Sunday, August 19, 2012

Banana Split Bread

I love to make Banana Nut Bread so I thought I'd try something different.  This turned out so much better than I had imagined.  Recipe makes two loaves.  You can freeze one loaf for up to 30 days if you like.  Just remove from freeze and allow to thaw.

2 Ripe Bananas mashed
2 Eggs
1/4 Cup Milk
2 Cup Flour
1/2 Cup Sugar
1/2 Tbs Cinnamon
2 Tbs Baking Powder
2 Cups Milk Chocolate Chips
2 Cups Chopped Walnuts

Mix masked banana, eggs  and milk in mixing bowl until well blended.  Gradually add flour, sugar, cinnamon and baking powder blending thoroughly.  stir in Chocolate Chips and Walnuts. If too thick gradually add additional small portions of milk.  Pour into bread pan coated with baking spray.  Bake at 350 for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick when inserted comes out clean.

I like to serve this hot topped with strawberry preserves.  It's also good with whipped cream, or vanilla ice cream.

Pork Chops Smothered in Mushroom Sauce

When your looking for a perfect Sunday Family dinner that won't take you away from the fun of the day this one will work.  Yes, it is just as delicious as it looks.  No touch ups.  I do my own pictures directly from my own dishes.  Its another easy crock pot dish, but works well in the oven also.  This will serve up to six.

6- 8 oz Pork Chops
1 15 oz Can Cream of Mushroom Soup
1/4 Cup Worcestershire Sauce
1 Cup Hot Water
1 Tbs Garlic Salt
1 Tbs Lemon Pepper
1 Tbs Onion Powder
1/2 Tsp Celery Powder
1 16 oz Package White Button Mushrooms sliced

Place Pork Chops in Crock Pot.  In separate mixing bowl add Mushroom soup, Worcestershire Sauce and hot water.  With a wire whisk mix thoroughly until soup is well blended.  Add seasoning and pour over chops.  Top with mushrooms.  Cover and cook on low for four hours.  Save broth for a delicious gravy.

If baking in oven place in a 9X13 baking dish and cover.  Bake at 350 for one hour.

Baked Pita Chips

I recently become enamored with tasty Pita Chips.  Like anything else as the demand for these alternatives to over fried Potato Chips has risen so has the cost.  I was no longer willing to pay nearly $4 for a bag of my new favorite chip.  I knew if I wanted to keep my craving satisfied I'd have to make my own.

6 Thin Pita
Canola Oil Cooking Spray
Seasoning of your choice

Cut pita bead  into strips and separate the two slices.  Spray cooking oil a  baking pan and lay the strips in a layer.  Coat the top of the strips with cooking spray to allow the seasoning to stay on the chip.  Top with seasoning and bake in oven at 400 degrees string with a spatula after five minutes. Remove when golden brown and service serve with your favorite dip or add to your sandwich for a quick lunch.  You have a healthier solution with great flavor.

I seasoned my chips my sea salt and lemon pepper.  Some other suggestions would be:

Cajun seasoning
Mesquite Seasoning
BBQ Seasoning
Grated Parmesan Cheese
Hidden Valley Ranch seasoning mix

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Vegan Tomato Hash

Yep-it's official.  My daughter has learned well.  I remember spending many days in the kitchen cooking up something new.  She always had her own touch to make a meal special.  She's done it again with this little jewel.  It's just as tasty as it looks.

2 Green Onions
2 Large Garlic Cloves
2 TBS Olive Oil
1 Large Beefstake Tomato
1 1/2 Cups Sliced White Mushrooms
1 tsb salt
1 tst pepper

1 14oz pkg Gimme Lean Ground Sausage
1 Tbs Olive Oil

Saute chopped onions and crushed garlic in heated olive oil.  Add diced tomatoes and mushrooms continuing to saute on low heat stirring occasionally adding salt and pepper.  In separate skillet brown sausage in olive oil and add to vegetables.  Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

Carne Picada de Enchiladas

Enchilada's are always a good choice.  There simple to make and you can roll them with you choice of meat or vegetables.  These are so creamy and cheesy they will go fast.  Recipe serves four

Enchilada Filling
1 LB Ground Meat (pork, beef or turkey)
1 Small Onion
1 Small Green Pepper
3 Garlic Cloves crushed
1/4 Cup Tomato Sauce
1/4 Cup Chili Powder
1/2 TBS Salt
1/2 TBS Pepper
1 16 oz PKG Fiesta Blend shredded Cheese
12 Corn Tortillas

Brown meat in a large kettle and drain grease into a separate pan.  Saute onion, green pepper and garlic in grease drained from meat for 5 minutes stirring constantly.  Return sauteed vegetables to ground meat without grease.  Add tomato sauce, chili powder, salt and pepper.  Simmer uncovered until all liquid is dissolved.

Heat 1 cup of oil in a small skillet.  Once oil is hot drop tortilla into skillet and quickly turn lightly heating both sides to soften the shell.   Place tortilla on flat services placing at least 2 tablespoon of ground meat on one edge topping with a generous sprinkle of shredded cheese.  Roll tightly and place in a 9X13 baking dish coated with cooking spray.  Continue process until all twelve tortillas are filled and packed tightly into dish.

Enchilada Sauce

1 TBS Flour
1 15 oz can Chicken Broth
2 8 oz cans Tomato Sauce
1/4 Cup Chili Powder
1 Tsp Cumin
2 Tsp Dried Cilantro
1 Tbs Oragno
1 Tsp Red Pepper
1 Tbs Garlic Salt
1 Tbs Lemon Pepper

Mix Flour in 1/4 cup of cold water and swiftly stir into heated chicken broth.  Add Tomato Sauce and spices.  Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.  Pour sauce into baking dish with Enchiladas and top with shredded cheese.  Bake in 350 degree oven for 20 minutes or until bubbly and golden brown.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Curried Tomato Rice and BBQ Tofu

It’s amazing to watch my daughter come to her own as a creative cook.  She has become so inventive and her dishes are always as tasteful as they look.  You’ll want to try this one for sure.

 Cup Brown Rice
2 Cups Tomato Juice
1 Tsp salt,
1 Tsp pepper
2 Tsp curry powder

1 14oz Block Firm Tofu
1 Tbs Olive Oil
1 Tbs Rice Vinegar
1 Cup Brown Sugar BBQ Sauce

Cook rice in tomato juice about 20 minutes, or until rice is tender.  Add Seasonings.

Remove as much water from Tofu as possible. Place in 375 degree oven baking 20 minutes on each side.  Remove Tofu from oven and cut into slices about 3 inches thick.  Heat Olive Oil and Rice Vinegar in Skillet adding sliced Tofu.  Coat each side with BBQ sauce and cook until completely seasoned.  Serve over rice

Monday, August 6, 2012

Red White & Blue Cheese Cake

How fun is this? Dazzle them with this Red White and Blue Cheese Cake.  No baking this one.  The crust and filling are made from scratch which give it even more amazing flavor.  Speed it up a little and buy a pre-made graham cracker crust, and strawberry preserves for the topping.  Makes one 9" pie.


One pkg (10 ct) graham crackers preferably cinnamon and honey
or add 1 Tsp cinnamon and 2 Tbs sugar to original graham crackers
1/2 cup butter

Finely crush graham crackers-in a blender works best.  Add sugar and cinnamon if needed.  Melt butter and thoroughly mix with crackers until completely coated.  Press mixture evenly into a 9" pie pan about 1/4 inch thickness.  Bake at 350 for ten minutes.

Red white and Blue Cheese Cake

2 8oz pkgs cream cheese
1 5oz can condensed sweetened milk
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 Tsp vanilla

Cream Cheese should be at room temperature to insure it blends evenly.  Add milk to cheese and whip until creamy.  Add lemon juice and vanilla.  Pour filling into cooled pie crust and refrigerate for several hours until completely set.


1 16oz container strawberries
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons corn starch mixed with 1/4 cup cold water
10 to 12 whole blueberries
Ship Topping

Cook strawberries with water and sugar allowing to boil for five minutes.  On low temperature slowly add corn starch and water string constantly until thickened.  Transfer to a covered bowl refrigerating until completely cooled.  Once strawberries are the consistency of a thick jam spreads on cheese cake.

Layer top left hand corner of pie with blueberries and top with stripes of whip cream (Redi Whip works best)

Patriot Crumble

Patriot Crumble is a deliciously warm desert for any occasion. I use Raspberries and Black Berries, but any combination of your favorite berries will work. My fav tip: Buy berries in summer months when they are in season and less expensive. Freeze, or can them for use any time. This recipe makes one 9" pie and makes six slices. Goes really well with vanilla ice cream.

Patriot Crumble
4 Cups Frosted Flakes
2 Tbs Cinnamon
1 Cup Melted Butter
1 1/2 Cups Fresh Raspberries
3/4 Cup Sugar
1 Tsp Cinnamon
1/2 Cup Corn Starch
1/4 Cup Cold Water

Crush corn flakes in a large bowl, but not too much. Melt butter in sauce pan . Add cinnamon and flakes stirring until flakes are completely coated and slightly brown. Coat one 9" pie pan with non-stick spray. Place 3/4 of the cornflake mixture in pie pan pressing into bottom and sides. Place in oven and bake at 350 for 15 minutes.

Boil water, sugar and cinnamon in a sauce pan. Mix corn starch and water in a cup and add to boiled water. Whisk swiftly until smooth. Toss Berries in pie base at the last minute so they won't become overcooked. Remove flakes from oven and add berries to crust. Sprinkle remaining flakes on top of berries and return to oven baking at 350 for an additional 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

Vegan Chocolate Cake

Vegan Chocolate Cake

Vegan Chocolate Cake
What do you do when your vegan friend has a birthday? Learn how to make a Vegan Chocolate Cake. I was running blind with this one, but it turned out really good (so I was told). It was very moist and had a great flavor. Since it is made with cocoa it had a rich chocolate flavor. I made a simple one layer version. Just double the recipe for a two layer cake.

Vegan Chocolate Cake Ala mode
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cup water
Mix all dry ingredients together. Add oil and use fork or pasty cutter to blend well. Add vanilla and vinegar string well so vinegar is well distributed. Add water slowly until batter is perfect consistency for cake. You may not need to use the entire 1 1/2 cups. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until tooth pick when inserted into center comes out clean. Allow to cool on rack.


1/4 Cup Cocoa Powder
1 Cup Powder Sugar
1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil (Or Vegan Butter if you have it)

Mix all ingredients together with blender adding vegetable oil in small amounts until smooth and creamy. Frost cooled cake and serve with vegan ice cream.

Southwest Scramble Egg Skillet

Eggs aren't just for dinner anymore.  Sometimes the best suppers are made with eggs, and they can be one of the most nutritious.  This is a quick meal that serves four.  It is also a crowd please when guests are over.

Southwest Scrambled Egg Skillet
4 Corn Tortillas
1 Sleeve Smoked Sausage
1 Small Onion
1 Small Green Pepper
2 Large Garlic Cloves
2 Large Jalapeno Peppers (optional)
2 cups Shredded Fiesta Cheese
4 Large Eggs
4 Tablespoons Milk
Salt and Pepper to taste
 1 Package 12 Count Flour Tortillas
 1 Large Avocado Sliced                                                       Sour Cream and Salsa

Slice Corn Tortillas into 3" X 1" strips.  Place in skilled with hot oil and cook until brown and crisp.  Remove from heat and add add diced onion, green pepper, garlic and jalapeno.  Stir until blended and sauteed but not over cooked. Add diced smoke sausage and cook for five minutes returning tortilla strips.  Whip eggs, milk, salt and pepper in a bowl blending thoroughly. Pour eggs in skillet over meat, vegetables and tortillas evenly distributing.  Once eggs start to bubble on top turn with a spatula until completely flipped.  Continue flipping until eggs are no longer runny.  Top with shredded fiesta cheese and allow to set until cheese is melted.

Serve as is with biscuits, or place in flour tortilla topped with your choice of avocado, sour cream and salsa.

Sausage and Egg Pie

Everyone likes pie for breakfast, right?  Here is one that makes a great start to any day.  I threw this together this morning not knowing what I would come up with.  My husband really enjoyed it.  Although I've used sausage any meat you prefer can be substituted.  I like to make my own crust, but to speed up the cooking time use one package of uncooked store bought biscuits.  Serves 4.
Sausage and Egg Pie   

1 Pkg Jumbo Biscuits
  1/2 Lb Uncooked Pork Sausage
   4 Eggs
   1/2 Cup Picante Salsa
   1 Tsp Salt
   1 Tsp Pepper
   1 Tsp Garlic Powder
   2 Cups Fiesta Blend Shredded Cheese
   1 Diced Jalapeno (optional)

Gently kneed together biscuit dough on flowered surface and roll to 1/2" thickness.  Place dough in a 9" pie dish that has been coated with a non cook spray.  Place in 350 oven and bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.,

Cook sausage over medium heat until no longer pink.  Do not crumble sausage, but leave in nice size chunks.  Set aside and remove all but one tablespoon of grease from pan.  Whip eggs, picante sauce and seasonings together.  Pour egg mixture over sausage and return to stove.  Allow egg to set and gently turn inward using spatula scraping sides of pan.  Continue turning eggs until done.  Place egg and sausage in pie crust.  Top with cheese and Jalapeno (if desired).  Return to oven for 10 minutes allowing cheese to melt.

Bacon, Egg and Spam Panini

I think it's safe to say my husband is a fan of panini.  He is such a great contributor to my colorful attempts at cooking creations.  His ideas sometime outshine what I have ever imagined.  Try this Panini anytime, day or night and you will be delighted in the toasty deliciousness.  You won't even know you added Spam to make this sandwich filling and crisp.  For this particular goody I used a sourdough bread.  It compliments the taste and texture of the meat and egg perfectly.  Makes one sandwich.

Egg & Spam Pinini
2 Slices Sourdough Bread
2 Slices Bacon
2 Slices Spam
1 Large Egg
1 Tablespoon Salsa

Cook bacon in skillet until done the way you prefer.  Remove from skillet and add spam browning on both sides.  In smaller skillet add 1 tablespoon of bacon grease.  Whip egg and salsa together and pour in cold skillet with melted grease.  Fold egg from outer skillet to middle letting set in between rotations so that egg forms good size pieces.  Butter each piece of bread on one side.  Place one slice buttered side down on a indoor grill or skillet.  Add one slice of cheese, bacon and then spam.  Add egg being sure to keep in center of sandwich.  Top with remaining cheese and bread with butter side up.  Close lid on grill and flatten slightly.  If using skillet press sandwich tightly and hold until sandwich will not rise any longer.  Brown for 5 minutes, flip and brown other side.  If cooking in indoor grill allow to cook until nicely browned and crisp.

Bacon and Egg Panini

This take on Panini is a wonderful way to wake up.  Warm, toasty and satisfying.  You'll be amazed how easy it is to make. The recipe makes one sandwich.

2 Slices French loaf bread (center cut to make sure you have the largest slice From the loaf).
                              1 Egg
                              1 Tbs Milk
                              S.  alt and Pepper
                              2 Slices Bacon
                              1 Slice Pepper Jack Cheese

Fry bacon in skillet saving grease.  Mix egg, milk, salt and pepper and whisk well.  Pour egg into skillet with bacon grease.  Cook on medium allowing eggs to bubble.  With spatula turn egg from side of skillet folding over to center.  Continue folding egg until no longer runny.  You should have some nice size pieces of egg.  Butter both slices of bread on one side and place one slice on an indoor grill with butter side down.  Place 1/2 of the cheese on top of the bread adding bacon and then egg. Egg should not be spread directly to the edge of the bread to avoid overflow when grilling.  Place remaining 1/2 of cheese and remaining slice of bread, butter side up, on sandwich.  Press grill lid down gently being careful not to close too tightly.  Grill sandwich for five minutes or until golden brown.

Desayuno Chorizo Tacos

t doesn't get much better than a Chorizo Taco for breakfast.  If you've never had one you'll want to give them a try.  They are even great for brunch, as a snack or a filling lunch. The flavor of these tacos will stay with you for most of the morning. This recipe will serve four.

1 Pkg 12 Count Flour Tortillas
1 16oz Tube Chorizo Sausage found at most grocers in the sausage section
4 Large Eggs
1/2 Cup Medium Salsa
1/2 Tsp Salt and 1/2 Tsp Pepper
Shredded Cheese

Sour Cream

Cook tube of Chorizo in a large skillet until done.  It will look something like a greasy paste.  Break eggs into a bowl and add salsa.  Whip until thoroughly mixed.  Heat tortillas in a skillet or on a griddle until slightly brown on both sides.  Pour eggs into chorizo.  Once eggs begin to bubble swipe edge of pan with spatula turning inward .  Allow eggs to continue cooking turning occasionally to form large lumps.  Serve on warm tortilla with shredded cheese and any optional t

Tangy Deviled Eggs

My husband is not fan of mayonnaise, but he is a big fan of mustard. I grew up using mayo in deviled eggs so I needed to change my recipe.   I tried to get inventive and create something that was different, yet had the same qualifies as  traditional deviled eggs.  These turned out to be a hit with my husband.  They went pretty fast when I served them for Easter Lunch too.

Tangy Deviled Eggs
 1 Dozen Large Eggs
  1 Tbs Salt
  2 Tbs Relish
  2 Tbs Dijon Mustard
  2 Tbs Pimento
  1 Tsp Lemon Juice
  1 Tbs Finely Chopped Jalapeno Pepper (optional)
 Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder, Onion Powder to taste

Place eggs in a large pan and cover with cold water.  Add salt and slowly boil on a medium heat so the eggs won't crack.  Allow to boil for 20 minutes and transfer pan to sink.  Cover eggs with cold tap water to stop the cooking process.  Let stand in water for 10 minutes to completely cool.  Gently tap eggs and remove peeling.

Split eggs down the middle remove yolk to a large mixing bowl.  Mash with a fork and add all ingredients blending thoroughly.  Return mixture to egg filling space where yolk had been.  Top with additional slice of jalapeno if desired.

Perfect Harvest Pasta Salad

Pasta Salad is a perfect summer treat.  Its so versatile and compliments any summer meal.   It's not only cool and refreshing it can be served as a quick lunch, or added to a weekend BBQ with friends.  Add tuna or chopped chicken for a different taste.  Use your favorite paste weather it be rigatoni, ziti or macaroni.  When you add your own grown vegetables it becomes something special.  This recipe will serve six to eight guests.

3 Cups Cooked Pasta (your choice)
1/2 Cup Yellow Bell Pepper
1/2 Cup Tomato
1/2 Cup Cucumber
1/4 Cup Onion
1/2 Cup Hickory Bacon Salad Dressing (more if you wish)
Salt and Pepper

Cook pasta according to directions.  Drain and rinse well with cold water setting aside.  Dice all vegetables, do not chop.  Toss all vegetables together in a mixing bowl.  Once well blended add pasta stirring lightly.  Add salad dressing, salt and pepper.  Once dressing is evenly distributed store in an air tight container allowing flavors to join.

Chicken Cheese Pinwheels

This recipe is good for so many things. It's a great party pleaser, a tempting appetizer, or a filling snack while watching your favorite game. I started out rolling the mixture into Jalapeno flavored tortillas. Than it dawned on me it would be good with party crackers too. The smooth creamy taste of the cheese mixed with the texture of chicken and zing of spicy peppers makes this something you just can't get enough of (seriously). This will fill 3 10" tortilla's.

Chicken Cheese Pinwheels
2 8oz Packages Cream Cheese (room temperature)
1 15oz Can Chicken (drained)
3 4oz Cans Green Chilies
2 Tsp Garlic Salt
2 Tsp Lemon Pepper
3 Tbs Mexican Chili Powder

1 Package 10" Flour Tortillas (any flavor you prefer)
Or 1 box of your favorite party cracker

Cream cheese in a large bowl and add chicken. Add green chilies and seasoning mixing until creamy and easy to spread. Trim vertical edges of your favorite flour tortilla to slightly square off your shell. Spread a layer of cheese over the tortilla and roll rightly. Refrigerate for several hours before slicing.

Or, spread generously over your favorite party cracker for a great snack on a relaxing afternoon.

Gene's Potato Salad

This is my husbands favorite Potato Salad, just the way he likes it.  Not sweet, but tangy and full of zest.  Perfect for any barbecue, or just kicking back with some chili dogs on Sunday afternoon.  Serves 6

4 Large Potatoes
2 Eggs
1 Cup Diced Onion
1/3 Cup Homemade Relish
1/2 Cup Yellow Mustard
2 Tbs Mayonnaise
1 Tbs  Diced Pimento
1/2 Tbs Garlic Salt
1 Tsp Pepper

Wash and dice potatoes leaving skin on.  Boil in pan with eggs for 20 minutes.  Remove from heat and strain potatoes, but do not rinse.  Allow potatoes to cool for at least 30 minutes.   Run cold water over eggs and peel.  Mash in mixing bowl until loosely crumbled.  Add diced onion and relish mixing thoroughly.  Once potatoes have completely cooled add to relish.  Stir in mustard, mayonnaise, pimento, salt and pepper.  Let set in refrigerator for at least thirty minutes before serving.

Homemade Relish

2 Large Dill Pickles Diced
3 Large Cloves Garlic
1/4 Cup Diced Onion
2 Taplespoons Diced Jalapeno

Mix and store incrediants in an airtight container.  Can be used in various recipes.

Vegan Crunchy Tacos

Weather you prefer to stick with a vegan diet, or just prefer to eat more sensibly these vegan tacos are full of flavor.  Most corn shells are vegan compliant but double check the ingredients to be sure. These are so quick and easy and you'll be enjoying them before you know it. this will serve four.

1 16 oz Package Boca Meatless Crumbles
1/2 Cup Taco Seasoning
1 Pkg 12 Count Crispy Taco Shells
Shredded Vegan Mozzarella Cheese
2 Cups Shredded Lettuce
Diced Tomato
Sliced Avocado
Jalapeno Slices

Prepare meat according to package directions and add taco seasoning.  Serve in taco shell with your choice of toppings.

Vegan Rice and Black Eye Pea Soup

This is one quick and easy lunch idea that also works as a simple side dish for dinner.  The beauty is that this dish freezes nicely for a great sack lunch.    I serve it with a spoon of salsa and two home baked vegan biscuits.  It is easier to make your own vegetable broth with Carrots, Celery, Garlic and Onion.  Make this an economical dish by cooking your own Black Eye Peas.  Severs two.

1 16oz can vegetable broth
1 Cup uncooked rice
                                                      1 10oz can black eye peas
                                                      1 Tbs Soy Sauce
                                                      1/4 Cup Soy Milk
                                                       Salt and Pepper

Cook rice in vegetable broth until it begins to turn tender.  Add peas, Soy, milk, salt and pepper.  Allow to cook until rice is done.  Top with a spoon of salsa is you like.

Vegan Mexican Soup

My daughter is in her final year of college.  Her life is hectic and on a budget, but she loves to be as inventive as me.  This quick and simple dinner she created is the perfect remedy for a night of relaxation.  Once you've tried it you'll certainly want to make it again. This recipe will serve three to four and has 240 cal per 2 cup serving.

Vegan Mexican Soup
1 12 oz Can Pinto Beans
1 12oz Can Sweet Corn
1 10oz Rotel
1 Cup Water
2 Tbs Taco Seasoning
12 oz Package Boca Meatless Crumbles

Throw all ingredients into a kettle being sure to drain juice from corn.  Allow to simmer slowly for 45 minutes.  Service with vegan cheese shreds and veggie chips if you like.

Potato and Sausage Chowder

For me this is the ultimate in all time comfort food.  The creamy potato and tangy sausage lift my spirits every time.  This recipe is enough to serve four.  If you prefer to trim it down use turkey or chicken sausage. This recipe has always been a family favorite and gets many requests.

Potato and Chosder Soup

Six medium to large potatoes
1 package smoked sausage
3 cups hot water
1 package frozen corn
1/2 medium onion
2 TBS olive oil
1 TBS garlic powder
1/2 TBS salt1/2 TBS pepper
1 cup milk
1/2 stick margarine

1/2 cup four
3/4 cup cold water

Clean potatoes with a brush, leaving skin on. Cut potatoes and sausage in bite size pieces. Place in a large pot and cover with water. Chop onion and saute in olive oil until translucent. Add onion and frozen corn to potatoes. Add seasonings and allow to boil until potatoes are nearly tender, approximately 15 minutes. Add milk and margarine continuing to cook for for 15 more minutes. Add flour to a cereal bowl and cover with water whisking briskly to avoid lumps. Add flour to chowder and allow to thicken.

Bologna and Cheese Panini

This is a bologna and cheese sandwich you won't forget.  The secret to a good panini is the bread.  The texture of good Italian bread makes this a toasty treat.  Italian Bread is sold in many forms from loaves to rolls.  Use whatever is most convenient for you.  Make sure the bread is toasted evenly all over.  Allow to cool for a few minutes so cheese is melded to the sandwich.  It's so easy you will want to try it again.  Makes one sandwich.

Bologna and Cheese Panini
 2 Slices Italian Style Bread
 2  Slices of Bologna
 2 Slices of Pepper Jack Cheese
 Dijon Mustard or Honey Mustard (your choice)

Butter one side of the bread and cover the over side with Mustard.  Place the slice of bread on an indoor grill (such as a George Foreman) with butter side down.  If you do not have a grill place bread in a skillet.  Add one slice of cheese, both slices of bologna with remaining slice of cheese last.  Do not place cheese along the edge of the sandwich to prevent spill over while cooking.  Top with remaining slice of bread butter side up.  Press grill down until sandwich is flattened.  If you use a skillet press the sandwich with a strong spatula.  Cook sandwich for approximately 10 minutes or until golden brown all over.  If you use a skillet turn sandwich after 5 minutes, or golden brown,  and cook other side. Remove from grill or skillet and let set for at least five minutes.  Slice and serve.

Ultimate Salmon and Avocado Deli

The flavor of the grilled salmon combined with the veg's and condiments is so good. Use any bread and condiment that fits your taste is appropriate. I grilled the salmon, but it can just as easily be baked in the oven or tossed in a frying pan. Either way you've got one tasteful sandwich. Throw one together while you kick back and watch baseball on Saturday afternoon.

1/2 Lb Salmon (fresh, not frozen)
Cajun seasoning
Lemon Pepper
Soy Sauce

Drizzle soy sauce over the top of salmon. Coat thoroughly with Cajun seasoning and sprinkle on lemon pepper. Toss on grill and cook between 4 to 7 minutes depending on how well you enjoy the meat. Remove and set aside.

1 Sour Dough Deli Roll
Sliced Tomato
Sliced Red Onion
Sliced Avocado
Hidden Valley Farmhouse Hickory Bacon Dressing
Mustard (optional)

Slice deli roll and toast on grill top side down while salmon is cooking. When cooled spread one side with dressing and one with mustard. Lay salmon on bottom slice of bread and top with vegetables.

Pork Rib Gravy Over Toast

This is a quick and simple recipe that can be used for either breakfast or dinner. It is packed with comfort for a cold morning or an evening in front of the fire.

Pork Gravy over Tost
6 to 8 Leftover Grilled Pork Ribs
4 Cups Of Water
Salt To Taste
Pepper To Taste
2 Garlic Cloves Pressed
1 Small Onion Chopped
2 Tablespoons Bacon Grease (Or Olive Oil)
1/4 Cup Flour
1/2 Cup Milk

Place leftover pork ribs in a pot and cover with four cups of water. Pick ribs that have a substantial amount of meat and little bone. Boil ribs briskly for 30 minutes or until the broth is rich. While the ribs are cooking place garlic and onion in a skillet with bacon grease. Olive oil is a good substitute if you do not have bacon grease. Sauté until onions are translucent. Remove ribs from broth and set aside. Using a slot spoon transfer onion and garlic from grease to pork broth. Add flour to grease stirring briskly to dissolve flour. Add salt and pepper to taste. Slowly pour broth into skillet continuing to stir rapidly until mixture is smooth and thick. Stir in milk and set aside from heat. Clean pork meat from ribs and dice into chunks adding them to gravy.

Serve gravy over toast, or switch up and serve over rice for dinner

Chili Cheese Dogs

When I can't get my husband to eat anything else he'll always appreciate a good chili cheese dog.  I make the chili from scratch. Do not hesitate to use a can of your favorite chill without beans. This will serve four (if they don't go crazy for them)

1 8 count package hot dogs
1  8 count package hot dog buns
Fiesta shredded cheese
Home make relish

Grill the dogs for about ten minutes if you have time. If not heat on the stove in boiling water or in the oven on a warm pan for 15 minutes.

Homemade Bean Less Chili
1 lb ground meat
2 Tbs Flour
1 4 oz Can Tomato Sauce
2 Tablespoons Water
11/2 cup Chili Seasoning Mix
1 Tsp Red Chili Sauce (more if you go for spicy)
Salt & Pepper

Brown meat in large kettle.  Mix flour into meat string quickly to avoid lumps.  Pour in Tomato Sauce and water continuing to stir briskly until mixture is smooth. You might need to add more water at this point if the gravy is too thick.  Add chili seasonings, salt and pepper. Let simmer for thirty minutes while hot dogs cook.

Home Made Relish
1/2 Cup Dill Pickles (diced)
2 Jalapeno Peppers (diced)
3 Large Garlic Cloves (crushed)
1/4 Cup Diced Onion                                       

Mix all ingredients and let set in refrigerator for at least an hour before serving.

Place chili, cheese and relish on the bottom of a hot dog bun and top with hot dog. ENJOY!

Pulled Pork Sliders on Homemade Buns

Bless my husband for putting up with my whimsical ideas.  I decided to explore the idea of home made sandwich buns several months back.  After a few attempts I finally achieved what I believe is a good bun.  Not only are they soft, but they freeze well too.  I like slider buns, but my husband prefers the larger hamburger buns.  This recipe will make 9 slider buns, or six larger buns.  This is a lengthy process but you will appreciate the results.
Pork Sliders on Homemade Buns
Begin by placing 2 pounds of pork meat in a slow cooker
2 cloves of crushed garlic, 1 tbs salt and 1 tbs pepper.
Cook on high for at least four hours.

Home Made Buns                
3/4 Cup Milk
1 Egg
2 Tbs Sugar
1/2 Tsp Salt
2 Cups Flour
2 Tsp Active Dry Yeast
1/4 Cup Warm Water

Place yest and warm water in a bowl for five minutes to activate the yeast.  Whip egg and milk together in mixing bowl.  Add yeast and dry ingredients kneading all items together.  Dough should be stiff and easily from a ball. If too moist add more flour until texture is proper.  Leave dough in bowl and cover with a warm towel until doubled (approximately 30 minutes).  Remove dough from bowl and lay on a well floured surface.  Knead until all air bubbles are removed.  With a rolling pen that has been floured make a round form 1 1/2 inch thick.  Pick a glass that is either 3 inches across (for sliders) or at least 5 inches for larger guns.  Dip glass in flour and place as close to edge of dough as possible.  With a knife trace the edge of the glass.  Remove glass and place the etched bun on a pan coated with cooking spray.  Continue process until all dough is used.  Take remaining  dough and roll again to form more buns.  Place tray in a warm room (or oven that is heated to no more than 150) and let raise until doubled (about 20 minutes).  Cook on 350 for 15 minutes or until golden brown.  Remove from oven and brush butter on buns.

                                                   Pulled Pork

                                                    2 Lbs Cooked Pork
                                                    1/2 Cup Ketchup
                                                    2 Tbs Brown Sugar (more if you prefer sweeter sauce)
                                                    1 Tbs Mesquite Smoke Flavoring
                                                    1 Tbs Worchestire Sauce
                                                    2 Tsp each salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder
                                                    2 Tsp Red Pepper Sauce (optional)

Pork should be cooked so that it falls apart easily.  Remove from crock pot and shred with two forks.  Remove all broth from the pan and set aside.  Once pork is nicely shredded place back in crock pot and add all of the remaining ingredients.  If too dry add a couple spoons of broth. Continue simmering pork in crock pot on low for one hour.

Garnish sandwiches with your choice of avocado, jalapeno or Home Made Relish.

                                                    Homemade Relish

                                                    1/4 Cup Dill Pickles (diced)
                                                    1 Jalapeno (diced)
                                                    2 Large Garlic Cloves (crushed)
                                                    1/4 Cup Diced onion

Mix all ingredients and let set in refrigerator for at least an hour before serving.

Chicken Panini

Panini is easy to make, and so good.  You can use any bread, meat and cheese that suits your taste.  I like to use sliced french bread because it has the right texture.  This is my favorite Panini to prepare. It is simple with the right flavor.  This recipe is for one sandwich.

Chicken Panini
Two Slices French Bread
1 Thick Sice Leftover Chicken Breast
1 Slice Pepper Jack Cheese
Mayonnaise, Mustard, Blue Cheese Dressing, or Ranch Dressing (your choice if desired)

Butter one side of each slice of bread.  Add your choice of condiment on the other side of each slice, or omit completely if preferred.  Place one slice of bread, butter side down, on a George Foreman (or similar) grill.  Layer 1/2 slice of cheese, all of the chicken breast, and other 1/2 slice of  cheese.  Top with remaining slice of bread butter side up. Press grill lid down tightly until closed to flatten sandwich.  Leave sandwich on grill until golden brown.

Snappy Oven Baked Chicken Strips

These chicken strips need no dipping sauce.  They are tender, juicy and full of flavor. I oven backed the breasts, but frying is a great option also.  This recipe will serve 4.

2 Lbs Chicken Breast
4 Packages Pringles Jalapeno Stix
2 Packages Pringles Cheese Stix

1 Cup Flour
1 Tablespoon Garlic Salt
1 Tablespoon Pepper
1 Tablespoon Onion Powder

2 Cups Buttermilk
2 Eggs

Wash breasts and pat dry with a paper towel leaving no water intact.  Slice chicken into 1 1/2 inch strips about 3 inches long.   Pound each strip with a tenderizer or anything you may have appropriate to slightly flatten the stips.  This will help the meat coat and cook evenly.  You will need three mixing bowls.  In the first mix flour salt, pepper and onion powder.  In the second bowl mix buttermilk with beaten eggs.  Tip:  If yu have no buttermilk add 1/8 cup lemon juice to 2 cups regular milk and let sit for 10 minutes.  Using a rolling pin flatten Pringles Stix while still in package rotating often to crush completely. Line the three bowls on a counter.   Dip strips in flour, douse in egg and milk, and coat with Pringles.  Follow same procedure for each piece and place on coated baking sheet in 350 oven.  Allow to bake for 20 minutes and turn chicken cooking other side an additional 15 minutes.

Cowboys Ground Meat & Vegi Delight

This recipe is the inspiration of my husband.  It is based on a dish that his father made when he was growing up.  I prepared his description as best I could.  Although not exactly the same flavor, it is still a combination of great taste and warm comfort.

1 LB Ground Meat (I used pork)
Cowboy Ground Meat & Vegi Delight
1 Small Onion
1 Small Green Pepper
3 Cloves Garlic
1 1/2 Cup Frozen Corn
1 1/2 Cup Frozen Peas
1 Can Cream Mushroom Soup
1 Can Flavored Broth (I used my own pork broth)
1 Tbs Worcestershire Sauce
1/2 Cup Flour
                                                      3/4 Cup Cold Water
                                                      Salt and Pepper
                                                      2 Cups Rice

Brown ground meat in a large cooking kettle.  Dice onion, green pepper and garlic adding to browned meat.  Once vegetables are tender, but not over cooked, add corn and peas.  Mix mushroom soup with broth and Worcestershire sauce adding liquid to to meat mixture.  Stirring constantly allow the dish to come to a full boil. Whip flour and water in cup until completely smooth.  Quickly stir into meat mixture to thicken.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Cook rice according to directions.  When rice is completely cooked drain but do not rinse. Form a round mound on dinner plate and spoon meat on top.

Chorizo Mac 'N Cheese

When I cook I ask myself three questions
1) Will it taste good?
2) Will my family like it?
3) Do I have everything I need?

Using what I have available allows me to be creative and combine flavors that go well together. I created this around a link of leftover grilled sausage. It turned out surprisingly good. Serves 4 to 6.

Mac & Cheese Chorizo
2 cups macaroni
3 cups Velveeta cheese
2 Tbs butter
1/2 Cup milk
2 cups salsa
1 link smoked sausage sliced

12 count pkg tortillas

Cook macaroni according to directions. Drain, but do not rinse. Add milk, butter and cheese. Once cheese has thoroughly melted add salsa and sausage. Serve with warm tortillas.

Rotel Pork Chops

This is a quick and easy one dish recipe. Serves 4 to 6 people

6 Medium pork chops
1 16 oz can Rotel tomatoes
1 cup water
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
11/2 tsp garlic powder
1 1/2 tsp onion powder
dash dried cilantro
2 cups quick cooking rice
1 package flour tortillas

Rinse pork chops and pat dry. Place in 13 X 9 baking dish that has been treated with cooking spray. Mix Rotel with water and spices pouring over meat. Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Sprinkle rice in with meat, cover and cook an additional 30 minutes or until rice is done. Serve with heated tortillas.

Chicken Pot Pie

A tasty dish to reinvent left over roasted chicken and potato. Use your favorite meat, such as roast beef and potato if you choose. Save and use the broth from roasting to add additional flavor. I prefer to make my own crust. Purchasing 2 prepared crusts will make this a quick dinner. This recipe makes one 9" pie and serves four.

Chicken  Pot Pie
3 Cups Chicken Broth
2 Cups Leftover Chicken Diced
1 Cup Leftover Potato Diced
1 Cup Frozen Corn
1 Cup Frozen Peas
1 TSP Onion Powder
Garlic Salt to taste
Lemon Pepper to taste
1/4 Cup Flour
1/3 Cup Cold water
2 9 inch Pie Shells
2 TSP Milk

Mix broth, chicken and all vegetables into a large pan. Season with onion powder, garlic salt and lemon pepper. Bring to a rapid boil allowing liquid to reduce slightly. Briskly stir flour and cold water together in a bowl pouring water over flour to avoid lumps. Add flour to chicken stirring constantly until mixture is thickened.

Line a 9" pie dish with hat has been treated with no stick spray with one pie shell. Spread a thin coat of milk over crust and bake in oven at 350 for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and pour chicken into cooked shell covering with remaining pie shell. Form a slit in top of the pie using a fork. Coat with a thin spread of milk and cook in oven at 350 for 25 minutes or until golden brown.

NOTE:  Making a pie crust from scratch is easy.  Jut follow this for 2 9" pieces

3 cups flour
2 tsb baking powder
2 tbs sugar
14/ cup butter
1/4 cup milk

Mix flour, baking powder and sugar in bowl and cut in butter.  Mix well until mixture looks almost like corn meal.  Graduall stir in milk.  Place dough on heavily flowered surface and kneed dough inward about 8 to 10 times.  Roll dough out into two sheets about 1/4 in thick.  Follow remaing directions above.

Tuna Casserole

Tuna Noodles Peas and Cheese

1 12 oz can flaked tuna
1 small onion
1 small green pepper
2 large cloves fresh garlic
2 tablespoons pimento
1 whole corn on the cob
1 14.5 oz can chicken broth
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup water

2 cups uncooked pasta (I used penne)
2 cups shredded cheddar jack cheese
1 pkg cheddar pringle sticks and 1 pkg jalapeno pringel sticks

Dice onion and green pepper. Saute in olive oil with miced garlic cloves until onion and green pepper are tender and add pimento. Remove corn from cob and add to mixture. Pour chicken broth over sauted vegetables add salt and pepper. Mix flour with water in a large cup and whip until mixture is thick and creamy. Slowly pour flour mixture into broth stirring briskly to avoid lumps. One thickened remove from heat.

Prepare pasta as directed. Combine with broth and move to a 6X6 baking dish. Top with cheese and crushed pringel sticks. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes.

Carne Molida de Res Tacos

I love doing a taco bar.  It's a simple meal and my family enjoys the idea of creating there own special taco.  All I do is cook up the meat and heat the shells.  The condiments are lined on the kitchen counter and everyone helps themselves. This recipe will make up to 20 tacos.

2 Boxes 12 Count Taco Shells
1 1/2 lb Ground Beef
1 Pkg Taco Seasoning
Salt and Pepper to taste

Shredded Cheese
Chopped Onion
Shredded Lettuce
Diced Tomato

Brown meat in skillet and add taco seasoning.  Warm shells in oven for 10 minutes. Fill shells with meat and your choice of condiments and enjoy.

Homemade Pizza

The great thing about pizza is it's versatility. Every one has a preference of toppings. I use this recipe with leftover grilled meat, and I use them all. Using chicken, beef, pork and even grilled sausage will make this a quick dinner. I typically make my own crust but to speed up the process purchase a prepared crust. This pizza will fill a 9 X 13 baking sheet and feed 4 to 6 people.

3 cups of any chopped meat desired (leftover works well)
3 cups of any chopped vegetables you prefer. Some suggestions would be combinations of tomato, onion, pepper, mushroom, and olives.
1 small jar garlic flavored spaghetti sauce
1 16 oz package mozzarella cheese
1 prepared packaged pizza dough

Place dough on a floured surface an roll into an oblong shape to fit 9 X 13 baking sheet,. Place in 350 degree oven for 10 minutes. Slightly baking the dough beforehand will keep it from turning out too soggy. Remove the dough from oven and top with desired amount of sauce. Toss on meat and vegetables to fill crust and top with cheese. Bake in oven for 20 minutes or until edges appear golden brown.

Chalupas de' Puerco

How fun are Chulupas?  Who doesn't like these tasty treats?  It's like creating your own Tex-Mex specialty.  You can top them with just about anything you like and they're guaranteed to taste great.  I prefer to create my dishes from scratch to avoid spending money on store bought products.  You can cut down the prep time by using your own short cuts.  The meat is slow cooked in a crock pot making it tender and juicy.
                                                          Puerco (Pork)
                                                          2 Lbs Pork Roast
                                                          4 Cups Water
                                                          4 Serrano Peppers 
                                                          4 Garlic Cloves (minced)
                                                          1 TBS Salt, 1 TBS Pepper

Place all ingredients in a crock pot and cook for six hours or until meat easily pulls away from bone.  Remove from pan and shred pork with two forks.  Store in refrigerator until ready for use.  Do not discard broth.

                                                         Frijoles (Beans)
                                                         2 Cups Brown Beans
                                                         Remaining broth from Puerco

Rinse beans and cook in broth on medium for four hours checking often.  Once beans have cooked place in large kettle and mash with fork.

                                                          1 Package Maize Tortillas

Heat 2 cups of corn oil in a large skillet on medium heat.  Once oil is hot place one tortilla in pan.  Cook tortilla for no more than one minute (or until toasty brown) and turn cooking other side for same length of time.  Continue same routine for remaining tortillas.  Allow tortilla's to cool some before using.

Spread frijoles on tortilla, layer with shredded lettuce, pork, cheese, salsa, sour cream and than avocado.  These are my choices for toppings, but there best when you create your own combination.

Cazuela de Chorizo y Arroz

Chorizo is a wonderful sausage that can be found in two forms.  The typical form us chopped pork and pork fat seasoned with vinegar (or wine), chili peppers and smoked paprika.  I use a very coarse variety with little fat content for this recipe typically found at a hispanic meat market.  You may want to try making your own with a mixture of fresh ground pork and pork sausage (to up the fat content) with the right blend of spices to suit.

1 LB Chorizo
1 Package Dry Taco Seasoning Mix
1 SM Onion
1 SM Green Pepper
1 SM Jalapeno Pepper
2 Tomatoes
2 Cloves Garlic

1 1/2 C Rice
1 1/2 Cups Black Beans
2 Cups Fiesta Blend Cheese
2 Cups Crushed Dorito Spicy Nacho Chips

Flour Tortillas
Sour Cream

Cook rice according to directions and set aside. Cook Chorizo in skillet with taco seasoning until done.  Remove Place in 9X13 baking dish draining grease and returning it to skillet. Chop all vegetables and add to skillet with sausage grease cooking until tender but not over done.  Add rice, beans and sausage to skillet and let simmer for 10 minutes.  Return Chorizo and Arroz to baking dish and top with crushed chips.  Layer with cheese and bake until  melted.  Top with Sour Cream and Avocado if desired.  Serve with flour tortillas.

Classic Patty Melt

When you'd rather taste the patty and not the bread this is the one you want. The Patty Melt is such a classic.  The taste is unbelievable.  The cheese oozes over a thick patty of beef covered with sauteed onions and mushrooms.  This recipe will make four burgers.

Patty Melt

1 1/2 lb Ground Beef
2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
1 tbs garlic salt
1 tbs lemon pepper
1 medium onion sliced
1 lb mushroom sliced
8 slices sandwich thins
4 slices Swiss cheese

Mix ground beef with next three ingredients and form into four patties at least 1 1/2 inches thick.  Cover and set in refrigerator for 30 minutes.  Place onions and mushrooms in foil and drizzle with olive oil.  Place on heated grill at least 15 minutes before meat is added.  Leave vegetables sauteing until meat is cooked.

Cook hamburgers on grill until done topping with cheese just before removed from heat.   Toast bread on grill and  place each patty on one bottom slice of bread topping with sauteed vegetables.  Serve with jalapeno slices and sweet pickles if desired.

Lighten it up:

Use ground turkey in place of ground beef.  Replace thin sliced bread with Potato Bread and Swiss cheese with fat free cheese.

Burrito Casserole

I enjoy turning leftovers into a totally new creation.  I try not to tell my husband were having "leftovers" for dinner.  Just something about that word. The other night we had burritos leaving plenty of meat and beans in the refrigerator.   This was quick, easy and tasted so good. Serves 4 to 6.

Six Burrito size flour tortillas
1 1/2 cups re-fried beans
1 lbs ground meat
1 pkg Enchilada seasoning mix
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 15 oz can stewed tomatoes with green chilies
1 tbs cilantro
1/2 tsp cumin
2 cups fiesta blend shredded cheese
sliced jalapenos (optional)

Brown meat in skillet adding 1/2 of the package of enchilada seasoning.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Mix in beans blending thoroughly.

Warm tortillas on a grille or in a skillet.  Spoon a generous amount of  beans and meat on the longest end of tortilla 1 inch from edge.  Wrap open edge around filling and roll rightly.  Repeat for all six tortillas.  Place in a 9X13 baking pan that has been lightly coated with cooking spray.

Open tomatoes in a bowl adding remaining enchilada sauce, cilantro and cumin.  Pour over burritos and bake in 350 oven for 20 minutes.  Top with jalapeno slices and cheese cooking an additional 10 minutes.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Lighten up Crock Pot Chicken Alfredo

Lighten up Crock Pot Chicken Alfredo 

A wonderful change up to a classic favorite.  I've added my own twist to make this easier on the waist, but still tasty.  It doesn't take a lot of effort to lighten up this dish with some common sense alternatives.  It has a richer, creamer taste than I could have imagined. Best of all it's all prepared in a crock pot which is my favorite way to prepare a dish.  You could use chicken breast but I prefer to use the more economical cuts of meet.  TIP: Once you removed the skin from the meat boil the pieces for the broth which can be used to make treats for the pets.

                                                          4 Lbs Chicken Legs and Thighs with skin removed
                                                          3 Cups Water                                                      
                                                          2 Garlic Cloves minced
                                                          3 Tbs Italian Seasoning (see below)
                                                          1 8 oz pkg Fat Free Cream Cheese
                                                          1/4 Cup Flour
                                                          1/2 Cup Water

                                                          Egg Noodles (see below)

Place chicken with skins removed in crock pot and add minced garlic.  Cook for four hours or until meat easily pulls away from bones.  Once cooked remove from pan and shred chicken with two forks.  Return chicken to broth and add seasoning with cream cheese.  Stir constantly until cream cheese is completely blended.  Whisk together flour with cold water until smooth.  Add flour to chicken until evenly mixed.  Cover and let cook uncovered for thirty minutes allowing to thicken.  Serve over homemade egg noodles, or prepare one 16oz package or egg noodles per directions.

                                                          Egg Noodles
                                                          2 Eggs
                                                          1 1/2 Cup Flour + 3 Tbs
                                                          1/2 Tsp Salt
                                                          2 Tsp Baking Powder

Whip eggs and stir in remaining ingredients mixing thoroughly.  Turn dough onto floured surface and roll to a 1/4 in thickness.  Allow dough to dry approximately 30 minutes to make it easier to cut.  Slice into 1/2 inch by 3 inch strips and drop into boiling water for 10 minutes. Drain, but do not rinse.

                                                         Italian Seasoning
                                                         2 Tbs Parsley
                                                         1/2 Tbs Oregano
                                                         1 Tbs Basil
                                                         1/2 Tsp Thyme
                                                         1 Tbs Onion Powder
                                                         1 Tbs Garlic Powder

Mix all ingredients and store in a sealed container.  Use for any dish you want to add a little Italian zing to.  My husband likes to add it to oil, vinegar and Worcestershire and use it as a marinade for pork.