Friday, December 30, 2005

Don't you feel better about yourself, now?

Friday night dinner

1 bag Cocoa Krispies
1 Gallon of milk
1 quart-sized cooking bowl

Eat until full.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Since it's still raining here...

With all this cold, rainy weather, I just can't help but make soup a few times a week. Here's another favorite soup recipe.

Tomato Pasta Basil Soup

3 lg ripe tomatoes
2 tbsp olive Oil
1 med onion, chopped
1 cloves garlic, minced
1 sm red pepper, finely chopped (optional)
4 c (1 litre) vegetable stock
3 tbsp tomato paste
salt and pepper
1 tsp sugar
1/4 c fresh basil or 1 1/2 tsp dried basil
1 c small shell pasta or macaroni
extra fresh basil leaves

Cut a small cross in the top of each tomato. Place in a bowl and cover with boiling water for about 2 minutes; drain and cool. Peel skin downward from the cross and discard. Roughly chop flesh. Heat oil in a large heavy-based pan. Add onion, garlic and red pepper; cook, stirring, for 10 minutes or until all ingredients are soft. Add tomatoes and cook another 10 minutes.
Add the stock, tomato paste, salt, pepper and sugar. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes. remove from the heat, add the basil. Allow to cool. Process in batches, in a food processor or blender, until smooth. (I use an immersion blender and blend right in the pot). Return the mixture to the pan and reheat gently.
Cook the pasta separately in boiling salted water until tender; drain. Add to soup and heat through. Serve sprinkled with fresh basil leaves.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Appetizer for New Year's Eve or Super Bowl parties

I'm a newbie to this blog. Thought I'd start out by sharing a family recipe for some incredible meatballs. These freeze very well. I serve them w/tooth picks stuck in them for easy eating by guests. Serve as an appetizer or add to spaghetti or other pasta dishes.

Swedish Meatballs

1/2 cup fine dry bread crumbs
1/2 cup warm cream
3/4 lb ground beef
1/2 lb ground pork
1/2 cup milk
2 egg yolks, slightly beaten
2 tablespoons minced onion
3 tsps salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp allspice
4 tablespoons butter

Soak crumbs in cream. Combine crumbs and meat; mix thoroughly. Add milk, egg yolks, onion and seasonings. Form into tiny balls. Can be fried or baked (350 degrees for 12-15 minutes) and later frozen. Serve as is or with gravy, barbecue or sweet and sour sauce.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Butternut Squash Dinner Rolls

I made these tonight with homemade chicken noodle soup. These are one of my favorite dinner rolls. I love getting in some veggies with my bread. :-)

Butternut Squash Dinner Rolls

1 1/2 c. flour, divided
1 c. whole wheat flour
4 1/2 tsp fast-rising yeast
1-2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. milk
1/4 c. honey
1-2 Tbsp butter
3/4 c. mashed squash
1 egg

Combine first four ingredients in a large bowl. Heat milk, honey and butter in small pot until very hot. Add milk mixture to flour, mixing until smooth. Mix in squash and egg and enough extra flour to make a smooth dough. Knead dough until smooth and elastic, place in greased bowl and let stand (covered) in a warm place until dough doubles in size (about 30-45 minutes). Punch down dough, shape into round balls and bake in a greased muffin tin at 375 F until browned; about 20-25 minutes.

White Chili With Chicken

Because I'd been feeling guilty for not cooking... I teamed up with my Cusinart Slow Cooker and found this YUMMY recipe that came with the crock pot.

White Chili With Chicken

1 pound white beans
cooking spray
1 TB good quality olive oil
2 cups chopped onions
1 TB chopped garlic
5 cups chicken stock, nonfat, low-sodium
1 1/2 pounds chicken breast meat, cut in 1-inch cubes
3/4 cup prepared salsa verde (from a jar)
2 tsp ground cumin
1 1/2 tsp oregano
1 tsp coriander
2 jalapeno peppers, cored, seeded and minced (optional)
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground white pepper
2 cups cut white or yellow corn, (thawed if frozen)
8 lime wedges

Pick over beans and discard any stones or bits of dirt. Soak beans overnight (8 hours) in water to cover by 3 inches. Drain and Rinse

Lightly coat the interior of the ceramic pot of the Cusinart Slow Cooker with cooking spray.

Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onions and garlic. Cook until onions are soft, about 5 minutes; transfer to pot. Place stock, beans and chicken in slow cooker. Add salsa, cumin, oregano, coriander, salt, pepper and jalapenos. Cover and cook on Low for 5 hours using Timer function; slow cooker will automatically switch to Warm setting. One half hour before serving, turn heat to High; stir in corn.

Serve with wedge of lime

Tip: sliced or diced avocado makes a good garnish for White Chicken Chili.

What I did - didn't do -- Used chicken broth that wasn't low-fat low blah blah, used chicken tenders instead of breast meat - because then I didn't have to chop 'em up. Just tossed 'em in. After chicken slow cooks it's easily breakable with stirring. Used regular salt cuz I'm not kosher, used white corn... forgot the lime wedges and forgot the avocado. I have left overs so I'm totally adding the lime and avocado today for lunch. ...mmmm...

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

What's for dinner tonight?

Hi, I'm new here. Thanks for letting me join you! I already have dinner in the crockpot - Beef Stew - love it on a cold wintery day. Smells good all day! Here is my recipe:

Slow Cooker Beef Stew

2 lbs beef stew meat, cut into 1 inch cubes
1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp worcestershire sauce
1 onion, chopped
1 1/2 cups beef broth
3 potatoes, diced
4 carrots, sliced
1 stalk celery, chopped

1. Place meat in slow cooker. In a small bowl mix together the four, salt and pepper; pour over meat, and stir to coat meat with flour mixture. Stir in the garlic, bay leaf, paprika, worcestershire sauce, onion, beef broth, potatoes, carros and celery.
2. Cover, and cook on Low setting for 10 to 12 hours, or on High setting for 4 to 6 hours.

What are you having for dinner tonight?

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

I have faith...

That you're all MUCH better cooks than I am. So seriously... I'm sitting here STARVING for some delicious food and ideas.

I started this blog because a little bird named Tracy thought this way we could all eat better. I'm still waiting little bird.

heheheh - all joking aside... I am literally STARVING. Please, send recipes/ideas.


Tuesday, November 29, 2005


Does anyone have a good chili receipe? Something easy?

Tuesday, November 22, 2005


So - what's cooking for your thanksgiving???

Monday, November 21, 2005

Turkish Delight

Turkish Delight

Turkish delight was quite a treat in Narnia, and still is around the world. Try this recipe to make some of your own.

2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/4 cups water
1 lemon, the peel cut into strips, the juice squeezed and strained
1 orange, the peel cut into strips, the juice squeezed and strained
4 tablespoons unflavored powdered gelatin
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch

What to do:

Dissolve the granulated sugar in half of the water over medium heat.
Add the strips of lemon and orange peel and the juices.
Bring the mixture to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes.
Soak the gelatin in the mixture for 5 to 10 minutes.
Strain the mixture into a shallow, dampened pan or onto platters, and let it set for 24 hours.
Cut the candy into 1-inch squares.
Sift the confectioners's sugar and cornstarch together into a shallow dish.
Roll the pieces of candy in the mixture.
Store the squares in boxes with more confectioners' sugar and cornstarch between each layer.

Pumpkin Chiffon

Preheat oven to 350

1 & 3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup sugar
1 stick butter

Melt the butter and mix the three ingredients, press in a 9 x 13 cake pan, bottom and sides

8 oz. cream cheese (softened)
2 beaten eggs
1/4 cup of sugar

Mix the three ingredients with electric mixer until smooth and pour onto the crust. Even it out and bake for 18 - 20 minutes. Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes.

2 small boxes of vanilla instant pudding
3/4 cup milk
1 can cooked pumpkin
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 medium container of Cool Whip (feel free to to make your own whipped cream - I do)

Mix the milk and pudding. Add and mix the pumpkin and cinnamon, then "fold" in 1/2 of the Cool Whip. Pour onto the cheesecake mixture and even out. Top with the remainder of the Cool Whip and even out. Optional - sprinkle graham cracker crumbs and/or cinnamon on top of chiffon. Refrigerate.

I can't stand pumpkin pie and this is a great alternative. Enjoy!

Thursday, November 17, 2005

My Mom's Crescent Butter Dinner Rolls

It's baking season...and my sister called for this recipe that our Mom used to make all the time. My favorite roll recipe and it's so easy!

Mom’s (Caroline H) Crescent Butter Dinner Rolls

1 Tb yeast
1 Tb sugar
¼ cup warm water

1 cup butter
½ cup sugar
1 cup warm milk
1 tsp salt
3 eggs

4 1/3 cup flour

Mix yeast with sugar and warm water – let rise

In another bowl melt butter, add milk, beat 3 eggs, add sugar, salt and yeast mix. Then add flour. Cover and place in fridge overnight.

I divide the dough into four balls. Roll out one ball into a circle and then cut like a pie/pizza. I can usually get about 10 triangles from each circle. Roll from out to in to create crescent shape. Place on baking sheet, sprayed with Pam (or use parchment paper).

Let rise for four hours.

Bake 350 for 10 minutes or 325 for 15 minutes.

Rolls should be somewhat golden brown. After removing from oven, butter the tops and serve… with butter of course.

Refrigerated dough should keep for a few days.

Sunday, November 13, 2005


I've heard some of you are having problems posting... please let me know if you have any questions!!!

There were problems with my invitation. What do I do?
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Note: Invitations should not be sent to mailing lists, since only one person will be able to accept it.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

BBQ Beef in the Crock Pot

This is yummy and easy...especially for me... not a big red meat fan...and even less so if I have to touch it. This one - I don't even have to handle it. Plus, the shredded beef is just more palatable for me... never liked huge chunks of flesh. This recipe... is de-freakin-licious. Got this from Ginny Thuesen who kept it from our Enrichment night a 1 year ago... so I don't know who to attribute for this recipe.

BBQ Beef (Slow Cooker)

3 lbs boneless chuck roast
1 ½ cup ketchup
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ cup red wine vinegar
2 TB Dijon mustard
2 TB Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp liquid smoke flavoring
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper
¼ tsp garlic powder

Mix all ingredients and then pour on top of roast in the crock pot.
Low 8-10 hours
High 4-5 hours

When done cooking take roast out and shred with a fork.

Replace roast into crock pot and mix with sauce.


ps. Becareful on granite counter tops... the first time I used my crock pot it was a chilly day and I had slow-cooked this on high... I have a lovely crack in the granite now...

Friday, November 11, 2005

Rockin' Cookies

My grandma used to make these cookies for my brothers and sisters every time we visited. It is so goooood!!! Or it just reminds me of being a kid!

Rockin' Cookies

1 Cup Shortening (they aren't the same without it, but if you just can't do that you may substitute 3/4 cup butter or margarine)
1 Cup Brown Sugar
1/2 Cup Sugar
1 Tsp Vanilla
2 Eggs
2 Cups Flour
1 Tsp Baking Soda
1 Tsp Salt
2 Cups Chocolate Chips (I use semi-sweet)
Cream shortening, brown sugar, sugar, vanilla and eggs until fluffy. Combine flour, salt and baking soda and add to creamed mixture. Add chocolate chips. Bake at 375 for 9-10 minutes.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Hot Mama Crackers

1 Box Saltine Crackers
1 Pkg of Ranch Dressing (Dry)
1 Tsp Crushed Red Pepper
1 1/2 Cups Canola Oil
2 Tsp Garlic Powder
1 Tsp Cayenne Pepper
1 Tsp Black Pepper

In a small bowl, mix spices in oil. Add crackers (I usually do this in two large ziploc bags) and let sit for about an hour to absorb oil. Arrange on dish and enjoy.

I got this from my sister who lives in Texas. They usually double the peppers when making this. Crazy.


Where do you like to get fresh fish?
What kind of fish do you buy/prepare?

Not your Momma's Banana Bread

I always have sad looking bananas - I don't even know why I keep buying them... but instead of the joe shmo banana bread... my friend has a GREAT recipe for the island girl in all of us.

Hawaiian Banana Bread by Julie Nef

3 eggs, beaten
1 cup vegetable oil
2 cups mashed ripe bananas
1 (8oz) can crushed pineapple, lightly drained
3 tsp. vanilla extract
3 cups flour
¾ tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 cups sugar
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup chopped macadamia nuts (optional)
¾ cup grated coconut

Mix first five ingredients until well blended. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix just until dry ingredients are moistened. Spoon batter into 2 greased and floured loaf pans. Bake at 325 for 1 hour (to 1 hour and 10 minutes). Remove from pans and let cool on wire racks before serving.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

What's Cooking Tonight

So I got suckered into having the missionaries over... and am not really creative tonight... but this recipe I got from a friend a long time ago.

Penne with Spicy Vodka Tomato Cream Sauce
From All Recipes

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
¾ teaspoon salt
1 pound penne pasta, cooked and drained
2 tablespoons vodka
½ cup heavy whipping cream
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
2 (3.5 ounce) links sweet Italian sausage

1. In large skillet, heat oil over moderate heat. Remove casing from sausage and add to skillet. Cook, breaking up the meat, until brown. Add garlic and red pepper and cook, stirring until garlic is golden brown.
2. Add tomatoes and salt; bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes.
3. Add vodka and cream and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low and add pasta, toss for 1 minute. Stir in fresh parsley and serve.

Note to self: I play with the pasta recipe a lot. I added asparagus instead of peppers for color and I can’t justify buying an absolute vodka bottle for just 2 tablespoons. ;-) Oh, and I usually buy the sausage that’s already cooked so it’s one less thing for me to do. You can substitute whatever meat you want – the key is the tomato sauce and cream…

Serrano Sistah's Scintillating Savories

This blog is the result of a bunch of women who need help figuring out creative menu ideas, or an idea for dinners and other food dilemmas.

Pull up a chair, lay down a napkin and pick up a spoon, fork, chopstick and dig in.

To Your Health and CHEERS!