Category Archives: Recipes

Request Granted-Cool Easy Summer Dessert!

I love requests!!

Strawberry Pie

  1. Small box of Strawberry Jello
  2. 1 Qt. (box) of strawberries
  3. 1/4 cup of sugar-You may also use artificial sweetener to taste
  4. 4 Tblsps Cornstarch
  5. 2 cups of water

Cook sugar and cornstarch in water until pretty thick. It takes about 2 minutes. Add the box of Jello and stir in completely. Let stand for about 10 minutes or just jiggley. Add the strawberries and pour into a baked crust. OK, if you want to make your own pie crust, go ahead, but you are a better chef than I am! Cool in the fridge, and top with Cool Whip to serve. This is incredibly easy and makes a fabulous presentation.

Corny/Not Corny!

Give Me A Break-Corny Can Be Good

I have been out of commission for a while and I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for your patience and your wonderful comments. Like most Bloggers, I thrive on feedback and comment. I know this sounds corny, but please do keep it up. The more the better!! Thanks again so much. I have been Skating Uphill for a bit, but as the Uphill Skater likes to say,

“Skating Uphill is really hard, but when you get to the top, the view is worth it!”

Keep that in mind. I always do.

Unexpected Tacos

Surprise Me!!!!

Flour tortillas, corn tortillas, and yes even tortillas made from different grains are all really good for that evening meal that ain’t happening. Oh, tacos also are great for any breakfast or lunch or just whenever. Hence the name “Unexpected”!

FILLINGS

  1. Any meat-I am a vegetarian so I use Morning Star Farms ground beef but you may also use ground turkey, pork, or even just for something unexpected-Spam!
  2. Any fish or shell fish-One of my favorites from a restaurant called Taco Mundo is breaded fried shrimp with sweet Asian cole slaw. I also really like salmon with Jasmine rice.
  3. Just vegetables can be unexpectedly delicious. Raw or cooked grated carrots, shredded cabbage, any kind of flavored slaw, actually just any vegetable you like. PD I LOVE Avocado
  4. Also for a veggie taco try lettuce, tomato, rice, and black beans.
  5. Another fav of mine from Casa Del Sol restaurant is tuna with sweet Asian slaw. Yum!
  6. Finally, use your imagination for breakfast tacos or burritos. Anything you have for breakfast is great in a taco shell or tortilla.
  7. BE UNEXPECTED!!!

Ins and outs of cooking grains

So many new grains, so little time

The more I read about ancient grains and new “fad” grains that we eat for fiber the more I become confused. Personally, I have liked in the past the little cups of different kinds of rice that you pop in the microwave for one minute, but seemingly that does just not cut it any more. I have started to experiment around a little for two reasons-First, I like rice. I also like Quinoa but I don’t like Faro. I like warm rice with salmon or Chinese food, but I also love cold rice salad. So, here are a few tips for boiling or steaming grains.

  1. Quinoa is one cup of quinoa to two cups of water. You need to simmer it for sometimes over 20 minutes, but watch it toward the end because it is done when all of the water is absorbed but burnt shortly thereafter!
  2. Brown rice is the same-one cup rice to two cups water. simmer again until the water is absorbed.
  3. Couscous-This is a little easier. One cup grain to two and a half cups water but Bring to a boil then just put on a lid and remove from the heat. Let is sit for a few minutes then fluff with a fork.
  4. Just regular white rice is one cup rice to one and one half cups water. Simmer covered for about 15 minutes. BTW add whatever spice or flavoring you like to the rice and it will be absorbed.

Finally, you can do what I suggested at the beginning. Buy instant. Real grain lovers don’t do this very often, but it really does work, honest!

Basta Pasta!

Yes, Little roasted tomato pasta!!!

Pasta is probably the most versatile and easy food in the entire universe. Also, you might be thinking, what exactly does she mean when she says “pasta?” Is it spaghetti, fusilli, Penne, lasagna. rigatoni, or what? BTW, are we talking about red sauce, with meat or without, vodka sauce, olive oil and garlic or what??? See what I mean? Anyway, here are a few quick and easy ways to have what I think of as one of the best and most yummy meals ever.

  1. Just plain spaghetti with a jar of red sauce-Try using whole wheat spaghetti with Newman’s Own Marinara or vodka sauce and you cant go wrong. PS be sure to add a nice loaf of French bread with an olive oil dip.
  2. How about a cold pasta salad? I like rotini for pasta salad and I add any fresh crunchy veg I have on hand. I add little tomatoes cut in half, fresh basil, broccoli, marinated artichoke hearts and so on. BTW if you buy a jar of artichoke hearts, be sure to save the liquid for your sauce or a dressing later. Please NEVER use mayo as your binder with a pasta salad. Salt, pepper, garlic salt and some olive oil and a dash of sweet balsamic vinegar is all you need, honest!
  3. Baked penne with meat or not and mushrooms or not is one of my faborites. Be sure to top this dish off with some parmesan cheese.
  4. The WEB is full of lasagna recipes, but I like veggie lasagna made with egg plant. You can buy egg plant rounds already breaded in the freezer at any grocery store and lasagna made with these little gems is soooo good.
  5. I am going to end this on a real Americana note-one of the best pastas around is good old Mac and Cheese. Yes, this has endless variatians, but they are all good.

Give PASTA a try for a quick, easy lunch or dinner and don’t forget the fresh bread. This all freezes really well too so make enough for two meals while you are at it!

Is there such a thing as “Rice Cheating”

So much rice, so little time!

I love rice. I love all kinds of rice too. I used to boil rice or make it in my rice maker, but NO MORE! Instant or semi-instant rice is a boon and a gift to rice lovers everywhere. As you can see, there are tons of options and rice is just as easy as a potato to use in sooo many different ways. This is NOT “rice cheating.”

I serve rice with anything too. Not just the traditional fish or shrimp or Chinese dishes, but as rice salad, a soup additive, or a main dish dressed up with some vegetarian chicken, onions, and mushrooms.

Spanish rice is an easy no brainer. Just make your rice and saute with your favorite salsa. I use Newman’s Own Mango Salsa. Add some warm tortillas, and what a dinner! If you are not a vegetarian, add some ground beef or Morning Star Farm Ground Beef Crumbles if you are.

Try different flavor ideas too. Curry, soy sauce, vegetables, and yes, even making your pasta salad recipe using rice instead of pasta!! Let me know how you like this, and I will also be sharing more recipes. Enjoy!

I LOVE those little roll up sandwiches!!

Whood a thunk it? Yet another use for tortillas!

Yes of all of the possibly hundreds of uses for tortillas, here are some more. This is one or those wrap, roll and slice ideas and I use it all of the time.

Spread room temp. cream cheese on a tortilla and lay thinly sliced ham to completely cover the tortilla. Sprinkle with fine grated swiss cheese. Roll up the tortilla very tightly tucking in edges as you go to make a neat roll. Wrap in plastic wrap and roll to make a tight package. Chill for several hours but not too long as the tortilla may dry. Remove from the fridge and slice into small rounds cleaning the knife every so often. These are yummy and can be served fancy on a plate with parsley or just put out on a paper plate at game time. This is also one of those recipes that can be done many different ways.

  1. Spread tortilla with butter and add scrambled eggs and shredded cheese. Follow the same procedure.
  2. Spread the tortilla with pot cheese and sprinkle with pineapple tidbits.
  3. For the kids, how about peanut butter and jelly spread and then sliced. This is a sure fire as they kiddos can help with the process.
  4. Use your imagination!

Great Days

Thanksgiving

Yes, I know that Thanksgiving is no longer politically correct, but can we not gather with loved ones and share a meal? Can we enjoy each other’s company and forgive and forget past wrongs, think about the future not the past, and just talk about anything good that we all feel? Don’t look back, you are not going that way!

Very Aptly Named Recipe

Pooh is easily tempted and so I am I!

Chocolate Temptation Cookies are very aptly named. Almost no one can resist them, myself included. I have adapted this recipe from one in the “In the Kitchen With Martha and Mary” cookbook. Hope you love it!

1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter 1 1/2 cups flour (May use whole wheat)

1/2 cup marg. Miniature peanut butter cups

1/2 cup brown sugar Mini chocolate chips if you are really

1 egg feeling decadent.

1/2 cup regular sugar

1/2 teaspoon each vanilla and salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

Cream together all ingredients down to the baking soda and flour. Add both and form into round balls. Place on a greased cookie sheet or in mini muffin cups. Bake at 375 for about 10 minutes. Just after you remove from the oven, push a little peanut butter cup down into each little cookie. Cool before removing . Enjoy!!

PS Add 1/2 a bag of mini chocolate chips if you dare!!

There are sooo many things to do with an empty pie shell. Think of it as a totally blank canvas and go from there. I think first of quiche. I make literally 10 different types of quiche with veggies, different types of cheeses, and leftovers.

Think also of fruit pies. The skies the limit on fruit pies with all different types of fruit, different toppings and so on. Think also of summer pies, I love the one you make with jello, cool whip and jello pudding. Yummy.

I am sure you could think of many more things to do with an empty pie crust. Also, one can do so much with imagination. Foods are such a pallet. Think about tastes you love and combine with other tastes you love. Also, think about all of the new fruits and veggies that are out there now.

Finally, I do not mean to be a nag, but also check out labels as you shop. We now know sooo much more about nutrition and health. Take advantage of all of this new knowledge.