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Saturday, April 19, 2014

Easter Food

I thought I might repost some of the wonderful past posts for delicious Easter food.  Enjoy!

I have some beautiful green and blue eggs from my chickens..perfect to use for Easter.  When I saw this recipe for Easter bread I knew I had found a perfect match for my eggs.  You do not need to hard boil the eggs before using them in this bread as they will cook in the oven as the bread bakes.




 1 package yeast, about 2-1/4 teaspoons
1.1/4 cups milk
pinch of salt
1/3 cup butter
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 cup sugar
3-4 1/2 cups flour (approximate)
1 egg, beaten with 1 teaspoon of water
6 dyed  eggs
1 undyed egg
sprinkles or sugar

Heat the butter and milk together in a saucepan just until the butter melts.  In a large bowl combine the salt, yeast and sugar.  When the milk is just warm..not hot..add to the yeast and whisk well.  Whisk in 2 eggs and then 2 c. flour.  Stir in  at least 1 more cup of flour..or enough that the dough is not longer sticky.  Knead for 5 minutes.  Put in a large buttered bowl, place in a warm spot and allow to rise for one hour.  It will look like this after rising:



Punch down the dough and divide into 12 equal pieces.  Roll each piece into a rope about 14" long like this:


Twist two ropes together and form in a circle.  Place on a cooky sheet covered in parchment paper or silipat.  It should look like this:


Let rise for one hour.
Take the one undyed egg and  whisk with 1 T. water.  Brush over your bread "nests".  Place an egg in the center.  Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.

OK super yummy sugar cookies

3 eggs
2 c. sugar
1 c. butter
Cream these well together on medium speed with your mixer.  Then
(This is the weird part)
Mix 1 c. milk (cold) with 1 t. baking soda
In another bowl mix 3 c. flour and 3 t. baking powder
 Alternately, mix flour and milk mixtures into the creamed egg/sugar mix.  Add
1 t. vanilla
1 T. lemon juice
1/2 t. zlmond
1 T. lemon zest
Add enough flour to make the dough thick and no longer sticky (about 3 more cups).  Refrigerate for at least one hour.

Roll out on a floured surface. Cut into shapes and place on greased cooky sheet,  Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes.  Cool, frost and decorate.


I know you all love chocolate mousse, and I am certainly never one to downplay the taste of chocolate.  But this is another light mousse..light and airy, tasting of summer to come.  Put a few ladyfingers in a martini glass, put this mousse in the middle, top it with whipped cream and you have a wonderful fancy dessert....how about for Mother's day?

Strawberry Mousse

2 pints fresh strawberries, pureed
1 c. sugar
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/4 c. lemon juice
2 egg whites
1 1/2 c. whipping cream
Combine puree and sugar in a medium bowl.  Soften gelatin in lemon juice, dissolve over hot water.(Stir over another bowl with hot water in it, or over a pot with hot water in it.)   Stir gelatin into puree.  Beat egg whites until foamy and add to puree.  Place mixture into the freezer.

When partially frozen, about 45 minutes later, beat in a food processor or blender until pale pink.  Transfer to a bowl.  Whip 1 c. of the cream and fold into berry mixture.  Place in serving sidhes.  Decorate with more whipped cream and and a strawberry.


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Easy German Rollatin

Rollatin is a German dish that my grandmother used to make.  Basically it is steak coated with horseradish mustard, cooked bacon bits and cooked onion then rolled and baked.  Recently I had it again at my Aunt Jane's and it got me thinking about the dish.  This version uses cube steak-often found at a good price.  I served it up with some baked potatoes and lettuce dressed with oil and vinegar-heavy on the vinegar.  It is a delicious dish and easy to prepare.

4 cube steaks
1 T. horseradish mustard for each steaak
2 pieces bacon
1/2 c. chopped onion
1/2- 2/3 c. beef bouillion
Chop bacon into bits and fry with onion until bacon is almost done.
Spread mustard on the surface of the steak.  Put about 1-2 T. of the bacon and onion mixture on one end of the steak.  Roll up and secure with toothpicks or kitchen twine.  Put in a baking dish.  Pour in broth, and cover with foil.  Bake at 350 for one hour.  You can make gravy from the broth-add a little mustard to it for an authentic flavor.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Parmesan Baked Tilapia

I am working hard at trying to incorporate a bit more fish into our diets.  This recipe from Food.com is a great working night dinner.  It takes about 10 minutes to prep and about 20 minutes to bake.  Dinner in 30 minutes!  What's not to like about that?



Ingredients:

2 lbs tilapia fillets
2 eggs, beaten
1/3 cup low-fat mayonnaise
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 cup breadcrumbs
2/3-3/4 cup grated fresh parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1 tablespoon parsley

Beat the eggs in a bowl, add in lemon juice and mayonnaise.  Beat well again.  On a plate mix the breadcrumbs, cheese, and spices.  Dip the tilapia fillets in the egg mixture, then the breadcrumb mixture.  Place in a baking dish that has been sprayed with Pam.  Bake at 400 for 20 minutes.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Lemon Yogurt Poundcake

This last week I went to visit my aunt and uncle in Syracuse, N.Y.  My Aunt Jane served this delicious pound cake after lunch just as it was.  No special garnish or topping needed.  This was a recipe she got from Ina Garden's website.  It is light, lemony and just the thing to celebrate spring.

1 1/2 c. flour
2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
1 c. plain yogurt
1 1/3 c. sugar
3 eggs
2 t. grated lemon zest
1/2 T. vegetable oil
1/3 c. lemon juice
Grease a loaf pan and line with parchment paper.  Grease and flour pan with paper in it.
Sift flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl.  In another bowl whisk together yogurt, 1 c. sugar, eggs, lemon zest and juice and vanilla.  Whisk dry ingredients into wet ingredients.  Pour into pan.  Bake at 350 for 50 minutes.

Glaze:  Mix remaining sugar and 2 T. lemon juice in a saucepan and bring to boil.  Cool and add 1 c. of powdered sugar.  Pour over cooled loaf.


Saturday, March 22, 2014

Maple Oatmeal Scones

Scones are such an easy bake.  They are scrumptious and not too sweet.  Great with jam or butter or alone.  Matched with a cup of tea or coffee a nice breakfast.


1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup quick or old-fashioned rolled oats
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) cold butter, sliced
1/4 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
2 eggs
 In a medium sized mixing bowl combine the flours, oats, baking powder, sugar and salt.
Mix together butter, buttermilk, maple syrup, and eggs.  Mix the two together just until mixed.  Do not over mix.  On a floured surface pat the dough into a circle and cut into  8 wedges.  Put onto a sprayed  cookie sheet.  Bake at 400 for 20 minutes.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Spicy Parmesan Shrimp Pasts

This recipe is soooo easy and requires no special ingredients.  I just love these kind of recipes--the kind you can come home after work and say "I think I will make that."  It comes together easily and served up with salad and/or bread makes a terrific dinner.

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or more, to taste
  • 1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 8 ounces penne
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 green onion, thinly sliced
Combine oil, garlic, brown sugar, soy sauce and red pepper flakes.  Add shrimp and marinate for 30 or more minutes.  Cook penne until tender.  In a skillet pour shrimp and sauce and saute until shrimp is pink.  Add penne.  Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and green onions,  Serve.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Peanut Butter M&M Cookies

Today my grand daughter is visiting so I wanted to bake up a bake up cookies for her visit.  This is an old recipe that I used to make when my own children were small.  It is a good reliable recipe that is easy to make and sure to please a child ( and a cookie monster husband.)


1 c. butters
1 c. sugar
1 c. brown sugar
1 c. peanut butter
2 eggs
1 t. vanilla
1 t. baking soda
2 1/2 c. flour
2 c. M&M s

Cream butter and sugars.  Mix in peanut butter.  Add eggs and vanilla..blend well.  Mix in four and baking soda.  Stir in M&Ms. Drop onto greased cookie trays.   Bake at 350 for 15 minutes.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Crockpot Beef Ragout

It is still rainy crockpot season.  You can serve this over some cooked egg noodles for a nice comfort food dinner.

1# stew meat
2 c. sliced mushrooms
1/2 sliced onion
3 garlic cloves, chopped
15 0z. beef broth
1# frozen sugar snap peas
1# cherry or grape tomatoes
1/4 c. tapioca
2 -3 T. cornstarch

Combine meat, mushrooms, onions, garlic, beef broth and tapioca in crockpot.  Cook 8-10 hours on low.  Add pea pods and tomatoes. Then add cornstarch to thicken.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Lemon Garlic cream sauce with pasta and asparagus

This is a nice light meal to celebrate the coming of spring.  Asparagus is showing up again at a more reasonable price and goes perfect in a delicious lemon sauced pasta.  Add a little chicken and you have a wonderful dinner.  If you want a veggie version leave out the chicken.  This would also be excellent with broccoli and shrimp.

1/4 c. butter
5-6 sliced mushrooms
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 c. half and half
4 oz. cream cheese
1 lemon, zested
juice of one lemon
3 c. dried tortellini
2 chicken breast, cooked and cubed
6 large asparagus spears,  sliced
Bring water to boil and add tortellini and asparagus.  Boil 8 minutes or until tortellini is tender.  Drain.  Mix in the chicken with the asparagus and tortellini.  In a saucepan melt the butter, add mushrooms and garlic.  Saute 3 minutes.  Add cream cheese and lemon juice.  Stir until cream cheese melts and becomes smooth.  Add half and half and lemon zest.   Pour hot sauce over tortellini mixture.  Serve with a sprinkle of parmesan cheest.



Thursday, February 13, 2014

Chocolate Torte

The other day I had a piece of chocolate torte for the first time.  It was sort of like a brownie but then sort of like a cake...it had powdered sugar on the top.  It wasn't too sweet, it wasn't too rich.  Just right.  I have never made a torte so of course I had to go straight home and begin looking at recipes.  After all, Valentine's Day is near and I would need to bake something special for my sweetheart.  This recipe is by far the simplest of all I found.  I found it on the Food Network website.   You can make it more decadent by topping it with ganache, fresh raspberries, whipped cream, or, well you get the idea.  I am going for the simple sprinkle of powdered sugar.

12 oz. bittersweet chocolate
1 1/2 c. butter
1/2 c. sugar
6 eggs
pinch of kosher salt

Put chocolate and butter in the top of a double boiler until it melts.  If you do not have a double boiler you can put it in a bowl that will fit over a pan.  Put water in the pan and simmer, put bowl on top and melt.  Let melted chocolate  cool.  Beat 6 eggs, sugar and salt on medium high for 6 minutes.  Fold in half of the chocolate.  Then fold in the other half.  Pour into a buttered springform pan.  Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes, or until no longer wiggly/jiggly in the middle.  If you stick a toothpick in it, it will come out with a few crumbs on it.  Cool.  Remover from pan and serve with desired topping.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Chicken Coconut Curry

This is a Martha Stewart recipe, with some adjustments.  It is cooked in a Dutch Oven and comes together ready to serve in about 45 minutes.  Great for after work or a busy weekend meal.  You can adjust the spiciness by adding or taking away the amount of red curry paste you use.

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 boneless chicken breasts, or 4 thighs or 4 whole chicken legs (about 3 pounds total)
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) light coconut milk
  • 2 cups canned reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons Thai red curry paste
  • 1 cup jasmine rice
  • 2 red bell peppers cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 8 ounces green beans ), cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 1/2 lemon or lime, cut into wedges, for serving
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  • Heat oil in a large pot or Dutch oven.  Add chicken--I used breasts and cubed it before cooking.  Cook over medium high heat for avout 10 minutes.  Add in broth, coconut milk, and curry paste.  Turn heat to medium and simmer until paste is well combined.  Add in rice, cover and simmer 15- 20 minutes.  Add in peppers and green beans and cook until just tender.  Serve with lemon or lime wedges. 

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Peanut Butter Nutella Swirl Cookies


Most weekends I try to make a batch of cookies for my sweetheart to enjoy with his coffee and in his lunch the following week.  I found this recipe and just had to try it as it combines two of his favorite things:  peanut butter and nutella.  Cookie baking is one of those great activities you can do and get other things done at the same time,  or sit and read a book while they bake, or just have a cup of coffee or tea and enjoy the yummy smells coming from your oven.  Give it a try this weekend and enjoy!  (This recipe makes a smaller batch so feel free to double it!)

1/2 cup unsalted butter
 3/4 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1-3/4 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup Nutella

Beat butter, peanut butter and sugars with a mixer until well combined and creamy.  Add the egg and vanilla.  Mix well.  Add flour, baking soda, and salt.  Microwave the Nutella in 10 second intervals until melted.  Drizzle over the dough, then gently fold in.  You are trying to marble it, not mix it together.  Roll into balls and place on sprayed cookie sheet.  Press down on each cookie with a fork, going both ways, making a crisscross pattern.  You will need to dip your fork in flour to avoid it sticking.

  Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Country Cassoulet

This is one of those easy one pan meals that cooks quickly, and uses ingredients you probably have at home already.  On the health side it is also high in fiber!

1/2# sliced turkey polish kielbasa
1/4# ham, cubed
1/4 c. onion chopped
2 carrots, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 c. celery, sliced
1/2 t. thyme
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can red kidney beans, diced
1 c. cooked brown rice, wheat berries, or quinea

Put 1 T. olive oil in a skillet.  Add onion, carrots, celery, garlic kielbasa and ham.  Saute for 10 minutes.  Add thyme and all remaining ingredients.  Heat through and serve.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Super Bowl Super Healthy Dip

Today is the Super Bowl.  Here in the Pacific Northwest we are all going a bit crazy for our Seattle Seahawks.  We are having some family over for the game and that means treats.  After making cookies in our team colors I needed to make up some great dip for the chips.  This recipe comes from Prevention magazine.

2 avocados, diced
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 c, chopped red onion
3/4 c. salsa
1 T. lime juice
1 T. chopped cilantro
2 T. chili powder
a small jalapeno, chopped
Mix all ingredients well and serve.



Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Lemony Chicken Noodle Soup

  • This is the time of year when colds and flu abound.  Working in an elementary school, it's pretty impossible to avoid germs.  This week I came down with a bad cold.  I can't complain, as I have been pretty healthy this winter.  But tonight called for a nice bowl of soup..and nothing is better than chicken soup when you aren't feeling great.  This one has the added bonus of lemon which gives you a nice dose of Vitamin C.
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  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 carrots  cut into bite-size pieces
  • stalks celery, chopped
  • 1/4  large onion, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 2 pounds bone-in chicken breasts, skin removed, diced
  • 8 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup egg noodles
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  •  
  • Put oil in a large soup pot.  Heat on medium heat.  Add celery, onion, carrots, thymne, slat and pepper.  Saute for 10 minutes.  Add chicken and continue to saute until chicken is no longer pink. Add broth and bring to boil.  Add pasta.  Simmer for 10 minutes.  Zest lemon and add to broth.  Stir in lemon juice and parsley.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Panda Express Chow Mein

This recipe is one of those restaurant copy cats.  It does use easy to find ingredients and is quick to put together.  If you are craving a Chinese dinner in a hurry this recipe is for you.  If you do not want to use Yaki Soba noodles, cooked spaghetti can be substituted.  To the original recipe I also add some chicken, but if you want a vegetarian version, just leave the chicken out.


  • 1/4 c. soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. fresh ginger, grated
  • ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2-3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 3 (5.6 oz) packages refrigerated Yaki Soba noodles (found in the produce section of the grocery store.. usually the 3 packages are sold together in one 17oz. pack)
  • 2/3 c. chopped celery (chopped diagonally)
  • 1 medium-sized onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 c. chopped cabbage
  • 1 c. sliced carrot
  • 1 chicken breast (optional)
  • Mix soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic and giner together and save as the sauce.
  • Heat oil in a large frypan.  If using chicken, cut in cubes and saute til no longer pink.  Add vegetables and saute for 10 minutes.  Cook noodles and add in.  Last, pour in the sauce and ook just until heated through.

Laura Bush's Governor's Mansion Cookies

Every Presidential election year, Family Circle Magazine publishes recipes from the candidates wives.
This is an exceptionally good one that makes a huge batch.  I halved this recipe for my husband and I and we still had plenty!

3 cups flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tbsp baking soda
1 tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
3 eggs
1 tbsp vanilla
3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
2 cups sweetened coconut flakes
2 cups chopped pecans (8 oz) (optional - I omit)
Preheat oven to 350ºF.
Beat butter and sugars together until well mixed.  Beat in eggs and vanilla.  Add flour, baking soda. baking powder. slat and cinnamon.  Then mix in the cocnut, chocolate chips, oatmeal and nuts.  Drop by tablespoons onto a cooky sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes.  Allow to cool on pan for several minutes before moving to a cooling rack.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cup Cookies.

 These are so good...peanut butter, chocolate chips, peanuts and peanut butter cups.  Everyone in your house will love them!


1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup bite-sized unwrapped miniature chocolate-covered peanut butter cups, chopped
1 cup  chocolate chips
1/2 c. peanuts

Mix butter, sugars , and peanut butter well.  Add eggs and vanilla.  Then add baking soda.  Mix in flour and salt.  Stir in chocolate chips, peanut butter cups and peanuts.  Preheat oven to 350.  Drop by large teaspoon onto baking sheet.  Bake 12 minutes.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Crockpot Orange Chicken

This is an easy meal to just tuck away in the crockpot and come home to ready to go.  Crockpots are so wonderful on a busy day.  Nothing like coming home to a dinner almost ready to go.  I served this with some orange yakisoba noodles I found at my local Safeway, but it would be equally good with rice.  This recipe serves 4.
4 chicken breasts or thighs
1/2 bottle honey barbeque sauce
1/2 c. orange marmalade
1/4 c. soy sauce
1 T. ginget
Just put all ingredients in crockpot and cook 6-8 hours.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Wheatberry Black Bean Chili

I had some cooked wheat berries left after I made my delicious salad..hope you saw that post!  So next on the week of grains....a nice vegetarian chili with wheat berries for protein.  This recipe went together very quickly.  Great for a quick meal.  It is spicy and hearty.  Put some avocado on top for a garnish.  This recipe is from Eating Well-so besides being delicious, and high fiber, it is good for you!
Perfect for a rainy night with leftovers for lunch.


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  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 large yellow bell pepper,chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 2 15-ounce cans black beans, rinsed
  • 2 14-ounce cans no-salt-added diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1-2 canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, minced
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 teaspoons light brown sugar
  • 2 cups Cooked Wheat Berries
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Heat olive oil in a large pot.  Add onion, peppers, garlic. and spices.  Cook 5 minutes.
 Next add the beans, tomatoes , broth, and chipolte peppers. Also add in brown sugar.  Bring to a simmer.  Simmer for 15 minutes.  Add in wheat berries.  Heat through.  Just before serving mix in lime juice.  Top each chili serving with avocado and cilantro.