cookie Magazine. I tweaked a little. It is still enough of hers to give her credit, but I always use dark brown sugar for extra richness and I have to add a little nutmeg if nutmeg is even in the same hemisphere as the other ingredients.

1/2 stick of butter
1 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup chunky applesauce
1 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 cup raisins

1 3/4 cups powdered sugar
3 Tbsp pure maple syrup

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix softened butter with sugars until blended. Add egg and applesauce until well mixed. Mix in everything else, except raisins. Add those once all the rest is blended well.

Drop dough in 1 1/2 inch balls on the baking sheet with parchment or silpat. Bake for 13-15 minutes, should be golden. Cool 5 minutes. Cool on wire rack over parchment paper.

Make icing by whisking the two ingredients until smooth. Drizzle over cookies on rack (hence the parchment underneath.) Let set. Store in airtight container. Stores well for three days.

Monday, December 22, 2008


1/2 cup butter (no substitutions, ever, ever) softened
1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour

2 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

Beat butter and add in sugar until blended. Mix in soda, cream of tartar then the egg and vanilla. Add flour and mix until dough is formed. Cover and chill for an hour. Roll in 30 balls. Mix together the sugar and cinnamon. Roll in cinnamon-sugar. Place balls on baking sheet, 2 inches apart. Bake at 375 degrees for 10 to 11 minutes. Transfer to rack to cool.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Da Bomb Pea Soup

Now I know pea soup does not sound that appetizing to some. But if you like it, this is really, really good pea soup. If you have never tried it, this is the recipe to try. If you do not like it, you might like this. If you do not like this, give up on it completely. Not everyone has to like everything.

Leftover ham hock
2 quarts water

Put the ham hock in a large pot and cover with the water. Bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer. Simmer for an hour. Strain the ham and save both the ham and the stock.

Return the stock to the pot and add:

1 pound green split peas (usually one bag)
3/4 cup chopped carrots
3/4 cup chopped celery
3/4 cup chopped onion
1 large bay leaf
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cumin
1 clove garlic, pressed

Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer. Let cook for two hours covered. Every half hour take off lid and stir.

Ladle soup into a blender, no more than 2/3 full and stir until smooth. Repeat until all the soup is done. Note: you need to pour the soup into another container, blend, and then return the blended soup to the pot.You can now add the bits of ham from the reserved ham hock. You can also garnish with green onions, bacon bits, shredded cheddar cheese, or sour cream according to your preference. Or enjoy it plain.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Nutty Orange Coffee Cake

This is a recipe originally from Paula Deen, passed onto us by Brenda Schulthuss. She tried it and thought we would like it. She was right. Since the kids are not nutty type girls, we skipped the pecans.3/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)
2 teaspoons ornage zest

Combine and set aside.

2 12-oz cans refrigerated buttermilk biscuits (10 count)
1 8-oz package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup mellted butter

Separate the biscuits. Cut the cream cheese into 20 pieces. Place one piece in the center of each biscuit and fold in half, pressing the edfges to seal. Dip the biscuits in butter and then dredge in sugar mixture. Place the biscuits, curved side down, in a single layer in the hollows of a lightly greased 12 cup bundt pan (or use a baking dish.) Space evenly and do not stack. Drizzle any remaining butter oven the the biscuits and then sprinkle with any remaining sugar. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes in a 350 degree, preheated oven until golden brown. Immediately invert onto a serving platter.

1 cup confectioners sugar
2 Tbsp fresh orange juice

Combine to make a glaze. Drizzle over the warm rolls. Serve warm.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Peanut Butter Blossoms

A favorite on the Christmas Cookie Plate. McKayla's favorite cookie of all time. Whenever I see Hershey's Kisses on sale, McKayla can get lucky.

1/4 cup shortening
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
2 Tbsp milk
1 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
1 3/4 cups flour

1/4 cup sugar
Hershey Kisses

Cream the first three ingredients. Add the eggs, milk, and vanilla. Mix until smooth. Add the dry and mix until well blended. Roll into 60 balls, roll those in sugar and place 2 inches apart on a baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes. While cooking, unwrap the kisses. When the cookies come out of the oven, immediately press a kiss into the center of each cookie. Transfer to wire racks and let cool.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

French Bird

This was made for me by Linda Spiker, original recipe from Catherine Fullmer (not her professional name.) It came over as a Relief Society meal when I was in need and roast chicken has never been the same. Even if you are not a raisin or dried fruit kind of person, the sweet and savory flavors are an intoxicating combination. And by the way, Linda has never made a bad meal so if a recipe is in her file, it is a keeper. Check out her cooking school at

Incidentally, this is Linda, not the bird.

1 chicken, clean and pat dry
olive oil
chili pepper
1/2 stick of butter
2 large potatoes, quartered
3 carrots, sliced in large chunks
1/2 bag of raisins (or combination of dried fruit)
1 onion, quartered

Take the bird and rub it down in olive oil. Sprinkle it with salt, pepper, garlic, chili pepper (or use Chef Prodomes chicken seasoning.) Put the butter in the cavity. Place in roasting pan and distribute vegetables and fruit around the bird. Salt and Pepper veggies. Squeeze orange juice over everything. Slice the same orange and place slices over everything. Cook at 350 degrees for 2 hours. covered and 15-30 minutes uncovered to brown.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Cafe Rio Ranch Dressing

Salad dressing, dip, or suck it down with a straw; it doesn't get any better than this.

1 Buttermilk Ranch dressing packet

Make it according to the directions.

In a food processor, pour in the ranch mixture and add:

2 tomatillos
1/2 a bunch of cilantro
1 clove garlic
juice of 1 lime
1 jalapeno (remove seeds, unless you like to live dangerously)

Process until smooth. Can be used and stored the same as regular ranch dressing.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Pretzel Hugs

Synder's square pretzels
Hershey's Hugs Kisses

On a covered baking sheet (cover with foil, parchment, or my personal favorite: a silpat) line pretzels on baking sheet and place a hug in the middle of each one. place in oven at 200 degrees for about 5-6 minutes. They should just be shiny not melted.

Remove from oven and squish an M&M down into the hug (like above). Place in fridge for awhile to let harden.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Lion House Crescent Rolls (with a little modification)

2 tablespoons yeast
2 cups water warm
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted
2 teaspoons salt
2/3 cup dry milk powder
1 egg
5 1/2 cups flour
melted butter

Warm water to between 105 and 115 degrees. Mix yeast, water and 1 tsp of the sugar and let stand 5 minutes. Add the rest of the sugar, butter, salt, dry milk, egg, and 2 cups of the flour. Beat together till smooth. Gradually add remaining flour till soft dough is formed. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead till smooth and elastic. (It takes me about 15 minutes.) Place in greased bowl; cover and let rise till double in bulk. Punch down; divide into thirds. Roll out one-third of dough into circle; cut into 12 pie-shaped pieces. Starting at wide end, roll up each piece into crescent. Place on greased baking sheet with point on bottom. Repeat with remainder of dough. Brush tops with melted butter (or margarine). Let rise till double. Bake at 400 degrees F. for 15 minutes. Makes 3 dozen rolls.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Citrus Punch

The first time I tasted this punch was at our wedding open house. We had our reception in Northridge, where I was raised. One week later, we drove up to Livermore to have an Open House at Ryan's parents house. I did not eat much that day, with all the meeting and greeting. But I did have the punch to quench my thirst. LOVED IT.I have made this punch for many occasions. I love to make it for Christmas breakfast or General Conference breakfast. When served really cold, it is gone fast. I usually make it into a concentrate and then add the water when I need the punch bowl or into two separate pitchers because it does make 1 gallon.

1 12oz can of frozen orange juice concentrate
1 12 oz can of frozen lemonade concentrate
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 tsp almond extract
1 1/4 cup sugar

Stir all together until well blended. When ready to serve, add 12 cans (using the concentrate can) of water or just add enough water to make a gallon (it should be the same amount.)

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Orange Ginger Fruit Dip

I fell in love with this when I was a student at BYU. I usually took early morning classes and then would go eat in the Cougareat. My favorite breakfast was a bowl of oatmeal and some fresh fruit with this dip. This dip is my favorite for fruit. Yes, it is as sweet as it can be. But it also has the fresh ginger which gives it a kick and a more unique flavor. I found the recipe years later and adjusted it to my taste. A little more ginger, a little less cream cheese.

1 8oz package cream cheese
1 16 oz jar marshmallow creme
2 Tbsp orange juice concentrate
1 teaspoon minced FRESH ginger

Whip the softened cream cheese with the marshmallow creme until completely smooth. Add the concentrate and ginger. Stir until well blended. Refrigerate at least two hours before serving so the flavors can meld. Serve with any and all fresh fruit.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Layered Green Salad

This recipe is from Marjorie Clark. She was in my ward growing up and is one of the nicest people you could ever meet. She was (now retired) a Kindergarten teacher whose class was so well organized that you could hear a pin drop, everyone was always on task, and she spoke in a sweet tones. She is the mother of all boys. And she helped throw my bridal shower. This is the dish she made for it. (I have modified it a little - I like more spinach.) This is also one of Diane's favorite salads.
One thing I love about it is that there are lots of vegetables in it. But they are layered in such a way and chopped small so that you don't even see all that you are eating. This is an old school recipe, but everyone always raves about it. I have written this recipes out scores of times: when I make it, people always ask for the recipe. Another great aspect of it is, that it needs to be made ahead. A green salad that has to be made ahead? When I sign up to bring a salad to church but I have no time to do it right ahead of time, this is my salad. Any buffet or meal that you need a salad AND cannot do it ahead of time: this is a great one.

1 small head iceberg lettuce, cleaned, dried, and torn in small bite size pieces
2 cups fresh spinach, cleaned, dried, and torn in small bite size pieces
1/2 cup small cauliflower buds
1/2 cup diced celery
1/2 cup diced green pepper
1/2 cup small broccoli buds
1/2 cup chopped green onions

In a 9x11 Pyrex dish (clear glass is the most attractive) layer all ingredients, in order, starting with the iceberg. Scatter each one on top of the other.

Take one package of Frozen Peas, left frozen, and spread on top. The salad should be densely covered in frozen peas.

2 cups mayonnaise
2 Tbsp sugar

Mix together the mayo and sugar. Spread over the peas like you are frosting a cake, making sure the edges are sealed.

1/2 lbs shredded cheddar cheese
8 slices of bacon, fried crisp, drained, and crumbled

Sprinkle cheese and bacon over the top. Cover with plastic wrap and chill overnight or at least six hours.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Sweet Potato Casserole with Praline Topping

Arnold Palmer's Restaurant in La Quinta places Macaroni & Cheese under the heading of vegetable. Now, I am no nutrition or food science major, but that is pushing it a little. Classifying this dish as anything else but a dessert is pushing it a little too. There are, indeed, vegetables in it. But by the time you add all the goodies, well lets just say that children would never have issues with vegetables if we could find a way to make all of them taste like this one. The original recipe called for only 2 1/2 lbs. of sweet potatoes. I upped it to 4 so I could feel a little better about calling it a vegetable.This is also a favorite at Thanksgiving or Christmas. I start craving it as soon as I see a fall leaf decoration in a store. I am like Pavlov's dog. I become inexplicably drawn to the sweet potatoes. So I try to sneak an extra serving of this in October as well. Usually at a Caress Family dinner.

There is still the praline topping versus marshmallow topping debate. I find that marshmallows are a non-issue after one bite of this. I wonder how marshmallows would spruce up cauliflower?

1 cup flour
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted
1/2 stick of love (butter for those who are not fluent in Paula Deen)
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Combine in a small bowl, stirring to form a streusel. Set aside.

About 4 pounds sweet potatoes (canned or fresh. If fresh, boil them until soft before starting.)
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1/2 cup evaporated milk

Mash potatoes in a large bowl. Stir in other ingredients. Stir in 1 cup ONLY of the streusel. Mix well. Pour into a 2 quart casserole coated with cooking spray. Top with remaining streusel. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Serve warm.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Chicken Adobo

This recipe is from Jean Ginther (see Lumpia) This is a Filipino recipe. The texture of the onions is to die for so don't chop finely. Serve with steamed rice so it absorbs all the lovely juices.

1/2 cup oil
2 medium brown onions (medium chop)
2 lbs chicken breast, boneless, chopped in one inch cubes
pepper to taste
6 cloves of garlic, crushed
4 bay leaves (whole)
3/4 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup white vinegar

Heat oil and add all of the garlic, then onion and cook until garlic and onion is lightly browned. Add chicken and saute until the chicken is beginning to tenderize. Stir occasionally.

Add remaining ingredients and let simmer for 35-45 minutes or until chicken is tender. Stir occasionally.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Strawberry Freezer Jam

This recipe is from Portia Walker. Well actually it is from the back of the package, but Portia gave it to us at an Enrichment demo. It tastes like fresh strawberries. Portia brought homemade rolls to spoon it onto and normally I like the rolls better than any topping. This was an exception.1 pouch fruit jell freezer jam pectin
4 cups crushed strawberries
1 1/2 cups sugar

Combine sugar and pectin and stir well. Take 2 cups of strawberries and chop to desired consistency. Take the other half and puree in a blender. Combine strawberries with sugar mixture and stir for about three minutes. Ladle jam into clean jars or freezer containers, leaving a 1/2 inch head space. Apply lids. Let stand until thickened, about thirty minutes.

Refrigerate up to 3 weeks or freeze for up to 1 year.

Yields five 8 oz jars.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Scotchie Recipe

This recipe is from Kirsti McCleary. As with most of her recipes they are similar to others, but hers are just a notch above everyone else's. For example, most do not have enough of the chocolate. This one is very generous in the chocolate topping. It is our traditional treat to have while watching General Conference and the Superbowl. In fact, the first time we had it was when Kirsti brought it over for a Superbowl party. Since moving away from each other, I had to get the recipe because well, we just could not live without it. Kirsti is one of those people that is as nice as the day is long. She has a great singing voice and has done a few recordings and starred in a number of community theater musicals. She knows how to throw a party like no other. We were in the same ward when we were first married. Dave and Ryan have always been best golfing buddies. Kirsti and I were both in education. We have been there for each other and we hope that we can stay close forever. Anyway enough gushing. On to the best Scotchies ever.

1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cup light karo syrup
1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter
1 box rice chex cereal
1 1/2 cups butterscotch chips
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Boil together the karo syrup and sugar. Add peanut butter and stir until smooth. Pour over cereal in a big bowl. Mix it together until the cereal is thoroughly coated. Spread it on two foil or waxed paper covered cookie sheets. Flatten it out to the edges. Melt the chips together in the micro wave for two minutes at 50% power. Stir until smooth. Fleck or spread over the chex. Let harden and then break up into chunks and serve.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Auntie Anne's Pretzels


1 1/2 C. warm water
1 1/8 tsp active dry yeast (1 1/2 pkg.)
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 1/8 tsp salt
1 C. bread flour
3 C. regular flour
2 C. warm water
2 Tbsp baking soda
To taste, coarse salt
2 - 4 Tbsp butter (melted)

Sprinkle yeast on lukewarm water in mixing bowl; stir to dissolve. Add sugar, salt and stir to dissolve; add flour and knead dough until smooth and elastic. Let rise at least 1/2 hour.

While dough is rising, prepare a baking soda water bath with 2 cups warm water and 2 tbsp baking soda. Be certain to stir often.

After dough has risen, pinch off bits of dough and roll into a long rope (about 1/2 inch or less thick) and shape. (the longer and thinner, the better) Dip pretzel in soda solution and place on greased baking sheet. Allow pretzels to rise again. Bake in oven at 450 for about 10 minutes or until golden. Brush with melted butter.

After you brush with butter try sprinkling with coarse salt OR cinnamon sugar.

Sugar Baked Shrimp

This is a sweet & sour dish. The sugar adds a crunch.

1 cup sugar (that is not a typo)
2 Tbsp flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp cayenne
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp cumin
1 large clove of garlic, crushed
1 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
24 jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined with tails on

Fresh lime wedges

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees. Put either parchment paper or a silpat on a cookie sheet.

Stir everything except the shrimp and lime together. A few at a time, roll the shrimp in the sugar mixture and set them on the baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes, or until the sugar has started to caramelize in spots. take the shrimp out of the oven and turn them over . squeeze the lime juice over them and serve right away.

The Pantry Mustard

1/4 cup course grained mustard
1/4 cup dijon mustard
1/4 cup dried basil
1/2 cup vegetable oil

Blend the mustards and basil in a food processor until smooth. Keep the machine running as you slowly add the oil. Process until the mixture is smooth. The mustard will store indefinately if it is tightly covered.

Used in place of regular mustard, as a marinade, or with ham.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Easy Key Lime Pie

1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
1 6 oz can frozen limeade concentrate (not thawed)
1 cup heavy cream
1 6 oz graham cracker pie crust
zest of 1 lime

Beat the milk, limeade, and cream until fluffy and soft peaks form. Pour the filling into the pie crust and smooth the top. Refrigerate until chilled and loosely set, at least four hours (and up to overnight.) Sprinkle the pie with lime zest before serving. (Recipe from Real Simple Magazine)

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Banana Cake

Banana Cake


2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking soda

1 pinch salt

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1 cup white sugar

3/4 cup dark brown sugar

2 eggs

4 ripe bananas, mashed

2/3 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup chopped walnuts


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour 2 - 8 inch round pans. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, soda, cinnamon, and salt; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream butter, white sugar and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Mix in the bananas. Add flour mixture alternately with the buttermilk to the creamed mixture. Stir in chopped walnuts. Pour batter into the prepared pans.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. Remove from oven, and place on a damp tea towel to cool.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Danish Aebleskiver

This is from Rasmussen's Bakery, my favorite in Solvang.

2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp baking powder
2 cups buttermilk
2 eggs, separated
3 Tbsp melted butter

Sift dry ingredients. Beat egg yolks, add to milk. Combine with dry ingredients, add melted butter. Beat egg whites until stiff. Fold into batter. Fry in aebleskiver pan.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Black Bean and Corn Salsa

1 (15 ounce) can of black beans, rinsed and drained (and/or white beans, black-eyed peas, or garbanzo beans)
1 1/2 cups frozen corn, defrosted
2 fresh jalapeno peppers, seeded and finely chopped
3 fresh plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1 onion, diced and 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped

You may also add any of the following: chopped avocado, chopped olives, chopped cucumber (de-seeded), green onions, peppers, etc.

Dressing: (or you may use your favorite Italian Dressing)

1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste

In a small bowl combine garlic, chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, lime juice, and lemon juice. Mix well. In a large bowl, combine the beans, corn, jalapeno peppers, tomatoes, onions, and cilantro. Pour the lime juice mixture over the bean mixture and gently toss. Add salt and pepper to taste. Chill before serving.

Eat on it’s own as a salad or with corn chips for an appetizer.

Banana Split "Cake"

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 9 rectangles, crushed)
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted
16 oz. cream cheese, softened
20 oz can crushed pineapple, drained
6 bananas
2 cups cold milk
8 serving size vanilla pudding, instant
1/2 cup strawberry preserves
1/2 cup chocolate syrup
2 cups cool whip
1 cup peanuts
12 maraschino cherries

Mix graham cracker crumbs, 1/4 cup of the sugar and the butter together. Press into the bottom of a 13x9 inch pan. Freeze 10 minutes.

Beat together the remaining sugar and cream cheese until well blended. Stir in drained pineapple. Spread over crust. Slice 4 bananas into1/2 inch slices and spread over pineapple mixture.

Mix together milk and vanilla pudding mix. Beat with wire whisk until smooth and thick. Stir in 1 cup of the cool whip and spread over the banana layer. Refrigerate for two hours.

Drizzle the chocolate syrup and jam over that layer. Spread the remaining cool whip over that. Sprinkle with peanuts. Slice the remaining bananas and arrange on top. Arrange cherries. Serve.

Peanut Buster Bars

1 box chocolate sandwich cookies

½ cup melted butter

½ gallon vanilla ice cream

1 jar hot fudge sauce

1 can cocktail peanuts

1 8 oz container Cool Whip

Crush cookies, reserving 1 cup for topping. Add the butter to the remaining crumbs and mix well. Grease a 9x13 inch pan and press cookie crumbs in pan. Soften ice cream and spread on crumbs. Spread sauce on ice cream, then sprinkle on nuts. Spread on cool whip. Sprinkle remaining crumbs on top. Store in freezer. Make this a day ahead.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Spicy BBQ Sauce

1 Tbsp canola oil
2 large cloves minced garlic
1 can (14 1/2 oz.) diced tomatoes in puree
1/4 cup molasses
4 Tbsp apple cider
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp chipotle chilis in adobo, finely chopped
1 tsp mustard
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
salt & pepper to taste

In a saucepan over medium heat, warm the oil. Add the garlic and saute until softened, about 1 minute. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Bring just to a boil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer, uncovered, until moderately thick, 15-20 minutes.

Can be used over ribs or chicken.

Classic Chicken Piccata

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in half and pounded to about 1/2 inch in thickness
salt and freshly ground pepper
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1 cup chicken broth
2 Tbsp. capers
2 Tbsp. fresh, flat leaf parsley, chopped

Season the chicken with salt and pepper. In a large frying pan over medium-high heat melt 1 1/2 Tbsp. of the butter. Add half the chicken and cook, turning once, until browned, about 2 minutes total. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with remaining chicken. Be careful not to overcook.

Add the remaining 1 Tbsp of butter to the pan and melt. Add the garlic and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the broth and cook, scraping the brown bits on the bottom of the pan, until the sauce is reduced by about 1/4, 2-3 minutes. Stir in the capers and simmer for one minute. Season to taste with salt and pepper and add the parsley. Return the chicken and juices to the pan and cook until heated through, about 2 minutes. Divide the chicken among four plates, spoon the sauce over, and serve.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Lorriane Hiltbrand Salad

I am not sure where this name comes from, but I got the recipe from my mother-in-law, Diane. The key here is the dressing. You must toss it in. It is nothing special without it and it is not as good just poured over. So right before serving, pour it all in and toss.

8 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced
1 head lettuce, torn into bite size pieces, cleaned and dried
1 cup sliced water chestnuts
2 avocados, diced
1 1/2 cups grated Swiss cheese
1/2 red onion, chopped
1 bunch spinach, torn, cleaned and dried
2 small cans sliced olives

For the dressing, combine in a blender and blend for 1 minute.

1/3 cup white vinegar
1/3 cup sugar
3/4 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp celery seed
3/4 cups oil
1/3 tsp red onion, grated
3/4 tsp prepared mustard

Flour Tortillas

I got this recipe from an enrichment meeting. This recipe comes from Vicki Taggert. She also taught this to the Activity Day girls. These are best right off the griddle. Add a little butter and they are heavenly. Or serve in any traditional way.

4 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
dash of salt
1/2 cup shortening, melted
about 1 cup water (added gradually)

Mix all ingredients together, in order, one at a time. Add water gradually until you get a nice dough that is not sticky. If it starts to get sticky, stop adding water and add a little more flour back into the dough. Let rest 1/2 hour. Break off a small ball and roll in as thin as possible. Cook on a hot griddle, flipping as needed.

Mexican Rice

I got this recipe from an enrichment meeting. This recipe comes from Vicki Taggert who always made the best tasting rice. Santa Rosa Ward 2005.

1 cup white rice
1 Tbsp oil
1 small onion, chopped

salt, pepper to taste

2 cloves garlic
mixture of chopped veggies, any you like: carrots, celery, peppers, tomatoes

2 cups water
4 oz can tomato sauce
2 tsp chicken bouillon

Heat oil in large sauce pan. Add rice. Saute until grains are all white or toasty, not clear. Add onions, garlic, veggies, and seasoning. Add water, tomato sauce, and chicken bouillon. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer covered for 15 minutes. Makes 8 large servings.

Pinto Beans

I got this recipe from an enrichment meeting. This recipe comes from Billie Garcia who always made the best tasting beans. Ere on the side of soft: better too soft than too hard.

1 cup pinto beans (or any pink or light beans)

Cover beans completely with water. Soak 4 or more hours in refrigerator. Drain and rinse. Place beans in large pot and completely cover with water. Cover and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer beans for 2-3 hours until they are very soft. (Beans should be completely covered with water while cooking.) Drain off water so it is level with the beans. Heat on medium high and stir beans.

1/2 cup cheese
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1/2 cup salsa (or El Pato or enchilada sauce)
about 1 tsp salt (or to taste)

Stir until cheese is melted. Makes 8 large servings.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Lemon Butter Sauce

This is perfect for a light toss on warm pasta, especially when seafood is mixed in. Very simple, very versatile.

1/2 cup butter, melted
2 Tbsp lemon juice
2 cloves crushed garlic
1 Tbsp chopped parsley
1/8 cup grated Parmesan cheese
salt & pepper, to taste

Combine all. Toss with warm pasta.

This can be made ahead and then warmed right before tossing it with pasta.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Pina Colada Sorbet

1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups water

Make into a syrup by heating together until mixture is clear. Cool.

In a blender combine:
1 20 oz can crushed pineapple
1 13.5 oz can coconut milk
1/4 cup lime juice

Stir until combined and smooth. Combine with syrup and stir until smooth. Let chill for at least 3 hours.

Pour into ice cream maker and follow directions. Store, covered in freezer.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Cincinnati-Style Chili Party Dip

This recipe came from Elizabeth Green. From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited.

1 8-ounce cream cheese

1 can or 1 frozen package of Cincinnati’s Skyline Chili (it can be substituted with 12 ounces of the chili recipe shared above!)

8-ounce package of shredded mild cheddar cheese

Diced tomatoes

Chopped lettuce

Black olives

Diced onions

Spread cream cheese on the bottom of an 8-by-8 inch casserole dish. Pour heated chili over cream cheese. Cover with shredded cheese. Top with tomato, lettuce, diced olives and onion. Serve with nacho chips or corn chips.

Asparagus and Crab Meat Soup

This recipe came from Denise Harker. Don't let the name fool you. She is from Vietnam and an excellent cook of all foods. From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited. (Soup măng cua) a Vietnamese dish

4 cups chicken broth
3 tsp of nuoc mam (Vietnamese fish sauce)
1/2 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp vegetable oil
6 shallots - chopped
2 garlic cloves - chopped
8 ounces lump crab meat -
picked over and drained
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot - mixed with 2 tbsp cold water
1 egg - lightly beaten
15 oz white asparagus spears
1 tbsp shredded coriander
1 scallion - thinly sliced Cut into 1 inch sections with canning liquid reserved

Combine broth, 1 tablespoon of the fish sauce, sugar and salt in a 3 quart soup pot. Bring to a boil . Reduce the heat and simmer. Heat the oil in a skillet and add the shallots and garlic and stir-fry until fragrant . Add the crab meat, the remaining 2 teaspoons fish sauce and black pepper to taste. Stir fry over high heat for about 1 minute then set aside Bring the soup to a boil . Add the cornstarch mixture and stir gently until the soup thickens and is clear.

While the soup is boiling, add the egg and stir gently, continue to stir for about 1 minute. Add the crab meat mixture and asparagus with its canning liquid and cook gently until heated through. Transfer the soup to a heated tureen . Sprinkle on the coriander, scallion and freshly ground black pepper.
Makes about 4 to 6 servings

Rick Green's Famous Cincinnati-Style Chili

From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited.

6 1-pound cans of tomatoes

2 large onions, diced

3 tsp. cinnamon

2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

2 tablespoons allspice

4 teaspoons cumin

2 teaspoons cayenne red pepper

2 tablespoons vinegar

5 tablespoons chili powder

2 teaspoons garlic chips

5 pounds cooked and drained ground beef

Boil tomatoes and chop in blender. Add tomatoes to cooked and drained ground beef. Add remaining ingredients and cook slowly for 3 hours. Serves 8. FOR A CINCINNATI THREE-WAY: Pour finished chili over cooked spaghetti and top with shredded mild cheddar cheese. FOR A CINCINNATI FOUR-WAY: Same as the 3-way, but add diced onions. FOR A CINCINNATI FIVE-WAY: Same as 4-way, but added cooked kidney beans.

Wagon Wheels Pasta Salad

This recipe came from Kylee McGee. From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited.

½ lb. wagon wheel shaped pasta

1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed

1 cup mild salsa

1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed

3 scallions, sliced

3 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro

½ tsp salt

Cook pasta according to package directions, drain well. In large bowl toss hot pasta with beans, salsa, corn, scallions, cilantro and salt.

Mexican Meatballs

This recipe came from Coral Johnson. From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited.

1 ½ lb extra lean ground beef

½ cup chopped onion

1 egg

1/3 cup dry breadcrumbs

¼ cup low fat milk

1 ½ teaspoon cumin

1-teaspoon oregano

Salt and pepper to taste

1 ½ cups salsa

Sliced green onions as garnish


Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. In a mixing bowl, smush together all ingredients, except salsa and green onions, using your very clean hands.

Shape into about 24 meatballs. Place meatballs in an ungreased 13x9 inch-baking dish. Bake uncovered about 25 minutes, or until no longer pink in center. Drain on paper towels. Just before serving, heat meatballs with salsa in a saucepan until hot. Sprinkle with green onions.


Buttered egg noodles Spaghetti Squash

Steamed Broccoli Refried Beans & Tortillas

NUTRITION (per serving)

350 Calories; 21g fat; 26g protein; 13g carbohydrate; 3g dietary fiber; 126mg Cholesterol; 505mg sodium. Exchanges: 1/2 Grain; 3 ½ Lean Meat; 1 vegetable 2 1/2 Fat.

Beef & Rice Casserole

This recipe came from Kylee McGee. From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited.

1 lb. ground beef (it’s also great with leftover steak)

1 med. white onion, chopped

garlic powder

seasoning salt

sour cream, 16 oz.

1 can cream of celery soup

1 can cream of mushroom soup

Hot, cooked, white rice

Combine ground beef (or leftover steak), onion, garlic powder and seasoning salt in a large pan. Cook until brown, drain. Add sour cream, cream of mushroom soup and can of cream of celery soup to meat and heat until bubbly. Serve over rice.

Chili Cheese Bars

This recipe came from Kylee McGee. From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited.

2 – 7 oz. can of diced green chiles

1 lb cheddar cheese, grated

1 lb monterey jack cheese, grated

6 eggs

garlic salt

Coat a 13” x 9” glass casserole dish with cooking spray. Then layer 1 can of chiles, ½ each of the cheeses in dish and pat down. Layer with other can of chiles and rest of cheeses. Pat down again. Sprinkle with garlic salt. Beat eggs and pour over cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for ½ hour to 45 minutes until brown. Cut into squares and serve warm.

Brunch for a Bunch

This recipe came from Kylee McGee. From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited.

(needs to be prepare the night before)

4 qt. casserole

loaf of egg bread, sliced

1 lb cheddar cheese, grated

1 lb jack cheese, grated

½ lb. mushrooms

3-4 green onions

1 green pepper

2 ½ c. milk


18 eggs

Lightly sauté mushrooms, green onions and green pepper in butter. Butter casserole. Remove crust from loaf of egg bread. Butter both sides of bread. Line bottom of casserole with bread. Place ½ of the cheese on top of the bread, add another layer of egg bread and top with remaining cheese. Add sautéed mushrooms, green onions and green pepper to casserole. Beat eggs with milk, pour over top. Refrigerate overnight. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes. Serves 12 – 15. Recipe can easily be cut in half.

Chili's Queso

We all love Chili's. In fact it is a genetic requirement to satisfy the Caress DNA. I happen to love it also, or else I could not join the family. Their queso is our favorite. I cannot remember who taught this to me or if we just came up with it on our own, but it is as close as you can come to the real thing. Adding a little more cheese or a little less to your taste. Madison is our official queso maker.


1 can Hormel chili “no beans”

1 small package velveeta cheese

Cut cheese into small cubes. Mix with chili in microwave safe bowl. Put in microwave and cook on high for 1 minute and then stir. Continue cooking for 1 minutes and stirring until mixture is smooth. Serve with tortilla chips.

Kentucky Cornbread

This recipe came from Elizabeth Green. From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited. Ellie (as we call her) and her family moved from Cincinnati just about a month before we did. They have three girls and a boy. Rick and Laura became dear friends and some of our best out here in the desert. Every time we think we are busy, I think of Laura and realize there ARE families busier than we are.

1 cup sugar

1 cup flour

1 cup cornmeal

½ tsp. baking powder

¼ tsp. baking soda

1 egg

¼ cup oil

½ cup milk

Mix ingredients and bake on 350 degrees for about 30 minutes.

Sweet Potato Casserole

This recipe came from Michael Redick. From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited.


2 large cans of sweet potatoes

1 cup sugar

1 tsp. salt

2 eggs, beaten

½ cup cream

½ cup melted butter

½ tsp. vanilla

Mash sweet potatoes and add remaining ingredients. Pour into 9 x 13 casserole pan. Make topping:

1 cup brown sugar 1/3 cup flour

1 cup chopped pecans

1/3 cup melted butter


Mix brown sugar and flour. Toss in pecans w/ melted butter. Spread over casserole. Bake for 35 minutes at 350 degrees. Place marshmallows on top and bake until golden brown.

Veggie Pizza Appetizers

This recipe came from Chloe Sykes. From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited.


1 can crescent rolls

1 8 oz package soft cream cheese with veggies

2 cups finely chopped fresh broccoli

1 cup finely grated carrots

1 cup finely diced red peppers

1 cup thinly sliced green onions

Tools needed: rolling pin

paring knife, 2 small silpats

2 small perforated baking sheets

  1. Using the rolling pin, roll out the crescent rolls on the silpat on one piece making sure to seal the edges.
  2. This should cover the 2 small silpats (roll thin since this type of pastry dough puffs).
  3. Bake at 400 degree for about 15 minutes until golden brown.
  4. Let cool
  1. While it bakes, chop up the veggies.
  2. When cooled, spread the cream cheese onto the top.
  3. Remove the crescent roll from the oven.
  4. Sprinkle the chopped veggie all over the top of the crust start with broccoli, then carrots, then red peppers, then green onions.

Egg Rolls

This recipe came from Elizabeth Cruz. From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited.


1 lb. ground pork or chicken

¼ lb. shrimp, macerated

½ med cabbage, cut

1 med carrot, cut

4 sticks of celery, chopped

½ napa cabbage, cut

2 pre-packed bean sprouts

Garlic & onion minced

Menlo wrappers or Melipia’s eggroll wrappers

Brown meat. Sauté garlic and onion. Add meat then shrimp. Season with salt and pepper. Add cabbage, carrot, celery, then cabbage. Toss. Add bean sprouts last. Toss for a minute. Turn off heat.

Wrap eggrolls tightly. Fry in oil.

Sweet Crepes

This recipe came from Kylee McGee. From the Mrs. Ivy 4th grade cookbook that I edited.

½ cup all-purpose flour

pinch of salt

2 eggs

1 cup milk

1/3 cup water

butter for cooking


lemon juice

Sift flour and salt into a mixing bowl. Break the eggs into center of the flour. Wisk together. Mix the mild and water in separate bowl, then gradually stir into the flour mixture. Whisk until batter is smooth. Heat a little butter in frying pan, when it’s melted, put in 2 tablespoons of batter. Tip pan quickly so that the batter spreads evenly and thinly over the pan. Cook for about 1 minute, until golden. Turn crepe over with spatula and cook the other side. Tip out onto a large plate and sprinkle with a teaspoon each of sugar and lemon juice. Starting on one side, roll up the crepe and transfer it to the serving dish. Sprinkle with lemon juice and a little more sugar. Keep warm in low oven.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Cinnabon Cinnamon Rolls

This recipe is a pass on from Kristi Fletcher. In some ways they are better than Cinnabon. But only with the proper care. Knead with love.

Roll ingredients:

One ¼ oz. package active dry yeast

1 cup warm milk (105-110 degrees)

½ cup sugar

1/3 cup margarine, melted

1 tsp. salt

2 eggs

4 cups flour

Filling ingredients:

1 cup packed brown sugar

2 ½ Tbsp. cinnamon

1/3 cup margarine, softened

Icing ingredients:

1 ½ cups powdered sugar

1/8 tsp. salt

¼ cup (2 oz.) cream cheese

½ tsp. vanilla

Dissolve the yeast in the warm milk in a large bowl. Mix together the sugar, margarine, salt, and eggs. Add the flour and mix well. Knead the dough into a large ball, using your hands dusted lightly with flour. Put in a bowl, cover and let rise in a warm place about 1 hour, or until doubled. Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough flat until it is approx. 21” long and 16” wide. It should be about ¼” thick. Preheat oven to 400 F.

Combine the brown sugar and cinnamon in a bowl. Spread the margarine evenly over the surface of the dough and then sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar mixture evenly. Roll the dough up. Cut the dough in 1 ¾ inch slices and place six at a time, evenly spaced, in a greased baking pan. Let the rolls rise again until double in size ( about 30 minutes.) Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until light brown on top.

While the rolls bake, combine the icing ingredients. Beat well with an electric mixer until fluffy. When the rolls come out of the oven, coat each generously with icing. Makes 12 rolls.

German Pancakes

This is another Megan Chugg recipe. She made these with just powdered sugar and lemon juice. Either way, it is delicious. This is McKayla's favorite breakfast food. Look for it on her birthday and any other time she gets to pick. The texture is amazing.


3 Tbsp. butter

3 eggs

½ cup flour

½ cup milk

¼ tsp. salt

Place butter in a 10 inch ovenproof skillet. Place in 400 degree oven for 3 to 5 minutes or until butter melts. In a bowl beat eggs with a rotary beater till combined. Add flour, milk, and salt. Beat till smooth. Immediately pour into the hot skillet. Bake about 25 minutes or till puffed and well browned. Serve with fruit sauce or maple syrup.

Broccoli Salad

Broccoli is my favorite vegetable. This salad is from my friend Dionne Liddiard who is an amazing cook and collector of recipes. She has many of the same recipes we all have, but for some reason, her versions always are a little bit better than the others. She is an incredibly creative person with limitless energy. She is the only stay-at-home mom that I think deserves a nanny (although she does not have one, I could justify her getting one.)


4 cups small broccoli florets

1 cup seedless green grapes, quartered

½ cup chopped celery

½ cup chopped purple onion

½ cup raisins

½ cup shredded cheddar cheese

¼ cup sunflower seeds

¼ cup bacon, cooked, drained and torn into small pieces

Combine in large bowl. Mix together: 1 cup mayonnaise and ¼ cup brown sugar. Toss with salad. Chill until served.

Funeral Potatoes

I insisted upon calling this Hasbrown Casserole for years, resisting the morbid name. Then one day, I was skimming through a Nigella Lawson cookbook and she had a similar recipe called Funeral Potatoes and identified it with Mormon women. I decided that I had to own it. This version of the recipe originally came from Marjorie Clark.


2 lbs. frozen hash browns

1 can cream of chicken soup

1 pint sour cream

½ cup chopped brown onion

2 Tbsp. butter, melted

½ cup shredded cheddar cheese


1 cup of crushed corn flakes OR saltine crackers

2 Tbsp. butter, melted

½ cup shredded cheddar cheese

Stir together soup, sour cream, onion, butter, cheese until blended. Mix in hash browns. Spread into a 9 x 13 pan. Sprinkle with topping cheese. Mix butter and crackers (or corn flakes) and then loosely sprinkle over cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until cheese is melted and topping in crunchy.