Recipe Index

1.29.2011

A Delish Pasta Dish

Picture from bhg.com
One of my favorite finds on BHG.com 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!

1.17.2011

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.

1.15.2011

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.

http://thepioneerwoman.com/my_cookbook/
  1. Better Homes and Gardens (bhg.com/recipes). 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. 

1.14.2011

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)

1.13.2011

WELCOME!

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,
                                                                      Ashley