Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Rocky Mountain Cookies

I made these cookies a while back as you can tell from the Christmas colored M&M's and forgot that I hadn't posted the recipe for these yet.Having grown up near the Rocky Mountians I saw this recipe and had to give them a try We love cookies in our house and these were really yummy. They were thick and chewy and crunchy all in one with the oats and rice krispies running through them. If you want a new cookie recipe to try give these babies a whirl they won't disappoint I promise!!!

Rocky Mountain Cookies adapted from Mel's Kitchen cafe
1 1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp maple flavoring
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 cups old fashioned oats
2 cups rice krispies
2 cups chocolate chips
1-2 cups M&M's (I used pretzel ones but whatever kind would be fine)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large bowl or you mixer, cream together the sugars and butter until light and fluffly. Add the eggs, vanilla, and maple and beat well. Add the flour, baking soda, powder,and salt.Mix. Fold in the oats, Rice krispies, chocolate chips, and M&Ms. Drop Tablespoonfuls of cookie dough onto greased cookie sheets and Bake for 10-15 minutes or until the cookies are lightly golden but still soft. Let cool on cookie sheet for a couple of minutes then Enjoy!!!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Skillet Lasagna

Lasagna-who doesn't love a big ol plate of lasagna? But who really enjoys all the work it sometimes takes to put it together especially on a weeknight when we have so much going on and need a yummy dinner fast. This skillet lasagna is so easy and fast and if I do say so myself taste just as good as the real thing with a lot less work. This recipe has been floating around the food blogasphere for a while now and lot of you have posted but for you that haven't tried this out give it a try you won't be disappointed.

1lb ground beef(use ground turkey or chicken if desired)
1 onion, chopped
1 T. minced garlic
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/3 tsp crushed red pepper flakes(will not make it to spicy don't leave out)
1 1/2 tsp basil
1/2 tsp oregano
2 cans(14.5 oz each)crushed tomatoes or one large can
1 can tomato sauce plus one can of water
12 lasagna noodles broken in 1 inch length pieces(can use whole wheat if desired)
1 cup mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1/2 cup part skim ricotta cheese

Brown the hamburger in a large skillet with the onion and garlic until no longer pink. Drain the grease. Scatter the broken noodles over the meat. pour in the tomatoes, sauce , and seasonings and stir. Cover and increase the heat and maintain a simmer until the pasta is tender(about 20 minutes) Stir in cheeses and cover and let stand till the cheese melts. Serve with crusty french bread and a green salad!!!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Baked Pumpkin Maple Oatmeal

So I have seen a lot of recipes for baked oatmeal and have really been wanting to try it so this weekend I did. Man am I ever happy that I did. This stuff was awesome!!!! I eat homemade granola every morning for breakfast but I believe this wonderful stuff will be making it into the rotation as a healthy hearty breakfast. My kids gobbled this up as well. Like I said I have found many recipes for this but I didn't really like everything in the recipes I found so I tailored this to my family's taste. Plus a lot of them had a whole stick of butter in them and I just thought that defeated the purpose of healthy oatmeal, granted I love me some butter and bad things for me(just look at my dessert list) but not for breakfast unless it is a special occasion. Anywho, give this recipe a try you will not regret it!!!
Baked Pumpkin Maple Oatmeal
3 T. melted butter
1 cup pumpkin
1/2 cup honey
2 eggs
3 1/2 cups old fashioned oats(not quick cooking)
1/2 cup whole or milled flax seeds
1 T. baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp maple flavoring( I think next time I will do 2 or maybe even a Tablespoon)
1 1/2 cup milk(any kind will work even soy or almond I used 1 percent because that is what I had)
1 cup fruit or nuts ( I used chopped almonds)

In a bowl mix together the butter, honey, eggs, and pumpkin. Add the oats, flax seeds, baking powder, salt, cinnamon,maple flavoring, and milk. Mix well and then fold in the fruit or nuts. Bake in a greased 8x8 or 8x 11 inch pan at 350 degress for 30-40 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with more milk, fruit, brown sugar, or honey!!!

Right out of the oven!!! So yummy believe me. We ate ours with more milk!! I baked in a 8x11 inch pan a 9x9 inch would also work well.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Sweet Potato Fries

I am one of those people who has never jumped on the sweet potato wagon. I have never cared much for them and all their goodness for you until I found this recipe. Granted my family and I are still your white potato kind of people. This recipe allows me to rotate these good for you orange potato into our dinner menu. If you have not tried a sweet potato or don't care much for them try this recipe out and it may just change your mind. I found this recipe over at Mel's kitchen. Once again my picture doesn't do them justice but Mel's picture does so if you aren't convinced by my pic take a look at hers Here.

Sweet Potato Fries
3 large sweet potatoes
3 T. olive oil
1 T. sugar
1 T. Kosher salt
1 tsp, chili powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp dried oregano

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Peel the potatoes and cut them into strips or wedges all about the same size, so they all cook evenly. Place the potato strips/wedges into a ziploc bag or bowl. Toss the potatoes with the oil. Add the seasonings and mix till well coated. Divide the potatoes between two baking sheets so they are all in a single layer. Bake the potatoes for about 12-15 minutes, flipping halfway through, until they are tender and well browned. I usually cook mine longer and broil them at the end to make them a little bit crispier. Just be careful and watch them cause they can burn easily if not watched near the end.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Chocolate Caramel Shortbread Bars

Oh my where do I begin with these yummy bars.... The picture just doesn't do them justice. I am so sorry I am not a photographer but take my word for it these are so yummy and might I add so easy. If you need a yummy treat to take to a bbq, church activity, or party take these believe me they will be gone in no time. I found the recipe for these babies over at Our Best Bites.

Chocolate Caramel Shortbread Bars
1 cup salted butter, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
2 cups flour
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups caramels(1-14 oz bag kraft caramels or 2 cups homemade caramel)
1-3 T. cream(1 T. for store bought caramel and 2-3 for homemade or firmer caramels)
2 pkgs(11 oz bags) mini Reeses Peanut butter cups

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Spray a 9x13 pan with cooking spray and set aside. Mix the butter, sugar, flour and vanilla until it comes together and forms a soft dough. Press into prepared pan. Prick with a fork and bake for 35-45 minutes or until crust is lightly golden. Remove from oven and cool completely.

Combine the caramels and cream and heat for 3-4 minutes, stiring each minute, until they are melted and smooth. Spread evenly over the cookie crust. Then place the pan in the refrigerator and chill for 30-60 minutes or until the caramels are solid.

In a microwave safe bowl melt the reeses peanut butter cups until smooth and melted, stirring every 45 seconds or so. Spread over cooled caramel and place in the fridge until chocolate is solid. Cut into squares and enjoy!!!!!
If you do happen to have leftovers they keep better in the fridge or a cool area.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Savory Roasted Potatoes

I saw this recipe over at Life as a Lofthouse and just new I had to try them out. I have had a bag of potatoes I have been needing to use but was tired of all my old potato recipes. This one was simple and delicious and not to bad for you either. You do use olive oil but hey it is the good fat for you!!!!

Savory Roast Potatoes adapted from Life as a Lofthouse
1/4 spicy brown or dijon mustard(I used spicy brown because that is what I had)'
1/4 cup olive oil
1 T. minced garlic
2 tsp dried crushed rosemary or 1 T. fresh rosemary chopped
1 t. Kosher Salt
1 t. black pepper
2-3lbs potatoes, cut into 1 inch cubes(any kind I used regular because that is what I had but new red potatoes would be awesome)

Heat Oven to 400 degrees. In a large mixing bowl whisk everything together except the potatoes. Dump the potatoes in and toss till all potatoes are coated well. Pour onto a greased cookie sheet. Spread in a single layer. Bake for 50-55 minutes, turning potatoes every 20 minutes until desired crispiness is achieved. Serve with grilled meat or we had a vegetarian meal and ate these as the main dish with steamed veggies(broccoli, carrots, cauliflower)

Monday, May 9, 2011


We had spaghetti the other night for dinner and the kids wanted me to make breadsticks. I was a little short on time so I pulled out this recipe that I have been wanting to try that only needs to be raised once. They turned out really great and were way simple. These are great with pasta but would be just as good to go along side a big bowl of soup.

1 T instant yeast
1 1/2 cups warm water
2 T. butter, softened
2 T. sugar
1 T. salt
4 1/4 cups flour
5 T. butter,melted
3/4 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp dill weed
Parm cheese for sprinkling

Mix the water, butter, sugar, and salt in you mixer. Add the instant yeast and flour and mix until well combined and a smooth soft dough is formed. You may need to add a little bit more flour. (if using regular yeast activate in the warm water then add the rest of the ingredients and mix well) Place on a floured surface and roll into a 2 foot long log. Cut into 16 pieces. Roll each piece into a 7 inch long breadstick and place on a greased cookie sheet two inches apart. Cover and let rise in a warm place for 45 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix all the topping ingredients together and brush each breadstick with the mixture before baking. Bake until lightly golden, about 12-15 minutes. After removing from oven, brush again with the butter mixture and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Pumpkin Carrot Cake

I made this cake a couple of years ago and thought I had posted the recipe but alas I haven't. I was about to make this again for a church activity in a few days so I thought I would post this. This is by far the best carrot cake I have ever had. You must give it a try. It has pumpkin in it also which puts this cake over the top.
Jessie's Pumpkin Carrot Cake
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 small can Pumpkin (about 2 cups)
2 1/4 cup flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp. salt
3 cups grated carrots
1/2 cup crushed pineapple,drained
1 cup chopped pecans (optional)
1/2 cup raisins or craisins ( I used craisins because that is what I had it was good)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 3 (9 inch) round cake pans with cooking spray. Cream the butter with the sugars with a mixer. Add the eggs and beat well. Add the vanilla and pumpkin. Add the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Mix well. Mix in the carrots, pineapple, nuts and craisins or raisins. Pour into pans and bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in comes out clean. Let cool then dump out of pans. Frost in between each layer of cake and all around the cake.
Cream Cheese Frosting
2-80z pkgs cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter softened
Cream these together until fluffly. then add 1 tsp vanilla and 3 cups powdered sugar and Mix well.