Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Wednesday's Recipe

Strawberry Pecan Pretzel Salad
  • 1 cup pretzels, crushed
  • ½ cup pecans, chopped
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ¾ cup butter, melted
  • 2 cups strawberries, diced
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 8 oz whipped topping
  1. Mix together crushed pretzels, chopped pecans, brown sugar and melted butter.
  2. Spread in a pan and bake at 400 degrees for 7 minutes. Allow the mixture to cool and then break it into small pieces.
  3. Beat together softened cream cheese, granulated sugar and vanilla.
  4. Fold in whipped topping.
  5. Before serving, stir the diced strawberries and sugared pretzels and pecans into the cream cheese mixture.

Tuesday's Recipe


RECIPE (12-15)
Fully cooked, spiral-sliced ham (4-5 lbs)
1 cup good apple cider
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup coarse ground mustard (the kind with whole mustard seeds in it)
1/4 cup honey
Heat oven to 350F with rack on lower position.
Mix together apple cider, brown sugar, mustard, and honey in a bowl.  Mix well to fully incorporate basting sauce.
Place ham in a 13×9 baking dish.  Coat ham with a generous amount of sauce.  Bake for 60-70 minutes, basting thoroughly  every 15 minutes.
To serve pre-cut slices, arrange slices neatly on a serving dish and brush leftover sauce all over ham slices and serve.  If serving ham whole, be sure to have leftover sauce available for drizzling.  The sauce is what makes this ham so great!
*Note:  This sauce is more of a thin au jus consistency, rather than a thick gravy texture.  If you prefer your sauce to be thicker, simply thicken it by bringing leftover sauce to a low boil.  Dissolve a bit of cornstarch (start with 1-2 tsp) in a little bit of water (about 1-2 tsp) and add dissolved cornstarch to the boiling sauce.  Stir constantly until sauce is thickened to your liking.  If you still want it thicker, add more dissolved cornstarch.  (Never addundissolved cornstarch directly to any boiling sauce, or it will become clumpy.)

Monday, March 30, 2015

Monday's Recipe

Cranberry Orange Cinnamon Rolls

Yield: Makes about 30 rolls


For the rolls:
2 packages of yeast, dissolved in 1 cup lukewarm water
6 tablespoons shortening
1 cup granulated sugar
7 cups all purpose flour (you might need a little extra if the dough is still sticky)
2 cups hot water
2 large eggs, beaten
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar
1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
1 tablespoons ground cinnamon
Zest of 2 large oranges
3/4 cup granulated sugar
For the orange sugar topping:
Zest of 1 large orange
1/2 cup granulated sugar
For the frosting:
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1 1/2 tablespoons orange zest
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice


1. Add yeast to 1 cup of lukewarm water. Stir with a spoon and set aside for about five minutes.
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add shortening, sugar, and salt to hot water and beat for 30 seconds. Let cool to lukewarm temperature. Stir in 2 cups of flour and mix until smooth. Add yeast mixture and mix until well combined. Mix in the beaten eggs.
3. Gradually stir in the remaining flour and mix with the dough hook for about 2 minutes. Remove dough from the bowl and place on a lightly floured counter. Knead by hand, add a little flour if the dough is still sticky. Knead until dough feels satiny and smooth.
4. Put the dough in a greased bowl and cover with a towel. Let rise for 30 minutes or until dough doubles in size.
5. Remove dough from bowl and place on a lightly floured counter. Divide dough in half. With a rolling pin, roll one half of the dough into a rectangular shape. Spread dough evenly with 4 tablespoons of softened butter. Sprinkle dough with 1/2 cup brown sugar, 3/4 cup dried cranberries, and 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon. Rub orange zest and granulated sugar together in small bowl. Sprinkle half of the mixture over the dough.
6. Gently roll up dough into one long roll. Cut rolls, using a piece of dental floss or thread, about two inches thick. Rub the zest of one orange and half cup of sugar together in a small bowl. Dip and twist the rolls into the orange sugar mixture. Place rolls in greased 9X13 baking pans.Now follow the exact same steps with the other half of the dough.
7. Place rolls in a warm spot and cover with a towel. Let rolls rise until double in bulk, about an hour. Bake rolls at 425 degrees F for 10 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350 degrees F and bake for 5-7 more minutes or until golden brown. Remove pans from oven and let cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes.
8. To make the frosting-in a medium bowl combine, butter, powdered sugar, milk, orange zest, and orange juice. Whisk until smooth. Frost the cranberry orange rolls generously with frosting. Serve warm.
*Note-these rolls are best eaten warm. To reheat-microwave each roll for about 15 seconds.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

A Week of Recipes

This week, I am going to try to share a recipe a day to make for Conference Weekend.
I know time is limited between sessions, so I hope this takes some pressure off you.  Enjoy your Easter/Conference Weekend.
  • 1 (14-inch) loaf Italian bread, ends trimmed
  • 1 1/2 pounds bulk pork sausage
  • 1 small onion, chopped fine
  • 3 cups shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese
  • 12 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 4 cups 1% milk
  • 1 ½ teaspoons table salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce
  1. Adjust oven racks to upper-middle and lower-middle positions and heat the oven to 400. Slice bread in half lengthwise then slice each half into ½ inch-thick slices. Spread the bread in single layers on two rimmed baking sheets and bake until golden, 10-15 minutes, flipping bread and switching and rotating sheets halfway through. Take care not to let the bread burn - it should be golden brown and toasted. Let the bread cool for 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, cook the sausage and onion until the pork is no longer pink, breaking the meat into bite-sized pieces as it cooks.
  3. Lightly coat a 9X13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Shingle half of the bread in the prepared pan so that the edges overlap slightly. Top with half of the sausage mixture and 1 cup cheese. Repeat with remaining bread, remaining sausage mixture, and remaining cheese.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk eggs, milk, salt, pepper, and hot sauce together. Pour evenly over the assembled casserole. Place the casserole on a rimmed baking sheet and wrap the casserole with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic wrap lightly on the top of the casserole. Fill another 9X13-inch dish with cans of food (beans, fruit, whatever) and nest the weighted dish on top of the assembled casserole. This will help the bread soak up the egg mixture. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 24 hours.
  5. When ready to bake, adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350. Let casserole stand at room temperature while the oven is heating. Remove weights, unwrap casserole, and bake until the edges and center have puffed and the top is golden brown, about 1 hour. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Upcoming Conference

What an opportunity we have before us!!  We should be waiting on the edge of our seat to listen to the voice of living Prophets.  I hope you are planning on watching General Conference.  With the available technology, we can record directly to our televisions to watch and re-watch.  Remember as Women, we have the first opportunity to be able to hear the messages first.  What??? I guess we have perks as women in the gospel, right?  All you girly girls be at the Stake Building this Saturday at 5:45.  See you there!!! 

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Springtime is Strawberry Time

Strawberry Rhubarb Jam
Yield: 4 half-pints
Strawberry Rhubarb jam is like spring in a jar!
  • 1 1/2 pounds strawberries
  • 1 1/2 pounds rhubarb stalks
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  1. Wash the strawberries and rhubarb well.
  2. Hull the berries and dice them into small pieces and chop the rhubarb into a 1/4 inch dice. Place the chopped berries and rhubarb in a glass or ceramic bowl with the sugar. Stir to combine and cover with a piece of plastic wrap. Let the fruit sit overnight, stirring occasionally.
  3. When you're ready to cook the jam, prepare a small boiling water bath canner and four half pint jars and bring it to a boil. Place four new canning jar lids in a small pot and bring them to a bare simmer.
  4. Pour the fruit and all the liquid into your jam in a non-reactive pot and place it over medium-high heat. Bring the fruit to a rapid boil and stir regularly. You'll need to adjust between medium-high an high heat to keep the fruit at a boil. It's like a dance- just be careful not to let the jam scorch on the bottom- it can happen quickly!
  5. The jam should take about 20 minutes to cook but every kitchen is different so keep a close eye and know that time will vary. The jam is done when it is quite thick. You can tell that it's ready when you pull a spoon through the jam and it doesn't immediately rush in to fill that space. Stir in the lemon juice.
  6. Remove the jam from the heat and funnel it into the prepared jars. Wipe rims, apply lids and rings, and process in a boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes at sea level and add 5 minutes for every 1000 feet of altitude above 3000 feet. Don't start your timer until the water returns to a boil.
  7. Remove jars from canner and set them to cool on a folded kitchen towel. When they are cool enough to handle, remove the rings and test the seals by grasping the edges of the lid and lifting the jar an inch or so from the countertop. If the lid holds fast, the jars are sealed. Any unsealed jars should be refrigerated and eaten within a week.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Two Nights of Dinner This Week!!!

Remember Wednesday night we will Celebrate Relief Society's Birthday.  Below is the invitation in case you didn't get yours.  Please try to attend, we don't get the opportunity for all Sister's to get together, eat and visit.  There is a great program prepared for you.  Come and see the beautiful balloons...Up, up and away!!!

But don't forget that Tuesday Night is the Ward Block Party in River Stone.  This event is hosted by the Young Women, there will be a Service Auction.  Bring a side dish or dessert.  This starts at 5:30 and is for the whole family.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Family, one of our Greatest Blessings.

As I wrap up a week in Arizona, reluctantly I will be heading home.  When all is said and done, I love my family!!  I have spent a week with my beautiful Granddaughter Alli.  We have laughed and laughed all week.  I can't believe what a wonderful Young Woman she is.  We spent our time in the days with Noa and Edmond, and their parents Carree and Chris.  My Arizona family is so blessed to be blocks away from the new Phoenix Temple.  Noa is a non-stop 4 year old, with his own agenda, not to be interfered with.  Edmond knows he has to be good, because Mom is so busy with Noa, there is no time for him.  The picture above is Edmond eating lunch, with his never ending smile.  Yes, my friends, that is red hair.  We have a Ginger!!!  I am excited to come home, I miss everyone at home, but I really hate to leave this cute little family behind.  I only can leave because I know that they have a wonderful ward, that looks out for them.  We need to be mindful that those we look out for in our ward, have a family that is counting on us to take care of them.  I am eternally grateful to the Sweet Sister that brought my Aaron and Darcy dinner while I was away.  I cannot believe how blessed I am to have such a wonderful Family and Ward Family!!!  I will be glad to see you when I get home.  Love You!!!

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Thank You Karen!!!

Today's lesson was outstanding.  Karen Austraw performed double duty by kicking off her beginning Genealogy Class as well as substituting as a Relief Society Teacher.  I love to be taught by example and Karen is certainly a great example to all of us.  She certainly showed us hope as she related her story.  I have been acquainted with Karen for about a year now, but she has been a friend to my Shannon for years.  I felt I had known her my whole life when we met in our exercise class and was elated to learn she was building in our ward.  I love to hear these lessons from previous Prophets perception and feel as though we learn so much more by being taught in this format.  I will be gone this next week, but am just a phone call away if you need me.  I truly love each of you and spend most of my time thinking of how I can make you know how special you are.  I am excited to celebrate the birthday of the Relief Society with you, and as you can imagine am getting a bit out of control on that.  I will be there next Sunday and hopefully will have a good news item to share.  Love you!!!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Yummy Recipe

Naked Carrot Cake

Naked cakes are the perfect dainty dessert for springtime. Especially when you use an egg shaped cookie cutter to add an Easter twist and this carrot cake recipe to add a little flavor. They are the perfect little cakes to serve at any event.
What you’ll need
4 eggs
1 1/4 cups vegetable oil
2 cups sugar (granulated)
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 cups grated carrots
2 teaspoons of vanilla paste 
What you’ll need for frosting
1/4 cup butter (softened)
8 ounces cream cheese (softened)
16 ounces powder sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla paste
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Flour and grease a baking sheet. In a large bowl, combine eggs, oil, white sugar, and 2 teaspoons of vanilla. Beat together with an electric mixer. Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Stir in grated carrots.
Pour into the baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick can come out clean. Let the cake cool before using the cooking cutters to cut out your desired shape of cake.
We used an egg shaped Easter cookie cutter, but don’t shy away from the other cute springtime shapes.