Tuesday, January 31, 2012

{#54} Must Try Tuesday: January 31, 2012

Can you believe this is the last day of January?  Truthfully, I am glad because January is not my favorite month and winter is not my favorite season.  Although it really hasn't been cold here, I am ready for spring.

Here are some yummy recipes that I found on my favorite blogs this week.  Enjoy!

Italian Cream Cupcakes


White Chocolate Reese's Peanut Butter Blossoms


Raspberry Cheesecake Cookie Cups


Chicken and Cheese Flautas


Texas Chicken with Lime Butter


Caramel Pecan Biscuit Bake

These recipes have been Pinned and Stumbled.  I hope it brings you lots of viewers.

Linked To:
*Finding Joy in My Kitchen: Friday Favorite Finds

Monday, January 30, 2012

Recipe: Not Your Mama's Cheese Dip

With the Super Bowl next Sunday, I thought this would be a perfect time to share a very yummy cheese dip recipe that we eat.  We are grew up with the classic dip of Velveeta and Ro-tel tomatoes and this one has those ingredients too.  It also has a few extra ingredients that takes it over the top to yummy delicious goodness.  I have been making this version for years and it is always gobbled up.  In fact, I pour this over enchiladas and it takes it a whole new level.  It can be made in a crock pot or on the stove and you could easily add ground beef or sausage to add even more goodness.


Not Your Mama's Cheese Dip
by Wende Rickett
  • 1 can chopped green chillies
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup
  • 1 pkg shredded Monterrey Jack cheese
  • 1-1lb Velveeta cheese
  • 1 small can evaporated milk
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (fire roasted is best, but plain is good too)

  1. Cube Velveeta.
  2. In a large saucepan or crock pot, add all ingredients, stirring to mix well.
  3. If making in the crock pot, turn on low and occasionally stir cheese dip to make sure the ingredients are incorporated.
  4. If making on the stove top, cook on medium-low heat and stir frequently until cheeses are melted.
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Linked To:
*Mrs Happy Homemaker: Makin' You Crave Monday
*Blessed with Grace: Tempt My Tummy Tuesday
*Permanent Posies: Tuesday Tasty Tidbits
*Chef in Training: Tuesday Talent Show
*From Mess Hall to Bistro: Made from Scratch Tuesday
*Miz Helen's Country Cottage: Full Plate Thursday
*Somewhat Simple: Strut Your Stuff
*Mom on Timeout: Taking a Timeout Thursday
*A Glimpse Inside: Catch a Glimpse
*Simply Sweet Home: Friday Favorites
*Rattlebridge Farm: Foodie Friday
*Blissful and Domestic: Feature Friday Linky Party
*I Heart Naptime: Sundae Scoop

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Recipe: Thin Mint Brownies

It's Girl Scout Cookie time!  It is also the 100th anniversary of Girl Scouts.  I have three Girl Scouts who are working hard to sell cookies to get to summer camp this year.  We have a huge goal (1000 boxes of cookies) and we are already a quarter of the way there!  So, needless to say, I have to buy several from each of my girls.  As my Grandma Lewis would say, "If you kick one, you have to kick them all."  I have been doing a lot of kicking...lol.  

Did you know that Girl Scout cookies freeze beautifully?  I actually have several cookies from last year still in my freezer.  Not only are they good for eating with a big glass of milk, but they are fun to bake with.  Last year, I made Tagalong Cupcakes that were so delightful.  So, when I found a lone package of Thin Mints in the freezer recently (I must have hid them from the family and completely forgot about them), I thought they would be so SO good in brownies.  This recipe couldn't be any simpler because it uses a box mix, but you could certainly make scratch brownie and add the Thin Mints.  The brownies were awesome because they were fudgy and dense.

If you see Girl Scouts selling, please support them and buy a few (or a case) cookies.  Once you have consumed massive quantities to satisfy your fix, hide the rest in the freezer to enjoy during the rest of the year.

Thin Mint Brownies
by littlebrowniebakers.com
  • 1 sleeve (half the box) Thin Mints
  • 1 box brownie mix
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/4 cup water

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spray a 9x13" pan with non-stick spray. Crush the Thin Mints into medium size pieces.
  3. Combine all the ingredients into a mixing bowl. Do not use an electric mixer. The batter will be stiff.
  4. Once the ingredients are combined, pour mix into the prepared pan and spread evenly.
  5. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes.
  6. Allow to cool before cutting.
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Linked To:
*Sweet as Sugar Cookies: Sweets for a Saturday
*Be Different Act Normal: Show and Tell Saturday
*A Well Seasoned Life: Sweet Indulgences Sunday
*I Heart Naptime: Sundae Scoop Link Party
*Nifty Thrifty Things: Nifty Thrifty Sunday
*Flamingo Toes: Think Pink Sunday
*The Foley Family: Sunday Funday
*Everyday Mom's Meals: Church Supper
*Petite Hermine: Sunday Link Party
*The Girl Creative: Just Something I Whipped Up
*A Simply Klassic Home: Simply Klassic Sunday
*My Sweet and Savory: Meatless Monday
*Boogieboard Cottage: Masterpiece Monday
*11th Heaven's Homemaking Haven: Homemaker Monday
*Make Ahead Meals for Busy Moms: Melt in Your Mouth Monday
*Blessed with Grace: Tempt My Tummy Tuesday
*Permanent Posies: Tuesday's Tasty Tidbits
*Chef in Training: Tuesday Talent Show
*From Mess Hall to Bistro: Made from Scratch Tuesday
*Mrs Happy Homemaker: Makin' You Crave Monday
*Skip to my Lou: Made by You Monday
*Talking Dollar and Cents: Sweet Temptations
*Something Swanky: Sweet Treats Thursday

Sunday Inspiration

He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, 
out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.

(John 7:38)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Recipe: Easy Cheesy Enchiladas

I think I have mentioned at least a hundred times how much I LOVE Mexican food.  It was my favorite while I was growing up, I consumed massive amounts during my pregnancies and it is my favorite to cook for my family.  Unfortunately, my children didn't inherit my crazy love of all things Mexican.  They do however, like dishes that are mild and have lots of cheese and these enchiladas totally fit the bill!

It's also no secret that one of my favorite blogs is Favorite Family Recipes.  Last month, when they posted this recipe, I knew that I would be making them soon.  I am trying to cut down on the amount of meat that we consume, so these enchiladas were perfect with their cheesy goodness.  The sauce was so yummy that I will now be making my own sauce for my other favorite Mexican recipes.  

If you love enchiladas as much as we do, you must make this recipe as soon as possible.  Enjoy!

Easy Cheesy Enchiladas
by {original recipe by Favorite Family Recipes}
    • 2 tbsp oil
    • 1 medium onion, chopped
    • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
    • Salt and pepper, to taste
    • 2 tsp chili powder
    • 1 tsp cumin
    • 1 14 oz. can fire-roasted crushed tomatoes
    • 1/2 cup chicken stock
    • 12 corn tortillas
    • 3 tbsp oil
    • 4 green onions, chopped
    • 3 tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
    • 4 cups Monterey Jack cheese, shredded and divided
    1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a small pot over medium heat and saute onion and garlic until tender.
    2. Add chili powder, cumin, tomatoes and stock.
    3. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
    4. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes.
    5. While the sauce is simmering, heat a small skillet over medium heat. Add oil.
    6. Soften each tortilla for 15 seconds on each side in the oil, shaking off any excess.
    7. Transfer to a plate covered with paper towels.
    8. Repeat with each tortilla.
    9. Heat oven to 375 degrees.
    10. Spray a 9x13" pan and set aside.
    11. In a bowl, combine the scallion, cilantro and three cups of cheese.
    12. Fill each tortilla with about 1/4 cup of the cheese mixture and roll up as tightly as possible.
    13. Place the rolled tortillas in the prepared pan.
    14. When all the tortillas have been rolled and placed in the pan, ladle the sauce evenly over the enchiladas and top with the remaining cup of cheese.
    15. Bake until bubbly and brown on top, about 15 minutes.
    16. Remove and enjoy!
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    Linked to:
    *The Sweet Details: Savory Sunday
    *My Sweet and Savory: Meatless Mondays
    *Boogieboard Cottage: Masterpiece Monday
    *11th Heaven's Homemaking Haven: Homemaker Monday
    *Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker: Your Recipe, My Kitchen
    *Make Ahead Meals for Busy Moms: Melt in Your Mouth Monday
    *A Southern Fairtytale: Mouthwatering Monday
    *Blessed with Grace: Tempt My Tummy Tuesday
    *Mandy's Recipe Box: Totally Tasty Tuesday
    *It's A Blog Party: Show Me How
    *Inside BruCrew Life: Trick or Treat Tuesday
    *Miz Helen's Country Cottage: Full Plate Thursday
    *Simply Sweet Home: Friday Favorites
    *Bacon Time at the Hungry Hungry Hippo: Anything Goes
    *Ekat's Kitchen: Friday Potluck
    *KB and Whitesnakes Home: Simply Delish
    *Just Winging It: Show Your Stuff
    *Blissful and Domestic: Feature Friday Linky Party 
    *Flamingo Toes: Think Pink Sunday
    *Everyday Mom's Meals: Church Supper
    *Petite Hermine: Sunday Linky Party
    *A Simply Klassic Home: Simply Klassic Sunday
    *From Mess Hall to Bistro: Made from Scratch Tuesday


    Thursday, January 19, 2012

    Recipe: Nutella Swirl Banana Bread

    Banana bread is a favorite at our house and this is the only way that I can eat bananas.  Just before Christmas, I bought one of these big bags of very ripe bananas for next to nothing so that I could make some banana bread for our friends and family for Christmas.  I have a recipe that has never let me down...super moist and delicious every time I make it!  I made a few loaves but really wanted to jazz up the next few batches.   Chocolate and banana just seems to go together and I though about adding some chocolate chips to the batter but then I had a light bulb moment....nutella!  I mean, who doesn't love that yummy goodness!  I decided to give it a try and let me tell you it was so good my family devoured the first loaf before it even had a chance to cool down.  It has just enough chocolate yum, but it is not so overly sweet that you can't enjoy the wonderfulness of a slice.  I think it is kind of pretty too!  It was well liked by all my family and friends and my children have already requested it several times.  


    Nutella Swirl Banana Bread
    by Wende Rickett/The Rickett Chronicles
    • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
    • 1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, room temperature
    • 2 cups sugar
    • 2 eggs, room temperature
    • 1 1/2 cups banana (about 4 medium), mashed
    • 1/2 tsp vanilla
    • 3 cups flour
    • 1/2 tsp baking soda
    • 1/2 tsp baking powder
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 2/3 nutella, divided

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
    2. Spray a loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.
    3. Cream butter, cream cheese and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy.
    4. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
    5. Add bananas and vanilla, beat well.
    6. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
    7. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet ingredients mixing until just combined. Do not over mix.
    8. Spoon half the batter into the pan.
    9. With a spoon, dollop 1/3 cup nutella over the entire surface of the batter.
    10. Spoon the rest of the batter into the pan.
    11. Dollop 1/3 cup nutella over the surface of the batter.
    12. With a knife, insert into the batter and gently swirl the batter and the nutella.
    13. Place pan in the oven and bake 1 to 1 1/4 hours or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
    14. Remove from oven to a wire rack and cool about 15 to 20 minutes.
    15. Remove from pan and cool completely.
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    Tuesday, January 17, 2012

    {#53} Must Try Tuesday: January 17, 2012

    It has been the usual crazy busy week so I will be keeping this short and simple.  I found some great recipes to try very soon!

    Mexican Stuffed Shells


    Hot Dog Buns


    Eclairs in a Jar


    Very Easy Cheesy Oven Baked "Giuveche"


    Amish Country Bread


    Fluffernutter Pancakes

    Linked To:

    Monday, January 16, 2012

    Recipe: Pimento Cheese Cornbread Muffins

    I love to have bread with soups, stews and chilies.  I think that it makes the meals.  But, cornbread can get kinda boring after a while so I wanted to somehow "jazz" it up one night when we were having Sausage Potato Soup.  I wanted the muffins to be cheesy but different cheesy.  My kids love pimento cheese so I thought it would be a great add in to my packaged corn muffin mix.  It was just the right amount of cheesy with a little extra flavor.  Even better is when you split the muffins and spread some pimento cheese on them.  These are super easy to bake because it is made from a buttermilk/cornbread mix plus a few more ingredients.  I think this would also be good for chili or we love to have a pot of pintos and cornbread.


    Pimento Cheese Cornbread Muffins
    by Wende Rickett/The Rickett Chronicles
    • 1 package buttermilk cornbread mix + the additional ingredients needed on the back of the package
    • 1/3 cup pimento cheese spread

    1. Heat oven according to package directions.
    2. Spray a 12 cup muffin pan with nonstick spray or line with liners and set aside.
    3. In a mixing bowl, add package mix plus ingredients listed on the package. (One of the ingredients on my mix was melted butter, but I omitted.)
    4. Add pimento cheese and gently mix until just combined.
    5. Scoop mix into muffin pan, about 2/3 of the way) and place in oven.
    6. Bake as suggested on the package or until the muffins are golden and the baked through.
    7. Allow to cool in the pan for a few minutes before serving.
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    Sunday, January 15, 2012

    Sunday Inspiration

    Do not be afraid of loving God's gifts. 
    What better way to serve the Lord than to delight in his gifts.

    Tuesday, January 10, 2012

    {#52} Must Try Tuesday: January 10, 2012

    After a week of beautiful warm weather here in Texas, we are back to cold and rainy days.  I am no way complaining about the rain after being so long without it, but it does make my yard a complete mud puddle which makes it more fun to get my girls in and out of the car.  So, I will continue to appreciate my muddy yard because that means we are getting the rain we so desperately still need.

    So now that we are back to colder days and nights, I have been looking for comfort foods.  There were some great recipes on the blogs this week.  These were some of my favorites that I can't wait to try.


    Vegetable Soup with Parmesan Dumplings


    Chicken Pot Pie Soup


    Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup with Brie, Spinach & Artichokes


    Chicken Suiza Melts


    Cheesecake Pancakes


    Strawberry Sweethearts Cocoa


    Sunday, January 8, 2012

    Sunday Inspiration

    Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the 
    Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

    2 Corinthians 3:17

    Saturday, January 7, 2012

    Crazy Cooking Challenge: Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup

    This month, I am participating in Mom's Crazy Cooking Challenge.  Every month there is a new theme challenge.  The great thing about this challenge is that you choose a specific recipe from another blogger.  You then bake and blog the recipe showcasing the blog that you selected the recipe from.  You also get to vote on the best "ultimate" recipe for the month.  The challenge this month is chicken noodle soup.  My family LOVES soup, especially chicken noodle, so this challenge was great for us.

    As I was searching for a perfect soup that my family would enjoy, I came across the blog Let's Dish and found Danelle's recipe for Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup.  What grabbed my attention was the fact that it was a creamy soup instead of a broth based soup.  With the addition of frozen egg noodles, I knew that this would be a soup my family would devour.  I was right!

    This soup is not only creamy, but hearty, belly warming goodness that my family gobbled up with only enough left for the girl's to have in their lunch the next day (and that is only because they begged for us not to eat it all gone so they could enjoy it again for lunch).  So, thanks to Danelle, we now have a chicken noodle soup recipe that my family not only enjoyed that night, but have requested several times since.


    Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup
    {slightly adapted from the original recipe by Danelle/Let's Dish}
    • 2 tbsp butter
    • 2 cups carrots, shredded
    • 1 cup celery, peeled and chopped
    • 1 cup onion, chopped
    • 6 -7 cups chicken broth
    • 3 boneless chicken breasts
    • 2 cans cream of chicken soup
    • 1 cup milk
    • 1 16 oz pkg frozen egg noodles (I used dumpling noodles)
    • Salt and pepper, to taste

    1. Thaw noodles according to package directions. My noodles were wide so I cut them in half.
    2. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large sauce pot over medium-high heat.
    3. Add the chopped onion, celery and carrots and saute until the vegetables are just tender, about 5 minutes.
    4. Add 6 cups chicken broth to the pot and bring to a simmer.
    5. Add chicken breasts and boil until chicken is cooked through, about 10 minutes.
    6. Remove chicken breasts from the pot and dice; set aside.
    7. Add the milk to the pot and return to a boil.
    8. Gently stir and add a few noodles at a time (if you incorporate the noodles one or two a time, they will not stick together) to the broth.
    9. Add diced chicken back to the pot and cook for an additional 15 to 25 minutes. (Because my noodles were thicker, it took about 25 minutes for them to cook all the way through.)
    10. Once the noodles are tender and cooked through, add cream of chicken soup and simmer for a few more minutes.
    11. If your soup is too thick, add a small amount of chicken broth until desired consistency is reached. If it is not thick enough, add more cream of chicken soup. (I only added one can of soup, because it was super creamy and thick.)
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