Saturday, February 27, 2010

Mexican Crockpot Chicken ~ by Sarah

I actually found this recipe on a website for people with celiac disease (allergic to gluten).  I was trying to emulate the shredded chicken that Mexican restaurants make to put inside all of their shredded chicken dishes.  This is super easy and so delicious!  The first night we usually put it on tacos and the next night we do quesadillas.  You could also make taco salads, burritos, chimichangas, etc.

11/2-2 lbs. chicken breasts, trimmed
1 package taco seasoning (either original or chicken)
1 c. chicken broth
1 c. salsa or picante sauce

Spray inside of crockpot with nonstick spray.  Place whole chicken breasts in bottom.  Sprinkle taco seasoning over chicken.  Pour broth over chicken and taco seasoning.  Pour salsa on top.  Do not stir.  Cook 6 hours on low.  When the chicken is done, mix all the contents together and use two forks to shred the chicken.

Restaurant-Style Salsa ~ by Sarah

This is another Pioneer Woman recipe.  Get over it, Molly.  Yes, I'm her stalker.  But I like her recipes.  The ingredients aren't weird, the recipes are usually pretty simple, and they usually involve lots of butter.

This salsa was SUPER easy to make and is delicious.  My favorite part?  No chopping tons and tons of tomatoes!

**EDIT 4/24/2010--Wes and I ate at Casa el Mirador tonight.  We have always loved their salsa.  Tonight we decided that this salsa is way better.  We've been eating gallons of the stuff since I posted this recipe!

1 can (28 ounce) whole tomatoes, undrained
2 cans (10 ounce) Rotel (diced tomatoes and green chilies) *Note--you'd think these would be in the Mexican aisle, but at Fred Meyer they're in the tomato aisle. 
1/4 c. chopped onion (Do you have a Vidalia Chop Wizard?  If you don't, get one.  It will change your chopping life!)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 whole jalapeno, quartered and sliced thinly
1/4 t. sugar
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. ground cumin
1/2-1 c. cilantro (depending on your love for the stuff)
the juice of 1/2 large or 1 small lime

Combine all the ingredients in a food processor or blender.  Pulse until you get the salsa to the consistency you like--about 10 to 15 pulses.  Test seasonings with a tortilla chip and adjust as necessary.  (You might think it needs a little more salt.)  Refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.

Golden Mushroom Pork Chops ~ by Sarah

I found this recipe on, then tweaked it quite a bit.  It was delicious!  Wes, being the meat and potatoes guy that he is, could not get enough of it.  I served it with mashed potatoes (from a box) and green beans.  The soup made for excellent gravy on the potatoes!

3-4 pork chops (I usually buy bone-in pork chops, but these boneless sirloins were on sale, so that's what I used)
2 cans golden mushroom soup
1/2 can water
1/2 can heavy cream or whole milk
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 package sliced fresh mushrooms
2 T. butter
garlic salt, seasoned salt, pepper to taste

Brown all sides of pork chops.  Season them well with garlic salt, seasoned salt, and pepper.  They don't need to be cooked throughout, just browned on the outside.

In a large skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat.  Add garlic and mushrooms and saute until mushrooms shrink up in size.  You'll hardly be able to stand how good it smells!

Reduce heat to medium-low.  Add mushroom soup, 1/2 soup can water, and 1/2 soup can cream or milk and mix well.  Place pork chops in skillet and cover them with liquid.  Put the lid on and simmer until chops are done.  (This will vary depending on their thickness.)



Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Beef 'n Bean Enchiladas ~ by Sarah

I've had this recipe for years.  I got it from Wes's mom back when I was in college in La Grande and living with my cousin, Casey.  He'd beg me to make these all the time.  They were his favorite, by far.  Wes also loves them and begs for them often, too!  As a bonus...they're easy!

1 lb. ground beef
1 med. onion, chopped
1 large can refried beans (any variety, but I always get "traditional")
1/2 bottle taco sauce (I get mild because I'm a wimp)
2 cans sliced olives
2 cans enchilada sauce (again, I get mild, but you can get what suits your taste)
10 large flour tortillas
2 c. shredded cheddar cheese

Brown ground beef and cook onion together in a large skillet.  Add beans and mix well.  (As they heat they will "melt" into the beef.)  Add taco sauce, 1 1/2 cans of olives, and about 1/4 cup enchilada sauce.
Mix well and simmer until heated throughout.
Meanwhile, heat enchilada sauce in a saucepan.  Pour half of it into a 9x13-inch pan.  Roll up beef mixture in tortillas and place in pan.
Top with the other half of the enchilada sauce, cheese, and 1/2 can olives.  Bake at 375 for about 25 minutes.  It does have a tendency to boil over, so I always put the pan on a cookie sheet with sides to protect the bottom of my oven.
I always serve it with Mexican-style Rice-A-Roni and corn.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Cheese Biscuits ~ by Sarah

Last summer, our neighbor girl brought these biscuits over to show off her cooking.  I ate them all and promptly sent her back across the street for the recipe.  They're easy and delicious!

2 c. flour
1 1/2 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
1/4 cup chilled shortening (I use white Crisco)
1/2 c. shredded sharp cheddar cheese
3/4 c. milk
1/4 c. butter, melted

Mix the flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl.  Cut in the shortening and cheddar cheese until crumbly.  Add the milk and stir to incorporate.  Drop by rounded spoonfuls onto an ungreased baking sheet.  Bake at 450 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown.  Brush with melted butter and serve immediately.

Makes 6 to 8 large biscuits or 12 small biscuits.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Asparagus ~ by Kelsey

I could eat these until I make myself sick!  I love them!

olive oil

Wash the asparagus and snap off the woody ends.  Put a tiny bit of oil in a large frying pan and cook the asparagus on medium heat.  Sprinkle with salt.  Cook until they are as done as you like them.  I like them to get a little brown.

Pork Chop Rice Casserole ~ by Kelsey

Last week the Wasco Market had assorted pork chops for only 99 cents per pound.  We bought a few packages, so we had pork chops again last night.  I got this recipe from Mom.  I still prefer to cook them in the crock pot because they come out so tender, but this recipe is good for a little variety.

pork chops
one package of dry onion soup
1 cup of uncooked rice, NOT quick-cooking rice
1 can of mushrooms

Brown the pork chops and season as desired.  Put the rice in a 9 X 13 pan.  It won't look like much rice, but it grows!  Sprinkle the onion soup on top of the rice.  Open the mushrooms, drain the juice into a measuring cup.  Spread the mushrooms on top of the rice.  Add enough water to the mushroom juice to make 2 1/2 cups of liquid.  Pour it on the rice.  Place the chops on the rice.  Cover with tin foil.  Bake at 350 for 45 minutes to an hour.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Twice-Baked Potatoes ~ by Sarah

I made these (from my Pioneer Woman cookbook) the other night and they were delish!  Add them to the "very fattening" section of your recipe book!  The recipe makes a huge portion (16 potato halves), so I halved it and we still had some serious leftovers.  (One half is definitely filling.)

8 baking potatoes, scrubbed clean
canola or vegetable oil
8 slices thick-cut bacon, fried
1/2 pound (two sticks) butter, cut into slices
1 c. sour cream
1/2 c. milk
pepper, garlic salt, and seasoned salt, to taste
2 c. grated sharp cheddar cheese
2 green onions, sliced

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  With a paper towel, rub the outside of the potatoes with canola oil.  Place the potatoes on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes, or until the potatoes are cooked inside and the skins are slightly crisp.  Turn the oven down to 300 degrees.  Dice the fried bacon into bits.  Throw the butter, sour cream, bacon, milk, salt, and pepper into a large bowl.  While the potatoes are still hot, hold each potato in a towel and cut in half lengthwise.  With a large spoon, scrape out the insides into the bowl with the other ingredients.  Repeat until all the potatoes have been scraped.  Reserve the potato shells on a large baking sheet.  Use a potato masher to mix the ingredients together.  Stir in 1 cup of the grated cheese.  Slice the green onions.  Add them to the bowl.  Stir, taste, and adjust the seasonings as necessary.  Fill each potato half with the potato mixture and return to the baking sheet.  Top with the remaining cup of grated cheese.  Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the potatoes are hot.

I know it sounds like they're a lot of work, but they're really not.  And they are worth the effort!

Pudding Poke Cake ~ by Kelsey

I got this recipe from  I really like that recipe website. Anyway, I decided to try it for Grace's tea party birthday party yesterday. I used a white cake mix and I made it in two round cake pans, and coated it in whipped cream. It was really good!


  • 1 (18.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix
  • 2 (3.9 ounce) packages instant chocolate pudding mix
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 4 cups milk


  1. Prepare and bake cake mix according to package directions for one 9x13 inch cake. Remove cake from oven. Poke holes at once down through cake to pan with the round handle of a wooden spoon. Holes should be at 1 inch intervals.
  2. Combine the pudding mix with the confectioners' sugar and gradually stir in the milk. Beat with an electric mixer at low speed for not more than 1 minute. Do not over beat. Quickly, before pudding thickens, pour about 1/2 of the thin pudding evenly over the warm cake and into the holes. (This will make the stripes in the cake.) Allow the remaining pudding to thicken slightly then spoon over the top, and spread to frost the top of the cake. Chill for at least 1 hour before serving. Store leftovers in the refrigerator.


  • Yellow cake or white cake with butterscotch, pistachio, banana, coconut or vanilla pudding. Chocolate cake with chocolate, vanilla, or coconut pudding.  

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Miniature Cherry Cheesecakes ~ by Sarah

Wes doesn't like sweets (ridiculous, I know), but he does have a weakness for cherry cheesecake.  Since today is Valentine's Day, I'm cooking him a meat and potatoes meal (literally), but I wanted some sort of yummy dessert for him.  I found this recipe on Tasty Kitchen.  This is a website run by Pioneer Woman with recipes submitted by subscribers.  Audrey and I "tested" one after we made them today and they're delicious!  And so cute!

1 1/4 c. graham cracker crumbs (It takes about one whole package of crushed crackers to get this amount.  I put the crackers in a Ziploc bag, then rolled over them with a rolling pin to crush them.)
3 T. sugar
1/3 c. butter, melted

16 oz. cream cheese
1/2 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 t. vanilla
1 can (about 20 oz.) cherry topping (or any other fruit filling of your choice)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line 1 1/2 muffin tins (18 spaces) with cupcake liners.  Mix graham crackers, sugar, and melted butter.  Press a spoonful into each cupcake liner and press firmly to the bottom.

Beat cream cheese, sugar, eggs, and vanilla until thick and creamy.  Spoon mixture onto graham cracker crust, filling about 3/4 full.  Bake for 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out mostly clean.  The tops will round out and crack and that's when you know they're done.  (Note: It took mine another 10 minutes or so to cook after my 15-minute buzzer went off!)

Let them cool, then add cherry filling to the top.  These are best when served cold.

Sour Cream Drop Biscuits ~ by Kelsey

I make these a lot.  They are easy to make and good to eat!  I got this from my Pillsbury cook book.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup shortening (or butter if, like me, you are out of shortening)
2/3 cup milk
2/3 cup sour cream

Heat oven to 450 degrees.  Grease cookie sheet.  In medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.  Mix well.  With fork, cut in shortening until mixture is crumbly.  In small bowl, combine milk and sour cream.  Blend well.  Add all at once to to flour mixture.  Stir just until dry ingredients are moistened.  Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto greased cookie sheet.  Bake at 450 for 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown.  Serve warm.  This recipe makes about 12 biscuits with 150 calories each.

Pork Chops in the Slow-Cooker ~ by Kelsey

This is another frequent dinner at our house.  It's easy, it smells good, and the kids love it.

Pork chops (assorted, bone-in, loin chops, whatever you like)
Cream of mushroom soup
Seasonings of your choice (I use garlic powder or whatever special seasonings we have at the time)

Lightly brown the pork on both sides in a frying pan, using the seasonings you like.  Put the soup in the slow cooker, add a can of water.  Put the pork in the slow cooker.  Cook on low for about five hours.  It can be difficult to get the meat out of the cooker in one piece because it will be falling apart.

Bacon Wrapped Lit'l Smokies ~ by Jessie

Ok, so this is a recipe in which not a single ingredient can be classified as 'healthy' (my favorite kind of recipe). It's basically pork wrapped pork (or pork & turkey or beef, depending on your preference) with sugar sprinkled on top. I, like most people I know, think almost anything can be improved by wrapping it in bacon, and that's exactly how these little smokies (or lil or lit'l or however it's spelled) are prepared.

At this point I have no pictures, but next time I make them I will take some, as they deserve to be documented on all their porky, sugary glory. Enjoy and keep an aspirin nearby in case of a heart attack.

1 pkg lit'l smokies
1 pkg bacon (NOT thick sliced, it will be soggy and unappetizing)
brown sugar

Cut the bacon into thirds (lengthwise obviously), wrap each lit'l smokie with a piece, and secure bacon with a toothpick. Place bundle of goodness on rimmed baking sheet. Continue until you run out of smokies or bacon, which ever comes first. Sprinkle each bundle with a healthy amount (about 1tsp) of brown sugar, leaving sort of a pile on top. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 40 to 50 minutes, or until bacon is fully cooked.

They're a delicious little appetizer and my favorites are the ones that have a big mound of crusty sugar on top.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Chicken Enchiladas with Green Chili Cream Sauce ~ by Aunt D'Lynn

Our family got this recipe at the 1994 Striker Family Reunion. Heidi Klindworth brought two trays of this dish to the reunion and stuck them in the fridge. Being the hungry sort that our family is, they got heated up and eaten before the reunion really even started! Thanks for the excellent recipe Cousin Heidi!

4 Large chicken breasts, thawed and cut into strips
1 C Sour Cream
10-12 flour tortillas
1 lb of grated cheddar/colby cheese
1 small can of diced green fire-roasted chilies
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 tsp of diced garlic
1 small can of sliced black olives
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
2 TB of butter
2 TB of olive oil
1 bunch of green onions, chopped
salt and pepper to taste

In a large saute pan, melt butter with olive oil, yellow onion, and green chilies. Add chicken and saute over low/med heat until chicken is cooked through. Salt and pepper strips lightly.

Add 1/2 lb of cheese, the cans of chicken and mushroom, and sour cream. Mix until all ingredients are incorporated and creamy. Add olives.

Fill each flour tortilla with mixture and create wraps. Place in a baking dish. Once dish is filled, use the left over sauce and pour over the wraps. Place foil over the baking dish.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and add a layer of cheese over the top. Place dish back into the oven for 10 minutes. Remove and enjoy!

Grape Salad ~ by Kelsey

I think I got this idea from my Aunt Janet, but it's been so long I can't really remember.

Grapes (I like purple, and NOT organic)
Sour Cream
Brown Sugar

Wash the grapes and put them in a bowl.  Mix some sour cream with a little brown sugar.  It is up to you how much to use.  I like mine fairly coated, but you could use less if you are trying to cut calories.  Mix the sour cream and brown sugar gently into the grapes.  Refrigerate.  The kids and I love these!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Rosemary Butter Rolls ~ by Sarah

Let's just get it over with.  Yes, this is another Pioneer Woman recipe.  Yes, I'm obsessed.

I've made these rolls a couple of times.  The first time my dough was expired.  (I didn't realize it until after they never rose properly.  I cooked them anyway and they were delicious.)  I made them again tonight with dough that actually had live yeast.  Let's just say I could make myself sick eating them.

a cast-iron skillet (not an ingredient, but necessary to make them look cool!)
frozen yeast rolls (I buy the Rhodes brand)
melted butter
fresh, chopped rosemary
coarse sea salt (but I used fine sea salt because that's what I had)

Spray cast-iron skillet with cooking spray.  Place rolls an inch or so apart around skillet.  Spray saran wrap with cooking spray and cover the skillet tightly.  Place skillet in a non-drafty area in your house until they are at least doubled in size, light, and fluffy.  (I put them by my wood stove that was just warm, not hot, and it took about 3 1/2 hours for them to rise.)

Brush each roll very lightly with melted butter (they're delicate, so be careful!).  Sprinkle chopped rosemary on top.  Brush with a little more melted butter.  Sprinkle sea salt on each roll.

Bake at 400 degrees for about 15-20 minutes until they're nice and golden on top.  Um, yum.  I ate four.  And I would have eaten five, but my guilt started to get to me.  And now, three hours later, I'm dying of thirst from all the salt.  Seriously, these are good.

Beef Stroganoff ~ by Sarah

This recipe is a combination of what Mom has always done and some things I've added and changed over the past few years when I've made it.  Wes could eat gallons of this stuff!

2-3 lbs. beef (like petite sirloin, round steak, London broil, etc.), trimmed and cut into strips
olive oil
1-2 cloves of garlic, diced
1 can beef broth
Worcestershire sauce
garlic salt, seasoned salt, pepper to taste
1 medium package wide egg noodles
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
8 oz. sour cream
2 T. butter
1 package fresh mushrooms, sliced
fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley (you can use dried parsley flakes in a pinch)

Heat a large skillet with olive oil over medium-high heat.  Add garlic, beef, and desired seasonings.  Cook just until beef is no longer pink on the outside.

Add the can of beef broth and a few good dashes of Worcestershire sauce to the beef.  Mix well, cover pan, and simmer for at least 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.  (Tougher cuts of beef like round steak may need a longer simmer time.  You want the meat to easily cut with a fork.)  Meanwhile, cook egg noodles according to package directions and set aside.  When meat is tender, add the two cans of soup and the sour cream to the pan and mix well.  Simmer over low heat until heated well throughout.

Meanwhile, saute mushrooms in butter until tender.  Chop parsley into small pieces.  Add noodles, mushrooms, and parsley to the beef and soup mixture.

Mix well and allow to simmer over low heat for a few minutes until heated uniformly.  Enjoy!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Fruit Salad ~ by Sarah

I got this recipe for a simple, refreshing, delicious fruit salad when I was at a baby shower for my friend, Miriah. Even though every single food item at the shower was delicious, we all kept heading back into the kitchen to fill our plates back up with this. As soon as strawberries are somewhat in season, this is in my fridge a lot!  As a bonus, I make it with Splenda, not sugar, so it's sugar-free!

Here's what you need:
2 green apples (I like Granny Smith)
2 red apples (I like pink lady)
a carton of strawberries
two ripe pears (peeled)
one lemon
one packet of Splenda sugar substitute

Start by quartering the strawberries into a medium-sized bowl.  Next, cut the apples into bite-sized pieces and add to the bowl.  (Don't peel them.)  I use my apple slicing gizmo to get nice, uniform slices and then I dice the slices.  Peel the pears and the cut them into bite-sized pieces (I also use my apple slicer with them).

Next is the secret ingredient that makes people think I'm weird when they see me doing it, but, believe me, it's what makes this salad so good.  Zest the peel of the lime into the bowl.  I don't have a zester, so I use the small holes on my cheese grater and it works great.  If you don't have a small-holed cheese grater, I have used a paring knife with success when in a pinch.

Next, cut the lime in half and squeeze the juice from both halves into the bowl.  Add the packet of Splenda and mix well.  Taste it.  If it seems too sour, add another packet of Splenda.  I like mine kind of tart, so one is always enough for me.

She loves it.  Gavin spits it out and makes a sour face.

*Note:  This does not keep more than a day or two in the fridge (especially the pears--they get very mushy).  If you're not going to eat it all in a day or two, you can lessen the amount by using just one pear, one red apple, and one green apple.  (I still use all the strawberries, lime, and Splenda.)

Mexican Layer Dip ~ by Sarah

This is delicious and, you guessed it, it's another Pioneer Woman recipe.  Wes was hesitant to let me make it for the Super Bowl party he was going to.  (He wanted the traditional 7-layer dip I normally make.)  When I told him it was a PW recipe he said, "Make it.  She hasn't let me down yet."

1 can refried beans (any variety)
Tabasco sauce, to taste
1 small can diced green chilies (undrained)
ground cumin (to taste)
3/4 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup sour cream
1 cup guacamole
3/4 cup grated Monterey Jack cheese
1 can black olives, drained
1 cup pico de gallo
1 diced jalapeno (optional)

Begin by throwing the refried beans into a small pan over medium-low heat.  Add several dashes of Tabasco sauce and can of chilies.  Stir well.  Next, sprinkle a little bit of ground cumin.  Spread the beans on the bottom of a glass bowl or platter.  Over this, sprinkle the sharp cheddar.  Next, plop your sour cream and spread it in a single layer, being careful not to disturb the cheese underneath.  The next layer is the guacamole.  (To make guacamole, all I did was mash two avocados and mix in some of the pico de gallo I had made.)  Spread it over the sour cream.  Follow this with a layer of Monterey Jack cheese and a nice sprinkling of chopped black olives.  Lastly, place a generous layer of pico de gallo.  You can also sprinkle some chopped jalapenos over the top, if desired.



Egg In The Middle ~ by Grace

Punch a hole in a piece of bread.  Turn the stove to Medium.  Put the bread in the pan.  Crack an egg in  the hole of the bread.  Let it  cook for a wile.  Flip  it over.  Ad some salt.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Sour Cream Pancakes ~ by Sarah

These are by far the best pancakes I've ever had. (Another Pioneer Woman recipe that has not failed to deliver!)  Seriously, these are delicious.  They almost remind me of a crepe, but thicker.  Make them, make them, make them!

1 c. sour cream
7 T. all-purpose flour
1 T. sugar
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
2 large eggs
1/2 t. vanilla extract

Place an iron skillet or griddle over medium-low heat.  You want to get it nice and hot.  (I used an electric griddle set to about 350 degrees.)  Place the sour cream in a medium bowl.  Dump in the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt.  Stir together very, very gently.  Stop short of the mixture being totally combined so that the pancakes have an interesting texture.  Whisk the eggs in a separate bowl.  Add the vanilla to the eggs and stir to combine.  Pour the egg mixture into the sour cream/flour mixture.  Stir together gently.  Don't worry about the mixture being totally combined; a little white and yellow swirling is fine.  Melt about a tablespoon of butter in the skillet (I sprayed my griddle with Pam to spare me some calories).  Pour the batter onto the skillet 1/4 cup at a time.  Cook for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes, then flip the pancakes over.  Cook for another 45 seconds and remove to a plate.  Top with butter and syrup as desired.

This recipe only made 7 4-inch pancakes, so if you have hearty appetites or a crowd, you'll probably want to double it.

Notice the lumps--they make them even better!



Friday, February 5, 2010

Chicken-Broccoli Casserole ~ by Sarah

This recipe has been Mom's church potluck staple for years.  It's creamy and delicious and a meal in itself!

3-4 cooked and cubed chicken breasts (I boiled mine)
1 onion, chopped
3 t. butter, divided
2 10-oz. packages frozen chopped broccoli
1 can cream of chicken soup
2/3 c. mayonnaise
1/3 c. evaporated milk
1 t. lemon juice
1 1/2 c. cheddar cheese, grated
2 c. dried bread crumbs (I bought dressing crumbs in the bread aisle)
garlic salt, seasoned salt, pepper to taste

Saute onion in 2 t. butter.  Combine soup, mayonnaise, evaporated milk, and lemon juice.  Add onion.  Layer chicken, then broccoli, then soup mix in 13x9-inch pan.  Top with cheese.  Saute bread crumbs in 1 t. butter, then spread on top of cheese.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 35 minutes--until cheese is bubbly. 

It smells so delicious when it's cooking!  Your family will become impatient!



Thursday, February 4, 2010

Buckaroo Cake ~ by Sarah

I got this recipe from Aunt Cheryl, but I have seen very similar recipes for this cake that go by the names "Crazy Cake" and "What Cake".  I don't know what's "crazy" about it--maybe the fact that it doesn't have any eggs?

The recipe for the frosting came from

3 c. flour
2 c. sugar
3 T. cocoa
2 t. baking soda
1 t. salt
2 T. vinegar
Almost 1 c. vegetable oil (see directions)
2 c. water
2 T. vanilla
1 c. walnuts (optional)

Combine flour, sugar, cocoa, soda, and salt in mixing bowl.  In a 1-cup measuring cup, put vinegar, then fill measuring cup to full with salad oil.  Add to flour mixture.  Add water and vanilla.  Mix well.  Stir in walnuts, if desired (they are never desired in my life!).

Pour into a greased 9x13-inch pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.


2 3/4 c. powdered sugar
6 T. cocoa powder
6 T. butter
5 T. evaporated milk
1 t. vanilla

In a medium bowl, sift together powdered sugar and cocoa powder and set aside.

In a mixing bowl, cream butter until smooth, then gradually beat in sugar mixture alternately with milk.  Blend in vanilla.  Beat until light and fluffy.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Zucchini, Yellow Squash, and Onions ~ by Kelsey

This is something we have literally EVERY night in the late summer.  We have so much zucchini from our garden that it's our regular side dish for months.  I recently noticed that you can actually buy zucchini in the winter at the store!  Ha ha!  Right next to it are some lovely-looking yellow squash.  Since I am longing for any reminder of summer, I decided to make this last night.

Yellow Squash
Sweet Onions (I LOVE Walla Walla Sweets, but unfortunately this time of year I have to settle for other sweet varieties.)

Put just a tiny bit of olive oil in a pan over med-low heat.  Wash the produce and slice it.  Put it all in the pan and stir frequently, until the veggies are tender.

Scalloped Potatoes with Ham ~ by Kelsey

We always have this the day after we have a spiral ham.  I love it!

Potatoes (I prefer Red or Yukon Gold)
Cream of Mushroom Soup
Cheddar Cheese, shredded

Grease a baking dish.  Slice the potatoes and layer them in the bottom.  Put a layer of ham over the potatoes.  Mix the soup, about 1/2 cup of milk, and some cheddar cheese in a bowl.  Spread about half of it over the ham.  Layer the potatoes and ham again.  Spread the rest of the soup mixture on top.  Cook at about 375 degrees.  The time varies depending on how thick you cut the potatoes, it usually takes at least 45 minutes though.  Test the potatoes, when they are soft, it's done!