Thursday, April 30, 2009

Microwave Fudge Pudding Cake

Fudge Pudding Cake (microwave!)

1 c. all purpose flour
¾ c. granulated sugar
2 Tbsp. baking cocoa
2 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
½ c. milk
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla
1 c. chopped nuts
1 c. packed brown sugar
¼ c. baking cocoa
1 ¾ c. boiling water

1. Mix flour, granulated sugar, 2 Tbsp. cocoa, baking powder, and salt in 2-quart
microwavable casserole.
2. Stir in milk, oil and vanilla. Stir in nuts. Spread evenly in casserole. Mix brown
sugar and ¼ c. coca; sprinkle over batter. Pour boiling water over batter.
3. Microwave uncovered on medium (50%) 9 minutes; rotate casserole ½ turn. Microwave
uncovered on high 5-6 minutes or until top is almost dry. Serve warm with ice cream or
whipped cream.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Stuffed French Toast

Another twist on a traditional recipe. Great for an easy dinner or breakfast in bed (*hint* Mother's Day is coming up! *hint*)

Stuffed French Toast

12 slices French bread (we just used regular and it was still good)
6 Tbsp cream cheese
¼ c. jam (any flavor)
3 eggs
½ c. skim milk
2 Tbsp. granulated sugar
Cinnamon and/or vanilla as desired

1. Spread cream cheese on one slice, jam on the other, and make 6 sandwiches.
2. Mix everything else together, dip both sides, and cook.
3. Great with syrup and powdered sugar!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Chicken Enchilada Pizza

Chicken Enchilada Pizzas

4 flour tortillas (10-inch)
1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
2 c. chopped cooked chicken breast
½ c. green salsa (red also works)
1 can (2¼ oz.) sliced ripe olives, drained
1/3 c. sour cream
1 c. shredded Monterey Jack cheese

1. Heat oven to 400, place tortillas on ungreased cookie sheet, bake about 5 minutes or
until crisp.
2. While tortillas are baking, heat oil in 10-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat.
Cook onion in oil, stirring frequently, until tender; remove from heat. Stir in chicken,
salsa and olives.
3. Spread sour cream on tortillas. Top with chicken mixture and cheese. Bake 5-6 minutes
or until cheese is melted.

I'm not really a fan of olives, so I substituted a small can of diced green chilis to add some zest!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Back in Business! Thai Chicken Pizza

Sorry for the recipe hiatus: it was finals week here and both computers bit the dust! My rented desktop had to be returned before my husband could graduate (congratulations Eric! I love you!) and my husband's laptop suddenly gave up the ghost.

NOW it's time to get back to cooking (the easy way!). I love pizza, but homemade pizza either requires a lot of work to make everything from scratch or money to buy all of the ingredients. I was so excited when I found these recipes for variety pizzas that use tortillas and other easy to find ingredients.

Thai Chicken Pizza

6 flour tortillas (10-inch)
1/2 c. peanut butter
1/4 c. soy sauce
2 Tbsp. rice vinegar
2 tsp. sugar
2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
2 c. chopped cooked chicken breast
1 lb. frozen (or canned) stir-fry vegetables, thawed and drained

1. Heat oven to 400. Place tortillas on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake about 5 minutes or
until crisp.
2. Mix peanut butter, soy sauce, vinegar, and sugar; spread over tortillas. Top each with 1/4 c.
cheese. Spread chicken and vegetables evenly over tortillas. Sprinkle with remaining
3. Bake 10 to 15 minutes or until pizzas are hot and cheese is melted.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Perfect Cream Cheese Frosting

I've been baking to drive away the stormy gray weather outside, and I stumbled across the perfect mix for cream cheese frosting.

Perfect Cream Cheese Frosting

1/2 cup butter (1 stick), room temperature
8 oz. cream cheese (1 pkg.), room temperature (I use fat free to induce less guilt!)
2-3 cups powdered sugar (depends on the humidity)
1 tsp. vanilla extract (works better if you have a clear extract or the frosting gets darker)

Mix butter and cream cheese on medium speed until very smooth (about three minutes). Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure even mixing. Add the vanilla extract and mix. Slowly add the powdered sugar. Keep adding until you get to desired sweetness.

Want to add decorative frills or writing but don't have the equipment? add a few drops of food coloring into a plastic bag, mix in frosting, and cut a tiny hole in the tip. No messy cleanup--just throw away the used bag!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Crock Pot Lasagna

Ok guys, here's a new one that I waited a LONG time to try! My husband loves lasagna but I can never make it like his mom did and it's just a lot of work....until this recipe! I found this from A Year of Crockpotting, and am seriously coveting her new cookbook.

Crock Pot Lasagna

1 box of regular lasagna noodles
1 jar of pasta sauce
ricotta cheese
1 pkg of Italian mix shredded cheese
1/4 cup water
assorted veggies (broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, mushrooms--even hard boiled eggs work great!)
optional meat

If you decide to add meat, brown 1/2 lb meat with minced onion first. Pour in entire jar of sauce with meat (don't rinse or throw away the jar!) Simmer for a few minutes. Spoon one ladle-full into the bottom of the crockpot. Top with a layer of dried noodles (you'll have to break them!). Smear on a layer of ricotta cheese. Add a layer of veggies and a handful of shredded cheese. Repeat layers until the crockpot is full! Put 1/4 cup water in the empty pasta jar and shake; pour the tomato-water over the entire mix. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4.

Check noodles an hour before serving and push them down into the water if they are getting hard or curling up.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Quick Chocolate Cake

Here's a quick single serving size cake you make in the microwave! It's not the BEST cake ever, but it's still good and extremely simple. Thanks to Linds for passing this one on.

Quick Chocolate Cake

4 Tbsp. flour
4 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. cocoa
1 Egg
3 Tbsp. milk
3 Tbsp. oil

Mix flour, sugar and cocoa in a microwavable mug. Spoon in 1 egg. Pour in milk and oil, and mix well. Put in microwave for 3 minutes on maximum power (1000watt). Wait until it stops rising (it will rise over the top of the mug!) and sets in the mug. Tip contents out of mug onto saucer and enjoy!

For an extra boost, add a Tbsp. of powdered sugar to the dry ingredients and add a handful of chocolate chips or a drizzle of chocolate syrup before cooking.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Cheesy Mostaccioli and Giveaway Winner!

This recipe was submitted by Rachael Wood--thanks for contributing! Want to send in your own favorites? shoot me an email: <>

Cheesy Mostaccioli

1 pkg mostaccioli pasta, cooked and drained
1 lb ground beef, browned and drained
1 can (10 3/4 oz) cheddar cheese soup
1 jar (26 oz) spaghetti sauce
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp Italian seasoning
3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 400. Combine cooked pasta, cooked meat, cheddar cheese soup, and spaghetti sauce. Add pepper, seasoning and 2 cups of mozzarella cheese. Mix to combine. Place in 9x13 baking dish. Sprinkle the remaining cup of mozzarella cheese on top. Bake for 25 minutes.

Rachael W. was the winner of Mary Ellen's Best of Helpful Hints books! I also have a special bonus prize for Sam B., so Sam, let me know when I can drop it off!