Monday, June 30, 2008

Hash Brown Egg Breakfast Casserole

I found several recipes for Breakfast Casserole and combined them to make this one. This is the best breakfast casserole I’ve ever had! I made it again this weekend for my baby’s blessing and everyone loved it. Hooray for success at feeding 40 people! (I’ve also made it with sausage – try some variety!)

Hash Brown Egg Breakfast Casserole
By Keri Stewart

1 2-lb. bag frozen shredded hash browns
3 T. melted butter
8 eggs, beaten
1 lb. ham or bacon, cooked & crumbled
1½ c. milk
2 c. Swiss cheese
2 c. Cheddar cheese
¾ tsp. dry mustard
¾ tsp. salt (to taste)
¼ tsp. pepper (to taste)
1 bunch green onions, diced
red & green pepper, diced

Grease a 9x13 casserole dish. Put hash browns in dish and drizzle with melted butter. Bake at 425° for 25 minutes. (I like my hash browns a little crispier, so after I bake them, I fry them for 5-10 minutes longer.) Mix remaining ingredients and pour over hash browns. Bake at 375° for 35 to 40 minutes (until it starts to brown on top). *This can be made the night before and refrigerated to make things easier.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Refreshing alternative to ice cream

You guys who know me know that I love ice cream. Seriously, I think I have an addiction to ice cream. BUT ... Cory won't let me eat it everyday since it's supposedly fattening :) So here's a refreshing alternative to eating ice cream every day - one that is very tasty, lactose-free, and much less fattening.

You need:
Your favorite kind of sherbet (I use raspberry or pineapple)
Frozen raspberries
Bananas, cut into bite-size pieces

Let sherbet sit out long enough so that you can empty into into a big mixing bowl - but don't let it melt - just enough that you can stir in the raspberries and bananas. Put in as many as you want (I put in a lot!) When everything is mixed in, put back into the container that the sherbet came in and freeze. Very tasty and much less fat! I'm sure you could experiment and add different kinds of fruit to different kinds of sherbet ... I'm just very partial to raspberries. Enjoy a refreshing treat in the hot summer weather.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Easy Chicken Casserole

I got this recipe from my mother-in-law in New York and it is absolutely delicious and easy to make.

2 cans cream of chicken soup
16 oz sour cream
4-5 cooked chicken cubes or a quart of canned chicken
2 stacks ritz crackers
1 stick melted butter

Mix cream of chicken soup and sour cream together. Spread a thin layer of this into 9x13 pan. Spread cooked chicken over this. Pour the rest of chicken soup mix over the chicken. Crush ritz crackers and mix with butter. Spread this mixture on top. Cover with foil. Bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes. Take foil off and cook for additional 5 minutes. This is great over rice.

Easy French Onion Soup

3 lbs. onions
2 cups apple juice
10 cups beef stock
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons thyme
salt & pepper to taste
toasted baguette
mozzarella cheese

Saute the onions. Salt and pepper to taste. Add beef stock, apple juice and seasonings. Simmer for 20 minutes. Serve with baguette and cheese. Serves 6-8 people.

This is new recipe that I just found last month. I love it because it tastes delicious, looks impressive, and is ridiculously easy.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Cheese & Chocolate Fondue

This is a really good fondue recipe, which I use as a meal but it may be better as an appetizer for some people. It's really easy, and it only takes about 15 minutes to make. You will need:

1/2 c butter
1/2 c flour
1 t salt
2-3 c milk (warmed)
2-3 c shredded cheese

Melt the butter in a sauce pan. Add flour and salt; whisk until it thickens (this takes about 5 seconds). Add 2 cups milk (I put it in the microwave for about a minute beforehand to speed up the process); whisk until it starts to thicken. Sometimes it thickens too quickly so I add another cup of milk. When it is about the desired consistency, add the cheese and stir until it is melted. I then do a taste test with a little bit of bread to see if it is cheesy enough. If not, I keep adding cheese until it is the flavor that I want. I serve it with french bread, and if you're really ambitious you can make meatballs to go along with it as well.

If you're a chocolate lover (as I am), you can make a chocolate fondue as well. The ingredients for this are:

1 pkg marshmallows
1 c half and half
1 pkg cream cheese
1 pkg milk chocolate chips

Melt the marshmallows with the half and half; make sure they melt completely, or the fondue will be lumpy. Soften the cream cheese and add to marshmallows; let melt. Add the chocolate chips; let melt. Serve with fruit and enjoy!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Taco Soup

It seems like most people I know have some version of this soup, but just in case you don't, I have to share it. It is so easy and goes from start to finish in about 15 minutes.

Brown 1/2 pound ground beef in bottom of a big soup pot. Add the following cans (dump the whole can, including any accompanying liquid): 1 can corn, 1 can red kidney beans, 1 can diced tomatoes, 1 can tomato sauce. Then add 1/2 package of taco seasoning. Heat until warm.

You can garnish it with cheddar cheese and sour cream and can add whatever other toppings you like to it. Serve with tortilla chips which can be crushed and put on top of the bowl of soup, or you can use them to dip into the soup and eat.

We also recently tried this using some grilled and cut up chicken and it was very good as well. Enjoy!

Cinnabon Cinnamon Rolls

I just made these today I have already eaten about 4! They are really yummy, but they do take time, but they are sooo worth it!

Combine the following:
½ C very warm water
1 ½ -2 T. yeast
2 T. sugar
Set aside and in a large bowl mix:
3 ½ oz package vanilla pudding (according to the directions on the box) and to that add:
2 eggs
1 t. salt
½ C. butter, melted
6 C. flour
As you add the flour, add the yeast mixture to it.
Knead until smooth.
Cover with a towel and let rise until double, punch down and let rise again. Then roll out dough to 34X21 size (I like to separate the dough into 2 balls and roll it out twice, I don’t have a ton of counter space and it works better for me.)
Take 1C. softened butter and spread over surface. In a small bowl mix 2 C. brown sugar and 4tsp cinnamon. Sprinkle over top. Roll up tightly and cut 2 inch sections. Place on a lightly greased cookie sheet 2 inches apart. Push down slightly with hand . Cover and let double again. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Ice when still warm with icing.

Cream cheese icing:
8 oz. softened cream cheese
½ C. butter
1 tsp. vanilla
3 C. powdered sugar
1 T. milk
Mix all ingredients.

Low-Fat Strawberry Shortcake


For middle of shortcake:
4 cups sliced strawberries
1/4 cup sugar

For shortcake:
2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp grated lemon grind
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
6 Tbs chilled butter, cut into small pieces
2/3 cup fat-free buttermilk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Cooking spray

For top of shortcake:
1 large egg white, lightly beaten
1 1/2 tsp sugar
2 cups frozen fat-free whipped topping, thawed

To make:
Combine strawberries and 1/4 cup sugar; cover and chill 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine flour and next 5 ingredients (down to baking soda), stirring with a whisk. Cut in butter to mixture. Combine buttermilk and vanilla; add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist (sticky dough).

Knead dough on floured surface 4 times. Make into 8-inch circle on baking sheet (that has been sprayed with cooking spray). Brush top with egg white. Sprinkle with 1 1/2 tsp sugar.

Bake 15 minutes at 400 degrees. Cool 10 minutes. Split shortcake in half horizontally. Cool layers separately. Place bottom half of shortcake, cut side up, on a serving plate. Drain strawberries, saving juice; drizzle juice over bottom half of shrotcake. Put 2 cups whipped topping over juice, then strawberries on top. Put top shortcake layer on. Then top with a little whipped cream and a whole strawberry on top.

My husband and I had never made this before, but this was a very easy recipe to follow and it turned our really yummy, too. I found it online at "Cooking Light". One of the best things about it is that it is only 246 calories and 7.4 grams of fat in each serving (10 servings total). Not bad for a dessert that usually has almost 400 calories and over 25 grams of fat per serving.

Homemade Strawberry Jam

I've been asked by a couple of different people to put up the directions to make homemade strawberry jam. It's not hard at all - the most time comes from de-stemming the strawberries. But it's soooo good - well worth all the effort!!

You need:

Fresh strawberries

Go to the store and buy Pectin. It’s usually found in the same aisle as the flour and the sugar (but no guarantees). There are instructions in the Pectin on how much sugar, berries and water you will need. Follow the instructions in the box, since it varies, depending on which brand of Pectin you get. I make the “quick and easy” freezer jam. You don’t have to cook the jam, so it cuts out on a lot of the time. Plus I like jam more than jelly, since I like fruit pieces in my jam. You guys can do whatever makes your heart happy.

I used a big mixing bowl full of strawberries.

I dump them in the sink and wash them – then cut off their stems.

Mash them with a potato masher – and follow the rest of the directions that came with your Pectin.

I use these plastic containers instead of canning jars – they hold more jam and they stack really nicely in our freezer – both good things, since we don’t have lots of room.

And wa-la! You have homemade jam that is delicious!!!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

NaDell's Easy Cheesy Lasagna

NaDell’s Easy Cheesy Lasagna

2 cups Ragu or other Spaghetti Sauce
2 cans (10 ¾ oz.) Campbell’s Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup
(may substitute Cream of Celery or Mushroom)
2 ½ cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
¼ cup Milk
1 lb. Ground Beef
10 dry lasagna noodles

The best part about this is that you don’t have to cook the noodles before baking.
Mix Chicken Soup, Mozzarella Cheese, and Milk. Set aside. Cook Beef until browned. Pour off fat. Stir in Spaghetti sauce. Heat thorough. Add spices as you wish. Spoon half the Meat Mixture into a 9x13 pan. Top with 5 dry Lasagna Noodles and Chicken Soup Mixture. Top with the remaining 5 Dry Lasagna Noodles and the remaining meat mixture. Add more cheese, olives, etc. if desired. Bake at 400° F covered for 30 minutes, or until it starts to bubble up a little. Let stand 10 minutes to set up. Eat and enjoy!!!

Crockpot Chicken Soft Tacos

This is exactly my kind of recipe -- beyond simple, but definitely good.

In the morning, throw a few chicken breasts into the crockpot. Top with salsa -- a fancy kind, or just whatever is in your fridge. Cook on low for about 8 hours.

I don't like salsa, so I pour it into a separate bowl for my husband. Then I shred the chicken and throw it in a tortilla shell with sour cream, shredded lettuce and grated cheese. You, of course, can add whatever toppings you like. My husband drenches his in the salsa.

We made two large chicken breasts yesterday; we've made six large tacos from it and still have only used about half the chicken. It makes amazing leftovers -- I don't even bother to heat it up.

Try it and let me know what you think.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Chicken Marinade

This is the easiest chicken marinade ever. You need:
Boneless, skinless chicken breasts
BBQ sauce (I use regular flavor, but you can get creative and use whatever you want)
Italian dressing

That's it. The ratio is 1:1. I use 1/4 a bottle of BBQ sauce and 1/4 a bottle of Italian dressing. Mix together and let the chicken marinate. You can use as many chicken breasts as you want - we usually make 4 or 5, so we can each have one and have some for leftovers the next day. You can use as much (or as little) sauce/dressing marinade as you want. If I've planned well, then I let the chicken marinate over night. But usually I'm not that on top of things, so I let them marinate for like 15 minutes before I am so hungry that I can't stand it anymore. We usually cook them outside on the grill, but they work great in a foreman grill too (in case it's too cold to cook outside). They cook fast, too, so if you're hungry, these make a fast and tasty meal.

I usually make some form of green salad and potatoes to go along (au-gratin, mashed, cheesy, baked - whatever you've got works) and WA-LA ... you've got an entire meal. Yummy!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


At Sarah's request, here's a recipe for the chicken sauce

Super fast and easy:
1-2 cans Cream of Chicken soup
1/2-1 can water or milk

combine all and bring to boil. Boil 2-3 minutes. Serve over rice and top with your favorite toppings

More time, but better tasting:
chicken tenders
1-2 cans Cream of Chicken soup
1/2-1 can water or milk

Combine all ingredients in slow cooker and cook on low all day. Or, simmer for 30 minutes on the stove top.

Looking for Hawaiian Haystacks

I realize that this might be cheating, seeing as how we are supposed to be posting recipes … but I am going to do it anyways :) I used to have a really good recipe for Hawaiian Haystacks, but it seems to have disappeared. I’ve got no idea where it went … and I have been craving them for months now … so I am wondering if anyone has a good recipe for Hawaiian Haystacks? I know how to make them … it’s just the sauce recipe that I am missing. So if anyone has a good recipe, please post it! Thanks guys!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Chicken Enchiladas

What you need:

1. 1 Pound of Chicken
2. 1 can of Cream of Chicken
3. 16oz Sour Cream
4. 4 cups Cheese
5. Green Chiles (optional)
6. Tortilla

Boil Chicken. In another bowl mix together cream of chicken, sour cream, green chiles, and 2 cups cheese. Shred Chicken and mix it in with the blend. Save some of the portion to add at the end. Roll tortilla up and place in a 9x12 pan. Add the rest of the mixture on top. Add the cheese.

Bake 350 for 30mins or until cheese and melted on top.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

No time? Try this!

Crock Pot Chicken- a very simple and easy recipe. This takes about five minutes to put together. You can add more or less for two to eight. Includes all the ingredients below- for a variation substitute it with different vegetables.

Cook time is 8-10 hours on low.
Peel and cut potatoes into chunks. (This takes the most time out of all of it.) Three medium sized potatoes works for two people.
I use peeled baby carrots. You just dump it in there right from the bag. Put in however many you want. I put in a lot.
Use one can of chicken broth.
Add one can of condensed Cream of Chicken Soup. (If you're doing this for a lot of people you can add two cans of Chicken Broth and two cans of Soup.)
For two add two frozen boneless skinless chicken breasts. Add more chicken for more people. Put the chicken in first, then the vegetables, and last the broth and soup.

When I walk in the door this is roasted to perfection. The chicken falls apart and is moist. When you serve it, you'll want to put a bit of the juice with it. We usually have enough left over for Deven to take for lunch the next day. Let me know how yours turns out!

Click on this picture and you can print off the recipe.

Let's get things rolling!

I agree with the comments that were left on the last post. I wouldn’t remember which day to post, either. So we’re going to just make it so that everyone posts something once a month. If you want to post something more than once, that’s totally okay – but everyone needs to post one thing a month (and yes, I will check to see if everyone is posting something ;)

Rules are: you can post whatever you want! A main dish, a dessert, a side dish, a salad, something that goes well in a crock pot … whatever strikes your fancy. It does not need to be elaborate!!! If you want to post your favorite recipe for making great macaroni & cheese, go for it. Post something about how you get your kids to eat vegetables (or tricky ways of hiding them). We are looking to get new ideas for meals that can be thrown together with ingredients we already have in our kitchens. Feel free to post side dishes, too. For example, at our place, we always seem to have quesadillas with either a green salad or an ancini (frog-eyed) salad. So if I was posting my recipe for quesadillas, then I would say that we often have green or ancini salad on the side – and we have a complete meal. Also, when you are posting a recipe, make sure you post the instructions. And post the “tweaks” that you make to the recipe (less salt, using water instead of chicken bouillon, etc.)

I know it’s already almost mid-June, but I think we should get started right away. So begin the posting!! I’m really excited about this – and I’m glad to have so many of you on board!


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

How's it going to work?

I've thought a lot about how I think this will work best, but I am definitely open to suggestions – so if you have any please email them to me! Since there are 22 of us (currently) I am thinking that if everyone posted one day a month, then we would pretty much be covered (I am not counting the weekends since that's the time that is the most hectic for me, and I think it should be family time, as much as possible – but if you really want to post something on a weekend, then go for it). I'm not sure if I just want people to "reserve" a day at the beginning of the month (so Andrea, you would post something on the 6th and Marie, you would post something on the 7th, etc, etc.) – or if we'll just do it freestyle, so you post a recipe once a month (at least) whenever you have the time. Suggestions from you guys? Email them to me or leave them in the comments section at the bottom of the post.

Thanks everyone! This is going to be great; I can tell. I'm very excited to get some new ideas for what to make for dinner!!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

New idea

I have been thinking – which I know is dangerous for me to do, since I get all sorts of ideas. At our house, I am the one who is always making dinner … and I figure that’s the case for many of you. I love to cook and I don’t mind making dinner but I am always trying to find new things to eat. I quickly run out of ideas and we end up eating the same foods every 2 weeks :) So I was thinking that with so many people blogging these days (myself included) that we should form some sort of recipe blog that we can all contribute to. It won’t take that much time, but if lots of people were to join then we would all get lots of new ideas. I sign up for daily “what’s for dinner” emails, but many of them are kind of weird – and they use ingredients that I don’t normally have – which is a problem for me since I live in the middle of nowhere and the nearest grocery store is 20 minutes away, so I can’t just “run” to the store. Anyways, I have set up this website so people can join and we can begin sharing recipes. If you want in, leave your name in the comments section so I can invite you to be part of this blog.