Strawberry Filled Oatmeal Coconut Muffins

Sunday, February 28, 2010

The best part about cold weekend mornings is the insatiable need I feel to bake hot breakfasts for my family.   I found the recipe for these moist, flavorful muffins in an old church cookbook .  They were a fun, unique way to start the day, and I loved that they were wholesome, not-overly-sweet, and easy to make.  And my family's favorite part?  The surprise strawberry filling!   Yum!!!

 Click here for printable recipe.

The ingredients:

1 cup oats
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup flour  (I used 1/2 whole wheat, 1/2 white flour)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
3/4 cup coconut
Strawberry preserves (or whatever flavor you prefer)

Combine oats in buttermilk and let soak at least 30 minutes.

Sift four, salt, baking soda, and baking powder together. Set aside.  Blend oil, brown sugar, egg, and coconut and add to oatmeal mixture.

Blend well.  Add dry ingredients, mixing just until moistened.  Spoon into greased muffin tins.  Spoon a small teaspoon strawberry preserves in center of each muffin
 (don't mind my ugly looking muffin pan. I've had it since we got married 16 years ago.)

and cover preserves with a little more dough.

Bake at 400° for 15-18 minutes.

Makes 12 muffins.  Enjoy!


Penne Pasta with Gorgonzola and Chicken

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

If you ever wondered what $25,000 tastes like, this is it. Taste of Home's biggest grand prize winner ever. It was super easy to make and wowed all the "judges" in our family too with its tender chicken and flavorful white sauce. This is one dish that will definitely be making a reappearance on our table.
Click here for printable recipe.

The ingredients:
1 pkg. (16-oz.) penne pasta
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 Tbs. olive oil
1 large garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup white wine (I used a white cooking wine)
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup chicken broth
2 cups (8-oz.) crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
6-8 fresh sage leaves, thinly sliced
Salt and pepper, to taste
Grated Parmesan cheese and parsley (for garnishment)

Directions: Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, brown chicken in oil on all sides. Add garlic, cook 1 minute longer. Add wine, stirring to loosen browned bits from pan.

Add cream and broth; cook until sauce is slightly thickened and chicken is no longer pink. Stir in Gorgonzola cheese, sage, salt, and peppers;

Cook just until cheese is melted. Drain pasta; toss with sauce.

Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and parsley if desired. Makes 6-8 servings. Enjoy!


Oatmeal Pancakes with Lemon-Apple Topping

Sunday, February 21, 2010

This DC winter has been like the winters of my childhood in Minnesota.  Our snowfall totals have made us one of the snowiest cities in America this year and have shattered the 120+ year old record  for snow.  It's been fun for the kids to experience first hand what waist deep snow is like and I frankly found the mid-winter break (longer than Christmas break had been) rather relaxing.  One of the best parts of all those snow days has been the relaxed mornings that mean we can sleep in and take our time to make hearty, wholesome breakfasts every day.    This is one of those snowy day breakfasts I discovered, which we instantly fell in love with.  The wholesome pancakes were good in and of themselves, but the lemon-apple topping really made this a stand-out breakfast.   We'll definitely be making these again soon! 

Click here for printable recipe.

The ingredients:

1-1/2 cups hot milk
3/4 cup old-fashioned oats
egg, beaten
2 Tbs. vegetable oil
2 Tbs. molasses
1 cup all-purpose flour
1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
egg whites

2 Tbs. butter
5 medium tart apples, peeled and sliced (I used Granny Smith)
1 Tbs. lemon juice
1 tsp. grated lemon peel
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbs. cornstarch
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg

Directions:  In a large bowl, combine milk and oats; let stand for 5 minutes.  Stir in egg, oil, and molasses.  Combine dry ingredients; stir into oat mixture just until moistened.

Beat egg whites until soft peaks form; fold gently into batter.

 Set aside.  

For apple topping, heat butter in a skillet until foamy.  Add apples, lemon juice, and peel; cook, uncovered, for 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Combine sugar, cornstarch, and nutmeg; add to apple mixture and cook 2 minutes longer.

While apple topping is cooking, cook oatcakes by pouring batter by 1/4 cupfuls onto a hot greased griddle.  Cook until bubbles form; turn and cook until browned on other side.  Serve warm with hot apple topping.  
 Serve warm over oatmeal pancakes.  Makes 6-8 servings.



Honey Lime Enchiladas

Thursday, February 18, 2010

 A perfect balance between sweet and spicy these yummy enchiladas from the Sister's Cafe were a hit with the whole family.  If you have the chicken pre-cooked (or cooked in the crockpot), the prep time on this is super fast making this a perfect weeknight meal.  

 Click here for printable recipe.

The ingredients:
1-1/2 lbs. pork or chicken, cooked and shredded
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup lime juice
1 Tbs. chili powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 can (28-oz) green enchilada sauce
2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
10 (8-inch) flour tortillas

Directions:  Combine honey, lime juice, chili powder, and garlic powder to make a sauce.  Add sauce to shredded pork or chicken.  Let sauce soak into the meat for about 30 minutes. 

Lightly spray a 9x13-inch baking pan with non-stick baking spray.  Pour green enchilada sauce into pan to coat the entire bottom.

 Fill tortillas with shredded meat and desired amount of cheese.

Roll and place seam side down in baking dish. 

Pour remainder of sauce over enchiladas and sprinkle more cheese on top.

 Bake uncovered at 350° for 30 minutes.  Then broil until cheese is slightly brown and crispy (it will only take a minute or two).
Makes 6-8 servings.  Enjoy!


Ranch Mac & Cheese

Monday, February 15, 2010

Most winters we sit around and wonder where all the snow has gone.  This winter, after over 3-feet of snow in one week, I am beginning to wonder if DC has been transplanted back to my home state of Minne-snow-ta!'s cold around here!  After being housebound for a few days while we shoveled out, we have been in need of some good old fashioned comfort food and this flavorful mac & cheese from a Taste of Home magazine was just perfect.  It was quick and easy to put together and everyone loved it.  

Click here for printable recipe.  

The ingredients:
1 pkg. (16-oz.) elbow macaroni
1 cup milk
1/4 cup butter, cubed
1 envelope ranch salad dressing mix
1 tsp. garlic salt
1 tsp. garlic pepper blend
1 tsp. lemon-pepper seasoning
1 cup (4-oz.) shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup (4-oz.) shredded Colby cheese
1 cup (8-oz.) sour cream
1/2 cup crushed saltines
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Cook macaroni according to package directions.  Meanwhile, in a saucepan, combine the milk, butter, dressing mix, and seasonings; heat through.  Stir in Monterey Jack and Colby cheeses until melted.  Stir in sour cream.  
Drain macaroni; stir into cheese sauce.  Allow to sit for 5-10 minutes before serving.  Sprinkle with crushed saltines and Parmesan cheese.  (We served it up with Mom's Roasted Cauliflower sprinkled over the top too and loved it!) Serves 8.    Enjoy!


Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

Friday, February 12, 2010

 This biscuit recipe is one I found over at Sister's Cafe that I'd been waiting to try for a long time and a  whole week of snow days was the perfect excuse.  These biscuits were light, perfectly flaky, and had an out-of-this-world flavor!    If you're looking for a good biscuit recipe I suggest you start right here.  

Click here for printable recipe.  

The ingredients:  

2 cups flour
2-1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
5 Tbs. chilled butter, cut into small pieces
3/4 cup buttermilk
3 Tbs. honey

Directions:  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in large bowl; cut in butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal.  Chill 10 minutes.

 In a small bowl, combine buttermilk and honey, stirring with a whisk until well-blended.  Add buttermilk mixture to flour mixture;

stir just until moist.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead lightly 4 times.  Roll dough into a 1/2-inch thick 9x5-inch rectangle; dust top of dough with flour.  Fold dough crosswise into thirds (as if folding a piece of paper to fit into an envelope).  Reroll dough into a 1/2-inch thick 9x5-inch  rectangle; dust top of dough with flour.  Fll dough crosswise into thirds again; gently roll or pat to a 3/4-inch thickness.  Cut dough with a 1-3/4-inch biscuit cutter to form 10 dough rounds.  Place dough rounds, 1 inch apart, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Bake at 400 degree for 12 minutes or until golden.  Remove from pan; cool 2 minutes on wire racks.  Serve warm.  Enjoy!  


Peanut Butter Fudge

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

I found this recipe in a family cookbook Lara compiled several years ago, but it took until this year for me to try it. It turned out amazingly creamy and yummy, and when we gave some of it away one of the recipients told us that they fought over who would get the last piece.  Next time I make it, I'm dipping it in chocolate for extra decadence!  :)

Click here for printable recipe.  
Peanut Butter Fudge
posted by Lara's Mom

The ingredients:
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups light brown sugar
3/4 cups milk
1-18 oz jar peanut butter
1- 7oz jar marshmallow creme
1 tsp vanilla 
Mix sugar, brown sugar, and milk in a large saucepan. Bring slowly to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add peanut butter, marshmallow creme, and vanilla. Mix quickly before fudge hardens. Pour into well buttered 9 inch pan. Cool then cut.  Enjoy!


Hearty One Dish Breakfast

Sunday, February 7, 2010

This here is a manly man's breakfast.  It was hearty, easy to make, and only messed up one pan.  My kids loved it with some fresh biscuits and orange juice and I loved that no one was hungry again until mid-afternoon.  With 2 + feet of snow falling this weekend we sure needed a good hearty breakfast like this to keep our strength up for the hours of shoveling!    

Click here for printable recipe.  

The ingredients:
1-lb. sliced bacon, diced
1 medium onion, chopped
2 packages (16-oz. each) frozen shredded hash brown potatoes, thawed
10 eggs
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese (optional)
Chopped fresh parsley

Chop raw bacon, then in a large skillet, cook bacon over medium-high heat adding the onions about 3 minutes into the cooking time.  Cook until bacon is crisp.  Drain all but 1/2 cup of the drippings.  Add hash brown to skillet; mix well.

Stirring occasionally, cook over medium heat for 10 minutes until browned.  Make 10 "wells" evenly spaced in the hash browns.  Place one egg in each well.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

  Sprinkle with cheese if desired (we did not end up using any cheese).  Cover and cook over low heat for about 10 minutes or until eggs are set.  Garnish with parley; serve immediately.  Yields 10 servings. Enjoy!


White Chicken Pizza with Caramelized Onions

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Every Friday is pizza night at our house, so we're always on the hunt for fun new pizza recipes to try.  This is one I found from Spryte's Place that caught my eye. I'm normally not such a huge white sauce fan, but I loved the addition of the garlic cream cheese and felt like I was eating at a gourmet pizzeria.  The kids were scared off by all the onions, but the onions is why I loved it so much.  Definitely a keeper! 

Click here for printable recipe. 
The ingredients:
2 Tbs. butter
3 cups thinly sliced sweet onions
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. thyme
2 oz. garlic herb cream cheese (I used Boursin light--see picture above)
1 pre-baked pizza crust
 1/3 cup prepared Alfredo sauce
1 cup shredded rotisserie chicken
1/4 cup Italian blend shredded cheese

Directions: Melt butter in a skillet and cook onions and sugar for 20-25 minutes, until deep golden brown and caramelized; stir in thyme leaves.

Stir cream cheese and Alfredo sauce together.
  Spread over pizza crust.

Top with chicken ,

then onions,

then shredded cheese. 

Bake at 450° for 10 minutes or until heated through.  Enjoy!


About This Blog

My name is Lara and while I'm definitely not a gourmet cook, I do love preparing tasty, healthy meals for my family. Finding new recipes to try and sharing the ones we've already fallen in love with is a passion I've had since college and the reason why I've started this blog! With five kids, I'm usually in a hurry, so you'll find most of these recipes kid friendly and simple to make.

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