Saturday, November 27, 2010


I made THESE tonight to test them out as possible Christmas treats to give away. I think it was a flop. I took them out five minutes earlier than the suggested bake time and they are totally crispy. Bummer.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Turtle Pumpkin Pie

One of the yummiest things you'll ever eat... HERE

Monday, November 8, 2010

EASY Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

THIS is the easiest recipe ever. And delicious, of course. I used mini chocolate chips and I liked the effect.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Vicious Delicious Cycle

I keep making pumpkin recipes that leave me with a partial can of pumpkin unused. So I have to make something else involving pumpkin so it doesn't go to waste. It's a good cycle. :)

I made THESE pumpkin snickerdoodles today and they are good!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

sweet blog...

One Lovely Life

i just ran across this blog today and i seriously love it. such a cute blog, and love the writing/pictures.
especially the toffee fruit dip?! that just screams heaven!

i'll add it to the side of our blog.

Halloween Food

So, I tried 3 things from the Halloween Food link I posted about. The nutty ghosts were EASY and a success I think. The mummy dogs were easy, yummy, and cute (I have done these before); we had them for dinner Halloween night. I also tried the candy corn pizza, but it didn't turn out that well because the cheese was "browned" by the time I took the pizza out so the colors didn't really show through. Bummer.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Pumpkin Nutella Bread

I have made THIS recipe two times in the past three days. Next time I'll just have to double it. :) It is heavenly!!

*I took a pic of mine but blogger won't upload me when I say it turned out AMAZING. Also, the recipe says to bake for 40-45 minutes, but I pulled mine out around 35 minutes both time because I was afraid it would burn, and it turned out great.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Pumpkin Waffles

I found THIS recipe and really wanted to try it. I knew it was too involved for me to actually use for breakfast. So I made it for dinner last night! So yummy!

*The recipe calls for buttermilk. Instead of buying buttermilk, you can just "make" it by pouring 1 Tbsp. lemon juice or vinegar into a liquid measuring cup and then add enough milk to bring it up to one cup. This recipe calls for 2 cups, so double it. :)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Zucchini Muffins

This is my mom's recipe and it is SO GOOD!!

1 1/8 C. oil *I used applesauce
3 C. sugar
2 t. vanilla
3 eggs
4 1/8 C. flour
1 1/2 t. salt
2 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
4 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. nutmeg
1/2 t. cloves
1/2 t. all spice
4 2/3 C. shredded zucchini *I only had about 3 C. and it turned out fine.
1 1/4 C. chopped walnuts (optional)

Cream oil and sugar. Slowly beat in vanilla and eggs. In separate bowl, combine dry ingredients. Add to the "wet" bowl- just to combine. Add zucchini and nuts. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes. Makes about 2 dozen regular size muffins.

*I think blogger is having problems with images right now, so I'll email a pic to whoever wants it. :)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


Look HERE at all these fun, easy Halloween treats. I made the mummy dogs last year and plan on doing it again this year.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Easy Birthday Cake

Jamie requested this cake for her bday. My mom used to make it but hasn't in a long time and I've never made it before this weekend. It turned out just like we remembered it and it is so easy to do.

It is basically just a yellow cake with a yummy "filling".

Make cake batter according to instructions on box. Spread into greased 9x13 pan.

Make filling:
Cream the following-
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/3 C sugar
1 egg

Spread over the top of the cake batter as best you can without "mixing it together". Sprinkle one cup of chocolate chips over entire cake. Bake according to cake mix instructions.

Yummy with vanilla ice cream.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

more on caramel smore cups

You may have recently seen me post the link for Caramel Smore Cups.

I made two batches today and boy are they tasty. Tim and I both tried one out and BOY are they DELISH!

seriously heavenly. need a simple dessert? i'm not kidding. SIMPLE!

now off to make the pumpkin crumb coffee cake

Friday, October 15, 2010

Pumpkin Crumb Coffee Cake

*recipe taken from a Kraft foods magazine a few years ago, I think.

1 C all-purpose flour
1/2 C packed dark brown sugar
Pinch of salt
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
6 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cold, cut into pieces *I used margarine since that's what I had on hand.

2 C all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/3 C vegetable oil
3/4 C unsweetened applesauce
1 15 oz. can pumpkin
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 C sugar
1/2 C packed dark brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature, lightly beaten *mine were not room temp.

1. Make topping: In a bowl, stir together flour, brown sugar, salt, and cinnamon. Add butter and combine with fingertips until mixture is crumbly. Refrigerate while making batter.
2. Make cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 9x13 inch cake pan. In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices. In a large bowl, whisk together oil, applesauce, pumpkin, vanilla, and both sugars until well mixed. Whisk in eggs. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture and stir until just combined; do not overmix. Pour batter into cake pan and spread evenly. Sprinkle with topping.
3. Bake cake until a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, 45 -50 minutes. *I baked mine for 45 mins. and it turned out perfect. Allow to cool in pan on a wire rack at least 20 minutes.

Sorry no pic but it looks so pretty, especially when you cut into pieces. It was so good! My family was raving about it.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Tried THESE yesterday and think it might turn into my go-to cookie recipe from now on. So delish!

Also, over the weekend I made a new "pumpkin" recipe: pumpkin crumb cake. I'd have to type out the recipe, but if you're looking for a yummy new pumpkin recipe, let me know and I'll post it! It was a huge success.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Caramel S'more Cups

how heavenly do these look? and EXTREMELY simple! i think i'll be making these in the very near future.

Caramel Smore Cups

{i love that you can copy + paste into blogger now!!}

Monday, October 4, 2010

Autumn Baking

Conference weekend at the Lunt home means delicious food, especially for breakfast. So, I've tried to carry that tradition over to our family. Saturday morning I made banana waffles and Sunday morning it was whole wheat pumpkin muffins. I got the RECIPE from my friend's blog a while back and have made it countless times. I love it!(Note: I substituted applesauce for the oil.) The exciting thing about this time around was that I used my first batch of freshly ground wheat flour to make them!

For dessert on Sunday I made heavenly apple crisp. I think I can safely say that this is my all time favorite thing to eat- my grandma's apple crisp (warm) with vanilla ice cream. I really should have taken a picture of this; the servings looked so appetizing in my mom's latte bowls from anthro. Here's the recipe anyway:

Apple "Filling"
6 C peeled, sliced apples (I used Gala)
3/4 C sugar
1/2 C flour
1/2 t. nutmeg
1/2 t. cinnamon
dash salt

2 cubes butter or margarine, slightly softened
1 C flour
1 C sugar
1 C oatmeal

*Tip: If you're like our family, and can't get enough of the "crisp" part, double all crisp ingredients. I felt apprehensive about FOUR cubes of margarine, so I just did three, and it worked just perfectly.

Mix apple filling ingredients and spread evenly in a greased 9x13 pan. Mix crisp ingredients by cutting butter in with a fork until mixture is crumbly. Spread evenly over apples. Bake at 350 til crisp is lightly browned on top. Approx 30 minutes.

Seriously, there is nothing yummier than this. I can eat embarrassing amounts in one sitting. :)

Thursday, September 30, 2010


Tried THIS new recipe last night. Delish! This made TONS, so we'll be having leftovers a lot. :)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

New Site

I just added THIS site to my google reader. Lots of goodness going on there.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Creamy Pasta Primavera

I tried THIS recipe yesterday. It was yummy, but next time I'll add more parmesan because it wasn't as flavorful as I was hoping. I also used different veggies- just the ones I had on hand.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Christmas goodie idea

Baked Perfection recently posted a fabulous idea. I'd like to try these out for the holidays.

Chocolate covered peanut butter pretzel bites

Who would try them out if I attempted these?!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Blueberry Muffins

Blueberries were really cheap at the Ranch Market and I had just seen THIS recipe in an email, so I tried it out! WINNER! I highly recommend this. It is so tasty and fairly healthy. Minor alterations of mine were: substitute applesauce for oil, and add a few shakes of cinnamon. SO good, and MOIST!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Sweet Pork Burros

So, I make this Costa Vida copycat recipe. It is very yummy. However, I don't think it's an exact match as far as the flavor of the sweet pork at Costa Vida. My mom has a DELISH recipe for sweet pork and makes a heavenly tomatillo dressing that's just like at the restaurant, but it's much more involved and requires ingredients I don't usually have on hand. SO, here's the one I use cause it's easy, yummy, and I don't have to make an extra trip to the store.

Brown Sugar

Place pork (mine's usually frozen) in crock pot. Cover with brown sugar (probably 1/2 a cup or less, depending on how much meat you're using) and salsa (probably 1/2 a jar or more). Cook on low for several hours. Shred and stir before serving.

1 C. rice (I use brown, but white is more like the restaurant)
1 small can diced green chiles
garlic, minced
spoonful of "butter"

Place green chiles, onion, and cilantro in food chopper and chop until "fine". Place all ingredients plus one cup water into pot and cook like you usually cook rice.

Serve meat and rice in tortillas (the kind you cook yourself are best) with cooked black or pinto beans. Top with cheese.

*Last night I made my own version of pico de gallo with tomato, cilantro, and green onion. Yum. I also used feta cheese instead of the shredded cheddar I usually would use and it was GREAT! I know I was a little vague on the exact measurements for the meat and rice, but if you ever want to make this, let me know and I'll be more specific!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Greek Pasta Salad

I had this at a baby shower and it was divine, so I asked the lady who brought it for the recipe. She brought it cold, sans chicken. For our dinner I did it with the chicken and served warm. I set aside some for Ryan before adding the olives, red peppers, tomatoes, and feta cheese. I LOVE the flavor combo of having all of it together! It was delish and easy! I recommend it!

*I'll give you the same disclaimer as the lady gave me: the seasoning contains MSG... if that matters to you.

Greek Pasta Salad

1 lb. corkscrew or penne pasta
Chicken breast – brown in olive oil and lot’s of cavendar’s seasoning
1 can olives – sliced
1 red pepper – diced
Broccoli – cooked till soft (not overcooked- can run cold water on it to
stop the cooking)
Cherry tomatoes - optional
Feta Cheese – crumbled

Mix all together - Add dressing – then add feta last

½ cup olive oil
½ cup vinegar
3 Tbsp cavendar’s greek seasoning (yellow and red container found in
the spice aisle of any store)

** for authentic greek salad use artichoke hearts instead of broccoli. I
just don’t like artichoke hearts so I changed it.

Monday, August 23, 2010

homemade bagels

this is now one of my favorite recipes of all time.
they are SO easy and sooooooooooo good.
i love putting blueberries in them.
you can see the one in front i didn't seal very good...but it was still delicious.

so here is the recipe!

homemade bagels

don't be afraid...make them! :)

chocolate chip granola bars (gluten free!)

today was the first day i've ever made granola bars.
these are yummy...but i'll definitely be trying out some other recipes.
my only complaint (besides that emerson didn't like them) is that they aren't as firm as i wish they'd be. they fall apart easily. not sure if i could just use a little less oil or what.

anyways! sage + jim + i all love them!

once again from good ole' martha!

Nonuttin' Chewy Chocolate Chip Granola Bars

Saturday, August 21, 2010


We had homemade salsa last Sunday and Lindsay asked me to post the recipe. We got this recipe from Nancy Hansen back in 2001 and served it at Amy & Tim's wedding reception! Yum!

1 clove garlic
1 bunch green onion, chopped
A few sprigs of cilantro (4-5 leaves)
1 can chopped green chiles, drained
1 large can whole peeled tomatoes, drained
1/4 can El Pato sauce (hot) Yellow can w/duck on it!

Put the garlic, green onion and cilantro in the blender and blend for a few seconds. Add the other ingredients and blend for 5 seconds.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Honey Whole Wheat Bread (with flax seed)

i used the recipe HERE on martha stewart's website.

NOTE: i added ground flax seed (ground in the blender).
next time i will probably add even more grains.

jim and i watched the move food inc earlier this week.
and it seriously changed our outlook on food.
i know i can't change everything we want to immediately...
but making my own bread is one thing that is really easy to do!

we really loved this recipe and will probably use it most of the time...
unless i find something else we like better.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

zucchini bites

this is an easy summer side dish or appetizer. i've made it a few times this summer - and finally decided to take a picture. and this has been a perfect use of leftover breading from chicken bites or other breaded chicken recipes. {ritz/parm mix consists of 1 sleeve Ritz and 1/4 cup shredded or grated parmesan cheese... blended together in food processor}

you need: 2 zucchini, ritz/parmesan breading mix, marinara sauce

preheat oven to 425*
slice zucchini about 1/4" - 1/3" thick
rinse in water
cover in ritz/parmesan breading mix
place on foiled and Pam'd baking sheet
cook for about 10 minutes, turn zucchini over
cook for another 10 or until crispy... or desired doneness.

enjoy with hot marinara sauce.

oh, and my 3rd time making these was a charm. i realized in order to make them as crispy as i like i needed to place the pan on the bottom row in the oven. worked much better.

Thursday, July 22, 2010


At our Lunt family reunion, my aunt was in charge of breakfast one day and she prepared "muesli." It's easy, healthy, and delish! Here's what she had provided for people to build their own muesli.

Oats (uncooked)
Chopped apples
Cut bananas
Sliced strawberries
Chopped walnuts
*Start with oats and milk and add whatever you want!

I made some this morning and I had oats, milk, low-fat Mountain High strawberry yoghurt, bananas, strawberries, apples, craisins, and chopped pecans. YUM!!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Yummy Site!

Yesterday our neighbor brought over the most delicious cupcakes ever! I loved them, and I usually don't like cupcakes very much. The key was the frosting. So good! I asked her for the recipe and she pointed me in the direction of Our Best Bites. HERE is the frosting recipe, and I've bookmarked several other recipes already! Check it out!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

A couple new recipes

Okay, I don't know what the deal is, but for a while now (like a few months) I've been having problems uploading pics to blogger. I did take pictures of everything I'm posting about today, but I only got one pic to upload. Sorry.

We were having company over on Sunday night so I decided to try a couple new recipes that I've been wanting to make.

Main Course: Lasagna Roll Ups

1 pkg. lasagna
1 (24 oz.) jar your favorite spaghetti sauce
2 Tbsp. chopped parsley
1 tsp. oregano leaves
1 tsp. basil leaves
2 (16 oz.) container Ricotta cheese
2 C. mozarella cheese, divided
1/2 C. parmesan cheese
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp. salt

Prepare lasagna according to package directions. Drain. Pour half of the spaghetti sauce in the bottom of lasagna pan. Blend ricotta, 1 cup mozarella, parmesan, eggs, herbs and salt. Spread cheese mixture equally on lasagna strips. Roll up each strip. Arrange lasagna rolls seam side down in pan. Top with remaining sauce and cheese. Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Serves 6-8

*My notes: I didn't know if the recipe referred to fresh parsley, oregano, and basil, but I used my stuff from my spice cabinet and just estimated. I used less than the measurements given since dried is much more potent than fresh herbs. (Right?)
Also, I let the noodles cool laying flat in layers separated my towels on a cookie sheet so that they didn't stick to each other.
Oh, and I forgot to cover before harm done, just not as pretty on top.
This was yummy!!

Served with: Breadsticks Recipe HERE

and green salad (I know you don't need a recipe for that. Ha)

Dessert: Ice Box Dessert from Kraft Foods magazine

7 1/2 graham crackers, broken in half
1 pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 cups milk
1 pkg. (4 serving size) vanilla flavor instant pudding mix
1 tub (8 oz.) cool whip, thawed, divided
1 cup quartered strawberries
1 cup chopped kiwis
1/3 cup coconut, toasted

Arrange graham crackers in even layer on bottom of 9 x 13 pan

Beat cream cheese in large bowl until creamy. Gradually add milk. Add pudding mix; beat 1 min. Stir in half the whipped topping. Spread over graham crackers in pan. Cover with remaining whipped topping. Refrigerate several hours or over night. Top with fruit and sprinkle coconut just before serving.

*I didn't do the coconut, although it would be yummy! Also, I used strawberries, blueberries, and boysenberries and it was red, white, and blue for the 4th! Yummy!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Monday, June 21, 2010

grilled avocado

again, this recipe is from 'summer grilling' from come back to the table.

1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp lime juice
2 large ripe avocados, halved, seeded and peeled
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 cup picante sauce (or chopped tomato and jalapeno) {i think she meant pico de gallo type combo... NOT pace picante sauce :o)}
shredded cheese {of your liking... probably monterey jack or a white cheese. not sure how cheddar would do}
snipped fresh cilantro

Stir together olive oil and lime juice. Bruch avocados with the mixture, and sprinkle the cut sides of the avocado with salt.

Grill cut side down on grill rack for about 5 minutes until browned. {remember, preheat on high, turn to low right when adding food}

Turn avocado halves and fill them with picante sauce and shredded cheese. Cover and grill 5 minutes more until cheese melts. Remove from grill, sprinkle tops with snipped cilantro. Serve on a bed of salad greens if desired, or as a side dish to grilled meat or fish.

{these are my little add-ons above. i would have waited a little longer for the cheese to melt more thoroughly... and i was going from memory so i just put the cilantro in with jalapeno and tomato mixture.}

Grilled Pizza & Grilling Tips

Grilled Pizza: (please note these directions are either directly from 'summer grilling' class at come back to the table or my rough interpretations of them.)

Make pizza dough... or a new trick we learned at an italian cooking class this last weekend... buy dough at a local pizza shop or at whole foods. for northern colorado - pulcinelli's is awesome and its 3 bucks for a large dough. not bad for the time saved. lindsay - i know that wouldn't happen with you or your fam ;o)

Okay, you have the dough. split the dough into two or 3. roll out into a rough round shape. in the meantime, preheat the grill on high. place pizza dough on a rimless baking sheet covered with coarse cornmeal. make sure the dough doesn't stick to the pan anywhere so that when you go to slide it on to the grill... it goes on smooth. turn the grill down to low right before putting the pizza on. drizzle olive oil, salt and pepper on the top of the crust. when the pizza is stiff, turn it with tongs. olive oil, salt and pepper the cooked side. top with pesto and cheese (or the toppings of choice). close the lid and cook until dough is cooked and toppings are warm/melted.

so the big tip?! preheat grill to high... but always cook on low to medium!

the pesto one was 1/2 of the large dough at pulcinelli's... the canadian bacon/pineapple one is a full large dough.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Ckn parmesan

This is my first mobile posting on the blog. But this was chicken parmesan we made a couple weeks ago.
Sent on the Sprint® Now Network from my BlackBerry®

EDIT: per lindsay's comment/request...

i used the same breading as i do with the chicken tenders/bites (ritz & parmesan combo). i used 2 chicken breasts and cut them in half lengthwise (to make 2 thinner pieces of chicken). then i placed them on parchment paper and covered them with it as well. i then used a heavy pan and pounded them down a bit. there are actual kitchen tools for this - sometimes the opposite side of a meat tenderizer... but a pan will do just fine.

then lightly cover them in olive oil and bread with ritz/parm mixture.

baked at 425 until done (about 20 minutes... and i flip half way through)

then top with some pasta sauce and parmesan and/or mozzarella cheese. throw back in the oven for about 5 minutes for sauce to heat through and cheese to melt. serve on pasta.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Fruit Pizza

Well, it's been a few months since I put something on here! Hopefully I can figure it out. I decided to make fruit pizza the other day and it turned out good! I bought a mix for gluten free sugar cookies and followed the directions on the box. I put in all in the pizza pan and spread it out. I baked it for about 12 minutes. After it cooled I mixed an 8 oz. package of cream cheese with 1/2 C. of powdered sugar and added a couple of tablespoons of cool whip just for fun. I spread that over the cookie and then started decorating with the fruit. It was yummy! We had it Tuesday night when Daniels came over to barbecue with us.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Who likes ketchup?!

Pardon me, I mean... Who LOVES Heinz Ketchup?!

Oh, right. You are my siblings and have been addicted to Heinz Ketchup since mom put it in our baby bottles. I actually don't doubt that.

Check out these Secret Spice Cookies. Yes, the recipe calls for Heinz Ketchup.

I 'Like' Heinz Ketchup on Facebook. And they posted this recipe on there today. I think it sounds quite interesting. And I know you all have a year supply of the stuff in your pantry, so try it out!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Strawberry Pie

I made strawberry pie for the first time yesterday. I had to; I bought tons of strawberries for 4 lbs./$1. It was way easy since it calls for a pre-made pie crust. I thought it was pretty tasty, and the highlight was having tons of homemade whipped cream on top.
HERE is the recipe I used.

cupcake idea

how darling are these?!

root beer float cupcakes

loving it.

okay, all my pics are at home. i PROMISE i will put up some recipes very soon from my grilling class. and tim & i are going to an italian cooking class on friday night! :o)

Friday, June 11, 2010

Dinner idea

Here's a delicious, easy dinner idea for you all. This is a meal I always thought of as a treat when my mom made it growing up, and it's so easy! However, I don't know what you'd call it...

Smoked Sausage
Fresh pineapple
Green bell pepper

Brown rice

Bring skillet to medium heat. Meanwhile, chop ingredients. Add about a tablespoon olive oil to skillet and add peppers. Saute for a couple minutes, then add sausage. Let cook, stirring occasionally until it starts to brown. Add pineapple and cook till everything is hot. Serve over cooked brown rice. Yum.

I think I served this with corn on the cob or watermelon, some summer produce item.

Another plus about this meal is that it is very cheap to make. I only used about half of the sausage (a little over $1). The pineapple was $1 and I only used about 1/4 of that. One bell pepper, about $ .50. Rice, cheap. Anyway, you get the idea...all in all, the meal was definitely under $5.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Easy Peasy

No Bake Cookies (my mom's recipe)
1 stick butter or margarine
1/2 C milk
2 C sugar
1/2 C peanut butter
1/2 C cocoa

Combine above ingredients in a medium sauce pan and bring to a boil.

3 C oatmeal
1 t. vanilla

Remove from heat and stir well. Form cookies and place on wax paper to cool. (As you can see, I put my wax paper on on a cookie sheet so I could place in fridge easily. This recipe made two pans full.)

I tried a new recipe from a cookbook my grandparents gave me for Mother's Day.
It is titled "Delicious and Easy Burrito Filling".

Approx. 2 lbs. frozen or thawed boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 can black beans
1 jar salsa

Put chicken in crockpot and season lightly (I used taco seasoning). Add remaining ingredients. Cook on high for four to five hours or low for six to eight hours. Shred chicken and mix together before serving. Serve in tortillas.

*We topped with shredded cheese.

~Now that it is getting hot, I try to minimize heating up the house for cooking. Hence the no-bake cookies. I love using the crockpot in the summer because I put in in the garage to cook all day and it doesn't heat things up inside. That is what I did yesterday with the above recipe.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Strawberry Bruschetta?

At first glance, it seems a bit weird, but it actually might be delicious!

See the recipe HERE.

Monday, May 17, 2010

the perfect s'more

graham crackers
roasted marshmallow
reese's peanut butter cup

I can almost guarantee you'll never
go back to chocolate bars again.

this post is not for mindy

garlic green beans

pour a little olive oil in a pan
add lots of garlic
(either chop up small or use a garlic press)
add lots of fresh green beans

stir almost constantly once the pan is really hot.
cook until they are tender.

green beans are my favorite vegetable.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

sloppy joes!

sloppy joes

2 lbs. ground beef
2 t. mustard
1 C. ketchup
1 T. worc. sauce

so yummy. you really could use less beef and it'd be a bit saucier!
and yes amy. it really is me. jill.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Recipe Organization and a recipe that I don't have a recipe for

So, I got this idea from my mom and I finally put it into action. I have gathered recipes from so many different sources that they don't all fit into a nice little box without folding, etc. So I put all my recipes in page protectors in a binder. I love it!

My biggest section is "Recipes I want to try."

Other sections include: breakfast, entrees, sides/sauces, breads/muffins, desserts. (All of these categories contain recipes I've actually made.)

And yesterday I got to make a HUGE amount of yummy pasta salad for our big mother's day gathering with my mom's family. It is my grandma McCook's signature pasta salad and I've never actually seen a recipe for just do it.

Cook pasta until al dente. Drain, let cool.

Chop whatever veggies you want to add. (I used what my grandma usually uses...olives, cucumber, different colored bell peppers).

Add veggies to cooled noodles.

Add equal parts Italian dressing and ranch dressing until desired consistency.

Enjoy! (I LOVE this and could it it nonstop.)

Friday, May 7, 2010

if i had kids... or nieces & nephews nearby...

i was looking at this website yesterday and thought... this is SO cute. how fun to have fun play time with nieces/nephews or friends kiddos. since i don't have friends with kiddos... and i don't live close to you & your kids... i thought i'd share.

Pudding Cups... and book associated with it - from Bakerella website

(the cups reminded me of the post or email traci made about the chocolate dessert cups.)

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Otis Spunkmeyer?

I have been getting lots of compliments on my cookies recently and just typed up the recipe to email to someone, so I thought I might as well copy and paste here! This is my mom's standard cookie recipe. Ryan LOVES them when they're raisin (not choc. chip). One time our friend came over and I had to take Riley somewhere for a few minutes. When I got home I noticed that someone had eaten a few cookies and I asked Ryan if Jordan liked them. He said that Jordan was raving about them and Ryan told him he thought they were a pre-made Otis Spunkmeyer cookie dough! Excuse me?! (We had bought some dough for our babysitter's soccer team fundraiser, yada-yada...) I guess it was a compliment. :)

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Cream the following:
1 C margarine or butter (softened)
1 C brown sugar
1 C white sugar
2 eggs
1 t. vanilla

2 C + a little flour
1 t. salt
1 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
2 C + a little oatmeal (I use quick oats for cookies)
1 C raisins, chocolate chips, m&ms, whatever you want!

Refrigerate! (I usually put it in for at least 20 mins.) Bake at 350 for 10 minutes (no more!). Cool on wire rack for best results.

Yield: about 4 dozen cookies

Nothing fancy, but very yummy!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Creamsicle Sandwich Cookies

I was browsing the Baked Perfection site today, and saw her most recent post... Creamsicle Sandwich Cookies. These look delish, simple and cute... and most importantly - desirable for a person of any age!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

White Chocolate Raspberry Crunch

recipe from a lady (loree) at work... the front and center dessert in this picture = delish!!

Layer #1
2 ½ cups crushed pretzels
¾ cup butter
3 tbls sugar
Melt butter in bottom of 9X13 pan then added the other ingredients and press flat onto the bottom.
Bake at 375 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Let cool.

Layer #2
8 oz cream cheese at room temperature
1 cup sugar
8 oz Cool Whip
½ bag white, mini chocolate chips melted
Mix together until smooth and spoon over pretzel layer.

Layer #3
6 oz box of raspberry jello
2 cups boiling water
20 oz raspberries

Mix jello and water (don’t use the amount of water on the box).
Add berries and refrigerate until slightly jelled. Pour over cream cheese mixture and refrigerate.
Sprinkle with rest of mini chocolate chips before serving.

Loree’s notes – I use frozen berries in layer 3 and make it before layer 2, just leaving it on the counter. Then when I have the cream cheese mixture in the pan the jello mixture is jelling and I add it. You can substitute any fruit or berries you want. I got this with strawberries and am looking forward to trying it with blueberries.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Peanut Butter-Toffee Cheesecake Brownies

I found THIS recipe in a magazine or somewhere and cut it out a while ago. I just tried it yesterday and took the results to DJ's Eagle court of honor. So yummy! They were gone fast!

(For the record, I didn't use all the same brands of ingredients that are suggested in the recipe.)

Friday, April 16, 2010

berry-topped brownie bites

just wanted to show you the berry-topped brownie bites. i topped with raspberries, blackberries and strawberries.

ganache didn't turn out exactly like i would have liked. white ganache was a little too runny. you can tell i went back and added plain white chocolate on top because it looked like a runny mess.

the semi-sweet chocolate ganache was almost perfect, maybe just a little too thick.

and one shot of it with a couple other 'competitors'... i got 1st out of 10 desserts.
the white chocolate raspberry bars pictured below were SOOO heavenly.
and so were some mint chocolate brownies.

Thursday, April 15, 2010


With strawberries in season, I've been checking out strawberry recipes.

Here's one I think I'll try: Strawberry Butter

And here's one I'd totally try if I knew what an ice cream freezer can was: Strawberry Buttermilk Gelato

I've already made strawberry freezer jam and have strawberries cut up ready for topping cereal, etc. Anything you guys like using strawberries? (Amy, I really wish I had a reason to make that strawberry salad you posted a link just wouldn't fly for Ryan! If I was hosting a shower or something, it would be great!)

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

berry-topped brownie bites

i'm going to make Ganache-Topped Brownie Bites for a chocolate bake-off at work on friday. i think i'll top with raspberries and blueberries to make it colorful... what do you think is a good topper?

while searching i found this: Brownie Ganache Torte with Raspberries (Gluten Free) and thought traci might like to know about it. :o)

Friday, April 9, 2010

Pulled-Pork Tacos Recipe

I found THIS recipe yesterday and I think I'll try it out next week! I already make a Costa Vida copycat sweet pork recipe, but I think this sounds even better.

strawberry arugula salad with lemon ricotta

check this out: strawberry arugula salad with lemon ricotta

looks so good for a summer picnic... or any occassion really.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

3 Desserts for the Birthday Boy

I ended up making three different "dessert" recipes for Ryan's birthday.

I made my cheesecake for the Sunday before. (Amy, no clumps at all...I think the key is softening the cream cheese first.) We topped with sweetened, fresh strawberries.

I made chocolate muffins (Ryan's request) and took them to him at work. These are so delicious! I should have taken a picture. They end up looking so the muffins from Costco. (recipe below)

I made a family recipe, "Applesauce Oatmeal" cake, to have when people came over on his birthday night (also Ryan's request). This is my favorite recipe of all time! I could live off of this cake and never get sick of it! (recipe and pic at the bottom)

Chocolate Muffins
1 box devil's food cake mix
1 small box instant choc. pudding mic
1 1/2 C water
1/2 C oil
2 eggs
1/2 t. vanilla
1 bag semi-sweet choc. chips

Mix together. Pour into muffin tins. Bake at 350 degrees for time indicated on cake mix box (usually 18-20 mins, I think).

*For gourmet looking muffins, pour enough into each muffin "spot" to only make one dozen. They will turn out big and will probably need a minute or two extra cooking time.

*This recipe can be used to make chocolate bread...just use loaf pans instead of muffin tins!

Applesauce Oatmeal Cake

1 1/2 C boiling water
1 C oatmeal
-Turn off heat and let it sit till you are done with the following...

1/2 C applesauce
1 C sugar
1 C brown sugar

-Now, add the oatmeal to the creamed mixture.

1 1/2 C flour
1 t. cinnamon
1 t. backing powder
1/2 t. salt

-Mix until well combined.

-Pour batter into a greased 9 x 13 inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes.

-Now, make your glaze.

Combine (in sauce pan over med-high heat):
6 T. butter (let it melt before you add the rest)
1/4 C. canned milk (regular milk is probably fine)
1/2 C. brown sugar
1 C. nuts (optional, but not really)
1 C. coconut (optional, but not really)

-When cake is done, take it out and spread glaze on top. Put back in the oven and broil for 4 minutes.

Serve on it's own or with vanilla ice cream. Eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner the next day. :)

Lemon Bars

I have always LOVED lemon bars- actually, I love anything lemon flavored! I wanted to make them for an Easter dessert, and I tried THIS recipe. They were good, but they didn't live up to my lemon bar expectations. I even used real butter (rarely do that) like it calls for! I thought it was not lemon-y enough and the crust was way too crumbly. I'll have to ask my aunt for her recipe next time; hers are always so good.

Sorry, no pic...they were too disappointing. :)(Everyone thought they were yummy actually...)

chili & baked potatoes

{written at 8:30 pm... but backed the time up so i wouldn't be the current recipe up here! :o)}

we needed something to eat tonight, and no meat was defrosted. so i threw the following together. we both really enjoyed it.

2 baked potatoes (i did it in the microwave)

1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/4 large white onion, finely chopped
1 can chili beans (just beans - not the kind with meat)
1 can diced tomatoes
1 small can diced green chilies
1/4 cup medium Pace chunky salsa (or whatever salsa on hand)
just shy of 1 tablespoon chili powder
just shy of 1 tablespoon cumin
5 twists of cracked black pepper
3 twists of cracked sea salt

cook the above ingredients together for about 15-20 minutes... while baked potatoes cook in microwave. tim was taking care of some computer stuff, so i decided to throw the baked potatoes in a square baking dish lined with foil. cut them open and fill with a good scoop of chili. top with a tablespoon or two of shredded cheddar cheese and bake for 5-10 minutes on 350.

smoothie idea

got this recipe from someone on facebook. i've yet to try it out... probably because its still snowing here in CO.

the recipe intrigues me because it calls for spinach. sounds like a great saturday morning drink in the summer. i wanted to keep it somewhere so i could ck it out later. so here it is.

1 cup OJ (all natural)
1/2 cup soy milk
1/2 tsp vanilla ext
1/2 cup Organic Strawberry yogurt
Handful of ice cubes
1 cup frozen strawberries
2 cups spinach.

Blend and enjoy!

Sometimes switch it up by adding mangos, a banana, or frozen blueberries)

jamie oliver

i don't know if you've watched jamie oliver's food revolution but i love it. and i found a great & simple recipe that all of you would like... or so i think. classic tomato spaghetti

Monday, April 5, 2010

cranberry-walnut chicken salad

you want to see a delectable chicken salad?

check this out:
cranberry-walnut chicken salad

taco salad

we had taco salad last week for the first time in way too long.

thanks lindsay for posting that idea.

we didn't do it in a crockpot, just cooked the chicken up on the stove in a non-stick pan and added seasoning. then put romaine and arugula. we topped with shredded cheese, black beans (slightly warmed up + added a teaspoon of cumin), chopped tomatoes, chicken, and salsa. we ate with baked tostito's. YUM!

no picture, but def fabulous.

(sry, that pic of the ckn salad pita was looking gross whenever i ck to see if someone posted so i wanted to post something else.)

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

chicken salad pita

courtesy, of... you guessed it - my cell phone
i put two cans of tyson canned chicken in a bowl, added in 1/4 cup chopped celery/red pepper combo. i'd probably use more veggies next time around. then added in mayo made with olive oil/reduced fat. i probably ended up using a little less than 1/4 cup... but honestly add a little at a time until its the consistency you want. then i added 2 teaspoons mrs. dash in.

served in pita with 2 small slices colby/montoreyjack cheese, lettuce and 2 tomato slices.

as you can see, i had 1/2 pita with a little container of unsweetened applesauce for lunch today.

Pomegranate Cooler

I haven't tried this recipe, but I had copied into my email drafts back in December. Not a go-to drink in December in Colorado but yesterday it was 80* and this could be on the menu soon!

1.5 Cup Pomegranate Juice chilled (or 1/2 Cup Cranberry Juice chilled + 1 Cup Pom Juice Chilled)
A Fistful of Mint Leaves
1/2 Teaspoon Fresh Ginger Juice
Sprite or any Lime Soda chilled
Sugar or Honey to Taste
1/2 Teaspoon of Orange Blossom Water (Optional)

Alcoholic Version:
Add: 1 ounce of Vodka + 1/2 Ounce of Orange Liqueur

Preparation: Muddle the mint leaves (with sugar or honey if you are using it).Combine the pomegranate, cranberry juice, orange blossom water (if you are using it) & ginger juice with the mint leaves. Add Ice & Give it a good shake shake shake.

(For the alcoholic version, add the vodka & the liqueur along with the juice & other things)

Pour it in to individual glasses, half glass each. Fill it up with Sprite or any Lime Soda. Garnish with mint leaves.This is a fantastic drink for outdoor/indoor parties. Prepare the drink & keep it ready chilled. Add the soda just before serving. Garnish with mint.

citrus vinaigrette‏

4 oz OJ
1 oz lemon juice
1 oz red wine vinegar
4 oz olive oil
Pinch of black pepper
Pinch of garlic salt

Put lemon, oj and vinegar in bowl. Slowly drizzle olive oil into the bowl while whisking together. Then add pepper and salt, whisk again.

Drizzle over your salad. We had romaine lettuce, red onion, green & red peppers, sliced carrots with grilled chicken. But make the salad to your liking... otherwise you won't enjoy it! (I'm still struggling to enjoy salads but grilled chicken always seems to help - just as a good light dressing does.)

i halved the recipe because tim didn't want it, and it have SO much leftover still.

Friday, March 26, 2010


would you all mind sharing what your weekly meal plans usually look like? i'm finally going to get my big booty to the grocery store so we can make meals at home.

when we have food in the house, we usually do:

chicken enchiladas & spanish rice
grilled chicken & veggies in baked potato
hashbrowns & eggs
chicken & veggie OR just veggie stir fry & rice
lindsay gave me some good crockpot ideas which i'll try out after grocery shopping.

i'm blanking on other simple ideas.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Check this out- how fun!

ice cream cakes

i bought one premade oreo pie crust and one graham cracker pie crust. i bought a container of reese's pb cup ice cream, one of vanilla bean, and one of caramel swirl.

in the oreo crust i put in a layer of reese's pb ice cream, layer of vanilla (to tone down the intense reese's flavor), then topped with a layer of reese's pb again. then i topped with crushed/chopped reese's pieces.

in the graham cracker crust, i put in a layer of caramel swirl, then vanilla, then caramel swirl again. then i topped with chopped up pieces of caramello. this was definitely a lighter taste. they both turned out well. and i got some questions as to where i bought them. :o) not bad.

and i'm glad i did two pies. because there were 30 candles to fit on them!


this was the first time trying this out. it was super simple. i had found a few recipes online that looked good. some were for fresh tomatoes, some were for canned tomatoes. jae & i decided to try it with half and half since i had some canned tomatoes and fresh tomatoes that i had picked up.

1 can whole stewed tomatoes - italian style (w/ italian seasonings)
5 roma tomatoes
fresh basil leaves (about 10-15 leaves)
3-5 cloves garlic
extra virgin olive oil for brushing
dash of salt
artisan bread, cut on the diagonal in about 1 inch pieces

chop 1 can of tomatoes, well-drained, into small pieces. chop roma tomatoes into same size pieces as canned tomatoes. mince 3 to 5 garlic cloves. i think i ended up doing 5 because my garlic mincer doesn't mince the whole clove... if that makes sense. slice basil leaves in thin strips. put in about half, stir and eye if you think you need more... or just taste the mixture. i think we ended up using about 15 leaves. we let the mixture sit for a couple hours before serving it up for the party. you can put it in the fridge if you prefer - but you aren't supposed to refrigerate fresh basil so we kept it out. don't put the salt in the mixture until you are about to put it on the bread because the salt will make the mixture sweat.

when ready to serve.. put broiler on to 450ish. slice the bread into 1 inch pieces. i put the bread in for about 3 minutes and they were perfectly toasted. then tyler pointed out that i forgot the EVOO (extra virgin olive oil). Oops! I had a moment of panic but i think it might have turned out better this way. they were a little crispier and held up throughout the night. after brushing the bread with EVOO, I threw in the dash of salt to the tomatoes and scooped the tomato/basil mixture on the bread slices. place on serving plate - and you are set!

my apologies for poor pictures of everything. i was doing most of the prep about 30 minutes before the party on my own. so i was just trying to get everything out before people showed up, that didn't exactly work but the food went over really well. i cropped this from the full food picture in the post before.

Monday, March 22, 2010

tim's 30th birthday party food

brownie bite topped with a little homemade whipping cream and a fresh raspberry
these flew off the plate at the party
this is the only good pic i have of the caprese skewers
(this is tim's sister - jae. she came out for the weekend with tyler)
cherry tomato, basil leaf, mozzarella ball (or slice would work)
plate drizzled with EVOO, served with a side dish of balsamic vinegar to dip in
the spread: veggies platter, bruschetta (i'll post my recipe later), caprese skewers, parmesan-thyme rolls, canadian maple leaf sugar cookies, salsa and chips (from la luz - local taco shop), cheese dip in the fondue pot, brownie bites in the far corner, hummus with pita chips.
parm-thyme rolls
maple leaf cookies
(threw on some red sugar sprinkles after)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

tims bday cake

i'm trying out this recipe for tim's birthday cake.

ice cream cake - real (ice cream + yellow cake) oh, and instead of coffee ice cream i'm going to pick up some soft serve from DQ...

just found this one:
easy ice cream cake- real (made with ice cream sandwiches)

if you have other ideas, let me know. :o)
should be at least 20 people at our party, but as you know not all adults want a piece of cake... ?

Green for St. Patty's Day!

I made THIS dessert in honor of St. Patty's Day...just because it's green. It is honestly delicious!! (Oh, and instead of "toffee bits" I used pecan pieces.)

Sunday, March 14, 2010

mama'a stove top zucchini

this one is from our friend audra. i loved this when she made it for us a few months back.

ingredients: oil, onion, tomatoes, garlic salt, pepper, jack cheese and zucchini

chop 1/2 onion into smaller pieces
stir fry in pan with tiny bit of oil (medium flame/heat)
add whole can of tomatoes
wash and slice zucchini
add to pan, add salt & pepper
cover and let cook on low
cook till starts to look clear in center...
turn off stove and sprinkle with grated jack cheese

Monday, March 8, 2010

Tollhouse-White Chip Chocolate Cookies

We got this cookbook when we got married. We've only tried a couple different recipes. Scott & I made these last night...mostly Scott though-

White Chip Chocolate Cookies

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour (I used Bob's Red Mill-GF All purpose baking flour)
2/3 cup cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 C (2 sticks) butter/margarine- softened
3/4 C granulated sugar
2/3 C packed brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs
2 cups (12 oz package) white chocolate chips

COMBINE-flour cocoa, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla in large mixing bowl until creamy. Beat eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in white chocolate chips. Drop by well-rounded teaspoon onto ungreased baking sheets.

BAKE in preheated 350* oven for 9-11 mintues or until centers are set. Cool for 2 minutes and enjoy...I sure did...probably TOO much. O-well. :)

Yummy Cookies

Tried THESE out today with Riley. YUMMY! Perfect balance of chocolate and PB flavor, in my opinion. I only made half the recipe and if you make them, don't bake for too long cause you definitely don't want them to be crunchy.

Parmesan Breadsticks

Here's the breadstick recipe, Amy! I made it yesterday for my family (immediate and grandparents) so I made the full recipe. When I make it just for us, I only do half the recipe.

3 C warm water
2 T yeast
6 C flour
1/4 C sugar
1 T salt

parmesan cheese and garlic salt

Combine top five ingredients and knead approx 3 minutes (note, this is not using a bread mixer/kitchen aid). Melt a stick of butter and pour half into each of two nine by thirteen pans. Put half the dough in each pan and spread out to cover the bottom of the pan. Use a pizza cutter to cut in half across the width and then into 1/2 in strips the long way. Cover with parmesan and garlic salt. Let rise for fifteen minutes. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes. Yum! These are so delish.

Also, I just put the stuff for THIS recipe in the crockpot (followed the instructions for swapping out the hominy). Hopefully it is yummy! I'm going to serve with chips and have sour cream and green onion to top (for me at least).

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

PB Temptations

I just "evernoted" four new cookie recipes this morning. THIS is the one I think I'm most likely to try in the near future. I love cookies!!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Shells

I tried THIS recipe yesterday. I liked it, but I also reduced the amount of spinach by about 75%. I just couldn't bring myself to put it all in...and what I put in, Ryan picked out of his serving. I really like fresh spinach, but the frozen kind is kind of gross to me. Next time I might just leave out the spinach altogether and just serve with veggies we like on the side. :)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Valentine's Day means heart-shaped food around here. I made heart-shaped cinnamon rolls (didn't turn out quite as well as last year, but still tasty!), heart-shaped pizza, and a heart-shaped jello dessert. Ryan and Riley made waffles on our heart-shaped waffle iron!

Here is a picture of the JELLO DESSERT. Topped with a little whipped cream, it was cute and yummy!

And here's a picture of the personal-size pizzas I made for Ryan and me. I make pizza basically every Saturday night, so if you want the recipe (it's my mom's) I can post it or email it.