Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Caramel Sauce

Posted by Kimberly:

With Halloween right around the corner, I was trying to think of a recipe to post that made me think of this time of year. I happened to remember this recipe that I had gotten from a friend several years ago for a caramel sauce that you dipped apple wedges in. At that time, I wasn't a huge fan of apples, but with them dipped in this sauce, I became a one!

Caramel Sauce:

2 sticks butter, melted
1 cup corn syrup
2 cups brown sugar
1 can sweetened condensed milk
Bring mixture to a boil and turn down heat. Stir constantly. Cook 5 minutes longer. Add 1 tsp. vanilla.

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Crispy No-Bake Cookies

Posted by Lori:
Maybe you've had these before, but maybe not. I had them growing up, but had never made them until a few years ago. My son, Zachary, kept talking about a peanut butter Rice Krispie treat that his friend's mom would make and send on school trips. He really liked the treats, so when I made regular Rice Krispie treats, I began putting peanut butter in them (which is great, too!). He liked them, but said they weren't the same. Finally, I asked the mom about the recipe and found that it was the one I remembered from my childhood. We called them "Special K" cookies, but you can use Corn Flakes, Rice Krispies, or any other "crispy" type of cereal.

Crispy No-Bake Cookies

1 c. sugar
1 c. corn syrup
1 c. peanut butter
6 c. cereal

Bring sugar and syrup to a boil, but do not boil. Add peanut butter. Pour over cereal and mix well. Drop by spoonfuls onto waxed paper and allow to cool OR pour into 9 x 13 inch buttered pan; allow to cook and cut into squares.

TIP: You know the chocolate no bake cookies? They can also be poured into a well-buttered pan. Either use a 9 x 13 for thicker bar cookies or a jelly roll pan (10 x 15 x 1). I got this tip from our Bible camp kitchen staff! It's a huge time saver.
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Monday, September 28, 2009

Pumpkin Bread

Posted by Lori:
This recipe is my favorite pumpkin bread recipe. It's from a cookbook called "Best Recipes from the Backs of Boxes, Bottles, Cans, and Jars". This recipe is from the label of the Del Monte pumpkin can. It says it's been on the can since 1969, so it's as old as I am!

Pumpkin bread is good any time of the year, but now that we're getting pumpkins out of our pumpkin patch, it really makes me want to make this bread!


3 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs, beaten
1 16 oz. can pumpkin (the actual recipe says Del Monte, of course!)
3 1/2 cups sifted flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves (I don't use this.)
2/3 cup water

Cream sugar and oil. Add eggs and pumpkin; mix well. Sift together flour, baking soda, salt, baking powder, nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon and cloves. Add to pumpkin mixture alternately with water. Mix well after each addition. Pour into 2 well-greased and floured 9 x 5 inch loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 1/2 hours, until loaves test done. Let stand for 10 minutes. Remove from pans to cool. Makes 2 loaves.

I like to use this recipe and use mini loaf pans, too. I'm not sure how many mini loaves it makes (can't remember), but I'm thinking 6 or 8. The mini loaves make great gifts. Just wrap in plastic wrap or cellophane and tie with a pretty bow. Also, the Libby's brand pumpkin is a 15 ounce can, but it's usually what I use and it has always worked just fine.
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Sunday, September 27, 2009

Banberry Surprise Cake

Posted by Donna:

I had forgotten about this cake recipe until my daughter, Lori, mentioned it to me. I used to fix this quite a bit when the girls were small; but, I had totally forgotten about it. I fixed it for a funeral last week. It's a refrigerator cake. The best part about it is the frosting.

2 (3 oz.) packages strawberry gelatin
2 cups boiling water
1 cup strawberry soda pop
Banana slices
1 yellow cake mix (without pudding)

Dissolve the gelatin in the boiling water. Add the strawberry soda and cool completely.
Bake the cake according to the directions and let it cool. Once the cake and strawberry mixture is cool, poke holes in the top of the cake. Pour the strawberry mixture over the cake. Then cover the cake with sliced bananas. ( I dipped my bananas in Sprite and let them drain on a paper towel before topping the cake with them. )

Frosting: Mix together 1 (5 oz.) instant vanilla pudding and 2-1/2 cups cold milk. After this thickens slightly, add 1 (9 oz.) container prepared whipped topping. Mix together and spread over the bananas. Keep the cake refrigerated.

I'm debating on whether to try this using a white cake mix instead of the yellow. This is a refreshing cake. But, like I said before, the frosting is the best part.
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Friday, September 25, 2009

Semi-Homemade Bread Sticks

I have mentioned before that I like to use frozen roll dough. I use Rhoades brand because that's what is sold here in southwest Oklahoma, but any frozen roll dough would work. I also purchase the package of 72 rolls because it's cheaper that way.

These Semi-Homemade Bread Sticks are a favorite of my family and also of others who have eaten them. Every February we host the church youth group with approximately 35 people attending. I make 100 of these bread sticks and there are never any left! Last night I made them for my daughter's birthday meal. My father-in-law especially likes them. This says a lot coming from him because he is THE bread maker in the Waugh family! He makes homemade rolls and cinnamon rolls almost weekly.

Directions:  Grease baking sheet.  I use olive oil, but cooking spray would be fine on some baking sheets that allow it.

Take desired number of frozen rolls and place them on greased cookie sheet to thaw.  A quick way to do this is using the microwave (directions on the back of the package) or what I like to do is preheat the oven to the lowest temperature - just until the light comes on.  It's probably about 100 - 110 degrees. 

When the dough is thawed, roll it between your hands or on the counter top, making long bread stick shapes. Place the sticks back on the greased baking sheet (you may need more than one sheet after making the sticks.) Brush sticks with melted butter and sprinkle with garlic powder. I use real salted butter, you may prefer margarine OR I wonder about olive oil and Italian herbs??  I wouldn't like it, but some of you really might!

Allow to rise at room temperature several hours, or place back in warm oven, if needed quickly.

Bake about 15 minutes at 350 degrees.  It's a joke in our family that things are either cooked "Coke" style (on the slightly-less-done husband would say "raw") or "Waugh" style (cooked until totally browned...or I would say "dry")  So, cook according to your preferences!!

After the breadsticks are done, I put a little more garlic & butter on them.  I forgot to take a picture right after that, but this is while they are waiting in the oven keeping warm until the guests arrive.  However, little did we know last night that the meal would be delayed by 30 minutes because SOMEONE forgot to cook the noodles!  You can read about that here.
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Thursday, September 24, 2009

Baked Ham

Posted by Donna:

The recipe I'm sharing today is the one I use for our holiday meals. Ordinarily, I would bake a ham steak; but for these special meals, I always buy a large bone-in ham. As I shared with you earlier, my dad owned his own grocery store and had previously worked as a butcher. He always told me to buy the butt portion. I always have the butcher slice my ham for me, and I opt for the slices to be thick like the ham steaks are. Before I prepare the ham for baking, I trim off the waste. After the waste has been trimmed off, these are the steps to follow.

Rub about 1 tablespoon of brown sugar on each slice of ham.

Stack the ham slices together in a 9 x 13 pan--lined with heavy aluminum foil.

Wrap the foil tightly around the ham.

Tie heavy string around the foil. (I had to have my grocery store order this string for me. It's not expensive and it will last for a long time.) I learned this step from my dad.

It's best to prepare the ham for baking a few hours beforehand. I always get mine ready the night before.

When it's time to bake the ham, pour just enough water to cover the bottom of the pan.

Bake in a 350 degree oven.

Cook 20 minutes per pound on a pre-cooked ham, or 30 minutes per pound on cured ham.

I had to bake a ham for a funeral meal this week. It was a 15 lb. ham; but, by the time I trimmed off all the waste, it weighed about 11 or 12 lbs. That's the thing about hams--you lose a lot from all the waste. Of course, the good thing about that is you gain some ham hocks and pieces of ham that can be used in other ways.

Have a great weekend.

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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Choco-Caramel Delights

Posted by Lori:
A Christmas tradition at my husband's work includes co-workers exchanging gifts...usually something homemade or handmade. Since my husband works for a children's home, many of the co-workers are houseparents and have a "house-full" of children in their care. So, when the gift exchange involves food...there needs to be a lot!

A few years ago, instead of making the traditional pumpkin bread I usually made for the exchange, I enlisted my family in a cookie-making day. We each picked two cookie recipes to make, then divided the cookies into gable boxes, and delivered the sweet treats. These Choco-Caramel Delights (Note: Not De-LITES!!!) were one of the ones I picked out to make and are now one of my favorite cookies.

Choco-Caramel Delights

2/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 egg, separated
2 Tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cocoa
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup finely chopped pecans
Caramel Filling (recipe follows)
1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
1 teaspoon shortening

In large mixer bowl, beat sugar, butter, egg yolk, milk and vanilla until blended. Stir together flour, cocoa and salt in small bowl; blend into butter mixture. Chill dough at least 1 hour or unti firm enough to handle.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease cookie sheets. Beat egg while slightly shape dough into 1-inch balls (using a 1 inch cookie scoop makes this even easier). Dip each ball into egg white; roll in pecans to coat. Place 1 inch apart on prepared cookie sheet. Press thumb gently in center of each ball. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until set. While cookies bake, prepare Caramel Filling. Press center of each cookie again with thumb to make indentation. Immediately spoon about 1/2 teaspoon Caramel Filling in center of each cookie. Carefully remove to wire racks to cool completely.

In small microwave-safe bowl, combine chocolate chips and shortening. Microwave at HIGH (100% power) 1 minute or until softened; stir. Allow to stand several minutes to finish melting; stir until smooth. Place waxed paper under wire racks with cookies. Drizzle chocolate mixture over top of cookies. Makes about 2 dozen cookies.

Caramel Filling: In small saucepan, combine 14 unwrapped caramels and 3 Tablespoons whipping cream. Cook over low heat, stirring frequently, until caramels are melted and mixture is smooth.

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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Banana Pudding

Posted by Kimberly:

This is the best banana pudding I have ever eaten. And, I'm not just saying that.... Everybody who eats it says it too!!! When you read the list of ingredients, you'll know why!!!

Banana Pudding:

1 box vanilla wafers
3-4 ripe bananas, sliced
1 small pkg. instant vanilla pudding
1 cup milk
1 can sweetened condensed milk
8 oz. sour cream
1 (16 oz.) carton Cool Whip

Stir pudding mix and milk in bowl. Mix well. Fold in condensed milk and chill for 15 minutes. Fold in sour cream and Cool Whip. Layer pudding mixture with cookies and bananas: start with cookies, then bananas, and then the pudding mixture. Repeat layers. Be sure bananas are completely covered. Chill overnight.

I never was a big fan of banana pudding until I had this version. It is so rich and delicious. I think you will love it just as much as I do.
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Monday, September 21, 2009

Broccoli Salad

Posted by Lori:
At our school's annual FFA Banquet this past May, someone made a broccoli salad that I really liked. I thought a friend of mine made the salad, but she didn't. So, I have no idea who made it!

I began to look for a recipe to make the broccoli salad, but all of them had a lot of mayonnaise in them and that wasn't what I wanted. So, last week, when I was cooking for a church fellowship luncheon, I decided to create my own version of a broccoli salad. I used ingredients I thought I remembered being in the one from May. It turned out great!

Broccoli Salad
6 cups chopped broccoli florets
1 cup red grapes, halved
1/3 cup cashews (could substitute sunflower seeds, peanuts, or other nuts)
1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped
8 sliced bacon, cooked and crumbled

1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup vinegar
1/8 tsp. salt
2 T. mayonnaise
2 1/2 T. sugar

In large bowl combine broccoli, grapes, cashews, onion, and bacon. In small bowl, whisk together dressing ingredients. Pour dressing over salad and refrigerate several hours before serving.

I served it immediately when I first made it, but the next day when I served it again, it was even better. So, it would really be better to let it sit at least a few hours before serving.
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Sunday, September 20, 2009

Barbecue Chicken

Posted by Donna:

My mother was a wonderful cook; but, my dad was also. He had his own grocery store and would make homemade chili and barbecue and sell it out of his store. I never was sure how he did his barbecue until a couple of years before he passed away. While he was here visiting, I bought some chicken breasts and had him stand right beside me and instruct me on how to make his barbecued chicken. When I have time, or when I set aside enough time, this is my favorite to make. I wrote down the recipe as he told it to me while we were making it together. You will notice that the recipe does not have exact measurements-----just statements on what to do. I should pay close attention and measure what I do so I could write it down, but I'm afraid that might take away the joy of making it like my daddy.

Sprinkle 8 chicken breasts with Cains barbecue spice and work the spice into the chicken with your hands. Put the breasts in a big fry pan. Sprinkle a handful of brown sugar on top of the breasts. Squirt mustard on top. (I put a continuous line of mustard on top of each breast.) Drizzle Woody's Cooking Sauce on top of the breasts. (Our Wal-Mart store doesn't always carry this sauce, but I have always been able to find it at our United Supermarket.) Dice one tomato and 1/2 of a yellow onion and add to the chicken. Sprinkle with salt and garlic powder. Simmer for approximately 1-1/2 to 2 hours.

This same recipe works for barbecue beef. Cut up a roast and then go through the same steps as above.
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Friday, September 18, 2009

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls

Posted by Lori:

Just the thought of a candy tasting like chocolate chip cookie dough is enough to make a lot of people like this candy. I shouldn't even admit this, but as a teenager, my best friend and I would mix up a half-batch of cookie dough, but NONE of it would ever make it to the oven! Yep. We would eat the whole half batch...without the fear of Salmonella.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls

1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 cups flour
1 can (14 oz.) condensed milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips
1/2 cups walnuts (optional)
1 1/2 pound chocolate candy coating

Cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add flour, milk, and vanilla; mix well. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Shape into 1 inch balls. Put in the refrigerator 1 - 2 hours. Melt coating per package directions. Dip balls in melted coating. Store in refrigerator in airtight container.

I rarely let my kids eat homemade raw dough now, because of the Salmonella threat, but we do sometimes buy the refrigerated dough at the store, and just like some of the cookie dough in my past never made it to the oven, some of the bought doesn't, either!
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Thursday, September 17, 2009

Gooey Pie

Posted by Lori:

This is one of the other pies my husband made for the county fair pie contest last weekend. To me, it's enough to say this pie has chocolate and caramel listed in the ingredients...two of my favorite combinations! I don't remember where he got the recipe, but I want to give the owner "credit". Her name is Susan Kienholz and she won "Grand Prize" in whatever contest she entered. Thanks, Susan, for this recipe!


1 unbaked 9 inch pie shell (my mom's pie crust found here is my favorite!)
1/2 cup chopped pecans
20 caramels, unwrapped
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 egg, beaten
2 T. butter or margarine
6 oz. semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Place pecans in bottom of pie shell. In medium sauce pan, cook 2/3 of the sweetened condensed milk and the caramels over medium-low heat, stirring constantly until melted and smooth. Spoon mixture over pecans. Beat the remaining condensed milk, butter and beaten egg with an electric mixer on medium for one minute. Stir in chocolate chips and pour over caramel mixture in pie pan. Bake 35 minutes or until center is set and knife inserted in center comes out clean (I didn't make this husband did...but I don't know that it will come out "clean" with hot caramel and chocolate.  I would think just cook it until it's set.)

"Gooey" best describes this pie, for sure! Gooey and Good!
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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Coconut Cream Pie

Posted by Donna:

Here I go again with my "old" recipes--- that more than likely--- most of you fix yourselves very often. I hear people say how much trouble and work it is to make a pie. I do have to admit cakes are easier and last longer; but, there's just something about making a homemade pie that is very gratifying. People love a homemade pie. I have found that homemade pies are one of the best desserts to make for people.

This recipe came out of an old Betty Crocker recipe book. The only change I made was instead of using whole milk, I use carnation evaporated milk.

3/4 cup sugar

1/3 cup sifted all-purpose flour

2 cups carnation evaporated milk ( I always use one can of evaporated milk. It lacks just a little bit making the 2 cups; so, I use whole milk just to fill the second cup of milk.)

3 egg yolks, slightly beaten with a fork

2 T. margarine

1 tsp. vanilla

1 9-inch baked pastry crust ( This was posted with the Chocolate Pie recipe.)
1 recipe meringue

In a saucepan, combine the sugar and flour. Gradually stir in the milk. Cook and stir over medium heat until the mixture boils and thickens. Cook 2 minutes longer. Remove from heat. Stir a small amount of the hot mixture into the beaten egg yolks; then, pour that mixture back into the saucepan. Cook 2 more minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add the butter and vanilla. Add 1 cup of coconut. Pour into the baked pie crust.

Meringue: Beat the 3 egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add 3 T. sugar, 1/2 tsp. vanilla, and a dash of cream of tartar (about an 1/8 of a tsp.) and beat until stiff peaks form. Spread on the cream filling. Sprinkle coconut over the meringue. Bake at 350 degrees until the meringue is golden.

On occasion, I have made this pie, as well as the Chocolate Pie, and baked them in my miniature pie tins. I gave them to my neighbors last year as their Christmas gift. Also, I have taken them to friends just for fun. They love the miniature pies.

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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Stick to Your Ribs Meatballs

Posted by Kimberly:

My son is a very picky eater, but one thing he really likes are these meatballs. In fact, whenever I make spaghetti, he will hardly eat it unless I serve these meatballs with it. They really are very flavorful and delicious. I got this recipe from one that I adapted from Rachael Ray's 30 Minute Meals. Hope you enjoy!

Stick to Your Ribs Meatballs

1 1/2 lbs. ground beef
1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs
1 egg
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 small yellow onion, grated
3 tablespoons grated Parmesan
2 tablespoons parsley

Mix the above ingredients by hand being careful not to overmix. Line a cookie sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray. Form meat mixture into balls and place on cookie sheet. I make mine ping pong ball to golf ball size. Place in a 450 degree oven for approximately 20 minutes. At this point, I transfer them to my pasta and spaghetti sauce and mix it all together.

These can be mixed up ahead of time and kept in the refrigerator until you are ready to bake them.
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Scalloped Potatoes

Do you like scalloped potatoes? This recipe is one I've used since we first got married. It's sauce is like a gravy made on the stove top, then poured over the sliced potatoes. I got this recipe from a Better Homes and Gardens cookbook.

1/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1/4 cup flour
2 1/2 cups milk
5 large potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced (equalling 5 cups)
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper

To make sauce, cook onion in butter or margarine till tender but not brown. Stir in flour, 1 1/2 t. salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Add milk. Cook and stir till thickened and bubbly. Cook and stir 1 to 2 minutes more. Remove from heat. Place half of the potatoes in a greased 2 quart casserole dish. Cover with half of the sauce. Repeat layers. Bake, covered, in a 350 degree oven for 45 minutes, stirring once. Uncover and bake 30 minutes more, or until potatoes are done. Makes 4 to 6 servings.

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Monday, September 14, 2009


Posted by Donna:

This is a very quick and easy recipe to prepare.

2 pounds super lean ground beef
1/2 chopped yellow or white onion
1 tsp. black pepper
1/2 garlic salt
2-1/2 cups tomato sauce
1 (8 oz.) jar salsa
4 T. chili seasoning mix ( I used the Williams' brand.)
2 cans pinto beans, drained

Cook the beef and onion together until the meat is brown and the onions are tender--about 10 minutes. Drain the grease. Add the black pepper, garlic salt, tomato sauce, salsa, chili seasoning mix, and pinto beans. Mix well. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for at least an hour.

This recipe will make about 8 servings.

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Saturday, September 12, 2009

Apple Crumb Pie

My husband entered this pie in a pie contest last night. It received rave reviews. You can read about the contest here!

1 1/2 cup flour
3 T. sugar
1/2 t. salt
1/2 cup butter (not margarine)
1 egg yolk
3 T. water

Combine flour, sugar, and salt in small bowl. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Whisk together egg yolk with water and add to flour mixture. Stir until forms a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in refrigerator for one hour or more. On lightly floured surface, roll crust out and place in GREASED 9 inch deep dish pie plate. (Or MASH it into the pan like my husband does as you can read about at the above link!)

6 cups thinly sliced Granny Smith apples
3/4 cup white sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg


1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup packed brown sugar
6 tablespoons butter (not margarine)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place sliced apples in a large bowl. In a small bowl, mix together white sugar, 3 tablespoons flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Sprinkle mixture over apples. Toss until apples are evenly coated. Spoon mixture into pastry shell.

In a small bowl mix together 1/2 cup flour and brown sugar. Cut in butter or margarine until mixture is crumbly. Sprinkle mixture over apple filling. Cover top loosely with aluminum foil. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. (My husband baked it on top of an upside-down 9 x 9 inch pan. He saw this suggested somewhere.) Remove foil and bake an additional 25 to 30 minutes, until top is golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.
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Barbequed Chicken Sandwiches

This is not a recipe, just an idea you may not have thought of before.

Cook desired amound of chicken breasts in boiling water on stovetop or in crockpot. (You could use left over chicken as well.) Shred or chop chicken. Add desired amount of your favorite kind of barbeque sauce. We like a "Made in Oklahoma" product - Head Country!) Serve on hamburger buns or sandwich rolls.

When I make for our family of six, I use one bag of frozen chicken, which is 2 1/2 or 3 pounds, depending on the brand purchased. I purchase large bottle of the barbeque sauce and use as desired. Some like a little. Some like a lot! Very good, quick, and easy!
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Thursday, September 10, 2009

MIllionaire Fudge

Posted by Donna:
As the fall season is quickly approaching, I think we all begin to think of certain recipes we use more often during those months. For instance, I tend to think more on the line of soup, chili, casseroles, and special desserts---in particular--- fudge. My mother always made this recipe for the holidays. She also made this for daddy every year on his birthday. After she passed away in 1991, I continued to make it for him on his birthday until he passed away three years ago. Many of you may already have this recipe; but, just in case you don't, please add it to your "to do" list.

4 1/2 cups sugar
1 large can carnation evaporated milk/pet milk
2 sticks margarine

Put the sugar, milk, and margarine in a large saucepan and cook until it begins to boil. Boil for 7 minutes. I don't deviate from the 7 minutes. Turn the burner off and add 15 oz. of semi-sweet real chocolate chips. Stir until smooth. Then add 1 jar (16 oz.) of marshmallow creme. Stir until it is well mixed. Add 1 large pkg. of chopped pecans. Pour into a 9 x 13 pan.

This makes five pounds of fudge. It's so rich--- the serving sizes need to be cut into small squares. It stores well in the refrigerator. It's so nice to have it already made and cut into individual pieces, and then pull it out when needed during the holidays. When Mother originally wrote down the recipe, she said to put 3 small pkgs. of chocolate chips in it. Then, when I started making it, I realized the packaging had changed for the chips; so, I had to figure out exactly how many ounces her three pkgs. had in them.

Have a great weekend!
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Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Mexican Casserole

Posted by Kimberly:

I like Mexican food, but with the exception of the chicken fajitas at Pappasito's (the best ever Mexican food restaurant located in major Texas cities), I prefer to eat Mexican food that is homemade. This Mexican casserole is a super easy dish that we have quite often at our house. In fact, we had it last night and then the leftovers again tonight. It makes your meat go further and makes a bunch! Gotta love that!!!

Mexican Casserole

2 lbs. ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
1 (4 oz.) can chopped green chilies
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 (8 oz.) jar taco sauce
1 (10 oz.) can enchilada sauce (I actually use a little more than this)
1 can ranch-style beans
1 (16 oz.) pkg. grated cheddar cheese (I use A LOT more than this!)
1 pkg. Doritos or 1 dozen corn tortillas (I use corn tortillas)

Brown beef and onion in a large skillet. Add green chilies, soup, taco sauce, enchilada sauce, and beans. Simmer for 10-15 minutes. In a lightly greased 9x13 casserole dish, layer half of the chips or tortillas, half of the beef mixture, and half of the cheese. Repeat layers. Bake for 30 minutes at 375 degrees.

I substitute chicken for the beef, which I did last night. I just boil 4 chicken breasts and then shred them. I do this to avoid eating too much beef during a week. I'm sure my husband prefers it with the beef (what man wouldn't?), but I like it just as well either way.

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Tortilla Wrap-Ups

Posted by Lori:
Appetizers are fun to make and even better to eat! These Tortilla Wrap-Ups are easy because they can be made the day before then sliced and served the next day.

Tortilla Wrap-Ups
1 - 8 ounce pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 - 8 ounce carton sour cream
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 - 4 ounce can chopped green chilis
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 cup thin-sliced ham, chopped
1 pkg. burrito-sized flour tortillas (You will only use 5 or 6 of them)
Dash of pepper, optional
Salsa, if desired

In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and sour cream until smooth. Add onion, green chilis, cheese, and ham, mixing a few times in between ingredients. Spread mixture over the tortillas; roll up tightly. Wrap each with plastic wrap, twisting ends. Refrigerate for several hours or over night. Unwrap and cut into 3/4 to 1 inch slices. Discard ends (or eat them!). Place back in fridge (covered) until ready to serve or serve immediately. Serve with salsa, if desired. May also be served with a toothpick in each wrap-up or with a small bowl of toothpicks on the side.

I usually make this recipe and the Cheese Ball I've posted before (here) at the same time. It makes it easy because several of the ingredients are the same. When I do them at the same time, I use a tablespoon of the green chilis for the cheese ball and then just use the rest of the can for these wrap-ups, instead of the whole can called for in the ingredients.
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Monday, September 7, 2009


Posted by Lori:
This is one of my mother-in-law's recipe, but also one of my kids' very favorites. Years ago when I worked part-time, she babysat them and the oldest two would help her cook. This was a regular dish they would help her prepare. One of my sons still wants to help when I make it now.

I've seen this recipe in other cookbooks with different names, such as "Tallerilla" and "Tallyrila". Wonder where the name came from? Maybe someone's last name...


1 pound ground beef
1 tsp. chili powder
1 small jar chopped olives and juice (I mince them even smaller in the food processor to "hide" them for my youngest two children!)
1 can whole kernel corn and juice
1 - 1 pound pkg. egg noodles
1 can diced tomatoes and juice
1 pound cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. salt

Brown meat and green pepper in large skillet. Season with chili powder, salt, and pepper. While this cooks, cook noodles until tender and drain. Add noodles to meat mixture. Add diced tomatoes and juice, corn, and olives and juice. Mix all together and pour into large casserole dish. Cover with shredded cheese.

This is always served with crackers. It really doesn't need anything anything else because it has all of the food groups, but a salad would be good to serve with it, as well. Last year I added a lot of beef broth and made it into a soup. It was really good, as well.
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Sunday, September 6, 2009

Festive Cranberry-Pineapple Salad

Posted by Donna:

With the holidays quickly approaching, I thought this gelatin salad recipe would be good to have on hand. My aunt shared this with me last year, and I made it for both Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners.

1 can (20 oz.) DOLE Crushed Pineapple
2 pkg. ( 4-serving size each) JELLO-O Raspberry Flavor Gelatin
1 can (16 oz.) whole berry cranberry sauce
1 medium red apple, chopped
2/3 cup chopped pecans

Drain the pineapple, reserving the liquid in a 1 qt. liquid measuring cup. Add enough cold water to the reserved liquid to measure 3 cups; pour into a large sauce pan. Bring the liquid to a boil; remove from heat. Add gelatin; stir at least 2 minutes, or until the gelatin is completely dissolved. Add cranberry sauce; stir until well blended. Because of the whole berries in the cranberry sauce, the gelatin mixture willl not be completely smooth. Pour the mixture into a large bowl. Refrigerate 1-1/2 hours. Stir in the pineapple, the apples and pecans; stir gently until well blended. Pour into a medium serving bowl. Refrigerate 4 hours or until firm.

It was hard for me to change from just a plain can of jellied cranberry sauce to serve with my holiday meals. I love the canned sauce. Since I have a standard menu for my holiday meals each year, this was a nice change.
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Thursday, September 3, 2009

Chicken Tortilla Soup

Posted & Created by Lori:

This soup was created many years ago as I was preparing for Wednesday night meals for our church family. Using a huge roaster pan, I just began dumping cans of soup, tomatoes, beans, broth, tomatoes and green chilis - plus the chicken - into it until the mixture "looked about right". Since that time I've made it countless times and had numerous requests for the recipe. Most people are really surprised that it's so simple to make. I serve this soup with Garlic Cheese Biscuits. (I use the Bisquick recipe (on the outside of the box) except I use more milk than is called for.)

(This is a 3cherrycokes' original recipe)

2 1/2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts (cooked and chopped or shredded)
2 family-sized cans cream of chicken soup (*see note below)
1 or 2 cans chicken broth (*see note below)
1 can tomatoes and green chilis (ex. Rotel or other brand)
1 can ranch beans (Ranch Style or other brand)
1 can evaporated milk
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1 tsp. cumin
8 corn tortillas, torn into pieces
1/2 cup sour cream, optional

Place all ingredients, except tortillas and sour cream, into large stock pot or crock pot. Heat thouroughly. Before serving, add tortillas and sour cream. (Sour cream would be pretty as a garnish on top, then put a little bit of cheddar cheese.)

Basically, it's still the same as from it's beginning (except I added the evaporated milk a few years ago to make it extra creamy and the cumin for extra flavor)...just dump everything together and the flavors do all of the work! (*NOTE: These ingredients are for a very large crock pot size (6 quart); you may need less of the cream of chicken soup and broth for your crock pot and for your desired preferences of thickness.) It's still a great recipe for large groups. Just pull out your roaster pan and double or triple.

**Tip - Do you use frozen chicken breasts? Frozen chicken is much cheaper than fresh chicken and can be great to keep on hand for quick and easy meals. You can still boil the chicken, chop or shred it, then freeze it to use later on...such as in Chicken Tortilla Soup!
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Dreamy Apricot Salad

Posted by Donna:

This is a recipe I "procured" from a co-worker. I had signed up to bring a jello salad to a funeral meal and my mind went blank as to which one to take. I found this one that I had marked as a "to do" recipe and decided to try it. I think you would really enjoy it as well.

2 (3 oz.) pkgs. apricot gelatin
2/3 cup sugar
2 ( 4 3/4 oz.) jars apricot baby food
1 (20 oz.) can crushed pineapple
1 (8 oz.) pkg. softened cream cheese
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 - 1/2 cups chopped pecans

Combine gelatin, sugar and water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve gelatin and sugar. Remove from heat and add fruit. Cool. Beat cream cheese and condensed milk in a bowl until smooth. Combine with the gelatin mixture and pecans, mixing well. Pour into a 3 qt. dish. Chill until firm.

It is very rich, but women really like it. A friend of mine took some of the leftovers home when I took it to the funeral meal, and her husband gave it thumbs up, also.
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Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Macaroni and Cheese

Posted by Donna:

This may seem like a strange recipe to post, or a very simple recipe to post; but, I visited with a lady one day, and she told me about the wonderful homemade macaroni and cheese she had eaten recently at a family get-together. I've always made homemade macaroni and cheese instead of buying the boxed. Not that the boxed isn't good. Some of my grandchildren prefer it over the homemade. I decided I should post my grandmother's recipe---it is definitely a wonderful homemade sidedish. It's the only one I ever make.

Macaroni and Cheese

Boil, then drain the macaroni--I always use a 16 oz. pkg. for our family of thirteen.

Butter the bottom of 9 x 13 baking dish. Put a layer of macaroni in the bottom of the dish. Put dollops of butter on top of the macaroni. Lay slices of sharp cheddar cheese on top of the macaroni and butter. ( I like the Sargento cheese. I usually buy two 8 oz. pkg.) Put another layer of macaroni on top of the cheese. This time I put the cheese on top of the macaroni first. Then I put my dollops of butter on top of the cheese. Pour a can of Carnation Evaporated milk over the macaroni and cheese. Bake at 350 degrees until the cheese is brown.

There are times I have to add just a little more carnation milk. You want your milk to come to the bottom of the TOP layer of macaroni. Usually one can is enough, but sometimes the macaroni soaks up the milk and you have to add just a little more. I'd rather have too little than too much.

If you have a special macaroni and cheese recipe, please share it with us. When I was teaching school, we would always say how we "stole" a certain idea from another teacher. One teacher told me we don't "steal" our ideas, we "procure" them. I think that's what most of us do with recipes---we "procure" them!!!!!!!

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Okra Salad

Posted by Lori:
This is one of my very favorite salads.

1 large pkg. frozen breaded okra (fried in oil per package directions)
6 slices bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
1/2 of a green pepper, chopped (optional)
4 green onions, chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped

1/4 cup oil
1/4 CUP sugar
1/8 CUP vinegar

Cook oil, sugar, and vinegar long enough to dissolve sugar and then cool mixture. Mix vegetable together and pour dressing on just before serving.

I've made it myself, but since my children don't care for it, I don't very often. But, I have several friends who bring it for church fellowship dinners and ladies' luncheons. I always look forward to it at those events. Yippee! We have one in two weeks!!
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