Archive for the ‘ Tasty Tuesday ’ Category

Recipe: Cheesy Ham, Potato & Green Bean Casserole

Saturday, July 5th, 2014

I recently bought some fresh green beans from a local produce farm and it made me hungry for this Cheesy Ham, Potato & Green Bean Casserole.  So I made it for dinner the other night and we all enjoyed it- even the children!  My 5 yr. old kept telling me how good it was and asked for multiple servings, which is always a nice compliment!

This dish can be a bit more time consuming to put together than some, but you if you work smart it’s not that bad.  I like to cook the green beans and potatoes together in the same kettle to save me dishes.  Or sometimes I’ll have baked potatoes earlier in the week and intentionally make extra to use in this dish.  You can also save yourself a dish if you melt the butter for the topping in the same pan that you mixed the cheese sauce in.  If you are like me, the less you have to clean up and wash the better!

While I think this casserole is delicious just as it is, don’t be scared to tweak it to fit your taste!  Add in some basil or onion or up the black pepper for a bit more kick.  It’s a great dish to play around with!

Cheesy Ham, Potato & Green Bean Casserole
Recipe type: Main Dish

  • 6 Tbsp. butter
  • ¼ c. + 2 Tbsp. flour
  • ½ tsp. pepper
  • salt to taste (about 1 tsp.)
  • 3 c. milk
  • 1½ c. shredded cheddar cheese
  • 5 c. potatoes, cooked and diced
  • 6 c. green beans, cooked
  • 2 c. cooked ham, diced
  • 2 tbsp. butter, melted
  • ½ c. seasoned bread crumbs

  1. Melt butter and stir in ¼ c. flour. Add salt and pepper
  2. Add milk, stirring constantly, until thickened. Remove from heat, add cheese and stir until melted.
  3. Put potatoes in greased 9×13 baking dish, top with green beans and then ham.
  4. Pour cheese sauce over all.
  5. Combine bread crumbs and butter; Sprinkle over top of casserole.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Recipe adapted from Christine’s Kitchen Chronicles.

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Recipe: Homemade Chocolate Syrup

Monday, June 23rd, 2014

I love a good glass of creamy, rich, chocolate milk- it’s so satisfying!  But for the last couple of years I rarely enjoyed that little treat because I couldn’t bring myself to buy Hershey’s syrup with it’s list of 20 some ingredients, many of which I couldn’t pronounce.

So when I discovered that I could easily make my own chocolate syrup from just 6 simple ingredients I was excited!  Rich and delicious, this homemade chocolate syrup does not disappoint!  It makes a wonderful glass of chocolate milk and it is also tasty drizzled over ice cream for a special treat.  You can even use it in the place of caramel syrup in this homemade frappe recipe to make a mocha frappe!  And on top of that it is inexpensive, easy and super fast to make.  In fact, why don’t you go stir up a batch for yourself?  I’m pretty sure you won’t regret it!

Homemade Chocolate Syrup

  • ¾ c. brown sugar
  • ¾ c. white sugar
  • 1 c. cocoa powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 c. cold water
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla

  1. Combine sugars, cocoa powder and salt. Add water; whisk until smooth.
  2. Heat until boiling, stirring occasionally. Simmer for 5 min.*
  3. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Cool. Store in fridge.

* Syrup will thicken as it cools, but if you like a really thick syrup, you may want to boil longer than 5 min.

Linking up at Living Well Spending Less.

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Tasty Tuesday: Sour Cream Chicken Quiche

Tuesday, May 27th, 2014

I love quiches.  And when I had my first bite of this one about a year ago, I knew it was a keeper.  It’s so, so good!  Cheesy and creamy, with just a hint of tanginess thanks to the nutmeg and sour cream, it’s a real winner with the whole family!

For a real treat, instead of using a pre-made bought crust, make this quiche with my Easy Homemade Pie Crust.

Sour Cream Chicken Quiche

  • 1 (10 in.) pie crust, unbaked*
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • ¼ c. chopped onion
  • ¼ c. chopped bell peppers (optional)
  • 1 c. chicken, cooked and shredded
  • ¼ tsp. salt (I add a tiny bit more)
  • ⅛ tsp. nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper
  • ¾ c. shredded cheddar cheese
  • 3 eggs, slightly beaten
  • ¾ c. milk
  • ¾ c. sour cream

  1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. In medium frying pan, heat oil on medium-high; add onion and green pepper. Saute until soft, stirring frequently. Remove from heat.
  3. Stir in chicken, salt, nutmeg and pepper. Spread over bottom of unbaked pie shell and top with shredded cheese.
  4. Combine eggs, milk and sour cream; mix until smooth. Pour over chicken mixture.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350º and bake 20 to 30 minutes until inserted knife comes out clean.

* If using 9 in. crust, reduce egg to 2 or just put whatever filling doesn’t fit into our pie crust into a separate small dish and bake that way.

Recipe adapted from Mommy I’m Hungry.

Linking up @ Mostly Homemade Mom.

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Tasty Tuesday: Simple Strawberry Pie (easy & delicious!)

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

When I was growing up, our family always eagerly awaited strawberry season because that meant we’d have lots of strawberry shortcake…. and this delicious strawberry pie!  We all thought Mom made the best strawberry pie and the sight of it on the dinner table was met with lots of excited comments!  And while I know there are lots of more elaborate strawberry pie recipes, you know, with cream cheese and the like, I still think her recipe is the best.  This is one of those times when simpler truly is better!

Use my Easy Homemade Pie Crust recipe for the crust and with the combo, you’ll be in for a real treat!

Strawberry Pie
Recipe type: Dessert

  • ¾ c. sugar
  • 3 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • 1½ c. water
  • 1 small box (3 oz.) strawberry jello
  • 3 to 4 c. sliced strawberries
  • Cool Whip or real whipped cream
  • 10″ pie crust, baked

  1. Combine sugar, cornstarch and water; cook over medium heat until thickened, stirring often. (I like to use a whisk for this.)
  2. Remove from heat and add jello; stir until dissolved.
  3. Allow to cool, then gently mix in strawberries. (If you are in a hurry, you can skip this step. The berries just stay nicer if it’s cooled.)
  4. Pour into baked crust and refrigerate. Once filling is set, top with Cool Whip or real whipped cream.
  5. Enjoy!

 Linking up @ Mostly Homemade Mom.

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Tasty Tuesday: Easy Homemade Pie Crust

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014

You know the saying ‘easy as pie’?  Well, this recipe makes that reality because it truly does make pie making easy!

Several years ago I created this recipe after getting frustrated with the Never Fail Pie Crust recipe that I had been using for years.  Because for some reason, it wasn’t holding up to it’s name anymore and I was getting rather frustrated with my dough tearing every time I tried to make it. So I experimented a bit and came up with this recipe.

I love that you don’t have to chill the dough before rolling it and I also love that it uses butter, not Crisco and so therefore is healthier.  It also handles well, doesn’t tear easily and makes a wonderfully, delicious flaky crust.

You’ll see that the recipe makes 3 crusts.  If you don’t need 3 pies at one time, simply freeze the other crusts.  You can freeze them baked or unbaked.  Also, I can often get a fourth crust out of the scraps that are leftover from the other 3 crusts.  It doesn’t look as nice, but it works.

Another thing you can do with the scraps is to combine them all into a ball, then roll the dough out.  Cut it into smallish pieces and spread jelly on one half.  Then fold over the top and pinch the sides together to make a pop-over of sorts.  I like to also sprinkle a bit of sugar on the top.  Then bake until lightly brown.  So yummy!

If you are new to pie making, you might find Eat Your Heart Out’s pie making tutorial helpful.  Oh, and I highly recommend getting a Pastry Blender (this is the one I have) if you don’t have one.  It’s making working the butter into the dough super easy.

Easy Homemade Pie Crust
Recipe type: Dessert

  • 3 c. flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 c. butter, softened slightly
  • 3 tbsp. milk
  • 3 tbsp. cold water
  • 2 tbsp. vegetable oil

  1. Combine flour and salt; cut in butter until crumbly. (I use a pastry blender, but two forks might work okay too.)
  2. Combine milk, water, and oil, then sprinkle in, tossing with a fork until mixture is moistened. Do not over-mix.
  3. Divide into 3 pieces; form into balls.
  4. Roll out crust on lightly floured counter and use as desired.
  5. If you need to use this in a recipe that needs the crust baked first, prick the sides and bottom of the crust several times with a fork (helps prevent shrinkage) and bake at 400 degrees for approximately 10-12 minutes.

Tip: If your crust does happen to tear a bit, simply push the dough together, dampen your finger with water a bit and “seal” it. It should hold without any problem.


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