Sunday, February 14, 2010

Beef Pot Roast

I HATE ROAST. Okay, I USED TO hate roast. A couple of weeks ago my neighbor invited us over for dinner, and told me that she was going to be serving roast. We are pretty good friends, so I told her that I wasn't a big fan of it. She GUARENTEED me that I would like HER roast, so I agreed that we would come over. I am so glad that we did! I am no longer anti-roast! Okay, I am no longer anti-roast if she or I make it. I still am very leary of anyone else's roast. I have never made a roast before and I will tell you, this is fail proof...and delicious!

Beef Pot Roast

3 pound chuck roast, thawed (I used arm roast)
1 package dry ranch seasoning
1 package brown gravy mix
1 package italian seasoning
3/4 cup water (if using a frozen roast, only use 1/2 cup water)

Combine all 3 packages of dry seasoning and cover all sides of roast with mixture. Place in a slow cooker and pour water over the top. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours, or high for 4 hours.

Serves 4-6.
Recipe from Jaime.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Carrot-Pineapple Cake

I have posted this recipe before, but the picture was soooo terrible and it was such a long time ago that I decided it needed to re-appear on the blog! It is a dessert that when you eat it you KIND of feel healthy...okay, not really. The fact that there are carrots and pineapple in it does help, however! It is completely homemade, so I feel like a really awesome wife, too!

Carrot-Pineapple Cake

1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
2/3 cup vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 cup finely shredded carrot
1 cup crushed pineapple(with syrup)
1 tsp. vanilla

Sift flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt together in a large bowl. Add vegetable oil, eggs, carrot, pineapple, and vanilla. Mix all ingredients together until moistened. Beat for 2 minutes at medium speed on electric mixer. Bake in greased and lightly floured 13 x 9 inch pan in a 350 degree oven for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool then top with frosting.

The BEST Cream Cheese frosting:

6 oz cream cheese (room temperature)
8 Tb. Butter (room temperature)
2 tsp. vanilla
dash salt
4 cups powdered sugar

Cream butter and cream cheese together, then beat in vanilla and salt. Gradually add powdered sugar. Top cake with frosting and then 1 cup chopped pecans, if desired

Recipe From Sister Eads

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Banana Bread

I will admit it, I am afraid of quick breads. I feel like every recipe I have ever made ends up being over-cooked on the outside and still doughy on the inside. That makes for a lot of wasted time, money, and not-to-yummy of an outcome. I have found that if I use the mini-sized bread pans they cook more evenly, and I can eat a whole loaf without sharing! I decided to try this recipe in a large bread pan, and guess what?! It worked! I was amazed beyond belief! Perfectly moist all the way through, no doughy middle, no dry edges. Thank you Better Homes and Gardens cookbook!

Banana Bread

2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg
2 beaten eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed bananas (5 medium)
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil or 1/4 cup oil 1/4 cup applesauce

Grease bottom and sides of loaf pans. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
In a small bowl, combine eggs, bananas, sugar and oil. Add egg mixture all at once to flour mixture. Stir just until moistened, the batter will be lumpy. Spoon batter into prepared pans.
Bake for 50-60 minutes for a large loaf, 25-35 for a small loaf, or until a wooden toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Using a knife, loosen edges and turn pan over to loosen bread. Slice and serve!

Recipe Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens New cook book
Makes 2 large bread loaves or 4 small

Hawaiian Haystacks

One of my favorite meals growing up was this...Creamy sauce with crunchy noodles and a touch of sweet from the pineapple and other toppings. There was nothing better. I was eating leftovers at work the other day and was shocked to find out that NO ONE had every tried them! I guess because they were a staple in my home I was in shock. I can't wait for my co-workers to give this recipe a shot and see how delish this meal is!

Hawaiian Haystacks

4 Tbs. Butter
2/3 cup flour
2 1/2 cups milk
1/3 cup chicken stock
1 tsp. salt
1 can cream of chicken or mushroom soup
2 cups cooked, shredded chicken5 cups cooked rice

La Choy noodles (in the Asian foods section)
shredded cheese
green onions

Melt butter in a large saucepan, add flour, milk, chicken stock, salt, soup and chicken. Cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, or until thickened.
Serve sauce over cooked rice and top with desired toppings. Cheese and La Choy noodles are a must have, the others just make it better from there! Enjoy!

Serves 4.
Recipe adapted from

Reeses Peanut Butter Bars

My cousin is in big trouble for sending this recipe my way. These taste EXACTLY like Reese's Peanut Butter cups, but with TWICE the amount of Peanut Butter...just how I prefer them. I am always so excited at easter and Christmas because they sell the Reese's eggs and christmas trees, which both have double the peanut butter. Now, finally, I have the homemade version and I don't have to wait for those holidays to get what I really want!

Reese's Peanut Butter Bars

2 cubes margarine
1 1/2 cups peanut butter
4 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

In a large, microwave-safe bowl, melt margarine. Remove from microwave and add peanut butter and powdered sugar. With an electric mixer, mix until combined. Grease a 9x13 pan and spread peanut butter mixture into bottom of pan evenly.
Melt chocolate chips in a microwave, stirring every 30 seconds until melted. Pour over peanut butter mixture and refrigerate for at least 1 hour prior to serving.

Recipe Adapted from Ashley

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Cody's Choco-Peanut Butter Delight Frosting

My hubb is pretty great...for my birthday he not only got me an beautiful and amazing crib and dresser for our baby (I am due June 23, and we can't wait!), but he also made me this cake. It is RIGHT UP MY ALLEY. He knew he couldn't go wrong with Peanut Butter and Chocolate, and boy was he right! I couldn't stop eating it, I am so glad he just made a few little portion-sized dishes, because I would have eaten the ENTIRE PAN! (He must have known that and thought to himself, "Do I really want my 4 month only baby to consume an entire cake just because his mom does?" ha! Anyway, this is KILLER, KILLER, and I expect to eat it every birthday for the rest of my life! YESSS!!! (This is just the frosting recipe, he used a box cake and topped it with Resees Peanut Butter Cups and chocolate shavings. For the entire recipe, click here.)

Cody's Choco Peanut Butter Delight Frosting

10 oz cream cheese, softened
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
5 cups confectioner's sugar, sifted
2/3 cup creamy peanut butter (or add 1/3 cup more if you really love PB)

In a bowl, beat cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Gradually add confectioner's sugar one cup at a time, mixing after each addition. Continue to beat on medium speed for 4 minutes.
Add peanut butter and beat until thoroughly blended.

Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen.
Frosts one 9x13 inch cake.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


O Baklava, how did I live 21 Christmases without you? I first had Baklava the year that I married Cody at his family Christmas party. His Aunt Jan made it, and I couldn't stay away. It is a Greek dessert that is made with sheets of pastry, way too much butter, your choice of nuts, and is sweetened with sugar and honey. It does take some time, but it O so worth the effort!

Printable Version

For the filling:

1 (5-inch piece) cinnamon stick, broken into 2 to 3 pieces or 2 teaspoons ground

15 to 20 whole allspice berries

6 ounces blanched almonds

6 ounces raw or roasted walnuts

6 ounces raw or roasted pistachio

2/3 cup sugar

1/4 cup water

1 teaspoon rose water

1 pound phyllo dough, thawed

8 ounces clarified unsalted butter, melted

For the syrup:

1 1/4 cups honey

1 1/4 cups water

1 1/4 cups sugar

1 cinnamon stick

1 (2-inch) piece fresh orange peel


Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the cinnamon stick and whole allspice into a spice grinder and grind.

Place the almonds, walnuts, pistachios, sugar and freshly ground spices into the bowl of a food processor and pulse until finely chopped, but not pasty or powdery, approximately 15 quick pulses. Set aside.

Combine the water and rose water in a small spritz bottle and set aside.

Trim the sheets of phyllo to fit the bottom of a 13 by 9 by 2-inch metal pan. Brush the bottom and sides of the pan with butter; lay down a sheet of phyllo and brush with butter. Repeat this step 9 more times for a total of 10 sheets of phyllo. Top with 1/3 of the nut mixture and spread thinly. Spritz thoroughly with the rose water. Layer 6 more sheets of phyllo with butter in between each of them, followed by another third of the nuts and spritz with rose water. Repeat with another 6 sheets of phyllo, butter, remaining nuts, and rose water. Top with 8 sheets of phyllo brushing with butter in between each sheet. Brush the top generously with butter. Place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Remove pan from the oven and cut into 28 squares. Return pan to the oven and continue to bake for another 30 minutes. Remove pan from the oven, place on a cooling rack, and cool for 2 hours before adding the syrup.

Make the syrup during the last 30 minutes of cooling. Combine the honey, water, sugar, cinnamon stick and orange peel in a 4-quart saucepan and set over high heat. Stir occasionally until the sugar has dissolved. Once boiling, boil for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and discard the orange peel and cinnamon stick.

After the baklava has cooled for 2 hours, re-cut the entire pan following the same lines as before. Pour the hot syrup evenly over the top of the baklava, allowing it to run into the cuts and around the edges of the pan. Allow the pan to sit, uncovered until completely cool. Cover and store at room temperature for at least 8 hours and up to overnight before serving. Store, covered, at room temperature for up to 5 days.

Recipe from Alton Brown