Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Brownie Cookies

½ cup shortening
2 tsp vanilla
1 ¾ cup sugar

Beat in:
2 eggs, one at a time

8 Tbsp cocoa
½ tsp salt
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup milk

Roll balls of dough in powdered sugar and place on greased pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 8-10 minutes. (They may look gooey, but if you overcook them they will be as hard as a rock.)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Accidental Dessert

So, the other day, Grandma Aitchison told me she makes a lemon bar cookie by mixing an angel food cake mix and lemon pie filling together and baking it. I decided to try it. The 'cookie' was good, but not fabulous. It was more like a moist lemon pound cake. I started considering what else could be done with it. This is the result.
Strawberry Lemonade Compote

1 angel food cake mix
1 2-lb. tube of lemon pie filling, divided
1 lb. fresh strawberries, quartered
2 c. whipping cream
1 T. sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Stir together the cake mix and 1/2 of the lemon pie filling. Spread in greased cake pan (9x13). Bake for about 20 minutes. After cooled, cut or tear into cubes, about 1 inch square.

In a large bowl, combine baked squares, remaining pie filling and quartered strawberries. Whip the cream until stiff peaks are formed; fold in the sugar.

Spoon the cake mixture into serving dishes. Top with whipped cream. Makes 8-10 1-cup servings.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Cloud Bread

So I've been counting calories lately. Boring right? I know. Anyway, one of the things that I've been most...scared to eat much of is bread. It just has too many calories in it for me to want to waste my time with. Which is sad to me. I've probably had 4 slices of bread in the last month and a half. Maybe.

I saw a recipe for "cloud bread" on pinterest and thought I'd give it a whirl. At only 43 calories each piece how could I not?!
Cloud Bread
(link to recipe I used - http://www.food.com/recipe/carb-free-cloud-bread-411501)
I really didn't make many changes, but my notes are in red :)
  • 3 eggs , separated
  • 3 tablespoons whole milk cottage cheese or 3 tablespoons cream cheese (I used cream cheese)
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar (I didn't have any so I looked up substitutes and ended up using 1/2 tsp lemon juice.)
  • 1 (1 g) packet artificial sweetener (I used 2 tsp splenda)


  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
  2. Separate the eggs very carefully, there must be no yolk in the white.
  3. In one bowl, mix together the egg yolks, the 3 T. of Cottage Cheese OR Cream Cheese and the one packet of Sweetener until smooth. (I softened the cream cheese for about 30 seconds in the microwave)
  4. In the other bowl add 1/4 teaspoon of Cream of Tartar to the whites and beat the whites on high speed until they are fluffy and form nice peaks.
  5. Very carefully fold the egg yolk mixture into the egg whites until mixed, but try and not break down the fluffiness of the egg whites too much.
  6. Spray two cookie sheets with Pam or other fat-free cooking spray.
  7. With a large spoon, "scoop" the mixture into 10 even rounds on the sheets (about the size of the top-half of the McDonalds hamburger bun; roughly 3/4 inch thick and 4 to 5 inches across).
  8. Bake on the middle rack. Here is when you have to watch them, because the cooking time the same on any two batches. It is somewhere around 1/2 hour, but it could be less or more. (Mine only cooked for 21 minutes)You just need to watch them until them become nice and golden brown (again, the color of a McDonalds bun).
  9. Remove from the pans and cool on a rack or cutting board.
  10. While warm they are crumbly and similar to cooked meringue - but don't let this fool you! Once completely cool, seal them in a ziplock storage baggie or a tupperware over night. They will totally change their consistency, to something much more like bread - a softer texture that is nice and chewy. If you do not like softer chewy bread, then eat them as they are, nice and crisp
     **I let them cool for about 10 minutes and then spread butter on one and ate it with my breakfast. I was actually pleasantly surprised and how good it was. Maybe it's because I haven't eaten bread in a while? I'm interested to see how the texture changes after they've sat for a while longer. They were so easy to make though, I think I'll be making them again.  I'm also already thinking of things to add to them, seasonings, chopped dried fruit, chocolate???, cheese, mmmm.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Moroccan Chicken and Rice

I made this for dinner the other night and it's possibly the most delicious thing I have ever made. It was well worth the hour or so that it took to prepare and cook it.

vegetable oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup onion, chopped or thinly sliced
1 cup chicken broth
1 tsp minced garlic
1/2 freshly grated ginger
1 satsuma, squeezed
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp coriander

Cook the chicken in 2-4 tbsp of oil, depending on the size of your pan. Let it brown on one side and then turn over. Stir in the other ingredients and bring to a boil. Then cover and simmer until the chicken is cooked through (25 - 35 min)

Chicken broth
1 tsp honey
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup pistachios, shelled and chopped

Cook the rice (stovetop or in a rice maker) with the chicken broth. Once it's done, stir in the honey, cinnamon, and nuts. I highly recommend serving the chicken atop the rice with the sauce poured over it.

Orange sherbet - without an ice cream maker!

7 satsumas/tangerines/mandarins/whatever you call them, squeezed
4 tbsp lemon juice
1 orange rind cut into small pieces
2 tsp vodka
2/3 cup heavy cream
1 cup sugar
dash of salt

(the recipe I found just called for fresh squeezed orange juice. I do not have a juicer so I hand squeezed them.)
Rub sugar and rind together until sandy and damp. Whisk in salt, juices, and vodka. Strain through a mesh sieve. Chill 2-3 hours in the fridge or 45 minutes in the freezer. Try not to let it ice over.

All I did then was blend the juice mixture and the cream for a minute or so to make it all frothy. For consistency, and I plan on doing this the next time I make it, I'd try whipping the cream into soft peaks before tossing it all in the blender.

I'm pretty sure it can be made without vodka but it won't be as smooth. In the end, you can't taste it but it makes the flavor richer and keeps it from freezing solid.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Sausage Rice Skillet (aka cheater jambalaya)

For a Relief Society activity a few years ago I organized a 5 ingredient recipe lesson, we gathered lots of yummy, easy recipes for the little cook book. This is one of our favorites here at our house. Super easy and it gives you the jambalaya experience in a lot less time!

Sausage Rice Skillet
1 (4 1/3 ounce) box Rice-A-Roni, Chicken Fajita flavor (we use a generic brand jambalaya flavored rice mix)
3 Polish sausages, cut lengthwise and sliced (I use one of those 12-14ish ounce sausages you can buy in the store by the lunch meat, I've also added chicken but don't every time)
1 medium onion, cut crosswise and sliced (we don't like onions, so I use about 2 Tablespoons dehydrated onion)
1 green pepper, sliced (in the above picture I used dehydrated peppers, I was out of fresh ones)
3 cups water

In skillet saute sausage, onion and green pepper until lightly browned. Add rice mix, seasoning packet and 2 1/2 cups of water, stir. Bring to boil. Cover, reduce heat to simmer and cook 25 minutes or until rice is tender, stirring occasionally. Add remaining water as needed.
Recipe makes 4 servings (though it usually feeds our family and then Andy and I have the leftovers for lunch, so I'd say it's about 6 servings)

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Mrs. McQueen's Oatmeal Crispies

Grandpa Hoyle's favorite cookies - IF you add 1-1/2 cups of raisins! They have a soft center and a crispy outside. Very yummy!
 My mom thinks she got this recipe in around 1959 from Mrs. McQueen who was her friend's mother. We've been using it ever since. This is a picture of the original recipe card on which my mom wrote it.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Cream Tuna on Toast

This is something that my mom made all the time but I don't know where it's from. It's one of my favorite meals, and it is EASY!

Cream Tuna

2 T margarine
2 T flour
1 cup milk
1 can tuna, drained
Salt & pepper, to taste

In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt margarine. Add flour and stir until the butter and flour are well combined. Pour in milk, stirring constantly as it thickens, about 10 minutes. Add drained tuna. Season with salt and pepper.

Serve over toasted and buttered bread.

Serves 2. (We triple it.)

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Chicken Broccoli Casserole

I love me some comfort food! We don't make this often because it's so fattening...but when we do make it we love love love it!! 

Chicken broccoli casserole
layer #1 - 2 10 oz packages frozen broccoli (cooked)

layer #2 - 2 cans cream of chicken soup
1 Cup Mayo
1 tsp lemon juice
2 lbs cooked.diced chicken

layer #3 - 3/4 Cup grated cheese

3/4 C bread crumbs
1/4 Melted butter

layer in 9x13" pan top with crumbs and drizzle butter
Bake at 350 for 1 hour (or less, as long as cheese is melted and it's warmed through)

Monday, January 30, 2012

Butter Beer!

I found this recipe on the internet but I don't remember the source. It's a good drink for chilly winter evenings, but SPOILER ALERT! you'll get fat.

2 tablespoons of butter (yeah, Julia Child would be proud)
2 tablespoons on brown sugar
A mugful of milk
Cinnamon and nutmeg

Melt the butter and the brown sugar over medium heat in a little saucepan. You want to stir continuously so it doesn't stick or burn and let it meld so close together that it's nearly caramelized.
Add in the milk and let it simmer.
Stir in a dash of cinnamon and a little nutmeg for flavor.
If you're feeling daring and heathenish, this is also really good with a half a shot of rum thrown in.

So you're literally drinking butter, sugar, and milk. It's like a cookie in a cup, so beware.

Silas Pancake

Or German Pancake. Whatever you call it, it's a great breakfast dish...although we usually eat it for dinner.

Silas Pancake

1 1/2 sticks margarine (or butter)
9 eggs
1 1/2 c. milk
1/2 t. salt
1 1/2 c. flour

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Cut margarine into several pieces and place in 9x13 cake pan and place in oven. Beat eggs, milk, salt and flour. When margarine is melted, add egg mixture and cook for 15-18 minutes.

Serve with favorite syrup. Silas's favorite topping is lemon syrup (lemon juice mixed with powdered sugar) AND jam. The kids and I like maple syrup and powdered sugar.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Amish White Bread

I've been making this bread as the mainstay for several years, now. It turns out delicious every time; unless, of course, you forget the salt. Worse yet, using expired yeast yields less-then-desirable results. However, it's a great recipe and better bread.


  • 2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C) I use hot tap water.
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast   I use just under this amount.
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt   I use 1 teaspoon.
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 6 cups bread flour   I use regular flour; sometimes a combo of wheat and white.


  1. In a large bowl, dissolve the sugar in warm water, and then stir in yeast. Allow to proof until yeast resembles a creamy foam (about 10 minutes).
  2. Mix salt and oil into the yeast. Mix in flour one cup at a time (I start with two cups, then add one at a time). Knead dough on a lightly floured surface until smooth. Place in a well oiled bowl, and turn dough to coat. Cover with a damp cloth. Allow to rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
  3. Punch dough down. Knead for a few minutes, and divide in half. Shape into loaves, and place into two well oiled (or sprayed) 9x5 inch loaf pans. Allow to rise for 30 minutes, or until dough has risen 1 inch above pans.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 minutes.   In my oven, these loaves take about 25 minutes.
  5. Brush butter on top, if you want to. Let sit in the pans for about 10 minutes, then turn onto a rack or paper toweling to cool. Of course, one loaf will probably disappear long before it cools!
This recipe makes good dinner rolls, too. After shaping the rolls, let them rise until they're very light. They are best eaten the day they're baked, but are good the next day, too. This is also the recipe I use for pigs-in-a-blanket. I make the dough and immediately roll it out, wrapping it around the hot dog pieces like a crescent roll. Then, I let them rise only one time. They're always a hit.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The easiest bread ever AKA: Artisan Bread

Artisan Bread
3 Cups Flour
3/4 Tablespoon Yeast
3/4 Tablespoon Salt
1 1/2 Cups warm water

Mix together, cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 3 hours (longer if you want, or need. I often let it rise either over night, or from morning til late afternoon)
With Olive Oil on your hands and counter take the dough (which will be gooey and sticky) and form into a round/circular loaf and place in a *round casserole dish with lid(no need to grease it, thanks to all the olive oil!).
Cover and bake at 450 for 30 minutes. Take the lid off and bake for another 15 minutes.

Let it cool so it's easier to cut and enjoy. Don't forget the butter :)

*I've also done it on a pizza stone, and it works fine. Just bake it for 40-45 minutes if you do it this way.

This is the dish I use to bake it in
The olive oil seemed to make a big difference in the crust to me as opposed to using flour when forming the dough.
We love it, and we hope you do too!

Cream Cheese Potato Soup

Andy doesn't especially like soups. I do, and I've tried to push share my love of a good soup with Andy. I especially like potato soup, but until I found this recipe I didn't have Andy convinced. We love this creamy soup, and make it about once a month (more often sometimes!). We like to look past the fact that it's not super healthy.

Panera's Cream Cheese Potato Soup (Original recipe in black, my notes/changes in red)

4 cups chicken broth (I just use the water/bullion method)
4 cups peeled and cubed potatoes (I do closer to 5 cups, I like it a little thicker)
1/4 cup minced onion (I use about 1 Tablespoon dehydrated onion)
1/2 teaspoon seasoning salt
1/4 teaspoon white pepper (I don't have this, so I just use pepper...)
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper (Instead of ground, I use red pepper flakes.)
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, cut into chunks

Combine broth, potatoes, onion, and spices. Boil on medium heat until potatoes are tender. Smash a few of the potatoes to release their starch for thickening. Reduce to low heat. Add cream cheese. Heat, stirring frequently.

Best served with Artisan bread. Yum!

Virtual family dinner (and dessert!)

For as long as I can remember our family gatherings have involved food.  Whether we're bar-b-queuing, having a sit down meal, snacking on finger foods, or just gathering for dessert we've had some exceptionally yummy gatherings! With everyone so spread out we can't always gather to eat and visit together, so what's the next best thing?! Sharing via the internet!

Sis and I started this blog a couple years ago with the intention of posting our favorite copycat recipes. It lasted for a while and we have some good recipes for you all to check out.

However, last week while Mom was visiting we started talking about a family recipe exchange/cookbook/collection and I had the thought to just make a blog. It should be very easy for us all to add our tried and true family favorite recipes here, even those of you who don't blog can figure it out. I promise. : ) Then after a while when we have a good collection of all our favorites we can think about getting it printed.

There are a few guidelines/suggestions for posting, so it's easy for us to find the recipes we're looking for-

LABEL YOUR POST - When you are posting a recipe, before you publish it, there is a box at the bottom of the post to label your post. Always put your own name there along with either the main ingredient or 'main dish', 'side dish', 'dessert', etc. The labels will show up on the side of the blog so it'll be easy to sort through the recipes.You can add as many labels to your posts as you want/think necessary.

MAKE IT FIRST - Since this is a family favorites blog, lets make sure the recipes are actually ones you like! : ) Seems simple, right? 

PICTURES ARE FUN! - that's all. I like to see pictures of what the food looks like, that way I know if it turns out right! : ) Obviously, not required. But if you happen to snap a picture, share it.

STORIES - One of the fun things about family recipes is hearing who made it first, where we got it, what parties we made it for, etc. So if you've made a recipe you're sharing for a family gathering let us know which one. It may be one we've been remembering and wanting to get from you!

So bookmark this site and lets get cooking! We're going to try keeping this blog private (meaning you'll have to log into view it), but if there's someone I didn't add to be a contributor let me know and we'll get them added!

I don't know about you, but I can't wait to try some new yummy Recipes! : )

Click here to read the "welcome" post and learn more about this family blog!