Cilantro Yogurt Sauce

Oh how I love this recipe. It’s so versatile and I’d say dangerous if it wasn’t so darn healthy! It all mixes up in a food processor and will make any Mexican dish better. You could even use it as a salad dressing. Or one could sit and eat it for breakfast with chips. Hypothetically.  It would be a great topping for chicken or fish tacos, along with some queso fresco. Please make it and tell us if you wake up in the middle of the night thinking about it.

1 cup plain greek yogurt
1 cup fresh cilantro
1 jalapeno seeded
2 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon cumin
juice of 1 lime
kosher salt

Mix all ingredients in a food processor and taste for salt. Eat with a spoon like nobody’s watching!

Sweet Potato Yum Yum Casserole

This is our mom’s sweet potato recipe. It’s sweet and rich, perfect for the holidays!
Base ingredients:
3 c canned sweet potatoes, drained
8 oz (1 cup)  evaporated milk
1/2 t cinnamon
1/2 t nutmeg
1/2 t vanilla
6 T. (3/4 stick) butter, softened
1 c sugar
2 eggs
Topping ingredients:
6 T. (3/4 stick) butter
3/4 c brown sugar
1 c crushed corn flakes
1 c chopped pecans
Mix the base ingredients with a mixer or food processor until smooth. Put in a 9×13″ (or slightly smaller) Pyrex dish that has been sprayed with Pam. 
Next, mix the topping ingredients, and spread on the hot sweet potatoes and bake at 400 for 15 minutes. 
Serve hot and enjoy!

Canyon Ranch Almond Butter Delight

We just got back from Canyon Ranch, and I had something I had forgotten about. It’s easy,  good, light and satisfying on toast for breakfast. (It has 32 calories per tablespoon.)

1 cup nonfat ricotta cheese
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
½ tsp ground cinnamon
1½ Tbsp honey
¼ cup almond butter (without added salt)

Combine all ingredients in a blender container and puree until smooth. Chill in refrigerator until ready to use.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Cherry Pistachio Pesto


For Brussels Sprouts
1 1/2 pounds brussels sprouts
3 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
For Pesto
1/2 cup toasted, salted pistachios
1/2 cup dried cranberries
3 cloves roasted garlic (I fake roast mine in the microwave with a little olive oil and water)
2 sprigs fresh parsley
1/2 cups olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400F degrees.

Cut off the end of the brussels sprouts, and cut them in half lengthwise. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper.

On a baking sheet, spread the brussels sprouts evenly and roast for 25 minutes, until you begin to see a bit of browning on the brussels sprouts. The interior should be fork tender.

Place the pistachios, cranberries, garlic and parsley into a food processor and process until very finely chopped. While the food processor is running, slowly drizzle in 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Spoon out the pesto into a bowl and stir in remaining olive oil. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. The pesto should be slightly sweet and salty.

Check for seasonings on the brussels sprouts, and salt if needed. Spoon approximately 1/4 cup of Cranberry Pistachio Pesto on top.

Adapted from Steamy Kitchen

Surprise Cornbread

img_9126This time of year, a hint of Fall in the air. Recipes come along and we save them for a rainy day, a holiday addition, and for the sake of trying something new.

How good can cornbread be? Our sister in law passed on this recipe to us. Don’t let the broccoli scare you (or leave it out if you’re just too terrified!). It is a family favorite, no surprise there. This cornbread rocks!


2 boxes of Jiffy corn muffin mix
1 1/2 sticks of melted butter
4 eggs
16 oz.  cottage cheese, small curd
1 box of frozen broccoli, thawed and strained to get out all of the moisture (use 3/4 to one cup of the broccoli finely chopped)

Preheat oven to 350.  Mix the ingredients together with a spoon.  Add the broccoli last.  Grease a glass 9 x 13  baking dish.  Bake for 45 minutes.

Keep this recipe handy for soups, BBQ, and any other meal needing a special side.

This recipe can easily be halved and baked in a 9×9 baking dish.  Adjust the baking time down as well.

Vegetable Souffle

Looking for a great side dish for the holidays? A dear friend shared her fabulous find over Thanksgiving.  Thanks Kelly, vegetables never tasted so good.   The recipe comes from a Neiman Marcus Cookbook that was published in 1991. Enjoy!


1 ½ cups sharp cheese, grated

1 can (4 oz) chopped green chilies

2 cans (16 oz each) whole green beans, drained

2 cans (16 oz each) whole kernel corn, drained

Salt and pepper

½ pound Monterey Jack cheese slices

3 eggs

¾ cup sour cream


Grease a 3 quart casserole dish or 9×9 pan.  Layer ingredients in this order:  ½ cup cheddar cheese, ½ can chilies, ½ can green beans, ½ can corn, salt and pepper.  Repeat.  Add remaining ½ cup cheddar cheese on top.  Cover with slices of the Monterey Jack cheese.  Just before putting in the oven, beat eggs and sour cream together, pour over vegetables and sliced cheese.  Bake one hour at 350.  This may be frozen after baking.  Serves 12      





Grilled Corn Poblano Salad with Chipotle Vinaigrette

Here’s another recipe from my fabulous weekend at my freinds’ Brad and Kirk’s lovely lake house. We served it with carne asada, cowboy beans and a big bowl of guacamole – it was all so good! This salad was fresh and delicious.

3 ears corn, shucked
1 poblano chile
3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 teaspoon finely chopped canned chipotle chile
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 avocado, cut into chunks
1/4 cup cilantro leaves
1/2 cup slivered sweet onion, rinsed, patted dry


  1. 1. Heat grill to high (450° to 550°). Rub corn and poblano with 1 tbsp. oil. Grill both, turning occasionally, until poblano is mostly blackened, 5 to 10 minutes, and some corn kernels have browned, 10 to 20 minutes. Let cool.
  2. 2. Cut corn kernels from cobs into a large bowl. Peel and seed poblano, cut into 1/2-in. pieces, and add to corn. In a small bowl, whisk remaining oil with lime juice, chipotle chile, and salt.
  3. 3. Stir avocado, cilantro, and onion into corn mixture along with chipotle dressing.
  4. Note: Nutritional analysis is per 1/2-cup serving.

Sally Lunn Bread

Is it dessert?  Is it a side dish?   You decide.  Candice, mom of 5 children, spoiled us with this “to die for” bread 8 years ago.  Candice is a southern bell,  complete with dresses and pearls, daytime aprons, french twists, and a lipstick perfectly in place.   We met in a doctor’s office almost 9 years ago.  Our boys were due days apart, a playgroup evolved with our boys, and Candice set the bar high.  We had playgroup at her house.  7 Moms, 7 little boys,  punch bowl, and food including Sally Lunn Bread.   Those were good days.  We fell in love with Candice and know that anything she cooks in her apron is going to be good!   Never the simplest recipes, but always the best

2 (1/4  oz) envelopes active dry yeast

1/2 cup warm water

1 1/2 cups milk

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup butter

1 t salt

2 large eggs

5 cups all-purpose flour

Blackberry Butter (optional, but yummy)  Stir 2 to 3 tablespoons seedless blackberry jam into 1/2 cup softened butter.  I have also had apricot butter with this bread.  Yum!!

Combine-yeast and 1/2 cup warm water in a one cup measuring cup.  Let stand 5 minutes

Heat milk and next 3 ingredients in saucepan over medium heat, stirring until butter melts. Cool to 100-110 degrees.

Beat yeast mixture, milk mixture, and eggs at medium speed with an electric mixer until blended.  Gradually add flour, beating at lowest speed until blended.  Mixture will be very sticky, soft dough

Cover and let rise in a warm place (85 degrees), free from drafts, one hour or until dough is doubled in bulk.

Stir dough down.  Cover and let rise in a warm place, free from drafts, 30 minutes or until dough is doubled in bulk.

Stir dough down, and spoon into a well-greased, 10 inch bundt pan or tube pan.  Cover and let rise in a warm place, free from drafts, 20-30 minutes or until dough is doubled in bulk.

Bake at 350 for 35 to 40 minutes or until golden brown and a wooden pick inserted into center of bread comes out clean.  Remove from pan immediately.  Serve bread with Blackberry Butter, honey, molasses, or jelly if desired.

Marinated Green Beans

Healthy can be yummy!  Lyn served these at a party as an appetizer.  She was gracious enough to share her recipe about a year ago and it has been a great addition to several menus.  I love the color, the crunch, and the simplicity.    Green beans a finger food?  Why not.  

Using a wire wisk, mix the 4 ingredients well.

1/2 cup sugar  (you can use sweetener)
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 tsp pepper flakes (I add a little extra)
1 clove garlic – chopped (I use 1 large or 2 if they are small)

Mix above early in the day and refrigerate.

Cook 1 lb. green beans for 3 minutes in boiling water. Remove and plunge in ice
water. Refrigerate beans.

About an hour before serving, pour marinade over green beans and allow to reach
room temperature. Serve. It makes a great appetizer or a side dish.

Mom’s Calico Beans

Tracy gave me this recipe that my mom has made for years. It is great for burger cookouts or with fried chicken.

2 cans kidney beans
2 cans butter beans
2 cans pork and beans
1 pound of bacon
½ onion
¾ pound of hamburger
1 cup ketchup
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup vinegar

Rinse and drain beans. Fry bacon and crumble. Saute the onion in bacon grease and set aside in small bowl. Fry hamburger in same skillet. Mix beans, onion, bacon, and hamburger in big casserole dish with only ½ bacon grease. Mix up sauce of ketchup, brown sugar, and vinegar. Add to casserole and mix. Cook at 350 for 30-45 minutes.