Friday, September 30, 2011

Brunch Enchiladas with Ham

It's funny how many brunch recipes I have when I have never really been a "breakfast person."

I do however love to host brunches, because your options for food are just endless.

Well, and there are usually Mimosas involved. 

This Spring I hosted a brunch in honor of my oldest daughter's graduation from 8th grade and making her Confirmation.  I still have yet to blog all of the recipes!!

(Find the brunch by clicking HERE )

So, I figured since it was Friday, maybe someone needed a recipe for breakfast or brunch this weekend. 

This is an easy one, enjoy!

brunch enchiladas with ham

Brunch Enchiladas with Ham

3 cups fully cooked ham, cubed
1/2 cup green onions, chopped
  • 8, flour tortillas, for enchiladas
  • 2 1/2 cups shredded Mexican blend cheese, divided (you can use cheddar to make them more mild)
  • 2 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups half-and-half cream
  • 6 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper

  • Spray a 9 x 13 pan with non-stick cooking spray. 

  • Combine your onions with your ham.  Put approximately 1/3 of a cup down the center of your tortilla, top with 2-3 Tablespoons of cheese. Roll "enchilada style" and place seam side down in pan.  Do this for all 8 tortillas.

In a mixing bowl combine the eggs with the flour, half and half, salt and pepper.   Beat until mixed thoroughly.  Pour over tortillas. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours. 

Remove the enchiladas 30 minutes before you are ready to bake them.  Top with remaining cheese. 

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

Bake covered for 25 minutes. Uncover and bake for 15 minutes more. The cheese will be melted and bubbly.

Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.  Serve with salsa, sour cream, guacamole, whatever your heart desires!

Don't forget your Mimosa!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Lemon Blueberry Crumb Bar Recipe - and a little birthday love.

lemon blueberry crumb bars bars

Yesterday was on of my lifelong friends birthday.  

She and I have been friends for 30 years!! 

I'm not sure when birthdays lose their "fun" as far as getting another year older?

I mean, remember when we even counted by HALF years? 

Most of us don't get too excited about adding another year to the age on our drivers license, little alone saying 

"I am 40 something and a half."

So, this year I decided that instead of looking at it as another year older, why not celebrate it as 30 years of birthdays?! 

Unless you're like 15-19, 30 sounds pretty darn good, right? ;)

SO many memories we have!!

me with sheri in 9th grade... gotta LOVE the 80's!!

Through all of the boys, sleepovers, prank phone calls to "teen lines," make-up, boys, cars, Friday night car cruising, boys,  late night phone calls, concerts, and did I mention boys?!? 

She has been there.

high school mall photo booth fun!

Not many people can say that they have had the same best friend for 30 years, but I have!! 

pre-concert, taken next to Sheri's 1983 Berlinetta

Through our weddings, and kids... (SIX of them, between us) we still have the daily phone calls.  

Late night ones have become the nightly texts of "how was ur day?" 

She has been there for me.

me with sheri, my maid of honor

So, cheers to you, my friend, for 30 years of friendship and 30 years of birthdays!!

This year I took Sheri to lunch and gave her a little gift, and a version of one of her most favorite baked goods, LEMON BARS!!  

Only these lovelies aren't those outta the box bars!! 

They are so lemony good and smothered in blueberries.  

(blueberries are a natural anti-oxidant, you know that right??) 

So let's preserve our youth, and celebrate one more birthday, Sheri!! 

I love you, BOO!!

celebrating 30 years of birthdays!

Lemon Blueberry Crumb Bars

1 Stick of butter
1 package of yellow cake mix
2 eggs, divided
2 lemons, one zested and both squeezed.
2 softened packages of cream cheese
1/2 cup of sugar 
2 pints of blueberries
1 cup powdered sugar

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. 

Line a 9x13 pan with foil, extending over the sides.  Microwave the butter in a mixing bowl until it melts.  Add to this the cake mix, 1 egg and 2 T of lemon juice.  Beat with a mixer until well blended. 
Use 2/3 of this mixture to press into the bottom of the pan. 

Beat the softened cream cheese with the sugar. Add remaining egg,  2 t. of lemon zest and  2 T. lemon juice. Beat. 

Spread over the crust. Top with blueberries.

Take remaining crust and pinch small pieces evenly over the blueberries.

Bake 45-50 minutes, or until center is almost set.

Make a lemon glaze by adding the remaining lemon juice to the powdered sugar until it's a "drizzable" consistency.

Drizzle the glaze over the warm bars. 

Cool completely in refrigerator (approximately one hour)

Now you can use the foil "handles" to remove the bars from the pan to cut them.

Keep bars refrigerated.

boxed up for miss sheri!

These bars are SO DARN GOOD!! My kids want more already!!

lemon blueberry crumb's a wrap

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

California Wine and Food Pairing Event at A World of Wine, Omaha

great view of the wine wall and the wine bottle fall centerpiece

This past weekend I was delighted to be asked to cater a California Wine and Food pairing event at 
A World of Wine in Omaha.

It was a lot of fun working with Julie to pick different foods to pair with the different wines they would be presenting that day.

Here is the list of wines we enjoyed on Sunday:

Schramsberg Mira Belle Champagne
Foghead Chardonnay
Foghead Sauvignon Blanc
Foghead Pinot Noir
Simi Cabernet
Ravenswood Teldeschi Zinfandel

The Menu:
Chicken Skewers with warm Artichoke Cream Dip
KC BBQ Beef Brisket Sliders on Hawaiian Sweet Rolls
Caprese Appetizer
Olives, green halkidiki stuffed with feta, green haldiki Sicilian style, and kalmata
Shrimp with Spicy Remoulade Sauce
Cheese, goat, mild cheddar, gouda, aged white cheddar and blue
Mini Chocolate Brownie Bundts with Chocolate Drizzle
Angel Food with Fresh Berries and Triple Berry Cream Dip
Kettle Chips
Broccoli Stuffed Mushrooms
French Baguette Bread

Here are some pictures from the event

warm artichoke dip 

Chicken Skewers and KC Smokehouse BBQ Brisket

French Baguette
use as a palate cleanser

fresh berries and triple berry cream 
pair with champagne

caprese appetizer 
pair with sauvignon blanc or pinot noir

cheese and olives
pair mild cheese with Sauvignon blanc, Chardonnay and pinot noir
pair aged and strong flavored cheeses with zinfandel, Cabernet or pinot noir

chicken skewers with warm artichoke cream dip
pair with Chardonnay or pinot noir

mini chocolate brownie bundt cakes with chocolate drizzle

chocolate pairs with EVERYTHING!! (duh!!)

these were definitely a favorite

chicken and beef
pair BBQ with the Cabernet or the zinfandel

broccoli stuffed mushrooms
pair with sauvignon blanc, pinot noir or Chardonnay

popcorn and kettle chips? go figure...
pair with champagne

Hawaiian rolls and kettle chips

So there you have it!! Now you can have a wine tasting of your own!!

Or better yet...have ME do it FOR YOU!! 

Is anyone else craving some wine and cheese?? 

I AM!!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Apple-Pear Pie

if only there were a scratch and sniff app, so you could smell this!

Ever heard of an apple-pear?  Well, I hadn't either, that was, until last Fall. 

cute little apple-pear

I was making my ritualistic bi-weekly trip to Costco, and browsing the produce.  I am the pie maker for Thanksgiving and I always bring the same thing.  Apple and Pumpkin.  One year I tried to "switch it up" and got boo'd out of the kitchen.  I guess we are a very traditional family, in that we have the exact same meal on Thanksgiving, and it's perfect, so why mess with it?

If it aint broke, don't fix it I guess!?!

Well, last year I didn't think anyone would get too upset if I swayed a bit, so along with my pumpkin, I made a pie with the apple-pears I found at Costco.  It was a HIT!!

New tradition?

I think so!

Last week my Mom and I went to a fall open house at this great store here in Omaha, and I found the COOLEST pie keeper!! I fell in love! 

and then I bought it.

My Mom always just rolls her eyes and says " and yet NOBODY ever knows what to get YOU for Christmas!"

But...but ...MOM!!  Fall is PIE SEASON!! I have to have it NOW!!
(insert the voice of the girl who wanted a golden goose from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory here)

the pie keeper...c'mon... you would have bought it, too, wouldn't you?

So, in the same week, three pie things happened.

1. I found the perfect pie keeper

2. Costco got their apple-pears in

3. Lark's Country Heart  gave a challenge for using nutmeg (which is in the pie!)

So, if that isn't a calling to bake a pie, I don't know what is!!

Apple-Pear Pie

5 apple pears
2 granny smith apples (I like a little tartness)
1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. nutmeg
1/2 c Craisins (optional)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Peel and slice apple-pears and apples, to equal approximately 7 cups.  Toss fruit with dry ingredients to coat. Place into prepared pie crust. Apply top crust, and vent. Dust with cinnamon and sugar.

Bake pie for 45-50 minutes, or until crust is browned and fruit is tender.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Triple Berry Preserves - My first attempt at canning fruit

triple berry preserves

After canning tomatoes, and having such great success, I thought I would try my hand at fruit.
I found a recipe for triple berry preserves and broke out my new canning set!

Triple Berry Preserves
(Makes about 10 cups)

4 cups crushed strawberries (about 4 pints)

2 cups crushed raspberries (about 2 pints)

2 cups crushed blackberries (about 1 1/2 pints)
1 (1 3/4 ounce) box Sure-Jell
4 1/4 cups sugar, divided use

1 teaspoon margarine

1 orange, zest of


Wash your jars and screw bands in hot, soapy water; rinse with warm water. Pour boiling water over the flat lids in medium saucepan off the heat. Let stand in hot water until ready to use.
To crush your berries, use a hand potato masher. Add strawberries, raspberries and blackberries to a saucepan.
Blend 1/4 cup of sugar with the Sure-Jell powder and stir the mixture into the fruit in the pan.
Add the margarine and orange zest and bring to a full rolling boil (this means it doesn't stop bubbling when stirred) over high heat.
Stir in the rest of the sugar and return to a full rolling boil.
Let the mixture boil for exactly 1 minute, stirring constantly.
Immediately and quickly ladle the very hot mixture into the clean 1-cup jam jars (filling to within 1/8-inch of the top) while wiping jar rims and threads.
Turn jars upside down after the band has been screwed tightly.
After 15 minutes, turn jars upright.

This recipe tastes amazing.  I know that the consistency of preserves is not like jelly, so I wasn't expecting it to be thick. But I also wasn't expecting it to be quite so thin, either.
I would recommend that you boil this longer until it thickens up to where you would like it.
Make sure that you wipe the tops of your jars down before adding the lids. This recipe is nice in the fact that you do not need a water bath.  I had two jars that didn't seal when I flipped them over, I turned them upside down again for a few more minutes and they sealed right up!
Again, it was thinner then I had anticipated, but let me tell you, we have had this one ice cream and used in place of syrup on french toast and pancakes and it fabulous!

Friday, September 2, 2011

S'More Cupcakes

s'more cupcakes with marshmallow butter cream

Too bad I am not on my game enough to have made these for National S'More Day a couple of weeks ago, huh?  Well, what was that holiday's loss was the School's Carnival Cake Walk's gain!

A fellow blogger shared this frosting recipe and her love of it when making cake pops a while back and as soon as I saw it I knew I was making S'more cupcakes...

how cute are these?!?!

S'more Cupcakes with Marshmallow Butter Cream Frosting

What you will need:

devils food cake mix and ingredients to make per box instructions
marshmallow cream
powdered sugar
Hershey bars
mini marshmallows
Teddy Grahams

Make the cake mix according to the box's instructions.


1 1/2 cups marshmallow creme

3/4 cup butter, softened

1 1/4 cups powdered sugar

In large bowl, beat marshmallow creme and butter with electric mixer on medium speed until blended. Beat in powdered sugar until fluffy.

Pipe frosting onto your cooled cupcakes, sprinkle with graham cracker crumbs. Top each with a mini marshmallow, a Hershey square and a Teddy Graham.

Pay attention to the poor little bears, though. I had about a 1/3 of mine buried head first!!

Then again... I bet they were happy little bears!

pretty as a picture...and no "campfire smell" to wash out of your hair!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Crock Pot Shredded Beef Burritos

Everyone who loves their crock pot, raise your hand!!

The crock pot makes life so easy on those busy "run-run" kind of days.

This recipe is one of our very favorites.

crock pot shredded beef burritos

I lived in San Diego for a short while years ago.  There's not much to dislike about San Diego!! But one of the things I loved the most?


I fell in love with the little taco stands.  To this day when we visit, it's our very first stop, Roberto's in Mission Beach. It doesn't matter what time of the day our flight lands, we stop there first.

Thank goodness they are open 24 hours a day!

My favorite thing has always been the shredded beef burritos. They just have so much flavor.

I attempted to make them, using my crock pot, and they are a pretty close match.

yum. added a little fresh salsa bowl, and chips, perfect.

Crock Pot Shredded Beef Burritos

3-4 pound beef rump roast
1 can Rotel tomatoes
1 can diced green chilies (or use fresh if you have them)
1 large onion sliced
2 T. beef bouillon
flour tortillas for burritos
toppings of choice

Do not drain the Rotel or the chilies.
Dump everything into your crock pot.
 I cook it on high for about 5-6 hours. Basically you want it to get to the "shredded falling apart stage."   Shred meat and put back in the crock pot until ready to eat.

I steam my tortillas so that they are easier to wrap. Place meat inside and wrap burrito style. 
 I prefer mine without other things, but my family chooses between any and all of these:
shredded lettuce, cheese, sour cream, guacamole.

The burritos pictured here were lucky enough to have also have fresh peppers from my uncle's garden!!
Here in Nebraska, we aren't that lucky year 'round.

how gorgeous are these little babies?

So, the only thing that's really missing from this burrito is the atmosphere if Mission Beach...especially the ocean!

Ah.... Roberto's at  Mission Beach... see you soon...but until then I will feed my cravings with these!

Roberto's, Mission Beach, San Diego