April 29, 2011

Waikiki Chicken

This is a yummy baked chicken recipe that is tangy and sweet. I love the combination on pineapple and chicken and so does my husband. He gobbled this right up! It does make you feel like you are in Hawaii at a Luau when you are eating it. I wish it was as easy to get to Hawaii as it was to make this meal! Enjoy some paradise on me. :)

Waikiki Chicken
8 Chicken breasts (or chicken pieces)
1 tsp. salt
1/2 c. flour
1/3 c. oil ( I didn't use the oil.... just sprayed the pan)
1/4 tsp. pepper

Coat chicken with flour and brown in oil (or in sprayed pan). Put in a shallow pan (if your chicken has skin, place skin side up). Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Make sauce.

1 (20oz) can sliced pineapple (I just used cubed)
1 c. sugar
2 TB. cornstarch
1/4 c. apple cider vinegar
1 TB. soy sauce
1/4 tsp. ginger
1 chicken bouillon cube
1 green pepper, cut into 1/4 inch circles

Drain pineapple, pour juice into 2 cup measure and add water to make 1 3/4 c. In sauce pan, combine juice with other ingredients. Bring to boil, stirring constantly. Boil 2 minutes and pour over chicken. Bake for 30 min at 350. Add pineapple and green pepper . Bake 30 minutes more. Serve with rice.
(original: Barbara Davis)

April 26, 2011

Deviled Eggs

I'm cheating a little here.  Deviled eggs are not in the family cookbook, but they are a family recipe from my Bendheim side.  As I'm sure a lot of you are sick of eating your plain hard boiled eggs you colored for Easter - here's another yummy snack for your kids to try.  Here's what you'll need...

18 hard boiled eggs
6 TBS Mayonnaise (I used light)
2 tsp. Mustard
3 tsp. pickle juice.
Salt and Pepper
1/2 a stick of celery - finely chopped
2 kosher dill halves - finely chopped
Paprika for dusting

For hard boiling eggs, I put eggs and water in a pot and bring to a boil, then turn off the flame, cover, and let sit for 12 minutes.  They come out perfect every time.  

Next cut your eggs in half and pop out the yolks .
 Add mayonnaise, mustard, salt pepper and pickle juice (add more or less to get the right consistency)
 Last add your pickles and celery.  Then scoop the mixture into your empty whites.
 Give it a final dusting of paprika and they are ready to serve.

April 22, 2011

Chicken Potato Casserole

This Chicken Potato Casserole was one of my favorites as a kid... and still is! Cutting out most of the butter makes it a healthy dish as well. You got your protein, complex carbs and veggies all in one dish! Did I mention it is also yummy and a great meal for kids? It is a real crowd pleaser!

1-(24oz) package frozen, shredded hash browns
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. white or black pepper
1 TB. butter (original recipe calls for 10!)
2/3 c. chopped onions
4 TB. flour
2 c. milk
2 chicken bouillon cubes
1/2 tsp. basil
1/2 tsp. worcestershire sauce
4 c. cooked chicken breast
1 c. frozen peas
Thaw and drain hash browns. Mix with 1 1/2 tsp. salt, 1/4 tsp. pepper and 6 TB butter (or you can choose to omit the butter... you don't need it to make it work). Save 1 c. for topping; press the rest of potato mixture into the bottom of 9x13" pan. Pelt remaining 4 TB of butter (or just 1 TB for low fat option) and cook onions until soft. Stir in flour and then gradually stir in milk. Cook until mixture boils, continuing to stir frequently until it thickens. Stir in 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper, bouillon, basil and worcestershire sauce. Add peas and chicken pieces. Mix well.
Pour mixture over potatoes and sprinkle 1 c. of reserved potatoes over top. Bake at 375 for 30 minutes. Serves 8

April 21, 2011

Mexican Corn Dip

This dip is YUMMY and easy.  I made it for a baby shower.  Then we finished off the left overs at my parents house during General Conference.  I accidentally put in double the jalapeno's which made it a little spicier than usual.  Luckily we like spice around here.  So here you go...
Mexican Corn Dip
2 (11oz) cans of Mexican corn with red peepers, drained
1/2 a 4oz can diced jalapeno, drained
2 c. mayonnaise (I used light - I always use light)
2 c. shredded Mexican-style cheese
1/12 c. shredded Parmesan cheese

 Mix everything together and put in greased (I used pam) casserole dish.  Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes.  Then serve them up with some yummy chips.
I must warn you that you will probably eat too much of this.  I always do.

April 18, 2011

Healthier Fabulous Lasagna! (Gluten Free Option)

This is my version of "The Best Lasagna. Ever"! I wanted to make it healthier and make a few changes to make it simple, yet healthy. This time when I made it, I was making it for a friend who is off gluten at the moment. So I made it with rice lasagna noodles instead of the regular noodles. You can make it either way. If you want it gluten free, you can use De Boles noodles that you don't even have to boil making this recipe even easier! I don't want to boast... but this lasagna is delicious!!! Even your little ones will like it. James doesn't have teeth yet and even he enjoyed it!


  • 1-½ pound 4% fat Ground Beef
  • 2 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 2 cans (14.5 Ounce) Whole Tomatoes
  • 2 cans (6 Ounce) Tomato Paste
  • 4 Tablespoons Dried Italian Seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 3 cups fat free Cottage Cheese
  • 2 whole Beaten Eggs
  • ½ cups Grated (not Shredded) Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 Tablespoons Italian Seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup Shredded Light Mozzarella Cheese
  • 1 package (10 Ounce) Lasagna Noodles
  • (add 1/2 Teaspoon Salt And 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil To Pasta Water)

Preparation Instructions

Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet or saucepan, combine ground beef and garlic. Cook over medium-high heat until browned. Drain any fat, if desired. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, 2 tablespoons of Italian seasoning and salt. After adding the tomatoes, the sauce mixture should simmer for 45 minutes while you are working on the other steps.

In a medium bowl, mix cottage cheese, beaten eggs, grated Parmesan, 2 more tablespoons Italian seasoning, and 1 more teaspoon salt. Stir together well. Set aside. Cook lasagna until “al dente” (not overly cooked). Or if using non-boil noodles, you get to skip this step J

To assemble:

Arrange 4 lasagna noodles in the bottom of a baking pan, overlapping if necessary. Spoon half the cottage cheese mixture over the noodles. Spread evenly. Cover cottage cheese with half of the mozzarella. Spoon a little less than half the meat/sauce mixture over the top.

Repeat, ending with meat/sauce mixture. Sprinkle top generously with extra Parmesan and mozzarella.

Either freeze, refrigerate for up to two days, or bake immediately: 350-degree oven for 30 minutes, or until top is hot and bubbly.

April 15, 2011

Mom's chocolate chip cookies

So many fond memories of these cookies. I use to love to freeze these and then eat them straight out of the freezer, letting them defrost in my mouth. They are are the best chocolate chip cookies I have tasted! Haws makes a close runner up, but I have to stay true to these. We had some people over for dinner and planned to make pizookies. We realized half way in that we didn't have enough chocolate chips to make the whole batch, so we made two pizzokies. One with semi-sweet chips and one with white chocolate chips. Then we saved the batter until I bought some more semi-sweet chips to make the cookies. I was surprised by how much I like the white chocolate chips pizookie. I think next time I will make more cookies with the white chips.

1 c. butter
1 c. shortening ( I just used 2 c. butter because I refuse to use shortening. If you choose to do the same, just know that your cookies will be a little more flat, but just as delicious.)
2 c. sugar
2 c. brown sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
4 1/2 c. flour
2 tsp. soda
2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
2 c. chocolate chips
2 c. chopped nuts (optional)

Cream butter, shortening (if using) and sugars together. Add eggs and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Add flour, soda, salt and cinnamon. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Place golf ball-sized dough on greased cookie sheets. Bake at 350 for about 10 min or until little cracks appear but cookies are still soft.

For the pizookies, we place about 1 c. of the cookie dough into pie tins, spread out and baked about 15 min.
Adding in the chocolate chips with the rest of the dough.

April 14, 2011

Sweet and Spicy Crockpot Chicken

Since I work full time I am all about the easy meals. One of my favorite kitchen essentials is the crockpot. I love my crockpot and what I love even more then my crockpot is amazing, delicious, recipes that I can make using my crock pot. This chicken is divine. So good! Perfect for taco night, burrito night, chicken salad night, basically any night you feel like chicken!

1 1lb boneless, skinless chicken breast
14 oz can of petite diced tomatoes, undrained
1/3 c. brown sugar
1/4 to 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper

Coat the inside of your crockpot with nonstick cooking spray. Place all ingredients in the crockpot. Cook on high for 4-6 hours or low for 8-10 hours or until chick shreds easily with fork. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve in corn or flour tortillas.

April 11, 2011

Meat Sauce

This pasta sauce is delicious, Johns absolute favorite, but definitely labor intensive!

Here's what you'll need:

2 tbsp butter
4 tbsp olive oil
2 medium onions, finely chopped
4 tbs pancetta (unsmoked bacon), finely chopped
2-3 carrots, finely sliced
2-3 stalks of celery, finely sliced
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
12 oz 8% fat ground beef
12 oz reduced fat ground pork sausage
salt and pepper
1 1/3 cup red wine
1 cup milk
280z canned plum tomatoes, chopped (or squished with your fingers - that's what I do), with their juice
2 bay leafs
1/2 tsp fresh thyme leaves

And here's your 11 step plan

1. with a bit of oil, brown meat (season with salt and pepper) in big pot and then take out and set aside.

2. In the same pot, heat oil and butter. Add onion and cook over medium heat 3-4 minutes.

3. Add pancetta and cook until onion is translucent.

4. Stir in the carrots, celery, and garlic. Cook another 3-4 minutes.

5. While that is cooking finely finely chop up your ground meat until it's super tincy.

6. Add meat back to pot.
7. Pour in the wine, raise heat, and cook until liquid evaporates. 3-4 minutes.
8. Add milk and cook until liquid evaporates.
9. Stir in the tomatoes with their juice and the herbs. Bring sauce to boil

10. Reduce heat to low, and simmer uncovered for 1 1/2-2 hours.
11. Check seasoning before serving.

Now for the pasta. I'm sure you all know how to boil pasta, but here are our suggestions. After you put the pasta in the boiling water, add a big handful of salt. Here's my picture to show you I mean a BIG HANDFUL!

And...The most important thing to super yummy pasta is shorten the cooking time on your noodles. I mean if the box says 12 minutes, it's done in no longer than 6 minutes. For spaghetti, when it's still raw just barely in the middle drain and toss with sauce and by the time it hits your mouth it's perfect.

April 8, 2011

Swiss Chicken & Broccoli Crepes and Aunt LaRee's Carrot Cake

We had the missionaries, some church friends and my mom (dad was at the final four... lucky!) over for dinner last Sunday. I wanted to make something special/different, so I turned to the family cook book and decided on crepes! Now, I have had and made dessert crepes before, but never made crepes as the main dish. These took some work, but were totally worth the effort! The crepes add a touch of sweetness to the meal and the sauce mixed with the broccoli and chicken was delicious! Everyone enjoyed it along with the carrot cake I made. I will give you that recipe too while I am at it :)

Swiss Chicken & Broccoli Crepes

1 (10oz) bag of frozen, chopped broccoli
2 TB. butter
2 TB. flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 1/2 c. milk
3/4 c. shredded swiss cheese (I used light cheese)
2 c. chopped, cooked chicken
12 crepes*

Cook broccoli according to package, drain and set aside. For sauce, melt butter in medium sauce pan. Blend in flour, salt and nutmeg. Add milk all at once and stir until thick and bubbly. Cook for 2 more minutes, stirring constantly. Add swiss cheese, stir until melted; set aside. For filling: combine chicken, broccoli and 1 cup of sauce.

Spoon about 1/4 c - 1/2 c (depending on the size of crepe) along the center of the unbrowned side of each crepe. Roll up crepe and place seam-side up in a baking dish.

Pour remaining remaining cheese sauce over crepes. Sprinkle with paprika if you like. Cover and bake in 375 degree oven for 18-20 minutes.

My mom and James. Had to post this picture of the woman behind a lot of these recipes (and my sweet baby James :)

*Crepe recipe

3/4 c. cold milk
3/4 c. cold water
3 eggs
1 TB. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/3 c flour
5 TB. melted butter
cooking spray

In a blender, combine all the ingredients and blend for 1 minute on high. Refrigerate for 2 hours. Spray skillet or crepe pan and place over med-high heat. When the pan is just beginning to smoke, remove from heat and pour 1/4 c of the batter in the middle of the pan and quickly tilt in all directions for 2 to 3 seconds to evenly distribute the batter. Return the pan to the heat and when slightly browned on the underside, turn the crepe with the spatula onto the other side and cook for a few seconds. Remove from pan. Repeat with remaining batter.

Carrot Cake

1 1/2 c. oil
2 c. sugar
4 eggs
2 c. sifted flour (I used white wheat flour)
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
3 c. grated carrots
1 c. chopped nuts (I used walnuts)

Blend oil and sugar together. Add 1 egg at a time and beat well after each. Mix and sift dry ingredients together, then add to sugar mixture. Add carrots and nuts last. Bake at 350 for 50 minutes or until done.

1- 8oz cream cheese, softened (I used light cream cheese)
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cube butter, softened
1 box powdered sugar.

Whip all ingredients together until fluffy.

April 7, 2011

Tex-Mex Dip

I call this dip the 7 layer dip. This is one of the best chip dips I have ever tasted. There is something about a crunchy chip dipped in such a yummy mixture of pure heaven! haha. I make this for all sorts of parties. It is always requested for super bowl, anytime we make tacos, and basically whenever Chase feels like it he will say "oh that dip would go perfect with..." he loves it just as much as I do. So enjoy!

1 28 oz can of refried beans or 1 can of frito-lay bean dip

Mix Together: 3 medium avocados, 2 Tablespoons of Lemon Juice, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper

Mix Together: 1 c. sour cream, 1/2 of mayo, 1 pkg of taco seasoning

1 bunch of green onions
3 tomatoes, chopped
1 small can of chopped olives ( I dont like olives so I never do this layer)
8 oz of cheddar cheese

Layer as Follows:
Spread bean dip on bottom of platter or pizza pan. Cover with avocado mixture. Then cover with sour cream layer. Sprinkle chopped onions, tomatoes, olives, then Cheddar Cheese. Chill and Serve!

April 4, 2011

White Chocolate Raspberry Almond Bars

(aka White Chocolate Brownies)
Yum Yum!

1 1/2 c. butter
36 oz. white chocolate chips
6 eggs
1 1/2 c. sugar
3 c. flour
1 1/2. tsp. salt
1 T. almond extract
1 1/2 c. seedless raspberry jam (I just used the whole bottle - it's just so yummy)
3/4 c. sliced almonds

Spray a 12x17-inch cookie sheet with cooking spray.  Melt butter and while it's still hot add 18 oz of the white chocolate chips and let stand.  In a mixer beat eggs until foamy, then add sugar and beat until they are lemon colored.  Add the butter/chocolate mixture and mix until combined.  Add flour, salt and extract and beat until combined.  Spread 1/2 of the batter on the cookie sheet then bake at 325 for 15-20 minutes.

(either my oven or cookie sheet is seriously uneven!)

Next stir the remaining white chocolate chips into the other half of the batter.  Heat the jam in the microwave or on the stove over low heat until it's melted, then spread the melted jam over the warm crust.
 Finally spoon the remaining batter on top of the jam and spread carefully.  Sprinkle with sliced almonds and Bake at 325 for 30-35 minutes.
Let it cool before cutting.  These are delicious treats and one of my absolute favorite desserts.  I made them for a baby shower last week - and froze half of them for another baby shower this week.  They freeze really well.  In fact, I've been known to make a whole batch just for me my family and stick them in the freezer, taking a couple out each day.

April 3, 2011

Ham, Cheese, and Potato Quiche

This is one of our all time favorite Quiche's. Chase request this about once a month. I love it because you can eat it for breakfast, lunch or dinner. I love eating breakfast foods for dinner, its always been one of my favorite things to do! One of my all time favorite foods is potato's, so the fact that this quiche has a potato crust instead of pie crust is just divine! This is one of my to go to meal when feeding people breakfast for Sunday mornings, so quick and easy. Enjoy!

24 oz pkg frozen shredded hash brown potatoes, thawed
1/2 c. butter
6 eggs
1 c. whipping cream
1 tsp. Lawry's seasoned salt
3 c. cubed ham
2 c. shredded cheddar cheese
1 c. shredded Swiss cheese

Mix hash browns and melted butter. Put in bottom and sides of a 9x13 pan and bake at 325 for 25 minutes

Mix ham and cheese together and put on top of potatoes. Mix eggs, cream, and salt and pour over ham and cheese.
Bake for 40 minutes. serve hot

April 2, 2011

Strawberry Freezer Jam- Lower sugar version

My mom's homemade strawberry jam is always a hit! Especially when combined with her crescent rolls ( I will make those at some point in time ). The secret is that the recipe comes from the sure-jell box! Yes, it is true. Not an original recipe, but still worth sharing. I wanted to try the lower sugar version the last time we made jam and I was pleasantly surprised about how good it was! It still has sugar in it, just not as much. It has more strawberry taste since it calls for more fruit. I may actually like this version more, so I wanted to share it with all of you. This jam is super easy to make. We made about 14 jars in just over an hour.

Low Sugar Version:

4 cups prepared fruit (we use the frozen strawberries from costco and defrost them)
3 cups sugar, measured into separate bowl
1 box SURE.JELL For Less or No Sugar Needed Recipes Premium Fruit Pectin
1 cup water
make it

RINSE clean glass jars with boiling water. Dry thoroughly.

CRUSH strawberries thoroughly. I used a blender and just pulsed to make sure there were still pieces of berry. You don't want to blend it too much. Measure exactly 4 cups crushed/blended strawberries into large bowl.

MIX sugar and pectin in large saucepan. Stir in water. Bring to boil on medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute. Remove from heat. Add strawberries; stir 1 minute or until well blended.

FILL all jars immediately to within 1/2 inch of tops. Wipe off top edges of jars; immediately cover with lids. Let stand at room temperature 24 hours. Jam is now ready to use. Store in refrigerator up to 3 weeks or freeze extra containers up to 1 year. Thaw in refrigerator before using."

For the original full sugar recipe... click here.