Thursday, December 11, 2008

My sister-in-law (and BMCC member) shared this website with me and I HAD to spread the news!

You go onto and type in an online store you would like to do some shopping. For example I entered "Hasbro" this morning. will then list several coupon codes for that website. The first one on the list was a 25% off code. I was in the middle of ordering Santa gifts and proceeded to enter the discount code on my Hasbro order. BOOM! I got 25% off my order ($6.25 off!!!). I was so excited!

Thank you APG for that wonderful website!

Happy Shopping!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Don't Forget the Coupons

This is not necessarily food related. It could be, but I just had to share this. It's one of those "duh!" moments for me.

I don't know about you, but I tend to forgot all those great coupons I get in the mail, at HOME. Not the best place for them. Especially if I'm trying to save money and lower my expenses.
I got this great idea from a few of my mom friends at my daughters school.

Collect all your coupons from the mail and newspaper and put them all in one of the large coupons/ads that folds up. Now get one of those large binder clips and clip it all together. Now you have a neat little packet of all your coupons. You can keep them in the car (so you don't forget them) or even in your purse. 

These are my coupons for this week. I'm going to try this and see how much money I can save by actually USING my coupons.

A great big thanks to "the Cowgirl" and KF for the great idea!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

This Weeks Menu

Over the years I have changed my shopping day and the "start" of my week many times. It also depends on my husband's work schedule. Wednesday seems to be a good day to start our week these days.

Chicken with Rosemary and Lemon Salt
Green Beans
Brown Rice

Green Salad

Meatloaf (pull from freezer)
Green Salad

Chicken and Rice Casserole (bake half and freeze the other half)
Use leftover chicken from Wednesday (I put it in the freezer to make sure it would be okay.) {info. on freezing and refreezing foods} 

Dinner at Nonna and Papa's - The easiest meal of the week. : )

Grilled Cheese and fruit

Deli dinner or Left Overs


A true comfort food. This is my mom and brother's recipe. My brother came up with the recipe and my mom added the Italian Sausage.

I need to warn you,  it will make 8 to 11 loaves of meatloaf. Yes, you did read that correctly. It depends on how big you make each loaf. When I made this I made eleven 1-1/4 lb loaves. Put them in the freezer and take them out when you want an easy meal. My girls love this dinner!


6 lbs of ground beef
4 lbs Sicilian Sweet Italian Sausage (take out of casing)
Put all the meat in a very large bowl.

1 loaf cheap white bread
3 cubes (1 tbsp) beef bouillon
Mix the bouillon with 1 quart hot water in a separate bowl. Tear up the bread and mush up in the bouillon water till very mushy. Put aside.

Add to ground beef mixture:
8 eggs (beaten)
12 oz French Fried Onion Rings
1-1/2 cup or so grated Parmesan cheese
about 1 cup chopped parsley

Add the bread/bouillon mixture and combine everything really good with your hands. Make sure all is mixed thoroughly.

Take out whatever you want for tonight's dinner and freeze the rest. I divide it up into 2 pound packages in zip lock bags.

I freeform the meatloaf on a tray in a roasting pan so the fat drips to the bottom instead of soaking into the meat.

Bake 2 pounds at 350˚ F for about 1 hour, 15 minutes.

If you put some potatoes in the oven to bake at the same time, all you have to do is make a salad or vegetable and dinner is done.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Question Regarding Freezing Casseroles

Can you help one of our members? Here is her question:

I read an article about time management and it mentioned cooking  
two casseroles at once. Then freeze one for a later date. Sounds like  
a good time saver to me!

The question is, what casseroles can you freeze and for how long? I thought it was a good question for the BMCC. All of us are busy :). Sharing recipes that can be made 2 at a time with one frozen for an easy meal later on would be cool!

If you have some ideas regarding freezing casseroles, please leave a comment.

Thank you for sharing!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Find the Star in an Apple

Did you know there is a star in every apple? There is. This is something really fun to do with the kids.

Just cut an apple in half - not from top to bottom, but from side to side (as shown above). Inside is the star.

Do you do stamping art with food items? This would be one to try. I bet you would get a cool star inside a circle if you stamped this. I'm going to have to try that.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Sliders/Mini Burgers

For a long time the only way I could get my older daughter (CK) to eat a hamburger was at McDonald's. I couldn't even get my younger daughter (O) to try any hamburger - McDonald's or otherwise. Something about the ground meat. Then both girls had Papa's Whimpies last winter in Lake Tahoe. They loved them. I even made them at home.

Over the Easter break the girls had some Sliders. O could not eat them fast enough. I was amazed. CK also loved them. Just make food mini and the kids love it. Too funny.

I started to make them at home. I would just cut a regular burger into quarters. The girls still loved them, but I wanted mini buns. I just couldn't find any....until now.

I pulled a package of Hawaiian Rolls out of the freezer. They were the perfect size. They were sweet, but they worked.

At the store today, I bought some Hawaiian Savory Rolls. Perfect! I can't wait to make them this week for dinner. (This image is from Hawaiian Rolls website)

They are so easy to make and so fast. They only takes a few minutes on each side. We cooked them on the griddle pan right on the stove. It worked out perfect. We toasted the mini buns. Topped with our favorite burger toppings. Tatter Tots or French Fries and a veggie - You're set.

Thursday, October 09, 2008


It's official. I have spoiled my daughters.

My older daughter will turn 7 years old tomorrow. A few days ago I told her I would bring cupcakes to her class. I mentioned I was going to just buy them at Nob Hill. Just make life a little easier.

"You have to make them!" she tells me. What? Yep...she expects homemade cupcakes. Store bought will not be acceptable. I've bought them before for parties. I do usually make mini double chocolate muffins for her class. This year, she wanted homemade cupcakes with frosting. Okay, how can I say no. It's her birthday.

I made Chocolate Sheet Cake, from Joy of Cooking, into cupcakes. I've made this cake before. It's easy and so good. Just as easy to make it into cupcakes. It made 24 regular size cupcakes. I made Whipped Cream Frosting to top them off. The girls added sprinkles. 

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Worth Re-Posting

Michael Chiarello's Chicken Bolognese. It's our family favorite - by far! I posted the link to this recipe in 2005, but thought I would re-post it. This time with an image. I've been wanting to add images, but get caught up in making and eating the dinner and forget to take a picture.

Like I said the first time I posted this recipe. It's not a hard dish to make, but it does take time and you need to be at the stove pretty much the entire time. Which can be hard with children who don't let you cook dinner.

My suggestion is to make it on a weekend and get your husband to be your sous chef (to prep everything and your mis en place all set). That takes about 20 to 30 minutes (with no interruptions). Once your husband tastes this pasta dish he'll be happy to be your sous chef anytime you want to make it again. My husband jumps at the chance to get all my mis en place set if I tell him I'm making Chicken Bolognese. (Although he also likes doing it.)

Once your mis en place is set it will take 45 minutes to make the Chicken Bolognese sauce. I've timed it. I've got it down.

All four of us love this pasta dish! The girls even have seconds and thirds. It's so good. It's hard to stop eating it. It's even better the next day!

Substitute the ground chicken for ground beef and white wine for red. Now you've got Beef Bolognese. Also good.

I have found packaged ground chicken in the meat department with the other chicken. If your grocery store doesn't have it and you don't have a meat grinder (attachment for Kitchen Aid Mixer), just ask the butcher in your meat department. They should grind some for you.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Bean and Cheese Enchiladas

Here is a great 2 serving meal from my cousin and fellow BMCC member.

Bean and Cheese Enchiladas


2 large corn tortillas (like Mission Super Size)

1 slice fat-free cheddar cheese, cut in half

2/3 cup enchilada sauce

1/3 cup fat-free refried beans

1/4 cup shredded fat-free cheddar cheese

1/4 cup chopped onions

1 tbsp. taco sauce

1/2 tsp. taco seasoning mix, dry

Optional toppings: fat-free sour cream, chopped scallions



Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a pan sprayed with nonstick spray, cook onions over medium heat until they begin to brown (about 2 minutes). In a small dish, combine the onions with the refried beans, taco sauce, and taco seasoning. Mix well. Spray a small baking dish with nonstick spray. Heat tortillas in the microwave until slightly warm. Lay the tortillas on a clean, dry surface, and then spread about 2 tbsp. of the enchilada sauce onto each one. Place one half of the cheese slice on each tortilla. Then, evenly distribute the bean mixture into the center of each tortilla. Wrap the tortillas up tightly, and place them in the baking dish seam side down. Pour the rest of the enchilada sauce over the enchiladas. Bake in the oven for about 10 minutes (until the enchiladas are hot). Remove dish from the oven, sprinkle shredded cheese over the enchiladas, and then return it to the oven for about 5 minutes (until the cheese is nice and melty). Plate those babies and, if you like, top with some of the optional ingredients. Enjoy!


Serving Size: 1 enchilada (half of recipe) • Calories: 187  • Fat: 2g  • Sodium: 976mg Carbs: 29g  • Fiber: 4g  • Sugars: 5g  • Protein: 12g  • POINTS® value 3*


Broccoli Soup

Here is a very great sounding recipe from my cousin and fellow BMCC member. I think it would be good on a cold winter's day.

Okay after watching an episode of kitchen nightmares in which Chef Ramsey is trying to teach someone how to make proper broccoli soup I decided to give it a try...and the whole family loves it.


I take two bunches of organic broccoli

3 or 4 stalks of celery (organic always if you can find it)

one onion


Chop it all up...wash and boil in enough water to cover until soft.

Drain but make sure to save the liquid.

Puree veggies in a food processor or blender adding back some of the liquid to get a good soup consistency.

Season to taste with salt and garnish with a bit of shredded cheese on top.

We also like oyster crackers with it too....yum!


Easy Beef Stroganoff

Another great recipe from one of our members. Enjoy

Easy Beef Stroganoff

1 lb. hamburger

1 medium onion diced

1 clove garlic minced

1- 10-1/2 oz. can Cream of Mushroom Soup

1/2 Cup Sour cream

2 Tblsp. Catsup

2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

Noodles - Cooked in salted boiling water


Saute onions in a little olive oil till they are soft. Add meat and

garlic and cook till meat is done. Combine remaining ingredients

except sourcream and noodles and add to meat.  Heat through. Then mix

in sourcream and heat but do not boil.


Serve over noodles. I mix the noodles and the meat mixture all

together in the pot.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Healthy Tip

I do our school newsletter. If I need a filler I add in a "Healthy Tip of the Month." My tips come from Raising Healthy Eaters, 100 Tips for Parents by Henry Legere, M.D.

This is a great little book. It's easy and fast to read. You don't even have to read the entire book, you can just go through and read which tips sound good to you at the time. Here is one I feel very strongly about.

Tip 26 - Even if your kids are picky eaters, don’t cook separate meals.

There are many things you can do  to encourage your children to enjoy their meals, but one thing you should not do is prepare different meals for them. Your children will not allow themselves to starve, so don’t worry if they skip the occasional meal or if they just pick at some of your dishes. You’re not a waitress, and your kitchen isn’t Denny’s, so don’t feel that you have to whip up a separate meal for each of your kids. Let’s face it: most parents don’t have the time or the energy to prepare a separate meal for each member of the family, and you shouldn’t feel obliged to.

There are some things that you can do, however, to encourage your children to eat with the family. Include your kids in a weekly or monthly menu planning, but don’t allow them to engineer each meal around their one or two favorite foods. You should be aware of your children’s favorite dishes and do your best to incorporate them into your menu at least every other week. For typical meals, incorporate familiar and acceptable dishes, but keep in mind that children still need to be exposed to new types of foods. Remember, kids may reject a food more than ten times and then come to like it, so persevere.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Cooking Class in Florence, Italy

I was just watching Samantha Brown's Weekend in Florence on the Travel Channel. What a wonderful weekend trip! If I had the money, I'd book the trip right now.

When I do book the trip I would love to take a cooking class in Florence. Faith Willinger is an American who has lived in Italy for the past 25 years. She now has one day cooking classes in Florence. How wonderful is that?

There are two different classes, "Lessons in Lunch" and a full hands-on Market-to-Table session. I have no idea what the cost is. I can't find that on the website. Once my trip is planned I'll inquire about the cost.

On Faith Willinger's website there is also a recipe page. It looks like she might change the recipe. There is only one listed. It sounds delicious. I'll have to try it. She also has pages about her pantry, traveling, and photos. It's worth checking out.

Buon appetito!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Salad with Apples, Dried Cranberries and Goat Cheese

One of our BMCC members altered a Cook's Illustrated salad recipe. I've had this altered version several times at our members home. It's a very tasty salad.

One thing I also like about this salad is if your kids don't go for lettuce there are still good things in here they can pick out.

Salad with Apples, Dried Cranberries and Goat Cheese
serves 6

14 cups hearty mixed greens, washed and dried
Goat Cheese
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped coarse and toasted
1 cup dried cranberries (can also use dried cherries)
2 medium Granny Smith apples

2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon finely minced shallot
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
ground black pepper

Combine vinegar, mustard, shallot, salt, and sugar in small bowl. Whisking constantly, drizzle in oil; season to taste with pepper. Toss with greens.

Quarter and core apples and cut into 1/8 inch thick slices. Toss greens, walnuts, cranberries, apple slices, and goat cheese together.

Hint: Use less greens, apples, walnuts, cranberries and goat cheese (just enough for your family) and save the remaining vinaigrette for next time.

Polpette with Mozzarella and Tomato

...or Italian meat patties. This is something my grandmother would make when my mom was a little girl. I haven't made it in a while. It's very good.

The recipe is from The Italian Kitchen by Gabriella Mariotti.

Polpette with Mozzarella and Tomato
serves 6

1/2 slice white bread, crust removed
3 tablespoons milk
1-1/2 pounds ground beef
1 egg, beaten
2/3 cup dried break crumbs
vegetable oil, for frying
2 beefsteak or other tomatoes, sliced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
8 ounces mozzarella cheese, cut into 6 slices
6 canned anchovy fillets, drained and cut in half lengthwise (you could leave this out. we love it)
salt and ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 400˚F. Put the bread and milk into a small saucepan and heat very gently until the bread absorbs all the milk. Transfer the bread to a bowl, mash it to a pulp and let cool.

Put the ground beef in a bowl with the bread mixture, the egg and seasoning. Mix well, then shape the mixture into six patties. Sprinkle the bread crumbs onto a plate and dredge the patties, coating them thoroughly.

Heat above 1/4 inch oil in a large frying pan. Add the patties and fry for 2 minutes on each side, until brown. Transfer to a greased ovenproof dish, in a single layer.

Lay a slice of tomato on top of each patty, sprinkle with oregano and season with salt and pepper. Place a mozzarella slice on top of each. Arrange two strips of anchovy, placed in a cross, on top of each slice of cheese.

Bake for 10-15 minutes, until the cheese has melted and the patties are cooked through. Serve hot, straight from the dish.

Homemade Poptarts

Here is a fun recipe from my cousin. She had a home daycare for years so she has lots of fun recipes. This is not only fun to make with the kids, but you know what is going into them.

Homemade Poptarts

one batch of pie dough (homemade for store bought)
homemade or store bought jam

Roll out pie dough.
Cut into shapes and spread jam on them.
Leave a half inch or so around the edge without the jam.
Cover with another piece of the same size and shape dough.
Crimp the edges with a fork and poke vent holes.
Bake until the pie dough is done.
Store in a re-sealable bag.

Pumpkin Muffins

It's that time of year when I start thinking of Pumpkin Pie, Pumpkin Bread--anything pumpkin. Here is a great muffin recipe I got from my cousin, who is a BMCC member.

Pumpkin Muffins

1 box of spice cake mix
1 small can pumpkin
1/2 cup apple sauce
1/2 to 2/3 cup cinnamon chips (or 1/2 to 2/3 cup raisins)

Mix at medium speed for 2-3 minutes
Fill muffin cups.
Bake at 350˚ - mini muffins bake for 12 minutes or regular muffins for 18 minutes.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Pork Loin in the Crock Pot

Here is another recipe from the BMCC email archives. As winter approaches I know many of you like to use the crock pot. I've heard rave reviews about his recipe.

Pork Loin or Short Ribs in the Crock Pot

Just put pork loin or short ribs (no bones and very little fat) I use the leanest cuts available. I've done this dish with chicken too and it is just as good.

1 can of condensed golden mushroom soup
2 - 3 cubed peeled potatoes (you can use sweet, regular, or both)
1/2 chopped onion
baby carrots
3/4 cup water

Put all of this in a crock pot (potatoes on bottom) on low for 6-8 hours. The meat will fall apart when done. I usually serve this with green beans or peas.

If you want to make this on the stove top,  which is good too, brown the meat and onions first  and then add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour.

NOTE from another BMCC member on this recipe: Check your crock pot settings. Mine has only low and high. A dish like this = LOW 10-12 hours, HIGH 5-6 hours.

Kauai Chicken

I have two friends who have started "Functional and Fabulous Recipe Friday." I thought I would join in and take this opportunity to add all those recipes from the BMCC emails to the blog. There are so many fabulous recipes the group has shared over the years. I really want them on the blog.

Here is one of the first recipes one of our members shared way back at the beginning in 2003. I've had this dish at her house. It's wonderful. 

Kauai Chicken
An Easy Standby

8 chicken thighs

1/4 cup EACH white and brown sugar
1/3 cup soy sauce
2 Tablespoons Hoisin Sauce
1 minced garlic clove.

Coat thighs in shallow pan with half of sauce mixture, bake uncovered for 25 minutes at 400˚. Turn chicken, and remaining sauce, bake another 15 minutes.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Two Yolks in One Egg

One of our members posted this on her blog. I thought it was a good one to post here.

"Does anyone know, when baking and using eggs if you get two yolks in your egg whether that still counts as one egg or two?? I have been working through a dozen extra large "cage free brown eggs" and just about every one of them so far has had two yolks in each shell!"

First of all, WOW, that is some chicken!

Here is what I found on the web on Sounds good to me.

"A double-yolker is usually a jumbo, which is a third larger than a medium and 20% larger than a large, which most recipes are based on. If it's an old recipe, count it as one and a half, but eggs are usually added for the consistency of the whites--yolks just add color, richness, and flavor." 

Any other ideas....leave a comment.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Lowering Your Grocery Bill

Here is some tips on lowering your grocery bill that the BMCC shared in some emails in 2005. I thought it should be on the blog. I hope you are able to get some ideas.

• knowing what your family eats and what they won't.

• Certain things are cheaper at Costco, like meat, bread, eggs and milk

• Keep a food journal that tracks prices of foods you regularly eat

• One thing I practice, that I enjoy is getting the grocery store ads and going over what menu I could do with all the sale items.

• I also look at the ads to stock up on what is a good deal, like cereal or juice. (this is where  the journal comes in handy)

• I almost never buy cleaning products, paper products, or baggies or foil at the grocery store. Once a month I will go to Walmart or Target to get those. The price differences are huge

• for my weekly menu I try to have at least one dinner that leads to the next, like pork cutlets one night and fried rice the next (I use the left over pork from the day before) or BBQ chicken one night and BBQ chicken pizza the next. There are lots of meals that use small amounts of meat, like stir-fries, casseroles, pasta dishes, and soups

• A great book and website is "Miserly Moms" by Jonni McCoy. She has some great tips. (there is also a website. The link is in our favorites list to the right.)

• Another tip, I got from my single mom, is I always use cloth napkins, real plates and flatware. No paper or plastic. It's a waste of money. I can wash cloth napkins and dishes and stainless flatware. People think it's fancy, but I'm really being cheap. It's amazing what just getting rid of paper napkins will do

• Find a friend, relative or neighbor who has fruit trees. Offer to pick the fruit and take some home with you. They usually have more than they can eat. My girls LOVE doing that and then I get a bunch of free food. My mother-in-law has 2 apple trees (among other things). I make tons of apple sauce. It's so good. Better than store bought and MUCH cheaper.

• Plant a garden. You don’t need a lot of space. One or two nice size planter boxes work great. Things like tomatoes and lettuce are easy to grow and so good from the garden. Make sure you plant things your kids will want to eat. Some type of window screen on top if you have birds or critters that you need to keep out. If you have an onion or garlic that has sprouted in your kitchen, put the entire thing in the ground or in a pot. The greens will grow and you can use them to flavor all your dishes when you don't have the onion or the garlic. Also good in salad.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Freezer Tips

I thought we could all use a tip from my great aunt and uncle. They have some great freezer tips I had to post. My cousin has written about them on her blog. Read Waste Not, Want Not. on Windshield Rosary's blog.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Motivated Moms

A friend of mine, and fellow BMCC member, discovered Motivated Moms. What a find indeed MM! I printed out a sample page to try it. I have only used it today and already love it.

Motivated Moms is a chore list - for the entire year! It's great. Someone has typed me up a chore list. It includes all the little things, that I put off. You do a little cleaning each day. (What a concept. I've heard about doing this. I love that someone has made the list for me.) It's totally worth the $4 (on sale right now!). Even $8 at regular price is a deal for this great chore planner.

There are different formats. You can get a weekly list or a daily list with space for appointments, notes, and your menu. Both versions come with or without Bible Readings. You can also get either version in 8 1/2 x 11 sheets or half size sheets. I just have to figure out what format works for me and I'm ordering one!

Go to Motivated Moms and click on the "Order" button. If you want to view what the different versions look like go to the very bottom of the page and click on the sample links.

I'm so excited to get my house organized!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Nob Hill/Raleys—Getting More from Your Grocery Store

My primary grocery store is Nob Hill. I love my Nob Hill. They have the best produce, know me by name, know my girls, and go out of their way to help me find something I'm looking for.

My sister-in-law, and BMCC member, is an even bigger fan. Here is her tip:

"I am a fan of Nob Hill/Raleys and especially their “Extra” magazine.  I am on their mailing list and get coupons for free groceries every week. That’s a good deal too, but what I’m really jazzed about is their website that has 25 recipes you can make with a rotisserie chicken. BTW Their chickens are WAAY better than Safeway and are great if you can’t get the Costco one. 

And do get the Extra magazine. I can’t tell you how many recipes that have wowed my family. You have access to all the recipes online too."

Thanks GG! I've signed up for Nob Hill's email coupons! I can't wait to get extra savings. We love there rotisserie chickens too. It will be fun to try some of their recipes.

If you have a tip to share please email me or leave your tip in the comments of my entries.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Fresh Tomato-Basil Caprese Kabobs

This was the other appetizer I made for our potluck. It was easy and fun to make. Even the kids loved them.

Fresh Tomato-Basil Caprese Kabobs

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Start to Finish: 1 hour 30 minutes
Makes: 34 Kabobs

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
2/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil or lemon basil leaves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 pint red cherry tomatoes
1 pint yellow cherry tomatoes
2 medium zucchini or yellow squash, cubed
1 lb fresh mozzarella cheese, cubed
34 (6 inch) bamboo skewers
Fresh basil leaves, if desired

1 In large bowl, mix oil, lemon juice, basil, salt and pepper, using wire whisk. Add tomatoes, zucchini and cheese. Cover and refrigerate about 30 minutes.

2 Drain vegetables, reserving olive oil mixture. Thread skewers alternately with tomatoes, zucchini and cheese; top with basil leaf. Serve kabobs with reserved olive oil mixture.

When I made this the grocery store didn't have yellow cherry tomatoes. I just bought 2 pints of the red cherry tomatoes and put one cherry tomatoe at each end. 

Virtually any skewer-able vegetable will work in this recipe. Try red, green or yellow bell pepper pieces or fresh pea pods.

High Altitude (3500-6500 ft); No change

Per Kabob: Calories 60; Total Fat 4.5g; Sodium 90mg; Dietary Fiber Og

Caramelized Onion Puffs

This is a recipe I found in a Pillsbury grocery store cookbook. You know the little cookbooks at the check out stand. I love those little books. I have dozens of them.

Anyway, we had a potluck get-together with friends and I was scheduled to bring some appetizers. I didn't want to just bring chips and dip. I wanted to bring something different. Here is one of the two dishes I brought. It was very easy to make and everyone loved it.

Caramelized Onion Puffs

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Start to Finish: 50 minutes
Makes: 24 Appetizers

2 Tablespoons butter
3/4 cup coarsely chopped onion
1/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
2 eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon red pepper sauce (I used Tabasco)
3/4 cup finely shredded Cheddar cheese (3 oz)
1 can (80z) Pillsbury refrigerated crescent dinner rolls

1 Heat oven to 400˚F. Spray 24 mini muffin cups with cooking spray. In 10-inch skillet, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add 3/4 cup onion; cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium; add bell pepper. Cook 5 to 7 minutes longer, stirring occasionally, until onion is softened and golden brown. Remove from heat.

2 In medium bowl, beat eggs. Stir in sour cream, salt and pepper sauce. Stir in cooked onion and 1/4 cup of the cheese. Spoon mixture evenly into mini muffin cups.

3 Unroll dough into 1 large rectangle; press perforations and edges to seal. Using a 1-1/2 inch biscuit or cookie cutter, cut dough into small rounds. Place dough round on top of onion mixture. Top with remaining cheese.

4 Bake 10 to 15 minutes or until golden brown and set in center. Cool 5 minutes; run knife around edge of each muffin cup. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Tip: Try using Monterey Jack or mozzarella in place of the Cheddar cheese.

High Altitude (3500-6500 ft): No change

Per Appetizer: Calories 80; Total Fat 6g; Sodium 135mg; Dietary Fiber 0g

Meat and Potato Casserole

Here is a recipe one of our members (SCJ) has shared. SCJ recently joined an organic co-op (in Florida) so she ends up with a bunch of food and not much creativity. In desperation SCJ called a friend, a foodie to the core. SCJ's friend gave her an easy recipe she made that very night.

Meat and Potato Casserole

1 large Yam (peeled and sliced in 1/2 inch wheels), you can substitute sweet potatoes or carrots
2 medium Potatoes (peeled and sliced in 1/2 inch wheels)

Pile these into a baking dish, drizzle with a generous amount of olive oil, lightly salt and pepper
Bake at 400˚F for 30 minutes or until tender

While roasting the yams and potatoes, cook up a meat of your choice. I had ground turkey which I browned, drained, and set aside.

Once potatoes are tender, pull them out of oven (leave oven on), cover them with meat, pour 1 cup chicken broth over the casserole, cover with 1/2 cup cheddar cheese. Optional: add 1/2 tsp. Paprika or Chili Powder.

Bake for an additional 20 minutes.

Serve with a green veggie for a balanced meal.

Thanks SCJ for this yummy sounding recipe. I can't wait to try it.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Oatmeal Bar

We are at The Lake with friends (a fellow BMCC member, actually) and just had a wonderful breakfast—an oatmeal bar. Fun, easy, healthy....what's not to like.

All you do is make a batch of old fashioned oatmeal and set out any type of toppings you want. This is what we had:

brown sugar

What a great breakfast for a crowd. The kids loved making their own breakfast.

Friday, June 13, 2008

TorteMeyerllini Salad

This is a recipe from one of our members. I can't wait to try it. I love pasta salad and this sounds fabulous. Especially, like she says, on a hot summer night. I think I may need to try it in at the lake too! Sounds perfect.


I have made this for years for work potlucks and family functions and I get asked time and again for the recipe - it's hilariously easy and this is really good with some fresh bread on hot summer nights when you don't feel like cooking!

TorteMeyerllini Salad
Cook a family size cheese tortellini package (such as Buitoni or
Safeway Select brand) according to package instructions.
In a large bowl, combine the following with the cooked tortellini:

  • Slightly less than half a pint of halved cherry or grape tomatoes
  • 1 small can sliced black olives (drained)
  • 1 can quartered artichoke hearts (NOT the kind in marinade)
  • About 1/2 cup or more of cubed mozzarella cheese (fresh mozz if consuming salad within a few hrs of making it, otherwise it falls apart once the dressing soaks in)
  • About a cup of steamed and cooled broccoli (steaming in those new Ziplok steamer microwave bags is awesome and a huge time saver)
  • Girard's Olde World Italian dressing (to taste - usually about 1/2+ bottle)
I put everything in a large tupperware bowl with a lid, and then give it a good shake. Refrigerate until ready to use. May need to add more dressing if it has been sitting for a bit. The addition of shredded roasted chicken would be good, or diced/cubed salami.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Menu from BMCC Blog Recipes

I'm trying to get back to planning my menus. I thought I would do something a little fun to start. I pulled recipes only from the BMCC blog to make my menu this week.

Some of these will be new recipes for my family. They are ones I've been wanting to try. They come recommended from the BMCC, so I'm sure they will be a hit.

*Chicken Wings
*Broccoli Cole Slaw Salad

*Chicken with Rosemary & Lemon Salt
Green Beans
French Bread or Rolls

*Easy Enchiladas (using left over chicken from Tuesday night)
Spanish Rice
Green Salad

*Mini Shrimp Scampi & Angel Hair Pasta
Green Salad

Left Overs

*Taco Ring

Father's Day - We're having dinner with my brother and sister and their families.

* recipe from the BMCC blog

As I was planning my menu I realized we need more recipes on here. I will be going through all my old emails and adding recipes from the group. Really.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Magical & Sinfully Good Peanut Butter Cookies

My sister-in-law is in love...again. No not another man, nor a new baby, or another cat or dog. This time it's peanut butter cookies.

The recipe comes from a friend who recently shared a tasty plate with her. Here is the recipe. I can't wait to try them. Enjoy!

Peanut Butter Cookies

All you need is
2 cups of creamy peanut butter
2 cups of sugar
2 eggs

That's it!!! They are magical and sinfully good.

Bake them at 350˚ for 10 minutes and enjoy.

Ice Cream Cake

This is my sister-in-law's Ice Cream Cake. Easy, fast, yummy. What more do you want for a birthday cake?

You need about 24 ice cream sandwiches. Lay out one layer of them in a 9x13 pan. Next add your choice of caramel or chocolate fudge sauce. Then you can add anything from toasted almonds to cut up candy bars on top of the sauce. Add another layer of sandwiches and then cover the whole thing with whipped cream. You can get fancy and pipe stars or flowerettes along the edges.

Put in your freezer for a few hours of even the day before. Let thaw a tiny bit before serving for easy cutting.

Easy Enchiladas

Do you have left over chicken? Use it to make chicken enchiladas.

This is my sister’s recipe. Her husband and daughter love them. Enjoy.

Easy Enchiladas

9x13 Backing Dish
Small Soft Taco size tortilla's (both corn and flour are good)
1 can Enchilada sauce (mild Rosaria brand isn't spicy-mild is spicy with all other brands)
1 bag Mexican style pre-shredded cheese
Grease pan. Take tortilla shell fill with
pre-cooked chicken (break up into small pieces or
shred), ground beef, steak. Roll up - put in pan until
you fill pan. Open sauce pour over all the
enchiladas (doesn't have to cover perfectly)
Top with cheese. Heat in oven 20 to 25 min at 350˚ pre-heated

Corn Casserole

My step-grandmother made this for Easter dinner. Everyone loved it. We all look forward to having it again.

Corn Casserole

1 can cream style corn
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
1 cube butter, melted
1 c. sour cream
4 tbsp. chopped onions
2 large eggs
1 pkg. Jiffy Corn Bread Mix

Mix altogether and bake 45 min. at 350 degrees

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Dream Dinners are a Dream

I have not posted on this blog in so long. I'm so sorry. If anyone even reads this anymore. It's great to just look up recipes.

I have a friend who had told me about Dream Dinners about a year ago. I never got around to going. I did find one very close to me and was interested in trying it, but just never made the time. Lately, I haven't even been planning my weekly dinner menus. It's been horrible. I'm hoping to get back to that this Summer.

Anyway, I finally went to Dream Dinners and made about 10 meals. Well, 9 dinners and 1 dessert. We love them! The dinners are great. The girls have loved them and talk about easy! Oh my gosh! If you haven't heard of one of these places (there are several different companies - all the same idea) they're great. Look one up!

Basically what you do is go in or online and register for the meals you want to make. They usually will have some type of minimum they want you to purchase. For example I had to order at least 36 servings. Some meals are 3 servings some are 6 servings.

You go to the store at your scheduled day and time. Everything has been prepped and cut for you. All you do is follow the receipt and drop the ingredients in the zip-lock bags. The employees come around and clean up after you, help answer any questions and refill ingredients. Once you have a meal bagged up you put it on your shelf in the refrigerator. When you're done an employee will tell you "Go ahead and have some coffee and try our sample. I'll get all your meals into your cooler bag for you. Let me know when you are ready and I'll take it out to the car for you." Take it out to the car! Did you read that?! How fun is this?! I loved it!

It took me about an hour total. Including sitting and having my coffee and trying the dessert. YUM, BTW. I'm hooked. I'm ready to go back and make more meals. I still have several in my freezer, but when I'm low, I'm going back.