Monday, September 26, 2011

I have many loves :) has been busy, and I haven't had time to do much blogging! However, I have been working on perfecting a new recipe- my Toasted Ravioli with Basil Cream Sauce. It's one of my new favorite meals- great with an ear of Sweet Corn. I use Meat Ravioli, but you could easily use another flavor.

I made my own bread crumbs for this...I toasted up some leftover Asiago Bread and pulsed it in my good processor.

To the bread crumbs, I added Parmesan Cheese, Italian Seasoning, Basil and Garlic Powder.

Place the thawed ravioli in a mixture of eggs and water.

Roll in bread crumbs until  evenly coated.

Place on a baking can bake directly on the pan, but then you should flip them while baking.

After all are coated, spray with cooking spray and place in a 400 degree oven for 25 minutes.

While they bake, make the cream sauce. Heat 3/4 cup of Heavy Cream over Medium High heat for 1-2 minutes, until it starts to thicken. 

Stir in the pesto and cheese.

Serve hot ravioli with a generous side of the sauce!!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

A recipe created just for Pizza Lovers!

I saw this recipe from Rachael Ray and tucked it away for a day I needed something "fun" to make for Robyn. Today I was struggling with a lunch plan...and then I remembered Pizza Puffs!!

Easy enough- I always have everything on hand. I added Garlic Salt and Italian Seasoning to mine.

The recipe says to add the basil at the end and sprinkle on top, but I chose to put mine inside.

Everything is better with cheese!!

Fill a mini muffin pan. GREASE WELL!!!! I found these to be a little tricky to get out of the pan. They were actually easier to remove after they cooled a bit. I used a Tablespoon and it filled 24 cups perfectly. Bake about 20 minutes at 375 degrees and allow to cool a few minutes before eating.

Serve with your favorite pizza sauce!

***Robyn and I loved these! Fun because you can easily add whatever toppings you love. Rachael also details in her recipe how to freeze them!***

Friday, August 5, 2011

I don't love heating up the kitchen when it's so hot outside!

Let's face's been too hot to cook!! My husband and I have been eating lots of salads lately!! However, I was really wanting something a little more exciting, so I used my crock pot to cook up a beef roast. I added dried red chilies, oregano and garlic to the pot as well. The result was super tender and slightly spicy shredded beef... click here for the beef recipe.

The 1st night, I used small tortillas...
With cooked peppers and onions...

And shredded beef to make quick fajitas- served with sweet corn.

The second night, I put beef and  Monterey Jack cheese in a large tortilla. I rolled it up and browned on all sides in a hot skillet with a little olive oil. Served with my Kickin corn Salad!

My crock pot made dinner for two nights with enough leftovers for lunch without heating up the kitchen!

And for those that need a baby fix...Lucas at 8 weeks :)

Playing with Big Sister :)

Bath time in a mixing bowl

Robyn brought him all her favorites :)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Who wouldn't love cake for breakfast?

I get Rachael Ray's magazine...and although I LOVE reading food magazines, I don't usually follow the recipes. I like to read them for ideas and inspiration! In the latest issue of Everyday with Rachael Ray, they feature a section on things to do with a box of cake mix. One of those ideas...pancakes!! I knew these wouldn't be a "healthy" breakfast, but a very fun one :) With a new baby at home, I'm trying hard to do something special every day with my 3 year old. A few days ago, I decided the time was right to bust out the "birthday cake pancakes!"

So easy- just start with a box of yellow or white cake mix,eggs, oil and sprinkles!

Mix batter according to the directions on the box- I added LOTS of sprinkles :)

 Heat a skillet or griddle, add a little oil and add batter like making any other pancakes. These did take a little longer to them over lower heat so they cook through without burning.

Top with a glaze of powdered sugar and a few more sprinkles! Not your ordinary breakfast, but fun for that special little person in your life :)

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Brownies baked with love...and an extra layer of yum!!

I'm back!!! After "baking" a beautiful new baby, I decided my first venture back to blogging should feature something baked! I've got a nasty sweet tooth lately, and really don't need all the extra I made something to send to work with my hubby :)

This recipe was super easy- and totally delicious. I had to cut the brownies to send with him to work, so I decided to try one :) This recipe belongs to "Keni" and I found it on

Start with you favorite brownie mix- "Family size". Prepare according to Cake-Like instructions (add an extra egg). Bake until it just starts to set...about 5 minutes less than total recommended cook time.

While the brownies baked, prepare the cookie dough. I'm not a huge fan of sour cream- but it was great in this recipe!

Cream together the butter an sugars. Something about chocolate chip cookie dough makes me need to use a wooden spoon!

Add in sour cream, vanilla, baking powder and flour. I also mixed the chocolate chips into the dough instead of putting them on top- I thought they would be less messy to transport.

When brownies are just set, smash cookie dough between your hands and piece together on top of the brownies.

Cover the whole pan with a thick layer of the cookie dough and put back in the oven. The recipe says to bake for another 10 minutes...I had to bake mine about 15 minutes.
Oh my yum!! It was hard to let them cool before I cut them!!

The end result- ooey gooey chocolate bliss! A totally wonderful recipe I will make again for sure!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

I love being home!!

We brought Lucas home...just 3 weeks after his birth! The Doctors said he broke the mold...technically shouldn't go home for another 2-3 weeks, but they had no reason to keep him!! He weighed 4 lbs 5 oz on the day we brought him home, and we'll find out on Tuesday how much weight he's gained since we've been home. He's a tiny little man, but we love him BIG time!!

Mommy and Lucas snuggles :)

The proud Big Sister!

Finally home- and loving his swing :)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Just feeding my family with Love right now...

I realize more people than just my friends read my I thought I would put out a quick update!!! My cooking days are over for a while...because I am  busy cooking a baby! My water ruptured around 30 weeks, and I am now on bed rest in the hospital until our Little Man is ready to make his appearance!

No worries- the hospital food is actually pretty good :)

I miss cooking and blogging- so I will be back some day soon, but in the mean time, I'm baking a baby and feeding my family a little extra love!!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Easy and Cute- 2 things I love!

Along with the Jessie Cake I made for Robyn's birthday party, I also just HAD to make these adorable cookies!!! I found them on the Disney Family site...and they were quite simple.

Start with store bought sugar cookie can make your own, but I only wanted a few cookies. The log made 12 cookies.

Bake according to package, allow to cool and then flip them over so the flat side is up. While they cooled, I made Sugar Cookie Icing. I colored it red with gel coloring. I used a ziploc to pipe a border of red around the cookies, allowed that to set and then filled in the centers. This icing is shiny and dry in about 2 hours.

To make the top of the hat, cup the tops off GIANT gumdrops. I found mine at Hy-Vee...they are fruity, not spice drops.

Using more Sugar Cookie icing in White (or leftover butter cream from the cake)...pipe a large dollop in the center of each cookie and press a gum drop into it. Then pipe a line around the outside and little lines through it to make the lacing on the hat.

Allow to dry completely before serving. Mine were a little sloppy, but I think they still turned out pretty cute!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

A special cake- for the Cowgirl I love the most!

Our daughter is obsessed with all the Toy Story movies! She sleeps with Woody and Jessie every night. With her 3rd birthday approaching, I started looking for a great cake idea for her Toy Story party. I looked though several blogs and found my inspiration here...

I started by making two 9 inch white cakes and two 6 inch chocolate cakes. I chilled them overnight so they would stay moist and be easier to frost.

I have had enough trouble with cake sticking to the pan, so I am all about parchment! I also put small squares of parchment under the edge of the cake to keep my platter clean while decorating.

I could totally eat it just like this- a butter cream sandwich!

Frost the bottom layer then add the top layer and cover with another layer of frosting.

I then chilled the cake after putting on a crumb coat and applied a second coat of frosting about 1 hour later.

The day before, I whipped up a batch of Marshamallow Fondant and colored half brown and half black. I made long snakes of brown fondant and twisted them into ropes. Then I made bunch of cow spots and applied all over the cake.

I chilled the cake overnight and then pulled it out of the fridge a couple hours before the party and added a few toys to the top to make it official! Pretty easy- and I was very happy with how it turned out! 

Happy 3rd Birthday to my favorite Cowgirl!!

Monday, May 2, 2011

If you love Orange Julius...

Simple and so sweet! I have a large amount of orange juice concentrate in the freezer, so I decided to make my daughter a very special treat!! This is a knock off Orange Julius, easy to make at home and just as sweet! I'm going to miss these :(

This recipe makes 4 Orange Julius drinks... I modified it slightly from all the recipes I saw on-line. I just couldn't make myself use all the sugar they called for!

6 oz Orange Juice Concentrate (I used Minute Maid Calcium Enriched)
1 Cup of Skim Milk
1 tsp Vanilla
About 10 ice cubes...add to desired consistency
1 Cup of Water
1/4 Cup Sugar...I used half white sugar and half powdered

Throw everything into your blender but the ice and puree. Add ice cubes a few at a time until you reach the desired consistency. You can also refrigerate any leftovers and re-process with additional ice the next day. Frothy, light and sweet. An excellent summer treat!