Friday, November 26, 2010

Christmas Cookie Recipes

What better day to release Christmas Cookie recipes than BLACK FRIDAY???

Christmas Cookie Recipes

Guest POST from Jen Merkel @
Here are the Christmas cookies I'm making this year - enjoy!

* Exported from MasterCook *

                               Booze Balls TNT

Recipe By     :
Serving Size  : 54    Preparation Time :0:00
Categories    :

  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  1                cup  semisweet chocolate chips
  20                    Chocolate Wafer Cookies -- 1/2 A 9 Oz Box
     1/2           cup  finely chopped pitted dried plums
     1/2           cup  confectioners' sugar
     1/4           cup  bourbon or 1/3 to 1/2 cup brandy
     1/4           cup  sweetened condensed milk
     1/4           cup  granulated sugar -- or colored decoration for garnish

Put chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and microwave on medium power for a minute. Stir and repeat until the chocolate melts, about 3 minutes in all depending on the power of your microwave. Alternatively, put the chocolates in a heatproof bowl. Bring a saucepan filled with 1-inch or so of water to a very slow simmer; set the bowl on the pan (without touching the water). Stir occasionally until melted and smooth.

Process the cookies in a food processor until finely ground (you should have about 1 1/2 cups ground cookies). Alternatively, put cookies inside a heavy re-sealable plastic bag and crush by moving a rolling pin over the cookies.

Stir the cookie crumbs, dried plums, confectioners' sugar, bourbon or brandy, and condensed milk into the chocolate until evenly combined.

Cover and refrigerate the mixture until firm enough to roll into balls, about 45 minutes. Scoop a tablespoon or so of the mixture into small balls with a cookie or small ice cream scoop and set onto a baking sheet or a large plate. Roll each portion by hand into a smooth ball.

Store booze balls in an air tight container at room temperature for a day to allow the flavors to come together. Store balls in the refrigerator for a week or freeze for up to 1 month.

To serve, put the sugar on a plate and roll the balls in it to coat. Serve at room temperature.

NOTE: I made one batch with rum rolled in chocolate sprinkles, and another batch with Bailey's Irish Cream, rolled in powdered sugar. Both came out awesome!
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* Exported from MasterCook *

                    Chewy Chocolate Cookies (Cake Mix) TNT

Recipe By     :
Serving Size  : 0     Preparation Time :0:00
Categories    :

  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  1            package  Devil's Food Cake Mix
  2         tablespoon  Butter -- Softened
  2         tablespoon  Water
  2                     Egg White -- Large
  1                     Egg -- Large
     3/4          cups  Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
                        Cooking Spray

Preheat oven to 350F

Combine first 5 ingredients in a large bowl; beat at medium speed of a mixer 2 minutes. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop by rounded teaspoons 2 inches apart onto baking sheets coated with cooking spray.

Bake at 350F for 10 minutes. Remove from pans; cool on wire racks. Store in an airtight container. Yield - about 5 dozen.

NOTE: I'm using Andes' Chocolate Mint Chips instead of the semi-sweet chocolate chips
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* Exported from MasterCook *

                   Chocolate Chip Cranberry Cheese Bars

Recipe By     :
Serving Size  : 36    Preparation Time :0:00
Categories    :

  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  1                cup  Butter -- 2 Sticks/softened
  1                cup  firmly packed brown sugar
  2                cup  all-purpose flour
  1 1/2            cup  quick or old-fashioned oats
  2           teaspoon  grated orange peel
  2                cup  NestlĂ©® Toll House® Semi-Sweet Morsels -
  1                cup  Ocean Spray® Craisins®
  1            package  Cream Cheese -- 8 Oz. Softened
  1                can  Sweetened Condensed Milk -- 14 Oz

Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a 13 x 9-inch baking pan.

Beat butter and brown sugar in large mixer bowl until creamy. Gradually beat in flour, oats and orange peel until crumbly. Stir in morsels and cranberries; reserve 2 cups mixture. Press remaining mixture onto bottom of prepared baking pan.

Bake for 15 minutes. Beat cream cheese in small mixer bowl until smooth. Gradually beat in sweetened condensed milk. Pour over hot crust; sprinkle with reserved flour mixture. Bake for additional 25 to 30 minutes or until center is set. Cool in pan on wire rack. Cut into bars.

Makes 36 bars.

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* Exported from MasterCook *

                  Philadelphia Cutout Sugar Cookies TNT

Recipe By     :
Serving Size  : 66    Preparation Time :0:00
Categories    :

  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  8              ounce  Cream Cheese -- Softened
  1                cup  Confectioner's Sugar
     3/4           cup  Butter -- 1-1/2 Sticks
     1/2      teaspoon  Vanilla
  2                cup  Flour
     1/2      teaspoon  Baking Soda

PREHEAT oven to 325F. Beat cream cheese, sugar, butter and vanilla with electric mixer on medium speed until well blended. Add flour and baking soda; mix well. Refrigerate 1 hour.

Roll dough to 1/8-inch thickness on lightly floured surface. Cut into 66 cookies, using 2-inch festive cookie cutters.

Bake at 325F 12 min. or until lightly browned. Cool on baking sheet 1 min. Remove to wire rack; cool completely.

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* Exported from MasterCook *

                          Buttery Spritz Cookies TNT

Recipe By     :
Serving Size  : 45    Preparation Time :0:00
Categories    :

  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  1                Cup  Butter
  1 1/4           Cups  Confectioner's Sugar
  1                     Egg
  1           Teaspoon  Vanilla Extract
     1/2      Teaspoon  Almond Extract
  2 1/2           Cups  All-purpose Flour
     1/2      Teaspoon  Salt
                        Food Coloring

In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in egg and extracts. Combine the flour and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture. Tint with food coloring if desired.

Using a cookie press fitted with the disk of your choice, press dough 2 in. apart onto ungreased baking sheets. Top with colored sugar and decorating candies if desired. Bake at 375 degrees F for 6-8 minutes or until set (do not brown). Remove to wire racks to cool.

  "45 Cookies"
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* Exported from MasterCook *

                           Peanut Butter Balls

Recipe By     :
Serving Size  : 72    Preparation Time :0:00
Categories    :

  Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
--------  ------------  --------------------------------
  1 1/2           Cups  Peanut Butter
  1                Cup  Butter
  4               Cups  Confectioner's Sugar
  1 1/3           Cups  Graham Cracker Crumbs
  2               Cups  Semisweet Chocolate Chips
  1         Tablespoon  Shortening

Mix together peanut butter, butter or margarine, confectioners' sugar, and graham cracker crumbs. Shape into 1 inch balls.

Melt chocolate chips and shortening in top of double boiler. Dip balls into chocolate mixture and let dry on waxed paper. (Poke each ball with a toothpick for easier dipping.)

  "72 Balls"
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*TNT = Tried 'n true, I have made these successfully at least once and recommend them
~Posted by Jen Merkel
Thank her by checking out her AWESOME blog and following her, too!  ;D

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Herb Roasted Turkey, Pan Gravy, Ultimate Mashed Potatoes

Sharing this from Campbell's Kitchen
Here's an easy, reliable way to ensure a moist and flavorful turkey...simply baste the turkey with herb-seasoned chicken stock during roasting.  When the turkey is done, use a bit more stock to make a quick and savory gravy.
1 turkey (12- to 14-pounds)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 carton (26 ounces) Swanson® Chicken Stock (about 3 1/4 cups)
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon dried basil leaves, crushed
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves, crushed
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1.                   Remove the package of giblets and neck from the turkey cavity.  Rinse the turkey with cold water and pat dry with a paper towel.  Tie the ends of the drumsticks together.
2.                   Place the turkey, breast-side up, on a rack in a shallow roasting pan.  Brush the turkey with the oil.  Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the meat, not touching the bone.
3.                   Stir the stock, lemon juice, basil, thyme and black pepper in a large bowl.  Reserve 1 3/4 cups stock mixture for the gravy.  Pour the remaining stock mixture over the turkey.
4.                   Roast at 325°F. for 3 hours or until the thermometer reads 165°F., basting occasionally with the pan drippings.  Begin checking for doneness after 2 1/2 hours of the roasting time.
5.                   Remove the turkey from the pan and keep warm.  Spoon off any fat and pour off all but 1 1/2 cups pan drippings.
6.                   Stir the reserved stock mixture and the flour in a small bowl until the mixture is smooth.  Add the flour mixture to the pan.  Cook and stir over medium heat until the mixture boils and thickens, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.  Serve the gravy with the turkey.
Source: Campbell's Kitchen
Prep: 15 minutes
Roast: 3 hours
Cook: 10 minutes
Cost per recipe: $23.73
Makes: 12 servings

Nutrition per Serving

Calories: 470
Fat: 22g
Fiber: 0g
Protein: 61g
Sodium: 279mg
happy thanksgiving lovely image 31002 pictures, backgrounds and images
*My side note here... I ALWAYS use Reynold's Oven bags (Turkey size) when I roast my turkey. It cuts down the time needed for cooking and ALWAYS comes out moist and DELICIOUS!!! Prepare as above for the seasonings, but use the cooking time according to the size of your turkey as outlined for using the cooking bag.  ;D

Ultimate Mashed Potatoes

3 1/2 cups Swanson® Chicken Broth (Regular, Natural GoodnessTM or Certified Organic)
5 large potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces (about 7 1/2 cups)
1/2 cup light cream
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
2 tablespoons butter
3 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled (reserve some for garnish)
Generous dash ground black pepper
  • Heat the broth and potatoes in a 3-quart saucepan over medium-high heat to a boil.
  • Reduce the heat to medium. Cover and cook for 10 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. Drain, reserving the broth.
  • Mash the potatoes with 1/4 cup broth, light cream, sour cream, chives, butter, bacon and black pepper. Add the additional broth, if needed, until desired consistency. Garnish with the remaining bacon. 

Source: Campbell's Kitchen
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Cost per recipe: $8.61
Makes: 6 servings (about 1 cup each)

Nutrition per Serving

Calories: 297
Fat: 16g
Fiber: 4g
Protein: 6g
Sodium: 694mg

happy thanksgiving pumpkin image pictures, backgrounds and images

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Moist and Savory Stuffing!!

By: Campbell's Kitchen 
"Perfectly-seasoned Pepperidge Farm® Herb Seasoned Stuffing, celery and onion are combined with Swanson® Chicken Broth for a classic, moist stuffing dish."
Prep Time:
5 Min

Cook Time:
10 Min

Ready In:
15 Min

Servings  15
(The BEST part about this site is that you can change the number of servings and it will automatically recalculate the recipe for you. Just click on the Recipe title to go to their site!! AWESOME!!)

  • 3-1/4 cups Swanson® Chicken Broth (regular, Natural Goodness™ or Certified Organic)
  • Generous dash ground black pepper
  • 2 stalks celery, coarsely chopped
  • 2 small onion, coarsely chopped
  • 7-1/2 cups Pepperidge Farm® Herb Seasoned Stuffing
This recipe's Ingredients were scaled to yield a new amount. The directions below still refer to the original recipe yield of 8 servings.
  1. Heat broth, black pepper, celery and onion in 2-quart saucepan over high heat to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender.
  2. Add stuffing and stir lightly to coat.
  • TIPS
  • For an interesting twist: Stir 1/2 cup each dried cranberries and chopped pecans into stuffing mixture.
  • Sausage & Mushroom Stuffing: Add 1 cup sliced mushrooms to vegetables while cooking. Stir 1/2 pound cooked and crumbled pork sausage into stuffing mixture.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Sweet Potato Casserole

Sweet Potato Casserole:
3 cups Cooked/mashed Sweet Potatoes
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup melted butter
2 eggs well beaten
1 Tablespoons vanilla
1/2 milk

Combine - mix well in 2 qt casserole dish

Marshmallow/Nut Topping:
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/2 - 1 cup chopped pecans
2 1/2 Tablespoons melted butter

Mix together and cover the sweet potatoes.
Bake in preheated 350 degree oven approx. 25 minutes

This image comes from
The recipe above looks like this but HERE is their recipe
I will put MY image in soon!  ;D
My recipe comes from my sister and is a family FAVORITE!!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Decadent Pecan Pie

Sorry, this is Betty Crocker image. I don't have any that I took yet. Next time I make this AWESOME pie, I'll take a pic and repost this recipe.  ;D  I've been making this recipe over 20 years!  Maybe this week since it's my sister's FAVORITE and her birthday is TOMORROW!! Posting this today for YOU, Kalea!!

This recipe comes from my OLD ORANGE Betty Crocker cook book and has always been a favorite! This poor book has been through SO MUCH abuse!! some pages stick, the cover is coming apart... HOORAY!! It's the exact same recipe on! I'm going  to go check all my favorites so I don't have to abuse this book so much, anymore AND can decipher some of the mess from pulling apart pages! HAH!  
This PIE for every holiday, baby! The best part about this pie is that it is yummy goodness without being TOO RICH like many pecan pies and recipes out there. I hope you enjoy it, too! It's a GREAT Thanksgiving pie!!
1cup Gold Medal® all-purpose flour
1/2teaspoon salt
1/3cup plus 1 tablespoon shortening
2to 3 tablespoons cold water
2/3cup sugar
1/3cup butter or margarine, melted
1cup corn syrup
1/2teaspoon salt
1cup pecan halves or broken pecans
  1. In medium bowl, mix flour and salt. Cut in shortening, using pastry blender (or pulling 2 table knives through ingredients in opposite directions), until particles are size of small peas. Sprinkle with cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with fork until all flour is moistened and pastry almost leaves side of bowl (1 to 2 teaspoons more water can be added if necessary).
  2. Gather pastry into a ball. Shape into flattened round on lightly floured surface. Wrap in plastic wrap; refrigerate about 45 minutes or until dough is firm and cold, yet pliable. This allows the shortening to become slightly firm, which helps make the baked pastry more flaky. If refrigerated longer, let pastry soften slightly before rolling.
  3. Heat oven to 375°F. With floured rolling pin, roll pastry into round 2 inches larger than upside-down 9-inch glass pie plate. Fold pastry into fourths; place in pie plate. Unfold and ease into plate, pressing firmly against bottom and side. Trim overhanging edge of pastry 1 inch from rim of pie plate. Fold and roll pastry under, even with plate; press with times of fork or flute if desired.
  4. In another medium bowl, beat all filling ingredients except pecans with wire whisk or hand beater until well blended. Stir in pecans. Pour into pastry-lined pie plate.
  5. Cover edge of pastry with 2- to 3-inch-wide strip of foil to prevent excessive browning. Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until center is set, removing foil for last 15 minutes of baking. Refrigerate at least 2 hours until chilled before serving. Store in refrigerator.

Nutrition Information:

1 Serving (1 Serving)
  • Calories 530
    • (Calories from Fat 260),
  • Total Fat 29g
    • (Saturated Fat 9g,
    • Trans Fat 2g),
  • Cholesterol 100mg;
  • Sodium 400mg;
  • Total Carbohydrate 63g
    • (Dietary Fiber 1g,
    • Sugars 34g),
  • Protein 5g;
Percent Daily Value*:
  • Vitamin A 8%;
  • Vitamin C 0%;
  • Calcium 2%;
  • Iron 8%;
  • 1 1/2 Starch;
  • 0 Fruit;
  • 2 1/2 Other Carbohydrate;
  • 0 Skim Milk;
  • 0 Low-Fat Milk;
  • 0 Milk;
  • 0 Vegetable;
  • 0 Very Lean Meat;
  • 0 Lean Meat;
  • 0 High-Fat Meat;
  • 5 1/2 Fat;
Carbohydrate Choices:
  • 4;
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
Now, I KNOW the calories and fat are ASTRONOMICAL and this is the most AWESOME thing that I found at! Not ONLY did they HAVE my recipe, but they gave an alternatvie LIGHT recipe!! SWEET!!!

Lighter Filling
2/3cup sugar
1/4cup margarine, melted
1cup corn syrup
1/2teaspoon salt
4egg whites
1teaspoon vanilla
1/2cup quick-cooking or old-fashioned oats
1/2cup chopped pecans

Nutrition Information:

1 Serving (1 Serving)
  • Calories 470
    • (Calories from Fat 190),
  • Total Fat 21g
    • (Saturated Fat 4 1/2g,
    • Trans Fat 3 1/2g),
  • Cholesterol 25mg;
  • Sodium 450mg;
  • Total Carbohydrate 65g
    • (Dietary Fiber 2g,
    • Sugars 33g),
  • Protein 6g;
Percent Daily Value*:
  • Vitamin A 6%;
  • Vitamin C 0%;
  • Calcium 0%;
  • Iron 6%;
  • 2 Starch;
  • 0 Fruit;
  • 2 Other Carbohydrate;
  • 0 Skim Milk;
  • 0 Low-Fat Milk;
  • 0 Milk;
  • 0 Vegetable;
  • 0 Very Lean Meat;
  • 0 Lean Meat;
  • 0 High-Fat Meat;
  • 4 Fat;
Carbohydrate Choices:
  • 4;
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Grilled Chicken Salad with Green Onion and Tomato Salsa

This recipe is a special treat! Ever go on a cruise? I have and the food is scrumptious!! Princess has been my favorite line, so far. This comes from the Captain's Circle Newsletter! Thought I'd share. The link will take you to the newsletter it came from. I highly recommend Princess! We enjoy the food, entertainment, and service tremendously!!  ;D

When you travel with Princess you enjoy a variety of freshly prepared cuisine perfectly suited to the time of year.  And this summer, our chef's have created a fresh off the grill twist on the classic chicken salad — as innovative as it is delicious. Perfect for entertaining, this meal will delight your friends with its bright colors and crisp, summertime flavors.

Grilled chicken salad with green onion  and tomato salsa

4 boneless, skinless breast halves
Extra virgin olive oil
A touch of cider vinegar
Salt and pepper
½ cup mayonnaise
1 tblsp. plus ½ tblsp. chives, divided
½ cup plus 1 ½ cups corn kernels, divided
1 medium red tomato,  peeled, seeded and chopped
2 medium tomatoes of a different color; green, yellow or orange
½ green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
½ red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
2 green onions, trimmed and chopped
2 shallots, chopped
6 oz. mixed salad greens

Method of Preparation: Preheat grill. Brush the chicken breast halves with olive oil. Season with salt, pepper and a pinch of sugar. Grill about 6 minutes on each side until chicken is cooked throughout. Remove from heat and cool 5–10 minutes. Chop coarsely and set aside to cool to room temperature, about 15 minutes.

In a medium bowl, mix chopped chicken, mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon chives and ½ cup corn kernels. Add additional mayonnaise if mixture seems too dry. Chicken salad can be refrigerated for several hours at this point if not ready to serve.

In a separate bowl, combine tomatoes, green pepper, red pepper, green onions, ½ tablespoon chives, remaining 1 ½ cups corn kernels and shallots. Drizzle with olive oil and a touch of cider vinegar and season with salt and pepper to taste. To serve, place a bed of mixed salad greens on each plate. Top with chicken salad. Spoon tomato-corn salsa on the side. 

Serves 8

Monday, September 13, 2010

Stuffed GIANT Portabello Mushrooms with Apple Juice = YUMMY!!

This is a modified recipe from the one below a few posts. I could only find the HUGE Portabello mushrooms, so I improvised a bit and we ALL LOVED the results!! I will add that you don't want to skimp and get alternate mushrooms!! The flavoring of the Portobello mushrooms is SO MUCH BETTER!! We just happened to serve this with apple juice and it enhanced the flavor SO nicely!! It reminded me of the movie Ratatouille!! I LOVE that MOVIE!! Here's the quote from

5 GIANT Portabello whole mushrooms
(One will be chopped)
1/2 lb bulk pork sausage
1 small can chopped black olives
2.5 cups shredded Mozarella Cheese
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp garlic powder
2 tbsp chives chopped
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp dill
1/3 cup of cream cheese 
(for lower calories you can use reduced fat)
1/3 cup of shredded parm/romano cheese blend
1/4 cup of panko crumbs
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees
Wash mushrooms and pat dry
Gently remove stems from the caps by pulling them with your fingers
Finely chop stems and extra mushroom
In a large saute pan brown bulk pork sausage
Add olive oil
Add chopped Portabello mushrooms
Add garlic powder
Add chopped chives, lemon juice and dill
cook until fragrant
remove from heat and set aside
in a medium bowl combine cream cheese, shredded cheese, salt, pepper, and panko crumbs
add mushroom mixture and black olives; mix well
prepare a large baking sheet with cooking spray
stuff mushrooms generously with mixture
Sprinkle a little more cheese on top.
Bake in center rack approx 10-15 minutes or until tops are golden brown.

Cool about 5 minutes before serving with apple juice to enhance the flavor!
Theme this WEEK:
Yes, I KNOW I'm 4 days late getting this typed up...  ;p

    What is your favorite food/best recipe??