Friday, December 24, 2010

Momma Carver's French Toast Casserole (by Cheesy Diva)

This is Dessert Diva. I'm posting this recipe for the Big Cheese. This was her contribution to our December Supper Club. The theme was Breakfasts and Appetizers.

1 stick of butter or margarine
1 c brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
6 slices of bread
5 eggs
1 1/2 c milk

Melt butter in a saucepan on the stove. Stir in the brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Spread in the bottom of a 9x13 pan.

Halve the slices of bread diagonally. Place in pan on top of brown sugar mixture in a double layer.

Beat eggs; add milk and whisk together. Pour over bread. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Uncover and bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

Enjoy! This makes a delicious breakfast!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Cranberry Cake (from Saucy Diva)

Good news and even better news! Good news...this cake is delicious!! Better news...This will be my last blog post without pictures! I'm getting a really nice camera from my really nice husband for Christmas!

Ok, back to this cake. This is my December Cake Slice Bakers cake from the book "Cake Keeper Cakes" by Lauren Chattman.

I did not have much luck with last month's cake. It was a downright disaster. So I was really nervous about this month. Was I not cut out to bake with these talented ladies? Was the book selection a nightmare? Fears were calmed when this warm strueulsly cake cake out of the oven. Here is the recipe. I suggest eating it with a big mug of coco.

For the streusel:
1 cup of sliced almonds
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar

For the cake:
2 cups unbleached flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
2 cups sugar
1 1/2 sticks butter, melted
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 bag fresh cranberries (12 oz) - I substituted a 12 oz bag of craisens I had left over from the big cookie bake.

Preheat oven to 350 and grease a 10 inch round spring form pan.
Combine all ingredients for the streusel until large crumbs are formed. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Whisk together dry (except white sugar)ingredients in a medium bowl.
In a large bowl, combine the eggs, white sugar with an electric mixer. With the mixer on low, add the butter and vanilla. Turn the mixer to medium and beat another 2 minutes.
Gently fold in the flour mixture and the cranberries.
Scrape batter into the prepared pan.
Sprinkle the streusel on top.
Bake until golden brown about an hour and 10 minutes.
Release the sides of the pan and cool completely before slicing into wedges.

LikeI said, this cake is delish. I love it's simplicity. Oh, and I love streusel. Streeeeuuuuusssssseeellll. It is even fun to say. One thing though...this cake is dying to be in muffin form!

Preheat oven to 350 and grease a 10 inch round spring form pan.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Egg Souffle (by Dessert Diva)

This souffle is my contribution to our December Supper Club night. The theme this month is Appetizers and Breakfast. This delicious souffle is a tradition at my house. I have eaten this every Christmas morning for as long as I can remember. My mom always prepared two of them for our family, as Christmas morning was the only time she would make it, and we all loved it! We would always eat it after opening our presents. This souffle brings back so many great memories for me...I hope you and the Divas agree that it is delicious! Enjoy!

6 eggs
2 cups milk
4 slices of bread, cubed
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 cup grated cheese (whatever kind you want; I use cheddar)
1 lb. sausage or ham, browned (use whatever you want here)

Beat eggs; add milk, bread, salt and mustard. Stir. Add cheese and meat. Put in a greased 9x12 pan. Refrigerate overnight. Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes.

Feel free to adjust the ingredients to fit the taste of your family. This is such a versatile recipe!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

2nd Annual Diva Cookie Day (by Dessert Diva)

A few weeks ago, we held our annual Cookie Day! Unfortunately, a couple of the divas had other plans and couldn't make it, but there was still no shortage of cookies!

The night before, my kitchen looked like a disaster as I prepared cookie dough and appetizers...

The next morning, the Divas showed up with bags of cookie dough, ingredients, pans and utensils in tow. We had plenty of food to munch on as we worked...
Saucy Diva made her famous Chocolate Mints, as well as some delicious fudge!

Spicy Diva also made Saucy's famous Chocolate Mints (there was a little mix-up!) and some Pistachio Cranberry Cookies! The only bad thing about there being twice as many Chocolate Mints is that there were twice as many balls to roll and Andes Mints to unwrap.
But we rolled...

and we unwrapped...

and we rolled some more...

and we kept rolling. Meanwhile, Baby Diva got bored and went to sleep...can you blame her?

She woke up in time for the important part, however! Here she is checking out her mommy's (Gourmet Diva) Peanut Butter cookies and Dessert Diva's Chocolate Oatmeal bars. We also made Truffle cookies and Heath bars.

We make so many cookies that they were literally cooling everywhere! I actually found some a few hours after the Divas left outside on my patio table...ha!

We hope you get to enjoy some holiday baking with friends and family like we did! Happy Holidays and Happy Baking from the Dinnertime Divas to you!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Lemon Cheese Logs (by Dessert Diva)

Today was our annual Diva Cookie Day! We made hundreds of cookies to share. The following is a recipe for cookies I made at last year's Cookie Day. These are a favorite in my house during the holidays. I grew up making these with my mom and sister. I have absolutely no idea where the recipe originated, but they are absolutely delicious!

1 cup sugar
1 cup butter
3 oz. cream cheese
1 egg yolk
2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup finely chopped walnuts
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. lemon rind
6 oz. chocolate chips

Combine first 3 ingredients. Cream until light and fluffy. Add egg yolk; beat well. Stir in flour, nuts, salt and lemon rind; mix well. Cover and chill at least 2 hours. Shape into 2 inch logs; place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 325 degrees for 12 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on wire racks. Dip half of the cookie into melted chocolate and immediately decorate with sprinkles.

Yield: 12 dozen

Monday, November 1, 2010

Paula Deen's Chicken and Rice Casserole

I am the queen of efficiency!

Ok, not really. Things just worked out really well for me this month. Not only was this recipe the October Cookbook Club recipe (chosen by my fellow MCHS alum, Molly) but the theme of DTD this month was comfort food.

This recipe is definitely comfort food! The ingredients were simple, the preparation easy, and the outcome was delicious. I'll admit that I was a little nervous about adding water chestnuts to a casserole, but it adds a whole new dimension of texture.

I'll be adding this recipe to my regular rotation!

Oh! And it's pretty too! You'll have to trust me on this one. I totally forgot to take a picture before we scarfed this one down. My apologies.

3 cups diced, cooked chicken
1 medium onion, diced and sauteed
1 - 8oz can of water chestnuts, drained and chopped
2 - 14 oz cans french cut green beans, rinsed and drained
1 - 4 ounce jar of pimentos, rinsed and drained
1- 10.5 ounce can condensed cream of celery soup
1 cup mayo
1- 6oz box of Uncle Ben's long-grain and wild rice, cooked according to directions on the box
1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2. Mix all ingredients together and pour into a 3 quart casserole dish.
3. Bake for 25 minutes.

WARNING! This recipe makes ALOT of casserole! It can easily serve 6-8 people. I halved the recipe for DTD and it was still plenty for 3-4 people.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Pizza Casserole

This is my "comfort food" for this month. Its super easy and super delicious. When you use healthy/lean/low-fat products, it's not TOO bad for you :-) Because my grocery store had NO meat, my DTDs got extra fancy, ground ANGUS. That's how we roll up in here ;-) Enjoy!

Pizza Casserole

1 ½ Lbs ground beef
1 oz package of spaghetti noodles (or other pasta)
1 can Cheddar Cheese soup
1 jar pizza sauce
2 C shredded cheddar cheese
2 C shredded mozzarella cheese

Pre-heat oven to 350°

Cook pasta according to package directions.

Brown beef and drain fat.

In a large bowl combine cooked pasta, cooked beef, cheese soup, pizza sauce, and cheddar cheese. Mix until thoroughly combined. Place in 9 x 13 pan. Top with mozzarella cheese. Bake for 40-45 min, or until cheese is golden brown and bubbly.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Slow-Cooked Chili (from Dessert Diva)

I know, I know...I've been M.I.A. for quite some time now. I've been just a tad bit busy...being sick. You see, our next Baby Diva is due at the beginning of April and so far, pregnancy has not agreed with me. Now that I'm beginning to feel better, I hope to start posting more recipes!

I'll start with the recipe for the meal I'm taking to our next Supper Club on Monday...slow-cooked chili. What better way to celebrate fall and football season than cozying up with a nice, hot bowl of chili?

2 lbs. ground beef
2 - 16 oz. cans kidney beans, rinsed and drained
2 - 14.5 oz. cans diced tomatoes, undrained
8 oz. tomato sauce
2 onions, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp. chili powder
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper

Brown beef in a nonstick skillet; place in slow cooker. Add all remaining ingredients. Cover; cook on high 4 hours or on low 8-10 hours. Garnish with cheese or whatever makes it a great bowl of chili to you!


Thursday, October 21, 2010

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake (aka...Autumn in a Loaf)

I love the word loaf. Good things come in loaves. I enjoy loafing around the house. So I was super excited to see that my first Cake Slice Bakers recipe was for a pumpkin chocolate chip pound the form of a loaf!!

What is Cake Slice Bakers you ask? Well its a somewhat "secret society" of bloggers who work out of one cake cookbook a year and one recipe a month. On the 20th of each month, we reveal our recipes on our blog. So drumroll please.....

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cake!!

1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cloves
pinch of nutmeg
1/2 cup of unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
1 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup milk
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped walnuts

- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat the inside of a 9x5 loaf pan.
- Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, cloves, and nutmeg
in a medium mixing bowl.
- Comine the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl and cream with an electric
mixer on medium high speed until fluffy.
- With the mixer on medium, add the eggs one at a time. Stir in the pumpkin,
vanilla, and milk.
- Turn the mixer to low and add the flour mixture 1/2 cup at a time until well
- Stir in the chocolate chips and walnuts.
- Pour the batter into the pan and smooth the top.
- Bake until firm and an inserted toothpick comes out clean...about an hour (mine
took about an hour and 15 min.)
- Let cool in pan for 5 minutes. Invert cake onto wire rack, flip back over and let
cool all the way.


I loved preparing this cake! My entire house was filled with the smells of fall. It turned out to be a beautiful orange color with delicious chocolate bites throughout.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Sweet and Sour Chicken

This was my contribution to DTD this month. Its a lighter version of the fried sweet and sour chicken you get from the asian take out establishments.

1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast meat - cubed
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup sliced green bell pepper
1/2 cup sliced red bell pepper
1/2 cup sliced onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
1 (8 ounce) can pineapple chunks, juice reserved
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1. Brown chicken in oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add green bell pepper, red bell pepper, onion and garlic and stir fry for 1 to 2 minutes.

2. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and soy sauce and mix together; pour mixture into the skillet, along with the pineapple and liquid, vinegar, sugar and ginger. Stir together and bring to a full boil.

Serve over rice.

Beef Tenderloin Bites on a Bed of Arugula

Guess who's back, back again? Saucy's back, tell a friend...

First of all, my apologies for my lack of posting lately. School started, camera broke, stuff happens. In my efforts to be a regular poster and not get the diva boot, I joined a cookbook club. It is a collection of wonderful bloggers that all make the same recipe once a month and blog about it. This month we are cooking from a Rachel Ray book and the recipe is Italian stuffed shells (pssst, Saucy, look at the title of the post, there are no mention of a stuffed shell). I know. I've been a little stuffed shelled out lately. I made my own Italian stuffed shells not too long ago, and the Big Cheese made some scrumptious Mexican stuffed shells last month.

Luckily, the creator of the cookbook club offers an alternative recipe. Hence, Beef Tenderloin Bites on a Bed of Arugula! It was fantastic! I made it after a busy workday, and it was a light but delish meal that hit the spot. One note: Make sure your beef is cut in cubes similar in size. I rushed a little and some of my smaller pieces were way over done.

Here is the recipe:

1 1/2 cups Italian bread crumbs, eyeball it
Handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, a couple of handfuls
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, eyeball it, plus some for drizzling
3 to 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
4 tenderloin steaks, 1 inch thick, cut into bite sized pieces
Salt and pepper
5 to 6 cups arugula, chopped
1 lemon, juiced

Preheat broiler to high.

Mix bread crumbs with parsley, cheese. Warm the oil and garlic over low heat to infuse flavor, 5 minutes. Pour oil into bread crumbs and combine to distribute equally and moisten the bread crumbs.

Season the meat with salt and pepper. Coat the meat in bread crumb mixture to coat evenly. Spread meat onto baking sheet and broil until crisp and meat is tender, 6 to 7 minutes. Serve meat on bed of shredded arugula. Give a squeeze of lemon juice over the beef and arugula.

Another note about the picture: Remember the broken camera? Still broken. So thank you to the Rachel Ray website for the picture!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Grilled Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches (by Gourmet Diva)

The divas have been meeting for 10 months now and August's theme is "Diva Favorites". We all got to vote on what the other divas would bring back for an encore meal.

This recipe is a great way to add a little "Gourmet" to a BBQ with friends. I will also add that the leftovers are great as a cold sandwich the next day. Happy BBQing!

-Gourmet Diva

Grilled Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches

1/4 cup hot jalapeƱo jelly
1 teaspoon water
1 tablespoon paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 (1-pound) pork tenderloins, trimmed
Cooking spray
1/4 cup light ranch dressing
1/4 cup sweet hickory smoke tomato-based barbecue sauce (such as Bull's-Eye)
8 (1 1/2-ounce) hamburger buns or Kaiser rolls
Prepare grill to medium-high heat.

Combine jelly and water; set aside.

Combine paprika and next 6 ingredients (through pepper); rub evenly over pork. Place pork on grill rack coated with cooking spray; cover and grill 15 minutes, turning pork occasionally. Brush pork with jelly mixture. Grill an additional 5 minutes or until thermometer registers 155° (slightly pink).

Place pork on a cutting surface. Lightly cover with foil; let stand 10 minutes. Thinly slice pork. Combine ranch dressing and barbecue sauce. Serve pork and ranch mixture with buns.

Nutritional Information
Calories:329 (22% from fat)
Fat:8g (sat 2g,mono 2.1g,poly 1.6g)

This is a Cooking Light recipe from many years ago!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Cheesy Appetizer Loaf (by the BIG cheese)

I made this dish while hosting the divas this evening! I heard great reviews, so I thought I'd share. I got the recipe from - so easy and SO GOOD!

1 pkg. (8 oz.) Italian Cheese Crumbles
3 Tbsp. Real Mayo Mayonnaise
2 Tbsp. chopped Spanish olives
1/2 tsp. Garlic powder
1 loaf French bread (24 inch), cut lengthwise in half

How do you make it? It's easy...

Heat broiler. Mix first 4 ingredients.
Spread onto cut sides of bread; sprinkle lightly with paprika.
Broil, 6 inches from heat, 1 min. or until cheese is melted.
Serve warm

Beef and Corn Enchiladas

1 lb extra lean ground beef
1 yellow onion
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 cup nonfat sour cream
1 - 15 ounce dice tomatoes drained
1 cup low fat ricotta cheese
1 - 7 ounce diced mild green chilies
8 - 5 inch corn tortillas
2 cups low fat shredded cheese
3 green onions, diced

1. Cook beef until browned
2. In a large bowl, combine the onions, garlic, sour cream, tomatoes, ricotta cheese, and green chilies and stir until incorporated. Set aside
3. Arrange 4 corn tortillas on top of the sauce.
4. Spred half of the ground beef over the tortillas.
5. Top with half of sour cream mixture.
6. Cover the sour cream mixture with 4 more tortillas.
7. Spread shredded cheese and green onions over the tortillas.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and back for 45 minutes. Remove foil, and back for 15 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Spring Appetizer Pizza (from Dessert Diva)

Here is the recipe for the final dish I made for our Diva BBQ last week. I have had and been making this recipe for forever. I have no idea where I found it, but I love that it's a bit different than the traditional veggie appetizer pizzas you typically see. It makes a great appetizer, vegetarian snack or breakfast. Also, feel free to change up the veggies, add more or less of things, use flavored cream cheese, etc. This recipe is very versatile!

1 pkg. refrigerated crescent rolls
8 oz. cream cheese
2 tbsp. mayonnaise
1 small garlic clove, pressed
1 tsp. lemon pepper seasoning
4 oz. ham, cut into short, thin pieces
3/4 cup chopped broccoli
1/2 cup cucumber slices, quartered
1/3 cup chopped yellow bell pepper
1/8 small red onion, cut into thin wedges

Preheat oven to 350. Unroll crescent dough; separate into 8 triangles. On a pizza stone (or cutting board), arrange the triangles into a circle with points in the center (I often just roll it out into a rectangle). Using a lightly floured roller, roll out dough to a 12 inch circle, pressing seams together to seal. Bake 14-17 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely.

In a small bowl, combine cream cheese, mayonnaise, garlic and lemon pepper seasoning. Spread evenly over cooled crust. Top pizza with ham and vegetables. Refrigerate 30 minutes. Cut into squares.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Garlic Green Beans (by Cheesy Diva)

Truth be told, this dish is better when you make it, then eat it right away. For the DTD BBQ, I made the dish then traveled about 45-50 minutes before warming it up and serving. In the past, I have served it right away, and enjoyed it 100% more.

AND - I never thought the day would come where these words come out of my can use too much cheese (don't hate me!). Follow the amounts listed below! Believe me, a fellow cheese lover, that you do NOT want to over-do it!

So, if you need a new twist on a classic green bean, this is the dish for you!


* 1 tablespoon butter
* 3 tablespoons olive oil
* 1 medium head garlic - peeled and sliced
* 2 (14.5 ounce) cans green beans, drained
* salt and pepper to taste
* 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


1. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt butter with olive oil; add garlic, and cook until lightly browned, stirring frequently. Stir in green beans, and season with salt and pepper. Cook until beans are tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat, and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Creamy Black Bean Salsa (from Dessert Diva)

**Photo and recipe courtesy of Taste of Home**

This salsa is to die for. Since I made it for our Diva BBQ, I have eaten it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It is THAT good!

15 oz. black beans, rinsed and drained
1-1/2 cups frozen corn, thawed
1 cup finely chopped sweet red pepper
3/4 cup finely chopped green pepper
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
1 tbsp. minced fresh parsley
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/8 tsp. pepper
Tortilla chips

In a large bowl, combine the first 6 ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine the remaining ingredients; pour over corn mixture and toss gently to coat. Serve with tortilla chips. Refrigerate leftovers.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Port-a-Pit Chicken (from Dessert Diva)

I have no idea where this recipe came from, but my mom has been making it for as long as I can remember. I made it for our DTD barbeque last night, and everyone raved over it and insisted I post the recipe ASAP. Out of fear for my life, here it is...

6 cups water
2-1/2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
2 tbsp. garlic salt
1/4 cup salt (hey, I never said this was a healthy recipe)
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tsp. pepper
6 tbsp. butter
1-1/3 cups cider vinegar
2 pkg. (8) chicken drumsticks

Boil all ingredients (except chicken) for 15 minutes in a large stockpot. Add chicken and simmer for 20-30 minutes. Heat on grill until brown.

**You can boil this in multiple batches, if necessary. Just return all chicken to marinade to sit until time to grill.

That's it! How easy was that? I promise you will love this dish. Now, just wait until you see some of the other dishes the Divas brought over for our BBQ!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Easy Appetizer Bites by Da Big Cheez

This is sooooo easy that it's unreal! They are cold, yumm-o and perfect for a summer day.

You will need:
1 pkg. (9 oz.) Ham and Turkey
5 Claussen Bread 'N Butter or Kosher Dill Sandwich Slices, cut in half lengthwise
1 tub (8 oz.)Garden Vegetable Cream Cheese Spread

Easy to make:
1. Pat meat and pickle slices dry with paper towels.
2. Spread each meat slice with about 1 Tbsp. cream cheese spread. Top each with 1 pickle slice; roll up. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap.
3. Refrigerate at least 1 hour or overnight. Cut each roll-up into 4 pieces to serve; secure each with toothpick.

Easy as pie!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Chocolate Pecan Pie Bars (from Dessert Diva)

I love desserts. I mean, seriously...chocolate, nuts, peanut butter, coconut, etc., etc., etc...what's not to love? This dessert is definitely high up on my list of favorites. It has chocolate and pecans and tastes just like pie, but it's all wrapped up in a neat little bar! Yum!

1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature, plus 2 tbsp. melted
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp. salt
3 large eggs
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup sugar
1 package semisweet chocolate chips
2 cups coarsely chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350. Line the bottom and sides of a 9x13 pan with foil.

In a bowl, beat 1/2 cup butter, brown sugar, flour and salt until coarse crumbs form. Pour mixture into prepared pan; press firmly into the bottom.

Bake until lightly browned, 25-30 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in the same bowl, mix eggs, corn syrup, sugar and melted butter until well combined. Add chocolate chips and pecans; spread over crust. Bake until set, about 25-30 minutes. Cool completely in pan before lifting out. Cut into 32 bars.


Thursday, May 13, 2010

Watch Out World - Baby Diva is in the HOUSE!

The divas would love to introduce the newest addition to the Diva clan.
Baby Addison has already started loving food, P-dub and life.

Congrats Gourmet Diva!
We love you.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Baked Potato Soup (By Cheesy Diva)

This rainy weather put me in the mood for a good soup. This soup was found out of Spicy Diva's Pampered Chef cookbook. Tried it, loved it.

Thanks Spice, you are super spicy - indeed!

4 medium baked potatoes
2 slices bacon
1/2 cup celery, chopped
1/2 cup green onions with tops, thinly sliced
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) chicken broth
1 1/2 cups milk
1 garlic clove, pressed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 coup light sour cream
2 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded (1/2 cup)

1. Remove skins from baked potatoes, coarsely mash.
2. Cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon to paper towel to drain; crumble and set aside. Discard all by 1/2 teaspoon drippings in pan.
3. Meanwhile, chop celery. Thinly slice green onions. Add chicken broth, milk, mashed potatoes, celery, onions, garlic, salt and black pepper to drippings in pan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, simmer for 10 minutes.
4. Stir in sour cream and reserved bacon. Ladle soup into bowls. Shred 2 tablespoons of cheese over each serving (or more if you like...I love cheese!)

Semi-easy and OH SO yummy!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Super Simple Raspberry Oatmeal Cookie Bars (from Saucy Diva)

I found this really easy recipe that a bunch of people were raving about on I gave it a whirl and it turned out to be a really yummy treat with a good combination of sweet and savory flavors.

1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1 cup old fashioned oats (not instant)
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup seedless raspberry jam

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Grease one 8 inch square pan.
3. Combine the first 5 ingredients.
4. Fold the softened butter into the dry mix until it becomes crumbly.
5. Press 2 cups of the mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan.
6. Spread the jam within 1/4 inch of the edge.
7. Sprinkle remaining dry mix on top of the jam.
8. Bake 35 minutes or until lightly browned. Allow to cool completely before cutting.

Since it has oatmeal and jam, I can eat this for breakfast right?

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Making Amends with Jamie Oliver - Macaroni and Cauliflower Cheese Bake (from Saucy Diva)

I don't claim to be the most health conscious person on the planet. I mean, have you seen some of the recipes I've posted on here?? But even I was embarrassed by the snack I purchased for students taking ISTEP at school. Sugar wafers that were loaded with calories, fat, and trans fat. I feared that someone would report me to Jamie Oliver and I would be featured on the next episode of Food Revolution. So I decided that to make amends, I would prepare something from his cookbook "Jamie's Food Revolution" tonight. I just so happened to have all the ingredients on hand for this ooey gooey bake. It was delish!

1/2 head of cauliflower
8 oz of cheddar cheese (use the real stuff!)
4 oz of Parmesan cheese (again, use the real the green bottle for spaghetti night)
parsley (to taste)
sea salt
1 lb dried macaroni (the book suggests elbow, I used penne)
1 cup of sour cream

1. Chop 1/2 head of cauliflower into small florets and grate the cheddar and the parm.
2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the macaroni and the cauliflower and cook according to the directions on the macaroni.
3. In a separate sauce pan, combine the cheese and the sour cream and cook over medium low
heat until melty. Add the parsley and a dash of sea salt to the cheese.
4. When the macaroni is fully cooked, drain and return to the pot.
5. Pour the cheesy goodness over the pasta and cauliflower and mix well.
6. Transfer mixture to a casserole dish and put under a broiler until golden and bubbly.

I know what you're thinking..."Hey Saucy, there's no picture!"

Delicious isn't always pretty people. Trust me on this one, its gooooood.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Ham and Cheese Corn Muffins (from Dessert Diva)

I made these delicious, hearty and healthy (only 204 calories and 6 g of fat per serving) muffins for breakfast this morning. The best part is they are freezer-friendly so I can enjoy one anytime I'm in a rush!

1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 tbsp. sugar
1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. ground red pepper
1 1/4 cups low-fat buttermilk
1/2 cup egg substitute (or 2 eggs)
3 tbsp. canola oil
3/4 cup reduced-fat shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 cup finely chopped green onions
1/2 cup frozen whole-kernel corn, thawed
1/3 cup diced extra lean ham
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour with next 5 ingredients in a medium bowl; stir with a whisk. Combine buttermilk, egg substitute (or eggs) and oil in a small bowl; add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist. Fold in the cheese, green onions, corn and ham.

Spoon batter into 12 muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Bake for 23 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove muffins to a wire rack to cool.
Hope you enjoy these as much as I did!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Bruschetta 'n Cheese-Stuffed Chicken Breast (by The Big Cheese)

What a fancy sounding recipe, yes? Believe me, I am not Gourmet Diva! This recipe sounds a lot more involved than it is. Enjoy.

1 can (14-1/2 oz.) Italian-style diced tomatoes, undrained
1-1/4 cups Shredded Mozzarella Cheese, divided
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1 pkg. (6 oz.) Stuffing Mix for Chicken
8 small boneless skinless chicken breast halves (2 lb.)
1/3 cup Roasted Red Pepper Italian with Parmesan Dressing

What you do:
First, heat the oven to 350°F. Mix tomatoes, 1/2 cup cheese and basil in medium bowl. Add stuffing mix; stir just until moistened.

Place 2 chicken breasts in large freezer-weight resealable plastic bag. Pound with meat mallet or side of heavy can until chicken is 1/4 inch thick. Remove from bag. Then place, top-sides down, on cutting board. Repeat with remaining chicken. Spread chicken with stuffing mixture. Starting at 1 narrow end, tightly roll up each breast. Place, seam-sides down, in 13x9-inch baking dish. Drizzle with dressing.

Bake for 40 minutes or until chicken is done. Sprinkle with remaining cheese; bake 5 min. or until melted.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Chicken & Pasta Toss with Sun-Dried Tomatoes (by Cheesy)

*Thank you, Kraft Foods, for the pic*

This meal is quick, easy and REAL good!

1 pkg. (16 oz.) bow tie pasta, uncooked
4 cups frozen broccoli florets
1-1/2 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips
1 cup prepared Italian Dressing Mix, divided
1 cup sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil, cut into strips
1/2 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

How to Get it Poppin':
Cooke the pasta as directed on package, adding broccoli to the cooking water for the last 3 min. of the pasta cooking time.
While that is all going on, cook chicken in 1/4 cup of the dressing in large skillet on medium heat 8 minutes or until chicken is cooked through, stirring frequently. Drain the pasta mixture and place in large bowl. Add chicken and all remaining ingredients. Mix it lightly together and serve.

Easy, Breezy, Beautiful!