February 3, 2013

February 3, 2013 at 10:00 pm (Food) (, , , , , , )

Hello again friends, and welcome back!  Wow, I’ve been a bad girl, been away for a while.  Sorry!!!  Hope you didn’t miss me too much…

So, let’s see, what’s been going on around here?  Well, William and I went on a field trip this past week to the Dali Museum and the Titanic Exhibit at the Mahaffey theater in downtown Tampa.  I decided it was high time I went on a field trip with one of my kids, since I missed them ALL with James, I guess William got the pleasure of having mom along.  I don’t know that he really even noticed I was there most of the time, he was hanging out with his friends, and I was busy chasing the other kids in my group.  I did get a few photos of the trip there, but we weren’t allowed to take photos inside either museum, and we didn’t get to go to the gift shop, so I have nothing really cool to show you!  But I can tell you it was a cool trip, and I think we should go back as a family instead of with a big group, we can spend more time looking around.

I got my hair colored last week, got some blonde highlights and some purple highlights, which actually turned out more lilac than purple, and here we are ONE WEEK LATER, you have to really look to find them.  I’m a little disappointed.  Think I’m going to go more like a garnet red next time, see how that turns out.

And we qualified for a mortgage, went looking at houses last weekend, found one we LOVED, so we made an offer.  After a little haggling and what seemed like forever (four days), we came to an agreement.  Inspection is this Wednesday, we’re supposed to close 3/15.  And lo and behold, we got a letter from an attorney, the house we’ve been renting for the past 6+ years has been foreclosed upon, the former owner has until 3/11 to pay up, or it goes to public auction 3/14.  Sounds like we’re getting out just in time!  Even trying to move the closing up a week or two if we can, so we can be out before all hell breaks loose around here.  I’m just crossing my fingers we get our original deposit back…  that money would REALLY come in handy to get stuff for the new place!

So, anyway, it’s been a busy few weeks around here.  Haven’t done much ORIGINAL cooking lately, but I do have two things to share with you this time.

BBQ Pockets

1 pound ground beef

1 Cup BBQ sauce of your choice

1 can jumbo biscuits

Brown and drain ground beef, return to pan.  Reduce heat, add BBQ sauce, and simmer for about 10 minutes, while you prepare the biscuits.

Roll the biscuits as flat as you can, mine came out pretty big, but not so thin you can’t handle them.

Place the rolled out biscuits on a cookie sheet, ungreased, place about 2 tbsp BBQ mixture on each flattened biscuit, fold over, press to close.  You can also go around the flat edge with the tines of a fork if you want, but the design sort of gets lost when the biscuits bake.  I had to do 2 at a time because they were SO big rolled out, two of them took up half the cookie sheet!

Bake at 350 degrees for 16-18 minutes, or until deep golden brown.  Serve warm!

Taco Pockets

1 pound ground beef

2/3 Cup water

1/4 Cup taco seasoning

1 can jumbo biscuits

Brown and drain ground beef, return to pan.  Reduce heat, add water ans seasoning, and simmer for about 10 minutes, while you prepare the biscuits.

Roll the biscuits as flat as you can, mine came out pretty big, but not so thin you can’t handle them.

Place the rolled out biscuits on a cookie sheet, ungreased, place about 2 tbsp taco mixture on each flattened biscuit, fold over, press to close.  You can also go around the flat edge with the tines of a fork if you want, but the design sort of gets lost when the biscuits bake.  I added a little shredded cheese on the outside of mine, but I think next time I’ll try cheese INSIDE.  I had to do 2 at a time because they were SO big rolled out, two of them took up half the cookie sheet!

Bake at 350 degrees for 16-18 minutes, or until deep golden brown.  Serve warm!


Taco on the left, BBQ on the right.

I also served ranch dressing with these, it was GOOD!

And then tonight, we had something different…

Teriyaki Pork with Rice

4 boneless skinless pork chops, thick cut

1/2 cup teriyaki sauce (Kikkoman’s is good)

2 cups prepared leftover rice

1 cup frozen peas

Trim fat from chops, cut into cubes, saute over medium heat until no longer pink.  Add in sauce and peas, stir well, cook until peas are bright green, maybe 5 minutes.  Reduce heat, add in leftover rice, cover and simmer about 10 minutes.


It was GOOD!!

So, that’s it for now.  Hope you try one of these, let me know how they come out for you!

Eat well, love well, live well!!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza day 313-319 (week 46)

November 18, 2012 at 10:02 pm (Food, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Hello again friends, and welcome back!  It’s been an interesting week…  nothing Earth-shattering, just interesting.

Work has been really busy, which I can only think is NOT a good thing considering what I do, that means the foreclosure business is booming, or maybe things are just moving better through the courts, but whatever is going on, it can’t be a good sign for the economy.

And of course, there was all the post-election stuff going on, the stock market dropping, businesses laying people off, Hostess closing, just kind of a depressing week all the way around.

BUT, William had a really good week at school, things are going very well for him, he’s enjoying his classes, and getting good grades.  Absolutely cannot complain!

Mike had a good week at work, things are picking up, they are finally keeping him almost busy, and he spent all day yesterday working on his guitar.  Took his birthday money and bought some new pick-ups, a new pick guard, and he’s really happy with the results.

I’ve been fairly busy working on jewelry, too, but I need to get better at getting OFF the computer at night and doing things I LIKE instead of wasting so much time on Facebook.  I mostly work on new pieces on my lunch hour at work, but I spent about 3 hours last night making clay beads, which was more fun than I remember, and then a few hours today making jewelry from some of those beads, so I feel like I had an extra special day!  And, I still got the laundry done, cleaned up the kitchen, and did my nails.  GOOD DAY!

So, on to the food….


Baked BBQ Pork Chops

4 boneless pork chops

About 3 cups BBQ sauce of your choice

1 Tsp garlic powder

Put the pork chops in a roasting pan, sprinkle with garlic powder, pour over BBQ sauce, cover and bake at 350 degrees for at least an hour, or until chops are done through and sauce is bubbly.  Serve!

Ratatouille (this was fun!)

1 smallish yellow squash

1 smallish zucchini

1 Chinese eggplant

2 Tbsp dried onion flakes

1 Tbsp garlic powder

1 cup tomato sauce

Salt and pepper to taste

2 Tbsp olive oil, divided

1/4 cup Parmesan

Italian seasoning blend

Using a mandolin slicer, slice the squash and eggplant very thin.  Spray a 13″ x 9″ casserole dish with olive oil flavor cooking spray.  Pour the tomato sauce in the bottom of the pan, sprinkle with the onion flakes and garlic powder.  Liberally salt and pepper.  Lay the slices of squash and eggplant on the sauce, alternating each type of veggie, overlapping each, all the way around and in the center. (sort of like in the movie, looks a little like a fan)  Salt and pepper, sprinkle with a few Tbsp Parmesan.  Layer more veggies, salt and pepper, Parmesan.  Repeat until you have about 3 to 4 layers, or you run out of veggies.  Sprinkle with remaining olive oil and any remaining Parmesan, and sprinkle with Italian seasoning blend.  Cover with aluminum foil, cook at 375 degrees for 45 to 55 minutes, or until tomato sauce is bubbling up around the edges of the veggies.  Serve!!

Fried Potatoes

2 leftover Perfect Baked Potatoes

Sour cream, about 1/2 cup

Parmesan, about 1/2 cup

2 Tbsp butter

Salt and pepper

Chop potatoes into bite-sized pieces.  Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add potatoes and fry until they start to brown a little.  Skin on or off is entirely up to you!  Once the potatoes are heated through and just a very little browned, remove from heat, stir in sour cream and Parmesan.  Serve!

Chocolate Chip Cake with Chocolate Pudding Pokes

Basic Yellow Cake recipe

3/4 c butter

3 eggs

2 1/2 c all purpose flour

2 1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1 3/4 c sugar

1 1/2 tsp vanilla

1 1/4 c milk

1/2 c chocolate chips

Allow butter and eggs to sit at room temp for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, grease and flour 9″ x 13″ baking pan.

In a medium bowl, mix together flour, baking powder and salt, set aside.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, beat butter on medium for 30 seconds.  Gradually add in sugar, beating on medium, until well combined.  Scrape sides of bowl, beat two minutes more.  Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Beat in vanilla.  Alternately add flour mixture and milk, beating on low after each addition, just until combined.  Stir in chocolate chips.  Spread batter into prepared pan.

Bake 25-30 minutes for 9″x13″ pan (I actualy had to put this back in for an extra 20 minutes before it was done, so I cooked 50 minutes)

Cakes are done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Cool completely in pan before frosting.

When cooled, poke holes in the cake with the handle of a wooden spoon.

Prepare instant chocolate pudding to package directions, family size package.  Pour over cake, making sure it gets into those holes and leaks down the sides a little.  Allow to cool in the fridge for about 30 minutes before serving.  YUM!


Ranch Fried Chicken, Bacon and Tomato sandwich

2 large boneless skinless chicken breasts

2 pkgs ranch dressing mix

2 cups flour, divided

3 eggs, lightly beaten

1 pound bacon

1 large tomato, sliced

Cut the bacon into about 1/2″ wide pieces, cook until crispy, remove to paper towel lined plate to drain, set aside.

Trim any excess skin or fat from the chicken, cut into chunks, then pound those to about 1/4″ thickness between two sheets of plastic wrap.

Put 1 cup plain flour in one wide shallow bowl.

Put the eggs, beaten, into another wide shallow bowl.

Mix the other cup of flour, ranch dressing mix, and a little salt and pepper, in a third wide shallow bowl.

Dip each piece of chicken first in the plain flour, then in the egg, then in the seasoned flour.  Fry in shallow oil over medium heat until golden brown and crisp.  Remove to paper towels to drain excess oil while cooking remaining chicken.  I can usually do 3-4 pieces at a time.

Serve on bread, toasted or not is up to you, with bacon, tomato and your choice of sauces.  YUM!


Jet’s Pizza


Chicken and Sausage with Tomato Sauce

3 large boneless skinless chicken breasts

1 rope Kielbasa

1 Jar spaghetti sauce

1 Tbsp garlic powder

1 Tbsp Italian seasoning blend

1/8 Tsp red pepper flakes

1 Tsp orange Everglades seasoning

1 Jar (that sauce jar!) water

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

Cut the sausage into roughly 2″ pieces.  Don’t cut the chicken, in fact, frozen works really well for this.

Put everything in a crock pot, mix a little, cook on LOW 8-10 hours.  Using a slotted spoon, fish out the chicken, which should be falling apart at this point, the sausage and beans, put on a serving platter.

Serve with rice or pasta, your choice, and a little of the sauce from the pot poured over each serving.

Parmesan Orzo

1/2 box Orzo style pasta

1 stick butter

1 c Parmesan

Cook pasta to package directions.  Drain.  Melt butter in the hot pan, add back in pasta, and add Parmesan.  Mix well and serve!

Steamed Veggies


Burritos and Taquitos

Frozen ones, sorry, no recipe this time!


Taco Bell

Yes, we ate out.  I just didn’t feel like cooking after working half the day, then housework, just didn’t have it in me!  But, once I ate dinner, I made…

Chicken soup

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

4 pkts chicken flavor Flavor boost

2 pkts vegetable flavor Flavor boost

4 quarts water

2 Tbsp green Everglades seasoning

1 Tsp garlic powder

1/2 bag frozen green beans

1/2 bag frozen sliced carrots

1/2 c frozen peas

1/2 box Orzo style pasta

In a LARGE stock pot, pour in water, add flavor packets and spices, mix well.  Add in chicken.  Cook over LOW heat about 2 hours.  Increase heat so that water boils, add in pasta, cook about 15-20 minutes, or until pasta is well done.  Reduce heat again, add in veggies, cook another 30 minutes.  Remove from heat, serve, or allow to cool and put into serving size containers.  Freezable!!  This made about a dozen large servings, about the same size as Chunky soup cans, but a lot better for you.


Breakfast for Dinner

Bacon, cooks crispy

Scrambled eggs with cheese

Crescent Rolls

Simple, quick meal that everyone loves.  I added a sliced tomato to my plate, but I’m the only one that likes them…

Apple Banana Dessert

1 small apple

1/4 cup dried banana slices

2 Tbsp brown sugar

1 Tbsp butter

1/4 C old fashioned oats

Core apple, cut into wedges, then slice the wedges into very small slices.  Put into a microwave safe bowl.  Add in the dried banana slices.  Top with the butter and brown sugar.  Microwave 1 minute, mix well, microwave another 4 minutes.  Allow to cool at least 5 minutes before serving!  Top with a little ice cream, YUM!!!

Anyway, that’s it for this week.  Hope you found something you want to try!!

Until next time, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 16

January 17, 2012 at 11:57 pm (Food) (, , , , , , , , , )

Welcome back food buddies!!

Today, we had BBQ beef sandwiches for dinner, they were YUMMY!!!  We also had some leftover potatoes and carrots from last night’s dinner, and a nice fresh salad with Italian dressing.  Still have a couple of those mini banana breads left from last night, but they won’t make it until tomorrow.

I got the idea for the BBQ beef from a friend, think I should give her credit (Candy Allman!).  Not sure exactly what she puts in hers, how long she cooks it or anything like that, but she made some over the weekend, and I said “I can do that!”  So, here’s my take on BBQ beef…

BBQ Beef

1 pot roast of your choice (I used an eye round roast for this**), 2-3 pounds

1-2 boxes beef broth

2 Tbsp garlic powder

1 1/2 – 2 cups BBQ sauce

Put the roast, beef broth and garlic powder in a slow cooker, cook on low 7-8 hours, or high 3-4 hours, or until the meat pulls apart easily with a fork.  Remove the roast from the pot, remove any remaining fat if desired, cut into thick slices, and shred with two forks, literally pull the meat apart.  Put the shredded beef into a large sauce pan, add 1 1/2 – 2 cups BBQ sauce of your choice, I used Great Value brand hickory flavored BBQ sauce.  Heat over medium low for about 15-20 minutes, or until hot.  Serve with sliced buns (I used fresh hard rolls), cole slaw if you want it (I wish I had some tonight, I love cole slaw on BBQ!), and whatever side dishes you want.  This would make a good picnic food, so other picnic foods would probably go well with it, like baked beans, fresh fruit, fruit salad, just whatever you want!  Also makes really good leftovers…

**So I have to tell you, I picked this roast because it doesn’t have a lot of excess fat, and once it’s cooked, it’s easy to see the fat and remove it.  Standing joke in my family, I do “surgery” on steaks before I eat them, have to remove anything that even remotely resembles fat, before I will eat it.  So of course, I couldn’t use a regular pot roast for this, or I would have been standing at that stove for hours removing all the fat, and there wouldn’t have been any BBQ for dinner because I would have gotten frustrated and threw the whole thing out!!

Anywho…  BBQ beef sandwiches are awesome!!  Dinner was a hit, and no roasts ended up in the trash, so it was a good meal.

Not sure what’s on the menu tomorrow just yet, thinking maybe cheese souffle…

Until then, eat well, love well, live well!!


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