Monday, April 25, 2011

Chocolate Peanut Butter Covered Brownie Bites- To Die For!!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Covered Brownie Bites

1 brownie mix such as Pillsbury

2 Cups semi sweet chocolate chips
1/4 Cup peanut butter

1. Prepare brownie mix according to package directions. Bake until toothpick comes out nearly clean from center but still slightly undercooked. Remove from oven and let cool for 15 minutes. When you are able to touch brownies comfortably, scoop brownies with a medium cookie scoop, roll tightly into a ball and place onto a wax paper lined baking sheet. Continue rolling until brownies are gone. Freeze brownies until very firm, a couple hours or overnight. No worries if your brownie balls aren’t perfect, once frozen reshape them. They are easier to handle when chilled.

2. Place chocolate chips over a double broiler (or heat in microwave until smooth) to melt, then stir in peanut butter until creamy smooth. Roll each frozen brownie ball into chocolate and place onto wax paper to dry. Enjoy room temperature or chilled.

Striped Delight

1 1/2 cups Graham cracker crumbs (we would place Graham crackers in a plastic bag and crush with a rolling pin).
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup melted butter
Combine and press into 9x13 inch pan

First layer:
1 package cream cheese (room temperature)
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons milk
Beat until smooth add 1/2 container of cool whip and mix together. Spread over crust.

Second layer:
Mix 2 packages instant pudding of your choice (my favorite is chocolate, but pistachio is good also) with 3 1/2 cups cold milk. Pour over cream cheese mixture. Chill.

Before serving, top with remaining cool whip.

Chocolate Chip cookie Dough Cupcakes

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cupcakes
from Annie's Eats

For the cupcakes:
3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
1½ cups light brown sugar, packed
4 large eggs
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. salt
1 cup milk
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips (semisweet or bittersweet)

For the filling:
4 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
6 tbsp. light brown sugar, packed
1 cup plus 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
7 oz. sweetened condensed milk
½ tsp. vanilla extract
¼ cup mini semisweet chocolate chips

For the frosting:
3 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature
¾ cup light brown sugar, packed
3½ cups confectioners' sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
¾ tsp. salt
3 tbsp. milk
2½ tsp. vanilla extract

For decoration:
Tiny chocolate chip cookies (if you feel ambitious)
Mini chocolate chips

To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350° F. Line two cupcake pans with paper liners (24 total). In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and brown sugar. Beat together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Mix in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Stir together to blend. Add the dry ingredients to the mixer bowl on low speed, alternating with the milk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients, mixing each addition just until incorporated. Blend in the vanilla. Fold in the chocolate chips with a spatula.

Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cupcake liners. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the cookie dough filling, combine the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and cream on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the flour, sweetened condensed milk and vanilla until incorporated and smooth. Stir in the chocolate chips. If the mixture is too soft or sticky to handle with your hands, refrigerate for an hour until it firms up. (Mine was just right - no chilling needed, but the original recipe suggested it.)

To fill the cupcakes, cut a cone-shaped portion out of the center of each cupcake. Fill each hole with a chunk of the chilled cookie dough mixture. You can be generous with the cookie dough mixture. I had about a 1/2 cup leftover.

To make the frosting, beat together the butter and brown sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until creamy. Mix in the confectioners' sugar until smooth. Beat in the flour and salt. Mix in the milk and vanilla extract until smooth and well blended.

Frost the filled cupcakes as desired, sprinkling with mini chocolate chips and topping with mini chocolate chip cookies for decoration.

Makes 24 cupcakes.

Almond Joy Brownies

I love these brownies because they are easy, delicious, and have ingredients that I usually have in my cupboard.

1 box (the 1 lb family size or 9x13" size) brownie mix
2 tsp almond extract
3/4 cup almonds chopped
1 cup coconut

Mix brownies according to package directions, and then stir in remaining ingredients. Bake according to package directions.
*I prefer my brownies with more brownies and less "stuff" but you could add in more nuts, extract, and coconut!

Creme de Menthe Brownies

Creme de Menthe Brownies

* 1 cups (2 sticks) butter, softened
* 2 cups sugar
* 4 large eggs
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 11/4 cup all-purpose flour
* 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
* 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
* 1 (10-ounce) package Creme de Menthe baking chips (recommended: Andes)
* Shaved Creme de Menthe thins (recommended: Andes)
* Chocolate frosting


* 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
* 1/3 cup cocoa
* 2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 2 tablespoons milk


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 13 by 9 by 2-inch pan.

Using an electric mixer, combine butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl; beat at medium speed until creamy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla, mixing well.

In a separate bowl, combine flour, cocoa, and baking powder. Gradually stir into butter mixture. Fold in mint chips. Spoon into greased pan. Bake for 35 minutes.

While brownies are baking, prepare frosting. Combine butter, cocoa, confectioners' sugar, vanilla and milk in a large mixing bowl; beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until dry ingredients are moistened. Beat at high speed until spreading consistency.

Remove pan from the oven and allow brownies to cool in pan on wire rack. Spread with chocolate frosting. Top with shaved mint thins.

Bubble Pizza

This has become one of our favorite meals. It is a quick & easy way to make pizza. The best part, you put whatever toppings you and your family likes in it.

2 tubes buttermilk biscuits
1 jar of pizza sauce
2 cups cheese
Any pizza topping you & your family likes

If you are using sausage or hamburger, brown and drain the meat.

Cut the biscuits into quarter. Put the biscuits and pizza sauce in a bowl. Add in all your pizza toppings except the cheese (for this pizza we did sausage, pepperoni, olives, green pepper). Mix it all together and place in an ungreased baking dish. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. Put the cheese on top and bake for another 10 minutes.
Note: For the pizza sauce, you can use any kind of sauce you want. Sometimes we use a big can of tomato sauce and put in our own seasonings. Next time, I think we are going to try it Hawaiian style with ham and pineapple.

Spicy Sausage Pasta

This can be a great freezer meal. I will add those directions at the bottom.
For each meal you will need:
1 lb Turkey Kielbasa or any kind of sausage you like, cut into thin slices
1 can Rotel
1 cup cubed colby cheese
1/2 cup Italian Dressing
12 ounces rotini pasta

Brown the sausage and then toss everything together with the cooked pasta. I like to serve this with rolls or cornbread.

When I make this, I usually buy the big 3 lb package of smoked Polish Sausages. I then brown up the sausages and divide into three portions and place each portion into gallon size freezer bags (the third one we eat for dinner). Then into each bag and our dinner, I add 1 can rotel, 1 cup cubed colby cheese and 1/2 cup italian dressing. I then place the two bags into the freezer.

When I want to have one of these meals for dinner, I get out one of my bags and let it thaw. I boil my pasta then add the stuff in the bag to the cooked pasta and let it heat up.
Here are our bags ready to be frozen.

Dorito Casserole

Dorrito Casserole

I got this recipe several years ago from a friend. I remembered about it a few weeks ago so we had it again and I was reminded how much we like it.

1 - 14 1/2 oz can Enchilada sauce
1 can cream of mushroom soup
3 cups cooked, cubed chicken
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1 cup cheese
1 bag Dorritos, any flavor (this time I used the ranch flavored Dorritos and really loved it, but I also really enjoy it with the cheese flavored ones, but you can use any kind you would like.)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Crush the chips and spread half of them on the bottom of a 9 x 13 pan. Mix the sauce, soup, chicken & onion in a bowl and spread over the chips. Sprinkle cheese over the sauce. Then top with the remaining chips. Bake for 35 minutes.

Simple Chicken Pot Pie

adapted from
1 cup potato, peeled and diced
1 cup onion, diced
1 cup celery, diced
1 cup carrots, diced
1/3 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup flour
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup half-an-half (I just use milk)
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper (I use lots more, to taste)
2 cups cooked chicken, diced or shredded
1 can crescent rolls

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Saute onion, celery, carrots, and potatoes in butter for 10 minutes.
Add flour to sauteed mixture, stirring well. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly.
Add milk and broth, gradually stirring into vegetable mixture.
Cook over medium heat stirring constantly until thickened and bubbly. stir in salt and pepper, add chicken and stir well.
Pour into 9x13 inch pan and top with crescents, rolled flat.
Bake for 20- 30 minutes until crescents are golden brown and filling is bubbly.

Southwest Egg Rolls

Southwest Egg Rolls
2-3 Chicken Breasts, cooked and cut into pieces
1/2 bell pepper, chopped
2 tsp dried onion
1 can corn, drained
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 small can green chillies
1/2 Tablespoon parsley
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
dash Cayenne pepper
1 cup cheese (we used mozzarella, but cheddar would be good too)
Flour Tortillas
Avocado-ranch dipping sauce
1 cup ranch
1 whole avocado
1 tsp minced onion
Blend together in blender. Add salt and pepper if desired.
Saute all the ingredients except the cheese together (I don't like biting into crunchy peppers, so I added my green pepper first and then added the rest of the ingredients) until warm. Remove from heat and add shredded cheese. Warm tortillas. Place about 1/2 cup mixture onto tortilla and fold and roll up so that the mixture can't get out. Place inside a panni or george forman grill to grill and melt cheese. Serve dipping sauce.

Thai Tofu Noodles

Thai Noodle Salad with Saute Tofu (from Cooking Light)
3/4 pound firm water-packed tofu, drained
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce (such as Lee Kum Kee)
1 teaspoon sugar
2 teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon peanut oil

3/4 pound uncooked rice vermicelli

1/4 cup fresh lime juice
3 tablespoons chili garlic sauce (such as Lee Kum Kee)
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons peanut oil
1 tablespoon Thai fish sauce (such as Three Crabs)
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Remaining ingredients:
2 cups thinly sliced romaine lettuce
1 cup shredded carrot
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 teaspoon salt

1. To prepare tofu, cut tofu into 3/4-inch-thick slices. Arrange tofu slices in a single layer on several layers of paper towels. Top with several more layers of paper towels; top with a cast-iron skillet or other heavy pan. Let stand 30 minutes. Remove tofu from paper towels; cut into 3/4-inch cubes. Combine tofu, 2 tablespoons juice, and next 6 ingredients (through garlic) in a zip-top plastic bag. Seal and marinate at room temperature 2 hours, turning bag occasionally.

2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan, swirling to coat; heat 30 seconds. Remove tofu from bag; discard marinade. Add tofu to pan; sauté 5 minutes or until crisp, carefully turning to brown all sides. Remove from heat.

3. To prepare noodles, while tofu marinates, place vermicelli in a large bowl. Cover with boiling water. Let stand 20 minutes or until tender. Drain and rinse under cold water; drain well. Set noodles aside.

4. To prepare dressing, combine 1/4 cup juice and next 8 ingredients (through 1/4 teaspoon red pepper), stirring with a whisk.

5. Combine vermicelli, lettuce, and remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Add dressing; toss well to combine. Top with tofu.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Lemon Cake for Easter

Cool Lemon Coconut Sour Cream Cake

1 pkg. (2-layer size) lemon cake mix

1-3/4 cups BREAKSTONE'S or KNUDSEN Sour Cream, divided

1/3 cup oil

1-1/2 cups BAKER'S ANGEL FLAKE Coconut

1/2 cup sugar

1-1/2 cups thawed COOL WHIP Whipped Topping

Make It

PREHEAT oven to 350°F. Spray 10-cup tube pan or 12-cup fluted tube pan with cooking spray; set aside. Beat eggs, cake mix, 1 cup of the sour cream and the oil in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed 2 min. Pour into prepared pan.

BAKE 40 min. or until wooden toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool in pan on wire rack 10 min. Run knife or metal spatula around edge of pan to loosen cake. Invert cake onto rack; gently remove pan. Cool cake completely.

MIX remaining 3/4 cup sour cream, the coconut and sugar in large bowl until well blended. Gently stir in whipped topping. Spread onto cake. Store in refrigerator.

Garnish with halved fresh strawberries just before serving.

Monday, April 11, 2011

FS Oatmeal Cookies

Such a wonderful recipe to use food storage ingredients, my kids wanted cookies and didn't have normal stuff to make cookies- here is a great recipe for FS cookies!!

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
*a tip before you begin…I always soak my raisins in water & vanilla so that the raisins are plump and juicy and taste like vanilla. If you don’t have a lot of time you can heat the water, vanilla, and raisins in the microwave for 2 minutes. Remember that you can definitely use your leftover water to hydrate your eggs!

Cream together:
1 C shortening (1 C. cooked and drained white beans)
1 C brown sugar
1 C white sugar
2 eggs (2 T. dry egg powder + 1/4 C. Water)
1 tsp. vanilla
Stir into creamed mixture
1 ½ C whole wheat flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. soda
3 C. oats
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 C. raisins
Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls and bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Other Uses for Dehydrated Fruits and Vegetables

While not critical for sustaining life, fruits and vegetables are a welcome addition to any food storage program for the health benefits, variety, to help you save money on your day to day grocery shopping and to make preparing a meal take less time.

Nutritionally dried fruits and vegetables are not that different from fresh fruits and vegetables because they aren’t cooked when dehydrated (unlike canned or frozen fruits or vegetables). The process of dehydration only removes moisture and liquid from fresh fruits and vegetables.

The cannery offers dehydrated onions, carrots, and apple slices. However, in addition to those, I personally store dehydrated celery, bell peppers, berries, and bananas. A good way to decide what types of dehydrated fruits and vegetables you should have on hand is to think of what types of fruits and vegetables you can’t store in a can as shelf stable food.

When making carrot cake use dehydrated carrots, whole wheat flour and powdered eggs, raisins and pecans which would rotate your food storage items.

Dehydrated apples from the cannery are great for whipping up a quick apple crisp or apple pie.

Since I discovered all these wonderfuly dehydrated fruits and vegetables I love using them it is cheap, and very much a time saver.

Using your Fruits and Vegetables

Throw in dehydrated vegetables or fruits.
much more nutrients than do canned vegetables, and add variety to food storage. Once you start using
them, the convenience will win you over. No washing, peeling, or chopping. Dehydrated potatoes, onions,
carrots, corn, bell peppers and celery are ready to use in soups and casseroles. Dehydrated apples
are fantastic in oatmeal, or reconstituted and chopped for baked goods. They’re also wonderful
straight from the can as a snack.
Dehydrated or freeze-dried fruits and vegetables retain

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Awesome Find!!

Ok, well after picking up the kids from school this afternoon, remembered I needed to stop by the store for Toilet Paper. So we stopped by Aldi and got stuff and low and behold I didn't remember Toilet Paper. So I ran over to Big Lots and just thought I'd look at what they had in the food area.  I see in the Mexican food area this potato soup mix. It is 30 servings for $5.00. That is  an excellent deal and perfect for food storage! I picked up two bags, but there are more so go get some. It looked like they had alot. I thought it was too good to pass up!!  You only add water! And yes, I did remember the toilet paper!:)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Yes a Lowfat Fudge Recipe

Peanut Butter Fudge

one box Betty crocker Fudge Brownie Mix Traditionaly Chewy
2 cups canned pure pumpkin
2 Tbsp. reduced fat peanut butter, room temp.

Heat oven to 350. Combine pumpkin with the brownie mix in a large bowl and stir until smooth (batter will be very thick). but don't add anything else!!

Spray a square baking pan (9x9) with nonstick spray and pour in the mixture. Spoon peanut butter on top and swirl in with a knife. Bake for 35 min. The batter will remain very thick and fudgy, and it should look undercooked. Allow to cool.

1 piece is only 65 calories, and 1 gram fat. :)

Buffalo Chicken Salad - lowfat

Buffalo Chicken Salad

3 cups chopped romaine lettuce
3 oz. cooked boneless skinless lean chicken breast, chopped
1 Tbsp. Frank's RedHot Original Cayenne Pepper Sauce
1 Tbsp. parmesan style grated topping
1/2 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped celery

Place chicken in a small bowl, top with hotsauce and parmesan, stir until chicken is coated, then heat for 45 seconds in the microwave.
Place lettuce, carrots, and celery in a large bowl, and then top with the chicken mixture.
1 serving

Caribbean Chicken and Rice

3 leg quarters cut into large pieces, washed and pat dry
1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
4 tablespoons Kecap Manis (or C’bean Chinese Sauce), divided
1 heaping tablespoon green seasoning
2 teaspoons five-spice powder, divided
1 teaspoon grated garlic
1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger, divided
Salt and black pepper to taste
2 cups long grain white rice
3 cups water
Canola oil
1 tablespoon fine chopped fresh ginger
3 clove garlic, smashed
Minced hot pepper to taste
½ cup diced carrots
½ cup green peas (fresh or defrosted)
½ cup diced bell peppers (red, green & yellow)
½ teaspoon MSG
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
2 eggs, beaten and lightly fried, and cut up
½ cup thinly sliced green onions (white & green parts)
Prep Ahead:
1. Add chicken, soy sauce, 2-tablespoons, Kecap Manis or Chinese sauce, green seasoning, 1-teaspoon 5-spice powder, grated garlic and ½ tablespoon grated garlic and salt and pepper to taste to a bowl and mix together. Set aside to marinate
2. Wash the rice about 3 – 5 times until water runs clear
3. Add rice, water, 1-tablespoon oil and salt to taste to pot. Stir, cover pot, set on high heat and bring to a boil. As soon as the pot comes to a boil, reduce heat to summer and let cook for 25 minutes. At the end of that time, remove the pot from the heat and leave untouched for 10 minutes then remove cover, fluff rice and spread it out on a large baking sheet to cool completely
1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil to large karahi/wok or deep frying pan
2. Remove chicken from marinade and sauté in pan. Let both side brown. Pour marinade and enough water to cook chicken, cover and cook until chicken is cooked through and there is just a little thick sauce remaining. Remove the pan from the stove and transfer the chicken and sauce to a bowl and set aside
3. Wipe the pan clean and add another 2 tablespoons oil and place on high heat
4. Add chopped ginger, smashed garlic and minced hot pepper and sauté for 30 seconds
5. Add carrots and cook for 30 – 45 seconds
6. Add peas, peppers and rice to pan and stir to mix; let cook for 2 – 3 minutes or until the rice is heated through
7. Sprinkle 5-spice powder, MSG, grated ginger, salt and pepper to taste and toss to mix thoroughly
8. Drizzle in sesame oil along with remainder 2-tablespoons Kecap Manis/Chinese Sauce and toss; cook for another minute
9. Add cooked chicken and drippings along with eggs to rice and toss to mix. Cook for another minute and serve garnished with green onions.