Crock Pot Cream Cheese Chicken Chili

Time to share a great crock pot recipe!  As you may have noticed, I am now booked for the entire month of December and have already warned the BF that cooking will be limited!  If I can find more great recipes like this he may not starve!  Super easy and delicious, from Rita’s Recipes another great Pinterest find!

Crock Pot Cream Cheese Chicken Chili
I followed Rita’s recipe exactly, except I added only 1 tsp of cumin and some shredded cheddar cheese at the end.  Served it over rice and it was amazing!
Continue Reading

The Brain Hemorhage Cupcake & the Cuisipro Cupcake Corer

I took last week off from blogging b/c life has been absolutely crazy, with craft shows, our Halloween party and work!  But I’m back and ready to share some great Halloween stuff!  Below are the Brain Hemorrhage cupcakes I made for our Halloween party.  They were super easy, a white cake mix, a can of buttercream frosting, a little red food coloring, and some strawberry pie filling.  Of course, I can’t forget about the one key item, the Cuisipro Cupcake Corer.  
This little gadget at only $5 is definitely worth it.  I baked the cupcakes as normal let cool completely and then you just screw the corer down into the cool cupcake and pull out the center piece.  Fill with pie filling and then frost with pink-tinted frosting.  I used a large round decorator to create a brain-ish looking top!  
Don’t forget this weekend is the Uniquely NNY Upcycled Art Show in the Cheel Commons at Clarkson University, Saturday October 29th from 10 – 4.  I will have a new assortment of Thanksgiving and Christmas/Winter Decoration Sets for my Banners and Wreaths!
Continue Reading

Crockpot Salsa Chicken

This recipe is amazing and once again a Pinterest find!  The BF and I absolutely love it!  We got 2 meals out of it, the first was chicken tacos the second was chicken nachos!  I have the say it worked even better as nachos than tacos!  Would also make an excellent taco dip for a party.

salsa chicken
Photo Credit: Amanda’s Recipe and Beauty Finds

I didn’t have to adjust this recipe at all, it was perfect as is.  

Ingredients:

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 cup salsa
1 package taco seasoning
1 cup sour cream
Directions:
1.  Mix soup, salsa and taco seasoning in the bottom of your crockpot.  Sink chicken breasts into the mixture, covering completely.  Cook on low for 5 – 6 hours depending on size of chicken breasts.
2.  Remove chicken, shred and return to the crockpot.  Add sour cream and mix well.  Heat until everything is warmed through.

Absolutely Delicious!  Give it a try!

Continue Reading

Yummy! Hasselback Potatos

Another delicious Pinterest find, Hasselback potatoes are the Swedish version of baked potatoes.  Just a few extra steps to the typical baked potato, but it adds so much flavor!

Photo Credit: Seasaltwithfood

I altered the recipe a little bit from what Seasaltwithfood originally did, so here it goes:

Ingredients:
Medium size potatoes (I used Russet)
2 cloves of garlic, minced (I used my wonderful Pampered Chef Garlic Press)
2 tbsp butter, melted
Sea salt

Directions:
Preheat oven 425. Wash and dry potatoes.  Slice each potato thinly about 3/4 of the way through.  Place minced garlic on top and let some fall down in cracks.  Drizzle with melted butter and sprinkle with sea salt.  Bake for 45 – 50 minutes, until top is crispy and potato is cooked through.

These were so delicious I actually brought a leftover one for lunch today, and I am so not a leftover person!

On another note, if you don’t have a Pampered Chef garlic press, I strongly suggest, nothing is better than fresh garlic.  The best part of this press, is you never have to touch the minced garlic or peel, I just scrape it off with a knife and use the same knife to pop out whats left of the peel after pressing.  So no worries about how you are going to get the smell off your hands (baking soda works great!)

Continue Reading

Super Easy Crock Pot Buffalo Chicken

Another Pinterest find, this recipe worked out well but was way to spicy for the BF and I so I have included what my adaptation will be for the next time, which is very similar just a few swaps.  

Adapted from My Kitchen Apron

4 Frozen Skinless Boneless Chicken Breasts
1 Bottle Franks Buffalo Wing Sauce
Butter (amount depends on how hot you want your sauce)
Blue Cheese or Ranch Dressing (I use Marie’s)

Pour the bottle of Frank’s Wing Sauce in your Crockpot.  Melt 1/2 stick of butter in the microwave and stir into wing sauce already in the Crockpot.  Taste your sauce, if it is still too hot add more melted butter.

Add frozen chicken breasts and spoon sauce over them.

Cook on low for 6 or 7 hours.

Using two forks, shred the chicken breast.  (It should pull apart extremely easy)

Stir in blue cheese or ranch dressing.  I started with 1/2 c – 1 c and added to taste.  Let warm through in crock pot on low.

Serve right away on rolls for sandwiches, make dip, pizza, pasta or even crepes the possibilities are endless.

You could also make a very large batch of this and then freeze smaller portions of it for later use.  This is what I will be doing next time!

Continue Reading

A Crock Pot makes it easy!

I am always looking for easier ways to cook a delicious meal.  My previous crock pot a Rival “Smart”pot had steered me away from crock pot cooking b/c it burned everything.  It was a “not so smart pot”, you could set it on the 10 hour setting and it would burn whatever you were cooking within 6.  I finally threw it and the last dinner it burned in the dumpster.  On recommendation of the BF’s sister, I purchased this crock pot:

Hamilton Beach 33967 Set 'n Forget 6-Quart Programmable Slow Cooker
Hamilton Beach 6 quart Programmable Slow Cooker
Definitely worth the $40+, I got mine at Target for $40.  The first dish I made in it was super easy.  Found on Pinterest (Check out my Yummy Board), all it was is a can of cream of chicken soup, 8 oz of cream cheese, a pack of zesty italian dressing mix and 2 – 4 skinless boneless chicken breasts.  Cook on low for at least 6 hours.  The great part about this crock pot is you can program it to cook on low or high for however many hours or using the probe until it is a certain temperature, and then the crock pot will keep it warm until you turn it off.  You can serve the above chicken over rice or pasta, I served it over wheat penne.  My one change next time is I will microwave the cream cheese, cream of chicken soup and the italian first to create a sauce before adding it to the crock pot.  
Since its starting to really feel like fall, tomorrow I am going to make Loaded Baked Potato Soup in the Crock Pot another Pinterest find, and put it in bread bowls.  Yum!
Continue Reading

Canning

I apologize I took a little break from blogging.  My sister is home visiting so I have been busy.  We went hiking,  worked on Halloween costumes and did a little cooking!  I canned 12 quarts of homemade spaghetti sauce so far and I only have 40 more to go!  My goal is 52 quarts, one for every week of the year.  I wanted to share this handy little thing I purchased, the FoodSaver Regular Mouth Jar Sealer.  For those of you that have a FoodSaver vacuum sealer with an accessory attachment, this is amazing!

FoodSaver T03-0006-01 Regular-Mouth Jar Sealer
It is super easy to use.  All you do is place your contents in the jar, put on a lid and secure this on top and press the accessory button.  I have only tried it with hot contents and it worked great.  All the jars sealed.  It can be a little messy if you over fill the jars (1 inch from the top).  It is still so much easier than any other method and cuts the canning process in half!
I love it so much I just ordered the Wide Moth Jar Sealer!
Continue Reading

Happy Friday! Spinach, Tomato & Ricotta Stuffed Chicken and Bridesmaid Dress Redo

So Pinterest.com has been an awesome resource for recipes as well as inspiration!  Last night for dinner I made Spinach, Tomato and Ricotta stuffed chicken and it was delicious!

We had it with a nice tossed salad, with blue cheese vinaigrette dressing.  Get the recipe here!  The only thing I might do different next time is add more garlic and some sweet hot peppers.  But I think I say most recipes need more garlic!  Instead of stuffing the chicken next time I think I might pound the chicken thin and roll up the mixture inside of it instead.  For more great recipes, check out my Yummy board on Pinterest!
This weekend besides getting ready for all of my upcoming shows, I am starting to redo one of my bridesmaid dresses for an upcoming wedding.  I couldn’t find a dress I want to wear for a July 23rd wedding and didn’t figure I had time to completely make one.  I have had this dress hanging in my closet since the wedding, which I believe was 4 years ago.  It is a very pretty dress, but needs to be shortened and made a little more fun!  So here it is in the beginning.  
I hope everyone has a good weekend!
Continue Reading

For the girls at work: My Spinach Artichoke Pizza Recipe :)

Every Wednesday the girls at work and I go to Little Italy in Potsdam b/c Tara’s BF makes us Spinach Artichoke Pizza.  It is to die for.  If you like the dip you will love the pizza!  While on vacation I still needed my “fix” so decided to make one myself and it actually turned out really good. A definite do again recipe but I think I will make a few small tweaks next time.   After searching and reading several different recipes none of them seemed good to me, so I came up with my own!
Janessa’s Spinach Artichoke Pizza 🙂
Ingredients
2 tbsps butter
2 cloves of garlic – minced
2 tbsps flour
1 1/2 c. milk (I used skim and it worked fine)
1/2 cup parmesan cheese – divided
6 oz fresh spinach washed, patted dry and roughly chopped
Mozzarella Cheese (I used part-skim and it was good)
1 can artichokes – rinsed and cut up (I bought 14 oz but didn’t use them all)
2 pizza crusts – I tried Freschetta Artisan Crusts and they are delicious 🙂
Tomato – optional
Instructions
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan.  Add the garlic and cook for about a minute on medium heat.  Add the flour and mix until combined and thick.  Gradually whisk in the milk, bring to a simmer and allow to simmer for 2 – 3 minutes, stirring frequently  Add parmesan cheese and mix until well combined.   Add spinach and allow to cook for 1 minute or until it wilts.  
I find that pizza stones work best but use whatever you have.   Place half of the spinach creme sauce mixture on each crust.  Then add a layer of mozzarella cheese and sprinkle with parmesan.  Place artichokes on top of the cheese, use how ever many you want.  I used them sparingly b/c we aren’t overly found of artichoke.  Place another layer of mozzarella cheese.  Put sliced or chunked tomato on top and then sprinkle with remaining parmesan cheese.  
Bake at 425 degrees on middle rack of oven for approximately 15 minutes or until cheese is bubbly!
This is a fairly mild spinach and artichoke recipe, the next time I am going to try adding more garlic (b/c I love garlic) using a romano/parmesan mixture (bc I’m Italian) and possibly either some crushed red pepper or some finely diced hot sweet pepper, to give it a little more zing.  It was definately good the way it was, but I just like my food a little spicier.  
Enjoy!
Continue Reading