Recipe Index


Summer Squash Recipe Roundup

This summer around the Fenton household, we are getting our vegetables the old-fashioned way: through an honest-to-goodness trade. Our friend who has been away all summer has asked us to mow his lawn and water his plants and in return we get our pick of his vegetable crop. Pretty sweet deal! But this also means we have way more veggies than we know what to do with. For the veggies we didn't freeze, I found I was desperate for new ways to cook zucchini and yellow squash. If that is the story of your life this summer as well, hopefully this post will inspire some fresh new ideas for you!

Baked Zucchini Fries with Cilantro and Green Onion Noodles from Anna at The Joy Cottage

Crispy Squash & Zucchini Chips from Laura at Meet Virginia

Creamy Ravioli with Squash, Lemon and Chives from Real Simple

Cheesy Zucchini Pizza from Jenna at Eat, Live, Run

Summer Squash & Chive Pancakes from Gina at Skinny Taste

Zucchini Cakes from Ryan at The Pioneer Woman

Pasta Salad with Tomatoes, Zucchini, and Feta from Ree at The Pioneer Woman

And finally, for those of you who have anti-veggie kiddos, here's a sneaky way to get them to eat their zucchini:

Low Fat Chocolate Chip Zucchini Bread from Gina at Skinny Taste

Hopefully you found some good ideas and maybe even a new food blog to follow! Let me know if you try any of these recipes and how they turned out for you. As if you haven't had enough of summer squash already, stay tuned for a family favorite (and award-winning, might I add!) zucchini recipe from the madre coming soon. :)


Kielbasa and Red Beans

I came across this recipe when I was looking for crock pot recipes that cook for around 4-5 hours (the time that was required to drive to my son's high school baseball game, watch the game, and then drive back home). I also needed it to be easy (always a requirement!).

2 lbs. Kielbasa, cut into bite-size pieces
5 - 16 oz. cans kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 - 14 1/2 oz. cans diced tomatoes
1 onion, chopped

Combine all ingredients in a slow cooker. Cover and cook on low setting for 8 hours, or high setting for 4-5 hours. This tastes really good served over rice. Serves 6-8. Enjoy!

Brunswick Stew

My younger sister, Catherine, gave me this recipe. She uses "Shane's Rib Shack's" BBQ pork and chicken and Williamson Bros. Bar-B-Q Sauce (really sweet).

2 - 28 oz. cans diced tomatoes
2 lbs. BBQ (my sister uses 1 lb. pork, 1 lb. chicken from Shane's)
2 cans creamed corn
2 cans shoe peg corn, drained
1/2 cup BBQ sauce (my sister uses Williamson Bros.)
1 t. ground pepper
1 T. salt
1 T. sugar
2 T. vinegar
chopped onions (optional)

Place all ingredients in crock pot. Stir. Cook on low 4-6 hours, stirring occasionally. You can also cook on high 2-3 hours. Enjoy!


Not Your Average Slaw

Hey there, I'm Lesley Anne, and I'm so excited to sign in for my first guest post on A Cook's Connection. I couldn't wait to share this recipe with you today because I don't think the timing could be more perfect! The weather is warming up, which also means it's time to fire up your backyard grill and get it back in action. The weather on Sunday is especially looking good for a backyard cook out here in Georgia!

Something my husband, Kyle, and I really enjoy making as a side when we grill out is slaw. But not just any kind of slaw. We are suckers for Asian Slaw, to be exact. It's a tasty twist on the typical cabbage, mayo and pepper combo, and I promise your taste buds will love you for it! Here's how to make it:

Asian Slaw

• 2 packs beef-flavored Ramen noodles
• 1 15 ounce/1 lb slaw mix tri-colored slaw
• 1 cup of sliced almonds (toast them at 250 very briefly if you want)
• 1 cup sunflower kernels/seeds
• 1 bunch scallions, chopped
• 1/2 Cup Sugar
• 3/4 Cup Canola Oil
• 1/3 Cup Vinegar

Break (uncooked) Ramen noodles up in a large mixing bowl. Place slaw mix on top of the noodles, and then sprinkle almonds and scallions on top. Take beef flavor packets in noodles and mix with 1/2 cup of sugar, 3/4 cup canola oil, and 1/3 cup vinegar. Whisk together until the powder dissolves and pour over the slaw. Let the slaw sit for an hour and then mix right before you eat.

Super easy and super delicious! If you try it, I'd love to hear how it turned out for you. Special thanks to Kyle's mom for introducing me to this wonderful recipe.


Chicken Taco Stew

Since I'm the "queen" of easy recipes, I thought that I'd share this recipe that was given to me by the mom of one of Lesley Anne's volleyball teammates:

Chicken Taco Stew

1 can corn
1 can kidney beans
1 can ranch style beans (pinto beans)
1 can stewed tomatoes
1 can rotel tomatoes
2 cans chicken broth
2 packs taco seasoning
2 lbs. chicken (raw & cut up into bite-sized pieces)
sauteed onions & peppers

Put all in crock pot and cook all day. Serve with sour cream and/or shredded cheese.

If you don't have time to saute the onions and peppers, just put them in raw and they will cook with the rest of the stew. This stew is really yummy and very easy!!!

"Must Try" Internet Recipe Finds {Vol.1}

Hello All! 
Sorry it's been a month plus some. My Man is full into tax season at work and I have taken on an extra challenge teaching in the After School Program at my school two afternoons a week. SO nota-lota (yep, it's officially a word in my dictionary) cookin' has been going on at our house. My sweet mom has made us dinner several times even though she claims she's not good at it. Well,  she has become amazing at finding and making fast and yummy meals! We appreciate it. 

Anywho! I have been perusing food blogs today for inspiration and thought I would share some finds that I want to try. Maybe you will be inspired too! 

I have plans for posting several of my favorite go-to recipes on here very soon. Maybe this will tide you over until I get to it. 


A Delish Pasta Dish

Picture from
One of my favorite finds on is the Eight-Layer Casserole. Get the recipe right here. If you are a pasta lover, then this is the dish for you! It is the perfect casserole to make for dinner guests because it makes a ton. That is unless you have a Drew Dickerson (my "little" brother, that is not so little anymore) as one of your dinner guests. In that case you should definitely make two batches if you are having more than four guests. The first time I made this dish I invited my parents and my then 18 year old brother to help us eat it. The casserole was an instant hit. My dad and Drew traditionally do not care of Italian cuisine, but they both went back for seconds (in Drew's case, thirds and fourths) of this Italian dish. According to the recipe I should have had half the casserole left, but by the time they were finished with it, I had NOTHING left. Not even a spoonful. My corning ware was bare! Like I said, it is good! I have made this for two other dinner parties and both times it was a success. It looks, smells, and tastes great. Serve with a side salad and garlic bread and you are set!

I have made some adjustments to the casserole which is not unusual for me. This one definitely needs more meat and tomato sauce. I think I doubled it last time and it turned out perfectly. I also added more spices to the sauce. Any of your favorite Italian spices will do like rosemary, thyme, and/or Italian seasoning. A little extra garlic flavor never hurts! Add some minced garlic ( 1 tsp. should do it) and onion salt to the meat when you brown it. Mmmm.....mmm!

 Try it out and let me know what you think!


A "Souper" Easy Recipe

Hi! I'm Cindy. Friends and family members will find it amusing that I'm posting on a cooking blog because they know that the best thing that I make for dinner is reservations! But, actually, I'm well-known for finding and cooking easy recipes. A few years back, while at a volleyball match (my daughter, Lesley Anne, played in high school), I heard about this easy soup recipe. The mom that told me about it said that the directions were easy. She said that all you had to do was to brown 2 lbs. of ground beef and open ten cans of vegetables and cook it in the crockpot all day. That sounded easy enough! So I went home and made it for my husband and he LOVED it!!! Now, he asks me to make it quite frequently, and now it is one of his favorite recipes! I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

Ten Can Soup

2 lbs. very lean ground chuck (browned)
2 cans mild Rotel
3 cans Campbell's Minestrone soup
2 cans kidney beans or black beans or pinto beans
1 can corn
1 can french style green beans
1 can Hoppin John with blackeye peas, tomatoes, onions, & jalapenos

Don't drain anything. Cook in large crockpot until hot and bubbly or all day.


Recipes Galore...

right here on the World Wide Web! All you need to do is just get out there and search and then let us know what you find! I will share with you a few of the treasures I have found.
  1. Better Homes and Gardens ( I have found many keepers from this site. Not only does it have great recipes, but you can save them to your own virtual recipe box for FREE! You can also surf their decorating ideas, and gardening ideas if any of that suites your fancy (it does mine). For even more fun and recipes subscribe to their magazine! I absolutely LOVE getting mine in the mail each month.
  2.   The Pioneer Woman She covers pretty much anything and everything, but she has a great cooking section and has even written her own cookbook (which I hear is fabulous) P.S. I just love the way she writes. 


Alan's Favorite Recipe

Last night I asked Alan to tell me which one of my recipes he likes best. He said that I make some mean spaghetti, but he also ask that I not tell that recipe. He claims it is a family recipe that should not be shared since it is a recipe that has been passed down from his Italian grandmother. It's not that hard, so one of these days I might share with you the gist of how to make it without giving everything away. That would be okay, right?

Anyway, his other favorite recipe is Dijon Pork Roast with Cranberries. It is great anytime of the year, but to me it has that "holiday" flavor and pairs well with casseroles and other "cold weather" dishes. My absolute favorite thing about this recipe is that it takes 10 minutes or less to put together! AMAZING!

Honey Dijon Pork Roast with Cranberries

1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 boneless pork loin roast (2 to 2 1/2 pounds), trimmed of excess fat
2 tablespoons honey dijon mustard
2 tablespoons honey
2 teaspoons grated orange peel
1 1/3 cups french fried onions, divided
1 cup dried cranberries

  1. Combine first three ingredients and sprinkle over roast and then place in slow cooker. Mix together mustard, honey, and orange peel and pour over roast. Sprinkle 2/3 cup french fried onions and cranberries over the top of the roast.
  2. Cover and cook on LOW for 4 to 6 hours (or on HIGH for 2 to 3 hours).
  3. Remove pork. Skim fat from the sauce in the cooker. Slice meat and server with sauce and another sprinkling of french fried onions, if desired.
This recipe is taken from The Slow Cooker Bible (Your All-in-One Guide to Successful Slow-Cooking)



I am so glad you have decided to connect with us and our endeavor to expand our palettes with recipes and great cooking advice!

Here's how I envision this working...(which may change when my sweet, very articulate, and social network/blog savvy sister gets a hold of this and helps me see the blogging light! Check out her amazing blog, Front Porch Sittin' with the Fentons.)

Once I get up my first actual cooking posts, please respond with your advice, questions, and other recipe ideas. Your advice, questions, and recipes could become the topic of a new posting. Eventually, I want as many friends, family members, and other deemed experts, who wish to contribute their own posts, to have access to do just that- make posts to A Cook's Connection blog.
   {I got this idea from Beth Moore. She and her daughters make their own individual posts on her blog at  The Living Proof Ministries Blog.  If you love her teachings, want to be inspired, or just love good  real-life stories, check it out! }

                                         With more than a spoonful of sugar and love,