Saturday, March 24, 2012

Recipe: Chocolate Covered Pretzel Blondies





I love all things brownie/blondies.  It has to be my favorite dessert, snack, dinner....yum!  I try to make a yummy dessert for us after Sunday dinner and this looked so yummy!  I found the recipe on one of my favorite blogs, Alli 'n Sons.  Alli always has the best sweet treats and these were no exception.  I loved the salty chocolaty yumminess and so did my family.  They were gobbled up in no time.


Make these soon so you too can enjoy!




Chocolate Covered Pretzel Blondies
{original recipe by Alli 'n Sons}
Ingredients
  • 1 cup AP flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbsp light corn syrup
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chocolate covered pretzels (white or chocolate), broken

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spray an 8" square pan with nonstick spray.
  3. In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  4. In a large pan, over medium heat melt the butter. Bring it to a boil, stirring constantly, until light golden brown, about 4 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in the sugars until well blended.
  6. Let cool for 5 minutes, until barely warm.
  7. Stir in the eggs and vanilla extract.
  8. Stir in the flour and broken chocolate-covered pretzels. The batter will be thick.
  9. Pour into prepared pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
  10. Cool completely in the pan on a wire rack.
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Linked To:
*A Well-Seasoned Life: Sweet Indulgences Sunday
*Nifty Thrifty Things: Nifty Thrifty Sunday
*A Simply Klassic Home: Simply Klassic Sunday
*Addicted to Recipes: Scrumptious Sunday
*Everyday Mom's Meals: Church Supper
*The Southern Institute: Creative Me
*Mrs. Happy Homemaker: Makin' You Crave Monday
*DIY Home Sweet Home: More the Merrier
*Make Ahead Meals for Busy Moms: Melt in Your Mouth Monday
*Flour Me With Love: Mix It Up Monday
*Skip to My Lou: Made by you Monday
*Lady Behind the Curtain: Cast Party Wednesday
*Chef in Training: Talent Show Tuesday
*Blessed with Grace: Tempt My Tummy Tuesday
*It's A Blog Party: Delicious Dishes
*Mandy's Recipe Box: Totally Tasty Tuesday
*33 Shades of Green: Tasty Tuesday
*From Mess Hall to Bistro: Made from Scratch Tuesday
*Crazy for Crust: Crazy Sweet Tuesday
*Mom on Timeout: Taking a Timeout Thursday
*Talking Dollars and Cents: Sweet Temptations
*Miz Helen's Country Cottage: Full Plate Thursday

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

{#61} Must Try Tuesday: March 20, 2012

Spring break as come and gone.  We did a whole lot of nothing and it was nice.  Softball season has officially started with practice two nights a week so that means crock pot meals and simple menus.  


Here are some fantastic recipes that I will be trying very soon!


Enjoy!






Crock Pot Brisket Tacos


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Lemon Pepper Chicken


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McAllister's Chicken Tortilla Soup


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Taco Chowder Soup


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Crock Pot Au Gratin Potatoes


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Rainbow Tie Dye Cake


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Decadent German Chocolate Pound Cake


~~~~
Carrot Zucchini Muffins







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

Monday, March 19, 2012

Recipe: Cauliflower Patties





My family loves cauliflower...okay...almost all of my family.  One of my girls does not enjoy it but she doesn't like lettuce or potatoes either, but will eat the mess out of tomatoes...go figure.  My other girls will eat it raw, mashed, roasted, however I make it.  Sometimes I even boil it a bit to soften it up, then add some Italian dressing and feta and pack it for their lunch.  They love it but their friends think they are weird...lol!


Cauliflower mash is our absolute favorite but I wanted to try something else.  I came across this recipe and it sounded delicious.  I actually used the recipe as a guide, but really made them to our family preference and what I had on hand.  My oldest daughter, Hailey, actually came up with the dipping sauce.  I was just going to use blue cheese or ranch dressing, but she wanted to make something with some zip.  She concocted a dipping sauce that was really tasty.  She mixed blue cheese dressing with a bit of A-1...zippy and tasty!


Enjoy!




Cauliflower Patties
{based on the original recipe by This Girl's Gotta Eat}
Ingredients
    For the Patties
    • 1 head cauliflower
    • 2 eggs
    • 2 tsp baking powder
    • 6 tbsp parmesan cheese
    • 1/2 tsp onion powder
    • salt and pepper to taste
    • 1/4 cup ricotta cheese
    • 1/3 to 2/3 cups flour
    For the Dredge Mixture
    • 2 tbsp parmesan cheese
    • 1/3 cup flour
    • oil

    Instructions
    1. Cut cauliflower into small pieces. Boil in a large pot of water until soft.
    2. Drain cauliflower very well and set aside until cool enough to handle.
    3. Mash cauliflower with a masher or fork.
    4. To cooled cauliflower, add 2 eggs and ricotta cheese, mixing until well combined.
    5. Add parmesan cheese, onion powder, salt and pepper.
    6. Starting with 1/4 cup of flour, mix into cauliflower. Add as much flour as needed to make a thick mixture. It should be thick enough that you can form patties and it will hold the shape.
    7. In a pan, add enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan. Heat on medium-high heat until hot.
    8. In a plate or bowl, add 1/3 cup flour and 3 tablespoons parmesan cheese. Stir well to combine.
    9. Dredge patties on both sides in the flour mixture.
    10. Fry patties until golden brown on both sides, about 3 minutes on each side.
    11. Drain on paper towel.

    Hailey's Dipping Sauce
    • 1/3 cup blue cheese or ranch dressing
    • 1 to 2 tbsp steak sauce

    Mix until well combined.
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    Linked To:
    *My Sweet and Savory: Meatless Monday
    *The Southern Institute: Creative Me
    *Boogieboard Cottage: Masterpiece Monday
    *Mrs. Happy Homemaker: Makin' You Crave Monday
    *Make Ahead Meals for Busy Moms: Melt in Your Mouth Monday
    *Flour Me with Love: Mix it Up Monday
    *Delightfully Dowling: Mangia Mondays
    *A Southern Fairytale: Mouthwatering Monday
    *Blessed with Grace: Tempt My Tummy Tuesday
    *It's a Blog Party: Delicious Dishes
    *2 Maids Milking: 2 Maids a Baking
    *Inside BruCrew Life: Trick or Treat Tuesday
    *Our Delightful Home: Show Me What You Got
    *Mandy's Recipe Box: Totally Tasty Tuesday
    *33 Shades of Green: Tasty Tuesdays
    *Permanent Posies: Tuesdays Tasty Tidbits
    *Reasons to Skip the Housework: Tuesday Time Out
    *Chef in Training: Tuesday Talent Show
    *From Mess Hall to Bistro: Made from Scratch Tuesday
    *Miz Helen's Country Cottage: Full Plate Thursday
    *Mom on Timeout: Taking Timeout Thursday
    *Bacon Time with the Hungry Hungry Hippo: Anything Goes








    Sunday, March 18, 2012

    Menu Plan: Week of March 18, 2012`







    Well, it has has been a fabulous week off from school.  We watched lots of movies, ate buckets and buckets of popcorn and did a lot of relaxing.  Now, it's back to reality and early mornings.  I am going to keep meals as simple as I can this week as we get back into our school routine.


    Have a great week!

    Meal 1
    Taco Salad

    Meal 2
    Crock Pot Chicken Quesadillas
    Pinto Beans

    Meal 3
    Pasta with Chickpea Tomato Sauce
    Salad
    Bread sticks

    Meal 4
    Homey Sauced Chicken
    Rice
    Corn-on-the-Cob
    Biscuits

    Meal 5
    Sloppy Joes
    Tater Tots

    Meal 6
    Dinner @ Bible Study

    Meal 7
    Dining Out


    Baking
    ~~~~
    Biscoff Brownies
    ~~~~
    Bacon, Egg and Cheese Biscuit Muffins
    ~~~~
    Baked Cinnamon Breakfast Bites



    Linked To:
    *Organizing Junkie: Menu Plan Monday

    Thursday, March 15, 2012

    Recipe: Lasagna Soup



    Last week here in Texas, we actually had three days of cold rainy weather....three days!  I must say this has been a very wet winter and we needed this rain.  The ponds, lakes and rivers are overflowing.  Spring is already here and this week we are back in the 80's.  

    So with all that cold weather, I knew some soup days were here.  I made this soup a couple of months ago and it was so good.  My family loved it and ate every last drop of it.  It was just as good this time around!  I love how quick this soup comes together, way faster than making a traditional lasagna, but you still get the awesome taste of a big pan of yummy good lasagna.

    I made just a few changes based on what I had on hand but it didn't change the yummy goodness of this soup at all.  On your next cold day, you must make this soup.  Your family will thank you for it!

    Enjoy!

    This is the cheesy goodness that goes in the bottom 
    of the bowl....don't skip this step...
    it totally makes the soup!




    Lasagna Soup
    {adapted from the original recipe by Brenda/A Farmgirl's Dabble}
    Ingredients
      Soup
      • 2 tsp olive oil
      • 1 1/2 lbs ground beef
      • 3 cups onions, chopped
      • 4 garlic cloves, minced
      • 2 tsp dried oregano
      • 2 tbsp tomato paste
      • 1 28-oz can fire roasted diced tomatoes
      • 2 bay leaves
      • 6 cups chicken stock
      • 8 oz pasta
      • salt and pepper to taste
      Cheesy Goodness
      • 8 oz ricotta cheese
      • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
      • 1/4 tsp salt
      • pinch black pepper

      Instructions
      1. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.
      2. Add meat/sausage, breaking up into bite sized pieces.
      3. Brown for about 5 minutes.
      4. Add onions and cook until softened, about 6 minutes.
      5. Add garlic, oregano, and red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 minute.
      6. Add tomato paste and stir well to incorporate. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the tomato paste turns a rusty brown color.
      7. Add diced tomatoes, bay leaves, and chicken stock. Stir to combine.
      8. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
      9. Add uncooked pasta and cook until al dente. Do not over cook or let soup simmer for a long period of time at this point, as the pasta will get mushy and absorb all the soup broth.
      10. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
      11. While the pasta is cooking, prepare the cheesy goodness. In a small bowl, combine the ricotta, Parmesan, salt, and pepper.
      12. To serve, place a dollop of the cheesy goodness in each soup bowl, sprinkle some of the mozzarella on top and ladle the hot soup over the cheese.
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      Linked To:
      *A Little Nosh: Tastetastic Thursday
      *Mom on Timeout: Taking a Timeout Thursday
      *The 36th Avenue: Party Time
      *Simply Sweet Home: Friday Favorites
      *Bacon Time with the Hungry Hungry Hippo: Anything Goes
      *It's a Hodgepodge Life: It's Hodgepodge Friday
      *Stuff and Nonsense: Friday's Unfolded
      *Happy Hour Projects: Freestyle Friday
      *Raising Oranges: Handmade 52
      *Rattlebridge Farms: Foodie Friday
      *Country Momma Cooks: Link and Greet
      *Around My Family Table: Feed Your Soul
      *The Sweet Details: Savory Sunday
      *Everyday Mom's Meals: Church Supper
      *Flamingo Toes: Think Pink Sundays
      *Addicted to Recipes: Scrumptious Sunday
      *A Simple Klassic Home: Simply Klassic Sunday
      *Beyer Beware: Hunk of Meat Monday
      *Blessed with Grace: Tempt My Tummy Tuesday
      *It's A Blog Party: Delicious Dishes
      *Mandy's Recipe Box: Totally Tasty Tuesday

      Tuesday, March 13, 2012

      {#60} Must Try Tuesday: March 13, 2012


      This is spring break week for us so I am spending as much time with my girls this week so I will keep this short and sweet.

      Here are some super recipes that I have recently found.  Enjoy!



      Lasagna Bolognese

      ~~~~

      Taco Chowder

      ~~~~

      German Chocolate Cake Cookies

      ~~~~~

      Salted Caramel and Peanut Butter Bread

      ~~~~

      Caramel Banana Muffins

      ~~~~

      Creme Brule Cheesecake Bars

      ~~~~

      Magic Marshmallow Puffs

      ~~~~

      Rolo Cupcakes


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


      Sunday, March 11, 2012

      Recipe: Oatmeal Cheesecake Cranberry Bars





      It's been a whole week since we have been back home.  I am still recovering from my surgery but I finally got in my kitchen a few days ago and whipped up a batch of the most delicious Oatmeal Cheesecake Cranberry Bars.  I had LOTS of time on my hands to peruse through some of my favorite blogs, which is where I found this recipe on The Sweets Life.  If you haven't been on Natalie's blog, you are really missing out.  I have found some awesome meatless meal alternatives, breads and rolls and fantastic looking desserts.  Really, everything she makes looks fabulous!




      The cheesecake bars were simple to make and super delicious.  I love the bottom, it was almost like shortbread.  The cranberry sauce was perfect with the creamy cheesecake and the crumb topping took the whole thing over the top!  I made a few changes based on what I had on hand but stayed pretty on track with the original recipe.


      You must give this yummy goodness a try!  Enjoy!




      Oatmeal Cheesecake Cranberry Bars
      {adapted from the original recipe by Natalie/The Sweets Life}
      Ingredients
      • 2 cups AP flour
      • 1 1/4 cups old-fashioned oats
      • 3/4 cup brown sugar
      • 1 cup butter
      • 16 oz cream cheese, softened
      • 3/4 cup sugar
      • 2 eggs
      • 1 tsp orange extract
      • 1 tsp vanilla extract
      • 1-14 oz can whole cranberry sauce
      • 2 tsp cornstarch

      Instructions
      1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
      2. Spray a 9x13" pan with non-stick spray; set aside.
      3. In a bowl, combine flour, oats and brown sugar. Add butter with a pastry cutter (or your hands) until mixture resembles coarse crumbles.
      4. Reserve 1 1/2 cups oat mixture; set aside.
      5. Press remaining oat mixture into prepared pan.
      6. Bake for 15 minutes; remove from oven and allow to cool slightly.
      7. In a bowl, combine cream cheese and sugar, beating until light and fluffy.
      8. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until smooth.
      9. Add orange and vanilla extract, beating until combined.
      10. Pour cream cheese mixture over crust; set aside.
      11. In a small bowl, combine cranberry sauce and cornstarch, mixing well.
      12. Dollop the cranberry mixture over the cream cheese. You will not completely cover the cream cheese.
      13. Sprinkle the remaining oat mixture over the top.
      14. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until set.
      15. Remove from oven and allow to cool for about an hour.
      16. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours and cut into bars.
      Powered by Recipage


      Linked To:
      *The Sweet Details: Savory Sunday
      *LambAround: Not Baad Sundays
      *I Heart Naptime: Sundae Scoop Link Party
      *Addicted to Recipes: Scrumptious Sundays
      *My Sweet and Savory: Meatless Mondays
      *The Southern Institute: Creative Me Link Up
      *Boogieboard Cottage: Masterpiece Monday
      *Mrs Happy Homemaker: Makin' You Crave Monday
      *The Sweet Spot: Recipe Party
      *Make Ahead Meals for Busy Moms: Melt in Your Mouth Monday
      *Flour Me With Love: Mix It Up Monday
      *Delightfully Dowling: Mangia Mondays
      *A Southern Fairytale: Mouthwatering Mondays
      *Marvelously Messy: A Marvelous Mess
      *Blessed with Grace: Tempt My Tummy Tuesday
      *It's A Blog Party: Delicious Dishes
      *2 Maids a Milking: 2 Maids a Baking
      *BruCrew Life: Trick or Treat Tuesday
      *Our Delightful Home: Show Me What You Got
      *Mandy's Recipe Box: Totally Tasty Tuesday
      *Permanent Posies: Tuesday's Tasty Tidbits
      *Reasons to Skip the Housework: Tuesday Time Out
      *Chef in Training: Tuesday Talent Show
      *From Mess Hall to Bistro: Made From Scratch Tuesday
      *Crazy for Crust: Crazy Sweet Tuesday
      *Sweetology: Tea Party
      *Miz Helen's Country Cottage: Full Plate Thursday
      *A Little Nosh: Tastetastic Thursday
      *Something Swanky: Sweet Treats Thursday
      *Mom on Timeout: Taking a Timeout Thursday
      *Alli-n-Sons: Sweet Tooth Friday
      *Everyday Mom Cakes: Sugar Me Up
























      Wednesday, March 7, 2012

      {Crazy Cooking Challenge} Scooter's Spaghetti


      I can't believe how quickly this year is flying by.  It's time for another Crazy Cooking Challenge.  Last month's challenge was chocolate cake.  The most viewed cake was Whopper Cake with Chocolate Almond Buttercream.  This month's challenge is spaghetti with red sauce.  My family loves spaghetti so I knew this was a challenge I was going to like!


      I know that I can't be the only person addicted to Pinterest, so several months ago, I came across a pin for salad in a jar.  A brilliant idea from Paula at Salad in a Jar.  I mean REALLY brilliant and if that was so smart she had to have more awesome recipes and boy does she but the one that caught my eye was Scooter's Spaghetti.  It was delish!  


      I made a few changes based on my family's preferences and ingredients that I had on had.  I had some Philadelphia Italian herb cooking cream that I thought would be a perfect subsititution for plain cream cheese.  I think that it add more flavor and creamy texture.  I also used a six cheese Italian pre-shredded mix...all two cups. 


      OK...here is where I may shock some of you.  When I make sauce, either homemade or jarred, I always add a stick of butter or margarine.  My sister-in-law's Italian grandmother taught me this over ten years ago.  It adds some yummy goodness and really takes the sauce over the top.  You certainly could skip this step, however, please give it a try and see if you don't agree.  And give it a try as you make this most devine spaghetti dish!


      Enjoy!  






      {Crazy Cooking Challenge} Scooter's Spaghetti
      {adapted from the original recipe by Paula/Salad in a Jar}
      Ingredients
      • 12 ounces uncooked spaghetti
      • 1 pound ground beef
      • 1 large jar spaghetti sauce (25 ounces)
      • 1/2 cup butter or margarine
      • 1 tbsp butter
      • 2/3 cup chopped onions
      • 1 tbsp minced garlic
      • 8 ounces Philadelphia cooking cream, Italian herb flavor or cream cheese
      • 2 cups Italian cheese mix, shredded
      • Fresh grated Parmesan cheese
      • French Fried Onions (small can)

      Instructions
      • Cook spaghetti according to directions on the package. Cook to al dente, drain and set aside.
      • Brown ground beef in a skillet. Drain excess grease.
      • Add spaghetti sauce and 1/2 cup butter to skillet and heat.
      • Combine onions, peppers and 1 tablespoon butter in small glass bowl. Cover and microwave 4 minutes on HIGH until soft.
      • Add cooking cream or cream cheese to vegetables and stir well.
      • Using a 10 x 6 dish, assemble in the following order:
        • Thin layer of spaghetti sauce on the bottom of the casserole dish.
        • Spaghetti
        • Cream cheese/vegetable mixture
        • Spaghetti sauce
        • Parmesan Cheese (amount subject to your own taste)
        • Italian cheese or cheese of your choice
        • French Fried Onions (added during last 5 minutes of cooking)
      • Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. Top with fried onions and continue baking 5 more minutes.
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      Linked To:
      *This Chick Cooks: These Chick Cooks
      *Turning the Clock Back: What's Cooking Wednesday
      *Bizzy Bakes: Bake with Bizzy
      *Miz Helen's Country Cottage: Full Plate Thursday
      *Frugal Follies: Frugal Food Thursday
      *A Little Nosh: Tastetastic Thursday
      *Mom on Timeout: Taking a Timeout Thursday
      *36th Avenue: Time to Party
      *Home Sweet Home: Friday Favorite Finds
      *It's a Hodgepodge Life: Hodgepodge Friday
      *Happy Hour Project: Freestyle Friday
      *Rattlebridge Farm: Foodie Friday
      *Blissful and Domestic: Feature Friday Linky Party
      *The Sweet Details: Savory Sunday
      *Everyday Mom's Meals: Church Supper
      *Mrs Happy Homemaker: Makin' You Crave Monday
      *The Sweet Spot: Recipe Party
      *It's A Blog Party: Delicious Dishes

      Tuesday, March 6, 2012

      {#59} Must Try Tuesday: March 6, 2012

      Well, I don't know about the rest of the United States, but around here, spring is definitely here.  The pear trees are in full bloom, the grass is a beautiful shade of green from all the rain we have had this winter, and the days are warm...like warm enough to have the air conditioner on.  We have one more week of school and then we are out for spring break.  My girls are super excited.  I am excited to not have to get up at 5:30am unless I want too!


      Hope you have a great week!




      Spinach, Mushrooms and Feta Crustless Quiche
      ~~~~


      Mini Greek Pizza Muffins


      ~~~~


      Cherry Fudge with Dark Chocolate


      ~~~~


      Peanut Butter Fudge Pretzel Brownies


      ~~~~


      Sweet Potato Brownies with Buttered Maple Glaze


      ~~~~


      Cherry On Top Bars


      ~~~~


      Hot Chocolate Muffins


      ~~~~


      Hot Chocolate Layer Cake with Homemade Marshmallows