Creating memories in the kitchen...One meal at a time.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Cookie Dough Truffles

One bite desserts are another of my  favorites for casual get togethers and taking to friends and neighbors. Just reading the name I knew they'd be good. Cookie dough. Yum. Truffles.Delish .Mix em together and wow!

A creamy cookie dough like center, studded with mini chocolate chips and crunchy pecans then wrapped in a heavenly coating of chocolate. Let me tell ya, these babies didn't last long!!

Cookie Dough Truffles
Paula Deen


  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup semisweet mini chocolate morsels
  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 1 1/2 pounds chocolate bark candy coating, melted


In a large bowl cream butter and brown sugar with an electric mixer at medium speed until creamy. Add vanilla. Gradually beat in flour and add milk. Add chocolate morsels and pecans, mixing well. Shape into 1-inch balls. Place on waxed paper; chill 2 hours.

*Cook's Note: Since the dough is sticky, roll your fingers into flour. This will make it easier to roll.

Melt chocolate bark candy coating in a double boiler. Using 2 forks, dip cookie balls into candy coating to cover. Place on waxed paper and chill to set. Store in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.

Posted by: Sallie
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Monday, August 22, 2011

Creamy Chicken Lasagna

Picture from Cassie Craves

When I asked my husband what he wanted for his birthday meal this week he said "Oh, I don't know, you just choose something."First I was shocked.Then I got excited. Planning meals for me is so much fun.  Anyway, it was the perfect opportunity for me to try out this new recipe I spotted on Cassie Craves. I've already raved about the Rosemary Ranch Chicken from her blog , and this was just as big of a hit.

As the name implies is super creamy and cheesy. With moist nuggets of sauteed chicken, tender pasta noodles and just the right amount of Italian flavors, my whole family gobbled this up. Yep, you read that right. I ACTUALLY MADE A MEAL THAT EVERYONE IN MY FAMILY LIKES!  I served mine with a green salad and rolls. It was the perfect dinner for my perfect guy!

Creamy Chicken Lasagna
Cassie Craves

1 pound chicken breast, cubed into small pieces
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil

3 cloves minced garlic
2 cans cream chicken soup
1 8-ounce package cream cheese
2 cups sour cream
1 cup milk
1 cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper to taste
1 box no-boil lasagna noodles
4 cups shredded Colby-jack or cheddar-jack cheese blend

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Season chicken with salt and pepper. In a large frying pan, cook chicken in olive oil and butter until the chicken is no longer pink. Remove chicken and keep warm.

3. Add garlic to pan; cook and stir for 30 seconds. Add cream soup, cream cheese, sour cream, milk, and chicken broth to the pan. Stir until ingredients melt and thicken slightly. Season with Italian seasoning and salt and pepper to taste. Add chicken and continue to stir. Turn heat down and simmer for 2 or 3 minutes.

4. Spread a thin layer of sauce in a greased 9 x 13 baking dish. Layer noodles (I used about 4 per layer), then cream sauce with chicken, then cheese (about 1 cup per layer). Continue to repeat until your pan is full, ending with cheese on top. Bake at 350 for 40 to 45 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

Posted by: Sallie
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Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Ultimate Beef Stroganoff

Most beef stroganoff dishes that I've had called for ground beef.  This recipe actually used stew meat (or a chuck roast), cubed.  It's prepared in the slow cooker, which makes the meat nice and tender.  It was very delicious and a hit with my toddler.  Bonus!

The Ultimate Beef Stroganoff


2-3 pounds stew meat (or a 3-pound chuck roast, cubed)
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 medium yellow onion, diced
¼ teaspoon garlic salt
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 ½ cups beef broth or stock
1 tablespoon ketchup
1/3 cup flour
6-7 tablespoons apple juice or water
4-8 ounces sliced mushrooms
1/2 cup light or regular sour cream

Place the stew meat, salt, pepper and onion in the slow cooker. Stir to distribute the seasonings and onion. In a small bowl, combine the garlic salt, Worcestershrie sauce, beef broth and ketchup. Pour over the meat. Cook for 7-9 hours on low or 4-5 hours on high. About 30 minutes before serving, combine the flour and apple juice in a small bowl, whisking vigorously to combine well. The roux should be thick but still pourable so add a tablespoon of apple juice or water at a time to thin, if needed. Pour the flour mixture into the slow cooker, whisking quickly to mix in the roux with the stew meat and juices and to avoid lumps. Add the mushrooms and stir. Cook on high for 30 minutes. Stir in ½ cup sour cream right before serving. Serve over pasta, rice or baked potatoes.

*Freezable Meal: The leftovers of the stroganoff can be frozen. I store the leftovers in a freezer-safe container and then thaw in the refrigerator (usually takes about a day) and reheat over medium-low heat in a saucepan on the stove.

Posted by:  Julia
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Monday, August 15, 2011

BBQ Chicken Kebabs

I can't believe it. School is actually starting today! I have the same mixed feelings every year. Sadness that the lazy, fun and sometimes crazy  days of summer are over but also joy that I can reclaim my house, get the kids to bed at a decent hour and have my precious routine back! Right now with only my kindergartner and a really quiet house I'm really leaning toward the latter.

Even though summer vacation is over it's still hot here. Really hot. That translates into let's grill something and not heat up the house.

These bbq chicken kebabs are unlike any I've made before. The chicken is mixed with a bacon puree. Yes, pureed bacon. This not only contributes a fabulous element of flavor, but also keeps the chicken extra moist. They're also flavored with a rub of both sweet and spicy paprika (translation, yummy smoky flavor) and a delicious and easy bbq sauce.

These were a hit with the whole family.  The leftovers are perfect for dicing up and using on pizza, sandwiches, or quesadillas. 

BBQ Chicken Kebabs
Cooks Illustrated

*The recipe calls for either chicken thighs or breast. if you use both, make sure to put them on separate skewers as they will cook at different rates.


  • Sauce
  • 1/2cup ketchup
  • 1/4cup light or mild molasses
  • 2tablespoons grated onion (see note)
  • 2tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1tablespoon light brown sugar
  • Kebabs
  • 2pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1-inch cubes 
  • 2teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2tablespoons sweet paprika
  • 4teaspoons sugar
  • 2teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 2slices bacon , cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 412-inch metal skewers


  1. 1. FOR THE SAUCE: Bring all ingredients to simmer in small saucepan over medium heat; cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce reaches ketchup-like consistency and is reduced to about 1 cup, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer 1/2 cup sauce to small bowl and set aside remaining sauce to serve with cooked chicken.
  2. 2. FOR THE KEBABS: Toss chicken and salt in large bowl; cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour.
  3. 3. Turn all burners to high, close lid, and heat grill until hot, about 15 minutes. Scrape cooking grate clean with grill brush. Leave primary burner on high and turn off other burner(s).
  4. 4. While grill heats, pat chicken dry with paper towels. Combine sweet paprika, sugar, and smoked paprika in small bowl. Process bacon in food processor until smooth paste forms, 30 to 45 seconds, scraping down bowl twice during processing. Add bacon paste and spice mixture to chicken; mix with hands or rubber spatula until ingredients are thoroughly blended and chicken is completely coated. Thread meat onto skewers, rolling or folding meat as necessary to maintain 1-inch cubes.
  5. 5. Place kebabs over primary burner and grill, covered, turning one-quarter turn every 2 to 2 1/2 minutes until well browned and slightly charred, 8 minutes for breasts or 10 minutes for thighs. (If flare-ups occur, slide kebabs to cool side of grill until fire dies down.) Brush top surface of kebabs with ¼ cup sauce; flip and cook until sauce is brown in spots, about 1 minute. Brush second side with remaining ¼ cup sauce; flip and continue to cook until brown in spots and instant-read thermometer inserted in center of meat registers 160 degrees for breasts and 175 degrees for thighs, about 1 minute longer. Remove kebabs from grill and let rest for 5 minutes. Serve, passing reserved barbecue sauce separately.

    Posted by: Sallie
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