Friday, January 18, 2013

'Twix' Bars

So really.... these don't exactly taste like actual Twix bars, but that's the name they were given and truly - they are just as addicting as the actual Twix Bars.  Very simple to make and you may not even have to go to the store to get the ingredients because they're very basic.  These are just one of the items I made for my holiday baking spree around Christmas.  For those of you who are on facebook and 'like' my page, I had an online album of all the things I baked and sold to people.  It went really well and I thoroughly enjoyed it!  It was exhausting but very fulfilling work for me.  I will definitely be doing it again - oh and probably for people throughout the year if they so request!  Enough chit chat - here's the recipe.

'Twix' Bars

Club crackers - about 70
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar (granulated)
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup milk
1 cup crushed graham crackers (8 or 9 crackers - about a full sleeve)
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup butterscotch chips
1 cup chocolate chips

Line a 9x13 pan (you can use a tupperware with a lid) with 1 layer of club crackers.  In a small saucepan simmer brown sugar, sugar, butter and milk.  After heated up and butter is melted add the crushed graham crackers.  Spread over 1st layer of Club crackers careful not to disturb the cracers too much.  Add another layer of Club crackers.
In another saucepan melt peanut butter, butterscotch chips & chocolate chips.  Spread over the top layer of Club crackers.  Let cool and cut.  Store in refrigerator if they end up lasting longer than just a few days.  :)

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Crock Pot French Dip Sandwiches

So this recipe = super easy.  Then again, there isn't much that you put into a Crock Pot that isn't!  The original recipe called for soy sauce, so I'm going to put that in there, but I ran out, so had to use a substitute.  It was still good.  I had quite a few rib steaks that needed to be used up from my freezer, so I used that for the beef part.  It was quite good.  Luckily I had homemade buns in my freezer so all I had to do was make the beef part!

French Dip Sandwiches (Crock Pot)

3-4 pounds roast, trimmed of fat and cut into large pieces or just cut in half
1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce*
1 beef bouillon cube
1 bay leaf
3-4 peppercorns, crushed
1 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon garlic powder
french sandwich rolls or buns

Place roast in 4-5 quart slow cooker.  Combine soy sauce and next 6 ingredients and pour over roast.  Add water to slow cooker until roast is almost covered.

Cover and cook on low 7-8 hours until very tender (or high 4-6 hours).  Remove roast, reserving broth, shred with forks.  Place shredded meat into rolls/buns and serve with reserved broth for dipping.

*If you don't have soy sauce you can substitute Worcestershire sauce.  Use 4 tablespoons Worcestershire plus 1 tablespoon water in exchange for the 1/2 cup soy sauce.

Turkey Chili

I LOVE CHILI.  It's sort of a perfect well-rounded meal in a bowl and all it requires is browning of some meat and dumping everything in a pot.  It's also a good source of protein and healthy carbs, fiber and, depending on what kind of meat you use, low in fat.  I made this recipe with ground turkey, 93% lean, but you can make it with ground beef also.  Just get 90-95% lean ground beef for a less fatty recpe.  It was really good.  It's not a spicy recipe, but you can certainly make it that way by increasing the cumin within the recipe or adding jalapenos (my personal favorite) to each bite.  (Another way I like to add spice is to put in a couple of tablepoons of Buffalo Wild Wings Caribbean Jerk sauce... that's a good secret to know, SOOO yummy)  Either way - it's good.  I threw in a small slice of velveeta into my bowl to make it slightly creamy/cheesy.  The key to the flavor in this recipe is truly the simmering time.  Don't make it if you don't have the time to simmer it for AT LEAST an hour, but 2 or even 3 is best.

Turkey Chili

2 pounds ground turkey
1 29-ounce can tomato sauce (or  14-ounce cans)
1 29-ounce can kidney beans, do not drain
1 29-ounce can pinto beans, do not drain
1 medium onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
3 medium tomatoes, choppes
2-3 teaspoons cumin
3 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon black powder
1-2 teaspoons sea salt
2 cups water (I put the water in the tomato sauce can and rinse)

Brown turkey in a large pot; drain juices.  Add rest of ingredients and simmer over low heat for 2-3 hours stirring every so often, about 20-30 minutes.

Nutrition info based on 10 generous helpings from
Per serving: Calories - 327, Fat - 8g, Sat Fat - 2g, Cholesterol - 64mg, Sodium - 1281mg, Potassium - 437mg, Total Carbs - 40g, Dietary Fiber - 12g, Sugars - 7g, Protein - 28g.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Chicken Spaghetti

This was really quite tasty.  Very light but a nice flavor and very simple.  My kids could make this... if I allowed them in my kitchen.  :)  My brother-in-law was over for supper and he said it was good also... and asked if he would see the recipe on twitter (my recipes automatically tweet when I post a new one).  Here ya go, Jeff!  You can very easily make this too!!  Give yourself time to make this recipe.  Not because it's time consuming to make, but because the longer the sauce simmers, the better it tastes and the thicker it gets.  You will dirty 3 pans making this dish, but I think you will enjoy it.  It's also very low in calories and fat and a good source of lean protein. 

Chicken Spaghetti

5-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into pieces
1 package fresh Baby Bella mushrooms, sliced (I can't remember how many oz they are)
28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
15-ounce can diced tomatoes with basil, garlic & oregano
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
olive oil
12 ounces red wine (some for the recipe and some for you!)
1 teaspoon oregano
2 teaspoon basil (divided)
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
spaghetti noodles (about enough for 5-6 people)

In a large pot saute the chopped onion and minced garlic in olive oil - about a tablespoon or so.  When they are cooked add the crushed tomatoes, diced tomatoes, red wine (I poured it into the can of diced tomatoes to rinse it out, then poured that into the can of crushed tomatoes so I could get all the sauce), oregano, 1 teaspoon basil, thyme, sea salt and ground black pepper.  Let simmer on low for at least an hour. 
Cut your chicken into about 1x1 inch pieces and slice the mushrooms.  Heat up some olive oil in a large saucepan or skillet and cook the chicken, mushrooms, 1 teaspoon basil and Italian seasoning.  Cook until chicken is cooked through and mushrooms are soft then add to your sauce.  I used tongs to take the chicken/mushrooms out of the pan so I could leave the leftover drippings in the pan instead of adding it to the sauce.  Let the chicken simmer in the sauce while you prepare your spaghetti noodles.  Prepare spaghetti noodles (whole wheat is best!) as directed and serve chicken in sauce over noodles on individual plates. 

You can top with some grated Parmesan cheese or as I like, with some jalapenos and Frank's Red Hot Sauce! 


Nutritional information from based on above recipe - 6 servings and including the noodles
Calories - 558, Fat - 7g, Cholesterol - 98mg, Sodium - 842mg, Potassium - 275mg, Total Carbs - 64g, Dietary Fiber - 6.5g, Sugars - 11g, Protein - 49g

Friday, January 4, 2013

Crouton Hotdish

FINALLY!!  Life has slowed down a bit now that the holidays are over and I get back to some blogging!  I made this quite some time ago and promised on my facebook page to post it... well here it is.  Better late than never, huh?  Anywhoo... this is good old 'Lutheran Lady Hotdish'.  Yep - we had it at a potluck at church and I tracked down the creator and asked for the recipe.  We have a small congregation in a country church, so it's not hard to find out who made what.  Usually we know each other's bowls/serving dishes.  This is so easy your kids could practically make it.  Really - flatten the hamburger into the dish, throw some veggies on top and dump on the soup topping.  So simple and so yummy. 

Crouton Hotdish

1 1/2 to 2 pounds ground beef (whichever amount you happen to have on hand)

1 package croutons - I believe they come in about 10 oz - or so - boxes/bags
1 cup celery, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1/4 lb butter
1 cup water
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of celery soup

Flatten hamburger (uncooked) in the bottom of a 9x13 pan and layer croutons on top.  Cover the hamburger well with them.  In a saucepan mix together and heat butter, celery, onion & water until butter is melted.  Pour over hamburger and croutons.  Blend soups in a separate bowl and pour over top of mixture.  You will have to spread it around to even it out.  Bake 1 hour at 350.  Turn off oven and let stand an additional 15 minutes.