Sunday, March 27, 2016

Creamy Potatoes


Creamy sauce, potatoes, and peas...throw 'em all together and you've got one super tasty side dish!

Creamed Garden Potatoes and Peas


2 pounds small red potatoes, quartered
3 cups fresh or frozen peas
1 cup water
2 tablespoons chopped onion
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons, plus 1 teaspoon all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 cups 2% milk
1 cup half-and-half cream


Place potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 8-12 minutes or until tender. Drain.

Meanwhile, place peas and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 3-5 minutes or until tender. Drain.

In a large saucepan, saute onion in butter until tender. Stir in the flour, salt, and pepper until blended; gradually add milk and cream. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Stir in potatoes and peas; heat through.

Yield: 12 servings.

Nutrition information: 2/3 cup equals 156 calories, 5 g fat, 18 mg cholesterol, 345 mg sodium, 22 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 6 g protein.

Source: Taste of Home. You can fine it here.

Notes: I really like the combination ofo potatoes and peas. If you like it too, you can also check out this potato salad recipe.

Easy and Satisfying Side Dish


Well, the title says it all. This is an easy and delicious side dish...and I'm all about easy, delicious, and satisfying food. Aren't you?

Glazed Orange Carrots


2 pounds fresh carrots, sliced
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup thawed orange juice concentrate
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley


Place 1 inch of water in a saucepan; add carrots. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 7-9 minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain.

Melt butter in a large skillet; stir in orange juice concentrate and brown sugar. Add carrots and parsley; stir to coat. Cook and stir for 1-2 minutes or until glaze is thickened.

Yield: 6 servings.

Nutrition information: 2/3 cup equals 132 calories, 4 g fat, 10 mg cholesterol, 13 mg sodium, 24 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 2 g protein.

Source: Taste of Home. You can find it here.

Notes: Good and easy! We made things even easier by buying sliced carrots.

Get Right to the Heart of the Matter


I like the artichoke leaves just as much as the heart...they're just different. Besides, have both!

Slow-Cooker Braised Artichokes with Toasted Garlic Breadcrumbs


8 cloves garlic, 4 peeled and smashed, 4 grated or minced
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups flavored breadcrumbs
1/2 cup grated Pecorino-Romano
5 large globe artichokes


Add 1/2 cup water and the 4 peeled and smashed cloves garlic, bay leaves, and peppercorns to the insert of a 6-quart slow cooker.

Heat the butter and grated garlic in a medium skillet over medium heat until the butter is melted and the garlic starts to sizzle and become aromatic, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the breadcrumbs and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper and cook until golden and toasted, about 4 minutes more. Transfer to a bowl, and let cool. Stir in the Pecorino-Romano and 1/4 teaspoon salt until well combined. Set aside 2 tablespoons of the breadcrumb mixture for garnish.

Pull off the small, tough petals near the stems of the artichokes. Cut the stems close to the base so the artichokes will stand upright. Cut off the top inch of each artichoke. Snip off any thorny tips on the remaining petals with kitchen shears. Fan out the larger leaves with your fingers.

Working over the bowl with the breadcrumb mixture, spoon the crumbs into the gaps of each artichoke until they're filled all the way around. Stand the artichokes up in the slow cooker. Cover, and cook on low until the stems are tender and the leaves come loose easily when pulled, about 7 hours. Being careful of the steam, transfer the artichokes to a serving platter, and sprinkle with the reserved breadcrumbs.

Source: Food Network. You can find it here.

Notes: This was a fun and different way to prepare artichokes. These were very tender and flavorful.

Daily Catch

We don't often have seafood (because so few of us in our family like it), but this was an awesome seafood salad! Since some people don't like seafood, it just left more for those of us who do!

Shrimp Salad


2 1/3 cups uncooked small pasta shells
1/3 pound cooked salad shrimp
3 celery ribs, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
4 radishes, halved and sliced
4 hard-cooked eggs, chopped
1 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper


Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the shrimp, celery, onion, radishes, and eggs. In a small bowl, combine mayonnaise, mustard, salt, and pepper.

Drain pasta and rinse in cold water; add to shrimp mixture. Add dressing mixture; toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Yield: 9 servings.

Nutrition information: 3/4 cup equals 316 calories, 23 g fat, 134 mg cholesterol, 622 mg sodium, 18 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 9 g protein.

Source: Taste of Home, submitted by Delores Hill. You can find it here.

Our Yearly Easter Ham

Every Easter needs a ham! Here's the ham we made this year.

Slow-Cooker Maple-Brown Sugar Ham


1 fully cooked boneless ham (5 to 6 pounds)
1/2 cup honey Dijon mustard
1/2 cup real maple syrup
1/2 cup packed brown sugar


Spray 6- to 7-quart oval slow cooker with cooking spray. Make cuts about 1-inch apart and 1/4 inch deep in diamond pattern in top of ham (we opted for a spiral sliced ham instead). Place ham in slow cooker.

In small bowl,s tir together mustard, syrup, and brown sugar with whisk until well blended. Pour mixture over ham.

Cover; cook on Low heat setting 3 to 4 hours or until meat thermometer inserted in ham reads 140 degrees F.

Remove ham from slow cooker. Cover loosely with foil; let stand 10 to 15 minutes. Strain cooking juices. Slice ham; pour strained juices over ham.

Source: Betty Crocker. You can find it here.

Notes: This was really good and so tender. Delicious stuff! As mentioned above, we didn't score our ham because we got a spiral sliced ham instead.

A Good Way to Use Your Easter Eggs


Do you have a ton of Easter eggs to use up? Here's a good way to use them!


Bacon and Balsamic Deviled Eggs


12 hard-cooked eggs
5 bacon slices, cooked and crumbled
1/3 cup mayonnaise
2 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper, to taste


Cut eggs in half lengthwise and scoop out all the yolks. Put yolks in separate bowl and mash. Add bacon, mayonnaise, onion, mustard, balsamic vinegar, and salt and pepper. Stir until well combined. Spoon the mixture in the egg halves evenly.

Makes 24.

Source: Found in The Deseret News. Originally from "The Ultimate Paleo Cookbook" by Arsy Vartanian (Page Street Publishing).

Notes: Deviled eggs with bacon in them have to be one of the best things ever. We also sprinkled ours with a little paprika as well.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

New Find for Irish Night

Even though we have a very reliable and set Irish feast, that doesn't mean we don't welcome new discoveries each year! You can find our tried and true recipes here, here, here, here, here, here, and here. See below for our newest find!

Irresistable Irish Soda Bread


3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/3 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup butter, melted


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease a 9x5-inch loaf pan.

Combine flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and baking soda. Blend egg and buttermilk together, and add all at once to the flour mixture. Mix just until moistened. Stir in butter. Pour into prepared pan.
Bake for 65 to 70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the bread comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Wrap in foil for several hours, or overnight, for best flavor.

Source:, submitted by Karin Christian. You can find it here.

Notes: This was a great soda bread recipe. We served it with Irish butter. It was a lovely texture and not dry like some soda breads can be. Good stuff!

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

I Love Using Just One Pot!


I love pasta. It's quick and easy. However, it usually takes a lot of pots and pans. I mean, you have the pot to cook the pasta in, the pot or pan to make the sauce in, the strainer, any pots or pans used for side dishes, etc. That's a lot of dishes to do at the end of the night. However, with one-pot meals, you literally only have one pot! Yay for fewer dishes!

One-Pot Parmesan Chicken Ziti with Artichokes and Spinach


4 cups water
2 cans (12 oz each) evaporated milk
1 teaspoon salt
2 cloves garliv, finely chopped
1 lb. uncooked ziti pasta (I used mostaccioli)
2 teaspoons cornstarch
2 cups shredded deli rotisserie chicken
1 can (14 oz) artichoke hearts, drained, coarsely chopped
6 oz. shredded Parmesan cheese (about 1 1/2 cups)
Juice of 2 medium lemons (about 2/3 cups)
2 tablespoons butter
4 cups baby spinach (5-oz package)
1/2 teaspoon pepper, if desired


In Dutch oven, heat water, 1 can of the evaporated milk, the salt, garlic, and pasta to simmering over medium heat. Simmer 12 to 14 minutes, stirring frequently, until pasta is tender.

In medium bowl, beat remaining can of evaporated milk and the cornstarch; stir in chicken and artichoke hearts. Add to mixture in Dutch oven; return to simmering, and continue to simmer 1 to 3 minutes, or until thickened and mixture coats back of spoon.

Remove from heat; stir in half of the cheese and the lemon juice. Stir until cheese melts, then add remaining cheese (rewerving 1/4 cup for serving, if desired) and butter; stir again.

Add spinach, and stir until wilted. Serve with reserved cheese and pepper.

Taste and season with additional salt and pepper, if desired.

Source: Betty Crocker. You can find it here.

Notes: Watch this carefully because it boils over easily and quickly!

This was a delicious dinner that hit the spot. It was also really quick to throw together.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Dessert Lasagna


I like re-imagining recipes. Why not re-imagine lasagna into a dessert? It's been done before and it will be done again. Here is one dessert lasagna that we happily discovered.

Strawberry Cheesecake Lasagna


2 (8 oz) cubes cream cheese, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 (16 oz) tub whipped topping
14 graham crackers
2 (10 oz) jars Cascadian Farm strawberry jam
2 cups frozen sliced strawberries
2 cups fresh (or thawed) sliced strawberries
Non-stick coconut oil spray


In a stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, cream together cream cheese and sugar. Slowly add the amaretto and whipped topping, beating until well combined. Set aside.

Spray the bottom of 9x13-inch baking dish with non-stick spray, line with 7 graham crackers. Spread half of the cream cheese mixture on top of the graham crackers.

In a large bowl, microwave one jar of jam until warm, then stir in half of the strawberries. Spread this mixture on top of the cream cheese layer. Top with a second layer of graham crackers and cream cheese. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Just before serving, microwave second bottle of jam until warm and stir in fresh or thawed strawberries. Allow to cool until no longer warm to the touch, then spread across the top of the cake. Slice and serve.

Source: This is a General Mills recipe that we found on You can find it here.

Notes: This was very yummy. You can't go wrong with cream cheese and strawberries.