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Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Shrimp Scampi with Zucchini Noodles

Yes, I finally gave in and purchased a spiralizer.  I have just been seeing too many great veggie fresh recipes using one.  I got mine at Bed, Bath and Beyond...but you can purchase them almost anywhere.  Mine has 3 blades.   I tried this recipe tonight using both zucchini and yellow squash because that is what I had on hand.  It was delcious and so quick to make.  A great warm weather recipe because the cooking goes really fast.  The recipe comes from the blog, "Damned Delicious."

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or more, to taste
  • 1/4 cup chicken stock
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 medium-sized zucchini, and/or yellow squash, spiralized
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
 Spiralize squash.  Put in a colander and sprinkle with salt.  Allow to sit about 20-30 minutes.  Squeeze out any of the liquid.

Melt butter in a large skillet.  Add shrimp and garlic.. Cook just until shrimp turn pink.  Now add in the red pepper flakes, chicken stock and lemon juice.  Mix well.  Stir in zucchini noodles.  Cook 2 more minutes.  Serve with a sprinkle of parsley on top.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Peanut Butter Brownie Cups

Yesterday my son sent me a post of these begging me to make up a batch for him.  So today that is what I did.  They were so extremely simple to make I thought I would share it for all those cooks who are just starting out or baking challenged.

  • 1 box of your favorite brownie mix
  • 1/2-3/4  cup of peanut butter
  • semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • peanut butter morsal chips
Mix up the brownie mix according to the directions on the box.  Spray with Pam a muffin/cupcake pan.  Put the made up brownie batter into the muffins cups.  Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.  After you take them out of the oven, use a spoon to make an indention in the middle of each brownie.  Microwave the peanut butter for about 20 seconds.  Spoon this into the indentation you made in the brownies.  Sprinkle with peanut butter and chocolate chips.  Set back in the oven for a minute to allow the chips to melt a bit.  Allow to cool in the pan.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Rosemary Garlic Pork Loin

Today I had the day off and so I made up this roast for dinner.  I served it with baked sweet potatoes and a nice spinach salad.

1 pork loin
4 t. chopped rosemary
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 T. olive oil
1 T. salt
1/4 c. white wine
Mix rosemary, garlic, salt and olive oil.  Make several cuts into roast.  Spread herb mixture into cuts and over surface of the roast.
Place roast on aluminum foil in roasting pan.   Bake at 400 for 30 minutes.  Turn roast and cook an additional 25 minutes.  Let rest 10 minutes before slicing.  Pour any juices into a sauce pan with 1/4 c. white wine.  Warm this and serve over meat.

New England Lobster Rolls

Last summer while visiting my aunt and uncle in Syracuse, New York, I attended a backyard barbeque featuring hot dogs with a special red sauce served on lobster rolls.  Now I am from the west oast where lobster rolls are not avaialable.  A few days later my husband ordered an actual lobster roll served on...a new england lobster roll.  There was this roll again!  I wanted to take some home in my suitcase which my husband quickly nixed.   I looked online.  Not available.  Then this last week I got and email from King Arthur Flour introducing their lobster roll pan!  I quickly ordered one and anxiously awaited its arrival.  This weekend the pan came and at last I made my own lobster rolls.  They were so easy with the pan and came out perfectly. 
Here they are:

If you want to order your own pan go to  and you are on your way.
Here is the recipe that was included with the pan:

3 c. flour
2 t. yeast
2 T. sugar
1/4 c. nonfat dry milk
2/3 c. instant mashed potato flakes
1 1/2 t. salt
2 T. butter, softened
1 egg
1 c. warm water.

Dissolve yeast in warm water, whisking until dissolved.  Ass in sugar, milf powder, slat, butter and egg.  Mix in potato flakes.  Add flour.  Knead until dough is smooth.  Allow dough to rise in a greased bowl until nearly double-about one hour.  Punch down dough.  Spread in place in lightly greased bun pan.  Stretch dough to the corners.  Place a greased cooky sheet on top of the bun pan and weigh it down.  I used a cast iron skillet.  Let rise about 20 minutes.  Preheat oven to 375.
Place bun pan, still with cooky sheet and weight on top into the oven.  Bake for 18 minutes.  Remove the cover and bake an additional 5 minutes.  Allow buns to cool in the pan.  Turn out onto a cutting board.   With rounded sides up, slice the buns apart.  Then slice buns almost to the bottom thru the middle of each bun.  Butter sides of buns and toast on a grill or under a broiler.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Hello Fresh Chicken Artichoke Cassoulet

I am continuing to try the wonderful recipes on the hello fresh website.  They offer a variety of healthy, easy to prepare meals--with the option of having the ingredients mailed to your home to prepare, or buying the ingredients yourself.  One of the great things about Hello Fresh is the ingredients are common and easily found.  Today was a gray misty day in the Northwest so I came home and made this recipe.  I served it with some sourdough bread and a spinach salad.  This recipe serves two but could be easily doubled or even tripled.

2 chicken breasts, cut into strips
1/4 red onion sliced
10 grape tomatoes, halved
1 t. thyme
4 T. olive oil
1 can artichoke hearts, drained and halved
1 can cannellini beans, drained
1 lemon
1/4 c. panko crumbs
1/2 c. mozzarella cheese, grated
2 T. chopped parsley
2 garlic cloves, minced

Combine the chicken breasts with the juice from the lemon, and zest from the lemon.
Heat 2 T. of the oil in a skillet and cook the chicken until tender.   Place the grape tomatoes, onion,
thyme, and 1 t. olive oil in a baking dish.  Bake at 425 until roasted-about 15 minutes.  Set aside.

In a baking dish combine the artichoke hearts, beans, and chicken mixture.  Add in roasted tomatoes and onions.

In a small bowl combine panko crumbs, parsley, mozzarella cheese and 2 t. olive oil.  Spoon over chicken mixture.

Bake until topping is browned, about 5-7 minutes.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015


A yummy German recipe that is pure comfort food.  This is best served with some thick sliced potatoes fried with bacon and onion, spatzel, mashed potatoes or even egg noodles.    The gravy for this is wonderful and would be even better with a little dash of either vinegar or whole grain mustard.   
3 thick cut boneless pork chops
5 slices of bacon, chopped
2 cups sliced mushrooms
2 tbsp olive oil, plus more if necessary
1/2 cup flour, for dredging
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup bread crumbs or pankco crumbs
4 tbsp Butter
4 tbsp Flour
3 cups beef broth
Salt and Pepper
Cut each chop through the middle to create two thinner chops, giving you a total of 6 when you are done.  Begin frying the bacon until crisp.  Remove bacon from pan, reserving bacon fat in pan.  Add mushrooms to pan and cook for about 5-10 minutes.  Remove mushrooms from pan.
Put eggs into a bowl, flour into another bowl, and bread crumbs into a third bowl.  Dip chops first into flour, then egg, then crumbs.  Put chop into hot pan with bacon fat and any additional olive oil needed and fry on each side for about 5 minutes per side.  When all chops have been cooked, remove from pan.  Scrape out any scraps left in the pan.  Add butter, melt and then add flour.  Whisk together then add in beef broth.  Whisk til thickened then add back in bacon, and mushrooms.  Serve this gravy over the chops.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Vegetable Hash with Eggs

A nice  breakfast with a multitude of healthy veggies topped with poached or sunny side up eggs...a great weekend breakfast.

1 c. chopped mushrooms
2 c. cubed pre-cooked potatoes(I just used a few microwaved ones)
1/2 zucchini chopped
1/4 c. chopped onion
1/2 c. chopped red pepper
2 T. olive oil
Heat olive oil in a skillet.  Add veggies and saute until tender.  Top with several poached eggs or sunny side up eggs and breakfast is served!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Caprese Eggplant Stacks and Little Eggplant Pizzas

A friend of mine at work is trying to eat vegetarian for a month.  She has inspired me to cook up some of the vegetarian recipes I have been wanting to try.  So today I tried two fabulous eggplant recipes.  I served them with a nice spinach salad and some nice toasted bread.  This eggplant has a perfect texture and great taste. 

Caprese Eggplant Stacks

1/2 eggplant
1 tomato
fresh mozzarella
fresh basil leave
1 egg
1 c. pankco crumbs
Slice eggplant into 1/2" slices.  Set out on paper towels.  Salt slices and allow to sit for 30 minutes.  This will draw out most of the moisture from the eggplant.  Beat up the egg.  Put pankco crumbs into a bowl.   Dip slices into egg and then into crumbs.  Grill on a grill pan, browning on both sides.
Place on a sprayed (with Pam) cookie sheet.  Top each slice with a slice of mozzarella cheese.
Broil until cheese melts.  Top with fresh chopped basil.

Caprese Eggplant Pizzas

1/2 eggplant
1/2 c. pizza sauce
fresh mozzarella
1/2 c. parmesan cheese
1/2 c. chopped tomato
fresh chpped basil

Slice eggplant into 1/2" slices.  Set out on paper towels.  Salt slices and allow to sit for 30 minutes.  This will draw out most of the moisture from the eggplant.   Grill eggplant on a grill pan for 5 minutes on each side.  Top with about 1 T. pizza sauce on each slice.  Top with a slice of mozzarella cheese, about 1 T. Parmesan cheese and some chopped tomato. Plaace on sprayed (with Pam) cookie sheet.  Broil until chesse melts.  Top with fresh chopped basil.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Pan-Seared Chicken and Orecchiette Primavera

This is a nice and simple spring vegetable dish that I adapted from the HelloFresh website.  This recipe serves two but could be easily doubled.  The original recipe calls for orecchiette, but you could use whatever pasta you have around:  tortellini, capatelli, macaroni, etc.  The sauce is light with just a hint of lemon.

2 chicken breasts, chopped
1 bell pepper, sliced
1 bunch of asparagus, cut into pieces
1 clove garlic, minced
2 T. lemon zest
2 T. chopped parsley
1/4 c. sour cream
1/4 c. Parmesan cheese, grated
1-2 c. pasta, uncooked

In a large saucpan, heat a little olive oil and add the pepper, garlic and chicken.  Cook over medium heat until the chicken is well done. 
In another pan bring salted water to a boil and add the asparagus and pasta.  Take the asparagus out after 5 minutes and add to the chicken mixture.  Continue cooking the pasta for a total of 10-12 minutes.  Drain the pasta, reserving 1/4 c. pasta water.  Add sour cream, lemon zest, parsley and a little of the water to the chicken mixture.  Stir well.  Mix in the drained pasta.  Serve with an additional sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Pesto Chicken and Greek Salad Flatbreads

I have a favorite restaurant in the nearby town of Coupeville.  It is called Chao and has the most amazingly delicious wood-fired pizzas.  But what I really love are their salad flatbreads.  Inspired by a recent visit, tonight's dinner-and tomorrow's lunch will be salad flatbreads.  I decided to make two varieties:  Greek Salad Flatbread and Chicken Pesto Flatbread.

Here is the recipe for the flatbreads:  This recipe comes direct from the blog "Savour the Senses."

  • 1 package (2¼ teaspoons) active dry yeast
  • 1½ cups warm water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 3½ to 3¾ cups all-purpose flour

  1. In a large bowl, combine the yeast, water, 1 tsp salt and 1 tbsp olive oil and let stand until bubbles begin to form (about 5 minutes).
  2. Gradually in 3½ cups flour until the dough has formed.
  3. Knead the dough on a floured surface until it no longer feels sticky, adding additional flour if necessary (about 5-10 minutes).
  4. Place the ball of dough into a bowl with 1 tbsp olive oil, coat with oil, cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in size (about 35-45 minutes).
  5. Punch the dough to flatten, cut into four pieces, cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 10 minutes. Preheat the oven to 450F.
  6. Gently stretch each flatbread into a 13x7 inch oval and place on a greased baking sheet.
  8. Sprinkle with a little olive oil.
  9. Bake at 450F until golden around the edges (about 10 minutes). 

Pesto Chicken
for 2 flatbreads:
1 c. cooked chicken
3-4 T. pesto
2/3 c. parmesan cheese
mixed greens
chopped grape tomatoes
Put chicken and cheese on top and return to oven at 400 just until cheese melts.  Then put remaining salad ingredients on top.

Greek Salad
for 2 flatbreads:
1 c. cooked chicken
1/2 c. chopped kalamata olives
1/2 c, chopped tomato
1 c. crumbled feta
2 c. chopped spinach
 Put Chicken, olives, tomatoes and feta on flatbread.  Return to oven at 400 just until cheese softens.
Then put fresh spinach on top.  YOu can also add a little tzatziki sauce on top if desired.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Easter Basket Cookies

This next post is a nice springtime treat to make at Easter.  I always made these when my children were young and they enjoyed helping with the decorating.  I originally made these in the 4th grade for a cookie contest and won a ribbon with a penny on it!  The original recipe is called "Candy Cookies."  They are a cook on the stove no bake cookie.

For the cookies:
     6 T.  cocoa
     1/2 c. butter
     2 c. sugar
    1/2 c. milk
     3 c. oatmeal
    1/2 c. peanut butter
    1/2 c. coconut

Put first 4 ingredients in a saucepan.  Mix well.  Bring to a boil over medium heat.  Boil for 2 minutes.  Mix in remaining ingredients.  Drop large spoonfuls onto a piece of waxed paper.  Press an indention in the middle for the "nest."  Let cool in the refrigerator.

For the nest:  Fill each nest with :  coconut for grass. chocolate eggs/jellybeans/peeps.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Cherry Cream Pie

Unfortunately, I haven't been able to blog lately due to some time spent in the hospital.  I am home now, but not exactly cooking up a storm=mainly chicken cup of soup.  So I thought I would share one of my sweetheart's favorite family recipes.  This is an easy dessert to make and a great way to celebrate the coming of warmer weather and spring.   The ingredients are quite simple but the results are extremely wonderful.

2 cans condensed milk
2/3 c. lemon juice
2 t. vanilla
1 t. almond flavoring
Mix all ingredients together very well until thick.
Fold in:
1 c. whipped heavy whipping cream

Pour into a prepared graham cracker crust.  Top with:
1 can cherry pie filling.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Miso Ginger Tummy Taming Soup

I have been in a battle with bronchitis and sinuitis for the last few months.  Finally seeking relied I went to the doctor.  I came home with antibiotics that totally have messed with my stomach.  This makes dinner and lunch and breakfast all a challenge.  Tonight I noticed a carton of Miso Ginger broth I purchased at Trader Joes in my pantry.  With a few more ingredients it made a tummy soothing soup.

1 carton Miso Ginger Broth (32 oz.0
1 T. finely chopped fresh ginger
2 c. chopped carrots
1 c. chopped celery
1/2 c. chopped mushroom
1/2 c. chopped onion
2 c. pea pods
1/2# steak, diced
1/2 . rice
2 T.  oil

Heat oil in dutch oven or soup pot.  Add meat and vegetables and ginger.  Stir on medium high heat for around 10 minutes.  Add the broth.  Bring to a boil.  Add rice, reduce to low and cover pot for 15-20 minutes. 

Monday, February 16, 2015

Stuck Home In the snow Casserole

Here in the Pacific Northwest, we have not had a bit of snow this winter.  Lots of rain,  and mild temperatures.  But when I watch the news I really feel bad for those areas that are being hit by snowstorm after snowstorm after snowstorm.  So here is an easy casserole to make up for those who are really snowed in and need to use whatever is in the pantry. 

Chicken, boneless, cut into cubes
1 c.   Sour Cream (don't have that? Use plain yogurt or even mayo)
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 bag croutons (don't have that?  Cut some bread into cubes and toast in the oven)
1-2 c. grated cheese
2 c. Broccoli (don't have that?  Use whatever veggies you do have)
Spray a casserole dish and place chicken on the bottom.  Top with broccoli.  Mix cream of mushroom soup and sour cream.  Pour on top of broccoli and chicken.  Bake 40 minutes at 350.  Sprinkle croutons and cheese on top and bake another 10-15 minutes.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Steak Diane

This is a recipe from a very old Betty Crocker cookbook I was given when I was a teen.  But this recipe is one of those easy standards that you will keep in your file for years to come.  It is quite delicious and comes together quite quickly.  If you just realized that your sweetheart did not plan on taking you out, and now it is getting late for a romantic dinner-this is your go to meal.  And make him help you make a salad and set the table!  On the other hand, if you are home alone make this, savor the moment and celebrate the wonderfulness that is you!

2 beef sirloin or tenderloin
1/2 c. thinly sliced mushrooms
1 clove garlic, minced
1 t. lemon juice
1 t. Worcestershire sauce
1/4 c. + 2 T. butter
2 T. parsley
Cook and stir mushrooms, onion, garlic, lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce in 1/4 c. of the butter until mushrooms are tender.  Stir in parsley.  This is your sauce-keep it warm.

Melt 1/4 c. butter in skillet.  Add steaks.  Cook on medium to medium high heat to desired doneness.  Serve with sauce on top.

Monday, February 9, 2015

90 Minute Cinnamon Rolls

This weekend my grand daughter spent the night.  Both she and my sweetheart have a special love for cinnamon rolls.  I could bake 5 dozen and never eat a one.  But Saturday morning I got up and made these yummies.  This is a recipe I got from a church cookbook probably 25 years ago.  For a long time it was my go to cinnamon recipe.  Then I started trying out other ones and forgot all about this recipe.  I came across it recently in a bunch of recipes I had stored.  Why did I ever give up on this recipe?  It is simple, easy and takes a good 90 minutes less than most other cinnamon roll recipes.

This recipe can be made with regular yeast or the quick rise type.  It makes 6 large cinnamon rolls-perfect for breakfast!

2 pkg. yeast
1 c. warm water
6 T. sugar
1 t. salt
4 T. melted margarine
2 eggs
4-41/2 c. flour

for inside of rolls
4 T. meltedbutter
2/3 c. sugar
2-4 t. cinnamon

Dissolve yeast in warm water.  Whisk in sugar, salt and melted margarine.  Then whisk in eggs.
Mix in flour.  Knead until smooth--about 5 minutes.  Roll out into a large rectangular shape, about 13' x 9'.   Cover dough with melted butter-spread with a pastry brush.  Sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon.

Roll dough up, starting at the long end.  Cut into rolls and place in a greased 13 x 9 pan.  Allow to raise in a warm spot for 30 minutes.
Bake at 375 for 30 minutes.   If desired top with vanilla/ white frosting while warm.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Knife and Fork Turkey Burger

This is a totally different turkey burger.  It is served on a slice of toasted french bread, covered in a pan gravy...knife and fork required!   A comfort dinner great for a cold day.  I served it with some homemade cranberry sauce and brussel sprouts (because my sweetheart loves them.)

For the burgers:
1# ground turkey
1 egg
1 c. bread crumbs
1/2 t. poultry seasoning
2 T. chopped or grated onion
2 T. parsley
MIx all together well.  Form into 4 patties.  Cook in 2 T. olive oil in a heavy frying pan.  Cook 12 minutes on each side.  Remove patties from pan and keep warm.

Cook:  4 slices bacon and save

To the pan the patties were cooked in add 2 T. butter, and stir till melted.  Scrap up the scraps in the pan, and stir around with the butter.  When the butter starts to get frothy, add in 2 T. flour.  Whisk well.  Add 1 1/2 c. chicken broth and 2 T. worchestershire sauce.  Whisk well on medium heat until thickened.  This is your gravy.

Toast:  4 slices french bread.

Put a burger on top of each slice.  Cover with gravy.  Sprinkle with bacon. 

Monday, January 26, 2015

Seared Steak With Cheesy Fondue

I apologize that I do not have a picture with this post.  But a pot of  yummy melted cheese fondue just doesn't photograph well enough to do it justice. You will just have to take my word for it..this is a nice leasurely tasty dinner.  You can use whatever you have in the fridge as dippers:  broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, cubed baked potatoes, toasted french bread, use your imagination!  Serve these with seared steak and you have a delicious dinner for 2 or 3 or more!

1 sirloin steak cut in this strips
8 oz. guyere cheese, grated
8 oz. gouda cheese, grated
1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese
2 T. cornstarch
1 c. white wine
1 garlic clove
dash of nutmeg

Heat a heavy fry pan, add 2T. olive oil.  Sear steak in small batches.  Place in a tent of aluminum foil to keep warm.  In a fondue pot, rub the inside with the garlic clove. Discard.  Pour in wine and bring to boil.  Mix cheeses with cornstarch.  Slowly add cheeses, whisking as it melts.  Serve with steak and dippers.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Better Than Chipotle Burrito Bowls

I have been looking for tasty recipes for Meatless Mondays.  This one was featured on the blog, "Damned Delicious."  I love Mexican and since I wanted to do this vegetarian I substituted quinoa for the rice to up the protein.  You could always use some cooked shrimp, chicken or beef and the rice if you prefer meat in your burrito bowl.  Anyway you fix it, this is a quick and delicious dinner.

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa or rice
  • 1 cup salsa
  •  3 cups chopped Romaine lettuce
  • 1 (15.25-ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1 (15-ounce) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 Roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1 avocado, halved, seeded, peeled and diced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves

Cook quinoa or rice.  Put rice or quinoa into serving bowls.  Top with remaining ingredients in order listed. Top with the cream sauce.
     chipotle cream sauce
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon chipotle paste*
  • 1 clove garlic, pressed
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, or more, to taste

Friday, January 2, 2015

Black eyed Pea Salad

This is a Southern recipe that is supposed to bring good luck if you eat it on New Years Day.  Black eyed peas are a good source of fiber,  so it is good for you too.  I tried "Texas Caviar" this summer at
Dinosaur Bar B Que in Syracuse, New York.  Texas Caviar is very like this salad.  I loved it.  So for 2015 at our house we are starting the New Year with this salad and some smoked pork chops.  I guess some collard greens on the side would be good too.  I cooked up a small bag of dried black eyed peas by boiling them in water for 90 minutes.  I froze the beans I didn't use for another time.

4 c. cooked black eyed peas
1 jalapeno pepper, diced
1 tomato, diced
1/4 red onion, chopped
1/2 red pepper, diced
1/3 c. chopped cilantro
Mix all these ingredients in a bowl.  Mix dressing, pour over and refrigerate for several hours before serving.

1/4 c. rice vinegar
2 T. canola oil
1 t. sugar