Sunday, May 31, 2015

Vanilla Pudding Cinnamon Rolls

Vanilla Pudding Cinnamon Rolls 

1/2 cup warm water
2 Tbsp. yeast
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 (3 1/2 oz) package instant vanilla pudding mix
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 eggs
1 tsp. salt
6+ cups flour

1 cup butter, softened
2 cups brown sugar
2 Tbsp. cinnamon
1/2 cup mini cinnamon chips

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
3 cups powdered sugar
2 to 3 Tbsp. half & half

1.  In small bowl, combine water, yeast and sugar. Stir to dissolve; set aside.
2.  In a large bowl, take pudding mix and prepare it according to the package directions. Add butter, eggs and salt; mix well.  Add yeast mixture; blend.  Gradually add flour; knead until smooth. Do not overflour - it should be soft but not sticky.  Place in a greased bowl.  Cover and let rise until doubled - about 1 hour.
3.  Roll dough out on a floured board to measure 34 x 21 inches. Spread 1 cup softened butter over the surface. In a bowl, mix 2 cups brown sugar with 2 Tbsp. cinnamon. Sprinkle this over the butter. Then, sprinkle the cinnamon chips over that.  Now, from the long side, roll up as tightly as possible. Cut into 1 1/2 inch slices using a serrated knife or thread.  Place 1 inch apart on a greased baking sheet.  Cover and let rise until doubled. 
4.  Bake at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes.  Remove when they're a nice, golden brown. Don't overbake! Cool.
5.  Mix together the Frosting ingredients until nice and smooth.  Spread over the rolls while they're still a bit warm.  Enjoy!

Makes 24 very large rolls.

Adapted from a recipe at 

Banana Bread, Bread Pudding

Banana Bread, Bread Pudding 

1 lb. banana bread, cut in 1 inch cubes
1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 cups half & half
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
3 eggs
1/8 tsp. salt

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray. Toast bread cubes for 15 to 20 minutes, turning once. Turn into a greased 8 inch spuare baking dish.

2.  Mix together cream cheese with powdered sugar until smooth. Beat in the half & half, vanilla, eggs and salt.  Mix well.  Pour over the banana bread.

3.  Bake in 350 degree oven for 35 to 40 minutes or until set.
Cool. Serve warm with whipped cream.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Deep Dish Oatmeal Fudge Bars

Deep Dish Oatmeal Fudge Bars

1 cup butter
2 eggs
2 cups brown sugar
1/3 cup milk
2 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
3 cups oatmeal

1 cup Eagle Brand sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup butter
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups chocolate chips

1.  Put all the filling ingredients in saucepan and melt over medium heat. Set aside to cool.
2.  Stir together flour, baking soda, salt and oatmeal. Set aside.
3.  Mix butter, eggs and brown sugar. Add vanilla and milk. Slowly add the dry ingredients.
4.  Grease a 13 x 9 inch pan. Spread 3/4 of the oatmeal mixture in the pan. Now, pour the chocolate mixture on top and spread to cover.  Now, drop spoonfuls of oatmeal mixture on top and try to spread. It won't cover, but it'll spread somewhat when it cooks.
5.  Let set while preheating the over to 350 degrees. Bake for 25 minutes. Cover with foil for the last 5 minutes if it looks like it's getting too brown.
6.  Cool on rack. Cool completely before cutting or the chocolate will all ooze out.

Arby's Sauce (copycat)

Arby's Sauce

1 cup ketchup
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
2 tsp. water
dash tabasco
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 tsp. onion powder

Combine all the ingredients in saucepan. Heat on medium until it just starts to boil.
Cool. Refrigerate.

Popeye's Chicken Tenders (copycat)

Popeye's Chicken Tenders

3 to 4 lbs. chicken tenders (strips)
oil for frying
2 Tbsp. white pepper
1 tsp. cayenne
2/3 cup flour
2 tsp. paprika
1 Tbsp. salt
3 eggs, beaten

Mix together the dry ingredients in one bowl.
Beat eggs in second bowl.
Dip chicken in egg and then flour.  Set on rack to dry - about 30 minutes.
Heat oil in deep fryer. Drop in chicken pieces - a few at a time.  Cook to golden brown.

Ultimate Macaroni Salad

Ultimate Macaroni Salad

1 lb. elbow macaroni (I used medium shells), cooked al dente
2 stalks celery, diced
1 green pepper, diced
1/4 cup scallions, diced
1/4 of a red onion, chopped
1/4 cup shredded carrots
4 hard cooked eggs, chopped
1 cup cooked bacon or ham, chopped
1/2 cup diced cucumber

2 1/2 cups mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup buttermilk
3 Tbsp. mustard
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1 Tbsp. sugar
salt & pepper, to taste

Cool the macaroni in the refridgerator. Add all the salad ingredients and stir gently.
Whisk together all the dressing ingrediants.
Now, mix the dressing in with the macaroni. Chill until ready to serve.

I served this with copycat Popeye's Chicken Tenders and copycat Arby's Sauce for dipping.

Recipe adapted from

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Sock It To Me Cake

Sock It To Me Cake

2 sticks butter, softened
2 cups sugar
1 cup sour cream
6 eggs
3 cups flour
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. vanilla

3/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup chopped nuts
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ginger
1 stick butter, softened

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 Tbsp. milk
1 Tbsp. vanilla
1 Tbsp. lemon juice

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour a large bundt pan or an angel food pan.
2.  Sift together flour, baking soda and salt.  Set aside.
3.  Mix together filling ingredients.  Set aside.
4.  Whip sugar and butter until light and fluffy.  Add egg - 1 at a time, mixing well after each.
5.  Mix in sour cream and vanilla.  Add flour, mixing just until blended. Do not overmix.
6.  Spoon half the batter into the prepared pan.  Spoon filling around the center.
7.  Spoon remaining batter on top, making sure the filling doesn't seep out.
8.  Set the cake pan on a cookie sheet.  Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes.  Start checking at 35 minutes.  It's done when a toothpick comes out clean.
9.  Cool on rack for 15 minutes. Then, turn out onto a serving plate; cool completely.
10.  Meanwhile, mix up the glaze and when the cake is cool, drizzle it over the top.

Italian Style Meat Loaf

Italian Style Meatloaf

2 lbs. ground meat
1 onion, diced
2 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 large tomato, diced
2 eggs, beaten
4 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp. Italian seasoning
2 cups Italian bread crumbs
1 1/2 cups Parmesan
2 cups mozzarella, shredded
salt & pepper, to taste

1 cup tomato sauce
1 tsp. garlic, minced
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 beef bouillon cube
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 Tbsp. sugar
salt & pepper, to taste

1.  Saute onion until just barely opaque.
2.  Add red pepper, tomato sauce and Italian seasoning until liquid evaporates - about 5 minutes.  Set aside.
3.  In pan over medium high heat, saute garlic until fragrant, then add in the tomato sauce.  Crumble in bouillon and mix well.
4.  Season with Italian seasoning, red pepper flakes, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, salt and pepper.  Simmer 5 minutes.
5.  Combine ground meat, bread crumbs, Parmesan, half the mozzarella, eggs, 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce, onion, garlic, tomato, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper. 
6.  Form into loaf and bake for 60 minutes at 350 degrees. With a meat thermometer, make sure the inside temperature reads 160 degrees.  Now, coat the top of the meatloaf with the remaining sauce and the remaining mozzarella. Bake until cheese melts - about 10 minutes.
7.  Remove from oven and let set for 10 minutes before serving.

Natchitoches Pork Pies

Natchitoches Pork Pies

1 1/2 lbs. ground pork shoulder
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 garlic clove, minced
salt & pepper, to taste
1 tsp. Cajun seasoning
dash of cayenne
1/2 cup flour

2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
3 Tbsp. vegetable shortening (I used butter)
1 large egg, beaten
1/3 cup milk

oil for frying

1.  Make Filling:  In skillet over medium heat, saute onion, garlic and pork until cooked through.  Add salt, pepper and flour; cook until almost dry.
2.  Transfer to bowl; chill.
3.  Make Pastry:  Sift together four, baking powder and salt.  Cut in shortening (butter) until it looks like coarse cornmeal. Add egg and milk; stir until it forms a ball.  On lightly floured surface, roll to 1/8 inch thickness.  Cut out rounds with a 4 inch cookie cutter or the top of a clean, empty coffee can.
4.  Heap a tablespoon of filling on each round. Dampen edges with water. Fold over to make a half moon. Seal with a fork dipped in water.  Prick top once with fork.
5.  Heat oil in fryer to 350 degrees.  Fry a couple at a time until golden - about 2 minutes on each side.  Drain on paper towels.

Mexican Lasagna

Mexican Lasagna

1 lb. shredded pork (or ground beef)
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, diced
28 oz. can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can refried beans
1 package taco seasoning
2 cups shredded mozzarella
2 cups shredded cheddar
1 1/2 cups cottage cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 tsp. cumin
1 egg
1 package raw lasagna noodles

1.  Brown pork with the taco seasoning, onion, garlic and 1/2 cup water. Cook until water is evaporated. If using ground beef, then brown beef and drain before adding other ingredients.
2.  Add green pepper, tomatoes and refried beans.  Simmer for 5 minutes.
3.  Mix cottage cheese, sour cream, cumin and egg.
4.  Mix together the mozzarella and cheddar.
5.  Now, we're going to layer everything in a 9 x 13 inch pan. Layer:
1 cup meat sauce
noodles to cover
3 cups meat sauce
noodles to cover
cottage cheese mixture
2 cups cheese
noodles to cover
2 cups meat sauce

6.  Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Remove foil and add remaining 2 cups cheese. Bake for 15 minutes.
7.  Let rest for 10 minutes.  Serve with taco toppings, if desired.

Grandma's Best Doughnuts

Grandma's Best Doughnuts

2 Tbsp. butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
3/4 cup buttermilk
3 cups flour 
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. salt
oil for frying
Cinnamon Sugar - 1/2 c. sugar + 2 tsp. cinnamon

1.  In mixer beat together butter and sugar; add the egg; mix well.
2.  In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon and salt. 
3. Add dry ingredients and buttermilk alternately, mixing well.
4.  Turn onto a floured board. Knead for a couple of minutes, adding more flour if dough is too sticky to work. 
5.  Roll to 1/4 inch thick. Cut with doughnut cutter.
6.  Fry in 375 degree oil - just a few at a time - 2 minutes per side.
7. Drain on paper towels. Toss in cinnamon/sugar mixture.