Slow Cooker Lasagna

1 bag frozen cheese Ravioli (25 oz.)
1 lbs ground beef, browned
3 cans crushed tomatoes (14-15 oz. each)
1 Tbsp. Italian seasoning
1 Tbsp. garlic salt
4 cups mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese

In a large skillet brown the beef completely and drain off any remaining fat. Stir in the cans of tomatoes and seasonings.

In a 6 quart slow cooker, cover the bottom with some sauce. Then place a layer of ravioli across the bottom. Then a layer of  mozzarella cheese. Continue this until all the meat sauce and ravioli is used. End with the meat sauce on top, then top with the leftover mozzarella cheese and add the Paremsan cheese on top (if desired).

Cook on low for 4 hours Turn off and let it sit for about 15 minutes before serving. Cut and serve with your favorite side salad and crusty garlic bread.


Microwave Apple Crisp

6 cups peeled, cored, and sliced cooking apples
1 Tbsp. lemon juice (optional)
6 Tbsp. butter
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup quick-cooking oats
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp. cinnamon

Place apples in an 8-inch glass baking dish and sprinkle with lemon juice.

Melt butter in a small, microwave-safe mixing bowl at high power for 60-90 seconds. Stir in brown sugar, oats, flour and cinnamon and mix until combined. Sprinkle topping mix over the apples evenly and press down lightly.

Microwave at high power for 14-16 minutes, or until apples are tender. (Rotate dish 1/2 turn after 8 minutes if your microwave does not automatically turn.)

Serve warm, cold, plain, or topped with whipped cream, ice cream, or lemon sauce.


Cinnamon Rhubarb Bread

Butter, for greasing the pan
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups diced rhubarb
1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease an 8 x 4-inch loaf pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Stir in the brown sugar, oil, buttermilk, egg, and vanilla, combining thoroughly. Fold in the rhubarb and pecans.

Pour the batter evenly into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out dry. Let cool in the pan slightly, then cool completely on a rack before slicing.


Sour Cream Rhubarb Cookies

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
3/4 cup sour cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups rhubarb, diced
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. (I use Silpats.)

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together with an electric mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the egg and beat to combine. Beat in the sour cream and vanilla, making sure all the ingredients are well combined.

Add 1/3 of the flour mixture and beat until combined. Add another 1/3 of the flour mixture and repeat until all the ingredients are combined. Stir in the rhubarb.

Drop rough tablespoons of batter onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing them about 2 inches apart. Bake 10 to 12 minutes, until the edges of the cookies start to brown and the tops of the cookies get a little color. Let cool slightly, then remove to a rack to cool completely.

via Maggie Shi


Sugar-Dipped Rhubarb Lemon Muffins

1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups diced rhubarb
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup canola oil
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
 2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
Sugar Topping 
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup granulated sugar 
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with liners or grease with butter or cooking spray.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the rhubarb and toss to coat with the flour mixture (this will help prevent the rhubarb from sinking to the bottom of your muffins).

In a medium bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, oil, egg, vanilla extract, lemon juice, and zest.

Pour the sugar mixture into the flour mixture and stir until just combined.
Pour the batter into the muffin cups, dividing evenly. Bake for 18 to 22 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out dry. Let the muffins cool for a few minutes before removing from the tin.

Place the melted butter and granulated sugar in separate small, shallow bowls. Dip the top of a muffin into the butter, then dip gently into the sugar, turning to coat lightly. Place the muffin onto a rack to cool completely and repeat with the remaining muffins.

via Maggie Shi


Best Lemonade Ever

1 gallon water
1 Tbsp. citric acid (buy at a pharmacy)
1 Tbsp. lemon extract
3 cups sugar
1 quart ice
1 lemon (juice from)


Easter Cookies: Teaching Children the Resurrection

Easter Cookie Story
To be made the evening before Easter, or whenever you want to give this lesson. 
You can open the oven early, but overnight works best.

I cup whole pecans
1 tsp. white vinegar
3 egg whites
1 pinch of salt
1 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 300°F.

Place the pecans in a zipper baggie and let the children beat them with a wooden spoon to break into small pieces.Set them aside.
Jesus was arrested, and the Roman soldiers beat him.  
John 19:1-3

Let the children smell the vinegar, and then put 1 tsp. vinegar into a mixing bowl.
Jesus was forced to drink vinegar when he was thirsty on the cross.
John 19: 28-30

Eggs represent life. By giving His life, Jesus gave us eternal life.
John 10: 10-11
Add the egg whites to the vinegar.

Sprinkle a little salt into each child's hand. Let them taste it. Add the salt to the bowl.
The salt represents the salty tears that were shed by Jesus’s followers and the bitterness of our sin.
Luke 23: 27

So far, the ingredients are not very appetizing. Add 1 cup sugar.
The sweetest part of the story is that Jesus died because He loves us!
Psalms 34:8; John 3: 16

Beat with a mixer on high speed for 12-15 minutes until stiff peaks are formed.
The color white represents the purit in God's eyes of those whose sins have been cleansed by Christ.
Isaiah 1:18; John 3: 1-3

Fold in the broken pecans. Drop by teaspoons onto parchment paper (or silpat) on a cookie sheet.
Each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus's bod was placed.
Matthew 27: 57-60

Put the cookie sheet in the oven, close the door and turn the oven OFF.
Give each child a piece of painters' tape and symbolically seal the oven door.
Jesus's tomb was sealed.
Matthew 27: 65-66

Go to bed.
The children may be sad to leave the cookies in the oven overnight just as Jesus's followers were in in despair when the tomb was sealed.
John 16: 20 and 22

On Easter morning, open the oven and give everyone a cookie, Notice the cracked surface and take a bite. The cookies are hollow!
On the first Easter, Jesus's followers were amazed to find the tomb open and empty.
Mark 16:1; Matthew 28: 2 and 5 
via leigh anne wilkes


"He is Risen" Rolls

2 cans crescent rolls
16 large marshmallows
¼ cup butter, melted
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
¾ cup powdered sugar
1 Tbsp milk, more as needed

• Preheat oven to 375°F
• Mix sugar and cinnamon together.
• Dip marshmallows in butter, roll in sugar/cinnamon mixture.
• Wrap a crescent triangle around each marshmallow, completely covering and squeezing edges of dough to seal.
• Dip in butter, place in greased muffin tin.
• Place muffin tin on foil or a large baking sheet to catch any filling that runs over.
• Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until golden. Meanwhile, mix powdered sugar and milk together to make glaze.
• Carefully remove puffs from muffin tins and drizzle with glaze.


Buttery Chocolate Chip Cookies


1½ cups butter, softened
1¼ cups granulated sugar
1¼ cups packed brown sugar
1 Tbsp. vanilla 

2 eggs
4 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 pkg. (24 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips (4 cups)

Heat oven to 350°F. Mix butter, sugars, vanilla and eggs in large bowl using spoon. Stir in flour, baking soda, and salt. Stir in chocolate chips.

Drop by rounded measuring tablespoonfuls about 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheet.

Instructions Bake 12-15 minutes or until light brown. Cool slightly. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack; cool.

Tips and Tricks:
Butter can make things better in cookies. If you like crisp rather than soft and chewy chocolate chip cookies, butter is the right choice. But, the butter needs to be really soft to mix it with a spoon.

Don't use tub butter or reduced-calorie butter substitutes; they don't work well in baked goods. Go for the real thing.

Avoid using rimmed jelly-roll pans they block the hot air from circulating around the cookies properly. Invest in a couple of heavy, flat baking sheets that won't buckle when they go into the hot oven. 

Line your baking sheets with parchment paper. Keeping the pans clean and guaranteeing nothing will stick. Reuse the paper again and again.

If you want to bak two pans at the same time, be sure to rearrange the oven racks before you turn the oven on. Then rotate your pans from the top rack to the bottom rack halfway 
through baking so the cookies brown evenly.

The trick to making thicker cookies is having the dough the right temperature. Too soft and they will be flat. You can refrigerate the dough until it's a little bit firmer. 

via Betty Crocker 


Amish Baking Powder Biscuits

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp. sugr
3 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup shortening
1 egg
2/3 cup milk

Preheat oven to 450°F.

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt with a wire whisk. Cut in shortening until mixture resembles course crumbles. Beat egg and milk; pour into dry ingredients just until moistened.

Turn onto a lightly floured surface; roll or press to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut with a 2-1/2- inch floured biscuit cutter. Place 1 inch apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 450°F for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm.

Via Taste of Home


Fluffy Belgian Waffles

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp. table sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
3 large eggs, separated
2 cups milk
¼ cup canola oil

In a Bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Combine the egg yolks, milk, and boil; stir into the dry ingredients just until moistened. In a small bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form; fold into batter. Bake in preheated waffle iron according to manufacture's directions.

Freeze Option: Cool waffles on a wire rack. Freeze between layers of waxed paper in a reaealable plastic freezer bag.  Reheat waffles in a toaster on medium setting, or microwave each waffle on high for 30-60 seconds or until heated through.

from Taste of Hom


Cinnamon Cream Syrup

1 cup sugar
½ cup light corn syrup
¼ cup water
1 can (5oz.) evaporated milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp. ground cinnamon

Combine sugar, corn syrup, and water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Remove from the heat; sitr in the milk, vanilla, and cinnamon.

from Taste of Home


Honeycrisp Apple Pie

Pastry dough for a 2-crust pie (I use store bought)
6 cups peeled, cored, and thinly sliced Honey Crisp apples*
½ tsp. cinnamon
1 cup light brown sugar
2 Tbsp. dry tapioca, ground to a powder in a blender**
1 Tbsp. lemon juice, or microwave apple mixture 3-5 minutes
2 Tbsp. butter, cut into small cubes
1 egg beaten with 1 Tbsp. water (egg wash is optional)
Cinnamon sugar, for garnish (optional)

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Line a 9-inch pan with half of the pie dough. Combine brown sugar, cinnamon and tapioca powder and toss with apples and lemon juice. Pour apple mixture into prepared pie shell. Dott butter cubes across the filling.

Roll out the remaining dough to form the top crust. Cut decorative vents into the crust with samll cookie cutters, or just slit it in a few places with knife. Place the top crust over the apples. Flute or crimp the edges of the pastry together. Brush the surface with a little egg wash and sprinkle with a cinnamon-sugar mixture.

Bake pie for 10 minutes, and then reduce the temperature to 350°F. Bake for 35-40 minutes longer or until the pastry is golden brown and filling is bubbly.

* Other apples you can use are Granny Smith, Pink Lay, Braeburn, and/or Fuji .
** Substitute 4 Tbsp. flour if you don't have the tapioca.


Easy Malasadas (Hawaiian Doughnuts)

1½ cups Bisquick
¾  cup milk (can use evaporated milk)
¼  tsp. vanilla
½ tsp. baking powder
6-8 slices white bread, broken into small pieces
1 egg
Cinnamon and sugar mixture 
Oil for frying

Heat oil to 375°F (190°C).

With a wire whisk, blend the baking soda into the Bisquick. Add the bread pieces and mix together. Whisk together the milk, vanilla, and egg. Pour the wet mixture over the dry ingredients and mix together thoroughly. It will be thick. 

With two spoons, compact about a golf-ball sized amount of dough and drop it into the oil. Fry 3-4 four at a time until golden brown, turning once. Remove from oil, and drain on paper towels. Roll in cinnamon and sugar mixture. Serve warm or cold. 

One recipe is never enough, so I usually triple the recipe. These are the amounts:
4½ cups Bisquick
2¼ cups milk
¾ tsp. vanilla
1½ tsp. baking powder
18-24 slices bread
3 eggs


Bacon-Wrapped Water Chestnuts

1 pound sliced bacon
2 cans (8oz.) whole water chestnuts, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup ketchup
1/2 cup barbecue sauce
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
Wooden toothpicks (don't use colored toothpicks)

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Cut bacon strips into thirds. Wrap a strip of bacon around each water chestnut and secure with a
toothpick. Place on an ungreased 15x10x1 inch baking pan. (I line my pan with aluminum foil for quick cleanup.) Bake until the bacon is crisp; about 25-30 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the ketchup, barbecue sauce and brown sugar. Cook and stir over medium heat until sugar has dissolved. Remove chestnuts to paper towels; drain. Dip chestnuts in to sauce mixture and place in a lightly greased 13x9 inch baking dish. Spoon remaining sauce over the chestnuts. Return to oven for 10-12 minutes. Be sure to let them cool a bit before eating. Makes about 36-40 depending on how many water chestnuts are in the can.

Nutrition Facts
1 piece: 33 calories, 1g fat (0 saturated fat), 2mg cholesterol, 92mg sodium, 5g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 0 fiber), 1g protein.
Modified from Taste of Home recipe.


Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Roasting gets Brussels sprouts caramelized on the outside!

2-1/4 pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp. water
3/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper

Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 500°F. Toss Brussels sprouts, water, oil, salt, and pepper in a bowl until Brussels sprouts are coated.

Transfer Brussels sprouts to rimmed baking sheet and arrange so cut sides are facing down. Cover sheet tightly with aluminum foil and roast for 10 minutes. Remove foil and continue to cook until Brussels sprouts are well browned and tender; 10-12 minutes.

Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve.


Spaghetti with Fresh Roma Tomato Sauce

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 pounds plum tomatoes, chopped (about 5 cups)
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

8 ounces uncooked spaghetti
1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
1 teaspoon sugar (optional)
Grated Romano cheese and additional basil

 In a 6-qt. stockpot, heat oil over medium heat; saute onion until tender, 4-6 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, salt and pepper; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, until thickened, 20-25 minutes. Meanwhile, cook spaghetti according to package directions; drain.

Stir 1/4 cup basil and, if desired, sugar into sauce. Serve over spaghetti. Top with cheese and additional basil. Freeze option: Freeze cooled sauce in freezer containers. To use, partially thaw in refrigerator overnight. Heat through in a saucepan, stirring occasionally.

Nutrition Facts
1 cup spaghetti with 3/4 cup sauce (calculated without cheese): 327 calories, 8g fat (1g saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 607mg sodium, 55g carbohydrate (9g sugars, 5g fiber), 10g protein.  

Originally published as Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce in tasteofhome.com


Don Nimmer's Caramels

2 cups brown sugar
1 can Eagle brand condensed milk
2 cups white corn syrup
1/2 lb. butter
1 cup walnuts, chopped (optional)

Melt the butter and add the ingredients, stirring as they are added. Put the walnuts in last. Bring to a boil and keep on a low boil for 30 minutes. (Good time to watch TV or read, said Don.)


White Chicken Chili

2 cans white navy beans
i can chicken broth
1 can chopped green chillies
10 oz. can chicken breast, or same amount of any chicken.
1/2 tsp. cumin

Combine, heat, and eat!


Pizza Crust Dough

1½ cups warm warter (105-110°F) 
1 tsp. dry yeast  
4 cups all-purpose flour  
1 tsp. sea or kosher salt  
1/3 cup olive oil

In a small bowl combine the warm water and yeast. Stir to combine and let sit for a few minutes, until bubbly. 

In a medium bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the flour and salt. Using an electric mixer on low, drizzle in the olive oil until just incorporated. Slowly add the yeast/water mixture. Mix on low speed until the dough forms a ball {you may need to use your hands to help incorporate all of the flour}. 

Spray the mixing bowl with non-stick spray, and place the dough inside. Spray the top of the dough lightly with the non-stick spray, then cover with plastic wrap. 

Let the dough sit in a warm place for 1-2 hours or until doubled. Or, if you are like me, let it sit all afternoon long, punching down the dough as it creeps to the top of the bowl. 

You can also store the dough in the fridge for 1 to 2 days. 

Preheat the oven to 500º F. Divide the dough in half if you want thicker crust, or thirds if you want thinner crust. Freeze any extra dough for later use. 

Using your hands or a small rolling pin, stretch the dough on a pizza stone or baking sheet sprayed with non-stick spray to the desired shape and thickness. Do not over work the dough. 

Add your desired sauce, cheese and toppings. 

Bake at 500º on the lowest rack in your oven for 8-10 minutes, or until the edges of the crust are a golden brown and the cheese is bubbly.

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