Thursday, April 30, 2009


Heidi over at Tried-and-True cooking with Heidi has graciously bestwoed upon me another blog award.

The Rules:
1. Put the logo in your blog
2. Write five things you are passionate about apart from blogging
3. Tag 5 people on your lists and let them know you tagged them.

Five things that I am passionate about are:
1.) Spending time with my family. I am blessed to be surrounded by some of the most wonderful people in the world.
2.) I love to cook and research recipe books. I love the vintage cookbooks that my Mother-in-Law gave me, I cherish them.
3.) I am passionate about my dogs, there are days when I wish they would take a walk and not come back for several hours, but let's be honest, I would miss them terribly.
4.) I love the thought of doing yard work and having a green thumb, but reality is, I can't stand to garden and I am so lucky to have a Husband who enjoys it so much.
5.) I love to take picture. For Christmas this year Santa brought us a Nikon D40 and I am never without it. People make fun of me for the amount of pictures I take, but I just gently remind them that they are memories and one day they will be glad I took them. Daniel said just the other day, he was glad we have so many pictures of his Dad who isn't in the greatest of health.

Now for who I want to share this honor with:

Sheila at Alice and the Mock Turtle
Cassie at Cassie Craves
My friend at 5th Sister, and it's horrible that I am not aware of her first name.
Kathy at Three on Food
Lisa at One Step at a Time

Pass it on Ladies! Thanks again Heidi, I so enjoy stopping by to visit your blog!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


Daniel and I both love cheese. We love it sprinkled on top of stuff, spread on and dipped in. I usually always have on hand the ingredients to make our cheese ball for those last minute munchies.

Cheese Ball~
8 oz. block cream cheese, softened
1 package of dried beef, chopped finely
3 tbsp. onion, chopped finely
2 dashes of hot sauce
2 dashes of Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup shredded mild cheddar
1 tbsp. milk

1.) Mix ingredients together in a bowl and then refrigerate for a few hours to marry.

Now how simple is that?? Hope you enjoy! Sorry about the horrible picture...didn't feel like making it fancy.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

French Bread Pizza

I don't know about you but I have never been one to enjoy frozen dinners. I do have an exception to that issue though and it involves Stouffers. I love their spaghetti and lasagna and I really really like their frozen french bread pizzas. I thought since I have been trying to come up with some new recipes and lunch/dinner ideas that I would attempt to recreate one on my own. This was pretty good and since I decided to make it for lunch my wonderful Hubby was kind enough to chop up the veggies for me so that everything would be ready to go for me when I got there. The man even had the oven preheated...we make such a good team when it involves cooking!

Simple ingredients, simple directions...what is there not to love about this dish!

Katie's French Bread Pizza
1 loaf of french bread
1 bag of Monterey Jack shredded cheese
1/2 onion, finely diced
1/2 green pepper, finely diced
*1 jar pizza sauce

*Use as little or as much as you prefer.

1) Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2.) Take your loaf of french bread and slice evenly down the center and then cut into four pieces.
3.) Take bread and sit on baking sheet, top with sauce, sprinkle on your onions and green peppers, and then top with your pepperoni, followed by a generous helping of cheese.
4.) Bake until cheese is melted and lightly browned.

This was pretty good, I couldn't eat but a bite or two because of the greasiness of the pepperoni, until this gall bladder comes out, if it does, I am trying to watch my intake of fatty/greasy foods. Daniel really enjoyed it. Obviously with any type of pizza you can add or withhold any of the ingredients. When I was building these I was wishing that we had grabbed a jar of mushrooms but didn't really think about it at the time. I used the monterey jack cheese because that is what I had on hand but you can use mozzarella or even mild cheddar, anything that floats your boat.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Strawberry Pretzel Salad

I was actually feeling pretty good this weekend so I decided to have my Mom and Grandma over for dinner Sunday evening. I was busy trying to come up with some sort of dessert to serve with the meal and with the help of some good people on allrecipes I think I came up with a winner. I have never had a strawberry pretzel salad before and believe it or not this was pretty easy to make. It was even easier to eat!! Hope you enjoy as much as we did.

Strawberry Pretzel Salad~
2 C. crushed pretzels
3/4 C. melted butter
3 T. white granulated sugar
1-8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
1 C. granulated white sugar
1-8 oz. container frozen whipped topping, thawed
2-3 oz. packages strawberry flavored gelatin
2 C. boiling water
2-10 oz. packages frozen strawberries

1.) Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2.) Stir together crushed pretzels, sugar, and melted butter. Mix well and press mixture into the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish.
3.) Bake 8 to 10 minutes, until set. Set aside to cool.
4.) In a large mixing bowl cream together cream cheese and 1 cup of sugar. Fold in whipped topping. Spread mixture onto cooled crust.
4.) Dissolve gelatin in boiling water. Stir in frozen strawberries and allow to set briefly. When mixture is about the consistency of egg whites, pour and spread over cream cheese layer. Refrigerate until set.

Now as usual I rushed through the directions and I actually made the jello according to the box, so not only did I add 2 cups of boiling water, I also added 2 cups of cold water. One of these days I promise I will gather some patience when baking and follow directions to the T. Also, 2 cups of crushed pretzels is not enough, I think I used closer to 3, maybe even 3.5. Next time I may even use more because the crust layer is pretty thin when compared to the cream cheese and strawberry layer. Of course we can't really consider the strawberry layer since it's two cups of water thicker than what it should have The extra water caused the strawberry layer to be a little on the runny side...please don't add the extra two cups of water or when you cut into it yours will look like mine did. Who cares tasted really good. Also, we purchased the while frozen strawberries and since the recipe didn't really state whether you should use whole or not I didn't cut mine up. Next time I will definitely cut them in half to make them easier to eat.

Recipe courtesy of allrecipes!!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Steak Marinade

We did a nice little cook out today for my Mom and Grandma and I splurged and purchased some eye of round steaks. It's a cheap cut of meat so you need to make sure you tenderize it and give it a nice marinade to soak in for several hours. I actually came up with this one on my own and it was pretty good. Daniel grilled them on the charcoal grill and they were so tender, I was quite pleased. No picture but maybe I will post one tomorrow when I have leftover steak for dinner...yummy.

Katie's Steak Marinade~
1/4 C. Honey
1/3 Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 tbsp. steak sauce
1 tbsp. soy sauce
1/3 C. Roasted Garlic Italian Vinaigrette

1.) Mix all of the ingredients together, slowly whisking in the olive oil. Allow your meat to marinade for several hours. We allowed ours to marinade for about two hours...I think they would have been even better had it have been much longer.

Hope you give this marinade a try during one of your BBQ's this spring/summer season!!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Bruschetta Bites

I had something similar to this several months ago during a carry-in at work. I have improvised a little bit and let me tell you they are so good. I love tomato based anything but I have never been one to eat a plain tomato. The fact I eat these is amazing. I have never actually made these for a group of people so I don't have exact measurements. I usually keep the supplies on hand so I can make two or three to snack on. Hope you enjoy.

Asiago cheese, sliced
Roma tomatoes
french bread
fresh basil leaves
Tuscan Italian dressing

1.) Toast a slice of your french bread, top with a spoonful of your dressing, top with a sliver of cheese, and then to wrap it up put on a fresh basil leaf and top with your slice of fresh tomato.

How easy is that? I have found my dressing at Jungle Jims and at Trader Joes. You can either toast your bread in a toaster which I usually do or you can brush some olive oil on the slices and pop them in the oven.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Anybody home??

Yes I am home it's just been one of those weeks, almost two if you're counting, I haven't been feeling well yet again, it's becoming the story of my life, and because of that I just haven't been cooking. I think we are starting to figure out why I have been sick for almost the past year, my gall bladder has gone haywire and has decided to either not operate at all or only operate when it so desires. This would explain why the $21,000 worth of Remicade treatments I have had since February haven't done an ounce of good. They aren't going to work if the reason they are being given to you isn't the reason why you are sick. I am not one to voluntarily sign up for a surgery, but people...I am ready to be sliced open and have that organ taken out and thrown away...that is how utterly miserable I am. If it is my gall bladder that would also explain my weight gain, I feel like I should just drop and roll instead of walking to my destination. This is evident by the pictures I have posted here on my blog. The top left one was taken exactly a year before the one I just recently posted of Daniel and Me. The roundness in my face should say it all. What makes me mad is I am eating about half of what I used to...I can't keep anything down so why bother. Now one would think, if you are eating less than you would lose weight.

Anyway, my Mother informed me yesterday that she was sick and tired of seeing the butterfly cake and instructed me that I needed to post something new. She told me I could tell everyone the story of when we moved to the farm. I was a freshman in high school and my Step-Dad had decided to go to Las Vegas during the week that we needed to move our six person, two story household. It was up to me and my Mom and she wanted me to tell the tale of moving the flimsy king size mattress down the flight of stairs. Needless to say it moved us and it was quite a ride down those stairs. Over the years I have determined that Mom+Katie+Moving= BIG TROUBLE. We attempted a dresser a few months ago, going up the basement stairs...Mom almost lost her life, I can't help that I have absolutely no upper body strength. Then there was just a few weeks ago. My Mom gave Daniel a treadmill that my Step-Dad didn't take in the divorce and let me tell you...that sucker was heavy. It took four of us to get it up those basement stairs and I would have been better off just watching. Daniel and Denny took the heavy part and Mom and I took the light part being the first two going up the stairs. I was taking the steps in a sitting position when my legs got trapped under the treadmill...I was stuck, couldn't move and it doesn't help that I am fatty. Mom and I always break down into fits of laughter during these moments so here we are stuck on the stairs laughing so hard we are crying and here poor Daniel and Denny are trying to pick up our slack and not drop the darn thing. They didn't find it very humorous but it's over now and the treadmill made it safely home. I don't think it helped that my 17 year old sister just happened to appear at that moment. Standing at the top of the stairs, cell phone in hand, asking what we were doing. Gee Megan, I don't know, having a tea party on the stairs because we are bored out of our minds...what does it look like we are doing.

There you go Mom, I gave you a new post and wrote what you requested I write about, I hope your happy.

For those of you looking for a new recipe there will be two new ones coming up, one hopefully tonight. Things may change though because I seem to get the sickest at night and in the early morning so here's hoping I can manage to pull it together.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Happy Easter

Thought I would share with everyone my butterfly cake, or the moth cake as my brother-in-law referred to it. It's easy to do and would make a great addition to your Easter spread.

1 box of cake mix, bake as directed on box
2 containers of frosting
12 oreos
candy to decorate

1.) Bake cake as directed according to the box in two 9 in. cake pans.
2.) Allow cakes to cool completely, cut in half.
3.) On a baking sheet stack up your oreos and place one layer of cut cake, icing and then stack the second layer.
4.) Finish icing and decorating with candy of your choice.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Fried Zuccini Chips

I promised I would share with you how to make the fried zucchini chips that I made to go along with our BBQ meatballs and yes I am a little late in posting...but hey, better late than never. I love vegetables that have been dredged in flour and deep fried and then dipped in ranch dressing. I especially love fried makes me happy. I pretty much use the same seasonings whenever I dredge something in flour and fry it, meats and vegetables. No exact measurements...I just fly by the seat of my pants.

Katie's Fried Zucchini~

2 md. zucchini, sliced relatively thin
1 cup flour
black pepper
garlic salt
onion powder
1 egg
splash or two of milk

1.) In a bowl mix your dry ingredients while in a separate bowl add your scrambled egg and milk, mix well.
2.) In a large skillet pour in vegetable oil, enough to coat the bottom without drowning your veggie, and bring to high heat.
3.) Take your sliced zucchini and dip in egg/milk mixture and then dredge in flour, add to your skillet. Brown on each side and layer on a plate with a paper towel to absorb an excess oil, sprinkle with salt.

* You will start your oil off on high but after about the first batch I turn my stove down to medium, if you don't it will burn and it doesn't smell pretty. Also, to test the oil and the seasoning in the flour I cut one thin slice of zucchini and do my thing with it and throw it into the skillet. You will know by that first piece whether or not the oil is ready and once it is done you can taste it to determine whether or not your seasoning is where you want it to be.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

BBQ Meatballs

It has been a very busy week at my house and as usual it has something to do with sickness. I think we have a black cloud over our house preventing everyone from being well at the same time.

Anyway, Lennon had his tail amputation Tuesday March 24th and everything seemed to have gone well. What we didn't know was that it was going to go down hill and fast. My poor little boy underwent emergency surgery this past Wednesday afternoon to remove more tail. I will spare everyone the gruesome details but we actually had to get a second opinion from another vet because the original didn't seem to think what was going on with his tail required another surgery. It did require another surgery and it required it immediately. After shelling out $1000 for this second surgery alone, Daniel and I are now on the Ramon noodle and cheap frozen pizza Of course had the first Vet done the amputation properly we wouldn't be in this mess but my little guy is doing really good and his tail looks 100% better than what it did after the first surgery. This Vet is having us bring him in every three days so she can make sure he stays on the path to a full recovery. I will be glad when it is all healed and he is back to normal. He is currently wearing one of those big plastic collars that they have to wear to prevent them from licking at their wounds and he is enjoying chasing Bandit around the house because of it. Bandit doesn't quite realize what it is and he is afraid of it.

On to more important matters...FOOD. I had been meaning to make this meal for a couple of weeks now. I am sure many of you are sick of seeing it as soon after the Pioneer Woman posted it to her blog, it seems that everyone jumped on the BBQ meatball band wagon. I still thought I would be nice and share with you, some of my followers may not have seen them so here you go!!
BBQ Meatballs

1 1/2 pounds ground beef
3/4 cup oats
1 cup milk
3 tablespoons very finely minced onion
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
plenty of ground black pepper

1 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons vinegar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire
4 to 6 tablespoons onion
Dash of Tabasco

1.)Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2.)Combine all meatball ingredients. Roll into medium-small balls and place on a cookie sheet. 3.)Place sheet in freezer for five minutes.
4.)Remove from freezer and immediately dredge in unseasoned flour.
5.)Brown meatballs in canola oil until just brown. Place into a baking dish.
6.)Combine all sauce ingredients. Pour over meatballs and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

Serve with egg noodles, mashed potatoes, or crusty french bread.
* Recipe courtesy of The Pioneer Woman

Now, as you are all already aware, I can't follow directions worth a hill of beans. This is why Katie+Baking=Trouble. The above recipe is straight from the Pioneer Woman herself, but because I have issues I made a few adjustments. First of all the oats we had in our pantry expired in 2007 so obviously they got pitched and in their place I used a sleeve of saltine crackers smashed up. Second, instead of using straight salt, I used garlic salt instead, it's what I do. Third, I added two eggs, I don't know why, I just felt compelled to use two eggs. Also, I didn't do the whole put them in the freezer and then roll them in flour deal. I just rolled them and fried them, didn't have time to mess around with that step, I had a Husband who said he had been hungry all day when I asked him if he was ready for me to start dinner, it was an emergency situation people! Now when it came to the sauce I pretty much stuck to the original with the exception of the Tabasco, I added a dash of red paper flakes instead.

These were definitely winners although Daniel said it tasted just like meatloaf which is understandable because I pretty much use the same ingredients when I do make meatloaf. I served mine along with mashed potatoes, tator tots for Daniel, and fried zucchini chips which I will share with you later.