It’s Always Nice to see Old Friends!

This Sunday after church I was just getting in our car when my husband called my cell phone to tell me: “Get back in here – there’s someone who wants to see you!” In the photo above is my dear friend Katie and her sons. I have known her since she was about 3 weeks old – I was her first caregiver (she’s now 35!) She and my oldest son were best friends all through grade school until they moved away. Her husband is a pastor in Kentucky now so I don’t get to see her very often – it was really nice to re-connect! (It’s funny-I don’t think I really feel like I’m losing weight but when I put on the dress above – which I haven’t worn for years, it was too big but I didn’t have time to change – funny how time changes things!)

============

Lemon Blueberry Bread

1/3 C. butter, melted
1 C. sugar
3 T. lemon juice
2 large eggs, room temp.
1 1/2 C. flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 C. milk (2%)
1 C. fresh or frozen blueberries
1/2 C. chopped nuts
2 T. grated lemon zest

Glaze:
2 T. lemon juice
1/4 C. sugar
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 8 X 4″ loaf pan with nonstick
cooking spray. In large bowl beat
butter, sugar, lemon juice & eggs.
In a small bowl combine flour, baking
powder & salt – stir into egg mixture
alternately with milk, beating well
after each addition. Fold in blueberries,
nuts & lemon zest & pour batter into
prepared pan. Bake 60-70 minutes or
until a toothpick inserted into center of
loaf comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in
pan before removing from pan to a wire
rack to cool.

Glaze:
Combine glaze ingredients & drizzle over
warm bread. Cool completely before cutting.
Makes 1 loaf.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————–

Fiesta Confetti Corn

1 1/2 T. butter (or bacon drippings)
1/2 c. chopped Vidalia or other
sweet onion
1/2 C. EACH: green & red bell
pepper, diced
1/4 C. chopped fresh jalapeno
6 C. fresh corn, cooked/scraped
from cob
1/2 tsp. light brown sugar
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. Cajun or Creole seasoning
(or to taste)
1/2 tsp. chili powder (or to taste)
1/2 tsp. cumin (or to taste)
1/2 C. water or chicken broth,
divided

In a skillet with lid heat butter (or
bacon drippings) – saute onion &
peppers until tender, about 4 minutes.
Add corn, sugar & seasonings & 1/4
C. water/broth. Reduce heat to Low;
cover & simmer only long enough
to warm through thoroughly & adding
additional water as needed to prevent
corn from sticking. Taste & adjust
seasonings as needed. Serves 4-6

NOTE: Frozen/thawed or canned/
drained corn may be substituted.
Can also substitute a 4 oz. jar of
chopped pimentos, drained, for bell
pepper. Add some chopped/cooked
bacon for extra flavor.

For a Creamier Version:
Stir in 1/3 C. shredded cheese and/or
3 oz. cubed cream cheese and
substitute heavy cream or Half & Half
for water or broth, stirred in at the
end.

(recipe: deepsouthdish.com)
——————————

Crockpot Garlic Tenderloin

2-3 lb. pork tenderloin
2 T. butter
1 C. butter, melted
1 T. garlic powder
2 tsp. garlic salt
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. parsley flakes
1 tsp. dried cilantro leaves
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. ground red pepper

Melt 2 T. butter in a skillet over
medium-high heat*. Brown
tenderloins about 3-5 minutes on
each side then place in crockpot,
pouring the remaining butter/
cooking juices over top. Whisk
melted butter & spices together &
pour evenly over tenderloin. Cover
& cook on Low 1 1/2 – 2 hours.
Serves 8

*or use the saute/brown feature,
if available, on your slow cooker

NOTE: While browning tenderloin,
let it rest at least 3 minute per side;
do not turn or flip it – it will make
the browning process work much
better.

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)
——————————

Fresh Green Bean/Walnut/Feta Salad

1 1/2 lb. fresh green beans, trimmed/
cut into 2″ pieces
1 C. chopped walnuts
3/4 C. diced red onion
1 C. crumbled Feta cheese
3/4 C. olive oil
1/4 C. white wine vinegar
1/4 C. fresh mint leaves, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Bring a large pot of water to a boil;
add green beans & cook ONLY 3
minutes. Drain well & immediately
plunge into ice water to stop cooking
process. Drain again & pat dry with
paper towels then place in large bowl.
Add walnuts, red onion & Feta; gently
stir to combine. In a food processor (or
blender) combine olive oil, white wine
vinegar, mint, garlic, salt/pepper & pulse
a few times to blend. Pour dressing over
bean mixture & toss. Chill about 1  hour
before serving.

(recipe: thekitchenismyplayground.com)
——————————-

Dill Pickle Bites
(appetizer – 8 hrs. or overnight chill)

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 T. mayonnaise
1 T. grated onion
1/2 tsp. dried dill weed
1/8 tsp. black pepper
12 baby dill pickles
12 slices white bread (or whole wheat)
crusts cut off
(optional) hard salami slices

In small bowl combine cream cheese, mayo,
onion, dill & pepper – mix until well combined.
Roll each bread sliced with a rolling pin until flat.
Spread cream cheese mixture thinly onto bread,
using approx. 1 T. per slice. Place a baby dill on
each & roll up.* Place rolls, seam sides down,
in a glass baking dish. Cover & refrigerate 8 hours
or overnight.
To serve:  Cut each roll into 3 pieces.
Makes 36 bites

*If you are using hard salami slices, spread about
1/2 T. cream cheese mixture on each slice then
top with a slice of salami & spread remaining
1/2 T. cream cheese on top. Place pickle then
roll up

(recipe: thekitchenismyplayground.com)
—————————–

Pork Chop & Cabbage Casserole

4-6 pork chops
4-5 C. coarsely chopped cabbage
2 T. olive oil
1 medium green pepper, cut into
rings
1 medium onion, peeled/cut into
rings
1 pkg. dry onion soup mix
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes,
undrained (could use fresh tomatoes)
1/2 C. chicken broth
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese (or
cheese of your choice)
=
Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
In a skillet brown pork chops in olive
oil. In large casserole dish layer
cabbage, green pepper & onion. Place
browned chops on top. In a bowl mix
dry onion soup mix, diced tomatoes,
chicken broth, salt/pepper, garlic
powder & oregano – pour over top
of chops. Cover & bake 55-60 minutes
until cabbage is cooked to the
consistency you like. Remove from
oven & sprinkle cheese on top. Return
to oven, uncovered, until cheese melts.

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)
—————————–

No-Bake Chunky Monkey Cake

1 (3.4 oz) pkg. instant vanilla pudding
mix
3 C. cold water, divided
1 (3.9 oz) pkg. instant chocolate pudding
mix
2 C. Cool Whip, thawed/divided
1 banana
1 box graham cracker squares

Line a 9 X 13″ baking pan with foil.
Line bottom of pan with a single layer of
graham crackers (you may have to break
some to fit) In medium bowl add van.
pudding mix with 1 1/2 C. milk – whisk
to combine. Fold in 1 C. Cool Whip.
Pour pudding mixture over grm. crackers
& spread out evenly. Top pudding layer with
another layer of gr. crackers. In separate
bowl add choc. pudding mix & remaining
1 1/2 C. milk – whisk to combine & fold in
last 1 C. Cool Whip. Spread choc. pudding
mixture over 2nd layer gr. crackers. Cover
pan with plastic wrap & refrigerate at least
4 hours or overnight.

When ready to serve, slice banana into thin
slices & spread over cake top evenly. Crush
1 graham cracker square & sprinkle crumbs
over top of cake. Slice & serve. Serves 9

(recipe: thecountrycook.net)

=======================

Having my baby grandson away on vacation has given
me more time to read (James Patterson novels) and knit;
below is a half-way done pink baby afghan and then a
project I just started last night. I wanted a chevron pattern
and have large balls of several solid colors so I chose this
pattern. It’s very easy (2 rows) so I’m hoping it will go
quickly. Just got the Pick-Up date for the Detroit Veteran’s
Hospital baby shower: Sept. 17th so that’s my goal for
attempting to finish both afghans – we’ll see how that goes.

==========

So far, the colors for the chevron will be white/medium yellow/mint green/a blue, white, green variegated then repeat in opposite order so bottom of afghan mirrors the top – we’ll see how it goes.

Hope your day is going well – it’s mid 70’s & on & off rain (but that’s OK because our flowers need it!)

Hugs;

Pammie

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Thursday

Summer is here – the weather is hot and I’m VERY grateful for air conditioning in both our house and cars! From today through Saturday our area is under an Extreme Heat Warning – which means it will be getting into the high 90’s, some chances of thunderstorms which might cool us off a bit – we’ll see.

=============

Peanut Butter Pudding Dessert

1 C. flour
1/2 C. cold butter, cubed
1 1/2 C. chopped cashews, divided
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/3 C. creamy peanut butter
1 C. powdered sugar
1 (12 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed/
divided
2 2/3 C. cold milk
1 (3.9 oz) pkg. instant chocolate
pudding mix
1 (3.4 oz) pkg. instant vanilla pudding
mix
1 milk chocolate candy bar (1.55 oz),
coarsely chopped

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. Place flour
& butter in a food processor; cover &
process until mixture resembles coarse
crumbs. Add 1 C. cashews; pulse a few
times until combined. Press mixture
into prepared pan & bake 25-28 minutes
until golden brown. Cool completely on
a wire rack.
In a small bowl using elec. mixer, beat
cream cheese, peanut butter & powdered
sugar until smooth. Fold in 1 C. Cool Whip &
spoon over cooled crust.
In another bowl whisk milk & both pudding
mixes 2 minutes. Let stand 2 minutes until
soft-set. Spread over cream cheese layer &
top with remaining Cool Whip. Sprinkle top
with chopped candy bar & remaining nuts.
Cover & refrigerate at least 1 hour before
serving. Serves 16

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
————————

Ham, Cheese, Tomato Quiche

1 (9 inch) pie crust, unbaked (poster
used Pillsbury frozen)
2 T. flour
1 C. evaporated milk
3 eggs
1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 fresh medium-sized tomato, chopped
1/4 C. onion, chopped
1 C. cooked ham, chopped
1/8 tsp. ground thyme
1/4 tsp. dried parsley
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Pierce unbaked pie shell several
times using a fork. Add ham, tomato,
cheese & onion to shell. In a bowl
whisk flour, eggs, milk, salt/pepper &
spices until smooth -pour over
ingredients in pie shell. Bake 50-55
minutes. Serves 6-8

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)
——————–

Crockpot Lemon Pepper Pork Chops

1-2 lb. bone-in pork chops
lemon pepper seasoning

Cover bottom of crockpot with a
layer of chops (only one deep).
Sprinkle layer liberally with lemon
pepper seasoning & place any
remaining chops on top – sprinkle
with seasoning. Cover & cook on
Low 7-8 hours (or High 3 1/2 – 4
hours). Serves 4-6

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)
——————————–

Baked Cream Cheese Rangoon Rolls
(appetizer)

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
15 egg roll wrappers*
1-2 T. vegetable or canola oil
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
2 T. finely chopped green onions
2-3 T. sweet & sour sauce (for dipping)
(comes in a jar in the aisle of grocery
that also sells Asian foods)

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper
or non-stick foil. In medium bowl mix
softened cream cheese with garlic salt &
green onions until well combined. In a
small bowl put some water for dipping
your fingers in. Pour about 2 T. oil on a
plate or shallow dish. One at a time: lay
egg roll wrappers out on a flat surface.
Spread about 2 T. cream cheese mixture
along bottom short end of wrapper – (don’t
spread all the way to the edges-cream
cheese does expand a little). Dip your fingers
in water & generously moisten the top edge
of the wrapper then tightly roll the wrapper
around cream cheese – when rolled up,
moisten inside edge of roll to seal, using
water. After all wrappers are tightly rolled
up, roll them, one-at-a-time, in the plate
of oil until they are well coated, paying
special attention to the edges where they
tend to cook fastest. Place them on the
prepared sheet & bake 12-15 minutes,
flipping them over half way through the
cooking time. Best eaten warm. Makes 15

*you can usually find egg roll wrappers in
the refrigerated vegetable section of
grocery stores.

(recipe: instrupix.com)
———————————–

Roasted Sweet Potato Wedges

2 medium to large sweet potatoes,
washed but unpeeled
a few tablespoons olive oil
3 T. dark brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Spray a rimmed baking sheet with
nonstick cooking spray (or line
with parchment paper.) Carefully
cut each potato lengthwise into
about 6 wedges & place on baking
sheet. Drizzle with olive oil & stir to
coat. Arrange potatoes skin sides
down. In small bowl stir together
brown sugar, cinnamon, salt/pepper –
sprinkle half of mixture over potato
wedges. Bake, stirring & sprinkling
with remaining topping halfway
through cooking time (about 15
minutes), until fork tender –
about 30 minutes. Serve hot.

(recipe: southernplate.com)
———————————-

Easy Pan ‘O S’mores

9 graham crackers, broken
crosswise in half (18 squares)/
divided
36 regular sized marshmallows,
cut crosswise in half/divided
4 (1.55 oz, ea) milk chocolate bars,
chopped

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place 9 graham cracker squares in a
single layer on bottom of a 8-inch square
pan. Top with 36 marshmallow halves.
Sprinkle top with chopped chocolate &
cover with remaining grahams. Top with
remaining marshmallow halves, cut sides
down.
Bake 9-11 minutes until marshmallows
are puffed & golden brown. Let stand
5 minutes before serving.

(recipe: facebook)

=================

Hope you’re having a good day –

Hugs;

Pammie

Tuesday – more recipes!

Easy Ice Cream Cake

1 (20 oz) box brownie mix, prepared
accordg. to pkg. directions
15 Oreo cookies, roughly chopped
1 (13 oz) jar hot fudge topping,
room temp (or slightly warmed if needed)
3 quarts ice cream, slightly softened
(should be spreadable)
1 (12 oz) jar salted caramel sauce,
room temp. or warmed slightly if needed)
1 pint heavy whipping cream
1/4 C. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla

Prepare brownie mix as directed & bake
in 9 X 13″ pan for 19-22 minutes until
edges appear done & center isn’t quite
set. Cool completely then freeze 30 minutes.
Spread hot fudge topping on brownies-
smooth out & top with chopped Oreos. Use
a spatula to really press cookies into topping –
smooth out top & freeze at least 30 minutes

Spread ice cream over hot fudge layer – smooth
top with a spatula. Cover with plastic wrap &
freeze at least 6 hours or preferably overnight.

Top ice cream with caramel sauce & smooth top.
Using a elec. stand or hand mixer, beat heavy
whipping cream, powdered sugar & vanilla until
stiff peaks form. Spread on top of caramel & smooth.
Freeze at least 2 hours.

When ready to serve, top with Oreo cookie crumbs
& additional whipped cream. Serves 20

NOTE: Store in freezer, tightly wrapped or in an
airtight container for up to 3 weeks. Allow about
10 minutes at room temp. before cutting

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
——————–
Crockpot Honey Mustard Chicken
(for sandwiches)

1 (14 oz) can chicken broth
2 lb. boneless skinless chicken
thighs/breasts (or a combo of both)
1 tsp. seasoned salt
1/4 C. mustard
1/4 C. honey
1/2 C. mayonnaise
1 tsp. black pepper
salt, to taste,
=
Buns (for 6-8 sandwiches)
sliced pickles for serving
=

Add chicken broth & chicken to crockpot.
Sprinkle seasoned salt on chicken; cover
& cook on Low 4-6 hours. Remove chicken
using tongs, & shred. In large bowl stir mustard,
honey, mayonnaise & pepper – stir chicken
into sauce, coating well – salt, to taste.
Serve chicken on buns with pickles.
Makes 6-8 sandwiches

NOTE: Poster said this recipe is good both warn
& cold – (cold, more like a chicken salad). Can
be served, cold, over salad greens with sliced
grapes & tomatoes.

(recipe: 365daysofcrockpot.com)
———————————–

Cherry Tomato Salad w/Buttermilk-
Basil Dressing

6 C. red and yellow cherry tomatoes,
halved, if large
kosher salt/ground black pepper
2/3 C. buttermilk
1/4 C. sour cream
3 T. thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
1 shallot, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced

Place tomatoes in a large serving
bowl & season with salt/pepper – toss.
In another bowl whisk buttermilk, sour
cream, basil, shallot & garlic -season
with pepper & drizzle over tomatoes –
toss. Serves 4

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
———————————

Grilled Veggie Platter w/Yogurt Mint
Sauce

Sauce:
1 C. plain Greek yogurt
1/4 C. fresh chopped mint, divided
2 cloves minced garlic, divided
1 tsp. olive oil
salt/black pepper

Veggies:
2 large red & orange bell peppers,
seeded/cut into 1″ pieces
1 red onion, sliced into 1/4″
thick rounds
1 lb. asparagus, trimmed
1 yellow squash, sliced diagonally 1/4″
thick
1 large zucchini, sliced diagonally 1/4″
thick
2 T. olive oil
2 T. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
=
Sauce:
Combine yogurt with half of mint
& half of garlic, 1/4 tsp. salt & black
pepper – place in a small bowl. Swirl
in 1 tsp. olive oil on top & garnish
with more mint.

Heat grill or grill pan to medium-high
heat. When ready, oil the grates.
Toss veggies in a large bowl with olive
oil, lemon juice, remaining garlic,
1/2 tsp. salt & black pepper, to taste.
Grill veggies, turning occasionally,
until lightly charred, about 6-10
minutes. Arrange on a platter with
mint yogurt sauce & sprinkle with
remaining mint. Serves 4

NOTE: recipe also calls for:
1 tsp. dried Zataar seasoning to
be mixed with veggies before
grilling. (since I’ve never heard
of this – I added it at the bottom &
YOU can choose to use it, or not
– Pam)

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
—————————-
Broiled Chicken & Artichokes

8 boneless skinless chicken thighs
(about 2 lb)
2 (7.5 oz, ea) jars marinated,
quartered artichoke hearts, drained
2 T. olive oil
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 C. shredded Parmesan cheese
2 T. minced fresh parsley

Preheat broiler.
In large bowl toss chicken & artichokes
with oil, salt/pepper – transfer to a
broiler pan. Broil 3 inches from heat,
8-10 minutes until a thermometer
inserted into chicken reads 170 degrees F.
turning chicken & artichokes halfway
through cooking time. Sprinkle with
cheese & broil 1-2 minutes longer until
cheese melts. Sprinkle with parsley
when serving. Serves 8

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————————
Crockpot Homemade Meatball Subs

Sauce:
1 (28 oz) can tomato puree
1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes
1/2 C. grated Parmesan cheese
2 (1.5 oz ea) packets spaghetti sauce mix
salt/pepper to taste

Pour all ingredients into a saucepan &
bring to boil, stirring frequently. Turn
heat to Low & simmer until completely
blended, stirring frequently. (serves 8)
=
Meatballs
1 lb. ground beef
1 C. Italian flavored dry bread crumbs
1/2 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1 T. fresh parsley, m inced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 C. milk
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
===============
8 hoagie or hot dog buns, split
==============
Optional toppings:
grated Parmesan or mozzarella cheese
===========
Spray insides of crockpot with nonstick
cooking spray. In large bowl mix all
meatball ingredients. Using your hands,
form 8 2-inch balls & place in crockpot;
pour sauce over meatballs. Cover & cook
on Low 8-10 hours (or High 4-6 hours).
Serve meatballs on buns with sauce &
optional toppings, if desired. Serves 8

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)
—————————–

Mini Peanut Butter Treats

Cookie:
1/2 C. butter, softened
1/2 C. sugar
1/2 C. packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1/2 C. creamy peanut butter
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 1/4 C. flour
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt

Filling:
42 miniature (Reese’s) peanut
butter/chocolate cups

In a large bowl using elec. mixer combine
butter, sugars, egg, peanut butter & vanilla –
beat until smooth. In another bowl combine
flour, baking soda & salt; gradually add to
peanut butter mixture – mix until fully
combined. Cover & chill 1 hour or until
easy to handle.
Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray miniature muffin cups with nonstick
cooking spray. Roll dough into walnut-sized
balls & place in prepared cups. Bake 8-9
minutes. Remove from oven & gently press
one (Reese’s) peanut butter/choc. cup into
each cookie, forming a depression. Cool
10 minutes before removing to wire racks to
cool completely. Makes about 3 1/2 dozen.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)

================

Have a great day!

Hugs;

Pammie

It was a GREAT day!

On Sunday (Log Cabin Day) we had 11 of my fellow knitters & crocheters come to spend the day with me and enjoy all of the activities. (I’m working on a baby blanket for a friend who’s due in September – just finished it yesterday). The weather was perfect (81 degrees F) with a nice breeze AND we were under tents so it was an enjoyable experience. There was only one sad part: this was the very LAST Log Cabin Day – from talking to those in charge of that particular historical society, they just can’t get the volunteers needed to keep it going. Very sad, but I’m reassured that they will be working on coming up with other, new ideas. I told them if they need me or my group, just let me know.

============

Strawberry-Rhubarb Cream Dessert

Crust:
2 C. flour
1 C. chopped pecans
1 C. butter, melted
1/4 C. sugar

Topping:
1 C. packed brown sugar
3 T. cornstarch
5 C. chopped, fresh or
frozen rhubarb
1 C. sliced fresh strawberries
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 C. powdered sugar
1 1/4 C. heavy whipping cream/
whipped & divided

Additional brown sugar (optional)
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. In small
bowl combine flour, pecans, butter
& sugar – press into prepared pan &
bake 18-20 minutes until golden brown.
Cool on wire rack.

In large saucepan over medium heat
combine brown sugar & cornstarch;
stir in rhubarb until combined. Bring
to boil, stirring often. Reduce heat; cook
& stir 4-5 minutes until thickened. Remove
from heat; cool then stir in strawberries.

In large bowl beat cream cheese & powdered
sugar 7ntil smooth. Fold in 1 C. whipped cream-
spread over crust & top with rhubarb mixture.
Spread remaining whipped cream on top.
Refrigerate 3-4 hours before serving.
Garnish top with additional brown sugar, if
desired. Serves 12

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————

Watermelon Salsa

1 1/2 tsp. lime zest (from about
1 lime)
1/4 C. fresh lime juice (from about
3 limes)
1 T. sugar
fresh ground black pepper
3 C. seeded/finely chopped watermelon
1 cucumber-peeled/seeded & diced
1 mango-peeled/diced
1 jalapeno pepper – seeded/minced
1 small red onion, finely chopped
8 fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
=
Tortilla or pita chips, for dipping
=
In large bowl stir together lime zest,
lime juice, sugar & 3/4 tsp. pepper.
Add watermelon, cucumber, mango,
jalapeno, onion & basil -toss gently.
Chill until ready to serve.
Serve with chips for dipping
Makes 3 Cups

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
—————————-

3-Bean Macaroni Salad

1 C. elbow macaroni, uncooked
1/2 lb. fresh green beans, trimmed/
halved
1 (15.5 oz) can kidney beans, drained/
rinsed
1 (15.5 oz) can Great Northern beans,
rinsed
1 green pepper, chopped
3/4 C. chopped red onion
1/2 C. mayonnaise
1/4 C. Zesty Italian salad dressing
2 T. chopped fresh dill

Cook macaroni accordg to pkg. directions,
omitting salt & adding green beans to
boiling water for last 2 minutes of
cooking time. Drain & rinse with cold
water; drain again. Place in large bowl &
add remaining beans, peppers & onions-
mix lightly. In small bowl mix remaining
ingredients until blended & pour over
salad – toss to coat. Serves 16

(recipe: myfoodandfamily.com)
———————-

Crockpot BBQ Roast
(made using beer OR cola!)

3 lb. beef roast
1/4 C. BBQ seasoning
salt/pepper, to taste
1 (12 oz.) can beer/non-alcoholic OR
Cola

In small bowl combine bbq seasoning,
salt/pepper & rub all over roast – place
roast in crockpot. Gently pour beer/cola
over roast & sprinkle a little more
seasoning on top. Cover & cook on Low
10-12 hours. Serves 6

NOTE: You ‘could’ cook it on High but it
is not recommended – the meat may not
be as tender.

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)
———————————–

Smoked Paprika Chicken Thighs
& seasoned rice

6-8 chicken thighs (bone in/skin on)
2 T. olive oil
2 T. butter
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 T. smoked paprika
1 tsp. garlic powder
pinch cayenne pepper
1/2 C. chopped green onions
1/2 C. chopped sweet green or
red pepper
2 C. chopped baby spinach
1 (14.5 oz) can chicken broth
2 C. heavy cream
2 C.  instant white rice

In a large skillet heat butter & olive
oil. In a bowl combine salt, pepper,
smoked paprika, garlic powder &
cayenne. Roll each chicken thigh in
spices & brown in skillet on both
sides until skin is cooked & blackened.
Remove thighs from skillet. Add green
onion & pepper to skillet & cook. Add
spinach & pour in chicken broth &
heavy cream. Stir & bring to a low
boil; turn to simmer. Add rice & cook
3-4 minutes. Add thighs back to
skillet; cover & simmer 15 minutes.
Remove from heat & let stand 10
minutes before serving to allow
rice to absorb liquid. Garnish with
chopped green onions.
Serves 6-8

(recipe: thesoutherladycooks.com)
——————————–

Cherry Tomato Salad w/Buttermilk-
Basil Dressing

6 C. red and yellow cherry tomatoes,
halved, if large
kosher salt/ground black pepper
2/3 C. buttermilk
1/4 C. sour cream
3 T. thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
1 shallot, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced

Place tomatoes in a large serving
bowl & season with salt/pepper – toss.
In another bowl whisk buttermilk, sour
cream, basil, shallot & garlic -season
with pepper & drizzle over tomatoes –
toss. Serves 4

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
———————————

Grilled Lemon/Cilantro Shrimp

1 lb. peeled/deveined LARGE
shrimp (tails on), raw
2 T. olive oil
2 T. freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, minced/or pressed
2 T. chopped cilantro
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper

Extra lemon wedges &
chopped cilantro – for garnish
=
Wooden skewers soaked in water

Place all ingredients in a large
bowl & stir to evenly coat. Let
stand, covered/refrigerated
10-15 minutes. Heat grill to
hot & wipe down grates with
olive oil or nonstick cooking spray
to prevent sticking.

Turn grill heat to Low
Thread shrimp onto skewers.
Place shrimp on grill & cook 2-3
minutes per side, until shrimp
turn pink & are cooked through.
Remove from grill & serve hot.
Top with extra cilantro & lemon
wedges, if desired
Serves 6

(recipe: iwashyoudry.com)
————————–

Fluffy Angel Food Cake w/Fresh Berries

1 (pre-made) Angel Food Cake
1 (8oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 (3.4 oz) pkg. vanilla instant pudding mix
1 1/2 C. cold milk
2 C. whipping cream-4 C. whipped (OR)
1 (16 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
1 C. fresh blueberries
1 C. strawberries, chopped
1/2 C. powdered sugar (optional)
=
Slice cake through, evenly, 2 times using
a sharp or serrated knife so you get 3
layers.

Filling:

In large bowl using elec. mixer, beat cream
cheese & dry pudding mix until blended.
Whisk milk into cream cheese/pudding filling
& let stand 3-4 minutes. Gently stir in
2 C. Cool Whip (or whipped cream)

Building the cake:
Place one layer of cake on a serving plate.
Spread a layer of pudding mixture over cake
& top with a layer of blueberries & chopped
strawberries – repeat 2  more times using
cake layers & berries. Frost cake using
remaining 2 C. whipped cream* using a
long spatula. Refrigerate 1 hour & keep
leftovers refrigerated/covered. Serves 12

*If you are preparing whipped cream, using
an elec. mixer, whip 2 cups (16 oz0 until
you have stiff peaks (reserve 2 C. to add to
cream cheese filling & add in 1/2 C. powdered
sugar to whipping cream already in bowl. Mix
together & refrigerate until ready to frost cake.

(recipe: thebakingchocolatess.com)

=========================

My husband finally got his Jeep back from the dealership
today – squirrels had got under the hood and chewed up
the wiring harness – every time he tried to start it the
emergency alarm horn would blare – no fun! Now we’re back
to our ‘regular’ situation – YAY!

So far it looks like I have a rather light babysitting schedule
(only 1 day) so that’s good. Trying to finish up knit projects
as I have a new multicolored baby yarn and a pattern I want
to start soon. (Now comes using my handy-dandy yarn winder
to put the big BALL of yarn into little yarn ‘cakes’ where it will
be easier to use).

The weather is breezy, sunny with beautiful blue skies & big
white fluffy clouds – temperature 87 (read that:
HOT if you have to be out in it!)

Have a great day – remember to stay hydrated and REST when
you need to!

Hugs;

Pammie

End of the week –

Today is Friday and my life is (kind of) slowing down – a bit. Yesterday was truly hectic (glad that’s over). VERY LONG STORY (shortened greatly) – husband’s Jeep needed work – finally got it towed to our dealership yesterday which allowed access to our backyard for our riding mower. Back yard was greatly overgrown so husband first did the dealership/tow thing then came home & mowed the ‘wheat field’. I also had babysitting 12:30 p.m. – ??? (turned out to be around 6:45 p.m.). LONG day – grandson was ok UNTIL he decided to find a TV remote (which I didn’t even know existed!) and messed up their TV. He LOVES watching TV and was very angry at me for not being able to FIX IT! (this resulted in a good 15 minutes of almost non-stop crying filled with “Blaze, Gumma – PWEEZE?” read that: kids TV cartoon called “Blaze and the Monster Machines” – his favorite show. I finally resorted to reading my book and ignoring him because NO amount of talking, glaring, etc. worked – this child is allowed free reign when at the other grandparents house and almost doesn’t know the word NO. Anyway I was ‘rescued’ by my son getting home – he knew how to push the right buttons to fix the TV and all was good. I was truly GLAD to come home – my dear husband orderd Jet’s pizza (half veggie for me/half meat lovers for him) so I was a tired but happy camper.

=========

Raspberry Pretzel Salad

2 C. salted pretzels, lightly crushed
3 T. sugar
1/2 C. butter, melted
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. sugar
1 T. lemon juice
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
1 (6 oz) pkg. raspberry Jell-O mix
2 C. water
4 C. frozen raspberries

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large bowl combine crushed pretzels,
sugar & melted butter; mix & pour into
a 9 X 13″ baking dish. Press mixture into
pan to form a crust. Bake 12 minutes
then cool completely.
In large bowl beat cream cheese, lemon
juice & 1/2 C. sugar until smooth & fluffy.
Fold in Cool Whip & spread mixture over
cooled crust, making sure to go to edges
of dish (to seal). Bring 2 C. water to a
boil then stir in raspberry Jell-O mix
until dissolved (about 2 minutes). Remove
from heat & stir in frozen raspberries –
pour mixture over cream cheese layer &
refrigerate until Jell-O layer is set, about
2-4 hours. Serves 16

(recipe: iwashyoudry.com)
———————————

Grilled Margarita Chicken Skewers

1 1/2 lb. skinless boneless chicken
breasts, cut into 12 strips
1 (10 oz) can frozen margarita mix,
thawed
2/3 C. tequila
1/2 C. chopped fresh cilantro
2 T. chicken seasoning
vegetable oil – for grill

Baby arugula & lime halves,
for serving – optional
=
In large ziplock bag place chicken,
margarita mix, tequila, cilantro &
chicken seasoning; squeeze out
air & seal. Massage bag to combine
ingredients & refrigerate 30 minutes
to 1 hour.
=
Soak 12 wooden skewers in water
=
Preheat grill to medium heat.
Remove chicken from marinade &
thread each piece onto a skewer. Oil the
grill grates & grill skewers 1-2 minutes
per side or until meat is cooked through.
Serve on a platter with arugula & lime
wedges. Makes 12 skewers

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
————————-

Zesty Feta & Veggie Rotini Salad

3 C. tri-colored rotini pasta, cooked/
cooled
1 C. crumbled Feta cheese
1 C. halved cherry tomatoes
1 C. chopped cucumbers*
1/2 C. sliced black olives
1/2 C. zesty Italian salad dressing (Kraft)
1/4 C. finely chopped red onion

In large bowl combine all ingredients &
toss. Refrigerate 1 hour before serving.
Serves 8

*When using unpeeled cucumbers, be
sure to scrub the skin before chopping
(some cucumbers are heavily waxed)
OR peel before chopping.

You can also substitute other vegetables
like chopped red/green/yellow/orange
bell peppers

(recipe: myfoodandfamily.com)
————————-

Bacon Cheddar Popovers

2 C. flour
1/4 tsp. baking powder
3 slices bacon, cooked/crumbled
3/4 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
2 T. butter, melted
3 eggs
1 1/2 C. milk

Preheat oven 450 degrees F.
Spray a 6-cup popover pan or
muffin tin with nonstick cooking
spray. In large bowl whisk flour,
baking powder & salt. Fold in
bacon, cheese & butter with a
spoon. In a separate bowl beat
eggs & milk using a fork then add
to flour mixture. Stir all ingredients
with a spoon just until moistened –
do not over mix. Pour batter into
prepared cups – fill cups almost
to the rim. Bake 15 minutes then
reduce heat to 350 degrees F. &
continue baking 15-20 minutes
until golden brown on top.
Makes 6 large popovers.

(recipe: thesoutherladycooks.com)
—————————-

Crockpot Taco Casserole

1 lb. ground beef, browned/drained
1 envelope taco seasoning mix
1/2 C. water
1 (15 oz) can pork & beans*
1 (11 oz) can mexicorn – drained**
1 (10.75 oz) can Cheddar cheese soup
1 C. milk
2 C. shredded cheese (poster used
Mozzarella)
2 C. crushed Chili Cheese Fritos***
=
After cooking & drained meat, mix water
& taco seasoning – stir into meat then
pour into crockpot. Top with pork & beans
& mexicorn. In a small bowl mix soup &
milk – pour into crockpot. Cover & cook
on Low 5-6 hours. Top with cheese &
turn heat to High for 15 minutes. Top
with crushed Fritos & serve.
Serves 8

*can substitute pork & beans for chili beans

** can substitute for regular corn

***can substitute with crushed Doritos or
even crushed butter crackers

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)
——————

Cheddar Bacon Cheeseball

1 lb. bacon cooked crisp, crumbled/
divided (reserve 2 T. bacon fat)
2/3 C. sweet onion, minced fine
2/3 C. sweet red bell pepper, minced
fine
1 T. garlic, minced fine
1 T. sugar
1 T. champagne vinegar
2 T. apricot jam (or other flavor) or
preserves
1/2 C. pecans, divided
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/4 C. sour cream
1 C. Swiss cheese, shredded
3 C. sharp white Cheddar cheese,
shredded
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. white pepper
1/4 C. fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped fine
=
crackers, for serving
=
In a skillet heat 2 T. bacon fat; add onions,
bell pepper & garlic; saute 4 minutes over
medium-high heat until soft. Lower heat to
medium; add sugar, vinegar & jam – cook
another minute -remove pan to cool. In small
pan over medium heat toast pecans 2-3 minutes
until browned. Remove to a cutting board & chop
fine. Reserve half the nuts in a medium bowl. In
bowl of stand mixer with paddle attachment, beat
cream cheese until smooth then beat in sour
cream – scrape & beat again. Add cheeses, salt/
pepper, half of chopped nuts, half of chopped
bacon & all onions/peppers. Mix just long
enough to incorporate – do not over mix.
Refrigerate 1 hour. Add remaining chopped
bacon to bowl with nuts & stir in chopped
parsley. Lay out a big piece of plastic wrap or
parchment pepper – sprinkle half bacon/nut
mixture out. Using a rubber spatula, gather
up cheese mixture. Using your hands, form
into a ball shape & roll in bacon/nuts, etc.
Cover ball until all mixture is used up; place
on a serving dish & refrigerate 1 hour.
Serve with crackers. Makes approx. 24 servings

(recipe: afamilyfeast.com)
——————————–

Orange/Vanilla Ice Cream Pie

1 pint vanilla ice cream
1 1/2 C. orange sherbet
1 C. orange soda/pop
1 prepared graham cracker pie shell
1 1/2 C. heavy cream
1 tsp. orange extract
1 T. powdered sugar
zest of 1 orange

In blender combine ice cream,
sherbet & orange soda/pop; blend
until smooth, stopping blender &
stirring mixture as needed to ensure
even blending. Pour mixture into pie
shell, then carefully transfer to freezer.
Freeze several hours or until firm.
When ready to serve, in large bowl
combine cream, extract & powdered
sugar. Using elec. mixer on High, whip
until cream holds firm peaks. Fold in
orange zest then mound mixture over
the ice cream pie. Let stand at room
temperature 5 minutes or until thawed
just enough to slice easily. Serves 6

(recipe: dallasnews.com)

===================

I’ve decided to try to ‘take it easy’ today &
tomorrow; need to do a quick grocery
shop in awhile.

Sunday is the annual Log Cabin Day where
my knit group & I participate by demonstrating
knitting/crochet at the event. I love going and
was informed by my friend & President of that
Historical Society that this might very well be the
last one – they just can’t get the needed
volunteers to staff it. I will truly miss it – have
been doing my best to ‘get the word out’ to
COME! The entire event is free with lots to
see and do. Next big event, for me, will be
July 27th when our County Historical Society
will be holding their Ice Cream Social – again
my knit group sits knits/crochets and has fun.

Hope you are able to enjoy some of this
gorgeous summer weather. Yes, it’s hot
but it’s also MUCH better than freezing
with snow & ice! Just a thought –

Hugs;

Pammie

Memorial Day

 

Today is Memorial Day – a day where we remember all those who died in the service of our country.

==================

Crockpot “Better than Sex” Cake
(needs a crockpot with removable
insert)

1 box chocolate cake mix
1 1/4 C. water
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk,
divided
3/4 C. vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 T. vanilla
2 C. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 (14 oz) container caramel ice
cream topping
1/2 C. toffee bits
13 oz. whipping cream (canned
or whip yourself)

In large bowl combine dry cake mix,
water, half of sweetn’d cond. milk,
oil, eggs & vanilla – mix well. Spray
insides of crockpot with nonstick
cooking spray & pour cake batter
into crockpot. Sprinkle choc. chips
on top of batter. Cover & cook on
High 2-3 hours until center of cake
is done & a toothpick inserted into
middle comes out clean. Using handle
of a wooden or plastic spoon, poke
holes all over surface of cake. In small
bowl combine remaining sweetn’d
cond’ milk & 3/4 of caramel ice cream
topping – pour evenly over cake,
allowing sauce to fill the holes.
Refrigerate until chilled. Cut cake
into 12 servings & top each slice
with whipped cream, reserved
caramel ice cream topping &
toffee bits. Serves 12

(recipe: crockpotladies.com)
———————————-

Hawaiian Pasta Salad

8 oz. rotini or bow tie pasta
1 (14 oz) can pineapple tidbits,
juice reserved
1 red pepper, diced
2 C. cooked/diced ham
1 green onion, thinly sliced

Dressing:
1/2 C. mayonnaise or salad dressing
1/4 C. sour cream
1 T. Dijon mustard
1/3 C. pineapple juice
1 tsp. cider vinegar
1 tsp. honey
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
black pepper, to taste

Cook pasta accordg. to pkg.
directions; drain & run under
cold water. In a bowl whisk
all salad dressing ingredients
together until smooth. Combine
all ingredients in large bowl &
gently toss with dressing.
Refrigerate 2 hours before
serving. Serves 8
Store any leftovers in fridge
up to 5 days.

(recipe: spendwithpennies.com)
——————————-

Shrimp/Cucumber Rounds
(appetizers)

1/2 lb. cooked shrimp, peeled/
deveined & finely chopped
1/2 C. mayonnaise
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1 rib celery, finely chopped
1 tsp. dill pickle relish
dash cayenne pepper
1 medium English cucumber,
cut into 1/4 inch slices

In small bowl combine first 6
ingredients – spoon onto cucumber
slices & serve immediately.
Makes 3 dozen

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————–

Vanilla Pudding Fruit Salad

2 (11 oz) cans mandarin oranges with juice
1 (20 oz) can pineapple chunks with juice
1 (3.4 oz) box instant vanilla pudding
1 lb. fresh strawberries, sliced
2 bunches seedless grapes, halved

In large bowl, combine oranges with juice,
pineapple with juice, & vanilla pudding
until well mixed. Stir in strawberries &
grape halves. Chill 1 hour before serving.

(recipe: Sandy-Marys Recipe Exchange)
————————-

Cheesy Mac ‘n Cheese

1 1/2 C. uncooked elbow
macaroni= cook accordg. to
pkg. directions
2/3 C. evaporated milk
1 egg, beaten
1/3 C. sour cream
4 T. butter or marg, softened
2 C. sharp Cheddar cheese,
shredded (see note below)
1 C. Velveeta cheese (8 oz) cut
into pieces (SEE NOTE BELOW)
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. salt

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a casserole dish with
nonstick cooking spray.
Drain cooked macaroni; add butter
& cheeses & mix well. Beat egg,
milk, sour cream, pepper & salt
with a wire whisk – add to mac &
cheese. Place mixture into
prepared dish & cover with foil.
Bake 50-60 minutes. Makes
about 6 servings. (You might want
to remove foil & brown top under
the broiler) Recipe can be doubled.
(If you double – use a 9 X 13″ pan)

* If you don’t like Velveeta,
add 3 C. shredded Cheddar instead
of 2 C.

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)
———————————–

Crockpot BBQ Pinto Beans
(overnight recipe)

1 lb. dried pinto beans
3 C. water
1 onion, chopped
1 (18 oz) bottle BBQ sauce
1/4 C. molasses or honey
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Sort beans, rinse & drain. Cover with
water & let stand, covered, overnight.
Next day: drain beans & rinse again.
Combine beans, 3 C. water, onion,
BBQ sauce, molasses & pepper in
4 qt. crockpot. Cover & cook on Low
8-9 hours until beans are tender.
Serves 6-8

NOTE: if you have a newer crockpot
that cooks hotter, check at 7 hours &
stir beans at halfway cooking time.

(recipe: thespruceeats.com)
——————————–

Best Ever Potato Salad

2 lb. Yukon Gold potatoes,
(about 6 medium)
1 1/2 C. mayonnaise
1 T. white vinegar
1 T. yellow mustard
3-4 T. chicken broth
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
1/2 C. chopped onion
4 hard boiled eggs, roughly chopped

Peel & dice potatoes into cubes – place
in large pot of water & boil about 20
minutes until fork-tender. (be careful
not to over-cook the potatoes; they
could turn out mushy). In large bowl
mix mayo, vinegar, mustard, chicken broth,
salt/pepper. Add potatoes, celery, onion &
gently stir – stir in eggs. Cover & refrigerate
at least 4 hours to blend flavors.
Serves 8

(recipe: thecountrycook.net)
——————————–

Best Gas-Grilled Ribs

1 rack pork ribs
1/2 C. pork seasoning rub*
1 C. unsweetened apple juice
1/2 C. orange marmalade (or
peach or apricot preserves)
1/4 C. apple cider vinegar
1 large disposable aluminum tray
aluminum foil

Remove ribs from packaging & pat
dry using paper towels. Remove
silver skin from back of ribs. Spray alum.
pan with nonstick cooking spray (or
rub with oil) – place ribs in pan. Sprinkle
some of rub on backs of ribs-press/rub
on meat. NOTE: you can cut ribs in half
to make it easier to handle on the grill).
Flip ribs over & season other side. Pour
apple juice into bottom of pan & cover
pan with foil – refrigerate until grill is
ready.

Preheat grill 300 degrees F.
Clean grill grates & carefully wipe them
down with oil. Place ribs in pan on grill –
cover grill & cook about 1 hour. Ribs are
done when you insert a meat thermometer
into thickest part of meat (away from bone)
& temp. reaches 145 degrees F. Carefully
remove ribs from pan & place directly on
grill. In a small pot over medium heat whisk
marmalade & vinegar – whisk until well combined.
Remove pot off heat & baste cooked ribs with
sauce – make sure to coat well. Cover grill &
cook an additional 5 minutes – repeat process
one more time. Carefully remove ribs from grill
& place on large cutting board – allow meat to
rest & cool a few minutes. Using a sharp knife,
carefully cut ribs between bones & serve.
Serves 6

*Homemade Pork Seasoning Rub

1/2 C. brown sugar
1/4 C. smoked paprika
1 T. coarse ground black pepper
1 T. kosher salt
1 T. chili powder
1 T. garlic powder
1 T. onion powder
1 tsp. cayenne

(recipe: thecountrycook.net)
————————————–

Crockpot Strawberry Cream Dump Cake

4 C. strawberries, cut into quarters
(can use frozen)
1/4 C. flour
1 1/4 C. sugar, divided
1 box white cake mix
8 oz. cream cheese
1 stick butter, sliced

In large bowl mix strawberries, flour &
1 C. sugar. Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray & pour mixture
into crockpot. Mix cream cheese & remaining
sugar together & spoon on top of berries.
Sprinkle dry cake mix on top & top with
pats of butter. Place a few paper towels over
opening of crockpot & cover with lid.
Cook on High 2-3 hours. Serves 8

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)
=======================

Have a lovely holiday.

Hugs;

Pammie

Sometimes it’s all in one’s PERSPECTIVE!

Yesterday I was offered a bunch of yarn ‘to purchase’; this consisted of three medium-sized bags of various yarns. The friend who presented the ‘offer’ was just a go-between person who really didn’t know anything about yarn. She mentioned it came from her daughter-in-laws garage sale; I guess daughter-in-law thought there was some really good/valuable yarn there. Not calling myself a yarn ‘expert’ but I’ve been working with yarns now for a good thirteen-plus years (with various charity projects, etc.) and I’ve come to KNOW good yarn v/s really old/no longer produced yarns. In these bags were yarn I would not even pass on to my knit group ladies! Now comes the ‘fun’ part – how do I ‘tactfully’ tell my friend that? (I did, but it was a bit awkward). Like I said: It’s all in ones PERSPECTIVE, I guess!

===============

(this sounds SOoooooo good)

Butter Pecan Choc. Chip Cake
with Nutmeg Frosting

1 box Super Moist Butter Pecan
cake mix
1 (3.4 oz) pkg. vanilla instant
pudding & pie filling
2 large eggs
1 stick butter or marg., melted
2/3 C. water
2/3 C. chocolate chips
2/3 C. chopped nuts (poster used walnuts)
2/3 C. butterscotch chips

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray.
In large bowl mix dry cake mix, pudding
mix, eggs, butter & water. Fold in choc.
chips & nuts & spread in prepared dish.
Sprinkle butterscotch chips on top.
Bake 30-35 minutes. Remove from oven
& allow to cool.

Nutmeg Frosting:
1 can rich & creamy prepared
vanilla frosting
1 tsp. vanilla flavoring
1 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg

Place frosting in a glass bowl/
container. Add vanilla & nutmeg –
microwave on High 30 seconds.
Mix well & pour over cooled cake.
Top cake with more nuts, if desired.

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)
—————————-

Pepperoni Pizza Biscuit Bites
(appetizer)

1 (12 oz) tube biscuits (with 12
biscuits)
24 slices pepperoni
shredded mozzarella (or)
cheese sticks cut into small
pieces
about 1/4 C. pizza or tomato sauce
1/4 c. chopped green onions (can
use regular onions)
1 tsp. drie oregano
1/4 tsp. garlic powder

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray a large baking dish with nonstick
cooking spray (poster used 10″ pie plate)
Cut each biscuit in half (you will have 24
halves) Roll each half as big as you can
get it using a rolling pin (or a glass). Spread
each half with pizza sauce, 1 slice pepperoni,
pinch shredded cheese & chopped onion.
Roll biscuit half up, tuck in ends & place in
prepared baking dish – repeat with rest
of biscuit halves & ingredients. Sprinkle
top with oregano & garlic powder. Spread
some pizza sauce on top & top with about
1/2 C. shredded cheese. Bake 20-25 minutes
until biscuits are cooked. Pull off pieces or
slice. Makes about 6 servings.

(recipe: thesoutherladycooks.com)
———————————

Crispy Baked Chicken Thighs

8 bone-in chicken thighs
1/4 tsp. onion salt
1/4 tsp. garlic salt
1/4 tsp. chili pepper
1/4 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. paprika

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Line a baking sheet with foil &
spray with nonstick cooking spray.
Add all spices to a small container
with a lid & shake until thoroughly
mixed – sprinkle mixture over
chicken. Place thighs on baking
sheet & bake 1 hour – until crispy.
(fully cooked, they should read
165 degrees F. on a food thermometer).
Serves 4 (2 thighs each)

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)
——————————
Greek-style Potatoes

6 large russet potatoes
1 T. semolina flour

Seasoning Sauce:
3/4 C. olive oil
3/4 C. water
1 T. oregano
juice of 2 lemons
3 cloves garlic, very finely minced
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray large roasting or baking pan
with nonstick cooking spray. Peel
potatoes & cut into wedges about
1/4″ thick – lay potatoes in a single
layer on pan. Mix all sauce ingredients
in small bowl – pour evenly over potatoes
in pan & toss gently to coat. Sprinkle with
half of semolina flour –
Bake 40 minutes until potatoes begin to
golden & are crunchy on top. Carefully
turn potato wedges & sprinkle with
remaining semolina. Bake 20-30 minutes
longer or until golden & crunchy on top
side. Serves 6

(recipe: bakeatmidnite.com)
———————————

Crockpot Taco Lasagna

1 lb. ground beef
1 oz. pkg. dry taco seasoning mix
8 burrito-sized flour tortillas
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened/
divided
2-3 C. shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce, divided
(optional: favorite taco toppings like
grated/shredded Cheddar cheese)

In large skillet over medium-high heat
cook ground beef; drain. Add taco seasoning
& water – according to pkg. directions.
Lightly spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray. Place 2 tortillas in
crockpot so they cover the bottom & come
up sides some. Spread 1/4 of cream cheese
over tortillas; top with 1/4th of meat, cheese
& tomato sauce. Repeat layers 3 more times.
Cover & cook on Low 3-5 hours. Serve with
your favorite taco toppings & cheese.
Serves 8-10

NOTE: make sure cream cheese is softened

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)
————————

3-Bean Baked Beans

1/2 lb. ground beef
5 strips bacon, diced
1/2 C. chopped onion
1/3 C. packed brown sugar
1/4 C. sugar
1/4 C. ketchup
1/4 C. BBQ sauce
2 T. molasses
2 T. prepared mustard
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 (16 oz, ea) cans pork & beans,
undrained
1 (16 oz) can butter beans, rinsed/
drained
1 (16 oz) can kidney beans, rinsed/drained

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 2 1/2 qt. baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray.
In large skillet cook & crumble beef with
bacon & onion over medium heat until
beef is no longer pink; drain. Stir in sugars,
ketchup, BBQ sauce, molasses, mustard,
chili powder & salt – stir to combine. Stir
in beans & transfer to prepared dish.
Bake, covered, until beans reach desired
thickness, about 1 hour. Serves 12

Freezer option:
Freeze cooled bean mixture in freezer
containers. To use: partially thaw in
fridge overnight. Heat through in a
saucepan, stirring occasionally &
adding a little water, if necessary.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————————-

Cheesy Garlic Cauliflower Casserole

1 large head cauliflower, chopped into
bite sized pieces
1 C. shredded Parmesan/Asiago/Romano
cheese (it comes in one container)
1 C. light sour cream
3 T. butter
1 T. minced onion
2 T. garlic powder
1 C. Garlic & Herb bread crumbs
(Cheddar cheese, shredded, optional
topping)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a casserole dish with nonstick
cooking spray.
Bring large pot of water to boil & add
cauliflower – boil until tender, about
10 minutes; drain. Add sour cream,
cheese, butter, garlic powder & minced
onion – stir until cauliflower is covered &
butter is melted – pour into prepared
casserole dish & add bread crumbs on top.
(poster added a little bit of shredded
Cheddar cheese before baking).
Bake 30-35 minutes. Once baked, stir
well to mix in the crunch of the bread
crumbs.

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)
————————————

Cookie Cups

1 (18-20 oz) pkg. refrigerated
cookie dough, any flavor
assorted fillings (prepared
pudding or pie fillings)
or fresh cut fruit
whipped cream or Cool Whip
(thawed) for topping

Freeze packaged dough 1 hour
until firm.
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Turn a regular sized muffin tin
UPSIDE DOWN & spray bottoms
with nonstick spray. Slice firm
dough into 1/2 inch slices & place
a slice evenly onto each muffin cup
bottom. Bake 11-13 minutes until
dough has baked around cups &
turned golden brown. Cool cups
5-10 minutes before carefully
removing from pans.

NOTE: Cups are VERY delicate,so
remove them gently. If any break,
just eat them as plain cookies.
Fill cups with pie filling or fresh-
cut fruit & whipped cream.

(recipe: mrfood.com)

===================

Turns out yesterday we DIDN’T get the
really bad thunderstorms – YAY! As far
as I know it was just rain! Just got an
email from our power company letting
us know their crews are on stand-by in
case of severe thunderstorms for THIS
afternoon – oh, great . . . sigh. Oh well,
I didn’t have anything special planned
for today/tonight, anyway!

Not much ‘exciting’ going on – babysitting,
special needs group, library knit group –
my ‘usual’.  The lady in my Panera group
that delivers the baby booties for us will
be gone until mid-June so we just keep on
knitting them. I counted today: 54 pairs.
You KNOW there will be lots more before
she’s back! I like knitting them – they knit
up fast (1 hr per pair – at least when I knit
them); they don’t use a lot of yarn (and I
still have a BUNCH of donated baby yarn
for them) and because they’re small, I can
knit them in the car while riding to & from
church Sundays while husband drives! Score!
(Keeps me busy & out of trouble – at least
that’s what my guys here say!)

Hope you’re having a great day!

Hugs;

Pammie

and we have BUNNIES – again!

Every Spring I look forward to seeing if I can spot our bunnies – these are wild bunnies that (usually) live in our yard in a space that used to be a garden – lots of wild blackberry bushes have taken over the area so they are well protected from predators. I saw one this morning – looking all fat & healthy (probably an adult) – just seeing them makes me happy.

Our weather has been really nice – yesterday it was SUPER sunny and got up to 71 degrees F. – YAY!!! (the rest of the week our forecast is for rain, but hey – we need that for the flowers, right?)

===========

I missed posting Cinco de Mayo recipes – so here’s a few, anyway

Double-Lemon Cheesecake Bars

52 Vanilla wafers, finely crushed,
about 2 C.
3 T. butter or marg., melted
4 eggs, divided
4 (8 oz, ea) pkgs. cream cheese,
softened
1 3/4 C. sugar, divided
3 T. flour
1 T. lemon zest AND
1/3 C. lemon juice (from 2 lemons),
divided
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 T. cornstarch
1/2 C. water

Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Line a 9 X 13″ baking dish with foil – ends
extending over sides (to use as handles).
In a bowl mix wafer crumbs & butter until
blended. Press onto bottom of pan & bake
10 minutes. Separate 1 egg; refrigerate yolk
until ready to use. Beat cream cheese, 1 C.
sugar, flour, lemon zest, 2 T. lemon juice &
vanilla in large bowl with elec. mixer until
blended. Add egg white & remaining 3 whole
eggs, one at a time, mixing on Low speed after
each – just until blended – pour over crust.
Bake 40 minutes until center is almost set.
Cool 1 hour & refrigerate 4 hours.
=
Mix cornstarch & remaining sugar in medium
saucepan; gradually stir in water & remaining
lemon juice just until blended. Bring just to a
boil on medium heat, stirring constantly. Cook
& stir until clear & thickened. Lightly beat reserved
egg yolk in small bowl with fork until blended.
Stir in 2 T. hot cornstarch mixture & return to
remaining cornstarch mixture in saucepan; stir
until blended. Cook 1 minute until thickened,
stirring constantly. Cool slightly.
Spoon lemon glaze over cheesecake. Refrigerate
1 hour until firm. Using foil as handles, remove
cheesecake from pan before cutting to serve.
Makes 16

(recipe: kraftrecipes.com)
—————————-

Crockpot Mexican Taco Casserole

1 lb. ground beef or turkey
1/2 onion, chopped (optional)
1 C. corn
1 can black beans, drained/rinsed
1 can diced tomatoes w/green chilies (aka: Rotel)
1/2 envelope dry taco seasoning
garlic salt, to taste
2 C. cooked rice (poster used brown rice)
8 oz. shredded cheese (poster used Cheddar)

In skillet brown meat; add onions, taco seasoning,
tomatoes, beans & corn – stir to combine.
Spray insides of crockpot with nonstick cooking
spray. Spread cooked rice on bottom of crockpot &
sprinkle with garlic salt. Spoon meat mixture over
rice & top with cheese. Cover & cook on High
2-3 hours. Serves 10

NOTE: for some crunch, add crushed tortilla
chips on top before serving.

(recipe: eatingonadime.com)
————————————–

(this next recipe my son (the chef) makes for holidays – really tasty – he drizzles honey over the brie before wrapping then does the rest of steps – no jam)

Baked Brie w/Phyllo Dough & Jam
(appetizer)

6 sheets phyllo dough (14 X 18″ size)
1 stick (8 T.) butter, melted
1 lb. round brie cheese
4-6 T. preserves or jam (your choice;
suggestions: peach, strawberry, apricot)

crackers for serving
=
Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Have on hand: a clean, dry dishcloth or
towel (needed to keep phyllo from drying
out).
Unroll phyllo & lay 1 sheet of dough onto a
large cutting board. Using a pastry brush,
brush dough with melted butter. Wrap phyllo
around brie (you can use more butter to get
folds to stick around brie). Brush next sheet
of phyllo with butter & place wrapped brie,
fold side down, in center of second phyllo
sheet – wrap around brie – repeat until you
have wrapped 5 sheets of phyllo around
cheese, always turning cheese over each
time so that folds are on the bottom.
Brush a generous amount of butter on 6th
sheet of phyllo. Spread jam across top of
wrapped brie – gently place phyllo over jam,
butter side down, being careful not to tear
the dough. Finish wrapping brie with dough,
folding edges underneath brie & using
additional butter, as needed, to smooth
phyllo folds around cheese. Brush additional
butter on top.
Place wrapped brie on a round baking pan or
cookie sheet. Bake 15 minutes until lightly
brown. Let stand 5 minutes before cutting.
Serve with crackers for dipping.

(recipe:  afamilyfeast.com)
——————————

1-Pot Mexican Chicken & Rice

5 chicken thighs, bone in/skin on
1 yellow onion, diced
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 T. chili powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 T. olive oil
1 C. white rice, uncooked
1 T. minced garlic
2 C. chicken stock
1 C. salsa
1/2 red bell pepper, minced
optional garnish: chopped parsley

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Heat cast iron skillet on High heat.
Season chicken with garlic powder,
chili powder, cumin, oregano, paprika,
salt & cayenne pepper. Place chicken,
skin sides down, in skillet & cook
4-5 minutes until browned – flip &
cook 3-4 minutes on other sides.
EITHER: remove chicken to a plate,
(OR) push chicken to sides of skillet:
Add olive oil & heat to medium-high.
Add onions & cook 3-4 minutes. Once
onions are mostly cooked, add garlic &
cook 30 seconds while stirring. Add
uncooked rice, salsa & bell pepper –
cook 1 minute unitl boiling. Pour in
chicken stock & place chicken back in
skillet, skin sides up. Cover & bake
35-40 minutes. Serves 5

(recipe: yummly.com)
———————————–

Cheesy Beef Enchiladas

8 corn or flour tortillas
1 lb. ground beef
1/2 C. chopped onion
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 (4 oz) can fire-roasted chopped
green chiles, drained
1 (15.5 oz) can black beans, drained/
rinsed
1 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. salt
about 3 C. enchilada sauce, divided
2 C. shredded Mexican-style 4-blend cheese
(or whatever cheese you like)
=
Toppings:
chopped green onions
chopped tomatoes
fresh chopped parsley
sour cream
sliced black olives

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Brown ground beef & onion in skillet;
drain. Add chopped garlic, green chilies,
black beans, cumin, pepper/salt & 1 1/4
C. enchilada sauce to ground beef. Stir &
cook on Low 8-10 minutes. Spread 3 T.
enchilada sauce evenly in bottom of a
9 X 13″ baking dish. Place stacked tortillas
on a microwave-safe plate & microwave
all 30 seconds to warm & make them
more pliable. Fill each tortilla with hamburg
mixture & place in baking dish. Pour 1 C.
enchilada sauce over tortillas & spread
evenly. Sprinkle 2 C. shredded cheese on
top evenly & bake 25 minutes. Garnish
with your favorite toppings.
Makes 4-6 servings

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)
—————————–
Chicken Tortilla Dump Dinner

2 (10 oz, ea) cans diced tomatoes
with chilies (like RoTel)
1 C. chicken broth
1 T. chili powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1 (15.5 oz) can black beans,
drained/rinsed
1 (10 oz) bag frozen corn
5 C. cooked/shredded chicken
(from small rotisserie chicken)
12 small corn tortillas, cut into
quarters
1 (8 oz) block Monterrey Jack
cheese, shredded (about 2 C.)
1/2 C. sour cream
1/3 C. diced red onion
1/3 C. loosely packed fresh
cilantro, chopped

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray insides of 9 X 13″ baking
dish with nonstick cooking spray.
In large bowl stir diced tomatoes
with chilies, chicken broth, chili
powder, cumin & salt. Add black
beans, frozen corn, chicken, tortilla
wedges & half the cheese – stir to
evenly distribute & moisten all the
ingredients. Place in prepared dish
& spread evenly. Loosely cover
with foil & bake 25 minutes.

Raise oven temp. to 400 degrees F.
=
Remove foil & sprinkle top with
remaining cheese. Bake until cheese
melts, about 10 minutes. Remove
from oven & top with dollops of
sour cream; sprinkle with red onion
& cilantro. Serve hot.
Serves  6-8

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
——————————-

Crockpot Peaches ‘n Cream
Dump Cake

1 (21 oz) can peach pie filling
1 box white cake mix
1/2 C. butter, melted
8 oz. cream cheese
1/4 C. sugar

In a bowl mix cream cheese &
sugar until smooth. Pour pie
filling into bottom of crockpot
& smooth out. Top filling with
cream cheese mixture then
sprinkle dry cake mix on top.
Pour melted butter evenly
over top. Place 6-8 paper
towels between lid of crockpot
& lid (to help absorb moisture).
Cover & cook on High 1-2 hours.
Serves 4-6

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)
—————————

Cherry Choc. Chip Cookies

1 C. (2 sticks) butter, softened
3/4 C. packed brown sugar
1/2 C. gran. sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
2 1/4 C. flour
1 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. kosher salt
2 C. chocolate chips
3/4 C. chopped maraschino cherries

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment
paper. In large bowl using elec.
mixer, beat butter & sugars until light
& fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs &
vanilla – beat until combined. In another
bowl mix flour, baking soda & salt – stir into
wet ingredients then fold in choc. chips &
cherries. Using a large cookie scoop, scoop
cookies onto prepared baking sheets & bake
until set, 12-15 minutes. Makes 22 cookies

(recipe: delish.com)

===============

I need to brag a little on my husband – he’s
the kind of person who can fix or figure out
just about anything. My (3-4 yr old) cell phone
has been acting up lately: in middle of typing
a text I will suddenly lose the keyboard & am
unable to continue – or it will suddenly jump
to another screen totally – frustrating! We
were talking about me possibly getting a new
phone but I wanted to download all my photos
FIRST – well, that became almost impossible.
Enter my husband! It took him a good hour to
finally get the data transferred to my computer –
there were 2 photos that I really wanted to save
and (almost) no amount of fiddling with the data
would allow them to be transferred/saved. He
kept working at it and FINALLY succeeded – YAY!
(I’m still learning how to make a video using my
phone, but super cute 2 yr old grandson is making
that a ‘needed’ thing!) Managed to get him being
his usual crazy/funny self and wanted to save those,
too. All is well – we will be off to the phone store
in a little while – time to ‘teach an old “lady” new
tricks’ – right? (don’t know about you, but I DREAD
having to learn how to operate something digital/
new – sigh).

Hang in there!

Hugs;

Pammie

PS: Got a small reprieve on knitting baby booties –
my friend who’s been delivering them will not be
able to do so until end of the month, so I’m trying
to finish the yellow blanket (nice pattern, just boring
to knit). Also – stepped out of my comfort zone yesterday
and bought a hand-crank yarn ball winder.
I already have an electric one which drives me nuts –
never makes the yarn ‘balls’ tight – they are very loose
& almost fall apart right after using. New winder works
like a charm – YAY! Yep – even though I’m quickly
approaching 71, it’s never too late to learn something
new.

It’s Wednesday!

Our weather is now “typical Michigan” – that means one day we have really nice, sunny & (sometimes) warm days followed by really cold, gray days – that’s NORMAL for Michigan closely approaching Spring. Yesterday it was really gorgeous – sunny and up to almost 47! Today it’s misting/rain, gray & 41 degrees F. BUT this coming Thursday we’re supposed to get up to 66! (followed by, on Saturday, 36 degrees F. – typical Michgan!  Sigh . . . )

I’m SUPER HAPPY today because after missing my Library Knit group for two weeks in a row I was finally able to join them! When I came in several ladies greeted me with “I’m so glad you’re here – I’ve been dragging these around for weeks!” They meant knit baby booties. I just stopped to count and we now have another 43 pairs to donate. One of my ladies from the Panera knit group has decided to help volunteer doing sewing for the group that does the baby burial outfits. She said she plans on going there once a week and would be willing to take our booties when she goes – that’s a BIG bonus for us, saving $$$ in mailing postage (last time 50 pr. cost $10 just to mail). I’m so happy to see that others are taking up the ’cause’ to help bless hurting families. As I’ve said before, it’s an honor to be able to do something small to help someone else in their time of grief. (If you’re new to reading my blog, I’m referring to a particular group of people who create/prepare burial clothing for infants who have died: “Angels Above Baby Gowns” – they have a Facebook page and are located in Garden City, MI.

===============

Homemade Cinnamon Apple Cake

2 C. flour
1 large apple, peeled/chopped
1 C. vegetable oil
1 C. dark brown sugar
1/2 C. granulated sugar
1/2 C. walnuts, chopped
2 large eggs
1 T. cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Lightly spray a 9″ round cake
pan with nonstick cooking spray. In
medium bowl mix eggs & oil; add
cinnamon, white & brown sugars &
vanilla – mix until combined. Add flour,
salt, baking soda & baking powder –
mix until thoroughly incorporated.
Fold in apples & nuts – pour into
prepared pan & smooth out evenly.
Bake about 45 minutes until a toothpick
inserted into center of cake comes
out clean. Let cool 15 minutes before
slicing & serving.

(recipe: americantimesfood.com)
—————————-

Angel Hair Pasta with Chicken

2 T. olive oil, divided
2 skinless boneless chicken breast
halves, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 carrot, sliced diagonally into 1/4″
pieces
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen broccoli florets,
thawed
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (12 oz) pkg. angel hair pasta
2/3 C. chicken broth
1 tsp. dried basil
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese

Heat 1 T. oil in medium skillet over medium
heat. Add chicken & cook, stirring, until
chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes.
Remove from skillet & drain on paper  towels.
Heat remaining oil in same skillet. Begin heating
water for pasta

(NOTE: before cooking pasta,
rub insides of pot with a little vegetable oil –
this will prevent the water from boiling over.)

Add carrot to skillet; cook, stirring, 4 minutes.
Add broccoli & garlic, cook, stirring 2 minutes.
Cook pasta accordg. to pkg. directions. While
pasta is cooking, add chicken broth, basil &
Parmesan to skillet – stir to combine. Return
chicken to skillet; reduce heat & simmer
4 minutes. Drain pasta & place in a large
serving bowl. Top with chicken & vebetable
mixture. Serve immediately. Serves 4

Variation: substitute 1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen peas
for frozen broccoli & 1 C. chopped, cooked ham
for chicken.
——————————–

Homemade Pizza “Rolls”
(recipe for now or later)

2 lb. ground beef
2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese
1 dozen sub rolls
2 (15 oz, ea) jars pizza sauce

In large skillet over medium-high heat
brown meat, breaking up into small
pieces until no longer pink & fully cooked.
Drain; add both jars pizza sauce – stir &
cook on medium until bubbly. Slice each
bun almost through & spoon cooked beef
mixture into buns. Add cheese on top &
seal with plastic wrap*; refrigerate.
When ready to eat, heat individual ‘rolls’
in microwave about 1 minute. Can be
stored in fridge for several days.
Serves 12

*Poster likes to put sealed rolls back in
the bag the buns came in for an extra
layer of protection.

(recipe: southernplate.com)
——————————–

Crockpot Split Pea Soup

1 (16 oz) bag dried split peas
1 tsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 large carrots, chopped
1 smoked ham hock (about 11 oz –
assuming 4 oz. meat removing bone &
skin)
6 C. chicken broth
black pepper, to taste

Place dried peas in a colander – wash &
drain peas. In small skillet saute onions &
garlic in oil over medium heat until soft,
about 3 minutes then transfer to crockpot
along with peas, carrots, ham hock & chicken
broth. Cover & cook on Low 10 hours until
peas are tender. Remove ham hock & season
with black pepper. Discard skin of hock &
shred pork off bone & add back to soup.
Serves 6

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
—————————–

Make-Ahead Unstuffed Shells

4 C. medium pasta shells, uncooked
1 lb. ground beef
1 (24 oz) jar (Classico) Tomato & Basil
pasta sauce
1 (8 oz) tub cream cheese spread
1/3 C. chopped fresh basil
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese
2 T. milk
1/2 tsp. dried Italian seasoning
1 1/2/ C. shredded mozzarella cheese

Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with nonstick
cooking spray.
Cook pasta accordg. to pkg. directions,
omitting salt. Brown meat in large
skillet; drain. Stir in pasta sauce &
simmer on medium heat 2 minutes –
remove from heat. Drain pasta; mix
cream cheese spread, basil, Parm.
cheese, milk & Ital. seasoning in large
bowl until blended – stir in pasta.
Spread half meat sauce in bottom of
prepared dish & cover with layers of
pasta mixture & remaining meat sauce.
Sprinkle top with Mozz. cheese & cover
with foil.

*Refrigerate up to 24 hours
before baking.

To Bake:
Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Bake, covered, 40-45 minutes until
heated through. Uncover after
30 minutes of baking time.
Serves 6

(recipe: kraftrecipes.com)
————————

Pork Stir Fry

1 T. oil
1 lb. pork tenderloin, cut into
bite-sized pieces
2 C. quartered fresh mushrooms
1 c. fresh snow pea pods
1 small yellow pepper, cut into strips
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T. minced ginger
1/4 C. Catalina salad dressing (Kraft)
1 T. soy sauce
1/4 C. cashews
2 green onions, chopped

3 C. cooked long-grain brown rice
=
Heat oil in large wok or skillet on High
heat; add meat & stir-fry 1 minute.
Add next 5 ingredients; stir-fry on medium-
high 3-5 minutes or until meat is lightly
browned. Stir in dressing & soy sauce;
stir-fry 2 minutes until vegetables are
crisp-tender & meat is done. Top with
nuts & onions, serve over rice.
Serves 6

(recipe: kraftrecipes.com)
—————————–


Amish Peanut Butter Cream Pie

1 (9 inch) baked/cooled pie crust

Peanut Butter Crumbles:
1/2 C. powdered sugar
1/4 C. creamy peanut butter

Peanut Butter Filling:
1 small box instant vanilla pudding mix
1 1/2 C. milk
1/2 C. peanut butter
1 C. whipped cream or 1 C. Cool
Whip, thawed

Whipped topping on top of pie:
2 C. whipped cream or 1 (8 oz) tub
Cool Whip, thawed

In medium bowl using elec. mixer, add
powdered sugar & peanut butter – mix
on medium speed until small peanut
butter crumbles start to come together.
If mixture is too powdery, add a few drops
of water & larger nuggets will form. Add
half the peanut butter nuggets to bottom
of pie shell.

Filling:
In medium bowl using elec. mixer, mix dry
pudding mix, milk, peanut butter for 2
minutes. Add in whipped cream (make
sure it’s already whipped) & mix in lightly.
Pour into pie crust on top of peanut butter
crumbles & top with whipped cream. Add
half remaining peanut butter crumbles (or
as many as you want) to top of whipped
cream. Let pie cool in fridge at least 1-2
hours to set up before cutting.

(recipe: thebaking chocolatess.com)
============================

I’m feeling like I should apologize for not writing
lately – it’s been kind of hectic with more babysitting
and my usual activities. SO GLAD I finally ‘spoke up’
and asked that my babysitting days be either Monday,
Thursday or Friday – NOT Tues./Weds, as those are
my only ‘me’ days where I have things I enjoy doing –
Tuesdays Panera Knit Group and Weds. Library Knit
group & my special needs group. We’ll see how that
goes.

Not much else ‘new’ been reading more David
Baldacci (one of my favorite authors for murder/
mystery). Am going to try a ‘new to me’ recipe soon
for Alfredo Spinach Gnocchi using fresh spinach,
frozen gnocchi & ‘jarred’ alfredo sauce – sounded
good to me as a side dish. (note: I’ve never cooked/
eaten gnocchi before, so ought to be ‘interesting’!)
For those who don’t know what gnocchi is: they are
small dough dumplings which team together nicely
with various sauces as a side dish.

Hope your week is going well;

Hugs;

Pammie

and here we are at Thursday again!

Well, once again our ‘dear’ Michigan weather decided to surprise (or not) – yesterday the weather reported snow around 11 a.m. followed by freezing rain/drizzle/snow – crazy. I went to Library Knit 10-12 (nice, clear weather!); babysat 2 p.m. – around 4 (beginning to get a little drizzle). Lois decided to cancel the special needs group so I did all the calling for that (and was HAPPY to go home for the evening!). Dinner was Pierogies & sausages (family favorite) – not sure but I don’t think we really GOT the freezing rain thing! Today is nice & sunny AND CLEAR – roads/sidewalks, etc! YAY!

Today found my running around attempting to pick up birthday items for youngest grandson’s birthday party Sunday; went to Old Navy – now he has lots of t-shirts & shorts for summer (in a bigger size than he’s wearing now). Stopped in at Michael’s & picked up a pair of size 8 bamboo knitting needles for knitting bigger baby booties (I find it’s easier with the wood – yarn doesn’t slip as easily.

Speaking of booties: Tuesday was my knit group’s Yarn Swap and (once again) I scored with lots of baby sport-weight yarns. Ladies brought me more knit baby booties which means tomorrow I’m going to the Post Office to mail off FIFTY pairs of booties! WOW! I’m so happy my ladies are getting into this project – even crocheters are now asking for crochet patterns for booties!

===========

Easy Coconut Pie

1 (9 inch) graham cracker pie crust
1/4 C. toasted coconut

Filling:
2 (3.4 oz, ea) boxes instant vanilla
pudding mix
1 tsp. coconut extract
12 oz. cold evaporated milk –
straight from can – do not reconstitute
1 1/4 C. cold milk
1/2 C. shredded coconut
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed

In large bowl using elec. mixer beat
pudding mixes, extract & milks on
Low speed 2 minutes. Fold in Cool
Whip & 1/2 C. shredded coconut –
pour into pie crust & spread evenly.
Top with toasted coconut & chill
at least 3 hours. (You can freeze it
also- then it’s like ice cream)
Serves 8-12

(recipe: bakemidnite.com)
——————————–

Spinach Dip Crescent Bites
(appetizers)

2 T. butter
1 C. chopped green onion
(about 1 bunch white & green parts)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 C. chopped red bell pepper (1 large)
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen chopped spinach,
thawed/well drained
8 oz. cream cheese
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/8 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1/3 C. mayonnaise
1 T. fresh lemon juice
1/2 C. chopped water chestnuts
1/2 C. shredded Parmesan cheese
2 tubes refrigerated crescent rolls

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Melt butter in a saute pan over medium
heat; add green onion, bell pepper &
garlic – saute 3-4 minutes. Add spinach
& cream cheese; stir & blend in cream
cheese until cheese is melted. Stir in
salt/pepper, paprika, crushed red pepper,
mayo, lemon juice, water chestnuts &
Parmesan. Remove from heat.
Unroll 1 tube crescent rolls & place on
a baking sheet. Using your fingers, gently
press seams to seal. Spread spinach
mixture evenly on rolls, leaving about
1/2 inch border along edges. Unroll
remaining tube of rolls & place on top
of spinach mixture. Press edges together
to seal – gently press seams together.
Bake 20-25 minutes until dough is golden
brown. Cut into small squares & serve
(NOTE: a pizza cutter works well for this).

(recipe: thekitchenismyplayground.com)
———————————

Crockpot Brown Sugar Meatloaf

3 lb. extra lean ground beef
1 1/4 C. Italian seasoned bread crumbs
1 C. milk
4 large eggs
2 pkts. dry onion soup mix
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. ground ginger

Topping:
2 C. ketchup
1 C. brown sugar (light or dark)
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

Line crockpot with a crockpot liner or
spray insides with nonstick cooking spray.
Using your hands, in large bowl combine
ground beef, breadcrumbs, milk, eggs,
soup mix, salt/pepper & ginger. Place
mixture in bottom of crockpot & shape
into a loaf shape, keep it away from the
sides of the crockpot. Cover & cook on
Low 6-7 hours (until meat thermometer
inserted into center of loaf reads 160
degrees F.) About 1/2 hour before
end of cooking time  in small bowl
mix ketchup, brown sugar & Worc.
sauce – evenly spread over top of loaf;
finish cooking. Carefully remove loaf
from crockpot by either pulling the
liner with meatloaf inside or use
2 spatulas to lift loaf up & out of
crockpot. Place on a serving platter.
Serves 10

Freezer Instructions: Mix meatloaf
together & place in a 1 gallon ziplock
freezer bag (or foodsaver bag) – flatten
as much as possible inside bag. In 1 qt.
freezer bag mix topping ingredients. Seal
& freeze with meatloaf – Place smaller
bag inside bag with meatloaf & seal
larger bag closed by hand (or seal using
Foodsaver). Label bag with date prepared,
name of recipe, ingredients & cooking
instructions. Lay bag flat in freezer & allow
to freeze for several hours; then you can
stand the bag upright if needed. Contents
of meal must be allowed to thaw completely.
Remove from freezer, place in fridge until
completely thawed (about 24 hours). Remove
topping bag & set on a plate in fridge until
needed. Follow remaining directions in
recipe.

(recipe: crockpotladies.com)
————————————

Crockpot Chicken Alfredo Tortellini
Soup

1 C. diced onion
4 cloves garlic, minced
8 C. chicken broth
4 medium carrots, cut into 1/2″
pieces
4 ribs celery, cut into 1/2″ pieces
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
2 lb. boneless skinless chicken
breasts (frozen is OK)
1/2 C. flour
2 C. Half & Half
1 (19 oz) pkg. frozen cheese tortellini
1 1/2 C. grated/shredded Parmesan
cheese
5 large kale leaves, washed & coarsely
chopped (discard stems)
salt/pepper, to taste

Add onion, garlic, chicken broth, carrots,
celery, salt/pepper & chicken to crockpot.
Cover & cook on Low 6-8 hours (6 hours
for thawed chicken/8 hours for frozen).
Remove lid & use tongs to place chicken
on a cutting board – cut into pieces or
shred – add back to crockpot. Turn
heat to High – warm the Half & Half*.
Whisk flour, 1 T. at a time, into Half &
Half until smooth – pour into crockpot.
Stir & let soup thicken about 10 minutes.
Add in tortellini, Parmesan & kale.
Tortellini will cook in about 5-10 minutes.
Adjust salt/pepper to taste.
Serves 8-10

* Poster warms in a microwaveable
cup or bowl for 1 minute

(recipe: 365daysofcrockpot.com)
————————–

Nacho ‘Taters’ (appetizers)

4 russet potatoes, about 1 lb.
2 tsp. vegetable oil
1 C. frozen corn kernels, thawed
1 C. enchilada sauce or taco sauce
1 C. Cheddar cheese, shredded
1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained/
rinsed
3 green onions, chopped
3 jalapeno peppers (pickled or fresh),
sliced

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Line a baking sheet with foil. Wash
potatoes well; dry. Coat each potato
in vegetable oil then prick skins a few
times with a fork. Place on prepared
baking sheet & bake 45 minutes to 1
hour until soft all the way through.
When potatoes are cooked, remove
from oven (leave OVEN on). Cut each
potato in half lengthwise down center
then once across – open potatoes &
mash insides slightly. Drizzle a few
tablespoons of enchilada sauce over each
potato then top with black beans, corn,
jalapenos & a handful of Cheddar cheese. Place
potatoes back in oven 3-5 minutes until
cheese melts. Remove from oven, drizzle
with more enchilada sauce & sprinkle
tops with sliced onions.
Serves 4

(recipe: budgetbytes.com)
——————————
Blackberry Cobbler

8 C. blackberries
3 T. sugar
3 T. flour
1/8 tsp. nutmeg (or 1/2 tsp. cinnamon)
4 T. butter, cut into small pieces
2 C. flour
3 T. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 C. shortening (like Crisco)
1/4 C. ice water
4 T. brown butter*
2 T. turbinado sugar (large, crystal
crunchy sugar – garnish)
=
Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray or butter a 9 X 13″ baking dish.
In large bowl mix fruit & sugar, flour &
nutmeg. Gently mix to coat the fruit
& pour into prepared dish. Dot top with
butter pieces.
Using a food processor, mix flour, sugar,
salt & shortening. Add ice water & pulse
to crumb texture – sprinkle over fruit.

*Brown Butter:
Melt remaining 1/4 C. butter until it is a
nutty brown color. Drizzle over pastry
chunks (make sure you get all the little
brown ‘crumbs” out of the pan). Sprinkle
top with 2 T. crunchy sugar.
Bake 40 minutes until pastry is golden
brown & crispy & fruit is bubbling.

(recipe: 77kitchen.com)
=======================

Our gas prices have ‘danced around’ a bit lately:
one day they were up to $2.49/9 but happily
they’re back down to $2.39/9.

Not much else new around here; finished the
next issue of the special needs group’s newsletter
& will be mailing that out tomorrow along with
all the baby booties.

Hope you have a GREAT SUNNY Day!

Hugs;

Pammie