Tag Archives: cheese

Silk Dyed Eggs and Sausage Pomodoro Brunch Bake


We made Breakfast with Samantha today 🙂 All the way from West Palm Beach. Technology is great, especially when a love one lives so far away.

This recipe was in the News Democrat this week. They always hassle me when I try a new egg casserole, because they love my Mom’s Breakfast Casserole. This is totally different from hers, Mark said he loved the tomatoes in it.Please make sure to see my notes on ingredients.

Sausage-Pomodoro Brunch Bake

  • 1 12-ounce package bulk reduced-fat pork breakfast sausage
  • 1/3 cup refrigerated basil pesto
  • 1 can Pillsbury refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
  • 1 14.5-ounce can Muir Glen organic diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese (1½ ounce)
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (4 ounces)
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 3 tablespoons shredded fresh basil leaves

Heat oven to 375degrees. In 10-inch nonstick skillet, cook sausage 6 to 8 minutes over medium heat or until no longer pink, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Stir in pesto. Set aside to cool.  Unroll crescent dough into 13-by-9-inch glass baking dish. Press dough in bottom and ½ inch up sides. Press perforations to seal. Spoon sausage into dough-lined dish. Sprinkle tomatoes and feta cheese over sausage. Top with mozzarella cheese.  In medium bowl, beat eggs and milk with wire whisk until well-blended. Pour egg mixture evenly over ingredients in dish.  Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until dough is golden brown and knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes. Sprinkle with fresh basil.
Yield: Serves 8.

NOTES: I used Italian sausage and used around 1 3/4 lb. I feel the Italian sausage gave it an extra little kick. I used an Italian mix for the mozzarella cheese. I had a package open and just used that. I did not have any fresh basil. I hope to soon, it is planted 🙂 I am thinking next time I will use a mixture of the diced tomatoes and sun dried tomatoes or all sun dried. I love the flavor of sun dried tomatoes.

Sorry, no ingredient line up.

See, I cooked breakfast with Samantha and Jeff 🙂 Press crescent Rolls into the bottom of a 9 x 13.

Brown sausage; drain and mix with pesto.

Put sausage and drained tomatoes on top of crust.

Top with cheeses.

Beat eggs and milk together and pour over the casserole.

Pop it into the oven.

I wish I had fresh basil, that would have made it extra good.

Sausage Pomodoro Brunch Bake. FYI, I just looked up Pomodoro, it means tomato in Italian.

Ok, I had some fun today with eggs, Silk- Dyed Eggs. I found this on Our Best Bites. Please click and see her wonderful photos. Mark decided he could part with one (1) tie.

Find a 100%silk tie and fresh eggs.

Take out the lining of tie, so it is just the silk.

Wrap the egg with the right side of the fabric making contact with the egg. The right side is the printed side, or the side that would be on the outside of the tie. You want to try to wrap the fabric as tight as you can without breaking the egg.

Then take an old pillowcase or handkerchief and wrap the eggs with it. I used twisty ties to secure at the top.

Pop them in to a pot of water with 1/4 cup of vinegar. Bring to a boil; boil for 20 minutes.

Removed and let cool in a colander or on a towel. I got impatient here!

IT WORKED! I probably did not use the best tie, kind of dark.

Love the crosses on this one.

Pretty cool. I cannot wait to try it with colorful ties. I had to show you before Easter was over. So, go to your husbands closet or a thrift store and find a 100% silk tie to try this out!

Please check out Our Best Bites site. They have some awesome eggs on there. They suggested not eating the eggs, they are unsure about the dyes used in the silk 😦

Happy Easter!

~Relish Family and Friends!


Super Duper Easy Potato Soup


On my last post, I posted a photo of me wearing a scuba mask while dicing onions. Well, I was watching Katie Brown Workshop this morning and she had a chef on there chopping onions. He made a comment that the only way not to tear up while cutting onions is to wear a SCUBA MASK! See I am not so crazy 😉 I believe I have mentioned this before, I  have onion goggles and I love them. They are a little more stylish than the scuba mask 🙂

I purchased my goggles from my friend Marcus. He owns a store in Duncan, OK. You can purchase them from him on his website Distinctive Decor.

I love Baked potato soup. One of my favorite places to get a bowl is in St. Charles at Magpie’s. This is not a baked potato soup, but it’s the cheater way of making Potato soup.

            Super Duper Easy Potato Soup                                                                        adapted from Pearls, Handcuffs and Happy Hour

  • 1 30 oz. bag of frozen, shredded hash browns
  • 42 oz.   chicken broth (or 3 – 14 oz cans)
  • 1 can of cream of chicken soup
  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped
  • heavy pinch of ground pepper
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 pkg. cream cheese

In a crockpot, combine everything EXCEPT for the cream cheese.  Cook for 6-8 hours on low heat.  About 1 hour before serving, add cream cheese and keep heated until thoroughly melted.  Serve with the toppings of your choice. I topped mine with Mexican blend cheese, sour cream, bacon bits and green onions.

Note: After chopping the onions, I sauteed them in olive oil for a few minutes. Totally not necessary, but I didn’t want the onion to be crunchy….because Grace would have figured out there was onion in it 😉 Check out my comment at the bottom of the post on the hash browns.

Seriously…this must be the easiest soup to make!

Ingredient Line up.

Put everything in the crockpot BUT the cream cheese. Cook for 6 to 8 hours on low.

Add cream cheese an hour before ready to serve. Continue cooking for an hour.

The toppings are really necessary, at least the bacon and cheese are.

Super Duper Easy Potato Soup.

After I had already purchased my hash browns. I started thinking that this would be really good with the hash browns that already have the red peppers and onions in it. Next time I will use those, but the ones with the cubed potatoes. I think that would make it really really good. When I make it next, I will let you know which way is better.

~Relish Food & Life


Baked Chicken Taquitos and Creamy Cilantro Sauce


I spent last weekend visiting Samantha in West Palm Beach, FL. It was so nice to get away to nice weather, but especially nice to spend some one on one time with Samantha. I am so proud of her and the woman she has become.

The first night we attended the West Palm Beach Art Show, which was across the street from her apartment. The art was great, but the people watching was fabulous 🙂

Friday night we had dinner atFood Shack in Juniper. Then we headed for a drink at Guanabanas Island Restaurant and Bar.

On Saturday Samantha treated me to an exercise class and a massage at Exhale located in Omphoy Ocean Resort.

We got to enjoy the beach a little bit in the morning before our class and massages.

Between the class and massage we enjoyed breakfast beachside. We both ordered Lobster Omelets. They were soo good. The little jar in the background was jelly and everyone got their own jar to use. It was yummy.

Samantha, Jeff and I enjoyed dinner  that night at one of my Mexicans places in West Palm, Rocco Tacos. On Sunday we decided to cook dinner for a few of her friends. So, we hit the Green Market to buy some of the ingredients.

I LOVE that place. There is a bakery there that has the BEST Almond Croissants ever! Unfortunately, I did not take a photo before I ate the whole HUGE thing. Well, Sam did take a photo of me stuffing it into my mouth, but I could not figure out how to send to my computer. Just trust me, it was delish and I relished every moment of it.

We stopped at a road side truck and purchased the Stone Crabs...which were yummy!

Then we took a long walk on the beach ♥

We prepare dinner together along with her friends. I really meant to take photos of the food…but I think the Mexican Martini kicked it and I forgot 😉

I had the job of slicing onions for the Onion Bacon Marmalade. This was our solution to onion goggles when cutting 4 lbs of onions.

Dinner was great, but the company was awesome!

I was sad to leave, but I get to see her in February at a pharmacy conference.

On the way home I had a layover in Chicago and I had the BEST Chicago Hot dog!

This is a sign they have posted at the hot dog place.

No, I did not put any ketchup on it...it did not need it. Sooo good!

Ok, are you ready for a recipe? I love Mexican food and pinned this recipe on Pinterest. The recipe, I think originally came from Our Best Bites.  Taquitos are usually fried, this a baked version. It was very easy and yummy.

Creamy Baked Chicken Taquitos

  • 4 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/3 cup salsa verde
  • juice of 1/2 a lime
  • 2 tsp chile powder or 1 tsp. Chile powder and 1 tsp. Ancho Chile powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 Tbs chopped scallions
  • 2 cups cooked and shredded chicken
  • 1/2 cup shredded Mexican Taco cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded Pepperjack cheese
  • 8-12 (6-inch) Flour tortillas
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • cooking spray

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, combine the cream cheese with the salsa, lime juice, cumin, chile powder, cayenne, onion powder, garlic, cilantro, scallions, and 1/4 tsp kosher salt.  Fold in the chicken and cheeses.  Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if necessary.

Working 3 tortillas at a time, stack them on a microwave-safe plate and cover with plastic wrap.  Cook 30 seconds, or until tortillas are soft and pliable.  I did not find the need to do this, but wanted to include it just in case your tortillas are not pliable. The original called for corn tortillas, I used flour and they are softer than corn. I like flour better.

Spoon 3 tablespoons of filling onto the lower third of each tortilla, and roll tightly.  Place seam side-down on the prepared(spray with cooking spray) baking sheet.  Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling.

Spray the taquitos lightly with cooking spray, sprinkle with salt.  Bake 15-20 minutes, or until the tortillas are crisp and golden-brown.  Serve with salsa, sour cream, and/or guacamole.

Ingredient line up.

The tortilla I have here are so soft. You can find them at Super Valu in the Mexican food area. They are not in the refrigerated section.

I cooked my chicken in the microwave in a covered casserole dish.

Mix cream cheese, spices, cilantro, green onion, salsa, garlic and lime juice.

Stir in chicken and cheeses. At this point, you can refrigerate until you are ready to use it.

Place approximately 3 T at the end of the tortilla

and roll up.

I had a poblano pepper, so I decided to roasted it and add it some of the Taquitos.

I brought home some FL avocados from the Green Market and decided to add it to some of the Taquitos.

It is hard to see here, but FL avocados are HUGE. They are at least 2 times the size of the avocados we have here.

Here I just added avocado. Some I added avocado and the poblano strip...oh man those were good.

Put the seam side down on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray.

I made the whole package of 10 tortillas and had this much chicken left.

Spray lightly with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt. Bake 15 - 20 minutes.

I decided I would serve it with a Creamy Cilantro Sauce and taco sauce. I wanted to serve it with salsa. But, I hunted high and low for salsa….never found any. Kate came home after we ate, walked to the frig and pulled out some salsa!?! Anyway, I made Creamy Cilantro Sauce ahead of time and refrigerated it. I found this recipe years ago on All Recipes website. It was very good with the Taquitos along with Taco sauce.

 Creamy Cilantro Sauce                                                                                    

  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 tablespoon sour cream
  • 1 (7 ounce) can Salsa Verde
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped 
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

Put it all in food processor and blend.

Ingredient Line Up. I have salt in here by mistake. It does not need it with the celery salt.

No need to chop the cilantro...doesn't it get chopped in the food processor??

Creamy cilantro Sauce.

This is great with just chips, chicken, fish or any Mexican dish.

Baked Chicken Taquitos with Creamy cilantro Sauce...YUM!

You really could add what you want with the chicken. I kept some of them without any add ins for Grace. Some ideas of things you could add: corn, chopped jalapeno, poblano, avocado, green chilies and tomatoes. Maybe not all together, but you could easily add one or two of them.

Sorry for such a long post, but I wanted to share my trip with you.

~Relish Food & Life!

Chile Relleno Casserole


This is a super easy and yummy dish. Mark must have told me 5 times last night how much he liked it. Please see my notes at the end. This recipe was adapted from Green Cattle Blog

            Chile Relleno Casserole

  • 1 – 1 1/4 lb ground beef **see note
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 cans of whole green chiles **see note
  • 1 4 oz can green chiles, diced
  • 1 1/2 cups taco cheese or Mexican blend shredded cheese
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • Salsa

Preheat oven to 375.  Brown meat and onion. Add garlic and saute for a minute.  Add salt and pepper and red pepper flakes.  In a 9 x 9 casserole dish,  place whole green chiles on the bottom. Top with half of the cheese, then with drained beef mixture. Top with the other half of cheese and then the can of chopped green chilies.  Mix 4 eggs and milk.  Add flour, mix well and pour over dish.  Bake at 375 for about 50 minutes.  Cover with foil halfway through cooking if it gets too brown.

Note: This was a really tasty dish. There were no whole green chilies to be found in town. I went to the Mexican grocery store and they had a 27 oz can of whole roasted poblano peppers (they are in the photo). That size was the right amount for the dish. I drained and seeded them and they were ready to go. I think the dish would be just as good with the whole chile peppers if you can find them. Next time I might roast my own poblanos….I think they would have a bit more of a kick ( I like it a little spicy). The canned poblanos are not as spicy as roasting my own.

Like I said before, the way I did it was very tasty, but I am always thinking what could I do to make it even better. I think next time I might try it with sausage and maybe even an Italian sausage. Chorizo would be good too… the ideas are endless. If you try it, let me know if you tried any of these suggestions and how it turned out.

Ingredient Line up, minus the garlic, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.

Brown hamburger and chopped onions. Add garlic and saute for a few minutes.

Place whole chiles in the bottom of dish.

Top with 1/2 of the cheese.

Top with beef.

then cheese and chopped green chiles.

Thoroughly mix eggs and milk . Then mix in flour. Pour over the dish.

All ready to pop into the oven.

Right out of the oven and ready to dig in.

Top with a little Salsa ~ Chile Relleno Casserole!

This would also be excellent for a breakfast casserole. Yum!

I seen on TV that the DVD for The Help is coming out soon. If you have not seen the movie or read the book. It is a must.

~Relish Food & Life

Poblano Mac n Cheese


These last 2 weeks have been a sad one. A friends 21 year old son lost his 2 year battle with Cancer. He started writing poems during his battle. They read several of them at his funeral. I want to share this one with you.

A new meaning of Thanksgiving

I used to think Thanksgiving was for my

Family to get together and eat pumpkin pie

Watch football games on the TV

And then take a nap around 3

This past year however I have found out

There are many more things to be thankful about

I thank God for my family, my life, and my friends

The people on who I can always depend on

I thank Him for mornings and thank Him for nights

And thank Him for giving me the courage to fight

the cancer I’ve had for nearly one year

And the bravery to not live in fear

So when you sit down to your Thanksgiving feast

Bow your head and say at least

“Thanks for my health, and thanks for this food”

And one last thing before I conclude.

Say a prayer for those less fortunate than you

So that they may have a good Thanksgiving too.


At Book Club last month we had to bring a sinful dish. I am more of a savory person than a sweet one. After thinking about if a while, I decided on something with pasta, cheesy and with a little spice. Poblano Mac n Cheese. This recipe was another find on Pinterest, which led me to Nutmeg Granny’s Blog.

Poblano Macaroni and Cheese

2 Poblano chiles
8 oz. elbow pasta
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 cloves of minced garlic
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 teaspoon mustard powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon lime zest
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
Salt and pepper to taste
4 cups grated white cheddar
1/2 cup Cotija cheese (I could not find this, so I substituted with Queso Fresco Cheese)

Roast the poblano chilies under the broiler until blackened, about 5 minutes per side. Place the chiles in a paper sack or plastic food-storage bag, close it tightly, and let the for 20 minutes. Take the chiles out of the bag and rub off the skin. Take the chiles out of the bag and rub off the skin. Remove the stem and seeds and chop the chiles into 1-inch long pieces.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the pasta. Cook according to your package’s directions ad then drain the pasta. (You want the pasta to be cooked but not mushy; cook for 5 minutes.)

Preheat the oven to 375. Grease a large baking dish or a large cast-iron skillet, and pour the drained pasta into the dish.

In a pot (you can use the pot the pasta cooked in or you can do this while the pasta boils), on low heat melt the butter. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Whisk in the flour and cook until a light brown, toasty paste is formed, about 1 minute. Whisk in the milk and stir until it’s thickened a bit but still fluid, about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the mustard powder, cayenne, cumin, lime zest, cilantro, and chopped poblano chiles. Adjust seasonings and add salt and black pepper.

Slowly add half of the cheddar cheese and stir until it’s melted and well combined into the sauce. (If the sauce has cooled too much and the cheese won’t melt, return the pot to low heat on the stove seems a little thick return it to the stove until soft again. If however, the sauce gets too thick, like a custard, you can thin it by stirring in milk, a teaspoon at a time.) Pour sauce over pasta and top with the remaining half of the cheddar cheese and bake uncovered for 20 minutes or until brown and bubbling. Sprinkle with Cotija cheese, and serve immediately.

Ingredient Line Up.

Roast your poblanos under the broiler.

After they are charred until the broiler. Place in a bag for 15 minutes. Then ready to peel off skin.

I got all my ingredients ready before I started the cheese sauce.

including grating the white cheddar cheese.

Get your pasta cooking in boiling water. In the meantime Melt butter and add garlic. Cook for one minute.

Whisk in flour.

Then whisk in the milk.

Remove pot from heat and then stir in the mustard powder, cayenne, cumin, lime zest, cilantro and chopped poblano peppers. Add salt and pepper.

I then put it back on the heat on very low. Slowly add half of the cheddar and stir until it is melted and well combined into the sauce. I did have to thin it a bit with some milk. Oh, that is looking yummy!

Pour sauce on top of noodles.

Sprinkle the other half of the white cheddar cheese. Pop it into the oven.

Top with queso fresco or cojita cheese. I turned off the oven and popped it back in few a minutes.

Poblano Mac n Cheese! Sinful!

I wish each one of you a blessed Thanksgiving filled with family and friends.

~Relish Food & Especially Life!


Chili and Skillet Cornbread


It is that time of year ~ Chili Time! I have been making the same chili recipe for years!

Looks a little used, huh!

I made a batch on Sunday and it was tasty as always.


  • 2 lbs lean ground beef
  • 1 -2 medium onions, chopped
  • 1 med green pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 2 -3 cloves garlic, minced

In a soup pot cook the above ingredients until meat is brown; drain.

Then add:

  • 2 16 oz cans tomatoes, diced
  • 1 15 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp Ancho chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/4 cup chopped pickled jalapeno peppers
  • (If you want a little more heat, you can add a dash of cayenne pepper)

Bring mixture to a boil; reduce heat. Simmer uncovered for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.

Then add:

1 15 1/2 oz can Chili beans

Cook 30 more minutes. Remove bay leaf before serving. Serve chili topped with shredded mexican cheese.

Note: This time, I had some poblano peppers, so I used those instead of green pepper. Since they have a little heat, I did not add any cayenne and reduced the jalapenos a smidge 😉 I also made a double batch, so that is why so much of the ingredients.

Chop all the veggies.

Add them to the soup pot with the ground beef.

When the beef is brown; drain.

Add the rest of the ingredients except for the beans.

Simmer for a hour and a half, then add Beans. Cook for another 30 minutes.

While the chili was cooking, I made skillet cornbread. This is a Pioneer Woman’s recipe.  I have to confess, I had to make it twice. I burnt the first one. Mark and Kathy, his sister both commented that it was not very tall. Well, look at Pioneer Woman’s, her’s is not tall either 😉 I guess I need to talk to Mark’s mom and see how she makes it. It was still tasty and I am not sure I would like it that thick! I am a thin and crispy kind of girl 😉

Skillet Cornbread

  • 1 cup Yellow Cornmeal
  • ½ cups All-purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
  • 1 cup Buttermilk
  • ½ cups Milk
  • 1 whole Egg
  • ½ teaspoons Baking Soda
  • ¼ cups Shortening
  • 2 Tablespoons Shortening

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Combine cornmeal, flour, salt, and baking powder in a bowl. Stir together.

Measure the buttermilk and milk in a measuring cup and add the egg. Stir together with a fork. Add the baking soda and stir.

Pour the milk mixture into the dry ingredients. Stir with a fork until combined.

In a small bowl, melt 1/4 shortening. Slowly add melted shortening to the batter, stirring until just combined. In an iron skillet, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons shortening over medium heat. Pour the batter into the hot skillet. Spread to even out the surface. (Batter should sizzle.)

Cook on stovetop for 1 minute, then bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Edges should be crispy.

Mix the cornmeal, flour, salt and baking powder together.

Mix together milk, buttermilk and egg. Then add baking soda to the mixture.

Stir the milk mixture into the cornmeal mixture.

Then add melted shortening.

Melt 2 T of shortening in a cast iron skillet.

Add the batter to the skillet.

Cook one minute on top of stove.

Then pop it into the oven. The recipe says to bake it for 20 - 25 minutes. I set the timer for 20 minute the first time and it was burnt. The second time I set it for 15 minutes and that was a good time. So, I would set your timer at 15 minutes and it needs longer, keep checking it.

Skillet Cornbread

Chili and Skillet Cornbread. yum.

Today I decided to stop by Fingerpost in Breese. What a little gem of a store that is! I believe I have mentioned this on my blog before…it is like Gringo Jones in St. Louis, but he has better prices than Gringo Jones.

I had a gift certificate (thanks to some sweet people) that has been burning a hole in my pocket. Here is what I got:

Amazing hand blown wine and margarita glasses. Aren't the colors fabulous! $14.00 each

How cute is this? Turkey AND the pumpkin $14.00

and this fabulous glass bowl. I have been deciding on this bowl for a long time...what size, where will I put it... I LOVE it. $32.00

Remember the 3 pumpkins in my last post that I purchased in Pike County? Here is what I did with them.

I love all the colors. I could use a few more corn husk, but that is all I had available.

All ready for fall, ignore the door...it is getting painted this week 🙂

Here are some photos of the store inside…he has a ton of stuff outside too.

You can click here The Fingerpost to see his website and you can Like their Facebook page where he updates it with new photos.

~Relish Food & Life!


Fresh Apple Coconut Cake with Brown Sugar Glaze and Buffalo Chicken Soup


It was a beautiful weekend. We went to my sister in-laws clubhouse in Pike County. Pike County was having their Fall Color Drive, so the guys went hunting and the girls hit the road. Each town that participated in the drive had yard sales, crafts, antique stores and food. We were off to find us some treasures.

Here are my purchases from the day.

This was my best find. I got all of these antique (around 75) ornaments for 10 bucks! I was so happy. I put garland on an antique chifferobe in my living room each year and fill it with lights and antique ornaments. I seem to break a few each year putting it up and taking it down. Now, I have replacements 🙂

I love dishes! I found these at various sales. The gold goes great in my kitchen and will be perfect for dips and sauces. My Mom had white milk glass and I have some of her pieces. I found those 2 white ones together at a sale. I have one like it already plus 2 bigger ones and a pedestal dish.

I have some of my whites dishes on display in my kitchen. I think I need to put mini pumpkins in between those dishes for fall!

I absolutely LOVE these pumpkins and their colors. I have a plan for them. I will post photo when I am finished with them.

My last post I told you I was trying an Apple cake recipe. It was really good. My Mother in law asked for the recipe…so it is good 🙂 The bad news is…I think I left my camera at the clubhouse, at least I HOPE so. My camera has all the photos on it. So, I will just give you the recipe. I found the recipe on Pinterest, which led to Lick the Bowl Good. I tweaked it a bit. Their version did not have coconut in it or applesauce. I thought it was a great addition. You can definitely omit the coconut it if you are not a coconut junkie, like I am. You can also omit the pecan if you wish. You can click on the name of their blog above, they have some photos of the cake.

Fresh Apple Coconut Cake with Brown Sugar Glaze

Apple Cake:
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup canola oil plus 1/4 cup applesauce
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 cups finely chopped granny smith apples (approximately 3)
  • 1 cup pecans chopped (optional)
  • 1/2 cup coconut (optional)

Brown Sugar Glaze:

  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 Tablespoon heavy cream

For the cake: Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an9 x 13 inch pan and set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.Stir with a whisk to mix everything together.

In a large bowl, mix the eggs with a hand mixer til light in color and foamy. Add the oil, applesauce and vanilla and beat well.

Stir in the flour mixture with a spoon and continue stirring the batter until the flour disappears. Add the apples, coconut and nuts and stir to mix them into the batter.

Scrape batter into prepared pan and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Place the hot cake on a wire cake. While it’s still hot, prepare the glaze.

For the glaze: Combine all the ingredients into a saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until the mixture comes to a gentle boil. Cook for 3-5 minutes.

Spoon the hot glaze over the still hot-from-the-oven cake. Let the glazed cake cool completely before serving straight from the pan.

This is yummy served warm with ice cream 🙂

Today was a cold rainy day, a perfect day for soup! I search for a new recipe to make and I decided on Buffalo Chicken Soup. I had an ingredient line up photo taken, but decided to make it totally different from the recipe. I think it turned out pretty darn good.

Buffalo Chicken Soup

  • 2 chicken breast (about 4 cups), cooked and diced (I might try shredding the chicken next time)
  • 1 small onion, chopped finely
  • 4 stalk celery, chopped finely
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 T butter
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup Buffalo wing sauce (I used franks brand)
  • 2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1/2 Parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/4 tsp Old Bay Seasoning

1. Cook chicken as you like. I diced my chicken, sprinkled it with salt, pepper and Cajun seasoning. Then I sautéed it. You can do whatever you want. You could even buy a rotisserie chicken from the deli. Just please do not use canned!
2. Saute onions and celery until  almost tender. Add garlic and saute a few more minutes.
3. Stir in broth, heavy cream, chicken and Buffalo Wing sauce.
4. In a bowl, toss both cheeses together and flour. Mix well. Gradually add to soup.
5. Heat until slightly thicken and hot.

I sautéed the chicken in a pan, sprinkled with salt, pepper and Cajun seasoning.

The Cajun seasoning that I used was Slap Ya Mama! If you wish to season it, You could use any kind of Cajun seasoning . This one you can find at World Market. You could also cook the chicken in the microwave with the seasonings.

Melt butter in olive oil.

Saute onion and celery until almost tender

Then add the garlic and saute a few more minutes.

Add chicken broth,

FYI, Super Valu has Kitchen Basic Chicken and Beef broth on sale this week for 2.99. It is located right when you come in across from the carts.

heavy cream,

Buffalo wing sauce and

chicken. Heat until warm.

Mix cheeses and flour together.

Then add handfuls of cheese mixture to soup. Stir until melted then add the next handful. Repeat until all of cheese is in the soup.

Add Old Bays Seasoning. Heat until hot and slightly thickened.

Buffalo Chicken Soup. It hit the spot on this cold rainy day!

Grace was not crazy about the celery and onions.  I might try to use my stick blender before I add the cheese and chicken next time to blend it smooth. Then add chicken (shredded) and cheese.  I think she might like it better that way. The rest of the family loved it the way it was.

Marcus and Leigh, Facebook Friends that live in Duncan, OK, they own a store called Distinctive-Decor. I cannot wait to go there and see it some day. Until then I will just order from them online. Congrats to them… for being in the November Issue of Oprah’s Magazine (page 81)  in the “O List” section for their Orka Plus Silicone Mitts that they have available at their store and online. I have Orange Mitts ordered 🙂 Originally $15, now $12 with code OPRAH.

~Relish Food & Life!


Yummy Corn Casserole


We had a Mexican Food night at our house last week.  I made Cilantro- Lime Flank Steak Tacos with all the fixins to go with it.

I am sure everyone has made corn casserole one time or another. Just in case you have not, here is the recipe I have been making for 20 years.

Corn Casserole

  • 1 stick butter, melted
  • 1 can whole kernel corn, drained
  • 1 can cream style corn
  • 2 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 box Jiffy corn muffin mix
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Mix together all ingredients. Pour into a greased 9 x 13 dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes or until set.

Ingredient Line Up.


Because I hate to do dishes. I spray the dish with pam and melt the butter in the dish I am using.


Add everything to the dish and stir until everything is mixed in thoroughly.

Since I was making this for a mexican meal, I choose to use this Mexican Cheese instead of plain cheddar. It gave it a wonderful flavor...I will probably use that from now on.


All ready to pop into the oven.

Corn Casserole ~ I should have taken a photo scooped out...but it did not last long.

This has been a family favorite for a long time. The girls love it!

Here is the recipe I used for the flank steak Cilantro Lime Flank Steak. The only thing I did different was added more garlic. It was good….especially with sautéed onions and poblanos, tomatoes, lettuce, sour cream, avocados and tortillas. Mark still prefers Asian Flank Steak when using flank steak! If you have not tried the Asian Flank Steak yet…it is fabulous!

Cilantro Lime Flank Steak with poblano and onions.


It was a beautiful night with great food and friends...what can more could you ask for?

~Relish Food & Life

When the moon hits your eye like a big “PASTA PIE” That’s amore!


I know it is supposed to be Pizza Pie, but we were having Pasta Pie! I had the song blaring from the computer when we sat down to eat…I don’t think my family appreciated my singing or the song 😦 BUT, they did love my big Pasta Pie 🙂

I did not think this recipe was going to turn out tonight…but it was a false alarm. It turned out great. I believe this recipe originally came Martha Stewart. I found it on Pinterest, which lead me to Noble Pig website. I added a few ingredients.

  • 1 pound rigatoni
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 pound ground beef 
  • 2 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper ( I don’t understand why they said 1/4 tsp…because directions said 1 tsp of salt and pepper and that is what I did)
  • 1 can (28 ounces) good quality crushed tomatoes
  • Butter, for pan
  • Salt
  • 1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 8 ounces coarsely grated mozzarella ( I used a packaged of a  combination of Italian cheeses)
  • I added a pinch of red pepper flakes, tsp of dried oregano and basil. I also added about 2 T of fresh basil…because I have it in my herb garden.

In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook pasta until slightly underdone (I cooked mine for 1 or 2 minutes less than what the package stated).  One pound of pasta should be cooked in 6 quarts of water, make sure you are using a big enough pot so the pasta doesn’t stick together.  When done, rinse in cold water and drain again.  Toss pasta with 1 Tablespoon olive oil to coat.  Set aside.

Heat remaining 1 Tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add ground beef.  Cook, stirring occasionally until browned.  Add garlic, 1 teaspoon salt and pepper (and  red pepper flakes, dried oregano and dried basil) Cook 2 minutes more.

Add crushed tomatoes; simmer until thickened, about 20 minutes. Stir in fresh basil (if you have it)

Toss pasta with Parmesan cheese.  Butter a 9-inch springform pan.  Tightly pack pasta into pan, standing each piece on end.  Spread meat sauce on top of pasta.

This was the tricky part! Push the meat sauce into the pasta holes filling each one up.  (I think my rigatoni had small holes…that is where I began to panic and I felt like I did not have enough pasta….Mark thought of a great idea to help me with that. You will see it in the photos)

Place in a 400 degree oven for 15 minutes.  Sprinkle mozzarella ( or Italian Blend) cheese on top and bake another 10-15 minutes until cheese is golden.  Remove from oven and let stand for 15 minutes.  Run a knife around the edge to loosen, unfasten and remove ring.

Cut into wedges and serve.

Ingredient Line Up.

Boil pasta in salted water.

Brown beef in 1 T olive oil.

LOVE! Local Beef!

After meat is brown. Add garlic and sautéed it for a minute.

Add seasonings and sautéed for another minute. Then add crushed tomatoes (I forgot to take a photo of that)

Toss drained and rinsed pasta with olive oil.

Toss with parmesan cheese.

HERE IS THE TRICKY PART! In a buttered 9″ springform pan stack the noodle standing on their ends. I did not have enough pasta, nor do I think my rigatoni was as big as the rigatoni the Noble Pig used. You need to check out their photo on the website.  Do they have different sizes of rigatoni? I started panicking because I thought I needed more and how in the world was I going to get that meat sauce in those holes!

Mark came up with the brilliant idea to put a tomato in the center. I could have used a bigger tomato, but it worked. He ate the tomato and said it was awesome. He said I should have added a few more tomatoes. I think that is a great idea! He didn't share! Make sure and put pan on a cookie sheet. Mine leaked a little.

Now comes the problem of getting the sauce in the holes. I just tried to push it down between the noodles instead of inside the noodles. Amazingly, I think some of it did get inside the holes.

There was so much still left on top. I thought there would hardly be anything inside or between the noodles. So I said a prayer and popped it in the oven.

Baked it for 15 minutes. Removed it from the oven.

Added cheese to the top. Said a prayer. Baked additional 10 minutes. Removed it from the oven and let it sit for 15 minutes. Run knife around edges. Unfasten and remove sides.

Drum roll please….

Pasta Pie! That's Amore!

It was very good!

I  realized after the girls stuffed the leftovers  into a container… that I failed to take a photo of my perfect slice of Pizza Pie on my plate. I even wiped off a drip on the plate. I had it looking good. That’s Amore was playing. I was trying to sing. I couldn’t wait to taste it… we all prayed and dug in. You will just have to take my word, it was pretty and yummy!

~Relish Food & Life