Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Chicken and Gnocchi Soup

Comforting...will warm you inside and out!

(Updated from 8/24/16)

This soup is delicious and perfect for a cool fall day!  But, I couldn't wait for fall, so I turned up the A/C and made it last night.  Heehee!   Seriously, it was so good, my family is already asking for it again.  

It's really easy to prepare, takes no time to cook and is filled with ingredients most all of us have on hand...garlic, celery, onions, etc.  Someone said to add a teaspoon of thyme, so I finally tried it and YES, it added more deliciousness (is that even a word?) Oh me, it did! 

1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 small onion, diced
3 stalks celery, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 carrots, shredded
1 tsp. thyme
3 cups cooked chicken breast, cubed (I used leftover Rotisserie chicken...yum!)
4 cups chicken broth, lower sodium
1 (16 oz) package potato gnocchi
1 (6 oz) bag baby spinach leaves, coarsely chopped (I didn't use it all)
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
2 Tbsp. cold water
2 cups half-and-half cream (fat-free is fine also)
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.  Cook onion, celery, garlic and carrots until onion is translucent, about 5-8 minutes.  Add thyme and stir in cubed chicken and chicken broth; bring to a simmer.

Stir gnocchi into the simmering soup and cook until they begin to float, 3-4 minutes.  Stir in spinach; cook until wilted, about 3 additional minutes.

Whisk cornstarch into cold water until smooth.  Stir cornstarch mixture and half-and-half into simmering soup.  Cook until soup thickens slightly, about 5 minutes.

Season to taste with salt and black pepper.

Serves: 6

Be encouraged!
For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.” -Romans 1:17

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Peach Cobbler Dump Cake

A peach of a dessert!

I seriously couldn't believe how easy this was to make...I've never made a "dump" cake before, but I'll be making more of these, for sure!  

The family loves peach cobbler, but I've only made it once and wasn't that pleased with it. So every summer, we take a trip to our local peach farm and make sure we have our homemade peach cobbler before we leave with our load of peaches, veggies and other goodies.

But, this year we just couldn't get there, so I went searching for a cobbler recipe and found a whole list of it made with this dump method.  Using the information I read about it, I added some of extra peaches and spices, knowing that's what my crew would love.

It was a big hit!  My granddaughter's first words after tasting it were, "Wow, Grandma! 
This is even better than the one at the peach farm!"  Gotta love grandkids, huh?


2 (15.5oz) cans sliced peaches in heavy syrup
1 (15.5 oz.) can sliced peaches in heavy syrup, drained
1 (18.25) box yellow cake mix
1 stick butter, cold, sliced into 16 pieces
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon (optional)
1/2 cup pecans (optional)

Preheat oven to 350'F.

Spray bottom of a 9x13" baking pan.  

Using the juice and peaches of two cans, pour into baking dish.  Then drain the liquid from the third can of peaches; using just the peaches.  (This added more fruit without using too much liquid.)

Cover with the dry (Yes, you heard me right...I said dry.) cake mix and spread evenly over the peaches.  Press lightly onto the peaches.  

Cut butter into small pieces and place on top of the cake mix.

Sprinkle brown sugar and cinnamon over the top. 

Add chopped pecans, if desired.

Bake at 350'F for 40-45 minutes until bubbly and when touched, the cake feels firm.

Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped topping! 

 And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.   -Acts:2:21

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Inside Out Stuffed Peppers

Makes a great week night entree!

As I was looking through the veggie drawer in my fridge, I noticed I still had half a package of tri-colored, chopped peppers, an onion and garlic.  I also had left-over rice...and even sauce!    I wished the peppers were whole, so I could make hubby one of his favorite dinners, stuffed peppers.

I wasn't giving up, so I decided to make a casserole out of all these yummy ingredients.  It's always fun to throw a bunch of things together and see what comes out of it.  Guess what? They all loved it!  Yay!  

Don't forget, in these types of recipes, you can add your favorite ingredients.  Maybe some Italian sausage, chopped olives, crushed red pepper for heat, Provolone instead of Mozzarella!  It's your kitchen and your show...have fun!


1 Tbsp. olive oil
2-3 cloves garlic, minced                       
1/2 cup onions, chopped
2 cups bell peppers, chopped (I used 2 cups of combined yellow, red and green)
2 cups cooked rice
1 lb. lean ground beef
1/2 Tbsp. parsley
1/2 cup Parmesan (plus some for topping)
1 1/2 cup tomato sauce
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 cup mozzarella, shredded (for top of casserole)

Pour olive oil in large skillet, on medium high heat.  Add garlic, onions and peppers; cook until just tender, about 8-10 minutes.  Remove to a bowl; set aside.

Place ground beef in the same pan and brown; drain any extra fat.  Add peppers and onions mixture back to the pan with beef, stir together.  

Add cooked rice, parsley, Parmesan and tomato sauce, salt and pepper.  Mix well and cook together for another  few minutes.

Pour into a prepared 7X11" baking dish.  Top with the mozzarella and a sprinkling of more Parmesan.

Bake at 375'F. for 15-20 minutes or until cheese is melted and casserole heated through.

"Keep looking up and kneeling down."   -Corrie ten Boom

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Baked Cod Italian-style

Italiano merluzzo al forno!

When I was a little girl, my mom would make us fish, baked in the oven, with tomato sauce, onions and peppers. It was always one of my favorite meals.  She didn't have a recipe, just put in what she knew we enjoyed.  I remember how good it smelled, the sauce and spices rose up and there was no fishy odors at all.

Tonight, I decided to try to re-create her baked fish.  I played with it and used some of the herbs my family love.  Also, added white wine, because that makes everything taste good. I like to use wine when I cook, sometimes I even put it in the food.  Just kidding!

Anyway, the family really enjoyed it and I will be making this often.  So easy to make and yet one of the tastiest ways to serve baked fish I know...and it's healthy.  Shh...let's keep that part to ourselves, we don't want to spoil it.  (wink)


1 1/2 to 2 lbs. white fish, such as cod or haddock
1 Tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup onions, chopped
1 cup bell green pepper, chopped (or a combination of red, yellow & green)
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, drained
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 tsp. basil
1/4 tsp. oregano
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese (optional)

Preheat oven to 400'F.  Spray bottom of a 9x13" baking pan with cooking spray.

In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat and add garlic, peppers and onions; cook on medium for about 2 minutes or until slightly softened.

Add tomatoes and wine; continue to cook for 10 minutes or until liquid has evaporated and leaves a chunky sauce.

Trim fillets by taking off any skin and removing any bones.  (Usually they come trimmed and cleaned from the fish section of your grocery store.)

Place fish fillets in the prepared baking pan in a single layer; sprinkle with lemon juice, then spoon the tomato mixture over the fish; sprinkle with Parmesan, if desired.

Bake, covered, for 15-20 minutes or until fish is opaque all the way through and flakes easily with a fork.

Serve immediately.

Yields: 4 servings

"I will praise the LORD as long as I live; I will sing praises to my God while I have my being." - Psalm 146:2

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Baked Lemon Chicken

A terrific recipe for the whole family!

This is a lovely, quick and easy recipe to make for family dinner or for company.  It's one of those dishes that you can add some of your favorite spices and put your own twist on it too.  

My granddaughter, Andrea, found this recipe, so I want to thank her for sharing it with the family.  We really love it!  The chicken turns out moist and tender, and the lemon flavor with the garlic was great!  


3 Tbsp. butter, melted                                  
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts(I pound them to about 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick.)

Preheat oven to 350'F.  Spray 9x13" baking dish with cooking spray.

In a shallow dish, combine melted butter, lemon juice, minced garlic, salt and pepper.

Pour breadcrumbs into a separate shallow dish.

Dip chicken in butter mixture and coat with breadcrumbs.  Place in the prepared 9x13: baking dish.

Drizzle with any remaining butter mixture.  (This gets thick, and I made a fresh 1/2 recipe of it to drizzle over the chicken, but that's just me. Haha!)

Bake, uncovered at 350'F. for 25-35 minutes, depending on the thickness of the chicken, or until juices run clear.

"I will walk in freedom, for I have sought out your precepts."  Psalm 119-45

Friday, August 5, 2016

Mom's Old-fashioned Pound Cake

Mom's old recipe!

Lately, I've been going through my mom's old wooden recipe box and finding treasures I had forgotten about.  This Pound Cake recipe is one of those treasures!  I can still remember her baking this and my anticipation as I waited for it to come out of the oven.  

It's so easy, too!  Just put all the ingredients in a bowl and blend until smooth, pour into the loaf pan and you're done...let the oven do the rest.  

This cake is delicious with a cup of tea or coffee, or used as the base for a beautiful fruit dessert!  Slice it lengthwise into three sections and you can fill it with cream, mousse, ice cream.  It's just so versatile and with a little imagination you can make it into a very special dessert.


2/3 cup butter                                        
How beautiful is this?

1 1/4 cup sugar
2/3 cup milk
1 tsp. lemon extract*
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
3 eggs

Preheat oven to 300'F.  Grease and flour (or spray) a 9x6x3" loaf pan.

Beat all ingredients together in a bowl until smooth, about 2 minutes.  Pour into prepared loaf pan.

Bake at 300'F. for 55-60 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  

*You can substitute the lemon with vanilla extract, if you prefer a vanilla flavor.

“Faith does not eliminate questions. But faith knows where to take them.” - Elisabeth Elliott