Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Meema's Jello Salad

 Today I am busy cooking for our Thanksgiving feast with our neighbors and on the menu is Turkey, Sweet Potatoes, rolls, pie, Cheese Flan and Jello Salad and that is only coming out of my kitchen. Karin is cooking up some wonderful things too! I am looking forward to my Jello salad. I have just enough cool whip to make it this year. This is usually a dish that I have to wait to visit Texas to get. My Meema does make it best! And when I come to her house she ALWAYS has it waiting in the fridge! It is MY FAVORITE JELLO! I can never seem to make it quite the same but I think Meema puts in more LOVE into it. My cousins and I usually fight over it, but I always win! =) hahahaha. Meema has even sent it in a To-Go box for me if I have to travel. Seriously it is delicious! I am counting down the days till I can have some, which is 13 by the way! Can't wait to have a Christmas with my family this year! But I am really looking forward to Thanksgiving tomorrow! What a wonderful time of year to gather together with good food, great friends and be thankful for what we have. After the flood we had this spring, I realize there are many many things that I have not thought of to be thankful for this year.

Meema's Jello Salad
1 (15oz) can crushed Pineapple with juice
1  (6oz) box lime jello
2 cups buttermilk (use milk with a little vinegar)
1 cup coconut
1 cup Chopped Pecans
1( 8 oz) Cool-whip( or dream-whip)
Place the pineapple and juice in a pan on stove. Stir and Heat to boil. Remove from stove and add jello. Stir till jello is dissolved. Cool and add buttermilk, coconut and pecans. Cool completely and add cool-whip. Chill for 4 hours. Get a big spoon and enjoy!
( I know Meema sometimes puts in marshmallows but I think it takes away from the yummyness of this dish. SO I Omit them.)

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Ginger Pumpkin Bread

Thanksgiving Week! I can not say how excited I am to watch the Macy's Day Parade. There is just something festive about a parade with a giant turkey and Santa Clause! Plus the whole thing about having a wonderful dinner with food and friends, makes this holiday one of my favorite! And to celebrate Thanksgiving week I am cooking up some of my favorite bread. Ginger Pumpkin Bread. This sweet bread is absolutely wonderful. You get the pumpkin pie and ginger flavor rolled all together in a loaf! I LOVE IT!! I make this one all year round just because it is so tasty! I hope you enjoy it and have a wonderful Thanksgiving week!

 Ginger Pumpkin Bread
3 cups sugar
1 cup oil
4 eggs (this bread works great with Egg Replacer)
2/3 cup water
1 can Pumpkin Puree
2 teaspoons ginger
1 teaspoon all spice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
3 1/2  cup flour
2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
 (You can add nuts or even Chocolate chips to this too and make it even more yummlisious!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 2 loaf pans.
In a large mixing bowl combine sugar, oil and eggs. Beat till smooth. Add water and beat till well blended. Stir in Pumpkin, ginger, cinnamon, and All spice.

In Medium bowl combine flour, soda, salt, and baking powder. Add dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture blend till all mixed. Divide into pans Bake about 1 hour till toothpick comes out clean.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Overnight Coffee Cake

This is a delicious coffee cake recipe that is easy and you can make it the night before, when you have guest over. Then you can stick it in the oven and have breakfast. I remember mom would bake this when we were growing up. She would make these for Sunday mornings. It has been a favorite of mine. I like to take these to potluck breakfasts. I don't make this to often in Galena because sour cream is hard to get out here. You might could use yogurt. But I have not tried it with yogurt.  I hope you enjoy this yummy recipe!

Overnight Coffee Cake
 3/4 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
2 cups flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sour cream (you probably could use yogurt, though I have not tried it)
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 brown sugar

Cream together butter, 1/2 cup brown sugar, white sugar, and eggs. Mix dry flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg and salt. Mix with creamed mixture. Add sour cream and nuts. Pour into greased 9X13 baking dish. Sprinkle 1/2 cup brown sugar on top( you can add more nuts if you want) Cover and refrigerate over night. Bake 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes.  Serve warm or cool.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup.

Today it is a brittle -10 and tomorrow is expected to be near the -30's. And when I say brittle, I mean that anything that is plastic breaks when you move it! Extension cords, toy dump trucks, sleds, they all are breakable and brittle at that temp. So today on this brittle day we are having this soup. Though tonight I am going to try this with taco meat instead of chicken, mostly because I have plenty of moose but have a small limited supply of chicken. This is a flavorful soup and perfect for cold nights like tonight!

Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup
2 chicken boneless chicken breasts.(Or 1 lb taco meat cooked, I am actually using stew meat)
2 cans Rotel tomatoes (if you don't have rotel you can use salsa)
1 can black beans rinsed and drained
1 can kidney beans rinsed and drained
1 can corn
1 onion chopped
2 cans chicken broth
1-2 cups water
1 TBSP garlic powder
1 TBSP chili powder
1 TBSP ground cumin
1 TBSP dried cilantro
tortilla chips(you can bake cut corn tortillas to make crunchy chips too)
sour cream
Cheese Mexican blend or cheddar.

Put chopped onion, cans of beans, Rotel, corn, broth, water and spices in Crockpot. Stir to mix. Put chicken on top of mixture. Make sure they are partly submerged in liquid. Cook on high 6-7 hours or low 8-9 hours. Before serving, take chicken breast out and shred. put back in soup. Stir and serve. Put chips on the bottom of bowls, ladle soup over  and top with cheese and sour cream. Enjoy!

Monday, November 18, 2013


This is a wonderful recipe for light fluffy scones. I love having teatime and these are wonderful to add to your afternoon tea. They are delicious and are usually gone very fast! This is one of my most asked for recipe. There are many variations that you can do to these. I will give you some of my favorites!

2 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp salt
8 TBSP butter
1/2 raisins(I use craisins)
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tsp vanilla ( i usually use Almond flavoring)
1 egg
Preheat oven 375 degrees.
Mix Flour, sugar,Baking Powder, Baking Soda, Salt. Cut in butter till it is mixed well till crumbly. Stir in Craisins, In a separate bowl mix sour cream , vanilla, egg till smooth. Mix into flour mixture. Mix well. divide into 2 portions. Place on a floured surface and roll into circles. Sprinkle with brown sugar on top. Cut into triangles. Bake 12-17 minutes.

Cranberry Orange- Add 1 tsp orange zest and cranberries
Cherry Almond- Add Almond flavoring and Dried Cherries.
Chocolate chips

Cranberry Orange Butter.
1 1/2 Cup butter (no substitutes)
1/2 cup frozen cranberries
2 TBSP powder sugar
1/2 tsp Orange zest
Cream butter, add berries, sugar, orange mix well. refrigerate 1 hour

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Spiced Cake Doughnuts

This recipe is from a sweet missionary friend that was with us in Zambia for a few years. We had a lot of good times together and I loved going to visit them. Uncle Mark is one of the BEST story tellers I have ever heard. Most of the time I don't know if the story is true or made up but he holds you captive in his stories that is for sure. He has served in many branches of the military and has been deploy a few times. Aunt Stacey is an awesome mom and has held down the fort with 5 kids while Uncle Mark was deployed. They are now missionaries in Kenya.

Aunt Stacey has a great recipe for Cake doughnuts! I am usually a fluffy yeast dough kind of a doughnut eater but these are really good! I love the flavor of the nutmeg and cinnamon that these give and they are super easy to make.  They also make a good Fall kind of doughnut to eat. So if you are looking for a sweet cake like doughnut to eat. Try these!

 Spiced Cake Doughnuts
3 1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
2/3 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup melted margarine
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 eggs
2/3 milk

Mix 2 1/4 cup flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg. In another bowl mix eggs, sugar and vanilla. Add milk and butter to the flour mixture and then add the egg mixture. Mix all together. stir in remaining flour. Mix well. cover and chill for 2 hours. Roll out dough on flour surface. Cut into doughnuts. Fry in HOT(350 degrees) oil till golden on each side. Drain on Paper towel. Dust with powder sugar or make a icing glaze to drizzle on top.

Glaze: ( I don't really measure this so I don't have the exact quantities)
about 1 cup powder sugar
1 tsp vanilla or almond flavoring
a little milk to make the glaze to the right constancy.
Mix together well and dip top of doughnuts in glaze.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Pumpkin Smoothies

 OK the closest Starbucks or coffee shop to us is 280 miles by plane, so going and getting me a Pumpkin Smoothie is not really an option and honestly I am not big on spending $5 for a cup of deliciousness but I love Pumpkin smoothies. I loved walking into Coffee shops when Fall and winter roll around and the smell of pumpkin and spice is in the air. So I searched for a recipe to get that yumminess. Here is one I have found and love. It is easy and delicious!

Pumpkin Smoothies
1 can pumpkin pie filling
3 cups milk
1/2 -1 cup yogurt(vanilla flavor)
Crushed Cinnamon Graham Crackers

Open the can of pie filling and pour into a freezer safe container.  Then freeze it. When frozen, blend milk and yogurt. Add pumpkin pie filling. Blend till pulverized. Add more milk or yogurt if needed. Sprinkle cinnamon and graham crackers on top. And enjoy!=)

Friday, November 8, 2013

Cinnamon Hot Chocolate.

"Oh the weather outside is frightful
And the fire is so delightful
And since we've no place to go
Let it Snow Let it snow Let it Snow!"

"When it snows ain't it thrilling
Though your nose gets a chilling
Well frolic and play the Eskimo way
Walking in a winter wonderland"

Two songs that go along with my day! We are having a winter storm with high winds and lots of snow. But thankfully warmer temps.... when I say warmer I am meaning in the teens. But it is refreshing and the snow is so beautiful! My kids are outside with our neighbors daughter playing in the snow. I was just out shoveling it, which honestly I love to do.... Is that weird? We are expecting 6-12 inches of snow this weekend and maybe some rain... Hopefully not the rain. But the snow provides us with an abundant  amount of activities to do like snow ski, sledding, building snow castles and snow angels. Mountains of fun! I love snow and so do my boys! After an afternoon of playing in the fluffy fun, it usually is hot chocolate time! What better way to warm you up then with a warm cup of chocolate? As I am writing this I can hear my boys stomping their feet in the Arctic Entry way and taking off their coats. So I am headed to the kitchen to make some hot chocolate. 

This recipe is from my friend Catherine, who shared it after her trip to Paris to visit her in-laws. I have adopted this recipe as my own and LOVE IT! I have also made some adaptions to fit different taste buds. This is a creamy smooth hot chocolate that warms you up real nicely! DELICIOUS!!! 

Cinnamon Hot Chocolate.(this really is delicious! Can I say that enough)
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1/3 cup water
4 cups milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
dash of salt
 Mix cocoa, cinnamon, salt and sugar in pan. Combine water and stir. Bring to a boil over Medium heat. Boil 2 minutes. Slowly add milk. Stir well. Heat thoroughly and add vanilla. Topping this with whipped cream is scrumptious.

My Adaptions:
 Mexican Vanilla Cinnamon Hot chocolate I add a dash of Cayenne pepper. Makes it a little spicy! I love it!

Fall Spice Cinnamon Hot Chocolate Add some Pumpkin Pie spice to give it that fallish flavor. Try this, It will become a favorite for those cold winter nights.... which we are already having.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Soft Frosted Pumpkin Spice Cookies

These are quickly becoming one of my favorite cookies of all time! I have said before that I love Pumpkin and when you top it with a cream cheese frosting, well who can beat that? Seriously! Frosted Pumpkin Spice cookies.... YUM I make these for any party that I have or go to and there are usually never any left. If I just want a few for our family I will divide the recipe and then just make a small batch. The frosting is a big batch and I actually can frost 2 batches with one batch of frosting. but the frosting freezes well so You can store it till you need it! Which is what I do. I personally don't like these cookies after about 2 days so I try to make the batch only as big as will be eaten right away. They kind of get crumbly after 2 days. And I usually never frost them until right before the party, just so they are creamy and delicious!  These cookies really make you feel like you are biting into the fall season with the spices and pumpkin! They are one of my favorites!

Soft Frosted Pumpkin Spice Cookies
2 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cup sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven 350. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, salt. Set aside. In medium bowl cream together butter and sugar. Add egg, pumpkin and vanilla. Beat till creamy. Add dry ingredients. Drop on cookie sheet and flatten slightly(this is important so the icing spreads nicely). Bake 15-20 minutes. cool completely before frosting.

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup cream cheese, softened
2-3 cups powder sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon.
Cream butter and cream cheese together. Slowly add powder sugar with mixer till creamy and thick. add vanilla and cinnamon. frost the cookies.

THESE ARE SCRUMPTIOUS!! and work great with egg replacer! DELICIOUS!!!!!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Carino's Bow Tie Festival

Today I really REALLY wanted to be able to go OUT to eat and pasta was what I wanted! But since there is no Olive Garden or Carino's around I figured I would test out a recipe that I had found. I really love Carino's Bow Tie Festival but have never tried making it and this recipe was a copy cat one. It turned out great and tasted almost just like it! It might taste exactly like it if I would have had heavy whipping cream but all I had was evaporated milk and I didn't have any fresh onions and used dried chopped onions. But it did turn out great and will be made again!

Bow Tie Festival
1 ounce melted butter

1 teaspoon chopped fresh garlic

1/8 cup diced red onion (I used dried chopped onions)

1/4 cup diced cooked bacon

1/4 cup diced Roma tomatoes

1 cup sliced, cooked chicken

1 ounce heavy (whipping) cream ( I used evaporated milk)

1 jar of Ragu Alfredo sauce (I made my own version... recipe below)

1/8 cup Asiago cheese
 ( I didn't have this either but used Parmesan)
1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

10 ounces pre-cooked Bow-tie Noodle

In a heated sauté pan, combine butter, garlic, onions, bacon, tomatoes, chicken, and spice mixture. When onions begin to turn translucent, add heavy cream and Asiago cheese. Once cheese and cream have reduced by half, add Alfredo sauce and bow-tie pasta. Toss until well combined and remove from fire. Allow pasta to cool for a few minutes so the cheese and sauce can thicken

Easy Alfredo sauce
1/4 cup butter
1 cup heavy cream ( I used evaporated milk)
1 clove garlic minced
1 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese grated
1/4 cup parsley

Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium low heat. Add cream and simmer for 5 minutes, then add garlic and cheese and whisk quickly, heating through. Stir in parsley and serve.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Pumpkin Roll~ Ryan Maier's Recipe

These Pumpkin Rolls are from my friend Ryan Maier. He was a co-worker of Keith's in Florida and would make these in the Fall and bring them to work. I would try to time my visits to the office for when he had these! When we moved to Alaska he gave me the recipe so that I could make them too. They are so delicious!  I am making these today for a Ladies Night Out that we are having tomorrow. They are a special treat and after the "eventful" Summer we had this year we needed a night out with special treats! (You can read about it all in my family blog in the months of May, June, and July of 2013) So for tomorrow I am cooking up these and a few other Fall treats to have. I love pumpkin rolls! Thanks Ryan for the recipe!

Pumpkin Roll~ Ryan Maier's Recipe
3 eggs slightly beaten
1 cup white sugar
2/3 cup pumpkin pie mix(if I don't have the mix I use pumpkin with cinnamon and all spice.)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup flour

Spray a jelly roll pan or cookie sheet with a edge pan with pam. Line pan with parchment paper. Spray parchment paper with pam. Pour pumpkin mixture in pan. Spread evenly around pan. It will be a thin layer. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and  Immediately roll into a log. then let it cool completely. I refrigerate it for a while. When cool mix up filling.

2 Tablespoons soft margarine
1 8oz pk cream cheese
1 cup powder sugar
1 tsp vanilla

Cream together. Carefully unroll log and remove Parchment paper. spread filling on cake and re-roll. Wrap in foil or saran wrap. I use saran wrap. Chill or freeze. Freezing makes it more solid and easier to cut in slices. ENJOY!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Pumpkin Pie Pancakes

November is here! Bring on the pumpkin treats, Hot Chocolate and the Macy's Day Parade! I love this time of year! Of course here in Galena the fall season of pretty color leaves and crisp days to wear sweaters has past and snow is already on the ground but it doesn't mean we can enjoy all the yummy treats that Fall has to offer! I love the flavors that are associated with Fall. Cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, all those yummy spices that tickle my taste buds. Pumpkin, squash, apple, pears, cranberries and all those delicious foods that mix with those delicious spices..... I am drooling already! So lets start the feasting! So this month I am going to share recipes that are associated with Thanksgiving and Fall.

The recipe I have today is a constant at our house, even without Fall. Mostly because I LOVE pumpkin! Pumpkin Pie Pancakes. Can you say yum? Can't go wrong on that breakfast lunch or dinner. Saturdays breakfasts or even Tuesday dinner. Who says Pancakes can only be for breakfast? We eat them quite often for dinner! I love the flavors of these! So do my kids. They like to have Chocolate chips added to their pancakes.... Can't really go wrong on that either! Make up a batch and enjoy these yummy Fall(or Anytime) Pancakes!

Pumpkin Pie Pancakes
1 cup flour ( I add more due to the egg replacer I use, I have never made these with eggs so I don't know if they get fluffy or not with eggs but the egg replacer doesn't work so well unless you add more flour. I add about a 1/2 cup more if not they are really flat)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 TBSP pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp salt
2 TBSP sugar
1 cup buttermilk (1 cup milk with 1 tsp vinegar is what I use)
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
2 large eggs
1/4 cup oil
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup( or more) chopped pecans or walnuts.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin spice, salt, and sugar. Whisk in buttermilk, pumpkin, eggs, oil and vanilla. Blend well.  Add pecans. Heat griddle over medium heat spray with PAM. Pour batter by 1/3 cupfuls on griddle. Cook till bubbly and golden brown on bottom and flip over and cook on other side till golden brown.  Serve with syrup! YUM!!