September 29, 2009

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Energy Bars

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Energy Bars

source: Food Network


  • Cooking spray
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 Tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup natural creamy peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 2 cups crisp brown rice cereal
  • 1/4 cup toasted wheat germ
  • 1/2 cup  roasted peanuts, chopped
  • 1/2 cup  dried apricots, chopped
  • 1/2 cup  dried figs or dates, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt


Spray a 9 by 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.

In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine honey, peanut butter, maple syrup, canola oil, brown sugar, cinnamon. Stir and cook until mixture just begins to bubble, about 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract.

In a large bowl, combine oats, rice cereal, wheat germ, peanuts, apricots, figs and salt.

Pour peanut butter mixture over oatmeal mixture and stir gently with a spatula until well combined. Transfer to baking dish, cover with parchment paper and press firmly into dish. Allow to cool completely (will cool faster in the refrigerator). Cut into squares or bars.

September 26, 2009

Red Beans & Rice

Red Beans & Rice

Source Elly Says Opa

  • 1/2 Tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 small sweet onion, diced
  • 2 ribs celery, diced (I threw in a few chopped celery leaves for flavor)
  • 1/2 cup diced bell pepper(s)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tablespoon Cajun seasoning, divided
  • 14 oz. turkey smoked sausage
  • 1 heaping Tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice
  • 2 cans chicken broth
  • 1 can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

Heat the canola oil in a large skillet (something that has a lid) over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, bell pepper, garlic and 1/2 Tablespoon of the Cajun seasoning.  SautĂ© until vegetables are tender.

Add the sausage, tomato paste, parsley, bay leaves and rice.  Add the chicken broth, and beans. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and cook until rice is done (approximately 55-60 minutes).  Fluff with a fork and serve.

Serves two adults, three kids and at least enough for three more adult meals.

September 23, 2009

Broccoli Cheese Soup

Broccoli Cheese Soup
Adapted from My Kitchen CafĂ©, this was suggested as being served in a bread bowl, which would be sooo good, but we didn’t have them so I served in in a bowl with rolls on the side!  It made enough for two adults and three kids with enough left over for at least two more adult helpings and a lunch size or kid size meal.


  • 2 cans chicken broth or substitute with vegetable stock
  • 1/2 onion, finely diced
  • 4-5 cups broccoli, chopped
  • 4 c. milk
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2/3 cup flour
  • 8 oz.  sharp cheddar cheese
  • salt and pepper


  1. Simmer broth and chopped onions for 15-20 minutes, covered in a small saucepan, until onions are soft.
  2. In large stock pot, steam broccoli florets until preferred doneness.  Drain and set aside.
  3. Heat milk in medium sauce pan over low-medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring frequently.  Add butter and stir till melted. Slowly add flour, whisking to avoid lumps.  Stir and heat together on medium-high heat until soup starts to thicken.
  4. Pour milk mixture & chicken broth mixture into large pot with broccoli, adding grated cheese.  Stir until cheese is melted and serve immediately. 

September 11, 2009

Sweet & Smoky Crusted Pork Tenderloin

Sweet & Smokey Crusted Pork Tenderloin
This was to-die-for good.  Perfect blend of spices, crusty outer, moist and tender inner.  I served it with mashed sweet potatoes & grilled corn on the cob. 
Sweet & Smokey Crusted Pork Tenderloin
Adapted from:


  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 3 tablespoons McCormick Grill Mates Sweet & Smoky Rub
  • 4 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 (3/4 pound) pork tenderloins


  1. Preheat grill for medium heat.
  2. In a large re-sealable plastic bag, combine the onion powder, garlic powder, Grill Mates Rub, and brown sugar. Place tenderloins in bag then shake, toss and rub to coat meat evenly. Refrigerate for at least 10 to 15 minutes.
  3. Lightly prep grill grate with no-stick cooking spray, and arrange meat on grate. Cook for 25 minutes, turning meat every 5 minutes. Remove from grill, let stand for 5 to 10 minutes before slicing.