Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Dad's Baked Beans

Several people have commented on how simple these recipes are. That was exactly my goal - to provide tried-and-proven recipes that are delicious AND easy to make! Today's recipe is another family favorite, one that Dad has made for years and I have made myself. It is very simple and very tasty! It is ideal for those summer picnics or Fourth of July celebrations you might be planning. Hope you enjoy!

2 (53-oz.) cans Van Camp's Pork & Beans
1 c. ketchup
1 c. brown sugar
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. Tabasco sauce
2 Tbsp. prepared mustard
1 medium onion, finely chopped
Garlic salt to taste

Combine all ingredients; pour into large baking dish, cover with aluminum foil and bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour. Uncover and bake until beans are firmer, watching carefully to be sure they don't burn.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Hawaiian Chicken Salad


 I apologize for not posting lately. I am a piano teacher (and on my days off I am a domestic diva LOL!) and this time of year is extremely busy with recitals, end-of-the-school-year concerts, etc. Things should be settling down now, though, so look for regular posts again very soon!
Speaking of piano recitals, I made this Hawaiian chicken salad for my students' recital reception and it was a HUGE hit! I received many compliments and requests for the recipe, so I thought it would be easiest to post it here. When I made it for the reception, I put it on sandwiches and arranged them like this:
I can't take credit for the idea of arranging finger sandwiches to look like piano keys. It's something I saw in a magazine a while back and knew that I wanted to do that for my next recital. I thought they turned out pretty well!
Now, for the recipe:
3 13-oz. cans cooked chicken breast
4 Tbsp. French salad dressing
12-oz. can pineapple tidbits, drained well
1 1/2 c. seedless grapes, halved
1/2 c. whipping cream
1/2 c. mayonnaise
Salt to taste
Pour French dressing over chopped chicken and toss to coat well (feel free to add more dressing if needed, but remember that you only want the chicken to be lightly coated and not swimming in dressing. A little bit goes a long way!)
Refrigerate 8 hours or overnight.
Combine drained pineapple and halved grapes.
Add fruit mix to chicken and toss.
With a wire whisk, blend whipping cream and mayonnaise until smooth and then mix into chicken. Add salt to taste.
Toss until well blended.
*Obviously this makes a fairly large amount so feel free to adjust the recipe if you aren't planning on making 50 finger sandwiches ;).

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Pea-Pickin' Cake

There are all kinds of theories on how this cake got its name, and it is also known in the South by other names such as "Pig Pickin' Cake" and "Pig Lickin' Cake." All I know is it is DELICIOUS!!! Absolutely perfect for the summer or any time you want a cake that is light and just yummy. I have made it for numerous church dinners and never have any leftovers to take home. Hope you enjoy!

1 pkg. yellow cake mix plus ingredients listed on box to make cake (yes, Duncan Hines... if you've been reading my posts you know the drill!)
11-oz. can mandarin oranges, drained
20-oz. can unsweetened crushed pineapple, drained
1 lg. pkg. vanilla instant pudding mix
12 oz. whipped topping

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare cake batter according to package directions.
Beat in oranges until blended. Pour into two greased and floured 9-in. baking pans. (I use Baker's Joy cooking spray and it works very well!)
Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
Combine pineapple and dry pudding mix; fold in whipped topping.
Spread between layers and over top and sides of cake. Store in the refrigerator.

*Although I have made this cake countless times, I didn't have a picture of it. My friend Erin graciously allowed me to use a picture she took when she made this cake recently. Thanks, Erin!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Broccoli Salad

Here's a light, yet yummy side dish that's another one of my favorites. Hope you enjoy!

1 bunch broccoli florets
1 pkg. coleslaw mix
1 c. raisins (I prefer golden raisins for this)
1/2 c. bacon bits (buy the REAL bacon bits, not those dehydrated things)

1 1/c. mayonnaise (I prefer light mayonnaise)
1/2 c. sugar
1/4 c. apple cider vinegar

Combine salad ingredients. Mix dressing ingredients well and toss with salad. That's it!

*As with any salad like this, it's best to let the prepared salad rest in the refrigerator for a bit so that it can fully absorb the flavor of the dressing.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Chocolate Chip Pound Cake

This is a fairly new recipe to me, but my Aunt Mary has been making it for quite a while. She made it when we went over for dinner recently and I knew RIGHT away that I had to get this recipe and make it ASAP! It is unbelievably simple to make and is definitely going to become a go-to recipe when I need a quick yet amazing dessert (or when I simply have a chocolate craving! LOL) Enjoy.

1 box yellow cake mix (not butter recipe)
1 box instant chocolate pudding
1/2 c. sugar
1 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
4 eggs
3/4 c. water
3/4 c. oil
1 c. sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix all dry ingredients together, then add remaining ingredients.
Mix with a wooden spoon or wire whisk.
Spray a bundt pan with Baker's Joy (be sure to coat all crevices liberally so the cake will come out easily!)
Pour batter into prepared bundt pan.
Bake for 1 hour.

*I dusted the finished cake with powdered sugar just to make it look "picture pretty," but it really doesn't need anything else.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Crunchy Onion Chicken

Long ago and far, far away, before the days of Pinterest, I would thumb through magazines and tear out recipes that looked appealing so I could try them later. That is how I discovered this recipe. I added a couple of extra ingredients that just put the finishing touch on an already tasty dish and another favorite was born! Hope you enjoy.

1 1/2 c. fried onions (you know, the kind in a can... not exactly healthy but oh so tasty!)
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast tenders
1 egg, beaten
Adobo seasoning (LOVE this stuff! If you are unable to find it at your grocery store, you can also use garlic powder)
1 can cream of chicken soup

Dump fried onions into a Ziploc bag; crush.
Season chicken with salt and Adobo seasoning or garlic powder.
Dip chicken into egg, then coat in onion crumbs.
Place in a lightly greased casserole dish.
Pour cream of chicken soup over chicken.
Bake 20 minutes at 400 degrees until cooked through.