Sunday, December 12, 2010

Fettucine with italian sausage, mushrooms, tomatoes, and basil

Once again I found this recipe on I loved this pasta dish and I thought it was even better the next day. Sorry I don't have a picture. Just trust me, it's yummy!
5 links johnsonville sweet basil italian sausage, removed from casing (I just used a non-name brand italian sausage)
8 oz. buttom mushrooms, quartered
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
1 c. grape tomatoes
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. fennel seeds, crushed
1 1/2 c. chicken broth
11 oz. fettucine (I used more)
2 c. baby spinach
1 c. fresh mozzarella, chopped into small cubes
3 Tbsp pine nuts (pine nuts are crazy expensive right now, so you could omit these)
handful of fresh basil leaves, chopped
Remove sausage from casing and cook for 2-3 minutes, then add onion and mushrooms. Continue to cook until the mushrooms are golden and onions are tender (and meat is cooked through). Add the minced garlic, grape tomatoes, oregano and crushed fennel. Stirring constantly. Add the chicken broth. Break up most of the tomatoes by piercing them with a spatula, then simmer sauce for 7-10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Cook the pasta, per instructions, while the sauce is simmering. Drain the pasta, then place into the sauce along with the spinach, cheese, pine nuts and basil. Toss to coat evenly. Enjoy!

Eggnog Quick Bread

I found this recipe on Allrecipes. I was a little hesitant to try it, I'm not sure why. I love eggnog, I just wasn't sure about eggnog in my bread. But it was great, the whole family loved it.
2 eggs, beaten
1 c. eggnog
2 tsp. rum flavored extract
1 c. white sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. butter, softened
2 1/4 c. flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
Prehead oven to 350 degrees. Grease bottom of 9x5" loaf pan or three mini loaf pans. Blend together the eggs, eggnog, rum extract, sugar, vanilla, and butter. Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg. Add the eggnog mixture and stir just enough to moisten. Pour into prepared pan. Bake bread for 40-60 minutes (until a toothpick comes out clean) I usually cook for about 30 min, then put foil over the top to prevent overbrowning and cook the rest of the way. Cool for 10 minutes and enjoy!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Sausage, Potato and Cheese Waffles

This recipe is from one of the magazines I subscribe to--I tore it out, so I don't know which one. These are like an entire breakfast cooked up into one waffle, and they are really tasty. The best part is that you can make the waffles ahead of time, freeze them up to 3 weeks, and then just pull them out and pop them in the toaster like an Eggo waffle when you need a quick and filling breakfast.

About 4 links breakfast sausage, casings discarded
1 baking potato, grated and excess water squeezed out (or just use 1 C. or so of frozen hash browns)
4 T. butter
1 3/4 C. flour
1 T. baking powder
1/2 C. shredded cheddar cheese
1 tsp. dried parsley
1 1/4 tsp. salt
1 1/4 tsp. pepper (I put a little less in mine and it was plenty pepper-y)
2 C. milk
2 eggs, lightly beaten

In a medium skillet, cook the sausage over medium-high heat, breaking it up with a fork, for 5 minutes. Add the potato and butter, lower the heat and simmer until the butter is melted, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for about 10 minutes.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, cheese, parsley, salt and pepper. Stir in the milk and eggs until smooth. Stir in the sausage-potato mixture.

Cook in waffle maker.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Beef and Bean chimi's

This recipe comes from one of my favorite cooking blogs, "for the love of cooking." I made it last night and it was a huge hit. I did cook mine a little differently, but I think either way they would be great.
1 lb. lean ground beef
1//2. sweet onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. paprika
1tsp. chili powder
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp oregano
1 can of chili beans (I did not drain)

Cook ground beef and onion until thoroughly cooked, add garlic and spices, and cook 4-5 more minutes. Add the can of chili beans and let simmer for a few minutes.
Layer tortilla with beef mixture and cheese. Place seam side down in a the hot skillet and cook for 3-4 minutes until golden brown. (I did it a little differently, I sprayed a 9x13 with cooking spray. I also lightly sprayed the top of the tortillas and broiled them on low for a few minutes. Watch closely, you don't want to burn them. You just want a nice crispy outside shell. I served these with sour cream and salsa. So good!

SoNo brownies

I recently checked out "The SoNo baking company" cookbook from the library. It's an amazing cookbook! I decided to try out their brownies. I have to admit that brownies are one of the few things that I prefer out of the box...but these brownies beat out the boxed mix anyday.

1/2 c. flour
1/2 c. unsweetened cocoa
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking powder
pinch of soda
1/2 c. butter
1 c. sugar
1 Tbsp. light corn syrup
2 large eggs, room temp
1 Tbsp pure vanilla
1 c. semi-sweet choc. chips

Preheat oven to 350. Spray 8" dish with cooking spray. (or if you're like me, you double the recipe and spray a 9x13"!) Whish flour with cocoa, salt, baking powder and soda. Set aside. In saucepan, melt butter. Remove from heat. Add sugar and corn syrup and whisk. Whisk in eggs one at a time, add vanilla. Add dry ingredients. Fold in chocolate chips. Bake for 30min. Delish!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Beach Street Lemon Chicken Linguine

I found this recipe on some random blog I stalk, so I decided to make it tonight. It is bona fide DELISH--even the kids liked it.

1 lb. linguine
2 tablespoons olive oil
Zest from one lemon
Juice from one lemon
3 green onions, chopped (white and green parts)
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

½ cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic, crushed (smashed with the back of a large knife or saucepan)
1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning (cut this down to 1 1/2 teaspoons if you want less heat but don't omit entirely or you will lose great flavor)
Juice of one lemon
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 chicken breasts, sliced

Combine the marinade ingredients in a bowl and whisk lightly before pouring into a ziploc plastic bag. Pat chicken dry and toss in marinade to coat. Refrigerate 3-12 hours.

When ready to cook, preheat skillet over medium heat and pour contents of plastic bag (both marinade and chicken) into the skillet. Saute over medium-high heat until chicken is cooked.

Combine juice of one lemon, lemon zest, olive oil, green onions and fresh parsley together in a small bowl. Set aside.

While the chicken is sauteing, cook linguine in boiling salted water until done; drain and return to warm pot. Pour lemon juice/olive oil/green onion mixture over pasta and mix lightly. When chicken is finished cooking, add hot pasta mixture to the skillet with the chicken and toss well. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste and toss in parmesan cheese. Serve warm.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Bunny Bread

I adapted my recipe from the Taste of Home magazine.


  • 2 loaves (1 pound each) frozen bread dough, thawed (I made homemade bread dough and then just used these instructions to form the bunny.)
  • 2 raisins
  • 2 sliced almonds
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten


  • Cut a fourth off of one loaf of dough; shape into a pear to form head. For body, flatten remaining portion into a 7-in. x 6-in. oval; place on a greased baking sheet. Place head above body. Make narrow cuts, about 3/4 in. deep, on each side of head for whiskers.
  • Cut second loaf into four equal portions. For ears, shape two portions into 16-in. ropes; fold ropes in half. Arrange ears with open ends touching head. Cut a third portion of dough in half; shape each into a 3-1/2-in. oval for back paws. Cut two 1-in. slits on top edge for toes. Position on each side of body.
  • Divide the fourth portion of dough into three pieces. Shape two pieces into 2-1/2-in. balls for front paws; shape the remaining piece into two 1-in. balls for cheeks and one 1/2-in. ball for nose. Place paws on each side of body; cut two 1-in. slits for toes. Place cheeks and nose on face. Add raisins for eyes and almonds for teeth.
  • Brush dough with egg. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 30-45 minutes. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Remove to a wire rack to cool.
  • Yield: 1 loaf.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Once you taste this salad, it will be a favorite! It's so easy and so yummy. I got this recipe from my sister and seriously, how can you go wrong with strawberries and chocolate?? You could probably save time and use a store-bought poppyseed dressing, I haven't tried it...but you could? My motto with this salad is "don't mess with a good thing"..

1 bag baby spinach
1 pint strawberries, sliced
heath bits*

1 c. mayonnaise
1/2 c. milk
1/4 c. vinegar
2/3 c. sugar
2 tbsp poppy seeds

Mix dressing ingredients together and toss with spinach, strawberries and heath bits.
Not every store has heath bits, so if you can't find them just crush up a skor bar or a heath bar.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Lemon white chocolate chip cookies

I was looking through my cookbook last night, trying to come up with a dessert for our Valentine's Day dinner. I came across this cookie recipe, I did post this on my blog a few years ago, but here it is again. It's one of my favorites:

1 c. margarine, or butter
2/3 c. brown sugar
1/2c. granulated sugar
1 egg
2 tsp. lemon extract
2 1/4c. flour
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. lemon zest (I like them really lemony,
so I usually add more)
1/2 tsp salt
1 pkg. white chocolate chips

You know the routine, Mix wet ingredients in a bowl, and dry ingredients in a separate bowl, then combine. Or if you are like me toss it all in one bowl and stir together. Bake 8-10 minutes in 350 degree oven. Yummy!

Chicken and Roasted Pepper Tostadas

This recipe again comes from one of my favorite blogs
I made this recipe last week and it was delicious. It was actually the first time that I had roasted peppers and i'm not sure why I waited so long, they were yummy! The sour cream sauce is a must!

Chicken and Dressing:
1-2 red bell peppers, cored, seeded and flattened
1-2 yellow bell peppers, cored, seeded and flattened
1 pasilla pepper, cored, seeded and flattened
2 c. leftover roasted chicken meat, shredded
1/4 sweet yellow onion chopped finely
1-2 tsp olive oil
1/2 tsp cumin
1 clove of garlic, minced
juice of 1 lime

Position oven rack close to broiler and heat the broiler. Cover a baking sheet with tin foil. Put the cored, seeded and flattened peppers skin side up on a baking sheet: broil until blackened. Transfer to a small bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let cool 10 minutes. Once peppers are cool enough to handle, carefully remove skin (It should peep right off) Chop peppers into small pieces. Reduce oven temp. to 400. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, cumin, garlic, lime, salt and pepper. Mix and set aside. (In the regular recipe she just combines the meat/peppers and onion in a bowl) I put chicken, onions and peppers in a frying pan and cooked until onions were soft and everything was warm. Remove from heat and toss with dressing. The recipe is for tostadas, but I found it easier to eat like a taco. Use costco's tortillas for best results :) Top with sour cream sauce.

Sour cream sauce:
1 c. sour cream
1 tbsp sweet yellow onion, finely chopped
2 Tbsp fresh cilantro, finely chopped
juice of one lime
1 clove garlic, minced
Combine all together in a bowl...

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Simple Crusty Bread

This is my first Domestic Diva post, but this recipe is fabulous--so fast, easy and non-fussy. The friend who sent it to me said it would change my life...and it has! I've copied the recipe into the blog pretty much as she sent it to me (hence all the random commentary).

Simple Crusty Bread

3 c. warm water
1 1/2 T yeast
1 1/2 T kosher salt or 1 T iodized
6 1/2 c. flour or 6 cup whole wheat

Mix yeast, salt and water in large bowl. (Like popcorn size bowl.) Stir in flour, mixing until no dry patches remain. Dough will be very loose and sticky. Cover and let rise 2-5 hours.

Dust a pan or cookie sheet with cornmeal, maybe 1/3 cup. Sprinkle dough with flour and pull off grapefruit size pieces of dough. Turn into a ball using additional flour on your hands as needed to shape 4-6 loaves. (Remember this dough is ultra sticky so I justify the oddly shaped loaves as being rustic and artisan.) Let rest on pan for 40 minutes.

Heat oven to 450 degrees and place an empty pan such as an old muffin tin or bread pan on the bottom rack while heating. Dust loaves with flour and slash tops with a knife three times or if you are up to it in beautiful ornate patterns. Pour one cup of water in empty pan in oven and place loaves in oven. Quickly close oven door to prevent escaping steam. Bake for 30 minutes. (I know, seems like a long time at that high of heat but don't scrimp on time or you'll loose all the yummy crusty goodness! And don't peek by opening the oven door either. Tempting, but you'll loose the steam. Must. Keep. Steam.)

You can also keep the dough covered in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Let rest on cornmeal for an extra hour before baking.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Braided Hot Sandwiches

I should definitely come up with a more creative name for this most delicious meal. Several years ago a woman from church shared a variation of this recipe with me and it has been a family favorite ever since. Basically it is a hot meat and cheese sandwich with anything extra you decide to throw in.

This past week I whipped up six of these (we were sharing four with another family) in not much time at all.

Braided Hot Sandwich


Make your bread dough (a real simple recipe is just perfect).

2 cups hot water
1 Tab. yeast
2. Tab. sugar
1 tsp. salt
4 cups flour
optional: 2 Tab. spices (I used this yummy mix from TJ Max called Parmesan Garlic Bread Dipping Blend)

Let rise about an hour (or stick it in your warmed oven if you are short in time until the dough rises to double).


Divide dough up. The dough recipe above will make three Hot Sandwiches.
Roll the dough out so it is a nice rectangle (maybe like 10" X 16")
Next use your pizza cutter or knife and make 1 1/2" slices all down the side of the dough (see below)
Then put all your fillings in the inside. This is where you can great creative.
Here are some ideas that I have tried:

--mustard, ham, cheese
--pesto (mixed with ranch), turkey, cheese
--marinara, ham, peperoni, cheese
--meat, cheese
Then you braid the dough. First you fold down the top of the rectangle a bit and then just start "braiding" the dough. Really it is a fake braid because you are just crisscrossing your dough strips.Gently lift of the braided sandwich and lay it on your greased and cornmeal dusted pan. Don't forget this next step...take one egg YOKE blended with 1 T. of water and brush the tops of all the sandwiches. One egg yoke was enough for all six of my sandwiches.
Let rise for a bit (maybe a 1/2 hour or stick in the fridge if you are not wanting to cook them for a couple of hours). Then Bake at 350 degrees until golden brown (probably 15-20 minutes).

They are delicious and look very pretty. If you are a veggie lover you could throw in some sliced olives, red peppers, artichoke hearts, or any other nasty veggie you can think of (just kidding...just I really am just a meat and cheese girl).

Serve with homemade french fries or chips and a tasty salad. Super yummy!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

GOOOOOOD Granola!!
(and good for you too I guess...)
Our Enrichment last night was on healthy living (blah blah blah) BUT, I did decide that maybe we should eat less fruit loops and more healthy cereals for breakfast, so I made granola- so yummy! I love it! and you really can't screw it up is the best part...any nuts, dried fruit, seeds, etc make it great! But here's a base recipe to get you started-

8 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 cups wheat germ
1 1/2 cups wheat bran or oat bran
1 cup sunflower seeds
3 cups varied nuts (almond slices, cashews, pecans, walnuts, peanuts)
1 cup coconut

1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup honey
1 cup veg. oil
1 TBS cinnamon
1 TBS vanilla

Pour sugar mixture over oat mixture and stir until evenly coated. Dump granola onto 2 foil-lined cookie sheets and bake at 325 degrees for 20-30 minutes...(longer if you like it even crunchier) It won't be hard or crunchy when it first comes out of the oven, but as it cools it will be! When cooled, mix in 2-3 cups dried fruit (raisins, craisins, cut-up apricots, extra coconut, anything!)
Store in air tight container.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Bean and Bacon Soup

I wish I was one of those cooks that "created" her own dishes. I'm not. Instead I peruse cooking blogs, magazines and cookbooks and I post my favorites. This one comes from one of my favorite cooking blogs. ( I made a few slight changes to it, but otherwise it's all hers. I decided to make this, because one of my favorite lunches in high school was a can of campbells Bean and Bacon soup with crushed ritz. This recipes brought me back to those days. It was delicious.
4 strips bacon (I used two and it was plenty)
2 large carrots, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf (I used two)
3 cans white beans, drained
4 cups chicken broth
2 Tbsp fresh parsley ( I left this out)
In a pot fry the bacon until crisp, remove and drain on paper towels. Let cool and chop.
Over medium heat, saute carrots, onion and celery in bacon drippings. Saute aroudn 5-7 minutes then add garlic and stir for an additional 60 seconds. Season with salt and pepper.
Add two cans of beans, bay leaf and broth. Bring to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to low. Let simmer 15-20 minutes or until celery and carrots are soft. Uncover and remove bay leaves. Using a potato masher (or my NEW immersion blender I got for Christmas!) partially mash bean mixture until it thickens slightly. Stir in last can of beans, parsley and bacon. Yum!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Secret ingredient

I've learned from my superb cooking skills (actually I should say eating skills), that cream cheese is always the "secret ingredient" to a yummy meal. When Delina gave my mom this recipe for Butternut Squash Soup, I was excited to find that indeed, cream cheese was in the soup. SO! I decided to try it out!
I began my cooking career 3 days ago with a sandwich thing with mushroom gravy. I kinda wanted to impress my boyfriend- and I hope it worked! The butternut squash on the other hand, was just for me to eat. Have you ever tried to cut squash? Ok, it's NOT easy- I had like 4 different knives going and was yelling and the stupid things and there were squash pieces flying everywhere! Later I learned that I should have actually peeled it with a potato peeler first. Maybe they should make squash-peelers, THEN I would have known. All in all it turned out lovely! The only thing was my cream cheese had those little lumps goin on - and I thinkg that was b/c my cream cheese wasn't room temp. BUT of course I didn't know that it should have been, until AFTER I was done. ok seriously, when I use recipe, EVER LITTLE DETAIL needs to be addressed. Here's the recipe and a pict-
oops! just found another piece of squash on the ground...................
Butternut Squash Soup

6 tablespoons chopped onion
4 tablespoons butter
6 cups peeled and cubed butternut squash
3 cups water
4 cubes chicken bouillon
1/2 t. dried marjoram
1/4 t. ground black pepper
1/8 t. ground cayenne pepper
1 (8 oz) package cream cheese

In a large saucepan, saute onions in butter until tener. Add squash, water, bouillon, marjoram, black pepper. Bring to boil; cook 20 min, or until squash is tender. Puree cooked squash mixture in a blender of food processor in batches until smooth. Blend in cream cheese. Return to saucepan, and heat through. Do not allow to boil.
Cayenne pepper is optional, and the leftovers are great!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Creamy Chicken and wild rice Soup

This is one of our favorite soups. It's not the healthiest soup, but definately a comfort food, and delicious! I found this on Allrecipes.

4 c. Chicken broth
2 c. water
2 cooked and diced chicken breasts
1 4.5 oz quick cooking long grain and wild
rice with seasoning packet.(like uncle ben's)
3/4 c. flour
1/2 c. butter
2. cups heavy cream

In a large pot combine broth, water and chicken. Bring to a boil and stir in rice, reserving seasoning packet. In a separate bowl melt butter, stir in contents of seasoning packet, stir until bubbly. Reduce heat and stir in flour to make a roux. Whisk in cream a little at a time, until smooth. Cook until thickened. Stir cream mixture into broth and rice. Stir until combined. These are the directions from the website...I don't like to dirty too many bowls, so I make it all in one pot and it turns out great.