Saturday, March 15, 2008

THE cooking/recipe resource

My sister gave me this cookbook as a wedding present, and in the 10 years I've been married it has been THE resource I always turn to. I've never been disappointed!

Friday, March 14, 2008

My Dinner Philosophy

The Seven Clown Circus dinner philosophy is pretty simple. Everyone eats the same thing and although I try to make meals that everyone will enjoy, I'm not always successful. The kids must try everything I've prepared. If they don't like it, fine. They don't have to eat it. But, that's it. No special meals to make up for it, and no snacks. Casserole type dishes are usually not a hit, rather, my kids prefer something simple like chicken, a green vegetable and rice or some other starch. Simple is golden here, and as the chief cook, I wouldn't have it any other way.

Breakfast Favorites

My cousin Stacey sent me these recipes, and although I haven't tried them, her family has and they are their absolute favorites.

Breakfast Pizza

1 package (12oz.) Breakfast Sausage links
1 package refrigerated crescent rolls
1 cup thawed hash brown potatoes
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
4 eggs
¼ c. milk
¼ tsp. dried basil
dash of cayenne pepper
½ c. grated parmesan cheese

Cook sausage until no longer pink, and slice into coin size pieces.

Unroll crescent roll dough, separate into 8 triangles

Arrange on an ungreased 12 inch. Pizza pan, placing the points into the center.
Press seams together and press over the bottom and up the sides of pan to form a crust.

Top with hashbrowns sausage and cheddar cheese

Combine the eggs, milk and spices, pour over cheese.

Sprinkle with parmesan cheese.

Bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean.

8 servings

Overnight French Toast

This is a simple one, but a favorite on a cool fall Sunday morning…..Enjoy!

A- 3-5 cooking apples ( I use green granny smith) peeled and diced
B- 1 c. brown sugar
C- 1 cube of butter (don’t use margarine)
D- 1/3 c. karo syrup
E- 1 Tbsp. of tapioca (or flour if tapioca isn’t available)
F- loaf of good and fresh French Bread (or I use Texas Toast)
G- 1 c. milk
H- 4 eggs

In the microwave cook B-D one minute at a time. Stirring in between minutes until very well melted, and combined. Usually takes 3 or 4 minutes to make a good thick syrup..

Pour out into a 9x13 pan

Spread apples out evenly over syrup and sprinkle tapioca/flour over them.

Cut bread into thick slices and dip into mixture of egg and milk well whipped.

Layer soaked bread over apples like fallen dominoes.

Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Bake at 375 uncovered for 30-45 minutes until golden brown. I sometimes cook with the foil on for half the time, and then take it off for the last half to keep the bread softer, not so crusty.


Thursday, March 13, 2008

Cooking Substitutions are a must...

I don't know about you, but when I'm an ingredient or two short, I don't have time to run out to the store and that's why this substitution guide from Kraft is so handy.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Easy Cheesy Chicken Manicotti

This is a recipe I modified from a Kraft recipe. It's certainly not gourmet, but the kids and Jeff liked it, and there was enough for 7 hungry clowns with leftovers. I don't think I liked it enough to make it often, but it was a nice, easy recipe to break up the monthly menu.

1 can condensed cream of chicken soup
1 1\2 cups of water
2 cups of grated cheese
2 cups frozen brocolli florets
12 (approx) manicotti pasta shells, uncooked
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cooked and diced
2 chopped green onions

Prehead oven to 400 degrees. Mix soup, water and cheese in microwave safe bowl. Microwave until cheese in melted and stir well. Pour one-third of the soup mixture into the bottom of a baking dish and set aside. Add brocolli and green onions to remaining soup mixture. Stuff chicken in shells. Place in baking dish. Cover completely with remaining soup mixture. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil.

Bake 45 minutes.