Category Archives: breads

Creamy artichoke bruschetta and Louisiana Friday night around here

First off…TGIF ya’ll. Thank God it’s Friday!!! It seems each week I am increasingly eager to get to Friday. There is just something about Friday. Today has been a tad bit gloomy and overcast. It has rained some with a little bit of sunshine mixed in. It’s been a busy week for us and I am just ready for whatever downtime I can get. Trust me, my expectations are low. I am nothing if not realistic. But the weekends have to bring some relief from the harried pace our weeks seem to take on, right? Just nod and back away slowly friends. There is something about Friday, isn’t there? Makes you want to party, celebrate, bow to the weekend Gods. And celebrate we shall. Today, I picked up 7 kids in the carpool line. Yeah…7. It was like trying to fit clowns into a clown car. My life is literally comparable to a circus and I am the ringmaster. It’s an incredibly funny and fitting comparison. So I loaded up my mini van aka swagger wagon with kiddos and backpacks and I toted them home. And then I decided since it was a Friday during Lent, it was overcast and we had a house full of kids that I needed to whip up something creamy and meatless and uber fantastic. That makes total sense, right? Exactly. This creamy artichoke bruschetta recipe that I found on fit that bill. Not only was it a cinch to whip up, it was a hit amongst my fellow circus people. They enjoyed it. The flavors just explode in your mouth. The creamy texture of the topping mixed with the crispness of the bread is simply heaven. It’s a perfect Friday night treat that lets you know the weekend has arrived…pop the top on that Angry Orchard Apple ginger beer or you know…whatever beverage you want.(clears throat) I just chose a beverage at random. Lol. This appetizer, that can totally hold its own as a meal in my book, is a perfect little treat to celebrate the weekend. It’s good to savor that. Hold on to the weekend and make it count ya’ll.

party like its Mardi Gras ya’ll!! That is how we roll in our circus.

Creamy Artichoke Bruschetta

serves about 10

stuff you need~

1 load French bread, cut into slices
Olive oil
2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup sour cream
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 (14 ounce) can marinated artichoke hearts, chopped
1/2 cup grated Parmesan (aka what we call shaky cheese…idk)
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1 tablespoon parsley flakes

what to do with the stuff~

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place your bread slices on a foil lined baking sheet. Brush with olive oil.


Bake in the preheated oven for about 8-10 minutes or until bread is nice and crispy.

Meanwhile, mix together all of the ingredients except the mozzarella in your standing mixer or with an electric mixer.


Spread a generous amount of this mixture over each piece of toasted bread.


Sprinkle the mozzarella cheese over each piece of toast. Pop it into the oven for about 15- 20 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and has little browned spots on it. So seriously devilishly delicious. It’s a party for your mouth ya’ll.

my lovely taste testers approve and rate it totes delish.

you want a piece don’t you?


Alayna’s best ever cornbread

I could give you a very brief synopsis here about this chick named Alayna who gave me a cornbread recipe that is to die for. That would be the abbreviated version. Y’all know that abbreviated it not really my thang so here goes. Alayna is one of the wittiest, most clever, funniest and most loyal friends a girl could have. Now, back when our girls started preschool together when they were 4, I was not so sure. Saw her in the target parking lot one day (where I see and meet most people) and she looked at me like I had 2 heads when all of my circus people start climbing out the suburban. She made some (witty I am sure) remark about “all my kiddos” and it was after school and I am sure my humor was low at the time. But Alayna is a tell it like it is type of gal. She will not steer you wrong and will tell you just how it is. Kind of…wait a second…hold up…like me. We are so much alike, which is kind of good and kind of not good, depending on the day. Now she says “cue the circus music!” when we arrive anywhere. She helps me to take it all in stride. I sure do love her. Tried and true, wonderful in every way…a lot like this cornbread recipe. She says she and her hubby, John, found this recipe somewhere and then perfected it over time. Oh I am gonna tell you…as Alayna is fond of saying…that’s what she said. They have tweaked it to the ultimate cornbread perfection. My country boy, I mean man, LOVES this cornbread with everything. Chicken and dumplings, Lima beans, red beans, chili, any kind of soup. And with fall around the corner and all those yummy gumbos and stews to be made you will be set with Alayna’s cornbread recipe in your arsenal. That’s right you are cornbread slinging, soup making Cajun mama (or daddy!). So when you are ready to try THE best cornbread recipe, the last you will need as far as I am concerned…make this one. Love you Layner! Thanks for the good cornbread recipe and even better friendship!!~AMB

I love her a bunch

our kiddos dig one another too

Alayna’s Best Ever Cornbread

Makes 1 large skillet of cornbread

Stuff you need~

1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sugar
3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup milk
1 egg, slightly beaten
1/3 vegetable oil (I use canola)

What to do with the stuff~

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 9 x 9 glass dish or a cast iron skillet with unsalted butter (if you have it, or spray it with cooking spray or use salted butter…Alayna would not want me fussing up recipe).

In a large mixing bowl, pour in flour, cornmeal, salt, sugar, and baking powder and kind of combine with a fork. Just mix it all together. Next, whisk in the egg, stir. Whisk in milk and oil. Whisk whisk until just combined. Pour into greased skillet or dish. Bake for about 30 minutes or until done in the center and golden brown on top. Yummy!!! Oh and don’t forget the butter. Oh my!!!
*let me add that some of this leftover cornbread with some ice cold milk poured over it in a bowl makes some excellent cush cush. Just saying!

Olive Cheese Bread

I love the Pioneer Woman aka Ree Drummond.  I have been following her since way back when.  Before she was famous.  When her cookbook cost like 10 bucks on amazon.  Before she wrote that cookbook.  I think she is amazingly talented and feel a kindred spirit with her.  So it is not surprising that I make many of her recipes.  And this is one of her’s.  Olive Cheese Bread.   Now I LOVE olives.  Black olives, green olives, any kind of olives.  Always have.  So of course I had to try this recipe when I came across it in her first cookbook, Recipes From an Accidental Country Girl.   It is a little bit like a muffaletta, but without the meat.  It is buttery, cheesy perfection that is just salty enough.  It is easy and makes a good bit and can be served as an appetizer, a side, a snack…It is extremely versatile.  It is delicious hot and not bad cold.  It is all those things you want it to be.  It aims to please.  And it will.  So grab the minimal ingredients this recipe requires and do the minimal work to make it and sink your teeth into this ooey, gooey, cheesy deliciousness tonight.


You ready?  I thought so.  Make it.  You know you want to.

Olive Cheese Bread (from Pioneer Woman’s cookbook)

Makes 8 servings


1 stick of butter, softened

1 lb. Monterey Jack cheese, shredded

1 can pimiento stuffed olives (6.5 oz.), drained and coarsely chopped

1 can black olives (14.5 oz.) drained and coarsely chopped

2 green onions, sliced

1/2 cup mayo (she insists you must use the real stuff, and I do…I actually I have started using Duke’s mayo and it is the BEST as far as mayo goes, in my very humble opinion.)

1 loaf of crusty french bread, sliced in half horizontally

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Combine the softened butter, the shredded cheese, the black and green olives (PW says to give them a rough chop…this means not super finely chopped, but just enough to break them into smaller pieces than whole.  It’s not an exact art, so don’t stress.) Now stir in the mayo and green onions and give it a good stir to combine well.  Spread across both sides of the bread.  Just slather it all over that bread.

Now put the bread on a large baking or cookie sheet.  Slide the sheet into your preheated oven.  Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until the cheesy olive mixture is all bubbly.  Pull it out of the oven.  Resist the urge to tear a piece off of the load like a ravenous dog because it’s super hot at this point.  I speak from er…experience.   Slice into about 4 inch wide slices.  Serve.