Archive for the ‘Side’ Category

Fresh corn and tomato salad

May 26, 2012

This is a variation of my mother-in-law Barbara’s version of a fresh summer salad.


4-5 ears fresh corn

8-10 cherry or grape tomatoes halved

3 green onions diced

1/2 cup mayo (or light mayo)

2-3 Tbs apple cider vinegar

1-2 tsp of sugar

salt and pepper to taste

Cut corn from cobs and place in a medium salad bowl.  Add tomatoes and onions.  Whisk together mayo, vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper.  Stir dressing into veggies and let sit for at least 30 minutes.  Charis, Sophie, and I like to add fresh avocado to our salads, but we leave it out of the main bowl ’cause the boys don’t like avocado.


Monster Cookie Dough Cookie Dip

May 16, 2012


Once again, Pinterest has come to save the day!  I brought this yummy recipe to Kim’s Boo-Hoo Party. I love it because you can eat cookie dough w/o worrying about raw eggs.  It’s also pretty versatile. The original recipe called for mini-M&M’s but I didn’t have any so I didn’t put them in. I may even try butterscotch chips next time. Or maybe some Peanut Butter chips. The varieties are endless. These could also be made into truffles. Mmmmm, this yummy goodness rolled into a ball AND coated in chocolate . . . .  I’ll be right back, I think I’m going to have to try that.

Monster Cookie Dough Dip

8 oz. Cream Cheese, softened
1/2 Cup Butter, softened
1 Cup Creamy Peanut Butter
1 Cup Powdered Sugar
3 Tbsp. Brown Sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla
1 Cup Oats (regular or quick)
1 Cup  Miniature Plain M&Ms
1 Cup Miniature Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

Mix cream cheese, butter, vanilla and peanut butter until smooth.  Stir in brown sugar and powdered sugar, mixing well. Next fold in oats, m&ms and chocolate chips.

Here is where I originally found this recipe:

Parmesan Green Beans

February 21, 2011

These green beans are a perfect side dish in the summer with green beans fresh from the garden. In the winter I’ll use frozen green beans instead. Either way, this is a delicious and simple side dish!

Parmesan Green Beans

Parmesan Green Beans


  1. Cook green beans in a pan of boiling water for 8 minutes.
  2. Drain and pat dry with paper towels.
  3. Pour remaining ingredients on green beans and toss lightly.

Oh My Macaroni and Cheese

February 3, 2011

            This oh-so-delicious macaroni recipe never fails.  The eggs add richness, the different cheeses provide lots of flavor, and the Cajun seasoning topping contributes a little kick to keep things interesting.  Guaranteed to be a hit among adults and kids alike, this side dish never fails!


12-16 oz. Macaroni*

1 (1/2 cup) stick margarine or butter, melted

2 eggs, beaten

1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk

1 (10.75 oz.) can condensed cheddar cheese soup**

1 cup milk

2 cups (sharp or mild) cheddar cheese, shredded

2 cups Colby jack cheese (or other cheese blend), shredded***

Bread crumbs

1-2 T. Cajun seasoning

*If you’re using a regular 9X13 pan, you’ll want to use a little less than 16 oz. of pasta because it will come close to overflowing the pan.

**I’ve substituted sour cream before for the cheddar soup, and it turned out fine.

***We use a different type of cheese every time; they’re all yummy!


1.  Preheat oven to 350° F.

2.  Cook pasta according to directions on box.  Drain.

3.  Mix next 5 ingredients in your biggest bowl.

4.  Alternate adding cheese and pasta to bowl.  (This step isn’t required, but it helps blend and melt the cheese.)

5.  Stir until thoroughly blended.  Pour into greased casserole dish.

6.  Sprinkle a layer of bread crumbs over the top.  Then sprinkle the Cajun seasoning over the bread crumbs.

6.  Bake for 30 minutes or until bubbly.

This recipe creates about 8 servings.  Our family of 2 ½ can usually eat it with three different meals.  It goes great with all types of meat and can even serve as the main dish for a meatless night.  We also take this side dish to lots of pot-lucks and always come back with an empty dish!

Pita Bread

February 2, 2011

Freshly Made Pita Bread

This is a great recipe for pita bread for dipping in freshly made hummus! Yesterday I made this for my kids’ afternoon snack, and they devoured it. I found this recipe in the recipe booklet that came with my bread maker. Because this recipe uses a bread maker, it’s fairly simple to make.

Pita Bread



  1. Put ingredients in bread maker according to manufacturers instructions. Set to dough setting.
  2. When bread maker is done, place dough onto lightly floured surface. Divide into 10 pieces and shape each piece into a smooth ball.
  3. Place 5 balls on a large baking sheet. Place the remaining 5 balls on another baking sheet. Let rise about 20 minutes. With fingertips flatten each ball into a 6 inch circle.
  4. Bake at 500 degrees for 5 minutes until puffed and tops begin to brown. Note: My oven only heats up to 450 degrees, so I bake them at 450 degrees for 10 – 15 minutes. Check them every 5 minutes to make sure they do not burn.
  5. Cut in half to form 2 pockets or cut into wedges for dipping in hummus. Makes 20 pita pockets.

Cheezy Garlic Rolls

January 7, 2011

Sadly, my bread maker sat in the cupboard unused for the first few months that I had it. I had no idea how easy making bread could be. Needless to say, I have more than made up for in the years that followed. This recipe came with my bread maker, and it was an instant hit! These rolls have become a staple at our house. Nearly everyone who has come to our house for Sunday afternoon dinner has had a chance to try these delicious rolls!

Cheezy Garlic Rolls

Cheezy Garlic Rolls rising and ready to bake!

Cheezy Garlic Rolls


1 egg, plus enough water to equal 1 1/3 cups

3 tablespoons oil

1/2 cup sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

4 1/2 cups flour

2 teaspoons yeast


2/3 cup parmesan cheese

2 tablespoons garlic, minced

1/4 cup olive oil

Put ingredients for dough in bread maker according to manufacturer’s directions. Set the bread maker to dough setting and press start.

When dough is finished, place dough on lightly floured surface. Divide into 24 pieces and shape. Place on a greased baking pan

For topping, combine cheese, garlic, and oil. Spoon 1-2 teaspoons on each roll.

Cover and let rise in a warm place 1 hour or until double in size.

Bake at 325 degrees for 35-40 minutes, or until done.

Lettuce Wraps and Egg Rolls

December 4, 2010

Here’s my late post.  Sorry if you were greatly anticipating my post a few days ago and were disappointed when it wasn’t there. 🙂

If you have ever been to the Chinese restaurant, PF Chang’s, you might know about these wonderful things called Lettuce Wraps.  My family has liked PF Chang’s for a long time and we always order up the lettuce wraps as an appetizer when we go.

I have recently found a recipe for Lettuce Wraps that really taste like the real thing.  So, here it is:



– 1 lb. cooked, cubed chicken

– 2 Tbsp. sesame oil

– 1 Tbsp. Garlic, minced

– 1 Tbsp. minced ginger

– 6 scallions, thinly sliced

– 1 8 oz. can water chestnuts (drained and chopped)

– 1/4 cup soy sauce

– 2 Tbsp. Hoisin Sauce

– 1 Tbsp. vinegar

– 1 tsp. cornstarch

– salt and pepper to taste

– 12 lettuce cups (I just buy iceberg lettuce and take it apart leaf by leaf.  A great tip that my mom gave me to keep the lettuce crisp is gently rinsing each leaf with hot water and cover with plastic wrap, then place in the fridge for awhile until you’re ready to serve)

Dipping Sauce:

(at PF Chang’s they mix up a yummy dipping sauce for you to dip your lettuce wraps in, if you like)

– About 1 tsp. Hoisin Suace

– About 1/2 tsp. Hot mustard

– About 1 tsp. Chili Garlic Sauce

– About 1 Tbsp. Soy Sauce


1.  Place chicken in plastic wrap and freeze for 15 minutes.  Then place in a food processor and chop coarsely.

2.  Heat oil in a skillet and add garlic, ginger, 3/4 of onions and stir fry for 30 seconds.

3.  Add chicken to the mixture and stir fry 3 minutes.  Cook until no longer pink.

4.  Add chestnuts, cook 1 minute.

5.  Mix soy sauce, hoisin, vinegar, cornstarch with 1/4 cup very cup water.  Mix until smooth and add to the above pan.  Stir until mixture boils and thickens.  Then turn heat to low.

6.  Simmer 1 minute.  Season with salt and pepper.  Top with the rest of your onions.  Serve with lettuce cups.

7.  Mix dipping sauce, if desired.

(if you’ve never had lettuce wraps before, you may not know how to eat them.  So, I will tell you how. 🙂  You lay your lettuce cup out and then put about 1-2 Tbsp. of chicken mixture in the center.  Then you fold in the sides like a taco and roll it up and eat.)

Hope you enjoy!  My family loves these, and I hope you do too!

(another thing that my family enjoys and that Adam can’t get enough of are these egg rolls…)



– 1 package egg roll wrappers

– 1 thing of regular sausage (I think Jimmy Dean brand tastes the best)

– 1 cabbage

-1 bag shredded carrots or whole carrots that you shred yourself

– Soy Sauce

– 1 can water chestnuts

-1 medium onion


1.  Chop up about 3/4 of your cabbage and coarsely grind in a food processor, or chop on you own.

2.  Take carrots and do the same thing.

3.  Chop onion and chop water chestnuts in small pieces.

4.  Place sausage in a big skillet and brown.  Add onion and then add carrot and cabbage.  Cook about 5 minutes until carrot and cabbage are soft and cooked through.  Then add your water chestnuts and cook another 3 minutes.

5.  Season with soy sauce to your liking.

6.  Place mixture in strainer and allow to drain for about 15 minutes.

7.  Now you’re ready to roll up your egg rolls!

1.  Get out your egg roll wrappers and lay them out diagonally.

2.  Fill the center with 1-2 Tbsp. of mixture.  Roll from the bottom up and then place your finger in water and wet the edges of the egg roll.

3.  Fold up both sides (look at picture above).

4.  And then roll up the rest of the way sealing with water.

Now you’re ready to fry!

– Pour some vegetable oil in a pan and heat on medium high to high heat.

– Then drop your egg rolls in a few at a time.

– Watch them get brown, which won’t take long.  And then as soon as they’re light brown, take them out and lay on a plate with a paper towel.

Add now you’re ready to eat them!  Enjoy!

(I usually serve these recipes with rice and stir fry)


(one last note about the egg rolls is: this recipe makes a lot of the mixture.  So, I freeze the left overs, and then it’s super easy to fry up some egg rolls the next time that I want to make some.  It freezes really well.)