Soups and Stews, Uncategorized

Sausage and White Bean Soup


Today is a little sad for me. Sometimes we need some good ol’ comfort food to just warm our souls. See….a piece of my heart was broken last month. I feel like a piece of my soul was forever taken. My oldest, who is not biologically mine, left. He moved back to Florida to be with his father. I’m happy for him, but sad at the same time. I think a lot of things have now forever been changed. I do think that it’s for the best, but it doesn’t fix my broken heart. Anyway, I decided I needed a little TLC. What better way to cheer yourself up than to have a big bowl of comfort and just focus on yourself for an evening?

1 Tablespoon olive oil

12.8 oz thin sliced smoked sausage

3 garlic cloves

1 diced onion

3 carrots, peeled and diced

2 celery stalks, diced

30 oz canned great northern beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 teaspoon dry oregano

2 bay leaves

4 cups chicken broth

2 cups water

salt and pepper

3 cups baby spinach

Heat olive oil in skillet. add sausage and cook until lightly browned. place sausage, garlic, onions, carrots, celery, beans, oregano, and bay leaves into a pot. Stir in chicken broth and 2 cups of water. Season with salt and pepper. cook in the crockpot for 7-8 hours on low, or 3-4 hours on high. On the stove top simmer for an hour. When done add in spinach to wilt.

Dessert, Uncategorized

Easy Peanut Butter Bars


I’m always looking for new things for my group of boys. Everyone of them loves peanut butter and chocolate anything, pretty much. I’m always excited to make new things for them. I have to watch though, because when the boys really, really like something, then they will eat it all within a short time. This is one of those recipes. I came home from the store the day after and half of what was left, was gone. Says something…

1 3/4 Cup Flour

1 1/4 Cup packed brown sugar

3/4 Cup peanut butter

1 stick of butter, softened

3 Tablespoons milk

1 Large egg

1 Tablespoon vanilla

3/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

1 Cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375. Spray bottom and sides of a pan lined with parchment paper or foil with some cooking spray. Mix all dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Then add in wet ingredients.  Fold in chocolate chips. evenly spread in the pan. Bake until a toothpick is inserted and comes out clean. About 20-25 minutes. Let cool for 20 minutes before you cut.

Stays good covered at room temp for up to 5 days.



Good vs. Yuck…


I’ve never tried parsnips. I’ve determined, I’m really not very open to trying new things, so I decided I’d try new things out. I was flipping through a magazine and found this carrot and parsnip puree, so I thought it would be a perfect recipe to try, since I was a little weird about trying new things anyway. Let me tell you this recipe was a total FAIL. I HATE parsnips. They had this weird taste and I was completely grossed out. No one in my house would eat it. No amount of seasoning could have made this better. It was enough to make me want to puke. Needless to say, I wont ever be making this recipe again.

8 Parsnips, peeled and sliced thickly

2 carrots, peeled, cut into 2 inch pieces

1/4 cup chives, or green onion stalks

6 Tablespoons butter

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

boil veggies in a covered, salted watered pot. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce and simmer. Drain, add chives, or onion stalks, butter, salt, and pepper. Puree with an immersion blender until smooth.

potatoes, Uncategorized

New potatoes


When I was a kid, we always had a garden. I used to LOVE the first crop coming in. I knew this meant crispy, crusty, yummy, brown, new potatoes. I always loved this. Something about a new potato being creamy and good.

This was my favorite part of the year because I knew that I worked hard to help. I was little, but my hands were helping hands. My grandfather, bless his soul, he calls me Annie, or Jean Annie…he’d always say “Jean Annie, come help me with these potatoes”…or cucumbers, or whatever they might be working on. He’d get me over there and let me use the hoe. I felt so strong and so special. That’s one thing he always did. I felt like no matter what I was the only one that mattered. Everytime I make this recipe I think of this time of my life.


Here’s all you need….

new potatoes


seasoning (i use salt and pepper, sometimes something like bbq rub…)

Cut up potatoes. Usually I cut into fours. I melt some butter in a frying pan and throw it all in the pan. I cover it with a lid, until the potatoes are soft. Once you get to this point, take the lid off and continue to brown the potatoes. Make sure you turn these while cooking!


Lancashire Hot Pot


Today was a good day. I’ve been worried about my littlest little bit. He has seemed to be sick today. He laid down and napped for two plus hours today. Then he asked to go to bed early. Those who know my little bit know that he never, ever would do this. Since he was napping, I decided I’d go and get some stuff done. I not only got 3 loads of laundry finished, but I also made this meal.

I always am on the hunt for new stuff to make. I love new recipes, but lately recipes are hard to find to suit my picky palate. I seen this recipe and I instantly wanted to make it but the problem is it’s made with lamb and I’m not a lamb fan. I decided I’d just make it my own. This is my version of a vamped up Lancashire Hot Pot.

3 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1.5 pounds of beef stew meat

1/2 a medium onion

1 large carrot, peeled and thinly chopped

1 teaspoon garlic, minced

2 lbs of thin sliced potatoes, peeled

2 teaspoons thyme

3/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 bay leaf

2.5 cups of beef broth.

Note: Watch the salt ya’ll! If you add salt, do it after it cooks!

Brown meat in oil. Remove from pan. Add onion and carrot until translucent. Add Garlic. Add back the meat and add the beef broth, thyme, pepper, and bay leaf. Let reduce by about 1/2-3/4. pour oil in bottom of pan. Fan bottom of pan with the potatoes. Ladle in the meat. Top with the remaining potatoes. Pour the remaining liquid over the top. dab with pieces of butter. cover and bake 425 until the potatoes are soft. Remove lid and bake until potatoes are starting to get crispy.


Crockpot BBQ Ribs


This is something my mother used to make when I was little. For a long time I wouldn’t make it, but then I’d be stationed in another state and get homesick, so I’d find myself making it. It’s always funny to me how you find yourself making things because you miss them, or you miss someone and that recipe reminds you of the good times. You suddenly just don’t feel so alone anymore. We’re home now, family lives close by. I still catch myself making this dish, because it brings back very fond memories.

This is the crockpot I use. I love this because I can program it and come back later. You should check this out guys!

BBQ sauce

Country style ribs

Add to the crockpot and cook on low for 8 hours.


Chicken and Rice Parmesan


We found this recipe. I have no idea where or how long ago. What I do remember though, is that we wrote it on a piece of paper and stuck it in a notebook. For the longest time I never made it. Suddenly one day I decided that it was time to try it. I sat there and wondered, why in the world did I never make it before? It’s amazing. My family gobbled it up. There was nothing left! I was happy about this, but sad too. Only because I didn’t get to have it for lunch the next day.

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic

1/2 teaspoon thyme

1 lb chicken

1/2 cup white cooking wine

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 1/2 cups uncooked rice

1 cup chicken broth

3/4 cup parmesan cheese

3 tablespoons dried parsley OR 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

Heat oil in a frying pan, add Onion and thyme. Add garlic. Sauté until cooked. Add Chicken. Brown Chicken. Add white wine. Add salt. Add pepper. Cook until almost all of the liquid is gone. Add rice. Add Chicken broth. Stir well.  Cover! Cook til rice is cooked. Add parsley. Add parmesan.