Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies


INGREDIENTS
1 cup (5 ounces) all purpose flour
½ cup (1 1/2 ounces) unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups packed (10 1/2 ounces) brown sugar
3 large eggs
4 teaspoons instant espresso powder (optional)
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
½ cup (3 1/2 ounces) granulated sugar
½ cup (2 ounces) confectioners' sugar

INSTRUCTIONS:
1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Whisk flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in bowl.

2. Whisk brown sugar; eggs; espresso powder, if using; and vanilla together in large bowl. Combine chocolate and butter in bowl and microwave at 50 percent power, stirring occasionally, until melted, 2 to 3 minutes.

3. Whisk chocolate mixture into egg mixture until combined. Fold in flour mixture until no dry streaks remain. Let dough sit at room temperature for 10 minutes.

4. Place granulated sugar and confectioners’ sugar in separate shallow dishes. Working with 2 tablespoons dough (or use #30 scoop) at a time, roll into balls. Drop dough balls directly into granulated sugar and roll to coat. Transfer dough balls to confectioners’ sugar and roll to coat evenly. Evenly space dough balls on prepared sheets, 11 per sheet.

5. Bake cookies, 1 sheet at a time, until puffed and cracked and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft (cookies will look raw between cracks and seem underdone), about 12 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through baking. Let cool completely on sheet before serving.

From whence it came: This is a Cook's Illustrated recipe. Their website shares great tips and yummy recipes. The Spy gave me one of their cookbooks a few years back and I haven't used it nearly enough. I need to repent!

Why it's bloggable: I grew up with a marvelous mom who made Chocolate Crinkle Cookies and I've always loved them! They are so good and they remind me of my mom and my childhood. This recipe is the best version I've ever tasted! They are extra good!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!

Monday, April 23, 2018

Crockpot Beef and Broccoli

INGREDIENTS
2 lbs. sirloin steak or boneless beef chuck roast, sliced thin
1 cup beef broth
1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 Tablespoon sesame oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 Tablespoons cornstarch
4 Tablespoons water
1 (12 oz.) bag frozen broccoli florets
White rice, cooked

INSTRUCTIONS
  • In the insert of the crockpot, whisk together beef broth, soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil, and garlic.
  • Place slices of beef in the liquid and toss to coat. Cover with lid and cook on low heat for 5 hours.
  • When done, whisk together cornstarch and water in small bowl. Pour into crock pot and stir to mix well. Add the frozen broccoli over the beef and sauce. Gently stir to combine. Cover with lid and cook 30 minutes to cook broccoli and thicken sauce.
  • Serve over warm white rice. Enjoy!
From whence it came: My terrific daughter-in-law sent a link of healthy crockpot recipes to me and this is the first one I tried. If the others are half as good as this one we'll have found some super yummy recipes. Our son married the best girl! Having a DIL is so much fun! SIL's are great, too, but mine don't exchange recipes with me. Sydney, you're my hero and I'm so happy you joined our family!

Why it's blogable: This recipe is crazy easy and crazy good. AND it's also healthy! What a perfect combo. The meat was so tender and the sauce was really flavorful. I'll be making this one again and again!

A horrifying story: Our baby boy married the nicest girl. Her name is Sydney and she's someone I'd never ever want to hurt. At our daughter's wedding last year, during family pictures, our baby boy was leaning against me and trying to push me over. I never get mad, I just get even. So I elbowed that bratty boy right in the stomach as hard as I could. Except that I missed Jake and elbowed poor Sydney right in the guts. Thankfully Sydney is a stud and took it like a woman. I bought her a pair of super soft socks and mailed them to her with a card that said, "I didn't mean to sock it to you!" Every mom of a boy needs him to marry a girl like our Sydney!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!



The World's Best Chocolate Chip Cookies


INGREDIENTS
4⅓ cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
2 sticks salted butter, softened
½ cup shortening
1 ½ cups brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1bag of mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

INSTRUCTIONS
  1. In a large bowl mix together flour, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter, shortening, and sugars until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and stir to combine.
  3. Add your dry ingredients to the wet ones and stir just until everything is combined. Do not over mix. Add in mini chocolate chips.
  4. Using a ¼ cup measuring cup, scoop dough into rounded discs and place on a plate small enough to fit into your freezer. Freeze for at least 2 hours or up to 3 months.
  5. If you’re not going to use the dough right away, transfer the frozen dough to a freezer bag to keep them fresh.
  6. Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
  7. Place frozen dough directly on to a greased cookie sheet.
  8. Bake for about 15 minutes or until you see golden brown spots form on top.
From whence it came: Pinterest comes through for us again! This recipe was pinned by Sarah Capriolo on her website Simple and Sweets. Sarah, you are my new BFF for creating and sharing this recipe. Cornstarch = genius!

Why it's blogable: The texture of these cookies is perfect. They are BIG and TALL! For some reason this recipe caught my eye as I was perusing Pinterest. When I read the ingredients and instructions I had a feeling it would be a winner. And let me tell you, I was right! These cookies are fabulous! I've never added cornstarch to cookies but believe me when I tell you, it works. I followed Sarah's instructions almost exactly. (You can read them here.) The only thing I did differently was use regular size chocolate chips. I'm sure the minis are super good, too. I just didn't have any on hand.

I can't urge you strongly enough to try this recipe! And when you do, let me know what you think!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Avocado, Black Bean & Corn Salad


Ingredients

Salad

  • 2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2-3 avocados, seeded and cubed. (*see note)
  • 2 cups corn, fresh or frozen (thawed)
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup red onion, diced (I used 4 green onions for a milder flavor)
  • 1/3 cup cilantro, rough chopped

Dressing

  • 1/3 cup fresh lime juice, more if desired
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoons pure maple syrup or agave, (or any sweetener) (I used honey)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, more to taste
  • fresh ground pepper, to taste

Instructions

  1. Place all the veggies in a large bowl (except the avocado) and toss to combine.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the lime juice, olive oil, maple syrup, cilantro, chili powder, garlic powder, ground pepper and salt.
  3. Pour dressing over veggies and toss to combine. Now add avocado and toss gently so they don't mash together. Taste for salt and pepper, add as needed.
  4. Serve immediately or refrigerate for 30 minutes. Serve with fresh pita bread, tortilla chips or a side of rice. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

* Avocados that are just-ripe work the best, otherwise they will get mushy in your salad.

* If you're making the salad ahead of time, you may want to add the avocados & tomatoes just before serving. This will keep the salad fresh tasting.

* For extra heat, add 1/8-1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper to the dressing. 

From whence it came: Dear Pinterest, YOU ROCK! I have found so many delicious recipes on Pinterest. Many I've never made, but boy-oh-boy am I glad I tried this one. Thank you Melissa from Vegan Huggs for sharing this healthy and fabulous salad recipe with the world.

Why it's blogable: I knew I'd love this salad. I sent the link to my adorable daughter-in-law and she made it right away and raved about it. So I gave it a whirl and now I'll be making it again and again. It's flavorful and really healthy! I was almost positive The Spy Who Loves Me wouldn't like it and I was very pleasantly surprised when he did. He more than liked it, he really liked it! And I know you will, too!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!

Monday, February 19, 2018

Three Ingredient Chicken Broccoli Alfredo Crock Pot Recipe

 Slow Cooker Chicken Broccoli Alfredo | TheFrugalGirls.com
Ingredients
  • 4 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts, fresh or thawed (I used 8 chicken tenders)
  • 1½ jars Classico Creamy Alfredo Sauce (15 oz. jars) (I used just 1 jar)
  • 10 oz. Frozen Broccoli Florets (I used fresh broccoli)
Instructions
  1. Place chicken in Crock Pot, and Cook on HIGH for 2.5 hours or LOW for 5 hours
  2. After 2.5 hours on HIGH or 5 hours on LOW, drain juices from Crock Pot.
  3. Evenly spread Alfredo Sauce over chicken, then top with Broccoli Florets.
  4. Cook on HIGH for 1 more hour {covered}, or until done.
  5. Optional: Serve with a side of Pasta. ENJOY!

From whence it came: I found this yummy and healthy recipe on Pinterest. TheFrugalGirls.com were nice enough to post it on Pinterest and I'm so glad they did!

Why it's blogable: The Spy is doing a low carb diet this week, and the reason is hilarious! He has a checkup with the doctor on Friday and he's trying to get some weight off super fast so he doesn't look like a slacker. Kind of like cramming for a test!  So I went on Pinterest looking for recipes that would fit my healthier eating plan and also his low carb cram diet. This one worked for both of us. I didn't make a side of pasta, instead I made a green salad and sugar free jello. And both of us agreed that this recipe is a winner!  I'll be making it again and again!

Cooks tips: Like I said above, I used chicken tenders and fresh broccoli.  I placed the chicken tenders in the crockpot, sprinkled them with salt, pepper and garlic powder then cooked them on high for about 2 hours. I drained all of the liquid, placed the broccoli in the pot and poured one bottle of sauce over everything. Then I cooked it on high again for about 45 minutes.  It was perfect!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!


Friday, February 16, 2018

Too Good To Be True Weight Watchers Pumpkin Cookies


Ingredients:
1 box spice cake mix
1 15oz can pumpkin
1 c. mini chocolate chips (optional)


Mix dry cake mix and pumpkin mixture until well combined.

And if you're in the mood to really go for it - add 1 cup mini chocolate chips to batter!

Drop by tablespoons onto greased cookie sheet.

Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes.

From whence it came: Weight Watchers! Yep, once upon a time I attended WW and I lost over 40 pounds on their plan. I'm still a fan of WW. I think it's one of the best diets out there. While attending a WW meeting the leader shared this awesome recipe with us. 

Why it's blogable: First of all, could this recipe be easier? Nope! Second, no one will know these cookies are low in calories. They feel like a cheat treat, but they're not. These cookies are that good.  Just be careful not to eat too many. One or two are fine. One or two dozen, not so much!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!


Friday, January 12, 2018

Steak & Green Bean Stir Fry

INGREDIENTS:

1 1/2 pounds flank steak
3 tablespoons cornstarch, divided
1 pound green beans
5-7 green onions (about 1 small bunch), chopped (reserve the green ends for a flavorful garnish)
1 red, orange, or yellow bell pepper, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger

SAUCE:

1/2 cup pear juice (reserve 2 tablespoons)
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon sriracha sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil

INSTRUCTIONS:


Whisk together the sauce ingredients and set aside. Set aside 2 tablespoons of cornstarch and 2 tablespoons of pear juice as well.

Slice the steak into 1/4″ slices (or slightly thinner if you prefer). Sprinkle them lightly with 1 tablespoon of cornstarch and toss to coat the steak.

In a large skillet, heat 1-2 tablespoons oil (one with a high smoke point like grapeseed, peanut, or canola oil) over medium-high heat. Add the steak in a single layer that covers the whole pan and cook 3-5 minutes or until the steak is cooked through. Move the steak off to the side of the pan (if it’s very large) or transfer it to a plate while you cook the veggies so the meat doesn’t “boil.”

Add the green beans and cook for 2-3 minutes or until they start to become tender-crisp. Add the chopped white ends of the green onions and the bell pepper and cook 1-2 minutes more. Add the garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant. Add the steak back to the pan and cook until the steak is heated through.

Turn the heat to high and add the sauce ingredients and bring to a boil. While the sauce is heating, whisk together the reserved cornstarch and pear juice. When the sauce is boiling, add the cornstarch mixture and cook about 1 minute or until the sauce is clear and thickened. Remove from heat and serve immediately over hot rice. Makes 6 servings.

From whence it came: Kate Jones of Our Best Bites is my hero for creating this recipe and then adding it to their 400 Calories or Less cookbook. I am having so much fun cooking meals from this new and healthy cookbook.  It's a winner and I highly encourage you to get a copy now!!

Why it's blogable: I think this might just be one of the best recipes I've ever made. And it's only 300 calories! It is beyond delicious. I can't recommend this one highly enough. I made it for The Spy and I and we had enough for two dinners.  The leftovers were just as delicious! This is a new favorite dinner that I will be making over and over again. 

If I were you: I'd consider investing in this cookbook.  For instance, on the margin of this recipe it gave the tip to look for the pear juice in the baby food aisle. Along with mouth watering recipes there are lots of tips and helps in the cookbook. You can find it at Amazon for a great price. Or if you're a bargain shopping addict like me, you might be able to find it for even less on Ebay.  I bought a brand new copy for $9.99 with free shipping.  I always to my best to find the best price on pretty much everything!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Turkey and Cranberry Sliders


INGREDIENTS:
  • 3 c turkey, cooked and diced
  • 1 can cranberry sauce
  • 1 c mozzarella, shredded
  • 1 ½ c gravy (leftover or prepared packet)
  • ½ c butter
  • 2 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 1 dozen Kings Hawaiian Rolls

DIRECTIONS:
  • Preheat oven to 300 degrees
  • In a pot, combine the turkey and gravy. Bring to a boiling and then set aside.
  • Cut the bread rolls in half HORIZONTALLY, keeping each roll connected. Set top aside.
  • Taking a few tablespoons from the 1/2C, butter the top of the bottom portion of rolls
  • Spoon the turkey and gravy over the buns, being sure to get as far to the edge as possible
  • Spoon the cranberry sauce over the turkey ensuring good coverage over the entire buns
  • Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella on top of the cranberry sauce.
  • Replace the tops of the buns
  • With the remaining butter, melt it and then brush it over the very tops of the buns.
  • Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
  • Bake in the oven for 12– 15 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and cut each slider individually and serve!

From whence it came: Thank you Pinterest! For changing my life and helping me find so many delicious recipes! This one comes from Tammilee Tips! She posted it, I pinned it then tried it and here it is on my little blog!
Why it's blogable: These sliders are so delicious! I made them for a party and they were really easy and super tasty.  They're like Thanksgiving on a bun - yum!
Cook's tips: As each oven is slightly different, keep an eye on the buns. The main objective is to have the cheese melt so when it’s entirely melted, you can remove them from the oven! I didn't have leftover turkey so I used turkey lunch meat from the deli counter and I used packaged gravy.  I also used extra cheese because - why not?  I'm making them for Christmas and I'm going to add stuffing.  My mouth is watering just thinking about it!  
Hope you enjoy stirring it up! 

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Cream Puffs



Cream Puffs
1cup water
1/2 cup butter
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
4 eggs

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Grease a baking sheet. 

In a medium saucepan combine water, butter, and salt. Bring to boiling. Add flour all at once, stirring vigorously. Cook and stir until mixture forms a ball. Remove from heat. Cool for 10 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well with a wooden spoon after each addition.

Drop 12 heaping tablespoons of dough onto prepared baking sheet. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until golden and firm. Transfer cream puffs to a wire rack and let cool.

Filling
1 box instant vanilla pudding (5.1 oz)
2.5 cups milk (I use whole milk)
1 container cool whip (8 oz)

Mix dry pudding with milk. Let set in refrigerator for 10 minutes. Gently stir in cool whip.

Frosting
In a bowl mix:
1 box powdered sugar
1/2 c. cocoa powder (more for darker chocolate frosting)
1 cube softened butter
1 T. vanilla (yep, that's right, a whole tablespoon!)
Enough milk to make the proper frosting consistency. Add the milk slowly because you don't need much.

From whence it came: Better Homes and Gardens gets the credit for this all time favorite cream puff recipe. Yep, that red and white checkered cookbook is where I found this beauty! Just about everybody in the world has this cookbook in their kitchen, including me!

Why it's blogable: Every time, and I do mean every time I made these cream puffs people go nutso. They are always a huge hit! My newest SIL is a big time fan! And my mom loves them mucho! If you want to wow folks, this recipe it the ticket!

Cooks tips: You can make the cream puffs smaller if you'd like.  I have made up to 20 per batch, and that's still a great size. To fill them you have a couple of options. You can cut off the tops, clean out the centers, fill then replace the tops. Or, you can use a pastry bag and tip to just squirt the filling into the top or side of the puff. The second way is faster but either way is great. For the frosting, I fill a ziplock baggie with frosting, clip of a tiny corner, and then just pipe it onto the puff. You can use a pastry bag if you prefer or you can just frost them like a cupcake.

This recipe is not difficult. In fact, it's pretty fool proof. They always turn out great. Check them after about 20 minutes to make sure they're not baking too fast. I only baked mine for about 25 minutes but we live in a higher altitude and things tend to bake more quickly here.

Make these for those you love! Make them for that church pot luck or work party. People will be so impressed, and you'll feel really proud of yourself.

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!


Monday, December 4, 2017

Perfect Pot Roast


INGREDIENTS: 
1 (4-5 pound) beef roast - any type will do
1 (1 1/4 oz) package brown gravy mix, dry
1 (1 1/4 oz) package Italian salad dressing mix, dry
1 (1 1/4 oz) package ranch dressing mix, dry
1/2 c. water

DIRECTIONS:
Place beef roast in crock pot.
Mix the dried mixes together in a bowl and sprinkle over the roast.
Pour the water around the roast.
Cook on low for 7-9 hours.
Add potatoes, carrots, mushrooms, celery and onion 2-3 hours before end if you'd like.

From whence it came: My fabulous daughter-in-law shared this recipe with me. Actually she did better than that, she made it for me. This girl who stole my baby boy right out of my arms can really cook! And bake! And she's even better at spoiling my boy than I was. She is a gem, and her pot roast recipe is almost as wonderful as she is!

Why it's blogable: This is the best pot roast I've ever made. It turned out so tender and the flavor is over the moon! I made it exactly as the recipe says except I didn't add veggies at the end, instead I made mashed potatoes and roasted glazed carrots. When the roast was finished cooking the juices that were in the crock pot made super yummy gravy. The Spy was crazy about this roast so it will now become a staple in our house. And it couldn't be easier to make!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up:





Here's a pic of my DIL who I love so much - on the day she stole my baby away from me:
Every mommy prays her baby will find a girl like Sydney!
She is kind, helpful, fun, funny, caring, patient, loving and basically perfect for my Pookie!


Wednesday, November 29, 2017

White Chocolate Raspberry Bundt Cake


INGREDIENTS

For the cake:

1 16.5 ounce package white cake mix (I like Duncan Hines)
1 (3.3 ounce) package instant white chocolate pudding (or vanilla pudding if you can't find white chocolate)
1 c. sour cream
4 large eggs
½ c. water
½ c. oil
1½ c. white chocolate chips, chopped into smaller pieces
1 c. raspberry pastry or pie filling 

For the frosting:
½ cup white chocolate chips
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 Tablespoons butter, softened
½ tsp. vanilla
1 cup powdered sugar

INSTRUCTIONS

For the cake: 
  • Grease and flour a bundt pan.
  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees (see note below). 
  • Mix first six ingredients together in a stand mixer or in a medium sized bowl with hand beaters. Fold in white chocolate chips.
  • Fill prepared bundt pan with two thirds of the batter. Spoon half of the raspberry filling in separated spoonfuls over the batter (so it looks like separate clumps of filling over the top). Using a knife swirl the filling through the cake. Don't overdo it. Just swirl it around like 2 times.
  • Pour or spoon remaining batter in evenly and spoon on remaining pie filling, repeating the "swirling" process above.
  • Cook for 50-55 minutes. Do a knife test to see if it is done. If the knife does not come out clean, keep placing back in the oven for 3-5 min at a time until it does. 
  • Remove from oven. Let cool for 20 minutes then place a serving tray over the top and flip it right side up. You can eat warm or cover with plastic wrap and let it cool overnight in the fridge. We had it both ways and it was divine. 

For the frosting: 
  • In a medium sized bowl, melt the chocolate according to package directions. Let the chocolate cool for 3 minutes. Add the cream cheese, butter & vanilla using a beaters. Beat on medium speed until well blended.
  • Slowly add the powdered sugar and beat well.
  • You can then put in the microwave for about 10 seconds if you want to pour on the the frosting over the cake. Or you can pipe it on. I warmed it, then poured it one so it could drip down the sides. Then I drizzled more on top to give it some texture, kinda a messy look if you like that :) Either way you frost it, it will taste amazing! We kept our cake covered in the fridge.
From whence it came: We can thank "Baked in Arizona" for this crowd pleaser! (Who knew such yummy things were going on in Arizona!) A super dear friend of mine asked me to make bundt cakes for her daughter's wedding. The beautiful bride found this recipe on Pinterest and the rest is history - very delicious history!

Why it's blogable: Every time I make this cake people go cray cray! I made three flavors of mini bundt cakes for my own daughter's wedding and this was the fan favorite! (It beat out triple chocolate and pumpkin! Now that's saying something!) This cake is really easy to make and it's one of the best cake recipes I've tried out. You really need to make this for someone you love - meaning yourself!

Cook's tips: You're really gonna need to spray the pan on this one! I always use Baker's Joy when making bundt cakes. Bundt cakes can stick, and this one is extra sticky! The white chocolate chips are the culprit. And I don't mean to scare you, but I've also had the bottom (which is really the top) of the cake stay in the pan when I flip it over. Those were tough times. Tears were shed! And they were sopped up with White Chocolate Raspberry Cake! Just spray your bundt pan really well and you'll be fine. Also, I've made this recipe in my mini bundt pans and they turn out so cute.  When I do that I don't use the raspberry filling before baking.  Instead I fill the little mini bundt cake hole with it after it's baked, then top it with frosting.  Here's a pic from some I made yesterday:


Share the love! Make this cake! It's perfect for the holidays or any day!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!



Monday, November 20, 2017

Buttermilk Syrup


INGREDIENTS:
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup buttermilk
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 tablespoon Light karo syrup
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

DIRECTIONS:
In a large pot or saucepan over medium heat add the butter, sugar, buttermilk, vanilla and karo syrup. Heat until everything is well combined and bring to a boil. Quickly remove the pot from the heat and add the baking soda, place back over the heat, stirring constantly. The syrup will grow large and threaten to boil over which is why a large pot is essential. If it gets too close to the edge remove from the burner and continue stirring to bring it down. Stir for 30 seconds over the heat (I often just take mine off so I don’t risk boiling over) and serve immediately.

From whence it came: I found this recipe on Oh Sweet Basil. And I'm so glad I did!

Why it's blogable: It was really easy to make and yummier than you can imagine. Pour it over these Melt in Your Mouth Pancakes and you'll be a very happy camper!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!

Melt in Your Mouth Buttermilk Pancakes


INGREDIENTS:
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups of sifted flour
2 tablespoons sugar
2 eggs, slightly whisked
2 cups of buttermilk
2 tablespoons butter, unsalted and melted

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat a griddle to medium heat.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the salt, baking powder, baking soda, flour and sugar. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs and buttermilk. Drizzle in the butter as you continue to whisk.
Switch to a wooden spoon and make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients. Pour in the wet ingredients and stir until almost completely combined. Please remember, the more you stir pancakes the more flat and tough they will be so please mix until a few streaks of flour are remaining.
Butter the griddle and scoop 1/3 cup of batter and cook until bubbles begin to form, flip and cook until golden. Serve immediately.

From whence it came:
I've discovered a new cooking blog. And it's a good one. Oh Sweet Basil gets the credit for this awesome recipe! I attended a women's conference this past weekend and the founders of Oh Sweet Basil were two of the presenters. They're a darling couple who know how to make some killer pancakes! One of the other presenters, Brad Wilcox, mentioned that his family is obsessed with their pancakes and that's when I knew I had to try them. Soon. So I stirred them up the next day and now here I am sharing this treasure with all of you. You're welcome!

Why they're blogable: Here's the truth - I'd never lie about pancakes - these are the best pancakes I've ever eaten. And The Spy agrees with me. Not on everything - but definitely on these pancakes. They are so fluffy and fabulous. They are super easy to make and they turned out perfect the first time. Make these pancakes! You won't regret it!

Cook's tips: Use real buttermilk. Don't mix vinegar or lemon juice with milk, use the real McCoy! And make their buttermilk syrup to drizzle on these little clouds of heaven. It's easy and awesome!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!



Here's a pic of me and my amazing friends at 
Time Out for Women this past weekend:
We had the best time! It was a bucket filling experience.
We left feeling enriched and inspired. What more can you ask for?

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Contest-Winning Old-Fashioned Potato Salad


INGREDIENTS
4 cups cubed peeled potatoes
3 hard-boiled large eggs, chopped
2 celery ribs, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon prepared mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

DIRECTIONS
Place potatoes in a saucepan and cover with water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat. Cook for 20-25 minutes or until tender; drain. Place in a large bowl; add eggs, celery and onions.In a small bowl, combine the remaining ingredients. Pour over potato mixture and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.Yield: 6-8 servings.

From whence it came:  Have I ever mentioned Taste of Home on this blog? Years ago my Grandma Alyce gave me a subscription to Taste of Home magazine and I believe they have some of the best recipes out there.  Taste of Home features real food, the kind that has basic, normal ingredients that you probably have in your pantry. Every Taste of Home recipe I've tried has been a winner, and this potato salad is no exception.

Why it's blogable: I made this potato salad last summer and it's the best potato salad I've ever made. In the past I hadn't used a recipe to make potato salad. I'd just add this much of this and that much of that, and it would turn out pretty good.  But I decided to try a recipe instead of playing the guessing game and am I ever glad I did.  This is now my go-to recipe for potato salad.  The Spy is a lover of potato salad and he is a lover of this recipe!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Green Chile Chicken Rice-A-Roni Casserole


Green Chile Chicken Rice-A-Roni Casserole
Serves 6


  • 1 box Chicken Rice-a-Roni, plus water called for on package
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 (10-3/4oz) can Cream of Chicken Soup
  • 1 (4.5oz) can diced green chiles
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 2 cups pepper jack cheese shredded
  • 2-1/2 to 3 cups (12 oz) chopped cooked chicken 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spray a 9x13-inch pan with cooking spray.

Prepare Chicken Rice-a-Roni according to package directions.

In a large bowl, combine sour cream, Cream of Chicken soup, green chiles, cumin, 1 cup of pepper jack cheese and cooked chicken. Stir in prepared rice. Spoon into prepared baking pan.

Sprinkle remaining 1 cup of pepper jack cheese on top of casserole. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until cheese is melted and bubbly.


From whence it came: I told you I was repenting and not just pinning but actually trying the recipes I've pinned on Pinterest. And I am! Here's another really good one that I found on Plain Chicken. Whoever plain chicken is, they know how to make a really good chicken, rice and green chili casserole!

Why it's blogable: The first time I made this casserole The Spy was VERY complimentary about it. Here's the down and dirty truth about The Spy - he's kind of spoiled! I'm not saying he's married to the best cook in town, he's not, but he is married to someone who loves to cook and bake, so he gets lots of homemade meals and goodies. Spoiled! He's a good boy, I can count on him saying, "Thank you, this is really good," just about every night. But every now and then, he will be really complimentary about something I make.  This recipe is one of those somethings. I shouldn't have been surprised. The Spy grew up eating Rice-A-Roni and he's a fan. I didn't grow up eating it, but I've learned it has it's place in life, and in recipes. This recipe easy-peasy. I'm all about easy-peasy. And it freezes really well, too! I put half in one smallish casserole dish and half in another. Then we eat one and I freeze one. I love pulling something out of the freezer on a busy day or a day when I just don't feel like stirring it up.

Warning: I made this for my grandpunks, who aren't super picky eaters, and they didn't love it. They picked out the chicken and ate that but I think the green chilies and pepper jack cheese were a bit much for them. It's not very spicy, but they weren't super into it. But being the "whatever the punks want the punks get" kinda grandma, I just made them quesadillas and all was right with the world.

I hope you enjoy stirring it up!

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Chocolate Whoopie Pie Cake


INGREDIENTS:
  • 1 (15.25 oz.) box chocolate fudge cake mix
  • 1 (3.9 oz.) box instant chocolate fudge pudding mix
  • ¾ c. water
  • ¾ c. vegetable or canola oil
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 c. sour cream (or Greek yogurt)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • Marshmallow Creme Filling:
  • 10 Tbl. unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 (7 oz.) carton marshmallow creme
  • pinch of salt
  • 1½ tsp. vanilla
  • 2 c. powdered sugar
  • Chocolate Ganache:
  • ½ c. chocolate chips (I used milk chocolate)
  • 3 Tbl. whipping cream

INSTRUCTIONS:
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. For the Cake: Grease and flour a 12-cup bundt pan; set aside. In a large bowl, combine the dry cake mix, dry pudding mix, water, oil, eggs, sour cream and vanilla. Using a hand mixer, mix until all ingredients are completely incorporated and mixture is smooth. Pour batter into the prepared bundt pan and spread out evenly. It is a very thick batter. Bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool in pan for 10 minutes, then invert to a wire rack and cool completely. Once cake is cool, slice in half horizontally.
  • For the Marshmallow Creme Filling: In a large bowl, using a hand mixer, mix butter until smooth. Add the marshmallow creme, salt and vanilla and mix until well combined. Add one cup of powdered sugar and mix until combined. Add remaining one cup of powdered sugar and mix until smooth and creamy. Spread filling over the bottom half of the cake and place top half of cake over the creme filling.
  • For the Chocolate Ganache: Place chocolate chips in a small bowl; set aside. Microwave whipping cream in a small, microwave-safe, dish until it starts to bubble. Pour hot cream over chocolate chips and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Stir together until smooth and creamy. If chocolate chips aren't completely melted. Place in the microwave and heat, stirring every 10 seconds until mixture is smooth and chocolate is melted. Allow to cool for 10 minutes or until slightly thickened and pour over cake. Store cake in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature before serving.
From whence it came: Pinterest!  I found this beauty on Pinterest!  And check out the name of this blog by Jenn - Eat Cake for Dinner. Now that's a great idea! We should all eat this cake for dinner. And then for breakfast the next day. I'm kinda famous for pinning recipes on Pinterest and then not trying them. But I'm repenting of that terrible habit and trying the recipes I've pinned. (That could take until the 12th of never because I've pinned a lot of recipes, but it's a worthy goal!)

Why it's blogable: Do not let the length of this recipe fool you!  It's so easy!  It's not difficult at all, I promise. It's super moist (I hate that word) and chocolaty. Add that cream layer in the middle then top it off with more chocolate and you've got a seriously yummy cake on your hands.  It looks a lot more difficult than it is so it's sure to impress everyone who's lucky enough to try it!

Cooks tip: I've made a lot of bundt cakes in my time. And I mean a whole lot! Whenever I make a bundt cake I use Baker's Joy. It's the best way to prep your pan and ensure that the cake doesn't stick. I buy it at Walmart but you can find it in just about any grocery store.

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!

Monday, November 6, 2017

Creamy Slow Cooker Ranch Pork Chops and Potatoes


INGREDIENTS
4-6 pork chops
6-8 medium potatoes, chopped into large pieces
2 cans fat-free cream of chicken soup
2 packages dry Ranch dressing mix
1 cup milk
Dried parsley to sprinkle on top (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS
Spray your slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray and put potatoes on the bottom. Place the pork chops on top of the potatoes. Mix together the condensed soups, Ranch dressing mix and milk. Pour on top of the pork chops and cook on LOW for 6-7 hours or on HIGH for 4 hours.
Use the extra sauce in the slow cooker as a gravy for the potatoes and the pork chops. Sprinkle with dried parsley if you want.

From whence it came:  I found this little beauty online! Don't you just love the Internet? Without the Internet I'd be naked and hungry! (Which is very similar to naked and afraid, only worse!) Sorry for the TMI moment, but it's true. I buy almost everything online. I hate shopping at the store. I know, weird for a girl, but it's true.  I love Walmart and Costco and beyond that I'm pretty much Amazon's best friend! I was browsing through a book online and came across this winner recipe from Six Sister's Stuff! If you have never tried their recipes, now is the time! Run, don't walk! These girls can cook - and bake! And I just want to thank the Six Sisters for the perfect pork chop recipe.

Why it's bloggable: I have never, and I mean never ever, had success with pork chops. They're either dry or tough or both. Ugh! When I saw this recipe I felt renewed pork chop hope! And could it be more simple? I think not! The Spy and I both loved it, and I'm pretty sure you will, too!

Cook's tips: I bought the super thick pork chops at Costco and cut them in half so they were thin. And I also bought the yummiest potatoes at Costco! They're butter potatoes, which are little tiny potatoes that I just cut in half without peeling them. I'm sure regular potatoes would be good, too! I cooked them on high for 4 hours and they were just right!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!

Friday, October 9, 2015

The Best Crockpot BBQ Chicken

Ingredients:
2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup BBQ sauce
1/4 cup Zesty Italian dressing
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

It's just this simple:  place chicken breasts in crockpot, mix remaining ingredients in a bowl, pour over chicken, cook on high for 4 hours, shred and put on rolls of your choice. (You can't go wrong with chibatta rolls, they are the rock stars of sandwich rolls!) 

From whence it came:  Our married daughter gets all of the credit for finding this gem of a recipe.  She found it on Pinterest and was smart enough to pin it and then she went the extra mile and actually made it.  (Are you like me, do you have a zillion recipes pinned on Pinterest that you've never made?)  And let's be sure and give some serious props to the gal who added this to Pinterest.  Her name is Corey and you can find this recipe on her blog here.

Why it's blogable:  Because it's super good, super easy, and actually kinda sorta healthy.  Recipes don't get easier than this one, and it's a real crowd pleaser!  The spy who loves me loves this recipe!  And I'm certain that you will, too!

Also...you can make a bunch and then freeze it and pull it out at the end of a day when you didn't even have time for a crockpot dinner.  Been there, done that! 

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!

Friday, February 27, 2015

Sugar Cookie Bars














Sugar Cookie Bars

Ingredients:
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups sugar
3/4 c. sour cream
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
5 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Directions:
1. Cream the butter and sugar together until fluffy then add sour cream.

2. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.

3. Meanwhile, mix the dry ingredients together in a separate bowl.

4. Add the vanilla to the creamed mixture and then slowly add the dry ingredients.

5. Press into a greased 13 x 18 inch pan and bake at 375F for 10-15 minutes.

6. Cool and frost (see directions below).

Frosting Ingredients:
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla
pinch of salt
4 cups powdered sugar
5 tablespoons of milk
food coloring (optional)
sprinkles (optional)

Directions:
1. In a mixing bowl, beat the butter until creamy.

2. Add the vanilla and powdered sugar.

3. Gradually add the 5 tablespoons of milk until you reach your desired constancy.

5. Chill and cut.

From whence it came:  My sweet wonderful friend, Judy Durrant (who is a great cook with great recipes) made these and I felt completely obligated to try one and once I did I just had to have the recipe!  And Judy is a true friend, so she shared it with me.  She found it on Pinterest and boy oh boy am I glad she did!  These are divine!!!  

Why it's blogable:  I made these for our newest grandpunk's baby blessing last weekend and they were a hit!  They are so much easier to make than frosted sugar cookies and just as good...or maybe even better.  And the recipe makes a bunch of bars so you can share and make friends and impress your peeps!  If you've had a "Swig Sugar Cookie" I would say there are somewhat close to Swig.  And if you haven't had a Swig Sugar Cookie, drive to Utah right this minute and get one! I made a Swig knock off recipe that I found on Pinterest and you will notice that it's not on this blog, because it was not blogable.  But this recipe, this recipe is seriously blogable.

Cooks tip:  Judy told me to be careful not to over cook these bars.  I cooked them for 15 minutes and had serious doubts that they were done, but I decided to listen to Judy, because she is smart, and I'm glad I did.  They seemed underdone but after I frosted them then chilled them and cut them up they were perfect!  So, listen to Judy, don't over cook these cookies!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!





Here's our newest little grandpunk, Brooks Anderson Labrum!
He is even sweeter than these cookies!

Friday, December 19, 2014

Peppermint Frosting

 

2 sticks (1 Cup) Salted Butter, Softened
5 cups Powdered Sugar, Sifted
40 whole Peppermint Candies, Crushed Very Fine
3 Tablespoons Heavy Cream, More If Needed (use 3-5)

Beat the butter to get it started, then add in the powdered sugar. Beat on low while adding the cream. When it comes together, add the crushed peppermints, reserving some for garnish. Beat the frosting for a good 30 seconds on high until it's light and fluffy, longer if needed.

Frost the cupcakes or brownies or cake however you want, then sprinkle on more crushed peppermints.

Note that the frosting will develop a light "crust" on the outside if left out.

From whence it came:  We can bow down and thank The Pioneer Woman for this festive and fabulous recipe!  I wanted to make peppermint frosting for these brownies so I turned to my dear friend, Google, and Google sent me right to PW's website.  And PW did not disappoint!  In fact, I'm gonna share the link with you to give PW the shout out she deserves:  

Why it's blogable:  Peeps, this recipe has butter, heavy cream, powdered sugar and candy in it.  Enough said!  Well almost enough said.  I was good when I made it, bowl lickin' good if you know what I mean.  But when I accidentally tried one of these bad boy brownies the next day, something magical had happened.  The little bits of peppermint had melted, or softened, or done something magical, and the frosting was even better!  So, my advice to y'all would be to make this a day ahead, or in the morning before the night you plan to eat a dozen of these problematic brownies.  They are problematic because you will accidentally try them over and over and over.  I say accidentally because I didn't mean to eat one, it just accidentally happened.  More than once.  

NOTE:  I didn't sprinkle more peppermints on top, I dumped every yummy one into the frosting.  That is after I pounded them to death with a rolling pin.  Pound 'em people!  You don't want a stray big chunk sending some one you love into the dentist's chair!

Hope you enjoy stirring it up!