Monday, February 24, 2020

Chicken Noodle Soup Recipe

Roger loves the whole roasted cooked chickens that you can buy for 5 bucks at Sam's Club, Costco, and Kroger.  There is always a lot of small pieces of chicken left over on the carcass after we slice off large pieces for our dinner.  So rather than throw it in the trash, I throw the small pieces of chicken into a pot along with whatever else I have in the fridge.
The recipe changes from batch to batch but generally this is the recipe.

Leftover chicken pieces. Pull apart larger pieces so they are spoon size.
2 cartons of chicken broth (I prefer low sodium but you use what you like best)
2 chicken bouillon cubes to pump up the chicken flavor
celery stalks, cut lengthwise and then diced
carrots fresh, cut in diagonal thin slices or use frozen or small can (drain before using)
small can whole kernel corn (drained)
1/2 C frozen peas not can peas. Can peas are too soft
1/2 C frozen lima beans
small can of mushrooms (Roger likes this)
2 cups or 3 handfuls of large size (dumpling) egg noodles
Season to taste.  I also add just before serving, a shake or two of dill weed.  Also had salt and pepper to taste.
In a large pot pour 1 1/2 cartons of broth (save the 1/2 carton for adding to bowls of soup when you re warm the soup because the noodles will soak up a lot of broth while in the fridge). Add the 2 bouillon cubes and heat at med high.

While the broth comes up to temp add your chicken pieces, carrots, corn, lima beans, peas, celery, even green beans.  Once it comes to a boil, turn down the heat to low medium and cover.

Cook your noodles in a large sauce pan.  Once they are cooked, drain, and add to the soup.  Never add uncooked noodles to your soup because the noodles will absorb all the broth.  At this point I add the mushrooms, cover, and turn the heat down to low for 1 hour.

You can adjust this recipe depending on what your family likes and how much soup you are making.

We prefer the large dumpling size noodles but you can also use the smaller egg noodles.

When reheating the soup in individual bowls, add some of the leftover chicken broth if the broth has absorbed into the noodles.

Store in fridge in a covered container so that the noodles do not dry out.

always remember
Reuse Repurpose Recycle

Monday, February 17, 2020

Easy Potato Soup Recipe + Bonus Recipe

This is the easiest and most inexpensive potato soup recipe.  I can't remember where I found it but when I run across that info I will add it to this post.
5 medium size yellow potatoes (Yukon Gold)
1 lg can of creamed corn
1 lg can of evaporated milk
1/2 lb of bacon (try to get thick sliced and smoked for added flavor)
1/4 to 1/2 of a sweet onion diced into 1/2 inch cubes
Save 2 tablespoons of the bacon grease
Pre cut your bacon before you fry it.  It is much easier and you will get a more uniform size of bacon bits.  When the bacon is almost cooked, remove the bits and place on folded paper towel to remove excess grease.  Do NOT compress the paper towel to remove all the grease.  The grease has flavor.  Save 2 tablespoons of the grease.
Peel and wash your potatoes.  Cut each potato into 4 pieces to speed up the cooking process.

Add enough cold water to cover your potatoes pieces by 2 inches.  Use the pot that you are going to cook your soup in.  Cook your potatoes (med to med high) until a fork can easily go into the potato.  Do not over cook or your potatoes will fall apart. Drain the water and remove the potatoes to cool so that you can dice them.  Cut the potatoes into 3/4 inch cubes once the potatoes have cooled slightly.  If you try to cut too soon the potatoes will fall apart. 

Into the EMPTY pot that you just used to cook the potatoes, add the evaporated milk, 2 tablespoons of the bacon grease, diced bacon, can of creamed corn, diced onions, and the cubed potatoes.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Remember that the bacon will already have salt.  Better to go lightly with pepper.  You can always add more later.  Cook for at least 1 hr on low to low medium heat in a COVERED pot.


I made this without the bacon grease the first time.  The first time I really compressed my paper towel to remove all the grease.  This caused the soup to hardly have any bacon flavor.  The second time that I made the soup I did not compress the paper towel and just let any excess grease to be collected in the paper towel.  I also added the 2 tablespoons of bacon grease when I made it the second time.  It didn't make the soup greasy but did add a lot of flavor.

Try to use a Vidalia onion if you can find one, if not make sure it is a sweet onion or the onion taste will overpower the potatoes.  

I like to dice my ingredients so I could theoretically get a piece of potato, bacon, and onion onto a soup spoon at the same time.  

I find that soups always taste better the next day.  So either make the soup early in the morning and then put in the fridge until time to rewarm or make it a day ahead of time.

The next time I make it I might add a small can of whole corn to get more of a corn taste. 

My husband really liked this soup and I liked how easy it was to make.

We added garlic and herb croutons just before eating.  

Below is my sister's potato soup recipe and basically everything that she cooks is good, no wait....really good.  She uses apple smoked, thick sliced bacon and oh my goodness is it good.  You can see by the recipe that this might have more calories....LOL  She also cooks her soup in a crock pot so there is no need to precook your potatoes. My recipe could also work in a crock pot.

Saturday, February 15, 2020

My Grandmother's Tuna Salad Recipe

My paternal grandmother made the best tuna salad and she always served it in a hobnail moonstone bowl.  Reminder to the Internet for 'The Bowl'.  For years we have been trying to crack the recipe and I think I have finally done it.  
My daughter in law came very close in the winter of 2018.  But I think that it was just one ingredient off and that one ingredient was Miracle Whip instead of mayo.  I always felt like the tuna salads we were making looked too yellow.

  My grandmother's philosophy was that there was nothing that couldn't taste better with a little sour cream added.  AND if it was something sweet she was of the mind that peanut butter could make it better.  Her peanut butter Rice Krispies  treats were very tasty.

But back to sour cream, Miracle Whip, and tuna salad.  We are a Hellman's household and there isn't a jar of Miracle Whip in the house but one day it dawned on me that Miracle Whip was the cat's meow in the 50-60's. AND Miracle Whip is WHITER than mayo.  So last week I tried the recipe again with Miracle Whip and it looks and taste like my grandmother's.

Grandma Brunette's Tuna Salad Recipe

2 cans of chunk tuna in oil NOT water. Must be chunk and in oil, drained (do not rinse). 

shell pasta approximately 1 1/2 cups uncooked (the photo shows shell and elbow because I ran out of shell) 

celery 2 or 3 stalks sliced lengthwise and then diced into 1/2 inch pieces.  Any bigger and you start getting those celery strings caught in your teeth.  

1/4 to 1/2 white sweet onion diced into 1/2 inch pieces, must be sweet onion or the onion taste will over power the other ingredients

frozen peas 1/2 to 3/4 cup

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt, we always salt lightly

Miracle Whip

sour cream

OPTIONAL dill weed just a dash or two.

Garnish with paprika.  She ALWAYS garnished everything with paprika.

Cook the pasta until al dente.   Drain and rinse with cold water.  If you do not rinse the shells they will stack inside each other (been there, done that). Drain and place in a large covered bowl,  and put in fridge to get cold.

While cooking the pasta you can dice your celery, onion, and thaw out your peas.  

Don't mix together any of the ingredients until everything is cold.  Add the drained tuna to the pasta and break apart the chucks into flakes and mix into the pasta.  Now add the rest of the ingredients and look for any shells that might be sticking together and separate them.

In a small bowl mix 1/4 cup Miracle Whip, 1/4 cup sour cream, and salt.  If you are adding dill weed this is the time to add it to the dressing mix. 
Now comes the most important part.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 12 hrs.  I have found that if you don't wait, the tuna flavor will  be too strong.  I don't know why, but it is.  Oh and while I am talking about tuna, do not buy tuna in water or tuna pieces.  It is tasteless and the pieces are so small that it is more like tuna slime and not tuna flakes. 


Saturday, February 8, 2014

Pattie Melt on Rye Bread

I love hamburgers but I don't like home made burgers.  I don't know why, maybe it is because the buns are steamed or maybe it's because I've never been able to achieve that nice browning on the outside without the burning my burgers.

So instead of burgers, we have pattie melts.  I really don't have a "recipe" but instead have taken a little bit of knowledge from Martha and a little bit from America's Test Kitchen.

This recipe (in the loose sense of the word) makes two half pound pattie melts.

1 lb of good ground beef

1/2 sweet onion sliced very thin

Minced garlic (optional)

Seasonings such as salt, pepper, onion and garlic powder


Baby Swiss cheese slices cut in half and brought to room temperature.  Using room temperature cheese helps the cheese to melt.

Rye bread 4 slices (we like a deli style onion rye)

In a frying pan on medium/high heat, melt 1T of butter, add the sliced onions and minced garlic 1t (optional).  Cook until limp and remove from heat and set aside.

Form 2 hamburger patties in the shape of your bread.  We prefer bread that is wide so I make my patties in a rectangular shape. Season to taste.  Place patties in the frying and lower the heat to medium. Cover.  I remove the cover when I start to see juices coming out of the top of the pattie.  I use a spoon to remove excess fat from the pan.

I then flip the patties and add the onions back into the pan and cover. I cook until the onions are fully browned and the patties are cook all the way through.  If you like your patties a little rarer then remove from the heat sooner.

While the patties are cooking, I butter one side of the slices of bread and place 1/4 of the Swiss cheese on two slice.

Once the patties are cooked, place them on the slice of bread that has the Swiss cheese, top with 1/2 of the cooked onions, add 1/4 of the Swiss cheese to each pattie, and top with a slice of bread with the buttered side facing up.

Wipe the frying pan with a paper towel leaving just a little fat in the pan.  Place the assembled patties in the frying pan (covered) for 2 mins or until just golden brown.  Flip and repeat the process.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Jalapeno Popper Pizza

I can't take credit for this recipe.  My sister, who can cook up a storm, made this pizza for her family for the Super Bowl game.

4 slices of cooked bacon chopped into small pieces

2 jalapenos sliced

1 diced shallot

1 ball of store bought pizza dough

1/4 c of corn meal

2 T olive oil

6oz soften cream cheese

1 1/2 c of grated Monteray Jack

Let ball of dough thaw and rise in an oiled bowl covered with plastic wrap.

Butter pizza pan and sprinkle with corn meal.

Spread dough out on the pan.

Spread dough with softened cream cheese.

Fry bacon till crisp.  Just before the bacon is done, add the slice peppers and shallots to slightly soften.

Sprinkle bacon, jalapeno pepper slices, and diced shallots over the cream cheese.

Top off with the grated cheese.

Bake at 450 degrees for 15 minutes until it is brown and bubbly.


I believe she got this recipe off of Pinterest but I do not know the original source of the recipe.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Apple Pie

I know there are a million or two apple pie recipes but I just had to post a photo of the apple pie that I baked using our own apples.  This is the first year we have had usable apples and we have been apple eating fools for the last month.

I've made crock pot applesauce three times.  Oh my it is sooooo good and so easy to make.

This is my second apple pie and my husband wanted me to make one using brown sugar.  Normally, I use white sugar but his grandmother used to make it using brown sugar so I gave it a try.

It was wonderful but then again I've never met a piece of pie that wasn't wonderful.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Peanut Butter Cheesecake

Oh my gosh.  This has everything that is good, all in one dessert.  Peanut butter, peanuts, pretzels, chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, cream cheese, and sour cream.  Think Sound of Music....."these are a few of my favorite things."  Do I sound like Julie Andrews?  You're lucky this is the Internet because I sound nothing like Julie Andrews.

This recipe is from the Taste of Home Cooking School.  Basically it is quite easy.  The hardest part is mixing the cream cheese and sugar and if you use a stand mixer it isn't a problem at all.

Peanut Butter Cheesecake

1 1/2 cups crushed pretzels
1/3 cup butter (melted)


5 packages of cream cheese (softened)
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 eggs lightly beaten
1 cup peanut butter chips
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips


1 cup sour cream
3 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup chopped peanuts

In small bowl combine pretzels and butter.  Press onto bottom and 1 inch up the sides of a greased 10 inch spring form pan.  Place on baking sheet.  Bake at 350 degrees for 5 minutes.  Cool on wire rack.

In large bowl beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth.  Add peanut butter and vanilla.  Mix well.  Add eggs, beat on low.  Stir in chips.  Pour over crust.  Return to pan to baking sheet.

Bake at 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes or until center is almost set.  Remove from oven and let stand for 15 minutes.  Leave the oven on.

For topping combine in small bowl sour cream, peanut butter, and sugar.  Spread over filling.  Sprinkle with chopped peanuts.  Bake for 5 minutes longer.

Cool on wire rack for 10 minutes.  Carefully run knife around the edge of pan to loosen.  Cool one hour.  Refrigerate overnight.  Remove sides of pan before serving.  Refrigerate the leftovers.