Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Cake

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Marshmallow Crunch Brownie Bars

When my husband and I were dating he loved hearing the Minnesota accents of my family and would try to mimic them.  Unfortunately for him, by the time we had met my accent had faded considerably and just wasn't quite strong enough for him. However, when I'd mention making either a "hot dish"  (that would be Minnesotan for "casserole") or "bars" (Minnesotan for any finger dessert baked in a pan), he would break out his pretend Minnesota accent and poke fun at me, trying to strike up a conversation about one of those previously mentioned dishes.  But luckily for him, he didn't take the teasing too far, since he wanted me to actually offer him some of that yummy food I was making!

It's good to have a decent lineup of different bar recipes so that you're not bringing the same thing as your neighbor to the church picnic, neighborhood block party or work function.  Or maybe you're just dessert crazy like my 5 kids and you want to try something new. Either way, these were definitely worth making. The kids loved these and so did about 30 neighbors at a farewell party for one of our friends. They were so gooey and delicious, and I'm not even a huge marshmallow fan.  I really liked the topping - peanut butter, melted chocolate, rice krispies.  Eat it with a spoon!

As I was making them, I decided to change them up a little bit.  I couldn't stop thinking that they would be even more delicious with graham crackers in the topping.  Sort of like a smore with peanut butter.  And while I think that the rice krispy version is super yummy, after tasting both of them my favorites were the ones with the graham crackers.  To make them, I just eyeballed it and crunched up a bunch of graham crackers into the melted chocolate/peanut butter mixture (no rice krispies in that batch).

Marshmallow Crunch Brownie Bars
Yield: 24 bars 
For the Brownie Base:
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate
2/3 cup unsalted butter
1¼ cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided
1-1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
4 large eggs, at room temperature
2 cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the Toppings:
1 bag (10½ ounces) miniature marshmallows
1½ cups chocolate chips (milk or semi-sweet)
1 cup smooth or crunchy peanut butter (don’t use natural peanut butter)
1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
1½ cups Rice Krispies cereal (or equivalent broken up graham crackers!) 
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9×13-inch pan.
2. For the brownies: In a microwave safe bowl, melt the unsweetened chocolate, butter and ¾ cup of the semisweet chocolate chips. Stir occasionally while melting. Set aside and cool for 5 minutes.
3. In a medium bowl sift the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside. In a large bowl , whisk the eggs thoroughly. Add the sugar and vanilla and whisk until well blended. Stir the melted ingredients into the egg mixture, mixing well. Stir in the dry sifted ingredients and mix well. Fold in the remaining ½ cup semisweet chocolate chips.
4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the surface with a spatula. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the corner of of the pan comes out with moist crumbs.
5. Remove the brownies from the oven and immediately sprinkle the marshmallows over them. Return the pan to the oven for 3 more minutes.
6. Meanwhile, place the chocolate chips, peanut butter, and tablespoon of butter in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Cook in 30 second increments until completely melted. Remove from heat, add the Rice Krispies and mix well. Allow to cool for 3 minutes.
7. Spread the mixture evenly over the marshmallow layer. Refrigerate until chilled before cutting.
Note: I used crunchy peanut butter and loved the extra peanutiness (is that a word?) that it added. Also, I found that it was much easier to spread the final layer (the chocolate/peanut butter/crunch), if the marshmallows had cooled and firmed up a bit. And drop the chocolate mixture in blobs all over.  That made spreading much easier.  Otherwise you're in danger of a big, gooey marshmallowey mess.  With chocolate mixed in.  Hey, that actually doesn't sound so bad!
Source: Adapted from browneyedbaker.com who adapted it from Culinary Concoctions by Peabody; originally from Buttercup Bakes at Home by Jennifer Appel

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

A Daily Loaf (Pain Ordinaire Careme)

Submitted by: Lisa

This is out of the book:  Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads.  I love this book.  I made this bread yesterday and didn't realize that it was an all day process.  I started at 1:30 in the afternoon and didn't get it baked until 9:00 that night.  So, start this early in the morning.  The reason it takes so long is because it has 3 rises.  It isn't complicated or really time consuming, it just needs a little attention in between the rising's so you do have to be around.

Verdict:  We like it a lot.  I just made it into 2 different peasant type loaves.  You can form it in many ways including baguette.

I have some whole wheat stored and decided to grind some of the white wheat up into flour and use some in this recipe.  I used 2 cups of the ground white wheat and the 4 cups regular all purpose flour.  It worked very nicely.


6 cups bread or unbleached flour
2 pkgs dry yeast
2 1/2 cups hot water (120 - 130 degrees)
2 tsp each salt & water

Mix by hand or mixer (only if you have a very sturdy, tough mixer):  Measure 3 to 4 cups of flour into the mixing bowl and add the yeast and hot water.  (actually take the temp of your water, it makes a difference)

Put on the flat beater if using the mixer and beat for 10 minutes.  If the mixer is sounding strained, stop and do by hand.  The batter will be smooth and pull away from the sides as the gluten develops.

When finished, dissolve the salt in the water and add to the batter and mix for 30 seconds longer.

Put on the dough hook.  Continue mixing with it and add additional flour 1/4 cup at a time.  Knead for 10 minutes.  Again, if this is taxing your mixer, do it by hand.

1st rising:  Place the dough in a large greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temp for @ 2 hrs.  The dough could be more that triple it's size.

2nd rising:  Turn back the plastic wrap and knead briefly, about 3 minutes.  Return to the bowl and re-cover with the plastic wrap.  Allow to rise to more than triple its volume, about 1 1/2 hrs.

Shaping:  The dough will be light and puffy.  Turn it onto the floured work surface and punch it down.  Don't be surprised if it pushes back, for it is quite resilient.

Divide inot as many pieces as you wish loaves.  One quarter of this recipe will make a baguette 22" long and 3" wide.  Or 2 large round loaves.  Allow the dough to rest 5 minutes before shaping.

3rd rising:  Cover the loaves with a cloth so they will still get air.  They should either be on the pan they will be baked on, or if using a baking stone, have then on parchment paper so you can move them without flattening them.  Leave about 1 hr to rise.

Preheat oven to 450.  Bake 25 to 30 minutes.  They are done when golden brown and if the bottom crust sounds hard and hollow when tapped.

Final step:  Place on a rack to cool.  Enjoy!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Limeade - Homemade

Submitted by Lisa
I got this recipe from a friend at work.  She said she got it from a waiter at a restaurant she was eating at.
 I think it is nice and refreshing.  Enjoy!

Homemade Limeade

2 limes, cut up into about 8 pieces, rind and all
1 cup of water
1 handful of ice
3 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk
1 cup of superfine baker's sugar
Blend all in the blender until the limes are all ground up and it's a bit frothy

Add 1-1/2 cups more water and pulse to stir

Pour limeade through a fine strainer or sieve to remove pulp. Serve over ice.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Jo Goldenberg's Bagels

Submitted by : Lisa

I love bread. Plain and simple. I just love it in all forms. Today was rainy and cool out and it just called for some sort of bread product. I decided to try this recipe that is in a new book I just got: "Bernard Clayton's New Complete Book of Breads". I have only tried a couple of the hundreds of recipes in this book. They all look amazing.


3 1/2 c bread or all purpose flour
2 pkgs dry yeast
3 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp salt
1 1/2 c hot water (120 to 130 degrees)
3 qrts water
1 1/2 tbs sugar
1 egg white, beaten, mixed with 1 tsp water
topping of choice


1 baking sheet, greased or teflon, or parchment paper (sprinkled with cornmeal)
4 1/2 qrt sauce pan

1. In large mixing bowl combine 3 cups flour with all the other dry ingredients.

2. Pour in the hot water and stir vigorously with a spoon or the flat beater at low speed for 2 minutes.

3. Add the remaining flour a little at a time. When the batter gets thick and heavy, attach the dough hook.

4. Knead by hand for 10 minutes or with dough hook until the dough feels firm and solid when pinched with your fingers.

5. Place dough into greased bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Let sit at room temp. until doubled.

6.  Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and punch down with extended fingers.  Divide into 10 pieces of dough.  Shape each into a ball and allow to rest for a few minutes.

7.  With your thumb, press deep into the center of the bagel and tear the depression open with your fingers.  Pull the hole open, pull it down and smooth the rough edges.  It should look like a bagel!

8.  Cover them with wax paper and leave at room temp only until the dough is slightly  raised, about 10 min.

9.  Pre heat oven to 400.  Start a pot of boiling water, add the sugar,  then lower to a simmer.

10.  Gently lift one bagel at a time into the water.  Do not crowd the pan, only 2 or 3 at a time.  Simmer for 1 minute turning over once.  Lift out and drain briefly on a towel, then place on the prepared baking sheet.

11.  Brush lightly with the egg white/water mixture and sprinkle on what ever topping you like.  ex: salt, onion bits, sesame, poppy seeds, garlic garlic from tastefully simple... what ever you want.

12.  Bake at 425 for 25 to 30 minutes.  Place on a metal rack to cool.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Cake

Submitted by Hannah

I'm sure my sisters remember this cake fondly. My Mom made this often when we were young and it was one of our favorite desserts. Eating it again reminds me why we all loved it so much. I know there are many who aren't fans of the "boxed" cake mixes but I happen to like them, not as much as homemade but I still like them. This recipe calls for a boxed mix but with all the additional ingredients you would never be able to tell and it is a huge time saver. With the filling in this cake there is no need for a frosting, it is delicous just like this.


Cake Batter-

4 eggs
1 cup sour cream

1 yellow cake mix

1 small box of vanilla instant pudding

3/4 cup water

1/2 cup oil


6 oz. mini chocolate chips (important that they are mini or else they can sink into the batter)

1 tsp cinnamon

2 tsp cocoa

1/2 cup sugar (brown sugar or a mix of the two are fine also)

Combine batter ingredients and beat 3-4 minutes. Mix filling ingredients and set aside. Grease a bundt pan heavily (I spray mine with cooking spray and shake flour in the pan, pour off the excess flour). Put 1/3 of the filling in the bottom of the pan cover with 1/2 the batter then another 1/3 of the filling cover that with the last of the batter and finish the top with the remaining 1/3 of the filling. Bake at 325 for 50-60 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Pork Chop Bake


Submitted by Lisa

This is a recipe that my grandma Dorothy used to make and it was grandpa's favorite. If you are short on time but need a hearty delicious dinner, this is for you. (I often substitute ground beef) You just throw it in the baking dish and wallah, in 2 hrs. you have a great meal! My kids actually lick the plate when done.


6 thick center cut pork chop (you can substitute ground beef, 2 lbs)
5 to 6 potatoes
2 handfuls of baby carrots
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
2 pkts of dry onion soup mix
1 1/2 c water


1. If using pork chops, just brown all sides in a frying pan. If using ground beef, no need to pre cook at all.

2. Pour the cream of mushroom soup, the dry onion mix into the baking dish and stir together and spread along the bottom of the pan.

3. Lay the pork chops on top of the soup mixture. (if using ground beef, just break up the uncooked beef in drop it in chunks over the top of the mixture.

4. Peel or leave washed potatoes unpeeled and roughly chop, add on top of and in between the meat.

5. Sprinkle the carrots in along with the potatoes.

6. Salt and pepper it all.

7. Pour the water over the mixture, no need to mix it in, cover with tin foil.
**Tip** put your baking dish on top of a cookie sheet with edges in case it bubbles over a bit.

8. Bake at 350 degrees for 2 hrs.

Serve with some homemade bread! YUM

Monday, June 20, 2011

Chocolate Banana Bread

Submitted by Heather

I can't believe I've never tried a recipe like this before.  Usually I'm trying to get chocolate into everything.  I guess I never wanted to "ruin" a chocolate loaf cake by adding bananas to it.  But let me tell you, this was no ruin!   The first thing I thought of when I tasted it was a chocolate banana milkshake.  I love them and haven't allowed myself to eat one in a very long time.
I do suggest you tell those who will be eating this, that it's Chocolate BANANA bread.  My husband took a bite and was immediately asking if something was wrong with my chocolate cake.  Once I told him that it was banana bread, he thought it was great (right, honey?).  Actually, my son brought some in his school lunch and shared it with a classmate who demanded that Josh go home and get him the recipe that day so that his mom could make it. 
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 1/4 cups mashed bananas (about 3)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup cocoa (I prefer dutch process)
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
1. Heat oven to 350. Spray bottom of 8×4 inch loaf pan with cooking spray.
2. Beat sugar, eggs, and oil in large bowl at medium speed until combined. Beat in banana and vanilla at low speed. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl; beat into banana mixture at low speed just until combined. Stir in chocolate chips.
3 Spoon batter into pan. Bake 60-70 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes. Remove from pan; cool completely on wire rack.

Source: www.thesisterscafe.com

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Mexican Chicken Soup

Submitted by Hannah

After trying many different tortilla and taco soups I came up with my favorite versions of those. This is fast to make and it makes a lot so you will have some for lunch the next day which I always love. Feel free to adjust the spices to your tastes. I usually don't measure I just dump in what I think, but I gave you a good estimate of what I use in the soup. I always taste along the way while it is cooking to see if additional seasoning is needed.


3 chicken breasts cooked and shredded

1 medium onion chopped

1 red, orange or yellow red pepper chopped

1 can of red enchilada sauce

1 can tomatoes with diced green chiles

2 cans white beans like great northern

3/4 cup frozen corn

1 tsp smoked paprika

1 1/2 tsp cumin

2 -3tsps chile powder

3 cups chicken broth and 1 cup of water

2 -3 Tbsp fresh chopped cilantro

salt and pepper to taste

** We usually like to add some heat to this by using chipotle chili powder or diced jalepenos.**


In a dutch oven or stock pot heat about 1-2 Tbsp of oil and add the chopped onion and pepper. Saute those over medium heat for a few minutes until the onion starts to turn opague. At this point I add the spices - cumin, chile powder and smoked paprika to let them toast a minute or two before adding the liquids. Then you can add the water, chicken broth, enchilada sauce, tomatoes with diced chiles, shredded chicken and the frozen corn. Cover soup and let it cook on medium low where it is simmering slightly for at least 40 minutes. It works out really well to make this in advance a day or two earlier if you are trying to prep some meals for another day. It just gets more flavorful.

Before you are going to serve the soup add in the fresh cilantro and stir. You can save some to serve on top also if you would like.

I like to serve this with sour cream, shredded cheese, diced avocado and tortilla chips.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Taboule Salad

Submitted by: Lisa

Ok. If someone came up to you and asked if you wanted to try some Taboule salad, what would you say? I said "Well, what is it?"... the answer : "Wheat Bulgur". Me: "ick. "

Seriously, does that sound appetizing at all? No, not really. Well, because of the peer pressure of my co-workers and the fact that I liked the lady who brought it, I broke down and tried it.

Yum. The key is to never utter the word "Bulgur" when talking about food you want people to taste. : )

Now, this takes like 1/2 hr to make. The wheat bulgur has to soak up the water for 30 min, then you add in the rest of the ingredients and you are done! Great for a pot luck or a nice light healthy lunch.


1 box of Taboule mix wheat salad by Near East (I found it by the boxed rice mixes)
1 cucumber chopped and seeded
1 tomato diced
1 container crumbled Feta cheese
olive oil about 3 tbsp
lemon juice 2 tbsp
basil 1/4 cup chopped

Follow the box directions for making the Taboule then mix in the rest!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Curry Chicken Salad

Submitted by Heather

Do you ever feel like you eat the same thing for lunch every day?  I seem to go back and forth between salad and deli-turkey sandwiches.  They're not bad, but sometimes it's nice to shake things up a bit.  That's where these yummy curry chicken salad sandwiches come in.  I never feel like making much of a fuss at lunchtime (read: doing more than throwing already prepared stuff in the microwave or on some bread), so I make this chicken salad the day before and store it in the fridge for the next few lunches.  My husband is lucky if he gets any, since I'm always pushing the leftovers from dinner on him.  I usually make it with "light" ingredients, but it's probably even more delicious with the full fat versions.  And I know some of you feel very strongly about mayo vs. Miracle Whip.  Just choose whichever suits you best or whichever one you have in the fridge.
I've used canned chicken from Costco, chicken cooked in a crockpot and rotisserie chicken and they're all good in this recipe.  And don't skip the apples (and peppers!).  They add a nice sweetness and crunch that I much prefer to the usual celery you find in these kinds of salads. 

I love to eat this salad on toasted sourdough bread or even better, homemade bread.  In the picture above the salad is on homemade wheat bread made by my neighbors.  It's delicious and if I can ever wrestle the recipe from them, I'll share the goodness.

1/2 C. light mayonnaise or Miracle Whip
1/2 C. light sour cream
1 T. lemon juice
2 tsp. curry powder
1/2 tsp. dijon mustard (or any mustard on hand)
3 1/2 C. cooked chicken, chopped
one green onion, chopped
1/2 red, orange or yellow pepper (optional)
1/2 apple, chopped small
1/2 C. chopped roasted cashews
salt and pepper to taste

In a small bowl, blend the mayonnaise, sour cream, lemon juice, curry powder, and mustard and then set aside.
Next combine the chicken, green onion, pepper, apple, and cashews in a large bowl. Add the dressing and mix well.  Salt and pepper the chicken salad to taste.

Note: If you plan on storing this to eat later, don't add the cashews until serving time or they'll get soft.

Source:  I have no idea.  I have a recipe ripped from a magazine that I used for inspiration, but I've changed it quite a bit.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

I've got the need, the need for fried cheese!

Submitted by: Lisa
Who doesn't love a tasty, warm, gooey fried cheese stick? Admit it, you have ordered them for an appetizer. Well, my favorite magazine has done it again and come through with a delicious make it yourself fix. Food Network magazine, June 2011 issue.

1 quart canola oil
2 large eggs
1/4 cup milk
3/4 c panko breadcrumbs
3/4 c italian breadcrumbs
8 egg roll or spring roll wrappers
16 thin salami slices (I didn't use any salami, just cheese)
8 1 once individually wrapped string cheese sticks

Marinara sauce, for dipping
  • In a medium saucepan, heat the oil to 325 degrees. Line a plate with paper towels.
  • In a shallow bowl, whisk the eggs and milk thoroughly. In another shallow bowl, combine the panko and italian breadcrumbs.

  • Dredge 1 side of an egg roll wrapper in the egg wash. Place the wrapper egg-wash side up on a work surface and put 2 salami slices in the center of the wrapper, toward the edge closet to you. Tuck in the ends and continue to roll until you have an egg roll shape.

  • Dredge the rolled wrapper in the egg wash again and thoroughly coat in the breadcrumb mixture. Repeat with the remaining ingredients. (the rolls can be frozen for future use at this point)

  • Add 1 or 2 rolls to the oil at a time and cook 2 to 3 minutes, until golden brown. Be careful not to overcook them or cook them on too high a temp, as the wraps may explode. Transfer the fried cheese rolls to the paper towel lined plate and serve immediately with marinara sauce.
I would try to cut the wrappers in 1/2 the next time to see if I could still get a cheese stick wrapped with only a 1/2 of the wrapper. It was a bit tough with so much wrapper on it...but still delicious. The family devoured them.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Cowboy Caviar

Submitted by Heather
Here's a recipe you NEED for summer.  There are so many barbecues, holidays and potlucks where it would be perfect to take Cowboy Caviar.  Plus it's healthy!  Well, the salad is healthy - the chips you use to scoop it up are not so healthy, but at least you can feel virtuous eating all those fresh, chopped veggies.  Aren't they pretty on the plate?
Why is it called Cowboy Caviar?  I don't have any idea.  I promise there are no fish eggs in this recipe. Whew.  One plus about this recipe is that you really should make it a day ahead to let the flavors meld (I love it when I have an excuse to use that word), leaving you free of last minute prep on the day of the event.  Of course then you have to plan ahead.  But that's a problem for another day.
You can really change this recipe depending on what you have on hand.  I've made it as written though and it's delicious just the way it is. I threw in English cucumbers this time, but I don't always do that.  But they were yummy in this.  Just feel free to improvise with different color peppers or kinds of beans (I used only black beans this time).  Also, if I have fresh tomatoes on hand, I use those, though I had to use the canned variety in this picture.  And I used fresh corn and it was definitely a good use of a few extra cobs I hadn't used for dinner.  Oh, and I almost forgot that I used one fresh jalapeno instead of  the canned variety. And if I'm feeling REALLY righteous, I'll use fat free dressing.  See how changeable this recipe is??  So go and be healthy already!  You'll be well on your way to your 5 a day with this dish.

1 15-oz. can black eyed peas, drained
1 15-oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 15 oz. can white corn (or fresh or frozen)
1/2 C. chopped red onion
1/2 C. chopped green pepper (or other color pepper)
1 4-oz. can diced jalapeno peppers or green chiles (or 1-2 fresh jalapenos)
1 14.5-oz. can diced tomatoes, drained (or equivalent fresh)
1 C. Italian salad dressing (use your favorite)
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
cilantro, chopped
tortilla chips

In a medium bowl combine all ingredients, except chips. Mix well, cover and refrigerate for a few hours or overnight.  Eat with tortilla chips.

Recipe source: adapted from Spicy Bean Salsa on allrecipes.com

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Streusel Coffee Cake

Submitted by : Lisa

I found this recipe online over the Christmas break. I believe I found it on www.allrecipes.com. I made several loaves and gave one as a secret santa gift. It was well liked and I ended up giving out many copies of the recipe.

Hope you enjoy!


1 c butter, softened
2 c white sugar
4 eggs
2 c sour cream
2 tsp vanilla
4 c flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda

1/2 c white sugar
2 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350. Grease 10 inch bundt pan.

Mix dry ingredients and set aside.

***except the last 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon***

Cream butter and sugar until fluffy.

Add eggs, sour cream, and vanilla. Mix well.

Add dry ingredients and combine.

Pour 1/2 the batter into the pan, and sprinkle 1/2 the cinnamon sugar mixture on top. Add remaining batter and top with the rest of the sugar mixture.

Bake 350 for 45 to 60 minutes, or until tooth pick comes out clean.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Banana Boats

Submitted by: Hannah

On Monday nights in our house we have family night and we always make some sort of treat. I found this recipe in a church cookbook and since it only has 3 ingredients I thought it was a perfect dessert for my son to help with. I picked this because I thought he would love it, and he did, but I loved it too. It is simple and delicous and it takes under 10 minutes to make. Now, that is my kind of treat!


bananas (they don't have to be to ripe but not green)

mini marshmallows

chocolate chips

Leaving the banana peel on cut down the banana lengthwise but don't go through the other side. Open the cut you just made so there is room to stuff the goodies. Take a piece of tin foil that is big enough to cover your banana. Put your banana on the tin foil and put as much of the mini marshmallows and chocolate chips that you like or that you can fit inside the opening you made. When finished filling it, leave the banana standing up and bring the tinfoil up around it and make sure it is enclosed. You will bake these bananas at 400 degrees for about 8-9 minutes. You can either eat these right out of the peel or carefully remove them from the peel and put them on a plate. Yum!!

*This is also a great campfire snack, you would make them the same way but your cooking time may not be as long.

Source: Barbara Smith

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Turkey Burgers

Submitted by: Hannah

Ahhh, it's finally summer and that makes me want burgers!!! Turkey burgers can get a bad rap for being dry or lacking in flavor, hopefully this recipe will change your mind if you are not a fan (yet). Adding sauteed vegetables to these helps keep the burgers moist and delicious. My husband who is a big hamburger fan (not usually turkey) even enjoys these.


1 1/4 lbs ground turkey (you can use the 99% lean but I prefer the 93% because they are juicier and have more flavor)

1 small onion diced finely

10 oz of mushrooms diced finely (now I have used up to a 16 oz package of mushrooms but you don't need that many but I am a big fan so I choose more sometimes)

2-3 tsps of dijon mustard

1 1/2 teaspoons Montreal Steak Seasoning by McCormick (you can use salt and pepper if you don't have this but it is a great spice for many things so I love having it on hand)

5-6 dashes worcestershire sauce

1 slice of swiss cheese for each burger (I had cheddar this time but swiss is my favorite)


Saute the chopped mushrooms and onions in a saute pan with 1-2 tsps of oil on medium heat. When they have completely cooked, it may take 5-7 minutes remove them from the heat. In a mixing bowl put in ground turkey, dijon mustard, Montreal Steak Seasoning, worcestershire sauce and the cooled vegetables.

Mix the ingredients thoroughly w/o overmixing. The mixture may be a bit loose and that is okay but if you are concerned they will fall apart you can add a bit of bread crumbs. I usually don't find that step necessary though.

On medium to medium high heat you can cook these in a skillet or grill pan with a small amount of oil. If I'm using a nonstick surface I usually just use nonstick spray. Since it is a poultry burger it is important to cook these completely through. I find it takes about 3 minutes per side but I make the 1 1/4 pounds stretch to make 6-8 burgers so they are on the smaller side. After your burgers have cooked on the first side when you flip them then you can add the cheese. I often add a tin foil tent over the top of the pan at that point to help the cheese melt faster. When they are done serve them on a bun and enjoy them with your favorite toppings. Some of my favorite toppings are: lettuce, tomato, pickles, bacon or avocado.

*When I have fresh rosemary in the summer I sometimes add 1 tsp of that chopped into the burger mixture.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Banana Bars

Submitted by : Lisa

I just love this recipe. It isn't like banana bread. It is light and delicious and very versatile. It suggests putting it into a jelly roll pan 10x15 size. I have never done that. I have put it into a 9x13 pan, an 8 inch spring form pan and put it on a pedestal, and now I am making them into cupcakes.

The kids love them, but more importantly the adults love them. I got this recipe from a co-worker and truthfully I don't know where she got it from.


1/2 c butter, softened
1 1/4 c sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup mashed bananas (top off with applesauce if you don't have enough banana)
1 8 oz carton sour cream
2 c flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda

Grease and lightly flour 10x15 inch jelly roll pan. Preheat oven to 375. Cream butter and sugar; blend in eggs, vanilla, bananas and sour cream.

Combine the dry ingredients; stir into the creamed mixture just until blended.

Spread in prepared pan.

Bake until bars test done with a wooden pick, about 25 minutes. Cool

Spread with cream cheese frosting....recipe follows

Cream Cheese Frosting:

1 3 oz package cream cheese, softened
3 tbsp soft butter
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla

Beat until smooth. I like to serve it chilled, but it doesn't need to be.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Chocolate Peanut Butter M&M Cookies

Submitted by: Lisa

There is a story with this one. I had a bag of Peanut Butter M&M's and I thought it would be delicious to make a chocolate cookie and put them in it. Well all the recipes I could find online called for cocoa. Well, I didn't have any cocoa but I have tubs, literally, of high quality chocolate pieces.

I decided to "adjust" one of the recipes to use melted chocolate instead of the dry cocoa. A little unsure of how to do that, I just treated the chocolate as if it was an unsweetened chocolate square. So I removed some of the butter that the recipe called for and followed the conversion instructions on the (empty) cocoa container for using chocolate squares and walla...we have a cookie! They are really pretty good. The texture was nice an chewy, and the flavor of the chocolate is mild. But I consider it a hit and will probably do a bit more experimenting with other recipes now that this was a success.

1 stick plus 5 tbsp unsalted butter, softened

1 1/2 cups white sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

3 1/2 oz (weight) of good quality milk chocolate, melted

1 bag (11.4 oz) of Peanut Butter M & M's

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time and mix to incorporate. Add the vanilla and mix thoroughly.

Melt the chocolate. Add to the Butter mixture and mix thoroughly.

Add the all-purpose flour, baking soda, kosher salt

Mix together until the dough appears completely combined.

Add the M & M's and stir them into the dough.

Drop by two teaspoonfuls onto an ungreased cookie sheet.

Or roll into balls, place about two inches apart on the sheet.

Bake for 11 minutes at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Allow to cool on the sheet for about one minute before removing to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Store in airtight containers.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Cake

Submitted by Hannah

I am a lover of citrus so when I saw this recipe for a simple pound cake I had to try it.  It is a light and delicious recipe that makes you feel like it isn't bad for you at all so be careful because you can just keep eating this.  Lately, whenever I make desserts I have to have a reason or someone to share it with or I end up overindulging .  So, in this instance I had a close friend who had just announced she was pregnant so I made these into "baby" bundt cakes for her.

Lemon Poppy Seed Pound Cake
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¼ tsp. baking soda
¼ tsp. salt
12 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 ½ tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp. poppy seeds
2 eggs, at room temperature
½ cup sour cream, at room temperature  

Directions:Preheat the oven to 325°. Lightly grease a loaf pan (preferably glass) and dust with flour, shaking to remove the excess. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt until blended. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together the butter, sugar, vanilla, lemon zest, lemon juice and poppy seeds until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition until just blended. Sprinkle half of the flour mixture over the egg mixture and stir until both are just incorporated. Stir in the sour cream, then sprinkle with the remaining flour mixture and stir until evenly distributed. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth out the top. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 70 minutes. Keep an eye on the cake near the end of baking and cover loosely with foil if necessary to prevent over-browning. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 15 minutes. 

*The recipe calls for this to be made into a loaf pan but I made them smaller and just starting checking them at about 15 minutes until they were done.  For the pan I had they took about 18 min. but it can vary by the size of pan you use.  Also, I added a simple glaze of powdered sugar with lemon juice once they were cooled.

Source:  annies-eats.com

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Mummy Boome's Traditional Shepherds Pie

Submitted by: Lisa
This is our absolute favorite shepherds pie recipe. I got it from www.foodnetwork.com
It has a nice rich flavor and even though it has vegies in it, the kids gobble it up. Never any left overs.

Ingredient list:

1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
2 carrots, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
salt and pepper
1 tbsp tomato paste (I used ketchup)
2 lbs lean ground beef
2 tbsp worchester sauce (I used steak sauce because I was out of worchester)
1/2 c beef stock
1 1/2 c peas

Cheesy mashed potatoes: (when I am in a hurry, I confess..I use potato pearls!)
4 lbs yukon gold potatoes, peeled, quartered
4 tbsp butter
1/4 c cream
1 cup grated mature white cheddar
salt and pepper

1. Boil potatoes until tender
2. Drain and place them back into the pan and mash them.
3. Add the cream and butter and mash until smooth.
4. Add cheese and stir.
5. Season with salt and pepper

Directions for the beef mixture

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

1. Add butter and oil to a large skillet on medium heat. Saute onions, carrots, celery and garlic until tender, about 7 to 10 min.

2. Season with Salt and Pepper. Once the vegies are softened and start to brown, add the tomato paste and mix evenly.

3. Add the ground beef and cook until no longer pink.

4. Add the worcestershire sauce and beef stock. Season with salt and pepper again.

5. Cook and simmer for another 10 minutes. Mix in peas

6. Transfer to an oven proof baking dish.

7. Place potato mixture on top of the ground beef mixture and spread out evenly. Rake through the potatoes with a fork to create peaks that will brown nicely.

8. Place into the oven and cook until browned, about 20 minutes.