September 05, 2016

Zucchini Bread

There are a lot of zucchini bread recipes out there in the world, I have to say that this one is the best one I've tried or tested. It was a recipe given to me by a friend at my bridal shower 20+ years ago. I think what makes it better than any other recipe is the brown sugar and extra spices! Try it and find out for yourself if you like it! 

3 eggs
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup oil
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. nutmeg
3/4 tsp. cloves
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups grated zucchini
3 cups flour

Beat eggs; gradually beat in sugars, then oil. Combine the dry ingredients. Add to the first mixture alternating with the zucchini.  Stir in vanilla. Pour into 2 greased and lightly floured loaf pans.  Bake for 1 hour at 325 degrees.  Let stand for 10 minutes and turn onto a wire rack to cool.

Poppy Seed Bread

Poppy Seed bread is one of those comfort foods of life. It  is  so yummy! I know you will enjoy this recipe!  The glaze is really a needed extra step that makes it melt in your mouth.

*Poppy Seeds can go rancid if stored for too long, so make sure you rotate them often and make lots of poppy seed bread to help you with that!

1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 tsp. Poppy Seeds
1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 tsp Vanilla
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp almond extract
3 eggs
1 1/2 tsp Baking powder
1 cup oil
3 cups flour

Mix the batter together well for 2 minutes. Pour into 2 greased loaf pans. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes at 350.

Glaze:
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup orange juice
2 tsp. melted butter
1/2 tsp almond extract
Mix and pour over bread while it is still warm.

Banana Bread

This banana bread recipe is a highly requested recipe from my three married daughters. I promised them I would add it to the blog so they could access it easier. We make this bread A LOT.
It is always delicious!! We double it, triple it, etc.. according to how many ripe bananas we have on our counter.  I hope you enjoy it!


1 3/4 cups flour
2/3 cup sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup (about 2-3 bananas)
2 Tbsp. milk
2 eggs

In a mixer, combine mashed banana, shortening, milk and eggs. Add sugar, 1 cup flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add rest of the flour. Mix well and pour in to greased loaf pans.
Bake at 350 for 55-60 minutes.

November 14, 2015

Chili

This recipe has a lot of ingredients, but don't let that scare you away from making it. It goes together really quickly and is easy to do.  You will love how hearty this recipe is, and how it will warm your tummy any day of the year!

2 lb. hamburger
1/2 lb. sausage
1 large onion chopped
3 cans of chili beans
1 (6 oz) can of tomato paste
3 stalks of celery chopped
1 green pepper chopped
1 red pepper chopped
1 Tbsp. bacon bits
4 beef boullion cubes
1/2 cup beef broth
1.4 cup chili powder
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 Tbsp oregano
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp basil

Fry up your hamburger and sausage together. Toss in the onions and continue until the meat is cooked. Drain any grease off your meat, then add all the other ingredients and let it simmer for several hours or in the crock pot. 
If you are in a hurry, it is fine to serve it when it is warmed. 

I don't remember where I originally found this recipe, but I make this with a couple of revisions. I left them all in the recipe in case you wanted to do it the way it came.  I don't put in 2 lbs of hamburger. That seems like a lot to me.  I use 1 lb. I am also not a fan of celery really, so I usually don't add celery either. And the green and red pepper depends on if I have both of those colors on hand. Otherwise I will use what I have, which is what I am sure everyone does.

This is a super delicious chili recipe that you will love!!

Taco Salad

Our favorite go-to meal is tacos. We have tacos a lot, and this kind of breaks up the same-mess a little bit and is still tacos, but in a salad form.  My mother-in-law is also  known for her "traveling taco salad". Every family get together or picnic, she would often times bring her taco salad.

This can be just a salad on a plate, or piled inside of an edible Mexican tortilla bowl. This is really a meal that you can make a variety of ways, with a variety of toppings. Come up with the best combination for your family! 

Ingredients:

Head of lettuce-chopped or torn into pieces
2 tomatoes- chopped
Taco meat - prepare as if for tacos with the taco seasoning
shredded cheese
sliced black olives
canned beans (drained) -black, kidney, pinto, or chili
green onions
Frito or tortilla chips
Ranch dressing

Assemble the everything in the salad or separate and let each person create their own favorite taco salad.  Top with Frito chips and Ranch dressing.

You can also serve this piled inside of an edible Mexican bowl and leave out the chips.

Enjoy this super easy and satisfying meal!

Fajitas

We have a small love affair going with the fajita!! ( Pronounced... FA-HEE-TA) It is a super short prep, and is OH! so good!! My new son-in-law is a particular fan of these and the first time he had them he told me I need to go into the restaurant business.  Flattery will get you everywhere!! 

image source

You can make fajitas with beef strips or chicken. I almost always make mine with chicken. It's easier, but both are extremely tasty.

Ingredients:


Chicken breasts, thawed, and cut into long-ish strips. 
  • Details are needed for my newly married daughters who have a lot of questions! :) 
  • You want to thaw the chicken first because otherwise when you are sautéing them (frying) a lot of extra liquid will be in your pan that you don't want. If you do have a lot of liquid, just pour it down the sink drain and add a tablespoon or so of more oil. *You want to be frying your chicken strips not boiling them in liquid.
  • Cut the strips the length of the chicken breast, then cut the strips in half
Onions (I use yellow or white, but the purple would be ok too) cut in julienne stips (long and thin)
Peppers cut in julienne strips (long and thin)
Fajita seasoning packet
Sour cream (optional)
Flour tortillas ( warmed before serving)


Instructions:

Being with sautéing your chicken strips in about 2 Tablespoons of oil in a skillet.  Saute them until the chicken is thoroughly cooked and is beginning to get a little crispy on the outside-about 5 minutes.

Add the onions and peppers and sauté them as well.  Now you don't want the peppers and onions to become soggy or completely limp in their texture. You want them to be "crisp-tender". This will be about 5 minutes as well.

Add the fajita seasoning packet with the water it calls for, and heat for 1 minute. 
any brand  will work


You are DONE!!  And you have made a mouth watering meal for your family!!

I am sure there are more complicated ways of making this with your own seasoning and such.  This works though and is oh so good!!

Spoon your fajita mixture into the center of a flour tortilla with sour cream. Serve up and enjoy!!




October 04, 2015

Home-Made Pizza



This is definitely one of family memory favorite meals! When our kids were grade school age, this was a much looked forward to meal that usually came every Friday night.  It inherited the nick-name Friday Night Pizza by our kids, and the neighborhood kids. Many of our children's friends wanted to eat at our house on Friday Nights so they could have our home-made pizza. 

I have TWO dough versions for this recipe that I will share with you. The first one is the one I have used for years and years and is delicious. The second one is the one I use now which is actually the dough for cinnamon rolls. We now use this second recipe for ALL and ANY dough recipes now as it is soooooo good!! 

Dough Recipe #1: (faster version)

2 cups warm water
2 Tbsp. yeast
3 Tbsp. oil
1 tsp. salt (or less)
4 cups flour

Mix dough together and let rise (if you have the time, I have done it many times without the rising step.  See how fast it can be!)

Add sauce...I usually use a jar or can of spaghetti sauce.
Add pizza toppings
Bake at 400 for 12-18 minutes


This dough recipe makes about 2-3 pizza pans. Depending on size and thickness of crust you want.

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Dough #2: (slower and worth it)

This recipe is for a bread machine, but I have made it in a mixer, and it was fine. It is just more perfect in a bread machine.

1/4 cup water at room temp.
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 small box of instant vanilla pudding
1 cup warm milk
1 egg room temp.
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
4 cups flour
1 pkg. (or 1 Tbsp) yeast

Add the ingredients in the order listed in the bread machine.  Select dough cycle. Push Start.

This makes 2 pizza pans.

Bake at 400 for 15-20 minutes

June 05, 2015

Cheesy Chicken

You will have your friends asking you for the recipe and your family wanting you to make this again and again.  Serve this with rice.

4 chicken breasts
1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 cups grated cheese
1 tsp. salt
1 stick butter
1 1/4 cup evaporated milk
1 can cream of mushroom soup

Heat oven to 425 degrees.  In a shallow dish place flour.  In 9 x 13 casserole dish, place margarine and melt it in the oven.  Dip chicken in flour, then place in the melted butter already inside the casserole dish. Bake uncovered at 424 degrees for 30 minutes.  Turn chicken, bake for 15 minutes more.

 In a bowl, mix together evaporated milk, cheese, soup, salt.  Pour over chicken.
Cover and bake at 325 degrees for 15 minutes until the chicken is done. 

Chicken and Rice

This is another recipe from my early marriage days.  It is simple, easy, and a family favorite. Young children also like this because it doesn't have a lot of flavors they are not used to.  You need to give yourself about 3 hours of baking time, but it is so worth it!

1 1/2 cups of uncooked long-grain rice
1 1/2 cups water
3 cans cream of chicken soup
4-6 chicken breasts

Add rice to your 9 x 13 casserole dish. Then add water and the 3 cans of cream of chicken soup. Mix well so you don't have any soup lumps and the rice is distributed throughout the dish.  Push raw chicken breasts into the rice, water, and soup mixture.  Cover with tinfoil and bake for 350 degrees for 2 1/2 -3 hours.

Chicken and Broccoli Casserole

This was one of the first recipes I collected when I was first married and I have been using it ever since.  I love the flavor combination of broccoli, chicken, and stuffing.  This is a great one when you have left over chicken from a previous meal, or turkey from Thanksgiving.  So good!!

4 cups cooked chicken, cubed
1 pkg. frozen broccoli
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 box stuffing, made according to the directions
Cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  There are two ways to mix this together according to your own preferences. 1) You can mix it all together and bake or 2) You can mix it all together except the stuffing and top the casserole with a layer of stuffing.  Both turn out great.

Bake this for 30 minutes.  Yum-Yum!