spicy gingerbread

1/2 cup margarine
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup molasses (microwaved honey with a bit of brown sugar)
1 egg yolk
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

In a large bowl, cream together the margarine and sugar until smooth. Stir in molasses and egg yolk. Combine the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and nutmeg; blend into the molasses mixture until smooth. Cover, and chill for at least one hour. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into desired shapes with cookie cutters. Place cookies/shapes 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until firm. Remove from cookie sheets to cool on wire racks. Frost or decorate when cool.

sugar cookies & frosting


1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
3 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt

Mix butter & sugar, then add eggs & vanilla. Combine dry ingredients & add to creamed butter mixture. Mix well. Roll out onto a lightly floured surface (1/8 inch thick) & cut out with cookie cutters. Place on a lightly sprayed sheet & bake at 375 (190C) degrees for 8-9 minutes, being careful not to overcook. Place on rack to cool. This dough freezes well: just wrap tightly in a plastic freezer bag or saran wrap and thaw until soft & roll-able.


1 cup powdered sugar
1 T very soft butter
1 or 2 T milk or water (adjust amount for the consistency you want)
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp peppermint extract (optional)
Food coloring if desired

Mix together well & adjust liquid or powdered sugar if necessary.
Spread onto cooled cookies. Enjoy!

glory to Jess, who is way more creative & hospitable than Martha Stewart.

easy as apple pie!

6 cups green apples, thinly sliced
3/4 cup sugar
1 T butter
1 tsp cinnamon
1 dash nutmeg
1 great pie crust recipe for a 9-inch single crust pie

Prepare your pastry for a two crust (top & bottom) pie. Wash, peel, core & slice apples; measuring about 6 cups. Combine sugar & cinnamon. If your apples are really tart, you can use more sugar. We like our pie a bit less sweet, but its up to you. Stir apples together with sugar & cinnamon, coating the apples well. Arrange apples in layers in your pastry/pie crust. Dot the top of the apples with small pieces of butter or margarine. Cover with top crust, or weave strips (like above picture). Bake on the lowest rack in preheated oven (450F=230C), for 10 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350F (175C) and bake for 30-35 more minutes. Serve warm or cold!

oatmeal peanut butter choc chip cookies!

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 cup sugar

1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/4 cup flour (1/2 white, 1/2 wheat if you prefer)
2 cups rolled oats (oatmeal)
1 cup chocolate chips
Optional: 1/2 cup nuts

Beat peanut butter & butter until creamed together. Mix in sugars, baking powder & soda, eggs & vanilla until combined well. Add flour & oatmeal, and mix again. Add chocolate &/or nuts if you prefer. Drop by tablespoon onto a cookie sheet, and bake at 325F for 10-12 minutes. Cool on a wire rack and enjoy!!

apple cake

2 eggs, beaten
2 cups diced, raw apples (500 ml)

Add & mix:
2 cups* sugar (500 ml) (I used 1.5 cups and it was still sweet, you can also substitute some honey for sugar)
2 tsp cinnamon (10 ml)
1/2 cup oil (120 ml)

Add & mix well:
1 cup nuts, optional (250 ml)
2 cups flour (500 ml)
2 tsp baking soda (10 ml)
1 tsp salt (5 ml)
2 tsp vanilla (10 ml)

Bake in a greased 9x13 pan (23x32 cm) 40-50 minutes at 350 F (180 C).
Top with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting, whipped cream, powdered sugar or Caramel Topping. Yum!
glory to Wycliffe International cookbook!

wheat bread rolls

This batch of rolls wasn't as "wheaty" as I would have liked - but wheat flour here in China changes each time I buy it. My next purchase of wheat flour was much darker. Oh well!

1 ¼ cup water (warm)
2 ½ T oil
2 tsp salt
3 T + 1 tsp sugar
1/3 cup wheat flour (I think you can increase this amount & decrease the amount of white flour)
4 cups white flour
2 tsp yeast

Add wet ingredients first, and then sift dry ingredients together, slowly adding to wet mixture - knead well. Or you can add all ingredients (in this order) into a bread machine (on the dough cycle). Remove dough and shape into small oval-sized rolls. Bake at 375F on a baking sheet for 15-20 minutes depending on desired crustiness. Makes about 10 rolls.
glory to the Avera girls - Vanessa & Scout

pita bread

Soft round bread with a pocket inside! Makes 16 pita pockets! (cut in half)1 cup warm water (110-115 degrees)
1 tablespoon oil
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons dry yeast

Combine first 4 ingredients, then add 1 cup flour + yeast. Mix well. Add 2 cups flour and knead into a soft dough. You can also use a bread machine for this step! Then, Oil the top of the dough & cover while it rises for 1 hour (in a warm place). With a knife cut into 8 equal pieces and roll into balls. On a floured surface, roll into 7+ inch flat circles (not too thin). Set aside & cover with a towel. They will continue to rise! Bake (1-2 at a time) on a wire rack in the middle of the oven (500 degrees) for 3-4 minutes, until puffy and slightly browned. You want to take them out before they get too dry/browned. Remove & cover to soften & cool. Cut in half & fill as desired! (fill with any combo of: meat, cucumbers, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, bell peppers, hummus)

Mrouziya (honey spiced lamb)

2 pounds of lamb, in chunks
2 cups water
2 tsp *Ras El Hanout spice
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup olive oil
2 T smen (aged butter**)
1/2 cup almonds, toasted
1/4 cup raisins

Heat oven to 325F. With your hands, coat the lamb with *Ras El Hanout spice. Place spiced lamb in a 5-quart pot (or deep casserole dish) with a lid. Add water, honey & olive oil, **smen and cover well. Bake until the meat falls off the bones (2-4 hours!) You can't hurry this dish!! Transfer the meat into a new dish and keep warm. Place the casserole dish over med-high heat and skim any fat, then add your raisins. Boil until the raisins are fully cooked (10-12 min). Return the lamb to the stew. Boil for about 2 minutes, until heated thru and sauce is thickened. Serve on a shallow platter, garnished with toasted almonds. Serve with extra sauce on the side, along with warm naan bread, and cooked Saffron rice.
Typically served on Eid - the celebration following Ramadan

*Ras El Hanout
(spice blend)
The name means "top of the shop" or the best combination of spices/dried roots, ground into one powder. You can also toast each ingredient before grinding for a finer texture. If you have a hard time finding any of these ingredients, try searching for a Middle Eastern market. :) Makes about 1/4 cup.

1 tsp Allspice berries, or 1 1/4 tsp ground Allspice
1 whole Nutmeg, or 2 tsp ground Nutmeg
20 threads Spanish Saffron
2 tsp black Peppercorns, or 1 1/2 tsp ground Black Pepper
1 1/2 tsp Blade Mace or ground Mace
1 3-inch Cinnamon stick, or 1 tsp ground Cinnamon
2 tsp Cardamom seeds, or 1 1/2 tsp ground Cardamom
2 two-inch dried Ginger, or 2 tsp ground Ginger

2 tsp Salt
1 two-inch peice dried Tumeric, or 1 tsp ground Tumeric

If using whole spices, put all the ingredients in a non-stick pan over med-high heat and toast, stirring constantly until the mixture emits a pleasant aroma (3-5 min). Remove from heat and cool. This first step is not necessary if using commercially ground spices. Using a mortar & pestle or a spice grinder, grind into a find powder. Sift to remove larger chunks and place in a tightly sealed container for later use.

**Smen (aged butter)
This is similar to Asian ghee: a prized flavoring in Central Asian dishes. It is made from clarified butter, dried herbs and salt. It is placed in small earthenware pots in a cool, dry place until it acquires the smell & consistency of Roquefort cheese. Berber farmers in southern Morocco bury a tightly sealed pot of Smen on the day of a daughter's birth, unearthing it years later to flavor couscous on her wedding day. I have heard you should use it within 6 months tho. You can substitute equal parts of butter & olive oil in place of Smen in a recipe if you prefer. Makes 1+1/2 cups.

1 pound unsalted butter
2 tsp dried oregano
1 T sea salt

In a med saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. Wrap the oregano leaves in a square of cheesecloth and tie with kitchen twine. Set the sachet in the butter. Simmer until butter turns clear golden, and white sediment settles to the bottom (25-30 min). Skim off foam. Discard the oregano sachet. Strain the butter thru fine muslin/cheesecloth once or twice until clear. Transfer to a sterilized jar. Add the salt & mix well. Let stand in a cool place until the butter becomes pungent, 1-2 weeks. Refrigerate after opening.


1/2lb small elbow macaroni (or whatever you can find, in our case!)
3 cups (12 oz) shredded cheddar cheese (extra-sharp is our fave)
1/2 tsp seasoned salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
*1/8 tsp nutmeg
*1 clove garlic, crushed & minced
1+ cup milk

I boil broccoli flowerets with the pasta for the final 4-5 minutes, and add to the casserole for a healthy addition. You can also top with bread crumbs, or crumbled crackers for a crunchy top.

Cook your macaroni according to the package directions, and drain. In a large bowl, combine all other ingredients, and mix well. Pour it all into a greased baking dish (8-9 inch). Cover and bake at 325F for 80 minutes. Uncover, stir & return to over for another 20 minutes until macaroni & cheese is thick. Stir again if desired.

If using a crockpot, cook for 4 hours on low.
For stovetop, pour prepared mixture into a large non-stick skillet and cook (covered) on med heat for 20-30 minutes. Reduce heat to med-low until sauce thickens.
glory to Tammy @ Tammy's Recipes, with some minor additions!

zucchini bread

This bread goes fast in our home! Sometimes its better to double the recipe so you can share with a neighbor, or savor it longer than 1 day!! Hope you enjoy.

3 cups flour
1 tsp of each: salt, baking soda & baking powder
3 tsp cinnamon
3 med sized-eggs
1 cup veggie oil
2 1/4 cups sugar
3 tsp vanilla
2 cups grated zucchini, well drained!
Optional: nuts (walnuts or pecans)!

Grease two loaf pans & preheat the oven to 325F. Sift together flour, salt, baking soda/powder & cinnamon. In a separate bowl, beat together eggs, oil, sugar and vanilla. Combine both mixtures and mix well. Add grated zucchini and stir well. Pour into loaf pans and bake 45-60 minutes. Test with a toothpick or knife to see if its done. Best when warm, buttered and sipped with tea. :)
glory to my sweet friend Jess.

chicken * soup

2 large chicken breasts OR 3 chicken legs, boiled & shredded
3-5 carrots, julienne sliced
1 onion, chopped small
1 squash - sunburst, zucchini (2 if small)
1 T garlic salt OR 2 tsp salt
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp parsley
1/2 tsp basil
1/2 tsp oregano
3 cloves garlic, diced
6 cups chicken stock (if you have it!)
one of these:
*1/2 pkg egg noodles, 1/2 cup rice, 1/2 cup barley (soaked), 2 potatoes (skinned & cubed)
celery (1-2 stalks, chopped)

To create your chicken stock: Boil chicken with onion, garlic and spices for about 45 minutes. Take chicken off bone, cut up vegetables into bite size pieces, put vegetables and *noodles/rice/barley/potatoes into the broth boil 20-30 minutes, put chicken pieces back into broth with veggies. Ready to serve, with bread or biscuits!

glory to Ann, my first mentor at the age of 14


6-10 slices of bread, cubed
1/4 cup butter, melted
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 tsp garlic salt (optional)
1 tsp dried basil (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F (175C). In large saute pan, melt butter over med heat. Add fresh minced garlic and simmer for 1 minute. Add optional spices, and mix well. Add bread cubes and toss to coat. Spread cubes on a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes or until crisp & browned. Check frequently to prevent burning. Let cool. Store croutons in a sealed container or ziploc bag. Serve over soups or salads. Yum!!

fudgy brownies

1/2 cup unsalted butter, cut into small 1/2 T chunks
8 oz. dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
1.5 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt

Preheat over to 350F (175C). Butter & flour an 8" square pan. Melt chocolate & butter in a glass bowl, stirring to combine. You can do this by microwaving the butter & chocolate in 20-second increments, stirring in between until fully melted/mixed. Allow the chocolate & butter to cool - about 10 minutes, then add sugar. Add eggs one at a time*. Stir until smooth before adding next egg. Add vanilla & stir lightly. Fold in the flour and salt. Transfer to pan. Bake 35-45 minutes.*
The brownies are done when a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out with moist crumbs. If the toothpick comes out clean, it is overdone (according to the fudginess of this recipe!). Cool in pan for 15 minutes, or chill in the fridge until they are set. Cut into squares. Yum!!

*Do not vigorously stir at any step, or the batter will incorporate too much air and will not be as fudgy. Aim to combine ingredients well (eggs esp). Fold the flour & salt lightly just until combined.

potato beef stir fry

Not really sure what to call this creation. I ordered a dish like this on the street months ago, and it tasted SO great. I have no idea how it was made - but this is my feeble attempt to re-create something of similar hue/flavor/combination! If you have a suggestion for a better name - please share!!

1/2 kilo beef (you can use other meats too), cubed
2-3 potatoes (washed, peeled & cut into small cubes)
veggie (2-3 carrots or cauliflower or none at all)
oil - 1/3+ cup
4-6 garlic cloves, diced
1/2 cup teriyaki sauce
1-2 T tomato paste
salt to taste (1/2 tsp?)
hot water

Optional: *onions, extra garlic

Heat oil in wok over high heat. Add meat and fry until cooked thru. Add salt & garlic to flavor. *You can add onions here if desired. Add teriyaki sauce and tomato paste and mix well. Add potatoes, veggies and stir well for 5 minutes. Add about 1/4 to 1/2 cup water, and simmer until potatoes are cooked thru. Serve over white/brown rice.

sage turkey burgers

Here are some zesty, quick-fix ground turkey burgers.

3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup buttermilk
1 T finely chopped onion
1.5 tsp rubbed sage
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon dried oregano
1 pound ground turkey (your can use chicken or pork too)

In a bowl, combine the first eight ingredients. Crumble ground turkey over mixture and combine well. Shape into eight 1/2-inch patties. Refrigerate for 1 hour. In a nonstick skillet over medium heat, fry patties for 6-8 minutes on each side or until meat is no longer pink. I think this would work over the barbecue as well. Hope you enjoy!!
glory to Amy, who is a master in the kitchen!

buttermilk biscuits

sift together
2 cups flour (white or wheat)
2.5 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt

with a pastry blender or knives/fork, cut in finely:
1/2 cup shortening or butter

1 cup buttermilk (1 T vinegar + 1 cup milk)

Stir with a fork to make a soft dough. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently 8-10 times. Roll or pat to desired thickness (about 3/4") then cut into biscuits with round cookie cutter, glass or knife. Place on an ungreased baking sheet all together for soft sided biscuits or
about 1" apart for crusty-sided biscuits. Bake 425F for 12-15 minutes.
glory to Amy, mother of three, living in China too!

flour tortillas

4 cups flour
2 heaping teaspoons baking powder
2 tsp salt
4 tsp vegetable oil
1.5-2 cups hot water

In a large bowl mix dry ingredients. Mix in oil, stir well. Gradually add hot water and stir...Add enough water to make a soft and warm dough that is not sticky. knead about 1 min. Divide
into 10-15 balls. Let rest 5 min - roll out and cook in pan on med heat. No oil needed in your pan.
glory to Amy: mother of three in China

banana oatmeal choc.chip cookies

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter/margarine
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1.5 cups mashed bananas

1 cup flour
1/2 tsp soda
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup chocolate chips

cocoa or nuts

Bake 190C (375F) 10-12 minutes. Makes about 2 dozen.


1/2 cup sugar
2 T corn starch
3 T cocoa powder
2.5 cups milk

Cook all ingredients over low heat until thickened stirring constantly - then add 1 tsp vanilla and 1 T margarine (optional). Then remove from heat and allow to cool. Then pour into Popsicle molds and freeze! yum!!

chocolate pudding

1/3 cup sugar
2 T corn starch
2 T cocoa powder
2 cups milk

Optional: 1 tsp vanilla, 1 T margarine

Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan, and simmer over low heat until thickened, stirring constantly with a whisk. Turn off heat and add 1 tsp vanilla and 1 T margarine (optional). Pour into a container (or small cups) and chill. Enjoy with whipped cream or toppings.

no-bake chocolate oatmeal cookies

Boil over med-heat:
1.5 cups sugar
1/3 cup cocoa
1/3 cup butter/margarine
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp salt

Remove from heat, and add:
3 cups oatmeal
1.5 tsp vanilla
nuts, optional

Drop by tablespoons onto waxed paper or spread on a cookie sheet. Refrigerate until hardened & chilled. You can also cut into bars, or eat like a cookie! They are very addicting, and don't require a lot of time.

corn tortilla crepes

Mix together with a whisk
1 cup milk
4 eggs
1/2 box of corn starch (about 8 oz)
1 tsp salt

To this add
1/4 cup plus 2 T+ corn meal/corn flour
1/4 cup of melted butter

Mix well: keep whisking or the corn starch may thicken too much. Pour a small amount into a hot skillet and cook like a crepe, just a few seconds till it bubbles. Cook both sides about 20-30 seconds each. Use as a tortilla and fill with yummy stuff, even enchilada makings. We've used them for Huevos Rancheros, burritos, etc. They are nice & soft. Freezes well or tasty plain (gluten-free!). Enjoy!!
glory to Aunt Gloreen & her yp.wife


This is a very simple way to make your very own beans if you can only find dried beans, or love making things from scratch! It's also a fun activity with young kids, as our girls love to sort & wash the beans, or peel the garlic cloves (I think they like the beans better when they get to help!!).

3-4 cups dried beans, sorted & washed
1-2 T salt
1 onion, chopped fine
6-10 cloves of garlic, chopped
large pressure cooker*
Combine all ingredients in the pressure cooker, and fill 2/3 full with water. Cover & seal. Heat over med heat until pressure is reached. Turn down to simmer for 30-40 minutes. Turn off heat and allow pressure to return back to normal. Open pressure cooker & taste your beans to see if they are soft enough. Some beans require longer if they are bigger in size. If so, continue cooking under pressure for 20-30 more minutes until they are soft. You can eat them as is, or use them to make refried beans, use in Huevos Rancheros, tacos, burritos, quesadillas, nachos, chili, etc.
*Please read the instructions for your pressure cooker, as each can be very different & sometimes dangerous

corn tortillas - GF

every recipe I have TRIED to make gluten-free corn tortillas has made me frustrated because they taste plain, crack easily, and require heaps of patience on my part. This recipe was an experiment, but it worked!! Xanthan gum is not very common, but its so important for this recipe! I hope you find some....
2 cups corn flour (masa harina)
1/4 cup powdered milk
2 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup warm water
1 tsp olive oil
1 egg

Combine dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Add water, egg & oil - mix until it becomes a doughy consistency. Form into a ball, and let stand covered for 30 minutes. You can also wrap it in saran wrap, to keep it moist. Then form into 5-8 balls and press individually between wax paper in a tortilla press. Brown each tortilla in a non-stick skillet (about 1 minute on each side) until lightly browned (no oil needed). Enjoy!!

peanut butter balls - GF

1 cup powdered milk
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup all-natural peanut butter (crunchy or plain)

Optional: (1/4 cup) Rice Krispies, Koala Crunch (chocolate/plain), or any rice-crispy sort of cereal, to add some crunch to the yummy-ness. Also, you could use chocolate for dipping.

Mix powdered milk & honey first. Allow to sit for 5 minutes, and then stir in the peanut butter. Add optional ingredients here. Roll into 1-inch (or smaller) balls, and then roll in powdered milk to make them less sticky. You could dip them in melted chocolate if you wanted a more "candy" type of treat. To do this, just melt chocolate in a double boiler, and dip each ball partly into the chocolate, and chill. Chill the PB balls for at least 30 minutes and enjoy! Our girls would devour these in an hour if we let them. We prefer to savor them.... They are quite filling too. Hope your kids love them too!
glory to Violet McNabb, Justin's grandma - who often made them for him

chicken nuggets - gluten free

this is Alabama meets Gluten-free meets China....2 chicken breasts, boneless/skinless, cubed or sliced
1/2 cup GF flour
1/3 cup corn meal
1 tsp GF baking powder
1 T sugar
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
1 T canola oil
Peanut oil for frying

Cut chicken breasts into 1/2-inch pieces or into thin slices. In a shallow bowl, combine GF flour, corn meal, baking powder and sugar. In a separate bowl, combine egg, milk and canola oil. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients; stirring until well blended. Heat a large, heavy and deep frying pan (we use a wok) over high heat; adding about 1" peanut oil. When oil is hot (375 degrees F.) reduce heat to medium-high. Roll chicken pieces in batter until completely coated. Carefully fry chicken pieces in oil, a few at a time, turning with tongs (we use chopsticks). When chicken nuggets are nicely browned and cooked through, remove to a paper towel. Repeat until all chicken nuggets are cooked. Serve immediately with ketchup or ranch dressing.

Options: If you have any left-over batter, we have used it to coat squash (in sticks) or carrot medallions. The kids will eat most anything that is deep-fried. :)
glory to www.glutenfreeda.com

ice cream in a bag

This is a well-known way to make your own ice cream - without the big machine. The kids love to help too! Your outcome might vary, depending on weather, humidity, etc. Have fun trying out the different flavors and toppings. 1 T sugar
1/2 cup milk or half-n-half or whipping cream
1/4 tsp vanilla (GF)
6 T rock salt
1 pint-size ziploc/plastic bag
1 gallon-size ziploc/plastic bag
ice cubes - 1-2 trays worth

Fill the larger bag half-full of ice, and then add the rock salt. Seal the bag while you prepare the next smaller bag. Put the milk, vanilla and sugar into the small bag - and then seal it well. Place the small bag inside the larger one and seal again carefully. Shake both bags until mixture is ice cream, only about 5 minutes!! You can eat it right out of the bag, or freeze for later enjoyment!!

You can top with nuts, fresh fruit or any favorite topping. You can also double the recipe, or use other containers to make larger amounts (with any seal-able container). I have heard of people using 1 & 3 pound coffee cans, with resealable lids! You can also improvise and use juice in place of milk for a sorbet!! This is how Justin's grandma makes it, I think with Pineapple juice? You could also add cocoa/chocolate syrup too.
glory to Violet McNabb, 93 and still making it!!

peanut butter cup frosting - gluten free!

1 cup smooth peanut butter
4 oz. cream cheese
1/2 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
3 cup confectioner's sugar
1/2 cup (about 6) chocolate covered peanut butter cups, crumbled

Beat first 5 ingredients until smooth and fluffy. Frost cake/cupcakes and sprinkle with pb cups. Refrigerate until its time to eat!

chocolate cake - gluten free!

GF Pantry Chocolate Cake Mix
5 T soft butter
2 large eggs
1/2 tsp GF vanilla
1 cup buttermilk or yogurt

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease & flour cake pan. Beat butter until fluffy, then add cake mix until crumbly. Add eggs, vanilla & beat again. Beat in buttermilk or yogurt. Spoon into prepared pan and bake 40-45 minutes. Cool 10 minutes before removing from pan. Frost & serve! Yields 10 servings. For cupcakes: Fill cupcake holders 3/4 full, and bake for 22-23 minutes. Yum!

Polo - Uyghur rice dish

this is a staple food in Uyghur culture. Uyghur people usually eat Polo a few times each week.
1/2 cup + vegetable oil
2-3 tsp salt
1 pound beef/lamb, cut into 3-4 chunks
5-8 carrots (orange & yellow), sliced into strips
1 medium onion, sliced
5-8 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tomato, diced
3-4 T tomato paste (GF)
3 cups rice, rinsed
3 + cups hot water
more onion
dates, chopped

Prepare all your ingredients first. See picture to know how to cut carrots into thin slices. Then, in a large wok, heat oil on med-high heat. When oil is very hot, add 1 tsp salt, and then add the meat to brown. Cover with lid to prevent splattering. Brown on each side for 3-4 minutes. Add onions & garlic, and stir well. Remove meat (set aside) and add thin carrot slices to onions/garlic. Stir well until coated with oil. Cook for 3 minutes, and add tomato, stir well. Cover & stir every 5 minutes. While simmering, cut the meat into bite-sized chunks. After 10 minutes, add 3-4 T tomato paste, 1-2 tsp salt, and the cut-up meat. Simmer for 5 more minutes and add 2 cups of hot water (add optional items here). Stir and spread carrots/meat out in the wok so that the rice can cook in the middle. Add 3 cups rice, patting it down into the wok (not stirring) so that it soaks up the liquid. Add more water (1-2 cups) until rice is almost immersed. Cover and reduce the heat to med-low. Let simmer for 15-20 minutes, checking to see if more water needs to be added. After 15 minutes, check the rice, and stir a bit if top remains uncooked. Add water if necessary. Stir rice and enjoy!!
glory to Bilqiz, my amazing teacher!

French toast

4 eggs
3/4 cup milk
3 T brown sugar
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla
12 slices of your favorite bread (cinnamon raisin bread is my fave)
1 T ground cinnamon

In a large mixing bowl or flat tupperware container, beat the eggs. Add milk, brown sugar, nutmeg & vanilla; stir well to combine. Soak bread (one slice at a time) in the egg mixture until saturated. Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium high heat. Brown bread on both sides, sprinkle with cinnamon and serve hot. Top with fresh cut fruit, syrup and/or maple syrup.

grandma eggs

This is something my grandma always made for me as a little girl, whenever we went to visit. so forever it has been called, "grandma eggs" even though its a simple egg+toast combo!

1 egg
olive oil
garlic salt
1 slice of toast

First toast the bread, butter and cut into strips, then into bite-sized squares. Put in a bowl. Then, fry the egg, sprinkle with garlic salt, and place it atop the bread. Cut up the egg so the yolk soaks into the toast, and there you have it!! Our girls love it too. You can multiply the recipe, and make more for the entire fam.
glory to my grandma, Irene Webber

sour cream @ home

We love sour cream. We can’t buy sour cream. What we can’t buy, we make.

Method 1
1 cup cream
1 tablespoon cultured buttermilk

In a double boiler bring the fresh cream up to 180 degrees. Cool to room temp in a cold water bath. Add the buttermilk, cover, and let sit at room temp for 24-48 hours. Stir and refrigerate. The batch will keep approximately 3-4 weeks, refrigerated

Method 2
1 cup cream
1 1/2 cups pasteurized whole milk
1/2 cup buttermilk

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl over warm water. Raise the temperature of the mixture (68 degrees to 70 degrees F) and let it stand for 12-24 hours or until it is sufficiently sour and thick enough to cling firmly to a spoon. Keep in the refrigerator until you want to use it. For a richer heavier sour cream combine 2 cups of pasteurized heavy cream with 5 tablespoons of cultured buttermilk and incubate as before

Method 3
1/2 cup COLD real whipping cream (non-sweetened)
1 tsp. white vinegar

Stir together and serve chilled. For better texture refrigerate for 24 hours before serving.

bisquit mix

for 8 cups ready-made mix
2 heaping T + 2 tsp baking powder
1 T + 1 tsp salt
1 T + 1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup sugar (or you can omit the sugar, and add honey when you add wet ingredients later)

to make biscuits, add
1/4 cup oil (per cup of mix)
enough milk to make ingredients moist

Use spoon to make into biscuits. Bake on greased pan at 400F. One cup mix makes about 4 biscuits.
glory to Mari!

apple butter

2 cups unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup honey
1 T + 1 tsp vinegar (apple cider vinegar for gluten-free)
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cloves

Combine ingredients in large greased roast pan. Bake at 350F for 60-75 minutes or until thick. Stir every 20 minutes. Yum!
glory to Mari, fellow sugar-free fiend

mandarin orange salad

1 head leafy lettuce
1 cup chopped celery
2 green onions
1 can mandarin oranges
(or 3 fresh mandarins, each wedge cut in half)

Fry till crisp
almonds, chopped or slivered
3 T sugar

1 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
4 T sugar
4 T vinegar
½ cup salad oil
dash red pepper sauce
1 T parsley

Mix all ingredients and chill. Add dressing and enjoy!
glory to Geri B...hospitality queen!

spinach mushroom salad

1 pound fresh spinach, washed & trimmed
2 hard boiled eggs, chopped
¼ pound fresh mushrooms, trimmed & sliced
10 slices of bacon, crisply fried & crumbled (or use turkey bacon)

1 cup salad oil
½ cup sugar
1/3 cup ketchup
¼ cup red wine vinegar
1 tsp worsteshire sauce
1 tsp salt
½ small onion minced

Top with plain/candied nuts. Serves 6
glory to my aunt Sue

chicken curry

This recipe can be stretched to feed 4-6 people depending on how many veggies you add, and the desired spiciness of your curry. Have fun experimenting with your own flavors, veggies and spices. This is a regular meal in our home!

1/3 to 1/2 cup olive/vegetable oil
1 onion (diced)
5-10 large garlic cloves, diced
ginger (1 whole med-sized root), peeled & diced small
2-4 tomatoes, diced
curry powder (2-4T of your favorite kind) we like MDH!
2-3 chicken breasts, cubed (or you can use beef, lamb, etc)
salt to taste
pepper to taste
2-4 potatoes, peeled & cubed
2-4 carrots, peeled & sliced
boiling water


coconut milk, green onions, cauliflower

You will need one large wok for this dish. Prepare all the ingredients ahead of time, and it will go smoothly. This meal requires constant stirring for the first 30 minutes, and then can simmer for another 20-30. Heat the oil in the wok (med-high heat) - then add the onions, garlic & ginger. Stir & simmer for 5 minutes until the onions are translucent/browned. Add tomatoes & simmer 5 minutes. Add curry & salt & simmer. This will create the base for your curry dish. Add chicken and simmer for another 10 minutes. Add potatoes and stir well until coated with curry sauce. Add carrots and stir well again. Add any other veggies of your choice. Simmer for about 5 minutes stirring constantly, and then add water and/or coconut milk until the potatoes are almost immersed in the wok. Simmer (med-low heat) for about 20-30 more minutes, stirring every 5 minutes to prevent burning. You will know the curry is done if your potatoes are nice and tender. Garnish with cilantro or parsley. Enjoy over white rice!
glory to Rinu & Esther, my Indian friends

hot chocolate mix

3 cups powdered sugar
1 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 cup coffee creamer
1 tsp salt
5 1/3 cups powdered milk

Optional: 1 tsp cinnamon
Mix together and store in an airtight container. Use ¼ cup and add hot water for each mug. Top with marshmallows or whipped cream and enjoy! Serving size: 12

We usually have to weigh the amounts, since they come in different measurements. If you live in a foreign land, you can also use these measurements to
o. You will need 726g Powdered Milk, 453g Cocoa, 453g powdered sugar, 170-226g coffee creamer, 1 tsp cinnamon.

Gluten-free pancakes

1 cup rice flour (or about 2/3 cup rice flour, 1/3 cup soy + corn flours)
1 cup buttermilk (milk with 1.5 T vinegar)
1 T sugar
1 tsp GF baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 eggs
1 T oil
cinnamon, GF vanilla and/or lemon juice to taste

Mix all ingredients thoroughly. Add more milk if batter is too thick.
glory to Dorothy, May 07

Gluten-free cake

GF = gluten free

100 grams sugar (1/2 cup + a little)
100 grams margarine/butter
2 eggs
100 grams tang yuan fen (sticky rice flour) (1/2 cup + 1/3 cup + 1T + 1 tsp + a bit)
1 tsp GF baking powder
any flavoring chosen

cream the sugar & margarine, add egg and then all dry ingredients + flavoring. Pour into greased baking pan. Bake at 177C (350F) for 30 minutes in preheated oven. This makes a good birthday cake. A friend also uses it on top of apples for a hot pudding.

1.5 x recipe =
3/4 cup sugar
3 eggs
150 g margarine/butter
150 g sticky rice flour (1 1/4 cup + 3T)
1 1/2 tsp GF baking powder
glory to Dorothy! May 07

date bars

1 pound dates (cut up)
1 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup water
1 tsp. vanilla

Cook in sauce pan stirring to dissolve sugar. Simmer 1 min. Puree in blender. Cool.

1 ½ cup oatmeal
1 ½ cup flour
1 cup brown sugar
½ tsp baking soda
1 cup butter

Mix ingredients till coarse. Put half in buttered 9x13. Filling on top, then remaining crust. Bake at 350 degrees for 38 minutes.

haroset - Passover side-dish

8-10 large green apples
10-12 oz chopped pecans, almond and/or walnuts
1 ½ cups sweet wine (red)
1 T cinnamon
4 T sugar

Peel, core & coarsely chop apples. Add nuts, wine, cinnamon & sugar. If sweeter taste is desired, add more sugar. Stir and serve.

da-pan-ji: aka "big plate chicken"

1 large chicken (cut down the middle, cut tail & head/neck off, cut off feet and wash well inside – then chop into good sized chunks)
½ cup cooking oil
2 T white sugar
3 tsp. salt
3 large potatoes (peeled, washed & quartered)
garlic cloves (10-15 large ones, smashed & chopped in half)
onion (about ½ an onion, cut into long thin slices)
ginger (about 5 long thin strips)
Chinese bark – not sure what name??
dried red chili peppers (13-20, depending on how spicy you want)
bay leaves – about 5-6
2 Chinese spices (wash & drain): Da Xiang – looks like a dried flower (about 10)
& Hua Jiao (1½ T)
Cilantro - chopped

Large deep pan (wok) with lid
Spatula/Spoon with long handle
Large bowl/plate to serve

Heat oil in the large, deep pan. Add sugar, and stir constantly. Watch the sugar very closely. It will seem to get solid, then turn red & orange. When the sugar begins to bubble almost yellow – add the chicken pieces, while stirring. Stir until coated evenly with the oil/sugar mixture. Add 3 tsp. salt. Fry while stirring for about 15 minutes. Add Chinese spices. Reduce heat to med/high, and stir for 1-2 minutes. Add diced potatoes, and continue to stir. Cook 10 minutes, stirring every minute or so. Add sliced onion, crushed garlic, and ginger strips. Immediately add 4-5 cups water (till chicken & potatoes are almost covered, depending on your skillet/pan/wok), and stir well. Add Chinese bark. Add 13-20 red chili’s, and 5-6 Bay leaves. Simmer for 15-20 minutes until potatoes are cooked thru, stirring occasionally. Top with freshly cut cilantro if you’d like.
Serve over wide egg noodles, or over white rice. Yum!!
glory to Adel, May 06

homemade sherbet

1 ½ cup water, dissolve ½ cup sugar in it (or fructose)
1 ½ cup orange juice
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1 cup crushed pineapple

Mix and freeze till ½ slushy and frozen. That is all – however, if convenient you can beat 1 egg white and blend into partly frozen sherbet. Stir occasionally. You can sweeten more – please your own taste buds!
glory to Grandma Violet

kringla's - Norwegian cookies

1 cup sugar
1 cup whipping cream (unwhipped)
1 cup sour cream
½ tsp salt
1 T vanilla
1 T baking soda
2 T baking powder
3 cups flour

Mix creams with sugar, first with a spoon - then an egg beater…so that sugar is fairly dissolved. Add vanilla. In separate bowl, combine soda, salt, baking powder & flour. Add combined ingredients to sugar/cream mixture. Cover and let set overnight in fridge. Before rolling, drop each small ball of dough in a bowl of flour to coat lightly. Then roll amount to pencil width and shape like a pretzel. Bake @ 450 for 5 minutes –very important to NOT overbake!!

glory to my mom, and all Norwegian peoples.

scalloped potatoes

¼ cup chopped onion
2 T butter
2 T flour
½ tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1 ¼ cups milk
3 medium sized potatoes (peeled & sliced thinly)

Cook onions in butter. Stir in flour, salt and pepper, then add the milk. Cook & stir till bubbly. Remove from heat. Add cheese if desired. Place ½ potatoes in greased 1-quart casserole dish. Use half the sauce to cover, and repeat layering process. Bake covered at 350 for 35 minutes. Serves about 4.
glory to Meagin D.

tuna mac-divine

1 head broccoli (cut into flowerets & blanched)
8 oz cooked macaroni or pasta
2-3 hard-boiled eggs (sliced)
1 can tuna (in water)

Cheese sauce:
1T butter
1-2T flour
1-2 cups milk
1/2-1 cup grated cheese (of your choice)
salt & pepper to taste
: 1/4 cup mayonnaise, 1 clove crushed garlic

Blanche the broccoli & set aside. Boil the pasta (you can hard boil the eggs with the pasta too) and drain. For cheese sauce, you will need to make a simple white sauce with cheese. First, melt butter in sauce pan (over med heat), then add the flour. Stir together with a fork until you get a crumbly mixture (called a Roux). Add milk slowly while continuing to stir with your fork. Make sure the flour gets evenly mixed with the milk. It should get thicker as the milk heats up. Add grated cheese to thicken and add flavor (you can add optional garlic here). Add salt & pepper to taste. Remove from heat. Add optional mayonnaise here. Mix cheese sauce with pasta, tuna, eggs - and pour over broccoli in your casserole dish. Top with "French fried onion rings", bread crumbs, or crushed crackers - whatever you can find! Bake for 20+ minutes at 350 degrees.

glory to my mom!

banana tropical punch

2 cups sugar
3 cups water
2 (12oz) cans of OJ concentrate
1 large can of pineapple juice (46 oz)
½ cup lemon juice
5 ripe bana

Mix all together in a blender (slushy consistency) and freeze in 6 smaller portions (for later use). Pour 6 quarts (total) of ginger ale over the frozen slush. Optional: add 1 can of pina colada mix, put in blender with ice and water – till crushed/blended.
glory to momma McNabb, the amazing punch we had at our wedding (8.4.01)

buttermilk scones

2 cups flour
3 T. sugar
2 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
½ cup cold butter, cut into small pieces
1/3 cup dried cranberries or raisins
1 T. grated orange peel
½ cup buttermilk
1 tsp. sugar
Preheat oven to 375ยบ (180C).

In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, 3 T sugar, baking powder & soda. Add butter; knead with your fingers to form fine crumbs. Stir in cranberries and orange peel (these are optional). Make a deep well in the center of the flour mixture and pour in the buttermilk (buttermilk can be made by mixing 1/2 cup milk with 1 tsp vinegar, and allow to sit for 5 min). Stir with a fork, until the dough holds together.
Pat the dough into a ball and knead on a highly floured board for 5-6 turns. Divide dough into two parts and shape each half into a smooth ball. Flatten each ball slightly into a 5 inch circle, and cut in half. Place the four semi-circles on an un-greased baking sheet, with halves facing each other to form two rounds. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 10 minutes. The scone halves should puff up and touch each other on their cut edges. With a sharp knife, quickly slash a cross ½ inch deep across the top of the scones. Return to oven and bake about 20 minutes longer until golden brown. Enjoy with jam or butter! You can also drizzle with powdered sugar icing (pictured above).
glory to Susan D, one of my fave people

easy applesauce

8-10 sweet flavored apples
1/2 cup water
cinnamon to taste

Peel, core & slice apples. Add water, and cook in a pressure cooker for 20-30 minutes on low heat. Remove from heat and mash (either with a fork, or blend in a food processor for smoother consistency). Add cinnamon to taste. No sugar needed (though you can add some if you want a sweeter taste)!

maple syrup

1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup boiling water
1/2 tsp maple flavored extract
1/2 tsp vanilla

Combine sugars & boiling water in a saucepan over med heat, stirring constantly for 3-5 minutes (or until sugars dissolve). let simmer, while stirring for another minute. turn off the heat, and stir in the maple & vanilla extracts. we store the syrup in a container in the fridge for later usage.
glory to Wycliffe cookbook

basic muffins

1 ¾ cup flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 ¾ tsp baking powder
1 egg + 1 egg yolk beaten
½ cup melted butter
1 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
¼ tsp almond extract
1 cup your choice of fruit

Combine first 3 ingredients, then combine the last 5 ingredients. Add wet ingredients to dry - mix just until moist. Fold in apples, blueberries, nuts, banana or whatever you want (1 cup)

Sprinkle with crumb topping:
3T flour
3T brown sugar
2T soft butter

Bake at 400 F (190 C) for 15-20 minutes!!

glory to Jen Namba! her muffins always turn out better than mine too!


3 cloves garlic – crushed
3 cups cooked garbanzos (soaked overnight with 2T salt, then pressure cooked for 25 min)
2 T tahini/sesame paste
¾-to-1 tsp salt
6 T lemon juice

Optional: (I like all three options!)
cumin or cayenne
parsley or cilantro
2 green onions

Blend in a food processor and enjoy with pita bread!
glory to Kristen McNabb/Ganim, with some extra options

teriyaki marinade

1 cup soy sauce (or tamari sauce)
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
3 T distilled white vinegar
3 T vegetable oil
1/3 cup dried onion flakes
2 tsp garlic powder
1 minced clove of fresh garlic
1 tsp grated fresh ginger

In a medium bowl, mix the soy sauce, water, OJ, sugars, Worcestershire sauce, vinegar, oil, onions, garlic powder, garlic & ginger. Stir together until sugar dissolves. there you have it!

homemade yogurt

This is a really great way to make yogurt! There are endless possibilities of flavors, and you can cut back on the sugar too. After your first batch, you just use a tablespoon of your own homemade yogurt as your starter, instead of store-bought.

4 cups water, divided
1 1/2 T plain yogurt with active cultures (this is your starter)
1 3/4 cups dry milk powder

(you can also use 4 cups whole/non-fat/low-fat milk instead of the water & milk powder, its up to you)

Pour 2 cups of water into a sealable container (1 quart), and stir in the starter-yogurt until completely dissolved. Whisk in powdered milk until completely blended. Fill with remaining water, and stir. Close the lid, and set in a warm place for 12-15 hours. You can use your gas oven (turned off), or a heating pad/in a cupboard (around 110 degrees). Refrigerate & chill before serving. Makes about 4 cups!
glory to many who have gone before me: mom, Scout...and the Mirage Restaurant (my starter)
Yogurt is the result of milk that has fermented and coagulated because it's been invaded by friendly bacteria. This is accomplished naturally by keeping the milk at about 110°F for several hours. The end result is a creamy-textured yogurt with an astringent, slightly tart taste. You can flavor with fresh fruit, added sugar, or any creative addition.

whipped cream

2 cups heavy cream
1 tsp sugar/confectioner's sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Whip the cream in a medium bowl, until you get formed peaks. Then add sugar & vanilla. You will need an electric mixer to get the cream to become stiff. Chill until you are ready to use.
great for pies, yogurt pie, topping for pancakes/waffles....so many things!
glory to?? yikes....not sure who taught me this one

simple graham cracker crust

1 1/2 C finely smashed graham cracker crumbs (I usually mash them in a large ziploc, to keep the mess contained)
1/3 cup white sugar
6 T butter/margarine, melted
1/2 tsp cinnamon (optional - depends on the pie flavor)

Mix together the graham crumbs, sugar, melted butter/margarine & cinnamon until well blended. Press the mixture into an 8-9 inch pie plate. bake @ 375F (190C) for 5-7 minutes, then cool. you can choose to not bake the crust - if so, chill for about an hour.
glory to my mom, and a few adaptations

tom kha khai - boiling ginger chicken soup

½ can coconut milk
3 breasts of chicken
Sweet & sour packet (powder)
Chicken bouillon
4-5 cups water
3-5 cloves of garlic
Onion (about ½)
Lemon grass
Serrano peppers
Green bell peppers
Ginger root
*shrimp or pork – optional

In medium sized wok: bring to boiling, ½ can coconut milk, 2 tsp. sweet & sour powder, and one chicken bouillon cube – till it smells tasty. Add chicken breasts (cubed) and bring back to a boil. Cook thoroughly.
In large pot: begin boiling water – add garlic and onion, salt and lemon grass (cut into ½ inch slices)
When ready: combine in large pot – along with veggies, peppers and ginger root. Simmer and serve! Goes well with white rice!

glory to Master Wee Donchai (& Thailand)
we learned this when he visited in 2003

flour tortillas

4 ½ cups flour
2 ½ tsp salt
2 ½ tsp baking powder
5 Tbsp warm butter
1 2/3 cups warm milk (set out for 20-30 min)

Sift all dry ingredients into a large bowl, then add wet ingredients; mix well. Knead dough with your hands people! Separate into balls, and roll flat on a floured surface. Cook on a flat skillet @ medium heat for about 1 minute on each side. Serve warm! Makes about 12-14 tortillas.
glory to Scout
McNabb 2006 fave recipe

strawberry yogurt pie

1 graham cracker crust
8 oz. carton whipping cream (or make your own)
8 oz. strawberry yogurt
1/4 cup strawberry jam
Fresh strawberries to top

Beat the cream with an electric hand mixer until thick, adding 1 tablespoon of sugar to sweeten. Fold in yogurt and jam until smooth and creamy. Fill the crust and freeze for at least 2 hours. Top with fresh fruit and whip cream, slice and serve! So delicious!
glory to Justin's mom, Rachel - its Justin's fave!
McNabb 2005 fave recipe

spicy Mexican salsa

6 Tomatillo tomatoes (green)
- or -
4 large red tomatoes
(or a combination of the two)
1-2 Jalapeno peppers (spicy)
1 Salerno pepper
2 lg garlic cloves, minced
¼ med onion, chopped
½ cup cilantro, approx.
1 lemon, freshly squeezed
1 T sugar
½ avocado
salt (to taste)

Wash all veggies, and finely chop each ingredient (especially the peppers, garlic, onion and cilantro). To be true to the Mexican culture - we use a molcajete (a mortar & pestle) but you can use a blender or food processor. Grind/blend for 20 seconds (until desired consistency). Strain liquids if desired. Enjoy with your favorite tortilla chips*! Serves about 6.
Justin learned this recipe while living in the mountains of Mexico in 99.
glory to Mexico
McNabb 2004 fave recipe

chinese chicken salad

4 chicken breasts (cubed)
teriyaki sauce
1 head green cabbage (chopped thin)
¼ head red cabbage (chopped thin)
8-10 green onions (chopped)
1 bunch cilantro (chopped)
1 pkg. uncooked ramen noodles (crushed)
1/8 cup sesame seeds
¼ cup chopped peanuts
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup peanut oil
½ cup seasoned rice vinegar
1+ tsp. sugar

Cut the chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces, and fry in a skillet over medium heat till cooked thoroughly. Pour about ¼-½ cup teriyaki sauce* over the chicken for flavor, and continue frying; set aside to cool. Wash & chop the veggies, and combine green & red cabbage, green onions, and cilantro into a large salad bowl. In small skillet fry peanuts, sesame seeds and ramen noodles in a tablespoon of olive oil till lightly browned; set aside. Combine oils & vinegar (in a container with a lid) to create the dressing. Add sugar to taste and shake well. Combine greens, chicken and nutty ramen topping in your large salad bowl. Pour dressing over the finished salad, toss and enjoy! Beware – this salad is addicting! Serves about 6 people.
glory to Diane Syres
McNabb 2003 fave recipe

a few disclaimers...

this is not my own recipe site! i am not a chef or a gourmet guru in the kitchen. i am basically an average stay-at-home mom, seeking to feed my family healthy, well-rounded meals - and do it on a thoughtful budget. many of the recipes i hope to include here are just ones that we love, and that are relatively easy to prepare, and mostly by scratch. i never knew it could be done! so even though these might be basic recipes, maybe it will be somewhat different to the way you are used to preparing meals. maybe not! either way, have fun exploring and experimenting with me!

...and i will always give glory (credit) to the original chef!...or whoever passed it along to me :)


today we bought a bread machine...and its very fun. we have made 2 loaves thus far, and i wonder why i ever bought bread before. its so easy, and the aroma alone is worth the work. then you get to savor the taste afterwards. yummmy!! buying this large appliance was quite the adventure. justin went to a bunch of electronic/kitchen appliance departments and called me everytime he located a breadmaker. I would then look up online the different brand & model to see if we would be able to download the manual in English. none of the models he found were online, and the one brand we did find - was a discontinued model! its funny, but they still carry it here in our remote area of the world! a friend here bought this same machine years ago, and she wrote the company to ask for an English manual. she was sent a photocopy, so she shared it with me! gotta love your friends. justin just made the 2nd loaf himself, so that says a LOT about how easy & scrumptious this bread is (did i mention he got to bargain for it too?).

here's the finished product:

ME; the convenient cook

i grew up on healthy foods, thanks to my beloved mom. she was amazing when it came to serving my brother & i the most natural foods she could find. it wasn't too hard, growing up in Santa Cruz - but i know she sacrificed much of her hard-earned money to create healthy meals. i guess you never really appreciate those kinds of things, until you attempt to do it for your own family (thanks mom!). when we were first married, we made lots of simple meals - trying to learn new recipes along the way. most of my cooking skills consisted of thawing out some meat, adding some spices/pre-made sauce, steaming/stir-frying some veggies, making rice/pasta out of a box (complete with flavors), or the good ol' barbeque! i thought i was an OK cook, but i knew there was more to learn! not until we moved half-way-across-the-planet did i realize how little i knew about cooking. herein lies the journey.