Friday, March 11, 2016

Loaded Baked Potato Soup

Every time we go out to a sandwich restaurant, I order Baked Potato Soup.  It is just so warm and comforting.  I always hesitate to make it at home because I know my children aren’t that into it, especially my middle child.  For some reason she has a serious aversion to mashed potatoes.  No joke, I made this soup and she devoured it and asked for more!  Maybe it was the bacon.  Ha!  I printed this recipe off the internet many years ago and there is no label on it so I am sorry I can’t give credit where credit is due.  If this is yours, please let me know so I can credit you!


-1 pound bacon, slightly chopped

-1 medium yellow onion, diced

-1 large carrot, peeled and diced (or a handful of baby carrots, diced)

-3/4 cup diced celery (3-4 large ribs)

-4 large Russet potatoes, peeled and diced

-4 medium red potatoes, diced

-1/4 cup flour

-2 to 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock

-salt and pepper to taste

-4 cups heavy whipping cream



1.  In a large pot over medium heat, fry bacon until crispy.

2.  Remove bacon and drain on paper towels, reserving half for garnish.  In bacon fat, cook onions, carrots, and celery until the onions are translucent.  Add potatoes and cook for 4 minutes. stirring occasionally.

3.  Whisk in flour and stir constantly over low heat until the flour is cooked and the mixture has thickened slightly, about 5 to 7 minutes.  Add chicken stock and half of the bacon.  Chicken stock should completely cover the potatoes in the pot.  Season with salt and pepper.

4.  Over medium high heat, bring the soup to a simmer and cook for 25 minutes until the potatoes are soft.  Mash some of the potatoes for thicker, creamier texture.  Add whipping cream and simmer for 5 minutes.

5.  Adjust thickness by adding water or stock.  Soup should have a creamy consistency.

6.  Seasons to taste; garnish with bacon. 



Monday, February 29, 2016

Cauliflower Risotto Cakes

Cauliflower is quite an incredible little guy.  He is super stinky to cook, but tastes delicious when he is done.  He has amazing health benefits, including inactivating carcinogens in your body.  Crazy, right?  We try to eat cauliflower at least every other week.  Sadly, my kids aren’t such a fan of the big guy.  I’m always trying to hide him in different foods.  After many tries, I finally succeeded!  These cakes were gone in the blink of an eye and they begged for more.  Healthy and yummy?  I’m in! 

Just a couple notes – I went ahead and made risotto from scratch but this would be just as good with long grain rice.  Also, for those who are egg free, this recipe still works great without the egg.  Just make your cakes a little smaller and thicker so they stay together.  Recipe from Cooking Light Magazine.


-1 cauliflower head (about 1 pound of florets)

-1.5 cups prepared risotto (or rice)

-2/3 cup panko

-1/4 cup parsley, chopped

-1/2 tsp salt

-1/2 tsp black pepper

-2 oz shredded fontina cheese (I used parmesan)

-1 large egg

-1 Tbsp olive oil



1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Pulse the cauliflower florets in a food processor until finely chopped.  Spread on a baking sheet; bake at 400 for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally.

2. Combine cauliflower with remaining ingredients, except olive oil, in a large bowl.  Shape into 8 (3 inch) patties (thicker and smaller if not using the egg). 

3. Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add 4 patties to pan; cook 3 minutes on each side.  Remove from pan.


Friday, February 26, 2016

Black Forrest Trifle

I LOVE Black Forrest cake.  I mean, it’s just chocolate, cherries, and whipped cream.  What is there not to love?  My birthday is in the summer and every year we try our best to find the perfect Black Forrest cake.  I’ve tried just about every one in the DFW area and haven’t found one that I just have to have again.  Last year, I tried this trifle and it was a home run.  Bonus: your cakes don’t have to come out perfect and the top doesn’t slide off when you try to put it on top of the cherry filling (speaking from experience).  This would be great to bring to a potluck too!



-Chocolate cake mix or Wacky Cake (click for egg free cake recipe)

-2 cans cherry pie filling

-1 (8 oz) container of Cool Whip or fresh whipped cream



1.  Make cake according to box directions for 2 cakes.  If you are using the Wacky Cake recipe (egg free), then make it twice so you have 2 cakes.  Allow cakes to cool completely.

2. Break cakes up to fit into your trifle bowl.  Each layer usually uses about half a cake.  Top layer with 1 can of cherry pie filling.  Top cherries with half of Cool Whip container.  Repeat layers.

3.  That’s it!  Enjoy!  Keep refrigerated.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Hot Fudge Brownie Cake

I’ve seen this recipe in many different forms, many different names, and many different blogs/magazines.  This version is from Southern Living (can you get any better?) and is the most fool proof that I’ve seen.  It is most delicious the first night you make it but heats up well for any leftovers.  My favorite part about this recipe is that is mainly uses ingredients I have on hand so I can whip it up for a quick dessert.


-1 cup flour

-2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa

-2 tsp baking powder

-1/4 tsp salt

-1 1/4 cups granulated sugar, divided

-1/2 cup milk, room temperature

-3 Tbsp vegetable oil

-1 tsp vanilla extract

-1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

-1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa

-1 1/2 cups boiling water


1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Stir together flour, next 3 ingredients, and 3/4 cup granulated sugar in a large bowl; stir in milk, oil, and vanilla.  Spread batter in a lightly greased 8 inch square pan.

2.  Combine brown sugar, cocoa, and remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar in a small bowl; sprinkle over batter in pan.  Using a spoon, gently drizzle 1 1/2 cups boiling water over batter, being careful not to disturb layers (do not stir).

3.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until a cake layer forms on top and layer springs back when touched.  Let cool on a wire rack 25 minutes.  Serve warm.


Friday, March 16, 2012

Buttery Snack Cake with Broiled Coconut Topping

When I got married, my Mom bought me a beautiful “Bridal Edition” Betty Crocker cookbook.  Honestly, I haven’t opened it in 6 years!  It’s one of those that is pretty to look at but not terribly practical for regular cooking.  The other night my husband was desperate for some dessert so we pulled out all the cookbooks and started looking.  This recipe caught our eye and I’m so glad because it is DELICIOUS!  The topping is so yummy and gooey and compliments the cake perfectly.  The cake isn’t super sweet so it’s great for snacking.  Worth a try!


-1 1/4 cup flour

-1 cup sugar

-1/3 cup butter, softened

-3/4 cup milk

-1 1/2 tsp baking powder

-1 tsp vanilla

-1/2 tsp salt

-1 large egg

-Broiled Coconut Frosting (below)


1.  Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease bottom and sides of a square pan (either 8 or 9 inches) or round pan, with shortening; lightly flour.

2.  Beat all ingredients except Broiled Coconut Frosting with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds, scraping bowl constantly.  Beat on high speed 3 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally.  Pour into pan.

3.  Bake 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.  Make Broiled Coconut Frosting.

4.  Set oven control to broil.  Carefully spread frosting over hot cake.  Broil with top of cake about 4 inches from heat about 2 minutes or until frosting in light brown.  Watch carefully so frosting does not burn.  Cool 15 minutes.  Serve warm or cool.

Broiled Coconut Frosting

-1 cup flake coconut

-1/3 cup packed brown sugar

-1/4 cup butter, softened

-2 Tbsp milk

Mix all ingredients.


Friday, March 2, 2012

Baked Ziti

I love Baked Ziti but never found a recipe that I liked or found easy enough to throw together for a meal.  This one was in Family Circle Magazine and looked so yummy that we gave it a try.  Winner for sure!



-2 Tbsp olive oil

-1 medium onion, chopped

-3 cloves garlic, sliced

-1 can (28 oz) whole tomatoes

-1 can (15 oz) tomato sauce

-2 Tbsp tomato paste

-2 tsp sugar

-1/4 tsp salt

-1/4 tsp black pepper

-1 can (14.5 oz) basil and oregano diced tomatoes, drained

-1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped (I substituted dried basil)

Ziti and Cheese:

-1 box (16 oz) ziti (I used the new smaller Ziti from Barilla and it was really great for my toddler)

-1 bag (8 oz) shredded mozzarella cheese

-1/4 cup grated Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese


1.  Heat oven to 375 degrees.  Coat a 13x9 baking dish with cooking spray.

2.  Sauce – Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat.  Add onion and cook 4 minutes.  Add garlic and cook another minute.  Stir in whole tomatoes and their juice, breaking tomatoes apart with your hands or a wooden spoon.  Stir in tomato sauce, tomato paste, sugar, salt and pepper.  Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes.

3.  Remove pan from heat.  Stir in diced tomatoes and basil.

4. Ziti and cheese – Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to boiling.  Add ziti; boil 10 minutes (or follow directions on box).  Drain and transfer to a large bowl.  Add half the sauce to bowl with ziti.  Stir to coat.  Pour ziti mixture into prepared dish.  Top with remaining sauce and then sprinkle with the cheeses.

5.  Bake at 375 for 20 to 25 minutes, until bubbly and lightly browned.  Cool 10 minutes.


Monday, February 27, 2012

Chocolate Gooey Butter Cookies

Paula Deen.  Cream Cheese.  Yup, that’s all you need to know!  These are the BEST chocolate cookies I have ever had.  6 ingredients and done.  So rich and yummy.  Enjoy!


-1 (8 oz) brick cream cheese, room temperature

-1 stick butter, room temperature

-1 egg

-1 tsp vanilla extract

-1 (18 oz) box moist chocolate cake mix

-Confectioners sugar, for dusting


1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2.  In a large bowl with an electric mixer, cream the cream cheese and butter until smooth.  Beat in the egg.  Then beat in the vanilla extract.  Beat in the cake mix.  Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours to firm up so that you can roll the batter into balls.

3.  Roll the chilled batter into tablespoon sized balls and then roll them in confectioners sugar.  Place on an ungreased cookie sheet, 2 inches apart.  Bake 12 minutes.  The cookies will remain soft and “gooey.”  Cool completely.



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