Monday, December 21, 2009

Icing for "flooding" cookies!

It works so fabulously I'm tempted to ice everything in the house =). Here's the recipe I used to ice the sugar cookies made from the recipe below. The cookies are amazing by themselves- I'm so glad I went with that recipe.

1 cup confectioners' sugar
2 teaspoons milk
2 teaspoons light corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
assorted food coloring

In a small bowl, stir together confectioners' sugar and milk until smooth. Beat in corn syrup and almond extract until icing is smooth and glossy. If icing is too thick, add more corn syrup.
Divide into separate bowls, and add food colorings to each to desired intensity.

Dip cookies, paint them with a brush, or I put mine in ziplock bags, cut the corner tip off, and "flooded" them. I had to use thinner icing for the bottom (white) layer to"flood" them. The icing gets hard and glossy, so you can stack them on top of each other and they don't mess up the design.
I mixed a second batch to do the blue, and made it thicker so I could draw lines w/it. I also used "edible glitter" (the white flakes, they came from Hobby Lobby) and sugar pearls from walmart.
It took me a long time to decorate them, but I may just be inefficient due to inexperience. Maybe you get faster after a while?! Not sure on that one, but here's a couple pictures- I just LOVE them!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

No Fail Sugar Cookie Recipe

I found this on Soul Kitchen's blog last week, but every time I open thatblog it jams up my computer, so I'm posting it here. I found some snowflake cookie cutters (finally!) and Dball & I are going to make this recipe for our family and friends. We may even ship it to folks- don't know how that will go!

No Fail Sugar Cookie Recipe

6 cups flour
2 cups butter
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 TBSP baking powder
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. salt

Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla. Mix dry ingredients and add to butter mixture. Mix well.

Chill for 1 to 2 hours

Roll to desired thickness (I like ¼ inch) and cut into desired shapes. Bake on ungreased baking sheet at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes or until just beginning to turn brown around the edges. This recipe
can make up to 8-dozen 3" cookies.

Royal Icing

2 tablespoons meringue powder
1/4 cup water
About 2 cups confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon flavoring such as vanilla, lemon, orange or almond (optional)

It's easiest to make royal icing if you use a large electric mixer. You can make smaller quantities in a small bowl and just stirring with a spoon.

Put confectioners' sugar, meringue powder and flavoring in mixing bowl. Start mixer and add water a little at a time until you get the desired consistency. It's best to keep it a little stiff at first and thin it later to pipe or fill.

Mix until smooth and shiny.

Take out portions of it to tint with food coloring. Keep the icing you are not working with covered with a damp cloth or paper towel so it doesn't dry out.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Crock-pot Black Bean Soup

I am not warm. It's definitely a crock-pot day, and I'm trying this recipe for the very first time. Since I made it up in my head. =) But I'm extremely optimistic, and cold. Keep your fingers crossed, will report back after!

Black Bean Soup
2 lbs dry black beans
salt pork (fat back, 10-12 slices bacon...)
2 medium onions
1 can diced tomatoes
6 cloves garlic
1-2 bay leaves
1-2 TBSP cumin
1 tsp chipotle pepper

sour cream, cheddar cheese, scallions for garnish

I soaked my beans overnight w/2 tsp baking soda and a large bowl of water. I don't know what the baking soda does for it, I've heard it cuts the gas and also that it can soften really hard beans (like the ones that have maybe been in your food storage for 10 years?! I don't know....)

So this morning I drained the beans, rinsed them real well and dumped them in the crock-pot. If you don't want to soak your beans overnight, you can clean, rinse, and sort them- then boil them for 1-2 hours.... THEN rinse and drain them and proceed. In the past, not soaking or pre-boiling the black beans has always yielded really hard beans for me. Your mileage may vary.

So, after I put the beans in the crock; I added the salt pork, can of chopped tomatoes, 3 whole cloves garlic, 1-2 bay leaves, chipotle pepper, cumin and chopped onions and set it on high. I'm thinking after about 6 hours, I will remove the bay leaves and any fat from the salt pork; add 3 minced garlic cloves and cilantro to taste, cover with water and let them cook another 2 hours.

Then remove half of the beans (and leave the onion and garlic in there- because they will become unrecognizable here shortly, for those of you whose people don't like to eat onions they can see...) and set them aside. I use my hand/stick blender and blend up what's in the pot. You may use a food processor, blender, whatever you have. You may also do it by hand with a rice masher if you're up to it.

Return the blended mixture and the reserved beans to the pot to simmer for 30 minutes or so, or however long it is until dinner. I'm serving ours with sour cream and grated cheese on top! Pictures to follow.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Crockpot Tex-Mex Chicken & Dumplings

I found this recipe on Homesick Texan's recipe blog, then read it later yesterday on Let's Dish's blog. They were both making standard Tex-Mex chicken and dumplings, but today is cold and misty, and I need to use the crock-pot. So I'm converting it and hoping for the best =). '

UPDATE: The chicken and soupy part was fab- my dumplings didn't turn out so well. I'll add pics though and you can maybe see where I went wrong!?

Tex-Mex chicken and dumplings
For the chicken:
2.5 lbs chicken breast (or 1 whole chicken, about 4 lbs... I dislike deboning!)
16 cups of water (1 gallon)
1 onion
9 cloves of garlic, divided
2 carrots, peeled and cut into quarters
4 celery stalks, cut into quarters
2 bay leaves
1 stem of cilantro (optional) plus 1/4 cup of cilantro, chopped
1 can of Ro-Tel
2 jalapenos, sliced
1/4 cup cilantro
Juice of one lime
1/2 cup of cream
Salt, black pepper, cayenne and cumin to taste

For the cornmeal dumplings:
1 cup cornmeal
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tablespoon melted butter
1 jalapeno, finely diced
2 tablespoons of minced cilantro

If using a whole chicken, clean and rinse your chicken and place in crock pot. Add water, onion, 8 cloves of garlic, carrots, celery, bay leaves and whole cilantro stem. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook on high for 3-6 hours (until chicken is cooked through, depending on your crock), occasionally skimming the foamy scum off the surface.

Remove chicken from pot. After it’s cooled, either shred or cut into bite-sized pieces. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper to taste.

Strain broth and throw out the vegetables as they’ve done their duty. If you've used a whole chicken, you need to remove the fat from the broth. If you don’t have a preferred way of getting rid of the fat or lack a gravy separator, you can try the plastic bag method. Take a quart-sized plastic storage bag, pour some broth into it. You will see the fat rise to the top. Snip a bottom corner of the bag and drain the broth, stopping when you get to the fat layer. (You will probably have to do this in batches).

If you used chicken breast (boneless skinless) place the broth back into the crock pot and add the shredded chicken and lime juice. In a blender, add the can of Ro-Tel, sliced jalapenos, chopped cilantro and garlic and blend. Add puree to the pot.

**I have a hand-held blender, so I put the broth back in the crock, add the
Ro-Tel, sliced jalapenos, chopped cilantro and garlic- and blend it right in the crock-pot before I put the chicken and lime juice in.
Now add the cream. Add salt, black pepper, cayenne and cumin to taste. Leave the crock-pot on high and bring back to boiling. While the soup is coming to a boil, make the cornmeal dumplings.

Sift together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder and salt. Beat the milk with the eggs and add to the dry ingredients. Stir in the melted butter, cilantro and jalapenos.

When soup is boiling, turn crock down to low and gently drop the dumpling batter into the pot, one tablespoon or so at a time. Do not stir. Place lid on top and steam dumplings for 20 minutes.

Ladle the chicken and dumplings into bowls and sprinkle cilantro and cheese on top. Serves six to eight. There's a good chance ours will also have sour cream on top (I'm just sayin').

This, my friends, is my plan for dinner tonight. If you aren't into making your own broth, you may skip the part with the carrots and onions, and put the chicken and a large box of chicken broth in the crock-pot and cook until the chicken is cooked through. I just dislike purchasing chicken broth when I can make it myself and the chicken has to be cooked anyway.... =) I'll post pictures and hubby's response later!!

Monday, November 16, 2009

B's Chocolate Chip Cookies (and Pan Cookie Conversion)

So AceBall spent a few years tweaking his chocolate chip cookie recipe, until he felt it was "the perfect cookie". I can't complain- I eat 'em hot, I eat 'em cold (the day after is THE BEST!) and pretty much any time of the day or night. I have been using the tollhouse pan cookie recipe straight off their site, but it always tastes too salty for some reason!? So I decided to use B's recipe and and see if it was any better. It was! Here it is, the ingredients are the same whether making traditional or pan cookies, just the baking instructions change a little so after you get it all mixed up you have to decide which kind you want ;o).

2 ¼  c. flour
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
1 c. butter
1 c. brown sugar
½ c. sugar
2 c. chocolate chips

B creams together butter, sugars, eggs, vanilla in the Bosch (note the extra vanilla- we kind of love it here, so we use extra in most recipes!). Then mix in dry ingredients (flour, salt, soda) until it's all well blended. B doesn't bother to mix dry ingredients separately- and truthfully I never do either. Add the chocolate chips last- we've been using 60% cocoa ghiardelli chips from Sam's Club- they're FABULOUS. But they're "dark"- so if you don't like bitter sweet or slightly stronger than semi-sweet- you may of course use milk chocolate (ugh- I think I just threw up in the back of my throat at the thought of it). But I digress.

For traditional cookies, bake at 375° for 10-12 minutes. We like our cookies soft here- we are not fans of Chip's Ahoy. For pan cookies spread it in the pan, bake at 325° for 10 minutes, then 350° for 13 minutes. B reckons you could just bake at 350° for 18-20 minutes or so, but we didn't try that way. He baked them first for 10 minutes at 325°, then another 10 minutes at 350°. They weren't done yet so he added another 3 minutes.

Then let 'em cool a bit and cut those bad boys up! They're so good I can't hardly stand it- and nearly put myself into a diabetic coma tonight eating them. I had TWO WHOLE COOKIES- and for someone with a gastric bypass, even with the 1/2 c of splenda- it's so NOT a good thing. But they sure are tasty.....

One of my best girlfriends in the whole wide world (KATIE) has a fabulous chocolate chip cookie recipe as well- I have it written down in my Better Homes & Gardens cookbook on a scrap of paper. I'll have to post hers as well in a bit....
Happiness on a Cheri Blum plate.....

Thursday, October 29, 2009


There's nothing good for you about it, I'm afraid. It comes out rich, moist, chocolatey.... and might induce a diabetic coma. But they're SO FABULOUS!

Most people put PEEcons on theirs, but I'm allergic to them so I do not. I've been know to "eat around" them on occasion, but it's really not a good idea with a nut allergy....


1 cup butter
1 cup water
1/4 cup cocoa
2 cups sugar
2 cups flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
Frosting, below
chopped pecans

1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup cocoa
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk
1 box (1 pound) confectioners' sugar, sifted (4 1/4 cups sifted)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Cake: Combine butter, water, and cocoa in saucepan over medium heat; heat until butter melts. Add sugar, flour, salt, eggs, soda, sour cream, and vanilla; mix well. Pour into a 15x10x1-inch jelly roll pan. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes. Spread frosting over hot cake and sprinkle with chopped pecans.

For frosting, combine butter, cocoa and milk in a saucepan; bring just to a boil. Add remaining ingredients and mix well with an electric mixer. Spread over the warm sheet cake and sprinkle with cjopped pecans if desired.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Pumpkin Spice Muffins w/Cream Cheese Glaze

Saw this recipe on Reba's facebook... tweaked it a little and even DBall eats them if "there's nothing else" lol. The rest of us LOVE them though!

1 15 oz can pumpkin puree
1 box spice cake mix
2 eggs
1 bag of cinnamon chips (like chocolate chips- but cinnamon!)
1/4 c. water

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup (4 ounces) cream cheese, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons fresh orange juice

Mix the first 4 ingredients together, then stir in cinnamon chips. Pour into cupcake cups in muffin pan, bake according to spice cake package directions.

To prepare glaze, place powdered sugar and cream cheese in a bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended. Beat in 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Add orange juice, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition. Drizzle warm muffins with glaze.


Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Crockpot Chicken & (Southern) Dumplings!

Crockpot Chicken & (Southern) Dumplings

1 whole chicken (about (3 lb.) or 4-5 chicken breasts
2 chopped carrots
1 chopped onion
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp sage or poultry seasoning
3 c water
(I add more spices than that, like rosemary or thyme...)

to thicken stock: 1/4 c flour + 1 c broth from pot

2 c flour
3 TBSP shortening
1 tsp salt
1/4 c water

Put carrots and onions in bottom of crock pot. Add chicken. Top with spices and water. Cover and cook 8-10 hours on low. Remove chicken, de-bone if necessary. Strain everything else and save broth. Break up chicken and return to crockpot with broth and carrots. Turn crockpot on high. When it is boiling, mix 1/4 c flour with 1 cup of broth from the pot, slowly add back in and stir and stir to thicken and remove lumps. You can also use cornstarch, but I'm anti-carbs and try to avoid it. (or maybe I just don't like corn starch??)
To Make Dumplings: In a medium mixing bowl, cut shortening into the flour and salt. Stir in 1/4 cup water (more if needed) to form a soft dough. Roll out dough on a floured surface, with a rolling pin, until thin. Cut into 1 inch wide strips using a pizza cutter or knife. Tear off 2 inch long pieces from these strips and drop into simmering broth and chicken meat. Simmer for 20-30 min until done. It may take longer depending on your crockpot.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Spicey Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas....

While I was unpacking and doing laundry from vacation today I was thinking how fabulous the cool weather is, and how tasty some chicken enchiladas would be! I have a recipe I normally use, but decided to change it up a bit. Here's what I did:

1 whole chicken or 6 chicken breasts
2 c cream-of-chicken soup (or 1 can I guess if you use canned?)
1 c green enchilada sauce (I used medium, couldn't find hot!)
1-1.5 c. light sour cream
2 TBSP La Sabrozita "Home Style Salsa" Tomatillo
2 TBSP Luzianne Cajun Seasoning (I use the green carton)
about 12 small flour tortillas
small can black olives
8-16 oz colby jack or cheddar cheese

I place the chicken in a pan and sprinkle with cajun seasoning and cover with water. Bring it to a boil, reduce heat and cook until chicken is done/falling apart. Remove the chicken from the pot to cool but save the water you cooked it in. When chicken is cool enough shred it or break it up.

To make cream-of-chicken soup I put 2 TBSP butter or margarine in skillet on medium and let it melt. Add 1-2 TBSP flour and stir until smooth. Turn heat to high, and when bubbling add 1 c of chicken cooking liquid and 1 c. milk. Stir until well mixed and thickened. Turn to low. Add sour cream, green enchilada sauce, La Sabrozita, green chilis and black olives. Stir until smooth.

Add about half a cup of this sauce to the bottom of your casserole dish. Put each flour tortilla into sauce one at a time, then remove from sauce and place in the casserole dish. Sprinkle cheese down the middle of the tortilla. Add chicken over the cheese, then roll tight and place in casserole seam side down. Repeat until you've used all the tortillas and chicken. Finally dump the remaining sauce over the top of all the tortillas.
Bake uncovered at 375° f for about 30 minutes (until it starts to bubble). Then add a cup or two of cheese, turn off the oven, and put the cheese-covered casserole back in the over for 7-15 minutes until the cheese melts.

**** The La Sabrozita is a bit spicey.... you may want to taste it before you dump it in your sauce. I really love it, and Bryson thinks it's pretty tasty if I don't add too much. In my pictures I forgot to mix it in the sauce, so I just sprinkled it over the enchiladas when they were rolled before I put it in the oven to bake. For some reason I cannot remove the aforementioned pictures from my disk for some reason, but I will get them off of it and post them when I can.

Friday, August 7, 2009

D's Birthday "Cake" in sections

I didn't frost the sides, because it was so rich I was afraid everyone might be ill!

So for DBall's birthday for the last couple years I've made a "brownie" cake. Just combined two packages of brownie mix and cooked it in a jellyroll pan, frosted it and lit it up at the appropriate time. This year we decided it would be yummy to try chocolate chip cookie on the bottom, and brownie on the top. So I've made the jelly-roll pan sized (11x16? I think!) brownie and got it freezing. Since I'm going to have to invert it onto the pan cookie base, I figured freezing it would help keep it from crumbling.
I had lots of (welcome) help

For the pan cookie base, I liked nestle's tollhouse pan cookie recipe. But we decided we needed double chocolate chip- with white chips. Then when we were at the grocery picking up the chips, the Birthday Boy decided he needed swirled chocolate/white chips. So I found a recipe for double chocolate chip cookies, and just used it and put it in the pan like bar cookies. Here's the recipe:
He measured stuff too, but this was a cuter picture!


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup baking cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, softened
  • 2/3 cup SPLENDA (I substituted this here)
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 12oz package swirled chocolate & white choclate chips

PREHEAT oven to 350º F.

Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine
flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt in medium bowl, and gradually beat into butter mixture. Stir in chips. Spread into prepared cookie sheet.

Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until cookie is puffed and center is set but still soft.

Double Chocolate Chip Cookie Bottom Layer

Sunday, July 26, 2009


The Snickerdoodle recipe I've been using lately.....

1 cup Splenda
1/2 c white sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons white sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (205 degrees C).
  2. Combine 1 1/2 cups sugar/Splenda, butter or margarine, vanilla and eggs. Mix well.
  3. Stir in flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt. Blend well. Place in fridge or freezer until really cold, or you won't be able to make the balls.
  4. Shape dough into 1 inch balls. Combine 2 tablespoons sugar and 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon. Roll dough in sugar/cinnamon mixture and place 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until set. Immediately remove from cookie sheets.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Crockpot Hot Italian Sausage & Peppers

2 lbs whole hot Italian sausages(or sweet, if you like sweet)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 large diced onions
1 yellow bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
1/2 lb fresh sliced mushrooms
1 can diced tomatoes
1 bay leaf
6 oz. can tomato paste
1/2 cup dry red wine or water
1 Tbsp. dried parsley leaves
1 Tbsp. dried basil leaves
1/2 tsp. oregano
3 tbsp olive oil

Cook turkey sausage in heavy skillet over medium heat until browned, turning occasionally. Layer half of the onions on bottom of 3-4 quart crockpot, then add half of the peppers and the mushrooms. Add all of the browned turkey sausage, then the rest of the onions and peppers. Add bay leaves and garlic.

Combine diced undrained tomatoes, tomato paste, and red wine in small bowl and mix well to blend. Pour over mixture in crockpot. Cover slow cooker and cook on low for 6 hours.

One hour before mixture is done, mix together parsley, basil, oregano, and salt and pepper to taste (TASTE IT FIRST! It may be plenty salty from the sausage....). Add to crockpot and stir well. Cover and cook one more hour until sausage is thoroughly cooked and vegetables are tender. I serve over pasta, and/or garlic bread like bruschetta. I've heard others use rice. Serves 8

Monday, June 15, 2009

Angie's New Higher Protein Morning Eggs / Yummy new egg recipe!

I've been eating an egg with low-fat turkey sausage and cheese for breakfast almost every morning for weeks and weeks. I don't really mind it, but it was a lot to have to eat just to get my protein in for the morning. Many WLS 'friends' kept telling me they eat cottage cheese, which honestly sounds so horrible I can hardly stand it. I like it cooked alright, but not straight by itself. Eeew.

So I started thinking maybe I could cook it into my morning scrambled eggs. This morning the cottage cheese plus the cheddar worked out to look and taste a lot like velveeta- all creamy and smooth and yummy. So I thought I'd share. I am planning to add chopped spinach to the mix,I just haven't bought any yet. I may try to get fresh spinach from the Farmer's Market this week... otherwise I'll have to use some other kind.

Angie's New Higher Protein Morning Eggs


2 eggs (I use Eggland's Best)
1 c LOW FAT cottage cheese
1/2 c (okay, sometimes I use more...) low-fat cheddar cheese
2 oz low-fat turkey sausage (the kind in the big round link, like Hillshire Farms smoked sausage)
butter for the pan
pepper to taste

I put the butter in the pan on medium to melt and scramble the eggs w/a little milk in a small bowl. When the pan is hot I add the chopped up sausage for a few minutes until it starts sizzling. Then I add the eggs, and don't let them set up into an omelet-type operation on the bottom of the pan- keep stirring them. When they're about halfway cooked, I add the cottage and cheddar cheeses, and keep stirring. I like my eggs tacky anyway, but after a few minutes the cottage cheese and cheddar kind of melt down and run together (keep stirring) and it starts looking like eggs with velveeta. I serve it with toast, and I can only eat half of the egg recipe (at most) so it lasts me a couple days at least.

It is SO FABULOUS- I'm muy impressed. I forgot to take a picture, but I'll probably make it again. Maybe I'll snap a photo of it with the spinach!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009


UPDATE: Alright, we tried this for dinner last night (06/09/09). It seemed a little salty at first, but I think that may have been from my over-dose of mozzarella cheese. :o) Other than that, I thought it wasn't tomato-y enough. Next time I will add a can of diced tomatoes, or fresh ones if I have them on hand. But AceBall enjoyed it, and I thought it was fairly decent as well. I've heard others who LOVE it, but I need to mention here that Italian is not my favorite style of food. I love Mexican, and Italian often makes me ill. At least the tomato-based dishes do, and ABall doesn't like non-tomato-based Italian dishes as a rule.

Dinner one night next week!


1 pound chuck or
1/2 pound chuck + 1/2 pound ground turkey
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 28 oz jar spaghetti sauce (your favorite)
1/3 cup water
8 lasagna noodles
1 4 1/2 oz can mushrooms
1 15 oz carton ricotta or cottage cheese (we use cottage cheese- Bryson prefers it)
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Brown meat and seasoning, drain.
Mix spaghetti sauce and water. Place 4 uncooked noodles in lightly greased crockpot.
Layer with beef mixture, sauce and mushrooms. Spread evenly with ricotta cheese and sprinkle with 1 cup mozzarella. Layer with remaining noodles, meat, sauce mixture, mushrooms and mozzarella cheese.
Cover, cook on high 1 hour. Reduce heat and cook on low 5 hrs. Yield: 4 servings

White Beans and Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Found this recipe online, intend to try it soon!

  • 2 cups Great Northern beans, sorted
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon Herbs de Provence
  • 3/4 cup chopped sun dried tomatoes in oil, drained
  • 4 ounce can sliced black olives, drained
  • 1 cup shredded Havarti cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Mix all ingredients except tomatoes, olives, and cheeses in 3-4 quart slow cooker. Cover slow cooker and cook on high for 4-6 hours or until beans are tender. Mash some of the white beans while in the crockpot to thicken mixture. Stir in tomatoes and olives and cook 10 more minutes until thoroughly heated. Stir in both types of cheese and serve. 5 servings

Cream Cheese Chicken

Cream cheese and chicken together, in my opinion, is FABULOUS enough to have every week. I do use the low fat (NOT fat-free) cream cheese, and the seasoning I use is amazing. Garam Marsala contains cinnamon, pepper, bay leaves..... it's SO YUMMY. I'm not sure what possessed me to include it with cream cheese and chicken, but Bryson deals with it and sometimes even enjoys it. I add it last, right before I serve it, because somehow it goes away if you let it cook too long. Please note that it is an Indian spice, and probably is not traditionally used with cream cheese or chicken. You may feel free to substitute Italian, Mexican, Greek.... whatever kind of seasoning you enjoy. But I recommend everyone try the Garam Marsala at least once, in something!

2 cups homemade cream of mushroom soup
frozen chicken--enough to feed four adults
1 onion
1 T sugar
1/4 t black pepper
1 t kosher salt
2 cloves minced garlic

--block of (low-fat) cream cheese (to add later)
Garam Marsala to taste, just before serving.

Put everything except for the Garam Marsala and cream cheese into the crockpot. Cook on low for 6 hours, or until the chicken is cooked through and begins to shred. Shred the chicken with forks, and mix in the block of cream cheese. Switch the crock to high and cook for another 30 minutes, or until the cream cheese is fully melted. Add Garam Marsala to each serving just before serving.

Serve over whole wheat pasta, egg noodles or brown rice....
might also be tasty in a whole wheat pita or tortilla (we think just about anything is good in a tortilla though) :) We're having it with broccoli we picked up at the Farmer's Market in Fayetteville!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Crock-pot Quesadillas

In celebration of Cinco De Mayo (any time is good time for a party!) we had Crock-pot Chicken Quesadillas for dinner. I made up the recipe, but Bryson and I both enjoyed it so I thought I'd post it here.

Put all of these in your crock-pot:

2 lbs chicken breast meat
1 lg can green enchilada sauce
2 cans diced chilis (or 4 jalapeños)
diced tomatoes or sundried tomatoes
1 medium chopped or sliced Vidalia onion
black olives if desired
salt & pepper to taste
cilantro & cumin to taste

Let this cook on high for 3-4 hours, or low for 7-8 hours. It will smell like heaven in a pot- all over the house. Then I shred the chicken; and get out the tortillas, cheddar cheese and sour cream. We just scooped the meat mixture into a flour tortilla, and topped it with cheddar cheese and sour cream. It was FABULOUS. I meant to take a picture, but we ate it (all) so fast I didn't have time. Maybe next time I'll snap a photo, and add it. ¡Olé!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Angie's Tweaked Southwest Chicken Soup

1 pkg boneless, skinless chicken breasts or tenders (approximately 1lb)
2 T olive oil
1 medium chopped onion
2 T minced garlic
1/2 t. chipotle chili powder
1/2 t. cumin
1/8 t. red pepper
1/2 t. salt
96 oz chicken broth (chicken, onion, carrots, celery, salt & pepper)
1 15 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can rotel chopped tomatoes and chilis
1 15 oz. can kidney beans
2 T fresh cilantro, chopped

To make broth: Cut the roots off the ends of the onion, leave the skin on and cut into quarters. Cut 1-3 carrots into 3-4 pieces each. Cut 1-3 celery stalks into 3-4 pieces each. Put all this plus chicken and water to the top of the Dutch Oven. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and cook until chicken is done. Remove chicken to cool, remove vegetables and throw away. Skim foam off broth if you want.

Sauté the onions in olive oil until they're translucent (I actually cook mine a little longer until they start to brown/caramelize). Add the garlic and seasonings and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add the chicken, broth and vegetables. Simmer for 15 minutes or more. Add the cilantro a few minutes before serving so that the green color remains. Top with shredded cheese, and serve with tortilla chips. Enjoy. This is an easy recipe to double and freeze in individual servings.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Southwest Chicken Soup

1 pkg boneless, skinless chicken breasts or tenders
2 T olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 T minced garlic
1/2 t. chili powder
1/2 t. cumin
1/8 t. red pepper
1/2 t. salt
Large box chicken broth
1 15 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 15 oz. can Mexican stewed tomatoes (I use kitchen shears and cut the tomatoes)
1 15 oz. can white sweet corn, un-drained
2 T fresh cilantro, chopped

Saute the chicken in the olive oil until the meat is white. Add the onions, garlic, and seasonings and cook for 2-3 minutes until the onions are tender. Add the broth and vegetables. Simmer for 15 minutes or more. Add the cilantro a few minutes before serving so that the green color remains. Top with shredded cheese, and serve with tortilla chips. Enjoy. This is an easy recipe to double and freeze in individual servings.

Mexican Stuffed Pizza

SOUNDS FABULOUS- got it on the menu next week!

1 lb. ground beef
1/2 cup (or more to taste) hot sauce
2 8-oz. cans reduced-fat crescent rolls
low-fat cheddar cheese
sliced black olives
low-fat sour cream

Preheat oven to 350° degrees.

Brown beef in skillet. Add hot sauce and simmer on low.

On a 10-12 inch round pizza pan (or large cookie sheet), slightly overlap wide ends of crescent rolls around the pizza pan, positioning the top half of each triangle so that it's hanging over the edge of the pan.

Spoon beef mixture in the center of each triangle and sprinkle with cheese. Bring top halves of each triangle over the beef and tuck under.

Bake for 28-30 minutes or when crescent rolls become slightly brown on top.

Cool and add chopped lettuce, tomato, cilantro, sour cream and black olives in the center!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

"Low Carb" Meatloaf

I found this recipe several years ago when I was low-carbing. I'm fairly permanently low-carbing now, or at least high proteining. I am pretty much incapable of following recipes exactly- I just normally cannot force myself to do it. But when I follow this recipe in general, Bryson and I really like it- you might try it if you've never had meatloaf with ground mushrooms in it. Also I use "no salt added" tomato sauce nowadays to lower the sodium content.


Yield: 8 servings
Source: "Secrets of Good-Carb Low-Carb Living"
Book Info:


- 1-1/2 pounds 95-percent-lean ground beef or ground turkey
- 2 cups very finely chopped fresh mushrooms
- 3/4 cup very finely chopped onion
- 3/4 cup quick-cooking (1-minute) oats
- 8-ounce can tomato sauce with roasted garlic or Italian herbs
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons fat-free egg substitute
- 1/4 cup very finely chopped fresh parsley, or 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt


Place all of the ingredients except for 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce in a large bowl, and mix well.

Coat a 9-by-5-inch meatloaf pan with nonstick cooking spray and press the mixture into the pan to form a loaf.

Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 35 minutes. Spread the remaining tomato sauce over the meatloaf and bake for 30 additional minutes, or until the meat is no longer pink inside and a meat thermometer reads at least 160 degrees.

Remove the loaf from the oven, and let sit for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (1/8 of recipe):
Calories: 160,
Carbohydrate: 9 g,
Cholesterol: 45 mg,
Fat: 4.4 g,
Saturated Fat: 1.6 g,
Fiber: 1.7 g,
Protein: 20 g,
Sodium: 399 mg,
Calcium: 18 mg

Diabetic Exchanges:
1/2 Bread/Starch, 3 Low-Fat Meat, 1 Vegetable

Monday, January 26, 2009

Legal Pizza (low carb, high protein)

Low Carb Pizza
1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, room temperature (I use low or non-fat)
salt & pepper to taste
1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350°. Grease a 9x13 baking dish.

In medium bowl, blend together cream cheese and eggs with a wooden spoon. Season with salt and pepper, and stir in Parmesan cheese until combined. Pour into baking dish and bake for 17 minutes or until golden brown. Let the crust cool for10 minutes.

Add toppings (pizza/spaghetti sauce, cheese, meats, veggies) and bake for 8 minutes or until cheese is bubbly.

I originally got this recipe from Suzanne Somers, and I personally think this turns out fabulously, and after WLS it's easy to eat, you don't have to deal with the pizza dough crust! If you're craving pizza but cannot have it because of WLS, this is worth a try!

Nannie's Sour Cream Chicken Squares

Nannie's Sour Cream Chicken Squares
2 c. bisquick
1/2 c. cold water
1 c. cooked chicken
1- 4 oz can of mushrooms
1jar pimentos
1/3 c. chopped onion
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
1 c. sour cream
1/3 c. mayonnaise
3 eggs
1 tsp garlic
1/8 tsp pepper

Grease baking dish. Mix bisquick and water until soft dough forms- beat vigorously- knead 5 times- roll into rectangle. Place dough in dish so edges are 1/2" up the sides. Mix together remaining ingredients and pout evenly over dough. Bake approximately 25 minutes at 425° until edges are golden brown and knife inserted in center comes out clean. 6-8 servings.

Nana's King Ranch Casserole

King Ranch Chicken
1 chicken
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 bar velveeta
1 can rotel tomatoes
1 can diced green chilis
1 large onion chopped
1 pkg corn tortillas tortillas
sharp cheddar cheese to taste

Boil chicken. Cool, de-bone and save broth. Combine soups, cheese, rotel, chilis, chopped onion and 1 c cheddar cheese in sauce pan. Cook until hot and all mixed together. Soak corn tortillas one at a time in reserved chicken broth (use canned broth if you didn't have to boil your chicken). Place layer of tortillas in bottom of greased 9x13 casserole dish. Layer chicken, soup mixture, sharp cheese. Repeatstarting with tortillas. Bake at 350° for 35-40 minutes (until bubbly and cooked through).

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Angel Biscuits (Thank you Mrs. Deen)

Angel Biscuits (Paula Deen's recipe)

2 1/2 tsp active dry yeast (or one pkg, if you buy it that way)
1/2 cup warm water (105°F to 115°F)
1/4 cup plus 2 teaspoons sugar, divided
5 cups all-purpose flour2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup shortening
1 1/3 cups milk

In a 1-cup liquid measuring cup, combine yeast, warm water, and 2 teaspoons sugar; let stand 5 minutes.
In a large bowl, combine flour, 1/4 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; cut in shortening with a pastry blender until mixture is crumbly.
Combine yeast mixture and milk, and add to dry ingredients, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead 1 minute.
Roll dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut with a 2-inch round cutter, and place on lightly greased baking sheets. Cover, and let rise in a warm place (85°F), free from drafts, for 1 hour, or until doubled in bulk.
Bake at 400°F for 10 to 12 minutes, or until golden.

Red Beans & Rice

*note: I always feel like we should have red beans & rice on Monday round about noon. I usually don't make it on Mondays, because Bryson doesn't work the night before, and he doesn't love red beans and rice (bizarro, I know). Somehow it feels better on Mondays though, and you may wish to take that into consideration if you have "feelings" about how or when certain foods should be eaten. Putting a pot of red beans on Sunday night is just- well, it's fabulous for me. :)

Red Beans & Rice
2 lbs dried red beans (small kidney beans)
6 c water
4 cloves garlic (minced)
1 lg green bell pepper (chopped)
1 lg red bell pepper (chopped)
1/2 lb salt pork
1 c dry red or cooking wine
1/2 c fresh parsley (chopped)
3 bay leaves
1 tsp dried oregano
1 TBSP Old Bay Seasoning
1 tsp celery seeds
1 tsp paprika
1/2-1 tsp ground chipotle pepper
1/2-1 twp crushed red pepper
1 tsp Louisiana hot sauce
1 lb smoked beef sausage cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 lb andouille sausage cut into 1/2 inch pieces
2 (11 oz) cans rotel diced tomatoes and green chilis (not drained)
1TBSP filé powder

Hot cooked rice

Combine first 16 ingredients in large stockpot. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 3 hours or until beans are tender (you can actually just do that in the crock-pot if you have time and start the night before). Then add sausage and tomatoes, and cook another 30 minutes. Stir in
filé powder. Serve with/over hot rice. Yields 10-12 servings (you can share with Celeste down the road, and/or freeze some for another meal!)

Mom's Tex Mex (7 layer) Dip

Tex Mex Dip
3 medium-size ripe avocados
2 TBSP lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
16 oz can refried beans
1 can diced green chilis
1 c dairy sour cream
8 oz pkg cream cheese, softened
1 pkg taco seasoning mix
2 3.5 oz cans sliced black olives
1 large bunch green onions w/tops, chopped
3 medium tomatoes (cored, seeded, coarsely chopped)
8 oz sharp cheddar or Mexican blend cheese

Peal, pit and mash avocados in medium-size bowl with lemon juice, salt and pepper. Combine green chilis and refried beans in a separate bowl. In a third bowl combine sour cream, cream cheese and taco seasoning.

To assemble:
Spread beans dip on a shallow serving platter. Top with seasoned avocado mixture. Top that with sour cream mixture. Sprinkle chopped onions, then tomatoes, then olives. Cover with shredded cheese. Can serve chilled or at room temperature.

Strawberry Delight

Strawberry Delight
(or use blueberry, cherry, blackberry or pineapple pie filling)

24 crushed graham crackers
6 TBSP sugar or splenda granular
6TBSP butter

1 c. mock cream cheese: 3/4 c. drained 1% low fat cottage cheese blended (in blender or food processor) with 6 TBSP low fat or fat free cream cheese
1/2 c sugar or splenda granular
4 egg whites
1 tsp vanilla
3 TBSP flour

1 pint sliced & drained strawberries, or can of pie filling

1 6-serving size instant vanilla pudding
2 1/2 c. cold skim milk

Prepare crust and press into 13x9 casserole. Bake 8 minutes at 375°. Refrigerate for an hour or chill in freezer while finishing recipe.

Preheat oven to 350° degrees. Blend cottage cheese, flour, and cream cheese in a large bowl. Add egg whites one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually add 1/2 cup sugar/splenda and vanilla. Pour into prepared crust and bake 20 minutes. Cool.

Spread strawberries or pie filling over cooled filling and crust. Mix instant pudding with 2 1/2 c. milk and pour over strawberries/pie filling. Chill 4 hours or overnight. Garnish with whole berries and/or whipped cream.

Chicken Roll Ups

Chicken Roll Ups
6 chicken breasts (sage, salt, pepper)
8 count dairy case crescent rolls
1 stick butter or margarine
2 oz cream cheese (2/3 of 3 oz bar)

Cook chicken with sage, salt & pepper in large pot with enough water to cover.

While this is cooking, cream together butter or margarine and cream cheese. When chicken is fully cooked (30 minutes or so, until tender and juices clear) drain and let cool. Tear, shred or otherwise make smaller pieces of chicken breasts :). Lay out the uncooked crescent rolls and spread evenly with cream cheese mixture. Put cooked chicken pieces on large end of crescent rolls and roll them up. Bake as directed (on the crescent roll can) until rolls are golden brown and cooked through. Serves 8.

Original Recipe (like KFC) Baked Chicken

Original Recipe Baked Chicken
2 cups self-rising flour
2 envelopes Lipton tomato cup-a-soup or 1 box Knorr dry tomato soup mix
1 envelope dry Good Seasons Italian dressing
1 tsp. salt
1/4 cup butter or margarine

Combine above ingredients and put in ziploc bag. Wash and cut chicken into pieces and place in bag. Shake to coat. Melt butter/margarine in baking pan. Add chicken and bake at 350° for 20 minutes. Turn chicken and bake 40 minutes longer or until done.

*The mix will coat several chickens, so don't use it all at once. Begin with half a cup.

Seafood Cheese Soufflè

Seafood Cheese Soufflè
(crab, shrimp or Lobster)
1 8oz grated sharp cheese
1 stick butter or margarine
8 slices of bread
1 cup crab, shrimp or lobster
4 eggs
2 cups milk
1/4 tsp tobasco sauce
salt & pepper

Cream butter and grated cheese, and spread on bread slices. Put 4 slices of bread in buttered casserole dish and sprinkle with half the seafood. Add a second layer just like the first. Combine eggs, milk, tobasco and salt & pepper to taste- mix well. Pour egg milk mixture over the bread slices in the casserole, cover and refrigerate. Remove from refrigerator 1 hour prior to baking. Bake covered at 300
° for 30 minutes. Remove cover, return to oven and bake additional 30 minutes. Serves 6.

Chicken Cacciatore

Chicken Cacciatore
from Nannie
2 1/4 lbs bone-in chicken breasts & thighs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt, divided
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 onions, chopped
1 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup dry red wine
1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons dried basil
1 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary

Combine flour, 1 tsp salt, and 1 tsp pepper. Coat chicken with mixture. In a large Dutch, sauté skin-side down in olive oil over medium-high heat. Cook 6 to 8 minutes, or until lightly browned. Remove from pan, and set aside.
Add onions, bell peppers, and garlic to pan drippings. Cook over medium-high heat, 6 to 8 minutes until tender. Add wine; cook additional 3 minutes. Add in tomatoes, oregano, basil, rosemary, and remaining salt and pepper (stir). Add chicken and cover. Simmer over medium-low heat for 25 minutes. Uncover, and simmer 10 additional minutes.
Serve over hot cooked pasta.

Angel Food Candy

Angel Food Candy

1 C. sugar
1/2 C. dark corn syrup
1TBSP white vinegar
1 TBSP baking soda
melted milk chocolate for dipping

Combine sugar, syrup and vinegar in 3 qt saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring to dissolve. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally until 300° on candy thermometer. Remove from heat and quickly stir in baking soda. WORK VERY FAST and do not stir too much. Pour but do not spread into a buttered 13x9 pan. After it's cooled break into pieces and dip into melted chocolate, drop on waxed paper.