Friday, December 30, 2011

Granola Bars

This is the second time that I've made these granola bars. The first time they crumbled, but still tasted great. I ate the whole batch as cereal. This time they stayed together a little better, but I'll still probably eat with milk or sprinkled on top of yogurt.

I would like to think this is a super healthy snack because there is no added sugar! I'll be making some more healthy recipes as the new year progresses. I hope all of you have a wonderful new year!

4 cup rolled oats (not the instant)
3/4 cup peanut butter (melted)
3/4 cup honey
1 cup of mixed nuts, raisins, sunflower seeds or any other concoction.

Mix oats and honey.
Pour in melted peanut butter.
Stir in mix of nuts, raisins, etc.
Press into 9x11 baking dish.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.
Let cool completely then cut and store in air tight container.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Roasted Garbanzo Beans

We're trying to be a little healthier and I really need a snack substitute. I think this recipe just might work.

One can garbanzo beans (also known as chickpeas)
Extra virgin olive oil
Seasoning salt (Cavenders, Tony’s, etc.)
Kosher Salt

Drain and pat dry the Garbanzo beans
Toss with olive oil
Roast at 450 degrees for 30-45 minutes
Sprinkle with seasoning to taste
Serve immediately

Nice, healthy snack!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Buttermilk Blackberry Breakfast Cake

I whipped up this recipe for our small group breakfast and it was divine! Blueberries were in the original recipe, but blackberries were on sale so I went went those instead. I will hopefully try it with blueberries in the near future.

Serves 6-8

½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2 tsp. lemon zest or more — zest from 1 large lemon
7/8 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
1 egg, room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. kosher salt
2 cups fresh blueberries *I used blackberries
½ cup buttermilk

1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Cream butter with lemon zest and 7/8 cup of the sugar until light and fluffy.

2. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until combined. Meanwhile, toss the blueberries with ¼ cup of flour, then whisk together the remaining flour, baking powder and salt.

3. Add the flour mixture to the batter a little at a time, alternating with the buttermilk. Fold in the blueberries.

4. Grease a 9-inch square baking pan (or something similar) with butter or coat with non-stick spray. Spread batter into pan. Sprinkle batter with remaining tablespoon of sugar. Bake for 35 minutes. Check with a toothpick for doneness. If necessary, return pan to oven for a couple of more minutes. (Note: Baking for as long as 10 minutes more might be necessary.) Let cool at least 15 minutes before serving.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Cookie Exchange!


Join us as we share our favorite cookie recipes!  Link up today and have fun visiting other blogs!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Christmas Cookie Exchange Coming Soon!


Mark your calendars! 
We'll be sharing our cookie recipes and we hope you'll link up with us as we have our first ever virtual Cookie Exchange!  Grab our button on the right to pass the word along.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Pumpkin Bread

The best way to go into a sugar coma (other than downing pure sugar) is eating a slice of pumpkin bread at Starbucks. I love it. I hate it. It’s so good. It’s so bad.

Bottom line. It tastes like a little piece of goodness on my tongue, but it has a whole lotta sugar.

Naturally I wanted to recreate the recipe to punish myself or rather my hips. The Starbucks Pumpkin bread recipe has a whole slew of other spices/ingredients none of which I had in my cabinet so I turned my focus to this recipe which turned out just as well with minimal ingredients.

Happy Thanksgiving! I’ll be posting one of my favorite dressing recipes some time later this week!

PS – I still don’t know what my main dish will be tomorrow. Turkey or Ham? What does your family do?


1 1/2 Cups All Purpose Flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup butter (melted)
1 can of solid pack pumpkin (approx. 15 oz.)
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla


Heat oven to 350. Combine dry ingredients and set aside. Mix egg, pumpkin, butter, sugar. Add remaining ingredients. Mix until well corporated. Cook 35-50 minutes or bread is set in the middle.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Chicken Tortilla Soup

I haven't cooked in forever! This week is looking like another busy one too, so I guess I'll be eating more frozen meals:). I did get a quick chance to make this delicious soup. I feel like I'm in college again. This big pot of soup will last me all week long especially since Ben won't eat it:).

The original recipe uses ground beef or deer meat, but I substituted chicken and it worked just fine. Great for a cold day when you need something warm and spicy!

1 cup shredded or diced chicken
3 cans chili beans
1 can while kernel corn
1 15 oz tomato sauce
1 can diced Rotel
1 can diced tomatoes
1 envelope taco seasoning
1 envelope ranch dressing mix
1 1/2 cup water (about)

Mix all ingredients and heat over medium for 10-15 minutes. Serve with cheese, sour cream, or avocado slices.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Creamy Shrimp Pasta

I had some leftover shrimp and wanted to make something delish for my family tonight.  I think it would have been tastier if I would have actually followed the recipe and added the Old Bay.  I didn't have any so I left it out.  It was OK.  It is a perfect dish for my dad because it was very bland and will probably not hurt his post-cancer mouth.  I found this recipe on Pinterest via here.

Creamy Shrimp Pasta

1 16 oz box of pasta (I used bow ties)
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 Tbsp butter
1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 1/2 Tbsp Old Bay, divided (low sodium kind if you can find it)
2 cups half-and-half
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
2 green onions, sliced thinly

Directions Cook pasta according to directions on package. During the last minute of cooking add the peas. Drain and reserve 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid.

In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the shrimp and sprinkle with 1/2 tablespoon of Old Bay. Cook for 3 minutes or until they start to turn pink. Reduce heat to medium-low.

Stir in the half-and-half, reserved cooking liquid, Parmesan cheese and the rest of the Old Bay. Simmer for 5 minutes or until the sauce begins to thicken. Remove from heat and add the pasta, peas and green onion. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving (this gives the sauce a few more minutes to thicken)

Serve with extra grated Parmesan cheese. 

Friday, October 14, 2011

Pumpkin Spice Krispie Treats

I found this fancy rice krispy treat recipe on Pinterest.  It came from Cookie and Cups.  I don't think I let my butter brown long enough so they might just be Pumpkin Spice Krispie Treats.  I totally forgot to take a picture before they were all eaten at Bennett's school picnic today.

Browned Butter Pumpkin Spice Krispie Treats
1/4 cup salted butter
1 (10.5) oz bag mini marshmallows
6 cups Rice Krispie cereal
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Spray 9×9 pan with non-stick spray.
Over med-low heat melt your butter.
Once your butter is melted, continue to cook until butter starts to brown.

It will turn a golden brown color and develop a nutty aroma.
Be careful not to burn.  Once the butter begins to brown it can burn quickly.
Stir up any brown bits.
Add the marshmallows and pumpkin pie spice.
Stir until marshmallows are melted.
Remove from heat and stir in rice krispies.
When mixed spread the krispie mixture in your prepared pan.
Spray a sheet of wax paper or parchment with non-stick spray and gently press the krispies down evenly.
Let cool for 30 minutes and then cut into squares.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Snickers Fudge

My boys and I made Snickers Fudge on Friday.  Bennett was such a big helper!  Part of the recipe requires you to unwrap an entire package of caramels.  Bennett unwrapped a few for me, but then he ATE them.  I had to take them away and unwrap them one handed while holding the pacifier in Henry's mouth.  Talk about multi-tasking!

Big helper eating the left-overs

Snickers Fudge

For the first layer

1 cup milk chocolate chips
1/4 cup butterscotch chips
1/4 cup peanut butter

For the second layer

4 tablespoons butter
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups marshmallow creme
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups chopped salted peanuts (I left the peanuts out)

For the third layer

14 ounce package caramel cubes
1/4 cup heavy cream

For the fourth layer

1 cup milk chocolate chips
1/4 cup butterscotch chips
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

To make the first layer

In a small saucepan over low heat, add milk chocolate chips, butterscotch chips and peanut butter. Stir often until completely melted and smooth. Pour mixture into the bottom of a 9 x 13" baking pan lightly coated with nonstick spray. Using an off-set spatula, spread the mixture to an even layer and place in the refrigerator until set.

To make the second layer

In a medium heavy saucepan, melt butter over medium-high heat. Mix in sugar and evaporated milk. Once it comes to a boil, let cook 5 minutes while stirring. Remove from the heat and quickly stir in marshmallow creme, peanut butter and vanilla. Stir in peanuts. Pour over the set chocolate layer and use an off-set spatula to gently spread mixture in an even layer. Place in the refrigerator until set.

To make the third layer
Place the unwrapped caramel cubes and heavy cream in a medium saucepan. Place over low heat and stir until the mixture has completely melted and is smooth. Pour in the pan and quickly spread to an even layer with an off-set spatula. Place in the refrigerator until set.

To make the fourth layer

In a small saucepan over low heat, add milk chocolate chips, butterscotch chips and peanut butter. Stir often until completely melted and smooth. Pour over the third layer and use an off-set spatula to spread to an even layer. Place in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before cutting into squares.

Scarecrow Crunch

Thanks to Pinterest I found this really fun snack mix.  I love fall so much!

I just bagged it up and put a little tag on each one to give to friends.  It was a cinch and so tasty!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Banana Oatmeal Bars

This recipe is a variation from Money Saving Mom. I eat oatmeal just about every single day so I'm always looking for new combinations. This recipe is relatively healthy, tastes great, and makes your kitchen smell divine!

1/3 cup butter, melted
2 large eggs
3/4 cup raw sugar (or brown sugar)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup plus 2 Tablespoons milk
3 cups oats (regular or quick oats)
2 very ripe bananas (smashed)

Beat eggs, sugar and butter together. Mix in baking powder, vanilla, cinnamon and salt.

Stir in milk, oats, and banana. Pour into a greased 9×13 foil pan or baking dish.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35-45 minutes, until set in the middle. Serve warm with milk or cut into bars.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Homemade Hamburger Buns

If you're up for the challenge, I highly recommend making your own hamburger buns. They aren't like your typically store bought buns. Honestly I like both store bought and homemade. The homemade buns are pretty heavy & yeasty. I know that doesn't sound appetizing (at all) but that's as far as my adjective vocabulary is taking me this evening. It's basically like eating a condensed yeast roll from Luby's or Picadilly (or MCL for you Midwest folks).

2 packages active dry yeast
1 cup plus 2 tbs warm water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup of sugar
1 egg
1 tsp salt
3 1/2 cups of all purpose flour

1. In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add oil and sugar; let stand for 5 minutes. Add egg, salt and flour to form a soft dough.

2. Turn onto floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic (about 3-5 minutes). Do not let rise. Divide into 12 pieces (6 if you like bigger buns); shape each into a ball. Place 3 inches apart on greased baking sheet.

3. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes. Smoosh slightly and bake at 425 degrees for 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Remove from sheet to cool on wire racks.

4. Slice them in half and serve with a big 'ole juicy hamburger patty.

**Note, my buns never turned golden brown, but I knew they were done because I grabbed one straight out of the oven and ate it:).

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Peanut Butter Pie with Pretzel Crust

I made this beauty for my dad's 62nd birthday.  I found the recipe here.

2 cups broken salted pretzel sticks
1/4 cup brown sugar
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1-8 oz pkg. reduced fat cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 cups heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
Handful of dry roasted peanuts, chopped
1 oz. semisweet chocolate chips
2 Tbsp creamy peanut butter
  1. To make the crust, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Using a food processor, finely grind the pretzels, and 1/4 cup brown sugar. Transfer to a bowl, then stir in the melted butter.
  2. Press evenly over the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie pan. Bake until light brown around the edges, about 18 minutes. Let cool on a rack.
  3. To make the filling, beat together 1 cup peanut butter, cream cheese and brown sugar in large bowl with an electric mixer on medium, until well combined.
  4. Whip the heavy cream on medium-high until soft peaks form. Stir 1/3 of the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture to lighten it up. Use a rubber spatula to gently fold in the remaining whipped cream until thoroughly combined. Spoon mixture into pie shell and smooth to edges of pie.
  5. To top, sprinkle with chopped peanuts. Put chocolate and peanut butter in a microwave-safe bowl and heat in 30 second increments at 50% power, stirring after each. Continue until the chocolate is melted and smooth.
  6. Transfer to a resealable plastic bag and snip a tiny bit off the corner. Hold the bag over the pie and drizzle the melted chocolate in a zig-zag pattern. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Ma – the Meatloaf!

Any Wedding Crasher friends out there?! **crickets** My dear friend Kelly passed along her mom’s meatloaf recipe and it was delicious!

I made a lot of meals over the weekend including Ms. Ann’s Meatloaf. I didn’t follow the recipe in its entirety because I didn’t have a green pepper and I totally forgot the cheese. Instead of baking as a loaf I divided the meatloaf into muffin pans then froze the little minis for later consumption.

*Original Recipe
1 lb. ground beef
1 egg
¼ cup oatmeal (instant is fine)
¼ cup onions
¼ cup green pepper
1/3 cup cheese
a squirt or 2 of BBQ sauce
¼ (or more ☺) cup brown sugar

Mush ingredients together very well. “When you think you’ve mushed enough, mush some more ☺”

Pat into baking dish until it’s about 1 ½ in. thick, and not touching the sides of the dish.

Pour1/4 in. of water onto the sides of the meat.

Drizzle ketchup all over the top of the meat so that you can't see the top.

Cook at 350 for 1 hour. “It will always be done after an hour.”

Thanks Kelly! If anyone is interested in the freezer method, just let me know.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Wanted – Freezer Recipes

Hello Dear Friends. Due to lack of organization around my household, I’ve eaten way too many hotdogs and sandwiches for the past few weeks. For the month of September I’m going to try and be a little better about meal planning especially on nights that we are on the go. I would love to have a few meals stashed away in the freezer for those evenings when preparing a decent meal just isn’t possible.

The catch is…Ben isn’t really a frozen food/casserole person so I need to be a little creative. Does anyone have any yummy recipes that are freezer worthy?!

Thanks for your help! I can't look at another hotdog.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Ms. Erma's Rolls

Why is bread so stinkin' good?! This recipe comes straight from Ms. Erma Hudson's kitchen in Dubach, LA. Ben's Aunt Debbie makes them every Thanksgiving and for some reason I just had to have 'em. If you like the chicken minis at Chick-fil-A, then you will love these rolls. They are very similar.

This looks like a lot of butter and maybe it is, but I couldn't resist. Repeat, couldn't resist.

1 env. granulated yeast
1 c. warm water
3 c. sifted flour
1 egg
1 tsp. salt
1/2 c. sugar
1/4 c. cooking oil
melted butter

Mix yeast and warm water. Let stand for 5 minutes. Place sifted flour in large mixing bowl. At the end of 5 minutes, blend yeast/warm water mixture on medium speed at 20 seconds only. Turn off and add egg, salt, sugar, and oil. Blend for 10 seconds. Pour liquid into flour and mix well. Be sure all flour is mixed in.

Cover and set aside for dough to rise. This will take approximately 2 hours, depending on warmth of kitchen. When dough has risen sufficiently (double in bulk), flour a smooth surface, table top or bar; dump dough onto it. Don't be afraid to get flour on your hands, flour them generously; work dough until no sticky surface appears. Flour rolling pin and roll dough to about 1/2 inch thickness. Cut with floured cutter, dip roll into melted butter and place in buttered pan. Set rolls close together and they will rise high. Makes about 1 1/2 dozen. Again, let rise in warm place 45 min to hour. Bake in preheated oven at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes. Be sure rolls are brown on top, so inside will be well done.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Greek Salad

My mom and I created this salad years ago (we were trying to remember how we came up with the idea the other day!) and we still make it ALL the time! It is a go to salad that we never get tired of and everyone loves! It is great as an entree or to accompany pasta or grilled meat or fish. I promise you, that if you make it once, you will never buy salad dressing again!!!!


1 head Romaine Lettuce, chopped

2-3 Plum tomotoes, diced (or a bunch of cherry tomatoes, quartered)

1 cucumber, peeled and diced

1/2 green bell pepper, diced

1/4 c. pitted kalamata olives, quartered

1/2 c. crumbled feta cheese


the juice of one lemon

1/4 c. olive oil

1 tsp. kosher salt

1 tsp. Cavender's Greek seasoning

Mix dressing ingredients together and pour over all the salad ingredients in a salad bowl.

Toss and serve!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Shrimp

Richard and Janine made these awesome shrimp last night.  They were pretty time consuming, but well worth it!

Ready to eat!

Basically all you do is, cut open the shrimp, add cream cheese and jalapeno to the shrimp.  Use center cut bacon to wrap each shrimp.  The secret ingredient is chicken rotisserie seasoning.  Sprinkle the shrimp with the seasoning.  Grill until done.  DELICIOUS!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Chicken Cake Salad

I somewhat threw together this meal & it's name, but I promise it was delicious and totally doable with your leftover chicken. I often cook chicken breasts in the crock pot and we'll have BBQ chicken and chicken quesadillas for the week. I was sick of the two and needed a different meal with chicken. I've always been a fan of crab cakes, so I used that premise to create the chicken cake.

-Shredded chicken (whatever you have leftover)
-1 egg
-1 cup Italian bread crumbs
-1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
-Salt & Pepper to taste

1. Beat egg and mix in Parmesan cheese.
2. Place Italian bread crumbs in a shallow pan.
3. Combine shredded chicken in the egg/Parmesan mix.
4. Using an ice cream scoop or large spoon, form chicken mixture into small balls and coat with Italian bread crumbs. Repeat.
5. Over medium to high heat, lightly fry chicken cakes on each side for 1-2 minutes or when they are lightly browned.
6. Then serve however you wish.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Almond Cinnamon Apple Muffins

It appears that most of my recipes consist of apples & cinnamon. Mainly because those are the two things I readily have on hand. The original recipe called for cheddar cheese, but I thought that was a little odd. They still turned out yummy and who knows, maybe the cheese adds some sort of overly delicious dimension.

I made these for Sunday School and the leftovers lasted all week long. I did keep them in the refrigerator which probably helped a little bit.


Almond Cinnamon Apple Muffins

1 egg
2 cups Bisquick
1 large apple pared and chopped
2 tbs vegetable oil
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup chopped almonds

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Beat egg; stir in all other ingredients.
3. Pour into muffin pan. {I used mini muffins}.
4. Sprinkle almonds on top and bake for 12-15 minutes.

Printer Friendly Version

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Instant Chocolate Cake

While this wasn't the best thing I have ever worked for a fun, end of meal treat.  I found this on  I used my little tea cups and added whipped cream and a squirt of caramel.  I think they would be cute served at a tea party!

Whisk 1/4 cup flour, 5 tablespoons sugar, 2 tablespoons cocoa powder, 1 egg, 3 tablespoons milk, 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, and a dash of vanilla extract and salt in a large mug (I made 3 small teacups out of this batter) until smooth. Microwave until puffed, about 2 minutes. (I only cooked for a little over a minute because I didn't want to overcook.)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Apple Nut Breakfast Crumble

This was thrown together in a matter of minutes and it turned out great. I made this for Sunday School, but quickly realized it wasn’t my day to bring breakfast…oops! Ben and I were forced to eat this all by our lonesome’s despite Ben’s healthier eating habits. The apple part is healthy.

It’s also VERY crumbly, so eating it with a spoon straight from the baking dish is highly recommended.

1 egg
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 cups Bisquick
1/3 plus 1/4 cup light brown sugar
2 medium apples pared and chopped
1 tsp cinnamon, divided
1/4 cup chopped nuts (any will do)


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Grease 9x12x2 baking pan.
3. Beat egg; stir in milk; apples and oil. Stir in Bisquick, 1/3 cup light brown sugar and 1/2 tsp cinnamon.
4. Stir just until flour is moistened (batter will be lumpy).
5. Pour into pan.
6. Mix 1/4 cup brown sugar, pecans, and 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon.
7. Sprinkle mixture over cake batter and bake until golden brown about 20 min.

Printer Friendly Version

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Tomato Pie

I got this recipe from one of Neil's co-workers.  She had us over for dinner and made this fabulous thing.  She sent me the recipe and I made one this weekend.  So yummy!  Thanks Mallory!

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Take one frozen pie crust and poke holes with a fork in the bottom and then brush with melted butter, bake for 5 minutes. Let cool.

Mix 3/4 cup mayonnaise, 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, 1 cup mozzarella cheese, and 1 TB dried basil together. Cut up 2-4 tomatoes depending on their size.  Sprinkle a little cheese on the bottom of the pie crust.  Add sliced tomatoes and then top with mayonnaise mixture. Slice red onions and place on top and then sprinkle with cheese.  Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Fruit Pizza

this recipe is coming to you straight our of Ruston, LA!  Molly brought this to a little Sunday School party a few weeks ago and I have been craving it ever since.  She said that her mom makes it all the time...I can see why!

I took this picture of Molly's pizza after it had been eaten, but I couldn' t resist posting!

I made this patriotic fruit pizza for the 4th.  I hope it's as good as Molly's!
Fruit Pizza
1 roll sugar cookie dough
1 8-oz cream cheese
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
assorted fruit

1 cup orange juice
2/3 cup sugar
2 T cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt

Pat sugar cookie dough on pan.  Bake at 350 for about 12 min or until done but not crisp.  Combine softened cream cheese, vanilla, and sugar.  Spread over cooled dough.  Arrange fruit on top.  Combine starch, sugar, salt, and orange juice.  Mix and boil 1 minute, stirring occasionally until thick.  Cool 5 minutes.  Pour over fruit.  Refrigerate.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Guest Blogger Lightened Squash Casserole

Messy Aprons thought it would be fun to feature some of our friends as Guest Bloggers! We have some fabulous recipes to share with you over the next few weeks! If you are interested in posting a recipe, just leave a comment and we’ll be in touch.
Welcome Catherine! She's sharing a recipe for Lightened Squash Casserole.
"Squash casserole is one of my favorite summer side dishes, as there is never a shortage of fresh, home-grown yellow squash around these parts! This is a lightened version, but I’ve also made the same recipe with regular cream of chicken soup and sour cream. There really isn’t much of a difference in taste to me, so I say cut back here so you can enjoy dessert later!"

•3 pounds yellow squash
•1/2 cup chopped sweet onion
•1 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
•1 cup grated carrots
•1 (10 3/4-oz.) can reduced-fat cream of chicken soup
•1 (8-oz.) container light sour cream
•1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
•1/2 cup crushed cornflakes cereal
•1/2 cup crushed French fried onions
•2 tablespoons melted butter
•1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
•Optional: 1 can water chestnuts, chopped; gives it a little crunch!

1. Preheat oven to 350°. Cut squash into 1/4-inch-thick slices; place in a Dutch oven. Add onion, 1 tsp. salt, and water to cover. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, and cook 5 minutes; drain well, and pat squash dry with paper towels.

2. Stir together grated carrots, next 3 ingredients, and remaining 1/2 tsp. salt in a large bowl; fold in squash mixture. Spoon into a lightly greased 2-qt. oval baking dish.

3. Stir together cornflakes and next 3 ingredients in a small bowl. Sprinkle over squash mixture.

4. Bake at 350° for 30 to 35 minutes or until bubbly and golden brown, shielding with aluminum foil after 20 to 25 minutes to prevent excessive browning, if necessary. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
About Catherine

I learned to cook from watching and helping my mother while growing up in small-town Minden, where it’s not always easy to just “pick something up”. I am a firm believer in the theory that if one can read, one can cook, and my favorite recipe sources include Southern Living, Real Simple, The Pioneer Woman, and of course, Messy Aprons! By day, I am a Petroleum Landman. I am the proud owner of a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Riley, and an orange tabby cat named Finn. Most of my free time is spent playing tennis, cooking, and enjoying dinner or drinks with friends.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Beef Wellington

I found this recipe here and it is a must. I probably say that all the time, but this was really grand. Even Ben liked the Beef Wellington despite being a meat and potatoes only kinda guy.

I didn’t follow the recipe to a T, but it still turned out wonderful! Here are my notes:

-Didn’t have a shallot
-Used a lower grade beef
-Had to improvise Dijon mustard; recipe found here
-Used full sheet of pastry puff

6 oz. button mushrooms
1 small shallot, peeled and roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 small sprig thyme (leaves only)
1/2 Tbsp. butter
1/2 Tbsp. olive oil, plus additional for searing steaks
1/2 sheet of puff pastry (1/4 of the box), thawed
2 filet mignon steaks, about 6 oz. each
2 tsp. dijon mustard
1 egg, beaten
coarse sea salt, for topping

Preheat the oven to 425.

Add mushrooms, shallots, garlic, and thyme to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.

Add butter and olive oil to a sauté pan and set over medium heat. Add the mushroom mixture and sauté for 8-10 minutes, or until most of the liquid has evaporated.  Season with salt and pepper and set aside to cool.

On a lightly floured surface, roll the puff pastry out to about a 1/4-inch thickness, or until it’s big enough to wrap around the two filet.  Cut into 2 squares.  Poke the puff pastry here and there with a fork.

Rub the filet with a little olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Heat a skillet over medium-high until very hot. Then, place the filets in the pan and cook for 1 minute, flip, and cook for another minute.

Spread 1 tsp. of the dijon onto a square of puff pastry.  Top with 1/2 the mushroom mixture, and then with 1 seared steak.  Brush the outer edge of the puff pastry with the egg and then fold the pastry over the filet (sort of like wrapping a gift). Seal and place seam-side down. Brush the top with the egg, and then sprinkle with sea salt.  Repeat the process for the second filet.

Bake until pastry is golden and steak is done to your liking, 15-20 minutes.

Printer Friendly Version

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Yummy Citrus Punch

Emily Aclin and her mom made this punch for a baby shower for Bennett.  It was so good and I have not forgotten about it.  I made it for the Father's Day Feast and dyed it lime green to match our tablescape.  Neil's grandmother even took some home with her!

You can see a picture of it off to the right in this picture.  I took off the lid and served it with a ladle, because it is so good slushy!

3 small packages lemon Jello
4 cups sugar
4 cups boiling water
2 large cans pineapple juice
16 oz. lemon juice
9 cups cold water
1 oz. almond extract
1 oz. food coloring of choice
2 quarts ginger ale

Combine Jello, sugar, and boiling water, stir until well blended.  Add pineapple juice, lemon juice, cold water, almond extract, and food coloring.  Freeze.  About 4 hours before serving, bring to room temperature to defrost.  30 minutes before serving chip.  Just before serving add ginger ale.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Guest Blogger Spicy Dr. Pepper Pork

Messy Aprons thought it would be fun to feature some of our friends as Guest Bloggers! We have some fabulous recipes to share with you over the next few weeks! If you are interested in posting a recipe, just leave a comment and we’ll be in touch.

Welcome Elizabeth from the Jolliff Family Blog! She's sharing a recipe for Spicy Dr. Pepper Pork!

From Elizabeth, "It isn't that spicy, my 3 year old Sam even liked it:)"

Spicy Dr. Pepper Pork:

1 large onion, 1 whole Pork Shoulder (Butt)- 5-7pounds
salt and pepper
1 can (11oz) chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
2 cans Dr. Pepper
2 Tbsp Brown Sugar

1. Peel the onion and cut it into wedges. Place them in the bottom of a large crock pot.
2. Generously salt and pepper the pork roast, then set it on top of the onions.
3. Pour the can of chipotle peppers (including sauce) over the pork.
4. Pour both cans of Dr. Pepper over the pork.
5. Add brown sugar to the juice and stir in.
6. Set on low and cook for approximately 7-8 hours. Meat will be done when it easily shreds.
7. After cooking is complete, shred and place back in juice to keep warm until ready to serve. Serve on warm tortillas topped with your favorite toppings

About Elizabeth

Elizabeth is the wife of a children's pastor (Hap) & mommy to Sam, Andrew, and baby #3 due in August. When she's not blogging over at the Jolliff Family blog, she's taking care of patients at the hospital, volunteering at church, or doing something crafty like sewing. The Jolliff's are currently preparing to move overseas and fulfill their calling as missionaries!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Lemon-Blueberry Cupcakes

We picked a lot of blueberries on Monday so I needed a recipe so they didn't go to waste.  I found this recipe on  They have some great stuff.


1          box Betty Crocker® SuperMoist® lemon cake mix
1 1/2    cups fresh blueberries
3/4       cup water
1/3       cup vegetable oil
1          tablespoon grated lemon peel
2          eggs
1          package (3 oz) cream cheese, softened

Frosting and Garnish
2 1/2    cups powdered sugar
3/4       cup unsalted butter, softened
1          teaspoon grated lemon peel
1/2       teaspoon kosher (coarse) salt
1 1/4    teaspoons vanilla
1          tablespoon milk
1          cup fresh blueberries
I added some lemon extract to make the frosting more lemony...I think it needed it!
Lemon peel, if desired
Fresh mint leaves, if desired

  • Heat oven to 375°F for shiny metal pans (or 350°F for dark or nonstick pans). Place paper baking cup in each of 24 regular-size muffin cups.

  • In small bowl, gently toss 2 tablespoons of the dry cake mix with 1 1/2 cups blueberries to coat; set aside.

  • In large bowl, beat remaining cake mix, water, oil, lemon peel, eggs and cream cheese with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds. Beat on medium speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Fold blueberry mixture into batter. Divide batter evenly among muffin cups.

  • Bake 18 to 22 minutes or until tops are light golden brown. Cool 5 minutes; remove from pan to cooling rack. Cool completely, about 1 hour.

  • In medium bowl, beat powdered sugar, butter, 1 teaspoon lemon peel, the salt, vanilla and 1 tablespoon milk on high speed about 4 minutes or until smooth and well blended, adding more milk by teaspoonfuls if needed. Frost cupcakes with frosting. Garnish with 1 cup blueberries the lemon peel and mint leaves. Store in airtight container at room temperature.