Happy Sunday!

On & off rain here lately – fortunately, it’s mostly been at night! We had a pretty windy/heavy storm last night and are supposed to be getting more today. The ‘good’ thing about that? I don’t have to remember to water my outdoor hanging flower baskets!

Not much new around here, almost done with the pink baby blanket, 3/4ths done with the chevron blanket and – (getting bored) – started a man’s winter scarf the other day with very heavy (donated) yarn. I don’t usually use thick yarn OR big knitting needles, so this is an ‘experience’ for me. The needles I’m using are size 15 (I usually use a 6 or 8) – the yarn colors remind me of a German Shepherd dog – black/various browns & a medium grey mixture – it will make a nice, heavy scarf (if I don’t go crazy knitting it!)


For all of you who just want a ‘little’ dessert:

Choc. Chip Cookie-in-a-Mug
Makes 1

1 T. real butter, salted or unsalted
small pinch salt
1 T. granulated sugar
1 T. light brown sugar, firmly packed
1/4 tsp. vanilla
1 egg yolk
3 T. flour
2 T. semi-sweet chocolate chips

Place butter in microwave-safe mug
& melt – (about 20 seconds) Stir in salt,
white & brown sugars & vanilla. Add egg
yolk; stir well then add flour. Stir again &
add choc. chips. Stir & microwave approx.
40 seconds

NOTE: cookie will continue to cook when
you take it out – let it cool slightly then eat.
You can also add a little ice cream on top.
-No baking soda or baking powder needed
-there is enough butter to keep it from sticking
to sides of mug.
-Can also be made in a small microwave-safe bowl
or ramekin.

(recipe: thecountrycook.net)

Crockpot Squash Au Gratin
(low carb)

1/4 C. melted butter
1 T. minced garlic
1 medium zucchini, sliced thin
1 medium yellow squash, sliced thin
salt/pepper, to taste
1/2 C. mayonnaise
1/2 C. sour cream
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
3/4 C. pork rinds, crushed finely
Pour butter in bottom of crockpot;
sprinkle garlic evenly over butter.
In large bowl mix mayo, sour cream, 1/2
C. cheese, pork rinds, squash &
zucchini – pour mixture into crockpot
& spread out evenly. Top with
remaining cheese. Cover & cook on
High 3-4 hours until squash is tender
& edges are golden brown.
Serves 6-8


Easy BLT Pasta Salad

12 oz. elbow (or other short) pasta
9 strips bacon, cooked crisp/rough chopped
1 C. Ranch salad dressing
4 Roma tomatoes, seeded/diced
2 C. romaine lettuce, cut into
bite-sized pieces
2 T. chives, chopped

Cook pasta accordg. to pkg. directions
until al dente; drain & rinse under cold
water until cooled. In large bowl mix
cooled pasta & ranch dressing, stir to
coat. Add most of tomatoes, lettuce
& most of bacon – gently stir to combine
& coat all ingredients. Garnish top of dish
with reserved tomatoes, bacon & chives.
Serve immediately. Serves 6

(recipe: realhousemoms.com)
Bacon Ranch Grilled Chicken

4 (6 oz) boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 T. olive oil
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
8 strips thick-cut bacon cut into
bite-sized pieces
3/4 C. prepared Ranch salad dressing
Preheat grill to Medium-high heat (about
375 degrees F.)
Place chicken breasts between 2 sheets
parchment paper & use a heavy rolling
pin or pan to pound chicken to an even
thickness. Drizzle chicken with oil & season
with salt/pepper & garlic powder on both
sides. Grill chicken about 5-7 minutes per
side until internal temperature reaches 160
degrees F.
Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium-
high heat until crisp; drain all but 1 T. grease.
Return bacon & grease to stove top. Turn
heat to Low & add ranch dressing, stirring
to form a sauce. Add grilled chicken to pan
& coat with sauce, letting simmer 1-2 minutes.
Serve immediately. Serves 4

(recipe: iwashyoudry.com)

Grilled Campfire Potatoes
(can also be made in oven)

1 lb. sweet onions (like Vidalia), peeled/
cut into 1/4″ slices
2 T. fresh garlic, chopped
2 lb. russet potatoes, peeled/sliced into
1/4″ slices
2 T. olive oil
4 T. melted butter
1 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. ground black pepper
2 T. fresh thyme, chopped
1 T. fresh rosemary, chopped
1 tsp. paprika

Heat grill to maintain a closed cover
temp. of 350 degrees F. (OR) heat
oven to same temp.
Lay out two 30″ long sheets foil on top
of each other, shiny sides up*
Place 2 pieces of parchment paper next
to each other over the foil. Sprinkle onions &
garlic over parchment.
In large bowl place sliced potatoes, oil, butter,
salt/pepper, thyme, rosemary & paprika – toss.
Lay in single layer over onions & garlic. Fold up
sides of foil/parchment & crimp together in
center then fold up & crimp ends. Make several
slits in top for steam. Place packet on grill with
cover closed (OR) in oven. Cook 30 minutes.
Remove & serve. Serves 6

*Interesting fact: Shiny side of foil reflects heat
& dull side absorbs heat. (information from the
manufacturing of tin foil.

(recipe: afamilyfeast.com)
Zucchini Quiche

Hash Brown Crust:
3 C. refrigerated or frozen hash
browns, thawed/patted dry
2 T. olive oil
2 T. unsalted butter, melted

Quiche Filling:
1/2 lb. bacon, cooked/crumbled
(reserve 1 T. bacon grease in pan)
1 shallot, diced (or onion)
1 medium zucchini, grated (squeezed
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 C. flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
5 eggs, room temp.
1 C. plain Greek yogurt
3 C. shredded cheese (sharp Cheddar,
Gruyere, Monterey Jack, Pepper Jack
or a combination of 2 or more)
Preheat oven 400 degrees F.

Spray a 9″ pie plate with nonstick
cooking spray. In medium bowl combine
hash browns, olive oil, butter, salt/pepper –
toss to combine. Bake 20-25 minutes until
edges are golden brown.
Reduce oven temp. to 350 degrees F.
In skillet used for bacon add diced shallots &
saute over medium heat 3-4 minutes until
translucent & soft. Add shredded zucchini;
turn heat to High. Season with salt/pepper &
cook 3-5 minutes more, stirring occasionally.
In small bowl combine flour, baking powder &
salt. In a separate bowl beat eggs until fluffy,
2-3 minutes. Whisk in Greek yogurt until smooth.
Add grated cheese, flour mixture, bacon &
zucchini mixture – stir until combined. Pour
filling into crust & bake 35-40 minutes until
center is set, the top is puffed & golden brown
AND a toothpick inserted into center comes out
clean. Remove from oven & allow to cool
several minutes before removing from pan &
Can be eaten at room temp. or chilled.
Serves 8

*Shredded Zucchini:
Grate zucchini onto a clean kitchen
towel & squeeze dry, removing as
much excess liquid as possible.

(recipe: amomontimeout.com)

Blueberry Kuchen

1 1/2 C. flour
3/4 C. sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. grated lemon zest
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt
2/3 C. whole milk
1/4 C. butter, melted
1 large egg, beaten
1 tsp. vanilla
2 C. fresh or frozen blueberries

3/4 C. sugar
1/2 C. flour
1/4 C. butter, melted

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray. In a
bowl combine first 6 ingredients. Add
milk, butter, egg & vanilla – beat 2
minutes until well blended. Pour into
prepared dish & sprinkle top with
blueberries. In a bowl combine sugar &
flour. Add butter & toss with a fork until
crumbly – sprinkle over top of blueberries.
Bake 40 minutes until lightly browned.
Serves 12

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)

Samoa Sheet Cake

2 C. flour
2 C. sugar
1/2 C. butter
1 C. water
4 T. cocoa
1/2 C. butter-flavored shortening
1/2 C. buttermilk
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/8 tsp. salt
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla

1/2 C. butter
6 T. milk
3 C. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1/8 C. caramel sauce (ice cream topping)
dash salt

2 1/2 C. sweetened coconut
8 oz. wrapped caramels (unwrapped)
2 T. milk
3/4 C. milk chocolate chips
1/2 tsp. shortening
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
On large cookie sheet pour 2 1/2 C.
coconut – spread out evenly.  Bake
5-6 minutes – stir a few times while
toasting & watch closely so it doesn’t
burn – remove from oven & cool.

Turn oven temperature to 400 degrees F.
In large bowl add flour & sugar – toss to
combine. In medium saucepan add butter, water,
cocoa & shortening – bring to a boil over medium-
high heat, stirring continually – pour into flour/
sugar mixture & mix 30 seconds (using elec. mixer).
Add buttermilk & mix into batter. Add baking soda,
salt, eggs & vanilla – mix 1 minute, making sure to
scrape bottom of bowl using rubber spatula so all
dry ingredients are incorporated. Spray large rimmed
cookie sheet (poster’s is 17 1/2 X 12 1/2″) with nonstick
cooking spray & pour batter onto sheet. Bake 20
minutes until a toothpick inserted into center comes
out clean.  While cake bakes, prepare frosting:
In a large microwave-safe bowl place butter & milk – heat
to boiling. Add caramel sauce, powdered sugar, vanilla &
dash salt – whisk using a fork until smooth (it will be thin).
When cake is still warm from oven poke holes all over cake
with a fork – pour prepared frosting over top of cake & smooth
out. Immediately sprinkle toasted coconut on top of frosting.
Place unwrapped in microwave bowl. Add 2 T. milk (or evap.
milk) to caramels & microwave 30 seconds. Stir & heat again
in 30-second intervals until caramel has melted & is smooth.
Drizzle over top of coconut.
Place milk choc. chips in a glass measuring cup & microwave
in 30-second increments, stirring after each. Add 1/2 tsp.
shortening & stir to combine. When melted, drizzle over
top of caramel on cake. NOTE: you can serve cake at this
point but if you like a cake that slices well –
refrigerate cake at least 1 hour before slicing & serving.
Serves 16-20

(recipe: jamiecooksitup.net)


Hope you have a great day!




Another GREAT Summer Day!

It’s another really NICE day here – sunny skies, slight breeze, temperature at 77 degrees F. and I saw our BUNNY in the back yard this morning – YAY! Got up kind of early, worked on both baby blankets – really want to finish BOTH by the pick-up date of Sept. 17th – we’ll see. Spent some time photographing my blankets (6) and all of the really beautiful things my friend Liz created to donate. She’s from Scotland and does GORGEOUS knitting – she knit up several baby sets (hat, booties, sweater), plus 3 extra sweaters, 2 prs. mittens, 6 prs. booties – I love seeing her projects. She’ll be out of country for the pick-up so she gave them to me to hold on to. The night of the pick up is REALLY hectic for me – everyone is coming in with their finished donations – I have to make sure each item is tagged (the ladies at the Vets want to know who knit/crocheted each thing so we put on tags with our first names on them), then photographed to be posted to our web site for those who weren’t able to attend for the pick up. Rarely do I take any knitting projects on that night because when it’s all done-I’m exhausted! I’m really proud of my ladies for all their kindness and donations – it makes me really happy that we are able to give-back to the wives of those in the military.


No-Bake Twinkie Cake

1 box Hostess Twinkies
4 bananas, peeled/sliced
1 (20 oz) can crushed pineapple, drained
1 (3 oz) pkg. instant vanilla pudding mix
2 C. cold milk
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed

maraschino cherries
chopped nuts
Remove Twinkies from wrappers (you
will use about 7 Twinkies) & slice
in half lengthwise. Place halves into
a 9 X 13″ baking dish, cream sides up.
Layer sliced bananas on top then spread
drained crushed pineapple on top.
In a bowl combine instant pudding mix
with 2 C. cold milk – whisk until combined
& starts to thicken slightly (3-5 minutes).
(Needs to still be pourable). Pour pudding
over pineapple & spread out evenly. Layer
with Cool Whip & spread evenly. Drain a
few maraschino cherries on a paper towel.
Sprinkle top of cake with chopped nuts then
place cherries on top. Cover & refrigerate
1 hour before serving. Serves 12

(recipe: thecountrycook.net)

9-Layer Summer Salad

1 (16 oz.) bagged salad mix
1 bundle radishes, cleaned/
1 small purple onion, diced
1 (6 oz) pkg. frozen peas
1 (6 oz) pkg. shredded cheese of
your choice
1 (10 oz) pkg. cherry tomatoes,
either whole or halved
1 (16 oz) pkg. baby corn, diced
1 (4 oz) container bacon bits
1 (16 oz) jar artichokes, drained/

NOTE: if you want the full effect of
this beautiful salad – prepare in a
clear bowl.

Place 1-2 handfuls salad mix in bottom
of bowl. Layer sliced radishes on top in
a ring around inside of bowl leaving a gap
in the middle to place more lettuce. Add
diced onion in a ring, more lettuce. A ring
of frozen peas & then cheese – fill gap with
more lettuce. A ring of tomatoes all across
top of bowl. Next baby corn, then artichokes-
both of these layers go all across top of layer.
Last add bacon bits sprinkled on top.

(recipe: heavenlysavings.net)

Red Potato Salad

1 1/2 lb. baby red potatoes, cut into quarters
8 slices bacon, cooked/crumbled
6 hard-boiled eggs, sliced
1 C. white onion, diced
1/2 tsp. dry mustard
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 C. mayonnaise
1 C. plain Greek yogurt
paprika – garnish
chopped fresh parsley – garnish

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Place cut potatoes on a baking sheet
lined with parchment paper – bake
30 minutes. Remove from oven & cool
10-15 minutes. Place crumbled bacon (
reserve a little for garnish), eggs, onion,
dry mustard, garlic salt, pepper & roasted
potatoes in large mixing bowl – stir to


In small bowl whisk mayo. & plain Greek
yogurt – pour over top of salad & gently
stir to coat. Top with reserved bacon, paprika
& diced parsley. Cover & refrigerate until
ready to serve. Serves 8

(recipe: realhousemoms.com)

Bacon-wrapped Scallops

2 lb. bacon (regular, not thick),
sliced & cut in half
2 lb. sea scallops (if very large,
cut in half
3 T. butter
1 T. minced garlic
1/3 C. chicken broth

Wrap a piece of bacon around each
scallop & secure with a toothpick.
Arrange wrapped scallops on a
baking sheet. Broil 5 inches from
heat 3 minutes per side until bacon
is crisp. In small skillet melt butter.
Add garlic & saute 1 minute. Add
broth & bring to a boil; cook 2
minutes. Place cooked scallops in
a large bowl & pour broth over –
gently toss to coat. Makes 40

(recipe: geniuskitchen.com)

Ham Salad

6 C. ham, coarsely ground
4 hard boiled eggs, chopped
1 C. celery, finely chopped
1/2 C. onion, finely chopped
1/2 C. sweet pickle relish
1 C. mayonnaise
4 T. Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. dried basil

In large bowl combine all ingredients –
mix well.

(recipe: thesoutherladycooks.com)

Crockpot Apricot Chicken

6 frozen skinless/boneless chicken breasts
(not thawed)
1 pkg. dry onion soup mix
1/2 C. Russian or French salad dressing
1 C. apricot preserves or jam
2 T. apple cider vinegar (or fresh lime or
lemon juice)
1 tsp. dried basil or thyme leaves
1/8 tsp. black pepper
Cooked rice, pasta or mashed
potatoes to serve 6
In bottom of 4 qt crockpot arrange frozen
chicken pieces. Mix dry onion soup  mix,
salad dressing, apricot preserves/jam,
apple cider vinegar, dried herb & pepper
in medium bowl – stir well with a whisk to
combine & pour over chicken. Cover & cook
on Low 6-8 hours until chicken is cooked to
160 degrees F. on a meat thermometer & is
tender when pierced with a fork.

NOTE: If you like you can thicken mixture
before serving by combining 2 t. cornstarch
with 3 T. water or chicken stock in a small
bowl – mix using a whisk until smooth &
add to crockpot – stir & turn heat to High
10-15 minutes until sauce is thickened.
Serve with cooked rice, pasta or mashed
potatoes. Serves 6

(recipe: thespruceeats.com)

Red Lobster’s Cheese (Biscuit) Loaf

3 C. flour
1 T. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp. black pepper
4 oz. Cheddar cheese, cut into
1/4 inch cubes
1 1/4 C. milk
3/4 C. sour cream
3 T. butter, melted
1 egg, lightly beaten

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 5″ loaf pan with
nonstick cooking spray. In a bowl
whisk first 5 ingredients. Carefully
stir in cheese cubes until covered
in flour mixture (this helps the cheese
from sinking to the bottom of the loaf).
In a different bowl, whisk remaining
ingredients. Fold wet mixture into flour
& cheese mixture. Stir until just
combined – do not over stir. Spread
mixture into prepared loaf pan & bake
45-50 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes
then remove from pan & allow to cool
on a wire rack 1 hour before slicing.
Makes 1 loaf.

(recipe: 1Krecipes.com)

Triple Berry Salad w/Vanilla Syrup

6-8 C. fresh berries (strawberries, blueberries
& raspberries) Rinsed/hulled & large berries
cut into 2-3 slices.
1/4 C. granulated sugar
1/4 C. water
1/2 tsp. vanilla

Place sugar & water in a small saucepan
over medium heat. Bring just to simmer;
stir until sugar is dissolved. Remove from
heat & cool 5 minutes. Stir in vanilla extract.
Chill completely in fridge.

Place berries in a large bowl. Just before
serving, drizzle syrup over berries & toss
gently to coat. (You may not need all of
the syrup.)

(recipe: thekitchenismyplayground.com)


Hope it’s a NICE day for you, too!



Meanderings on a Sunday Afternoon

It’s hard to believe almost a week has gone by since last I posted. Not a lot important going on, just lots of babysitting. The good thing is – I get a week off while they’re on vacation! YAY!

Our weather has been almost typical August – not really hot (in the 80’s) with not much rain (mostly sunny & breezy). It was the perfect weather for my Sunday School classes annual picnic at our teachers house. I brought the Lemonade Pies (the recipe I recently posted) – they were good (in my opinion-too sweet) but our pastor loved them so I sent the second pie home with he & his wife. Also made a chopped cabbage salad (with chopped carrots, sunflower seeds, cooked bacon, golden raisins, chopped onion, & a Sweet Vidalia onion dressing – Ken’s brand – great stuff!). Only had a small bowl of salad left to bring home! On another good note, managed to get 2 ‘sort-of’ recipes: one for Seafood Salad & one for Scalloped Potatoes. I say “sort of” because both ladies said “Well, I don’t really HAVE a recipe – I just sort of throw stuff together” – I asked them to tell me just WHAT they threw together so now I have what I guess I’d call “experimental’ recipes! We’ll see how they come out – but their versions were REALLY YUMMY!


Orange Juice Cake

1 (3.5 oz) box instant vanilla
pudding mix
1 C. cold water
1 (18.25 oz) box yellow cake
1/2 C. butter
4 eggs
3/4 C. sugar
1/2 C. vegetable oil
3/4 C. orange juice
1 pkg. crushed nuts (optional)

1 C. orange juice
1 stick butter
1 C. sugar

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a Bundt pan with nonstick
cooking spray. (If you’re using nuts,
sprinkle them evenly over bottom
of pan.)
In large bowl combine cake mix,
pudding mix, water, oil, juice & eggs-
mix using elec. mixer on medium speed
2 minutes – pour batter into prepared
pan. Bake 30 minutes until a knife
inserted in center of cake comes out
clean.  (poster notes she usually bakes
hers 45 minutes)

Place orange juice, butter & sugar in a
saucepan & bring to a boil: boil 2
minutes, stirring. While cake is still
warm, poke holes all over top of cake &
pour mixture over cake (into holes).
When cake is saturated, about 10 minutes,
invert cake onto a plate & serve.

(recipe: Facebook)
Cheesy Ranch Chops & Potatoes
with Garlic Asparagus

4 boneless pork chops
asparagus, ends trimmed
halved red potatoes
garlic salt
1 packet Ranch Dressing mix
1/2 C. shredded Parmesan cheese
olive oil

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Cover a baking sheet with foil &
spray with nonstick cooking spray.
Place potatoes on one end of sheet &
drizzle tops with olive oil. Place chops
in middle & asparagus at end of sheet.
In a bowl mix ranch dressing mix (dry)
with shredded cheese – scatter mixture
over potatoes & chops. Drizzle a little
olive oil over asparagus then shake some
garlic salt on them. Bake 25 minutes.
Turn on Broiler
Broil sheet 2-3 minutes to brown
(watch them so they don’t burn)
Serves 4

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)
Chicken Tortilla Chip Casserole

4-5 C. chicken, cooked/chopped
1 C. green onion, chopped (or
regular onion)
1 C. green pepper, chopped
2 T. oil
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes,
1 (10.5 oz) can cream of celery soup
1 (10.5 oz) can cream of chicken soup
1 (4 oz) can green chilies, drained
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cumin

3-4 C. crushed tortilla chips
2 C. shredded Mexican-style cheese or
cheese of your choice
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray & place
a layer of crushed tortilla chips
on bottom – spread out.
In a large skillet add oil & cook gr.
pepper & onion. Add tomatoes, both
soups, green chilies, chili powder,
garlic powder, salt/pepper & cumin –
mix well & simmer 10 minutes.
Add a layer of chopped chicken to
baking dish & cover with half soup
mixture from skillet – sprinkle on
1 C. shredded cheese. Add another
layer chips/chicken & rest of soup
mix. Bake 20-25 minutes. Remove
& add remaining cheese. Return to
oven for about 5 minutes to melt
cheese. Serves 10-12

Optional toppings:
Sour cream
chopped tomatoes
sliced olives
sliced avocado

NOTE: You can also add some cayenne
or hot sauce to recipe, if you like
hot food.

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)

Mexican Street Corn Salad

1/4 C. mayonnaise
1/4 C. sour cream (full fat)
1 lime zested/juiced
1 tsp. kosher salt (or to taste)
1/2 tsp. black pepper (or to taste)
2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
(optional – to taste)
1 tsp. hot Mexican chili powder
1 tsp. garlic powder

4 C. cooked corn (about 6
average ears)*
1 C. diced purple onion
1 C. chopped red bell pepper
1/8 C. pickled sliced jalapeno, chopped
1/4 C. fresh chopped cilantro (or parsley)
1/2 C. Cotija, Feta or Romano cheese,

Combine ingredients for dressing &
set aside.

Combine all salad ingredients except
cheese & mix. Add dressing & blend.
Gently fold in 1/2 C. cheese. Refrigerate
until well chilled & garnish top with
additional cheese & cilantro/celery
before serving. Serves about 4

*You may grill, boil or use your
favorite method to cook corn.

NOTE: This recipe has a little ‘fire’ to it –
if you prefer things on a milder side,
substitute regular chili powder & omit
red pepper flakes & jalapeno.

May substitute a 4 oz. jar of well drained,
chopped pimentos for red bell pepper

(recipe: deepsouthdish.com)

Cucumber, Strawberry, Tomato Salad
w/Balsamic Vinaigrette

3 English cucumbers, peeled/halved/
1 lb. Campari tomatoes, quartered
1 lb. strawberries, cleaned/sliced
1 C. balsamic vinaigrette
black pepper

In large bowl gently mix all ingredients.
Refrigerate 1 hour prior to serving.

(recipe: hoteatsandcoolreads.com)

Easy Homemade Sweet Pickles
(makes 4 pints)

9 C. sliced pickling cucumbers
1 large sweet onion, halved/
thinly sliced
1/4 C. canning salt
1 C. sugar
1 C. water
1 C. white vinegar
1/2 C. cider vinegar
2 T. mustard seed
1 tsp. celery seed
1/2 tsp. whole peppercorns
4 bay leaves
12 cloves garlic, crushed
In a large  nonreactive bowl, combine
cucumbers, onion & salt -cover with
crushed ice & mix well. Let stand 3 hours.
Clean and dry 4 wide-mouth 1-pint
canning jars
Drain, rinse & drain thoroughly.
In a Dutch oven, combine sugar, water,
vinegars, mustard seed, celery seed &
peppercorns – bring to a boil, stirring
to dissolve sugar. Add cucumber
mixture & return to a boil, stirring
occasionally. Reduce heat & simmer,
uncovered, 4-5 minutes until heated
through. Carefully ladle hot mixture
into cleaned/dried jars, leaving 1/2 inch
headspace between mixture & top edge
of jar. Add 3 cloves garlic & 1 bay leaf
to each jar. Remove air bubbles and, if
necessary, adjust headspace by adding
hot pickling liquid. Wipe rims of jars &
center lids on jars. Screw on bands until
fingertip tight. Place jars in a canner with
simmering water ensuring that they are
completely covered with water. Bring
to a boil & process 10 minutes. Remove
jars & cool.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
Grilled Vegetable Foil Pack

2 zucchini or squash, thickly sliced
1/2 red onion cut into chunks
1 red bell pepper cut into chunks
1 green bell pepper cut into chunks
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. minced garlic
1 T. olive oil

Lay out a large sheet of foil on the
counter. Place all vegs. on foil, in
center, & mix together then drizzle
with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt/
pepper & garlic. Fold up foil making
a packet. Place packet on grill &
cook 5-8 minutes, turning once at
2 – 4 minutes. Serves 6

(recipe: eatingonadime.com)

Crockpot Whole BBQ Chicken

1 (4 lb) whole roaster chicken
1-2 pkts. BBQ chicken dry rub*
1 small onion, sliced
1 bottle of your favorite BBQ sauce

Remove chicken from packaging &
remove any gizzards/hearts/neck,
etc. Rinse off chicken under running
water, inside & out then pat dry using
paper towels. Place sliced onion in
bottom of crockpot. Sprinkle dry rub
all over outside of chicken & rub in well-
sprinkle some of the rub inside chicken
as well. Place chicken on top of onions.
(No other liquid needed). Cover & cook on
Low 8 hours.
Once chicken is cooked, pour half of BBQ
sauce on outside of chicken & spread well.
Cover & let cook on Low another 15 minutes.
Serve with leftover BBQ sauce.
Serves 4

NOTE: Chicken will be VERY tender when cooked –
use caution when removing from crockpot.

*Poster notes that one packet of dry rub is plenty
for a whole chicken but she buys 2 b/c she’s a
bit messy and wants to make sure she has enough
to season both inside & outside of chicken.

(recipe: thecountrycook.net)

Raspberry Jell-O Pie

1 deep dish pie shell, baked
1 C. raspberry juice
3 oz. Jell-o Wild Raspberry
flavor (1 pkg.)
10 oz. frozen raspberries (1 pkg)
10 oz. frozen blackberries (1 pkg.)
2 C. Whipped cream (garnish –
1/8 C. coconut – toasted –
garnish – optional
8 fresh raspberries, garnish,
8 fresh blackberries, garnish –
1 sprig fresh mint, garnish,
Heat raspberry juice to boiling &
pour over Jell-O in a bowl, stirring
until all dissolved. Add frozen berries.
Place Jell-O & fruit in fridge until
partially set then pour mixture into
baked pie crust. Refrigerate until
fully set.
When ready to serve garnish with
any/all optional garnishes.
Makes 8 slices

(recipe: food.com)


Hope your weekend is going GREAT!



Grocery Shopping and Word Definitions

Today, out of need for a specific bottled water, I went to Meijer grocery store. It’s about 2 minutes from my house and they recently re-modeled the entire store. First thing in the door I go to where they USED to keep the carts only to find it empty; had to walk half the width of the store to the Information desk to ask that they put in a call for more carts. I was informed they moved them – apparently I passed the NEW location on my way in the store – now they are located immediately to my left inside the door (except today they were shoved WAY back so, unless I knew where they were, I surely wouldn’t have seen them – sigh.) The newly decorated/re-arranged store must make sense to someone but certainly not to most of the customers I chatted with today. Went looking for raisins – they ‘used’ to be with all the other dried fruits (plums, apricots, cherries, etc.) – finally asked someone. Turns out JUST raisins are in the baking aisle – almost the entire width of the store away. Oh – extra insert here: THIS aisle is labeled “PUDDING’, SYRUP, and something else – NOT BAKING or BAKING GOODS – crazy. My biggest laugh of the day was their use of a certain word: CONSUMABLES. Webster definition: Consumable definition:  “able or meant to be consumed, as by eating, drinking, or using: consumablegoods. ” And just exactly WHERE would you find this word used in our Meijer? In HUGE letters (about 4-5 FEET tall, up towards the ceiling, on a wall. What, you might ask, was BELOW said sign? Why, something I don’t believe ANYONE would CONSUME/EAT: Mops, brooms, sponges, floor waxes, floor cleaners! Wow . . . just wow! And today, once again, I remembered just why I DON’T shop at that store! Too frustrating!


Plum Pie

2 unbaked pie crusts
2 lbs. plums
1/2 C. sugar
2 T. flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 T. butter

Preheat oven 450 degrees F.
Place one crust into a 9 inch pie
Wash plums but do not peel.
Cut plumbs in half, remove pits,
then cut into quarters – arrange
cut plums in bottom of pie crust.
Mix dry ingredients together then
sprinkle over plums. Dot with butter.
Place second crust over plums, trim
edges with enough to turn under –
crimp crust edges. Cut several
1 inch slits in top crust (to vent).
Bake 12 minutes.
Reduce heat to 325 degrees F.
Bake 25 minutes longer or until
plums are tender. Cool.
Serve warm or cold.
Serves 6-8

(recipe: food.com)

Southern Tomatoes & Rice

2 T. butter
1 tsp. olive oil
2 C. uncooked rice
1 small – medium Vidalia onion
(can use yellow)
4 C. chicken stock
1 tsp. salt (or to taste)
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper (or
to taste)
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes with
juice (if using fresh tomatoes,
use 2 lb. diced small)

Heat a large pot over medium heat;
add butter & olive oil – melt butter
completely. Add rice & stir to coat.
Stirring constantly, toast rice for 2
minutes (to add flavor). Add diced
onion & saute another 2 minutes,
just until onion begins to soften.
Add chicken stock, salt/pepper – stir
to combine.* Cover pot & bring to
boil then reduce heat to simmer &
cook 10 minutes. Add tomatoes with
juices & stir to combine. Cover pot
& bring back to simmer, cook 10-15
minutes longer. Remove from heat &
allow to stand 10 minutes before
serving. Serves  8

*can substitute water, if needed

(recipe: juliassimplysouthern.com)

Deviled Egg Macaroni Salad

1 (16 oz) pkg. elbow macaroni
6 eggs, hard-boiled/peeled, cut in
3 C. mayonnaise
1 T. ground mustard
1/8 tsp. paprika (more for
garnish, if desired)
2 dashes onion powder
(2 tsp. spanish olive brine)*
1 sprig fresh parsley or celery
leaves, garnish (optional)

Cook macaroni accordg. to pkg.
directions; drain. In medium bowl
place cooked egg yolks & mash with
a fork until fine. Add mayo, mustard,
paprika, onion powder & olive brine
& mix. In a very large bowl place
cooked/drained macaroni. Chop egg
whites & toss with macaroni. Add mayo
mixture & combine. Refrigerate at least
a few hours before serving. Sprinkle top
with paprika & garnish with parsley or
celery leaves, if desired. Serves 10

*Not exactly sure exactly what you
would substitute if you don’t have
said ‘brine’ but this is the way the
recipe was written.

(recipe: noplatelikehome.com)

Creamy Ranch, Bacon & Tomato 
Pasta Salad
1 (16 oz) pkg. bacon, cooked & crumbled
1 (16 oz) pkg. large shell pasta
1 1/2 lb. grape tomatoes, sliced in half
3 green onions, chopped
3/4 C. sour cream
3/4 C. mayonnaise
3/4 C. buttermilk
1 (1 oz) pkg. Ranch salad dressing mix
salt & pepper
Boil pasta accordg to pkg directions. Place
in strainer; pour cold water over pasta until
it comes to room temperature; set aside. 
Place tomatoes & green onions in large bowl;
add cooled, cooked pasta. In small mixing bowl,
combine sour cream, mayonnaise, buttermilk &
dry ranch mix; stir well to combine, making sure
all ingredients are well incorporated. Add 
crumbled bacon to pasta mixture. Pour half of
dressing over pasta; stir well. Cover & 
refrigerate 1 hour or until ready to serve.
Refrigerate remaining dressing as well. When
ready to serve, pour remaining dressing over
top; stir well, making sure all ingredients are
covered with dressing. Taste it - add salad & 
pepper, if needed.Makes 10 large servings

(recipe: Jamiecooksitup!)
Crockpot Sun-dried Tomato/Chicken

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 C. chicken broth
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
2 T. dried basil
1/2 C. sun-dried tomatoes in
olive oil
2 C. heavy cream
1 (16 oz) pkg. angel hair pasta, cooked
1/2 C. grated Parmesan cheese
Place chicken in crockpot; pour chicken
broth on top. Season with salt/pepper/
basil - pour sun-dried tomatoes on top.
Cover & cook on Low 6-8 hours until 
chicken is tender. 
FIVE minutes before serving: stir in
heavy cream. After combined, stir in
grated cheese & pasta. Serve immediately.
Serves 6

(recipe: eatingonadime.com)

Sorry, can't seem to get my
goofy computer to stop underlining

Have a great day!



and sometimes we get sick –

Not sure exactly why but I think I had a bout of food poisoning Weds. – really rough (won’t go into details). The strange thing about it was/is – my balance is now ‘off’ a little – slightly dizzy. It’s doing a little better today – was really blessed to learn I don’t have to babysit today so that will give me one more day to rest, drink lots of water & recover. (on the bright side: lost 2 1/2 lbs. so now I’m down to 168.4). Tomorrow is the Historical Society’s Ice Cream Social and I’m DETERMINED to go! (we’ll see, at this point), really don’t want to disappoint the other knit group ladies who come because I really pushed it!)


Triple-Berry Punch Bowl Cake
(overnight recipe)

1 prepared Angel Food Cake (14 oz)
1 (16 oz) tub sour cream
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
1 (5 1/2 oz.) can evaporated milk
3/4 C. powdered sugar
1 1/2 C. thinly sliced fresh strawberries
1 1/2 C. fresh blueberries
1 C. fresh raspberries
3 T. chopped pecans (optional)

Set aside a few berries to use as a
garnish on top of cake.

Hull strawberries, rinse all berries & drain.
In large bowl combine sour cream, Cool
Whip, evap. milk & powdered sugar –
stir to combine & until smooth. Using a
serrated knife or your fingers – cut or tear
angel food cake into small pieces. Add
cake pieces to sour cream mixture & mix
well. Draw an X across the top of the cake
mixture in bowl by dragging a spoon across
top (you are roughly dividing the mixture
into fourths – you will be using 1/4th of
cake mixture for each layer of cake.)
Place 1/4th cake mixture into bottom of
a glass punch bowl (or other large glass
bowl). Top cake layer evenly with sliced
strawberries. Spread 1/4th of cake mixture
on top & sprinkle cake evenly with fresh
blueberries. Spread 1/4th of cake mixture
on top & sprinkle evenly with fresh
raspberries. Top with remaining 1/4th
of cake mixture. Sprinkle top with chopped
pecans & garnish with reserved berries.
Cover with plastic wrap & refrigerate

(recipe: thekitchenismyplayground.com)

Sour Cream Cucumbers

1/2 C. sugar
3 T. white vinegar
1 T. sugar
pepper, to taste
4 medium cucumbers, (peeled if
desired) thinly sliced
1 small sweet onion, thinly sliced,
separated into rings

In large bowl whisk sour cream,
vinegar, sugar & pepper until blended,
Add cucumbers & onions – toss to coat.
Cover & refrigerate at least 4 hours.
Serve with a slotted spoon. Serves 8

Cucumbers with Dill

Omit first 4 ingredients from above
recipe. Mix 3/4 C. white vinegar, 1/3 C.
snipped fresh dill, 1/3 C. sugar & 3/4 tsp.
black pepper – stir into sliced cucumbers.

NOTE: Most grocery store cucumbers are
coated with protective wax to prolong
freshness – they should be peeled before
eating. English cucumbers are wrapped in
plastic & don’t need to be peeled.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)

Grandma’s Shrimp Salad

1 1/2 lb. elbow macaroni
2 C. Miracle Whip
2 bundles green onions, diced
8 oz. canned shrimp, drained
salt/pepper, to taste

Prepare macaroni accordg. to pkg. directions;
drain & run cold water over to cool pasta;
drain. Place cooled macaroni in a serving dish.
In a bowl mix Mir. Whip, diced onions, shrimp.
Add salt/pepper, to taste & mix in. Mix into
cooled pasta. Cover & refrigerate. Can be
served warm or cold. (Poster chills salad 1
hour before serving).

(recipe: heavenlysavings.net)

Simple Chicken/Spinach Alfredo

1 (8 oz) pkg. uncooked fettuccine pasta
1 lb. skinless boneless chicken breast
halves, cut into strips
1 T. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (14.5 oz) jar (Prego) homestyle
Alfredo sauce
6 oz. fresh baby spinach (about 6 C.)
1/2 T. Parmesan cheese

Cook & drain fettuccine pasta accordg.
to pkg. directions. While past is cooking:
season chicken as desired & heat oil in
a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat.
Add chicken & cook until browned &
cooked through, stirring occasionally.
Add garlic & cook/stir 1 minute. Stir
in sauce & heat to a boil. Add spinach
& cook just until spinach wilts. Add
cooked pasta to skillet & toss to coat.
Season to taste & sprinkle with cheese-
serve hot. Serves 4

(recipe; campbells.com)

Crockpot BBQ Beer Chicken

3-5 lb. roasting chicken
1/4 C. BBQ seasoning (plus more for
sprinkling on top)
1 (12 oz) beer (or non-alcoholic beer)

Lightly spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray. Gently lift skin of
chicken & generously rub BBQ seasoning
under skin & on top of skin-place in crockpot
& pour beer over top. Sprinkle extra bbq
seasoning on any areas where beer washed
seasoning away. Cover & cook on Low 8 hours.
Place chicken in a broiler-safe dish & broil
chicken 2-5 minutes watching VERY closely
to crisp up skin & not burn it.
Serves 6

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)

BBQ Roasted Potatoes

3 lb. red potatoes, cut into 1″ pieces
1/4 C. vegetable oil
4 tsp. chili powder
4 tsp. brown sugar
2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. salt
black pepper
dried parsley – garnish

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray a large baking sheet with
nonstick cooking spray. In large
bowl combine potatoes & oil –
toss to coat. In a small bowl mix
brown sugar & all seasonings (except
pepper & parsley) – sprinkle over
potatoes. Stir & mix well – transfer
to prepared pan & sprinkle with
black pepper. Bake 45-60 minutes,
stirring every 15 minutes until
potatoes are fork-tender. Garnish
with parsley before serving.

(recipe: everydaymomsmeals.blogspot.com)

Blueberry Kuchen

1 1/2 C. flour
3/4 C. sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. grated lemon zest
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt
2/3 C. whole milk
1/4 C. butter, melted
1 large egg, beaten
1 tsp. vanilla
2 C. fresh or frozen blueberries

3/4 C. sugar
1/2 C. flour
1/4 C. butter, melted

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray. In a
bowl combine first 6 ingredients. Add
milk, butter, egg & vanilla – beat 2
minutes until well blended. Pour into
prepared dish & sprinkle top with
blueberries. In a bowl combine sugar &
flour. Add butter & toss with a fork until
crumbly – sprinkle over top of blueberries.
Bake 40 minutes until lightly browned.
Serves 12

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)


Hope you’re doing well.



It’s Tuesday and a Quiet Day!

It’s a beautiful summer day – sunny, slight breeze and the temperature is 72! PERFECT summer weather! Earlier I came home to our porch to find a lady cardinal had gotten in the porch and couldn’t get out. Took me awhile of working at it but finally was able to sort of scoop her up using a batmitton racket & shooing her out the door. I had noticed when I first came in the porch there was a male cardinal outside the porch – I’m guessing that might have been her mate. Anyway – peace is restored in the cardinal world.


Peaches & Cream Muffins

3/4 C. sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C. cooking oil (poster used Canola)
3/4 C. sour cream
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
2 C. flour
1 (15 oz) can peaches, drained/
cut into pieces
extra nutmeg – optional

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray a 12-cup muffin tin with
nonstick cooking spray. In large
bowl combine sugar, eggs, vanilla,
cooking oil & sour cream – mix well
using a spoon, until smooth. Add
baking soda, nutmeg & flour – continue
stirring. Fold in drained peaches. Add
batter to muffin tins & sprinkle tops
with a little more nutmeg. Bake 20
minutes. Makes 12

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)

Buffalo Shrimp Lettuce Wraps

1 T. olive oil
1 lb. peeled/deveined large shrimp,
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 C. hot sauce (such as Franks)
1 head romaine lettuce (or butter
lettuce), leaves separated (need
12 leaves)
1/4 C. red onion, finely chopped
1 rib celery, sliced thin
1/2 C. light Blue Cheese or Ranch
salad dressing
chopped chives, optional garnish

In large skillet over medium heat, heat
oil. Add shrimp & garlic – cook, flipping
halfway through cooking time, until
pink & opaque on both sides, about
2 minutes per side. Turn off heat & add
hot sauce, tossing to coat.

Assemble Wraps:
Add a scant 1/4 C. shrimp mixture to
center of a lettuce leaf, then top with
dressing, red onion & chives.
Serves 4

(recipe:  skinnytaste.com)

Crockpot Biscuit Breakfast Casserole

1 tsp. butter, softened
1 (16.3 oz) tube refrigerated biscuits
(8 count tube)
4 large
1/4 C. milk
1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
5 oz. bacon, cooked/chopped

Butter sides & bottom of (either) a
3.5 qt. or 6 quart oval crockpot. Open
biscuits & lay in single layer in bottom.
In medium bowl whisk eggs, milk,
cheese & bacon – pour evenly over top
of biscuits. Cover & cook on High 1 1/2 –
2 hours until sides of biscuits are lightly
browned & egg mixture is fully cooked.
Serves 8

(recipe: crockpotladies.com)
Hawaiian Macaroni Salad

4 oz. uncooked elbow macaroni
4 oz. smoked ham, diced
1 1/2 oz. mild Cheddar cheese, diced
1 C. diced fresh pineapple
1/2 C. diced pimientos
1/2 C. diced red onion
1/2 C. diced celery
1/2 C. mayonnaise
2 T. sweet pickle relish
1 tsp. ginger paste
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
salt/black pepper, to taste

Cook macaroni accordg. to pkg.
directions; rinse & drain. Stir together
remaining ingredients with cooked
macaroni & refrigerate several hours
before serving. Serves 6

(recipe: palatablepastime.com)

Tarragon Chicken Salad

4 chicken breasts (or small whole
chicken) cooked – about 3 1/2 C.
2 stalks celery, chopped
1/2 C. dried cranberries or grape
1/2 C. chopped pecans
1 T. dried tarragon
1 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper
1/2 C. mayonnaise

In large bowl combine chicken with
other ingredients. Adjust salt/
pepper to taste & add more mayo.
as needed to reach desired consistency.
Chill at least 2 hours to allow flavors
to meld.

NOTE: Can be served over lettuce leaves
or in a sandwich

(recipe: thekitchenismyplayground.com)

Grilled Chicken Satay w/Peanut Sauce

1 C. plain yogurt
1 tsp. freshly grated ginger
1 tsp. minced garlic
1 T. curry powder
1 1/2 lb. skinless boneless chicken
breasts, cut into strips
vegetable oil – for grilling
Butter lettuce leaves – serving
Fresh cilantro leaves-serving
20 wooden skewers soaked
in water for 30 minutes
Peanut Sauce:

1 C. smooth peanut butter
1/4 C. soy sauce
2 tsp. red chili paste (like sambal)
2 T. dark brown sugar
2 limes, juiced
1/2 C. hot water
1/4 C. chopped peanuts – garnish
Chicken Marinade:
In a shallow pan/dish combine yogurt,
ginger, garlic & curry powder – stir
to combine. Place chicken strips in
yogurt mix & gently toss until well
coated. Cover, refrigerate & let
marinate up to 2 hours.
Peanut Sauce:
In a food processor combine:
peanut butter, soy sauce, red chili
paste, brown sugar & lime juice.
Process to fully combine until
smooth. (While motor is running,
drizzle hot water to thin out
sauce.) Pour sauce into a serving
bowl & garnish top with chopped
Heat grill to medium-high heat.
Thread chicken pieces onto soaked
skewers*. Brush grill with oil
to prevent meat sticking. Grill
skewers 3-5 minutes per side until
nicely seared & cooked through.

Place butter lettuce leaves &
cilantro on a large serving platter
& arrange grilled skewers on it.
Place Peanut Sauce on platter &
serve. Makes 20 skewers

*Thread chicken pieces onto soaked
skewers, working skewers in & out
of meat, down the middle of each
piece so it stays in place during
When grilling, place
skewer ‘stick/handles’ facing UP
so they don’t burn & also so you
can pick them up without burning
your fingers when removing from

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)

Choc. Chip “Cookie in a Mug”
(1 person – microwave recipe)

1 T. butter, salted or unsalted
small pinch salt
1 T. granulated sugar
1 T. light or dark brown sugar, firmly
1/4 tsp. vanilla
1 egg yolk
3 T. flour
2 T. semi-sweet chocolate chips
(There is enough butter in this
recipe to keep cookie from sticking
to mug. Also, can be made in a
ramekin or small microwave-safe

In a microwaveable mug, place
butter-microwave about 20
seconds to melt butter. Stir in
small pinch salt, both sugars &
vanilla. Add egg yolk & stir well
then add flour. Stir again & add
choc. chips – stir well. Microwave
approx. 40 seconds.

NOTE: cookie will continue to cook
when you take it out. Let cool slightly
then eat. Could also add a little ice
cream on top.

(recipe: thecountrycook.net)

It’s going to be a BUSY week but also
FUN – the ‘usual’: both knit groups, my
special needs group but also: I get to
go out to lunch with two ladies I went
to high school with! We’ve been friends
since 1965, approximately, so it’s nice
to get together every once in awhile to
just chat and catch up.

This Saturday is my ‘other’ 1800’s event –
this one is the county historical Ice Cream
Social. The weather looks to be OK – mid 80’s
(but not like last week – in the 90’s!). Hopefully
there will be a breeze as my group & I will be
knitting/crocheting under a Sycamore tree for
the day. I will take photos to post later (if it doesn’t

Hope you have a GREAT day/week.



Friday Summer Recipes

This week we are under an Extreme Heat Warning and today is no exception: supposed to get to 93 degrees with 50% chance of thunderstorms this evening – with the heat, we will NEED the rain! AND, it seems, it’s getting hotter tomorrow with 96 for the high – SO glad we have air conditioning!

Babysitting today for about 5 hours so lots of knitting, reading my book and maybe doing a few word-search puzzles.

Yesterday’s dinner with two very dear friends went very well – we were at Big Boy for THREE hours (chatting, of course!). We hadn’t been together like that for at least 5 years so it was a very nice time of catching up.

on left, me; then Sue who was the original leader of my special needs group (she retired about 10 years ago) then Lois (on right) took over. Such a nice time of ‘remembering’ – we’ve been friends for 35 years – sweet memories!


Easy Blueberry Cream Pie

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. sour cream
1/4 C. sugar
1 1/2 C. Cool Whip, thawed
1 graham cracker pie crust
2 C. fresh blueberries, divided

In medium bowl using elec. mixer,
beat cream cheese, sour cream &
sugar until well blended; fold in
Cool Whip. Spoon half of mixture
into pie crust & top with 1 C.
blueberries. Spread remaining cream
cheese mixture on top & smooth out.
Scatter top with remaining blueberries.
Cover pie with plastic wrap & refrigerate
at least 5 hours.
Makes 1 pie

(recipe:  food.com)

Broiled Tomato/Mozzarella Melts

fresh sliced mozzarella cheese
fresh basil, torn (or dried basil)
kosher or table salt

Preheat broiler to 500 degrees F.
Slice tomatoes into thick slices; if using
smaller tomatoes, just slice in half. Place
on a rimmed baking sheet & sprinkle
tops with salt. Place under broiler 3-5
minutes (or 500 degrees F. oven 5-7
minutes). Remove from oven & top
with slices of cheese & basil. Return
to oven 2-4 more minutes until cheese
is fully melted. Serve warm.

This will serve as many as you have
tomatoes for. Poster says she allows
two slices per person.

*Tomatoes: If using Roma, slice in half
down center. If using Garden tomatoes,
slice into thick 1/2 – 3/4 inch slices.

(recipe: southernplate.com)
Summertime Garden Skillet

1-2 lb. ground beef
2 large garden tomatoes
1-2 yellow squash, sliced
1-2 bell peppers, hcopped
1 onion, chopped
1 T. dried parsley flakes
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
Hot cooked noodles (OR)
hot, cooked rice
Turn oven to Broil.
Line a baking sheet with foil & place (whole)
tomatoes on sheet; broil tomatoes  5-8
minutes. In large skillet over medium-high
heat, cook ground beef & onion until fully
browned (about 10 minutes); drain. Remove
tomatoes from oven & set aside to cool
slightly. Once cooled, carefully peel skins off
& slice into large wedges. Add tomatoes to
gr. beef mixture & cook, over medium-high
heat, while you stir & chop them up, being
careful not to squirt hot juice on yourself.
Add salt, parsley, black pepper – stir well
& cook 10 minutes. Add squash & bell
pepper; stir well & cook until squash
is lightly translucent & pepper is just
tender, about 10 more minutes. Serve
over hot, cooked macaroni noodles or
cooked rice.

(recipe: southernplate.com)
Roasted Red Potato Salad

2 lb. red potatoes, cut into
1-inch cubes
1 medium onion, chopped
4 large hard-boiled eggs, sliced
6 strips bacon, cooked/crumbled
1 C. mayonnaise
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
paprika & minced fresh parsley,
optional garnish

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray a 15 X 10 X 1″ pan with nonstick
cooking spray & place cubed potatoes
in pan. Bake, uncovered, 25-30 minutes
until golden brown & tender, stirring
occasionally. Cool 15 minutes.
Transfer to a large bowl; add onion,
eggs, bacon, mayo, salt/pepper & toss
to coat. Cover & refrigerate several
hours or overnight. Sprinkle top with
paprika and/or parsley, if desired
Serves 8

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
Tuna Noodle Casserole

3 C. wide egg noodles (about 5 oz)
1/4 C. unsalted butter
1 C. chopped celery
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 onion, diced
1/4 C. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 1/4 C. whole milk
2 T. Dijon mustard
12 oz. water-packed tuna, drained
1/2 C. frozen peas, thawed
4 oz. shredded Cheddar cheese

1/2 C. Panko bread crumbs
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1 T. smoked paprika
1 T. chopped parsley
1 T. butter, melted

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Lightly spray a 2-quart baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray. Cook
noodles accordg. to pkg. directions,
removing when al dente; drain.
In large skillet over medium heat
melt butter. Add celery, bell pepper &
onion-cook until onion is translucent,
stirring frequently. Stir in flour, salt/pepper
slowly add milk & cook, stirring constantly,
until thick & bubbly. Stir in Dijon mustard.
Add tuna, peas, noodles & cheese & fold
into sauce. Pour mixture into prepared dish.

In small bowl combine Panko, Parm. cheese,
paprika, parsley & melted butter – sprinkle
over top of caserole. Bake 25-30 minutes
uncovered, until heated through & golden
brown on top. Let stand a few minutes
before serving. Serves 10

NOTE: Can be made ahead.
Prepare as directed but stop before
adding Panko topping. Cover & refrigerate;
preheat oven – sprinkle on topping & bake.
You will need an additional 5-10 minutes
to cooking time.

Freezing before cooking:
Assemble casserole as directed. Wrap in
plastic wrap & foil. Let defrost fully in
fridge overnight then follow directions
to bake. Pull from fridge before you
preheat oven so casserole isn’t quite
as cold. Add an extra 5-10 minutes to
cooking time to compensate for it being

Freezing after Cooking: Let casserole cool
completely; wrap in plastic wrap then foil
to make sure it’s sealed well. Defrost fully
then warm as desired.

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
Crockpot Beef & Beer

1 to 1 1/2 lb. beef stew meat
1 medium onion, peeled, cut into
2 T. cooking oil
1 (4 oz) can mushrooms, drained
1 C. either chicken or beef broth
1 C. beer
2 tsp. brown sugar
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp. thyme
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. salt
1 T. red wine vinegar
1/4 tsp. dried parsley
Optional garnish: chopped green onions
Cooked egg noodles or rice to
serve 6

NOTE: If you want the gravy thicker,
thicken with a little cornstarch in a
saucepan with some of the gravy –
cook, stirring until thickened – pour
back into crockpot & stir into gravy.
Brown stew meat & onions in oil
in a skillet then pour into crockpot.
Whisk mushrooms, broth, beer, brown
sugar, thyme, black pepper/salt, vinegar &
parsley – pour into crockpot. Add bay leaf.
Cover & cook on Low 5-6 hours (or High
2-3 hours). Remove bay leaf & discard.
Serve over cooked noodles or rice.
Makes about 6 servings.

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)

I plan on making this next recipe for
our Sunday School class picnic next
month – it sounds both easy & refreshing!

Frozen Lemonade Pie

14 oz. sweetened condensed milk
6 oz. frozen lemonade concentrate,
12 oz. Cool Whip, thawed
2 (9 inch, ea) graham cracker pie

In large bowl mix sweeten’d cond. milk &
frozen lemonade concentrate. Fold in
Cool Whip slowly, keeping as much air
in the mixture as possible – spoon into
crusts. Freeze until firm (2 hours minimum).
Remove from freezer half an hour before
serving (to allow pie to thaw to a creamy
Makes 2 pies

(recipe: food.com)


Hope you have a great
day – remember to stay cool



Summer on a Saturday

Had to go out today to purchase snacks for my Sunday School class (my turn) – wasn’t out for more than a half hour but MAN, IT’S HOT! I tend to forget just how hot until I’m out in it – with AC in both the house & car I’m spoiled. It’s 90 degrees F., clear skies & sunny (not much breeze) – perfect day for the beach (I’m guessing – haven’t been to the beach in a good 5+ years).

Was working on a new blue/green/white variegated baby blanket but just kept getting hung up with the pattern. Last night I couldn’t seem to get it right and today I noticed that I’d dropped a stitch a good 4+ rows down from where I was attempting to work. I gave up – ripped it out and went for a new pattern, soft pink yarn – finally back in my ‘Happy Place’! My theory is: Why work on something that gives you grief? Life’s too short – knit happy!


Watermelon Chiffon Pie

1 graham cracker pie crust
6 C. watermelon (seeds are fine)
1/3 C. sugar
2 T. unflavored gelatin (2 envelopes)
1 T. fresh lime juice (or 1 T. lemon juice)
2 large egg whites, room temp.
1 C. cold heavy cream (or 1 C. whipping
1 C. powdered sugar

powdered sugar, for dusting
whipped cream
Place a medium bowl & beaters from
elec. mixer in refrigerator to chill.
Bake pie crust accordg. to pkg. directions;
allow to cool & refrigerate until ready to use.
Combine watermelon & sugar in very large
bowl. Using a potato masher, mash until
mxiture is quite liquid. Set aside for 15
minutes. After 15 minutes, drain mixture
through a strainer, reserving almost 2 3/4 C.
juice (discard pulp & any seeds).
Place 1/4 C. juice in medium bowl & sprinkle
dry gelatin over it. Set aside 3-4 minutes to
dissolve. Heat 1/2 C. of juice in a small
saucepan over medium heat (or in microwave)
to a near boil. Whisk hot juice into dissolved
gelatin. Pour remaining 2 C. watermelon
juice into large bowl & stir in gelatin/watermelon
juice mixture. Stir in lime juice & refrigerate.
Using an elec. mixer in medium bowl, beat egg whites
until stiff peaks form. Set aside & clean & dry beaters.
Using the chilled bowl & beaters beat heavy cream
until it holds stiff peaks. Add powdered sugar & beat
until smooth & stiff but not grainy. Refrigerate.

When watermelon juice mixture starts to firm up,
add about 1/4th of whipped cream & beat using
elec. mixer, until smooth. Add beaten egg whites &
remaining whipped cream. Gently fold in using a
large rubber spatula. (If necessary, use a whisk very
briefly to smooth mixture & break up any large globs
of whites or whipped cream). Pour filling into cooled
pie crust – shake to settle mixture. Cover with
loosely tented foil & refrigerate at least 4 hours,
preferably overnight.

To serve, garnish each slice with dusting of powdered
sugar & a dollop of whipped cream. Serves 10-12

(recipe: geniuskitchen.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 broiler pan.
Broil 3 inches from heat 8-10 minutes
or until a thermometer inserted into
chicken reads 170 degrees., turning
chicken & artichokes halfway through
cooking. Sprinkle with cheese & broil
1-2 minutes longer until cheese is
melted. Sprinkle with parsley.
Serves 8

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)

Seafood Salad w/Shrimp & Crab

1 lb. shrimp, cooked/peeled &
de-veined (41/60 count)
24 oz. imitation crab meat
1/2 C. celery, finely chopped
1/4 C. onion, finely chopped
1 C. mayonnaise
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/8 tsp. Accent seasoning (MSG)
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. garlic salt

Cut each shrimp into 2-3 pieces. Chop
crabmeat into pieces about the size
of the shrimp pieces. Mix all ingredients
in a large bowl & refrigerate 4 hours to
allow flavors to blend. Serves 6-8

(recipe: geniuskitchen.com)

Crockpot Pizza Bake

1 (16 oz) tube biscuits (8 per can) –
cut biscuits into 6ths
1 lb. ground sausage; browned/
1/4 C. shredded Parmesan cheese
1 (8 oz) container pizza sauce
1/2 C. chopped bell pepper
(optional: 1 (4 oz) can sliced mushrooms,
2 C. shredded Mozzarella cheese
(optional: 1 (4 oz) can sliced olives,
Spray insides of crockpot with nonstick
cooking spray & place sliced biscuit pieces
in bottom. Sprinkle 1/2 C. cooked sausage
& 1/4 C. Parmesan cheese – spread sauce
on top. Top with remaining sausage. Layer
peppers & optional mushrooms. Top with
cheese & optional olives. Cover & cook
on Low 3 hours until center is done &
edges are golden. Cool 10-15 minutes
before slicing & serving. Serves 6-8

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)

Chicken Alfredo Dip

2 C. cooked chicken, coarsely chopped
into bite-sized pieces
1 1/2 C. Alfredo sauce (in a jar or homemade)
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 1/2 C. shredded Mozzarella cheese, divided
1/2 C. cooked/crumbled bacon
1/2 C. diced tomatoes
1 T. chopped parsley

chunks of bread
wedges of pita bread
Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray a small skillet or baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. Place chicken,
Alfredo sauce, cream cheese, Parm. cheese,
Italian seasoning & 1/2 C. Mozzarella cheese
in a bowl – stir to combine. Spread mixture
into prepared pan & top with remaining cup
of Mozzarella cheese. Bake 20 minutes until
dip is bubbly and cheese is melted. Turn oven
to Broil – broil 1-2 minutes until cheese just
starts to brown. Top the dip with bacon,
tomatoes & parsley. Serves 8

(recipe: dinneratthezoo.com)

Taco-stuffed Avocados

1 lb. ground beef
1 T. chili powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 tsp. onion powder
4 oz. tomato sauce
3 avocados, halved
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1/4 C. cherry tomatoes, sliced
1/4 C. lettuce, shredded

Additional toppings:
chopped cilantro
sour cream
In medium saucepan add ground beef –
cook over medium heat until browned.
Drain; add seasonings & tomato sauce –
stir to combine & cook 3-4 minutes.
Remove pit from halved avocados. Place
cooked meat mixture into ‘pit holes’ in
avocado halves. Top with cheese, tomatoes,
lettuce, cilantro & sour cream. Serves 6

NOTE: If you want to make the ‘pit holes’
in the avocado halves bigger, spoon out
some of the avocado & set aside to make

(recipe: therecipecritic.com)
Easy Refrigerator Pickles

6 C. thinly sliced cucumbers
2 C. thinly sliced onions
1 1/2 C. sugar
1 1/2 C. cider vinegar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. mustard seed
1/2 tsp. celery seed
1/2 tsp. ground tumeric
1/2 tsp. ground cloves

Place cucumbers & onion in a
large bowl. Combine remaining
ingredients in a saucepan & bring
to boil. Cook & stir just until the
sugar is dissolved – pour over
cucumber mixture & cool. Cover
tightly & refrigerate at least 24
hours before serving. Makes 6 Cups.

NOTE: You can use this brine to quick-
pickle other vegetables such as summer
squash & green beans.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)

3-Ingredient Potato Chip Clusters

9 oz. white baking chocolate, chopped
2 C. coarsely crushed ridged potato chips
1/2 C. chopped pecans

In large microwave-safe bowl, melt
chocolate. Stir in potato chips & nuts –
drop by tablespoonfuls onto waxed
paper-lined baking sheets. Refrigerate
until set. Makes about 3 dozen

Options: You can use shoestring potatoes
or Fritos in place of the potato chips.
For an easy-grab & go: line muffin tins
with paper liners & place batter in liners.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)


Hope your week has gone well for you;



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

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

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″
1 large zucchini, sliced diagonally 1/4″
2 T. olive oil
2 T. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
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

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)
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

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

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!



New Week – new challenges

This Thursday is my regular 3-month doctor check up and I’m pretty sure I’m going to get a lecture on my diabetes. I’m not on meds but try to regulate my sugar numbers by eating correctly. That’s not saying I don’t ‘cheat’ (see above funny). We’ll see how it goes – along with the sugar number comes my weight – another thing I try to keep under control; so far that’s doing OK – hopefully!

Was just going through my emails and decided to weed out a lot of the old ones, like “25% off shoe sale from PayLess”! I went back 2 years then got bored – lots of my emails are for recipes and knitting patterns/stitches so you can guess how FULL my emails are! Just for ‘fun’ I just looked at the total: 1,970 emails ‘saved’ – I read them and then couldn’t decide what to do with them so there they sit! Oh well – we all have our ‘foibles’!


Raspberry Marshmallow Fluff Salad

1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
2 C. mini marshmallows
1 (3.4 oz) box instant vanilla pudding mix
1 (32 oz) tub vanilla yogurt
1 (12 oz) pkg. frozen raspberries

In large bowl mix yogurt & pudding mix;
stir until completely mixed together. Fold
in Cool Whip & raspberries (raspberries
will soften while salad sets). Add marsh-
mallows & mix well. Cover & refrigerate
30 minutes. When removing from fridge
fold salad with a spatula several times to
allow raspberry juices to spread through-
out salad. Serves 15

(recipe: sugar-n-spicegals.com)
Creamy Pesto Pasta Salad

1 (7oz) jar (Classico) traditional
Basil Pesto sauce & spread
1/4 C. Miracle Whip salad dressing
2 1/2 C. rotini pasta, cooked/drained
1/2 C. sliced black olives
3 T. chopped oil-packed/sun dried
tomatoes, drained
1/2 tsp. black pepper

In large bowl mix pesto & dressing until
blended. Add remaining ingredients &
mix lightly. Refrigerate 1 hour.
Serves 6

(recipe: myfoodandfamily.com)
Steak & Potato Kebabs

1/2 lb. fingerling potatoes,
halved lengthwise
1 1/2 lb. beef tenderloin,
cut into 1 1/2″ cubes
2 T. olive oil
kosher salt/ground black pepper
1 bunch asparagus, cut into 1-2
inch pieces
1/4 C. ketchup
2 T. Dijon mustard
2 T. balsamic vinegar
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp. steak sauce
pinch red pepper flakes
8 (10″ each) skewers
NOTE: If using wooden skewers,
make sure to soak them in water
before using)
Preheat grill to medium high &
brush grates with vegetable oil.
Place potatoes in a microwave-
safe bowl; cover & microwave
about 5 minutes until tender.
Toss beef with olive oil in large
bowl & season with salt/pepper.
Thread beef, potatoes & asparagus
onto skewers.
Combine ketchups, mustard, vinegar,
2 T. water, Wors. sauce, steak sauce
& red pepper flakes in a small bowl.
Grill kebabs, turning occasionally,
about 6 minutes for medium-rare.
Serve with the sauce.
Makes 4 servings

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)

Crockpot Baby Back Ribs

1 rack baby back pork ribs
1 C. water
1/2 C. Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce
2 tsp. Hickory liquid smoke

more Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce
for serving

 2 T. brown sugar
1/4 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. paprika
Remove silver skin from back of
ribs* – cut ribs into 4 sections.

In small bowl mix together all
Rub ingredients & ‘rub’ onto
ribs using your hands – place ribs
in crockpot. Pour water & liquid
smoke around ribs**. Cover & cook
on Low 8 hours (or High 4 hours).
Brush with more BBQ sauce if desired,
& serve. Serves 4

*Removing silver skin: Poster lifts an
edge of the middle of the ribs &
tears off in one piece

**You can add liquid smoke into rub
instead of adding to water, if desired

(recipe: themagicalslowcooker.com)

Pasta with “The Works”

1/2 C. thinly sliced pepperoni
1 medium green pepper cut into 2-inch
long strips (about 1 1/2 C.)
2 C. (Prego) Fresh mushroom Italian sauce
or traditional spaghetti sauce
1/3 C. pitted black olives, cut in half (optional)
3 C. rotini (sprial) pasta, cooked/drained
1 C. shredded Mozzarella cheese (about 4 oz)

Optional: grated Parmesan cheese

In a 10″ skillet over medium heat cook pepperoni
& peppers until peppers are tender-crisp, stirring
often. Stir in sauce & olives (if using) & bring to a
boil. Reduce heat to Low; cover & cook 10 minutes.
Stir pasta & mozzarella cheese into skillet & serve
with grated Parmesan cheese (if desired).
Serves 4

(recipe: campbells.com)

Bacon Ranch Mac & Cheese

4 1/2 C. cooked penne pasta (about
2 1/2 C./8 oz. dry)
1 (14.5 oz) jar Prego Alfredo sauce
4 slices bacon, cooked/crumbled
1/4 C. ranch salad dressing
1/2 C. shredded Monterey Jack cheese

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large bowl stir cooked pasta, sauce,
bacon, dressing & half of cheese. Spoon
mixture into a 8 X 8″ baking dish &
sprinkle top with remaining cheese.
Bake 30 minutes until pasta is hot &
bubbling. Serves 4

(recipe: campbells.com)

Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Rolls

4 (1/4 oz, ea) pkgs. active dry yeast
2 1/2 C. warm water (110 – 115 degrees F)
3 C. 2% warm milk (110-115 degrees F.)
1/2 C. butter, softened
2 large eggs, room temp.
3/4 C. honey
4 tsp. salt
14 C. flour

6 T. butter, softened
2 1/4 C. packed brown sugar
1 (12 oz) pkg. miniature semisweet
chocolate chips
3 tsp. cinnamon

3 C. powdered sugar
6 T. butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
6-8 T. whole milk
In large bowl dissolve yeast in warm water;
let stand 5 minutes. Add milk, butter, eggs,
honey, salt & 3 C. flour – using elec. mixer,
beat on Low speed 3 minutes. Stir in enough
remaining flour to form a soft dough. Turn
dough onto a floured surface; knead until
smooth & elastic, 6-8 minutes. Place in a
large buttered bowl, turning once. Cover &
let rise in a warm place until dough doubles
in size, about 1 hour.
Grease four 9 X 13″ baking dishes with butter.
Punch down dough & turn onto a floured
surface. Divide dough into 4 pieces. Roll
each piece into a 14 X 8″ rectangle & spread
tops of pieces with butter. In a bowl combine
brown sugar, chips & cinnamon – sprinkle over
dough to within 1/2 inch of dough edges –
press mixture into dough. Roll up dough
jelly-roll style, starting with a long side. Pinch
seams to seal. Cut each roll into 12 slices &
place, cut sides down, into greased baking dishes.
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Cover & let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes.
Bake rolls 25-30 minutes until golden brown.
Cool for 5 minutes then remove from pans to
wire racks to complete cooling.

In a large bowl combine powdered sugar, butter,
vanilla & enough milk to reach desired consistency.
Drizzle over warm rolls. Makes 4 dozen

NOTE: Recipe can be halved

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)


So far it’s looking like a ‘light’ week for me:
Knit group at Panera tomorrow evening;
Library Knit Group Weds. morning/special
needs group Weds. night; Dr. visit Thurs &
babysitting grandson Friday.

Am still working on several knitting projects:
started a new baby blanket in shades of blues/
greens/white (variegated yarn), still knitting
baby booties and (temporarily) knitting baby
headbands for the Detroit Veteran’s Baby
Shower in September. For several years now
I’ve knit toddler baby headbands for that event
but this year two of my ladies from my knit
groups purchased a book on how to knit FLOWERS
so they came up with this idea that THEY would
knit the flowers and I could knit the headbands –
well . . . I ‘guess’ that’s OK but knitting headbands
is rather boring (just saying). Oh well – the job
gets done so I shouldn’t complain, right?

Our weather is now ‘typical’ Michigan July –
in the 80’s most days, sometimes rain but
mostly just hot. I’m grateful for our air
conditioning in both the house & car – I
don’t do well in heat so AC helps keep me
in a ‘pleasant’ mood!

Thought I’d ‘brag’ a bit on my middle son
(not the chef) – he came up with the idea, as
he put it: “Mom, you cook for us ALL the time,
I thought it might be nice to cook for YOU for
a change.” Last night he came up with this
idea: He took 6 boneless/skinless chicken
breasts & put them in a ziplock bag. He
dissolved some salt (don’t know how
much) in hot water & put it in the bag.
Placed the bag in the fridge for about
6 hours – chicken was frozen when he
started. After removing them from
fridge he tore off 6 large heavy foil squares.
He put one chicken breast (1 per square) &
topped them with chopped onion, Italian
seasoning & fresh garlic. He also
added salt/pepper, & cayenne then wrapped
them up & placed them on a cookie sheet.
Baked 45 minutes and they came out VERY
tender (I used a BUTTER knife to cut them-
amazing!) He was very happy they came out
the way he wanted. This was the FIRST TIME
he’s ever tried this idea! I thought it was
great – we had them with some chicken
stuffing on the side.

Hope you are able to enjoy this day –
stay cool & smile!