Sunday, June 19, 2016

Zucchini Boats

Tonight was the first time I made these! They were really good. I just used what I had around the house and it turned out great! Even the kids liked them! Definitely a keeper!

2 medium zucchini
1 cup rice
1 lb bacon, cooked and chopped
1 jalapeno, minced
¼ cup onion, minced,
½ cup shredded cheese
1 pinch dried basil
1 pinch dried Oregon
Seasoned salt to taste
Pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese

Prepare the grill for indirect heat.

1.   Place the zucchini in a pot with enough water to cover. Bring to a boil, and cook 5 minutes. Drain, cool, and cut in half lengthwise. Scoop out the pulp to about 1/4 inch from the skin. Chop pulp.
2.   In a bowl, mix the zucchini pulp, rice, bacon bits, jalapeno, onion, tomato, and cheese. Season with basil, oregano, seasoned salt, and pepper.
3.   Place zucchini on grilling tray. Stuff the zucchini halves with the pulp mixture.

4.   Place tray on the prepared grill over indirect heat. Cook 15 to 20 minutes, until tender.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Vegetarian Stuffed Peppers

Okay, so these were a date night invention. I thought they were pretty darn good. When we feed them to the missionaries, they asked for the recipe. Here goes...

1.5 cups wild rice, uncooked
6 sweet red peppers
2 red onions
1-2 tsp. olive oil
4 (or so) large cloves garlic
3/8 cup walnuts, chopped
2 oz. dried apricots, chopped
5 oz. gorgonzola crumbles

Prepare rice as directed.

While rice is cooking, caramelize onions in olive oil. Add garlic once onions begin to soften and turn a nice brown.

Preheat oven to 350F.

Once onions and garlic are nice and caramelized, cut tops off peppers. Hollow out seeds and rind.

Add rice to onions. Mix in apricots and walnuts and gorgonzola. Stuff peppers with rice mixture and place tops back on.

Put peppers in 9x13 dish and fill 1/2 inch full of water. Cover with aluminum foil. Bake 35 to 40 minutes. Remove aluminum foil and bake for 15 more minutes, or until tops are brown to black.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Browned Butter Caramels

I got this recipe from, and it is the best caramel I've ever made.  The flavor is superior to regular homemade caramel.
8 Tbsp butter
2 cups sugar
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup corn syrup
2 tsp vanilla
Grease an 8×8 pan.  Melt the butter and continue to cook until golden brown.  The darker the color, the richer the flavor, but be careful not to let it burn!  Once browned, add sugar, cream, and corn syrup. Cook until 245 degrees on a candy thermometer, more or less depending on altitude and chewiness desired.  I take mine off at 240 degrees.  Remove from heat and add vanilla. Pour into prepared pan and cool.  Once cooled, cut into squares and wrap pieces.  Store in a covered container.  

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Roasted Vegetable Pasta in Lemon Cream Sauce

Before anyone freaks out about the word "cream" here, let me tell you this recipe is super low calorie.  And it's filling!  It's also really pretty, but my phone really doesn't do it justice.  Leah and I made this up on my birthday (because that's what we do around here on birthdays), and it's absolutely lovely.  Enjoy!

4 tsp. olive oil, divided
2 small onions or 1 large onion
10 cloves garlic (this number is negotiable, but we really like garlic)
1 head broccoli
1 bunch asparagus
1 pint cherry tomatoes
2 bell peppers (not green)
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. basil
1/2 tsp. thyme
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. salt (or to taste)
1/4 cup flour
1 1/2 cup water
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
2 cubes chicken bouillon
5 oz. rotini pasta*
2 Tbsp. heavy cream

1. Chop the onions into small pieces.  Add to skillet with 1 tsp. olive oil.  Crush the garlic.  Heat slowly, allowing onions to caramelize.

2. Chop broccoli, asparagus and peppers into bite sized pieces (as shown).  Put all three into a bowl with tomatoes and remaining olive oil.  Toss with a little salt and pepper to coat.  Transfer vegetables to glass baking dish and roast at 450 for 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are nice and roasty.

3. While stirring onions frequently, add oregano, basil, thyme, pepper and salt.  Once onions are caramelized, add flour (like a roux).  Once flour is incorporated, add water, bouillon and lemon juice.  Boil until mixture thickens and turn to simmer.

4. Cook pasta according to directions.  (We do this simultaneously with step 3.)

5. Once vegetables are nice and roasted and pasta is soft, drain the pasta and remove vegetables from the oven.  Add the cream to the sauce.  Then add the pasta and vegetables and stir together.  Serve hot with a tiny bit of parmesan sprinkled on top.

*We use Barilla white fiber pasta.  Trust me, it's worth the extra couple cents (it's still cheap!).  It has more protein and fiber than normal pasta but tastes just like your average rotini.  It's seriously a miracle.

Calories per serving: 325.  Fat: 8g. Carbohydrates: 54g. Protein: 9g. Fiber: 9g.  (NOTE: Calories do not include parmesan.  We calculated the calories using the Barilla white fiber pasta.)

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

French Bread

6 cups flour (bread flour is best)
2 Tbsp yeast
2 Tbsp sugar
2 tsp salt
2 cups warm water
1 egg white, lightly beaten
1 Tbsp water

  1. In a large bowl, combine 2 cups flour, yeast, sugar, and salt. Stir in 2 cups warm water, and beat until well blended using a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment. Using a wooden spoon, stir in as much of the remaining flour as you can.
  2. On a lightly floured surface, knead in enough flour to make a stiff dough that is smooth and elastic. Knead for about 8 to 10 minutes total. Shape into a ball. Place dough in a greased bowl, and turn once. Cover, and let rise in a warm place until doubled.
  3. Punch dough down, and divide in half. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Cover, and let rest for 10 minutes. Roll each half into large rectangle. Roll up, starting from a long side. Moisten edge with water and seal. Taper ends.
  4. Grease a large baking sheet. Sprinkle with cornmeal. Place loaves, seam side down, on the prepared baking sheet. Lightly beat the egg white with 1 tablespoon of water, and brush on. With a very sharp knife, make 3 or 4 diagonal cuts about 1/4 inch deep across top of each loaf.  Cover with a damp cloth. Let rise until nearly doubled, 35 to 40 minutes.
  5. Bake in a preheated 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) oven for 20 minutes. Brush again with egg white mixture. Bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes, or until bread tests done. If necessary, cover loosely with foil to prevent over browning. Remove from baking sheet, and cool on a wire rack.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Taco Casserole


lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef
can (16 oz) Old El Paso® refried beans
jar (16 oz) Old El Paso® Thick ‘n Chunky salsa
package (1 oz) Old El Paso® 40% less-sodium taco seasoning mix
2 1/2
cups coarsely broken tortilla chips
medium green bell pepper, chopped (3/4 cup)
medium green onions, sliced (1/4 cup)
medium tomatoes, chopped (1 1/2 cups)
cup shredded Cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese (4 oz)
cup sliced ripe olives (opt)
cup shredded lettuce

  • Heat oven to 350°F. In 12-inch skillet, cook beef over medium-high heat 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thoroughly cooked; drain. Stir in refried beans, salsa and taco seasoning mix. Reduce heat to medium. Heat to boiling, stirring occasionally.
  • In ungreased 2-quart casserole, place 2 cups of the broken tortilla chips. Top evenly with beef mixture. Sprinkle with bell pepper, onions, 1 cup of the tomato, the cheese and olives.
  • Bake uncovered 20 to 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly and cheese is melted. Top baked casserole with lettuce, remaining 1/2 cup tomato and remaining 1/2 cup tortilla chips.  Makes 5 servings.
    1 Serving (1 1/2 Cups)
    Calories from Fat
    Total Fat
    (Saturated Fat
    Trans Fat
    Total Carbohydrate
    (Dietary Fiber
    % Daily Value*:
    Vitamin A
    Vitamin C
    2 Starch; 0 Fruit; 1/2 Other Carbohydrate; 0 Skim Milk; 0 Low-Fat Milk; 0 Milk; 1 Vegetable; 0 Very Lean Meat; 0 Lean Meat; 0 High-Fat Meat; 1 1/2 Fat;
    Carbohydrate Choices:
    *Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Breakfast Skillet

1 (16 ounce) tube sausage
1 medium green pepper, coarsely chopped
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
4 large eggs
1 1/4 c. skim milk
1 (8.5 ounce) box corn muffin mix
1/4 c. drained sliced jalapeño peppers
2 c. shredded cheddar cheese
salsa or maple syrup, for serving

In a 12-inch cast iron skillet, cook sausage over medium heat on a camp stove, grill or on a cooking grate over a fire. When no pink remains, add green pepper and onion; cook about 5 minutes or until tender. Drain. Remove from heat.
In a bowl, beat together eggs and milk; stir in corn muffin mix and jalapeño peppers until combined. Pour over sausage. Return to medium heat, cover, reduce heat, and cook 10 minutes. Remove from heat; let stand 5 minutes. Sprinkle with cheese. Serve with salsa or maple syrup, if desired.  Serves 8.

Daily nutritional values:
10% vitamin A
20% vitamin C
30% calcium
10% iron
Nutrition information per serving:
Calories: 380
Carbohydrate: 27g
Cholesterol: 140mg
Dietary Fiber: 1g
Fat: 23g
Protein: 19g
Saturated Fat: 10g
Sodium: 880mg
Sugar: 9g
Trans fats: 0g 

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Fried Banana Bread

Trust me, it's lovely.  And please believe me that you DO NOT want to calculate the calories, all or which are totally worth it.

  • Start with a high fat content banana bread recipe.  (Leah and I use this one.)
  • Spray a non-stick pan with Pam.  
  • Put your banana bread in the pan and pan-"fry" it with the Pam.  (You could use butter, but Leah and I actually found that makes the banana bread soggy and doesn't give it the nice crisp.  It has nothing to do with calories.)
  • When your banana bread is nicely browned and the outsides are crisp, put the slices on individual plates.  
  • Place a scoop of vanilla ice cream on each hot slice of banana bread.
  • Top ice cream with syrup (buttermilk of maple) and walnuts.  
This is one of my all-time favorites.  I'll upload a picture next time we make it!

Saturday, January 26, 2013


I like this because it's fast, easy, and a great way to use up leftover ham!! If you don't use ham in it, you may need to add more salt. I've been known to use all sorts of leftover meats in this though and it's always good! I just kind of throw in whatever I have, but this is a basic recipe.

2 Tblsp oil
1 ½ cups chopped onion
1 bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic
2 cups cubed ham, or chicken, or sausage (cooked)
½ tsp thyme
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper
¼ tsp cayenne pepper (or more if you want it hotter)
¼ tsp creole seasoning (or more to taste) optional
1 16-oz can diced tomatoes
1 cup chicken broth

Saute onion, peppers, and garlic in oil until slightly brown. Add meats. Add seasoning, tomatoes and broth. Bring to boil. Serve over cooked rice.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Mom's Cranberry Salad

Okay, we've been trying to get this up for years.  I'm now delivering.  You're welcome.

1 box (3 oz.) orange Jell-O (It's Alive!)
1 envelope Knox gelatin
1 1/4 cup boiling water
8 oz. can crushed pineapple
12-16 oz. fresh or frozen cranberries
1 orange, peeled and pith removed
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
1/2 cup fresh celery, chopped

1. Dissolve gelatin and Jell-O in boiling water.
2. In your food processor (or blender), chop pineapple, cranberries and orange until all are in very small pieces.  (Do no liquefy.)
3. Add walnuts, celery and gelatin mixture to processor and pulse process briefly until mixture is desired consistency.  (A little pulsing goes a VERY long way.)
4. Chill until set - a few hours.

This yields 12 side dish servings, each of which have about 130 calories.