Category Archives: Recipes

Homemade Avocado Hummus


avocados-in-bowl-(1)

A few years ago, I had worked a booth with the Anthropology Club at the farmers market at Bernice Gardens in Little Rock. Some farmer’s markets are quite a venue to visit; some are big, some are small, nevertheless, Bernice Gardens is quite the atmosphere mixed with farmers, artisans, artists, and a few food trucks.

While I was there I walked around visiting each booth, trying homemade pastries, freshly brewed coffee that was locally grown and roasted, homemade goat cheese, and homemade hummus. I purchased fresh produce from some of the farmers, some pastries, and some hummus. Now and then I have gone back, mostly for an Anthropology class, but to also support the local farmers and artisans. Plus, I had lived close enough, until now as I had moved further away.

The other day, my boss brought in a container of hummus that she had made herself. I asked her what all she put in there and it seemed an easy recipe that I didn’t know why I hadn’t made it myself before. She told me a variety of recipes she uses and I decided to try one for myself. However, if you don’t have a food processor like me, you can still make this using a mixer or a blender.

2 Avocadoes, peeled and seeded

1 can of cooked and drained chickpeas

1/4 tsp of cumin

1/4 tsp of paprika or pepper

1/4 tsp of curry (optional)

1 lemon, squeezed into the ingredients

2 tbsp of olive oil

1/4 tsp salt

If you are using a mixer, you may have to blend for a few mins until ingredients are well blended. Blender or food processor would work better.

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Homemade Starbucks Mocha Frappe Recipe


 

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found on google images

This morning I decided to buy the Starbucks Mocha drink mix while I was out shopping at my local grocery store. The price for the drink mix is about the same price for just one of their medium sized drinks, so why not save money and make my own at home. Other times, I get the Starbucks mocha samplers that they have in the coffee aisle.

When I got home I noticed it didn’t have any recipes on the carton, nor any websites for the buyer to go to find homemade recipes using their mix. I spent twenty minutes searching the net for a good recipe when I kept coming up on the same homemade recipe that everyone is using that didn’t ask for the mocha mix. Instead, they asked for you to brew a cup of coffee, add several cups of milk, a cup of ice, 3/4 cup of sugar (REALLY?? That’s a lot of sugar for just one cup of coffee), then add chocolate syrup or cocoa powder. Hmm, so not what I was looking for. I then decided to just make up my own recipe, though with the help of the Oregon Chai recipe (found on their website, as well as on the side of their cartons).

I did go to one of the few Starbucks websites looking for recipes, but found one of their websites that looked more or less like a training site for their employees. Their main page just shows what’s on their menu and you can also shop for coffee or buy one of their coffee machines. I guess their recipes are Top Secret or they would rather you spend your money on having one of their employees making you one from their store.

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found on google images

 

I have a NutriBullet blender, which is for smoothies, but when I make frappes they come out foamy, rather than creamy. Here’s the recipe that I have tried so far:

1 cup of ice

1/2 cup of the coffee mix

1 cup of milk

1 teaspoon of cocoa powder

1 1/2 teaspoons of sugar

 

I’ve learned that adding a banana to the mix helps make a perfect blend and keeps it from being too foamy.

If you have a better recipe, please leave it in the comments below.

Must try baked chicken recipe


I’m always looking for recipes to try and change things up. It gets boring making the same thing over and over. I spend a lot of time on Pinterest, pinning things to try. Some recipes are a hit, while some recipes aren’t worth a second try.

Not too long ago I found a recipe for baked chicken that I wanted to try. I had most of the ingredients at home, but made a run to the store for the things I didn’t have – wasn’t too expensive really. After I got home, I mixed up the ingredients and put the chicken in the oven. let me just say, the recipe was a hit and so I placed it in my little cookbook that I use quite often. The only thing that I would change is placing aluminum foil down to cover the bottom as the ingredients stuck to the dish, making it hard to come off, even with scrubbing. It says that the recipe is for 6 chicken breast, I had used up all the ingredients on just 3 thin pieces.

Now I can’t take all the credit for the recipe of course, so click here. She has a wonderful blog of fun activities, crafts, and other wonderful recipes you may like to try.

Brown Sugar Baked Chicken

2 1/2 tablespoons light brown sugar

1 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp cumin

3/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

1/4 tsp dried oregano

1/4 tsp garlic salt

Mix ingredients and cover chicken breast thoroughly. Bake at 425F, for 20-22 minutes.

Recipe for Shrimp Fried Rice


The other day I found a recipe for one of my favorites, shrimp fried rice. What the recipe should’ve said is that it’ll feed an army lol! I’ve made a few changes so that it’ll feed about 3 people, rather than feed 8.

•2 cups rice, prepared
•½ pound shrimp cooked
•1 cup peas & carrots, frozen
•1/2 white onion, chopped
•2 cloves garlic, minced
•2 eggs
•3 tablespoons sesame oil
•¼ cup soy sauce

Instructions
1.Prepare rice according to package instructions to yield 2 cups cooked rice.
2.Heat sesame oil in a large skillet on medium heat.
3.Add onion, garlic, peas, and carrots. Stir fry until tender.
4.Crack eggs into a separate pan and scramble, then mix throughout vegetables.
5.Add rice, shrimp, and soy sauce to pan. Stir in soy sauce and remove from heat.

Recipe for the best meatloaf


I’m always looking for recipes to try for dinner. I’ve eaten meatloaf quite a few times, but each time it was always okay. Mostly it was greasy from sitting in the greasy juice meatloaf always creates when it’s cooked.

I’ve been in the mood for meatloaf and have been searching for the perfect recipe. Most of the time when I get a craving for meat, mostly hamburgers or steak, it’s because my iron is low; I’m anemic and have been for many years. I don’t eat a lot of meat, especially red meat, but when I do eat red meat it’s usually twice a month.

Recently I found a recipe for meatloaf that I wanted to try. I substituted a few ingredients it was calling for a few ingredients of my own. After it was cook and cooled and I tried a bite I was amazed at how well I did. It was amazing! I loved it! I printed the recipe off of the computer and put it in one of the cookbooks I use often so that I will find it for a later meal.

Meatloaf

 

  • 2 pounds ground beef, 85% to 90% lean
  • 2 tablespoons grated onion (I didn’t put onion in mine)
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed garlic
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup oatmeal
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup ketchup, plus more for topping
  • 1 tablespoon ground mustard
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried leaf thyme or sage (I used sage)

Preparation:

Combine the ground beef, grated onion, egg, garlic, oatmeal, milk, 1/4 cup of ketchup, ground mustard, salt, pepper, sage or thyme. Pack into a greased 9x5x3-inch loaf pan. Bake at 350° for 1 hour and 10 minutes. Remove and carefully pour off any excess grease. Spread ketchup over the top of the meatloaf and return to the oven for 15 to 20 minutes longer.

I always like my grandma’s semi-mashed milk and butter potatoes with meatloaf. Just cut up a few large potatoes, boil them until soft, drain, then add a little milk and a couple of spoonfuls of butter and stir. You want it lumpy…unless you don’t like lumpy potatoes. But it’s suppose to have a creaminess to it with a few lumps of potatoes…hence the reason for it being called semi-mashed potatoes.

Must try recipes


I do majority of the cooking here at home; that doesn’t count take out food or pizza delivery. I’m always interested in trying new things. I know how to make several things without using a recipe to guide me, but sometimes those are the items that I usually make way too many times in one month.

Grandma bought a couple recipe books that I have used a few times. One book is call Land O Lakes Recipe Collection which has quite a few great recipes that I have tried. Another book is called Classic Recipes with Old Fashioned Quaker Oats which has a lot of great recipes that I have used.

Today I made dinner (Salmon Cakes with white rice) and desert (Old-Fashioned Apple Crisp) using both of these books. It was the first time that I made apple crisp and it turned out so good that I actually went back for seconds. I mostly try to refrain from seconds, but this time I couldn’t avoid it. Both recipes are really easy to make and I’ll share them with you.

Salmon Cakes

1 can (14 3/4 ounces) pink salmon, drained, skin and bones removed

3/4 cup of Quaker Oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked)

1.3 cup fat-free (skim) milk

2 egg whites, lightly beaten

1/4 teaspoon salt (optional)

Combine all ingredients in medium bowl; mix well (I use my hands instead of a spoon). Let stand 5 minutes, then shape into 4-5 oval patties about 1 inch thick. Lightly spray skillet with nonstick cooking spray. Cook salmon cakes over medium heat 3-4 minutes on each side or until golden brown and heated through.

Old-Fashioned Apple Crisp

6 medium apples, peeled, cored, sliced

3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar

3/4 cup uncooked old-fashioned oats

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 cup cold Land O Lakes Butter (I didn’t really use Land O Lakes)

Heat oven to 375F. Place apples into ungreased 9-inch square (2 quart) baking dish.

Combine brown sugar, oats, flour, and cinnamon in medium bowl; cut in butter with pastry blender or fork until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle sugar mixture over apples. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until apples are tender and topping is golden brown. Serve warm with ice cream, if desired.

Simple Chai Tea Frappe Recipe


It can be nerve wrecking sometimes when you cannot find the recipe you’re searching for. I’ve spent over an hour so far just looking for the right recipe for a Chai tea frappe or smoothie just to save myself a bit of money from having to go to a chain coffee shop to buy one.

Each recipe I found had a long list of items that I would have to buy. But, why buy all those things when you can buy the Chai mix in liquid or powder form? To which I already have. And you can get both in plain or vanilla. I usually get both in the concentrate to change it up now and then.

When I finally found a recipe using the Oregan Chai mix, everything was measured in ounces. Using a chart I figured the comparison from ounces to cups.

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1/2 cup of ice

1/2 cup of chai tea (liquid mix)

1/3 cup of plain (or vanilla) yogurt, or you could substitute yogurt for milk

Blend and enjoy!

Simple recipe!

If anyone has a better recipe that you prefer, please let me know in the comments below. 🙂

Christmas Eve Goodies


Every year on Christmas Eve I bake a bunch of goodies and I or Gram’s delivers them to the local Hospice House and our local Fire Department. It’s our Christmas tradition…in a way. Both places hold a place close to our heart. The Hospice House was where my grandpa and many of our relatives had spent in their times of sickness, before they eventually passed away. The local Fire Department, well, my grandpa and two other guys had formed the Bryant Fire Dept in 1973. Grandpa eventually retired from the Fire Dept in 1997. The Fire Dept also came out and built a wheelchair ramp for my grandpa after he suffered from a series of strokes. Both places are employed by some really sweet people.

The Hospice House takes in home baked meals and goodies for the families that are visiting with their sick loved ones. During those times they would rather remain close to their loved ones instead of going home to cook dinner.

I have found a website that has some great recipes, crafts, and other things. They even have a facebook and twitter. I love peanut butter and chocolate…two things that go great together! I found this recipe on their website for these peanut butter bon bons…I’ve been searching for this recipe and finally found a good one! I think I’ve eaten several dozen of these things growing up.

Here’s their website: http://www.sixsistersstuff.com

And here’s a link to find those yummy peanut butter bon bons: http://www.sixsistersstuff.com/2011/10/homemade-reeses-peanut-butter-cup.html

I’ll list more recipes later.

Recipe: Crockpot Candy


I come from a long line of bakers. Everyone used to go to my Grandpa for a specific cake to be made; wedding or birthday. My Great Grandpa was one of the co-owners of a local bakery many years ago; my grandpa worked for him. His three girls can bake, my grandma bakes, I bake, and my youngest sister bakes and decorates cakes.

Often I’m asked for a recipe for something that I’ve baked or cooked. A lot of times it’s at family reunions or other functions that I attend. Since it’s the holidays and a lot of people do a lot of baking, I will try to post some of my favorite recipes on my blog.

Crockpot Candy

My Grandmother makes this popular candy every year and I’m always asked for the recipe or if I could get her to make them some more. I thought I would share the recipe with you.

~*~ Just a precaution, this candy is very addicting and will leave you wanting more!

Crockpot Candy Recipe:

1(16oz) jar unsalted dry roasted peanuts
1 (16oz) jar slated dry roasted peanuts
1 (4oz) german chocolate bar
1 (12oz) package peanut butter chips
1 (12oz) package mild chocolate chips
24oz vanilla bark

Chop chocolate and vanilla bark into small pieces. Layer ingredients in a crockpot in order listed above. Cook on low for 2 hours 15 minutes. Do not open the lid during the cooking process. Candy may appear to be melting but it is! When cooking time ends stir vigorously with a very dry wooden spoon. Spoon candy onto waxed paper with a teaspoon. Once candy has set, store in airtight container.