Sunday, October 24, 2010

Oatmeal Raspberry Bars

Have you ever had an obsession with food? I am not a huge sweets fan, but I get around these little guys and oh, boy! I had to send the leftover ones (I can't believe I made it through the night without eating them all) with my husband to work so I wouldn't take it upon myself to finish them off today. And good thing, cause the Saints got beat this morning and the Broncos are as we speak. I guess I'm kind of an emotional eater. That and there is something about watching football that makes me want to snack all day. That raspberry jam just calls out to me.Or perhaps it's the stick AND a half of butter in it! ANYWAY! Just make these-they're good! You won't be sorry you did. My mom agrees. She showed me the way with this one.

Oatmeal Raspberry Bars
  • 1 1/2 C flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 C brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 C old fashioned rolled oats
  • 3/4 C unsalted butter
  • 1 C raspberry jam
  • 1 tsp lemon juice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Add brown sugar and oats. Cut in butter and mix with your hands. Reserve one cup of oat mixture for the topping. Firmly press remaining oat mixture into 8x8 greased pan. Spread with jam mixed with lemon juice. Top with reserved crumb mixture. Bake for 28-32 minutes or until lightly browned. Cut into small squares when completely cooled. Enjoy!

Ranch Cheeseball

This one is a crowd pleaser! Who doesn't love a good cheeseball, and this one is definately the best I've had. My step-mom Mo is famous for making it and it never disappoints. The best part is-you cannot mess it up.

  • 1 pkg. Hidden Valley Ranch mix, dry
  • 1/2 C mayo
  • 1/2 C milk
  • 8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese*
  • 6 oz. cream cheese* (I may have used 8. I used a whole block-whatever that is)
  • 5 oz. toasted almonds

*leave cheeses at room temperature for one hour.

Mix together 1st 3 ingredients. Add cream cheese. Beat well with electric mixer. Add cheddar cheese and blend. Cover and freeze 30-45 minutes. Shape into a ball and roll in toasted almonds. Serve with any crackers or veggies of your choice. Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

No Bake Cookies

I love football season! I love baking and making all kinds of things that call for a whole stick of butter, but I don't need to eat that whole stick of butter by myself, so when we have family dinners with the football coaches I make all these devilish little treats and everyone else eats the rest. It's a win-win for everyone! These little doozies are a sure hit!
No Bake Cookies
  • 1 3/4 C white sugar
  • 1/2 C milk
  • 1/2 C butter
  • 4 T unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 C peanut butter
  • 3 C quick cooking oats
  • 1 t vanilla extract

Lay out wax paper or parchment paper-about 2 cookie sheet size sheets. In a large pot, combine sugar, milk, butter, and cocoa. Bring just to a boil on medium heat and cook for 1 1/2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter, oats and vanilla. Drop by spoon onto wax paper. Let cool until hardened. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Cookies

These are the perfect cake-like cookie for any fall party or festival! Everyone loves them. A few things: little t is teaspoon, big T is Tablespoon. I am not questioning your intelligence BELIEVE me! Just putting it out there for ya. I also didn't have nutmeg on hand and instead of loading up all the Applewhites for some spice I just went with Allspice-cause-well-it has nutmeg in it and it was justifiable for me and we need no more spice...or sass for the matter. No one noticed. Not even me. So there. Improv at it's finest. Take the bull by the horns once in a while! Live on the edge-but don't go overboard.

Pumpkin Cookies

Dry Ingredients

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1 t ground cinammon
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/2 t ground nutmeg

Other Ingredients

  • 1/2 C butter, softened
  • 1 C brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 C canned pumpkin
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 1 C chocolate chips (or raisins or neither)
  • cream cheese frosting

**Grease cookie sheets and preheat oven to 375 degrees. Stir together all the dry ingredients. in a bowl. In a seperate bowl (if you have a Kitchen Aid, use that bowl for this part) beat butter for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar and beat until fluffy. Add egg, pumpkin and vanilla-beat well. Add dry ingredients to beaten mixture until combined. Fold in chocolate chips. Or don't-whatever.

Drop from a spoon 2 inches apart onto greased cookie sheet. Bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes. Let cool completely. Cover with cream cheese frosting. Enjoy!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Tortellini Soup

This is one of those throw together, don't need a recipe kind of meals and that's what is so great about it. You can chop and dunk and you are done! Super easy from start to finish and something in there for everyone! You can add chicken to this too. These measurements are VERY approximate. Just adjust to your liking and crowd. I used the refrigerated tortellini for this one, but I have used the dry as well and they are just as good.

Chicken Tortellini Soup

  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 20 ounce package of tortellini
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • pepper to taste
  • 1t-1T italian seasoning
  • Parmessan Cheese, shredded

In a large pot brown all the veggies, about 8-10 minutes. Dump in chicken broth and seasonings and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer on low until veggies are al dente, about 20 minutes. Dump in tortellini and cook for as long as the package says. Serve in bowls (with crusty bread-yum) and top with parmessan cheese.


Monday, August 30, 2010

Black Bean Soup

I think fall is right around the corner. This is hard for me to say because it is 88 degrees outside. I am not used to these temperatures in the south, but I think that is a mild temperature for Louisiana this time of year. I even saw a few yellow leaves of the trees in our backyard. Hard to believe, but I suppose it's true. Anyway, I thought I would celebrate this sudden drop in temperature by making SOUP! It speaks to me. It says autumn and rain and leaves changing colors and putting on a sweatshirt and all kinds of other things, but yesturday it said, "Im easy!"

Black Bean Soup
  • 1 Cup jarred fresh tomato salsa (plus extra for garnish)-I make my own pico de gallo. Well worth a little extra effort.
  • 2 15 oz. cans of black beans (I stick with my low sodium), drained and rinsed
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • sour cream for garnish
  • 1 lime
  • Dry sherry (optional but a nice flavor if you have it in the pantry)
  • tortillas (optional)

Heat the salsa in a large saucepan over medium heat, stirring frequently, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in the beans and broth, then heat to boiling. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer 15 minutes. Mash up the beans with a potato masher or a hand blender that you have just stick right in the pot. Dish out into bowls and add a splash of sherry and give it a stir. Top with sour cream, salsa and a squeeze of lime. Add a tortilla for dipping if that's what you're into. Enjoy!

Black Bean Tacos

Never mind that I was half way through this taco before I realized I hadn't snapped a picture of it. Oh, YES! They are that good-and even easier to make! They were in our weekly menu, but we have had to pump the brakes a bit-hubby says, "too much of a good thing isn't always a good thing." Lucky for him I was away for 2 weeks in Colorado so he didn't have to eat it...but my good friend Shannon got a taste and she likey too!

Black Bean Soft Tacos-serves 4
  • Spray of Olive Oil
  • 1 can fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1 can black beans (I go low sodium here, but do as you wish), drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels
  • 4 scallions, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • couple shakes of red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 red onion finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 avocado, sliced (optional)
  • lettuce (optional)
  • 8 corn/flour tortillas (I go whole wheat flour)

Heat oil in a large skillet. Throw in the scallions and give them a quick minute to release their yummyness then add garlic. When that is heated dump in tomatoes, black beans, corn, red pepper flakes and cumin. Bring to a boil and reduce heat. Let simmer about 5 minutes, or if you can't wait another second grab a tortilla and get your eat on! Top it off with cilantro, red onion, avocado and lettuce. Or if you're plain then just eat it without all those fixins. It's your taco. I'm not the boss of you. Enjoy!