Tuesday, January 8, 2013

veggie dip.

Veggie Dip from Michelle:

1 cup mayo
1 cup cottage cheese
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tsp onion salt (or onion powder + 1/2 tsp salt)
1 tsp garlic salt
1 tsp Accent (or salt to taste)
1 tsp pepper
2 T dried parsley

Blend in blender. Chill and serve with veggies.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

slow cooker tomato basil parmesan soup {winner!}

Slow Cooker Tomato Basil Parmesan Soup from Tamara:

2 (14 oz) cans S & W Italian Recipe diced tomatoes, with juice
1 cup finely diced celery
1 cup finely diced carrots
1 cup finely diced onions
1 tsp dried oregano or 1 T fresh oregano
1/4 cup fresh basil
4 cups chicken broth
1/2 bay leaf
1/2 cup flour
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese (make sure to use freshly grated, not powdered)
garnish (optional)
1/2 cup butter
2 cups half and half, warmed (substitute milk for less calories)
Kosher salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste

Add tomatoes, celery, carrots, chicken broth, onions, oregano, basil and bay leaf to a large slow cooker.  **If putting in crock pot less than 7-8 hours, sauté celery, carrots and onions until slightly soft before putting in the slow cooker.

Cover and cook on LOW 5-7 hours, until flavors are blended and vegetables are soft. At this point I used a hand immersion blender to blend vegetables to a smooth texture. (You can also transfer to a blender in batches) If you prefer a chunkier texture you can leave it as is or even blend just some of it. Return to blended vegetables back to the slow cooker.

About 40 minutes before serving prepare the roux. Melt butter over low heat in a skillet and add the flour. Stir roux constantly with a whisk for 5-7 minutes. Slowly whisk in 1 cup hot soup. Add another 3 cups and stir until smooth. Add all back into the slow cooker. Stir and add the Parmesan cheese, warmed half and half, salt and pepper.

Cover and cook on LOW for another 30 minutes or so until ready to serve.

Serve with additional grated Parmesan, if desired.

**If you blend soup smooth with blender, you can make a healthier version by cutting roux in half as the blended vegetables help create a thicker texture.

lasagna soup.

Lasagna Soup from Shalee:
via: a farm girl dabbles

2 tsp. olive oil
1-1/2 lbs Italian sausage
3 cups chopped onions
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
2 T tomato paste
1 - 28 oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes
2 bay leaves
6 cups chicken stock
8 oz. mafalda or fusilli pasta
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh basil leaves
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

For the Cheesy Yum:

8 oz. ricotta
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp salt
pinch of freshly ground pepper

Additional Cheesy Yum:

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese


Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add sausage, breaking up into bite size pieces, and brown for about 5 minutes. Add onions and cook until softened, about 6 minutes. Add garlic, oregano and red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 minute. Add tomato paste and stir well to incorporate. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the tomato paste turns a rusty brown color.

Add diced tomatoes, bay leaves and chicken stock. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Add uncooked pasta and cook until al dente. Do not over cook or let soup simmer for a long period of time at this point, as the pasta will get mushy and absorb all the soup broth. you may even want to consider cooking the noodles separately, and then adding some to individual bowls before ladling the soup over them. This would be an especially smart move if you are anticipating any leftovers. Right before serving, stir in the basil and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

While the pasta is cooking, prepare the cheesy yum. In a small bow, combine the ricotta, Parmesan, salt and pepper.

To serve, place a dollop of the cheesy yum in each bowl, sprinkle some of the mozzarella on top and ladle the hot soup over the cheese.

Creamy Mexican Chicken & Corn Chowder.

Creamy Mexican Chicken & Corn Chowder from Beckie:

3 chicken breasts, diced
1/2 c. chopped onions
1-2 cloves garlic
3 T butter
2 chicken bouillon cubes
1 c. hot water
1/2 - 1 t. cumin
2 c. half & half
2 c. shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 can cream corn (undrained)
1-4 oz. can diced green chiles (undrained)
1/4 t. Tabasco

chopped, tomatoes, cilantro, tortilla strips

In dutch oven or large saucepan, brown chicken onion and garlic in butter until chicken is no longer pink.  Dissolve the bouillion in hot water.  Add to pan with cumin; bring to boil.  Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 5 minutes.  Add half & half, cheese, corn, chiles and Tabasco sauce.  Cook and stir over low heat until the cheese is melted.  Stir in chopped tomatoes (***or serve on the side if your family is adverse like mine).  Serve - garnish with cilantro and tortilla strips.

*2 cans corn, more cheese, chili, broth to taste.
*to thicken: 2 T melted butter and 2 T flour and some half & half

broccoli cheese soup.

Broccoli Cheese Soup from Jenni:

3/4 cup butter
3/4 cup flour
1 quart half and half
Salt and Pepper to taste

1 bunch broccoli chopped small
1 medium onion, chopped

Cook chopped broccoli and onion with just enough water to cover until tender. Do not drain. Set aside and combine other ingredients to make a white sauce. Pour broccoli and onion with water into the white sauce. Stir and then add 12-16 (I almost always use 16) slices American Processed Cheese Slices. I know it sounds gross, but it makes the yummiest soup!!

Tomato Basil Goodness Soup.

Tomato Basil Goodness Soup from Jocelyn:

1 - 26 ounce can Campbell's Tomato Soup
2 - 14 oz cans chicken broth
1/2 pint half and half
4-6 cloves garlic
1 medium size yellow onion
4-6 Roma Tomatoes
6-8 Fresh Basil Leaves
Dry Basil
Dry Oregano
Onion/Garlic Salt

Chop onions and garlic. Saute in pot with butter until soft. Add tomato soup. Replace water with half and half and chicken broth. Add more chicken broth if desired. Add peeled, chopped and seeded tomatoes. Add just a touch of oregano. Dry Basil can be added to taste. Chop fresh basil and add garlic salt, pepper to taste. Simmer for a half hour. Eat it up. Yum!

creamy ham and potato soup.

Creamy Ham and Potato Soup from Erin:

3 1/2 cups peeled and diced potatoes (2 potatoes)
1/3 cup diced celery (2-3 stalks)
1/3 cup finely chopped onion 
1/2 cup carrot, diced (optional)
1 cup diced cooked ham (buy a ham steak in the deli section)
3 1/4 cups chicken broth
1/2 tsp salt. or to taste
1 tsp ground white or black pepper, or to taste
5 Tbsp butter
5 Tbsp all-purpose flour
2 cups milk

Note: can add a can of corn too.

1. Combine the potatoes, celery, onion, carrot, ham and chicken broth in a stockpot. Bring to a boil, then cook over medium heat until potatoes are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir in the salt and pepper.

2. In a separate saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Whisk in flour with a fork, and cook, stirring constantly until thick, about 1 minute. Slowly stir in milk so that lumps don't form and until all of the milk has been added. Continue stirring over medium-low heat until thick, 4 to 5 minutes.

3. Stir the milk mixture into the stockpot, and cook soup until heated through.

4. Top with cheddar cheese, chives and bacon if desired. Serve immediately.

5. Makes 6 servings.

butternut squash soup (liquid gold).

Butternut Squash Soup from Melanie:

Butternut squash (1-2 lbs)
1 green tart Granny Smith apple
1 medium onion, chopped
3 T raw rice
1 tsp sugar
pinch of curry
4 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup cream
Milk to stretch
6 oz jalepeno cheese, grated
salt to taste

Peel and cube squash and apple. Place in saucepan with the onion, rice, sugar, curry powder and chicken stock. Simmer 30-40 minutes until soft. Puree in blender. Return to pan. Just before serving, heat and add cream, milk and cheese. Stir until cheese has melted and season with salt. Freezes well.

Great with French bread or any bread.

*This is a double recipe, but that's what I always make so I have left overs.

white chicken chili.

White Chicken Chili from Heidi:

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 medium onion, chopped
1 1/2 tsp garlic powder or 2 cloves fresh garlic finely minced
1 T oil
2 cans (15 1/2 ounces each) Great Northern Beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) chicken broth
2 cans (4 ounces each) chopped green chiles (If you like less kick, add just one can)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup whipping cream

Top with:

Fresh cilantro
tortilla chips

In a large saucepan, saute chicken, onion and garlic powered (or fresh garlic, if using) in oil until chicken is no longer pink. Add beans, broth, chiles and seasonings. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat; stir in sour cream and cream. Garnish with fresh cilantro, if desired. Serve immediately. This is especially good served with tortilla chips.

chicken tortilla soup.

Chicken Tortilla Soup from Brittany:

1 - 32 oz carton Chicken Broth
1 - can black beans, including liquid
1 - can white corn, including liquid
1 bottle La Victoria Salsa Verde
1 bag Uncle Ben 90 second brown rice
Rotisserie Chicken
1 small can diced green chiles (optional) if you like some extra kick

Put all ingredients together on stove. Heat and serve. May garnish with avocado, cheese, sour cream, lime, cilantro and chips.

christmas slush {winner!}

Christmas Slush from Mindi:

1 big Tupperware 
2 bottles apricots juice and all, put in blender
Then add lots of grapefruit, oranges, 2 cans mandarin oranges and juice, 1-2 can crushed or pineapple tidbits, pears in juice and a can of lemonade concentrate. Add bananas when serving. Freeze and serve with 7-Up.

prosciutto asparagus spirals.

Prosciutto Asparagus Spirals from Shalee:

1 pkg (17.3 ounces) Puff Pastry Sheets, thawed
6 Tbsp Bousin Herb and Cheese Spread, softened
8 slices prosciutto or thinly sliced deli ham
30 medium asparagus spears, trimmed

1. Heat the oven to 400. Unfold the pastry sheets on a lightly floured surface. Spread 3 Tbsp cheese on each pastry sheet. Top each with 4 slices prosciutto. Cut each into 15 strips crosswise, making 30 in all.

2. Tightly wrap 1 pastry strip around each asparagus spear, prosciutto-side in. Place the pastries seam-side down onto baking sheets.

3. Bake for 15 minutes or until the pastries are golden brown.


Fudge from Kelly:

4 cups sugar
2 - 5 oz cans (1 3/4 cups total) evaporated milk
1 cup butter
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
7 ounces of a dark or milk chocolate candy bar (cut up)
7 ounces marshmallow creme
1 cup chopped nuts
1 tsp vanilla

Line a 13x9 with foil. In a large saucepan over medium-high heat melt butter and then add sugar and milk. Cook and stir until mixture boils and then turn down heat to medium and continue to cook for 10 minutes. Remove pan from heat and then add chocolate chips, chocolate bar, marshmallow creme and vanilla. If you want your whole batch to have nuts you may also add them at this time. If your family is like ours, just add the nuts to one of the 9x9's and then pour the fudge on top when it is done. Stir the fudge until everything is combined and continue to stir for one minute more. Spread warm fudge into your pans and cut when cool.

hot fudge sauce.

Hot Fudge Sauce from Jenni:

3 ounces semi-sweet or dark chocolate (I use semi-sweet chocolate chips)
1/4 cup butter
1 can sweetened condensed milk

In a saucepan, heat the butter and condensed milk over medium-low heat until the butter melts and the milk is warm. Add the chocolate and stir until the chocolate is completely melted and smooth. Remove from heat.

Store leftovers in an airtight container for 1-2 weeks.

fiesta rolls.

Fiesta Rolls from Tamara:

1 pound ground beef or ground turkey and 1 tsp salt
3/4 pound cheddar cheese (I like to use Sharp)
1 small can chopped ripe olives (make sure to use chopped, not sliced)
3 green onions
1 green pepper
2 small cans tomato sauce
1 T vinegar
dinner rolls

1. Brown beef. Drain and add remaining ingredients (except rolls). Simmer for 30 minutes. From the top or the side of the roll, make a hole and pulling out the middle of the roll. Stuff mixture in each roll. 

2. Bake, covered, at 350 degrees until mixture is hot and starting to bubble.

3. Remove foil and continue to bake for a few more minutes.


Wassail from Lauren:

1 can frozen apple juice
1 can frozen orange juice
1 can frozen lemonade
2 cinnamon sticks
1 T ground cloves
1 cup sugar
4 quarts water

Bring to a boil and stir to dissolve sugar; keep on low heat as long as you want or transfer to a crockpot to keep warm.

monkey bread.

Monkey Bread from Erin:
4 tablespoons butter, divided, 2 tablespoons softened and 2 tablespoons melted
1 cup milk, warm (about 110 degrees)
1/3 cup water, warm (about 110 degrees)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for work surface
2 teaspoons salt
Brown Sugar Coating: 
1 cup packed light brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
8 tablespoons butter (1 stick), melted
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons milk
Butter a Bundt pan with the 2 tablespoons softened butter. Set aside.
In a large measuring cup, mix together the milk, water, melted butter, sugar, and yeast. Mix the flour and salt together in a standing mixer Turn the machine to low and slowly add the milk mixture. mix 6 to 7 minutes. If you think the dough is too wet, add 2 tablespoons flour at a time and mix until the dough comes together (it should still be on the sticky side, just not overly wet). Coat a large bowl with nonstick cooking spray. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise until doubled, 1-2 hours (alternately, you can preheat the oven to 200 degrees, turning it off once it reaches 200 degrees and place the covered bowl in the oven to speed up the rising time).
Mix the brown sugar and cinnamon together in a bowl. Place the melted butter in a second bowl or shallow pie plate. Set aside.
To form the bread, gently remove the dough from the bowl and press it into a rough 8-inch square. Using a bench scraper or knife, cut the dough into 64 pieces.
Dip the balls in melted butter, then Roll the dipped dough ball in the brown sugar mixture, then layer the balls in the Bundt pan
Cover the Bundt pan tightly with plastic wrap and let the monkey bread rise until puffy and they have risen 1-2 inches from the top of the pan, 1-2 hours (again, you can use the warm oven approach to speed this up).
Heat the oven to 350 degrees  -Unwrap the pan and bake until the top is deep brown and caramel begins to bubble around edges, 30 to 35 minutes. Cool the monkey bread in the pan for 5 minutes (any longer and the bread will be too sticky and hard to remove!), then turn out on a platter or large plate and allow to cool slightly, about 10 minutes.
For the glaze, while the bread cools, whisk the confectioners’ sugar and milk together in a small bowl until the mixture is smooth. Using a whisk, drizzle the glaze over the warm monkey bread, letting it run over the top and sides of the bread. Serve warm.

chocolate roll.

Chocolate Roll from Brittany:

4 cups real whipping cream (I prefer heavy, but regular works too)
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp peppermint extract
1 cup powdered sugar
1 package Famous Chocolate Wafer Cookies (hard to find but King Soopers has them locally)

Beat cream, sugar and vanilla with mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form (more than you would typically beat the whip cream). Stir in peppermint extract to taste.

Spread a layer of whipped cream on the bottom of serving platter. It should be thick enough that the wafer can stand on its own. Spread whipped cream onto wafer cookie and top with another cookie making a sandwich. Place cookies on serving dish using the whipped cream layer that was spread to anchor them. Continue to layer whipped cream and cookies until all wafer cookies have been used. I squeeze the cookies pretty close together so some cream oozes out the top. Once all the cookies have been places spread additional cream over and around the chocolate log. Place in fridge for at least 4 hours. Garnish with chocolate shavings or crushed peppermint right before serving. Slice on the diagonal to see all the layers of cookie.