Monday, December 31, 2012

New Years Eve....Looking Forward

Here it is New Years Eve time to say good-bye to another year.  To tell you the truth I am very happy to see 2012 gone.  Instead of dwelling on a not so good year I am going to look forward to the New Year with a fresh start and optimism.

To start the year off I am going to be changing up my blog I will be adding more than food.  I am hoping this will help me with one of my goals for 2013 by being more creative and trying new things. 

If I can keep on the right track with my blogging schedule it will then help me with another goal which is to be more organized in my home and in my life.  This is something I have struggled with all my life I am ready to hand over my crown as the Procrastination Queen to someone else.

Then there is the resolution almost everyone has about getting healthy.  I did pretty good last year losing 30 pounds but I still have a ways to go.  Instead of waiting that extra day to start I am starting today for some reason I like starting on a Monday.  Today is my first day (again) of TurboFire.
I'm sticking with TurboFire I know it works and it is fun.

Throughout the year I will add goals to my list and share them here.  It's funny I will have a ton of ideas/goals in my head and as soon as I look at a blank piece of paper my mind goes blank too.
Nothing has to be set in stone by New Years Day especially when it has to do with enriching your life that is something we can work on the whole year long. 

Tonight my husband and I are going to enjoy a nice evening together watching Harry Potter (I've only watched up to the 4th movie) while eating finger foods and toasting in the New Year.

How will you be spending the last day of the year?  

I will see you in 2013

Until Next Year,

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

I will be back in 2013.  Taking a much needed break during the holiday season.

2012 has been a rough year for us.  We have had to put out major dollars for our water well which is still not producing much water, I have to do laundry in town, not always enough water to take a shower or do dishes.  Due to this Christmas is very bleak, no decorating and no gifts this year.  I am thankful for good health and that we have a lovely Christmas dinner.  Praying that 2013 is better.

Until the New Year,

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

Sending Thanksgiving Blessings to you and your family

I am so happy that my daughter and her boyfriend were able to make the 7 hour drive to Utah to have Thanksgiving with us. 

I am thankful for Family and that we are all in good health I couldn't ask for anything more

Until Next Time,

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Johnsonville Viva La Pizza

Here is my third entry in the Johnsonville Pizza Possibilities Contest and it happens to be my husbands favorite of the three I entered.

Viva La Pizza
A hearty Mexican pizza using Johnsonville Hot Italian Sausage and Johnsonville Chorizo Patty

1 Johnsonville Hot Italian Sausage Link, remove casing
1 Johnsonville Chorizo Patty
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 16oz can refried beans
1 packet taco seasonings
1/4 cup Kraft Parmesan Grated Cheese
2/3 cup Kraft Shredded Cheddar Cheese
2/3 cup Kraft Shredded Pepper Jack Cheese
1 4oz can sliced black olives
1/4 cup pickled jalapeños sliced
1/2 cup sliced onions
1/2 cup your favorite salsa
1 Boboli Original Pizza Crust
Sour Cream

Heat 1 teaspoon olive oil is a skillet cook Johnsonville Chorizo Patty about 12 minutes on each side, chopped into small pieces, set aside. Heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil in same skillet and add Johnsonville sausage cook until crumbled and no longer pink. Mix together with Chorizo. 

Now it's time to assembly your pizza. Spread can of refried beans on pizza crust. Sprinkle with taco seasoning, parmesan cheese, cheddar cheese and pepper jack cheese. Top with sausage and chorizo, onions, olives and jalapeños. Place in a pre-heated 400 degree oven and bake for 15 minutes or until heated through and cheese has melted. Top with salsa and serve. Serve with extra salsa, sour cream and avocado.

Until Next Time,

Monday, November 19, 2012

That's What I'm Talking About Pizza

I received the phone call today about the Johnsonville Pizza Possibilities Contest and I was not chosen as the grand prize winner.  This is the closest I've gotten to winning a recipe contest so I am thrilled to death.  

Here is one of my other entries in the contest.

That's What I'm Talking About Pizza
A yummy pizza with Johnsonville Hot Italian Link Sausage with red sauce topped with a refreshing relish

2 Tablespoons fresh basil, minced
1 large Roma tomato, chopped
10 yellow cherry tomatoes, quartered
1/2 cup sliced peperoncini's, chopped
1/2 of a red onion, chopped
1 large dill pickle, chopped
1/8 teaspoon celery seed
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 Johnsonville Hot Italian Link Sausage, casings removed
1 cup Kraft Mozzarella shredded cheese
1/2 cup Kraft Parmesan Grated Cheese
1 cup pasta sauce
1 Boboli Original Pizza Crust

Prepare relish by chopping and adding to a bowl, red and yellow tomatoes, peperoncini peppers, dill pickle, red onion, fresh basil. Add salt, pepper, celery seed and 2 tablespoons olive oil, mix together and set aside. 
Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet, add Johnsonville Hot Italian sausage cook until crumbled and cooked through about 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside. 
Assemble: Add the pasta sauce to the Boboli Pizza Crust spreading just to the edge, add cheeses and sausage. Place in a pre-heated 450 degree oven for 10 minutes. Top with Relish Mixture before serving.

Tomorrow I will share my last entry in the pizza contest which happens to be my husbands favorite.

Until Next Time,

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Zesty Lemon Sausage Pizza

A couple months ago I entered three pizza recipes in the Johnsonville Pizza Possibilities Contest.  I was notified I was one of 5 finalist.  You can view all five finalist  HERE.  I'm now waiting to hear who the Grand Prize Winner is....Keeping my fingers crossed.  I will be sharing the other two pizza's I entered over the next couple days.

Zesty Lemon Sausage Pizza

3  Johnsonville Mild Italian Link Sausages
2  teaspoons Olive Oil
3  cups fresh spinach
Juice from 2 lemons, divided
Zest from 2 lemons, divided
1 package 8oz tub Mascarpone cheese, room temp
2/3 cup Kraft parmesan grated cheese
5 teaspoons prepared basil pesto
5 or 6 leaves fresh basil, chopped
1 Boboli Original Pizza Crust

Heat olive oil in skillet place the Johnsonville sausage links in pan cook on medium heat for 12 minutes each side and remove from pan to let rest.  While the sausages are cooking mix together mascarpone cheese, parmesan, juice from one lemon and zest from one lemon.  

In the same skillet you cooked the sausage squeeze half a lemon juice in skillet and add spinach cook until just wilted and remove to a dish.  Cut sausage into bite size pieces (they will still be a little pink in the center). Squeeze the other half of the lemon juice into the skillet and add sausage cook until a nice brown crust and no longer pink.

Spread the cheese mixture on pizza crust, add basil pesto and spread on cheese mixture, add the spinach and sausage.  Sprinkle with a little parmesan cheese and bake in a pre-heated 400 degree oven for 15 minutes.  Top with fresh basil and the rest of the lemon zest and serve.

Until Next Time,

Jam Hands

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Southwestern Corn Pudding

Thinking back on all the Thanksgiving meals I have prepared I usually make the same dishes mainly because my husband loves them and doesn't like change.  Over the years I have changed a few things I use to make a broccoli casserole that was very fattening.  I loved it but I ate too much of it.  So I changed to either fixing green beans or brussel spouts (I prefer the sprouts). 

My stuffing has stayed the same for over 30 years but last year I added a new ingredient...applewood bacon.  No one ever complains about bacon.  

Before springing a new dish on my husband Thanksgiving I did a test run today.  Southwestern Corn Pudding.  I started to fix him a plate of it and he thought it was best just to try a fork full.  Needless to say after the fork full he ate a plate full.  

Southwestern Corn Pudding

1 onion, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
2 8 oz boxes Jiffy corn muffin mix 
2 sticks butter, melted
2 15oz cans whole corn
2  15oz cans creamed corn
1 7oz can diced green chilies
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1 16oz container sour cream
1 teaspoons cayenne pepper
4 dashes Tabasco Sauce
3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
3/4 cup shredded pepper jack cheese

Heat olive oil over medium heat for about 5 to 8 minutes, just until tended. Mix together in a large bowl onions, muffin mix, butter, whole and creamed corn, chilies, eggs, sour cream, tabasco and cayenne. Spray a 9 x 13 inch baking dish with vegetable oil, pour in batter. Bake in a pre-heated 350º oven for 45 minutes.  During the last 20 minutes of cooking top with the jack and cheddar cheeses.

Here's to new dishes

Until Next Time,

Friday, November 9, 2012

Bacon Swiss Chicken

My wish for winter to hold off until December came to a halt today.  We had rain through out the morning that turned into snow.  The next few days our high will be in the 30's and low's in the teens.  To take my mind off the weather I decided to work on a new chicken dish and I think I came up with a winner.  The marinade brought a wonderful flavor to the chicken and the bacon and swiss cheese complimented nicely.

Bacon Swiss Chicken

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup white wine
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons McCormicks Molasses Bacon Seasonings
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
4 slices onion, about 1/4 inch 
8 slices bacon
4 slices thick swiss cheese
olive oil

For marinade mix together vegetable oil, honey, balsamic vinegar, white wine, oregano, McCormicks, salt and pepper and place them in a ziplock bag with chicken breasts.  Toss the chicken around so all the marinade is cover the chicken.  Place in refrigerator for 2 to 4 hours.

In a hot skillet sear chicken on both sides for about 4 minutes each side in a little olive oil I happened to fry up some bacon so I just seared the chicken in that.  Remove from skillet place a slice of onion on top of each breast and wrap with 2 slices of bacon around each breast secure with toothpick if needed. Place back in skillet and place in a 375º oven for about 25 - 30 minutes, half way through the cooking time flip chicken oven and continue cooking until done..  Place a slice of swiss cheese and each breast put back into oven just until the cheese melts.

Until Next Time,



Jam Hands

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Leftover Cookies

Today is baking inventory day, it's time to use up ingredients that have been opened and take inventory on what I need to do my holiday baking.  I've gone through my cookbooks and have decided on what goodies I will be making to give as gifts.

Today I made "Leftover Cookies" I'm using the leftover bags of chocolate chips, nuts, candy whatever I have in my pantry.  I make a large batch of standard cookie dough and make a couple of trays of cookies.  The rest of the dough I freeze for when I need to bake up some last minute cookies.

This time I did something a little different with the recipe I added spices to try something new.

Leftover Cookies

4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon espresso powder (optional)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg (optional)
1/4 teaspoon cardamon (optional)
2 cups butter (4 sticks softened)
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
3/4 cup dark brown sugar, packed
2 teaspoons vanilla
4 large eggs

What ever leftovers you have on hand I added 3/4 bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips, 1 cup butterscotch chips, 1 cup coconut, 1 cup chopped pecans and 2/3 cup rough chopped Pumpkin Spice Kisses.  

Pre-heat oven to 375º 

In a small bowl add the flour, baking soda, salt, espresso powers and spices.  In a extra large bowl cream together butter and sugar, add eggs one an a time beating after each one, add vanilla.  Add flour a little at a time until all the flour is incorporated.  Add the leftovers and drop by rounded tablespoons onto a ungreased baking sheet.  Cook for 9 to 11 minutes allow to cook for a couple minutes before removing from baking sheet.  This recipe will make approx. 6 to 7 dozen cookies

Now Go Vote

Until Next Time,

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Beef and Spinach Lasagna

Here we are the end of October.  Almost all the leaves are gone from the trees.  Our lows have been down to freezing but our days have been beautiful.  Mostly we have been in the 60's but today we hit 72 degrees.  I am enjoying this fall weather and I hope snow holds off until December. 

Winter is on the way more deer are coming down from the mountain.  Bill walked outside last evening and a deer was standing right next to the house.  We are seeing less squirrels and chipmunks I guess they are ready for their dens.

This time of year I enjoy more comfort food like soups and casseroles.  Tonight I fixed Beef and Spinach Lasagna since it is just the two of us and will be enjoying all week.  

Beef and Spinach Lasagna

1 lb lean ground beef
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced and divided
salt and pepper, to taste
3 1/2 to 4 cups pasta sauce (jarred or homemade)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 10oz package fresh baby spinach
1 30oz container whole milk ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cup grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
2 eggs
1 9oz box no boil lasagna (I use DeLallo)
4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

In a large skillet over medium heat brown ground beef, add oregano, red pepper flakes, onions and garlic. Cook until ground beef is no longer pink.  While ground beef is cooling heat olive oil in a big pot, add garlic and spinach.  Cook spinach until it is almost completely wilted.  Add to beef mixture. Add 1/2 cup pasta sauce to the bottom of a deep 9 x 13 casserole dish.  Add enough pasta sauce to beef mixture for it to be wet but not soupy.

In a bowl combine ricotta, 1 cup parmigiano, 2 eggs, salt and pepper to taste mix together. Place 5 lasagna sheets over sauce, overlap if needed. Place 1/2 of cheese mixture evenly over lasagna. Sprinkle with 2 cups mozzarella.  Spread evenly 1/3 of the meat mixture on top of the cheese and repeat. Keep enough of the meat mixture to top the last of the lasagna before topping with the last of the mozzarella and parmigiano cheese.  Cover with foil and place on a cookie sheet, cover with foil and bake in a pre-heated 350º oven for 20 minutes.  Remove foil and bake for additional 25 minutes.  Let sit for 15 minutes before cutting.

Saying a nightly prayer for the East Coast
Until Next Time,

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Chai Banana Bread

I love these crisp cool fall days.  Days like this make me want to bake.  I noticed my bananas were getting heavily spotted and beyond where I would eat them. (although Bill loves them this way) Before he could eat them I decided today I would make some banana bread.  But instead of the traditional banana bread I decided to add Chai spices to the recipe.  

Patting myself on the back *What a great idea* first off this bread smells amazing while it's baking and the spices kick this bread up to another level.  Husband approved too.  I knew he would love it he loves  banana bread and my hot chai tea.

Chai Banana Bread

3 cups sugar
3 eggs
1/2 tablespoon vanilla
1/3 cup water
1 cup oil
3 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon cardamon
 5 ripe bananas, mashed

Mix together in a large mixing bowl sugar, eggs, vanilla, water and oil.  Sift into sugar mixture flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and cardamon. Fold in bananas and divide batter into 2 greased and floured loaf pans.  Bake in a pre-heated 350º oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour. 

Your friends and family will love receiving this Chai Banana Bread this Holiday Season.

Until Next Time,


The Chicken Chick

Also shared at  Celebrate-Creativity and Foodie Friends Friday  grab a cup of coffee and see what creative items Lisa and her fans have shared.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Classico Pasta Sauce - Chicken and Peas Alfredo

I use to make a big pot of homemade pasta sauce every month.  Then one day I didn't have time to make it so I ran to the store and bought a jar of Classico.  My husband loved it and said it was every bit as good as my homemade and I'm not spending hours making homemade.  That was way too many years ago to count and I've been using Classico every since.

I love there is a Classico sauce for any dish you want to make from a simple pasta dish to lasagna to pizza. I'm always trying new combinations with items I have on hand and my family is always pleased with the results.

Today I had some chicken breasts that I needed to use up and decided that a Alfredo pasta dish would be perfect.

Chicken and Peas Alfredo

3 boneless and skinless chicken breasts
cajun seasonings
1 lb dry Mostaccioli pasta
3/4 cup onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced and divided
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup white wine or chicken broth
1 15oz jar Classico Four Cheese Alfredo Sauce
12 oz bag frozen peas, do not defrost
4 tablespoons butter
1 cup italian bread crumbs
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated

Pre-heat oven to 375º. Rinse and dry chicken breasts sprinkle with salt, pepper and cajun seasonings both sides.  Place in oven and bake for 20 to 30 minutes until done.

Fill a pot with water, add salt bring to a boil add Mostaccioli pasta and cook for 8 minutes (it will finish cooking in the oven) drain.

In a skillet heat olive oil over medium heat add half the garlic and cook for 5 minutes (do not brown). Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds, add wine (or chicken broth) and simmer for 2 minutes.  Add to a large bowl.  Cut cooked chicken into bite sized pieces and add to onion mixture, add Classico Four Cheese Alfredo Sauce, frozen peas and cooked pasta to bowl and mix together.

Pour pasta mixture into into a large buttered or sprayed casserole dish.  In the same skillet add butter and melt.  Add garlic and sauté for 30 seconds, add bread crumbs stir until butter is incorporated, add cheese and mix completely.  Sprinkle over pasta dish and bake in a 375º oven for approx 30 minutes until it is heated through and bread crumbs have lightly browned.

Click HERE for a coupon on your next purchase of Classico

Until Next Time,

Monday, October 15, 2012

Baking Partners Challenge #3: Cupcakes or Muffins

It's that time of month again...Baking Partner Challenge.  This month it is Cupcakes or Muffins and I was so happy when I got the recipes....Pumpkin.  I love pumpkin, just ask my family I have been know to pumpkin them out. 

Of the 3 recipes I chose Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins which can also be made into a loaf which would be a wonderful gift for someone.  The recipe was very easy and fast to put together.  I decided to make a Apple Cider Glaze to add a little more flavor.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins with
Apple Cider Glaze
adapted from Joy of Baking

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Pre-heat oven to 350º and place rack in the middle of the oven. Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners or spray with a non stick vegetable spray.

In a large bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, ground spices and salt. In the bowl of your electric mixer or with a hand mixer, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla extract. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. With the mixer on low speed add flour and pumpkin, alternating between the two in 3 additions, beginning and ending with flour.  Fold in chocolate chips. Fill the muffin cups evenly with the batter. Place in the oven and bake for about 18-20 minutes, or until firm to the touch and toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Place on wire rack to cool.  For Loaf: Use a 9 inch loaf pan, butter or spray the loaf pan with a non stick vegetable spray for even more "yum" dust loaf pan with cinnamon sugar. Bake in a 350º oven for about 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean. 

Apple Cider Glaze

1/3 cup butter
2 cups powdered sugar
pinch of salt
1/2 to 1 cup of apple cider

Heat butter and salt over low heat until it is melted and remove from heat. Stir in powdered sugar until smooth. Stir in the apple cider a little at a time until you get your desired consistency.  Dip muffins in glaze while muffins are still warm.  You can double dip the glaze letting the 1st glaze set up before dipping again.  Spoon glaze over top of loaf.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Rossi Pasta Giveaway Winner picked my winner of the Rossi Pasta Giveaway

Drum Roll, please...........

from Dabblings and Whimsey


Please email me at with your mailing information and telephone number (I need your phone just incase Rossi Pasta needs to get ahold of you for shipping) so I can order your prize and get it off to you.

If I don't hear from the winner by Monday I will choose a new winner.

Until Next Time,

Monday, October 8, 2012

McCormick Bourbon Spiced Dip

I found these McCormick Gourmet Spices that make a complete dinner and thought how good they would be as a dip. The McCormick Bourbon Spiced Pork Seasonings just the name Bourbon Spice intrigued me.  Next I will be trying the recipe that is printed on the package. There are more recipes to check out at McCormick Gourmet along with the other McCormick Gourmet Seasonings.

McCormick Bourbon Spiced Dip
The McCormick Bourbon Spiced Pork Seasoning gives this dip a smoky flavor. This dip is also excellent served as a dipping sauce with fried fish instead of tarter sauce

1/2 cup mayo
1/2 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons minced flat leaf parsley
2 tablespoons minced onion
2 tablespoons McCormick's Gourmet - Bourbon Spiced Pork Seasoning Mix
salt and pepper, to taste
Chips and Raw Veggies

Mix all ingredients together place in the refrigerator for at least a couple hours.  I like to make it the night before.  Serve with chips and veggies.

Until Next Time,

Friday, October 5, 2012

Popcorn Packed With Flavor

Since we moved and our daughter has moved away Game Day snacks has changed.  I would make enough food to feed a small army for anyone who wanted to show up to watch the game.  Now I'm down to making one snack since there are only two of us.

I packed a lot of flavor into this popcorn along with the savory is some sweet from the dried cranberries.

Rosemary Garlic Popcorn with Nuts and Dried Cranberries
The Rosemary Garlic Butter is also good brushed over the top of bread or rolls before and after baking

6 cups popped popcorn (not microwaved)
 2 sticks unsalted butter
3 large cloves minced garlic
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2  teaspoons minced fresh rosemary
1 cups raw almonds, toasted
1 cups raw cashews, toasted
1 1/4 cups dried cranberries
2/3 cup grated Asiago cheese
1 teaspoon salt or to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper or to taste

Toast nuts in a single layer in a 400 degree over for 7 to 10 minutes, until golden brown.  Keep your eye on them they can burn quickly. Remove and set aside.

Melt butter over a medium heat add garlic, red pepper flakes, rosemary, salt and pepper.  Lower heat to a medium low setting. Stirring occasionally for the next 7 minutes, do not let the garlic brown. Remove from heat cover with a piece of foil and let sit for 3 or more hours.

Pop the popcorn and put in a large bowl.  Reheat butter on low just to let it melt but not get to the bubbling point turn off heat and remove from burner.  Add nuts to butter mixture just to coat remove and toss with popcorn.  Add cranberries to butter mixture just to coat remove and toss with popcorn. Pour remaining butter mixture over popcorn adding a little then tossing, repeat.  Add cheese and toss. Ready to serve.  Note: you can use any combination of nuts you like or have on hand.

Until Next Time,

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Meatball Subs

For me this is the scariest time of the year and not because Halloween is just around the corner.  This is the start of the Holiday Season and I have so much too do in a short amount of time.  I swear the hours in the day seem to get shorter and I run out of time every year.

Here is a time saving recipe to help keep you on track.  Meatball Subs that take about an hour and the flavor is fantastic.

Mama Capone's Meatball Subs


1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
1 1/2 cups grated Romano cheese
1 1/2 cups fresh bread crumbs
3 eggs
1/4 cup whole milk
1/2 cup Italian flat leaf parsley, minced
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
1/2 yellow onion, minced
3 large cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste


1/2 cup olive oil
12 cloves garlic, rough chop
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
2 28oz can good crushed tomatoes (I used DeLallo)
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 bay leaves
1/2 cup fresh basil, rough chop


3 dill pickle halves, chopped
2 roma tomatoes, chopped
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1/4 cup peperoncini, chopped
salt and pepper, to taste

Mozzarella Cheese

Chop up pickles, tomatoes, onion, peperoncini in a small bowl add salt and pepper, mix together and set aside to allow flavors to marry.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and brush a casserole dish with olive oil including sides of dish. Mix the beef, cheese, bread crumbs, eggs, milk, parsley, basil, onion, garlic, red pepper flakes and salt and pepper together.  Form into 2 1/2 to 3 inch balls (do not pack the meat).  Arrange in casserole dish and bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until cooked through and lightly browned.

Heat olive oil in a sauce pan. Sauté onions, garlic and red pepper flakes for 5 minutes. Add crushed tomatoes, oregano, bay leafs, salt and pepper, mix together and simmer for 45 minutes.  Add meatballs to sauce and cook an additional 10-15 minutes.

Slice bread and place 3 to 4 meatballs in bread top with Mozzarella cheese and place under the broiler until cheese has melted.  Serve relish on top of sandwich.

Until Next Time,

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Happy Birthday Shelby - Chicken, Broccoli and Stir-Fry

This post is dedicated to Shelby at The Life & Loves of Grumpy's Honeybunch
I have been following Shelby's blog for the last two years.  I enjoy reading about Shelby's family and the wonderful recipes she shares.  

In honor of her Birthday I made Chicken, Broccoli, and Noodle Stir-fry.
Raising a glass to you Shelby and wishing you a very 

Chicken, Broccoli, and Noodle Stir-fry

adapted from Food Network

1 lb chicken tenders, cut into bite sized pieces
2 cloves fresh garlic, minced and divided
2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated and divided
1 tablespoon maggi sauce (or soy sauce)
1 tablespoon Splenda Brown Sugar
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon Mirin
1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
1/3 cup water
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
3 cups broccoli flowerets
1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
2 cups pasta, cooked according to package directions (I used lower carb pasta)

Mix 1/2 of the garlic and ginger with the Maggi sauce, Splenda Brown Sugar, Mirin, Sesame Oil, and 1 teaspoon cornstarch.  Place chicken pieces in sauce and toss to coat.  Marinate for at least 15 minutes.  Mix remaining cornstarch with 1/3 cup of water and set aside.

Heat large, non-stick skillet over high heat.  Add 1 tablespoon olive oil and heat oil, add broccoli and stir fry 1-2 minutes.  Add remaining ginger and garlic and chili flakes and two tablespoons of water; stir-fry another 30 seconds or so.  Transfer broccoli mixture to a plate and set aside.

Re-heat skillet and add another tablespoon of olive oil.  When oil is hot, add chicken mixture and stir fry until chicken is no longer pink.  Add hoisin sauce and broccoli, toss to coat.  Add remaining cornstarch mixture and stir until sauce thickens.  Add hot noodles and toss to coat.  Serve hot, sprinkle with more hot pepper flakes if desired.

Stop by Shelby's Blog and wish her a Happy Birthday

Until Next Time,

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

My Favorite Pasta - Rossi Pasta & a Giveaway

I love when bloggers share their favorite items. It nice to get their opinion before you purchase an item or maybe you didn't even know that it existed. 

 I wanted to share one of my favorite Pasta's that I have been buying for years.  Rossi Pasta is a gourmet pasta that is handcrafted and comes in array of flavors that cooks up fast and adds a ton of flavor to your recipes.

Besides the wonderful pastas, sauces, bread mixes and gift baskets you will find recipes on their website to go with the pasta you purchased.  

I made the Chicken Tequila Fettuccini to go with the Spinach Basil Garlic Fettuccini I had on hand.

Chicken Tequila Fettuccini
recipe from Rossi Pasta

1 package of Rossi Pasta Spinach Basil Garlic Fettuccini
1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
2 tablespoons garlic, minced
2 tablespoons jalapeno peppers, minced
3 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup chicken stock
3 tablespoons tequila
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
zest from one lime
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 ¼ pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cubed
1/4 red onion, sliced
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1/2 yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced
1/2 green bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 ½ cups heavy whipping cream

1. Sauté the cilantro, garlic, and jalapeno pepper in 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes. Add the stock, tequila, and lime juice.
2. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook until reduced to a pate-like consistency. Set aside.
3. Pour soy sauce over the chicken and set aside for 15 minutes. Saute the onion and the red, green, and yellow bell peppers with the remaining tablespoon of butter, stirring occasionally.
4. Meanwhile, cook fettuccini according to package directions.
5.When the peppers have wilted slightly, add the chicken and soy sauce. Toss and add the reserved tequila/lime mixture and cream. Bring to a boil.
6. Gently simmer until chicken is cooked and sauce is thick. Toss with well-drained fettuccini and garnish with cilantro and lime zest.
Serves 4

What you can win - Rossi Pasta Deluxe Pastas & Sauce Basket

What's inside:
• Spinach Basil Garlic Fettuccini • Tomato Basil Garlic Fettuccini • Lemon Pepper Fettuccini • Capelli d'Angelo (Angel Hair) • Vino Rosso Linguini • Artichoke Linguini • Roasted Red Bell Pepper • Italian Spice Linguini • Classic Fettuccini • Classic Marinara Sauce • Sun-dried Tomato Sauce • Artichoke Sauce • Vodka Sauce

Entering is simple just leave me a comment telling me which of the Rossi Pasta's you would like to try. 

Giveaway is open to US residents. Giveaway starts September 26th and ends October 11th, 2012. One entry per person. Winner will be picked via on October 12th and have 48 hours to respond otherwise a alternate winner will be picked.

Until Next Time,

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Spicy Lime Ranch Dressing

Thank goodness this post is NOT about making french fries I will leave that to Ree at The Pioneer Woman.  Lets just say I have no business working with hot oil.

Open question to Ree:  How the heck do you cook with those beautiful silk tops without wearing that oil?  I have some hand washing to do before they go into the washing machine.

What this post is about is the dipping sauce I made for the french fries, a Spicy Lime Ranch Dressing. Fast, simple and you just might have all the ingredients on hand.  Next time I make a taco salad or southwest potato skins I'm making this dressing.

Spicy Lime Ranch Dressing

3/4 cup Litehouse Ranch Dressing
1 tablespoon Tapatio sauce
zest from one lime
juice from half a lime
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

Mix all ingredients together until blended. Refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.

Until Next Time,

Monday, September 24, 2012

Day Trip to the Desert

Bill and I went for a drive yesterday to the desert.  Got some nice photos of some old mines.  Also took a couple of interesting photos while we were going through one of the towns nearby the mine.

This closed hotel had beautiful stain glass windows above the windows and doors

Not sure what this ad was for. I love the colors and the way the paint is pealing off the bricks

 I think this could have been the office for this mine

Look at the way it was put together just using stones found in this area

This is what is left of the roof

There are mine shafts all over the property some are boarded up some are not

Here is a boiler and in the background is a mine shaft

There were core sample left all over the ground

 Couple of crows that were dive bombing each other

There was a ton of stuff buried in the ground

 Interesting shapes

This looks like part of a cast iron stove

Until Next Time,

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Pumpkin Spice Coffee

Are you all enjoying this beautiful Fall weather?  I just love the crisp mornings sitting outside wrapped in a blanket having my coffee while the sun comes over the mountain.  I see so much wildlife in the morning not sure if they see me or that they just don't care. Rabbits, squirrels, chipmunks and deer right off my deck it's worth getting up early.

Whether you are enjoying your morning outside or heading out to a tailgating party or maybe a hay ride. (do they still do hayrides?)  Fill those thermos up with Pumpkin Spice Coffee, it will warm your bones and save you money by not going to the local coffee shop.  

Pumpkin Spice Coffee

1 14oz can sweetened condensed milk
1/8 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
pinch ground cardamon
pinch of kosher salt
1 pot hot coffee 

In a saucepan add sweetened condensed milk, nutmeg, pumpkin pie spice, cardamon and salt heat over medium-low flame stirring for 8 to 10 minutes.  Add coffee and stir together then serve.  

To make this coffee extra special add a splash of spiced rum and a dollop of homemade whipped cream and a cinnamon stick.  For a bit of heat add a pinch of cayenne pepper.

Until Next Time,

Jam Hands

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Welcome Fall

Happy First Day of Fall from Southern Utah

Photos were taken 3 miles above my house

Everyone must take time to sit and watch the leaves turn ~Elizabeth Lawrence
 Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower ~Albert Camus

Winter is an etching, spring a watercolor, summer an oil painting and autumn a mosaic of them all ~Stanley Horowitz
A woodland in full color is awesome as a forest fire, in magnitude at least, but a single tree is like a dancing tongue of flame to warm the heart ~Hal Borland
Autumn, the year's last, loveliest smile ~William Cullen Bryant

Until Next Time,

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