What you do in your house is worth as much as if you did it up in heaven for our Lord God. We should accustom ourselves to think of our position and work as sacred and well-pleasing to God, not on account of the position and work, but on account of the word and faith from which the obedience and the work flow. ~ Martin Luther

Monday, July 24, 2006

It's Blueberry (Huckleberry) Week

Ever been kayaking? Boy, is it grand. Corynn LOVES it…

We headed ‘home’ this weekend to visit with Matt’s family. Gram was hospitalized two weekends ago and stayed for five days. While she IS home now, she still isn’t fully recovered. She is almost 90 but looks about 75. We wanted to see her, so we made the trek.

We stayed at Gary and Linda’s, which is basically, a retreat. Gorgeous flowers everywhere, 26 acres of blueberries, strawberries to pop in eager mouths, a lake to swim in and kayak, dirt roads to meander through (or tour with the doodlebug), and just so many other great things to do. We visited with the family (I got to hang out with some sisters-in-law) and just had a grand time. The girls went berry picking (you should have SEEN all the berries we girls (and Nate) picked! Julie, the die-hard, was out there for four hours and picked more than 3 gallons. With other responsibilities, like visiting Gram and taking care of the chillins’, I was only out there for about 1 ½ hours and I ALMOST filled up my entire container…probably around 1 ½ gallons (maybe a bit less). Needless to say, blueberries is my middle name this week and blue is my tongue... Corynn picked berries for a while (and what she didn’t eat right away, she ate on the way back to the house), then found salamanders with Grandma, then went kayaking, then read books, then ran around like a banshee and so on and so on. Matt did guy stuff. Tractors, lumber, sawmills, bush-hogging, doodlebug, you know…

Saturday morning I TRIED to go yard-saling. There were TWO community sales around so I was pretty excited. Then it started to rain. The first one was a dud. The only good thing I found out of about ten houses were a few books and two trendy maternity shirts for .50 a piece. No, I am NOT pregnant. But, do you know how expensive TRENDY maternity shirts are? There is nothing like scouting yard-sales in the rain and not having anything to show for it! The other community sale must have been canceled because of the torrential downpours of the morning. I met my sister and mom for lunch, but before I did, I made a surprise visit with the dearest of the dear. I got to see the Owen Five and their new spacious, two-story, already settled-into and lovingly decorated home, and as an added bonus, I got to see Rebecca’s teeny twins-who at a month old are STILL smaller than Andrew was on d-day!! What a fun, but all-too-short visit.

As for lunch-a better time could not have been had. Andrew was the only child there and that NEVER happens. My mom has kiddos just like my sister and I do-so it is rare indeed when all arms are empty and distractions are limited to only one itty-bitty. It was bitter-sweet, because I wouldn’t be able to have another girls-lunch out for a long time. *sigh*

We ended up going to church with G&L, they thought it would be special. I don’t like doing that though. I would much prefer our ‘own’ church. ‘Nuff said.

This was the first FULL weekend Matt has had off since he started his new job and it was SORELY needed. That man is like a machine. He works so hard with such long hours, with hardly a day off-and yet he never complains. I complain more than he does…he amazes me. The weekend was a much needed time of relaxation and I wouldn’t have changed it one bit. Coupled with relaxation, it was also an emotional visit and certainly caused some reflection. Matt and I talked the entire trip back (the kids were thankfully sleeping) and the hours flew by. Much was said.

We pulled in the drive and spotlighted the doghouse-but no dog. The leash with her harness was laying there-but she was gone. Apparently, she has figured out how to un-harness herself. Who knows when she did it and how long she was unleashed. My heart was in my throat-but then…wait. There she was, sitting on the front stoop, wagging her tail. Who KNOWS how long she was unleashed-but there she was. What a good dog. I was so happy she was THERE that I overlooked the terrible plant mess she made while we were away. I guess she was mad at us for leaving…

ANYWAY-THAT is why I am JUST NOW answering your questions about this neato-misquito contest. So-as for the


Post your summer recipe-preferably the kind that doesn't require a hot OVEN-in the comments section of THIS post (since no one did it on the last one, none will be missed…) and you can post as many as you like. The more recipes you post, the more chances to win. If they are posted on this blog, then EVERYONE can benefit from the recipes-not just me! Even if you don’t participate-make sure to check the recipes out, there might be some good ones-even a Winner! ;-)

Due to the confusion, I am going to extend the deadline until Friday night. I will post the winning recipe on Saturday. The extension has absolutely NOTHING to do with added time to unpack from the weekend, laundry or ANYTHING like that….it is purely for YOUR benefit! hehehe


Anonymous said...

Yippee! I get to be the first to post! :-) Sorry I was so distracted when you were here for your brief "visit"--I did not even say "boo" about your little "panda", although I did notice the cute little fellow--he is getting so big! By the way, my little girls are actually 2 months old now--they were 9 weeks old when you saw them. Doesn't that make them seem even smaller?! They probably were each weighing at least 8 1/2 pounds or so by the time you saw them last weekend if they have kept up their average weight gain of 5 1/2 to 6 ounces per week.

Well, I SHOULD be in bed sleeping as everyone else is--even both babies--unheard of for only 10 pm! Instead I will try to post a few recipes really quickly. By the way, I don't know if all of mine are "summer" recipes or not, but they are all yummy ones, so hope that is good enough.

Will post a recipe next.

Anonymous said...

Chicken Dulce
4-6 pieces of chicken (whatever fits in your crockpot)
8 oz. French dressing (I like Catalina)
1 envelope dry onion soup mix
1 can cranberry sauce
Mix the dressing with the dry soup mix and cranberry sauce. Layer chicken followed by sauce 2-3 times in the crockpot. Cook on low 6-8 hours??? (Depends on your crockpot.) Serve with/on rice, etc. This has a nice sweet/sour taste to it, even though the combination sounds strange! :-)

Carrots Au Gratin

Delicious--kids love them!
1/2 c. crushed corn flakes
1/3 c. melted butter
1/3 c. chopped onion
3 tbsp. flour
1 1/2 c. milk
1 c. shredded American cheese (I use about 6 slices cut into strips)
28 oz. can sliced carrots, drained
1 tbsp. parsley flakes

Preheat oven to 350F. Combine corn flakes and TWO tbsp. of melted butter. Set aside. Saute onions in remaining butter. Add flour, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir in milk. Stir constantly until mixture thickens. Remove from heat. Add cheese and parsley, and stir til cheese melts. Fold in the carrots and stir gently til well coated. Pour mixture in a casserole dish and sprinkle with reserved corn flake mixture. Bake 20 minutes or til heated through.

Angel Rolls

Abby can vouch for these being "heavenly"-- I let her try some and she says she has never had such fluffy rolls--they are sooo quick and easy too!

3 1/2 c. bread flour
2 tbsp. sugar
1 package (1/4 oz.) QUICK RISE yeast
1 1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 c. warm buttermilk (120-130 degrees) (I make my own with regular milk with a bit of vinegar to "curdle" it)
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1/3 c. warm water (120-130 degrees)
Melted butter or margarine

In a mixing bowl, combine 1 1/2 c. flour, sugar, yeast, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Add the buttermilk, oil, and water; beat til moistened. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough. (I usually need all of it.) Turn onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 4-6 minutes. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes. Roll out to 1/2 inch thickness; cut with a 2 1/2 inch biscuit cutter. Place on a greased baking sheet. Bake at 400F for 15-18 minutes or until golden brown. Brush the tops with butter (I just pull the wrapper on a stick of butter part way back, and then "rub" it on each roll when they are fresh from the oven--easy!) Yield: 14-18 rolls

Orange Biscuits
These take some time to make and the pans need to soak a bit after to make easier to come clean, but they are yummy! They taste a bit like yeast rolls, but no yeast is involved.

1/2 c. cold butter (1/4 c. for orange glaze and 1/4 c. for the biscuits)
1/2 c. orange juice (preferably fresh--I didn't!)
1/2 c. sugar
2 tsp. grated orange zest (I didn't)

2 c. all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 c. milk
1-2 tbsp. soft margarine or butter for brushing on the uncooked biscuit dough
1/4 c. cinnamon sugar (1/4 c. sugar with about 2 tsp. cinnamon)

Heat the oven to 425F. Grease a 12 muffin tin. **Do not use muffin liners.** To make the glaze, combine 1/4 cup of the butter with the orange juice, sugar and the orange zest in a saucepan. Stir over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved and then cook for 2 minutes. Divide among the muffin cups. Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium size bowl. Cut in the remaining 1/4 c. of butter til the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Add the milk, stirring with a fork until the dough forms a ball. Turn it onto a counter, knead it briefly (4 turns or so), and roll it out into a 1/4 inch thick rectangle, roughly 12 in. by 8 in. (I used a bit more flour with mine as it was quite sticky.) Brush with the softened margarine or butter and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

Flour your hands and roll up the dough, jelly roll style, then cut it into 12 one inch slices (I use dental floss). Place a slice in each glaze filled muffin tin. Bake for approximately 18 min. or until biscuits are golden brown. Run a knife around each biscuit, then turn them out, glazed side up, onto a cooling rack with a baking sheet or waxed paper below. Makes 12 biscuits.

Indoor Smores

5 c. mini marshmallows
1/3 c. light corn syrup
6 tbsp. margarine or butter
1 1/2 c. MILK chocolate chips
1 tsp. vanilla
8 c. Golden Grahams
1 c. mini marshmallows

Grease a 13 by 9 in. pan. Melt 5 c. marshmallows, corn syrup, margarine, and chips in a large microwaveable bowl uncovered for 2 1/2 to 3 minutes on high, stirring after each minute, until mixture is smooth when stirred. Stir in vanilla. Fold cereal in, and mix quickly until it is completely coated with chocolate. Stir in 1 c. marshmallows. Press mixture evenly in pan with buttered back of a spoon. Let stand at least one hour or refrigerate if a firmer bar is desired. Cut into 2 inch squares. Yield: 24 squares

Creamy Fruit Salad

(This is a big hit, so I double or even triple this and just approximate the amounts of everything.)
1 can (11 ounces) mandarin oranges, drained
1 can (8 1/4 ounces) sliced peaches, drained
1 can (8 ounces) pineapple chunks, drained
1 c. miniature marshmallows
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. plain yogurt
1/4 c. sugar

In a bowl, combine the oranges, peaches, pineapple and marshmallows. In a small mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, yogurt, and sugar until smooth. Pour over the fruit and toss to coat. Refrigerate for at least 15 min. before serving. Yield: 4 servings

Wong's Spaghetti Salad

1 pound spaghetti--Break into 1/4 inch pieces and cook
2 tomatoes
1 red onion
1 c. celery
1 green pepper
1 cucumber
Chop the vegetables.
Mix above ingredients with 1/2 to 1 bottle of Salad Supreme seasoning and 8-16 oz. of Italian dressing (depending on the strength and consistency you want). You can make this recipe the night before, also.

Club Cracker Cookies

These sound different, but everyone that tries them wants the recipe. They are not for people with dentures, though! LOL Super quick and easy, too!

Club crackers to fill a pan
3/4 c. (1 1/2 sticks) butter
1/2 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 c. sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 350F. Line a jelly roll pan (shallow edged cookie sheet) with aluminum foil. Break club crackers into rectangles, and cover the entire pan. Boil the butter and sugar together for 2 minutes, then add vanilla extract. Pour over the club crackers, and sprinkle with nuts. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Remove from foil when they "harden".

OK, I suppose I should go to bed now as I have been up for an hour and a half past when I put the two baby girls down to bed. (And I guess I posted more than just one recipe! LOL) I may try posting some more recipes another time if I am able. I hope everyone enjoys these recipes!

Anonymous said...

Here are some recipes from Indiana.

Baked Ziti
From the Kitchen of Johnsonville Sausage

1 package (19.76 oz.) Johnsonville Sweet Italian Sausage, cooked according to package directions and coin sliced (I used Meijer brand sausage)
8 oz. penne or rigatoni dry pasta, cooked according to package directions
1 jar (26 oz.) pasta sauce
¾ cup water
1 Tbsp. fresh basil, chopped (I used dried)
1 Tbsp. fresh garlic, chopped (I used dried [1/4 tsp.])
½ cup fresh shredded Parmesan cheese
¼ tsp. black pepper
1 pkg. (10 oz.) frozen garlic bread, thawed and sliced into 12 slices (I made my own)
½ cup olive oil
12 fresh whole basil leaves (I didn’t use these)
2 Rome tomatoes, sliced into 12 slices (It took more for me)

In a large bowl, mix cooked sausage, cooked pasta, pasta sauce, water, basil, garlic, Parmesan cheese, and pepper. Toss gently. Place mixture into a greased 9” x 13” pan. Place twelve slices of garlic bread on top of mixture and cover with mozzarella. Dip tomato in olive oil and place on each bread slice. Bake uncovered at 400o for approximately 30 minutes or until heated through. Tuck basil leaf slightly under each tomato. Let stand ten minutes to help set before slicing and serving. Servings: 12

Chicken Pot Pie

2 ready-made pie crusts 1 ½ cups cubed cooked chicken
1 can veg all ½ cup milk
1 can cream of potato soup ½ teaspoon pepper
1 can cream of celery soup ½ teaspoon thyme

Put on crust in bottom of 9 inch pie plate. Save 2nd crust for top.

Mix remaining ingredients together and place in pie crust.

Top with 2nd pie crust. Brush with beaten egg, and put 4 slits in top.

Bake at 375o for 40 minutes. Cool 10 minutes. Eat and enjoy.

Six Week Bran Muffins

4 cups All-Bran cereal 3 teaspoons salt
2 cups Bran Flakes cereal 5 cups flour
2 cups boiling water 1 quart buttermilk
1 cup vegetable oil or Crisco oil 5 teaspoons baking soda,
3 cups white sugar dissolved in a little
4 eggs buttermilk

Place bran cereals and boiling water in a large mixer bowl. Stir to combine. Let cool; add remaining ingredients and mix well. Store in large covered container in refrigerator. Bake as needed. Batter will keep for 6 weeks. Do not stir batter when using after it has been in refrigerator.

To bake: Fill paper lined or well-greased muffin cups ½ full. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes. Cool 5 minutes and remove from pans.

Small batch bran muffins:

1 ½ cups All-Bran cereal ½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups Bran Flakes cereal 2 ½ cups flour
1 cup boiling water 2 cups buttermilk
½ cup vegetable oil or Crisco oil 2 ½ teaspoons baking soda,
1 ½ cups sugar dissolved in a little
2 eggs buttermilk

Hope they copied well. If not, send me your email address to bibbymj@mintel.net

Love keeping up with you all on the blog. Thanks for posting pictures of Elizabeth. I miss her updates. Love you, Mrs. B.

Leah said...


I'm so sorry we didn't get to see you when you were up! :( It sure would've been nice.

Here are some recipes some of which may qualify as being summery.

Scott's parents make the following salad every Christmas and it never lasts long! I love it!

Christmas (in July) Salad

2 No. 2.5 cans chunk pineapple, undrained
1/2 package mini marshmallows
1/4-1/2 cup red cinnamon candies
3/4 cup whipped cream

Put pineapple chunks, marshamllows, and candy together. Mix well. Refrigerate overnight. Drain, fold in whipped cream.

Blueberry Muffins

3 cups flour
4 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1-2 t. real almond extract
1 cup milk
1/2 cup cooking oil
2 cups blueberries (fresh or frozen)
Sliced Almonds

Note: If using frozen blueberries do NOT thaw them, use frozen.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Either grease 18 muffin tins or use 18 paper muffin papers.

Mix flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Beat eggs, milk, almond extract, and oil together. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Fold together just until moistened. Add blueberries... fold in. Drop spoonfuls of batter in prepared muffin tins. Sprinkle a few almonds and then some sugar on each muffin. Bake about 25 minutes.

Fudge Brownies

1 1/3 cups flour
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup baking cocoa
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)
1 cup chocolate chips
2/3 cup cooking oil
4 eggs, slightly beaten
2 t. vanilla
1 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 9 X 13-inch pan with cooking oil.

In mixing bowl combine all dry ingredients (except 1 cup chopped nuts). In another bowl beat egss; add oil and vanilla. Mix well. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Fold everything together... DO NOT OVERMIX! Spread batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle with 1 cup chopped nuts, if desired. Bake 25-35 minutes until center is just set.

Yield: 2 dozen

Idaho Potatoes Supreme

8 medium potatoes(cook w/ skins on w/ 2 bay leaves until partially done; peel, cool, and grate coarsely)

Mix together:
1/4 cup butter
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 1/2 cups sour cream
1/2 tsp. salt
3 green onions, tops and all
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, grated

Add mix to potatoes and blend carefully. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 1/2 hour. Sprinkle top with 1/2 cup grated cheese and 1/2 cup crushed corn flakes. Bake 15 minutes longer. Serves 10-12. (Freezes well before and after baking.)

Disappearing Apple Cake

1 cup oil
2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 1/4 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
3 cups diced apples
1 cup chopped nuts

Cream together oil, sugar, and eggs. Mix together with dry ingredients. Stir in apples and nuts. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour in a 9 X 13-inch pan. Melt together 1/2 cup butter, 1 cup brown sugar, and 1/4 cup milk. Pour over hot cake just when removed from oven.

I guess that's all for now. I may be back later with a few more recipes.

Anonymous said...

Here are 2 of my favorites. I have a few more I'll post later.

Sticky Chicken

1 large roasting chicken, the biggest they have

1 cup onion, quartered ... or lemons (optional)

4 tsp salt

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp cayenne pepper (optional - makes it really spicy!)

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp thyme

1 tsp white pepper

½ tsp garlic powder

½ tsp black powder

In a small bowl, thoroughly combine all of the spices. Remove the giblets from the inside of the chicken. Rinse off the chix and dry it. Rub the spice mixture into the chicken, both inside and out, making sure it is evenly distributed and down deep into the skin. Place in a resealable plastic bag, seal and refrigerate overnight (Kris's note: I don't do this .... I just prepare the chix w/spices right before I'm going to cook it. I never remember to do things overnight ... sigh ...!). When ready to roast chicken, stuff the cavity with onion or lemon (optional) and place in a shallow baking pan. It must be deep enough to catch the juices you'll be basting with.

Bake at 250 degrees F for FIVE hours. (Kris's note: you can shorten the time by cooking at 300 F for around 4 hours). After the first hour, baste the chix with the pan juices and then continue to baste it every half hour until it's all cooked. You may not have a lot of juices until about 90 minutes after starting the cooking process. If the chicken contains a pop-up thermometer, ignore it. Let the chix rest about 10 minutes before carving.

When the chix is done, take it out of the pan. Throw in cut up potatoes and any other veggies that you like and toss in the pan juices. Cook at 350 F for 20-30 minutes and continue to check on them until the veggies are warm and soft enough to eat. I usually combine a bunch of potatoes and one of those stirfry veggie mixes.

Oreo Cookie Refrigerator Cake

Make in a 9 x 13 pan; will also need a mixer, mixing bowls, spatulas, etc.

1 package of Oreos or Oreo-type cookies
2 sticks of butter, melted
16 oz. cream cheese, softenend
16 oz. Cool whip, not frozen!
1 cup confectioner's sugar
1 LARGE chocolate pudding mix (needs 3 cups of milk)

This dessert is made in layers:
1st layer - crush the Oreo cookies inside of a ziploc bag, icing and all. You can reserve some to sprinkle on top of final layer, if desired. Place in medium bowl and stir in ALL of the melted butter until well blended. Pat into 9 x 13 pan to make crust. Place in fridge while making 2nd layer.

2nd layer - In large bowl, mix ALL of the softened cream cheese, 8 oz. of Cool whip and confectioner's sugar. Spread over crust and refrigerate.

3rd layer - Make large chocolate pudding according to directions on box. Pour over cream cheese layer and spread evenly. Refrigerate for a minimum of one hour or until solid enough for final layer.

4th layer - Spread 8 oz Cool whip over the chocolate layer. Refrigerate for another hour or so or you can serve immediately - I've done it both ways and it really doesn't matter!

Cut into pieces and ENJOY! This is VERY rich, so start out with small pieces!

NOTE: You can use low-fat versions of the cookies, cream cheese, cool whip and milk. DO NOT USE FAT-FREE PRODUCTS as the layers will not gel well.

Anonymous said...

One of our faves is BBQ wings/legs with pasta salad with volcano pickles.

BBQ wings/legs
Fill your crock pot with wings or legs and add 1 cup of BBQ sauce. Home made or ready made. PC Dry Garlic rib sauce is great!
Cook on low 4 to 6 hours. Then take out and finish on the BBQ or under the broiler, basting with more sacue.
Cooking the meat right in the sauce REALLY gets the taste in the meat. This is the only way my dh will eat wings/legs.

Pasta salad
Cook pasta till just softening, drain and rince under cold water. Drain. Chop 3 volcano pickles (recipe on my website www.homestead-acres.com )add to pasta and add enough mayo to make a nice creamy salad.

This is soooo easy and tasty on a hot hot day.

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad that the contest has been extended. I just found your blog yesterday.

Here are some quick and easy summer recipes that we enjoy.

Crunchy Floret Salad

3 cups fresh broccoli florets
1 1/2 cups cauliflowerets
1/2 lb. bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 cup mayonnaise
2-3 Tbsp. sugar
@ Tbsp. cider vinegar
1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

In a large bowl, combine the broccoli, cauliflower and bacon.
In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sugar, vinegar and salt. Pour over salad and mix well. cover and refrigerate until serving. Stir in cheese just before serving.


Dilled Cucumber Salad

2 large cucumbers
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup sour cream
2 Tbsp. mayonnaise
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsp. fresh dill, minced
1 1/2 tsp. sugar (optional)
salt & pepper, to taste

1. Peel cucumbers and slice into 1/8 inch thick slices. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and let stand for 15 minutes. Drain.
2. In a cold mixing bowl, whisk together the sour cream, mayonnaise, lemon juice, dill and sugar.
3. Stir the drained cucumbers into the mixed dressing. season with additional salt and pepper, if desired.
4. Cover and chill for 2-3 hours. The cucumbers improve in taste as they marinate in the dressing.
5. Serve and enjoy...This is a wonderful, simple to prepare, warm weather side dish.


Blueberry Chicken Salad

2 cups fresh blueberries
2 cups cubed cooked chicken breast
3/4 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup diced sweet red pepper
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
1 carton (6 oz) lemon yogurt
3 Tbsp. mayonnaise
1/2 tsp. salt

Set aside a few bluberries for garnish. In a large bowl, gently combine the chicken, celery, red pepper, onions and remaining blueberries. Combine the yogurt, mayonnaise, and salt; drizzle over chicken mixture and gently toss to coat.
Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Serve on lettuce-lined plates, if desired. Top with reserved blueberries.

Carmichael Family said...

Here are a couple recipes to start off with...this contest is so fun!

BLT Bites
16-20 cherry tomatoes
1small jar Hormel bacon crumbles
1/2c. sour cream
1/2 packet of Lipton Vegetable Dip Mix
3 TBSP Parmesan cheese crumbles

Cut a thin slice off each tomato top. Scoop out and discard pulp & seeds. Invert the tomatoes on a paper towel to drain.
In a small bowl, combine all remaining ingredients; mix well. Spoon mix into tomatoes.
Refrigerate for 2 or more hours, to firm. Serve chilled.

Okay, here’s my “healthier” version:
-for the bacon crumbles, you can substitute 1 lb. turkey bacon, cooked & crumbled
-for the sour cream, choose a low-fat, or even dairy-free like Tofutti

Greek Pizza
1 bag baby spinach, de-stemmed, triple-washed & patted dry
1/4 c.sliced black olives
1/4 c. sliced Spanish olives
1 small container tomato & basil crumbled feta cheese (Greek style)
1/2 TBSP. rosemary
1/2 TBSP. fresh basil, finely chopped
2 TBSP. olive oil
1/3 c. sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
pre-made crust (or make your own with recipe below)

Grease & flour pizza pan according to crust directions. (I use some olive oil) Pre-heat oven according to crust directions.
Brush crust with olive oil, then spread herbs. Add baby spinach. Add sun-dried tomatoes, olives, then feta cheese. Top with light splashes of more olive oil.
Bake according to crust directions, checking it a few minutes sooner than suggested. The feta won’t melt like normal cheese, but it will soften.

Homemade Crust
this makes two 12-inch crusts
1 package regular or quick active dry yeast
1c. warm water (105-115 degrees)
2-1/2c. all-purpose flour (want even healthier? use whole wheat flour)
2 TBSP. olive oil or vegetable oil (healthier? grapeseed oil)
1/2 tsp. salt
olive oil or vegetable oil

Dissolve yeast in to warm water in medium bowl. Stir in flour, 2 TBSP. oil & the salt. Beat vigorously 20 strokes. Cover & let rest 20-40 minutes.

FOR THIN CRUST: move oven rack to lowest position. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Grease 2 12-inch pizza pans with oil. Sprinkle with cornmeal. Divide dough in half: pat each half into 11-inch circles onto pan, using floured fingers. Prick dough thoroughly with fork. Bake, with toppings, about 10 minutes, or just until crust begins to lightly brown.

FOR THICK CRUST: Move oven rack to lowest position. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Grease pans then lightly sprinkle with cornmeal. Divide dough in half; pat each half onto pan. Cover & let rise to almost double. Bake 20-22 minutes, with toppings, or just until crust begins to lightly brown.

Carmichael Family said...

Here's another just for fun. :)

Fruit Pops

1 banana
1 peach
1 container of vanilla yogurt
splash of oj

Peel the banana and the peach (or whatever fruit combo you'd like to try). Throw fruit & yogurt into a blender and blend on pulse.

Add a splash of oj to create a smooth consistency.

Pour mixture into popsicle molds.

Put in freezer and let them freeze overnight before serving.

Carmichael Family said...

Here's more...

Taco Soup
1 lb. hamburger
1 can of corn - drained
1 can of ranch style black beans or kidney beans - drained
1 pkg. of taco mix powder (as directed with water)
1 can of stewed/ diced tomatoes, or diced fresh tomatoes
To Top: Mexican shredded cheese & sour cream

~Saute hamburger in a pot. Combine taco mix with water. (For a less spicy taste, use less of the powder.) Add mix to hamburger.
~Add corn, beans, and tomatoes. Add water to desired consistency & let simmer to heat all ingredients.
~Serve in a bowl over crumbled tortilla chips, and top with shredded mexican cheese & sour cream.
Healthier alternatives...
Substitute ground turkey for the ground hamburger meat. Use low/ no fat choices for the sour cream & shredded cheese.

Quick Cheddar Cheese Biscuits
(Makes 8 biscuits.)

1. 1 cup all-purpose flour
2. 1 1/4 tsp baking powder
3. 1/2 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
4. 2 TBSP chilled butter
5. 2/3 cup milk

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Combine flour & baking powder in a medium bowl (optional addition, 1/2 tsp salt).
2. Cut in butter using a pastry blender or 2 knives until coarse crumbs form.
3. Using a fork, stir milk into flour mixture until a soft dough forms. Do not overmix or overwork dough.
4. Stir in shredded Cheddar cheese.
5. Drop dough in heaping tablespoons, 1 inch apart, onto ungreased baking sheet.
6. Bake until biscuits are firm to the touch, about 15 minutes.
1. Try basting the biscuits with melted butter and Hidden Valley Ranch powder.
2. Freeze these biscuits to have for mini egg sandwiches. Defrost biscuits; reheat for 10 minutes. Fill with scrambled eggs, bacon, and Cheddar.
3. Complement a spaghetti dinner: use Parmesan cheese instead of Cheddar and add 1/2 tsp dried basil in Step 1 of directions.

Fudge Frosting

1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup Hershey's Cocoa
3 2/3 cups powdered sugar
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

In small saucepan over low heat, melt butter.
Add cocoa; stir constantly just until mixture begins to boil.
Remove from heat; pour into small mixer bowl.
Add powdered sugar alternately with milk, beating to spreading consistency.
Blend in vanilla.
Spread frosting while warm.

Yield: About 2-1/4 cups frosting.

Add 1 tablespoon finely crushed peppermint candy to frosting mixture.

Flaky Butter Pie Crust
(makes enough for 2 pie crusts)

7 oz (14 Tbsp) unsalted butter, cold
3 cups flour
1./2 tsp. Salt
1/4 tsp. Baking powder
1/2 to 3/4 c cold water
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

Whisk the flour, salt, and baking powder together. Cut in the cold chunks of butter with a pastry cutter until pea-sized pieces form.
Combine the water and vinegar and add to dry ingredient mixture. Work the dough, quickly, by hand until it forms into a smooth ball. Break in half to form 2 smooth balls.
Flatten out each ball into a round circle for easier rolling, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm (at least an hour or overnight).
If you've made extra, be sure to double or triple wrap it before putting it in the freezer and let it thaw out in the refrigerator for at least a day before using.
Roll the first circle out thin enough to use as bottom pie crust. Roll the second circle out to be used as the top, or cut into strips to weave together.

Anonymous said...

Here is another favorite of ours ... no more Jiffy mix when we want REAL cornbread!

Ingredients for the most AWESOME cornbread ever!:

1 c. half and half (I used non-fat)

2 large eggs

1/4 c. honey

1/4 c. corn oil

1/4 c. packed dark or light brown sugar

1 c. all-purpose flour

1 c. yellow cornmeal (I used Bob's Red Mill)

1 Tbl. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 c. shelled sunflower seeds, preferably unsalted (I omitted this)


1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Oil or butter a 9-inch square baking pan. Whisk together the half-and-half, eggs, oil, honey and brown sugar in a medium bowl.

2. Combine the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt, and sunflower seeds in a separate bowl.

3. Stir the dry ingredients into the egg mixture until you have a rough batter; be careful not to overmix.

4. Pour the batter into the baking pan.

5. Bake the cornbread for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cneter comes out clean. Remove from the oven and serve hot or at room temperature.

Serves 6 .... maybe!!

betsy said...

Sounds like a lovely trip, Rebecca! What fun to go berry picking and get to see family and friends! I should really type out some recipes, but I just don't have the energy right now...for now I'll just have to enjoy other people's and maybe share some on my blog later. I think your contest is a splendid idea though, and I can't wait to try some of the yummy recipes others have shared!

Carmichael Family said...

Fruit Dip

8 oz container Strawberry cream cheese – softened
7 oz jar Marshmallow cream
2 tbpn Amaretto or almond extract (optional)

Place all ingredients in mixing bowl and beat on medium speed until well blended. Serve immediately with a variety of fruit or chill until ready to use!

Creamy Ranch Potatoes

2.5 lbs of small red potatoes, quartered
8 ounce sour cream
.4 ounce package buttermilk ranch dry salad dressing mix
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup

Place potatoes in a slow cooker. In a small bow combine remaining ingredients. Spoon mixture over potatoes; stir.
Cook on low-heat setting for 7 to 8 hours or on hight-heat setting for 3.5 to 4 hours. Stir gently before serving.

Cream Cheese Clouds

1 can (16.3 oz.) refrigerated buttermilk biscuits
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
1 pkg. (8 oz.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, cut into 12 cubes
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted

PREHEAT oven to 350°F. Separate dough into 12 biscuits; press or roll each to 1/4-inch thickness.

MIX sugar and cinnamon in shallow dish. Dip cream cheese cubes in melted butter, then roll in the cinnamon sugar. Place 1 cheese cube in center of each dough circle; gather up sides of dough to enclose filling. Press edges of dough together to seal. Place, seam sides up, in lightly greased muffin pan. Drizzle with any remaining butter; sprinkle with any remaining cinnamon sugar.

BAKE 15 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm.

Baked French Toast

3 eggs
1/3 C apple juice
2 Tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
4 slices of cinnamon/raisin bread (I just used cinnamon swirl)

Preheat oven to 375. Place bread in a shallow pan. Beat together remaining ingredients and pour over bread. Let stand for about 5 minutes turning once. When liquid is mostly absorbed place bread on a greased baking sheet. Drizzle with any remaining liquid. Bake about 10 minutes, turn slices, bake 10 minutes more.

Serve with powdered sugar.

Five-Cup Fruit Salad

1 can (8-1/4 oz.) DOLE Pineapple Chunks, undrained
1 can (11 oz.) DOLE Mandarin Orange Segments, drained
1 container (8 oz.) BREAKSTONE'S or KNUDSEN Sour Cream, any variety
1 cup JET-PUFFED Miniature Marshmallows

DRAIN pineapple, reserving 1 Tbsp. of the juice.
MIX pineapple, reserved juice and remaining ingredients; toss lightly. Cover.
REFRIGERATE several hours or until chilled.

Carmichael Family said...

Last one...

Chicken Salad

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed
1 C of mayo
1 C of sour cream
1 C of chopped celery
1 Tbsp of mustard

Brown chicken in about 1 tbsp of butter until no longer pink
Add mayo, sour cream and mustard; stir to mix well and coat
Add celery and stir well
Simmer over low heat until heated through - about 5-10 minutes.

I usually season with Italian seasoning and serve over rice.

Carmichael Family said...

Oops, I just realized it's after noon eastern time...oh well, don't include those last recipes if you don't want to...

Rebecca said...

And this recipe was emailed to me by my friend Michelle...


1/2 c. olive oil (I usually use just 1/4c. to make it lighter)
1/2c. chopped cilantro
2 Tbsp. EACH lemon juice and white wine vinegar (or apple cider in a pinch!)
1 fresh jalapeno pepper, seeded, finely diced
1.5 c. chopped dill pickles (if you don't like 'em, leave 'em out and it is still great!)
1 15oz. can EACH black, pinto, and garbanzo beans, drained
1 stalk celery, sliced
2 green onions, sliced
1/2 red pepper, diced
1 tomato, chopped
2 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. dried oregano

Mix dressing ingredients: olive oil, cilantro, lemon juice, vinegar, cumin, jalapeno pepper, and oregano in a large bowl.

Add salad ingredients and stir well. Cover. Refrigerate 2hrs. or overnight.

Roberta said...

Oops! I just saw you changed it to noon. I was going to post tonight, (although your tonight is later than mine). Oh well, you have lots of good ones to choose from. :)

Roberta said...

You're so sweet! I hope my comment didn't read rudely, sometimes quick comments leave the tone in question.
I have enjoyed your blog, you have a fun personality I read through your posts. :)