Friday, July 4, 2014

Pasta with White Beans and Arugula

This year's Fourth of July was a most pleasant day. After Joan prepared a opulent breakfast, we took the morning papers to the porch. After passing a leisurely afternoon, we grilled some ribs that we  purchased at BJ's.

Joan made this salad as a side:

Pasta with White Beans and Arugula
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Start to Finish: 30 minutes
Servings: 8


1 package (16 oz. ) bow-tie (farfalle) pasta
1 can (19 oz.) cannellini beans, drained, rinsed
1 jar (8.5 oz.) sun-dried tomatoes in oil and herbs, drained, rinsed
1 package (5 oz.) arugula
1 package (4 oz.) crumbled feta cheese (1 cup)
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt


1. Cook and drain pasta as directed on package; cover to keep warm.
2. Meanwhile, in large bowl, mix remaining ingredients. Stir in hot cooked pasta until blended.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Dustin's Party Favorites

Dustin was in town so we all get together to celebrate.
Three recipes that hit the spot:

North Georgia Caviar

This will keep refrigerated in a plastic container for several days. It is good with corn bread or as a side item with hamburgers and hot dogs.
But best served with Tostitos Scoops.

This will keep refrigerated in a plastic container for several days. It is good with corn bread or as a side item with hamburgers and hot dogs.

But best served with Tostitos Scoops.

2 (15-ounce) cans black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
1 (15-ounce) can shoe peg corn, drained
1 (10-ounce) can Rotel tomatoes, drained
1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
6 whole green onions, chopped
1 (16-ounce) bottle Italian dressing

In a large mixing bowl combine the black-eyed peas, corn, tomatoes, bell pepper, onions, and dressing. Mix thoroughly. Refrigerate until ready to serve.


 Rita's Wild Rice

This is a fabulous side dish to anything! Tastes better the second day.

6-oz. pkg. long-grain and wild rice mix
1/2 c. onion, chopped
1/2 c. carrots, peeled and chopped
1/2 c. celery, chopped
1/2 c. radish, chopped
1/2 c. Italian dressing

Prepare rice according to package directions; let cool. Toss rice with chopped veggies. Stir in salad dressing to coat. Serve at room temperature or chilled

Serves 4 to 6.


2 packs Ramen Noodles (Beef Flavored) - crush and use flavoring packet
1 cup silvered almonds
1 cup sunflower seeds (unsalted, roasted - in bulk dept.)
1 stick butter

Sauté altogether about 15 minutes. Refrigerate after you sauté, at least 1/2 hour.

2 bags of coleslaw with carrots
2 green onions, chopped

Dressing - refrigerate the night before
1 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup white wine vinegar

Put cabbage , noodle mix together, toss than add dressing and toss.
Put it together about 1/2 hour before serving.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Porch Party Beverages

Summertime and time for the porch party.

Here are two thirst quenchers to start you off:


Great on a hot summer day.

    1 12-ounce can frozen pink lemonade concentrate

    1 6-ounce can frozen cranberry juice cocktail concentrate

    1 2-liter bottle of lemon-lime carbonated beverage

    Cracked ice

    Lemon twist (optional)

In a 3-quart pitcher combine lemonade and cranberry juice cocktail concentrates. Stir in carbonated beverage. Serve over ice with lemon twists. Make about 10 (8-ounce) servings.


Try this variation of that popular summertime beverage.

1/2 to 1 cup sugar

1 to 2    teaspoons whole cloves

8           tea bags

4          cups boiling water

10        cups cold water

1 to 2   cups of orange juice

1/4      cups lemon juice

In a 4-quart container, combine sugar, cloves and tea bags. Pour boiling water over mixture. Cover: let steep about 10 minutes. Remove tea bags and cloves. Stir in remaining ingredients. Serve over ice. 16 (1-cup) servings.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Pasta Bake Florentine

Pasta Bake Florentine
 Not only is this baked pasta delicious,
but the variety of vegetables makes it
colorful and appealing as well.


2 T olive oil
1     onion, finely chopped
1/4 c.  red pepper, chopped
1/2 c.  mushrooms, sliced
1 lb.    ground beef
1/2 t.   salt
1/4 t.   garlic salt
1/4 t.   pepper
2 26-oz. jars pasta sause
1 c.     marinated artichokes, drained and chopped
10-oz. pkg. frozen spinach, thawed and drained
16-oz. pkg. rotini pasta, cooked
8-oz.   pkg. shredded mozzarella cheese


Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Sauté onion, red pepper and mushrooms until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in ground beef, salt, garlic salt and pepper. Cook until beef is browned, about 5 to 7 minutes; drain. Stir in pasta sauce, artichokes and spinach until well combined. Stir in cooked pasta. Transfer to a lightly greased 13”x9” baking pan; sprinkle with cheese. Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes or until heated through and cheese is melted.

Serves 8

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Pumpkin Spice Muffins

  Recipe from Ruth Thompson of Dublin, NH 

Ruth used this recipe to bake muffins to sell at a church fundraiser.


    18-1/4 oz. pkg. spice cake mix
    15-oz. can pumpkin
    3 eggs, beaten
    1/3 c. oil
    1/3 c. water


In a bowl, beat all ingredients together. Pour batter into greased or paper-lined muffin cups, filling 2/3 full. Bake ate 350 degrees for 20 minutes, or until golden.

    Makes 2 dozen.

    Suggestion: Joan added nuts and raisins.

Fresh-Picked Frittata

Recipe from the get-togethers with Gooseberry Patch cookbook.
This custard dish breakfast treat deified its namesake since 3 inches of snowfall last evening would prevent picking veggies from a frozen garden.


    1 c. redskin potatoes, diced
    1/2 c. onion, diced
    2 T. olive oil
    1 c. mushrooms
    1 c. broccoli flowerets
    1/2 c. red pepper, chopped
    1/3 c. water
    1-1/2 c. shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
    8 eggs, beaten
    1/2 c. mayonnaise
    1/2 t. dried oregano
    1/2 t. basil
    1 T. Italian salad dressing mix


Combine potatoes, onion and oil in a skillet over medium heat; sauté until golden. Add mushrooms, broccoli, pepper and water; cover and cook just until potatoes are tender. Uncover and cook until liquid evaporates.

Spoon vegetables into a lightly greased 9-1/2” round deep-dish baking pan; top with half the cheese. Whisk together remaining ingredients except cheese; pour evenly over top. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Bake at 375 degrees for 40 minutes, or until a knife tip inserted in the center comes out clean.

Let stand for 5 minutes.

    Makes 6 servings.

    Suggestion: Joan served the frittata with fresh fruit and a pumpkin spice muffin.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Sausage, Bean & Spinach Stew

A hearty slow-cooker stew that is not chili.


1    lb. dried white beans, such as great northern,
              rinsed and picked through
8    cups low-sodium chicken broth
1    onion, peeled and finely chopped
2    carrots, peeled and finely chopped
2    ribs celery, finely chopped
6    cloves of garlic
8    sprigs fresh thyme
1    bay leaf
      Parmesan rind (optional)
1    lb. sweet or spicy Italian sausage, casing removed,
              shaped into 1/2-inch meatballs
1    bunch spinach, trimmed
      Juice of 1/2 lemon
      Crusty bread, for serving

  1. In a large slow cooker, stir together the beans, chicken broth, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, thyme, bay leaf and Parmesan rind, if using. Cover and cook on hiogh heat until beams are nearly tender, about 3 1/2 hours.
  2. Place sausage meatballs on top of beans. Cover, cook until the meatballs are no longer pink in the center, about 25 minutes.
  3. Discard the thyme sprigs, bay leaf and Parmesan rind. Stir in spinach, thencover and let stand until the spinach wilts, 10 minutes.
  4. Stir in lemon juice, season. Serve with crusty bread.

Serves - 8 to 10           Prep - 30 min.       Slow-Cook - 4 HR

Joan found this recipe in her January/February issue of EveryDay with Rachel Ray. Joan used crusty rolls from BJ’s as a substitute for bread.