Posted in Dessert, Eat at home ingredient spotlight, Family Recipe, Grandma, Holiday/Christmas, Recipes, Salad

Grandma’s White Salad

I have so many memories of this salad.  One of my best memories is when I worked at Walt Disney World in 1995.  My grandma sent me various family recipes so that I could have a little bit of home while down there.  When Thanksgiving came, I decided to make a Thanksgiving meal for my friends and me to share.  We had a Thanksgiving meal with all the trimmings, except we had chicken instead of turkey.  One of the dishes I made was grandma’s white salad.  For two weeks afterward, I would take portions of the Thanksgiving meal to work for my lunches.

That Thanksgiving weekend was also when I almost met Rider Strong and Ben Savage from Boy Meets World.  At Disney-MGM Studios, now Hollywood Studios, they would have celebrities put their hands in cement at the Chinese Theater.  Both Rider and Ben put their hands in the cement and then went to have a talk.  I “ran” along the side of their convertible as they traveled between venues and ended up sitting behind their families.  Too bad Fred Savage was not there.  I would have gone up and said hi to him.

My Grandma’s White Salad

Stars of the recipe:

  • 1 sm. lemon or lime  jello
  • 2 c. hot water
  • 1 (8 oz.) package of  cream cheese
  • 1 (15 oz.) can of crushed pineapple drained (med. can)
  • 1 & 2/3 c. mini marshmallows
  • 1 & ½ c. chopped pecans or walnuts (My grandma used pecans.)
  • 1 (8 oz.) container of Cool Whip

Steps:

  1. Mix jello with water.  Add cream cheese and beat until smooth.
  2. Put in fridge until semi-solid.  Remove and then put in the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Chill.

Or how my grandma made it:

  1. Mix jello with water.  Add cream cheese and beat until smooth.
  2. Put the rest of the ingredients in a flat pan (9 by 13 glass dish).  Put it in the fridge to chill.

This recipe is linked to Mommy’s Kitchen for Potluck Sundays and Eat at Home’s Ingredient spotlight!

Posted in Cookies, Holiday/Christmas, Recipes

Watermelon cookies

In an earlier post, I mentioned that I enjoyed reading murder mysteries. One of my favorite authors is Joanne Fluke. Her main character Hannah Swenson owns a cookie shop. Joanne includes recipes in her books. This is one of the many recipes I have found in her books.

Even though the recipe calls for watermelon kool-aid, you do not have to use watermelon flavored kool-aid. You can use any flavor, which is great for holidays. You could use lime kool-aid for one batch and cherry (or any other red kool-aid) for another batch at Christmas time. Your choices are endless.

When I made these, people loved the cookies’ color and flavor. I even shared some grape ones with my students. They thought they were delicious. In fact, one of the students was still talking about it at the end of the school year. They must have been memorable.

IMG_2357

Without further ado, here is the recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 1 package (.16 ounce) watermelon (or any other flavor) Kool-Aid powder (Don’t get the kind with sugar or sugar substitute added.)
  • 1 2/3 c. white sugar
  • 1 and a 1/4 c. softened butter (2 and 1/2 sticks, 10 ounces)
  • 2 large eggs, beaten (just whip them up in a glass with a fork. I usually poke the yoke first, so it is easier to beat them.
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour (pack it down in the cup when you measure it)
  • 1/2 c white sugar in a bowl

Steps:

  1. Mix the watermelon Kool-Aid (or whatever flavor you choose) with the white sugar.
  2. Add the softened butter and mix until it’s nice and fluffy.
  3. Add the eggs and mix well.
  4. Mix in the salt and the baking soda. Make sure they’re well incorporated.
  5. Add the flour in half-cup increments, mixing after each addition.
  6. Spray cookie sheets with Pam or another nonstick cooking spray.
  7. Roll dough balls one inch in diameter with your hands.
  8. Roll the cookie balls in the bowl of white sugar and place them on the cookie sheet, 12 to a standard-size sheet.
  9. Bake the Watermelon Cookies at 325 degrees F. for 10 to 12 minutes or until they turn golden around the edges. Don’t overbake.
  10. Let the cookies cool on the cookie sheets for a minute, and then remove them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Yield: Approximately 6 dozen pretty and unusual cookies that kids will adore, especially if you tell them that they’re made with Kool-Aid.

This recipe has been linked up to Potluck Sunday.

Posted in Recipes

Sloppy Joes

A few years ago, I got this easy recipe from Menus4Moms.  This is a family favorite.  I think the Imaginative One loves it because it combines two of his favorite foods – hamburgers and ketchup.  The reason I like the recipe is because of its ease.  Since I work all day and then come home to cook, I need recipes that come together easily.

Without further ado, the recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds of ground beef – I usually half this recipe and do only one pound of ground beef.
  • 1/2 cup of chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup of chopped green pepper
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp prepared yellow mustard – Shh!  I usually put more in.  I am the only one who likes mustard, so this is our little secret that I put more in there.
  • 1 and 1/2 cups of ketchup
  • 1 Tbsp. & 2 tsp. of brown sugar – That is 6 tsp. of brown sugar.
  • salt and pepper to taste

Steps:

  1. In a skillet over medium heat, brown the ground beef, onion, and green pepper; drain off liquids.
  2. Stir in the next 4 ingredients; mix thoroughly.
  3. Reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes.
  4. Season with salt and pepper.

This recipe is linked up to Tempt My Tummy Tuesday.

Posted in Cookies, Recipes

Pretzel chocolate chip cookies

I enjoy reading murder mysteries.  One of my favorite authors is Joanne Fluke.  The main character in her books is Hannah Swenson.  Hannah has a knack for finding dead bodies, which drives her mother absolutely batty.  With the help of her mother, sisters, and friends, she investigates murders.  Since Hannah owns a cookie shop, the author includes recipes for different types of baked goodies plus other food.  In the past, I’ve tried different cookie recipes.  Usually, I am impressed with the end result.  One such recipe was for pretzel chocolate chip cookies.

Last month, our new church had a get-together.  We were supposed to bring a different type of dish to share.  I decided to take a batch of these pretzel chocolate chip cookies.  Everyone’s reaction to these cookies was a positive one.  Since the only other dessert was strawberry shortcake, which was also good, it was nice to have cookies there.

The boys enjoyed crushing the pretzels into tiny bits.  I put a handful or two of pretzels into a zip lock bag, hand them a meat mallet and a plastic cutting board and then let them pound away at the pretzels.  I’d rather have them pound out the pretzels rather than each other.

Without further ado, here is the recipe.

Pretzel Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

– 1 cup softened butter (2 sticks, 1/2 pound)

– 2 cups granulated sugar (white)

– 3 Tbsp. molasses

– 2 tsp. vanilla

– 1 tsp. baking soda

– 2 beaten eggs (just whip them up in a glass with a fork – poke the yolks first)

– 2 cups crushed salted thin stick pretzels (measure after crushing)

– 2 and 1/2 cups all purpose flour

– 1 and 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix the softened butter with the sugar and the molasses. Beat until the mixture is light and fluffy, and the molasses is completely mixed in.
  3. Add the vanilla and baking soda. Mix them in well.
  4. Break eggs into a glass and whip them up with a fork. Add them to your bowl and mix until they’re thoroughly incorporated.
  5. Put your pretzels in a zip lock plastic bag. Seal it carefully and place it on a flat surface. Get out your rolling pin and run it over the bag, crushing the pretzels inside. Do this until there are no large pieces and the largest is a quarter-inch long.
  6. Measure out two cups of crushed pretzels and mix them into the dough in your bowl.
  7. Add one cup of flour and mix it in. Then add the second cup and mix thoroughly. Add the final half cup of flour and mix that in.
  8. Measure out a cup and a half of chocolate chips and add them to your cookie dough. If you’re using an electric mixer, mix them in at the slowest speed. You can also put the mixer away, and stir in the chips by hand.
  9. Drop by rounded teaspoons onto greased or sprayed with nonstick cooking spray cookie sheets. Place 12 cookies on each standard sheet.
  10. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes or until nicely browned. (I do it for 11 minutes.)

This post is part of Potluck Sundays, Tempt My Tummy Tuesdays, and Eat at Home.

Printable Recipe

Posted in Recipes

Homemade pizza

For the longest time, the Imaginative One would not even touch a piece of pizza. A few weeks ago, he decided he needed to see if his taste buds had changed. He discovered that he does like cheese pizza so that makes meal planning easier because I know he will eat it if I make it. In the past, he would eat something different if we had pizza.

The sauce:

Pizza Sauce

Homemade Pizza Sauce

  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

a small can of tomato paste

– 1 Tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil

– 1/4 to 1/2 cup of water

– 1 Tbsp. of sugar

– salt to taste

– Italian Seasoning (or 21 Seasoning Salute from Trader Joe’s) again to taste

– garlic powder again to taste

Directions

  1. Open up can of tomato paste and put it a small bowl.
  2. Put the EVOO, sugar, and seasonings into the bowl. Pour water into the bowl.
  3. Stir up the tomato paste, EVOO, seasonings, sugar, and water.

 

That’s it. It’s very easy to make. You can put more or less water in it depending on how thin you like your sauce to be. You put how much seasonings you would like in it depending on your taste buds.

Quick Pizza Crust:


(I got the recipe from Mommy’s Kitchen. When I made this on Saturday, I wanted a simple pizza crust for our pizza. This recipe fits the bill. It was easy to make and was tasty. The only change I would make is adding some Italian seasoning to the crust so that it would have a little more flavor. Other than that, I wouldn’t change a thing.)

Homemade Pizza Crust

  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1 & 1/4 oz packet of yeast (2 1/4 tsp. of yeast)
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp. oil (vegetable or olive) – I used EVOO.
  • 2 & 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons cornmeal – optional for sprinkling on cookie sheet

Directions

  1.  Dissolve yeast in warm water and add sugar. Let yeast sit about 10 minutes (you want it good and foamy).
  2. Stir in remaining ingredients until blended. Beat vigorously 20 strokes. I removed the dough from the bowl and kneaded it until it was no longer sticky.
  3. Place the dough in a greased bowl, turning dough to coat all sides and then allow the dough to rest for at least five minutes.
  4. Preheat oven to 425, spread dough onto a lightly greased baking sheet sprinkled with corn meal (optional)
  5. Top with desired toppings and bake for 20 minutes This makes 1 – 14 inch pizza.

My hubby who works in the pizza business and has for the past twenty years said the pizza was pretty good. That is a compliment coming from him. Both of the boys liked it. We’ll use this pizza crust recipe again.
This is what the 21 Seasoning Salute looks like.

Posted in Recipes, Snacks

S’Mores Snack Mix

I saw this recipe on another new blog (at least to me) called Mommy’s Kitchen.  Since it both looked easy to make and yummy, I knew I needed to try it.

Today we went to a local outdoor mall to play in the water fountain.  I decided to pack our lunch and knew that the S’Mores snack mix would be a perfect complement to our lunch.  When I had the Imaginative One try the snack mix, he wanted to eat only the marshmallows and chocolate chips and not try the Golden Grahams cereal.  I then showed him that you could make miniature S’Mores using two Golden Grahams, a marshmallow, and a chocolate chip.  He tried it and loved it.  The imaginative one figured out the recipe on his own.  He was so proud of himself.

Later that evening, we saw fireworks at a Tattoo event.  The Air Force sponsored the tattoo, which is free to the public.  They have a concert and planes that do tricks.  The evening ends with fireworks.  My father-in-law decided to take my niece, nephew, and two sons to see the fireworks.  We sat across the street from where the Air Force Museum.  Since we were going to sit and wait, I decided to make some snack mix to bring along.  My mother-in-law and niece both agreed that it was yummy!

This recipe is a keeper.

Without further ado, the recipe

S’mores Snack Mix

Stars of the Recipe:

  • 15 oz box of Golden Grahams
  • 16 oz bag of mini marshmallows
  • 12 oz bag of chocolate chips

Steps:

  1. In a large bowl, mix up the ingredients.
  2. Enjoy!

It’s that simple!  This is a real winner.

Posted in Bread and muffins, Recipes

Snickerdoodle muffins

Snickerdoodle Muffins

I love making Snickerdoodles at Christmas, especially with green and red baking sugar instead of regular granulated sugar.  So when I saw a recipe for Snickerdoodle muffins on a new blog (at least for me), I knew I needed to make them.  Today provided a great opportunity to make them.  I was going to pick up the Imaginative One from VBS and visit Mary Jane before heading to the library. We ate our lunch at her house while visiting. I brought Mary Jane a homemade treat of Snickerdoodle muffins. We all agreed these muffins are keepers.

Without further ado, I present you the recipe for Snickerdoodle muffins. 

Snickerdoodle muffins

from Eat at home cook

Stars of the recipe:

  • 2 c. of all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2. tsp. cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 stick of butter, softened
  • 3/4 c. sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c. milk
  • 1 & 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 Tbsp. Sugar and 1 tsp. Cinnamon combined and set aside

Steps:

  1. Mix the flour, salt, cream of Tatar, and baking soda in a large bowl. Put aside.
  2. Using a mixer, cream the butter and sugar.
  3. Add the eggs. (Break the eggs in a bowl and add them one at a time.)
  4. Add the milk and vanilla. Mix until combined.
  5. Stir in the dry ingredients until well moistened. (Put a little bit at a time.)
  6. Fill muffin cups 2/3rds of the way full of batter.
  7. Sprinkle the muffins with cinnamon sugar.
  8. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes or until the toothpick comes clean.
  9. Enjoy!!!

You are going to want to make these.

Posted in Recipes

Easy Peasy BBQ chicken

This really isn’t a recipe.  Instead it’s a method.  I take chicken pieces – legs, breasts, thighs, or wings – and place them in the crockpot.  Then I take a bottle of bbq sauce and pour it over the chicken.  Then I cook the chicken all day on low (6 to 8 hours).  The chicken falls off the bone and is delicious.

You can be fancy and put up onion in the crockpot with the chicken.  To be even fancier, you could cook up the onion first and then put it in the oven.

Told you this really wasn’t a recipe but more of a method.

For those who need a recipe:

Stars of the recipe:

  • 1 to 2 pounds of chicken – legs, thighs, breasts, wings
  • Bbq sauce – Your favorite
  • onions, chopped – Optional

Steps:

  1. Place chicken in the slow cooker.
  2. Add onions if desired.
  3. Pour barbecue sauce over the chicken.
  4. Cook for 6 to 8 hours on low.
  5. Enjoy!

Stay kind!

Have a magical day,
Traci

Posted in Recipes

Sausage-sauerkraut skillet dinner

One of my favorite blogs is Cooking during stolen moments. Kate, the author, often has good recipes that my family enjoys eating. One of those recipes is Sausage-Sauekraut skillet dinner. I saw the recipe when she posted it in May and decided I needed to put it on my menu plan.

To be honest, I’m the only one who enjoys eating sauerkraut. Hubby does eat it; however, it’s not his favorite. When I made it on Monday, the boys humored me and tried the sauerkraut. They both decided they were not fans of it. They both loved the sausage. I could have saved time and effort and cooked up the sausage. Hubby did enjoy it, and I loved it. But I love sauerkraut, so the likely hood of me liking it is great.

Things I did differently:
I used turkey sausage. There is no difference in taste.
Instead of canned sauerkraut, I used refridgerated sauerkraut.  I also rinsed off the sauerkraut before putting it in the skillet.
I also used three potatoes.