Sunday, September 19, 2010

OREO Balls

Here it is! This is what you have all been waiting for! Oreo Balls! I added a little chocolate covered strawberries to it as well. You might be wondering why I would do such a thing? Well, my roommate got engaged this weekend! So, I had to make a cute little yummy dish! So, this is what I came up with!

1 pkg. Oreos
1 pkg. Cream Cheese
1 pkg. Milk Chocolate Almond Bark
Strawberries (optional)

*I doubled the recipe because whenever I make these they are always gone very quickly!

First, you need to open the box of Oreos and crumble them with your hands into a large bowl. Once they have all been crumbled, you can get out a hand mixer and start mixing the Oreos pieces. Then add the softened cream cheese and continue mixing until it has reached a creamy consistency.

Then you can start rolling the Oreo batter into small little balls. It is up to you on the size you want to make them! I usually make them a little bit smaller than a ping pong ball. :) Once you have rolled them all up, put them in the freezer until they harden. This will take less than 10 minutes. They don't need to be frozen, just colder, so they will not fall apart. Once they are cold enough, it is time for the CHOCOLATE! 

So, now you need to melt the Almond Bark! You can do this in the microwave or on the stove. I did it on the stove and used a double boiler. Well, actually I used two pots stacked on the stove (I don't own a double boiler.) I filled the botton one with boiling water, and then the top one with chocolate. Keep it on the stove, until all the Almond Bark has melted. 

Then you will dip the balls into the melted chocolate and cover them with this creamy sensation! When it is completely covered in chocolate, you will place it on a plate. Then you will place it back in the freezer until it is completely dried! 

You can use the extra chocolate to dip anything in. I used strawberries this time! Maybe next time I will use pretzels!

Then once everything is done drying you will have a nice little arrangement like this! :)

Italian Mac and Cheese Bake

Alright! This was my first attempt at making homemade mac and cheese! I would say it was successful! :) I also added Italian sausage and baked it to make a casserole. I also added breadcrumbs, which I may not do in the future. It is a texture that some people love, and others find a bit odd.

FYI- This is one of those recipes that you need to be focused on. In order to get everything done at about the same time, you need to have a routine down. You will also have the oven preheating and about 3 burners going. :)

1 bag (elbow noodles or your choice)
2 cups Half and Half)
4 Tablespoons flour
2 1/2 cups shredded cheese (cheddar)
Mild Italian Sausage (I used 5 links)
Salt and Pepper (several shakes)
4 Tablespoons butter

First of all, preheat your oven to 400 degrees. In the mean time, fill a pan with water and your noodles. Go ahead and get that boiling and ready. :) In the mean time, put your italian sausage in the skillet and let it simmer and cook. (This will take awhile if they are not already cooked.) It may be a good idea to have these cooked ahead of time, and everything will go at a faster pace.

Now, you are ready to start preparing the cheese sauce. First, melt the butter in the sauce pan. Gradually pour in the flour, while stirring it all with a whisk. Gradually add the Half and Half and stir for about 2 minutes, while it boils. Then you will gradually pour in the shredded cheese, while you stir. You will notice the sauce will start to get thicker! Let it continue to cook for about 5 minutes.

Once the noodles are done, you will go ahead and drain them! Go ahead and add a little olive oil or melted butter during this process. Then add the cheese sauce to the noodles. Once the Italian sausage is done, cut it into bite size pieces and mix it into the noodles. Then put all of this is a casserole dish. Top with breadcrumbs (optional). I used Italian breadcrumbs, which was good. However, make sure you sprinkle the bread crumbs and don't pour. Put the dish into the oven for about 20 minutes, or until the top is golden brown! Then you are done! :)

Friday, September 17, 2010

White Chili (with a little zest)

My mom always makes white chili at home and it looked pretty complicated with a lot of steps, but I decided that it would be my next dish to tackle. :) To my surprise, it was very easy and not that expensive. I took her recipe and tweaked it. This "tweaking" is what makes you feel more like a cook! Almost anyone can read a recipe and do exactly what it says, but you when start taking risks and trying new things, that is when you stop becoming a "preparer of food," but rather a developing chef! Here is my recipe...

*FYI- This recipe requires a lot of spices, that you may not have in your kitchen, if you are a beginning chef. I have found the best place to buy spices in the largest quantities is Aldis! :) You can get almost any spice for $1.09. The only spices I have ever needed that they did not have was Cilantro and Basil. Their containers are twice the size for less than half the money of Walmart! Spend $10 and bring 10 new spices into your kitchen. Bring a little spice in your life!

Great Northern Beans (2 cans)
Green Chiles (1 can)
1 small yellow onion (chopped)
2 green onions (chopped)
Grilled Chicken (cubed) Do you like a lot or a little chicken? 
1 tablespoon Vegetable Oil
1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/4 teaspoon Ground Red Pepper
1 teaspoon Ground Cumin
1/2 teaspoon Oregano 
1 teaspoon Cilantro
1 cup Chicken Broth

First of all, you need to decide how much chicken you want in your chili? I put a fair amount of chicken in my mine. One thing I have purchased, which has never failed me, is a bag of frozen grilled chicken breast strips. Buy a bag for less than $7 at Walmart, and you will have chicken for many meals. It is so easy to throw in! I used the rest of my bag for this meal and I had previously used it in Mac and Cheese, Fried Rice, Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo, and now chili! It goes a long way! You could even throw some in fajitas!

Anyway, dump your frozen chicken or grilled chicken breast in a skillet with the chopped onion. This will allow the frozen chicken to thaw and the onions to soften. Once the strips started to thaw, I took them out and chopped them into cubes. I then put them back in the skillet to cook with the onions. I added a tablespoon of vegetable oil and some Worcestershire Sauce. 

In the mean time, I opened the cans of beans and chiles and dumped them into the pot! I added the chicken broth and all the spices. Once the chicken and onions were softened, I added them to the pot. I then added the green onions last! I stirred it all up, and let it simmer (covered) on the stove for about 10-15 minutes, just to get all spices bonding together and making friendships. :) 

Then you are done! I added some shredded cheese and a dollop of sour cream and it was splendid. We also made some Jiffy Cornbread to eat along with the chili. I won't tell you how to make that, just read the box! Maybe one day I will make some homemade. :) Also, don't ever be afraid to add to the cornbread. I added a little shredded cheese to the mix! There is nothing quite like Southwestern White Chili with some cheesy cornbread on the side, or mixed in!

Sunday, September 12, 2010


I love Brushetta, and it is so easy to make on your own!


1/4 teaspoon Basil
1/4 teaspoon Parsley
2 Tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
1 medium sized tomato
1 loaf of french bread
Green onions (optional)
Shredded Cheese (any flavor)

First of all, preheat the oven to 375 degrees. In the mean time, cut your french bread into pieces about 1 1/2 inches thick. Then butter both sides of the bread. I use "Smart Balance," which is healthy butter. :) Buttering both sides helps get a softer inside and crunchier outside, which is how I like it!

Cut up your tomato into cubes. You will want to cut out the seeds. Put the tomatoes in a bowl. Then add some parsley, basil, and vegetable oil. Honestly, I don't know how much. A few shakes of basil and parsley and about 2 tablespoons oil. Also, add about a handful of shredded cheese and chopped green onions (for color). Mix all these ingredients together. 

Once the oven is done preheating, put just the bread in the oven for about 3-4 minutes, just to get the butter melted and the bread starting to get a bit crunchy. Then, remove the bread and add a little of the mixture to the top of each loaf of bread. Put in the oven until the cheese has melted and the bread is crunchier around the edges. (The bread will be in the oven less than ten minutes all together.)

Remove from the oven and enjoy! :)

Pot Roast or Roast in a Pot?

Meat and Potatoes and a few other veggies...


1 Cup Water
1 Cup Beef Broth (optional)
1 1/2 Teaspoon Mrs. Dash Seasoning (Buy it at the store, it will be an investment for every recipe!)
1 onion (chopped)
4 stalks celery (chopped)
2 handfuls of carrots (I use chips! However, you can use baby carrots, or cut some large ones.)
 I package of "Savory Pot Roast" Mix (This is what I found at the store! You could make up your own, if you choose)

Everyone loves a little meat and potatoes in their diet, so why not add a few more veggies as well! With a busy schedule, everyone wants to figure out a meal that he/she can cook and not watch and stir every two minutes! So, this was my first attempt at making pot roast! 

I am a beginner cook, so my first step was going to the store (Walmart) and picking out the meat! I honestly did not know what type of meat to buy. It is called pot roast, and no animal is given the name pot! I decided to go with some Rump Roast. In simple terms, I bought the butt of a cow! The first thing I did was get out a large skillet and start browning the meat. Obviously the meat was in a huge lump, so I had to cut it in pieces! I also added some Worcheshire sauce while I was browning the meat! According to Anna Carter, this is the only sauce you need in the kitchen for cooking! I bought this bottle at the Dollar Tree. :)

While the meat was browning, I skinned and cut up seven red potatoes. I cut each potato into fourths. However, you can do this however you want. You can also leave the skin on, if you wish. It adds a little character. As I was growing up, we ate many things in large pieces, I guess our family had large mouths? 

During this time, I also cut up the celery and onions. I added the onions to the crock pot, with 1 cup of water and the seasoning package. The crock pot, should be set on the lowest setting! 

Once the roast was brown on all sides, I put it into the crock pot along with the onion. I let these two ingredients bond together for about an hour, until I interrupted the party with the celery, carrots, and 1 cup of beef broth, just to add some more flavor! I then shook in some Mrs. Dash as well. 

Then, the carrots, celery, broth, water, seasoning, rump roast, and onions all had an exclusive party for 8 hours on low! When the 8 hours was up, you are ready to enjoy! 

This is a great dish to start in the morning and eat for dinner!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Cookie Bars or Cookie Cake?

Cookie Bars or Cookie Cake? I am still working on a name, but it just depends on how you serve it. I love cookies, but I hate the drying racks, time, and constantly watching the oven. So, cookie bars are the next best thing and they are always a hit!


2 1/4 cup flour
1 cup butter (2 sticks)
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 bag chocolate chips (I think the whole bag is too much.)
1 egg or 2 eggs (Two eggs will make it more fluffy.)

First, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Second, mix the sugars, egg, and butter together in a mixing bowl. Gradually add in the salt, baking soda, and flour. Once everything has been mixed together, stir in the chocolate chips.

Third, spray your 9 by 13 baking dish and spread the dough. Once it has all been spread, put it in the oven for about 20 minutes (or until golden brown). Take it out of the oven and let it cool. This will make 24 bars. :)

For special occasions, feel free to decorate the cookie bars and turn it into a cookie cake. Otherwise, just cut the bars and serve!

Baked Potato Soup

If there is one thing I love it is potatoes, bacon, cheese, and soup. So, why not mix it all together? :) One thing I will try to do is give you all the ingredients and the correct amounts of each. However, I constantly find myself putting a pinch of this here, or a shake of this there. So, I may use those terms instead of the actual terms. Feel free to modify recipes, that is how we will all become great cooks.

5 red potatoes
1/2 cup carrots (chopped)
1/2 cup celery (chopped)
1 onion (chopped)
5 pieces of bacon
3 cups chicken broth
1 cup half and half
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon basil

First you need to wash and cut your red potatoes. I did not skin my potatoes for this recipe, but it is totally your preference. I would say leave the skin on. It adds a little color and character. :) Once you have cut the potatoes into cubes, place them in a pot and fill with water, until the potatoes are completely covered. Begin to boil the potatoes until they are soft.

In the mean time, put your bacon in the skillet. Once the bacon is cooked, drain it on a paper towel and leave the bacon grease in the pan. Put your basil, carrots, onions, and celery into the bacon grease and sauté  until soft. I added the celery last, so that it would be a little crunchy when finished. :) Feel free to add a little minced garlic as well. Once the potatoes are somewhat soft, dump out about 1/4 of the water. Then add the chicken broth and the veggies to the potatoes. Continue to cook until the potatoes have softened. Then add the half and half and crumbled pieces of bacon. You are almost done. Pour some in a bowl. Feel free to add sour cream, cheese, more bacon, parsley, and chives to garnish. :) Enjoy!

My Confessions...

Well most of the world has turned into bloggers, so I thought I would join in. :) However, I don't think that a blog should just be all about my life and everything I do everyday. I think it should be about my goals, undertakings, and things I hope to accomplish in the coming years of my life. Well, this is my senior year of college. Some goals I have are to finish the school year strong, graduate, and ultimately become a more domesticated woman during my final year of college. :)

So, the point of this blog is to keep you all informed about my trials through courses in college, courses in life, and ultimately the courses of food I will be making. My personal goal is to make one meal from "somewhat" scratch at least once a week. These recipes will not be hard or expensive, but will hopefully be delicious. I also must forewarn you that they will probably be full of carbs, cream, cheese, or chocolate. No recipe is complete without one of these four "Cs". However, I will try to use some vegetables to hopefully balance it all out. :)

So, get ready, get set, and prepare to hear the confessions of a college chick trying to become a domesticated woman of the future, or at least make some good casseroles and cookies.