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Monday, April 28, 2008

Skewered Chicken

A favorite from our days in Florida, these skewers are never a disappointment!

3 med chicken breasts, skinned and boned
1/4 cup soy sauce
3 T dry white wine
2 T lemon juice
2 T cooking oil
*3/4 tsp fines herbs, crushed
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1 clove garlic
1/4 tsp onion powder
Dash pepper

Cut chicken into 1/4" by 1 1/4" strips. Thread onto 6-8 skewers. Place in 9x13 pan. Combine other ingredients and pour over chicken. Chill 2-3 hours. Drain. Grill over hot coals 3-4 minutes. 6-8 servings

*I haven't been able to locate this blend in years, so I haven't been able to include it. It still turns out well without it, but if you can find it, let me know where!!

Variation: Chicken Kabobs

I often cube the chicken and include bite-sized pieces of red and green bell peppers and pineapple chunks on the skewers. Onion, mushroom, or any other grillable addition would be fun, too. It makes for great color, as well as a fun grilling item.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Austin's Banana Bread

This is our family's all-time favorite banana bread! Austin discovered the recipe a couple years back, and I have not made another banana bread since. This loaf has great flavor, and is extremely moist. I share it with excitement!

3 or 4 ripe bananas, mashed
1/3 cup melted butter
1 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking soda
Pinch of salt
1 1/2 cup flour

No need for a mixer for this recipe. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a medium sized bowl, mix butter into the mashed bananas. Add to that the sugar, egg, and vanilla. Sprinkle the baking soda and salt over the mixture and mix in. Add the flour last. Pour mixture into a buttered* 4x8 inch loaf pan. Bake 1 hour.

*After buttering the pan, I sometimes coat it with a sprinkling of sugar, both on the buttered pan as well as on the top of the loaf. For a special treat, it sure is tasty!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Black-Bottom Banana Cream Pie

I found this recipe online, and I have to say it's not the caliber of recipe I typically like making (I've since noticed it's also on the back of the Nilla Wafer box). I'm more appreciative of a 'from-scratch' approach. However, that said, I LOVE how simple and easy it is and, believe it or not, I have had more comments and compliments on this pie than I would have ever expected. If you're in a crunch and still want to please, here's your ticket!

6 Tbs butter, melted
25 Nilla Wafers, finely crushed (about 1-1/4 cups crumbs)
2 Tbs sugar
4 squares Baker's semi-sweet baking chocolate
2 large bananas, sliced
1 pkg. (4-serving size) JELL-O vanilla flavor instant Pudding & Pie Filling
1-3/4 cups cold milk
1 cup thawed cool whip or whipped topping

MELT 1/4 cup (4 Tbsp.) of the butter; place in medium bowl. Add wafer crumbs and sugar; mix well. Remove 2 Tbsp. of the crumb mixture; set aside for later use. Press remaining crumb mixture firmly onto bottom and up side of 9-inch pie plate; set aside.

MICROWAVE chocolate and remaining 2 Tbsp. butter in microwaveable bowl on HIGH 1 min. or until butter is melted; stir until chocolate is completely melted. Drizzle evenly onto bottom of crust; top with bananas. Set aside.

PREPARE dry pudding mix with 1-3/4 cups cold milk as directed on package for pie; pour evenly over bananas. Refrigerate at least 4 hours or up to 24 hours. Top with whipped topping just before serving; sprinkle with reserved 2 Tbsp. crumb mixture. Store leftover pie in refrigerator.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Honey Buttermilk Bread

I LOVE my bread machine. I decided to use it full time for my family's bread, and have been excited by the money we have saved and the preservatives we have avoided by doing so. I haven't purchased a loaf of bread from the store since December of last year, and I don't miss it one bit. While it's fun to branch out and explore new recipes, this is the one that has become our staple. Makes a 1 1/2 pound loaf.

*1- 1/4 oz pkg yeast
3 cups bread flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup buttermilk
*3 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp butter
1/2 cup warm water

Place ingredients into the pan in the order above; select white, basic, or the closest equivalent on your machine, then press start. Before you know it, the smell of delicious homemade bread will waft throughout your home. Get your honey-butter ready!

*If using yeast that is not packaged in the 1/4 oz measurement, I have found that the equivalent of loose yeast is somewhere between 1/2 Tbsp and 1 Tbsp. You will have to play around with it for your machine.

*Sugar can be substituted for the honey, although the flavor, in my opinion, is not as good.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Kristin's Chili

Well, I just got off the phone with two more people requesting this recipe so I thought it must be worthy of being posted. This chili recipe does take longer to make and is a little more expensive than most chili so when I make it I usually double or triple the recipe so I have a couple more meals of it to freeze for a rainy day. Then I have a homemade pot of chili ready in just the time it takes to defrost and reheat. Be warned that it is very spicy.
Kristin's Chili

Mix to form paste:
2 Tbsp ancho chili powder
2 Tbsp Mexico chili powder
1 1/2 Tbsp cumin seed, toasted
2 tsp coriander
2 tsp Mexican oregano
1/2 cup water

1 onion
5 cloves garlic
4-5 jalapenos

Add chili paste to onions and saute 3 minutes more.

Brown 1 pkg bacon, save fat
2 lbs beef chuck, toss with salt and brown slightly in bacon fat, about 5 minutes. Do not cook it all the way through or it will not be as tender. It will cook in the simmer.

Add all together:
1 large can diced tomato, with juice
3 cans beans, any kind
1 can beer, opt
2 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp lime juice
Worcestershire Sauce
6 cups broth, chicken or beef
bacon and beef

Simmer two hours. Season with salt and pepper. Chill overnight. Mix 4 Tbsp corn starch and some of the broth from chili together to form paste. Add to chili, increase heat, simmer until thickened, about 10 minutes. Serve with fresh red onion, cheddar cheese, and sour cream. And Mom's corn bread of course!

*Regular oregano is fine. If you can find any two different kinds of chili powder that works best. They really do taste different because they are made from different kinds of peppers. Depending on how hot you like it, you might want to cut back on the chili powder. This is really spicy. The first couple times I made it I had to add a whole container of sour cream, another can of tomatoes, another can of beans, and another can of beef broth to tame it down and it was still hot. Next time I make it I will probably add 1 1/2 Tbsp of each chili powder, then to taste. Kellen likes it hot and said he liked it better before I made all the adjustments so we'll see. You will have to make it to the taste of your family. Also, this is a lot of beef so you could easily add a pound or so less and have enough. There was still plenty in mine after adding all the extra stuff.

Mom's Cornbread
(I think this recipe originally came from Nancy Lueck)

2 Jiffy Corn Bread Mixes
1 Jiffy White Cake Mix
3 eggs
2/3 cup whole milk
1/2 cup cold water

Mix all together. Let rest 3-4 minutes before filling cups or 9x13 pan. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes.

(The only store I can find Jiffy White Cake mix at out here is Walmart.)

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Bunny Bread with Dip in Tummy

My mom made this one time and I have always remembered it. I wanted to make it for Easter this year but didn't have the recipe. Where to do you go to find just about anything you want? Google! I typed bunny, bread, veggies into a google search and the recipe was the first thing that came up. It is easier than it looks and everyone enjoyed it!


  • 2 (1 lb.) loaves frozen bread dough, thawed
  • 2 raisins
  • 2 Sliced almonds, can sub 1 white jelly bean cut in half
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • lettuce leaves
  • ranch dip or spinach dip
  • assorted fresh vegetables
  • crackers

  • Directions

    Cut a fourth off of one loaf of dough; shape into a pear to form head.

    For body, flatten remaining portion into a 7x6" oval; place on a greased baking sheet.

    Place head above body. Make narrow cuts, about 3/4" deep, on each side of head for whiskers.

    Cut second loaf into 4 equal portions.

    For ears, shape 2 portions into 16" ropes; fold in half. Arrange ears with open ends touching head.

    Cut a third portion of dough in half; shape into a 3 1/2" oval for back paws. Cut two 1" slits on top edge for toes. Position on each side of body at bottom.

    Divide fourth portion of dough into 3 pieces. Shape two pieces into 2 1/2" balls for front paws; shape the remaining piece into two 1" balls for cheeks and one 1/2" ball for nose. Place paws on each side of body at top of body. Place cheeks and nose on face.

    Add raisins for eyes and almond for teeth. Brush dough with egg. Cover and let rise for about 30-35 minutes or til doubled. Bake at 350ยบ for 25-30 minutes til golden brown. Remove to a wire rack to cool.

    Place bread on a lettuce-lined 16x13" tray. Cut a 5x4" oval in center of body. Hollow out bread from tummy leaving a shell. Cut bread into cubes for dipping. Line hole in belly with lettuce leaves, fill with dip. Surround entire bunny with bread cubes, fresh veggies and crackers for dipping.

    I cut apart a cardboard box for a serving tray because it is hard to find anything else big enough. I baked some of the pieces seperately for the same reason (the ears and bottom paws). If you have a bigger baking sheet it would work.