August: Potlucks!

August Theme: Potlucks. What do you take with you?

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Easy Stuffing

This is my great-grandmas recipe for stuffing that is super easy and delicious.

1 loaf of bread (take off the top crust and discard -- for some reason it just doesn't cut as well)
1/2 tsp salt
1 square of butter
2 heaping tablespoons of sage

(quadruple for a 22 lb. turkey)

Cut up the bread into cubes. You don't have to dry the bread, but if you do it will hold more flavor. To dry the bread, put the cut up cubes on a cookie sheet and put in a 200 degree oven for a few minutes.

Put bread cubes in a bowl and toss with salt. Then add chunks of butter throughout. Add sage and toss with your hands.

If you are not stuffing a turkey, add about 1/2 cup chicken or turkey broth and bake in tinfoil at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes. There is nothing it in that needs to cook, it just needs to be heated.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Peppermint Ice Cream Dessert

1 lb chocolate waffers or cream filled cookies, crushed
1/2 cup butter

1/2 gallon Peppermint Stick ice cream
1 12 oz container whipped topping

1/2 cup butter
4 oz unsweetened baking chocolate, chopped
2 cups sugar
1 can evaporated milk
1 teas. vanilla
crushed peppermint candy

Mix crushed cookies and butter. Press in 13x9 pan.

Stir together ice cream and 2 cups whipped topping. Spoon onto crust. Freeze until firm.

Melt butter and chocolate in a 2 qt. pan over low heat. Stir constantly. Stir in sugar after chocolate is melted. Gradually stir in milk, then heat to boiling over medium heat. Cook and stir until lightly thickened. Stir in vanilla. Let cool completely.

Pour chocolate sauce over ice cream piece and top with remainder of of whipped topping and crushed peppermint.


Suggestions: I used one bag of chocolate graham crackers for the crust. The original recipe says to put the chocolate sauce on and freeze, but the chocolate sauce doesn't freeze and will cause a big, sticky mess!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Caramel Apple Cider

This is the other drink I considered bringing to the Recipe Swap. I opted for the cool beverage because I am nursing/hormonal and get hot often. :) Then the night of the swap a huge storm blew in and it was freezing. Guess I chose the wrong drink! Anyway, this recipe tastes amazing, even though the ingredients are simple. Served with a dollop of whipped cream, it would be like one of those fancy shmancy drinks they charge $6 for. Really.

1 1/2 cups apple cider
1 1/2 tablespoons caramel ice cream topping
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 gallon apple cider
1 cup caramel ice cream topping
5 teaspoons vanilla

Stir ingredients together and heat through.

Christmas Punch


2 cups
1 1/2 cups
cinnamon sticks
3 cups
cranberry juice
2 1/2 cups orange juice
1 cup
lemon juice
2 liters 7-Up soda
ice cubes (optional)


Chill fruit juices and 7-Up. Simmer water, sugar and cinnamon sticks together for 10 minutes. Set aside for several hours to allow the mixture to develop the cinnamon spiced flavor. Prior to serving time, remove the cinnamon sticks from the sugar syrup. In a large punch bowl, combine the sugar syrup, cranberry juice, orange juice, and lemon juice. Slowly pour in the 7-Up. Add ice-cubes if desired.

If I made this again, I would use less cinnamon somehow (either use three sticks, let it steep for less time or add more juice). I thought the cinnamon was just a bit too strong.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas Goodies!

So this year I have been in the mood to make Christmas goodies! I thought I would share a couple that I have tried out all ready and they are yummy!

Brownie Crackles
1 package fudge brownie mix (13-in. x 9-inch pan size)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 egg
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup canola oil
1cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
Confectioners' sugar

Directions: In a large bowl, beat the brownie mix, flour, egg, water and oil until well blended. Stir in chocolate chips. Place confectioners' sugar in a shallow dish. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls into sugar; roll to coat. Place 2 in. apart on greased baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 8-10 minutes or until set. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool. Yield: 4-1/2 dozen.

Creamy Lemon Fudge
1 1/2 tsps plus 1/2 cup butter, divided
1 package (4.3 ounce) cook and serve lemon pudding mix
1/2 cup milk
3 3/4 cups confectioners' sugar
1 tsp. lemon extract
Line a 9 inch square pan with foil. grease the foil witn 1 1/2 tsp butter; set aside. In a large heavy saucepan, combine pudding mix, milk and remaining butter. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened. Remove from heat. Beat in confectioners' sugar and extract. Pour into prepared pan; refrigerate until set. Using foil, lift fudge out of pan. Discard foil; cute fudge into 1 inch squares. Store in the refrigeratior.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Layered Key Lime Pie

This is a wonderful version of a lime pie for those of you who aren't a big fan of lemon/lime desserts. It is extremely simple and the final product looks wonderful!

1 9 in. graham cracker crumb crust
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup (about 3 medium limes) fresh lime juice
1 teaspoon grated lime peel (make sure to grate the lime peel BEFORE juicing them)
2 cups cool whip
Lime peel twists or lime slices (optional)

BEAT sweetened condensed milk and lime juice in small mixer bowl until combined; stir in lime peel. Pour into crust; spread with whipped topping. Refrigerate for 2 hours or until set. Garnish with lime peel twists.

Cookie Salad

1 c. buttermilk (I use milk with 1 tbsp. lemon juice because I never have buttermilk)
2 (3.4 oz.) pkgs. instant vanilla pudding
1 (16 oz) Cool Whip
1 (20 oz) can crushed pineapple, not drained
1 can mandarin oranges, drained
1 pkg. fudge striped cookies, crumbled

Mix buttermilk and pudding together until well blended (it will be really think.) Add cool whip and blend well.  Stir in pineapple and mandarin oranges gently.  Place in fridge until ready to serve.  Just before serving fold in crumbled cookies.  

Strawberry Spinach Salad

1 pkg. baby spinach
1 1/2 cups chopped apples
1 1/2 cups sliced strawberries
1 pkg Craisins
1 small package (about 1 cup) slivered almonds (wet almonds, roll in sugar, roast 300 degrees for 5-10 minutes or until desired)

2 Tbsp. lemon zest
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. mustard seed
1/3 cup olive oil
1 egg yolk
1/2 cup sugar (can use less)

Put this in a sealed container and shake. Don't pour it on the salad until you are ready to serve.


Saturday, December 13, 2008

Party Rice

Super simple and super yummy!!! It does take a long time to cook, though, so plan ahead if you make this.

1C white rice
1 stick butter (you could use margarine, but not the tub kind, the stick kind)
1 can beef broth
1 can french onion soup

preheat oven to 300. pour rice, soup, and broth into ovenproof bowl, then cut butter into large chunks on top. cook uncovered for at least an hour.

Tonight, it cooked for over an hour, and was still liquidy and crunchy. I popped it in Leslie's oven at 375 for 10-15 more minutes and it was perfect. I think my oven doesn't work quite right, but you could try cooking it at a higher temperature, or just for longer.

Blueberry Banana Scones

1 ¼ c flour
½ c whole wheat flour
¼ c sugar
1 t baking powder
½ t baking soda
¼ c butter
½ c yogurt
1/3 c mashed banana
½ c blueberries
1 T brown sugar

Preheat oven to 350. Combine flours, sugar, baking powder and soda. Cut in butter until mixture resembles crumbs. Add yogurt and fruit, stir until moistened. Form dough into a ball. On a lightly greased cookie sheet, pat dough into a circle with floured hands. Sprinkle with brown sugar. Cut into 6 or 8 wedges. Spread on the cookie sheet one inch apart. Bake 25 minutes, until golden brown. Serve warm.