Category Archives: Recipes

Chicken and Dumplings….comfort big girl food!

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Ahh comfort food at it’s finest.I mean how can you go wrong with nothing more than chicken in a thick creamy broth surrounded by puffy yummy clouds of dough? Yeah I thought so too.
 
This is my momma’s recipe but there are many on the internet that are so close…or spot on. Each has it’s own place in the owner’s heart. I add a little more memory to mine.

Ingredients:
3 cups chicken, cooked and shredded
2 quarts chicken broth
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
2 tbsp. salted butter, cubed
milk (a little less than a cupful)

Instructions

  1. Boil in a stockpot 2 games hens till cooked completely.
  2. Remove the broth from heat and let cool completely. This makes skimming the fat easier.
  3. Once the broth has been skimmed, pour into a fine sieve to remove any fat that has settled to the bottom and pour broth back into stock pot.
  4. Once the chickens have cooled enough to handle remove the skin, and being shredding off the body with a fork.
  5. Set chicken aside in another bowl.
  6. Start warming homemade stock it up on the stove top while you make the dumplings. To get that chicken soup taste add 1/8-1/4 tsp celery salt and pepper to taste. If it’s not to your desire you can add chicken bouillon to it.
  7. In a medium bowl, combine flour and baking powder. Then add in cubed butter.
  8. Combine using your fingers, fork or pastry cutter.
  9. Pour in the milk. Mix it all together.
  10. Dust your counter with a generous amount of flour. Place dumpling dough on the counter and dust it with more flour.
  11. With a rolling pin, roll the dough out to about 1/4″ thickness.
  12. Be sure to add flour as necessary to keep it from sticking underneath or to your rolling pin.
  13. Using a knife or a pizza cutter, start cutting out your dumplings into squares.
  14. Dust dumplings with a bit more flour. The extra flour is all gonna help keep them from sticking but will also thicken your chicken broth some as well when you add them to the pot.
  15. Bring chicken broth up to a boil. Add in shredded chicken and stir.
  16. Begin adding dumplings one at a time so they don’t all stick together. Stir frequently while adding them.
  17. Allow dumplings to cook for about 15-20 minutes. You should notice your broth starting to thicken (from the extra flour) and your dumplings may start to sink a little to the bottom because they are soaking up the broth. Take one out and taste test it. It shouldn’t have a doughy taste anymore.

Bacon Wrapped Ranch Chicken

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I made this April 10th yeah been a little behind, but it’s ok. I have been busy and your mouths have been watering. I have to admit I was surprised by this recipe. I thought that the ranch would over power everything cos ya know ranch is a pretty strong flavor on it’s own.
 
I will need to do this without the bone in thigh chicken….you will want to make alot of this cos it’s that dang gone good! For those of you that have nitrate issues used uncured bacon in place of regular bacon and you should be fine!
 
Ingredients:
 
8 chicken thighs
1 packet of ranch dressing mix
bacon
 
Directions:
 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pat dry each thigh, then coat in ranch dressing mix. Wrap 2-3 slices of bacon around each thigh. Place on a rimmed baking sheet….this will help keep all the juices from the chicken and bacon in the pan. Place each thigh 2 inches apart. 
 
Place chick in oven for 30-45 min until bacon is crispy and chicken juices run clear or 160 degrees is marked on your meat thermometer. Serve with sides of your choice, just be sure there is color on your plate.

Internet Win….big time

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Ok this recipe/video has been shared I don’t know how many times on Facebook or other social media sites. It’s for that peanut butter lover in your life. In my case my roomie. Yeah. It all started to innocently when my best friend posted it to my Facebook wall. I watched the video and then my roomie seen it and was like can you do that?

Yes it was a loaded question, and yes I knew I could make them. The main question was did I want to make them and what did it all entail? So I went to Delish’s website and saw how incredibly easy these were to make. Needless to say roomie was happy, like a kid in the candy store after a toys r us spree happy.

So without much more to say except that these are super peanut buttery, and very addictive and go awesome with coffee, and the filling can be changed to Oreo cookies, rolo’s and tons more. Your imagination and comfort level are all that are stopping you.

Peanut butter lovers ~only~ By Delish.

LEVEL: EASY
YIELD: 12 LARGE COOKIES

INGREDIENTS

FOR FILLING
  • 1 c. smooth peanut butter
  • 1/2 c. powdered sugar
FOR COOKIES
  • 1/2 c. creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 c. (1 stick) Butter, softened
  • 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • 1/4 c. granulated sugar (plus more for rolling)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 375° and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Make filling: In a medium bowl, combine peanut butter and powdered sugar and mix until smooth. Scoop into small balls (about 1 1/2″) and freeze until ready to use.
  3. Make cookies: In a large bowl, combine peanut butter, butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar and beat with a hand mixer on medium until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla and mix until thoroughly combined. Add flour, baking soda and salt and mix until just combined.
  4. Scoop heaping tablespoon of the cookie dough and flatten into a flat, pancake-like circle. Place the frozen peanut butter ball on top. Bring the edges of the dough around the frozen peanut butter ball and pinch the edges together to seal, adding more dough if necessary to cover the frozen peanut butter completely.
  5. Roll stuffed cookie dough ball in sugar and place on baking sheet. Repeat until all dough is used, spacing the cookies about 2” apart.
  6. Bake until the cookies are golden on the bottom, about 12-15 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Let me or heck even them know how well they turned out. Oh another thing these are not small cookies at all. I got lucky and ended up with a baker’s dozen (13) instead of a dozen.

When life hands you lemons…

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Betty Crocker Cranberry Poundcake

All credit for the picture goes to the above link!

Ok so it’s been crazy….and I mean crazy! My father died December 18, 2016 and well let’s just say there is lots of legal stuffs to do, cops and more. Shaking my head….good thing dad was like me and I have enough coffee to hopefully get thru this.

So it’s like the old saying when life gives you lemon’s you make….Baked goodies! It’s too cold right now here in North Carolina to make lemonade. So I made 2 loaves of lemon blueberry strudel bread for my oh so lovely neighbors. I guess it shocked them that I knew how to bake, well that is to say the least of all the recent shocks around here. So today is cold and too bad outside so to try something new I whipped up a lemon cranberry pound cake.

I got the recipe off of pinterest my oh favorite addictive site on the web. I saw the recipe, had to make the recipe and now awaiting to see if I conquered said recipe. Lucky lucky me I’ve had more pinterest wins than fails. One must take inconsideration before baking crazy exotic gourmet goodies the comfortablity one has in the kitchen.  Me the kitchen is the heart and soul of a home.

I will post some different recipes using lemon. Not the one’s that everyone knows, ya know lemon meringue and curd and lemon poppy. Lemon’s are cheap, easy to work with and delightfully compliment many different types of other fruits. Especially berries.

So without further going and witnessing for the delightful lemon…I present new recipes to try!

Lemon Raspberry French Toast

Tiny Potatoes with Lemon

Lemon Creme Brulee

Lemon Berry Cheesecakes

Lemon Blueberry Streusel Bread

Lemon Cranberry Pound Cake

Choose My Plate

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The new thing in portion control is choose my plate. It is designed with how much protein, veggies, grains and fruits you need in a meal. Does it work not sure but it does seem very interesting to me.

Portion control is what makes a balanced meal and the http://www.choosemyplate.gov/ give great printables and more on how to properly balance your meal.  I get that portion control along with eating a well balanced meal and exercise is good for you but what’s to say they (government) won’t change this plan in a couple months or years.

I’m all for this but I have noticed a couple of problems in this plan of theirs and it’s not really their fault, but the industry’s fault. The choose my plate plan is based upon a 8.5-9in. in diameter plate…well most plates that you buy from say walmart, target, kmart or what have are 10-12in. diameter sized plates. 

In my honest opinion it’s a start but with the ever increasing prices of food that one prepares at home verses the cost of pre-packaged meals or what I call convenience junk food it will be hard. To eat and prepare healthy meals for a family cost more than that convenience junk food that one can buy. May they can focus on getting rid of some these foods and lower the cost of healthy food. 

But like I was stating I am going to try more to have veggies and fruits than meat. But remember just start simple and eat in moderation. 

Non Grain Flours

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This picture belongs to glutenfreerecipebox.com

Ahh the mass confusion using gluten free flours for paleo/gluten free/ whole foods and more recipes. So many choices and which to use for what can drive one crazy. Then add in converting regular recipes to use these said flours is enough to…well it’s enough!

Ok so now for the conversions….

Bob’s red Mill has come up with this chart it may help. You can check it out here (http://www.bobsredmill.com/media/pdf/Alternative_Flours.pdf)

In gluten-free baking the golden rule is 1 cup of all-purpose bleached white flour = 120 grams. Since most baked goods recipes in America were developed with gluten flour just use 120 grams of your gluten-free flour blend in place of the AP.

In general, you want to use a ratio of  2/3 heavy/medium flours and 1/3 starch/light flours for the best texture.  If you prefer a  ‘white’ flour replacement, switch that ratio!

A very rough estimate is about 1 1/4 cup gluten free flours to 1 cup all-purpose wheat flour.  The addition of about 1/2 teaspoon gum of choice is usually called for for ideal texture.  However, many recipes with additional binding ingredients (chia meal, flax meal, banana, applesauce) does not need the addition

If you want to sub gluten free flours for other ones you prefer, sub a light for light, medium for a medium, a heavy for a heavy (refer to list below for flour ‘weights’).

Here is a good link to a site that not only tells you about flour subs but even gives you recipes to make your own blends! http://www.glutenfreeandmore.com/resources/food-allergy-substitutions.html

Here is a baking chart for converting recipes! http://www.gygi.com/blog/blog/2012/07/20/gluten-free-baking-the-conversion-chart/

Hopefully these links will help you on your journey to healthy eating and converting recipes to which ever grain free diet or lifestyle that you are doing.

PUMPKIN CHEESECAKE

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Every year I make this cheesecake and everyone loves it! It’s the perfect mix between pumpkin and cheesecake. I got my recipe from my Treasury of TOP Secret Recipes. I love making this cheesecake despite the crack that always happens. I really could care less about this I care more for the ohh’s and ahh’s I get from it when people try it.

PUMPKIN CHEESECAKE

1 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
5 Tbsp. butter, melted
1 cup plus 1 Tbsp. sugar
3 80z. pkg. of 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup pumpkin puree
3 eggs
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

Preheat oven to 350. Make the crust by combining the first 3 ingredients, stirring well enough to coat all the crumbs with butter. Press the crumbs onto the bottom of a spring-form pan. Bake the crust for 5 min. 

In a large bowl combine the cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla. Mix with an electric mixer until smooth. Add the pumpkin, eggs and pumpkin pie spice and continue to beat until smooth and creamy. Pour batter into the pan. Bake for 60-70 min. The top will be a bit darker at this point. Remove from the oven and allow the cake to cool. When the cake has come to room temp. place in the fridge. Serve with whipped topping or some other kind of topping.

Breakfast Apple Pie

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Gooseberry Patch CookBook: Farmer’s Market
Page: 26

1 egg, beaten   1/4 cup oil  1 cup milk  11/2 cup bisquick mix or baking mix1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp. sugar  2 apples cored, peeled and cut into wedges 1/2 tsp. cinnamon 1/4 tsp. nutmeg 2 Tbsp. butter ( I omitted this out)
Garnish: Whipped cream or vanilla icecream

1. Beat together the first 4 ingredients and the 1/2 cup sugar. Beat well.
2. Pour into a greased 9′ pie pan/plate.
3. Arrange apples over batter; sprinkle with remaining sugar, cinnamon, and nut meg.
4. Dot with butter. Bake at 375 degrees for 30 min. or until apples are tender….I would bake till it tests done.
5. Serve warm with whipped cream or vanilla icecream

No Bake Cookies aka Preacher Cookies

No-Bake-Cookies

 

This is a new family tradition ever since I made them the first time in North Carolina. My Granny and me call them preacher cookies, but most everyone knows them as no bakes. Everything is done on the stove and then you use your fridge that easy.

Ingredients:

2 C. sugar

  1/2 C. milk 

1/4 C. butter

3 Tbsp. baking cocoa powder
3 C. quick cooking oats 

1 tsp vanilla 

1 C. peanut butter creamy/crunchy your choice (Sunbutter if your allergic to PB)

Directions:

Mix the first 3 ingredients in a large saucepan and boil for no more than a 1 min. Remove from heat and stir in remaining ingredients. If it seems a little soupy add more oats. Stir till everything is well combined.

On wax paper drop cookie mix by Tablespoon full. Once done then place in the fridge overnight to set the cookie up. If you need to set them quick you can also put them in the freezer for about 30 min, then transfer to airtight container and store in the fridge until time you serve them.

 

Mock Keebler Soft Batch Chocolate Chip Cookies

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I got this recipe from the food guy that lets you made brand named recipes at home. I have to admit that these are better than the store bought ones and it makes more of them too! My DS can’t seem to get enough this cookie. The trick to keeping them super moist is the molasses…shhhh

Ingredients:

1 lb. of butter ( 4 sticks of butter), softened

2 eggs

2 Tbsp. molassess

2 tsp. vanilla

1/3 C. water

1 1/2 C. sugar

1 1/2 C. brown sugar ( I use light) packed

1 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda 

1 tsp. salt 

5 C. flour 

2 pkgs. of chocolate chips or chunks

Directions:

1. Preheat oven 375 degrees
2. Cream butter, eggs, molasses, vanilla, and water in med. size bowl.
3. In large bowl sift together sugars, baking powder, baking soda, salt and flour.
4. Combine wet mix with dry mix. Add Chocolate chips.
5. Shape dough into 1-in. balls and place them 1-in. apart on a greased baking sheet. I use a small cookie scoop so all my cookies are the same size.
6. Bake 8 min or until light brown around the edges. I let mine sit on the pan for 5 min to cool a bit before removing to cool completely.