Soups and Stews, Uncategorized

Sausage and White Bean Soup

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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.

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Dessert, Uncategorized

Easy Peanut Butter Bars

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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.

 

potatoes, Uncategorized

New potatoes

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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

butter

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!

Pork

Crockpot BBQ Ribs

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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

Chicken and Rice Parmesan

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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.

Pork

Sausage and Potatoes

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I totally used the bbq seasoning. Honestly, I thought it was going to be gross. I’m really weird about bbq. I ended up really liking the recipe. It was very good. My siblings who are the worlds most pickiest twin duo even liked it. To my surprise, they tried it. When they were babies, I was a teenager. I used to try to get them to eat new things, but they never would. So now every time they try something new and they like it I feel like I’ve just scored a huge win. This recipe is deemed picky eater approved. Try it!

2 packs of smoked sausage

1/2 teaspoon a1 mesquite rub or Montreal seasoning

4-5 potatoes

1/4 onion thinly diced

Olive oil

Heat a small amount of oil in a cooker. Add potatoes. Add seasoning. Add onion. Cover. Let cook. Slice Smoked Sausage in about 1/4 inch pieces. Throw in meat. Recover and cook until hot.

Beef

Country Fried Steak

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One summer I went to stay with my mom’s brother and his wife. She cooked a lot of things I didn’t get here at my parents house. Liver mush being an example. one word…GROSS. I hate Liver mush. I refused to eat it. Not all things were gross to me. This was one of the most favorite things she ever made me. She taught me to cook it and I still have this knowledge 20 years or more later after learning to make it.

Cubed steak (I usually do 6 pcs)

Butter

Olive or Canola Oil

Seasoning of choice (cayenne, salt, pepper, parsley, etc)

1 cup Flour

1-2 cloves Garlic

In a plate put flour and seasonings and mix it up. In a pot scoop in butter and oil. You generally will use about 1/4 cup butter and oil. Roll beef in flour mixture. Place meat in pot and cover. Brown on both sides. Once done leave oil in pot and add garlic. stir until fragrant. Add flour. Stir. Wait patiently until it’s browned. Add water a little at a time to prevent lumps. Stir until thick. Add Salt and pepper. Stir and your done! ENJOY!