Monday, September 29, 2008

Hula Bagel Melts make you do the Hula!!!

These bagel sandwiches are so tasty, simple, and nice and warm for a cool September day! I have to give my husband credit on this picture. He was the one who assembled these sandwiches. Notice the barbecue sauce dripping!!! That's the way he likes it. There is never too much barbecue sauce, and who cares if it drips all over the place...right?!? I got this idea from Kraft, but I have made it better! It is so simple. You just assemble the sandwiches, wrap them in foil and pop them in the oven. In 15 minutes you have a Hula Bagel Melt that will make you do the Hula!!! The pineapple and barbecue sauce just make this sandwich. They make a great combo! Serve with some salty veggie crisps and you have got a yummy meal!

Hula Bagel Melts
Bagels (Onion, Plain, or Everything)
Deli Ham
Sliced Pineapple
Barbecue Sauce
Deli Swiss Cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Each sandwich you make you will need a square of foil big enough to wrap up your sandwich. Lay out your foil and place open faced bagels on top of your foil. Begin assembling the melts with Ham, Pineapple, Barbecue sauce, and Cheese (in that order) on one side of bagel. Top with other side of bagel and wrap with foil tightly so that the melts stays together and the barbecue sauce doesn't leak. Place in preheated oven for 15 minutes. Let them sit for about 5 minutes to cool off a bit, and settle. Now, Hula away!!!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Muffins in the Morning!!!

We absolutely LOVE a good muffin for breakfast with some fruit on the side. I have 2 muffins for you today. They were so delicious. They both were packed with fresh flavor, with a healthy feeling after I ate more than my share! I like to make muffins once a week at my house. Both of these muffins were great and they both came from 2 of my favorite sites. We are finally done with our peaches. We canned some, made jam, dried some, and then had enough for a peach pie, and these yummy Whole Wheat Peach Muffins (pictured above). The recipe came from Smitten Kitchen. They are actually Whole Wheat Apple Muffins, but I used my peaches instead of apples. They were so yummy. I'm pretty sure you could change out the apples and use any fruit variation. My sister tried them with pears and said they were fantastic! Go here for the recipe: . The recipe made a lot. I made 12 regular size muffins and about 16 mini muffins. The mini's are perfect for the kids, and I loved just popping them in my mouth. I also loved the sprinkling of brown sugar on the top. It made for a great finishing touch, and I loved the sweet little crunch on the top. I'm excited to try them with the apples. If you still have some peaches left over and arent' sick of them yet, you've got to make these muffins. Try them with any fruit. Whatever you've got! You won't regret it! On to the second muffin...

I love blueberries! My boys love blueberries! My 2 year old couldn't keep his hands out of the blueberries while I was making these! I got this recipe from another favorite, The Sisters' Cafe. There is a fun story behind these muffins. Find the recipe and story here: . Little Red Riding Hoods Blueberry Wheat Muffins (pictured above), really are amazing! These tasted like a muffin you would get at Great Harvest, or Einstein's. They were so tasty! I loved the secret ingredient. It really added a nutty flavor to the muffins. They tasted so healthy and hearty! The batter was super thick, and it was hard to get the blueberries mixed in well. I used frozen blueberries. I wasn't so worried about mushing them, and they didn't make my batter all blue. I got 12 regular sized muffins and a mini loaf out of it. Go to the recipe and find out what Granny's secret ingredient is. It is shocking and perfect for these delectible breakfast muffins! Happy muffin eating!!!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

It's Fall Y'all

I can't believe that it's officially fall. I love this time of year! Not only am I ready for the cooler weather, but I love beautiful fall leaves and all the yummy fall foods. We kicked off the fall at our house with one of our favorite soups! Mac 'n Cheese Soup. Even my kids will eat this soup! This recipe comes from the Pampered Chef Main Dishes cookbook. It has become a favorite of mine because of the easy recipes inside.
Mac 'n Cheese Soup

1 package (14 ounces) deluxe-type macaroni & cheese dinner
1 cup broccoli, chopped
1/2 cup onion, chopped (I used 1/4 cup dried onion)
1 cup water
2 1/2 cups milk
1 can (10 3/4 ounces) cheddar cheese soup
1 cup cubed ham (I didn't use it this time and I think I liked it better without)

Cook macaroni according to package directions; drain and set aside. Combine broccoli, onion and water in pot. Bring to a boil; cook 2 minutes (do not drain). Add cooked macaroni, cheese sauce from pouch, milk, cheese soup and ham. Return to boil, stirring occasionally. Yields 6 servings.

A few weeks ago I was experimenting and this is what I came up with. I had found a recipe from Picky Palate that got me wanting to experiment with this idea. She made Monkey bread and rolled hers in cinnamon and sugar. I decided to try making them into parmesan breadsticks and this is the result. My husband and kids loved them. I think it puts a little twist on the normal breadsticks we usually have with spaghetti or lasagna. Enjoy!

Pull Apart Parmesan Breadsticks
1 pkg Pillsbury refrigerated breadsticks
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tsp italian seasoning
dash garlic salt
Olive oil

Combine parm cheese, italian seasoning and garlic in a small bowl. Separate breadsticks into strips and put two strips together (one on top of the other). Cut into 1 inch pieces. Roll each in parmesan mixture and place in greased muffin tins (about 5 pieces in each one). Brush top with olive oil and sprinkle parmesan cheese mixture on top. Bake at 375 for 10-15 minutes. Makes about 7 or eight.

Okay, I had to post a sweet treat too! I'm finally to the end of my peaches and I'm getting pretty tired of them. I've canned them, made jame, frozen some and made lots of yummy treats with them. This was my final treat. After attempting to make a peach pie one day and not having the crust turn out right or the pie filling set, I decided to try something way easy. I made these simple peach pie turnovers and boy were they good! (and easy)

Peach Pie Turnovers
1 pkg Pillsbury refrigerated pie crust (each one cut in half)
3 large peaches
2 Tbsp instant tapioca
3 Tbsp sugar
Dash Cinnamon
Dash Nutmeg
1 egg white
White sparkling sugar (to sprinkle on the top)

Peel peaches and cut into small pieces. Add tapioca, sugar, cinnamon & nutmeg. Stir well and let sit for 10 minutes. Unroll pie crusts and cut in half (each one will make 2 turnovers). Place 1/4 of peach mixture on half of pie crust, make sure to leave enough room on the edges to seal it when you fold it over. Use your fingers to rub a little bit of water on the edge to help seal it. Fold over filling and seal, use a fork around the edge for decoration. Brush tops with egg white and sprinkle white sparkling sugar on the top. Bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes. Cut in half before serving and add a scoop of vanilla ice cream. If you cut them in half after they are baked they will make 8.

Coming soon: Super easy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies

Friday, September 19, 2008

Homemade Sloppy Joes ... step aside Manwich!!!

Growing up we had sloppy joes quite often with the Manwich sauce... in fact, when I first was married I bought a can of the sauce thinking that the meat was included. Opened it up for a quick dinner and to my dismay... our plans had to change. I was not an expert then, neither am I now, but I have learned a lot since then. One thing I have learned since then is to never buy Manwich again! This recipe for Sloppy Joe's is amazing! It is so saucy and full of flavor. I always get great reviews. However... I cannot take all of the credit because the recipe comes once again from my sister in-law, Tammy. She is an expert. I love the crunch that the veggies give to this sandwich. It is a perfect warm sandwich for a cool September day. I usually serve this with hamburger buns, but I have a new favorite on these soft deli rolls that I buy at Sam's Club. They are soft and delicious. They come in white or wheat and are both my favorite. If you are looking for a quick dinner, this is the one for you. The kids love it and gobble it. I love them with some chips and fruit on the side.

Sloppy Joe's

1 lb. hamburger
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1 - 10 oz can Tomato Soup
1/4 cup ketchup
1 Tbsp Vinegar
1 Tbsp Sugar
Salt & Pepper to taste

Brown your meat and cook veggies together in skillet over med-high heat. When meat is browned, drain. Add remaining ingredients and simmer for 20 minutes or longer to get all of the flavors to sink in, stirring occasionally. Serve on hamburger buns, hoagie boans, bread, whatever you have! Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Scrumptious Peach Cake

This Fresh Peach Cake is to die for. The recipe came from one of my best friends. You can find it on her blog (Visit her blog for this recipe and many other wonderful recipes). It is amazing! I could tell that it was going to be very good when I tasted the batter. I could have eaten just the batter! It was lucky to have made it to the oven! The sauce is delicious and added the perfect touch. I think that next time I will put it all over the cake before cutting it and then have some on the side to add to it. The fresh chopped peaches on the side are a must! This recipe is definetely going to be on my list of favorites! Enjoy!Thanks for sharing Heather!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Lemony-Blueberry Nectarine Freezer Jam & delicious Zucchini cookies

Well, we have a lot of different fruit trees in our backyard (2 apple, 1 pear, 2 peach, 1 nectarine, & lots of grapes). Last year I used hardly any of our nectarines. This year I was determined to find something to do with them. I found this wonderful recipe in my Ball canning book. Everyone that has tried it has loved it. The lemon in it gives it the perfect zing. So, for those of you that may have a nectarine tree and don't know just what to do with all of them, try this freezer jam!
Lemony-Blueberry Nectarine Freezer Jam
3 cups chopped, pitted peeled nectarines ( I use my potato masher to mash the fruit)
1 cup crushedd blueberries
1 Tbsp. grated lemon peel
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 pouch freezer jam pectin

Combine nectarines, blueberries, lemon peel, lemon juice and sugar in a medium bowl. Let stand 15 minutes. Gradually stir freezer jam pectin into fruit mixture. Stir 3 minutes; let stand 5 minutes. Ladle jam into freezer jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Freeze.

Zucchini Drop Cookies

I found this recipe for zucchini cookies and I loved them. My 3 year old loves to help me cook and while he was helping me he called these "bikini" cookies, instead of zucchini cookies. It was cute! You can find the recipe by clicking on this link They are delicious! I made half with nuts and half without, but I definitely liked the ones with the nuts the best. I think the nuts made the cookies!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


A BIG "thank you" to Laura from Real Mom Kitchen for the Blog Award!!! She has got a great blog with some amazing recipes. She is very talented and creative. She sent us this blog award and I had never seen her blog. Her blog is a new found favorite and I visit every day. Check it out for yourself here: . I know that you will love her blog. She is very consistent in her posting...unlike us. She has always got delicious recipes, with pictures that make your mouth water. Find out for yourself! Now, we would like to share the LOVE and pass this award onto some yummy food blogs. Here goes!

1. The Sisters' Cafe at . These sisters' sure know how to cook! They are so talented. I can always find a yummy recipe on their blog.
2. Hot off the Garlic Press at . Natalie's blog is a lot of fun. She has got a fun, sassy, attractive food blog. She is very talented with her camera. I could eat her pictures right up!
3. Fun Foods - On a Budget! at . Stephanie has got some great ideas and tips to make great frugal meals. She is creative and fun!
4. Annie's Feathered Nest at . Annie is an amazing lady. She featured My Sisters' Cucina on her blog a few months ago. Her blog is inspiring to me. It is a person like her that is making a difference!
5. Barbara Bakes at . Barbara has a fun blog. She takes some delicious pictures. I can't help drooling when I see her blog.
***Thank you to all who stop by and read our blog. We are busy mom's of young children that keep us on the run! Thanks for staying tuned!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Baking at Beautiful Bear Lake!!!

If this cake isn't BEAUTIFUL...I don't know what is!!! It even tastes as good as it looks. Don't be deceived by the name of it, just dig in and trust me on this one!!! We spent our Labor Day weekend at beautiful Bear Lake. If you live in Utah, you have got to make your way there. I think that it compares to an ocean beach without driving the distance. The lake is so blue and is surrounded by mountains. We love vacationing there. Bear Lake comes pretty close to this Orange Juice Cake! We spent time with my in-laws, who were kind enough to let us stay with them, and they were very accomadating to my two sisters who also came for the weekend. My sister's husband heard that we were having Orange Juice Cake, he said something like this ..."that sounds awful...but if Sara is making it...I'm sure its good...I'll give it a try!" Thanks Tyson! I think I fooled him. He went back for 2nds. I knew he would. This is an amazing cake that comes from my husband's Aunt Daisy from Tennessee. This lady is terrific! She is 89 years old and around the holidays she gets orders for this cake. She sells 75-100 at Christmas time. She made this recipe up one day in her kitchen. She is inspiring! Although I have never met her, I will always remember Aunt Daisy and her amazing Orange Juice Cake! This cake is definitely a family favorite. The ultimate baker of this cake is my sister-in-law Tammy. She makes incredible desserts and this is one that she gets requests for. I baked my cake in a silicone bundt cake pan. I love my silicone bakeware that was given to me from the queen dessert maker, Tammy. Thanks Tams! I am determined that my cake turned out this beautiful because of the silicone bundt pan. So, if you have one, you must make Orange Juice Cake in it. If you don't...go get one. It really cooks your cakes to perfection and you don't have to worry about it falling apart, or sticking to the pan. It is wonderful! On to this moist, juicy cake!

Aunt Daisy's Orange Juice Cake
Yellow Cake mix
Instant Vanilla Pudding (small box)
1/2 cup Oil
1 cup Orange Juice
4 Eggs
Chopped Pecans (about 1/2 cup, or more if you like)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together. Don't over-mix! Spray bundt cake pan. Sprinkle chopped pecans on the bottom of the pan. Pour cake mix evenly in bundt pan. Bake for 30-45 minutes. You know when it is done when it starts to pull away from the sides and the inside ring. While baking, make your glaze.

1 Stick Butter
1 cup Sugar
1/2 cup Orange Juice

Combine butter, sugar and juice in small saucepan. Bring to a boil and turn off. When cake comes out of the oven, stir glaze well before spooning over hot cake so that the butter gets mixed back in. (When it sits the butter settles to the top.) The glaze will eventually seep through the cake giving it a juicey moistness all over. This is what your cake will look like after the glaze settles in. Let it sit for 1 hour before removing from your pan. To remove from pan, place your plate upside down over the bundt pan and flip. If you use the silicone pan it will plop out perfect.
It is an amazing cake. I sent it to a funeral once and the kitchen ladies said that people kept coming into the kitchen looking for the yummy orange juice cake. I'm glad that I was able to brighten their day!!! It melts in your mouth. We had a wonderful time in Bear Lake, and got a taste of fall weather while we were there. Bring on the fall season with this Orange Juice Cake!

Peanut Butter Cup Cookies

This was another favorite at Bear Lake. I took a peanut butter cookies recipe that I have that calls for peanut butter chips and put chopped Reese's Peanut Butter Cups in instead. They were a hit!! I just love peanut butter and chocolate and this was a good combination!

Peanut Butter Cookies
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 egg
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
8-9 Reese's Peanut Butter Cups chopped

In large bowl, beat brown sugar, peanut butter, butter and egg on medium speed or until creamy. Stir in flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Stir in peanut butter cups.

Shape dough into 1 1/2 inch balls. Roll balls into granulated sugar. Place on ungreased cookie sheet about 3 inches apart.

Bake at 375 for 9-10 minutes or until light brown. Cool 5 minutes; remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Makes about 2 dozen cookies.

*I froze my peanut butter cups before chopping them and it seemed to be easier to chop them.

As you can see above, these cookies were irresistable. The kids were climbing on the table to get to them. I just had to get a picture of them all. It will be something to laugh about later on in life.