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!


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!


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.


French Toast Bake…mmm


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!


Monkey Bread

For the past few years we have made Monkey Bread for a morning meal. This year’s was particularly good! (not burned at all)

A few simple ingredients required: Pillsbury Grands,sugar,brown sugar,cinnamon,and butter. This year we used a product that was Splenda mixed with brown sugar and Slenda. It was great.

How to make Campfire Monkey Bread


  • 1 cup granulated sugar (Splenda)
  • 1 cup light brown sugar (Splenda/brown sugar mix product)
  • 3 tbsp. ground cinnamon – *you can use more or less, depending on taste
  • 1 stick butter, or 8 tbsp. margarine
  • 2 tubes Pillsbury Grands/Biscuits

Camping cookware and disposables:

  • 1 Dutch oven
  • Heavy-duty aluminum foil or Aluminum foil dutch oven liners
  • sauce pan to melt butter


  1. Mix the sugars and ground cinnamon in a paper or plastic bag, (paper works best), shake to mix well.
  2. Cut Grands/biscuits into quarters.
  3. Shake pieces in the bag to coat.
  4. The dough pieces are now officially Monkey Bread , toss them into the Dutch oven, or arrange them neatly, it doesn’t really matter.Important: Make sure the Dutch oven is pre-heated.
  5. When all biscuit pieces are in, pour the melted butter over the entire batch – cover and cook.
  6. This easy camping recipes for kids (and adults) will take about 30-35 minutes at about 350`, which equates to 10-12 briquet-sized hot coals under the oven, and about 12-14 on top
  7. After about 15 minutes, rotate the Dutch oven about 90` and replenish the coals on the top and bottom.
  8. At about 25-30 minutes, check the bread, it should be done. You will be able to tell because it will be puffy and slightly browned. If not, bake another 5 or 10 minutes.