Friday, April 13, 2012

Black-Bean and Brown-Rice Cakes


2 cans (15 ounces each) black beans, rinsed and drained
2 large scallions, coarsely chopped
1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
3/4 cup cooked brown rice
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup plain low-fat yogurt
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh cilantro, plus leaves for serving
                                         1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. In a food processor, pulse half the beans with scallions, jalapeno, and cumin until a chunky paste forms. In a large bowl, combine bean puree with rice and remaining beans; season with salt and pepper. Divide mixture into eight 3-inch-wide patties. (To freeze, wrap individually in plastic and freeze up to 2 weeks; thaw before cooking.)
Brush a rimmed baking sheet with oil; place in oven to heat, 5 minutes. Carefully place patties on hot sheet; bake until bottoms are golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through. Let rest on sheet 5 minutes before removing.
                    Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine yogurt, cilantro, and lime juice; season with           salt and pepper. Serve patties topped with yogurt sauce and cilantro leaves.

Tuna and White Bean Salad


2 cans (6 ounces each) water-packed tuna, drained
1 can (15 ounces) great Northern or navy beans, drained and rinsed
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 plum tomatoes, diced (3 cups)
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons capers, rinsed
1 cup roughly chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
4 slices thick country bread, toasted or grilled


In a large bowl, combine tuna, beans, garlic, tomatoes, olive oil, lemon juice, capers, and parsley. Season with salt and pepper, and toss to combine. Serve on top of bread.

Banana Bread

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature, plus more for pan
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup mashed very ripe bananas
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan; set aside. In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, and beat to incorporate.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt. Add to the butter mixture, and mix until just combined. Add bananas, sour cream, and vanilla; mix to combine. Stir in nuts, and pour into prepared pan.
Bake until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 1 hour 10 minutes. Let rest in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to cool.


To make the cream cheese frosting-filled banana bread as featured on "The Martha Stewart Show," in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together 6 ounces cream cheese, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract until smooth. Once bread is baked and cooled, halve horizontally. Using an offset spatula, spread cream cheese frosting evenly over bottom half. Top with remaining half; slice and serve.

BBQ Chicken Dip


1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened*
1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon milk
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons barbecue sauce
3/4 cup chopped cooked chicken breast
2 tablespoons sliced green onion


1. In small mixing bowl beat cream cheese on medium speed of electric mixer until fluffy. Add cheddar cheese, milk, garlic powder and cayenne pepper. Beat until combined. Spread cream cheese in 7-inch circle on serving plate.

2. Spoon barbecue sauce on top. Sprinkle with chicken and onion. Serve with crackers. *NOTE: Soften cream cheese in microwave at high for 15 to 20 seconds.

Cinderella Cookies

Loaf of white bread
Sweetened condensed milk
Bag of flaked coconut


Remove the crusts from the bread. Cut each slice of bread into 4 strips. Coat each strip in milk then roll in the coconut. Place the strips on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes, or until coconut is very lightly golden brown.

Pumpkin Crunch


1 can pumpkin, large
1 can (13 ounce) evaporated milk
3 eggs, beaten
1 cup sugar
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ package spice cake mix
1 cube margarine
1 cup chopped walnuts


Blend pumpkin, milk, eggs and spices in 9x13 pan. Sprinkle dry cake mix over top. Melt margarine and drizzle over cake mix. Top with chopped nuts. Bake at 350 for 50 minutes. Note: 1 package cake mix equals 4 cups. I use a little more spice (½-3/4 teaspoon ginger, 2 teaspoons cinnamon, ½ teaspoon cloves). You can also use your favorite pumpkin pie filling. Serve chilled or slightly warm. Whipped cream optional.

Bacon Wrapped Breadsticks

1 (4.5 ounces) box sesame seed breadsticks (long ones if possible)
16 ounces of uncooked bacon
8 ounces container of grated parmesan cheese


Preheat Oven to 350 degrees. Wrap uncooked bacon around each breadstick. Place on lined cookie sheets (I use foil or parchment, again for easier clean up) and bake for about 30 minutes. Remove from pans and dredge through parmesan cheese while still warm. Place on paper towel lined platters or plates and allow to cool and crisp.

Fried Mozzarella

Yield Makes 40

1 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
1 cup panko or plain dried breadcrumbs
1 teaspoon dried thyme
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 pound bocconcini (bite-size fresh mozzarella balls)
2 cups vegetable oil
Tomato sauce, for serving

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Place flour in a bowl. In another bowl, beat eggs. In a third bowl, combine panko with thyme. Season each with salt and pepper. Working with 2 bocconcini at a time, dredge in flour, shaking off excess, coat in egg, and roll in breadcrumbs, pressing gently to adhere.
In a small saucepan, heat vegetable oil over medium-high until pinch of breadcrumbs sizzles and floats to the top when added. Fry bocconcini, 4 at a time, until golden brown, turning occasionally, 2 minutes per batch. With a slotted spoon, transfer balls to paper towels to drain and season with salt. Keep warm in oven and repeat with remaining bocconcini. Serve with tomato sauce for dipping.

Sausage-Cheddar Balls

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 cups grated cheddar (1/2 pound)
1 pound bulk breakfast sausage
1/2 large yellow onion, grated on large holes of a box grater
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, and baking powder. Add cheddar and toss to coat. Add sausage, onion, and butter. With your hands, mix until well combined and roll mixture into 1-inch balls. Place balls, 1/2 inch apart, on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake until balls are golden and cooked through, 25 minutes. Serve warm.

Mini Deep-Dish Pizzas

Olive oil, for muffin pan
All-purpose flour, for rolling
1/2 pound homemade or store-bought pizza dough, in 6 pieces
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella (4 ounces)
1 large tomato, coarsely chopped
Desired toppings, such as cooked vegetables, pineapple and ham, or pepperoni

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Lightly brush 6 standard muffin cups with oil. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out each dough piece to a 6-inch round. Fill each cup with 1 round, gently pressing dough into bottom and sides of cup. Season with salt and pepper.
Sprinkle each dough cup with 1 tablespoon each cheese and tomato. Add desired toppings and another tablespoon each cheese and tomato. Bake until dough is golden brown and crisp, 12 minutes. Let cool 2 minutes before removing from cups.

Strawberry Torte

Ingredients Unsalted butter, for pan
8 extra-large eggs, room temperature, separated
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup cake flour (not self-rising)
2 teaspoons sifted baking powder
1 pint heavy cream
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar, plus more for work towel
1 quart strawberries, washed, dried, and hulls removed
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and line a rimmed 15-by-10-by-1-inch jelly roll pan with parchment paper; set aside.
In a large bowl, beat egg yolks and sugar together until light in color, about 1 minute; stir in 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Add cake flour and baking powder; stir until well combined.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form. Gently fold into flour mixture.
Pour cake batter in prepared pan and spread evenly with a spatula or the back of a spoon. Transfer baking sheet to oven and bake until cake springs back when touched, about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, set 6 strawberries aside for garnish. Thinly slice remaining strawberries. Place heavy cream in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; beat on medium speed. Slowly add remaining teaspoon vanilla and 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar. Continue beating until soft peaks form. Set half of the whipped cream aside. Gently fold sliced strawberries into remaining half; set aside.
Lay a clean kitchen towel flat on a work surface with one of the short ends facing you. Generously sprinkle dish towel with confectioners' sugar. Flip cake onto towel, remove baking sheet, and peel off parchment paper. Using the dish towel, roll cake away from you; let cool.
Unroll cake. Evenly spread strawberry whipped-cream mixture over surface of the cake and re-roll. Transfer cake to a serving plate and evenly spread top and sides of cake with reserved whipped cream. Cut reserved whole strawberries in half lengthwise and place on top of cake for garnish.

Leftover Turkey Enchiladas

3-4 cups leftover turkey, shredded
1 large can green or red enchilada sauce
1 package taco seasoning
1 cup of sour cream
1/3 cup green onions, chopped
2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend


Put 1 cup of cheese and 1/2 can of enchilada sauce aside, and mix all other ingredients together. Spoon into corn tortillas or flour if your family prefers those. Place them in a large baking pan like tacos, lying on their side. Sprinkle remaining cheese over the enchiladas. Pour the other half can of enchilada sauce over the top. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for half an hour or until they are done.

Bacon, Egg, and Toast Cups

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
8 slices white or whole-wheat sandwich bread
6 slices bacon
6 large eggs
Coarse salt and ground pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly butter 6 standard muffin cups. With a rolling pin, flatten bread slices slightly and, with a 4 1/4-inch cookie cutter, cut into 8 rounds. Cut each round in half, then press 2 halves into each muffin cup, overlapping slightly and making sure bread comes up to edge of cup. Use extra bread to patch any gaps. Brush bread with remaining butter.
In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium, until almost crisp, 4 minutes, flipping once. (It will continue to cook in the oven.) Lay 1 bacon slice in each bread cup and crack an egg over each. Season with salt and pepper. Bake until egg whites are just set, 20 to 25 minutes. Run a small knife around cups to loosen toasts. Serve immediately.

Cook's Note

Standard muffin pans come in 6- or 12-cup size; if baking 6 items in a 12-cup pan, Leave empty space in between. Nonstick pans are nice but not essential. Beware of very thin pans, which often lead to burning. Place pans on a baking sheet to make them easier to get in and out of the oven.

Pumpkin-Pecan Treat

Yield Makes one 11-inch round tart


For the Crust
All-purpose flour, for work surface
1/2 recipe Pate Brisee
1 egg white, lightly beaten
For the Filling:
1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of coarse salt
For the Topping
3/4 cup light-brown sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of coarse salt
4 tablespoon unsalted butter, cut into small cubes and chilled
1 1/2 cups pecan halves
Sweetened whipped cream, for serving


1. Make the crust: On a lightly floured work surface, roll pate brisee into a 14-inch round. With a dry pastry brush, sweep off excess flour; fit dough into an 11-inch-round tart pan with a removable bottom. Fold edges toward center to reinforce; press into sides of tart pan. Prick bottom of tart shell all over with the tines of a fork. Cover with plastic wrap; chill tart shell until firm, about 30 minutes.
2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Uncover and line chilled tart shell with parchment and fill with pie weights or dried beans. Transfer to oven and bake until crust is set in pan, 30 to 35 minutes. Remove weights and parchment and continue baking until bottom of crust is lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool slightly. Brush crust with egg white and let stand 5 minutes.
3. Increase oven temperature to 425 degrees.
4. Make the filling: In a large bowl, whisk together pumpkin, condensed milk, eggs, cinnamon, and salt. Pour filling into cooled tart shell; transfer to oven and bake until slightly set, about 15 minutes.
5. Make the topping: Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix together brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, and salt; using a pastry blender or your hands, mix in butter until mixture is crumbly. Add pecan halves and mix to combine.  

6. Remove tart from oven and reduce temperature to 350 degrees. Sprinkle topping over filling and return tart to oven; bake until topping is dark golden-brown and center is bubbling slightly, 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool. Serve with whipped cream.

Carmel Candy


1 pound Brown Sugar
1 cup Kyro light Syrup
1 cup Butter
1 Can sweet milk 4oz

Cook on low heat until melted together for 12 mins. Grease cookie sheet. Pour hot mixture into cookie sheet and let cool till set up.

Mashed Potato Soufflé

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for baking dish 5 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and halved crosswise
1 cup milk
1/2 cup sour cream
4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
6 ounces sharp or extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated on large holes of a box grater
3 tablespoons fresh chopped chives

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a large shallow baking dish; set aside. Fill a large pot with 2 to 3 inches of water; set a steamer insert into pot and add potatoes to insert. Cover and steam potatoes until tender and easily pierced with the tip of a sharp knife, about 15 minutes. Pass potatoes through a ricer into a large bowl.
2. In a small saucepan, heat butter and milk over medium heat until butter is melted. Add milk mixture to potatoes, along with sour cream, cream cheese, 1 tablespoon salt, and pepper; fold to combine. Transfer potato mixture to prepared dish.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk heavy cream until medium peaks form. Fold in cheese and season with salt and pepper; spoon cream over potatoes, spreading evenly to cover. Transfer to oven and bake until potatoes are heated through and top is light brown, about 30 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes; garnish with chives and serve.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Sunny's Easy Glazed Cinnamon Buns

2 Tbs Butter, plus more for greasing pan

3/4 Cup Light Brown Sugar
1 Cup Chopped Pecans
1 Honey crisp or Fuji Apple, peeled, cored and diced
1 Lemon, zested
3 tbs Ground Cinnamon
1/8 tbs Freshly ground Nutmeg ( 8 scrapes on a fine grater)
1/8 tbs Ground Cardamom
Generous pinch of Salt
Flour, for dusting
2 Puff Pastry Sheets, thawed

1 1/2 Tbs Butter, melted
1/4 tbs Vanilla Extract
1 1/2 Tbs Fresh Lemon Juice
3/4 to 1 Cup Powdered Sugar
Pinch of Salt

Special equipment 10 inch round cake pan

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.  Grease the sides and bottom of pan with butter.

For the filling:  In a bowl, add the brown sugar, pecans, diced apple, lemon zest, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom and a pinch of salt.  Stir until combined.

In a small pot, melt the 2 tablespoons butter with a pinch of salt.  Lightly dust a clean work surface with flour.  Flatten the puff pastry and roll with a rolling pin to even out and seal the perforations, if any.  Brush the butte all over the puff pastry, leaving a 1 inch border at one of the shorter ends. Sprinkle the apple-cinnamon mixture evenly over the pastry sheet, being careful to leave that 1 inch border.  Starting from the end furthest from the without any filling, begin to tightly roll the pastry.  Tuck and press as you go,  keeping the log as even as possible.  When the edge is reached, roll the pastry onto itself and press firmly, even pinching,  to seal.  Using a serrated knife, trim the edges and gently cut 6 equal slices from each log. 
Repeat with the second puff pastry sheet to make 12 pieces total.

Place the slices spiral side up in the prepared pan.  Start around the edges and fill in the center.  Bake until the pastry is cooked through and golden brown, 35-40 minutes.

Meanwhile, for the glaze:
In a small pot, add the butter and melt over low heat.  Add the vanilla extract and lemon juice and begin whisking in the powdered sugar in 1/4 cup increments.  Continue adding and whisking between addition until the glaze thickens.  Season with a pinch of salt, then remove from heat.

Remove the buns from the oven and pour glaze over the top.  Let rest about 5 minutes before serving. Serve warm

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Spinach Artichoke Dip


16 oz Frozen Spinach ( thawed and drained )
13.75 oz Can Artichoke Heart
8 oz Cream Cheese
1 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
8oz Sour Cream
1 Clove Garlic ( minced )
3/4 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese


Mix all but 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese. 
Place mixture into greased baking pan.
Place rest of Parmesan cheese on top.
Bake at 350 for 20-25 Min's.

Hot Chicken Dip


Shredded Chicken Cooked
Hot Sauce ( Any Brand you like )
2 Cream Cheese
Blue Cheese Dressing
Shredded Cheese


Cook you chicken and shred.
Place into bowl.
Add your hot sauce.  This depends on how much you want to put in there.
Mix in your cream cheese and blue cheese dressing ( again this is up to you on how much you put in)
Once all mix up place into greased backing pan.
Place into oven at 350 for 20 minutes.
Remove and place shredded cheese over and bake again for 10 Min's.


Cocoa Gravy ( Also known as Black Gravy)


1/2 Cup Sugar
2 Tbs. Cocoa
2 Tbs. Flour
1/8 tbs. Vanilla
2 Cups Milk
1 Cup Margin


Mix sugar, flour and cocoa together in pan on stove. 
Add mix cook until thick.
Add vanilla and margin.

Serve over hot biscuit's.

This is a old family recipe that my mom has been making us kids since we were babies.  We all love it and it's worth a try.  Let me know what you think.

Over Night Salad


1 Head Lettuce ( Cut up )
1 Cauliflower ( Cut up )
1 Jar Miracle Whip
1/2 Ib. Bacon
Green Onions ( Chopped )
1/2 Cup Sugar


Mix the lettuce and cauliflower into bowl. 
Layer the lettuce and cauliflower with Miracle Whip.  Make sure to cover it all.
Spread the Sugar on top of Miracle Whip.
At this point place into refrigerator and let set all night.
Pull out salad the following day.
Mix in bacon, green onions and cheese. 
Mix everything together and enjoy.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Chilli Dip


1 Can Chili (no beans)
1/2 Jar Tostino Monetary Jack Cheese Dip
1/2 Jar Sam's Club Black Bean Mild Salsa

Mix together and heat in pan.
Use any kind of chips with this.

Creamy Spinach Dip


1 Cup Mayonnaise
1 pkg Knorr Vegetable Recipe Mix
1 pkg (10 oz) Frozen Chopped Spinach
                 ( Thawed and squeezed dry )
1 Container (16 oz ) Sour Cream


Combine all above and Chill for 2 hours.


Oriental Coleslaw


4 Cups Shredded Cabbage
1 pkg Oriental Raman Noodles ( broken up in package )
1 Cup Toasted Slivered Almonds
2 Tbs. Toasted Sesame Seeds
1/3 Cup Sliced Scallions

Toast Ramen Noddles, Silvered Almonds and Sesame Seeds until brown.


1/2 Cup Salad Oil
3 Tbs Sugar
3 Tbs Wine Vinegar or Cider
Garlic Salt to taste
1 pkg of Oriental Noodles Seasoning ( what comes in the Oriental Raman Noodles pkg.)
1 tbs Soy Sauce


First bowl, mix together the cabbage, scallions, and noodles.  Break noodles up in bag before opening.  Do not cook.  You want them crunchy! NOTE: Noodles should not be put in until a half hour before you eat,  the will get too mushy. 
Next in a small bowl, whisk together dressing ingredients and pour over cabbage toss and chill.  Top with almonds and sesame seeds.
NOTE:  Seeds & Almonds taste great when lightly browned.  To toast seeds and almonds spread on baking pan and heat 6-8 min. at 350 degrees.  Watch closely so the don't burn.

 Enjoy and let me know what you think.

Taco Soup


1 Ib. Hamburger Meat
1 Large Onion
3 (15.5 oz) Mexican Chili Beans
1 (15.5 oz) Whole Kernel Corn
1 (15.5 oz) Whole Tomatoes
1 (4.5 oz) Green Chopped Chile's
1 (1 oz) Envelope Ranch Dressing Mix
1 1/2 Cups of Water


Shredded Lettuce
Corn Chips
Sour Cream
Shredded Cheese
( Use any combination of these topping for the soup)


Cook Meat and Onion in large pan and drain.
Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to boil.
When you place soup into bowls top with the toppings and enjoy.