Tuesday, December 16, 2008

M and M Cookies

I searched high and low for a good M&M recipe. I like this one because there is a little crunch, but also a lot of chew. Hubby enjoys dipping them in his hot tea :)

M&M Cookies

1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 cup shortening (I did 1/2 cup shortening and 1/2 cup softened butter)
2 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups M&M's

In a large bowl, mix sugar, eggs, shortening, and vanilla thoroughly. Add flour, salt, and baking soad to creamed mixture. Blend well. Add 3/4 cup of M&M candies.

Drop dough by teaspoonful onto cookie sheet. Slightly push a few candies on top of each dough ball with remaining candies (optional) or just add them all into the batter.

Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 9 to 11 mins, to your liking.


Monday, December 15, 2008

Delicious Gobs

Growing up in South Central Pennsylvania...well, sorta....western too (insert proud smile) was quite quiet and fairly peaceful, and good recipes were easy to come by! My family, both sides, knew how to cook and bake!

With all the great food, there is one thing that will always remember and cherish from my childhood and adulthood. They are called Gobs (click on here). They were orginated by the Pennsylvania Dutch. Most people know them as whoopie pies, but believe me they are NOT the same. Whoopie Pies are made with marshmallow creme and Gobs are made with a yummy icing. The moister the Gob the better.

I have had several recipes over the years and it is just a matter of opinion of what you like best.

I have found that my hubby's Grandmother had found one of the best recipes. I will post it below. They are DELICIOUS and moist.

My grandfather also has a delicious recipe for them as well....I will have to track that one down or my mom will have to post it cuz I know she has it to share.



2 cup sugar
1/2 cup shortening
1 egg and 1 egg yolk (cream) save the egg white
1 cup sour milk
1 tsp of baking soda in 1 cup boiling water

Mix together and add dry ingredients:

4 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 Cup cocoa

Mix together and drop by the teaspoons (like cookies) on a baking sheet. I used parchment paper to keep them from sticking. Bake them for about 8-10 mins or until your liking at 375 degrees F. Becareful to not overbake them.

As they are baking, make filling.


1. Beat 1 egg white with pinch of salt
2. Add to 1 cup sugar, 3/4 cup canned condensed milk, 1 cup shortening, and 2 tsp. vanilla.
3. Beat until smooth
4. Spread filling between the cookies.
5. Then wrap them individually with plastic wrap.

They freeze wonderfully!!

I hope you enjoy these! They are delightful!
Have you ever had one?? What did you think??

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Christmas Creations

On Saturday night my friend Mary came over so we could work on DIY Christmas creations.

Sidenote: Awhile back my Mom came down to visit me and she brought a project for us to make. After posting our project on my Everyday Life with a Smile blog, many of my friends wanted the directions to make one. So, I passed it along and people fell in love with its simplicity and class. Because of all the people Mary needed to show her appreciation for this holiday season, she decided to make lots of these with different words/phrases on them. She worked on the fabulous wrapped blocks as seen here......

And I worked on some glass containers (purchased at Michaels craft store for $3.99 a piece for the circular and $4.99 for the square). I decorated them with patterned and plain cardstock, CTMH stamp (All Decked Out), a $1.00 stamp from Michaels, Creative Memory punches, and other doo dads :) I am filling each of the glass containers with Gobs (recipe will be posted at a later date), candy buckeyes (my mom posted below this one), and/or M&M cookies for people my husband works with, Noah's bus driver, and the Postman (I heart him). I hope they love them as much as I do!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Candy Buckeyes

Cream together the following:

1 - 18 oz jar of peanut butter
1 stick of butter
1 T vanilla

Blend in 1 lb of powered sugar. Mix well and form into balls the size of a buckeye.

Mix in saucepan on very low heat the following:

1 - 12 oz pkg. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 rectangle of paroffin wax (you can buy this at the grocery store and it's perfectly fine to eat)

Dip the balls into chocolate mix to coat leaving a small space amount uncovered. I use a toothpick to dip them and cover the small hole in the top when finished.
To make dipping easier, put the balls in the freezer for 20 min. before dipping.

About Buckeyes
The Buckeye – You may have had one these chocolate-lover's treat, but have you ever wondered where it got its name? This unique snack has a history just as rich as its flavor.
Candy buckeyes are named after the shiny, dark nuts of the Buckeye Tree – the official state tree for Ohio. The state's original settlers found it to be an unfamiliar tree in the forest, and adopted it as a symbol of Ohio heritage. These pioneers carved the soft buckeye wood into troughs, platters and even cradles. Today, buckeye trees are prominent in the Ohio River Valley, and are known for being resilient and hearty.
The nuts of the tree, which are actually mildly toxic, were given their name because of their resemblance to the eyes of white-tailed deer. Folk wisdom says that carrying a buckeye nut in your pocket brings good luck (but you might not want to try that with the candy variety).

From Your Mother

Monday, November 3, 2008

Menu Plan for November 1-8

This is week is going to be an easy one! I love LOVE easy weeks and recipes. Thanks to the Schwan man stopping in on Saturday, we have chicken for the week! :) Here is the weekly plan!

Sunday: Honey Dijon Salmon, wild rice, and peas

Monday: BBQ Chicken on the grill (nice weather), grilled potatoes, and corn

Tuesday: Spaghetti and garlic bread

Wednesday: Grandma's fried/baked chicken, mashed potatoes & gravy, and corn

Thursday: Basil Pork Chops (below), scalloped potatoes, and peas

Friday: Out (somewhere with a coupon of course)

Saturday: Football game with friends

Basil Pork Chops
You gotta try these! They are so flavorful and fast! Give them a try...SERIOUSLY!

What you need:
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
4 boneless pork loin chops (1/2 inch thick and 4 oz each)

What to do:

In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, basil, salt, and chili powder. Gradually stir in 1 tablespoon oil until crumbly. Rub over both sides of pork chops.

In a large skillet, cook pork in remaining oil over medium heat for 7-8 minutes on each side or until juices run clear.

Yield: 4 servings
Prep/Total time: 25 minutes

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Mini Cheddar Meat loaves

Mini Cheddar Meat loaves

This was a recipe given to me by my friend Julie. She swore by them so I tried them and we have been in love since. My hubby won't let me make any other recipe of meat loaves! Everyone gets their own loaf!!

Meat loaves
1 egg
3/4 cup milk
1 1/4 pound sirloin ground beef (85% lean)
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/2 cup onion chopped
1/2 cup quick cooking oats
1 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2/3 cup ketchup
1 1/2 teaspoon mustard

In a bowl beat the egg and milk. Stir in cheese, oats, onion, and salt. Add beef and mix well.

Shape into 7 or 8 hand-size loaves. Place loaves evenly separated in a greased 9x13 baking dish.

Glaze: Combine sugar, ketchup, and mustard in a small dish. Spoon over loaves.

Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until meat is no longer pink and is 160 degrees on a thermometer.

Menu Plan for October 26-November 1

This week's menu plan is pretty boring. I tell ya...I am sick of spending so much for groceries. My plan is to move to the 2 week grocery trip like we used to before kids. I am hoping this will help me save some money. Until then.....boring meals here. I found we are keeping things out of our meals like veggies and fruits. Just one way to cut back.

Sunday: BBQ Chicken on the grill with grilled potatoes (cut up potatoes with olive oil, seasoned salt and pepper) and green beans.

Monday: Mini Cheddar Meatloaves, mashed potatoes (the real thing), and corn

Tuesday: Grilled Salmon in olive oil and basil, grilled potatoes (hubby is a potato man), & salad

Wednesday: Cheddar Chicken Rice Casserole (this recipe but I add cheddar cheese) and butter bread

Thursday: Spaghetti, garlic bread, and peaches

Friday: HALLOWEEN so we are ordering pizza

Saturday: Out for relaxation time

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Hershey Bar Cake

This is a recipe that my husband's Grandmother gave us, but I have also found it on the Internet in several places. The recipe is made several different ways, but she definetly gave us the BEST one!! This is the most DIVINE dessert you could ever make. It is also pretty easy.

I will add the pictures later.....This is a MUST try!

Hershey Bar Cake
This is a 3 layer cake (but very easy!)

1 box Devil's Food Cake mix
1 1/2 cups milk (2%)
3 eggs
3/4 cup oil
1 small package instant Vanilla pudding

Mix all ingredients together and pour into 3- 9 inch cake pans that are greased and floured. Parchment paper/wax paper cut to fit the bottom helps when flipping the cake out) Bake at 325 degrees for 25-30 mins. I found on a similar recipe to freeze the layers of the cake in wax paper because it will moisten the cake?? Didn't do that, but might try that next time!


12 oz cool whip
8 oz cream cheese (room temperature)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 cups confectionary sugar
3 Hershey Bars (frozen and ground fine) or A giant Hershey bar: Pampered Chef chopper works GREAT!

Cream both kinds of sugar with cream cheese until smooth, add cool whip and Hershey Bars. Mix well and frost the cake.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Menu Plan for October 19-25, 2008

I started doing a weekly menu plan about 2 years ago after my daughter was born. We had a friend living with us and with our busy schedules, it seemed like the right thing to do. Now it seems to be quite the thing to do!! A couple of the bottom recipes I got from What's for Dinner?

Sunday: Chicken Manicotti & peaches

Monday: Honey Dijion Salmon, Rice, and Peas (Hubby's birthday dinner) I also made him a Hershey Bar Cake (I will add that one later)

Tuesday: BBQ Chicken, cut-up grilled potatoes (potatoes cut up into small pieces, wrapped in foil with butter and seasonings), & corn

Wednesday: Spaghetti & Garlic Toast

Thursday: Out because Hubby has parent-teacher conferences all night!

Friday: Italian Grilled Chicken, cut-up grilled potatoes, & corn

Saturday: Out

Chicken Manicotti

Chicken Manicotti

This is the easiest recipe ever! It was quick, very little mess involved, and kids love it!

1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 1/2 lbs chicken breast tenders (uncooked)
14 uncooked manicotti
(30 oz) jar spaghetti sauce
2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread 1/3 cup of the spaghetti sauce in ungreased 12x9 baking dish. Sprinkle garlic powder on chicken. Insert chicken into uncooked manicotti shells. Place shells on spaghetti sauce in dish. Pour remaining spaghetti sauce evenly over shells, covering completely. Sprinkle with cheese. Cover with aluminum foil and bake about 1 hour, or until shells are tender

Honey Dijon Salmon

Honey Dijon Salmon

1-1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
2-1/4 teaspoons melted butter
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 Tablespoons honey
1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
Dash white pepper
2 salmon fillets (4 oz each)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts (I keep out)
1/2 lb fresh asparagus, trimmed (I keep out)

Servings: 2

In a small bowl, combine cornstarch, butter, and Worcestershire sauce until smooth. Stir in honey, mustard, and pepper.

Place each salmon fillet on a double thickness of heavy-duty foil. Drizzle with honey mixture and sprinkle with walnuts (if you use them). Place asparagus around salmon (If you use them). Fold foil around salmon and seal tightly. Grill, covered, over medium heat for 15-20 mins or until fish flakes easily with a fork.