Monthly Archives: December 2011

The Best Darn Chili EVER!!!

chili over fire

This is a very easy to make chili that everyone seems to love.  You can make it your own by adding or subtracting ingredients.


1lb. ground sirloin  (you can use ground beef, ground round, or whatever you prefer)    
*1 16 or 24 oz of your favorite salsa.  I prefer the white corn and black bean salsa.  Oh and here is where you control the heat.  use mild if you prefer a less spicey chili.  medium if you prefer more…..etc… you can also use more salsa if desired.    
*1 pkg. TACO seasoning mix. (not the chili seasoning)
* 1 sweet onion, diced
* 1/2 large green pepper, diced
* 1/2 large yellow pepper diced
* 1/2 large sweet red pepper diced
* 1 large 22 oz can diced tomatoes OR IN SEASON, about 4 fresh tomatoes, diced
* 1 can each, dark red kidney beans
* 1 can black beans
* 1 small can 10 oz v8 juice ( you may not need this, if you prefer a very thick chili, or if you want a soupier texture, then use it or even add more.)

Brown ground sirloin  in large skillet with the taco seasoning, add onion. while this is cooking, put all the other ingredients into a large crock pot, and then when done cooking the ground beef and onion, add to the tomatoes and bean mixture.  Set the crock pot on low and simmer for a couple of hours to blend all the flavors.  This chili is excellent cooked a day ahead.  The flavors will combine and be perfect the next day.  My favorite version of this is to take it camping and cook it over an open fire.  The smoke from the campfire gives it a mellow smokey flavor that can’t be beat!  But just be sure to bring enough, the other campers around you will want some too!


Quick Beef and Noodles



The easiest and best beef and noodles ever!  Your family will love this!

This is fast and easy.

chunks of beef roast *  2 cans of beefy mushroom soup + 1 c water* cooked noodles

combine all ingredients and serve plain or over biscuts or mashed potatoes. YUM! 

Use the left over beef from the pot roast, or make a pot roast or use canned beef.  My point is you will start with fully cooked beef.  I use frozen noodles from the store.  They are the most like homemade I have found.  You can use your favorite noodle. I have only found one company that makes the beefy mushroom soup and that is Campbells.  It makes an excellent gravy.

Easy crockpot pot roast


So easy and ready when you come home from work!  

The size roast you need depends on how many you are feeding.  For me,  I love left-overs, so I usually get 2 lbs or more.  I normally add potatoes and carrots, again the amount will depend on how many people you are serving.  One potato for each person is a good rule of thumb.  I quarter the potatoes but you can do what ever you want.  I also like to use the little red potatoes for variety, but any will work.   I use 3-4 per person, of those and I leave them whole.  This picture shows mashed potatoes but for a quick and easy dinner, just cook the potatoes with the roast.  For carrots, I use the little fingerling type, sometimes called baby carrots. If you are adding frozen green beans, do so about 1/2 an hour before serving or they will be over cooked.  This meal can be dressed up with pearl onions, different types of potatoes, and your favorite veggies can be used.  Hope you enjoy!

you will need

1 beef pot roast (chuck works great) *  several potatoes *  1/2 lb bag of baby carrots  * 1 pkg dry beefy onion soup mix

Place roast in bottom of crock pot and sprinkle dry soup mix over it.  Pour enough water over to cover roast and add potatoes and carrots, making sure they are covered also.  Cook on warm all day (or several hours).  The roast will be tender and fall apart when done.  Suggestion,  Use the left overs for beef and noodles!!

Melting Moments

1 C Flour  * 1/2 C cornstarch  * 1/2 C Powdered Sugar  *  3/4 C Butter

Beat butter til smooth.  Gradually beat in cornstarch and powdered sugar.  Add flour just til mixed.  Refrigerate 1 hour.  Shape into 1″ balls and place on ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake in 300 degree oven for about 20 min.  When cool, roll in powdered sugar.  These cookies can be flattened with a fork before baking, you can add nuts after the flour.  I have added a bit of peppermint flavoring, flattened the balls with a fork, and dipped in dark chocolate.  Try the basic recipe first then variations.  Your imagination is your limit.  These are delectable!!

** note  always use real butter.  I use regular salted butter but you can use the unsalted if you prefer.  NEVER use margarine of any kind.  The water content will ruin these delectable delights!!

Easy creamy peanutbutter fudge

This is the easiest peanutbutter fudge I have ever made!

First I line a square cake pan with crushed peanuts.  This allows easier removal of the fudge.

1 C creamy peanut butter * 1/3 C real butter * 1 box powdered sugar.

over low heat melt peanutbutter and butter.  stir in the powdered sugar and spread in caked pan. Thats it!! let it cool, best not to refrigerate, it will get hard and you will have trouble cutting it while its cold.  But at room temperature, it is perfect and creamy!!

Homemade Chicken Pot Pie

A favorite with my kids and their friends.  Very easy for busy moms!

1 refrigerated pie crust (not frozen)  *   1 12- 16 oz bag of frozen vegetables          *3 or 4 large potatoes  * 2 cans of cream of chicken soup   * 1 1/2 lbs. skinless boneless chicken breast meat  *** preheat oven 375 degrees

First peel and cube about 3 large potatoes. In just enough water to cover potatoes,  Boil just til tender, not mushy, and set aside, keeping the water.

Next  cube about   1 1/2 lbs.  of skinless, boneless chicken breast meat.  Cut into nice sized pieces, maybe about an inch.   Cover bottom of skillet with a little oil, not too much, you are not actually frying this chicken… place chicken in skillet and cover, cook on low heat til no longer pink.  This doesn’t take as long as you might think.  Cooking too long  just makes it rubbery and tough, so keep a close eye on it.

As soon as it is cooked through, add the potatoes and water.   Add 2 cans of cream of chicken soup, a 12-16 oz bag of frozen mixed vegetables.  mix well all ingredients.  The soup should make a nice gravy.  Pour into a large crock pot and cover with a refrigerated type, pie crust.  I have used the name brand and the store brands.  Most are just fine.  I do not use the frozen ones, they don’t seem to do as well.  place just the removable part of the crock pot, in a regular oven, on 375 degrees til the crust is brown, usually takes about 1/2 an hour.

Mouth Watering BBQ Ribs!!


Tender and juicy and easy as pie!!!  Simply sear on the grill for about 30 min.  then place in crock pot and  cover with your favorite  sauce, and cook on low for 3 hours.

My suggestions for turning a store bought sauce into  your very  own, drizzle a little molassis over the ribs in the crock pot, a little brown sugar sprinkled on top of that…..then mix with your BBQ sauce  a  1/4 to 1/2 cup applebutter, and make sure you are cooking on low.

These are fall off the bone tender and since you grilled them the meat has that smokey taste that we all love so well…..  charcoal works well, but a gas grill and hickory chips works great too!