Monday, November 24, 2008

Oatmeal/ Granola bars

I tried the following recipe out last night, and got the stamp of approval from the hubby this morning.


1/2 c. soft butter
3/4 c. brown sugar
1/3 c. corn syrup
1 egg
1/2 tsp. vanilla
3 1/2 c. quick oatmeal
1 c. chocolate chips (optional)

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9 x 13 inch pan. Beat
butter, sugar, and syrup until light and fluffy. Blend in
egg and vanilla. Add and mix oats and chips. Press firmly
into pan. Bake 20 to 23 minutes. Cool a couple hours. Cut.

Cooks Notes: I went ahead and individually wrapped the bars (in hopes that this might lead to a little discretion and them lasting a bit longer). After cutting them with my pizza cutter, I packed them down individually so they would hold a little better. I didn't wait for them to cool completely, but I would definitely like to hear from you if that is easier. Here is the link to the originial recipe at . I only used 1/2 the amount of chocolate chips called for, and it still seemed a little too much for me. These are a fantastic alternative to buying the overly priced ones at the store. I imagine you could always add some coconut and/or raisins into the mix to spice things up every once and a while. Also adding some peanut butter to the top would be tasty.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Discontinuing blog... but not really

I'm sorry to say this, but I've decided that I'm not going to be actively working on this blog (as you may have noticed from the past month). This is a hard thing, as I was quite excited to embark on it, however, I do not have the time for it, and it has become quite difficult to find tasty recipes given the dietary restrictions that have been placed on my husband so that he will be able to get past the chronic acid reflux that he has been experiencing. We are doing a "bland diet" now. As you may imagine, from the name of the diet, it's not much to speak of. We have found some somewhat tasty recipes, however, they haven't been anything that I have been horribly excited to share with others. I don't want to be tempting him with still trying out new recipes all the time, and so I've discontinued trying new tasty recipes.

I'm not going to delete the blog though. I still think the concept is great (though I'm sure that it's not original), and so I'd still love to invite any who would like to, to submit recipes to me that you think others would enjoy. They can be main dishes, desserts, appetizers, whatever you would like to share. If you would like to submit recipes on a regular basis, then I will be happy to make you an author on this blog. Please include any tips that you think would be helpful as well (not necessary though).

Helpful guidelines for submitting your favorite recipes

First of all, I want you to contribute your recipes, so thank you for looking at this section! Please submit your family favorites, as well as recipes that use food storage items. I would like for this to be a great resource for simple (enough) homemade dishes.

Please include any helpful tips that you may have for the recipe.

If you have modified a recipe to where it is no longer recognizable as the original, do not bother citing your source; however, if it is only slightly modified, please note the name of the cookbook, author/editor, and copyright year (this may be a great opportunity to help others to find good cookbooks!).

Please do not submit recipes containing any type of coffee or alcohol.

Thank you so much for your effort and willingness to share with us your family's favorites.

One last thing, please let me know if you wish to be remain anonymous as far as who submitted the recipe, otherwise I will credit you as submitter by putting first name and last initial.

Please submit to
I will contact you via email if I have any questions for you. Thank you so much!

Friday, October 3, 2008


I'm so sorry that I haven't posted anything in a couple of weeks. I hope to have a couple recipes posted next week. Life has just been a little hectic with trying to recover from my daughter's birthday bash and having my husband start school back up. I recently realized that I stalled out on unpacking from our move, and have been hitting that hard. Please don't give up on me!!
Check back next week!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Macaroni and Cheese

2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni (7 ounces)
1/4 cup margarine or butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground mustard (dry)
1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 cups milk
2 cups shredded or cubed sharp Cheddar cheese (8 ounces)

1. Heat oven to 350•
2. Cook macaroni as directed on package.
3. While macaroni is cooking, melt margarine in 3 quart
saucepan over low heat, stir in Worcestershire sauce. Stir in flour, salt, pepper, and mustard. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is smooth and bubbly; remove from heat. Stir in milk. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute. Stir in cheese. Cook, stirring occasionally, until cheese is melted.
4. Drain macaroni. Gently stir macaroni into cheese sauce. Pour into ungreased 2-quart casserole. Bake uncovered 20 to 25 minutes or until bubbly.

Add extra pep to this favorite recipe by using pizza-flavored or jalapeno pepper cheese.

Cook's notes: I like this twist on mac n' cheese. It's definitely more filling and is a great negotiation with the kids! I combine all the dry ingredients in a small bowl before mixing in to the wet ingredients. Definitely take your time when adding in the milk! I add this a little bit at a time until the mixture becomes more of a liquid- using your sauce whisk at this step works beautifully! We like to eat this with a bit of ketchup on it.

PREP:25 min; BAKE:25 min
Makes 6 servings, about 3/4 cup each

Source of recipe: Betty Crocker's New Cookbook

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Chocolate Crackle cookies

1/4 cup shortening, melted
1/4 cup cocoa
1/2 cup oil
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped (optional)
1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)
1/2 to 1 cup powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, cream together shortening, cocoa, oil, sugar, eggs, and vanilla until well mixed. Add flour, salt, and baking powder. Mix well, then add walnuts and chocolate chips, if desired. (Dough will be very sticky and almost runny.) Refrigerate dough for 2 to 3 hours or overnight. Drop and gently roll dough by tablespoonfuls in powdered sugar, being careful not to overhandle dough. Place on a greased or wax paper-covered cookie sheet. Bake for 9 to 10 minutes. Do not overbake. The cookie dough may be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days; baked cookies will store for at least 2 weeks, if well covered and refrigerated. These cookies freeze beautifully. Makes approximately 5 dozen cookies.
Cook's notes: These cookies are like poetry in motion. You will find that these are my most favorite cookies to take to any function. I usually double the recipe because, as the recipe says, they freeze beautifully! (You will end up with 2-3 gallon bags full of cookies if you double to recipe) What's wonderful is that you can literally eat these straight from the freezer. I am all about doing mass baking! Be prepared to have some amazingly messy hands by the time you are done rolling these babies out. The toughest part about this recipe is keeping the dough hard enough to be rolled in the powdered sugar. Here is the technique that I've found works best for me (since the dough gets incredibly sticky by being out of the regrigerator or being handled) : First of all, I do use my tablespoon to scoop the dough; you do not need to be precise about it though (I tend to get way too much dough if I don't do this). Once the first batch is going, roll as many of the dough balls as you can within the first 6-7 minutes of baking your first batch, meanwhile putting them in a bowl or tupperware container (I prefer to use my 1/2 gallon size just because it usually accommodates 15 balls for one layer- which is how many cookies fit on a 16 by 24 in. baking sheets). Put these in the freezer while you prepare the batch that will go in the oven- roll balls and roll in powdered sugar. Once that batch goes into the oven, roll more balls and put them in a second bowl/container. Put these into the freezer, and pull the balls that were initially frozen; roll them in the powdered sugar just a couple minutes before the second batch is done. However you find works best for you, just be sure to keep the dough in the refrigerator or freezer when not being worked with.
Phew!! Yes.. this is a lot of baking at once and a lot of rolling, but the end results are well worth it!
Baking all these cookies works best with using 3 rotating cookie sheets.
These cookies peel off of baking mats so wonderfully! If you do not have a baking mat, then I would suggest using the wax paper (they do sometimes stick excessively to these on occasion, but not as much as to a plain baking sheet)- definitely find out what works best for you. Do take note that you will not get the "crackle" effect if you roll the dough in the powdered sugar too far in advance, that's why I tend to roll them in the powdered sugar no more than a couple minutes before putting them in the oven. Additionally, do not be conservative with the powdered sugar, make sure and coat it when rolling. One final thought- let the cookies cool for a few minutes before removing from the cookie sheet/baking mat/wax paper.

Preparation time: 15 minutes Active prep/baking time : 2-3 hours (when doubled)
Source of recipe: Lion House Classics

Just a thought... you can google "chocolate crackle cookies" in images if you want to see a picture of these cookies... I plan on eventually posting pictures with the recipes.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Wheat Thins

1 3/4 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups white flour
3/4 tsp salt
1 Tbs sugar (optional)
1 tsp garlic powder (optional)
1/3 cup oil
1 cup water

1. In a large mixing bowl, mix the whole wheat flour, white flour, salt, sugar and garlic powder.
2. In a smaller bowl, mix/beat oil and water together.
3. Add liquid mixture to dry, mixing well, but as little as possible (otherwise the dough becomes too elastic and difficult to work with).
4. Split dough in half and take
one half and roll as thin as possible- not more than 1/8” thick, on unoiled cookie sheet . Mark with knife for size crackers desired, but do not cut through. Prick each cracker a few times with fork. Sprinkle lightly with salt or onion salt if desired. Repeat for second half of dough.
5. Bake at 325 until crisp and light brown, about 30 minutes.

Cook's notes: Sugar and garlic are not in original recipe, but original recipe tastes a bit bland without them. I think these are a wonderful alternative to the commercial wheat thins since they are a more sustaining snack. I flip my cookie sheet over to roll the dough out on, as well as to bake them. I prefer to use a pizza cutter rather than a knife to perforate the dough since the knife tends to make the edges more ragged. Just be sure to not cut all the way through, as it causes the edges to burn

Adapted from: Deseret Recipes cookbook.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Italian Dressing

1 cup olive or vegetable oil
1/4 cup white vinegar
2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon ground mustard (dry)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh or 1 teaspoon
dried basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 cloves garlic, crushed
Shake all ingredients in tightly covered container.
Shake before serving.

PREP: 10 min
Makes about 1 1/4 cups dressing

Cook's notes: We always use olive oil in this recipe (instead of the suggested "or vegetable oil"); it makes for a much more satisfying dressing. You will need to pull it out of the refrigerator about 5 minutes before each use, as it becomes pretty solid since the oil is cold. This also works fabulously as a marinade for grilled chicken! I was definitely skeptical the first time I used it, but I cannot express to you enough just how wonderful it tastes! Just let it marinade over night if possible.

Source of recipe: Betty Crocker's New Cookbook

Monday, September 1, 2008

Baked Chicken Supreme

4 whole chicken breasts, halved
1/4 cup shortening
1 small garlic clove
1/3 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon oregano (optional)
1/4 cup flour
1 cup tomato juice
1 can (about 10 1/2 ounces) tomato soup
1 cup sour cream
1/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
Hot cooked rice

Brown chicken breasts in shortening, using more shortening if needed. Remove from frying pan and place in 9x9-inch baking dish. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons drippings. Add garlic and onion to skillet; cover and cook until soft but not brown, about 5 minutes. Blend in salt, sugar, oregano, and flour (use a sauce whisk if possible here, as the flour will tend to clump). Add tomato juice and tomato soup; heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and blend in sour cream. Stir vigorously. Add enough milk to thin sauce a little. Add Parmesan cheese. Pour over chicken in baking dish. Cover and bake at 325 degrees for about 45 minutes, or until meat is fork tender. Serve with cooked rice. Makes 8 servings.
Note: Skinned and boned breasts are best, but unskinned, unboned pieces may be used. Or use all pieces from one chicken, or pieces desired from two chickens.

Cook's notes: This is a great recipe for having leftovers! We found that if you individually pack Tupperware containers with the chicken, sauce and rice, that it warms up beautifully in the microwave, and will still taste fresh all week (I guess the sauce works as a preservative) . Do BE CAREFUL while browning the chicken, it has a tendency of spitting hot shortening your way when the pan gets too hot!! On another note... I really like the onion flavor, so sometimes I will add about a cup of onions instead of the amount listed in the recipe. Also, I typically purchase the frozen chicken breasts, and will use 6-8 of them depending on their size.
I always use my 9x13 baking dish instead of the recommended 9x9.

Source of recipe: Lion House Classics

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Maple Syrup

3 Cups light corn syrup
1/2 C brown sugar, packed
1/4 C water
1 1/2 tsp maple flavor
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbs butter, optional

Combine corn syrup, brown sugar, and water in 2 qt sauce pan; mix with wooden spoon. Stirring occasionally, bring to rolling boil. Boil for 2 minutes. Turn off/remove from burner and stir in maple flavoring and vanilla extract. Stir in butter.
Cook's notes: Adding the optional butter helps to keep your syrup from developing a film on the surface; the butter will still create a film, but it breaks up more easily. I love this recipe because it is so much more cost effective than buying the syrup sold in the store, and it tastes better! The recipe will yield a little less than 1 qt syrup. It is very easy to reheat when it is stored in a mason jar. You can warm it in the microwave in increments of 30 seconds (on high). It is well worth it to invest in some maple flavoring. Click here for a link to the best deal we found online (at the time- we could NOT find maple flavoring in the stores; additional note, we got the 1 pint size and it has lasted us a couple years).

Adapted from McCormick's Maple Syrup recipe

Friday, August 29, 2008

Picnic Brownies

4 ounces baking chocolate
1 cup butter
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon salt
4 eggs
1 3/4 cups flour
2/3 cup walnuts, pecans, or almonds, chopped (optional as always)
1 cup chocolate chips

Grease two 9-inch round pans. In top of double boiler or microwave-safe bowl melt chocolate and butter. In medium bowl mix sugar, vanilla, and salt; add to melted chocolate mixture and blend well. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour and mix well. Divide batter equally into prepared pans. Spread evenly and sprinkle top of each with chopped nuts and chocolate chips. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. (Do not overbake.) Allow to cool completely before cutting. Run a thin knife between pan and brownies and turn upside down.
You may need to shake hard to release brownies from pan. With knife that is longer than brownies are wide, cut brownies by pressing knife straight down through brownies; cut into 8 pie-shaped pieces. Makes 16 brownies.

Note: These brownies are named Picnic Brownies because they stack and travel very well.
Cook's notes: This recipe really does do best in round pans. When I do try it in a rectangular
9 x 13, I usually end up under baking the center.

Preparation time: 15 mins
Source of recipe: Lion House Classics

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Banana Bread

1 1/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup stick margarine or butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (3 to 4 medium)
1/2 cup buttermilk (yogurt or soured milk are great substitutions)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour*
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped nuts, if desired

1. Move oven rack to low position so that tops of pans will be in center of oven. Heat oven to 350°. Grease bottoms only of 2 loaf pans, 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 x 2 1/2 inches, or 1 loaf pan, 9 x 5 x 3 inches, with shortening.
2. Mix sugar and margarine in large bowl. Stir in eggs until well blended. Add bananas, buttermilk and vanilla. Beat until smooth. [Mix the following ingredients in separate bowl before adding to original mixture, this helps to prevent baking soda pockets from occuring.] Stir in flour, baking soda and salt just until moistened. Stir in the nuts. Pour into pans.
3. Bake 8-inch loaves about [45 mins -]1 hour, 9-inch loaf about [1-] 1 1/4 hours, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes in pans on wire rack. Loosen sides of loaves from pans; remove from pans and place top side up on wire rack. Cool completely before slicing [NOT necessary, but definitely for about 10 mins]. Wrap tightly and store at room temperature up to 4 days, or refrigerate up to 10 days.
*If using self-rising flour, omit baking soda and salt.
Cook's notes: I have found that the 8-inch loaves cook more evenly than the 9-inch. Additionally, if you can find seamless bread pans, then it is incredibly easy to get the finished loaves out. I frequently replace the buttermilk with yogurt if I have it on hand (since it's abnormal for me to have buttermilk on hand). You can also make "buttermilk" on your own if you do not have any by combining 1 C milk and 1 Tbsp vinegar or lemon juice and letting it sit for about an hour (this will make double what you need for this recipe, but you half that mixture). Also, spoiled milk works wonderfully in substitution for buttermilk! I typically mix the flour, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl before adding to the recipe, otherwise you risk having pockets of baking soda (yuck!!!!), this frequently happens when I am being lazy.

Prep time:15 min; Bake time:1 hr
Source of recipe: Betty Crocker's New Cookbook

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Lemon Bars

1/2 cup soft butter or margarine
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 cup flour
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Grated rind of 1/2 lemon

Cream butter and powdered sugar; add flour. Spread in 8x8-inch pan and bake at 325 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes. While crust is baking prepare next layer: Beat eggs slightly; add sugar, flour, lemon juice, and rind. Mix well and pour over hot crust. Bake for an additional 18 to 25 minutes at 325 degrees. Remove from oven and sprinkle with sifted powdered sugar. Cool slightly before cutting into finger cookies. Good served with vanilla ice cream.

Note: This recipe may be doubled and baked in a 9x13-inch pan.
Baker's notes: If you wait a few minutes before sprinkling the sugar on top, then it will stick, but the temperature of the bars will not cause the powdered sugar to "melt" into it. If you wait to cut the bars until the following day, that is best. Additionally, this dessert does tend to taste best the following day, as the lemon flavor stands out more. Wait to cover until completely cooled. If you double the recipe, baking for 20 and 25 minutes (respectively) will typically cook the dessert fully (varies by oven).

Total time start to finish: 1 hr

Source of recipe: Lion House Classics

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