Fall Favorite #4

Growing up in Tennessee, family gatherings were not sparse. We got together for any occasion and then just to get together. With sixteen, grandchildren I can only imagine the chaos we caused my grandmother.

My Aunt Sue always had a Christmas morning breakfast. It wasn't just family, it was neighbors and friends gathering to celebrate the holiday. As kids that was the best morning. We opened presents, then got dressed to head to her house for the most amazing breakfast.

She has gorgeous Christmas china. I have had a fascination with it ever sense. Maybe that's why I now have not one set, but three. She had powdered donuts on the tiered platters. I know it doesn't seem that special, but when those little white rings are on Christmas china, they look pretty darn good.

One thing she always had was sausage balls. My mom didn't like them, so she never made them. Aunt Sue always had them. She would make them ahead of time and freeze them. So they are ready in a jiffy.

This is one of those foods that bring back memories, smells, and feelings of Christmas morning at her house. Try them today

You can find a ton of different recipes for sausage balls on the web. The pioneer woman has a spicy variety that is delicious. This time I just made the basic. To be honest, I don't measure. I just dump it in. Here is my best guess.

Sausage Balls
1 of of sausage
1 -1.5 cups bisquick
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded

Mix all in a large bowl. Using a cookie scoop to make them the same size, scoop out a ball and roll with your hands.

Bake at 375 until brown and the sausage is cooked.

Enjoy!

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Hot and Creamy Jalapeño Dip

I found a recipe Saturday morning to take to a little party friends where having. It was a jalapeño Dip that was served warm with bread.

Having never made it before, I had no idea what to expect. It was okay! Nothing great, not really terrible, but not what I wanted.

Today I made it again and added all the things that I thought would amp it up and make it an amazing Dip.

It turned out perfectly spicy and delicious. I put it on allrecipes as my first submission. Check it out.


http://allrecipes.com/personal-recipe/64660174/hot-and-creamy-jalapeno-dip/

Enjoy!

Fall Favorites #2

The air is cooler, the grass is getting crunchy, and the leaves are turning. That can only mean fall is here!

In Wyoming fall isn't only cooler, sometimes it is downright cold. There has been rain and drizzle for three days. So there is only one thing to do, make soup!

I love making soup. Any kind will do. There is something about chopping and mixing that creates a soulful concoction.

Today it was chicken noodle. This is the easiest soup to whip up in no time at all.

Ingredients:
Chicken
Frozen peas
Carrots
Frozen noodles
Watkins chicken broth mix
Celery

I don't really measure this out. It's more of a toss and see what it looks and tastes like.

In a large pot mix the chicken mix and water. Add the mix according to the package directions for the amount of water you added.

Let it come to a boil. At this point add the chicken. You can use any kind you like. I sometimes you leftover rotisserie chicken shredded. If using fresh, you can chop and sauté in a pan, boil in water then shred, or bake breasts in the oven sprinkles with salt and pepper and drizzled with olive oil. Either way works, just chop or shred and add to the broth.

Next add the carrots and peas. I use dehydrated carrots. They are one of my top pantry items. Just drop a handful or two into the pot. They will plump up to perfect pieces. If using raw dice to bitesize pieces and add. Also add peas to your desired tastes.

Finally add the frozen noodles. Let them thaw on the counter until they are soft. I sometimes put them in the microwave for 25 second bursts. Drop one at a time into the soup. It is time consuming, but if you drop the whole thing it will be one big lump.

Let cook for 20-25 minutes at a simmer. When the noodles are plump and thick, taste the broth. Watkins contains no salt. So you will need to adjust to taste with salt and pepper.

Enjoy!

Fall Must Haves #1

If you know me even just a little, you are overly aware of my fascination with fall. I just love everything it brings.

September – January, I consider to be a magical time. It just oozes family, cooking, and magic is in the air.

One of my favorite things to do is celebrate fall. As soon as it starts getting cooler, I feel the need to begin baking. I simply can't hold out. Now pumpkin spice everything is not what I'm talking about here. I'm meaning applesauce, pumpkin roll, and anything that smells of cloves and cinnamon.

Last year when I went up to New York for the yarn festival at Rheinbeck, I had the most glorious apple cider. It was different from anything I had every tasted. It was sweet and fresh! Not like the other stuff typically found.

After getting back to Wyoming, I knew I needed to share this great with my family. I began the search. I found it on Amazon. Well of course I did, I think you can find anything on there.

This stuff is magical. It arrives frozen or in some form of cold. Slushy is fabulous. I always order two, one in the fridge and the other goes into the freezer to save for the holidays.

Drink it cold or drink it warm, either way you will not be disappointed!

You can also order it from Their website at
http://kauffmansfruitfarm.com

Enjoy!

Pancake Sausage Muffins

I have been stuck in bed for a week now due to having surgery. Therefore I have been spending a lot of time on the Internet, mostly Pinterest. I have found some pretty fun recipes most I cannot try due to taking too much time on my feet, but they will be coming soon. 
This recipe is quick and easy and so fabulous.


Grab sausage patties and your pancake mix. That’s basically it besides a muffin tin and some nonstick spray. 


Cook the sausage until done. Mix up some pancake batter. 


Cut each sausage patty into four pieces. (crumbled sausage would probably work also)
Spray the pan with nonstick spray. Pour in just enough batter to cover the bottom of each muffin. Place 1-2 pieces of sausage in each spot. Pour batter just until the sausage is covered. 



Bake at 350 degrees until done. The tops will stay white. It will depend on how thick your batter is. I would say 10-12 minutes. But check with a toothpick. 


Serve with warm syrup. Great make ahead for camping!


I used my best dishes for these!! Since I’m out of the kitchen, I’m making cleanup easy for my family. 

Lamb Gyros! My New go to Meal!

We have been buying a lamb at our local 4H sale for quite a few years. If you haven’t had lamb, you are missing out. If you had lamb and didn’t enjoy it, the chef or restaurant had no idea how to cook it properly.  Lamb is absolutely delicious.

The other day my cowboy cooked up a lamb roast on the traeger. It was delicious. The next day we were going to be heading to town and would be  in and out from the ranch. I knew we would not have a chance to eat up the leftovers. I remembered the Gyros I had eaten in New York at the Sheep and Wool festival. I sliced the meat very thinly and froze it in baggies. That way each biggie was enough for Gyros for our family of four.

Today I grabbed the rest of the ingredients from the store and made our meal. They were everything I remembered. The taztziki sauce was simply delicious.

Head out this week and buy yourself a lamb roast. Look for one that is grown in America.(It’s important to support our farmers and ranchers!)
Lamb Gyros

Start with a lamb roast. Generously sprinkle with salt and pepper. Nothing fancy. Place on a rack in a roasting pan. Cook on your traeger or in the oven until done to your liking. Serve with mashed potatoes, green beans, and mint jelly.

The next day slice the meat very thinly.

Gyros

Taztziki sauce

1/2 cup cucumber peeled, seeded, and shredded. Then squeezed through a towel to remove excess water

2 cups Greek yogurt

1 clove garlic minced

1/2 tsp salt

1tbsp olive oil

Mix all together and let sit in the fridge for several hours
In a pan or griddle sauté the sliced lamb with a little olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. I also add a little garlic powder.  In another pan or at the end of the griddle heat up one piece of pita bread turn it occasionally to keep it from burning.


When all is cooked and warm build your pita. Add a good amount of the sauce to the pita, then pile with meat and your favorite fixings.

Sliced olives, lettuce, tomato, sliced red onion, oregano, mint, and the sauce all combine to make a great gyro.
Enjoy

Leftover Yummies

We all have a few foods that we enjoy as leftovers. Some are not as good as others, but there are a few that stand out. 

When I make mashed potatoes I always think about the leftovers. We of course have to heat them up for whatever meal they went with, steak, pork chops, fried chicken, etc. However sometimes the only thing left is the potatoes. In that case, I look forward to transforming this morning staple into something wonderful. 


Potatoes cakes are truly fabulous. They are whipped up in no time at all and are great alone or with the next days dinner. Growing up we had these quite often. 

Make these the next time you have leftovers. They are great with a meal, breakfast, or as a snack.  

Potatoes Cakes

Leftover mashed potatoes

1 egg

Chopped onion 

Flour

Salt/pepper

Oil
Mix mashed potatoes with egg. Add enough flour to be able to handle the potatoes. Stir in the onion. (Sometimes I add garlic salt and cheddar cheese). Make into patties and fry in a nonstick skillet with a little oil. Cook until brown on both sides and heated through. 


Enjoy!

Chicken Soup on a Cold Day!


If you have read many of my posts you know that I love soup. It is my go to meal when I’m unsure what to cook. It is my go to meal when it’s cold. Let’s face it, it is my go to meal anytime!!

It has been overly cold here in Wyoming, and finally I found chicken on sale. Chicken in Wyoming is outrageously overpriced. At home in Tennessee, it is so cheap!!

When I have chicken I usually make chicken noodle soup. However this time I mixed it up and made chicken and rice. 

All of my chicken soups start with a great broth or base. You can do this lots of ways. However I love Watkins Chicken Base.  It adds the perfect mixture of seasonings without salt.  

I mix several cups of water with the seasoning according to the directions. Bring this to a slow boil. Toss in chopped chicken or you can toss in cooked shredding chicken. Let this cook until the chicken is done or until warm. 

I then add my onions and carrots. These are freeze dried and will plump back up. I toss in whatever amount to my liking. Thrive is an awesome company! I use so many of their products. The veggies never go bad and I don’t have to worry I always have them on hand!

Let this cook until the veggies are plump and tender. At that point I add in the frozen noodles or in this case uncooked rice. If you use noodles it really tastes much better with homemade or frozen. Regular pasta just doesn’t do it. 

Let it cook until tender at a slow boil.  If you like throw in some frozen peas and 1 tsp or so of celery powder. 

If you would like your soup a little thicker, mix together water and cornstarch until blended. Pour a little at a time into the soup until it reaches your desired consistency. 

Check taste. You will need to add salt and pepper. Sometimes it needs more chicken flavoring and I will mix in a little water and more Watkins seasoning. 


Enjoy!

Ingredients:

2 chicken breasts

Peas, carrots, onions

Frozen Noodles or rice

Watkins chicken soup base

Quick, Easy, and Oh, So Yummy!

I recently returned from a visit to my family in Tennessee. I always enjoy my visit and come back with lots of great memories. I also usually have lots of stuff from taking advantage of stores we do not have here in Wyoming. This year I also came home with a great recipe. 

Now recipes are swapped back and forth between my mother and I all the time. The significance of this recipe is it came from my little sister. She is not a cook. By that I mean she doesn’t try new recipes very often. She keeps it simple. She does basics! She could cook very well if she wanted but as she says cooking is not her thing. 

Well she shared this recipe and at first I was reluctant. The ingredients, all three of them, just didn’t seem to be a good mix to me. Then she popped over to mom’s and proceeded to whip this up. 

I was wrong it’s wonderful. Not only does it only have three ingredients but it is done in about 10 minutes, Maybe less! It is also addicting. 

The other reason I love it, is that it makes just enough. You don’t end up with a huge pot of dip. It is a rather small amount compared to my regular sausage dip with velvetta. So if making for a crowd you will need to double or triple. 

Here it is. You must make this! Chances are you have everything you need in your fridge right now!

Easy Sausage Dip

1lb sausage- swaggerty

1 pkg of cream cheese

1 can of original rotel
Brown the sausage and drain the grease. 

Then add the cream cheese and rotel. Mix throughly. 
Serve warm with tortilla chips or crackers. 

You will thank me for this one. I couldn’t resist. Had a bite immediately!