Saturday, December 28, 2013

Easy Blue Cheese Tapenade

Have you ever purchased a jar of tapenade? If so, I am sorry to inform you that you spent too much! My husband just taught me that Tapenade is so easy to make.  Plus, it tastes much fresher than any good jar you would purchase. Stop by your local deli and quickly assemble an award winning tapenade...I never knew what the olive bar was I know. 

Cheesy Broccoli Mash Cups

These little mashed potato cups make the perfect side dish or appetizer. If you are watching your waist you can easily control your portions and indulge with just a couple bites. These were super easy to make. You can use leftover mashed potatoes or whip up some instant potatoes like I did. The kids loved these.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Cheesy Sausage Snowmen

Appetizer time in our house happens often. Its fun…what can I say!? This night I had kids, mommies and a few hungry men coming over. I knew my “health conscience” friends would be sure to bring some salads and veggies so I had to make sure we had something of substance on hand.

My friends are so creative, so I need to make sure I had something more than chips and dip. I came up with this crazy idea to make snowmen out of crescent roll dough stuffed with Italian sausage and fresh mozzarella.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Cookies

Cookies are not my forte. But you can’t go wrong with the original NESTLÉ® TOLL HOUSE® Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe….with some modification of course! Soft chewy and not too sweet make these a favorite of mine. 

A dear friend of mine gave me a Dark Chocolate Peppermint Crunch Bar this holiday and I thought what better way to use than to cook with it! This wasn’t just any bar, this natural chocolate bar is certified Gluten-Free, Non-GMO and 10% of the profits are donated to endangered species protection.  

Monday, December 23, 2013

Buffalo Chicken Sweet Roll Sliders

Juicy chicken breasts are lightly breaded with a cracker Parmesan crust and dressed with buffalo sauce and creamy Havarti. Creamed with a Gorgonzola aioli and sandwiched between a Kings Hawaiian Sweet Roll, these sliders are a hit!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Backyard Pine Cone Holiday Ornaments

I am not crafty. Really I am not. Crafting is similar to baking. It takes precision, detail and patience – none of which are qualities I innately posses. I do however, love giving handmade gifts and that is a little difficult to do if you don’t make something.

This year I wanted to do something with the pine cones in the back yard. Our northwest pine cones aren’t the best looking for decoration but they served the purpose. Check out the step by step project below. Just make sure you give yourself a day in-between steps to allow for drying.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Ginger Ale Glazed Petite Carrots

Another easy side dish comin’ at ya tonight! It’s so easy and so tasty I had to share. We get a little burned out on just salad or broccoli so these carrots break up the veggie monotony at our table. The ginger ale adds some extra sweet and creates a nice glaze finish. The chili powder adds a little contrast of spice.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Creamy Lemon Garlic Orzo

What a perfect side dish for any meal. So quick and I had everything on hand and readily available. What was even better? The kids loved it – phew! We enjoyed this simple and delicate dish with grilled pork tenderloin and green beans.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Salmon Chowder

Cold days call for hearty soups and chowders. Someone told me recently that they made my recipe for Salmon chowder and it was delicious, so I of course decided I had to have it. My salmon chowder was slightly adapted from a recipe my father makes and is filled with fresh flavors.

I actually was blessed enough to have a large piece of salmon in my freezer brought to me by my mother-in-law when she recently visited Alaska. The fish was caught by her nephew and apparently everyone there has freezer’s full of fish – wouldn't that be a dream come true!

After all of the prep work, this recipe comes together very easy. If you are someone who prepares in advance it would be awesome to have this on a weeknight if you had some of the chopping done of ahead of time!

Monday, December 2, 2013

Frozen Apple Pie à la Mode Bites

Those close to me know that baking isn't my specialty. Don’t get me wrong, I love cooking, but dessert is often an afterthought for me. In all seriousness, I would much rather have seconds than a dessert. There is however a couple of little people in my house that especially enjoy baking. They actually enjoy “helping” bake almost as much as eating baked treats.