Thursday, December 22, 2011

Feel Free To Follow, Comment or Both!

By the way, if you've hopped over here from Pinterest, feel free to become a Follower of my blog or just leave a comment. I'd love the added Followers, comments, ideas, suggestions, etc. =)

Omelet In A Bag

I heard about making omelets in baggies several years ago. We made them a couple of times & then, like so many good ideas & recipes I have, I forgot about it. I was thinking about making omelets the other day & this technique came to mind again. It works great & is a wonderful way for the whole family to get to sit down to breakfast together & everyone's eggs still be hot. (Let's be honest, most of us moms have cold eggs by the time we get seated & ready to eat!) It's also great for when everyone can't agree on what add-ins they want in their omelet. With this method, each omelet is custom made for each person :) 

The idea & whole process is all over the internet (including a clip on the Rachel Ray Show, a Paula Deen version & how-to videos on several sites).  I'm recording it here for me & so that it'll be included in my collection for LiviGirl. 

Photo from Food Network  
Omelet In A Bag

2-3 eggs (depending on how hungry you are :)
salt, pepper, milk
add-ins (cheese, ham, mushrooms, veggies, onions, bacon, salsa, etc. - whatever you like in your omelet...*Note* meats should be precooked)

BRAND NAME quart size baggies. Both ZipLoc & Hefty would work fine, but many store brands are just not high enough quality or thick enough plastic to work. I prefer the kind that zip or slide shut for this recipe. 

Take a sharpie or other permanent marker & label each bag with its owner's name. Then, break 2-3 eggs in each baggie, add salt & pepper to taste & I also added a dash of milk because I usually add a dash to my scrambled eggs. It's purely a personal preference. Throw in the add-ins each person wants, seal up baggie (be sure to get the extra air out). Knead baggie to "beat" eggs & mix all the ingredients. 

*Note* I've read several places where people find the above step easier if you put the baggie in a mug or cup & roll the top down over the sides of the mug/cup while filling so that the baggie doesn't fall over. Sounds like a good idea to me!

Use a large stock pot so that the baggies can freely move about in the water. Bring water to a rolling boil. Then turn temperature down to a simmer & drop sealed (extra air removed) baggies into the boiling water. 

I've seen instructions that say boil for as little as 7 minutes & as long as 15 minutes. As a general rule, I boil 13 minutes for 2 egg omelet, 15 minutes for 3 egg omelet.  

Use tongs to lift baggies from water. Lay on a paper towel for a few seconds, then open baggie & roll omelet on to each person's plate. 

*Disclaimer* Some people have a great aversion to eating anything heated in plastic. disputes this claim here. Some schools of thought think that by simply turning down the heat & simmering the bags you can prevent the negative aspects of cooking your food in plastic. I'm of the mindset that a large percentage of us still heat in "tupperware" or "gladware" & this is really no different. In fact, IMO, it's probably much healthier than many of the restaurants we're willing to go out to & eat breakfast. Regardless, if you have a problem with cooking in plastic, then this is obviously NOT the method for you.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Cookie Balls

I'm not sure where I originally found this recipe, but you can find it at AllRecipes with close to 100 user photos so I'm thinking it's probably a family favorite for many families. =) My recipe is jotted down on a notepaper with LiviGirl's name at the top so I'm going to guess that she had something to do with the finding of this recipe. 

She & I made these several years ago. They're messy to make (think Oreo crumbs everywhere), but they are delicious & messing up the kitchen with your cooking buddy is really part of the fun, isn't it?

Cookie Balls

1# chocolate sandwich cookies, crushed (*read "Oreo" here. I think we used the double stuffed ones)
8 oz. cream cheese
1 # vanilla candy coating (I probably used white chocolate almond bark, because I've found it to be the easiest to use white chocolate coating.)

Combine crushed cookies with cream cheese. Roll into balls & dip with a fork into melted white chocolate/candy coating. Set on wax paper to cool. 

Makes about 36. 

Fluffy Hot Chocolate

I don't know about you, but this time of year I always crave hot chocolate. It's just the perfect drink for curling up & watching Christmas movies, IMO. 

Anyway, this wonderful recipe comes from an old Taste of Home sister magazine, Quick Cooking.  It's really delicious & doesn't take much longer to make than heating up water for hot chocolate in a packet. I especially love that it's made from ingredients I usually have on hand!  Enjoy! 

Fluffy Hot Chocolate

8 tsp. sugar
4 tsp baking cocoa
4 c. milk, 2%
1-1/2 cups miniature marshmallows 
1 tsp vanilla

In a saucepan, combine the 1st 4 ingredients. Cook & stir over medium heat until the marshmallows are melted, about 8 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. Ladle into mugs. 

Makes 4 servings. 

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Soup

Livi & I love broccoli cheese soup so when Toby brought a recipe home from a lady he works with for a soup with cheese, broccoli & chicken I couldn't wait to try it. Unfortunately, it was not all it was cracked up to be & I was really disappointed. 

After thinking about it for a little while, I decided to change up the recipe & see what I could come up with. The result: my own version of Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Soup. It's creamy & thick like a chowder, super easy to make & tastes wonderful!  

Cheesy Chicken Broccoli Soup

2 cans of cooked chicken breast, drained & broken into smaller pieces
1-1/2 bags of frozen broccoli
2 cans of cheddar cheese soup
3-4 cups of milk - enough to make it soup like; use more for thinner soup & less for more chowder-like soup
1/2 cup of onions (more or less depending on your family's preference for onions)
salt & pepper to taste
8 oz. cream cheese, softened & cubed

Mix everything but the cream cheese & heat over low-med. heat until warm. Stir in cream cheese & stir until melted (this may take several minutes)

Serve with crumbled bacon & shredded cheese. 
Makes about 4-5 servings. 

Monday, December 12, 2011

Cherry Delight

This recipe for Cherry Delight comes from my Aunt Beth (Dad's sister). I probably 1st had it when I was 9 or 10 yrs old. It instantly became my favorite dessert & I proceeded to request it for EVERY family gathering. Finally, when I was early in my teen years, my Aunt Beth said, "Why don't I just give you the recipe?"  (Poor lady was probably sick of making Cherry Delights!)

Cherry Delight

2 cans of cherry pie filling (I try to get the "more cherry" kinds)

9-12 Tbsp of butter melted
2 cups of crushed graham crackers
1/2 cup of sugar

Mix these together & press into the bottom of a 9x13 dish.
Place in freezer while making filling.

2 cans of sweetened condensed milk
2-8 oz blocks- Philadelphia Cream Cheese

Mix these together until smooth & then add:

1 tsp of vanilla
1/2 cup lemon juice

Continue to mix on high until well blended.  Filling will become thicker & "fluffier".

Pour the cream cheese mixture on top of the crust. 

Refrigerate overnight. Put cans of cherry pie filling in refrigerator overnight as well. The next day, pour cherry pie filling on top of cream cheese mixture. 


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Salsa Chicken

Today's recipe comes from my cousin, Sheena, and was pronounced quite possibly the "best chicken you've ever made, mom" by LiviGirl. I have to agree. This will be a family favorite from now on. Not only is it DELICIOUS, but it's super simple to make as well. 

(*I took some pics of the finished dish, but this is one of those dishes that just doesn't look that pretty even though it tastes amazing.  I didn't want to scare anyone off by what it looks like, so I decided against using the pic.)

Sheena's Salsa Chicken

1/2 oz taco seasoning mix (half of the reg. 1 oz. pkg)
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 1lb total)
1 cup salsa
1 cup shredded cheddar (I used Kroger Mexican shredded cheese)
1 Tbsp. sour cream, optional

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place taco seasoning mix & chicken in a ziplock bag & shake to coat, then place chicken in baking dish. Pour salsa over the top.

Cover with foil & bake for 20 min or until chicken is tender & cooked through.

Remove foil, sprinkle chicken with cheese & continue baking until cheese is melted, another 3-5 min. Top with sour cream.


This recipe makes 4 servings & only costs approx. $1.72 to make. I would highly recommend doubling it, because you're gonna want seconds (& leftovers)'s THAT good! 

Big "Thank You" to Sheena for giving our same ol' same ol' chicken a spicin' up! 

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Easy Enchiladas

Even though I haven't been on here in a very long time, I have been trying new recipes. I just haven't found anything that really "wow-ed" me...until this recipe. It's so easy that I nearly skipped it thinking that anything this easy would most certainly be bland & a waste of my time. I'm so glad I didn't! My family has proclaimed this their new favorite enchilada recipe. 

Easy Enchiladas
(taken from

Flour or wheat tortillas (I used wheat)
1 lb. ground beef or chicken
1 can green or red enchilada sauce (I used red)
1 pkg cream cheese
1 pkg shredded cheese (I used Kroger brand Mexican blend shredded cheese)

Melt cream cheese in microwave until very soft. Add half of can of enchilada sauce to cream cheese. Reserve remainder of enchilada sauce. 

Cook beef or chicken & add to mixture.

(The recipe calls for heating tortillas in microwave before filling. I skipped this step since the ones I had were easily rolled & going into the oven to heat up anyway. You may need to do this if your tortillas are too stiff to roll up without tearing)

Place mixture in tortillas & wrap.  Place enchiladas in baking dish. 

Pour shredded cheese & remaining sauce over top.

Bake 20 min. or until hot at 325 degrees.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

"Everything I eat has been proved by some doctor or other to be a deadly poison, and everything I don't eat has been proved to be indispensable for life. But I go marching on." ~George Bernard Shaw

I haven't "desserted" Mom's Kitchen (& yes, I know that is a bad pun - haha)...I've just been really busy & not had much new to share. Last month, I bought 3 Gooseberry Patch "Our Favorites" Cookbooks.  I'm going to try  a few new recipes from those this week & next. 

I've been on the lookout for new, EASY recipes.  Big emphasis on the "EASY" part. I don't mind to cook, but I am not into "gourmet" cooking.  I like things quick, simple & delicious. 

As I was going through the checkbook today, I noticed that we have consistently been eating out more & more.  A habit that is both costly & unhealthy. Since my classes are only 3 days/week this semester, I've let the menu planning fall to the wayside & I really need to get back to doing that.  Having the answer to "What's for dinner?" figured out, before I come home exhausted & hungry, is really the key to curbing the eating out. 

So, this week, I'm home on Spring Break & I'm going to make the effort to get us back on track.  This week menu includes:

Pork Chops 'N Gravy with mashed potatoes
Fajitas (this is a new recipe I'm trying from a Hidden Valley Ranch cookbook I have had for years)
Swiss Chicken & Stuffing (one of the Gooseberry Patch recipes from my new books that I'm trying)
Scalloped Ham & Potatoes (a crockpot recipe from another of the Gooseberry patch cookbooks I bought)
Creamy Beef Stroganoff (another crockpot recipe from that same Gooseberry Patch cookbook)
Creamy Chicken with Broccoli & Red Pepper (This is a recipe using one of the new Philadelphia Cream Cheese "Cooking Creme".  I am not usually a fan of KraftFood recipes, but we'll see.  I've been wanting to try one of the cooking cremes.)
Roast, potatoes & carrots (This is one of my faves. Toby will eat it, but Livi usually eats leftovers from a previous night. Still, I can't pass up an "on-sale" roast...after all, I AM the one doing the cooking :) 

Well, that's my "menu" for the next week or so.  I figure we'll have enough leftovers to go closer to 2 wks on this menu. I still have Brown Bag Burritos in the freezer for quick lunches & I think I'll make some salsa for snacking on.  

Last weekend at our Pampered Chef party, we made a veggie dip with mayo, sour cream & Pampered Chef Spinach & Smoky Red Pepper Dipping Seasoning. It was DELICIOUS!!! So, I think I'll make some more of it for veggie snacking this week too :) 

Monday, January 17, 2011

Brown Bag Burritos

This recipe originally came from Cris over at Goodness Gracious.  I've changed it a bit (mainly because I rarely hand grate anything :) Feel free to check out the link above for the original though! 

Brown Bag Burritos

2 lbs. ground beef, browned & drained
1/2-1 cup nacho blend shredded cheese
2 cans refried beans
1 can enchilada sauce
1/2 cup water
1/2 tsp onion powder
1 Tbsp chili powder
1 Tbsp garlic powder
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. dried oregano

20-24 flour tortillas (I use multi-grain or whole wheat tortillas)

Combine 1st 8 ingredients.  Simmer on stovetop for 20 min or can be put in microwave for 15-20 min., stirring every 5 min. 

If eating immediately, heat up tortillas & spoon 1/4 cup of mixture onto each tortilla & roll-up.  (If making for later, tortillas don't have to be heated before making each burrito.)

Wrap each burrito in a paper towel & then in aluminum foil.  Freeze.  

When you want to heat one up, remove from aluminum foil & place (leave paper towel on burrito when heating) in microwave for approx. 90 sec.  These can be removed from freezer & thawed & then heated as well.  Heat approx. 45 sec. if burrito is thawed. 

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Frosted Pecans & Cow-Patties

Lastly tonight, something for your sweet tooth...

Livi's Grandma King made these a couple of Christmases ago.  I'm not much of a nut eater, but I couldn't get enough of these.  It's not hard to make, but because it uses pecans it's not necessarily cheap to make.  However, as a once-in-a-while special's awesome!

Frosted Pecans

1-1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup sour cream
1-1/2 tsp. vanilla
1# pecans (chopped or bite-size pieces)

Mix sugar & sour cream & bring to a boil. Boil for 5 min. stirring constantly.
Remove from heat & add vanilla & pecans.  Stirring until pecans are well coated.

Spread mixture out onto wax paper to cool.  Separate after cooled. 

Cow-patties (aka No-Bake Cookies)

I grew up calling these cookies "No-Bakes" but Toby's family always calls them "Cow Patties".  Let me preface this recipe with a few things:

#1) I think most people already know how to make these.  However, since this blog is for Livi, I'm adding them to it because they are a family favorite.

#2) I can count on one hand the times that I've made these blame cookies & them set up right, but my family is use to this & still requests them...even if they have to be eaten with a spoon :)

Lastly, my father-in-law requested these cookies for Christmas this past year.  Now being a diabetic he didn't need me to make a double batch for him. However, I have come to realize something about my dear FIL:  He is not necessarily overly-impressed with my cooking or of the mindset that I am a fabulous cook, BUT he has learned that I AM the pushover in the family & have the hardest time telling him "no".  

So, when I said, "You know I can't ever get those cookies to set-up.  You'll be eating them with a spoon!"  And he replied, "I'd eat 'em through a straw if you'd just make me some. *insert sweet smile here*"...yeah, I made 'em for him.  See what I mean?  PUSHOVER :) Still, these will probably always be "his" cookies from here on out...

The recipe I use is actually from Livi's Grandma Snell (my mom).  For whatever reason the one I use to use had the ingredients added in the wrong order & NEVER set up.  This recipe does work if you boil it just right & the weather cooperates & the cookie gods are on your side that day - LOL! 

So, without further ado...the recipe: 

1 stick of butter (no substitutes)
1/2 cup milk
2 cups sugar
2 TBSP peanut butter

Heat in a saucepan.  Mix well & boil for 1 min. Remove from heat & add 1 tsp. of vanilla.

In a separate dish, combine 3 cups of quick oats & 2 TBSP of cocoa. Stir into heated mixture & drop by spoonfuls onto wax paper.  

** Pray they set up like they're suppose to :) **

Broccoli Salad

This recipe I got from Livi's Grandma King.  I always forget I have it, but it's one of our favorite salads.

Broccoli Salad

2 bunches of broccoli, cut into bite-size pieces
1# of bacon or 1 pkg of real bacon bits (no imitations here :) 
small pkg of shelled sunflower seeds
2 small onions (or to taste), chopped
1 cup of Miracle Whip
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup vinegar

Cut bacon into small pieces & fry (if not using real bacon bits)
Combine broccoli, bacon pieces, onions, sunflower seeds; toss. 
Mix Miracle Whip, sugar & vinegar. 
Pour over combined ingredients. 

Refrigerate overnight.

Slow Cooker Enchiladas

Slow Cooker Enchiladas
Picture from

1# lean ground beef 
10 (6 inch) corn tortillas, quartered (we prefer flour tortillas & they work fine too)
1 pkg taco seasoning mix
1-1/4 cups water
1 (12 oz) jar chunky salsa
1 (10.75 oz) can condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 (10.75 oz) can of condensed cream of chicken soup
4 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend

sliced black olives, optional

Crumble the ground beef into a skillet over med-high heat.  Cook & stir until evenly browned. Drain.  (Or skip this step & use ground beef that you've prepared & frozen :) 

Add taco seasoning & water to ground beef; simmer for 15 minutes over low heat.

In a medium bowl, stir together salsa & soups.  Mix in most of the cheese, reserving approx. 3/4 cup for later.

Place a layer of tortillas covering the bottom of the slow cooker.  Put a layer of the ground beef mixture over the tortillas, spoon a layer of the cheese & soup mixture over the meat.  

Repeat the layers until you run out of stuff, ending with a layer of tortillas on top.  Top with remaining cheese.  (I put the sliced black olives on top of the cheese.)

Cover & cook on high for 45 min-1 hr. or you can put it on low for 3-5 hrs.
**I haven't tried it, but I would think this could also be assembled in a casserole dish & baked in the oven too. 

**I've also seen versions of this that add green peppers, kidney beans, tomatoes & green chilies, & onion (cooked with the beef).  So the recipe can easily be tailored to suit your family's tastes. 

Soups for a Cold Winter's Day

Since it's freezing cold out there, I thought I'd add a couple great soups from Mom's Kitchen.  I actually got this recipe from my Grandma Patton. I think she found it in a magazine or newspaper insert or something. It's about as simple as soup can get &, if you're New Year's Resolution was to lose weight, you're going to love that it's also easy on the diet.  (It only has 3 WW pts. per serving - if you're a WW person)

Quick & Tasty Potato Soup

3 cans (10 oz. ea.) FF chicken broth
1 pkg. McCormick's Low Fat Country Gravy Mix
1 pkg Ore-Ida Potatoes O'Brien 

Mix together & heat through. 

Another family favorite is:

Enchilada Chicken Soup

Picture from

1 can (11 0z) condensed fiesta nacho cheese soup, undiluted
1 can (10-3/4 oz) condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
2-2/3 cups milk
1 can (10 oz) chunk white chicken, drained
1 can (10 oz) enchilada sauce (I use the red sauce)
1 can (4 oz) chopped green chilies

sour cream, optional

In a large saucepan, combine the soups, milk, chicken, enchilada sauce, & chilies; mix well.  Cook until heated through.  Garnish with sour cream, if desired.  

Serve with tortilla chips & salsa.

Catching Up

I noticed the other day that it's been a long time since I added to Mom's Kitchen. I've been so busy lately that I haven't tried out many new recipes.  I did go through some family favorites tonight though that I thought you all might enjoy.  As usual, I don't have photos of all of these yet (because I always forget to take them...shame on me!) but I will try to add pics when I make these the next time. 

Au Gratin Sausage Skillet

Picture from

1# kielbasa or polish sausage, halved & sliced into 1/2" thick slices
2 pkg. (5-1/4 oz. ea.) packged au gratin potatoes
2-1/2 cups of water
1 pkg (12-16oz) of California blend vegetables, frozen
1-3 c. shredded cheddar cheese (the amount on this depends entirely on how well your family likes cheese)

Put potatoes with contents of sauce mix & water in skillet.  Cover & cook over medium heat for 10-15 min., add sausage & recover & cook for 5-20 more min or until potatoes are almost tender. Stirring occasionally.  Add veg; cover & cook for 8-10 more min. or until potatoes & veg. are desired tenderness.  Sprinkle with cheese.  Remove from heat & let stand until cheese is melted. 

Makes 6-8 servings