Tag Archives: Cajun mama

5 ingredient white chicken chili

Hey ya’ll!!  It has been a little bit of a chaotic week so I have not posted yet and I apologize BUT I am going to make it up to ya’ll by posting a crazy yummy recipe.  I put this one in my column in Red River Moms a few months back and I have gotten lots of good feedback.  I think ya’ll will like it and best thing is it only requires 5 main ingredients.  You can add the optional toppings but the basic recipe calls for 5 things!  I figured since many of you do not get an issue of Red River Moms, you might not have seen it.  You can always view the issues of Red River Moms online though at http://www.shreveporttimes.com/section/redrivermoms if you want to.  Just a little FYI for you in case you are interested.  But just in case, I am going to post this deliciously easy and real recipe for you here today.  It is a soup recipe.  Ya’ll know I love soup and this one is a WINNER!!! 

5 ingredient White Chicken Chili (I found this at http://www.gimmesomeoven.com)

servings 2-4 

Total cook time 15 minutes (this includes prep)

Ingredients:

6 cups chicken broth (I use reduced sodium)

4 cups shredded chicken (you can use rotisserie or you can bake 3 chicken breasts or about 1 lb. and shred that…either is great)

2 15 oz. cans of Great Northern beans, drained 

2 cups Salsa Verde (she gives you a link to make your own…but I bought mine at Brookshires.  It is near the other picante sauce and salsas…Ethnic foods aisle)

2 tsp. ground cumin 

optional toppings: diced avocados, chopped fresh cilantro, shredded Monterey jack or cheddar cheese, sour cream, crumbled tortilla chips (I made my own and I will tell you how below)

Instructions:

Add chicken broth, shredded chicken, beans, salsa, and cumin to a medium saucepan or small stockpot.  Stir to combine.  Heat over medium high heat until it comes to a boil.  Lower heat and let it come to a simmer, cover.  Let it simmer for at least 5 minutes.  Serve warm with which ever additional toppings you like. 

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So hearty and flavorful…perfect for a chilly fall night

Homemade tortilla strips

Now, this is very simple.  Preheat your oven to about 325 degrees. Get you some corn tortillas.  I take about 5 at a time and cut them longways into strips and then cut the strips in half.   Spray a baking sheet with some cooking spray.  Lay your strips on the baking sheet.  Bake until the strips are crispy.  About 10 minutes give or take.  Remove from oven and let them cool.  Voila!  You made your own tortilla strips!!  Yay you!!!

Cajun Mama’s Creamy Chicken Spaghetti

So first things first.  I have told ya’ll that I am not from Shreveport originally.  I know it seems like those 2 hours North of Alex. would not make that big a difference food wise.  It does.  Chicken spaghetti is  a dish that I personally had not eaten or heard of before I came to Shreveport.  In fact, when my good friend Leia was craving chicken spaghetti during her first pregnancy, I honestly thought she meant spaghetti sauce with chicken pieces in it.  My mom made that when i was growing up.  My daddy loved it.  Spaghetti and meatballs and chicken in it.  So I thought that was what she meant when she said she wanted chicken spaghetti.  I was so wrong.  They were kind about it and thought my naivety was endearing.  So then one day, a sweet dear lady named Mama Kate sent me a local church cookbook and low and behold, it had a recipe for chicken spaghetti in it.  So I made it.  It was good but took a lot of time and at the time I was in college and didn’t have time for that.  Around this time, my mom started making chicken spaghetti and she had her own way (which is usually fantastic and better) and it was so good.  So over the years, my recipe sort of evolved and Big Daddy absolutely loves it.  Good enough of an endorsement for me.  I am quite certain everyone reading this has made chicken spaghetti before, but just in case you haven’t, let me warn you…this is one of those dishes that you will make repeatedly until you are sick of it because it is so good and easy.  My kids love this dish, but not with the Rotel so I always pull some out before I add the mushrooms or Rotel.  I always serve this with garlic bread and a nice big green salad.  MMMMMMMM!!!

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Creamy dreamy chicken spaghetti 

 

Cajun Mama’s Creamy Chicken Spaghetti

Ingredients 

1 package of angel hair spaghetti

2 cans cream of mushroom soup

2 cans cream of chicken soup

1 jar of sliced mushrooms, drained

1 can Rotel tomatoes (I use mild but use the heat you want)

1 16 oz. package of Velveeta (I use the  2 % milk kind)

1 package of boneless chicken thighs, cooked and shredded (you can definitely use a rotisserie chicken if you choose)

Directions

Cook your chicken and shred.  Set aside.  Boil your pasta according to package directions.  Drain.  Pour pasta into a dutch oven.  Pour soups, Rotel, and  mushrooms into the pot.  Cut the velveeta into chunks and add that to the pot.  Now, over low heat, stir this all together.  You will need a strong spoon for this as this concoction is hard to stir until it is well combined.  Be sure to stir frequently as the pasta starts to stick to the bottom.  Continue to stir until the cheese is melted throughout and the pasta is well combined with the soups and cheese.  I like to sprinkle a little kosher salt and cracked black pepper over the finished product before serving.

There is really nothing to it.  Hope you love this dish as much as we do.  It is such a crowd pleaser!

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Me…so excited to get the Pioneer Woman’s new cookbook on the day it was released!  I have no shame.  ha ha

Cajun MAMA side note~That picture is the REAL me.  No makeup.  Hair not straightened.  Dark marks on my skin left from my pregnancies showing.  Totally excited expression and really quite goofy and cheeseball.  Yep that’s me.  I have never been one for pretense and these days even less so.  It takes too much time and energy.  Sure, I love to get dressed up and put on my makeup when I feel like it.  When I do, the only person I am trying to impress is…me.  It makes me feel good and the mood has struck me.  Other than that, no thanks.  I am my own genuine article just like you are.  I embrace her frankly because I do not have the energy to force this into any other than its natural state.   I am a little rough around the edges at times.  I am ok with that.  I would rather be seen that way than anyone ever accuse me of being anything less than real.  In this journey we call life, I find it easiest to love me the way I am.  I cannot be like anyone else.  It is too much trouble.  So I give myself permission to like me just the way I am.  I give you  permission to.  Now…there is a bracelet that my friend tagged me in a picture of that said “hide your crazy”. lol!!  Now, I want that bracelet so I can remind myself to reign myself in when I get a little TOO authentic and real.  But no Kardashian life for me.  I am not polished.  I am not posh.  And seeing the train wreck that is the Kardashians these days, why would anyone want to be that?  Who wants to keep up with the Kardashians?  They can hardly keep up with themselves.  That is a hard lonely life they are leading.  No thanks.  I will keep being the authentic hot mess that I am, cheesing it up in the Barnes and Noble because I got a new cookbook.  There is no glamour in that, but there is peace and contentment.  So be real my friends.  Be you.  Embrace your emotions, your true self.  Love that.  It is perfect as is.

Naughty brownies

Now the original name of these brownies is “slutty” brownies and “lady of the night” brownies.  I am really not sure where that name comes from unless it is the fact that you feel downright bad about yourself for making them let alone eating one.  I didn’t not let such a notion stop me.  I mean…chocolate chip cookie dough, double Stuf oreos and brownies?  Umm…sounds like a dream come true to me. But truthfully, these things are sinful so I can kind of see why such a name.  But for the sake of any aunts, uncles, friends’ parents from elementary school who might follow my blog I am going to call them Naughty brownies.  Also, my 10 year old gets on my Cajun Mama facebook page from time to time and also reads my blog, and I really not ready to answer questions about that name.  And they are naughty, so this name is appropriate.  Anyway, Big Daddy was going to the store this morning to get some stuff for his boat and he asked if I needed anything.  I said yes, 2 packs of double stuf oreos.  He immediately got a worried look on his face and asked if i was ok. He knows that Oreos are my weakness and a bad day could send me into the position.  Hunched over a glass of milk dunking oreo after oreo.  I told him I was fine.  I am making brownies.  He didn’t ask any more questions.  He just went and then came home with a pack of double stuf Oreos and then…gasp a package of Mega stuf Oreos.  Seriously?  Who knew they made those.  Luckily my kids love oreos too, so between putting them in the brownies and my kids’ attacking them like a pack of starved gorillas…no worries about having them around the house.  Ok…I made these brownies once before when I first found them on Pinterest.  I don’t think I cooked them long enough and the batch was too small so I kind of felt meh about them.  That was before Cajun Mama.  I felt like it was my responsibility to try them again and report the results to you all.  So…it was tough but I muddled through.  I took one for the team.  ha ha ha! 🙂  Much better results this time with a few changes to the recipe.

Also, this is NOT my brainchild.  I wish I could claim ownership of such a devilish concoction, but I am not a genius.  i do not know where this originated from but I will give you my take on it and i made some changes so to whomever came up with this recipe…my hat is off to you!!

Naughty Brownies

Ingredients

One recipe of Nestle Toll House cookie dough (off the back of the nestle toll house semi sweet chocolate chips package)

one package of Double Stuf Oreos

One family size package of Betty Crocker chewy brownie mix

Directions

LIne one 13 x 9 baking pan with parchment paper.  Leave some sticking out on each side so you can use it for handles to lift the brownies out the pan later.  Trust me.  Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Make cookie dough according to Nestle Tollhouse directions.  Press cookie dough into pan.  Lay enough Oreos on top of cookie dough to amply cover the cookie dough.  Like this…

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Next, make your brownie batter according to package directions.  Pour brownie batter on top of Oreos.  Make sure you spread it evenly over the Oreos and cookie dough.  Pop your pan in the oven and bake for about 40 minutes.  Check them for doneness and continue to cook in 10 minute increments until done.  You will know they are done when the brownies start to separate from the parchment paper and you don’t see any gooey brownie dough when you look at them.  Mine took about 50 minutes to be done.  I made a bigger batch than what the original called for and they cut much better and more evenly.  Plus more to share.  Win!  This batch turned out perfectly.  I let them cool for about 30 minutes and then I took each end of parchment paper and put that on a cutting board.  I then used my beloved Pampered Chef spatula and cut them into squares while simultaneously shooing little hands away until I was done.  Seriously…little people and big men come out of the woodwork when these are done.  Proceed with caution.  So. devilishly good.  Also these would be precious with the seasonal oreos (thought they will not be double stuf) for a little added color.  Hope you enjoy them.

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Aren’t they lovely?  These taste even better than they look.  Promise 

Cajun MAMA side note…So I woke up too early this morning.  Big Daddy had woken up and then my little bull followed suit.  Little Bull wanted a pot pie from the freezer of all things for breakfast.  So BD heated it up for them.  He had no way of knowing that Cookie loves potpies and i had bought that one for her.  She of course woke up this morning and decided she HAD to have it for breakfast.  That is how I ended up at Walmart at 7 a.m. in the frozen food aisle buying another potpie.  So naturally, me being the talkative Cajun I am even without coffee, I share this with the sweet checkout lady.  She gives me a knowing look and tells me “honey.  stop spoiling them children.  They gonna always expect you to do this stuff for them.” I took her words to heart.  She went on to tell me she knows what she is talking about as a 53 year old experienced mom.  I have no doubt she does.  I also have no doubt I probably go too far to please my kids sometimes.  I find it hard to see the line sometimes.  I often wonder if I am the only one.  Am I too self indulgent?  Then I see someone else doing something for their kids and I realize no…I am a mom.  Moms do those things.  Do our kids take us for granted?  Sure.  They are too young to understand why we do it…they just know we do it.  Was going to WM at 7 a.m. on Saturday morning to replace that potpie too much effort for my child who is already struggling to find her place and identity?  I don’t think so.  I want her to know she is worthwhile.  I want her to feel valued.  It is the same reason we moms and dads do any of the stuff we do.  Because we are laying the foundation for their tomorrow.  Does it ensure their love for the long haul?  Maybe.  I don’t know.  All I know is that I cannot give her everything.  I won’t. I cannot give her a pony.  I cannot order everything she wants from the PB Teen catalog.  Even if we could afford it, I would not.  That is not realistic.  I am limiting what Santa brings this year because all that excess is unnecessary and eventually setting me up for having to give more and more.  But I CAN go replace a potpie that was her’s and that I bought because she loves them that got eaten.  I can do that.  I try hard to live my life doing what I can with what I have where I am.  That is all I can do.  Same reason on Saturday when I am too tired to really care, I make trashy brownies, cajun bean and ham soup, a cheese dip for the game.  If it is the small things that become the big things, then I think I am going to make it.   We all will.  Those things I can do.  ~AMB

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Cajun Mama’s Candied Pickles

If someone had told me a few months ago that I would be writing about the awesomeness of pickles…I would have called them crazy.  I mean, what kind of loon writes about pickles?  A pickle freak?  This weekend we went up to my inlaw’s lodge for a little R&R.  Much needed I can say that.  It was wonderful as always with an added twist.  Pickles my friends.  Yes, pickles.  Not just any pickles.  Sweet candied pickles with just enough heat to make them interesting.  Like me.  ha ha ha!!  Apparently all friends and family and lodgers know about these pickles except me.  Not sure what the deal was or if I have been purposely left out of the pickle loop (I am looking at you Debby!!  :)) or maybe because in the past I was pregnant so much I ignored pickles for everyone’s sake??  I really don’t know.  What matters is that I know now.  And they have been coined Cajun Mama’s Candied Pickles.  And a star is born.  I thought about keeping this recipe to myself.  But my sweet mother in law was so kind to share with me and I know the right thing is to share with my friends.  Now this recipe makes a huge batch of pickles but remember my mother in law runs a lodge and part of that is cooking meals and she serves these bad boys with supper every night.  I made the big batch recipe because I plan on sending samples to different friends just to get feedback.  And to get people hooked.  Mwahhahahahaha! (that’s my evil laugh if you don’t know).  I am sure you can cut the recipe in half if you want to, but truthfully the pickles last for a long time in the fridge so just make the whole batch.  Trust me, these pickles will be your new addiction.  We had them last night with our chicken and dumplings, purple hulls and cornbread.  Went just fine believe me.  

Cajun Mama’s Candied Pickles

Ingredients

1 gallon jug of hamburger slices (pickles)

6 tsp. garlic powder with parsley flakes

6 ounces of Louisiana hot sauce

4 pounds of sugar (yes, 4 pounds. Hence the name candied…)

Directions

Drain the pickles in a big colander.  No need to save the juice, but you do need to save the jar.  In a huge bowl, add your sugar (all 4 pounds…go on.  Just do it.  Yes, its so bad but so good), hot sauce,  and garlic powder.  My mother in law (aka Deb as I will refer to her from here on out) said to just stir it all up by hand.  I will warn you that it gets very sticky.  Push through this.  Just get it the sugar mixture mixed up a little.  Add in some pickles and  then mix by hand.  Add more pickles and continue to mix by hand until all of the pickles are mixed in.  Get those pickles in that juice friends.  Try to not lick your hands…but you will want to.  The juice is addictive.  

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Now what I did was just cover my big silver bowl well with saran wrap and store them in our outside fridge over night.  I had a rough evening last night and ended up being kind of bossy to Big Daddy and made him stir the pickles a few times in the evening. Then this morning, I transferred the pickles and that yummy juice back to the big jar.  

 Ok, ok…truth…I was more than a little bossy.  I would have given Hitler a run for his money.  As a Cajun MAMA side note let me give ya’ll a good piece of advice.  Don’t try to do it all.  You can not be it all to everyone.  You cannot push yourself until there is no more.  I mean you can, but you will eventually be setting yourself up for disaster.  As a stay at home mom, you would think I would have plenty of time to get everything done…you would be wrong.  As moms and dads, there is only so much of us to go around.  Heck as friends, daughters, sons, cousins, siblings…whatever your role…there is only so much of you to go around.  I know better and still yesterday I fell prey to the “just a little more”  mentally.  Everyone in my household lost with me in that state of mind.  I never sat down, did not enjoy my family, turned into a screaming frustrated banshee by 6 p.m. and was just in general ticked off.  That is no way to live.  Sure, life with kids, 4 kids, however many you have, 2 dogs and a cat and a husband…homework, suppertime, bath time (aka the Shamu halftime show in our house…geez Louise they make a mess), life is chaotic and overwhelming.  But when I try to throw in a bunch of extra stuff…I start to backslide.  Maybe it is just me.  I don’t know.  I just know that I should have just left it at making supper and making pickles.  The pickles turned out fabulous.  I am eating some as I type.  These computer keys are getting sticky.  🙂

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Love these pickles!!!!  

 

Slowcooker Caramel Apple Cider

Holy cow friends, this is one delicious recipe.  I have had this one for a while, just waiting for semi fall like weather to get here.  I needed to get my recipes turned into my editor for my Red River Moms column and since we are working on the November issue, I figured it was a perfect time to try it to test it out for my column.  Well I was not disappointed.  So. dang. good.  While it is cooking, it makes the whole house smell so inviting and tastes like Fall in a mug.  It is a copy cat Starbucks ecipe that I came across on Pinterest and I thought it sounded yummy.  I have never ordered it at Starbucks and actually  just noticed it for the first time on the menu the other day.  First sip and I was hooked!!  It warms in the crock pot making it fuss free to boot!!

You will need a small crock pot for this.  I used my 4.5 quart and it was a little too big.  It still worked fine though so if that is what you have you can use it and if you are making it for Halloween night or for guests arriving on a (hopefully) chilly Thanksgiving morning, this could and should be doubled and the 4.5 quart size would actually be perfect.

Slowcooker Caramel Apple Cider (adapted from crockpot 365 blog) 

Serves 4 but can easily be doubled

4 cups apple cider

3 Tablespoons caramel syrup (the ice cream topping…like Smuckers)

1/2 Tablespoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

whipped cream in the can for topping and extra caramel syrup for drizzling

Directions

In a 2 quart slow cooker, combine all ingredients except whipped cream.  Whisk all ingredients together until good and combined.  “Cook” on low for around 4 hours.  Ladle into mugs and top with a good dollop of whipped cream and drizzle a little caramel syrup on top for good measure.  Now…call me crazy…but next time I am going to sprinkle a little fleur de sel (flaky salt) on top.  Because I am a sucker for salted caramel anything.

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Fall in a mug my friends!!!

Crock-Pot Creamy Cheesy Potato Soup

Well the crock pot frenzy continues over here in Cajun Mama’s kitchen.  Fall is in the air, the windows are open, breeze is flowing in, I have a sinus headache and the circle of life in the South continues.  I am hoping that you read my post from yesterday about it being crockpot week on cajun mama.  If not, just scroll on down and read that post.  Now, I don’t have a picture of this already prepared as it is currently in the process of cooking, so I apologize.  On the flip side, I am ahead of the game which is a good feeling!  Also, this is my first time to try this recipe but really…how bad can it be?  No, it is not the ultimate potato soup.  I found quite a few potato soup recipes that I would have rather tried but this one definitely caught my eye and the reviews were great.  The difference between this one and the others is that this one is made in the slow cooker and requires almost no prep work.  This week is about convenience and saving time.  This one qualifies.  I hope we all just love it and it becomes a keeper.  Only time will tell or approximately 6 hours on low.  Ha ha!!!  As a side note~today has been what I call a shady Tuesday.  You think Tuesday would be great because Monday has the rep for being “the bad day”.  Shady Tuesdays are like that.  Bad Tuesdays.  Tuesdays are given far too much credit as far as I am concerned.  One thing that has given me a little smile and sense of comfort as I clean bright yellow laffy taffy out of the carpet is that I have something yummy (I hope) in the slow cooker.  One less thing to worry about.  Now I will get the rolls rising and I will be smiling big time. (um…no not from scratch?  don’t ya’ll know me at ALL?  I mean that frozen dough.  Defrost and then rise.) Take that Tuesday!!!

Crock-Pot Creamy Cheesy Potato Soup ( slightly adapted from Sprinkle Joy blog)

1 bag  of Ore-Ida southern style diced potatoes (hasbrowns)

32 oz. (one box) of chicken broth (reduced sodium is what I use)

1 can of cream of chicken soup

1/2 cup of onion, chopped

1/4 tsp. group black peper

1 8 oz package of cream cheese (1/3 less fat kind or the regular because they melt better than fat free)

optional toppings:  crumbled bacon, shredded cheddar, sour cream, green onions

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This is at the beginning of the cooking process!

Very Uncomplicated Directions:

Dump all of the ingredients except for the cream cheese into your slow cooker.  Crock Pot.  What have you.  Give it a good stir and then put the lid on.  Let it cook for 6-7 hours.  Add the cream cheese and stir.  Put lid back on and let it cook for another hour or until cream cheese is melted and then stir to combine.  Now, I have a crock pot with a timer function.  I set it for 6 hours and let it go.  This is wonderful feature because you don’t have to worry about getting home to shut it off on time.  A great idea for my friends with jobs outside of the home!!  Check the seasoning if you desire and add salt and pepper to your liking.  Ladle soup into bowls and then add optional toppings if you want them.  Enjoy!!!  And relish in the fact that you are so AWESOME that you are able to prepare supper while you are not even in the kitchen.  That is multi-tasking at its very finest.  I am woman (or man)!  Hear me ROAR!!!

Of course once my family and I try this soup, I will come back and add some additional comments depending on how we like it and what may need a little tweaking.  Thanks for reading.  Drop me some comments if you want.  I would love to hear from ya’ll!!!!

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Heaven in a bowl ya’ll!  mmmmmmmm (that is my final verdict. mmmmm)

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.

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

Olive Cheese Bread (from Pioneer Woman’s cookbook)

Makes 8 servings

Ingredients

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.

Cookie dough brownie bombs

Ok so I am not usually this quick to post a recipe but the reaction to the picture of the cookie dough brownie bombs was so crazy, I thought well I best get this post up or these people are going to beat me to death with a wooden spoon.  So here I am, Friday night, writing about these fabulous things.  Now, I will be straight up and say these are not my brain child.  A woman named Hayley from The Domestic Rebel, is the amazing genius behind these little pieces of heaven.  All hail the queen.  She is my hero.  You know how sometimes you see a recipe on Pinterest and get all worked up because it looks so good and then you make the recipe only to be disappointed?  Yeah, I kind of wish I could say this but it is so not the case.  These babies are even more delicious than you could begin to imagine.

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They taste even better than they look…can you imagine?  You ready to make up a batch of these beauties?

Ok let’s get started.  You are so close to chocolate heaven.

Cookie Dough Brownie Bombs (brainchild of Hayley Parker of The Domestic Rebel)

Ingredients:

3/4 cup butter, softened (this is a stick and a half of butter.  I use the real stuff)

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup white sugar

2 T. whole milk

1 tsp. vanilla extract

2 cups all purpose flour

pinch of kosher salt

2 cups mini chocolate chips, divided

1 pkg. fudge brownie mix, baked and cooled

1 pkg. chocolate Candiquik or chocolate almond bark

Instructions aka your undoing 

Ok…I was so excited to be finally making a batch of these that my cooking ADD got in my way.  So I will make it easier for you and tell you what to do in an exact order.  First, bake your brownies according to the directions on the box.  You want fudge like brownies, not cake like brownies so make sure you see  to this.  I would use a family size box of brownies and bake them in a 9 x 13 pan. Remove them from the oven when done and set aside to cool

Ok after you have your brownies baking, start making your cookie dough.  Using a stand or hand mixer, cream together the butter and sugars.  Then add in the vanilla and milk.  Mix that in nicely.  Now add your salt and gradually beat in the flour.  Now mix in 1 cup of the mini chocolate chips.  Now, you are going to make the cookie balls.  You want to take about 1 scant tablespoon of dough and roll it into a ball.  Take a measuring tablespoon and barely fill it.  You will get a general idea of what size they will be and make them as uniform as possible.  I laid a silicon baking mat on a 13 x 18 cookie sheet and put my cookie balls on there, but you can also use foil or parchment paper.  It will look like this when you are done.  Now take the cookie sheet and slide it into the freezer for about 30 minutes.

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If you don’t have a wide enough freezer for that big of a cookie sheet, just use 2 smaller cookie sheets.  No biggie.

Ok now once the cookie balls are frozen and your brownies are cooled, you are ready for step two.  Cut your brownies into 1 inch squares.  You don’t want them much bigger because you will be flattening them out and wrapping the brownie around the frozen cookie ball.  Mine were too big at first and they looked like cookie dough brownie monstrosities.  Trust me.  Ok so take each 1 inch square of brownie and flatten it between your hands.  Now gently roll the brownie around the frozen cookie ball.  It will seem strange at first but you will get the hang of it.  Don’t worry about making it perfect.  Remember this will be coated with candiquik and they are not meant to look perfect.  This is how it will look…photo (7)

And then continue to work the dough around the cookie ball until it is as covered in brownie dough as possible.  The brownie dough will become more pliable as you continue to work it around the cookie ball.

See…photo (4)

That is how it will end up looking all the way around.  Lay them back down on the silicone baking mat/foil/parchment paper cookie sheet.

Now, you want to put the brownie covered cookie balls back into the freezer for about 45 minutes to an hour.  Calm down, the time the will pass quickly.  You are so close my friend.  So close.  And there will be some left over cookie dough balls…so nibble on that to get your sugar fix.  You can do this.

Ok now when you are about to pull the brownie covered cookie dough balls from the freezer, melt your chocolate Candiquik according to package directions.  This is much easier and involves less clean up than if you melt chocolate almond bark in a double boiler or a pot, but if that is what you feel more comfortable doing than feel free.  Knock yourself out.  I am assuming if you are following my blog you are like minded and think “ain’t nobody got time for that!” but we still love you and you are still welcome here.  🙂  Alright, compose yourself and pull the balls from the freezer.   You will need a large piece of parchment paper at this point.   Now using a fork, roll each brownie covered cookie dough ball around in the chocolate Candiquik until it is well coated.  Let the excess drip off and then put it on the parchment paper.  Sprinkle some of the remaining chocolate chips over the top of the chocolate covered cookie dough ball.  And let it sit there will you do the same thing to the remaining brownie covered cookie dough balls.  Get ready to slap little (and big) hands away because husbands and children will be begging you for just one.  This will make about 18 cookie dough balls, maybe more depending how big you make your  cookie dough balls.  Also, it depends how many brownie squares you cut your brownies into.  But about 15-18 is what you can expect if you follow these directions.  Give or take a few.  Ok, after you are done rolling all of the balls in the chocolate and have sprinkled them with chocolate chips they will look like this…IMG_6773.

 

Wipe your face…you’re drooling.  And when you bite into them, they will look like this…598850_535987716481800_1543053785_n.

You’re welcome.  Enjoy your Saturday!!!  Let me know how you and your family like them.  Or love them.

 

White Chicken Enchiladas

So a while back, there was this recipe floating around Facebook.  Everyone was sharing it and commenting on it.  I prefer not to comment, I just prefer to cook it.  And I did.  This is THE white chicken enchilada recipe to beat all white chicken enchilada recipes.  They are so fabulous.  They are so easy.  That makes them Cajun mama style.  If it is easy to yield delicious results, sign this girl up!!!  I am pretty sure you feel the same way so I wanted to share.  I have made them for several friends, and they all loved them just the same.  My mother in law also loved them.  And so did my father in law.  That my dear friends, says it all.  I am not saying that they are hard to please, but they are hard to impress.  And they were impressed.  Especially my one heck of a cook mother in law.  She runs a lodge in Arkansas and she said she wanted to cook them for her hunters.  That is all the compliment I need!!!  These are really delicious and if you are craving Mexican but don’t feel like spending the money (for us it means taking 6 people to dinner…4 of them being kids!) or just don’t feel like going out…this is a definite alternative.  So give them a try and let me know what you think!

White Chicken Enchiladas (adapted from Witchin’ in the Kitchen food blog)

What you will need aka Ingredients:

10 soft taco size flour tortillas (I love the mission bell soft and fluffy ones)

2 cups cooked shredded chicken (you can use rotisserie chicken or bake or boil 2  seasoned chicken breasts until done throughout and then shred them)

2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided

3 T. real butter

3 T. flour

2 cups chicken broth

1 cup sour cream

1 4 oz. can diced green chilies

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 9 x 13 baking dish with cooking spray.

Mix your shredded chicken and 1 cup of the cheese.  Spread about 1/4 cup of the chicken/cheese mixture on each tortilla.  Roll up and place seam side down in prepared baking dish.

In a medium size saucepan, melt butter.  Whisk in flour and cook for a minute.  It will be quite think like peanut butter.  That is what you want.  Now whisk in broth slowly and stir with whisk until smooth.  Continue to whisk over medium heat until thick and bubbly.  Stir in sour cream and green chilies.  You don’t want to bring mixture to a boil because it could scorch and stick and the sour cream could curdle.  Nobody wants that.

Pour thickened mixture over your pan of enchiladas.  Top with remaining 1 cup of cheese.  Bake for 20-25 minutes  at 350 degrees and then switch broiler on hi and cook them for about 3 minutes or until cheese is good and bubbly and there is a little brown on the cheese.  YUM!!!!!!!

I serve this dish with cilantro lime rice you can find in the Mexican food aisle at Target.  It is Archer Farms I believe.  Also, if you love a side of beans, I use Frijoles Mexicana from Bush’s beans.  It is a new line they have and they are in the bean aisle of many supermarkets.  (kroger and Wal-mart carry them here).  Hope you enjoy!  Ole!

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Perfect Iced Coffee

I love coffee.  Love, love, love it.  To know me is to know I love coffee.  The words ‘coffee lover’ will be written in my eulogy.  I am defined by my love of coffee.  See what i mean…I am little obsessed.  When my son was 3, we would go through the Starbucks drive thru and he would be able to say my order…”one tall bold cup with 2 splendas and half and half”.  yep, I have apparently brainwashed my kids.  Oops!  There is just something about that warm mug full of that precious brown liquid in your hands.  When I see someone with a cup of coffee in the carpool line or on TV, I admit I feel a little jealous.  I was watching Pioneer Woman on Food Network the other day and in this episode she makes iced coffee.  I was intrigued.  Not so much with the fact that she was making iced coffee, but more intrigued with HOW she was making it. She mentions in the episode that iced coffee tends to be watered down when you make it yourself and how her method changes that.  So I figured in the interest of my blog, in the interest of those who might like iced coffee and want a foolproof method…I would give it a go.  For all of you.  For research.  Just so we are clear.  Ha Ha!!  I really didn’t have high hopes, but I was amazed.  The stuff is awesome.  I am sitting here as I type with a lovely tumbler of iced cold coffee and I am not missing my warm mug much at all.  So if you love coffee, especially if you love iced coffee, you should give her recipe a whirl.

Perfect Iced Coffee (from the Pioneer Woman)

1 pound ground coffee (a good rich roast)

8 quarts of cold water

milk or half-and-half (nice enough splash to change the color to that beautiful iced coffee color)

sweetened condensed milk (if you are feeling super indulgent)

OR a few packets of your favorite sweetener, but I used good ole pure cane sugar because Pappaw always swore it dissolved better and as usual, he was right

Place the ground coffee into a large container

Pour in 8 quarts cold water

Give it a good stir to make sure you wet all the coffee grounds

Place the lid on the container and let it sit on the counter at room temperature for a half a day or a full 24 hours (I let mine sit for 24 hours and it was perfect)

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Excuse my little helper’s hand in the picture…I needed some backup.

Lay some cheesecloth in a fine mesh strainer.  Slowly pour the coffee mixture through the strainer and into a clean container.  

After you have poured most of the liquid out, gently press the grounds with a spoon to make sure you get all of that lovely coffee out and then discard the cheesecloth with the grounds inside.  I will forewarn you, this is messy.  We used the leftover grounds in our garden…just FYI.

Chill your pitcher of coffee in the fridge.

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Pour the coffee into a glass filled with ice.

Splash in your milk or half-and-half 

Add your sweetened condensed milk or sugar or sweetener and then give it a quick stir.

Prepare yourself for iced coffee nirvana.  To fall in love with iced coffee. To be a changed person.

ImageAhhh!!!  That picture just makes me happy.