Category: Different ways to cook something familiar!!!





  • 1 pound lean ground beef (or half Italian sausage)..I used Hot Italian Sausage
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 TBS minced garlic cloves, ­
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes…more if you like some “kick”
  • 1 (24 oz.) jar Prego Traditional Italian Sauce
  • 8­-10 cups low­ sodium chicken broth. Once it is cooked you will add more to the soup for a good consistency or you can leave it thick
  • 1 (14 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 4-oz can tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar (optional)
  • 2-3 tablespoons Italian Seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 10 uncooked lasagna noodles, broken into approx. 2 inch pieces Cheese Garnish
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup cottage cheese…both mixed together
  • freshly finely grated Parmesan cheese 
  • fresh Basil for garnish

IMG_0603Saute Ground Beef, Sausage and onion in large soup pot until browned.  then add garlic and red pepper flakes for 30 seconds.  Then drain excess fat.


Add Prego Sauce, 6 cups of Chicken Broth, crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, balsamic vinegar, sugar, spices and lasagna noodles. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer until lasagna noodles are tender..about 20-30 mins.

Now, mix your “cheese mixture” ingredients together and then dish out your soup and top with as much or as little cheese mixture as you want!!

  • IMG_0614IMG_0615
  • Now, go and enjoy…it is the BEST and even better, the next day!!

Thank you Jen@Carlsbad for this delicious recipe!!!




VOILA!...and you can add fruit to make it sooo HEALTHY!! hahaha

Bacon Pancakes

Start with the bacon and cook in a 400 degree oven for 15-20 mins until crispy

Start with the bacon and cook in a 400 degree oven for 15-20 mins until crispy


Just follow the "all you do is add water" directions for the amount of pancake mix you are going to use

Just follow the “all you do is add water” directions for the amount of pancake mix you are going to use


Just put the cooked bacon in the pan and add the pancake mix on top

Just put the cooked bacon in the pan and add the pancake mix on top


How easy is that.  Now wait for the bubbles to appear, and then flip over

How easy is that. Now wait for the bubbles to appear, and then flip over


30 seconds later....

30 seconds later….


VOILA!...and you can add fruit to make it sooo HEALTHY!! hahaha

VOILA!…and you can add fruit to make it sooo HEALTHY!! hahaha




The final product!!!!

The final product!!!!


  • One 12 pound turkey
  • lots of kosher salt
  • a plastic bag from the grocer


  • Take the turkey, clean out the insides and make sure you remove the neck giblets and anything else in the cavity.  Clean it off thoroughly and pat dry with a paper towel .  Next add kosher salt all over and then put into a grocery bag, close it up and put in the fridge for at least 12 to 24 hours.  This is called BRINING the turkey.

Ready to Brine

After it has Brined, take it out of the bag and rinse it under water and again, pat dry with paper towel….now the fun part.

First, preheat your oven to 500 Degrees 

Next take:

  • 2 sticks soft butter
  • 1 /2 cup poultry seasonings (sage, thyme, marjoram, oregano, rosemary or poultry seasoning alone…your choice!)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 pound bacon to use with butter


  • Put all ingredients into food processor and mix until ingredients are smooth

Bacon Butter


  • Now, SLOWLY, rub the mixture under the skin with the breast and the legs & thighs doing your best not to tear it.  Then take the rest and spread it ALL over the turkey so it looks like a kindergarten project!!

turkey with bacon butter

  • Put this in a 500 degree preheated oven for 30 minutes and then remove from oven.

Bacon Turkey ready for oven

Once removed from the oven, take your bacon strips and put it on top of the turkey and make whatever design you want!!! I did a lattice look like one does with pie crust, but it makes no difference.  Once the turkey has the bacon all over it, reduce the oven temp to 350 degrees and cook for 2 1/2 to 3 hours.  You can tent it with an aluminum foil  and make sure you have a meat thermometer on hand and check it until you have an internal temp of 160 degrees.  Then take out of oven and let sit for 20 mins before carving.

The final product!!!!

The final product!!!!

Once I take it out of the oven, I put it on the cutting board and cover with the foil and let sit while I go back to the pan and start making the gravy!!!

When I carve it, I do take ALL the bacon off and I saved it and put it in the fridge to use at breakfast the next day.  But you can also serve the bacon with your meal!!  Again, YOUR CHOICE!!!!

This truly was the BEST turkey I ever made and I think my guest can attest to that!!!!  Everyone went back for seconds!!!!!!

*****Thank you the Daily Meal & the Runawayspoon for your guidance in making this meal!!******

Only in Ixtapa

Eggplant Stuffed with Shrimp & Chorizo


  • 1 Med Eggplant Cut in half lengthwise, then make criss-cross markings to allow removal
  • ½ med onion, chopped
  • 2 TBS chorizo chopped (optional, but gives it a nice kick)
  • 1 med sized Portobello mushroom, chopped
  • 10-12 medium shrimp – peeled, deveined and chopped
  • 1/8 cup chopped fresh basil
  • Salt, pepper, garlic seasoning, some red pepper flakes..whatever you want!
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 to 1 cup white wine (good stuff, that you would drink yourself!!)
  • 1-2 TBS bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup Monterey Jack cheese, grated


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Scoop out the flesh of the eggplant, chop, and reserve. Coat shells with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper; and put in oven on top shelf to soften shells
  2. Heat 2 TBS olive oil in a large, deep skillet over medium high heat. Sauté minced garlic and then add onion and cook for 1-2 mins.  Then add chopped Chorizo and cook another 2-3 mins. Stir in the reserved chopped eggplant and chopped mushroom. Season with salt and pepper. Pour in wine, and cook 5 minutes.  TAKE EGGPLANT SHELLS OUT OF OVEN.
  3. Next add chopped shrimp and cook 1-2 mins.  Add breadcrumbs if too moist, a little at a time.
  4.  Stuff mixture into eggplant shells, and sprinkle top with Parmesan cheese and then Monterey Cheese and put back in oven
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, or until eggplant is tender.
  6. Then ENJOY!!!

*****Thank you, once again, All-Recipes for the guidance of this recipe!!!*****

Beef Stroganoff

Serves 8

Total Time: just about an hour…GET ORGANIZED!!!!


• 2 lb beef tenderloin or flat iron steak or sirloin steak
• Marinade of ¼ c red wine, 3 TBS Worcestershire, 1 TBS minced garlic
• 6 TBS butter
• 1 ½ cup finely chopped onion (about 1 large onion)
• 2- 8oz pkgs of mushrooms. Button or Bella or Cremini or whatever you want, SLICED
• 2 cans of 14.5 oz beef broth
• 2 TBS of Cognac or Brandy or red wine or Worcestershire
• 2 TBS (or more if you like) Paprika
• 1 TBS Nutmeg
• ¼ to ½ cup of Fresh or Dry DILL. THIS IS THE BEST PART OF IT!!
• 1 pint (16 0z) sour cream *** at room temperature***
• 2-3 TBS Dijon mustard (depending on your taste)
• 2-3 tsp sugar
• ¼ cup fresh parsley or dry if you don’t have fresh
• Cornstarch on hand, to thicken when needed
• 1 – 1 ½ packages of 16 oz wide egg noodles

NOW go get ALL ingredients and put on counter. Then chop, slice, mix, measure, take sour cream and leave on counter and have everything ready to go….THEN READ THE RECIPE SLOWLY!!!! Then start!!


1. Put large pot of water on to cook the egg noodles & follow directions to cook noodles
2. Slice the BEEF in 2” strips (I prefer thin slices)
3. Mix the marinade and put sliced beef into marinade and refrigerate for 15 mins to an hour

• Melt 3 TBS of butter in large skillet over med heat. Make sure not to burn the butter. Add marinated slices of BEEF into the pan, single layer. Do not crowd. You will do this in batches. Cook until browned (lightly) on both sides and then put in bowl and repeat process until done.
• In the same pan add the ONIONS and cook for a few minutes until soft and add to the bowl with the meat.
• In the same pan, add another 3 TBS of butter , increase the heat, and add the SLICED MUSHROOMS. Stirring occasionally, cook for 6-8 mins then add the NUTMEG & PAPRIKA, then the MUSTARD & SUGAR and continue stirring.
• Now add the BEEF BROTH, COGNAC or BRANDY whatever alcohol substitute you have on hand, stir and bring to a boil. ADD the DILL!! (to your taste!)
• Now add the room temperature SOUR CREAM and stir to mix

Take the cooked noodles, put on a plate and then top with the Stroganoff Mixture…top with chopped parsley…and then serve!!!


  • 2 pounds fingerling potatoes, unpeeled, cut into 3/4″-1″ pieces
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt plus more for seasoning
  • 5 tablespoons (or more) extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 tablespoons brown mustard seeds
  • 3 medium leeks (white and pale green parts only), halved lengthwise, cut crosswise into 1/4″ slices (about 5 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon (or more) white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  • Place potatoes in a large pot. Add enough cold water to cover by 3″. Stir in 1 tablespoon salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Drain. Transfer to a large rimmed baking sheet and let cool slightly.
  • Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a small skillet over medium-high heat. Add mustard seeds to skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until seeds start to pop, about 2 minutes. Pour oil with seeds into a large bowl.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add leeks, season with salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until just tender, 10-12 minutes.
  • Wisk 4 tablespoons oil, vinegar, Dijon mustard, and 1 tablespoon water into mustard-seed oil. Add potatoes and leeks; toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; chill. Return to room temperature before serving, adding more oil and vinegar if dry.

Read More

Mushroom Wellington

Shopping List or what you will need:

  • 2 large Portobello Mushrooms 5-6” wide
  • 1 leek/1 shallot
  • Minced garlic in jar
  • 1 pkg Button Mushrooms
  • 1 pkg Shiitake Mushrooms
  • 1 bag (4 oz) chopped walnuts
  • 4-5 oz blue cheese
  • Dijon Mustard
  • Fresh thyme/fresh chives (tho dry is fine too)
  • 1 pkg frozen puff pastry sheet (Pepperidge Farm) thawed
  • Parchment paper/baking sheet
  • 1 pkg baby spinach
  • 1 pkg Arugula
  • 1 ripe pear
  • 1 red grapefruit
  • Champagne or white wine vinegar
  • Shaved parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg scrambled with 1 TBS water.

*** And a good couple of hours to put this together…along with some nice music and maybe a nice glass of wine!!!!*** This will take time, but if you are organized and follow my lead, it will be EASY!!!


  • Toast ½ c chopped walnuts and put aside
  • Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper & put aside.


  • 2 large Portobello mushrooms cleaned, stems & gills removed
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme


  • ½ c minced leeks
  • 2 TBS minced garlic from the jar
  • 1 ½ TBS olive oil
  • 1 cup  each stemmed &minced button mushrooms AND shiitake mushrooms
  • ½ c toasted  chopped walnuts
  • 2 TBS minced fresh chives
  • 1 tsp Dijon Mustard
  • 1 tsp fresh chopped thyme


  • 4 TBS  Blue Cheese
  • 1 sheet  frozen puff pastry, thawed (8.65 oz)
  • 1 egg, beaten with 1 TBS water


1.         Gather EVERYTHING together and put on the counter

2.         READ THE DIRECTIONS….then read them again!!!!

3.         Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and line baking sheet with parchment paper

BRUSH: each Portobello, gill side UP, with the mixture of mustard, thyme, salt & pepper and roast in oven until slightly brown, about 20 mins and USE A TIMER!!!

SAUTE: leeks, shallots & garlic in olive oil in skillet over med-high heat until softened, 2-3 minutes.  Add minced button & shiitake mushrooms; cook until liquid is evaporated and mixture is soft. About 6-7 mins.

STIR: in walnuts, chives & 1 tsp Dijon mustard, 1 tsp thyme, S&P..and YES, you can taste this!!!!

SPRINKLE: 2 TBS blue cheese on each roasted Portobello mushroom then divide the sauté filling and put on top of cheese.

CUT: two 5-inch rounds ( I used a bowl) from the puff pastry (be sure it is thawed) and roll out on floured surface to about 8-10 inches in diameter. Place the stuffed mushroom in center of each round then fold the pastry edges inward, leaving a small opening at the top.  Brush each wellington with the egg wash, put back on the parchment paper and put back in oven and cook at 350 degrees until pastry is golden and puffed.  About 15-20 mins…USE  A TIMER!

Take out, let cool and then cut with a serrated knife.  Drizzle some heated blue cheese on top and voila~!!!!!!! Serve with a nice spinach salad. (go to for the recipe and MANY more!!!

***Thank you Cuisine at Home for the recipe*****

Cobb Salad Pizza


  • 1  (11-ounce) can refrigerated thin-crust pizza dough
  • Cooking spray
  • 1/4  cup  (1 ounce) crumbled blue cheese, divided
  • 1  tablespoon  extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1  tablespoon  balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4  teaspoon  black pepper, divided
  • 3  slices smoked bacon
  • 8  ounces diced chicken from rotisserie chicken
  • 1/2  cup  roma tomatoes, seeds removed and diced
  • 2  tablespoons  chopped red onion
  • 2  cups  lightly packed mixed baby greens (or any greens you want)
  • 1  avacado peeled and diced


1. Preheat oven to 425°.

2. Unroll dough on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray; pat dough into a 14 x 12-inch rectangle. Lightly coat dough with cooking spray. Bake at 425° for 8 minutes or until golden. Remove from oven; sprinkle evenly with 2 tablespoons blue cheese. Set aside.

3. Combine oil, balsamic vinegar, mustard, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper in a large bowl; stir with a whisk.

4. Cook bacon in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon from pan; crumble bacon into oil mixture.

5. Add chicken, tomatoes, and onion to oil mixture; toss gently to combine. Add greens; toss gently. Top crust evenly with chicken mixture, avocado, and remaining 2 tablespoons cheese. Cut into 8 pieces.

Compliments of Cooking Light!

Mu Shu Chicken Wraps


8 (6-inch) flour tortillas
2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 TBS minced garlic from the jar
1 (16-oz) bag coleslaw mix (or 1 large carrot, grated, plus 3 cups shredded cabbage)
3 scallions, thinly sliced
1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
1 5-ounce can water chestnuts, sliced
4 tablespoons water, divided
2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 teaspoon Asian sesame oil

3 TBS Hoisin Sauce or plum sauce
2 1/2 to 3 cups coarsely shredded cooked chicken, without skin (leftover or from a 2-lb rotisserie chicken or from 3 sauteed, then sliced, chicken breasts)
Hoisin or plum sauce for serving on top of tortilla’s


  1. Heat the oven to 300. Wrap the stack of tortillas first in damp paper towels and then, tightly, in foil, and put them in the oven to heat while you prepare the filling.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a 12-inch non-stick skillet over medium heat, then cook eggs, scrambling, until cooked. Transfer the eggs to a plate. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to the skillet and cook the garlic, stirring constantly, until fragrant — about 30 seconds. Add the coleslaw mix, scallions, celery, water chestnuts, and 2 tablespoons water and cook, covered, over high heat, stirring occasionally, until the cabbage is tender but still retains a bit of bite, about 5 minutes.
  3. Stir together the soy sauce, sesame oil, hoisin sauce, remaining 2 tablespoons water, then add it to coleslaw mixture along with the eggs and chicken, and cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
  4. To assemble, spread hoisin or plum sauce on each tortilla and top with mu shu mixture, then roll up, tucking up the bottom to prevent leak-out.

**Make sure you READ the directions and then go and gather everything, measure everything, slice & dice everything and THEN turn the pan for the eggs**

This will serve 4 people 2 rolled tortilla’s each.  I served with fried rice and it was absolutely delicious!!!!

Blog Photos

So, you need to make something quick for dessert…you look around and what do you do???

You find 4oz semi-sweet chocolate and chop it up

Then you find 1/3 cup of heavy cream somewhere in your fridge

Then 1 TBS of light corn syrup or Karo syrup…

In a small saucepan, mix the cream and syrup and heat until bubbling along the side..DO NOT SCALD..

Then take off the stove and pout it over the chopped chocolate that you have in a bowl.  Let it sit for a second and start to melt the chocolate,  then get a whisk and “whisk-it-up” until it is smooth and then VOILA…pour it over some vanilla ice cream and you are set!!!  Your guests will LOVE it….trust me!!! hahaha