Saturday, October 19, 2013

Mini Peach Pies (Peach Hand Pies)

I love peaches. They are my absolute favorite fruit. I had extra pie crust left over from when I made empanadas one night and decided to make up a recipe using peaches.


1 can of O'Sage Raggedy Ripe Freestone Peaches*
1 cup of sugar
1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon
pre-made pie crust (usually in the isle with canned biscuts) 


Preheat the oven to (450)

Drain the syrup off of the peaches and put to the side. DO NOT THROW OUT!!!

Rinse the peaches and make sure to remove and pieces of pit that may be in the can 

Using your hands break the peaches into small chunks in a microwave safe dish

Add the cup of sugar. You can opt to only use 3/4 cup of sugar if you would like

Add the cinnamon

Mix together thoroughly 

microwave for 9 minutes in 3 minute intervals. Stir after each interval.

Once it is done cooking place it in the fridge to cool and thicken

Unroll the pre-made pie crust unto some parchment paper and chose a circular dish to cut it. I used a zip lock Tupperware container. 

Make the cuts as close together so that you can get more circles out of each pie crust. 

Put any left over crust together at the end and roll it out using a rolling pin or cup and cut out more circles. 

Lay the circles in a single layer on some parchment paper and get the peaches out of the fridge. 

Place about a tablespoon and a half of the peach mixture on each crust. 

Fold the crust over on its self and crimp the edges. (any excess peach mix will gush out the side, just scrape it up and add it to the next pie). 

Once folded and securely crimped poke small holes in the top of the pies, put into a closed container, and refrigerate for at least 10 minutes. 

In a small bowl mix the left over heavy syrup, 1 tablespoon of butter, 1 tablespoon of sugar, and a teaspoon of cinnamon. Melt this mixture in the microwave until the butter is completely melted. 

Remove the pies from the oven and place them on a greased cookie sheet. 

Use a pastry brush to brush the peach syrup mixture over the top. 

Bake the pies until golden brown (usually around 13 minutes) in a   450 degree oven. 

*Of course other brands of peaches could be used to make these, but I prefer these because they are cheaper and taste very good. They are called raggedy because the can contains some bits and pieces, but that is perfect for what we are using them for. This is a 20 something ounce can.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Best Bowtie Pasta

This is my all time favorite pasta dish. My grandmother hates pasta but says that she loves this and it is better than anything that she has ever had at Olive Garden. My old roommates used to ask me to make this for them all the time. It is greasy and super unhealthy but it is sooooo worth it. 


1 package sweet Italian bratwurst
1 package spicy bratwursts
1 can whole olives
2 tbsp minced garlic
1 chopped onion
1 box of  mini bowtie pasta
2 jars of great value or prego brand CHUNKY GARDEN PASTA SAUCE (do not use ragu!!!)
salt and pepper to taste


1. Take all of the sausage out of it's casing and mix the sweet and hot sausage together and then brown.

2. Crush each olive in between your fingers so that they split into.

3. Once the Sausage is fully cooked add the olives, garlic, and onions and continue to cook until they are tender.*

4. Boil the pasta as directed on the box.

5. Add the pasta sauce to the meat and then add in the pasta.

*Don't drain the grease off of the meat. It thins out the sauce and makes the pasta have a yummy smoky and sweet flavor throughout.

Easy Awesome Meatloaf

This is not your mother's soggy meatloaf. This meat loaf has a lot of flavor and none of the awkward chunks of decomposing cracker or bread chunks. It is a full proof and delicious recipe. 
On the plus side it can all be made in one bowl or even in the loaf pan itself if you really hate washing dishes.


1.5 pounds of ground beef
1 chopped onion
1 chopped bell pepper
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 pack dry meatloaf seasoning
1 package of stuff top stuffing mix 
1 egg
1 cup of hot water
1 tbsp dry Italian seasoning 


1. Preheat the oven to 350 F

2. Combine all of the ingredients in a large mixing bowl and use your hands to mix until everything is thoroughly incorporated. 

3. Put the mixture in a loaf pan and cook for 30-45 minutes. 

4. Take out of the oven and drain off excess grease. 

5. Then cover with your preferred meatloaf topper. I prefer ketchup. 

6. Bake for another 5-10 minutes. 

Diabetic Friendly Peanut Butter Fudge Truffles

These little guys are really yummy and are a good little treat for someone with diabetes. 
They do have carbohydrates so they are not completely diabetic friendly, but they are much better than if they were made with sugar. I made these for my grandfather last Christmas and there were enough truffles to last him for a good two weeks. He really enjoyed them so I am stoked to make them again this year. 


Sugar Free Chocolate Cake Mix (and all required ingredients)
1 Container of Sugar Free Chocolate Frosting
1 Cup of Peanut Butter


1. Bake the cake as directed on the box. 

2. Remove the cake from the pan and allow to cool for 30 minutes to an hour. 

3. Once the cake is fully cooled use your hands to break it into teeny tiny pieces a little bit larger than a grain of sand. 

4. Add the Chocolate frosting and mix with your hands until it is fully incorporated. 

5. Get a teaspoon of the mixture and roll it into a ball and lay it on parchment paper. Continue until all of mixture is used. 

6. In a small bowl melt one cup of peanut butter in the microwave until liquid. I usually heat for 5 seconds and stir and then repeat until it is smooth. 

7. Place the melted peanut butter in a piping bag or one end of a zip-lock back and pipe it on to the truffles.

8. Allow the peanut butter to cool and harden and then serve.  

Cabbage Rolls

Admittedly, the cabbage rolls above were found on Google. However, the ones that I make look identical to these but I am sure mine taste better! I forgot to take a picture of mine before we ate all of them. These cabbage rolls are very very yummy and can be healthy if you use lean ground beef or ground turkey and substitute brown rice for white rice. The meat mixture can also be used to stuff bell pepper which I bet would be very yummy. 


One 2-3 pound head of cabbage. Look for one that looks perfect. Tight and light green leaves. 
1.5 pounds of lean ground beef or ground turkey
3/4 cup uncooked, long grain white rice
1 chopped bell pepper
1 chopped onion
1.5 cups of chopped mushrooms
1 tbsp of garlic 
1/2 tsp dry thyme
1 tbsp dried Italian seasoning
2 tsp salt
2 tsp pepper
1/2 cup tomato puree or sauce
1 cup chicken or vegetable sauce (or you could use a cup of the water from boiling the cabbage) 
1 egg
Jar of your favorite pasta sauce (I prefer sun dried tomato spaghetti sauce or prego original for this recipe)


1. Preheat the oven to 350 F

2. Bring a LARGE stock pot of water to a boil. 

3. Cut the core out of the bottom of the head of cabbage.

4. Once the water is boiling place the cabbage in it and cover. Leave in the water from 5-7 minutes.

5. In a pan sweat the chopped bell pepper, chopped onion, chopped mushrooms, garlic, dry time, and Italian Seasoning. When the onions and bell peppers are tender and translucent move them to a large mixing bowl. 

6. Remove the Cabbage from the boiling water carefully and place on a large cookie sheet and allow to cool. 

7. Add the uncooked rice, ground beef, egg, and 1/2 cup of tomato puree and salt and pepper to the onion mixture. Use your hands to combine it until it comes together like meatloaf. 

8. Carefully peel away each cabbage leaf individually. You want 12-16 whole cabbage leafs. 

9. Use a pairing knife to trim the large vein on the outer side of the cabbage leaf. You want to just sort of shave away the excess of it so that it is easier to roll. 

10. Lay down the cabbage leaf with the outer side down  and place a scoopful of the meat mixture on the end of it. Then roll the mixture forward and pus the sides of the cabbage leaf towards the middle to conceal the ends and finish rolling it completely. Lay the rolls seam side down in a 9x13 inch casserole or baking dish. 

11. You can use any meat mixture that is left to pack in between the cabbage rolls in the pan. 

12. Pour half of the jar of pasta sauce over the top of the rolls and spread it out evenly over the top. 

13. Chop any remaining cabbage and cover the top of the rolls and tomato sauce with it.

14. Pour one cup of chicken broth, water, or cabbage water over the top of the cabbage rolls and shake the pan to make sure the water goes to the bottom. 

15. Cover tightly with foil and bake for 1.5 hours. 

Healthy Chicken and Rice Soup

I like to make this soup when it's either cold out or I have a cold. It is very easy to make and moderately cheap to make.


1-2 pounds of shredded chicken (You can cook it yourself, use leftover chicken, or canned chicken) 
4 celery stalks
2 cans of sliced carrots
1 onion
2 tablespoons of minced garlic
3 large cans of chicken broth or 12 cups of homemade stock
2 cups of water
brown rice (I use minute rice or boil in a bag rice) 
2 tsps of your favorite seasoning ( I prefer zatarans) 
2 tablespoons of dried Italian seasoning
salt and pepper to taste


1. In a skillet over medium-high heat caramelize 1 diced onion, the garlic, and 4 sliced celery stalks. When the onions are brown and the celery is translucent add to a soup pot along with the sliced carrots (do not drain!) 

2. Then add in your chicken, chicken broth, water, seasoning of choice, Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper to taste. Bring this to a boil and then reduce the heat and allow to simmer for at least 15 minutes. 

3.  Prepare the rice as directed. Once it is completely cooked add it to the soup. 

4. Allow the soup to continue heating for about another 10 minutes and serve. 

*Though I have never tried it, I suppose this could also be made with noodle. You can also add in other vegetables to your liking such as bell peppers, peas, corn, or anything really. 


If you are looking for something that is super impressive and really really yummy this is a great go to dessert. IF you are an OVER-ACHIEVER make your own homemade red velvet cake and homemade frosting.
I call these truffles instead of cake balls because they are much more moist than cake balls and very very rich. This recipe yields A LOT of cake balls. Depending on the size you make them it can make between 25 and 100 of them.


1 box of red velvet cake mix (and what ever additional ingredients it calls for)*
1 container of whipped cream cheese frosting*
1 bar of white almond bark
Sugar Sprinkles (any color)
Powdered Sugar or Cocoa Powder*


1. Bake the cake as directed on the box. 
2. Remove the cake from the pan and place in a large bowl to cool for 30 minutes to 1 hour. 
3. When the cake is COMPLETELY cool use your hands to break it into teeny tiny pieces. 
4. Add the entire can of frosting to the cake mixture and use your hands to mix thoroughly. 
5. Lay out a lot of parchment. 
6. For large truffles take 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of the mixture and roll it into a ball and place on the parchment paper. For medium ones use 1 tablespoon and for very small use a little more than a teaspoon. 
7. Once you have used all of the cake mix, you must decide which decorating route to take! I prefer to melt almond bark and put it in a piping bag and then drizzle it over the cake balls and sprinkle on sugar crystals. You can also dust the balls with powdered sugar or cocoa powder. 
8. Let them sit out until the chocolate is dry and the truffles are a little dried out on the outside. 

*If you plan to decorate with chocolate, these ingredients are non-essential.  

Chicken Enchiladas

Of the many things I have cooked for my boyfriend, this is his favorite so far. These are best eaten right after they are cooked. If  you don't think that you and your family will be eating 12 enchiladas I would only make as many as needed and store the filling and sauce separately so that extras can be made when needed. This recipe makes 12-16 enchiladas and the filling is also very good wrapped in a tortilla and fried up in a little butter. 



1-1.5 pounds of chicken
1 package of taco seasoning (choose a spiciness to your liking)
1 can of original rotel (tomato and green chilis)
1 can of corn (drained)*
1 package of cream cheese (8 oz)
1 diced onion
1 diced bell pepper*
salt and pepper to taste


1 pack of small-medium sized corn or flour tortillas
1 can of cream of chicken, mushroom, or celery soup (10 oz) 
1 can of red enchilada sauce (10 oz)
2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese


Making the Filling

1. If you are boiling your own chicken, bring a large stock pot to a boil with some salt, pepper, and any seasonings you like and boil the chicken until done. However, if you can find a rotisserie chicken on sale at the grocery store it saves a lot of time and sometimes money to buy one of these and shred the chicken. 

2. If you boiled your own chicken, put it into the fridge to cool before shredding. When it is cool enough to touch you can shred it making sure to discard of any gristle or bones. 

3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. 

4. In a skillet sweat the onions and green peppers until translucent on medium-high heat. 

5. Then add the corn into the onions and green peppers and get them a little roasted. 

6. After the corn is roasted and the onions are caramelized, add in the rotel and taco seasoning. 

7. When the mixture is thoroughly combined taste it to make sure it is seasoned well. It may need another half pack of seasoning depending on your preference. 

8. Then cut up the block of cream cheese and add to the pan and reduce the heat. Mix this well and continue to stir until the cream cheese is fully melted and completely incorporated. 

9. Transfer the mixture to a bowl to cool. 

Rolling the Enchiladas

1. Put about 2 tablespoons of the filling into a small tortilla and roll. Place them in a greased 9x13 inch pan. 

2. Mix the cream of chicken soup and enchilada sauce thoroughly.
3. Once all of the enchiladas have been placed in the pan, cover them with the enchilada sauce mixture.

4. Then add the entire two cups of cheddar cheese to the top of the enchiladas and let bake for 15-17 minutes. 

*Corn and bell peppers can be omitted if they are disliked.