Friday, February 26, 2010

Cookbook: Emeril's There's A Chef In My World

Emeril's There's A Chef In My World
Emeril Lagasse

Illustrated By: Charles Yuen
HarperCollins Publishing / 2006 / Hardcover
Note:   I ran across this cookbook in the after Christmas sales.    I know Little Guy is going to love it.    I bought it and have put it away in my gift closet to tuck into his Easter basket.     I hope I can wait that long!   It is going to be fun cooking all the great recipes from around the world.

Chef Emeril brings you a taste of the world! He helped younger kids take their first steps into the kitchen with Emeril's There's a Chef in My Soup! Recipes for the Kid in Everyone and then kicked it up a notch for older kids and adults, too, in Emeril's There's a Chef in My Family! Recipes to Get Everybody Cooking. Now Chef Emeril is back with a cookbook that really takes you places!
You can start your travels in your own kitchen by exploring the meals, ingredients, and cooking styles enjoyed in different countries and regions. Hey, Chef Emeril knows that we're all part of one global family, and a great way to learn about other cultures is through their food! Once you're cooking international-style, you'll be ready to hop on a plane to China, Portugal, England, Greece, or Africa, just for a start!
This cookbook is for kids of all ages and adults to use together, with 75 recipes for daily meals, special occasions, and everything in between, along with cooking tips and safety precautions. You can make a meal with dishes from one region or mix it up for a truly international feast! Plus, Chef Emeril includes "Did You Know . . ." tidbits of cultural information behind some of the recipes.
  • Try breakfast English-style with Toad in the Hole -- and discover what the "toad" is!
  • After tasting Mexican Broiled Corn, you might never go back to plain old corn on the cob again!
  • Instead of going to a Chinese restaurant, cook your own Kung Pao Chicken and find out how this popular dish may have received its name!
  • BLT Hot Dogs are a perfect twist of two American classics! But just how American are hot dogs, anyway?
  • And don't forget to leave room for dessert! One bite of No-Bake Caribbean Rice Pudding and you'll want to know more about the flavors of the islands!
So, get ready, pack your bags -- here's your passport to a whole new world of food!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Cake Boss is Safe

Back in January I told you that I wasn't making New Year's resolutions, but I wanted to challenge myself to learn a few new things this year.     One of the things on my list to learn has been to decorate cakes.     I always thought it would be fun to just learn some basics.    

Little Guy and I ran through Michaels a few weeks ago and there was a Wilton demonstrator there and they were having a special on their classes which allowed you to sign up for 50% off plus they gave you a coupon for an additional $5 off.     We decided that we would jump in and take Course 1.

We have a few classes left.      We have really enjoyed taking this class, but trust me when I say that the Cake Boss and Ace of Cakes are very safe with their business!   Ha!

Little Guy took this picture of his first cake.     He decided to put his initial on it as well as stars, clouds, meteors, the moon and a planet.

Here is my first cake.    I went with basics to try to practice some of the techniques she was teaching us in class.    Boring, but finished.


We decided to challenge ourselves a little.     When it was our turn to take snacks for Little Guy's basketball game we made sugar cookies and decorated them to look like basketballs.      We had so much fun doing this!   (Sorry this is such a bad pic.   I took it with my cell phone.)

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Skillet Lasagna

Note:   I love lasagna, but I rarely make it because I don't want to mess with it.     Finding this skillet version of lasagna  over at Sisters' Stuff was quite a score.     It gives you the taste without the time and prep.     I don't think it replaces really good lasagna, but what could replace that?  

Skillet Lasagna

1 pound ground beef
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove minced garlic
1 1/2 cups diced tomatoes, undrained
1 1/4 cups water
1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups bow tie pasta, uncooked
1 cup cottage cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Dash basil, pepper


In large skillet, brown beef with onions and garlic; drain. Add tomatoes, water, tomato sauce, parsley, basil, oregano, and salt. Mix well. Stir in uncooked pasta. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat; cover, simmer for 20 minutes or until pasta is tender, stirring once. Stir in cottage cheese. Cover with and Parmesan cheese, and sprinkle in basil and pepper to taste if desired. Cover and cook for 5 minutes.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

IHOP National Pancake Day Celebration


IHOP is giving away free pancakes for National Pancake Day  TODAY! 
IHOP has been celebrating National Pancake Day since 2006 and has raised $3.25 million to support local charities.    This year they will be taking donations for local Children's Hospitals.    What a great opportunity to support our local Blair E. Batson Children's Hospital!
Go here for all the details! 

Monday, February 22, 2010

TMTT: Crockpot Breakfast Casserole

Note:    Saturdays are crazy with basketball games.    Sunday mornings are very busy trying to get us all out the door to church.    Monday is very busy with my sweet twin nieces coming over to play for the morning.    Right now the crockpot is getting a workout because I am using it to even help out with breakfast occasionally!         

Crockpot Breakfast Casserole

1 pound bag frozen hash browns, partially thawed
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 dozen large eggs
1 cup milk
salt and pepper

Spray the inside of your crockpot with a nonstick cooking spray.     Pour half of the hashbrowns evenly into the bottom of the crockpot.   Top with half of the cheese.    Repeat with the rest of the hashbrowns and cheese.

Mix eggs, milk, salt and pepper.   Pour on top of the hashbrowns and cheese.    Cook on low overnight (about 8-9 hours).

If you like meat in your breakfast casserole, you can add cooked bacon, sausage, or ham after the hashbrowns and before the cheese.   

I am heading over to Tempt My Tummy Tuesday to see my friends, Lisa and Lana, and check out this week's wonderful recipes!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Cookbook: Southern Living Annual Recipes 2009

Southern Living
2009 Annual Recipes

Oxmoor House,  November 11, 2009
368 Pages, Hardcover, 0848732855

Note:  I wait every year for Southern Living to release their annual recipe book.     I don't always have the luxury of purchasing the book, but I love going to the local bookstore, buying a cup of coffee and just casually going through each and every page.      No matter what recipe you pick, you can be assured it will be delicious.  

Praline Pull Apart Bread

1  cup  granulated sugar
4  teaspoons  ground cinnamon, divided
1  (2-lb.) package frozen bread roll dough
1/2  cup  butter, melted
1  cup  chopped pecans
3/4  cup  whipping cream
3/4  cup  firmly packed brown sugar


1. Stir together granulated sugar and 3 tsp. cinnamon. Coat each roll in butter; dredge rolls in sugar mixture. Arrange in a lightly greased 10-inch tube pan; sprinkle with pecans. Cover and chill 8 to 18 hours.
2. Preheat oven to 325°. Beat whipping cream at high speed with an electric mixer until soft peaks form; stir in brown sugar and remaining 1 tsp. cinnamon. Pour mixture over dough. Place pan on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet.
3. Bake at 325° for 1 hour or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack 10 minutes; invert onto a serving plate, and drizzle with any remaining glaze in pan.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Not "Just" Baked Beans

Note:    I made baked beans for supper the other night.    The boys came into the kitchen and saw the pot sitting on the stove.     "What are we having for supper?" one of them asked.     "Baked beans."   I said.   I giggled when I saw the "that's all?" look that passed between them.      Hubs said, "Not JUST baked beans.   Mom's baked beans."     

Not "Just" Baked Beans

1 (28 oz) can pintos beans, drained
1 (28 oz) can white kidney beans, drained
1 pound bacon, diced
1 pound hamburger meat, browned and drained
1 sweet onion, diced
1 green pepper, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
3 Tablespoons tomato paste
1/4 cup yellow mustard
1/4 cup molasses
1/2 cup ketchup
1/2 cup BBQ sauce
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 Tablespoon Tabasco
2 teaspoons cider vinegar
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Drain and rinse beans well. Combine the beans in a large mixing bowl and set aside. Cook the bacon in a skillet until crispy. Pull out the bacon and remove 1/2 the bacon grease. Drop in onions and cook until translucent, then add the peppers and the garlic. Cook just to wilt the vegetables, 5 or so minutes. Add the vegetables to the beans, along with remaining ingredients except the bacon. Mix, taste, and adjust to suit you. Pour into casserole dish, cover, and bake at 350 for 40 minutes. Remove the cover and place cooked bacon on top. Bake uncovered for another 10 minutes.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Jiffy Corn

Note:   I tried to tell you my boys love corn.    *giggle*    They really do.   But seriously, how much corn on the cob can you eat?    They can eat a ton of it, but I have to have some variety!   

Jiffy Corn
2 15 oz. cans corn, drained
1 15 oz. can creamed corn
2 eggs
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 cup sour cream
1 box Jiffy cornbread mix
salt and pepper, to taste
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper


In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients and stir together. Pour into an 8×8 or 9×9 baking dish and bake in a 350 degree oven for about 45 minutes.     Make sure the middle has set before removing from the oven.   Just poke a knife in the center and if it comes out clean or almost clean you are good to go! 

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Grab Them Before They Are Gone

I love after holiday sales.    I could not think of a thing I needed from the Valentine after holiday sales so I didn't go out yesterday to look.    But this morning it hit me that there is one thing I always buy at the sales after Valentine's Day....

They are PERFECT to put away for all your St. Patrick's Day baking that you will be doing in a few weeks.   Stock up now!

Perfect Corn (In The Boy's Opinion)

Note:    Have I ever mentioned just how much my boys love corn?     They could literally eat it every night.    But this recipe.... they consider it perfect corn.      Of course, if you add bacon to something

Perfect Corn


6 slices bacon, fried crispy and chopped bite size
1 bag frozen corn
1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese
1/2 cup half and half
salt and pepper, to taste

After you fry your bacon, use the same pan and add the corn and cheddar cheese.     Cook for about 5 minutes, but stir frequently.      Add bacon and half and half.       Stir and cook for about 5 more minutes until very bubbly. 

Monday, February 15, 2010

Southwestern Soup

Note:   "Sweetheart, do you realize we still have that ground beef left in the refrigerator?"    Oh, shoot!   I forgot all about it.    Do you ever do that?    I had bought a package of ground beef to make meals and had just a little bit left.    About a pound.     I put it in the refrigerator thinking I would make tacos or something and then completely forgot it.      So now I had to do something quick.      It is raining outside and on days like this soup just sounds yummy!

Southwestern Soup

1 lb. ground beef
1 can kidney beans
2 cans Ro-tel
1 can stewed Mexican style tomatoes
1 can corn (drained)
2 Tbs. taco seasoning
16 0z. Velveeta cubed

Dump everything in your crockpot and cook on high for about 3-4 hours.    
Love this with some cornbread! 

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Date Night Chicken Pie

Note:   The first meal I ever cooked for my sweet hubs was this chicken pie.    (Look at how young we were.     Can you believe my tall husband fit in my tiny car?    Every time we look at this picture we can't figure out why we were in my car instead of his.)    Anyway, this chicken pie isn't anything special, but he must have liked it because we have been married for 20 years and he still requests it.

Date Night Chicken Pie

1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of celery soup
1 large can VegAll mixed vegetables
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
salt and pepper
1 Tbsp. worcestershire sauce
1 stick butter, melted
1 cup self rising flour
1 cup milk

In a large pot, put water on to boil.   Add 2 Tbsp. butter, salt, pepper and 1 tsp. garlic salt.    Add chicken and boil until tender enough to cut into bite size pieces.      In a casserole bowl, mix soups, vegetables, worcestershire sauce and 1/2 cup of chicken broth from the chicken you just boiled.     Add chicken pieces.    Salt and pepper to taste.       In a separate bowl mix together, melted butter, flour and milk.    Pour over the top of the chicken mixture.    Bake in 350 degree oven until the crust has turned golden brown.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Cookbook: Sesame Street "C" is for Cooking

Sesame Street "C" is for Cooking
40th Anniversary Edition

by McQuillan, Susan, M.S., R.D. and Sesame Workshop
Published: 4/4/2007, 128 pages, Hardcover , ISBN: 9780471791010

Can you think of any better way to introduce your kids to cooking than with the Elmo, Cookie Monster and Zoe?     I think letting kids help out in the kitchen is one of the first basic "homeschool" experiences.     It teaches kids about food, nutrition, eating habits, math, science and basic safety (using kitchen utensils).

  • Includes more than 55 delicious recipes that kids and parents can make together, plus fun food and cooking games and activities
  • Filled with tasty dishes that appeal to young, picky eaters, such as Grover's Little & Adorable Chicken Nuggets and Rosita's Tortilla Soup
  • Features 16 pages of simple, kid-friendly recipes and activities from celebrity chefs like Mark Bittman and Emeril Lagasse
  • Filled with full-color photos and illustrations, plus food facts that engage children and encourage them to try new things
  • Comes with a sheet of reusable stickers of foods, characters, numbers, and words
Whether you try Oscar’s Spicy Cider, Elmo’s Chili, Big Bird’s Spaghetti Pie or Cookie Monster’s Peanut Butter and Jelly Thumbprint Cookies, the whole family is going to be happy!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Chocolate Lover's Fondue

Note:    Nothing says Valentine's day like chocolate.      Fondue is just fun.     Whether just you and your honey, your family or a large group of friends, it is hard not laugh and enjoy yourself when you are covering everything with chocolate.

Chocolate Lover's Fondue

2 cups chocolate chips (hubs and Little like semi-sweet, but Big Guy and I like special dark)
3/4 cup half & half
1/2 cup sugar
Items to Dip:   pound cake, graham crackers, pretzel rods, marshmallows, bananas, strawberries, grapes, pineapple tidbits, sliced apples, and anything else that sounds good to you!

Combine chocolate chips, half & half and sugar in saucepan.    Cook over low heat until chocolate chips are melted and mixture is hot.     Transfer to fondue pot.       Keep warm.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Kid's Love Potion

Note:    My boys love fun drinks like this.      One of our favorite things is to make something like this and sit out on our front porch and sit and just talk.    

Kid's Love Potion

32 ounces of pink lemonade
1 quart of vanilla ice cream
fresh or frozen raspberries
Sierra Mist

Put one scoop of ice cream into your class.   Sprinkle with about 5-7 raspberries.    Fill the glass with half lemonade and half Sierra Mist.     Insert a straw and enjoy!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Raspberry Spinach Salad

Note:     This is a pretty salad to serve at Valentine's Day, but a delicious salad to eat any day!    Now if I can just make it pretty enough to make hubs not realize that he is eating spinach.      Oh, well, Little Guy and I will love it!

Raspberry Spinach Salad


2 Tablespoons Raspberry Vinegar
2 Tablespoons Raspberry Jam
1/3 Cup Vegetable Oil
8 Cups Spinach, rinsed, stemmed and torn into pieces.
3/4 Cup coarsely chopped Macadamia nuts or toasted almond slices
1 Cup Fresh Raspberries
3 Kiwis, peeled and sliced


Dressing: Combine vinegar and jam in blender or small bowl. Add oil in thin stream, blending well.

Toss spinach with 1/2 of the nuts, 1/2 of the raspberries, 1/2 of the kiwi's and the dressing. Top with the remaining ingredients (nuts, raspberries and kiwis.) Serve immediately.

Monday, February 8, 2010

TMTT: Chocolate Layered Delight

Note:    There are LOTS of names for this dessert.     Depending on how quickly it disappears it should be called, "Gone in 5!"     I am going to be making this for my boys for Valentine's Day.      They will love it.

Chocolate Layered Delight

Blend together:

1 1/2 cup plain flour
1 1/2 stick margarine
1 1/2 cup chopped nuts

Press into 9" x 13" pan. Bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees. Cool

Cream together:

1 cup powdered sugar
1, 8 oz package of cream cheese

Fold in 9 oz. defrosted Cool Whip. Spread onto the cooled pastry layer.

Mix well:

1 large box of chocolate INSTANT pudding
Add 3 1/2 cups milk

Spread on top of the second layer.

Spread a 9 oz. container of defrosted Cool Whip on top of the third layer and refrigerate.

I am heading over to Tempt My Tummy Tuesday to find more delicious recipes for our Valentine's weekend!

Cherry Dump Cake

Note:    This week I will be featuring recipes that would be fun for Valentine's Day.    This dessert is quick and easy and red.    Isn't that one of the requirements for this holiday?

Cherry Dump Cake

1 can {21oz} cherry pie filling
1 can {20oz} crushed pineapples, undrained
1 box yellow cake mix {dry}
1 1/2 sticks of butter

Pour undrained can of crushed pineapple into a baking dish.   On top of the pineapple, spread the cherry pie filling.       Sprinkle the yellow cake mix evenly over the top of this.   

Cut sticks of butter into pats and lay all over the top of cake mix.   Bake at 350 degrees until browned.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Cookbook: Pioneer Woman Cooks

 Note:     My family played Dirty Santa at Christmas this year.   When my BIL opened this cookbook, I immediately knew I was going to steal it from him.     Of course, I had been looking for it because my sister told me that she had bought it to be her gift for our Dirty Santa Christmas swap.      After I had this cookbook in my hands I think my family might have been slightly scared of me because I had a death grip on it and gave everyone a "look" if they even glanced my way.      Merry Christmas, everyone!   *smile*

The Pioneer Woman Cooks

Paula Deen meets Erma Bombeck in this spirited, homespun cookbook, which colorfully traces one woman’s transition from city life to ranch wife through recipes, photos, and pithy commentary based on the author’s popular, award-winning blog.

The Pioneer Woman Cooks takes readers on a voyeuristic journey through the life of a girl who once believed a Grande Latte from Starbucks was the key to all happiness but who ultimately finds her bliss in the arms of a cattle rancher.

In her folksy, wonderfully engaging voice, Drummond shares how she learned to cope with the isolation and peculiarities of ranch life, from chasing beavers out of the pond and saddling horses, to cooking for a man who believes the sun rises and sets in a steak and baked potato. Using only simple and widely available ingredients, Drummond shares many of her satisfying and delicious recipes--both for cowboys and cowgirls--including Cowboy Calzones, Pioneer Woman’s Ribeye Steaks, Cheese Grits, fresh Blackberry Cobbler, Pico de Gallo, and Iny’s Prune Cake.

To view samples of Ree's recipes, visit her blog!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Nachos (With Options)

Note:    My boys love some nachos when it comes to watching football.    Of course they love eating nachos for any occasion.      Sometimes it is fun to give nachos a little twist!

BBQ Nachos
Tortilla chips topped with bbq pork, beef or chicken, cheese, baked beans and cole slaw

Buffalo Wing Nachos
Tortilla chips topped with shredded rotisserie chicken, buffalo wing sauce, crumbled blue cheese, finely chopped celery, and a little blue cheese dressing on top

Cheeseburger Nachos
Tortilla chips topped with browned hamburger meat, cheese, lettuce, tomato, pickles

Dessert Nachos
Cinnamon chips topped with scoop of ice cream, fruit, chocolate chips, topping syrups, whipped cream and cherry.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Spicy Tortilla Rollups

Note:    It is the big countdown to the Superbowl!    This weekend people all around me are going to be going crazy for this game.     We decided to invite some friends over for the game.     I am going to make some foods that I can put out and are easy for people to serve themselves and eat in the living room.

Spicy Tortilla Rollups

5 large flour tortillas
1 2 ounce can of sliced olives
4 ounces chopped green chilies- drained
1 Tbsp. Tabasco sauce
8 ounces cream cheese - softened
8 ounces sour cream
1/2 pound cheddar cheese - shredded
Salt and pepper to taste

Have tortillas at room temperature. Place the remaining ingredients in a bowl and, with an electric mixer, combine all until well distributed. Spread mixture fairly thin and evenly on tortillas to within 1/8 inch of edge. Roll up jelly-roll fashion and wrap each tortilla in plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.   Because tortillas have a tendency to dry out, only slice when ready to serve, slice in 3/4 inch rounds and arrange on serving plate. Serve plain or with salsa.

Monday, February 1, 2010

TMTT: Homemade Green Pepper Jelly

Note:    You have bought pepper jelly in the store, but until you have made it fresh you have not really realized just how delicious it can be.     Put this out at your Superbowl party with some triscuits and the plate will come back empty!

Green Pepper Jelly

6 large green peppers, cut in squares
1 1/2 cups cider vinegar
1 tsp. crushed red pepper
6 cups sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
One bottle pectin

Place half the green pepper pieces in an electric blender container with 3/4 cup vinegar. Cover and process until liquified.  Pour into saucepan.  Repeat with remaining pepper and vinegar and add to saucepan.

Stir in the red pepper, sugar and salt and heat to boiling. Stir in liquid pectin and boil until somewhat thickened. Add a few drops of green food coloring and pour into sterilized jars and seal.

So delicious served over a log of cream cheese!

Join me over at Tempt My Tummy Tuesday for more delicious recipes!