• 1 box white cake mix with pudding in the mix
    1/2 cup oil
    3 whole eggs
    1 cup water
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    2 1/2 cups crushed Oreos.  (Take the frosting out of about 8 of the Oreos)

    Preheat oven to 350ºF and line two pans of cupcake pans with liners.

    In a mixing bowl, beat together the cake mix, oil, eggs, water and vanilla.  Beat for about 2 minutes, or until nice and creamy.  Add the Oreo crumbs and beat until well combined.

    Divide the batter amongst 24 cupcake liners.

    Bake for about 20 minutes, or until lightly browned, and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

    Allow to cool for 5 minutes in the pan before removing to racks to cool completely before frosting.

    To  make a layer cake, divide the batter between two pans and adjust the cooking time to 25-30 minutes.

  • from BHG Kids Favorites Made Healthy

    Nonstick cooking spray
    8 Chicken Drumsticks
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon black pepper
    2 cloves garlic, mined, or 1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
    2 teaspoons cooking oil
    3/4 cup bottle barbecue sauce
    1/4 cup catsup
    1/4 cup orange juice or water
    2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
    2 tablespoons light molasses or maple-flavored syrup
    Several dashes hot sauce (optional) (We skipped)
    Directions:

    Lightly coat a 15x10x1-inch baking pan with cooking spray.  Skin chicken. Arrange chicken in prepared baking sheet.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Bake in a 375ºF oven for 25 minutes.

    Meanwhile, for sauce, in a medium saucepan cook garlic in hot oil over medium heat for 30 seconds. Stir in barbecue sauce, catsup, juice, brown sugar, molasses, and, if desired, hot sauce.  Heat through.

    Carefully brush chicken with sauce. Turn chicken and brush with additional sauce.  Bake for 20 to 25 minutes more or until chicken is no longer pink (180º).  Reheat any remaining sauce; drizzle some of the sauce over the chicken; pass remaining sauce.

  • ice pop assemblyfrom Everyday Food, July/August 2010

    1/2 pound strawberries, hulled and quartered (1 1/2 cups)
    1/4 cup sugar, divided
    1/2 pound blueberries (1 1/2 cups)
    1 1/4 cups low-fat plain yogurt (we used full fat)

    Directions:

    In a food processor, puree strawberries with 1 tablespoon sugar.  Transfer to a small bowl.

    In processor, puree blueberries with 1 tablespoon sugar.

    In another small bowl, whisk together yogurt and 2 tablespoons sugar.

    Pour the three mixtures, alternating, into ten 3-ounce ice-pop molds, making 3 to 5 layers each.  With a skewer or thin bladed knife, swirl mixtures together in an up-and-down motion.  Insert ice-pop sticks and freeze until solid, 2 1/2 to 3 hours.

    Makes 10.

    *For tropical pops use 4 kiwis and 1 large mango instead of the berries.

  • corn dog muffins1 cup flour
    1 cup cornmeal (yellow, white or blue)
    2 tablespoons sugar
    1 tablespoon baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    1 cup milk
    2 eggs
    1/4 cup vegetable oil
    8-10 hot dogs, sliced into 1/4 inch coins
    1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese (optional)

    Directions:

    Preheat oven to 425ºF.  Spray two muffin pans with cooking spray and set aside.

    In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, salt and pepper.

    In a separate bowl, combine the milk, eggs and oil- blend well.

    Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix just until combined.  Fold in the hot dog slices and cheddar cheese.

    Fill the muffin cups 2/3 full with the chunky batter- try to evenly distribute the hot dog slices so you don’t end up with muffins minus dogs.

    Bake in a 425ºF oven for about 15 minutes.  They should look like they are just starting to brown around the edges.  Remove from oven and let cool in the pans for five minutes.  Remove the muffins from the pans and serve immediately.

    Makes about 18 corn dog muffins.

  • cookiesAKA No-Bake Cookies

    AKA Amish Boiled Cookies

    1 stick butter
    1/2 cup milk
    2 cups sugar
    3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
    1/2 cup regular (not low-fat) peanut butter
    1 teaspoon vanilla
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    3 cups quick cooking oats- not instant and not old-fashioned
    1/2 cup coarsely chopped nuts or raisins (I used raisins today)

    Directions:

    Line a baking sheet with wax paper and set aside.

    In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.  Once melted, add the milk, sugar and cocoa and turn up the heat a little bit.  Stir while cooking, and bring to a boil.  Once boiling, cook and stir for 1 minute.

    Remove from heat and stir in the peanut butter, vanilla and salt.  Stir until smooth.

    Add the oats, and nuts or raisins if using and fold them in until everything is well coated.

    Using a cookie scoop or two tablespoons, dollop out tablespoon sized portions of the mixture onto the baking sheet.  Work kind of quickly as the mixture begins to set up while you are scooping.  Set the baking sheets aside for 1 hour to set and firm up.

    Store in an airtight container- makes between 35-48 cookies, depending on the size of your scoop.

  • from Barefoot Contessa Family Stylemacncheese

    Kosher salt
    Vegetable oil
    1 pound elbow macaroni or cavatappi
    1 quart milk
    8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, divided
    1/2 cup all-purpose flour
    12 ounces Gruyere, grated (4 cups)
    8 ounces extra-sharp Cheddar, grated (2 cups)
    1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    3/4 pound fresh tomatoes (4 small)
    1 1/2 cups fresh white bread crumbs (5 slices, crusts removed)

    Directions:

    Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

    Drizzle oil into a large pot of boiling salted water. Add the macaroni and cook according to the directions on the package, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain well.

    Meanwhile, heat the milk in a small saucepan, but don’t boil it. Melt 6 tablespoons of butter in a large (4-quart) pot and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring with a whisk. While whisking, add the hot milk and cook for a minute or two more, until thickened and smooth. Off the heat, add the Gruyere, Cheddar, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Add the cooked macaroni and stir well. Pour into a 3-quart baking dish.

    Slice the tomatoes and arrange on top. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, combine them with the fresh bread crumbs, and sprinkle on the top. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the macaroni is browned on the top.

  • Ingredients:

    • 1 cup plain low-fat yogurt
    • 1 cup fresh or thawed frozen strawberries
    • 2 tablespoons honey

    Tools:

    • Measuring cups
    • Measuring spoons
    • Blender
    • 4 paper cups, 5-ounces each
    • Aluminum foil
    • 4 small, wooden craft sticks or plastic spoons

    Directions:

    1. Place the yogurt, fruit and honey in a blender.  Cover and blend for 15 seconds or until smooth.
    2. Pour the mixture into paper cups, filling them about three-quarters full.
    3. Cover the cups with small squares of aluminum foil.
    4. Poke the wooden sticks through the center of the foil covers, standing the sticks straight up.
    5. Place the cups in a level surface for about 5 hours or until frozen.
    6. Peel off the foil and paper cups and serve.
  • 1 cup frozen peach slices
    1 1/2 cups frozen strawberries
    3/4 cup yogurt
    3/4 cup pineapple juice
    2 tablespoons honey
    2 tablespoons strawberry jam

    Directions:

    Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.  Serve immediately, or refrigerate until serving.

    Makes 4 child-size servings.

  • 1 cup cocoa powder
    2 cups sugar
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 cup cold water
    1 tablespoon vanilla

    Directions:

    In a 3-quart saucepan, whisk together the cocoa, sugar and salt until no lumps of cocoa remain.  Whisk in the cold water (it will resist combining at first).  Turn on the heat to medium to medium high and bring to a boil- whisking pretty consistently.

    Once it comes to a boil, turn down the heat so that it is still boiling, but not in danger of boiling over- medium low worked well for me.  Continue cooking and stirring for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the mixture has appeared to thicken slightly.   Be careful not to overcook, this is a fairly thin syrup.

    Remove from heat and add the vanilla.  Cool, pour into a glass jar and store in the fridge.

    Makes about 1 3/4 cups of chocolate syrup and will keep for several weeks refrigerated.

  • 5 russet potatoes
    4 tablespoons butter, melted
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    2 teaspoons seasoning salt
    freshly ground black pepper

    Directions:

    Preheat oven to 450ºF.

    Wash each potato well, peel if desired, although peeling is not necessary.  Cut each potato into eight wedges, cutting first in half, then half again, and then halves of the quarters.

    Combine the melted butter, olive oil and seasoning salt in a small bowl.  Mix well to combine.

    Toss the potato wedges in the butter/oil mixture and lay them out on a baking sheet individually, make sure the wedges are not actually touching each other.

    Sprinkle all the wedges with freshly ground pepper and then bake for 45 minutes.  Flip them at the 30 minute mark to crisp both sides.

    Serve with ketchup or sour cream for dipping.

    Makes 40 wedges.

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