Thursday, November 27, 2008

Turtle Pumpkin Pie {picture coming soon}

  • 1/4 cup caramel ice cream topping
  • 1 (6 ounce) HONEY MAID Graham Pie Crust
  • 1/2 cup PLANTERS Pecan Pieces
  • 1 cup cold milk
  • 2 pkg. (4 serving size) JELL-O Vanilla Flavor Instant Pudding & Pie Filling
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 (8 ounce) tub COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, thawed, divided
  • 2 tablespoons caramel ice cream topping
  • 2 tablespoons PLANTERS Pecan Pieces


  1. Pour 1/4 cup caramel topping into crust; sprinkle with 1/2 cup pecans.
  2. Beat milk, dry pudding mixes, pumpkin and spices with whisk until blended. Stir in 1-1/2 cups whipped topping. Spread into crust.
  3. Refrigerate 1 hour. Top with remaining whipped topping, caramel topping and pecans just before serving. Store leftovers in refrigerator.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Easy Cheesy Cheese Ball (thanks to DeAnn Jeppson)

Original Cheese Ball

1 Package of Cream cheese
1 tablespoon of chives
1 tablespoon of Bon Appetit seasoning

Mix these things together and roll in almonds, and you have a delicious cheese ball. 

chris' cheese ball

1 package of cream cheese
1 tablespoon of chives
1 tablespoon of dry ranch mix
1/2 cup of smoked cheddar cheese
and he added just a dash of Bon Appetit seasoning

Mix all together and roll in almonds. Chris loves almonds that are
flavored with garlic. 

this makes the perfect holiday treat!! 

Friday, November 7, 2008

Pumpkin Spice Cake with Delicious Honey Frosting!!

    • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for pan
    • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
    • 2 teaspoons baking soda
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 tablespoon pumpkin-pie spice (or 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, 3/4 teaspoon ginger, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, and 1/8 teaspoon each allspice and cloves)
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 1 can (15 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin puree
    • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, very soft
    • 1 bar (8 ounces) regular (or reduced-fat) cream cheese, very soft
    • 1/4 cup honey


    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-inch square baking pan.
    2. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, salt, and pumpkin-pie spice. In a large bowl, whisk eggs, sugar, butter, and pumpkin puree until combined. Add dry ingredients to pumpkin mixture, and mix gently until smooth.
    3. Turn batter into prepared pan, and smooth top. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool cake 10 minutes in pan, then turn out of pan, and cool completely, right side up, on a rack.
    4. Make Honey Frosting: In a medium bowl, whisk butter, cream cheese, and honey until smooth.
    5. Spread top of cooled cake with honey frosting. Cut cake into squares to serve.

    It asks that you use the pumpkin filling from the can, it's the most compatable for this recipe. It's delicious and the frosting is something fresh and new. 

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Creamy Macaroni and Cheese with Ham

Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 pound elbow pasta, cooked and drained
4 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, chopped
1/4 cup (spooned and leveled) all-purpose flour
4 cups milk
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, (optional)
1 1/4 cups (5 ounces) shredded yellow cheddar cheese
1 1/4 cups (5 ounces) shredded white cheddar cheese
8 ounces ham, diced into 1/2-inch pieces
2 white sandwich bread

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cook pasta, and drain; reserve. Meanwhile, in a 5-quart heavy pot, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion; cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Whisk in flour to coat onion. In a slow steady stream, whisk in milk until there are no lumps.

Cook, whisking often, until mixture is thick and bubbly and coats the back of a wooden spoon, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in cayenne & nutmeg, if using, and 1 cup each yellow and white cheddar cheese. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Toss pasta with cheese mixture; fold in ham.Transfer to a 9-by-13-inch baking dish or individual dishes (see note, below left). Set aside.

(This topping is the best and would be great on anything where you need a breaded topping....cheesy, crunchy, yum!) In a food processor, pulse bread until large crumbs form. Toss together with remaining 1/4 cup each white and yellow cheddar, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Top pasta with breadcrumb mixture. Bake until top is golden, about 30 minutes

I always add nutmeg. Just add a dash or two. It adds a kick without making you think. Hmmm...there's nutmeg in this. Also, the cyanne pepper is a really great addition. I just add all one kind of cheese.


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Glazed Carrots

Brown Sugar

Steam carrots until al dente (not too soft as they will continue to cook a little while you glaze). Over Med-low head glaze carrots to taste with a bit of butter, the brown sugar, pepper and nutmeg for a few minutes until sugar melts and caramelizes a little. Easy and super yum! One of my most frequently asked for recipes!

Skillet Chicken Parmesan

Sauce (this one is fresh and delicious or use your favorite pre-made)
¼ cup olive oil or vegetable oil
1 cup chopped onions
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 can (28oz) crushed tomatoes
2 tsp sugar
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/3 cup Progresso Italian style dry bread crumbs, or similar
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg, beaten
½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 TBS grated parmesan cheese

1. Heat 2 TBS of the oil over medium heat. Cook onions and garlic in oil 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in tomatoes, sugar, salt and pepper. Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat; cover and simmer, stirring occasionally.
2. Between sheets of waxed paper, flatten chicken to ¼ inch thickness. In shallow dish, mix bread crumbs and 1/3 cup parmesan cheese. Dip chicken into egg, then coat with bread crumb mixture.
3. In 12-inch skillet, heat remaining oil over medium heat. Cook chicken in oil 10-15 minutes, turning once, until no longer pink in center. Pour tomato sauce around chicken in skillet. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese over chicken; cover and heat until melted. Sprinkle with 2 Tbs Parmesan cheese just before serving.

Butternut Squash Soup

Meet the oh so delicious and healthy Butternut Squash. Mix it with a few things (it can't be too healthy, right?!) and you've got a perfect soup for fall that's elegant enough for a fancy dinner and yet soothing enough for a night by the fire....that is if I had a fireplace. Guess I'll have to huddle up next to the heater vent! Butternut Squash soup:

1-3 Butternut Squash (I used 3 and it filled my big pot. Freezes great and also yummy to pair with Easy Breadsticks and share with neighbors)
Chicken Broth (for 3 I used the big box type. May only need 1-2 cans)
Brown Sugar

Bake the de-seeded butternut squash upside-down in a pan (may add a little water if you prefer) at about 350 for about 45-60 minutes, or until fork tender. Scoop out all of the yummy pulp and combine it with some of the chicken broth in the blender until smooth and to just about the desired consistency (will add milk later). If you have a super-duper "scary" blender like mine with a stick thing to help mix it around, you can put quite a bit in at a time. Otherwise, you may want to blend it a portion at a time. Pour it into a pot on the stove and add to taste about 4-12 TBS butter, a bunch of Brown Sugar, and the pepper and nutmeg. Pour in milk or cream until desired consistency and taste. Heat through. Soothing, flavorful, beautiful, YUM!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Fabulous Potatoes

Fabulous Potatoes and Autumnal place settings. O.K. for the potatoes:

14 potatoes
3 cloves garlic
1 pound bacon
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 pound cheddar cheese, grated
1 pint whipping cream

Cover raw potatoes and peeled garlic cloves with water in a large pot. Bring to a boil. Turn down heat to a gentle boil. Cook until tender (test with a fork). Drain potatoes. While potatoes are cooling, open bacon, cut with kitchen shears into bits and fry. Set aside crisp bacon. Drain most of the fat from the pan. Add onion to drippings and saute till golden brown. Add bacon back to pan and mix.
By this time the potatoes should be cool enough to peel. Use a small paring knife to do this. Then cut potatoes into slices the about the width of your pinkie, you know, not too thin.
Spray a pan (I use the one bigger than 9x13, a dripper pan) with Pam and layer 1/2 of the potatoes in the bottom, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover with the bacon/onion mixture. Add the rest of the potato slices, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and cover with the cheese. Drizzle the whipping cream over the top. Cover tightly with foil (I spray it with Pam first, so I won't have any cheese sticking to it) and bake 350 F for about 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly. You can also prepare it earlier, and put it in the fridge. Then put it in a cold oven and gradually bring it to 350F. It bakes about an hour this way. Serves 12-16.

Those potatoes are screaming to be served in Fall. Here's a place setting idea: Gather leaf-shaped place mats or place mats of fall colors. I had clear plates, so
I added a leaf underneath my plate. Next came the salad bowl and the napkin. (this is Morgan's place, hence the little fork and spoon). Voile! Happy eating!