Recipes and Cooking Ideas for Homemakers and Amateur Cooks

Same pizza ingredients, different look

Posted on April 30, 2008
Filed Under Main dishes

Whenever Saturday evening rolls around, my cooking brain always automatically thinks pizza-crust-pepperoni-cheese thoughts. Maybe it’s because I was raised with pizza every Saturday night. So, whether it’s pulling a frozen pizza out of the freezer or calling 1-800-WE-NEED-SOME-PIZZA-DELIVERED or going out for pizza with friends or whipping up something from scratch, we somehow usually end up with pizza of some sort on any given Saturday night. If it’s a pizza from scratch night, it might be Real Stromboli (pizza variation instructions at the end of the recipe), Quick Stromboli, Saturday Night Pizza, or Redneck Double Pizza (honestly, we only made this once!).

Sometimes I feel in a rut with my cooking. Like right now. And I don’t mean just with the Saturday night pizza thing. I mean with all my cooking. Whether it’s Sunday-lunch-pot-roast or fried chicken breasts (which we have at least once a week and I really should feature sometime), it seems I kind of make the same type of things way too often.

I automatically skip over recipes that I’m not used to the ingredient combinations or that take ingredients that I’d need a dictionary for. Dishes like: Dark Chocolate and Pine Nut Crostata, Hawaiian Seafood Chowder, Rhubarb Chili Cubano, Artichokes with Tarragon Butter. I mean, really, wouldn’t you skip over the Rhubarb Chili Cubano, thinking “How could rhubarb and chili ever belong in the same dish?!”? That recipe, by the way, comes from the latest Country Woman magazine and from reading over the recipe, I saw that it is in fact regular chili with rhubarb in it!

So, anyway, I’m going to get out of my comfort zone and make myself try one recipe every week that gives me some apprehension and raised eyebrows. Who knows, I may discover that apples baked with cheese is good or that I really do like fruit in my lettuce salads.

But for today, I’ll stay in my comfort zone. Surrounded by the ingredients we know and love.

This is actually an experiment of rolled pizza… a variation in looks of regular flat pizza and quick stromboli. We had this last Saturday night. I’m quite sure I won’t make it again because it didn’t turn out as beautifully swirled as I thought it would. So, why am I featuring it then? Mainly so you know that things flop in my kitchen and because I still think it’s a neat idea and maybe you can offer suggestions to make them more attractive… there will be some troubleshooting going on at the end of the recipe.

Pizza Roll

1 refrigerated Pillsbury pizza crust
Pizza sauce
Shredded cheese
Parmesan cheese

swirls1.jpg   Roll out pizza dough into a rectangle.

swirls2.jpg   Spread with pizza sauce.

swirls4.jpg   Sprinkle with some cheese.

swirls3.jpg   Chop up pepperoni

swirls5.jpg   and put on top of cheese.

swirls6.jpg   Add more cheese and Parmesan cheese.

swirls7.jpg   Starting at a long side, roll up like a jelly roll.

swirls8.jpg    Spray a bit of cooking spray on a sharp knife and cut the roll into 1″ thick pieces. Lay cut side down on baking sheet.


swirls9.jpg  They looked pretty messy, so I gave up on the swirl effect and sprinkled some cheese on top.

swirls11.jpg   Bake at 400 for 15 – 20 min or until browned.

Now, what to do different… I still think they could be an attractive thing to serve, esp for an evening snack when you have company or something. They, of course, tasted really good, but the appearance had much to be desired.

What should’ve I done different?
— Were the toppings too thick?
— Would’ve a stiffer dough done better (like frozen bread dough thawed)?
— Should’ve I skipped the extra cheese on top? Would’ve the swirls looked less messy after baking?
— Are you rolling your eyes, thinking ‘Just make regular pizza, for crying out loud!’?
— Would cutting it with a string (instead of a knife) make them look neater?

Ok, now I need to start looking for an out-of-my-comfort zone recipe… I don’t think I’ll have to look too far. I’ve got that Country Woman magazine sitting here on my computer desk.


7 Responses to “Same pizza ingredients, different look”

  1. Lavonne on April 30th, 2008 1:22 pm

    I think they look wonderful, as in yummy!! ???? I wonder what would happen if you baked them on a lower temperature? I know my oven seems to be extra hot and I aften bake at a lower temp than called for. Have a good one! BTW, I’m enjoying your website! ~Lavonne

  2. Judi on April 30th, 2008 1:59 pm

    I love pizza any way you slice it, but I wonder if you baked it first as in a stromboli – only rolled- then slice it after it cools for just a second. They would still be spiral looking. And I liked your idea of adding more cheese – maybe after baking, slicing then add cheese like you did and pop back in the oven til melted???? Hope YOU try it again and let us know lol

  3. Julie on April 30th, 2008 3:44 pm

    You could always make them without the sauce and then have the sauce for dipping. That might make them look a little neater.

  4. Christy on May 1st, 2008 6:43 am

    I think this is worth working out the wrinkles. They would be a hit party food, for sure. Looks like you have some good suggestions already. ^^^

    And way to go on trying new things. :) I love trying new recipes, but I often get scared of strange sounding combinations as well. I’m finding out it’s worth it though. Who would have thought strawberry spinach salad would be good??? But it’s delicious! I would have never thought a peach or mango salsa could be good, but it has a nice…sweet/tangy flavor.

  5. chelsa on May 1st, 2008 12:50 pm

    we had crockpot pizza last night, easy and still tastes good

  6. Twila on May 1st, 2008 12:59 pm

    I make something similar, only I use frozen bread dough, and I slice it after baking. Also no sauce, we just dip it when we eat it, like we do stromboli.
    And hopefully you’ll come up with some interesting new recipes for us! I made a coleslaw this week that had grapes and apples in it. It was pretty good, but of course next time I’d tweak it a bit.

  7. Lori on May 5th, 2008 7:18 am

    I think they look great as is- I like food that’s a bit “rustic” looking. No need for it to look absolutely perfect. And I’ll bet they tasted great!:-)

Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies

Posted on April 28, 2008
Filed Under Cookies and bars

Ok, here we go again. The break is over. I had enough Tasty-Kakes and Starbucks to last me for awhile now.

I wish Tasty-Kakes would come to WI. Well, they do come to WI… but only when we bring them here from PA or FL. A couple years ago, I ordered a bunch and they were shipped UPS. For awhile, every time after that, when we’d see a UPS truck, Lexi (who was 3 at the time) would say, “Mom, let’s ask him for some Tasty-Kakes!” I guess she thought those trucks had a never-ending supply of Tasty-Kakes in them. Kind of like ice cream and a Schwans truck. Would be nice to be able to just flag one down a UPS truck whenever the Tasty-Kake urge strikes.

And since we live up in the boondocks here, our closest Starbucks is 1 1/2 hours away, so we don’t get there often. But along the turnpike, going across IN, OH, and PA, there was often a Starbucks at the travel plazas. Very nice! I tried a couple different things, plus my favorite: a caramel frappucino.

Now, back to the kitchen, new recipes, and all…


This one isn’t really a new recipe. To me anyway. You’d know that if you’d see my recipe card… it’s bent a little, it has a bit of sugar stuck to it, and it has a blue star (written by me) up by the recipe name. What first caught my eye when I was flipping thro’ the cards was the word “Irresistible”. Yeah, that wasn’t me putting that word in the title, that’s the name of the recipe: Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies. So, I decided to try them. They were wonderful, and I’ve been making them for the last couple years. The recipe is from an Easy-to-Bake-Easy-to-Make recipe card.

One thing that was interesting is that it calls for Crisco (w the logo) shortening and for awhile, that exact recipe was on the Crisco cans. I don’t know why I had never noticed the word “Irresistible” on my Crisco can before. Now, the recipe on there is “Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies”. I wonder how often they change the recipes on their labels.

One other thing, I always wonder how peanut butter cookies got that trademark crisscross pattern in them. I don’t think any other kind of cookie has that and you can always tell a peanut butter cookie by it. I Googled it and there were answers like “To tell them apart from other cookies”, “They don’t taste as good without that”, “They don’t flatten by themselves in the oven”, “They did it in the 1930s and it stuck”. :)

Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies

1 1/4 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup Crisco shortening
3 Tbsp. milk
1 Tbsp. vanilla
1 egg
1 3/4 cups flour
3/4 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. salt

Heat oven to 375. Place sheets of foil on countertop for cooling cookies. Combine brown sugar, peanut butter, shortening, milk, and vanilla in large bowl. Beat at medium speed w electric mixer until well blended. Add egg. Beat just until blended. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Add to creamed mixture at low speed. Mix just until blended. Drop rounded tablespoonfuls of dough 2″ apart on ungreased baking sheet. Flatten slightly in crisscross pattern with tines of fork.


Bake one baking sheet at a time at 375 for 7-8 minutes, or until set and just beginning to brown. Do not overbake. Cool 2 minutes on baking sheet.

Remove cookies to foil to cool completely.
Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

Soft and chewy… just like a cookie oughta be! Wish I could give you one. Oh yeah, that’s right… there are none left to give.


10 Responses to “Irresistible Peanut Butter Cookies”

  1. barb on April 28th, 2008 5:34 pm

    Those cookies look great. I’m going to try them.
    When I grew up, my parents had a bakery (still do)
    When we made peanut butter cookies we used a hand-held meat tenderizer to make the pattern in the top. It looks a little different than fork marks but a lot faster. Also, I have a recipe for peanut butter cookies that has a peanut butter filling between two of the cookies. They’re called nutter butters. I make them often and have shared the recipe MANY times. I will leave the filling recipe here. You could use it with any p.b. cookie recipe, but if anyone would like the recipe that goes with this filling, I will share that too.

    Nutter Butter Filling:
    1/2 c. peanut butter
    1/4 c. butter (softened)
    1/4 c. milk
    2 c. powdered sugar
    Beat butter and p.b. together, then add powdered sugar and milk. beat till smooth. If it is too thin you may need to add more powdered sugar so it will “stay” between the two cookies.

  2. Kay on April 28th, 2008 5:53 pm

    Sounds good, Barb! Thanks! I’ll have to try that next time I make p.b. cookies. Looks pretty easy. :)

  3. Freida on April 28th, 2008 6:23 pm

    I LOVE peanut butter cookies. Next best thing to monster cookies. :) I shall try this recipe.

  4. Tamara Merritt on April 28th, 2008 6:46 pm

    Thanks Barb for the Nutter Butter filling YUM

    Are you the same Barb of Frito Salad fame?

    My Peanut Butter cookie recipe is:

    1 c. white sugar
    1 c. peanut butter
    1 egg

    Mix and drop. Press with fork. (I loved Barb’s meat tenderizer idea!!!) Sometimes I will make balls, and roll in sugar, and then press.

    Bake at 350 til done.

  5. Rosalyn on April 29th, 2008 10:43 am

    Good to see you back on here after your “coffee break”. It was nice being able to meet you in person!

  6. Judi on April 30th, 2008 9:28 am

    Missed you and I’m glad you’re back. Your playhouses look too cool. My Maintenance Man, as I like to call him, loves peanut butter cookies. I don’t make them too often because we certainly don’t need them. He says he eats best when we’re having company lol.

  7. Esther on April 30th, 2008 10:42 am

    I love your site. I get some many ideas of things to make for meals. I was wondering though i wanted to make the raspberry cream cheese rolls you posted about awhile ago and cant find the donought mix. The store i shope at has a bulk food section and they didnt have it their either. Where can i find it. I’m dying to try the rolls. Thanks

  8. Kay on April 30th, 2008 11:02 am

    I had the same problem. Couldn’t find it around here either, so I asked a friend from OH to ship me some because she said they have it at a bulk foods store near her. Got any friends from OH? Or PA? :) You could also Google it and order it online or you could try something different, like roll mix. I’ve never tried it with anything other than donut mix, but finding donut mix is a VERY common problem with me and other readers on here!

  9. Esther on April 30th, 2008 2:09 pm

    I’m from Pa actually Lancaster area to be exact so I guess i’ll just have to check at more bulk food stores in the area. Thanks for your help.

  10. Anna on May 1st, 2008 10:23 pm

    I think I’d like your cookies better than the ones I made today. That is, the Magnolia Bakery Copy Cats. Yours are more traditional and I like when peanut butter cookies have shortening in them rather than all butter. The shortening gives them a better texture.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog, Cookie Madness! I am looking forward to reading yours too :).

Coffee break…

Posted on April 23, 2008
Filed Under Tidbits

Actually a long ‘coffee break’. I went on a business trip with Shannon this week. We’re in Lancaster, PA right now with the truck and trailer loading up playhouses and some other stuff.
Here’s our load:
Heading back to WI tomorrow. I should be back in my kitchen on Saturday. Meanwhile, I’m enjoying eating other people’s cooking! :) Have a good week!


3 Responses to “Coffee break…”

  1. barb on April 23rd, 2008 7:44 pm

    Hurry back, I miss your recipes and ideas.

  2. Judi on April 24th, 2008 6:06 pm

    Have a safe trip.

  3. Shannon on April 24th, 2008 7:31 pm

    Hope your trip was great! :)

Corn Chip Salad – Crunchy and delicious!

Posted on April 21, 2008
Filed Under Salads

I tried the corn chip salad over the weekend. Thanks for the recipe, Barb!


Barb posted it in the comment section of this post. She didn’t leave a link, so I can’t refer you to her site if she has one. The salad is very easy to make (no veggies to chunk up) and has a nice crunch to it. I liked the combo of salty (corn chips) and sweet (dressing).

Usually, when I think of salad, I think ‘diet’. This is not by any means a ‘diet’ salad! The only thing diet in there is the lettuce. Everthing else is laden with calories and fat. No wonder the salad is so good, huh?!

Barb was right though… leftovers are not good! I made 1/4 batch just for us and we didn’t eat it all, so I put it back in the fridge. The next day, it was soggy and the lettuce was wilted.

I’d say a whole batch would be about right for 18-20 people, unless you’re making it to go along with a big meal, then it would feed more people, maybe more like 25. Ok, hopefully that guess isn’t too far off for those of you who have it in a cookbook if it says how many servings it is! I could not find a corn chip salad recipe in any of my cookbooks.

Corn Chip Salad

1 head lettuce
6-8 hard boiled eggs
1 pound bacon, fried and crumbled
1/2 pound shredded colby or cheddar cheese
4-6 cups corn chips, crushed (the more-the better)

1 cup miracle whip
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar (can use apple cider vinegar)
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar

Toss lettuce, eggs, bacon, and cheese. Add chips and dressing just before serving.

salad1.jpg  …Lettuce

salad2.jpg  …Eggs

salad3.jpg   …Bacon and cheese

salad4.jpg   Toss it.

salad5.jpg  Add dressing and corn chips.

I just put all the dressing ingredients in a bowl and beat it with a wire whisk. Forgot to get a picture of it.

Toss it all together.


Sounds like some of you have made this, but if you haven’t, I’d highly recommend it. The corn chips in there is what makes it so good (and the bacon helps too!). Plus, I’ve always liked salads that are tossed with dressing.


9 Responses to “Corn Chip Salad – Crunchy and delicious!”

  1. Monica on April 21st, 2008 11:21 am

    I love this salad, too!!! I think it’s especially good made with the Chili-Cheese Fritos!!!

  2. Judi on April 21st, 2008 11:31 am

    Okay, so everything sounds real good, but the eggs are kind of throwing me. I’ll definitely have to give it a try. Thanks

  3. Audrey on April 21st, 2008 11:38 am

    What a really great recipe. Very simple.

  4. Shannon on April 21st, 2008 11:59 am

    That looks wonderful! I’m gonna have to try it. I know my girls would love it.

  5. Amber on April 21st, 2008 3:14 pm

    I make it without eggs and bacon and add pinto beans and this dressing:
    2 c. mayo
    1 c. sugar
    1/3 c. ketchup
    1/3 c. oil
    1/2 tsp. salt
    2 Tbl. honey mustard
    1/2 tsp. paprika
    1/2 tsp. worcestershire sauce
    1/2 tsp. garlic powder
    1/2 tsp. red pepper

    Or, you can just use French dressing. It tastes more like a taco salad. :)

  6. Bill Beck on April 22nd, 2008 9:34 pm

    Congratulations!!! You have been nominated for a 2007 Best Of Blog Award!! To find out more about how your site has a chance to become one of this year’s Best Of’s and how to nominate other bloggers, visit us at Remember voting begins May 5th so make sure you pass the word to your friends, family, and faithful followers.

    Bill Beck
    Project Mgr.

  7. Jessi on April 22nd, 2008 9:59 pm

    THANKS! I’ve been reading your blog for a couple of weeks (I think I found it via Nate’s Conf. of CF) and have tried several recipes….I needed to come up w/ a good salad, for an event our Women’s Ministry is having on Friday-this sounds easy enough! (Except for hard boiling eggs and making the bacon….LOL!)


  8. Nancy on April 26th, 2008 5:28 am

    Last evening we had a family gathering and I took the Corn Chip Salad. It was SOOOO good. I will be making that again. Thanks for sharing your recipes. I have been enjoying them.

  9. Roxanna on April 28th, 2008 9:29 pm

    Thanks to Barb and you for the wonderful cornchip salad recipe! My daughter Makenzie (8) just loves it! I really like your website and I can’t wait to try the pb cookies. I have a hard time getting them chewy so am anxious to try! God bless!

Rich and chocolatey, 7-layer bars

Rich and chocolatey, 7-layer bars

Posted on April 19, 2008
Filed Under Cookies and bars


These are the only kind of bars that last more than a couple days around here. It’s not because they’re not tempting, it’s because they’re so RICH and you can’t eat more than a couple at a time. One glance at the list of ingredients and I think you’d agree. They are oh-so-good though!

I’m sure this recipe is in quite a few cookbooks, but the one I used is from the Derstine cookbook.

Seven-layer bars

1/2 cup butter or margarine
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 cup coconut
1 cup chocolate chips
1 pkg. butterscotch chips
1 can Eagle Brand condensed milk
1 cup chopped nuts

Melt butter or margarine in 9×13 pan. Sprinkle over top graham cracker crumbs, coconut, chocolate chips, and butterscotch chips. Drizzle milk over top. Add 1 cup nuts. Bake at 350 for 25 to 30 min. Cool and cut.

bars1.jpg   Layer #1: butter.

The dark that you see under the pan is just a hot pad… the pan was hot from melting the butter in the oven.

bars2.jpg   Layer #2: graham cracker crumbs

bars3.jpg   Layer #3: coconut

My Grandma made Lexi’s apron for her (the one that makes the brown sugar pie). Grandma wears that kind of apron all the time and she sewed a few miniature ones for the great-grand-daughters. They were really cute even though they look a bit old-fashioned.

bars4.jpg   Layer #4: chocolate chips

I like chocolate chips way better than butterscotch chips, so I always trade quantities and put in the whole pkg of the chocolate and only 1 cup of the butterscotch.

bars5.jpg   Layer #5: butterscotch chips

bars6.jpg   Layer #6: sweetened condensed milk

bars7.jpg  Layer #7: chopped nuts (I used pecans.)

bars8.jpg   Just came out of the oven. Slightly browned around the edges.

bars10.jpg                                                                                                                                                                                            Mmmmmm! Just delicious!



9 Responses to “Rich and chocolatey, 7-layer bars”

  1. Irishcoda on April 19th, 2008 1:07 pm

    Hi, thanks so much for visiting and leaving a comment at my blog. I haven’t made a seven layer bar in years but I have to say reading the recipe and looking at the pictures has my mouth watering for one…just one, yes, they are so rich! :)

  2. amy on April 19th, 2008 1:20 pm

    I can eat more than one of those. No wonder I struggle so!!

  3. Razor Family Farms on April 19th, 2008 5:26 pm

    My grandmother used to make them for church functions because the ingredients were usually always in her cupboards. Delicious!

    I found your blog by way of The Pioneer Woman and must tell you that I am totally hooked on it now. I’ll happily continue to read it over the next few days. What fun!


  4. Shannon on April 20th, 2008 5:16 pm

    ohhh these look good. :)I’m gonna go eat peanut butter brownies.:p

  5. Rosalyn on April 21st, 2008 10:45 am

    MMMM!! I can’t wait to try these–I’m pretty sure I have all the ingredients on hand!! ????

  6. Judi on April 21st, 2008 12:02 pm

    I usually make these around the holidays and yes, they are rich.

  7. Drew Kime on April 21st, 2008 9:29 pm

    “It’s not because they’re not tempting, it’s because they’re so RICH and you can’t eat more than a couple at a time.”

    That’s why I eat dark chocolate. Milk chocolate is designed to be so bland you can eat forever and never be satisfied. But one little piece of 85% cocao Lindt and a small glass of milk and I’m set.

    It works for other foods too. Real butter, heavy cream, bacon … yum.


  8. Al Malekovic on April 29th, 2008 1:26 pm

    Hi! My name is Al Malekovic and an owner of a very small company “Country Bobs Inc”. We make the world’s greatest sauce. I would like to send you a bottle to try and maybe comment on your blog about it. Someone said bloging is a way to let people know about Country Bobs. So if you would like please email me your address after you look at our web site. Thanks for your time. Al Malekovic

  9. Katy on August 22nd, 2009 12:58 am

    Thanks for the recipe- they turned out delicious!

Ahhhh, this is the way to start a day! (and other rhymes)

Posted on April 18, 2008

Posted on April 18, 2008 
Filed Under Breakfasts, Sweet rolls and Coffee cakes, Tidbits

…start it with raspberry cream cheese rolls and coffee!

Sometimes I wonder if I should try a post that’s in poem format. This would be a good one to do that on because the title rhymes… and that just happened, didn’t even try it. The best poems are ones that flow, that you can’t tell the poet was working hard to get it to rhyme. An example of working too hard to rhyme would be like this:
My friend and I met
this morning at eight.
Our coffee we drank
and our donuts we ate.
You just don’t say “our coffee we drank” and “our donuts we ate” in regular conversation, you say “we drank our coffee” and “we ate our donuts”. That is one of my pet peeves in poetry. I know it’s ‘legal’, but it just makes it sound so much more formal. It would be much better to say,
Coffee and donuts
and a friendly chat,
Breakfasts don’t get
much better than that.

I used to get a kick out of writing poems in my adolescent years. My favorite has always been a 6-line style where lines 1& 2 rhyme, 3&6 rhyme, and 4&5 rhyme. I don’t know what it’s called, kind of like a limerick, but not quite. Around 16, I wrote a whole poem consisting of about 10 stanzas in that style. The first stanza was:
In August we moved
To what actually proved
To be home at Valley View Orchard.
At first, work was fun,
But before all was done,
We thought we were seriously tortured.
…and so on it went, about life on our orchard.

My dad was/is great with poems. I still remember when I we were growing up, Dad would start making up a poem about this or that and just kept going and going for quite awhile, not having to pause to think of a rhyming word. It was amazing to me even at a young age how he could do that. Of course, the bar was pretty low because we were just kids and were thrilled with anything that rhymed.


Anyway, when I started this post, I had no clue I’d get into poems! So, instead of erasing the poem parts, I went up and added “(and other rhymes)” into the title. I was just posting to tell you that I made raspberry cream cheese rolls this morning AND that I finally have a new FAVORITE coffee mug once again! Here are both:

My friend, Shannon, from OH,  sent me that coffee mug. It’s perfect. The ‘walls’ are thick, just how I like them. It’s heavy and solid. And the design is great. And she said that they’re hard to break… which is good! Did you know that I break more dishes than my 2 children do?! Sometimes I wonder if I’m clumsy. Anyway, it’s a Longaberger mug, if you’re interested in getting one. She tells me Longaberger mugs are the best. And I think I’m convinced.

And those raspberry cream cheese rolls (here is the link to the recipe), they are just the best! Seriously, try them! I just thought of it now, I got the recipe for these rolls from Shannon, too (same one that just gave me the mug). These rolls are easier than they look and the dough is SO nice to work with because it doesn’t stick to anything… not to the rolling pin, not to the counter, not to your hands. The raspberry filling is just regular pie filling from the grocery store (I put it into a plastic storage bag, cut a corner off, and pipe it on). It doesn’t have to be raspberry, in fact, this time I used strawberry. I put it in the food processor so there wouldn’t be big chunks. The cream cheese filling is from a bulk foods store in plastic bag tubes. BUT, Barb, if you’re reading this, you had asked a question about the cr. ch. filling if you don’t have a bulk foods store around. I made it from scratch this time just to experiment and it turned out great! I edited the post that the rolls are featured on and added that filling recipe.


So, now everyone, tell me what you had for breakfast in a comment! You can make it in poem form if you want to.

Here I’ll start:
My roll was first-rate
My coffee was great
And Shannon confirmed that when he ate his.
You may have guessed
These are the best
And I don’t care who your grandmother is!


19 Responses to “Ahhhh, this is the way to start a day! (and other rhymes)”

  1. Arla on April 18th, 2008 11:22 am

    Kay dear, I am one of those old-fashioned cooks that doen’t know much about things like doughnut mixes. I found quite a few bags of last sumemer’s blackberries in my freezer this morning and was just wondering what to make with them. Your raspberries rolls look wonderful, and I can figure out how to make pie filing of my fresh frozen wild berries, but I am lost about the doughnut mix. Are these rolls cakey or bready? if you know what I mean? What shall use in place of the mix? I love your website BTW.

  2. Kay on April 18th, 2008 11:40 am

    Arla, don’t even try to look for donut mix around here. I looked everywhere from Duluth to Eau Claire and couldn’t find it in the big grocery stores and Pine Knoll bulk food store doesn’t have it either. You could try hot roll mix… the rolls are bready like regular cinnamon rolls, not cakey (it’s raised donut mix). My friend from Ohio (Shannon, who’s mentioned above) sent me some donut mix from a bulk food store near her.


    There are a few rolls left… if you’re going to town today, stop in and I’ll give them to you. Seriously.

  3. Sharon on April 18th, 2008 12:50 pm

    Hey, Arla & Kay, they have donut mix at Weaver’s Store here 10 minutes out from Eau Claire. It’s “my” bulk food store. If you want me to bring you some sometime, holler. I betcha these rolls would work with another cinnamon roll dough, but I personally love how fast the mix make them.

  4. Ali on April 18th, 2008 2:50 pm

    I had an extra, extra big mug of coffee with splenda and cinnamon vanilla creamer.

  5. Monica on April 18th, 2008 3:00 pm

    Gotta love the Longaberger mug!! Looks just mine! Couldn’t come up with anything to rhyme with my boring breakfast of Multi-Grain Cheerios!! Those rolls look and sound delicious!! Monica

  6. barb on April 18th, 2008 3:33 pm

    First of all, I don’t have a rhyme. I would have to think to hard and I’m sorta in a hurry. But…
    after thinking a while I finally remembered what I had for breakfast (yes, it’s been a long day)
    I had a homemade cinnamon roll. I’ll tell you why I just happen to have homemade cinnamon rolls around, because that don’t happen around here very often. A couple of days ago, I was making french bread and had some extra dough. I thought I would rather have cinnamon rolls than extra french bread, so I just rolled it out, spread some butter on, sprinkled on cinnamon and sugar, rolled ’em up and Wow, easy cinnamon rolls(at least if you are making bread dough anyway:)

    I guess you didn’t ask for us to write a book about our breakfast but it just kind of happened.

    The only poem of any significance that I ever wrote was for my sister when her baby died at birth. It was inspired by God, because I can not write poems like that, but I really do like to read poetry.

  7. Liz on April 19th, 2008 8:11 am

    I guess you won’t be getting a poem from me. I don’t like writing them and don’t make a practice of reading them. (I had to read yours to see what you wrote.)=) I just had cereal for breakfast but yesterday for brunch I was able to sample some of the delicious rolls.=)

  8. Arla on April 19th, 2008 9:46 am

    Thanks Kay, So I guess I’ll just use Melinda Kulp’s Cinnamon Roll recipe that’s in the Dirstine Cookbook and go from there. I couldn’t believe all my typos in what I’d written before. I write to communicate, mostly, not to inspire, thus no poetry from me, either, but it’s an eighth wonder you could even follow my hasty question there, sorry about that.

  9. rosa on April 19th, 2008 1:13 pm

    I love your mug. I was actually gonna post and tell you my favorite mug is the exaxt same one but I never got around to it. I have 2 of them and I always claim them!

  10. amy on April 19th, 2008 1:27 pm

    Your rolls look great,
    But I’m watching my weight,
    You never could see
    By looking at me.
    Sweet things like your rolls,
    Make me lose all control,
    So I’ll make them not,
    And stick with celery and carrots.

    Okay that was lame, but very fun.

  11. amy on April 19th, 2008 1:28 pm

    Oh and I’ll probably end up making them too. I just needed things to rhyme:)

  12. Elaine on April 19th, 2008 2:40 pm

    I MUST stop reading this site for the next several months. This morning, I had Special K protein cereal and tomorrow morning I am planning to have whole wheat pumpkin pancakes with sugar-free maple syrup. They’re both what I would call edible, but not what I would call a wonderful way to start a day!

  13. Katie Mast on April 20th, 2008 2:48 pm

    Well I am with the post just above me, I may need to stop reading your delightful post as well, my stomach is churning so bad. I am really really trying to watch my food intake this week, just eating salad’s and veggies. For breakfast I am having protein drinks, yikes!!! Those rolls really look good, i have been wanting to try them. Just waiting for company so i dont eat them all cuz bread is my weekness. I love your site. I get all excited when i see you featuring pampered chef items. Now i know your not paid to cook with those items, but I love all my PC products.

  14. Shannon on April 20th, 2008 5:11 pm

    Ummm, I love you mug too.

  15. Shannon on April 20th, 2008 5:12 pm

    And I’d love to come over and tell you all about our weekend over some rolls and coffee. The comment submited before I was done.?

  16. Judi on April 21st, 2008 11:57 am

    Protein, grain and fat
    Just a little not too much
    Energy stays strong.

    Egg, toast and butter
    I enjoy it every day
    Perfect start of day.

    I think a Haiku is a poem of sorts. Haiku is groups of words making a statement with 5 syllables, 7 syllables and 5 syllables. I’m new at this, but I need the practice lol. I start my day with a scrambled egg and toast every day. It gives me a strong start and holds me til I get around to eating again, be it 4 hours or 7 hours. I’ve tried changing to others things, but too much carbs makes me starved in less than an hour. And sugar – forget it I’m ready for a nap in less time than that.

  17. Susan on May 19th, 2008 7:04 pm

    I like your mug, and those rolls look scrumptious! I liked Amy’s poem, too! Very cute!

  18. Longaberger Mugs on June 2nd, 2008 10:09 pm

    Your friend is right about the Longaberger mugs. We own the exact same mug (except ours are green) and I’ve dropped them many times. They are very durable.

    Alicia Smith

  19. Violet Sorc on June 5th, 2008 4:55 pm

    I would like to boast,
    That I had some toast.

“Hey, what’s for lunch?” 13 Quick Ideas, Thursday Thirteen #4

It appears that the cook around here is on strike, doesn’t it? I think it’s more a thing of needing to hire a scribe because I currently have pictures for 4 posts. I’ve made supper the last 2 evenings, and for some crazy reason, I can’t remember back farther than that. Probably several snacky fend-for-yourself meals in there somewhere. Yeah, we do have those weekly, and then some more on the weekend… that’s why I try to keep frozen pizzas, hot dogs, nacho stuff, cheese & pretzels, and cold cereal on hand. Anyway, the last 2 evenings, we’ve had grilled chicken salad and wet burritos, respectively. I like the grilled chicken salad because all I have to do is throw a couple salads together and possibly pop some refrigerated Pillsbury breadsticks in the oven… the rest is on the grill, which, if you’ve been reading Kitchen Scrapbook for any length of time, you’ll know I don’t touch the grill. I have the 4 plates of salad sitting out on the counter and Shannon brings the chicken in AND cuts it up and puts it on top of the salads. On the wet burritos, I read my post on that last night and thought it was strange that I served crescent rolls and salad with it. Huh? That sounds more like lasagna sides! I don’t even remember serving that with it; now I serve tortilla chips salsa with it. And sometimes applesauce, just because I have a thing aboout that there’s gotta be at least 3 different things on the table, not counting condiments, otherwise it looks skimpy. 

I finally made my salad that I’d been craving a couple weeks ago. So, what does the word ‘colorific’ mean? I decided it must be a made up combo, merging colorful and terrific. And that would fit this salad. I got this recipe from Jolene. Thanks, Jolene, it’s a keeper! Connie, thanks for your recipe too, I’d like to try it sometime… I don’t go for feta cheese, but I’ll bet that could be substituted for mozzarella.


Colorific Salad
1 c. craisins
1 c. red peppers
1 c. honey roasted sesame sticks
1 c. pecans
2 c. shredded cheese
1/2 of a purple onion
1 head of romaine lettuce

Posted on April 16, 2008 
Filed Under Thursday Thirteens


 Nobody likes to spend alot of time in the middle of the day making lunch, right? Well, actually I’d love to if I didn’t have a never-ending “to do” list hovering over me, following me around everywhere, making me fight off the guilt it gives me when I decide to throw responsibility to the wind and relax in my kitchen, cooking and baking to my heart’s content more food than we could ever eat.

Plus, it doesn’t seem worth it to make something ‘nice’ just for the girls and I. Especially since I never know when they’re gonna eat alot or when they’re gonna take 2 bites and say “Mom, I’m full”. If I spent only 10 minutes making lunch, I don’t feel as compelled to yell say, “Honey, I just spent 2 hours making this food!”

So, here are some ideas to keep on hand for quick lunches. And, no, ‘leftovers’ are not on the list! That’s not something we need to note to keep on hand on purpose. Leftovers just kind of happen automatically. They can make nice lunches too, though, depending what it is. But, just for the record, I don’t like when a meal has leftovers.


1. Pigs in Blankets

Only two ingredients and 12 minutes of baking time! These are a real hit with kids (and grown-ups too). If you aren’t sure how to do them, the recipe name in red is a link to go to the post where they’re featured.


2. Cheese Quesadillas 
 Only 3 ingredients and about 1 minute in the microwave. Lay 1 tortilla out flat and sprinkle shredded cheese on half.
 Sprinkle some Italian seasoning over it.
 Fold tortilla over cheese and wet edges with a bit of water and press together. Put it in the microwave for about half a minute, then check it by pressing down on the tortilla. If the cheese feels soft and melted, get it out. If not, let it in for a bit more.

Cut into fourths with a pizza cutter. Good with sour cream and salsa, but my girls eat them plain as a finger food. These could be jazzed up alot more or fried instead of microwaved, but that’s is the quickest way to do them.



3. Grilled Cheese Sandwiches and Tomato Soup
Tomato soup from a can is what I use. And yes, I do cheese sandwiches directly on my smooth top stove. What about you?



4. Open-faced meat and cheese sandwich
 Only 3 ingredients and and a couple minutes under the broiler. And if you use a piece of tin foil, you don’t even dirty a pan!
 First, a piece of toast.
 Then some deli meat.
 Then the cheese. Turn the broiler on High and put sandwich on a rack in the highest position. It takes a couple minutes, but check it now and then anyway. This is just delicious, especially with the cheese browned a little!



5. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches
 Here’s our peanut butter and jelly sandwich making pro. She’s quite a pro at making a huge mess too. A couple days ago, I came into the kitchen and there was jelly on the floor. I asked what happened and she nonchalantly said, “Oh, the bread slipped off the counter.” You know, no big deal, just spread more jelly on and the mess will take care of itself. It always does. I have tried having her clean up her own messes, but while the first mess may sort of get cleaned up, the process usually makes another whole mess of its own.


6. Quick stromboli

This may look vaguely familiar if you’ve been on this site recently!


7. Ravioli
  This came in handy for me one day last week. I had some morning guests and I wasn’t sure how long they were planning to stay, but I had a few lunch options around so I was able to say, “I’ll make a quick lunch if you have time for it”. We had ravioli, French bread, cheese slices, applesauce, and cookies. The cookies I baked that morning while we were hanging around in the kitchen, chatting and looking thro’ cookbooks.



8. English muffin pizzas
 Split apart English muffins and toast them. Arrange them on a baking sheet and spread with pizza sauce, some cheese, 3 or 4 slices of pepperoni, some mushrooms if desired, and then some more cheese. Bake at 400 for about 15 minutes or till they’re browned to your liking.


9. Good ol’ frozen pizza
 You’re probably all familiar with this. If not, you either need to get out more or lower your standard of eating when in a hurry. The thin ones aren’t as good, but they sure bake faster!


10. Hot dogs
 Throw them in a frying pan (fast), or under the broiler (faster), or in the microwave (fastest). Or charcoal grill (SLOW).


11. Nachos w\ salsa and sour cream
 These have only 2 ingredients with an optional 3rd or 4th and take 7-10 minutes in the oven. Or, we’ve already done them in the microwave too, but the cheese doesn’t get brown and crispy then.


12. Throw a salad together. 
Instead of starting with a head of lettuce, a big time-saver is starting with this:


13. Now, for #13, here are some side dish ideas to go with the main course…
—applesauce or other fruit, like apple slices, canned peaches, etc.
—cheese slices
—potato chips, pretzels, or other salties
—jelly bread
—cookies or cake
—ice cream bars, sandwiches, or plain
—and this: A quick single serving dessert I was inspired with one day…
   Dump about 2 Tbsp. of cracker crumbs into a bowl. Top with 1/4 banana sliced. Mix up a box of instant pudding and put 1/2 cup of it on bananas. Slice another 1/4 banana on top of pudding and sprinkle another Tbsp. of graham crackers on top.

This is actually really good! And the neat thing is that you can make exactly how many servings you need and exactly the size of servings you need instead of making a big bowlful and having some left over. We’ve been in a streak of having it pretty often around here!

Don’t forget to visit other Thirteeners at Thursday Thirteen!


20 Responses to ““Hey, what’s for lunch?” 13 Quick Ideas, Thursday Thirteen #4”

  1. Joyce T. on April 17th, 2008 12:15 am

    This is such a lovely post. I can tell you went to a lot of work to post so many pictures with the recipe ideas!

    Through the years I have made almost all of these for my family. An exception is the stromboli, which certainly doesn’t look quick to make. But it is?

    Your salad looks so tasty. I must go to bed, and not snack!

  2. Irishcoda on April 17th, 2008 3:13 am

    Mmmm-mmmm Good! What great ideas! And I remember having griled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup as a kid!

  3. Suprina on April 17th, 2008 5:33 am

    What a wonderful list….

    We make the little pizza’s as well but I use biscuits.
    And peanut butter and jelly sandwiches ROCK at my house. I have one boy that is a VERY picky eater and that is what he gets in his lunch.

    Happy TT!

  4. Adelle Laudan on April 17th, 2008 6:30 am

    You know I’ve had a busy day when we have soup and grilled cheese for supper lol After reading you list, I am officially hungry! Happy T13!

  5. Monica on April 17th, 2008 6:44 am

    Great ideas!! My husband works here at home, so I always have to have something for lunch!! I don’t like to spend alot of time on it in the middle of the day, so these ideas will come in handy. Especially the English Muffin Pizzas!! I also do Omelets and Egg Sandwiches when I need something really quick and don’t have leftovers!!

  6. Sharon on April 17th, 2008 7:32 am

    liked the list. One extra we do with the quesadillas is smear a little refried beans & salso on, too. Doesn’t take much time and is delish! Interesting about your take on leftovers–I usually TRY to have leftovers each night so I don’t have to worry about food the next day for lunch! Guess we’re all different…

  7. Shannon on April 17th, 2008 7:50 am

    What mom doesn’t want a list like this. I think I need, not want the salad for lunch today.

  8. Heidi on April 17th, 2008 8:14 am

    great list! i think the kids would really like the quesidias (sp) and they look really easy. also the english muffin pizzas i have been wanting to try those but never have. i think ill get some muffins at the store next time i go. thanks for all the ideas its so fun to visit your site and see your “delicious” pictures =)

  9. Tammy on April 17th, 2008 8:22 am

    Yummy! I think I’m going for the salad for lunch today and now after all your wonerful pictures I’m very hungry. Happy TT

  10. Judi on April 17th, 2008 9:07 am

    I need a reminder of easy things and this is definitely it. Thanks. But I sure am hungry now.

  11. Freida on April 17th, 2008 9:50 am

    A wonderful list! I’m one who enjoys leftovers, too, just because its the fastest thing to get ready. But I have made all the above sometime or other. Oh except for the open faced sandwiches. I might have to try that one today.

  12. she on April 17th, 2008 10:28 am

    that banana desert looks easy and fun! i’m going to try it!

  13. Amber on April 17th, 2008 11:27 am

    Great list ideas! Thanks for the reminder of open faced sand., i haven’t done that for a while. And the banana/pudding dessert, we used to do that at home. (top with a ‘squirt’ of redi whip for something extra good.)

  14. amy on April 17th, 2008 1:46 pm

    yummy yummy Why do I have to be so attrached to food?

  15. Kat on April 17th, 2008 2:33 pm

    My favorite quick lunch is the bagged salad…topped with tysons frozen (pre-cooked) teriyaki chicken thighs. Add a few almonds or sunflower seeds and some ranch dressing…delish!

  16. All about Cheese Cutters » Blog Archive » ‘cheese cutter’ on the web on April 17th, 2008 2:35 pm

    […] Put it in the microwave for about half a minute, then check it by pressing down on the tortilla. If the cheese feels soft and melted, get it out. If not, let it in for a bit more. Cut into fourths with a pizza cutter. … […]

  17. chelsa on April 18th, 2008 7:05 am

    LOVE LOVE LOVE this post! thanks for some inspiration!

  18. lisa on April 18th, 2008 11:28 am

    another twist to pigs in a blanket-cut hotdogs or brats in half or thirds, flatten a pillsbury biscut, wrap it around the meat and bake. my daycare kids and marc love these. i like it because it makes not such a big quantity as an entire pack of crescent rolls, cut into pieces.
    did you make all this food especially to take pictures for the post?

  19. Beth on April 30th, 2008 12:49 pm

    I really like the open faced meat/cheese sandwich, closed face! It’s really good if you do it on the George Foreman Grill. MMMMM to the max!

  20. Beth on June 2nd, 2008 11:29 am


ing.jpg” alt=”colorific-salad-before-mixing.jpg” />
Mmmmm… you know it’s gonna be a good salad when you have to say “Where’s the lettuce?” ????

Oh, one little tidbit… I took the idea from Connie’s recipe to saute the pecans… yum! I didn’t sugar them though.

1 T. mustard
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. oil
1/3 c. vinegar
1/4 c. water
1 tsp. salt
1 Tbls. minced onion
Blend dressing in blender. I put this picture on here so you can see what color the dressing is…
Toss with salad ingredients.
I was taking this to a carry-in meal at church, so I took it in this big bowl with a lid (more room for tossing) and put the dressing in a separate container… you can see it all in the background here.

And then, instead of letting the kitchen help take care of tossing my salad, I went out when church was almost over to do it myself so I could get a ‘done’ picture. ????


Next up… Megan’s puppy birthday cake. How did my baby turn 1 already?!

And this afternoon, I’m planning to bake monster cookies. Yay! I just did last week, but who cares. In a perfect world, I’d bake ’em every week. :)



5 Responses to “Colorific Salad”

  1. joe on June 17th, 2011 6:15 am

    No comments?!?!……hmmmm….well I ain’t sayin a word! LOL

  2. Kay on June 17th, 2011 8:18 am

    Too late… you already gave your opinion on this AWESOME salad yesterday.:) You don’t know what you’re missing, especially with those nuts and craisins in there. Ha.

  3. Liz on June 17th, 2011 5:23 pm

    Monster cookies again? :) They are really good and the scales showed it. :( Oh, well, I’m dieting again anyway. Ha!
    Looks like a salad I would try. If someone else made it. I can’t see it going over real good in this household.

  4. Connie Stoll on June 18th, 2011 9:24 pm

    Yum, this does look good! I’m going to try this one, too.

  5. Kim on June 25th, 2011 7:32 pm

    Finally, something a dieter can eat! ???? It looks delicious. Gonna have to try it soon.
    …always fun to browse here!

Pancakes! Plus a bit of fun for the kids.

Posted on April 15, 2008
Filed Under Breakfasts


We eat pancakes alot. I make a batch, then put whatever we don’t eat in the freezer for quick breakfasts, usually warmed in the microwave, but the toaster works great too.

When I was growing up, we had pancakes alot. We children had the recipe memorized, but I also remember what it looked like. It was in an old Betty Crocker cookbook located at the top left-hand corner of the page. There was some batter splatters and flour stuck to the page. And the sugar in the recipe had a line through it. I remember one time when I was making them, I was feeling a little daring and put the sugar in. At 9 or 10 years old, I didn’t think about it that a little sugar wouldn’t make a huge difference and I was surprised when the pancakes looked and tasted the same.

Mom also used to make syrup. She’d make it, then pour it into 2 glass ‘Aunt Jemima’ syrup bottles. I always liked it better the second time because it was thicker and not so warm and runny. I still like my syrup thick and I don’t warm it up in the microwave (even though our plastic syrup bottle has a thing on the front that says ‘HOT’ after it’s warmed) because it’s too runny.

We got to talking about pancakes recently in family emails and my brother said they got a good recipe out of a local newspaper awhile ago and he makes them pretty often. He copied the recipe in an email and since I usually use the recipe on the side of the Bisquick box, I knew any recipe would be an improvement! So, I made them this morning.

My brother is a great chef. He made grilled salmon one time for our whole family and does lots of other grilling too. And that’s not all. One time, we all got together for a meal and this trifle appeared. The layers were picture-perfect, not crooked or varied thicknesses. I was complimenting my sister-in-law on it because I knew they brought it and because she’s a pro at making things look nice and attractive. She said, “Oh, I didn’t make it. Bruce did.” I really wish I’d have taken a picture of it. Anyway, they’re both great cooks and I can’t understand why they’re still slim and don’t weigh 300 pounds!


2 cups flour
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 eggs
2 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup butter (melted)

Mix first 5 ingredients together. Lightly beat eggs, buttermilk, and butter in a separate bowl.

pancakes2.jpg  Add milk mixture to flour mixture all at once and stir until just combined (should be a little lumpy and quite thick).

pancakes3.jpg  Can you hear the sizzle?

Yeah, I don’t use a measuring scoop to put the pancakes in the frying pan. I just pour, thus my pancakes are varied shapes and sizes, but we don’t mind.



pancakes6.jpg Just look at the texture of these pancakes! They were so soft and fluffy and had visible air pockets. They tasted great too… probably partly because of the melted butter! Delicious! this recipe made 18 4″ pancakes (give or take an inch, depending which pancake you pick).

Now, for the fun part…

You may think I’m crazy, but this is what we do with pancakes around here. My girls haven’t eaten a normal round pancake for quite awhile.


pancakes8.jpg  Their plates.

pancakes9.jpg  My plate.

It really doesn’t take long at all to cut out shapes and it’s fun for them to eat and pick which shapes they want. And the scraps are kind of hard to spread peanut butter on, but they taste the same… believe me, I know!

P.S. Barb posted a Corn Chip Salad recipe that sounds wonderful in the comment section of the hard boiled egg post (Thanks, Barb!). Check it out! Who’s going to be the first to try it? :)


9 Responses to “Pancakes! Plus a bit of fun for the kids.”

  1. Berneice on April 15th, 2008 11:59 am

    My kids are not cracked over pancakes, might have to try the shapes to make it more fun.

  2. Freida on April 15th, 2008 1:37 pm

    We love pancakes, too. I make them often. Altho’ we need eggs with ours! My kids would love the shapes. Something I should maybe try, altho’ more time-consuming. :/

    I haven’t ever made corn chip salad, but I had some for the first time the other week at somebody’s house. It was SOOOO yummy! I’m gonna write this recipe down.

  3. Shannon on April 15th, 2008 1:44 pm

    I always put the metal cutters in the pan and pour the mix in there. It would stick and wouldn’t come out when I flipped them and on and on. This looks much easier!! Madison often asks for pancakes for supper! :)

  4. Kay on April 15th, 2008 2:07 pm

    Yeah, Shannon, I used to try that too with metal cutters. I could never get it to keep its shape… batter would seep out or the pancake would stick and rip some off. It was such a mess!

  5. Jay on April 15th, 2008 2:15 pm

    Is that peanut butter I see on some of those pancakes? And I thought my family were the only ones.

  6. Liz on April 15th, 2008 2:43 pm

    Maybe I will have to try this. What I use now is a mix that someone gave me and I am never real happy with the results.
    Do L and T actually eat that many pancakes for breakfast or are they smaller than it appears? I do good just getting K to eat a small bowl of cereal or one egg most of the time.

  7. barb on April 15th, 2008 2:51 pm

    My hubby and children like pancakes a lot better than I do, but I’m going to have to make them soon, and I am definatly going to do the shape thing. I know my boys will LOOOVE it.

    I had to laugh at the picture of your plate, Kay.
    That is so typical for us mommy’s, but that’s O.K. it all taste the same;)

  8. Rene on April 15th, 2008 10:07 pm

    I’m so glad I found your site on the Mommy
    Blogs! Your recipes look great and have inspired me to dust off my kitchen and use it for more than a place to dump the mail!

  9. Karen on April 16th, 2008 9:24 am

    We will definately have to try the pancakes! Our usual is the bisquick recipe and Hubby is the pancake maker. Certain members of this house think the only way to make pancakes is to sprinkle mini milk chocolate chips on one side when frying……
    And we LOVE that cornchip salad. It has been a favorite for a long time!

How to Make a Hard Boiled Egg

Posted on April 14, 2008
Filed Under How to…


I’m wondering if, from reading the title, you thought “Duh, everyone knows how to do that!” or if you were secretly happy to finally have directions to do it instead of just putting the eggs on the stove in water and kinda guessing from there.

I would be in the last category, until yesterday. You know, there are some things it seems like everyone evidently is just automatically born knowing… you just never see a recipe in a cookbook of how to make hard boiled eggs. Or how to make baked potatoes or grilled cheese sandwiches.

I so seldom make hard boiled eggs, maybe about once a year for a salad. A salad was actually the reason I made them yesterday. I used to not like eggs at all. It was actually more psychological than anything, I think, just picturing what the yolk could have become. Then I grew up. Now they’re fine if they’re scrambled or made into omelets or somehow fried solid with the yolk and white mixed, nothing over-easy! Hard boiled with salt is too dry. Deviled eggs are good too, but I haven’t made them in ages. I just eat the ones other people bring to church potlucks and picnics. So, that’s my opinion on eggs, for whatever it’s worth.

Anyway, we got together with family last night and I was in charge of bringing salad. Yesterday afternoon, I mused to Shannon, “I wonder what the proper way is to make hard boiled eggs”. He said, “Just boil ’em in water for awhile”. When I didn’t go with those directions, he switched to ‘Google knows everything’. By the way, did you know there are entire websites about cooking eggs?! To make a long story short, I followed some online directions and the eggs turned out PERFECT! So, I’m going to write them here so I have them for future reference (you know, for when I make hard boiled eggs next year). And if you flounder around and guess every time you make hard boiled eggs, then this is for you too. I also learned a tip to keep that greenish color from forming between the whites and yolks.

Put eggs in a pan and cover with cold water. Water should come an inch or so above the eggs.

Bring to a boil over high heat, then turn burner down to medium and cook for 10 minutes.


When the 10 minutes is up, immediately drain the hot water and put them in cold water or ice water. I kept them in the pan and just rinsed them in cold water a few times till the pan was cold, then filled it with cold water. Let them sit in there for a few minutes, then gently crack the shells and peel them.

—Getting them in cold water right away after they’re done cooking keeps the yolks a nice yellow and cooling them down quickly keeps that greenish color from forming.
—For deviled eggs, to get the yolks centered, lay the eggs on their sides for about 8 hours (in the fridge of course) before cooking them.
—Don’t use fresh eggs. They peel hard. Eggs should ideally be at least 2 weeks old when using them for hard boiled.

There is another way to hard boil eggs too. You can bring them to a boil, then take them off the burner and let them sit for 20 minutes. I actually made eggs twice yesterday because the first time didn’t work. The yolks weren’t quite done. I had used this method, but the directions said to let them sit only 10 min. There was another site that said 20 min, so I think that might be enough for the yolks to get done.

How do you hard boil eggs? Do you make them alot?


21 Responses to “How to Make a Hard Boiled Egg”

  1. Sharon on April 14th, 2008 9:59 am

    I actually have a cookbook with directions for hardboiled eggs, but I know they are kinda tricky. I think some of the greenish stuff is from overcooking, but I really don’t know. I always add a little vinegar to the water I boil ’em in, since that supposedly helps prevent them from cracking while they’re cooking and a little white leaking out. (and because my Mom always did that). I don’t usually completely cover the eggs with water (that wouldn’t work in the pan I do it in), and they turn out fine. You first method is basically how I do it, too, tho’ I start timing as soon as the water starts bubbling and do ’em 15 minutes at a slow boil. Definitely do the ice water right away.

    I don’t make ’em as much as I used to, partly because of Sawyer’s egg allergy, and I don’t keep as many on hand. But the rest of us LOVE deviled eggs, and I love just plain hardboiled for a snack, so I do ’em occasionally.

    I laughed over your take on eggs. Sounds similar to mine. When I was younger, just the thought of where they came from & what they might be (and I gathered eggs, and saw what’s on ’em sometimes, which didn’t help) was bad enough, and I didn’t like the over-easy part either. I still don’t like if they ooze, but will eat them otherwise. My family really does think I’ve grown up, though, to eat them at all, and even say they’re good!

  2. Judi on April 14th, 2008 10:01 am

    I bring them to a boil then set them aside for 20 minutes with a lid on. When I put the cold water on them I bang them around a little to get them to crack. The theory is that the cold water will go under the peel and help to remove the shell. Don’t know if that works or not, but I still do it that way. Maybe your theory about the age of the egg is really what counts, but I get mine from the market so I don’t know how old they are.

  3. Freida on April 14th, 2008 10:13 am

    I boil eggs all the time. We LOVE them!…in lettuce salad, regular egg salad, and creamed eggs. I do it pretty much like you said. I’ve heard too that they peel easier if they are not fresh, but I buy brown eggs from our neighbors or church people, so I don’t know if they are fresh or not. Either way, we eat them.

    My take on eggs???? I LOVE them! I can’t imagine not liking them. I laughed at yours. ????

  4. amy on April 14th, 2008 11:02 am

    I always wondered what was up with the green on the yolk part was all about. sometimes it’s there and sometimes not. I am anxious to try the cooling faster method.

  5. Twila on April 14th, 2008 11:35 am

    I love runny yolks! Several years ago our neighbor gave us a number of goose eggs and then I was in egg-yolk heaven, frying those for my breakfast (yeah, I figured that might gross you out, lol.) I boil eggs just like your first method, 10 minutes and then into ice water. Works every time.

  6. Rosalyn on April 14th, 2008 11:56 am

    I do quite a bit of hard boiled eggs. My girls love ’em! I like them for salads, and have to make a few extra for the daughter that wants the egg but no salad. They love deviled eggs, too. I usually boil mine your first method…for 10 minutes. Then I immediately put ice water on them. I try to peel them as soon as possible. I never know how old my eggs are, but sometimes I have such a problem peeling them, and the next time they peel just fine. I wish you’d have a method for no-fail peeling!! ???? (other than old eggs, I mean)

    Oh, and I actually have 2 different cookbooks that tell me how to boil an egg–Better Homes & Garden Cookbook, and then Mennonite Country Style Recipes, by Esther Shank. Both of those are my “tell how to make anything” cookbooks! :)

  7. Elaine on April 14th, 2008 1:17 pm

    you can use fresh eggs, just get the water boiling first, holding the egg over the water drop them in the pan, they will hit the bottom of the pan and crack just a little. You might have some white strings in the water but they peel just fine. When I peel the eggs I have most of the shell cracked before I peel it off.

    We have our own fresh eggs and eat boiled eggs fairly often.

  8. Berneice on April 14th, 2008 3:22 pm

    I have to admit I thought, who needs a recipe to boil eggs, but it was intresting to see all the tips! :)
    We love hard boiled eggs! I have them on hand most of the time. I also use the 1st method you had. If the fridge is void of eggs,we have a problem. We find the nearest source and QUICK get some!

  9. Ruthie on April 14th, 2008 5:24 pm

    I used to do the first method, but kept forgetting that I had them on the stove and would overcook them. (I know; use a timer..duh! I keep thinking I will remember without the timer…) So the second one is my favorite method. And, if the eggs are fresh, add a TBSP or two of salt to the water. Tap the tip of the egg against the counter, just enough to hear it crack, but not enough to actually see the crack. The shell peels right off!

  10. barb on April 14th, 2008 8:40 pm

    I second what Ruthie said about the salt when boiling “fresh” eggs. It works!! I would say at least 2 Tbsp. salt.
    I have a recipe for “Cornchip Salad” that has boiled eggs in it. It also has bacon, cheese, and of course lettuce and corn chips. The dressing is homemade and it is delicous. The recipe came out in one of our church (German Baptist) cookbooks a few years ago and it has become a famous German Baptist salad:) If anyone would like the recipe just comment here and I’ll gladly post it. It is a must have in your recipe collection.

  11. Jo on April 14th, 2008 8:41 pm

    I didn’t know how to hard-boil eggs when I got married. *blush* Esther Shank’s cookbook was my lifesaver there. When I’m doing deviled eggs, I cool them in water & then put them in the fridge for an hour or two; they peel effortlessly. I’ll have to remember your tip for centering the yolks, ’cause that’s a pet peeve of mine. Someone mentioned the age of store-bought eggs; I once heard that they are often a couple of weeks old already when we buy them. I’ve hard-boiled eggs that I just got from the store, and they worked great, so they’re obviously not very fresh.
    We love eggs here—and all of us love runny yolks, except Kendric (we hope to convert him soon!)

  12. Kay on April 14th, 2008 9:30 pm

    Hey, Barb, I want that salad recipe! Sounds wonderful! You can just post it in another comment here.

    Thanks to everyone for all your tips and how you do it! This is interesting. And I learned alot about eggs! Maybe I’ll start making them more often. I think I should edit the post now to add all your tips too. :)

  13. barb on April 15th, 2008 7:20 am

    Corn Chip Salad

    1 head lettuce
    6-8 hard boiled eggs (no problem, right?)
    1 pound bacon, fried and crumbled
    1/2 pound shredded colby or cheddar cheese
    4-6 cups corn chips, crushed (the more-the better)

    1 cup miracle whip
    2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar (can use apple cider vinegar)
    1/4 cup milk
    1/4 cup sugar
    1/4 cup brown sugar

    Toss lettuce, eggs, bacon, and cheese. Add chips and dressing just before serving.

    This is one of those salads that is not good leftover.(I guess I do know of a couple people that will actually eat it the next day. Yuck)
    Anyway, try to remember that when you make it.
    Hope you enjoy it:)

  14. Berneice on April 15th, 2008 11:58 am

    I also have this recipe. It is awesome. Everyone needs to try it. :)

  15. Drew Kime on April 15th, 2008 12:23 pm

    I’ve got a good followup for this, How To Dice A Hard Boiled Egg:

    I’ve also got a taco salad recipe you might like. (Hmm, going to have to write this one up on my blog.)

    – 1 head lettuce
    – 2 Roma tomatoes – drained, seeded and diced (just the meaty part)
    – 1 small sweet onion, diced
    – 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
    – 1 lb ground beef, cooked and seasoned (taco seasoning, chili powder, your choice) then cooled to room temperature
    – 1 cup thousand island dressing
    – 2 cups Fritos or other corn chips (the skinny kind)

    Toss the lettuce, tomato, onion, cheese and dressing. Add the ground beef and corn chips and toss again.

    If you’re taking this on a picnic — that’s how I remember having it, when my Aunt made it — you can mix everything except the corn chips and pack it in a zip-top bag. Add the chips and serve.

    Leftovers are still good for two or three days in the fridge, as long as you add fresh corn chips when you serve.

  16. Christy on April 16th, 2008 7:03 am

    I’m so w/ you on not liking eggs when I think too long about what they are. Aaaack!!! I went through a stage where I could hardly even eat baked things that tasted like eggs. (Still don’t really like it, but just try not to think about it.)

    I also thought it was funny that boiled eggs are something you should just know. My grandma put her recipe in a cookbook, so now I can refer back if I forget. It’s the bring to boil, rest 20 min. version. I thought the green color was from overcooking. ??

  17. Katie Mast on April 16th, 2008 3:21 pm

    I admit when i first saw the title, I’m like people dont know how to boil eggs. But it was interesting to read comments about it. At our house when we are out of eggs we are in trouble. I can hard boil a dozen eggs and by the time i have them peeled they are gone. My husband just loves them and so do my 3 children. I heard a long time ago that if you take a thumb tack and prick a hole in the bottom of each egg before boiling, they will peel clean. That is the way i do all mine, even when they are fresh,(some made comments about cracking them a little) I think it does the same thing. I dont end up with half of my egg coming off with my peelings. If you got a Pampered Chef decorator you got to make deviled eggs they look so pretty when done. ALso we live in PA dutch contry and here we make red beet eggs. MMMM We eat 2 dozen eggs in one day made that way. I am with you on just eating plan eggs, i dont like them that way either, but hard boiled any which way I love them.

  18. Katie Mast on April 16th, 2008 3:25 pm

    I was also going to say that Esther Shank cookbook is the best. I have given that for gifts to so many people that were just learning how to can or newlyweds and it’s a big hit.

  19. Gwen on April 17th, 2008 9:19 pm

    When we were visiting our friends in the hospital in Colombus, OH, we were all eating in the cafeteria one day, and there, for sale in the cooler, a bowl of hard boiled eggs…$1.00 each. Kindof makes you want to start making and selling them!!

  20. Kim Mast on April 19th, 2008 10:47 am

    I bring my eggs to a boil over medium heat and boil for one minute. Remove from heat and let sit for 12 minutes. Then immediatly put in ice cold water. Mine always peel like a charm!
    P.S. I also put salt in mine if I know they are fresh.

  21. how to hard boil egg on April 26th, 2008 10:09 pm

    […] to Make a Hard Boiled EggMake the perfect hard boiled eggs! Tips, pictures, and directions included. egg – Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaHard-boiled eggs are produced by boiling until both the […]

Stromboli tonight! But, oops, forgot to thaw bread dough.

Posted on April 11, 2008
Filed Under Main dishes

Oh well, there’s Pillsbury pizza dough in the fridge. I’ll try that.

And it worked!


It was 30 minutes till our normal supper time and I was leafing thro’ cookbooks. I went for the Quick Cooking cookbooks because there’s always a 30-minutes-till-mealtime section in those, and if that ever described where I was at, it was right then. But, the problem was always that my hamburger wasn’t already browned, my veggies weren’t already chopped, my eggs weren’t already beaten… I need a section titled I-just-walked-into-the-kitchen-and-did-no-prep-ahead-and-it’s-30-minutes-to-mealtime.

This stromboli (almost) would fit into that category. I timed myself this evening. It was 35 minutes from everything still in the fridge to eating. And I was even taking step-by-step pictures, which actually takes more time than you’d think. And the mushrooms weren’t washed or sliced ahead of time either.

My oven might preheat slower than most (it takes almost 10 minutes to go from 0 – 400), but the first thing I did was turn the oven on, then got the pizza dough, Parmesan cheese, pepperoni, mushrooms, and cheese out of the fridge and the Italian seasoning and the baking sheet out of the cupboard. And by the time the oven beeped that it’s up to temp, the stromboli was about ready to go in the oven. This stromboli is nothing fancy, no neat sealing it shut or hiding the seams or anything. Actually, maybe it’s even a slam to stromboli to call it that. Maybe it could even be called a calzone. What is the difference anyway?

Ok, I just stopped a bit and put ‘stromboli define’ into Google… the first 2 definitions were an active volcano on an island in southern Italy! Finally, I found the food variation. Then I looked up calzone. Seems like the main difference is the size… calzone is serving size and originated in Naples. Stromboli originated in Philadelphia. But, they’re both meat and cheese enclosed in dough. So, there’s your history lesson/cooking lesson for the day.

35 Minutes to Mealtime Stromboli

1 13.8 oz can Pillsbury refrigerated pizza dough
8 oz pepperoni
5 fresh mushrooms
3/4 cup pizza sauce
Italian seasoning
8 oz shredded cheese (ok, I actually used a little more… finished out a bag, plus the 8 oz bag, but who cares, there was actually no recipe, I’m just making up amounts here so it looks good and qualifies as a recipe)
Parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp. melted butter


Spread the pizza dough out in the pan. Sprinkle generously with Parmesan cheese.


Put pepperoni on one half, leaving about a 1/2″ space along the edge.


Wash and slice mushrooms and put over pepperoni.


Sprinkle on some Italian seasoning and spoon pizza sauce over.


Add the cheese.


Flip other half of dough over toppings and pinch edges together to seal.

Bake at 400 for 20 – 25 minutes, depending on how browned you like it. Brush melted butter on top right after it comes out of the oven


Sprinkle with some more Parmesan cheese.


And call everyone to the table.


18 Responses to “Stromboli tonight! But, oops, forgot to thaw bread dough.”

  1. barb on April 12th, 2008 7:32 am

    That stromboli/calzone looks wonderful, I am for sure going to try it, but I have a question. What did you serve with it. Thats where I’m always having trouble deciding. What to go with main course????

  2. Shannon on April 12th, 2008 9:16 am

    Oh, it looks divine and I could eat a couple helping right now. Maybe that’s what I’ll make for supper only I have no prefab dough, nothing frozen. Guess I’ll have to make my own. (Unless I can hint around long enough about going out to eat) :)

  3. LaVonne on April 12th, 2008 9:27 am

    wow, that looks delicous!! Will definatly have to try that! I enjoy reading all your diffrent recipes. Have a good weekend!

  4. Audrey on April 12th, 2008 10:29 am

    I was just going to tell you how much I love your web site. I usually check it out when I see through Xanga that you have added. I love the way you describe all of the steps and add your little comments in very every day terms, and how you make things work even if you don’t have all of the right ingredients. That stromboli looks VERY good…I think our family would like it. Anyway, just an encourageing note that I think you do a GREAT job with this web site.

  5. Jo on April 12th, 2008 10:41 am

    Saturday nights are usually pizza night for us, but that stromboli (or whatever it is) looks better than pizza. Only 3 problems: I have no dough, no white flour, no cheese, & no mushrooms. Oops, that’s 4 problems. Bummer. Oh, for a grocery store across the street…!

  6. amy on April 12th, 2008 10:56 am

    Yummy!! We love stromboli and I have kind of forgotten about it. Thanks for reminding me.

  7. Kay on April 12th, 2008 10:58 am

    Barb, that is one the reason why I don’t make all-in-one casserole type dishes very often… I like to have at least 3 different dishes on the table and I never know what to put with the all-in-ones either. I usually have one or 2 of these sides with stromboli: salad, breadsticks, or applesauce.

  8. Elmina on April 12th, 2008 11:15 am

    This looks absolutely wonderful!! I will have to try that using my pizza dough recipe. If I were serving this, I’d add a tossed salad and applesauce to the menu, and have ice cream for dessert. I really love your website, and all your great ideas.

  9. Farrah on April 12th, 2008 2:48 pm

    I just read the other comments on here and had to chuckle. I have NO PROBLEM with one dish meals on the table! In fact, I love them! Reduces dishes and work so I can spend more time doing things I love, like playing games with my family. Hee-hee! Actually, forget “on the table.” I like one dish meals straight out of the pan on the stovetop. We dish the plates up and bring them to the table. It probably helps us not overeat, too, having to walk all the way into the kitchen for seconds. The only time we put food on the table is when we have company. However, we all eat together and do not watch TV at all. So long as we get in a meat, veggie, and starch I’m happy! Who cares if it’s all in one pan, so long as it tastes good!

    I am not much for pizza, but I am saving this recipe, because my son and Hubby would love it! Enjoyed all your comments and pictures! The history lesson was perfect, because when I asked Hubby if he likes Stromboli, he asked, “What is that?” Haha!

  10. Sassy Mama Bear on April 12th, 2008 4:01 pm

    Looks scrumptious! Definitely something we have not done in a long time. I would mention that a fun thing to do is make individual versions of these so everyone can have their favorite toppings inside. Salad, and my husband’s famous homemade garlic breadsticks are our usual sides when we have calazones.

  11. Katie Mast on April 13th, 2008 9:36 am

    THanks for another great recipe. I will need to try this one to. I just want to tell you I tryed your meatloaf one the other day and i got so many raves over it. My husband said “now that is a good meat loaf”. I knew when i read that “you finally found your best meatloaf” I had to try it. It was great, thanks. I replaced my old one with this.

  12. The Apron Queen on April 13th, 2008 6:57 pm

    Late making my rounds. Sounds delicious! Do stop by. I’ll save you a plate of my Just Peachy Cobbler. ????

    For your daily dose of vintage goodness & a bit of silliness, stop by Confessions of an Apron Queen, the home of Vintage Thingies Thursdays</a

  13. Menu Plan Monday « Beanish and Other Languages I’m Learning on April 13th, 2008 8:59 pm

    […] Wednesday: Stromboli  […]

  14. Heidi on April 14th, 2008 12:01 pm

    yumm this looks so good. i will definetly have to try this. thanks for sharing these great recipes with us!

  15. Kim on April 16th, 2008 6:04 pm

    I made this for supper tonight. It was delish! Thanks for sharing the idea!

  16. Mary Faith on April 18th, 2008 8:38 pm

    I made this tonight for my sis. and brother-in-law. He told me, “You can make this stuff many more times before you leave. It is awesome!” (I’m here helping them since my sister had her baby.) I actually made three of them and they were all devoured. lol That fed about 12 people. Next time they want me to make four of them. :) One thing I added was Canadian bacon and that was really good too! I loved how simple and quick it was, too. Thanks for the recipe. :)

  17. Judi on April 21st, 2008 12:14 pm

    My maintenance man (aka hubby) doesn’t like pizza and I love it. I’m going to try this and see what he thinks.

  18. Kitsune on May 27th, 2011 4:44 am

    I asked a chef at a local restaurant what the difference was and he said it’s close to the same, but the stromboli is supposed to be folded across the top(or bottom) and closer to in thirds, smaller, and with cheese. The Calzone has more “extra” bread and is generally the semi-circle shape, while Stromboli is rectangular.
    Your Stromboli definitely looks rather yummy!

13 Ingredient Substitutions, Thurs 13 #3

Posted on April 10, 2008
Filed Under Substitutions and Equivalents, Thursday Thirteens


I would really do well to live beside a grocery store. Somewhere that you don’t have to even cross a street to walk to it. Then, I could nickel and dime my checking account to death instead of giving it heart attacks with big grocery bills every week. There are people who live in houses that close. I envy them and wonder if they just run over when they need something or if they plan ahead, keeping their cupboards stocked and keeping a perpertual grocery list on the fridge for a once a week run.

Our grocery store is at the end of Main Steet. It would also be close enough to live on Main Street, above one of the stores. I still remember when I first found out that people live up there. I was 9 or 10. Every time after that, when we’d drive down Main St, I’d be looking up, not around. And dreaming of living up there one day, preferably in the one above the fudge shop. I’d sit out on the deck and watch the world go by and nobody would know I’d be watching because who looks way up when you’re shopping on Main St?! To be honest, I still look up there when I’m on Main St. Not because it’s still my dream to live up there, just because it still kind of intrigues me, I guess. I even took a picture of it a couple months ago, since I was on Main St with my camera anyway…

The street is snow-covered because the Birkebeiner Ski Race was going on… that’s why I was on Main Street with my camera. Looks like someone is hosting a Birkie party on their deck up there.

Anyway, since I don’t live in town and don’t plan my menus in advance, my big laminated ‘Ingredient Substitution Chart’ comes in handy pretty often. This is one time when I won’t run out of ideas before getting to #13… I could easy do a Thursday Thirty-three today!

I’ve tried substitutions on my own. Some of them worked, like substituting blown up marshmallows for marshmallow creme in this dip recipe. Others failed, like the time when we were first married and my brothers were overnight guests. My oldest brother is diabetic and late that night, I suddenly thought about it that I have nothing in the house for breakfast for him… no bacon, no English muffins, no eggs to make eggs or pancakes with, only sweetened cold cereal. Then, I thought about it that I could make biscuits from scratch and sausage gravy. In the morning, to my dismay, the sausage I thought I had happened to be hamburger, so I decided to try to spice it up to make mock sausage. Fast-forward about 20 minutes… my brothers are in the kitchen eating and as I’m walking towards the kitchen, I hear my younger brother (who’s back is toward me) mutter, “This is gross.” as my other brother gave him a ‘shut up, she’s coming’ look. They never said anything to me about it… I guess they knew not to attack a new cook on her cooking. I don’t remember if I hadn’t test-tasted it first or what, but I did later and yeah, he was right, it was gross.

1. When you’re out of unsweetened chocolate, for every ounce or square that is called for, substitute 3 Tbsp. cocoa and 1 Tbsp. fat or oil.

2. When you’re out of cornstarch (for thickening), for every tablespoon that is called for, substitute 2 Tbsp. flour.

3. When you’re out of whipped cream, chill a 13 oz. can of evaporated milk for 12 hours, add 1 tsp. lemon juice, whip until stiff, and measure according to recipe.

4. When you’re out of eggs, for every egg called for, substitute 1/4 cup egg substitute OR 3 Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. thawed frozen egg OR 2 1/2 Tbsp. dry whole egg powder & 2 1/2 Tbsp. lukewarm water. Or, just make these cookies. ????

5. When you’re out of garlic cloves, for every clove called for, substitute 1/8 tsp. garlic powder.

6. When you’re out of flavored gelatin, for every 3-oz pkg called for, substitute 1 Tbsp. plain gelatin and 2 cups fruit juice (then omit the water you’d normally add to a 3-oz pkg).

7. When you’re out of fresh herbs, for every Tbsp. called for, substitute 1 tsp. dried.

8. When you’re out of lemon juice, for every tsp. called for, substitute 1/2 tsp. vinegar. But don’t do this for lemon meringue pie!

9. When you’re out of miniature marshmallows, for every cup called for, substitute 10 large marshmallows.

10. When you’re out of buttermilk, for every cup called for, substitute 1 cup plain yogurt OR 1 cup minus 1 Tbsp. milk  and 1 Tbsp. lemon juice or vinegar and allow to stand 5 or 10 min OR 1 cup milk and 1 3/4 tsp. cream of tartar.

11. When you’re out of fresh onions, for every small onion called for, rehydrate 1 Tbsp. minced onion.

12. When you’re out of shortening (for use in baking), for every cup called for, substitute 1 1/8 cups butter or margarine and decrease salt in recipe by 1/2 tsp.

13. This last one, I just recently got from a friend… when you’re out of sour cream, combine 1/4 cup skim milk, 1 Tbsp. lemon juice, 8 oz. cottage cheese, and 1/4 tsp. salt. Blend all in blender. Makes 1 cup sour cream.

And if you’re out of the substitute items (for example, no cottage cheese on hand to make the sour cream that you’re out of), I don’t know what to do about that either. I guess make something else or go to the store.

Don’t forget to go visit other Thirteeners over at Thursday Thirteen!


15 Responses to “13 Ingredient Substitutions, Thurs 13 #3”

  1. Dallas >^^< Meow on April 10th, 2008 8:37 am

    When you’re out of fresh herbs, for every Tbsp. called for, substitute 1 tsp. dried

  2. kay on April 10th, 2008 8:37 am

    I, too, love to cook, and I almost always substitute. It works just fine. Happy TT.

  3. Kay on April 10th, 2008 8:41 am

    Replying to the first comment… ‘dried’ as in ‘from the container in your spice rack’ is what I take it to mean. At least I don’t dry my own herbs! :)

  4. Tammy on April 10th, 2008 9:15 am

    Loved your TT. I didn’t know some of those and took note. Thanks

  5. Karen (Simply A Musing Blog) on April 10th, 2008 9:28 am

    Wow. Those are some great substitutions. I knew some of them (like the buttermilk, onion and herb ones) but many of them I didn’t know. Thanks for stopping by my blog – I’m the one who won all the scrapbooking stuff. If you lived closer, we could get together and have a scrap date! I’d share! Honest, I would! :)

  6. Colleen on April 10th, 2008 9:47 am

    Great list! I’ll have to bookmark this and come back to it!

    Thanks for visiting my T13!

  7. MAmaArcher on April 10th, 2008 9:54 am

    great list and I loved the photo!

    I often (for a healthier substitute) will use applesauce instead of oil in cakes.

  8. amy on April 10th, 2008 9:55 am

    What a helpful list this week, thanks so much!

  9. lisa on April 10th, 2008 10:07 am

    i needed this post tuesday. i was short on sour cream and didn’t know what to do. ended up adding some blueberry yogurt to top off the sour cream i did have. worked fine. i can taste it in the marble squares, but apparently it’s not too noticeable because marc hasn’t commented. i came on here to tell you-i made the meatloaf you posted a few thursdays ago for supper last night. marc’s brother brought his new girlfriend over. let’s just say, i’m BITTERLY disappointed there are no leftovers. mmmmm, i’m getting hungry just writing about it.

  10. Out and About in Dubai on April 10th, 2008 10:46 am

    thanks for the substitutions – will have to remember the lemon bit as I always seem to be out of it!

  11. Sassy Mama Bear on April 10th, 2008 11:56 am

    Thank you so much for visiting The Cafe today, I love finding other bloggers from WI. You live in a lovely area of the state too. I live near Oshkosh myself. Our main street is currently the set of a movie about John Dillinger, I shall not being going to see the madness now that the filming will be starting.
    I am going to add you to my reader so I can check in regularly and what a wonderful & useful TT you have this week.

  12. bits & pieces on April 10th, 2008 1:03 pm

    I LOVE this list! I’m always looking up substitutions. Thanks for sharing!

    Happy TT!

  13. Judi on April 10th, 2008 1:43 pm

    Great post. Good thing I only live about 7 miles from the store (only 1 from a party store)lol I didn’t have most of the “use this instead” stuff. The other day I got all the ingredients for your “Monster Cookies” and today I had to go back out because my Maintence Man ate most of the M&M’s. Can’t complain he brings in most of the money. Just can’t say “no” to that man. :) Happy TT

  14. Michelle on April 10th, 2008 10:14 pm

    Thanks for sharing those hints!! They could come in handy!!!

  15. Shannon on April 11th, 2008 6:40 am

    I think I need to print some of these off. :) Do another one if you have so many. :)

I LOVE Taco Soup!

Posted on April 7, 2008
Filed Under Soups

But I’m still looking for that perfect recipe.

I just recently made taco soup. I’ve had it at other people’s places, but this was the first time I’ve had it from my own kitchen. The taco soup I made was really good, but I’ve had better, so I’ll keep trying some other recipes in my cookbooks.

Actually, now that I think of it, I might put that on hold for awhile… that sounds like a great winter project for next year. With the snow melting outside and the promise of Spring, who wants to be making taco soup or any soup?!

Unless it’s bread soup. Now THAT’s a summer soup! Did you ever have that? Rip up a piece of bread, put some fruit chunks in (bananas, fresh peaches, or fresh strawberries are best), sprinkle some sugar over it, then add milk. On a hot summer day, that is just a great lunch. So refreshing! And you don’t break out in a sweat while eating. Mom made that now and then when we were growing up. Another cold soup (that I don’t know if I’d ever have the nerve to try) is Cool Raspberry Soup. I see it in one of my cookbooks now and then and even though there’s a picture, I always flip past, knowing I’d never make it.

Anyway, back to the taco soup. It’s cold and damp and rainy outside, so I think it’s still ok to talk about and feature hot soups. This recipe comes from the Fix-It and Forget-It cookbook. I’ll bet alot of you have that cookbook. It seems pretty popular. One thing I think is so neat about it is that I know a couple people who submitted recipes and tips. I have a few cookbooks like that. Makes it feel like it’s just not some random cookbook compiled by some random unknown people. I even know someone in one of my Taste of Home’s Quick Cooking cookbooks!

Taco Soup with Pizza Sauce

2 lbs. ground beef, browned
1 small onion, chopped and sauteed in ground beef drippings
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 1/2 pkgs. dry taco seasoning
1 qt. pizza sauce
1 qt. water
Tortilla chips
Shredded mozzarella cheese
Sour cream

Combine ground beef, onion, salt, pepper, taco seasoning, pizza sauce, and water in 5-qt, or larger, slow cooker. Cover. Cook on Low 3-4 hours. And there ya go, easy as that! Top individual servings with tortilla chips, cheese, and sour cream. Notice there IS soup under the toppings. Can almost see it.
Makes 8-10 servings.

At the bottom of the recipe, it says, “Variation: Add 15-oz can black beans and 4 oz. can chilis to mixture before cooking.” I thought that sounded good, so I added both.

The soup went perfect with cornbread muffins! About every time I post, I wish there’d be a way to give you a taste of whatever food I’m featuring. Technology and computers keep advancing, but I’m quite sure there will never be software to install for that feature. Oh well, you’ll just have to come visit sometime… or try the recipes yourself.


7 Responses to “I LOVE Taco Soup!”

  1. barb on April 8th, 2008 7:41 am

    I found thisrecipe for taco soup lately, but haven’t got a chance to try it yet, but it sounds better than any I’ve ever made. Yummy, you got me in the mood for taco soup.
    This recipe came from the Duggar
    Family website. They have 17 children so it is a huge batch but you can break it down. If you haven’t checked out their website, you should.

    3 lbs ground turkey or beef
    1 med. onion, chopped
    3 (4oz.) cans green chilies, chopped
    3 tsp. salt
    1 1/2 tsp. pepper
    3 pkg. taco seasoning
    3 pkg. ranch or 1 c. liquid ranch dressing
    3 cans hominy, undrained
    9 (14 1/2 oz.) cans diced tomatoes, undrained
    3 (15oz.) cans kidney beans, undrained
    6 (15oz.) cans pinto beans, undrained
    5 c. water

  2. barb on April 8th, 2008 7:44 am

    OOPS! I forgot to put the directions on with the recipe. Oh well, you are used to that from your horse and buggy cookbook, right?

    Brown ground beef w/ onion. stir in remaining ingr. Bring to boil. Simmer 30 min. Serve w/ Tortilla chips, grated ched. cheese & sour cream.

  3. Judi on April 8th, 2008 12:36 pm

    Both taco soup recipes look a lot like my chili recipes lol. Then cover with cheese, chips or crackers and sour cream. Yum

  4. Jo on April 8th, 2008 12:45 pm

    Well, today is definitely NOT a soup day here (sunny & near 70!—yay!!!), but the forecast predicts rain/snow showers over the weekend. :( So I just might be pulling out this recipe for Sunday lunch! Thanks!
    Did you find another coffee mug yet?

  5. Kay on April 8th, 2008 2:29 pm

    Thanks for the recipe, Barb! Ha, yeah, I’m used to that with the Horse and Buggy cookbook. :) Which reminds me, I want to scan a recipe in to have you all help me figure it out!

    Jo, I didn’t find the perfect coffee mug yet. Still lookin’. It’s actually kinda fun. One of these days, I’m gonna stroll the shops on Main Street. :)

  6. Berneice on April 9th, 2008 7:17 am

    Loren loves the cold bread soup stuff. i on the other hand can not handle soggy bread, so i fix a little for him and we eat something else. We used to eat it when we were kids, but for some reason I can’t choke it down anymore.

  7. Twila on April 9th, 2008 9:31 am

    Ah, bread soup! That has to be an old Amish dish if anything is (same with tomato gravy). We had bread soup suppers on hot summer evenings when I was growing up. I came to dislike soggy bread…just give me the fruit, sweetener, and milk…but then it’s not bread soup anymore, and you’ve lost the uniqueness of it. A good memory nonetheless. I would like to know why you’ll never make the Cool Raspberry Soup? Because I love raspberries and would be interested in knowing what the recipe is. :-)

13 Recipes You’ve Gotta Have! Thursday Thirteen #2

Posted on April 2, 2008
Filed Under Thursday Thirteens


I don’t know how many recipes are on here, but I have spent the last while going thro’ and picking out my favorites. Well, that’s not quite accurate… if they’d be my top favorites, they’d probably all come from the dessert or cookie category. Chocolate this, chocolate that. And your eyes would glaze over. So, instead, I went thro’ the categories and picked one from each of 13 categories… some categories were hard to choose from!

So, here are 13 of the recipes I’d recommend trying sometime (the recipe name is linked to the post that the recipe is featured on). Try something for supper tonight! If you have all the ingredients, that is. I often think it would be so handy to live nextdoor to the grocery store, what with my lack of planning ahead and all!

1. Monster cookies – from the Cookies and Bars category.
monster-cookies.jpg This is the kind of cookie that I make the most often, even way more than regular chocolate chip cookies. I bake these probably about every 6 – 8 weeks… more often if I’m not on a diet. Speaking of which, yes, I do know the calorie count. It’s 175 calories per cookie if you get 7 dozen out of the batch.

2. Glazed Meatloaf – from the Beef category.
13meatloaf.jpg After years of looking for the perfect meat loaf recipe, I finally found it. It is just incredible. And I don’t even put the shredded carrots in. That top ketchup part is great too! Mmmmm, now I’m getting hungry.

3. Red Lobster Biscuits – from the Breads, Biscuits, and Rolls category.
13rlbiscuits.jpg Ever been to Red Lobster? These taste like the real thing! They are so soft and so good and very melt-in-your-mouth. Just delicious! And they’re fast and easy… except the part where you beat the dough with a wooden spoon for 30 seconds!

4. Raspberry Cream Cheese Rolls – from the Sweet rolls and Coffee cakes category.
I’ve gotten several recipe requests for these after people have tried them at my house. You start with donut mix instead of from scratch. I couldn’t find donut mix at any grocery stores around here, but found it then at a bulk foods store. That cream cheese filling in there is so good. You could also try other fruit filling instead of raspberry.

5. Fudge – from the Candy category.
I’m taken with this stuff! Fudge is probably the food that I have the hardest time resisting. We won’t go into detail about things like how much I’ve eaten in one sitting already. This is so easy to make with only 4 or 5 ingredients and you don’t need more than a microwave and something to stir with.

6. Easy Chocolate Lover’s Cheesecake – from the Desserts category.
Ok, you just KNOW you can’t go wrong here! Cheesecake, caramel, and chocolate… what a trio!

7. Steak & Cheese Stromboli – from the Main dishes category.
As good as it looks! I make the pizza variation quite a bit too. Sometimes, if I’m in a hurry, I use Pillsbury refrigerated pizza dough (from a pop-able can).

8. Brown Sugar Pie – from the Pies category.
I’ve loved this pie for as long as I can remember. My dad grew up with it and his dad grew up with it. If we have an extended family get-together and there’s not brown sugar pie there, there will be a complaint or 2. And don’t put Cool Whip on it! I thought it was weird that when I got married, my husband didn’t know what it was. Then, I found out that alot of people don’t know what it is. The recipe has good tips from Grandma… try it!

9. Open-faced Pork Chop Sandwich – from the Pork and Ham category.
Fire up the grill! My husband made up this sandwich. In fact, he wrote the post that the recipe is featured on. We have this sandwich pretty often and have made it for company. It’s great! Very basic ingredients. Perfect for those summer-time cookouts!

10. All-in-one Taco Salad – from the Salads category.
Delicious!!!! One handy thing about this salad is that it can be put together ahead of time, then tossed just before serving. One of the church ladies makes a huge bowl of it pretty often for potlucks and it gets licked clean about every time. It’s not spicy, but it’s got lots of flavor.

11. Twice-baked Potatoes – from the Side dishes category.
Company coming? These make a good impression! They’re very attractive, not to mention very good! This is actually something I serve quite a bit when we have company. Another nice thing is that they freeze well, so you can make them ahead of time or just keep them on hand in the freezer.

12. Layered Finger Jello – from the Snacks category
This is more in here for the fun it is than for the taste, although I still have enough kid in me to really like finger jello! The reason it’s fun is because you can make it fit to any occassion by using certain colors of jello (red and green for Christmas; red, white, & blue for 4th of July, etc.). I also tried a sugar-free version and it turned out great!

13. Iced Tea – from the Beverage category.
The Pampered Chef pitcher that I use to make this tea doesn’t really have a home in the cupboard. It’s better off in the fridge with iced tea in it. If you know what meadow tea is, it’s comparable to that. But this is a much handier and faster way to make it!

Don’t forget to go visit other Thirteeners at Thursday Thirteen!


13 Responses to “13 Recipes You’ve Gotta Have! Thursday Thirteen #2”

  1. Pretty Life Online on April 3rd, 2008 2:17 am

    Great listing! Happy TT, mine’s up too hope you can drop by!

  2. Cassie on April 3rd, 2008 3:44 am

    Oooh, mouth watering! I have to check these out, great idea for a TT!

  3. Out and About in Dubai on April 3rd, 2008 7:22 am

    Glazed meatloaf looks great – I’m going to give that a shot this week! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Kat on April 3rd, 2008 11:48 am

    What a great TT idea! Yummy…and now I need a snack :-) Thanks so much for stopping by my blog…and yes, you need to try the chicken cordon bleu…easy and very delish.

  5. barb on April 3rd, 2008 11:52 am

    I have already tried your glazed meatloaf recipe, but used half sausage/half hamburger.
    My husband LOVED it. So, that is the meatloaf recipe I will use now. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Laura on April 3rd, 2008 1:54 pm

    Of all the things I miss from growing up, the wonderful foods of the Mennonite community are the most memorable…and now you’ve made me hungry all over again! Great T-13!

  7. Sharon on April 3rd, 2008 2:54 pm

    This post reminded me again how grateful I am for your ‘teaching’ me about that good tea! Actually, now I’ve found one I like just as good or better–and it’s still easy. Get dried spearmint leaf tea from the bulk foods store (if you can) which works great in a coffee perk too, and I think tastes as close to meadow tea as “your” stuff…

    We like your pork chop sandwich, too, ‘cept I do an open face grilled cheese and top it ( I think it’s easier than making toast, making the sauce hot and melting the cheese that way).

    Anyway thanks for all your great recipes!! Keep them coming!!!

  8. Shannon on April 3rd, 2008 4:24 pm

    I’m gonna have to try the rolls again. :) AND the cheesecake. :)

  9. JO on April 3rd, 2008 11:54 pm


  10. Judi on April 4th, 2008 2:17 pm

    I love your T13. I’ve just started this thing and they are all sooooo different. Definitely adding you to my blog roll. Think I’ll be back often for more recipes. Thanks

  11. Kay on the farm in Neb on April 10th, 2008 11:48 am

    These are sooo not on my eating plan, but they look wonderful! Especially the Strombolli!


  12. Anonymous on April 18th, 2008 2:22 am
  13. Melissa on April 18th, 2008 10:54 am

    I love the tea! I gave some to my husband and didn’t tell him what it was. He was convinced it was garden tea. I think I’ve made it just about every day for the past week.