Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Black Bottom Banana Bars.

My husband generally eats bananas like they're becoming extinct. However, the last few times I've bought them, he hasn't. Perhaps my pregnancy hormones are changing his eating habits. (See picture at right, lolsies)

Anyway, I've had 5 bananas looking like the ones described in the Grinch (You're a bad banana with a greasy black peel) icky! I don't like bad bananas, or how they smell.

Today, I finally decided to get them off of the shelf and turn them into something yummy and delicious! Thanks to Food.com's (formerly recipezaar.com) recipe for Black Bottom Banana Bars for helping me to get rid of those nasty bananas!

I decided not to change or alter the recipe in anyway- other than to add chocolate chips to the top and so far so good. I just took them out of the oven and OH MAN do they ever smell delicious! I can't wait until they cool and I can eat the shit out of them. **UPDATE- I just ate a little - surprised that I stopped myself from eating the whole pan, aren't you? Bastards. Anyway they're effing scrumptious. **

Photo courtesy of Derf, from Food.com, since mine didn't turn out nearly as thick as theirs!

Here's the recipe!

1/2 cup butter or 1/2 cup margarine, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (about 3 medium)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup baking cocoa

I also topped with a hand full of chocolate chips to make it look a little prettier (ok fine, I did change the recipe just a bit, but I don't think this counts!)

In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add egg and vanilla; beat until thoroughly combined. Blend in the bananas. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt; add to creamed mixture and mix well. Divide batter in half. Add cocoa to half; spread into a greased 13-in x 9-in pan. (I think this is too large a pan, mine turned out really thin) Spoon remaining batter on top and swirl with a knife. (This also didn't turn out well, it didn't look like when you swirl a brownie batter with cream cheese, etc.) Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes or until the bars test done. Cool and enjoy!

Let me know what you think!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

My Cheesy Obsession: Cheesy Potatoes

This is my aunt's recipe. I'm not sure where she got it. The fact that it came from my estranged aunt only subtracts slightly from the SUPER DELICIOUSNESS that is...CHEEEEEEESSSSYYYYY POTATOESSS!

2 lb. package frozen OreIda hash brown potatoes ("Southern Style", not shredded), thawed
1/4 c diced onion
1 can cream of chicken soup - undiluted
1 lb sour cream
4 tbsp butter or margarine, melted
8 oz cheddar cheese, keep some aside for topping (amount is up to you)
dash ground pepper

Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, mix together all ingredients. Pour into a 9x13 baking dish. Bake for one hour. Top with remaining cheese and bake for 15-20 minutes more. Remove from oven and serve! nom nom nom

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Texas Hash!

This dish sounded absolutely disgusting to me until I gave in and finally tried it. Mikey's mom used to make it all the time and he begged for over a year before I caved.

1 lb ground beef
3 lg onions, chopped
1 lg green pepper, chopped
1 can (16 oz) whole tomatoes (I like to use Diced Tomatoes w/Mild Green Chilies, add 1/4 can extra water)
1/2 c uncooked reg. rice
2 tsp salt
1 tsp chili powder, heaping
1/8 tsp pepper
Garnish however you'd like. I LOVE LOVE LOVE cilantro and cheese.

Cook and stir ground beef, onions and green pepper in 10 in skillet until beef is browned; drain. Stir in tomatoes (with liquid) and remaining ingredients.Heat to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer; stirring occasionally until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed- about 30 minutes.

** For a family of 5, double all ingred. except ground beef. <3>

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

"Everything" Chicken

I'm tired of oven fried, marinated grilled and gravy smothered chicken. Tonight, I needed something new, so I searched food.com and found this. I love making bagels, especially everything bagels so I thought these sounded scrumptious! It took less than 30 minutes from start to finish and is definitely a keeper (duh, I'm not adding it to the blog for no reason)

Of course, I don't measure anything, so I'll give you the measurements that were given on

3 tablespoons instant minced onion
3 tablespoons
garlic flakes
3 tablespoons
poppy seeds
3 tablespoons
sesame seeds
1/2 tablespoons
black pepper (they called for 2 tbsp)
1 tablespoons
coarse salt or 1 tablespoons sea salt (they called for 2 tbsp)
1 1/2 lbs chicken tenders
extra virgin olive oil, for drizzling

Preheat oven to 375 f. In a bowl (I used a ziplock bag) drizzle the tenders with olive oil, coating completely. Mix all other ingredients to create the seed mixture in a separate bowl. Dip each tender into the seed mixture, making sure to coat completely. Place on an ungreased baking pan. Once all chicken tenders are covered, bake for 10-15 minutes, or until juices run clear. Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Not My Grandmother's Chicken n Dumplin's

Now, I was taught by my VERY southern grandma how to make dumplin's. Also to- "NEVER STIR 'EM" because they'll stick to each other and the pan. I remember begging her for what seemed like forever to teach me. All the while, her excuse was that hardly any of the grand kids (I think there are 28 grand kids and multiple great grand kids on this side of the family) can make them. Most turn into "rocks" or "slime" or "just not right." The reason for this? Possibly because she literally cooked with a teacup, a hand full and a pinch of this and that. That's her recipe. No joke.
I cook very much the same way, which is why it's hard for me to actually measure, write them down and put them on these "interwebs." Please note, this isn't her recipe (you probably couldn't make it anyhow), nor is it remotely similar. I didn't hand make the dumplings. I added veggies. I didn't cook an entire chicken...but tenders instead. Today, I wanted a thicker stew-like version. I want it to stick to my ribs- more than it normally does...it's standard practice to have a bowl, sit a minute, undo your pants, get up and jump up and down while on your way to get another helping. nom nom nom delicious.
Here goes.

4 boneless chicken breasts (6 I used boneless/skinless chicken tenders)
2 cans cream of chicken soup (yes, even I sometimes use "cream of crap" soups, but RARELY)
2 cartons reduced sodium chicken stock
1 onion, medium, chopped
2 whole carrots, chopped (to my taste)
2 whole celery stalks, chopped (to my taste)
2 tsp butter
1 tsp celery salt
1 tbsp dried thyme
2 10 oz cans biscuits (I used Grands Jr-Flaky)
salt and pepper to taste

In a stock pot, over medium heat, add chicken, soup, stock, veggies, butter, celery salt and thyme. Cook until chicken is cooked through and veggies are no more than barely crunchy. Remove chicken and shred/chop/whatever you'd like to do and return to pot. About 90 minutes before serving, remove biscuits from can, flatten one by one and cut each into bite sized pieces. Add to pot, individually, to keep from sticking. Stir after every few biscuits have been added. At first, biscuits will start to spread out (like marshmallows when heated), but they'll go down. Cover and bring to boil then reduce heat to simmer. Cook until "dumplings" are no longer doughy. Put on your stretchy pants, serve and enjoy!

NOTE for those who can make their own dumplings, I think I'll actually make them instead of using biscuits this time, but it was pretty easy this way.

***Can be used as a crock pot recipe***
Add all ingredients except biscuits. Cook on high 5-6 hours. 90 minutes before serving, add biscuits as instructed above.

Grandma is probably rolling over in her grave. LOVE YOU GRANDMA!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Easiest, Most Scrumptious Pumpkin Muffins EVAH.

I was searching for a pumpkin bread or muffin recipe the other day that had any number less than 3 eggs. Most call for 4. I had 2. Boo hoo hoo. ANYWAY, on Food.com (formerly recipezaar.com) I found one! It called for ZERO eggs! WOOT! (Believe me- when you eat these things, you'll catch my excitement!)

The original poster stated that she acquired the recipe from a Weigh Watcher's meeting. GAG! But, alas, unlike most of the other healthy (read: ICKY) muffins, these haven't caused me to become good friends with The John, aka toilet.


1 15 oz. can pumpkin
1 18 oz. box cake mix, suggested: yellow, white or spice
(I used Dunkin Hines Butter Recipe Golden*)
*Because I used a non spiced mix, I added the following
1 tsp cinnamon, ground
.5 tsp nutmeg, ground
.5 tsp ginger, ground

Mix all ingredients until creamy. I'd suggest using a stand mixer as your arm will become VERY tired. Divide into lined muffin cups. *** Bake as directed on the box. I got 22 muffins.

***To jazz up the place, I decided to top the muffins, pre-baking, with a Crumb Topping recipe from the same site.

1/4 c all-purpose flour
1/3 c brown sugar, packed
2 tbsp butter or margarine, softened
1/2 tsp cinnamon, ground

In a separate bowl, mix ingredients, using fork or pastry cutter until mixture is crumbly. Top each muffin as evenly as possible.

(Sorry about the poor picture. I hate posts without pictures, but I didn't anticipate putting this on the blog.)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

I've started a business!

See? To the right? It's a "Page Badge" from Facebook. The new business is called Black Lotus Massage. Awesome. If you have a Facebook page, you should "like" my Facebook Business Page. Super Awesome.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

So Good Chicken n Rice Tortilla Soup

3 tbsp olive oil
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 med carrot, chopped
1/2 med onion, chopped
1 tsp lime juice
4 tbsp cilantro, chopped
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
w/ green chillies AND juice
1/2 tsp garlic, minced
4 cups chicken stock, plus 3 cups
1 cup cooked chicken, diced
1/2 cup rice, uncooked
1/2 tsp cumin powder
salt and pepper to taste

Garnish with fresh cilantro, diced tomatoes, shredded cheese, crushed tortilla chips, etc.

Heat olive oil in large sauce pan. Add celery, carrot, onion and sauté until onion is nearly translucent. Add lime juice and cilantro, cook about 1 minute more. Add tomatoes with chillies and their juices and minced garlic. Cook over medium heat until liquid is reduced to half. Add cumin powder, chicken stock and rice. Heat, uncovered until rice is tender. Add remaining 3 cups of chicken stock, then add diced chicken. Cover and simmer. (I cooked for hours, until we were ready to eat). Spoon into bowls, garnish and enjoy!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


I love Recipezaar.com. It's fantastic. I was searching for and easy bread to make because I don't really have the patience or knack for yeast breads. This one is as easy as they come. This recipe has to be fab because it's just a smidge under a 5 star rating by 534 people. Literally. I'm pretty sure that many people can't lead me astray. I only wish I would have chosen a better beer...but I'm cheap, but not PBR cheap. By the way, has anyone gone onto a beer's website and noticed that you have to put your birthday in? Really? You can't look at beer online if you're under 21? You can see commercials on tv when you're 2. Also- you should go to the PBR link and look at the PBR art. Sweet. I personally like this one because I believe that the belly on the dragon truly depicts that of a true PBR drinker.


3 cups flour (sifted)
3 teaspoons baking powder (omit if using Self-Rising Flour)
1 teaspoon salt (omit if using Self-Rising Flour)
1/4 cup sugar
1 (12 ounce) can beer
1/2 cup melted butter (1/4 cup will do just fine)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Mix dry ingredients and beer.
3. Pour into a greased loaf pan.
4. Pour melted butter over mixture.
5. Bake 1 hour, remove from pan and cool for at least 15 minutes.

**1/3/11 UPDATE**
I made a double batch, using self-raising flour, 3 cups (or 1.5 c each batch) of finely shredded cheddar cheese and Lebatt Blue beer. OMG Delicious.

Strawberries 'n Cream Muffins

I signed up for the Cooking Club of America without knowing that you had to pay membership dues and all of that bullshit. Mike signed up for the Hunter's Club and didn't have to pay a dime...and they sent him a pant load of cool gear. WTF. Same thing I guess, only I get delicious recipes, kind of. Anyway- they send me a cooking magazine which, for the most part, sucks. However, in the back of the April/May 2010 issue, there is a "flashback" recipe which looked scrumptious. I just had to try it. Besides, tomorrow is Mikey's birthday...he's gotta have something good for breakfast!

Strawberry-Cream Cheese Muffins

2 c all-purpose flour
3/4 c plus 3 tbsp sugar, divided
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
6 Tbsp unsalted butter, chilled, cut up
1 c chopped strawberries
3/4 c plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk
1 egg
1 (3oz) pkg. cream cheese, cut into 12 cubes

1. Heat oven to 400 F. Grease bottoms of 12 muffin cups or line with paper liners. Combine flour, 3/4 c of the sugar, baking powder and soda in a medium bowl. With pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in butter until mixture is crumbly-ish. Stir in strawberries.

2. Whisk buttermilk and egg in a small bowl until blended. Gently stir mixture into flour mixture until just combined. Divide evenly among muffin cups. Dip cream cheese pieces in 2 tbsp of the sugar; press cubes in the center of each muffin (do not cover with the batter). Sprinkle muffins with remaining 1 tbsp sugar.

3. Bake 20-25 minutes or until light brown and toothpick inserted off-center comes out clean (don't put the toothpick in the cream cheese). Cool on wire rack 10 minutes Remove from pan; serve warm or at room temp. Store in refrigerator.

Note: I made 6 large muffins. I baked at the same temp for 25-30 minutes-ish.