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Showing posts from October, 2012

~Random~

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Lancaster County Beauty
Smyrna Road  Kinzers, Pa. This past week was a busy but beautiful one. The weather was perfect and seemed almost Spring like except for the color on the trees. I did a lot of work outside in the flowerbeds. Getting them ready for winter and also doing some thinning and transplanting of the perennials.
I went to watch our son Shawn and his team play a soccer game - they won.☺ I love watching our boys play sports. It doesn't really matter if I don't always know the rules or purpose (football anyone? :) of the game. It's just fun to see them enjoying what they do and encouraging their teammates and having a great time. And I thank God for healthy kids that provide us with this privilege. To me it doesn't matter as much if they win or lose but in how they play the game. Are they remembering to play with integrity? no matter what? Win or lose there is always character building going on. Character can be built on both the winning or losing teams. I …

Baked Potato Omelets

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What a fun way to enjoy an omelet! The combination of potato, ham, cheddar, and egg is delicious! I made a few with mushrooms and onions and the other one was just plain without the veggies. That one seemed to cook faster.  Use Omelet ingredients that work for you .
I rubbed olive oil on the potatoes and baked them uncovered in a baking pan @350° until they were done. About an hour and a half. Allow to cool then cut a slice off the top and scoop out the center leaving a little on the inside of the skin. These were smallish potatoes and I used 2 eggs with some milk but 3 eggs would have filled them a little better. 3 medium potatoes, baked 3 eggs 1½ Tablespoons milk diced ham diced onion diced mushrooms shredded cheddar cheese Homemade bacon Bits Parsley flakes salt and pepper to taste To those of you who stop in here to read and have taken the time to tell me personally that you do. Thank you! I'm always amazed to know that you take time out of your busy lives to see what might …

Mushroom Garlic and Rosemary Roast

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A friend recently gave me a big bag of fresh Baby Bella mushrooms. She drives past the mushroom houses on her way to and from work so they are super fresh and delicious! Love those little things! but I knew I would never "sell" them to my family. So I decided to saute them with some fresh pressed garlic and rosemary leaves and put them through the blender with some beef broth to make a thick "gravy" that I could use to bake a chuck roast in in the crock pot. The flavor was there but not the mushrooms. I liked it too that it was thick without the addition of flour, although it did thin a bit as it cook in the crock pot with all the moisture and juices from the meat.
too pretty and yummy to blend, but...☺ 3-3½ lb. chuck roast Coarse Sea Salt Freshly Cracked Pepper Generously season both sides of the roast; set aside. 4 cups Baby Bella Mushrooms, sliced 6 Garlic Cloves, fresh pressed Fresh Rosemary leaves 1/3 cup Burgundy Cooking Wine 2 cups Beef Broth  Olive Oil Put …

Random

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My 'Good Morning" from God ☺ Love how the sun forms a star as it blazes through the trees! The hunters that live here have left us for the mountains in hopes of bagging a few deer. So Serena and I will have a quiet weekend of doing whatever we fancy, and eating when, if, and what we fancy. I whipped up a bit of girl food this morning and plan to stay out of the kitchen as much as possible for the rest of the weekend. As much as I enjoy cooking and baking a break now and then is nice! ☺ When I was still living at home we could see both sunrises and sunsets. Where I've lived since I'm married the trees have blocked either one or both of them. I really miss them and so a few nights ago I went to a place where I could see what remained of this one. Ahhh, LOVELY! ~Happy Weekend!~ ♥

Creamy Lemon Meringue Squares

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♥ at first bite!
My sister Karen makes this creamy, lemon-y deliciousness in pie form, but I decided to try it with a traditional Lemon Bar crust in a larger pan. Wow! The fact that the crust is buttery and flaky and thicker than a normal pie crust and the filling is more evenly distributed with the Meringue on top makes it pretty near to perfect, in my humble opinion.☺ Seriously though, I really, really like them like this! And the sour cream in the filling mellows the lemon flavor just right. The meringue on top takes care of the super sweet powdered sugar that traditional Lemon Bars are dusted with. Try them, I think you will like them! For the Crust: 1½ cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, slightly softened ¾ cup powdered sugar 3 cups all purpose flour Place ingredients into a mixer with the wire whip attachment and mix until crumbs form. Or you can cut the butter into the flour/sugar like you do for pie crust. The mixer is much quicker though. Press into the bottom and up the sides …

Scrumptious Chicken Tenders

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I'm always looking for different ways to make something good even better. I tried these several times before I was satisfied. They are super moist and delicious! And they bake in a hurry! 17-20 Chicken Tenders, trimmed 1½ cups Mayo 1 cup Buttermilk 1 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese 16 oz. Italian Panko Crumbs 1 Tablespoon McCormick Garlic and Herb Seasoning 1 teaspoon freshly cracked Pepper 1 teaspoon salt Trim the Tenders and set aside. Combine the next 3 ingredients. Place chicken Tenders into Mayo/Milk mixture. Make sure each piece is coated. In a separate bowl combine the Panko crumbs and seasonings. Dredge each chicken piece in the crumbs and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake @ 375°-400° for 20-25 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and crumbs are beginning to brown. Serve with a salad for an quick, easy, and satisfying meal. ♥Blessings!♥

Caramel Sauce

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I ♥ Caramel! This, my friends, is delicious and a great way to top off  cakes, desserts, or Apple Dumplings , etc. It's also easy and uses simple ingredients. 1 stick butter ½ teaspoon salt 2 cups water 2 cups brown sugar 1/3 cup (slightly rounded) clear jel cook type 1 cup water 2 teaspoons vanilla Combine butter, salt, and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. After it boils add the brown sugar and stir. Bring to a boil again. Meanwhile combine the clear jel and 1 cup of water and stir till smooth. When the sugar mixture boils the second time slowly add the clear jel mixture while stirring with a wire whisk to prevent lumps. Add vanilla extract. Serve with Layered Date Nut Cake.

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Layered Date Nut Cake with Caramel Sauce

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Yummy! This is a dessert that was often served around the Holidays or at weddings when I was growing up Traditionally the cake was cut into squares and served as a trifle layered with Cool Whip, Caramel Sauce, and bananas. I always think you get more Cool Whip than anything else when it's served like that so I decided to change things up a bit and serve it like this. I think I like it better because the filling and cake and the sauce are more evenly distributed.

1 cup dates, diced fine 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 cup hot water 1 cup brown sugar 1 Tablespoon butter 1 cup all purpose flour 1 egg ½ cup chopped pecans, optional In a small saucepan combine the dates, hot water, and baking soda and bring to a boil. Boil till the dates are tender. Pour into a mixer bowl and add the rest of the ingredients; mix. Pour into a 9 X 13 baking pan that is lined with parchment paper and the paper lightly greased. Bake @350° for 20-25 minutes or till toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.…

Golden Raisin Sticky Buns

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When I was younger and living at home my Mom used to make these with Pecans and we would call them Pecan Rolls. But when I got married and moved to Pennsylvania I discovered they call them Sticky Buns and bake them with raisins. They also make them with Pecans but since my family prefers them with raisins that is how I bake them. I usually put Pecans on one, just for me ☺. I don't really care for the way they look with the dark raisins so I prepare them with Golden Raisins. I think they look a bit more appetizing this way and the flavor isn't altered.  1 Tablespoon dry Yeast (I used instant) ¼ cup warm water Combine in a small bowl and stir till all the yeast is wet. Set aside. 1 cup milk, scalded ½ cup sugar 1 teaspoon salt 4-4½ cups all purpose flour 2 eggs 1 cup quick oats 1/3 cup butter, melted  Filling: ½ sugar ½ brown sugar 2 teaspoons cinnamon In a mixer bowl combine the sugar and salt. Pour scalded milk over sugar and salt. Add 1 cup flour; stir. In a separate bowl, b…

Almost-Famous Breadtsticks

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These breadsticks are perfect with soups like Chili or the Italian Meatball Soup (previous post). They are chewy and flavorful and perfect for dipping. I don't make them very often but when I do they disappear quickly. Ingredients: Courtesy of The Food Network 1 package (approx. 1¼ TBSP.) active dry yeast ¼ cup warm water 4¼ cups all purpose flour, more for dusting 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened 1&1/3 cups water 2 Tablespoons sugar 1 Tablespoon fine salt Oregano Garlic Powder Topping: 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted very fine garlic salt Combine the yeast and ¼ cup of warm water and set aside to soak for about 5 minutes. Pour into a mixer bowl and add the the flour, butter, sugar, fine, salt, and the rest of the water; mix with the paddle attachment until a slightly sticky dough forms, about 3-5 minutes. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead by hand until smooth and soft, about 3 minutes. Roll into a 2 foot long log and cut into 16 - 1½ inch pieces. Knead…

Italian Meatball Soup

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The season for comfort foods like soups and chowders is here! Yay! There's just something about a pot of soup simmering on the stove on a cloudy, chilly day that gives you a good feeling. The sun in my corner of the world has been hiding behind the clouds for days and soup just seemed appropriate on this particular night. I served it topped with what I call pizza cheese (shredded mozzarella with grated Parmesan cheeses and Italian seasonings) and Almost Famous Bread Sticks from the Food Network for dipping into the soup. Delicious! For the meatballs: 2½ lbs. 80% ground beef 2 eggs ¼ cup milk 1 cup Homemade Crouton crumbs 2 Tablespoons grated Parmesan Cheese 2 garlic cloves, fresh pressed 1 Tablespoon dry onion flakes 1½ teaspoons dried oregano 1 teaspoon garlic salt 1 teaspoon fresh ground Italian seasoning Butter, for browning Combine the milk, eggs, crouton crumbs and seasonings in a bowl and let set for a bit till the liquid is absorbed. Add the ground beef and mix gently by …

Avocado Hummus

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I've never been an all out hummus fan. I've tried different ones and just wasn't crazy for them so when I saw this one I wasn't too sure about it but I love avocados and I had heard that white beans have some good health benefits so I decided to give it a try. I was pleasantly surprised to find that I enjoyed it. I hope you do too.

1 (15.5 oz.) can White Cannellini Beans,
drained and rinsed
1 Avocado, peeled and diced
1 Tablespoon Lime Juice
1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon Olive Oil
½ teaspoon Kosher Sea Salt
¼ teaspoon Cayenne Pepper

Place everything in a blender or food processor and process until smooth. Serve with veggies of your choice or Triscuits.
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White Chocolate Vanilla Bean Latte

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Something to warm us up on those chilly Fall days when the sky just weeps. I was not gonna do this today. But it keeps raining... and it's chilly... and, well never mind. I just needed a bit of reinforcement.  Sooo, I thought, why not?! It's warm, it's comforting,  and it will hit the spot! I was right of course, it did indeed hit the spot after doing an errand in the rain. And it uses two of my favorite ingredients. White chocolate and a vanilla bean. So I knew I couldn't go wrong there. The only thing better would have been someone to share it with. ☺ 2 cups milk ½ cup strong brewed coffee (Starbucks Vanilla flavored coffee) ½ cup white chocolate chips 1 vanilla bean (contents of) In a small saucepan heat the milk, coffee, and chocolate chips over medium heat. Meanwhile cut vanilla bean in half and scrape out the contents of each half with a spoon. Add to the milk mixture and continue heating till chocolate is melted mixture is frothy. heavy cream vanilla extract Beat to…