Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Pepper jack and bacon scalloped potatoes

6-7 potatoes, peeled and diced
8-10 slices bacon, cooked and crumbed
1 sleeve Ritz crackers (I used bacon flavored)
1 stick butter
1 cup milk
½ cup flour
2 cups shredded pepper jack cheese

Cut potatoes and bring to a boil for about 10 minutes.  Strain and add to a greased 9x13 pan. Sprinkle bacon on top of the potatoes. Shake milk and flour together (or stir briskly with a whisk) and pour on top of potatoes. Add a few dashes of salt and pepper. Cover with pepper jack cheese.  

Melt the stick of butter and add one sleeve of well crushed crackers.  Mix and spread this on the top of the potatoes.  Cover with foil and bake for 40 minutes.  Remove foil. Bake for 15 more minutes.

On a cold rainy day, nothing sounds better to me than a hot casserole out of the oven.  But, because it was cold and rainy, I didn’t want to go to the grocery store.  So I decided to put this together some ingredients I had in my kitchen and see what happened.  The result? One of my favorite creations of all time!! Warm, hearty and delicious!  

White Chocolate Lemon Cookies

1 ½ sticks butter, softened
¾ cup white sugar
¼ cup light brown sugar
1 egg, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp. lemon zest
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 ½ cups white chocolate chips

Cream butter and sugars together. Beat in egg and vanilla. Mix in lemon zest.  In a separate bowl combine flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. Add to butter mixture. Stir until combined and gently stir in white chocolate chips.

Form into balls about an inch or slightly more in diameter. Chill for at least 2 hrs or a couple days if you don't want to eat them right away. Preheat oven to 350 and grease cookie sheet. Bake for 8-11 minutes until edges are lightly brown. Do not over-bake. The centers may still look doughy. Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes and then cook on wire rack.

These cookies taste like summer and magic! Although they would be great any time of the year, the taste is light and refreshing.  They are a lot of white chocolate chips in this recipe.  If you don’t like overly chunky cookies, scale back to 1 cup instead of an entire package of white chocolate chips. 

Monday, November 9, 2015

Cake Mix Peanut Butter Bars

1 cup of Peanut Butter
1/2 cup water
1 large egg
15.25 ounces Yellow Cake Mix

For the frosting:
1 stick margarine (1/2 c.), softened
1/4 cup milk
1/­2 tsp vanilla (depending on your taste)
3 tablespoons of cocoa
2-­3 cups of powdered sugar

Heat the oven to 350°F.  Spray a 13 X 9­inch pan with no­stick cooking spray.

In a medium bowl combine 1 cup of peanut butter, water and egg in large bowl, stirring until smooth.  Stir in cake mix until blended well. Spread into prepared pan.  Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until puffed and light golden brown. Cool completely.

Mix all frosting ingredients with a hand mixer until smooth. Add more powdered sugar or milk until you reach desired consistency and spread on top of bars. Or, if you’re feeling lazy, buy a can of whipped milk chocolate frosting. 

These bars were easy to throw together and smelled delicious coming out of the oven.  While they were very tasty, be warned that they are very “dense”.  I would cut them in small squares or be prepared to wash it down with a glass of milk. 

Monday, November 2, 2015

White Trash Casserole

I have to admit, the name of this recipe intrigued me.  It looked simple and included ingredients I had on hand so I decided to give it a shot last night.

1 lb. ground beef
1 onion, chopped
1 tbsp. mince garlic
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 can corn, drained
Small brick of Velveeta, cut into cubes
Tater Tots
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Brown beef and onion together then drain. (The original recipe doesn’t call for minced garlic but I added it and was glad I did.)  Mix cream of mushroom with the ground beef.  Spread beef mixture in bottom of a casserole dish. Layer corn, Velveeta, and tater tots. Bake uncovered for 45 minutes to an hour, until tater tots are golden brown.

This made my house smell amazing while it was cooking.  It tasted great too. It was what I imagine a casserole would taste like if Hunters Dish and Tater Tot Casserole had a baby.  If you’re looking for an easy recipe to throw together on a cold night, add this to your collection.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Crockpot Pineapple Moonshine

1 56 oz can pineapple juice
2 c. sugar
1 bottle Everclear grain alcohol or vodka

Add pineapple juice and sugar to crock-pot.  Cook on LOW for 2 hours with lid slightly ajar.
Allow mixture to cool completely before adding in Alcohol.  Add in alcohol and mix well.
Pour mixture into 4 Quart Canning Jars or a large jug with lid. Store in a cool dry place. Serve over ice. 

I used an orange pineapple apple juice blend.  This was VERY strong! I added another bottle of the orange pineapple juice and then it was delicious. 

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Peanut Butter Puff Corn


Two 3½ oz bags puffcorn
¾ cup butter
¼ cup peanut butter
1¼ cup brown sugar
⅔ cup light corn syrup
1 teaspoon baking soda

Pour puffcorn into a large, greased roasting pan. Put butter, peanut butter, brown sugar and light corn syrup in a large saucepan (mixture will bubble up so it has to be big). Bring to a boil and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add baking soda and mixture will foam up. Pour mixture over puffcorn and stir to coat. Bake at 250 degrees for 45 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Remove from oven, pour onto waxed paper and break into pieces.

Although it takes a little time to make this due to the stirring every 10 minutes, it is totally worth it! This is sweet and delicious with a bit of crunch.  

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Sausage balls

What do you take to a brunch potluck when the host is already making the egg bakes and you’re a little short on time?  After perusing Pinterest I found this handy recipe and decided to give it a try.

1 lb. ground pork sausage, cooked (NOT drained)
2 cups Bisquick
2 cups shredded cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl, combine cooked sausage, Bisquick and shredded cheese. Form into walnut size balls and place on baking sheets.  Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes, until golden brown. (makes approx. 36 balls) 

I made these in the morning and then threw them in the crockpot on warm for the brunch.  They were easy to make, simple ingredients and tasted great.