Thursday, March 15, 2012

Chicken and Dumplings

Ok. Being born and raised in the South, if you don't know a good recipe for Chicken and Dumplins, then you just might as well move up North and call yourself a Yankee. heehee!! :)
BUT! Lucky for you; even a Yankee can enjoy this amazing comfort dish. I have born my own recipe...and it's so simple, you'll wonder why you've never done this before. If you have time... and the resources... please try this simple dish. And, if you do.. leave me some feedback. I wanna know what you think.

What you'll need:
one pk of chicken thighs (about 6 thighs should work)
Mary B's Open Kettle Dumplings (I said easy!!)
Can of Cream of Celery soup
Can of Cream of Chicken soup
Box of Chicken Broth 

^^This stuff. Plus chicken^^

What to do:
 In a large boiling pot, add the chicken stock and enough water to equal about 2.5 quarts of liquid. Add your chicken, some salt and pepper and a little garlic powder if you want. Boil for about 20 minutes or until chicken is done.

Remove chicken from pot and allow it to cool. Into the SAME POT OF BROTH, add both cans of soup. Stir it all together really good. Now, it's DUMPLIN' TIME! :)

You're gonna want to crack those frozen dumplings into thirds. You don't want to fight a 6 inch dumpling. So, crack each frozen dumpling into thirds and add them to the broth. As you add, make sure you stir so they don't stick. Once you've added all the dumplings, turn your heat up until it starts to boil. 

Stir it really good, put a lid on it, turn it down to low and let it simmer for 30-40 minutes. Make sure you come back and stir it regularly so the dumplings don't stick. 

After about 30 minutes, pull the chicken into pieces and add it to the dumplings. Stir it up, take the lid off and let it cook another 10-15 minutes.

Serve and watch them smile! :)

Pizza Casserole

Easy schmeezey recipe right here. And, it's a pretty tasty dish. Found a recipe on the internet that gave me the idea, but of course I put my own spin on it. So, here it is!

What you'll need:
either 2 regular jars of your favorite spaghetti sauce OR one HUGE jar. 
Shredded mozzarella cheese
1.5 lb of ground beef
1 pkg of rigatoni noodles or ziti noodles or whatever. 
9x13 casserole dish

Brown your ground beef and boil the noodles until done. Then, layer ingredients into the casserole dish like this:


^^It should look something similar to this^^

Cover it with foil and bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Then, take the foil off and bake another 15 minutes. This should be your finished product:

Yummy!! Easy and tasty! Feeds the whole family! Enjoy!

Monday, March 12, 2012

I made an Apple Pie!

Holy Moly! I have never baked pies. Never tried it. This weekend, I decided to try my hand at a home made Apple Pie for my honey.

AMAZING!! I am going to share this recipe with you..and you've GOTTA try it. I found the basis for the recipe on a site, then I tweaked it and added to it until it became MINE! ALL MINE! So... here ya go..

Apple Pie worthy of competition!

2 9" pie shells
8 Granny Smith Apples (peeled, cored and sliced)
1/2 cup of unsweetened butter
3 tbsp all purpose flour
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
dash of nutmeg
1/4 cup of water (minus 1 tblspoon)
1 tbsp vanilla extract (to replace the tbsp of water you removed)

Preheat your oven to 425.

Ok.. here we go. Stay with me here. Get your 9" pie plate. Unroll one pie shell and dust both sides with flour. Place it into your pan and make sure it's nice and pretty.
Melt butter in a medium sized sauce pan, then mix in flour until it gets good and incorporated. Once it starts looking pasty, add brown sugar, white sugar, water, cinnamon, vanilla and nutmeg. Stir this really well and bring it to a boil. Once it bubbles a minute or two, turn it down to simmer.

DO NOT skimp on the 8 apples! You want to get them all sliced and piled into the pie shell. Just mound them up! Go ahead and pour the sugar mixture on top of the apples. Reserve about a 1/4 cup for the top!

Now, you gotta do this quick. Actually, you should already have your top crust ready to go, because that sauce caramelizes FAST! I use a basket weave design on top of my pie. I think it's pretty!... But, feel free to cut a design or just whatever you wanna do.
For the sake of me.. we're using the basket weave pattern! Seal your pie crusts. Then, you can brush the top crust with the remaining sauce to make it nice a brown and sweet and crusty.

Bake at 425 for 15 minutes!

Then, drop your temp to 350 and bake for 45 more minutes. Make sure your apples are soft.

A couple pointers?... You may want to place a cookie sheet on the lowest rack to catch drippings... and.. bake your pie on the middle, to low rack. Helps it to not burn the crust before it's done.

I know how tempted you will be to cut this puppy as soon as it comes out of the oven.. but resist the urge. Let the pie cool for about 90 minutes before you cut it. That allows the sauce to gel up and to make this one AMAZING pie!!!!

Please try this pie. And, when you do; take a picture of it and post it here for me! :) I wanna see!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Cookie Day

So, today we (my bestie and my baby girl) made cookies. We had a great time. I just want to say that I have finally found the BEST royal icing recipe EVER! I'll give you the recipe, and insert a few cute pictures for the heck of it.

Royal Icing
1 cup of Confectioner's Sugar
1 teaspoon of milk
1/4 teaspoon of almond extract
1 teaspoon of kayro syurp

Add your food coloring after this and then mix it well. You may have to add some milk to get it to the consistency that you like (I always do)... but this recipe is fantastic! The almond extract makes the taste unbelievable, and the kayro syrup makes the icing shiny. Have fun!

 playing with the dough. 

 cookies after we iced them with the Royal icing. Ready to decorate!

So much fun! 

Finished products! 

 mmm... taste tested, kid approved!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Broccoli Cheese Soup

Ok, this one you will find me personally and thank me for. It is so rich and creamy... mmmm....

1 medium onion thinly sliced
1 stick of butter
1 quart of Half n Half
1 family sized can Cream of Mushroom Soup
1 lb Vleveeta Cheese (cut into small cubes)
2 pounds of  broccoli (steamed)
Salt n Pepper

Saute the onion in the stick of butter until they are cooked and almost clear. Add half n half, soup, cheese, broccoli, salt and pepper. Cook on Medium heat for 20-30 mins, stirring frequently so the cheese melts completely.. Careful not to cook it too fast, or it will burn.

Serve and enjoy.

Try it and let me know what you think!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Cake Ballin'

Alright.. This is my first adventure through the lovely world of Cake Balls. These little gems are amazing!! So, without any further delay....I introduce to you: 

First, choose your poison. Whatever cake mix and icing you choose. For this recipe, I used a white cake mix with Whipped Vanilla frosting. 

Step 1: Bake your cake and let it cool for about 20 minutes. 

Step 2: Crumble that sucker up into a fine mess! 

Step 3: Add about 3/4 of your chosen icing into the cake and mix it up really good. The best way to do this is with your hands. Yes! Get alllll gooey. It should have the consistency of play-dough when you're done.

Then, stick it in the freezer for a minimum of 30 mins or so. 

Step 4: Melt some candy pieces. Whatever color/flavor you want. Here, I used pure white/vanilla flavor. I also used some pink colored. 

Step 5: Take a tablespoon and dip out a nice amount of cake, then roll it into a ball and place it on a wax lined plate or pan. 

Dip your lollipop stick into the melted candy and then poke it into the cake balls (about halfway through). 

Put them in the freezer for a couple of hours, or overnight if you need to. 

When you're ready, just dip the cake balls into some melted candy and let the excess drip off. Then, quickly add your choice of sprinkles...and taaa-daaa! Cake Balls!

Just a few tips: 

*Be careful with the sticks, you don't want to be too rough with them, they may come out of the cake ball if you aren't careful. 

*You are going to have to act quickly to add the sprinkles/decorations once you coat them. Since they've been in the freezer, the candy coating is going to dry fairly quickly.

*While you're rolling the balls out, if the mixture becomes too sticky, put it back into the freezer for a few minutes. 

and, have FUN! 
This is a great time to get your kids in the kitchen. 
You can't go wrong here. 

Enjoy! :)

Thursday, January 26, 2012

White Chocolate Cran-Blueberry Cookies

Well. Let me just tell you. I can come up with the craziest combinations..but this one is so rich, you'll be livin' like a Rockstar!

This batter recipe is amazing! You could add whatever you want into the batter..I just wanted something a little different. Plus, my child thought she would like these Craisins (Blueberry flavored) when she saw them in the store. hahahahaa.. yeah. 

She hasn't touched them! So, here we are.. let's get this going. 

1 cup of softened butter
1 cup of white sugar
1 cup of packed brown sugar
2 Eggs
2 teaspoons of Vanilla extract
1 teaspoon of baking soda
2 teaspoons of hot water
1/2 teaspoon of salt
3 cups of all-purpose flour
2 cups white chocolate chips
1 cup Blueberry flavored Craisins

Soften butter and cream with white sugar and brown sugar until smooth. Add eggs, one at a time then Vanilla extract. Now, take the hot water and baking soda..and dissolve the soda in the water. Add that mixture into the batter along with the salt. Mix it all up really good. Add the flour and mix. Stir in white chocolate chips and Craisins (or whatever you want to substitute here..I highly suggest you try this recipe won't believe the flavors).

Drop by spoon fulls onto a cookie sheet and bake 10 minutes on 350. 

Of course, once the batter is made, you have to have some of this:

and a little of this:

and don't forget a whole lot of this:

Enjoy! :) 

I almost forgot the secret ingredient: lots of laughs and love!