Holiday Family and Food

Nothing says holidays like good food and family. We certainly experienced both of those this Christmas. We started off our week with an early Christmas at Wayne and Noel’s house. It was a genuine fiesta featuring savory (and a little spicy) chicken enchiladas. These enchiladas were packed full of chicken, cheese and spicy sauce; a mouth-watering (and eye watering) delight! Here’s Noel’s tip for us gringos: Put your sauce on after you bake them. This keeps them from getting soggy. I can’t believe I haven’t already been doing this!

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Feliz Navidad. Some mexican cuisine from Noel.

According to my family, the holidays aren’t the same without sugar cookies.  I get requests for them every year. I found a great recipe a long time ago for sugar cookies that, when you roll them thick, they not only keep their shape, but are more like a cake than a cookie. This cookie recipe coupled with the C&H Powdered Sugar buttercream frosting recipe on the box makes a taste combo. that is hard to resist no matter how full you are. Top these cookies with cute sprinkles and you are set. They will be gone in a flash!

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unfrosted cookies

Since I am on the subject of sweetness. I decided to try a recipe I found on Pinterest called “French Toast Bake.” I wanted to make something special yet familiar for the family on Christmas morning. What I like about this recipe is that you can prepare it the night before and pop it in the oven in the morning. It’s also very easy and can be made mostly with ingredients you already have. I could not find Texas Toast in stock anywhere so decided to use Challah bread which, I was told, makes good french toast. As it turns out it was good. I might also add bacon or sausage if you are one that likes to mix your salty and sweet (Those who know me know I am not one of them). Make sure to top with real maple syrup; none of that corn syrup stuff.

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French Toast Bake…mmm

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Real Maple Syrup only!

So, from enchiladas  to Mongolian BBQ to French Toast Bake to Rib Eye Roast, it was a tantalizing trip for the taste buds. I swear I will never eat again (yeah right)! Happy 2014 and Bon Appetit!

Breakfast for dinner….fabulous French toast!

Every once in awhile I just have a craving for breakfast for dinner. Who am I kidding? I could eat it everyday! My French toast cravings got the best of me this evening so I set out on Pinterest to find a recipe that appealed to me. I found this mouthwatering doozy and had to try it. I’m a sucker for brown sugar. I threw in a couple scrambled eggs and managed to satisfy my tenacious breakfast cravings….for tonight anyway. Enjoy!

http://www.thisgalcooks.com/2013/04/11/recipe-brown-sugar-french-toast/

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Taco Casserole

The holidays are quickly approaching and I don’t know about you, but I am always looking for meals that simplify my day. I would much rather be decking the halls than peeling potatoes, if you catch my drift. This recipe screams simplicity and Mexican (two of my favorite things) all rolled up into one! You can’t ask for anything better. Even though it is a casserole, I found it to be good wrapped in a tortilla, as well. Also, feel free to add what you like: sour cream, guacamole, corn, etc. The sky’s the limit!

Taco Casserole

Ingredients

  • 1 pound Ground beef
  • 1 can refried beans
  • 1 jar salsa
  • 1 pkg taco seasoning mix
  • 21/2 cups coarsely broken tortilla chips
  • 3/4 cup chopped bell pepper
  • 4 medium green onions (sliced
  • 2 medium tomatoes (chopped
  • i cup shredded jack or cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cups sliced olives
  • 1 cup shredded lettuce

Cooking Directions

  1. 1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F. In 12 inch skillet brown ground beef. Drain. Stir in refried beans,salsa,and taco seasoning and water. Heat to boil stirring occasionally. In ungreased 2 quart casserole place
  2. 2 cups of broken tortilla chips. Top evenly with beef mixture. Sprinkle with bell peppers, onions, 1 cup of the tomato, cheese, and olives.
  3.  Bake uncovered 20-30 minutes or until hot and bubbly and cheese is melted. Top baked casserole with lettuce, remaining 1/2 cup tomato and remaining tortilla chips

Cookies and Cream Cupcakes

Who doesn’t love a good cupcake, right? I spent part of my Memorial Day baking up some goodies for my first graders who have summer birthdays. It’s one of the ways I choose to fill up my last two minimum days of school before summer vacation! Woo hoo!

These cupcakes are cookies and cream. They are made with a standard white cake mix (Duncan Hines) and my scrumptious buttercream frosting. I threw in Oreo cookie crumbs to give the frosting a little flavor , as well as the look of cookies and cream. I used a plastic frosting bag with a hole cut in the bottom (you can do the same thing with a ziplock bag) to frost them in a swirly pattern. This method is much easier and quicker than frosting with a knife, in my opinion. I topped them off with half an Oreo cookie. Yum!

Happy birthday to my summer birthday kiddos!

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Fried dough for breakfast!

Ever smell or taste something that takes you back to a certain time? Fried dough does that for me! Sounds strange, but fried dough is one of those family eats that mom used to make on Sunday mornings before church. I would always awaken to the smell of dough frying on Sunday mornings…heaven!

For those of you who don’t know, fried dough is exactly what it sounds like…fried dough. It’s Bridgeford brand dough thawed, sliced and fried in a generous amount of oil until each side is golden brown. Topped with butter and syrup, it’s hard to resist. A carb lover’s delight!

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