Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Au Gratin Potatoes

2 large baker potatoes or 4-5 medium, thinly sliced
½ cup chopped onion
2 Tbs. butter
¼ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
2 Tbs. flour (white bean flour)
1¼ c. milk
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
¼ cup dry bread crumbs

Cook and stir onion in butter until tender. Stir in flour, salt, and pepper. Add milk all at once. Cook over low heat until thick and bubbly (at least 3 minutes if using bean flour). Add ¾ cup of the cheese. Stir until melted. Place ½ of the potatoes in a greased casserole. Cover with half the sauce. Repeat. Bake covered at 350* for 40 minutes. Mix remaining cheese and the bread crumbs. Sprinkle over potatoes. Return to oven and cook uncovered for 30 more minutes.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Pico de Gallo

Pronounced "peek-oh day guy-oh", pico de gallo, or pico sauce is a wonderful addition to tacos, tostadas, burritos, and the like. It's SO easy to make and to customize. And by 'customize', I mean I, again, don't have a strict recipe but more of an ingredient list. Here's what you need:

Fresh (not canned) diced tomato
Fresh diced onion
Chopped cilantro

Mix these three ingredients in ratios that are pleasing to your taste and add a sprinkle of salt and a squirt or two of lime juice.

That's it. Easy right?

You can add other ingredients as desired. Green onion is pretty. Some people like black pepper. Or jalapeños for some heat. We like our mild. What's fun about the pico that is pictured is that all the veggies are from our own garden! Pretty, yummy, and easy. What's not to love!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Chicken Noodle Soup

This isn't a recipe per se because I don't exactly follow one... It's more of an ingredient list so you'll have to fiddle with amounts, but here goes:

I follow my cookbook recipe for the noodles (LOVE my pasta roller/cutter) and then wing the rest of it.

Sauté onion, carrot, and celery in olive oil and season with salt, pepper, basil, garlic.

Add chicken broth (either homemade or using Better Than Bouillon [or both]). Today I ran out of BTB so I used a packet of dry chicken gravy mix to boost the seasoning. I don't usually do that.

Dice up chicken breast and fry it in a little oil (I used coconut) in a separate pan. Season with salt, garlic, pepper, whatever is to your liking.

Add noodles and boil until desired tenderness. It totally depends on if you are using dry store-bought noodles, fresh homemade, frozen homemade... I never know how long to cook it. 10-12 minutes probably.

Add cooked chicken at the last minute and heat through.

See my post on "Homemade Pasta" for the noodle recipe. I use the whole batch of noodles when I make this soup.

Homemade Pasta

I'm totally cheating here but instead of posting the recipe I'm just going to post a link to the page in my recipe book that I follow.

I use the main recipe with no variations. If you don't have the nifty pasta maker pictured you can roll it out with a rolling pin and cut the noodles with a pizza cutter. That's what I did before I got the pasta maker. It's more work but it's totally doable.

This recipe is from the
Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook.


Monday, August 29, 2011

Energy (Granola) Bars

3 cups granola
1 cup (heaping) nuts
1 cup (heaping) dried fruit
3/4 cup bonus ingredient
3/4 cup bonus ingredient (yes, another one)
1/2 cup brown sugar
3 Tablespoons whole wheat flour
4 egg whites
Click on images to enlarge
Bonus ingredients are things like:
a second dried fruit, seeds, another nut, chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, coconut, whatever floats your boat!

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Prepare a 10x15 cookie sheet by lining it with foil and then spraying with a light layer of oil. This really helps when releasing the bars.

Press mixture into prepared pan.

Bake at 300* for 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned. Let cool for 10 minutes and then cut into bars. (I use a Bash-n-Chop and press it into the mixture so I don't drag a knife over the foil under the bars. You could probably use a pancake turner or anything like that.) Don't wait until completely cool or the bars will just crumble.

Remove from pan and separate into bars when completely cool.

Makes about 24 bars depending on how they're cut.


The bars pictured here were made with almonds, dried cranberries, coconut, chocolate chips and a wee bit of flax seed.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Turkey Tetrazzini

8 oz. noodles, cooked
4-6 Tablespoons butter
¼ cup flour
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup cream
8 ounces mushrooms, optional
½ - 1 cup green peas, optional
3-4 cups cooked turkey or chicken
½ - 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
Bread Crumb Topping: ¼ cup dry bread crumbs & ½ cup grated cheese (any kind)

Cook noodles. In a skillet melt 2 Tbs. butter and sauté mushrooms. In saucepan, melt ¼ cup butter; stir in flour, garlic, and salt until smooth. Add chicken broth and cream. Cook until thickened. Add turkey, cheese, peas, and mushrooms; heat through. Add cooked noodles and combine. Transfer to a buttered baking dish. Top with bread crumb topping. Bake 15-20 minutes in a 425° oven.

This recipe is my morphing about 3 different recipes into my own version.

Photo courtesy of:

Blueberry Buckle

¾ cup sugar
½ cup butter
1 egg
½ cup milk
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup frozen or fresh blueberries

Mix sugar, butter, and egg. Stir in milk. Add flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix well. Gently fold in blueberries. (If frozen, don’t thaw) Spread batter into a greased, floured 8- or 9-inch square pan. Sprinkle with crumb topping.

Crumb Topping:
½ cup sugar
1/3 cup flour
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ cup butter

Cut together until it resembles crumbs. Sprinkle over batter. Bake 35-40 minutes in a 375° oven.

Recipe courtesy of: my mom!! ♥
Photo courtesy of:

Corn Chowder

8 small to medium potatoes
1 cup chopped onion
2 Tablespoons chicken bouillon
¾ teaspoon pepper
4 cups milk
1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
½ cup flour*
32 oz. fresh, frozen, or drained canned corn

Place peeled and diced potatoes in a large saucepan, add onion, bouillon, pepper, parsley, and enough water to cover it all about ½ inch. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer about 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in 3 cups of the milk. Combine remaining milk and flour.* Stir milk-flour mixture into potato mixture. Cook and stir until thick and bubbly. Add corn and cook until heated throughout. If desired garnish with crisp-cooked, crumbled bacon.

This makes a big batch. I freeze half of this and each half feeds my family of seven.

*I usually use white bean flour and it can be whisked right into the hot soup, it doesn't need to be mixed with cold milk first like regular flour would.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Cream Cheese Frosting

6 oz. cream cheese
½ cup softened butter
2 tsp. vanilla
4 ½ to 4 ¾ cups powdered sugar
(1 cup powdered sugar = 6 oz.)

In a large bowl, beat together cream cheese, butter and vanilla till light and fluffy. Gradually add 2 cups of the powdered sugar, beating well. Gradually beat in enough remaining powdered sugar to make frosting of spreading consistency.
Frosts the tops and sides of two 8- or 9-inch cake layers.

Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting: Prepare as above, except substitute ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder for ¼ cup powdered sugar.