Where Cooking is Fun
We want cooking to be as fun for you as it is for us.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Sour Cream Coffee Cake


Jack and I are not big breakfast people. We LOVE eating it. We just love our sleep more. Usually we eat real breakfast food on Saturdays and that's it. (and that's not until about 11am usually) Depending on how many times we hit the snooze button we can usually cram in a bowl of cereal- that's why I love coffee cakes so much! I always forget about them till I make one and remember what a life saver they are for me. I make them the night before and then we can finally eat real breakfast for a few days. Here's one of my very favorite recipes

Sour Cream Coffee Cake

1 c. butter
2 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 c. sour cream
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 c. flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/8 tsp. salt

Filling:
1/3 c. flour
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
3 Tbs. melted butter
1 tsp. cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 and grease 9x13 pan. In a large bowl cream together butter and white sugar until fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time and then stir in the sour cream and vanilla. Mix in flour, baking powder and salt. Spread 1/2 of batter in the prepared pan. Prepare filling: in a medium bowl mix flour, brown sugar, butter and cinnamon. Sprinkle cake batter with 1/2 the filling. Spread second half of batter over the filling and top with remaining filling. Bake 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.

~Dayna~

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Hearty Hash Brown Soup

Soup isn't just for Fall and Winter...its made year round at my house. I like it especially on cold windy days, but any day can be a soup day for me. This is a super easy soup...but, it makes a lot. If you have a small family or don't want a ton of left overs, then just make half the recipe...ON THE OTHER HAND-if you have a large group of people that you want to serve, then make a full batch. I found this recipe in the "Best of Taste of Home" cookbook. I love the recipes in these books because they are tried and tested and I usually have most of the ingredients to make the recipes myself. They don't usually have "weird" things that I can't find at our local stores...its all in my cupboard or just a short drive away. I made this soup exactly how the recipe was written, but in the future, I think I will garnish it with a little grated cheese too (just because cheese makes everything extra yummy). 

Hearty Hash Brown Soup
2 lb. frozen hash brown potatoes
4 c. water
1 large onion, diced (I didn't use the onion because my family doesn't like onions, but I put in 1 t. onion 
    powder)
3/4 c. celery (I also didn't put the celery in...because family doesn't like it...but it would be better with it)
4 chicken bouillon cubes
1/2 t. celery seed
1/4 t. pepper
4 cans cream of chicken soup, undiluted
4 c. milk
2 c. cubed (small) fully cooked ham
1 T. dried parsley flakes
1 1/2 t. garlic powder
bacon, cooked and crumbled

In a soup kettle, combine the first seven ingredients; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until veggies are tender. Mash vegetable with cooking liquid. (I didn't mash mine...we like chunks) Add soup and milk; stir until smooth. Add ham, parsley and garlic powder; simmer for 10 minutes or until heated through. Garnish with bacon (and cheese if you want). 

We served this soup with corn bread (watch for that recipe in a future post) and it made it a great meal!

Happy Cooking~
Julie

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Layered Salad



I went to college with 2 of my very best friends. We had SO much fun living together. Some of my favorite memories were the Friday nights when we would take our mattresses off our beds and cook up a huge feast and get comfy for an entire weekend of scary movies and girl talk. I love those memories. One of the staples for our feasts was Layered Salad. I'm not even going to lie to you- this salad sounds disgusting. But if you like these ingredients I can promise you that combining them in this super weird combination will leave your taste buds screaming for more.

Layered Salad
1 can of refried beans
1/4 cup (or less if desired) sour cream
1/2 cup grated cheese
1 small bag of salad
corn chips
Italian dressing

Layer one can of refried beans into a bowl or serving pan. Layer sour cream, cheese and salad in order. Chill until serving. Top individual servings with chips and Italian dressing. Enjoy

~Dayna~

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Mozzarella Cheese Sticks

My kids love cheese sticks....who am I kidding, I do too! Everyone was so excited when I announced that I was going to tempt to make them from scratch. I admit that it was a trial and error adventure, but I think that I finally mastered them. They are delicious and alot easier than you might think. Everyone gobbled them right up...there was nothing even left over for a later snack....I should have set some aside so I could have had another one later, but honestly I didn't think they would have eaten everything. NOTE: Make a lot!!!

Mozzarella Cheese Sticks
1 lb string cheese (could use a mozzarella brick, cut into strips)...cut each piece of string cheese in half 
   lengthwise and then FREEZE them!
3 eggs, beaten
2 T. water
1 c. flour
1/4 c. cornstarch
2 boxes extra crispy Shake-n-Bake
1 t. garlic powder
1 t. onion powder

Mix flour and cornstarch in a mixing bowl. Mix Shake-n-Bake and seasonings in a separate bowl. Mix water and egg together in another bowl. Remove cheese from the freezer. Dip each cheese stick in egg, then roll them in the flour. Dip in the egg wash again, then roll in Shake-n-Bake. Place on wax paper and chill for an hour. In a large skillet or deep fryer, heat oil to 375 degrees. Fry chilled cheese sticks until golden brown. Serve with ranch dipping sauce or pizza sauce.

Happy Cooking~
Julie 
  

Monday, April 26, 2010

BBQ Chicken Calzones


I've been meaning to try these Calzones for weeks. I had a recipe all ready to try and when I got ready to make dinner tonight I decided to scratch the recipe and make up a quick version. We were extremely pleased with the outcome. Perfect for a quick dinner (if you cook the chicken before hand). Dip these babies in some ranch and you will not be disappointed.

BBQ Chicken Calzones
Pizza Dough
3 Boneless Chicken Breasts
1 cup BBQ Sauce
Mozerella Cheese

Prepare your favorite Pizza Dough recipe. Bake Chicken Breasts at 375 for 35-40 minutes. Dice chicken into small pieces and combine with BBQ sauce. Take small balls of dough and roll out until you have a 3-4 inch circle. Place 1 spoon full of chicken and about 1 Tbs cheese in each calzones. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes.

~Dayna~

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Fruity Syrup

I'm a true lover of maple syrup, BUT  sometimes its nice to shake things up a bit and serve the morning pancakes, waffles and french toast with something OTHER THAN the plain ol' everyday, maple syrup.
I love to make different syrups and sauces and make breakfast a new experience for one and all. I have a few in my "sweet little family" that just prefer the "Ol' standby"...but they are good sports and always try my new creations...they usually end up liking them too. This one is a fun syrup for spring, something fresh and new...get out of the "dreary maple syrup routine" for one morning and try this.

Fruity Syrup
1 c. sugar
3 T. cornstarch
2 c. cold water
2 c. fruit (you can use fresh or frozen (thawed)...if using canned fruit, use the juice from the fruit in place
      of your water)
1/2 package of sugar-free jello (flavor of your choice)

Combine sugar and cornstarch in a small saucepan. Add cold water. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Add jello and stir in until its dissolved. Add fruit and continue to cook until thick, stir continually to keep syrup from scorching. Once your syrup is thick, remove from heat and pour into a cup with a spout. Serve in place of maple syrup...give it a try, you never know, you just might like it.

Happy Cooking~
Julie

Friday, April 23, 2010

Homemade Croutons

Croutons, in my book, can be either really good and add a ton of taste to your salad, or be really nasty and take away the joy of eating a salad all together. I like to make my own croutons so that I can make them the way I like them. They are easy, almost too easy, to make. I make homemade bread every week, so I use my homemade bread to make my croutons. I have used store bought bread too...but when it comes right down to it, the heavier, more dense bread (like homemade or deli or the more expensive store bought bread) works the very best.

Homemade Croutons
1 loaf bread
1/4 - 1/2 c. butter, melted
Italian seasoning
Parmesan Cheese (the canned)


Cut 1 loaf of bread into 1/2 inch cubes. Place cubes onto large baking sheet. (I had to use 2 baking sheets) Bake at 300 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Melt butter in a skillet and put baked bread cubes into melted butter. Stir until well coated. Add Parmesan Cheese and Italian seasoning to taste (however much you want). Return bread cubes to baking sheets and bake for 30 minutes at 275. Cool completely. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator.

*Use them on salads or in soups...or just eat them plain. I like mine to be a little chewy. Adjust cooking times according to the density of your bread and how crispy you like them.

Happy Cooking~
Julie

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Kim's Crab Won Tons


I love chinese food in almost any shape or form...BUT these crab wontons are right up there with my very favorite, especially when my sweet daughter, Kim, whips them up and makes them for me. She likes them as much as I do, so we get to eat them often. They are great to serve as a main dish or you can serve them as a side dish with one of your favorite chinese entree's.
"syihwan" (means "Enjoy" in chinese)

Kim's Crab Won Tons

2 1/2 packages cream cheese, softened (we have used the Neufchatel cheese and it works just as well)
8 oz. chopped imitation crab
1/2 bunch of chopped green onion.
I used the kitchen scissors and just snipped off the tops directly into my bowl. (I tell my kids that
onions are always optional, because they don't like onions, BUT Kim insists that they are NOT
optional for this recipe...and I tend to agree, the won tons don't taste as good without them.)
1 package won ton wraps
Oil for deep frying
Combine cream cheese, imitation crab and onion in a bowl and mix with a mixer until well blended. Place a teaspoon of filling on the center of the won ton wrap. Moisten the edges with water and bring all corners together at the top, press to seal shut. Heat oil to 350 degrees. Fry the won tons until they are golden brown, about 45 seconds to 1 minute. Drain well on a paper towel.

"hen hau fan" (means "very good food" in chinese)

Happy Cooking~
Julie

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Death by Chocolate


When I was in High School my best friend would always rave about Death by Chocolate. It sounded amazing but I never tried it until her graduation dinner. Oh. My. Gosh. I was hooked. I've been making it ever since. It's one of my very favorite desserts to whip up because it's so easy! Perfect for a picnic or BBQ- or just to impress friend and family.

Death by Chocolate
1 package brownie mix
2 packages instant chocolate pudding
1 large container cool whip
5 large Snicker bars

Prepare Brownies according to package directions. When finished let cool completely. Break brownies into bite sized chunks. Prepare pudding according to directions. Chop Snicker bars into small pieces. Layer 1/3 of brownies in the bottom of a large bowl. Cover brownies with a layer of pudding. Spread a layer of cool whip over pudding. Sprinkle with Snickers'. Repeat. (Brownies, Pudding, Cool Whip and Snickers). Refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving.


~Dayna~

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Taco Soup


I think every family has their own version of a Taco Soup recipe, our family is no different. I have found one that I have used for the past 20 years and my family loves it. We eat it frequently and seldom is there any left over. It's the easiest soup to make, taking only about 15 minutes to put together, then you just heat and serve....its that easy! NO JOKE! Its one of my favorite "easy" recipes to make when I am in a hurry.

Taco Soup
2 cans red beans (can use Kidney beans or any other that your family likes)...don't drain
2 cans corn, drained
1 lb. ground beef, cooked and drained
1-46 oz can of Tomato juice
2 packages of taco seasoning

1 package of Frito style corn chips

Toppings ideas: shredded cheese, olives, avocado's, chopped tomatoes, chopped red onion, sour cream...etc...

Put all ingredient (except chips and toppings) in a large soup pan. Heat until warm, then serve. Top with corn chips and your  favorite taco toppings then...Eat up!

* For a more spicy soup, add 1 bottle of salsa and reduce the amount of tomato juice that you put in. 

Happy Cooking~
Julie 


Monday, April 19, 2010

Potato Skins

I use mayonnaise more than any other cooking ingredient in the entire world. I am not exaggerating here. It's my favorite. I eat EVERYTHING with fry sauce or homemade ranch- those suckers use a lot of mayo. It's what gives me all those sexy curves (insert over the top eye roll). Luckily the dip factor is not the only thing that is amazing about this recipe.

Potato Skins
10 potatoes
1 cup cheese
Bacon pieces
Melted butter

Bake potatoes WITHOUT tinfoil. It allows to skins to get crispy. Once they are finished let them cool. Cut potato in half the long way and scoop out some of the center, not all of it because you want some potato left in...leave about 1/2 inch around the inside of the potato. Brush inside of potato skin with melted butter and broil for about 4 minutes (until its warm but not crisp) then add the cheese and bacon and broil again for 2-3 minutes (watch because oven times vary) and eat! Serve with homemade ranch.

~Dayna~

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Fluffy Homemade Waffles

Waffles are one of my favorite breakfast foods. I've used the store bought "just add water" mixes...and I don't mind them, BUT I prefer my mom's Fluffy Homemade Waffles. Serve these with strawberries and cream or with maple syrup...any way that you serve them, you will love them.

Mom's Homemade Fluffy Waffles

2 c. flour
2 c. milk
1 T. baking powder
3 T. oil
2 egg yolks
2 t. vanilla
2 egg whites

Beat egg whites until stiff and fluffy. Mix remaining ingredient together. Fold in beaten egg whites. Heat waffle iron and spray with pan coating. Pour in 1/2 c. of waffle batter and cook until done. Serve with your favorite waffle topping.
*I like to double the recipe and then freeze the extras. They warm up really nicely in the microwave or you can toast them in the toaster.....makes for "easy" breakfasts when you're in a hurry. 

Friday, April 16, 2010

Mock Wingers Chicken

Some of my favorite recipes to try are "mock" recipes from original restaurants. I love the feeling of eating restaurant quality meals for 1/3 of the price. My mom found this years ago (sorry I can't remember where) and we eat it for every occasion. This recipe for Winger's Chicken is easily one of our very favorite foods. Now it can be one of yours too!

Mock Wingers Chicken

1 bag of chicken chunks (I use Great Value)

Sauce:
1 1/2 c. brown sugar
4 T. water
6 T. "Franks" Hot Sauce (it has to be this brand)

Bake chicken strips according to the package. Heat hot sauce, water and brown sugar in a sauce pan until all the sugar is dissolved. Cut chicken into bite sized pieces. (or leave as strips) Pour sauce over chicken and toss until sauce is coated evenly. Serve immediately. Dip in homemade ranch dressing. *Mixing sauce and ranch dressing will create a "buffalo sauce' similar to the one served at Wingers.

~Dayna~

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Cinnamon Roasted Nuts

Have you ever gotten a whiff of the "Cinnamon Roasted Almonds" cooking, as you browse through the malls doing your Christmas shopping, and just wish that you had a little bag of them to munch on?...THEN after you purchase a little bag of them you eat them ever so slowly because you know that you won't get any more until NEXT CHRISTMAS?...well, I have solved your dilemma...NOW you can make these sweet little treats right in your own home and make them as often as your heart desires. They even make your house smell yummy while they cook...it's a win win situation!
Let me know what you think of them....I bet you're going to love them!

Cinnamon Roasted Nuts

4 c. nuts (use Almonds, Cashews, Walnuts, Pecans...whatever you love 
      * I used Almonds and Cashews, because those are my favorite nuts...but really, I will eat any nut)
1 egg white
3 t. vanilla
1/2 t. salt
1 T. cinnamon
3/4-1 c. sugar ( I used 3/4 c. and it was just right...but if you want more sugar, add more)

In a small dish combine sugar, cinnamon and salt, set aside. In a large mixing bowl beat egg white until frothy, but don't allow it to get stiff. Add vanilla, mixing into egg white. Add nuts and stir until they are coated well. Add the sugar mixture and stir until the nuts are well covered. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Spray a large baking sheet with pan coating. Spread nuts evenly onto pan. Bake for 30 minutes then turn nuts with a pancake spatula...then bake for 30 more minutes. Remove from oven, allow nuts to cool. Store in an air tight container....that is if there is any leftover.

Happy Cooking~
Julie

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Strawberry Limeade

A few weeks ago my Sister in Law and I stopped at Sonic on our way home from a scrapbook expo. After walking around for 4 hours and spending all our money, we were parched. I ordered a strawberry limeade and I have been hooked since that day. Jack is SO glad I started making them at home so he can stop running to Sonic every few hours. (they are THAT good) I made my recipe for a single serving but I would definitely use it for a summer picnic or reception drink! Also, I found that the longer the limes sit in the drink the better it tastes. It lets all the flavors combine.

Strawberry Limeade

1/2 cup mashed strawberries
2 cups sprite
1/2 lime (cut into quarters)

Mash your strawberries until you have plenty of juice. The smaller the chunks the better. Combine Strawberries and Sprite. Cut Lime into quarters and gently squeeze the lime into your drink- dropping the limes into the cup once done. Chill until served.

Spring Parfait

For Easter dinner I wanted to make and serve something fresh and light, something that reminded me  of "Spring". After searching my recipe books, and the internet I came up empty handed. I couldn't find anything that sounded like what I was looking for. That left one option, come up with something on my own...I came up with this fun "Spring Parfait". And I have to say, it turned out just the way that I wanted it too. Its fun, its light, its fluffy and most of all....it is GOOD! It's a great little treat that you could serve as a jello salad or a dessert.

Spring Parfait

Bottom layer:

1 .6 oz package of lime Jello (large box)
2  large cans of pears
16 oz cool whip
8 oz cream cheese
Drain the pears, keeping 2 c. of the juice. Pour pear juice into a saucepan and bring to a boil, then dissolve the 2 pkg. lime Jello in the pear juice. Place Jello in a shallow dish in the refrigerator until it starts to set up...(just starts to thicken a little). While you are waiting for that, mix cream cheese and drained pears in the blender, then stir in the "partially set" Jello. Fold in the cool whip and spoon into your dessert cups. If you don't want to serve it in a dessert cup, pour it into a 9x13 glass baking pan. Place mixture into the refrigerator for 3 hours then spoon/spread on the middle layer mixture.

Middle layer mixture:

3 c. frozen raspberries, thawed (could use frozen blueberries too)
8 oz. cream cheese
2-8 oz cool whip

Drain the berries and try to get off most of the juice. Beat cream cheese and 1-8 oz. cool whip together until creamy, then add thawed berries. Place in the refrigerator for 30-45 minutes until it sets up to a thick consistency. Spoon onto Bottom layer. Leave overnight or 6-8 hours in the refrigerator until firm. Top with 1-8oz cool whip, top with berries or something fun and serve. I hope that you like itLet me know what you think~ 

Happy Cooking~
Julie

Monday, April 12, 2010

Winner

Howdy Readers. So sorry I didn't get our winner posted on Saturday. We took a weekend trip to San Diego and I decided to wait till I got back to post our winner. And now, according to Random.org our winner is comment #9.....

**Valerie Spencer**

Congrats Valerie! I don't have your email address to get all your information so when you get a chance please email me at ady.dayna@gmail.com and I will get your dish towels in the mail!

Thanks so much for entering our giveaway and reading our blog. We love our readers! We're already planning our May giveaway so make sure you check back!

Chicken Parmesan


I am in love with meals that cook themselves. I don't know why it's been so long since I've used my crock pot. I saw a recipe HERE and I decided I'd try it out this week and I am so glad I did. I'll never make chicken Parmesan any other way!

Chicken Parmesan
4 chicken breasts
Ragu Spaghetti Sauce
Noodles
garlic
Parmesan cheese
mozzarella cheese

In a crock pot, pour some of the spaghetti sauce in the bottom of dish. Place chicken in crock pot and cover with additional sauce. Bake on low for 5-6 hours.

Cook noodles according to package directions. In a saucepan, heat up more spaghetti sauce and season with garlic and Parmesan cheese. Remove chicken from crock pot and place in a baking dish with sauce from crock pot. Cover with grated mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Broil in the oven until cheese is melted.

Top noodles with spaghetti sauce and chicken.

~Dayna~

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Breakfast Funnel Cakes

Funnel cakes aren't just for the State Fair. You can have them for breakfast any time that you want to. They are a nice change from the ol' standby "pancake"....and your family will appreciate your morning creativity.

Breakfast Funnel Cakes

1 1/3 c. flour
4 t. non-fat dry milk powder
4 T. sugar
1 T. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1 egg, beaten
3/4 c. water
1-2 cans pie filling of your choice
whipped topping
powdered sugar (for dusting)
syrup
oil (to deep fry Funnel Cakes)

Mix flour, powdered milk, sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda in a bowl. Stir in eggs and water, mixing until smooth. Let your batter rest for 10 minutes.

Fill a skillet with oil at least 1/2 inch deep. Heat until very hot. IF you have a funnel with a big enough hole in it ( I didn't) then follow these directions: Put your finger over the opening of the funnel and fill with batter. Move funnel over the oil, removing finger from the end, and then letting the batter drizzle into the hot oil forming a circle or any other design that you choose. IF you don't have a funnel, use a cup and pour batter into the oil forming a design or shape of your choice. When the funnel cake is brown on one side, flip it ( I used a pancake turner and a fork as to not splash the hot oil all over me) and let it brown on the other side. Usually takes 1 minute per side. 

These are a fun change and taste really good. BUT they don't make good leftovers, so don't bother making extra or saving any that you don't eat....BUT I don't think there will be any leftovers, you will gobble them all right up. 

Happy Cooking~
Julie 

Friday, April 9, 2010

Twice Baked Potatoes

**Click HERE to enter our giveaway**


This is one of my all time favorite foods. I could eat 8 of these potatoes and not feel guilty. They are absolutely amazing. It's one of my favorite dishes to prepare when we have company. They always get gobbled up. Definitely worth the extra effort it takes to prepare them.

Twice Baked Potatoes
4 large potatoes
1/4 cup crumbled bacon
1 cup Sour Cream
4 Tbs. Butter
1 cup shredded cheese

Bake potatoes at 350 for 1 hour. When potatoes are done allow to cool for 10-20 minutes. Slice the top off each potato and scoop out the flesh into a bowl. Save skins. Add sour cream and butter to potato flesh. Mash until desired consistency has been reached. Add cheese and mix. Spoon mixture back into potato skins. Top with additional cheese and bacon. (bacon can also be added to the potato mixture) Bake for another 15 minutes until cheese is bubbly.

~Dayna~

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Homemade Carrot Cake

**Click HERE to enter our giveaway**

Carrot Cake...its right up there with Cheese Cake if you ask me...HEAVEN. I am not a huge fan of the "boxed" carrot cake, but give me homemade carrot cake and I might just eat the entire thing. Dayna made this cake for her "Homecoming Cake" several years ago and its been tried and tested MANY times....although, I will admit that she makes it much better than I do. This cake is worth the little bit of time that it takes to throw it together...but I guess anything thats tastes this good, takes a "little bit of time".

Homemade Carrot Cake

1 1/2 c. sugar
1 c. oil
3 eggs
Beat together then add....
2 c. flour
1 1/2 t. cinnamon
1 t. baking soda
1 t. vanilla
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. nutmeg
Mix all together then add...
3 cups of grated carrots (DON'T use the pre-grated carrots from the store, both times I did, my cake
failed and I had to make another one)

Spray pan coating and flour cake pans (2 rounds or 1-9x13) then pour cake batter into 2 round cake pans or 1-9x13 oblong pan. Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool and then frost cake.

Cream Cheese Icing for Carrot Cake
1 8oz pkg. of cream cheese
1/4 c. butter
2 t milk
1 t. vanilla
blend until smooth then add...
4 c. powdered sugar-1 c. at a time. (if its too runny add more powdered sugar until you get your desired
consistency)
Mix all together and frost cake.
Doesn't that just look ScruMpTious?!!!!

Happy Cooking~
Julie

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Grilled Asparagus

**Click HERE to enter our giveaway**


When I was a little girl we used to meet my Aunt Denise and cousin Jackson and go pick asparagus. It's a simple memory. Nothing over the top happened, but now that my cousin is gone I cherish those sweet memories of our childhood. I never liked eating the stuff but I enjoyed picking it. A few years ago our friends the Tryon's cooked dinner for us and they made grilled asparagus. It was amazing. It took me back to fond childhood memories and promised many future memories enjoying this stuff!

Grilled Asparagus
1 lb. asparagus
1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper to taste

Cut the rough bottom off the asparagus. Toss in Olive Oil until coated. Transfer to a tin foil "boat" and sprinkle with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. Set "boat" directly onto grill. Cook approximately 10-15 minutes rotating frequently.

~Dayna~

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Strawberry Freezer Jam

**Click HERE to enter our giveaway**

I love strawberries, they are one of my most favorite fruits...therefore that makes Strawberry Freezer Jam one of my most favorite jams! Last year I got a killer deal on some flats of strawberries, so I bought 2 of them...BUT I didn't know what I was going to do with all of these beautiful, ripe berries. YES, I ate plenty of them, but I thought that I should be more productive and do some preserving of some kind. I came across this recipe for freezer jam and thought that it sounded very easy and right up my alley. I tried it out and it wasn't only easy, it was delicious as well! I could hardly keep the family from eating it up, one container right after another...needless to say, it didn't last long and I am eager to make some more this year.
Make some up, you will be shocked at how easy it is!
....AND you'll love it too!

Strawberry Freezer Jam

4 c. mashed berries (I put mine in the blender and pureed them)
2 3/4 c. sugar
1 box Sure-Jell fruit pectin

Combine pectin with 1/4 c. sugar; add pectin mixture to smashed fruit and stir well. Set aside for 30 minutes stirring frequently. Gradually stir in the rest of the sugar until dissolved; pour jam into freezer containers and cover tightly with lids. Let stand at room temperature overnight, then store in the freezer.
Eat it on toast, bread, waffles, pancakes, french toast....or just by the spoonful, its that good!

Happy Cooking~
Julie

Monday, April 5, 2010

Giveaway


Another fabulous giveaway to kickoff Spring.

Because you are all spending so much time in your kitchen trying out all these amazing recipe, we thought we'd give you something to help make the clean up a little more fun. These bright and cheery dish towels are sure to brighten up any kitchen! (set of 3)

Want to win these? Easy-
- Leave us a comment on THIS post telling us what spring activity you are more excited for . INCLUDE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS

Want to win REALLY bad? Get more entries by:
- Blogging about this giveaway
- Follow our blog
- Include us in your facebook status
- Add our button to your blog

Be sure to leave an addition comment for each extra entry. Include your email address so we can get ahold of the winner!

*If you are already a follower or have already added our button leave a comment telling us so.

Example: Blogged about this giveaway. Check it out at betterthanburgers.blogspot.com Email address is johndoe@gmail.com

Added your button to my blog Email address is johndoe@gmail.com

Became a follower Email address is johndoe@gmail.com

etc, etc, etc

Good Luck! Giveaway will be open until FRIDAY April 9th at 11:59p.m. Winner will be announced Saturday morning.

*Giveaway is sponsored by Better Than Burgers very own cook Dayna

Steak Rub


Jack has become addicted to BBQing. He has everything a BBQer would need (except the nice expensive gas grill) and he loves spending his time reading about techniques and trying new recipes. This year for Easter dinner we decided to grill steaks. Jack found a delicious rub in one of his books and it turned out amazing!

Sweet Spice Rub
1/2 cup pure red chile powder
2 Tbsp. Brown Sugar
1 Tbsp. Paprika
2 tsp. Ground Cumin
2 tsp. Course Salt

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix thoroughly. Use immediately or transfer to an airtight container and store in a cool dry place for up to 6 months.

*Press spice rub onto both sides of each steak. Grill the steaks over medium-high heat.

~Dayna~

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Buttermilk Tortilla

Homemade flour tortilla's make all my mexican dishes just "a little bit better". In a bind...I love the convenience of the store bought tortilla shells, but my favorite is the good ol' fashioned "Home made" ones. I've had a recipe that I've used for years and years. It was the one that my mom made when I was little. But the other day, she shared a new recipe that she had started using and said that she liked it so much better. I thought I would give it a try...I'll have to admit that I agree. It is so much better. Its lighter and fluffier and just tastes a notch above the old recipe. For those of you that are big fans of Cafe Rio (that would be ME)...it tastes a lot like the tortilla's that you get there!
You've got to try these, they are awesome!

Buttermilk Tortilla's

5 c. flour
4 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
1/2 c. shortening
2-3 c. buttermilk (put in 2 to start with and then add a little more if you need some)

Mix all the dry ingredient together then cut in shortening. Add buttermilk. Mix with your hands (or a large wooden spoon if you prefer not to get your hands dirty), kneading the dough as you go. Let sit for 5 minutes, then form dough into balls just a little bit larger than a walnut ( I did mine bigger because I like a larger shell). Let balls rest for 5 minutes. Heat a skillet or griddle...DO NOT add oil. ( I did use a little pan coating, just because...) Roll balls out into a thin tortilla. Place shell in the hot skillet, turn when the shell starts to bubble. Place cooked shell on a plate and serve with your favorite toppings. 
* Can use 1/2 wheat and 1/2 white flour if you choose to...I just used white flour. 

Happy Cooking~
Julie

Friday, April 2, 2010

Chili and Cream Cheese Dip


I recently made this recipe for a Young Womens activity. Everyone gobbled it right up, ooh-ed and ah-ed over it and then asked for the recipe. I was sure everyone in the world had this recipe and was shocked to find someone who hadn't eaten it before, almost as shocked as they were to find out it only had 2 ingredients! This is a quick fix for any parties, after school snacks or weekly "I'll watch Biggest Loser while I consume 6,500 calories of dippy goodness" moments.

Chili and Cream Cheese Dip
1 can chili
1 package cream cheese

Combine. Microwave on high for 3-5 minutes. Stirring periodically. Serve hot (or cold- I LOVE it cold) with chips. (I love this dip with Hickory BBQ potato chips!)

~Dayna~

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Breakfast Crepes

Breakfast is the one meal that I have the hardest time coming up with new foods to make. But I know if I make Crepes...everyone will be happy. They are so versatile and you can put just about whatever you want on the inside of them....everyone in our family has their own way of eating them...and "to each their own" I say.
They are easy to make and always seem to hit the spot first thing in the morning. YUM!!

Breakfast Crepes

2 1/4 c. flour
1 1/2 t. salt
3 T. oil
9 eggs
3 3/4 T. sugar
3 c. milk

Mix until smooth, batter will be thin. Put 1/2 c. of patter into a very well greased, hot skillet. Move the pan side to side to spread the crepe batter out. Crepe will bubble and set up, then turn it over and let the other side cook. When its done, place on a plate and let cool slightly. To serve, put canned fruit and whipped topping down the center and roll up. Top with more fruit and whipped topping. EAT and enjoy!
* Serving options: Spread butter on hot crepe and sprinkle cinnamon and sugar on it, then roll up.
Put your favorite jam and whipped topping down the center and roll up.
Serve like you would a pancake...with hot maple syrup
For the chocolate lover: Spread Nutella on the entire crepe, roll up and top with whipped topping.

Happy Cooking~
Julie