No Crust Apple Pie

When I was a little girl, I would walk down the road to my great aunt’s house to visit a few times a week.  She made this “pie” for me sometimes when I came for a visit.  It is especially good with ice cream!

5 cups sliced apples

3 slices bread, cut into strips (about and inch wide)

1 stick margarine or butter, melted

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 1/4 cup white sugar

1 egg, beaten

Place apples in a greased baking dish (I use 8×8).  Arrange bread on top of the apples, close together.  Mix remaining ingredients and spoon over the bread.  Bake at 350 degrees until brown and apples are done. 

That’s it!  Seriously, this is soooo good!  Give it a try.

Published in: on September 5, 2008 at 12:06 pm  Leave a Comment  

Black Bean Soup

I made up this recipe last week to suit a sort of craving I was having.  No, I’m not pregnant.  But I definitely had a taste for this soup.  I didn’t know when I was mixing up all the ingredients just how delicious it was going to be!  Oh my gosh.  Be prepared.

1 pound black beans, sorted and rinsed

6 cups chicken broth

1 can diced tomatoes with green chiles

1 Tablespoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon black pepper

Texas Pete, to taste (I use 2 or 3 “dashes”)

1 pound Country Style Pork Ribs, bone in (about 3)

Add beans and broth to a pot and boil for 2 minutes; pour into slow cooker.  Add remaining ingredients, including the pork ribs.  Cover and cook on low 8-9 hours.  

Remove pork from slow cooker and shred the meat, discarding the bones.  Set the shredded pork aside.  

Scoop out 1/2 to 3/4 of the beans and puree them in a food processor.  Stir processed beans back into soup.  This should thicken the soup just a bit.  Stir in the shredded pork.  

Serve with shredded cheese and a dollop of sour cream and tortilla chips.  

**This soup is not really thick.  Hubby says he would like it to be a bit thicker, while I am fine with the way it is.  The next time, I will most likely cut the amount of broth I use down to 5 cups to see what kind of consistency that gives it.  But, like I said, I like it the way it is.

This is my feeble attempt at a picture of my delicious soup.

I so badly want a better camera.  Want to give me one?  

Published in: on August 27, 2008 at 4:17 pm  Leave a Comment  

Better Than Sex Cake

According to my mother, that’s exactly what my grandmother called it!  I hate to publish so many recipes all the time, but this one’s too good not to share.  And I’m dying for a piece right now.  

When I was younger, I loved nothing better than to walk down the hill to my Mamaw’s house and look through her recipe box.  It was filled with recipes scrawled on the backs of envelopes and sales receipts, no doubt from various potlucks and parties she had attended.  Many of Mamaw’s recipes did not have names on them.  This is one of those recipes.  I told my mother that I had taken this cake to work one day and everyone wanted to know what it was but I didn’t know the name.  She says Mamaw called it a Better Than Sex Cake.  

1 box yellow cake mix and ingredients to prepare

2 eggs

1 cup white sugar

1 can crushed pineapple

1 small package vanilla instant pudding, prepared




Bake cake in a 9×13 inch pan, according to package directions, adding 2 additional eggs to the mix.  When cake is done, poke holes in top of cake with a fork.  Combine sugar and undrained pineapple in a pot and cook over medium heat to boiling.  Boil for 5 minutes and immediately pour over cake.  Allow cake to cool completely.  Spread vanilla pudding over top of the cake.  Spread Cool Whip over top of the pudding.  Sprinkle generously with coconut.  Keep refrigerated.

I suppose whether you think this cake is actually better than sex depends on who you’re having sex with, right? You be the judge.  At any rate, enjoy the cake!

Published in: on August 20, 2008 at 9:06 am  Leave a Comment  

Homemade Sandwich Cookies

I took these to a picnic over the weekend and they were a huge hit!  Everyone loved them and said they taste a lot like Oreos.  Of course, I handed out the recipe to everybody it seemed.  These are super easy to make and would be great for a bake sale too!

2 boxes devil’s food cake mix**

2 sticks of margarine, softened

2 eggs

1 can store-bought white or vanilla icing

1/2 cup (approximate) confectioner’s sugar

Combine cake mix, eggs, and butter in a bowl.  You’ll end up mashing it together with your hands to get it all mixed up into a fairly stiff cookie dough.  Form dough into balls using a measuring teaspoon.  Place on cookie sheet (I like to line mine with parchment paper) and bake at 400 degrees for 8 minutes.  Remove from oven and allow to cool on pan for a few minutes before placing on a cooling rack to cool completely.  

Combine icing and confectioner’s sugar and beat with electric mixer until fairly stiff.  Spread icing on bottom of one cookie and top with another cookie.  I like to just turn half of my cookies top-side down and squirt the icing on them using a pastry bag.  It really cuts the time and potential for mess.

This recipe makes about 3 dozen sandwiches.

**I like devil’s food cake mix the best but you can use any flavor you want.  Strawberry is particularly good and so is lemon.  You could always choose a different flavor icing to complement your cookie flavor.

Published in: on August 18, 2008 at 9:02 am  Leave a Comment  

Easy Shepherd’s Pie

I found this recipe for Shepherd’s Pie not too long ago.  My kids love it and it’s super easy!  We had this for supper last night and there was none left!

You’ll need:

1 lb. hamburger

1 bag frozen mixed vegetables

1 jar brown gravy

3 oz. cream cheese (softened and cubed)

garlic (to taste)

1 c. shredded cheddar cheese

mashed potatoes (you can use instant if you want – make enough for 6 servings on box)


Brown hamburger and drain off fat.  Add mixed veggies and brown gravy.  Cook and stir until heated and veggies have thawed.  Pour into 9×9 bake dish.  If you’re making real mashed potatoes, add garlic to potatoes while cooking.  If you’re making instant potatoes, add it to the water while it’s heating.  Once you have your garlic mashed potatoes, stir in cream cheese and 1/2 cup of cheddar cheese.  Spread on top of meat/veggie mixture, sealing the edges.  Top with remaining 1/2 cup of cheddar.  Bake at 400 degrees until meat/veggies are bubbly and cheese is melted.

That’s it!  Super easy and super yummy!  Enjoy!

Published in: on August 12, 2008 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  

Zucchini Bread


The neighbor behind us has a (huge) beautiful garden and has supplied us with a ton of zucchini this summer.  With the zucchini abundance, I decided to make zucchini bread.  Here’s my recipe:

3 c. all-purpose flour

1 t. salt

1 t. baking soda

1 t. baking powder

3 t. ground cinnamon

3 eggs

1 c. vegetable oil

2 1/4 c. sugar

3 t. vanilla extract

2 c. grated zucchini (leave the skin on)

1 c. chopped walnuts

Sift flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon together in a bowl.  *I don’t actually sift it, I put it in the bowl and stir it up with a wire whisk.  The flour I buy is pre-sifted and I’m too lazy to sift it again. Beat eggs, oil, vanilla, and sugar together in a large bowl.  Add “sifted” ingredients to creamed mixture, and beat well.  I find that at this point it’s getting a bit thick.  If it gets hard for my mixer to mix up, I go ahead and toss in some of the zucchini for added moisture.  Once you’ve gotten everything mixed up, stir in the zucchini and walnuts until well combined.  

Pour the batter into two greased and floured 8 x 4 inch pans.  Bake at 325 degrees for 40 -60 minutes, or until tester inserted in the center comes out clean.  I find that it actually takes closer to 60 minutes but I don’t want it to get dry so I start checking it at 40 minutes.  Cool in the pans on a rack for 20 minutes before removing from the pans to cool completely.  

When I eat zucchini bread, I like to spread cream cheese on the slice.  YUM!  

Do you have a good zucchini recipe?  I’d love to hear it.  With all this zucchini around, it would be nice to have something new to try.

Published in: on August 7, 2008 at 1:03 pm  Leave a Comment  

Real Baked Potatoes

This past weekend when we had a couple of friends over, I wanted the meal I cooked to be perfect.  Who doesn’t like to impress?  I certainly do!  I knew we were going to grill steaks and, in my opinion, a steak isn’t complete without a baked potato.  Lordy, do I ever love steak and baked potatoes!  

Years ago, I just washed my potatoes and poked them with a fork, wrapped them in aluminum foil, and baked them forever.  I checked to see if they were done just the same way that my mother had taught me – stick a fork in it and see how easily it slides off.  These past few years, I’ve washed my potatoes, poked them, brushed them with oil and salted them then rolled them in foil and proceeded to cook them forever. But, Saturday, I wanted them to be just right.  So I hit the internet to find out how to cook the perfect spud.

Did you know that a true baked potato is not wrapped in aluminum foil?  I did not know this.  Apparently, if you wrap a potato in foil, the foil holds in the moisture and actually steams the potato, giving it a more boiled flavor and a different texture.  Personally, I put so much butter and sour cream on mine, it just tastes like a potato.  But, this theory makes sense to me.  So, I did not bake my potatoes in foil.   

Also, I found out that in order for your baked potato to be light and flaky, you need to use mature, baking-type potatoes.  You should also make sure your potato is a nice brown color and doesn’t have a green cast to it.   Try to make sure your potatoes are similar in size so they all get done at about the same time. 

Here’s what I did:

1.  Scrubbed my potatoes.  Don’t just wash them off, you want to make sure they’re really clean so you can eat the skins.  That’s the best part, right?

2.  Dried the potatoes well with a towel.

3.  Poked holes in the potatoes with the tines of a fork.  Four times on each side, to be precise!

4.  Brushed each potato with olive oil and rubbed with kosher salt.  I tried rolling it in the salt but it was too much salt so I ended up just sprinkling it over the potatoes and rubbing it around to make sure it was covered.

5.  Placed my prepared potaoes directly on the oven rack in my preheated 400 degree oven.  

6.  Baked the potatoes for approximately 90 minutes.  I was busy chit-chatting with the guests to keep and exact time but it was about 90 minutes or so. 

7.  I tested for doneness by gently squeezing the middle of the potato (while wearing an oven mitt, obviously).  When they “gave a little”, they were done!  

These were the best baked potatoes I’ve ever made – by far!  

Never failing to impress, I had cut up some green onions and cooked & crumbled bacon earlier in the day so I could serve my potatoes “loaded”.  YUM!

So, do you have a potato tip?  Maybe you have a tasty ‘tater recipe?  We’re always eating potatoes around here so I’d love to hear from you!

Published in: on August 6, 2008 at 6:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Ice Cream in a Bag

Who doesn’t love homemade ice cream?  

Unfortunately, we don’t have an ice cream freezer.  That’s why I was so excited when I found this recipe a few years ago.  My kids love it!  It’s great for a hot summer day.

You’ll need:

1 gallon size Ziplock bag

1 pint size Ziplock bag

1/2 c. milk

1 T. sugar

1/4 t. vanilla

6 T. salt


Fill gallon size Ziplock bag half full of ice.  Add salt and seal the bag and set aside while you prepare the ice cream.  

In the pint size Ziplock bag, pour milk, sugar, and vanilla.  Seal the bag and place it in the larger bag of ice. Seal the large bag and hand it to your kid.  Have him/her shake the bag around for about 5 minutes to freeze the ice cream.  I always end up giving my boys a hand towel to hold onto the bag with because their hands get so cold!

When the 5 minutes is up, wipe off the smaller bag so no salt gets in the ice cream, open it up, and give ’em a spoon!  They can eat it right from the bag.  My kids love knowing that they made ice cream all by themselves in only 5 minutes time.

**This only makes one serving so I make up a bag for each of my kids.   

Published in: on August 1, 2008 at 12:47 pm  Leave a Comment  
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