Here we go . . . AGAIN!


View from my kitchen window – note the icicycles (the one on the mid-left looks like a witches hand!)

We’re getting MORE snow today (1″ last night; 3-5″ today along with freezing rain – oh, joy . . . ). It’s coming down really fast, very fine little snowflakes, but it’s covering everything quickly. Both sons called in to work and begged off – the roads are not too bad NOW but by the time they would be coming home, our driveway would be virtually impassable – better safe than sorry. Yesterday we had a ‘high’ (from the past few weeks) of 30 – this left some of the remaining snow on the driveway almost mushy – not good if you’re trying to make a running dash up the drive before you get stuck. I had just returned from picking up grandson and was half-way up the drive when I see my neighbor beginning to back out of her garage (we share a connecting semi-circular drive) – she’s in her late 70’s and I’m pretty sure she didn’t even SEE me. In order to avoid a collision, I stopped (dumb move – lost my forward motion). She waited for me (I couldn’t go anywhere) – finally she backed down her driveway. I made several more attempts at going forward (nada) then ended up backing down the drive and going all the way around the block to be able to be in the correct position in the turn lane to make another running shoot up the drive – success. NOW, considering all that as futile, we’re getting more of the white stuff which will make our drive all the more difficult – oh, joy. Due to our ‘lovely’ weather, this past January, out of 4 ‘possible’ meeting nights for my special needs group – we met ONCE. Church attendance was almost equal and, if it keeps going like it is right now – we probably won’t be going tomorrow either. I’m getting SO TIRED of this! There’s only so much knitting, reading books, watching TV, playing video games one can do before the dreaded CABIN FEVER sets in! Looking out in our backyard who do I see but “Pudgems” (our resident squirrel) – if you look closely you can see he’s almost covered in snow while attempting to get at the seed the birds have pushed out of the bird feeder!


I have been working on the Diagonal Box Stitch crocheted baby blanket; in fact, I bought more yarn to complete it. I’m sure there will be enough leftover yarn to make a good number of baby hats (been working on those, too). Just before I went to sleep last night I had a quick thought: “What would a baby hat done in the Star pattern look like?” Will attempt to find that out later today.

With this blasted snow and unrelenting COLD, it surely does not inspire me to cook. I stopped at Hungry Howie’s pizza yesterday for our dinner (and to please grandson). Leftovers are breakfast/lunch today. I realize the Super Bowl is tomorrow (mainly because of all the great snack/appetizer recipes I keep getting!). Are YOU going to be watching or perhaps hosting a Super Bowl party? (I’m not even sure the guys will care if it’s on TV or not – in years past they only watched for the ‘goofy’ commercials; THESE days they’re featuring ‘sneak peeks’ at the SB commercials on YouTube, so if you aren’t into football, why bother watching – just go to YouTube!


(I LOVE cannoli’s – wonder what this would taste like?)

Cannoli Dip

1 (32 oz) ricotta cheese
1/3 C. powdered sugar
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
1 1/2 – 2 tsp. vanilla
mini chocolate chips (garnish)
fresh orange zest (garnish)
chopped pistachios (garnish)

wafers, strawberries or graham
crackers, for dipping

Combine first 4 ingredients in large
bowl. Top with your choice of garnishes.
Refrigerate until ready to serve.

King Ranch Chicken

  • PAM® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray
  • 1/4 cup Fleischmann’s® Original-stick
  • 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
  • 1 can (10-3/4 oz each) condensed cream of chicken soup
  • 1 can (10-3/4 oz each) condensed cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 can (10 oz each) Ro*Tel® Original Diced Tomatoes & Green Chilies, undrained
  • 2 cups chopped cooked chicken breast
  • 12 corn tortillas (6 inch), torn into bite-size pieces
  • 2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese (2 cups = 8 oz)


  1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Spray 13×9-inch baking dish with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. Melt Fleischmann’s in large saucepan over medium heat. Add bell pepper and onion; cook and stir about 5 minutes or until tender. Stir in both soups, undrained tomatoes and chicken.
  3. Layer one-third each of tortillas, chicken mixture and cheese evenly in dish. Repeat layers twice more. Bake uncovered 40 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

– See more at:

1/4 C. margarine
1/2 C. chopped green bell pepper
1/2 C. chopped yellow onion
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of chicken soup
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of mushroom soup
1 (10 oz) can Ro*Tel diced tomatoes & green
chilies, undrained
2 c. chopped, cooked chicken breast
12 (6 “) corn tortillas, torn into bite-sized pieces
2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13 baking pan with nonstick spray.
Melt margarine in large saucepan over medium
heat. Add bell pepper & onion, cook & stir about
5 minutes until tender. Stir in both soups, tomatoes
& chicken. Layer one-third each: tortillas, chicken
mixture & cheese evenly in dish. Repeat layers
twice more. Bake, uncovered, 40 minutes or until
hot & bubbly. Serves 8 (about 1 C. each)


Party Nachos

1 lb. ground turkey (or beef)
2 T. vegetable oil
1 (1.25 oz) pkg. taco seasoning mix
1/2 C. water
1/2 C. bottled salsa
1 (16 oz) can black beans, drained/rinsed
1/2 pkg. Scoop-style tortilla chips (about 60)
1 C. shredded Monterrey Jack cheese (about
4 oz)
guacamole, for garnish (optional)
sour cream, garnish (optional)
sliced canned jalapenos, garnish (optional)

Preheat oven 450 degrees F.
 In large nonstick skillet on medium-high
heat, heat oil. Add ground meat; cook 8-10 minutes
or until meat is no longer pink; crumble & drain fat.
Stir in taco seasoning, water, salsa & black beans; cook,
uncovered, over medium heat, stirring occasionally,
5 minutes. Spoon mixture evenly into each Tortilla
Scoop & place on large baking tray. Top with shredded
cheese & bake 4 minutes *. Serve with suggested
garnishes. Serves 12

*Microwave alternative: Microwave filled tortilla chips,
in small batches, on High setting 20 seconds.


Crockpot Pizza Bread

1 C. flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
2 eggs
2 T. olive oil
3/4 C. milk
1/2 C. shredded Parmesan cheese,
1 1/2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese
1 C. pepperoni slices, diced
1/2 C. marinara sauce

In bowl, mix flour, baking powder,
baking soda, salt & pepper. Add in
eggs, olive oil, milk, 1/4 C. Parmesan,
1/4 C. mozzarella & pepperoni slices;
stir well. In a well-greased bread pan,
add half of the batter. Place a layer of
marinara sauce on top of batter; add
rest of batter evenly on top. Top with
remaining Parmesan. Cook, on High,
2 hours or until batter is cooked in
middle. Makes 1 loaf.


Tamale Dip

3 cans tamales (remove paper wrappers)
3 (8 oz, ea) pkgs. cream cheese

sides: Mexican chips, tacos, corn chips

Place all ingredients in crockpot;
cook on High 1 hour. Lift lid & break
up tamales & cream cheese until smooth
but still has pieces of tamales. Continue
cooking, on Low, until melted & creamy.
Serves 15


Crab Rangoon Dip

2 (8 oz, ea) pkgs. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. sour cream
4 green onions, chopped
1 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
2 T. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 (12 oz) pkg. imitation crab meat,

Add all ingredients to crockpot; stir
as well as you can. Cook, on Low,
2 hours, stirring occasionally. Serve
with crackers.


No-Bake Coca Bars

1 C. peanut butter
2/3 C. honey
1/2 C. coconut oil (do not substitute)
2 C. old fashioned oats
1 1/2 C. semi-sweet chocolate chips

In medium-large sized saucepan, melt
peanut butter, honey & coconut oil.
Remove from heat & add oats and
chocolate chips; stir until combined
and chocolate chips are melted. Spread
into a 9 X 13 pan lined with foil.
Refrigerate mixture until hardened,
about 1-2 hours. Cut into bars & store
leftovers in fridge. Makes 12-24 bars,
depending on how big you cut them.


Chicken & Bean Burritos

1 (16 oz) can refried beans, heated
4 (10 inch) flour tortillas, warmed
2 C. chopped, cooked chicken, warmed
1 1/3 C. shredded Monterey Jack cheese
(or your choice of flavors)
1 C. shredded lettuce
1 C. chopped tomatoes
1/2 C. guacamole (optional)

Spoon an equal amount of refried beans
down center of each tortilla. Top, evenly,
with chicken, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes &
guacamole (if using). Fold in opposite sides
of each tortilla, roll up burrito-style. Cut in
halve to serve. Serves 4 (1 burrito, each)

NOTE: you could also serve sour cream and/or
salsa to top them


Turkey Tortilla Soup

1 1/4 lb. turkey breast tenderloin,
cut into 1 inch pieces
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 C. chopped onion (1 large)
3/4 C. chopped green pepper (1 medium)
1/2 C. chicken broth
3 T. tomato paste
2 tsp. ground cumin
2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1/4 tsp. salt
4 (6 “) corn tortillas, cut into 1/4” thick

1/8 tsp. salt
1/4 C. plain nonfat Greek yogurt
2 T. salsa
1 avocado, halved/seeded/peeled /sliced
2 fresh limes, cut into wedges

In a 3 1/2-4 qt crockpot combine turkey,
tomatoes, onion, gr. pepper, broth, tomato
paste, cumin, chili powder, pepper & 1/4 tsp.
salt. Cover & cook, on Low, 6 hours or High
3 hours.

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spread tortillas on large baking sheet; spray
tortillas with nonstick spray & sprinkle tops
with 1/8 tsp. salt. Toss & spread into an even
layer. Bake 8-12 minutes or until golden,
tossing once halfway through baking.
Serves 4

To Serve:
Ladle Soup into serving bowls; top each
serving with yogurt & salsa. Garnish with
tortilla strips, avocado & a lime wedge.


Meatball Sandwich Casserole

1 bag frozen meatballs
1 jar marinara sauce/or spaghetti sauce
1 C. mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 C. Italian blend cheese, shredded
1/2 C. Parmesan cheese, grated
1 loaf fresh Italian bread, sliced

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Place entire bag of meatballs in pot
with sauce; cook over medium heat
until warmed completely through,
about 10 minutes. Stir as needed to
keep meatballs from sticking. Once
heated through, remove from heat. Place
meatballs in center of a 9 X 13 baking
pan; layer mozzarella & Italian cheese over
meatballs, ending with Parmesan. Place
slices of bread around edge of pan, keeping
the meatballs toward the center of the pan.
Bread slices should be standing up.* Bake
approx. 25 minutes until cheese is melted &

*You can butter bread or brush lightly with
olive oil & garlic.

(recipe: Mary Free-Marys Recipe Exchange)

Peanut Butter/Nutella Cookies

1 C. butter, room temp.
2/3 C. peanut butter
1 C. sugar
1 C. brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
2 2/3 C. flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
heaping 1/3 C. Nutella

Cream butter, peanut butter, sugar, brown
sugar, eggs, & vanilla together until smooth.
Combine flour, baking soda & salt; add to butter
mixture. Add Nutella in dollops over top of the
dough. Using a butter knife, swirl Nutella through
the dough. Do NOT over mix. Chill the dough 15
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spoon dough onto cookie sheets. Bake 8-10 minutes,
until edges are slightly brown. Let cool a few minutes
on sheets before removing to cooling rack.

(recipe: Peg-Marys Recipe Exchange)

(on a side note: Have you tried Nutella? (the chocolate/hazelnut spread). I had to admit to my oldest son that I definately CANNOT have that in my house – I’ll eat it all . . . WITH A SPOON! I love hazelnuts (filberts) and to  mix my very favorite nut with chocolate is almost a SIN! There are certain things I must avoid at all cost: Nutella, ice cream, some chocolate, some brownies, goulash – you get the idea.  It’s like I become a different person: MUST HAVE . . . (fill in the blank); I will just keep going back to it until it’s all gone – have you ever done that? When I had the Nutella conversation with oldest son he was laughing so hard he was crying, just picturing me sneaking into the kitchen and grabbing the baby spoon (YES, you HAVE to use a baby spoon, then you don’t feel quite so guilty that you’re eating this!) and glomming down on Nutella. Actually, I don’t think anyone else in the family even got a taste of it – that’s REALLY bad, right? Needless to say, all it took was ONE jar of the stuff to make me realize it’s POISON to me and I can’t buy it or have it in the house! (Now, the commercials will tell you it’s made from ‘all natural’ ingredients, BUT if you read the label there’s a boatload of SUGAR in it, also! (definately NOT something a diabetic should be eating, much less consuming the entire JAR!!!) Now I didn’t say I ate it all in ONE day – buuuuut… disappeared pretty quick – maybe 2-3 days? Just sayin’ . . .  (ah, the things I confess on my own blog!)

Reading-wise, I’ve consumed two books in two days, one murder/mystery”Chosen to Die” by Lisa Jackson (GREAT writer) and one ‘fluff’ book: “A Cookie Before Dying” by Virginia Lowell (ok writer, kept the story moving but a little too much ‘fluff’, in my opinion) but then – why do I read ‘fluff’/cooking-referenced books? For a break! I did discover that Lisa Jackson is still writing and has quite a few books out there, so it looks like I’m going to put in for some of her novels in my ‘books on hold’ at the library. (that is: if/when this stupid weather breaks!). Most of the books I’ve been reading lately come from a used book sale, so they are not your current ‘best sellers’ but they still make good reads (especially to keep my mind off the fact that I’m HOUSE BOUND!!!).

Enough of the snow talk! I’m thinking spaghetti & meatballs with garlic bread for dinner – youngest son already called in to work, so he’s staying home, husband & I will be here; middle son works as a server for our oldest son, so husband is driving him to work in his Jeep (that usually can get through almost any bad weather, being it has 4-wheel drive).

Not much else going on, if I run across any more ‘party dips/appetizers’ I’ll post them for ya.

Stay WARM and safe – remember to smile a little during the day!




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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. I’ll be getting the tractor out of the garage later this morning and snow blowing the drive and parking areas. It has been a while so I may have to take some time with it.

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