Sunday, December 18, 2011

Easy Calzone Rolls

Made these for dinner on a whim. I needed something relatively quick, but less than boring. And whoo boy, it was delicious! I substituted the sliced hard salami for regular old pepperoni because I was wary the little ones would balk at salami. Worked just fine. Though I would use pizza sauce for the dip instead of marinara to give it more kick.


2 loaves thawed frozen bread- like Rhodes.
1/2 lb. sliced ham
1/2 lb. sliced hard salami (or pepperoni)
2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
1 c. jarred marinara sauce (or pizza sauce)

Roll each loaf into a rectangle about 8 x12. 

Layer ham, then pepperoni and cheese on top.

Tuck the short sides in and roll from the long side in. Pinch the ends well and place on a baking sheet seam side down. 

Bake at 375 for about 20 minutes, or until browned. 

Move to a slicing block and slice- serve with dipping sauce. 

Monday, September 19, 2011

Make Yer Own Pita Bread

I am staring down the bread aisle. Three bucks plus for six pitas. Having a growing family, we are needing more pita loaves. (loaves? circles? slices?) We need more like eight for our favorite recipes; pita pizzas, pita tostadasMoroccan garbanzo pitas! But six dollars? Sheesh!

That is what prompted me to look up just how hard it might be to make pitas? Turns out the answer is: well, kinda hard. But kinda worth it.

1 pkg. yeast
1/2 c. warm water
3 c. flour (I used 2c. white and 1 c. wheat- mostly because I ran out of white flour)
1 1/4 tea. salt
1 tea. sugar
1 c. lukewarm water

Dissolve yeast in 1/2 c. warm water. Add sugar and stir until dissolved. Let sit 10-15 mins. until frothy.

Combine flour and salt in a large bowl. Make a depression in the center and pour yeast water in.

Slowly add 1 c. lukewarm water, stir until elastic. Place on a floured surface and knead for 10-15 mins, until the dough is no longer sticky.

Coat a large bowl with vegetable oil, toss in the dough ball, then turn it over so the whole ball is coated. Leave to rise in a warm place for about 3 hours, until doubled in size.

Once doubled, roll out to be a rope, and pinch off small pieces- about 10-12. Place the balls on a floured surface and let sit covered for 10 mins.

Preheat oven to 500 and make sure the rack is on the bottom. Put the baking sheet in there as the oven preheats.

Roll out each dough ball into circles about 5-6 inches and 1/4 in. thick.

Bake for 4 minutes, until it puffs up. Then turn flip them over and cook for another 2 mins. Remove each pita with a spatula and press the extra air from the bubble out. Immediately place in storage bags.

Can store in the pantry for up to a week or freeze in freezer bags for up to a month.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

His Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookies

On random nights, The Husband gets a serious hankering for chocolate chip cookies. Most of the time I just google "chocolate chip cookie recipe" and use whatever comes up. I don't have time to catalog and bother with cookie recipes- I can never tell a difference anyway. Well, after making this particular batch, The Husband exclaimed that I must bookmark this recipe ASAP. So I am. They were pretty yummy. They tasted a little vanilla-y to me, but The Husband loved it. So here you go.

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (I usually half this) 
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons hot water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts (optional) 

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F 
  2. Cream together the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Dissolve baking soda in hot water. Add to batter along with salt. Stir in flour, chocolate chips, and nuts. Drop by large spoonfuls onto ungreased pans.
  3. Bake for about 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until edges are nicely browned

I thought it was odd to dissolve the baking soda, but it worked just fine! I also didn't have all the chocolate chips I needed- being last minute on the cookies, I only used 1 c. mini chips and it worked just fine. 

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Frozen Fruit & Yogurt Roll Ups

These are delicious! The kids were none too happy with them, but I scarfed them down. I would let them thaw a bit from frozen.

10 flour tortillas
1-1/2 cups Vanilla yogurt
frozen berries
1/2 cup sugar
1 T. cinnamon
spray butter
Mix cinnamon & sugar on a large plate. Spray one side of a flour tortilla with butter, covering the entire surface, then place butter side down on plate with cinnamon and sugar. Press down and move around, coating one side of tortilla in cinnamon and sugar.
Next, place tortilla, sugar side down on another plate. Spread about 1/8 cup of yogurt (I just eyeball this, I don’t measure) in a strip a little left of the center. Add some frozen berries (I bought a bag of mixed, strawberries, black berries, raspberries and blue berries- I cut the strawberries up). Roll the tortilla tight and place on a large cookie sheet.
Continue the process with the rest of the tortillas.
Place the cookie sheet in the freezer for about 2 hours. Remove from freezer, cut each tortilla in half and place them in a large zip lock bag and put them back in the freezer for storage.
To Serve:
Take out of bag and eat immediately. You can let them thaw a little bit, but if you let them thaw too long, they’re mushy, but can be eaten that way too.
Variations: you can try this with different flavors of yogurt and different fruits. Strawberries and bananas would be good…..just be sure to cut the strawberries up, a whole strawberry is hard to eat when frozen.

Costa Vida Chicken

Hands down, love this. Especially as a taco salad. And it's super easy to make!

  • 1 (16 oz.) bottle Kraft Zesty Italian Dressing (I used Kroger brand)
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp cumin
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 5 skinless, boneless chicken breast
Cook all together in a crock pot on high for 4 hours, shred meat and cook 1 additional hour. (This recipe makes a lot so you can do have or freeze the leftovers for another meal)

Chocolate Chip Cookie Oreo n' Brownie Bars

One of my family's favorites. It's a little rich for me, but I still end up making it all the time.

1 cup unsalted butter, room temp
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 cups chocolate chips, semi sweet
1 package of Oreo cookies
1 package of brownie mix (to be prepared as directed on the box)  Ghiradelli works well.
dulce de leche or caramel topping- I skip this, makes it runny.

Preheat the oven to 350 and line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper- or just grease the thing.
Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and mix well.
Add the flour, baking soda and salt and mix just until combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
Press the cookie dough evenly into the pan.
Now place the Oreo's on top of the cookie dough.
Spread or drizzle the dulce de leche or caramel topping on top of the oreos. (again, skip this)
Prepare brownie batter as directed. Pour/spread brownie batter on top and smooth it around with a spatula.
Bake for  about 50 minutes. Bars are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out with a bit of a moist crumb attached. Remove from oven and let cool completely, about 2 hours.  
Cut into squares and serve. 

Rolo Cookies

Made these today, Rolos and I are pretty close. A friend since I was little, for sure. In cookie form, they are also magical. Lately the recipes I've been trying have been found on Pinterest. So I'll link it from there, but also transcribe them, too. I don't trust weblinks long term. And I will be needing to have them to reference. (and my own little notes)

1 pkg. Rolo's (the large bag)
1 box Devils Food Cake mix
2 eggs
1/3 c. oil

Mix cake mix, oil, and eggs. Take a small ball of dough and form a ball around the rolo. (Only use enough dough to cover the rolo so it can spread through the cookie.)

Place on greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 for 7-8 minutes. Yields about 3 dozen- seriously three dozen. No joke.

Sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired. If you like to get fancy-pantsy. 

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Ground Beef Satay Wraps

I can't believe I haven't posted this yet! Or maybe I have and I just can't find it? Either way: make these pronto.

They are super easy, and even easier if you have an almost-empty-jar of peanut butter.


1/2 c. beef broth (not the whole can- I made that mistake once)
1/3 c. smooth peanut butter
2 tea. cornstarch
1 tbl. vegetable oil
1 tbl. ginger
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb. ground beef
1 c. shredded carrots (I only had baby carrots, so I threw them in a food processor for a bit)
1/4 c. thinly sliced green onion
2 tbl. soy sauce
Boston lettuce leaves
chopped peanuts (opt)

In a jar with a lid (or small tupperware container) combine broth, peanut butter, and cornstarch. Shake well to blend and set aside. In skillet, over med/high heat, cook oil and add ginger & garlic. Cook 30 sec. Add beef and brown for 5 mins. Shake sauce and pour into skillet. Cook for 2-3 mins. Remove from heat and stir in carrots, green onion, and soy sauce. Served wrapped in lettuce leaves with peanuts.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Momma's Green Beans

One Sunday night for Sunday Night Dinners at my parent's house, my Mom started messing with the green beans. As I was really hoping my 4 yr olds were going to devour the green beans, I got a bit worried. She was making them pretty fancy. Preschoolers tend to shun the fancy-fare. (hi, chicken nuggets)

Much to my amazement, the fancified green beans were the first things off the plate. Of course, I had to get the recipe:

Green Beans (steamed to slightly crisp)

Saute minced garlic in olive oil, add celtic sea salt, (I may try with just regular salt- I'm not that fancy yet)  fresh ground pepper, dried parsley.

Add green beans immediately after steaming into fry pan with hot olive oil (guessing about 1/4 cup - depending on how many green beans).  Add 1/4 stick of butter or margarine.  Toss until butter is melted.  Serve.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Banana Chocolate Pie

4 squares baker's semi sweet chocolate
2 tbl. cold milk
1 tbl. butter
1 graham cracker pies crust
1 medium banana- sliced
2 pkg. (4 serving each) Jello Vanilla instant pudding
2 c. cold milk
2 c. thawed cool whip- divided

Microwave chocolate, 2 tbl. milk, and butter in large bowl for 1 - 1 1/2 mins. or until butter is melted, stirring every 30 sec. Spread onto bottom of crust. Refrigerate 30 mins. Cover w/ bananas.

Beat pudding mixes and 2 c. milk in large bowl with whisk 2 mins. Let stand 1 min. Stir in 1 1/2 c. cool whip. Spoon over bananas. 

Refrigerate 4 hours until firm. Top with remaining cool whip just before serving. Store leftover in refrigerator.

Creamy Peach Squares

2 c. graham cracker crumbs
1/2 c. sugar- divided
1/2 c. butter- melted
1 1/2 pkg. (8 oz. each) Cream Cheese- softened
1 tub cool whip- thawed and divided
3 large peaches (1 1/4 lb. peeled & sliced)
1 1/2 c. boiling water
1 pkg. (6 oz.) Raspberry Jell-O
2 c. ice cubes

Mix crumbs, 1/4 c. sugar and butter in 13 x 9 pan. Press into bottom of pan.

Beat cream cheese and remaining sugar in bowl. Whisk in 1 1/2 c. cool whip, spread over crust. Top with peaches. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Add boiling water to gelatin mix in large bowl. Stir 2 mins. until dissolved. Stir in ice cubes until melted. Refrigerate 5 mins. until thick. Whisk in remaining cool whip, spread over peach layer. Refrigerate for 4 hrs until firm.

Garnish with fresh raspberries and peach slices.

Aquarium Cups

I am going on a blitzkrieg of dessert cooking this weekend. Mostly from a random Jell-O recipe book my Mom picked up at the checkout line. Either way! Good stuff!

How fun would these be for the twins?! So much fun I tell you.

Here's whats what:

3/4 c. boiling water
1 pkg. (3 oz) Berry Blue flavor gelatin
Ice cubes
1/2 c. cold water
1/2 c. chopped strawberries (I'm using mandarin oranges instead)
4 bite size fish shaped chewy fruit snacks

Add boiling water to gelatin in a medium bowl. Stir 2 mins. or until completely dissolved. Add enough ice cubes to cold water to measure 1 1/4 c. Add to gelatin, stir until slightly thickened. Remove any unmelted ice. If gelatin is too thin, refrigerate more.

Place berries in 4 clear plastic cups; cover w/ gelatin. Press fruit snacks into gelatin until completely submerged.

Refigerate 1 hr. or until firm.