Sunday, December 21, 2008


This is a yummy cookie I added to my Christmas baking a few years back. My husband loves molasses, so I gave them a try. They are soft and delicious cookie we love to make.


2 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking soda
3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1/3 cup molasses
Cinnamon sugar:
1/2 cup sugar mixed with
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease 2 baking sheets.
2. Combine flour, spices, salt, and baking soda in a bowl. In a large bowl,beat butter with sugar and egg at medium speed 2 minutes, until fluffy. Add molasses; beat 1 minute. Slowly add flour mixture; beat to combine.
3. Using a rounded teaspoon for each cookie, roll dough into balls, then roll each in cinnamon sugar and place on baking sheets.
4. Bake 10 minutes, or until cookies are golden and crisp. Cool 1 minute, then transfer to wire racks to finish cooling.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Peppercini Roast

My friend Sally always passes me great recipes. This one is a favorite.

Pepperocini Roast

Chuck Roast
2 bottles Pepperocinis with juice

Wash the roast, place it fat-side up in a slow cooker. Pour the pepperocinis and juice over the roast.

Cook on low heat for 8-10 hours, or high for 4-5 hours.

Make sandwiches with Havarti cheese... or eat over pasta, rice...

Corn Chili

My friend Erin made this chili for our ward Trunk-or-Treat. I love chili...and her recipe is mmmm YUM.

Corn Chili

1 lb ground beef (or mix beef and turkey or left over roast)
2 tsp chicken base
1 can diced tomatos
1 can tomato sauce
1 onion
2 cans green chiles
3/4 tsp cumin
lots of chili powder
1 can kidney beans
1 can corn
1 green bell pepper
1 Tbsp sugar
corn starch to thicken

Saute veggies
cook meat
Mix it all in a large pot, bring to boil and simmer for 2 hours.

I also added a can of sliced olives and worchestire sauce.

We love eating chili over rice with cheese and/or corn chips. My hubby and I also love Chili dogs.... mmmm.

Chicken Florentine

This is a Paula Dean recipe I found on the site. I had to modify it based on what I had in the house. My modified version is below...go to the link above to go to Paula's recipe.

Chicken Florentine
My recipe I made made enough for the 4 of us for dinner and lunch the next day.

1 (10 oz) packages frozen chopped spinach
2 chicken breast halves, cooked and shredded
1 can cream of mushroom soup
2 cups heavy whipping cream
2 cups grated sharp cheddar
3 slices havarti
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp curry powder
salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1/2 cup soft bread crumbs
2 Tbsp butter

Remove the outer wrapper from the box of spinach. Open 1 end of each box. Microwave on full power for 2 minutes, until thawed. Drain the spinach and put into a large bowl. Add tthe shredded chicken.

In a medium bowl, combine the soup, cream, cheaddar, havarti, lemon juice, curry powder, salt and pepper, to taste and wine. Whisk together to make a sauce. Pour the sauce over the spinach and chicken. Mix well with a spatula.

Place the mixture into an 11x7 in casserole dish or 2 (9-inch) square disposable aluminumm foil pans that have been sprayed with vegetable oil cooking spray. Pat down evenly and smooth with a spatula. Combine the Parmesan and bread crumbs and sprinkle over the top. Dot with the butter.

You can freeze the casserole. Allow it to thaw 24 hours before baking.

Bake 350 degrees for 30 minutes until bubbly.

We had this over rotini pasta. The girls loved it too.

Pumpkin White Chocolate Drops

About two years ago my lovely friend Kim, who had just moved into the ward and recently called as activities chair - put together this awesome Back-to-Bethlehem activity for Christmas. At the activity I happened to find these magic cookies. They melted in my mouth and were so scrumptious. I found out that Angela, the real Martha Stewart made them. So she was gracious enough to share her recipe. One warning... you will not believe how many cookies disappear without you noticing. Enjoy.

Pumpkin White Chocolate Drops

2 cups butter, softened
2 cups granulated sugar
1 can (16oz) solid pack pumpkin (I use one of the giant cans - we like the pumpkin)
2 eggs
4 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 bag (12 oz) white chocolate chips

Preheat oven 375, grease cookie sheets (I like to use parchment paper)

Beat butter and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add pumpkin and eggs, beat until smooth. Add flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder and baking soda, beat just until well blended. Stir in white chocolate chips.

Drop dough by tsp full about 2-inches apart onto prepared cookie sheets. Bake 14-16 minutes, until bottoms are golden. Cool 1 minute on cookie sheets; remove to wire racks to cool

1 container (16 oz) cream cheese frosting
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
French vanilla extract

Combine frosting and brown sugar and French vanilla in bowl, spread over warm cookies.

Makes about 6 dozen cookies. You can also freeze the dough.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Fresh Apple Cake

Fresh Apple Cake
4 cups apples, diced (peeled or unpeeled)
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup chopped nuts, optional (walnuts are good)
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 cups flour

Mix apples and sugar. Let stand. Mix remaining dry ingredients, add wet ingredients then apple mixture. Pour into greased, floured pan. Bake @ 350 degrees for 1 hour.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Chocolate Zucchini Cake

Is the zucchini starting to roll in? Too much in your garden? Are your neighbors a little too willing to share their harvest? This is the best zucchini recipe--the moistest chocolate cake I've ever had.

Chocolate Zucchini Cake
3 cups flour
2 cups sugar
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup baking cocoa
3/4 cup vegetable oil
2 cups grated zucchini
2 Tbsp white vinegar
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup water

Mix dry ingredients. Add wet ingredients. Pour into greased & floured 9x13 pan. Bake @ 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Top with your favorite chocolate frosting (or not).

Friday, July 04, 2008

Garlic Chicken Farfalle

I got this from Becky Higgins website. It is sooo good. I make half the recipe and it is enough for our family (me, husband, and 3 boys ages 6, 4, and almost 2 with a little leftover. One of my sons thinks it has too much pepper, so you can decrease the pepper if you're worried about it. I use evaporated milk instead of whipping cream to cut down on some of the calories.


16 oz. Farfalle pasta
1 c. heavy whipping cream (or evaporated milk)
3-4 chicken breasts (boneless, skinless)
2 to 3 cloves garlic, crushed OR garlic salt
1 Tbsp. pepper*
1/2 c. butter
1 lb. bacon, crumpled**
1/2 c. shredded Parmesan cheese
1 (12 oz) Lawry’s mesquite marinade with lime juice

*Seems like a lot of pepper, but it has a wonderful flavor when everything mixes together. If you're apprehensive, do less pepper. You can always add more.

[ directions ]

Crock pot chicken and bottle of marinade on low for 6 hours. Pull marinated chicken out of the juices, allow to cool a little bit, and shred (I pull it apart). Set this aside. About a half-hour before serving, boil the pasta. In a small saucepan, melt butter, add garlic, whipping cream, pepper, parmesan cheese, and crumpled bacon. Whisk together on low heat for 3-4 minutes. In a large bowl, pour over cooked, drained pasta, add chicken and stir through. Sprinkle a little bit more shredded parmesan cheese on top.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Hot Fudge Spoon Cake

yum! Another recipe from Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cook Book.

3/4 c. flour
1/4 c. sweet ground chocolate(or cocoa powder, but if it is unsweetened increase the sugar to 2/3 cup)
1/4 c. sugar
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 c. milk
1/4 c. butter
1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 c. sweet cocoa powder
1/4 c. granulated sugar
1/4 c. firmly packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 c boiling water

1. Coat the cooker with butter or butter-flavor nonstick cooking spray.

2. In a bowl whisk together the dry ingredients for the cake. Make a depression in the center and add milk, butter and vanilla. Whisk until smooth. Pour into your ROUND crockpot(cakes tend to burn in oval ones) and spread evenly.

3. In same bowl, or another, depending on how many dishes you like to wash, combine the dry ingredients for the topping. Add the boiling water and whisk until smooth. Gently pour over batter in the cooker. DO NOT STIR! Put the lid on and cook on high for 2 - 2.25 hrs. Basically until the cake is puffed and set.

4. Enjoy with ice cream or by itself.

Ideas: I like to put vanilla in the topping, it tastes yummy too. I'm sure some other additions would work well as well in either one.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Rat Patootie

I can't spell it, it is French, I won't try. I've been craving something like this, and didn't realize it until we started watching the Pixar movie, because SOMEONE kept asking to see mice. This recipe seemed a bit small for a family size, but good enough for a mommy and a toddler. Here goes.

1 medium-largish zucchini sliced
1 small eggplant (I used 2 thin chinese eggplants, you be the judge on how much you like eggplant) sliced
1/2 onion, diced
1-2 cloves garlic
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes.
1 cube chicken bullion

1. Fry up the onion and garlic with a lot of olive oil until the onion is semi-transparent
2. Add in eggplant and zucchini, cook until somewhat transparent or at least changing color.
3. Add the can of tomatoes and bullion cube, once the cube is dissolved cover the pan and let the veggies simmer until the zucchini and eggplant are clear(you know what I mean...please say you do!).

Serve up. I added parmesan and pepper, but I hear fresh basil or oregano tastes good too. My 2 year old loved it, so next time you are watching a Pixar movie about rats, try this dish out, and see if you can all feel the ambiance.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Seafood Chowder

This is another recipe from Ina Garten's Barefoot Contessa Parties. I was trying to decide what to make one night and I remembered my friend Carrie had brought me over some of this delicious chowder. I thought I might have all the ingredients in my fridge or freezer..and I nearly did. It turned out delicious...the girls love seafood and this was a hit.

Seafood Chowder (makes 3 quarts)

1 pound large shrimp (32-36 per pound), peeled and deveined (save shells for stock) [so I thought I had raw shrimp from trader joe's... turns out they were cooked - but the shells worked just fine. The shrimp was less tender than I would have preferred...but it worked given I didn't want to run out and go shop]
1/2 pound scallops [I had this in the freezer also from trader joe's - very tender]
1/2 pound monkfish [I had tilapia in the freezer from I used it it worked fine - although monkfish is also delish]
1/2 pound fresh lump crabmeat, picked over to remove shells [this was the one of the ingredients I didn't have on hand]
1/4 pound unsalted butter
1 cup peeled and medium-diced carrots (4 carrots)
1/2 cup medium-diced onion (1 onion)
1 cup medium-diced celery (3 stalks)
1 cup medium-diced small white or red potatoes
1/2 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 recipe Seafood Stock (recipe follows)
1 1/2 Tbs heavy cream (optional) [I used milk - didn't have cream]
2 Tbs minced parsley [didn't have this either - not even the dried seasoning]
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Cut the shrimp, scallops, and monkfish into bite-sized pieces and place them in a bowl with the crabmeat.

In a heavy-bottomed pot, melt the butter; add the carrots, onions, celery, potatoes, and corn and saute over medium-low heat for 15 minutes, or until the potatoes are barely cooked, stirring occasionally. Add the flour; reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring often, for 3 minutes. Add the Seafood Stock and bring to a boil. Add the seafood; reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 7-10 minutes, until the fish is just cooked. Add the heavy cream, if desired, and the parsley. Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve.

Seafood Stock (makes about 1 quart)

2 Tbs good olive oil
Shells from 1 pound large shrimp
2 cups chopped yellow onions (2 onions)
2 carrots, unpeeled and chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup good white wine
1/3 cup tomato paste
1 Tbs kosher salt
1 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
10 sprigs fresh thyme, including stems [I didn't have this when I made it]

Warm the oil in a stockpot over med heat. Add the shrimp shells, onions, carrots, and celery and saute for 15 min, or until lightly browned. Add the garlic and cook 2 more min. Add 1 1/2 quarts of water, the white wine, tomato paste, salt, pepper, and thyme. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 1 hour. Strain through a sieve, ssing the solids, You should have approx. 1 quart of stock.You can make up the difference with water or wine if you need to.

Pasta, Pesto, and Peas

Yesterday my parents dropped by on their way home to the Bay Area from Utah. I had lunch ready for them...and oh yeah... the grand babies too. ;-)

I love Ina Garten. Her recipes are easy and always delicious. These are from her Barefoot Contessa Parties cook book.

That morning before we left for violin I rolled out my mom's crescent butter rolls and left them to rise in time for lunch. Then when we arrived home from violin I started working on the fresh pesto and then a fresh fruit salad [strawberries, boysenberries, pineapple and blueberries - layered) and the Pasta, Pesto and Peas salad.

Pasta, Pesto and Peas (serves 12)

3/4 pound fusilli pasta
3/4 pound bow-tie pasta
1/4 cup good olive oil
1 1/2 cups homemade pesto
1 10oz package frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and squeezed dry
3 Tbl freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 1/4 cup good mayonnaise
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 1/2 cups frozen peas, defrosted
1/3 cup pignolis (pine nuts), toasted (optional)
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Cook the fusilli and bow ties separately in a large pot of boiling salted water for 10-12 minutes, until each pasta is al dente. [I cooked them together] Drain and toss into a bowl with olive oil. Cool to room temperature.

In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade, puree the pesto, spinach, and lemon jucie. Add the mayonnaise and continue to puree.

Add the pesto mixture to the cooled pasta, then add the parmesan cheese, peas, pignolis, salt, and pepper. [I added chopped ham and I didn't add add'l salt - didn't need it] Mix well, season to taste, and serve at room temperature.

Pesto (makes 4 cups)

1/4 cup walnuts
1/4 cup pignolis (pine nuts)
3 Tbl diced garlic (9cloves)
5 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups good olive oil
1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Place the walnuts, pignolis, and garlic in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process for 30 seconds. Add the basil leaves, salt, and pepper. With the processor running, slowly pour the olive oil into the bowl through the feed tube and process until the pesto is finely pureed. Add the parmesan and puree for a minute. Serve, or store the pesto in the refrigerator or freezer with a thin film of olive oil on top.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008


This is a perfect recipe for Mother's Day brunch.
It's so easy, you can hand it off to your hubby and kids to make while you relax!

4 Tbsp butter
1 1/2 cups milk
3/4 cups flour, unsifted
1/3 cups sugar
3 eggs
1/4 tsp salt

2-3 cups fresh strawberries, sliced
sour cream
brown sugar

4 twelve fluid ounce crocks*

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place 1 Tbsp of butter in each crock and put in oven until the butter melts and bubbles. Be careful not to burn the butter.

While the butter is melting, mix the milk, flour, sugar, eggs and salt on medium speed in the blender until smooth. Remove crocks from the oven and pour 2/3 cup of mixture into each crock and return to oven.

Adjust the heat to 450 degrees and bake for 20 minutes. Then, lower the heat to 350 degrees and bake for another 10 minutes.

While the hootenanny bakes, prepare the strawberries.

When done, the hootenanny will be puffed and browned. As it cools it will fall. Top with strawberries, sprinkle with brown sugar and add a dollop of sour cream. Yum!

* You can also make this in a 10 inch pie dish

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Blender Pancakes

These are wicked good, and after La Yen's very yummy post on how to use wheat storage I've been inspired to share. My mom started making these when I was real young(to use up their something-hundred pounds of wheat storage). I could go on about how good they are, but here is the recipe instead.

1.5 cups buttermilk
.75 cups wheat kernels
2.5 Tbsp. Cornmeal
2 Tbsp. Brown Sugar
2 Eggs
.25 cup Butter
1 Tbsp. Baking Powder
.5 tsp Baking Soda

Directions :
Put the buttermilk and wheat in the blender and LIQUIFY for three minutes. Add cornmeal, brown sugar, eggs, and butter. Blend for another 30 seconds. Add baking powder and baking soda and blend for another few seconds.

Griddle up those tasty treats.

Extras : Fold in blueberries, chocolate chips, whatever at the end, no blending is required. Other grains also work well, I used pearled barley once, it was gooooooood.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Whole Foods

So my parents have been using this blender for years. They are such good examples of eating healthy and changing their food habits to suit the different stages of their lives. Plus, they do a really good job of looking out for each other and taking care of each other.

Naturally they want my babies to be healthy...seeing as my oldest refuses to eat veggies - this blender was the perfect solution.

Now we have a smoothie everyday, loaded with:
1 cup grapes (peels and seeds)
1 cup strawberries (with core and leaves)
1 banana (peeled - if the monkey's don't eat the peel - neither do we)
1 apple (with peel and seeds)
1/8 of a cantaloupe (with the seeds not the peel)
1/2 a cucumber (with peel)
1/8 of a cabbage
1/2 cup of carrots
1/2 cup of vanilla yogurt (organic)
1/4 cup of juice (100% variety)
1/4 cup flax

I can't tell you how happy it makes me that they are eating veggies and don't even know about it. I love how easy it is for me to blend it and then clean this machine. It's literally a 5 min max to clean. We are now buying fruits and veggies in bulk for the four of us. It's fantastic. This can work as a total meal replacement. I love that summer is on it's way... just think of all the other fruits I'll be mixing in...

ps. I've been meaning to mention this - my Mom taught me to wash grapes, strawberries... in salt water. It's amazing how much extra dirt comes off the fruit. I tend to rinse 2-3 times after too... salt is an amazing tool.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Chocolate Cream Cheese Dessert

This is my mother-in-law's specialty.  Yum!

Two crust options:

Nut crust
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/2-3/4 cup ground nuts, walnuts or pecans
1 cup flour
Mix well and pat into 9x13 pan.  Bake @ 350 degrees for 10-15 min or until sightly browned.  Cool.


Chocolate Cookie Crumb crust
2 cups crushed oreos (minus the filling)
1/2 cup melted butter
mix and pat into 9x13 pan.  Bake @350 degrees for 10-15 min.  Cool.

Two 8 oz packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
3/4  of a large cool whip (defrosted)
Beat cream cheese and powdered sugar until creamy.  Fold in cool whip.  Spread over cooled crust.

2 boxes Dark Fudge pudding mix (4 servings each)
2 3/4 cups milk
Mix together and pour over cream cheese layer.  Let set until firm.  Top with remaining cool whip, then sprinkle with chopped nuts, mini-chocolate chips, or chocolate shavings.

Creamy Crockpot Chicken

I know Queen posted a recipe very similar to this a couple of years ago, but it's so easy and good, I thought I'd share my variation.

6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 pkg. Good Seasons Italian dressing powder
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of celery soup

Mix cream cheese until smooth than add soups & Dressing.  Blend until smooth.  Spread some of the mixture on the bottom of crockpot, than add chicken.  Cover with remaining mixture.  Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 3 hours.  Serve over rice or noodles

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Food Storage Recipes

We had a preparedness fair last week, and each ward brought some things to taste, made out of the food storage stuff. There were some surprisingly tasty treats:

Wheat "Horchata"
(I LOVE horchata. We get it super fresh at the latin market. And this was almost as tasty. I would drink it no problem.)

Sugar (brown or regular)
ground cinnamon
vanilla extract

24 hours before, soak the wheat.
The following day wash and drain the wheat. Fill a large pot with enough water to cook the wheat, and heat until it is soft and cracks open. Drain and cool.
Blend with milk once cooled.
Add flavorings to taste.

Wheat Dessert
(This was like a rice pudding/tapioca sort of thing. I really liked it.)
1 can evaporated milk
1 can water
1/2 c sugar
3 T cornstarch
2 C cooked wheat (3/4 c uncooked wheat = 2 C cooked wheat)

Boil milk, sugar, and water, stirring constantly.
In a separate bowl, add 2 oz water to cornstarch, and mix well. Pour into milk mixture and stir until thickened.
Add cooked wheat and let cool.
Refrigerate until set.
Before serving, sprinkle with cinnamon

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Burritos Para Ti

I just came across this blog and am directing you to it--because if you are like me you like ghetto burritos at odd hours of the day.
Breakfast and Dinner Burritos to make ahead of time

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Scarlett's Simple, Hodge-Podge Soup

I've been meaning to post this... and other simple recipes I make. I tend to only post recipes from credible sources that I've actually tried...rather than the ones I whip up out of what's available. It's because I don't consider myself an expert... I wing it. Anyway - I noticed Compulsive Writer was looking for soup recipes and that motivated me to finally type it up. ;-)

This soup is something I throw together when "baby it's cold outside"... and/or I'm too tired to do anything else. The girls love it and so does my hubby. It's sort of a take of my Dad's soup... his soups are perfection...mine are like a little girl learning to write with chicken scratch. This soup is also more embellished from the soup my brother and I used to make when we lived as neighbors at the FLSR. Fond memories of going to college with my brother.

Scarlett's Simple, Hodge-Podge Soup
Serves 4-6
1 box Organic Chicken Broth (I buy the pack of boxes at Costco)
1 can Cream of Mushroom
1 can Chicken Noodle
1 can Corn kernels (drain the water)
1 can Chinese mushrooms (optional - you know the cute ones that look like they're wearing hats?)
1 can of tuna (optional)
1/2 box of butterfly (farfalle) pasta, or what I prefer to use a package of 3 servings Japanese noodles (regular or buckwheat) or the Japanese Udon (course, you can use whatever pasta you prefer)
1 egg beaten in a separate bowl
Kosher salt (optional)
Freshly Ground Pepper
Shredded Cheddar Cheese (optional)
Tabasco or Cholula (optional)
Left over chili (optional)

In a medium pot heat broth at medium high heat. Add cream of mushroom soup, chicken noodle. In a separate pot (or before you heat up the soup) cook the noodles per package instructions and drain. Set aside noodles.

When the cream of mushroom dissolves add corn, mushrooms, tuna. Bring soup to a boil and then slowly pour the beaten egg into the soup as you quickly stir the soup. It should cook quickly from the boiling water and give you that egg drop soup texture.

Add the noodles and pepper. Simmer for 5-10 minutes...depending on how soft you like your noodles.

Serve in the bowls. Add cheese, hot sauce and/or chili.

Cheese - because my girls love cheese.

Hot sauce because... my hubby and I love everything spicy.

So the chili story. I like to freeze the extra chili and then use it when I need a fast meal. Well - we had some left over from that quick meal in the fridge and I thought I'd just add a cold dollop (better than putting an ice cube to cool off the soup for my girls) of it on the bottom of the bowl and then ladle the hot soup over it. It was YUMMY. Course I know everyone's tastes are different. We're the type that like new things and are definitely not meat and potatoes ...but we love chili.