Thursday, December 31, 2009

Hoppin John by Elizabeth Eastmond

Yeah!!! my first "guest" post. If you want to share you recipes with me (us) than please email me, I would love to have your family favorite :)

For a time we lived in the south--Arlington, Texas--to be exact. Every region of the country has their food traditions and one famous one for that area is serving a dish called "Hoppin' John" for New Year's Eve. Basically it's a combination of black-eyed peas, brown rice, sausage and bacon all simmered together. I got the recipe from my cross-the-street-neighbor, Margaret Hall, who brought some over one New Year's Day. "Oh, you have to try it!" she said. "It brings good luck to the new year." I ate it, and was hooked. As for good luck? Well, that was the year one of my children was born--a baby a sure sign of good luck if I ever saw one.

Happy New Year and Enjoy!
Elizabeth Eastmond

Hoppin' John
Prepare separately:
1 cup brown rice (when cooked yield is 3 cups)
1 pound Jimmy Dean's Sage sausage, browned and drained
1 pound bacon, chopped and cooked
1 onion, chopped
1 bunch celery, chopped
3 16-oz. cans black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
a few drops of Tobasco sauce, to taste
salt and pepper (check first, as the bacon can add enough salt)

Add all to a crock pot. It is ready when hot (2-3 hours). You can also do this stovetop, adding chicken broth as necessary to keep it moist. I've also heard it can be made with white rice, or spicy-hot sausage, although I've never tried that.

We like serving it with freshly baked tortillas, or gritty corn chips for scooping. It's always better the next day too, so enjoy it on New Year's Day while you take down the Christmas tree.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Carmel Popcorn

6 qt popped corn
1 cup butter
2 Cups brown sugar
1/2 cup karo syrup
1 tsp salt
1 Tbsp vanilla
1/2 tsp baking soda

put butter, sugar, karo and salt in sauce pan. Cook on medium heat, bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Let boil for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and add vanilla and baking soda. Mix with popcorn, cook in oven at 250 for 45 minutes. I put the popcorn in a big metal bowl. You will need to stir the popcorn every 15 minutes while baking.

Place on sprayed wax paper to cool

Recipe from Cindi McNiven

Easy Bake oven Chocolate cake

I don't know about all of you, but I have a little girl that LOVES to bake. So it only made sense that Santa brought her an Easy Bake Oven for Christmas. I was so excited when I saw what Santa choose, until I went to the store to buy "Mixes". WHAT A RIP! They want $5.69 for enough cake batter for two (Very small) cake pans. NOT! So to the web I went.... and I did find, oh yes... so here is the first, there will be more to come.


Easy Bake Oven Recipe
Children's Chocolate Cake Mix
1 cup sugar
3 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup vegetable shortening

In a medium bowl, combine sugar, cocoa powder, flour, baking soda and salt. Stir with a wire whisk until blended. With a pastry blender, cut in shortening until evenly distributed and mixture resembles corn meal. Spoon about 1/3 cup of the mixture into each of 11 small containers with tight fitting lids or ziplock bags. Seal containers. Label with date and contents. Store in a cool dry place. Use within 12 weeks. Makes 11 packages of Children's Chocolate Cake Mix for Easy Bake Style Oven.

To Use:
1 package cake mix
4 teaspoons water

Mix together and stir with a fork or spoon until blended and smooth. Pour mixture into greased and floured 4 inch round miniature baking pan. Follow directions for child's oven, or bake in Mom's preheated 375° oven for 12 to 13 minutes. Remove from oven and cool in pan on a rack for 5 minutes. Invert onto a small plate and remove pan. When cool, frost with Children's Chocolate Frosting. Serves 2 children.

Turkey cutlets with rosemary and shallots

My hub-o-love got me a subscription to EVERYDAY food by Martha Stewart! When I thumbed through it on Christmas day I found this recipe. It was delicious, easy too!

1 boneless turkey-breast half, sliced on the diagonal into 8 cutlets
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
Course salt and ground pepper
4 shallots, quartered lengthwise
1/2 cup dry white wine (I used chicken broth)
5 sprigs rosemary (about 1 inch each)
1 Tablespoon cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces

1. One at a time, place turkey cutlets between two sheets plastic wrap, using meat mallet or heavy skillet, pound cutlets to 1/4 inch thickness. In a large skillet, heat 1 Tbsp oil over medium-high heat. Season turkey with salt and pepper. In batches, cook turkey until cooked through, 1 to 2 minutes er side (add up to 1 Tbsp oil if needed, reducing hear to medium if skillet becomes too dark). Transfer turkey to plate and cover.

2. Add 1 Tbsp oil and shallots to skillet; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until shallots are tender, about 4 minutes. Add wine and rosemary and cook until syrupy, about 3 minutes. Add broth and cook until reduced by half, about 2 minutes. Return turkey to skillet and cool until warmed through, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in butter; season with salt and pepper. Serve with potatoes (I did mashed)

Recipe from EVERYDAY FOOD by Martha Stewart

Monday, December 28, 2009

"Ugly Dip" (Salsa)

Two years ago, when we first moved here, I was asked to be in a "meal group" It was FANTASTIC! Monday-wednesday dinner was brought to my door, hot and ready to eat, then on Thursdays it was my turn to make and take dinner. There was a girl in the group, Breanne, she cooked the MOST amazing foods, as did everyone. This is her salsa recipe, called Ugly dip (Yes, you know me... I LOVE the name!)


5-6 green onions, chopped
1 small can chopped olives
3 tomatoes, chopped
1 1/2 tsp vineager
3 Tbs. olive oil
1 can of Jalapeno salsa (I couldn't find this for the LONGEST time, so I have included a picture of the can. I know... I rock!)

Recipe from Breanne Street

White Bean Chicken Chili

A year ago (I can't believe it's already been a year) I had my third child and at the ripe age of 30 and because of it, I contracted a heart disease called Peripartum Cardiomyopahty. It completely changed my life, I couldn't do ANYTHING, and for the first 3 months our ward (Church) brought us in dinner every other night. It was a HUGE Blessing and this was one of the dinners we got. Miss amazing, @CyndyMickelson gave me her recipe for this chicken chili. YUM. Stick it in a crock pot for the day and forget about it.

3 cans Great Northern White Beans
3 chicken breast (1/2's) cook-season with below spices and cut up into small cubes
1 T. olive oil
1 Med Onion chopped
4 t. garlic
2-4oz can chopped green chilies
1 can chicken broth
3 c. grated jack cheese
2 t. cumin
1 1/2 t. oregano
1/4 t. gr. cloves
1/4 t cayenne pepper
S & P

Cook chicken cut into small cubes and season. Saute onion, garlic in oil, add chilies and saute for 2 min. Add beans, chicken broth, onion mixture & chicken to large pot or crock pot. Simmer for 2 hours. Then add cheese and let it melt. Season with S&P. Garnish with sour cream and salsa and fresh snipped cilantro.
Yummy on a "cold" day.

Number Of Servings:Probably 6-8

Recipe from Cyndy Mickelson

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Oriental Glazed Chicken

I found this recipe in a Family Circle magazine and gave it a try. I changed the original version to be a little better, I hope. Good luck.

(I got a new camera.... aren't the pictures AMAZING!)

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
1/4 cup light soy sauce (I used regular)
1/4 cup honey
3 Tbls vegetable oil
2 Tbls chili sauce (I didn't have any so I used taco sauce)
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 cup chicken broth
1 Tbls cornstarch
2 cups coleslaw mix
1 cup salted cashews, chopped
3 cups cooked rice

Place chicken in a baking dish for marinating. In a small bowl, mix together soy sauce, honey, 2 Tbls of the vegetable oil, the chili sauce, ginger and garlic powder. Pour over chicken and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Mix together the broth and cornstarch and set aside.

Heat large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and marinade and bring to a hard simmer, cooking chicken completely. Remove chicken and set aside. Also set aside left over juice from pan.

Add remaining oil to skillet and add coleslaw mix. Cook, stirring until tender, about 4 minutes. Remove from pan into a bowl for serving. Pour back in both/cornstarch mixture and bring to boil until thickens, add back in chicken and cook until warm.

To assemble: Put rice in bowl, add tender cabbage and chicken on top, you can either spoon over cooked marinade of broth mixture from chicken. Then add chopped cashews.

Recipe from Family Fun.

Stuffed Mushrooms

I make these every time there is a party and they are always a hit. and with only 4 ingredients, how can you go wrong!


1 package of Italian Sausage (remove the casing)
1 tsp garlic powder
1 8oz package of cream cheese
45-50 white mushrooms or Crimini's whatever you prefer

Once you have removed the slimy casing place in skillet and brown sausage until completely cooked. While cooking add the garlic powder. Drain. Add back into pan and add cream cheese, stirring to combine. set aside. Wash the mushrooms with a damp cloth, snap out the stem, fill with sausage/cream cheese mixture.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

Recipe is from a friend in Kingman, Cindy McNiven.

Monday, December 21, 2009


So my friend Cyndy dropped this off to my house this morning and I knew from the second I saw it I would have to get that recipe out of her, and surprisingly enough she didn't even put up a fight. So you can all thank @CyndyMickelson for this recipe. I know I do!

Ingredients for the powder mix:

1 cup orange tang (I know right!)
3 cups sugar
12 oz lemonade mix (like Countrytime)
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves

Makes 46 cups.

I know Cyndy doubled the recipe and made 15 jars (I think that is what she said)

How to make the drink:

Add 2 Tablespoons of the mix (recipe above) to 1 cup boiling water

Recipe came from the one and only Cyndy M. Love ya!


Everytime I make this I "wow" people. It really is pretty easy and you get a HUGE response. Make it this holiday season.

4 sticks real butter melted
2 ½ cups chopped walnuts
1/8 cup sugar
3 tsp cinnamon
1 pound Filo dough
Mix together nuts, sugar and cinnamon, set aside. Brush cookie sheet with some of the melted butter. Place one sheet of filo carefully in the pan. Brush melted butter. Repeat until there are 6 layers of filo.
Sprinkle 1/3 of the sugar mixture
Layer two leaves of filo on top of the nut mixture, brush with butter, layer 4 more sheets, one at a time, brushing each with butter. Sprinkle 1/3 of the sugar mixture
Layer two leaves of filo on top of the nut mixture, brush with butter
Sprinkle last 1/3 nuts on top. Repeat layering of filo until all layers areused. Brush top layer with butter. With a small sharp knife, sore the top of the pastry with parallel diagonal lines about ½ inch deep and two inches apart, then cross them diagonally to form diamond shapes. Bake in the middle of a 350F oven for 30 minutes. Reduce the heat to 300 and bake for 45 minutes longer or until the top is golden brown.
Meanwhile, make the syrup
1 ½ cups sugar
¾ cup water
1 tbls FRESH lemon juice
1 Tbls honey
Combine sugar, water and lemon juice in a small sauce pan and stirring constantly, cook over moderate heat until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat to high and timing from the moment the syrup boils, cook briskly, umncovered for about 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the honey. Pour the syrup over it slowly, up and down all the scored. Cool to room temp and cut just before serving.

Recipe is from my Mom

Captain Crunch French Toast

I saw this on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives on the Food network and it looked delicious, so away I went to the good ol' web and found TONS of variations. So decided to make my own. They were crunchy and fantastic!

3 large eggs
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 cup butter
1 (16 ounce) box Cap'n Crunch cereal (don't use the cheaper brands)
1 loaf Texas toast thick bread

1.Pour Cap'n Crunch into a gallon-size zip lock bag and crush to a course meal -- make sure there are a few good size pieces in the mix. Pour into a 9x13 pan in order to dredge properly.
2.Combine eggs, sugar, cream, vanilla, and spices in a large bowl. It will have the consistency of custard.
3.Soak each slice of Texas Toast in wet ingredients, 30 seconds each side. Be sure the edges are moist, too.
4.Dredge in Cap'n Crunch, lightly press onto each side, and around the crust. Place on parchment paper until all slices are coated.
5.Heat 2 tbs. butter in large skillet, then gently place slices in pan; two at a time.
6.Cook three minutes per side. Place on parchment covered baking pan in a warm oven.


Saturday, December 19, 2009

Best Chicken EVER! (really!)

again... no picture on this one, but because I liked the chicken so much I am SURE I am going to make it again soon...


boneless, skinless chicken breasts (however many it takes to feed your family)
Montreaal Chicken Seasoning
Salt and Pepper
2 Tb olive oil

Heat oil in a frying pan until med to med-high heat. Place chicken in pan and sprinkle with salt and pepper and montreal seasoning. Cook for about 3-4 minutes on one side, then flip over and season same as before. After it has cooked for 6-8 minutes total place pan into 350 degree oven. bake for 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven WITH OVEN MITT (I forgot that part) and place on plate and cover with tinfoil for about 5 minutes.

The chicken has the YUMMIEST flavor and it so very tender.

I made this recipe with the Thai Chicken Wraps, and they were delicious!

Thai Chicken Wraps

So... our camera died. dead. So sad, I know... so this entry doesn't have a picture which is unfortunate because it was YUM and looked cool too! So picture something delicious, good luck!

Red onion cut into thin wedges
2 cups chopped green cabbage
1 cup shredded carrots
4 green onions, sliced
1 Tb grated ginger root
2 tsp minced garlic
2 Tb oil

Cooked Rice
tortillas (the ones you cook)
Cooked chicken chopped or shredded

Peanut sauce (recipe below)

Cooke red onion in oil until tender. Add cabbage, carrots, green onion, ginger root and garlic. Cook 2-3 minutes. Lay cooked tortilla on sheet and lay chicken, rice and vegetable along the length of one side. Drizzle with peanut sauce and roll the tortilla. Slice in half and serve the peanut sauce on the side for dipping.

Thai Peanut Sauce:

1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup sugar
3 Tb soy sauce
2-4 tsp minced garlic
3 Tb water
2 Tb oil

Cook in saucepan on low to med heat to dissolve sugar. stir often. (I actually forgot to read this part and served my sauce uncooked and it was still VERY yummy)

Recipe from Breanne Street (miss her and her cooking)

Christmas Cookies

These are David's family favorites. We have made them every year since we got married. They are made with pecans, but because we have a little guy with a nut allergy we just leave them out. They don't last long and make sure to have some milk handy... you will need it!


1/4 cup sugar
1 cup butter or marg.
2 cup flour
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup finely chopped pecans

cream together sugar and butter. Beat in flour, vanilla and salt, stir in nuts. Use scant tsp, roll into ball and put on ungreased cookie sheet (about 30 on a sheet). Use finger to put print in the center of each cookie BEFORE BAKING. Once out of the oven fill with frosting (recipe below)

1 Tsp butter or marg.
1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp almond flavoring
red or green food coloring

mix with whole milk or canned milk.

Recipe is from David's mom, SueAnn Charon

Christmas Kiss Cookies

Cream together:
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar

1 egg
2 Tablespoons Milk
1 tsp vanilla extract

mix together then add to creamed mixture:
1 3/4 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

form into balls about 1 inch in diameter, roll in granulated (white) sugar. Baking in a 350 degree oven for about 8-10 minutes, or until set. Take out of oven and immediately press a chocolate kiss into center. Remove to wire rack to finish cooling. Kisses will get soft but will firm up again as the cookie cools. These take a LONG time to cool (like an hour or more)

Recipe from my Mom.... Elizabeth

Monday, December 14, 2009

Black and White mint Truffles


1 package creme filled chocolate cookies (I used the mint ones)
1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
36 oz vanilla flavored candy coating (almond bark) I used chocolate as well
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 tsp vegetable oil
cocoa for dusting

1. line 2 cookie sheets with waxed paper/ Place cookies in large food processor. Cover, process with on and off pulses until consistency of fine bread crumbs. IN large bowl, stir cookie crumbs and cream cheese until well blended (I just added the cream cheese in the food processor) it will be like a dough consistency.

2. Chop 8 oz of the candy coating, stir into the dough mixture. Roll dough into 1-inch balls, place on cookie sheet. Freeze for 30 minutes or until VERY firm.

3. In small microwaveable bowl, microwave half of remaining 28 oz candy coating on high for 1 minute at 30 second intervals. Stir. Continue microwaving and stirring in 15 second intervals until melted and smooth.

4. Remove half of the balls from freezer, using 2 forks roll each ball in coating, return to cookie sheet. Melt remaining candy coating and dip remaining balls.

5. in 1 quart resealable freezer plastic bag place chocolate chips and oil. seal bag. Microwave on high 35 to 50 seconds, squeezing chips in bag every 15 seconds until chips are melted and mixture is smooth. Cut small tip from bottom corner of bag. Drizzle chocolate over truffles, and sprinkle with cocoa. Store covered in refrigerator.

Recipe from Mrs. Bliss and Betty Crocker Christmas Cookies

Peppermint Pretzels


Pretzel rods
White almond bark (melting chocolate)
Andes Peppermint bites

Dip pretzels in white melted chocolate, sprinkle with Andes Peppermint bites. Let cool, the chocolate gets hard when completely cooled. Eat. YUM!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


In a word: YUM!


3 large cans of diced tomatoes (28 oz)
2 onions, chopped
1 bunch of cilantro, chopped
1 Tbs garlic, about 3 or 4 cloves
2 cans diced chilies
1 can diced jalapenos
2 Tbs lime juice
Salt and pepper to taste
a dash of red pepper flakes (don't use if you don't want it with a kick)

I add 1 can of tomatoes with all onions, cilantro and blend in blender. Then I pour that into a bowl and blend everything else and combine, then salt and pepper to taste.

Recipe from Tyla Watson

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Biscuits disguised as cinnamon rolls :)

My kids were requesting cinnamon rolls this past Sunday morning, and since I didn't have any yeast, this seemed like a good option, and I remember my Mom making them the same way when I was younger... YUM!


2 cups white flour
1/2 tsp cream of tarter
2 tsp sugar
4 tsp baking powder
1 stick margarine
2/3 cup milk

Mix flour, cream of tarter, sugar and baking powder in a bowl. Using a pastry cutter, incorporate the stick of margarine until pebbly. gradually add 2/3 cup milk, knead 5 times on floured surface. Shape into biscuits. Bake at 425F for 7-8 minutes.

Sometimes I add fresh herbs for a yummier taste.

To make these into cinnamon rolls:

roll out dough into a large rectangle. Using a pastry brush, brush on melted butter. Then sprinkle brown sugar and cinnamon. Bake for 7-8 minutes. When they come out of the oven drizzle with a glaze made out of powdered sugar and milk.

Recipe for biscuits is from Lucinda Meyers Milton