Archive for May, 2011

Dinner Rolls

Happy Memorial Day! It’s been a great day. We started the day at a Memorial Day service that really reminded me why we celebrate Memorial Day and brought me back to the real meaning of the day. Sometimes it seems we get caught in the hustle and bustle of life and forget how much we really have to be thankful for in our country. If any of you are serving the armed forces or have served, lost a family member or have someone overseas I would like to personally thank you and your family for all of the sacrifices that you have made for our country.

As the weekend winds down it’s nice to think that I only have four days of work this week and then off to our first camping adventure of the year. Lots to get ready before then including cleaning out that camper. I’m really looking forward to a relaxing weekend at the lake with family and friends. The weather looks gorgeous for the weekend so I’m hoping mother nature cooperates with us and it holds out for that long. Speaking of weather wow was it a hot and windy one today. We tried to turn our central air on tonight and unfortunately my hubby is sitting on the couch quite defeated because we can’t get it to kick in so it looks like we are calling to get it serviced tomorrow. It’s only a few years old so hopefully it’s nothing major but it could be a toasty one tonight in our house! The recipe that I’m sharing with you tonight was a first for me. I stole my mom’s bread maker because she never used it. I remember she got it for some kind of present when I was probably around 10 and it’s collected dust ever since one attempt at bread that didn’t go to well. Looking back it was one of those presents dad bought for her because he wanted homemade bread. Heads up to the men out there this is not a great idea and it will probably backfire! I’m afraid after she gets a taste of these dinner rolls she might reclaim her bread maker because they were divine. I’m hoping not. I brought them to dinner today at my in-laws and a young gentleman told me they rivaled his grandma’s but in case I ever met her I was suppose to keep this on the down low because she might take offense to that! These make wonderful buns for sandwiches or burgers too. Enjoy!

Dinner Rolls
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1 c. warm water (80-90 degrees)
2 Tablespoons butter
1 egg
3 1/4 c. flour
1/4 c. sugar
1 tsp salt
3 tsp bread machine yeast or quick-acting active dry yeast

1. Put ingredients in your bread machine in the order listed. Put yeast in on top without letting it touch the wet ingredients. I made a little dent in the top and put the yeast in there.

2. Set your machine on the dough setting then start it. Go have a glass of wine, run errands or take a nap this cycle takes about a hour.

3. When dough is ready, lay it out on a floured smooth surface. Make into a rectangular shape. Cut rolls with a pizza cutter. You should get 15-18 rolls. It really all depends on how big you want your dinner rolls. Pinch rolls into nice shape and brush with melted butter. Cover with clean towel and let rolls rise 30 minutes. They should double in size.

4. Bake at 375 degrees for 12-15 minutes.

Recipe from: Spruce Hill

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Rhubarberry Crisp

Today I was outside planting my flowers while my hubby was working on the garage. Yes we have started another project at the Evinks! We are onto building a garage. Of course because we are sooooo lucky we have already found difficulties with it. Our lot slopes about two feet in the backyard which equals a LOT of gravel to build it up. We are talking FIVE loads of gravel! So he was busy leveling out the gravel while I was working on the flowers. During this time I noticed that I have abundance of rhubarb. I know there is some lurking in my backyard that I haven’t picked yet and I need too. I think my hubby is starting to get sick of me making more rhubarb desserts/bread/muffins etc. I did promise him I’d make him Pizza Bars because I mentioned making them with my niece last weekend and he’s been begging for them ever since then. I can’t say that I haven’t been craving them also! I still have yet to share the best dessert with you. It’s of course my mom’s recipe and I have never made it but I’m telling you it’s a melt in your mouth to die for dessert that I can’t wait for her to make. I’m going to cut that rhubarb in the backyard and hopefully make it next week and share it with you so be on the look out! This dessert has both strawberries and rhubarb in it again and my parents said it was great especially when you top it with ice cream and it’s warm and fresh out of the oven. I tried it today with cool whip also. I recommend the warm with ice cream approach! Enjoy!

Rhubarberry Crisp
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1 c. flour
3/4 c. oatmeal
1 c. brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 c. butter, melted
3 c. rhubarb
3 c. strawberries or raspberries
1 c. sugar
1 T vanilla
3 T cornstarch

1. Mix together flour, oatmeal, brown sugar and cinnamon; stir in butter. Press half of mixture into greased 9×13-inch pan.

2. Mix rhubarb, strawberries and sugar in a large saucepan; let set for 2 minutes. Stir in cornstarch and vanilla. Cook and stir until thickened. Pour over crust; top with remaining crumb mixture.

3. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

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Ham & Cheese Bowties

I still had some ham in the fridge from when I made scalloped potatoes so I found this recipe that I wanted to try with that pesky leftover ham. The hubby absolutely loves cheese, especially mac n cheese so I figured this was the perfect recipe because it’s basically glorified mac n cheese with ham. It was super easy to whip up after work and you should have most of these ingredients already in your house. If you don’t have Colby cheese you can use whatever cheese you have in your fridge. I served peas on the side but if you get really crazy and daring you can mix them right in. No Parmesan cheese? Use some bread crumbs. The possibilities with this recipe are endless. I should probably put a disclaimer on this recipe *Incredibly Cheesy* Not for the faint of heart! In fact I asked hubby if it was to cheesy. He of course replied it could never be to cheesey in his opinion. I’m off to softball practice! Enjoy!

Ham & Cheese Bowties
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16 oz farfalle pasta
1/4 c. butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground black pepper
2 c. milk
1/2 tsp prepared mustard
2 c. shredded Colby cheese
2 c. cooked ham, cubed
1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add pasta & cook 8-10 minutes or until al dente, drain.

3. In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Saute garlic for 30 seconds. Whisk in flour, salt & pepper. Cook & stir until smooth. Pour in milk, a little at a time, stirring constantly. Bring to a boil for 1 minute. Stir in mustard & Colby. Continue to cook stirring occasionally until cheese is melted. Remove from heat & stir in ham & pasta. Pour into a baking dish. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top.

4. Bake 30 minutes or until bubbly & golden.

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English Trifle

This is my potluck creation that I came up with! I knew I wanted to use my Trifle Bowl that my parents gave me for a birthday present many years ago and I found it again when I was cleaning out our closets after our basement project. I’ve never used it even though I think it’s the cutest bowl ever. I also knew that I wanted strawberries in it because my wonderful hubby love strawberries. I thought that I had this recipe tucked away that would be perfect for it in my folder of “I should try recipes”. So I started going through that and actually found some other recipes to try. Always a good thing. This recipe isn’t quick but it’s not hard, just takes a little bit of time to put it all together. Trust me it’s well worth the effort! Enjoy!

English Trifle
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1 package (3 oz) strawberry gelatin
1 c. boiling water
1 c. cold water
1 prepared angel food cake (8 oz), cut into cubes
1 c. mashed strawberries
1 tsp sugar
1 can (8 oz) unsweetened pineapple chunks
1 c. sliced firm bananas
2 c. sliced fresh strawberries
2 c. cold fat-free milk
1 package (1 oz) vanilla pudding mix
1 carton (8 oz) frozen Cool Whip, thawed
1/4 c. slivered almonds, toasted (I skipped this)

1. In a small bowl, dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Stir in cold water. Pour half of gelatin mixture into a small bow; refrigerate for 1 hour or until slightly thickened. Let remaining gelatin stand at room temperature.

2. Place half of cake cubes in a trifle bowl. In a small bowl, combine mashed strawberries and sugar; spoon half over the cake.

3. Drain pineapple, reserving 1/4 c. juice. Cut pineapple chunks in half; arrange half over mashed strawberries. Toss banana slices with reserved pineapple juice; arrange half of slices over pineapple. Top with 1 c. sliced strawberries. For one of my wedding presents I got this handy little Strawberry Huller. It’s inexpensive and I’ve used it a ton this spring already. Totally recommend the purchase! Spoon refrigerated gelatin over fruit. Refrigerate trifle and remaining gelatin mixture for 20 minutes.

4. In a small bowl, whisk milk and pudding mix for 2 minutes. Let stand for 2 minutes or until soft-set. Spread half of pudding over trifle. Repeat all layers. Top with whipped topping. Cover and refrigerate. Just before serving , sprinkle with almonds.

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Do you have those recipes where your mouth will start watering as you dream about eating it? Well this is one of them for me, which often makes me wonder why I don’t make it more often. The reason is not because it is hard. In fact it’s super simple and comes together fast which is always welcome on a week night when you get home from work.Throw together a green salad and make these Garlic Cheddar Biscuits and your meal is done! I really should make this more often. Sometimes recipes just get tucked away in the overflowing recipe box and you forget to take them out again for awhile. I think the ingredient that makes this soooo good is the Seafood Seasoning. Trust me you need this. I get Old Bay Seafood Seasoning. If you don’t have it make sure you get it for this recipe. After I finishing posting this recipe I’m off to make a dessert using my trifle bowl I’ve had forever and haven’t used. It’s a little bit sad and a little bit funny I get excited about using new cookware and bakeware. We have potluck at church tomorrow so HOPEFULLY it turns out or I’m up a creek without a paddle. Enjoy!

Shrimp Penne with Garlic Sauce
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3 c. Uncooked Penne Pasta (You can use any pasta you have on hand)
2 Garlic Cloves, Minced or Grated
1/4 c. Butter, Cubed
1/4 c. All-Purpose Flour
1 can (14 1/2 oz) Chicken Broth
1 can (5 oz) Evaporated Milk
1 lb Cooked Medium Shrimp, Peeled and Deveined
2/3 c Shredded Parmesan Cheese
2 Tbsp. Minced Fresh Parsley
1 1/2 tsp Seafood Seasoning

1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Make sure not to over cook or your noodles turn to mush when you mix it with the pasta sauce!

2. Meanwhile, in a large saucepan saute garlic in butter. I used my hand dandy little grater to grate my garlic and it works amazing. If you don’t have one I think it’s worth the investment.

3. Stir in flour until blended; gradually add broth and milk. Bring to a boil; cook and stir 2 minutes or until thickened.

4. Stir in shrimp (Make sure they are peeled and deveined!), cheese, parsley and seafood seasoning; heat through.

5. Drain pasta; place in a large bowl. Add shrimp mixture; toss to coat. Serve immediately.

Recipe adapted from: Taste of Home

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Tonight during supper I told my husband that I had this fabulous idea. He hesitantly asked what it was. I said I’m inventing leftover Fridays. That means that whatever is leftover in the fridge on Friday night that’s what we eat for supper. He quickly came back with the fact that he eats leftovers for lunch all week, which he does, but we still have leftovers piling up in the fridge and it drives me bonkers! About two hours later we were sitting downstairs. Yes downstairs. It’s finished and we can actually sit here and enjoy it!! AMAZING! We have doubled the space we have to live in and it’s great. Ok back to the story at hand. We were sitting downstairs and he asks me if we still have a gift certificate to a local bar and grill and I said I thought so. Well he’s thinking we should go out to eat tomorrow night to celebrate having the basement done. I started laughing and he couldn’t figure out why. I asked him if leftover Friday night was really that awful. He claims he forgot but I’m doubtful on that one! This cookie recipe is awesome. The cookies are soft and chewy just how I like them. They seriously will vanish. I asked Jason what were were going to do with them all since there’s only two of us and I used to bring extras to work but we don’t have that many people at my new job. He promised that they would be gone in a few days because Julie I’m going to eat at least half a dozen tonight, a few tomorrow morning for breakfast because they do have both oatmeal and raisins and that’s a good breakfast, a few for dinner and so on…he has made a big dent in them already. I may have helped him out also. My mom also confessed she stopped over to peak at the finished basement and just may have took a cookie! Enjoy!

Vanishing Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
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1 stick plus 6 Tbsp butter
3/4 c. Brown Sugar
1/2 c. Sugar
2 Eggs
1 tsp Vanilla
1 1/2 c. Flour
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Salt
3 c. Quick Oats
1 c. Raisins

1. Heat over to 350 degrees.

2. Beat together butter and sugars until creamy. Add eggs and vanilla, beat well.

3. Add combined flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt, mix well.

4. Stir in oats and raisins, mix well.

5. Drop onto ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes until golden brown. Do not over bake. Make sure they are just golden brown on the edges. This keeps the cookie nice and chewy! Cook 2-3 minutes on cookie sheet.

Recipe Adapted From: Quaker Oats

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Enchilada Lasagna

Wow is this weather awesome or what? I know we deserve it and it was a long time coming but it’s great. This is three days in a row of great weather. I think we are getting spoiled and it looks like it’s back to reality in the next few days with the forecasted gloomy weather. You can truly tell I’m a farm girl at heart. Every morning on my way to work I call my mom and check in to see how the guys are coming in the field. I quiz her about the planting and tillage that they are doing. You can take the girl off the farm but there’s no taking the farm out of the girl that’s for sure! My mom gets the honor of bringing meals to the field every night. I think this is why some of our hired help actually stay. It’s simply for Mom’s cooking. I know I would! I was thinking last night, that being the wonderful daughter I am, I should really really volunteer to bring a meal out one night. So I’m thinking I might open my mouth and offer to do that for her as she gets tired of cooking every night like we all do. I don’t think I’ll be able to test out any new recipes on the guys or I might get fired, wait maybe I should and then I’d never have to do it again! The recipe I’m sharing with you tonight is a new one I tried out last night. It’s a little bit different than the typical meat and potato recipe but I’m up for mixing it up every once in a while. So I better share it with you so I can get ready to go to our first softball practice of the year and enjoy this nice weather! Enjoy!

Enchilada Lasagna


8 Flour Tortillas
3 (16 oz) Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, cubed and cooked
1 tsp Cumin
3/4 c. Black Beans
1/2 Red Pepper, chopped
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
1/2 Sweet Onion, Chopped
1 10 oz can Enchilada Sauce
2 C. Mexican Cheese

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees

2. Heat skillet on medium heat and add olive oil, onions and peppers. Saute until soft, about 5-6 minutes.

3. Add chicken, cumin, 1/2 the can of enchilada sauce, black beans and 1c. of the cheese. Stir unil warm and combined.

4. Spray a 13×9 in baking dish with non-stick spray and put 2 tortillas on the bottom. Top with filling and repeat until tortillas are gone.

5. Top with remaining cup of cheese and drizzle the rest of the enchilada sauce on top.

6. Bake for 25-30 minutes.

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