creamy chicken noodle soup

I'm turning into my Mom in so many ways.  One in specific is that I don't measure anything when I cook.  (except when I bake. then I measure.) 
I wanted chicken noodle soup a few weeks ago.  And I really love soup when it's creamy.  Most of the recipes I know call for cream of chicken soup.  I've been trying not to use that stuff.  Ya know - high sodium, MSG, high calories.  Not that I don't sometimes still use it, I just try to use it less.  So I made my batch of soup and while it was simmering I remembered I had some heavy cream in the fridge.  Best decision ever.  It was the yummiest chicken noodle soup I've ever made.  And here's pretty close to how I think I did it.
Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup
1 large can of canned chicken (Costco)
2 large carrots
1/2 package of wide egg noodles
1 can of chicken broth
2 cups of water
2 chicken bouillon cubes
1/4 c diced onions (maybe a little more?)
1 garlic clove
celery salt
salt and pepper to taste
I always put my pot on the stove, turn it on to medium and start pouring things in.  The broth, the water, the bouillon cubes.  Then I drained and threw in the can chicken.  I diced my carrots, onions and garlic.  I added the seasonings and then it boil until the carrots were tender.  I tasted it - added a little more seasonings, more water.  I added the noodles and then that boil for almost 10 minutes.  Then I poured in the heavy cream!  I let that boil for about 3 minutes stirring occasionally. 
Then I ate it :)


turkey meatballs

A few weeks ago at my local grocery store that I absolutely love, there was this meat sale.  And one of the items was ground turkey.  I admit, I'm not a big fan.  I bought it regularly when we were first married because my husband liked it but I didn't know how to cook with it.  Whenever I made anything, it tasted like a weird form of Thanksgiving dinner to me. ;)  So I stopped buying it.
But it was apart of this fun sale, so I couldn't resist.  Me and food sales...I just have to buy them.  I called my sister when I got home, remembering she had made turkey meatballs one time.  She referred me to the Food Network website and I found this recipe.  And holy cow....they were heaven!  My two year old ate 4 meatballs before I even sautéed them in the marinara sauce.  And we devoured the rest over noodles.
It's a really easy recipe.  Please try!

Turkey Meatballs
1 small onion, grated
 3 garlic cloves, minced
1 large egg
1/4 cup dried bread crumbs
3 tablespoons ketchup
1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 pound ground dark turkey meat
3 tablespoons olive oil
(This is a terrible secret of mine, but when I don't have certain ingredients and I'm already in the process of making something, I just leave it out.  I totally left out the Romano and I didn't have bread crumbs, so I used the panko crumbs I had.  AND I only used 2 garlic cloves which was plenty garlic enough for me.)
I just put everything into a large bowl and mixed it together.  Then I had two plates ready and rolled meat into the size of ping pong balls placing them onto the plates when finished. Have a pan with oil heated and drop in the meatballs.  Cook all sides of the meatballs and then place back onto a plate.   If you're going to have the meatballs over spaghetti do this:
Drain the oil and pour your choice of marinara sauce back into the pan.  Put the meatballs back in and stir.  Let simmer for about 15-20 minutes. 

Pour of spaghetti noodles and enjoy!!


Follower Friday: Taco Soup

My AMAZING cousin Candice sent me another one of her yummy recipes.  Candice, you're my first follower to have back to back Follower Friday posts.  You're awesome :)  Comment if you're interested in doing a Follower Friday (or doing another one!)
Taco soup
1 pound ground beef
1 15-ounce can black beans
1 15-ounce can chili beans with chili gravy
1 15-ounce can garbanzo beans
1 14-1/2-ounce can Mexican-style stewed tomatoes
1 11-ounce can whole-kernel corn with sweet peppers
1 1.25-ounce package taco seasoning mix
Dairy sour cream
Brown hamburger and drain and then add all ingredients without draining the cans and cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 6-8 hours. 

YUM! Perfect the Fall weather!


what have you done with peaches?

Peach season has come and is almost gone.  I. Love. Peaches.  This is what I did with mine.
A local grocery store had a 22# box for 11.99 one Friday.  I went and bought a box, a case of jars, sugar and pectin.
1. I brought it all home and made 3 batches of jam.

Jam is super easy, I promise.  I follow the recipe exactly that's inside the pectin box.  I boil my lids and jars in cake/bread pans on the stove while my jam is boiling.  And instead of water bathing my jam, I turn my jars over after I tighten the lids.  After a few minutes, I flip them back over and listen to them pop which signified they're sealed :)

2. Then I canned one batch of peaches.

This was my first year canning peaches and I was nervous.  But guess what?  I totally thought it was easier than making jam.  I did have to borrow my friends canner.  How I canned my peaches:
I filled the canner with enough water so when I put my pint size jars in, the water would be about an inch over the jars.  Then while I waited for that to boil, I put my jars and lids in the bread/cake pans to boil as well.  Next, I washed and began peeling the skin off of the peaches.  If they're not ripe, blanch them for just a minute.  A pillow case works great!  Dip the whole case into the canner for about 60 seconds, then pull it out and the skin comes right off the peach.  I put the peaches facing down into the jar.  I made a syrup mixture: 1.5 c sugar and 5 cups of water in a saucepan and when the sugar dissolved I began pouring into the jars over the peaches.  Topped off the jars with extra warm water so it touched the bottom of the rim.  Tightened the lids and placed them into the boiling water in the canner.  I boiled for 30 minutes.  Pulled them out and set them out to dry and seal.  They all popped :)

3. I made this heavenly peach cream pie

I got the recipe from this blog.

4. We ate a bunch,
5. I sliced up two sandwich bags full of peaches and put them into the freezer for smoothies.

The End.


how we grill our chicken

(I should really call this post - How we grill our chicken when I'm lazy and have no ideas and it's 4:30)

I have hardly cooked this summer.  I'm sure you've all felt the same way. 
If I can't grill it or chop it up into some kind of salad, I won't make it.
So here is the NUMBER one thing we've been eating all summer.
Barbeque chicken with a little marinade James(the hubby) came up with himself.
What's even better, is this recipe has been tested and loved on steak and pork chops.  So mix it up and marinade whatever meat you love most.
It's the easiest recipe.  And when you read it, you'll laugh.  But I promise, it's a whole new flavor and it's delicious.
1/2 barbeque sauce
1/2 Italian Dressing
That's it.  Pour it into a bowl with your defrosted meat.  Let marinade for a few hours or just grill it.  And while you're grilling it, brush more sauce onto meat.  Enjoy!

*And a shout out to Crystal.  Thank for motivating me once again to have a go at my food blog :)


Follower Friday: Chicken Cordon Bleu Pasta

Remember how I love comfort food?  Well this dish that Candice makes is right down my alley of comfort food :) 
Candice is my cousin.  She's a year and a half younger than me but we might as well be twins.  We think a lot alike and everyone at college got us confused.  We loved that.  We got married within a few months of each other and our life goal would be to live next door to each other.  But I doubt I'm ever moving to Lund. :)  She's an amazing woman and mother.  And I wish we had more than Facetime.  Enjoy her recipe!

Chicken Cordon Bleu Pasta

What you need:
16 oz. Penne Rigate Noodles
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 15 oz. bottles of Alfredo Sauce
1/2 c. apple juice
2/3 c. milk
4 tsp. olive oil
2 tsp. butter
1 1/3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 cup crumbled cooked bacon
3 chopped green onions (optional)
Heat to sizzling:
olive oil and butter 
4 boneless chick breasts, sliced and patted dry, sauté in oil & butter until tender season lightly with salt & pepper
Heat in saucepan:
Alfredo sauce
apple juice
Add pasta and cooked chicken to sauce.  Pour into greased 9 x 13 pan. 

Top with:
mozzarella cheese
crumbled cooked bacon
green onions
Bake at 450 until heated through.  (Bake 10-15 minutes if sauce and chicken were hot before baking.)


beef stroganoff

Still needing emails for Follower Fridays - even if you've DONE it, you can do it again :) Add your email to the comments.

 Stroganoff is a food that I have one of those love/hate relationships with.  I know it's bad for me.  I know it is.  But it's also one of my comfort foods.  A big pile of warm, creamy, TASTY food.  So I make it sometimes.  I know I shouldn't.  But I do.  And I'm sure many of you are thinking, "Tiff, those ingredients are bad for you."  I know they are.  But like I said.  It's a love/hate relationship.

And this recipe, I'm telling you, is FREAKING delicious.  So don't try it unless you want to have a guilty conscience each time you make it ;)

Oh wait...and one more reason why it's on my love list - it's one more recipe that uses leftover Sunday Roast.

Beef Stroganoff
(I know that's really vague but you can use what you like - ground beef, leftover pot roast, stew meat, steak, whatever, you choose!)
1 cup of sour cream
1 block of cream cheese
1 can of cream of mushroom soup
1 packet of onion soup mix
2 cups of water
salt and pepper to taste
(I told you it was bad)
Mix it all together in a crock pot.  Simmer on low for 6-8 hours.

My kids LOVE it!  And they are picky eaters.  So that's ONE MORE reason why I love it.

(terrible pictures - I'm no photographer, but I am a baker and an eater...haha, I'm so funny)


ginger chicken kabobs

(I am in need of followers who would like to do a guest post for Follower Friday.  If you're interested, please comment with your email so I can get you onto the schedule.)
I found this recipe inside a magazine years ago.  Pretty vague, huh?
But it's foolproof and delicious.  And perfect for end of summer barbeques!
Ginger Chicken Kabobs:
1/2 c. honey
2 T. minced garlic
2 T. grated, peeled ginger root
4 T. soy sauce
2 chicken breast (cut into chunks)
(When you buy the ginger root, I just break a chunk off of the large pieces they have in produce!  They're huge and you only need a little.)
Cut defrosted chicken into small pieces.  Put them in a shallow pan.  Combine honey, garlic, ginger root, and soy sauce in a saucepan.  Stir over low heat until honey melts. 
Pour honey mixture over it, mix well and refrigerate overnight. (I never do this part - I'm lucky if it marinates for 30 minutes.)  .
Place chicken on skewers and cook over the grill turning every few minutes
Now this is where I changed the recipe.  I've never had skewers.  The first time I made this I bought wooden skewers.  Which works just fine, just be sure to soak them in water first.  But I have since lost the entire package of skewers and never bought any again.
SO...I do this:
Put a large piece of aluminum foil onto the grill.  Spray with cooking spray.  Pour the contents of the pan onto the aluminum foil.  And then grill the chicken, stirring/flipping the chicken every few minutes.
I've put this with rice or salad.  Last week we had it with fresh salsa and peaches.


breakfast with avocado

Recipe number two!
When my Mom first made this for me, I was sure there was no way I was eating it.  I don't like tomato and at the time, I was still on a "no avocado" kick.  But I tried it and I loved it! 
(This is definitely not anything original.  I'm sure you've heard of it, probably even tried it!)
It's simple, has lots of flavor, and is easy to make. 
Bagel with tomato and avocado
(origin of picture - I forgot to take one!)
One whole wheat bagel
Cream cheese
Lemon pepper seasoning
One slice of tomato
3-4 slices of avocado
Toast your bagel.  Spread both sides with cream cheese.  Sprinkle with lemon pepper seasoning.  Layer tomato and avocado.  Put together and and enjoy your bagel sandwich!


greek salad

Do you know what today is? 
The FIRST day to have a recipe with avocado in it. 
Are you excited?  You should be.
My friend introduced me to this salad.  My kids even love it!  There's no specific amounts for any of the ingredients.  Just as much as you want to put in.

Lettuce (I use half romaine, half green leaf...you can be more exotic)
Diced red onions
Diced green bell peppers
Crumbled feta cheese
Tortilla strips  (when I don't have them, I smash up tortilla chips)
Greek vinaigrette dressing


I slice my avocado in half.  Cut horizontal and vertical lines.

Then I squeeze it into the bowl.  Perfect chunks :)
Mix it all up and enjoy!
Remember how I don't take the best pictures...well here's another one for you to look at ;)



i discovered the avocado


Everyone around me was eating them.
They were kind of becoming the "new" healthy thing to eat - add it to your sandwich, salad, eggs, whatever.
But I just couldn't do it.
I had tried guacamole a LONG time ago and hated it.  And because of that I didn't touch avocadoes.
Then my cousin's husband, Moroni, made me guacamole.
I. Was. In. Love.
For the next couple years, every time I saw him, I would beg for more guacamole.
I started buying avocadoes just to make that very specific guacamole.
And within the past 6 months, I've actually started using them in my recipes.
Let's just get to the point.  I love avocadoes now and when they're not sitting in my yellow produce bowl, I'm disappointed. (Do you have a produce bowl sitting on your counter? You should.)
SO...in honor of me FINALLY coming around and joining the bandwagon, we're going to have...

And just for a teaser...add avocadoes to these already Will There Be Food There recipes.
Acapulco Chicken

*avocado pic from here: original picture



This is one of my ALL TIME favorite desserts.  Its easy, fast, and you can eat a few rows of them without thinking!  They're also something we eat every time I'm with my family.  I was with my parents last week, we made them and devoured the tray.
1 cup sugar
1 cup Karo syrup
1 cup peanut butter
6 cups rice krispies
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
1 cup butterscotch chips
Combine sugar and syrup in a pot.  Bring to a boil and remove from heat.
Stir in one cup of peanut butter.

 Mix in 6 cups of rice krispies.

Pour onto greased cookie sheet.

Melt both chips in the microwave.

Pour on top of rice krispies.

Put in the refrigerator (NOT FREEZER!) until they set.  Then pull them out and eat as many as you want!  Enjoy! :)


Follower Friday: Avocado Lime Salsa

FOLLOWER FRIDAY!! It's been awhile, hasn't it?  I asked Crystal if she'd do today's post.  She's...amazing!  I married her husbands best friend.  My first date with my husband was actually a double with Crystal and her husband.  Crazy huh?  From the beginning she was kind and loving to me.  When my husband and I got engaged, I knew she'd be a dear friend for life!  She was at my wedding, threw me my FIRST baby shower, and drove an hour one night to dip strawberries with me.  She's selfless, an amazing mother and let's be honest, I wish I had her taste in fashion.  Enjoy her recipe!


Thank you Tiff for giving me the opportunity to be featured as a Follower Friday on your blog! I thought long and hard about what recipe to share (I'm not very savvy in the kitchen, and I haven't really considered myself to have any awesome recipes up my sleeve.) The only recipe I have taken pride in is for sugar cookies, which I got from my mom, and Tiff has featured here. So wouldn't it only be appropriate for me to share a tried and true recipe given to me by my mother-in-law for this? :)

Get ready to jump into spring/summer with this DELICIOUS side or snack. (Heck I eat so much of this stuff it becomes more like a meal than a snack! Ha ha)


You will need:
1 packet Italian Salad Dressing Mix- made according to package directions
Olive Oil (called for on dressing mix)
Vinegar (called for on dressing mix)
2 Avocados
4 to 5 roma tomatoes, diced
1 can white corn (shoepeg), drained
1 can black-eyed peas, drained
1/2 bunch cilantro, washed and chopped
2 to 3 limes, squeezed

Side Note: I've noticed brand of Dressing Mix doesn't matter for this so I just get the cheapest ;)

Mix salad dressing in a large bowl.

Slice Avocado
How I slice it: After cutting in half and removing the seed, slice to the skin vertically and then again horizontally, then scoop out with spoon and break up the slices.

Add drained corn and beans

Slice tomato
How I was taught: after removing top of tomato, slice down about halfway one direction and then again the other direction, then cut across the length of the tomato to get "dices". Repeat on the remaining half. (The reason I go only halfway is so your slices don't flop all over the place as you are trying to cut across)

Continue adding the remaining ingredients (Cliantro and squeezed limes) Then stir and your done!

Serve with your choice of tortilla chips :)
This is best served on the same day, but can be refrigerated for about a day. (After that the cilantro gets limp and the vinegar flavor soaks into all the ingredients a little too much) 

Mmmm....DELICIOUS! Enjoy :)


stir fry

I can't remember if I've told you this but I just love a big bowl of food all mixed together.  Ya know like a big plate of rice, beans, and tortillas or a bowl of chinese food.  And this is probably why I have a huge crush on stir fry.  My hubby doesn't really care for vegetables which is just so sad!  So I rarely make stir fry.  But tonight he was out with my toddler.  They called to say they would stop to eat somewhere so I decided us girls at home (me and my 18 month old) were going to have stir fry.  And here's how I made it.
Cut two chicken breasts into small chunks. 
Heat 2 T of oil and 2 T of butter in a pan.  (I LOVE the taste of butter...I know, fat fatty over here)
Throw in chicken, 3-4 T of parmesan cheese, 2 tsp of garlic powder, 2 tsp of dried onions, and salt and pepper to taste
Cook until nice and brown!
Combine 2 chicken bouillion cubes, 2 cups of water and 1 cup of uncooked rice
Bring to a boil, turn heat down to low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.
I love the stir fry mix of frozen veggies.  But you can just add frozen peas or whatever you like.  I cook about two cups according to the package, drain and set aside.
When everything is finished, combine the rice and vegetables into the pan with the cooked chicken.  Mix all together, top with parmesan cheese, salt, pepper and SERVE!


Forgive me with this yummy treat!

December got away from me.  I was busy.  And I would be lying if I didn't tell you that I had second thoughts about this blog.  I kept thinking it was silly.  I know very little about actual cooking or nutrition.  And I hardly do anything new or inventive.  I make my mom's food and then find yummy recipes online.  Nothing new. 

But then a few people said some pretty some stuff to me. (Thank you Sharon for the final boost!) And I realized - I might not know very much about cooking.  And I might never make something insanely new and inventive.  But I LOVE FOOD.  That's why I started this blog.  Because I love food.  I love cooking yummy things and then getting to eat them.  I love trying new recipes.  That's why I started this blog.  Not to impress everyone with my amazing cooking skills or my creative recipes or even my knowledge on nutrion - cause there won't be any of that here.  Just lots of yummy recipes.

I won't be as dedicated to my weekly posts as I was. There will be at least one a week but don't be hopeful on more. And we'll still do Follower Fridays so if you're not following this blog, hurry and click that button! I want you to be able to share your recipes too.

So to my awesome 29 followers - forgive me for being M.I.A. for a few months?  And let's get this thing started again! 

This was one of my "neighbor treats" for Christmas.  It's freaking delicious!  My one neighbor told me she ate it in one sitting - it's addicting.  Enjoy!  And yes I'm buttering you up with this buttery recipe to get your forgiveness....gosh I'm hilarious.

Buttery Nutty Popcorn (with M&M's)
10 cups poppped popcorn
1 1/3 c. sugar
2 c. butter
1/2 c. Karo Syrup
1 tsp vanilla.

Pop the popcorn and set aside.  Place aluminum foil on cookie sheet.  Grease the aluminum foil.  (I used PAM)  Melt butter and sugar together in a pan.  Boil until it turns a light carmel color (about 5 minutes)  Take off heat, add vanilla.  Pour over popcorn.  Stir until all popcorn is coated.  Mix cashews and mixed nuts.  Pour onto the aluminum foil.  Top with M&M's.  Put into little goodie bags to give away or just DEVOUR the popcorn yourself! :)