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Friday, August 16, 2013

Delicious Sausage Dip

One of my favorite people shared this recipe with me years ago, and almost every time I go to visit her, we share this dip as an evening snack.

It is a staple in their home, and it never gets turned down when made.... And when you start to fry the sausage, the smell fills the house, and everyone mosey towards the kitchen in anticipation of the finished dip.

With only 3 ingredients, it is a snap to put together, and the only other thing you need is a bag of tortilla chips, or if in your part of the world you can't get tortilla chips, you could substitute a cracker, or baguette.

Sausage dip:

1. pound of good quality ground sausage
2  10 ounce cans of Rotel tomatoes with green chilies
1  8 ounce package of cream cheese

In a skillet, Brown the sausage until cooked thoroughly.  If there is an abundance of grease, drain the sausage to remove the grease.

When fully cooked, add the 2 cans of tomatoes with green chilies, slightly drained.  You can leave some of the juice.

Stir to distribute, and heat through, then add the cream cheese and heat just until the cream cheese is melted, do not over cook.

Serve hot with tortilla chips.

It is also great made with hot sausage, and the spicy/hot Rotel tomatoes for those who like spicy things.

If you can't find the Rotel tomatoes, you can substitute canned diced tomatoes, and add a can of diced green chilies to it, I think it is 4 oz sized can.

I hope you enjoy this as much as we do, it makes me hungry just talking about it.

This would be wonderful made with Reindeer sausage.... something you can get if you still live in Alaska..... sometimes I miss it more than others...


An amazing young woman

This video is about a wonderful young Woman that has a heart for the lost.
She is a dear friend, and we are so proud of her.

Watch the video, and if you have any questions, please contact her.... 

She loves to share her passion of reaching out to the lost and to the unsaved

She spent an amazing time in India, touching lives, and sharing her faith.

I hope you will enjoy the video.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

almost at 2000 blog visits!


Can hardly believe that I am at almost 2000 views on my blog!

I am so amazed, and so humbled by it.

Looking forward to sharing some more recipes with everyone soon, but today is cleaning day, so hopefully if I finish early I will be able to post something new, have a couple of things in mind....

Thanks for all the continued support!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

welcome to my visitors from around the globe

Welcome to my little place on the internet!

It always makes me smile to look and see where my blog is being read.

This week, America is in the lead, but several other countries have popped in to take a moment to read the blog.

This week we have also been visited by.......Isreal, Netherlands, Poland, France, Italy, Germany, Russia, and Serbia!

Thank you so much for stopping in and sharing part of you precious time by reading my blog...

I hope you enjoy my words of encouragement, and my family recipes!  

Every recipe I share is because we love it and make for our family... And I hope you will share them with your family too.

Take the time today to make someone smile, smiling is contagious, and happiness is something everyone can use more of!

Have a blessed day!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

27 Years filled with love and adventure

This marriage that God has blessed me with has been a grand adventure.

It started off with a crazy trip to Hawaii and a catamaran cruise, and has lead me all over the United states, filled with times of laughter, excitement, and too many blessings to count.

I couldn't have asked for a better man to walk beside me and share my life.  He loves me despite my enormous faults, and never fails to bring entertaining times to our life on a daily basis.

He allows me to bloom wherever I need to be, and supports my itchy traveling nature.

We have seen our fair share of complications and roadblocks that every married couple goes through, but during those times we have learned to rest in God's grace and mercy, and draw closer to Him and each other.

My life is a daily event of silliness, and quirky things that would drive a lesser man to the brink of a meltdown, but through it all, we have learned to love each other more, and to embrace those strange and quirky ways about each other, and instead of going crazy and running away from each other, to appreciate those things that make us unique and our marriage something that works for us.

The best parts of us are shown to us daily in our two beautiful daughters.  Evidence of our amazing love, and God's faithfulness to us.  How awesome is that...... those things about our great love living daily before us, reminding us of why we said I do, so many years ago.

My oldest, just started her marriage, and it is amazing to see all that love and promise blooming in their new life together.   

I look back at my parent's marriage, and how they taught me throughout my life how to love deeply and freely.   They truly loved each other, completely, I learned the precious gift of romance, and dedication from them, and try to show that in my own marriage.  

A favorite saying of my mom and dad was..... "The love in your heart wasn't put there to stay,  love isn't love until you give it away..."

I try to live that to it's fullest, and invest in people around me, sharing the love I have received, and make their lives better by loving them in any way I can to make a difference.  

It is wonderful to touch people in a small way, and show them the love of Christ,  some people never get that, and when I can have the opportunity, it is a blessing to my life.

It has been a wonder life so far, and I look forward to seeing where God leads us, I am sure there will be lots of interesting places, and times ahead for us, and I have the most amazing man to share my journey with...

Thankfully God will be right alongside us as we proceed forward, sharing a life filled with love, and so many people to share it with.

Thanks Darling for this marriage and our adventure together.....

~ Brat ~

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Salmon in Foil Packets

This is how I got my daughters to eat fish... It was something I taught them how to make when they were young, and they enjoyed having the fun making them for the family.

Baked Salmon in Foil packets

Salmon Filet (1 serving per person)
Sliced onion
Lemon sliced 1/4 inch thick
Lemon Pepper


To make foil packets, rip off foil large enough to make a packet for each person.
Place fish in center of foil that has been rubbed with butter.
Sprinkle with Dill, Lemon Pepper, Parsley, salt and pepper (to your taste).
Place onion slices on top of fish
Place lemon slices on fish
Place 2 pats of butter on top.
Seal up foil by bringing up edges and rolling top, then rolling in edges to make a sealed packet.  This will allow the fish to steam.

Place the fish packets into a preheated 450 degree oven.  They should bake for15 min.
Remove to each plate to serve.  Be careful when you open packets, the steam is very hot.
Serve with Rice, Steamed vegetables, and salad for a light healthy dinner.

We usually buy the Salmon filets in the seafood department in the freezer section. 
Defrost under hot water, and assemble. 

This goes great with Noodle Rice Pilaf recipe here on the blog, we always make them together....

Noodle rice pilaf: a family favorite recipe

Noodle Rice Pilaf
You can change the flavor of this dish by changing the 
bullion flavor to beef, or vegetable, etc.

1/4 C. Margarine or butter ( not spread)
1 C. long grain rice
½ C. Thin noodles ( we use little stars.) Any little noodle will do, alphabets, 
       thin spaghetti-broken in small pieces etc. 
2 3/4 cup chicken broth ( I use water, and 2-3 chicken bullion cubes)
2 T. parsley.
Dash of garlic
Dash of onion pd.

Melt butter/margarine in sauce pan, add noodles and rice and brown nicely. 
Add broth/water and seasonings, bring to boil, put on lid, reduce heat to simmer/low and cook for 
20-25 min. Do not remove lid during simmer process more than once, you need the build up of steam to cook the rice.

Makes 4-6 servings

My kids love this stuff, and it is so economical... you can vary the taste by using different broth flavors, and by browning the rice lighter or darker.  The darker the rice gets the deeper the flavor....just be careful not to burn them.

You can also add frozen peas and or carrots, or slivered almonds, or broccoli to the rice before you put the lid on it.  We have also added split peas and lentils to it.

We serve this with our Salmon in Foil Packets recipe that I shared on my blog.

Comments function is now working.

This is me and my brother when we were very young.


Well.... after a Month of trying to fix my comments problem, it is finally fixed!  

Comments can now be made to the blog page at each post.

It would be wonderful to hear from those who stop by and read my blog, since there are people reading from all over the world...

So give me a shout out if you stop by the blog, and comment on any recipes you happen to try....

Looking forward to getting to know my readers a bit better... so don't be shy....


Mexicali Bake

What do you call a dish that is mixed all together and put into a pan and cooked in the oven?

Do you  call it a Hot Dish, Casserole, a Bake.....

In our house, my husband doesn't like the word Casserole for some weird reason, so I always call them Bakes.. Chicken Bake, Macaroni and cheese bake, tuna bake.... you get the idea.... well here is my Mexicali Bake... I came up with this recipe one day when I needed to take something to a pot luck at church.  I searched through my cupboards late Saturday night, forgetting all about the pot luck the next day, and came up with this dish with what I had on hand.  It turned out wonderful, and I have been making it ever since, and passing the recipe off to all those who have asked.

Mexicalli Bake    serves 6-8          

1 jar spaghetti sauce
1 medium can tomato sauce (or 2 small)
2 cups cooked ground hamburger
1 pkg. chili seasoning (dry) or 1 pkg. taco seasoning
1 can Olives drained
1 can corn drained or 1 cup frozen corn
1 can Red kidney beans , rinsed and drained or a can of black beans
1 can Rotel, tomato and green chilies
1 box spiral noodles
2 cups shredded cheese
dash garlic
dash onion powder
salt and pepper to taste

heat: sauce, seasonings, meat, in large sauce pan.
Cook pasta, and drain.
Grease a casserole with pam.
Place noodles in casserole pan.
Add olives, corn, kidney beans, Rotel tomatoes, to sauce and pour over noodles,
Lightly stir to mix. Sprinkle cheese over top,

Bake 350 For 30 min, or until cheese melted and heated thoroughly.

Great for potlucks, and for cold winter nights, serve with a green salad and maybe some tortillas chips and some of my home made salsa for a complete meal..... would be a great meal for your entertaining pleasure....  Because Food is always better shared with friends!

Make this vegetarian by leaving out the meat.

Hope you enjoy it as much as we have.

~Alaskan Brat~

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Hawaiian Volcanoes updated

We learned of this recipe from a Missionary family that became friends of ours while they came home for a break.  They invited us over for dinner and served us this wonderful dish.  It was something that they used to entertain people with on the mission field. Most of the ingredients can be kept in the cupboards for spur of the minute entertaining so it makes it a go to meal when you need something quick.

It became an immediate family favorite of ours, and we share this meal with lots of friends, and entertain with this dish all the time.

It is great for hot summer days, as well as mid winter, it doesn't heat up the kitchen to bad, and can be made in the crock pot too.  

I have shared this recipe with so many people, I have lost count.  I hope you enjoy.

Hawaiian volcanos  

2 cups cooked and cubed chicken breast
2 large cans cream of chicken soup 26 oz. Size
Cooked rice- enough to feed your family as main dish
Shredded cheddar cheese. Lots of it.
green onions-sliced thin
shredded cheddar cheese
chow mien noodles
pineapple tidbits
mandarin oranges
chopped red onion or green onions

Cook rice, to be ready and Hot
In another  Medium pot, place chicken and cream of chicken soup.
Heat through, add only enough water to make gravy consistency(about 1 can)
prepare toppings, and place in individual serving dishes.
When Rice and chicken sauce is hot and ready, place a serving of rice in middle of plate, top with chicken sauce.
Pass toppings around the table so everyone can have their choice of toppings, Coconut is the Snow on top of Volcano.
Volcanoes rapidly grow as toppings are added so watch out.

Great dish to serve company because most ingredients are readily available in cupboards normally.

** other topping that might be used are: chopped - tomato, celery, lettuce***

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Chicken Ala-gone

This is a recipe from my tried and true archives....  I have made it so many times, I couldn't count them... It is something I turn to when I need to take a meal to someone in time of need, like a death in the family, or a new baby, or when someone is recovering from a surgery.... It is one of the oh so good comfort food type of meal.  It is one of those casseroles that even picky eaters, young and old seem to like.  If you pair it with a nice crisp green salad, and some brownies, you have a perfect meal to drop off and make someone feel special, and all three dishes can be thrown together in a small amount of time.

I hope you enjoy this dish as much as my family does...

Chicken Ala-Gone

1 lb. pkg. thin spaghetti noodles
1 large can cream of chicken soup (26 oz size or 3-small 10.5 oz size)
1 cup sour cream
2 cups cooked and diced chicken breast
1-2 stalks celery chopped fine
2-3 carrots peeled and sliced in thin coins
½-1 cup frozen peas or more if you really like them
½ tsp. garlic pd. Or 1 clove minced garlic
½ tsp onion pd.
Liberal dash of paprika

Peel carrots, and slice into coins
Chop celery

Bring water to boil for spaghetti, add carrots, and celery with the noodles and cook specified time on box.

Drain noodles and veggies into colander that you have placed the frozen peas (they will cook by the hot liquid pouring over them, and not get soggy).  When completely drained, place noodle mixture into a greased 9X13 pan.

In a large sauce pan heat cream of chicken soup with ½ can of water until very warm, you might need to use a whisk to remove lumps. Add seasoning, and when all lumps are gone and soup is heated, add the chicken breast and sour cream just until completely blended.

Ladle mixture over the top of the noodles, and work in the sauce and chicken with spoon to get it distributed throughout.

Bake 350 until top is lightly browned, Or until heated through, about 30min.

You can also add a layer of shredded cheese to the top before baking, for those who love cheese.

** In place of garlic and onion, I usually use 1-2 tsp Canadian steak seasoning from Sam’s Club.  It is a blend of garlic and spices. 

Reading of my Blog across the globe...

It always amazes me to read the activity on my blog dashboard.

As Bloggers, we get to see how many times people read the blog, and from what countries it is being visited from. It is fun to check up on the blog and see from what countries my blog is being read.

Some days, it is only the USA, and Russia that are checking in with my blog, and on other days, there are many more countries that have checked in with my latest posting....

It is fun to see where my words are being sent to on the planet....

So far this week these countries have checked in:  USA, Russia, Netherlands, Serbia, Canada, Australia, Egypt, Finland, Germany, Qatar, Italy....

I have very dear friends in several of these countries, but some of the others I have only an understanding of where the country is located...

It is kind of exciting to know that you can reach so very far away with a simple click of a button on my computer or my Kindle, and touch someone on the other side of the world....

I wonder what is happening in their lives, and if they have found a bit of something to make their lives a little bit better...

I thank God for each and every one of you and pray that you find a bit of peace and comfort from my blog....  if you look close enough at my blog, I hope you will see that my faith in Christ is very important to me. 

I look forward to seeing where my blog with reach next..... And hope that I will eventually reach all over the globe, and with doing that, share my faith, my recipes, my thoughts,  with as many as possible...

Have a blessed Day...


Contest on a blog that I follow to win a free Kindle Fire

This ebook blog has a contest to win a new Kindle fire...

Enter to win a Kindle Fire

I absolutely love my Kindle, and if you are interested you can enter to win your own.

This blog/email list has great deals on ebooks, and also links to free ebooks.

I have been following his page for a while...


Sunday, July 21, 2013

Throwing the Bridal Bouquet, not only one winner

At most all weddings, the bride throws the bouquet, and one lucky single lady gets to take it home with her...

It is said that whom ever wins the catch and the bouquet, is the next in line to get married. All the single ladies at the wedding get ready to catch and compete to get the bouquet, and sometimes it is a knock down drawn out fight to get control of it and win.

Seemingly mild mannered ladies with knock each other over in a competition to get to be next in line to wed....

Well at my daughters wedding we decided to do it a little different...

We made the throwing bouquet to come apart when thrown.  We had one larger bouquet in the center, and made 8 smaller bouquets to sit around the larger one in the middle.  To anyone looking at the bouquet, it looked normal.  We just tied a large ribbon around the base of the bouquet, and as the ladies lined up to compete and catch it, the bride loosened the ribbon that was holding it all together.

We did some trial runs at home to make sure it would work, and found that you had to throw it high in the air to make it work and separate correctly.

It was fun to see the faces of all the ladies, not sure what was happening, but they were pleasantly surprised, and not one, but 9 people got to take home a part of the bridal bouquet.

When it came to throwing the garter for the guys, we put it on a football and threw it to the single gentlemen...

Because everyone knows, that a guy never lets the ball drop....

It was fun, and was a great competition for the single men.  You need a large area to throw the football, because it travels a far distance, and they need to be told to go long to catch it......

It was fun watching the young men trying to catch the ball too... and quite a memory...

The wedding was a wonderful an amazing day..... so glad that so many friends and family were able to spend the day with us and be part of these beautiful memories....

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Spicy Pasta with Garlic and Chili Peppers

This is a easy and filling go to meal for when you are on a time crunch.

We have made it with many different vegetables, just use what you have on hand, fresh or frozen.  It is quick, and filling, and oh so yummy.  

Using shredded Parmesan cheese, or freshly grated Parmesan cheese makes all the difference.

Using enough garlic is important (we like a lot of garlic), hence this pasta is meant to be garlic flavored, be careful not to burn the garlic, or it will have a bad aftertaste.


Spicy Pasta:

1 lb. Spaghetti noodles cooked 
Chopped garlic 3-4 cloves or More (I use chopped garlic in a jar and add 2 Tb.)
4 Tb. Olive oil
Shredded Parmesan cheese
1-2 tsp. Chili pepper flakes

2-4 cups Broccoli florets (Or) Asparagus, zucchini, snow pea pods, Kale, etc.
1 Lb.Shrimp (optional)

In a large skillet, put olive oil in and saute your chopped Garlic
Add your vegetables, and shrimp If you are using it, and saute. 
And chili pepper flakes, 
Add pasta and toss to distribute over pasta.  
Sprinkle Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper over the noodles and serve

Hope you enjoy it as much as we do...


Frozen Fruit Cups for a Cool Summer Dessert

We have been making this fruit dessert for many years, it is so refreshing on a hot summer day.

We made these for our Ladies tea at our church in California last year, and it was enjoyed by all, and looked really pretty being served with the finger sandwiches and scones.

You can make it in a 9x13 pan, or put in clear plastic cups to serve individually, which is what we usually do.  

Frozen fruit cups…

*12 oz orange juice concentrate with 1 can water
*12 oz pineapple juice concentrate  with 1 can water
1 bag frozen strawberries, chopped
6 bananas, sliced
1 can crushed pineapple with juice
1 can sliced peaches in juice, cut up
1 package raspberries or blackberries (about 2 cups)

Mix juice and fruit together and mix well. Pour into a 9 x 13 inch glass pan, or into individual clear plastic cups. Freeze until solid. When ready to serve, let it sit out for about 15-30 minutes before attempting to cut. (depends on how hot it is out)  Use a fork to eat it, you kind of flake it apart and eat it like a slushy fruit delicacy. 

**You can use frozen Lemonade, Cran-raspberry, or other juices in place of the juices recommended, as well as adding any other fruit that you might like. We have added apricots, cranberries, blueberries, cherries, etc to the mix and it always turns out wonderful.  If you add sour fruit, you might want to add 1/2 cup of sugar to counter the sour fruit.

Some Pictures from the wedding...

Wedding Pictures are getting done, and here are 
some of my latest favorites.

Daddy Daughter Dance.... She'll always be 
His little girl....

The Bouquet was made to separate into 9  parts, with one main 
bouquet and 8 smaller ones giving more ladies a chance to catch the flowers.
The Maid of Honor won the toss....

Great Grandpa and Bride doing the Jitterbug... 
He taught the girls to dance when they were just little girls, and they dance
 when ever we go to visit them.... It is tradition...

My Husband's fathers pocket watch being held by the newlyweds.... 
He passed away 2 weeks before the wedding.... 
He was missed at the wedding so very much.... 
But still there in our hearts and thoughts...

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Corn Bread my Mom's way

Mom and Me In Tahoe a few years ago, 
with me in a rarely seen ponytail.

This recipe has been our family since I was a little girl.... We would have this almost daily through the winter because it goes with so many winter dishes so well.  We would definitely make it with our chili, or stew, or with a big ole pot of pinto beans and ham.

I remember my mom making this by huge batches to feed all the hungry muzzeloader Mountain men out at the range during our shoots on the weekends.  

One year we had a big shoot at the range and everyone brought ingredients to add to the big cast iron stew pot that my parents had, it is about 4 feet wide and holds who knows how many gallons... any way, everyone brought some meat, and a vegetable to add to the pot to make a big batch of "Stone Soup".  Well my brother had just heard the story in school about how one person fooled everyone into giving up their food to make him a pot of soup with his special rock that made special stone soup.

Well the soup was a huge success, but as the pot got down to the bottom of the pot, there were a bunch of huge rocks in the bottom.... My brother, and I had added stones to the big pot...  My mom wanted to kill us... everyone thought the soup was a success, and only my mom and us kids knew our mischievous act.

This was served along side the Stone soup....

It is a sweet corn bread with almost a cake like texture, but heaver than cake. For those who like non sweet corn bread, you will not like this recipe, but in our home, it is the only way to make it.   I also like to use Albers corn meal, but you can't get it here on the east side of the united states...

Me and my brother when we were little..

Johnny Cake Corn Bread

1 C. Flour
1 C. Corn meal
½ C. Sugar
1 T. Baking Powder
1 tsp. Salt

Mix dry ingredients together in bowl

1/3 C. Oil
1 Egg
1C. Milk

Mix wet ingredients, and add to dry....stir only to moistened. Do not stir too much or it will be tough.

Place in buttered/greased 8x8 glass pan.
Bake 400 degrees for 25 min.  Until nicely golden in color and toothpick comes out clean.

*I double this and put in 9x13, and bake a little longer.....

I also sometimes add a dash of vanilla and some cranberries for muffins, or a cup of canned/frozen corn, or a can of creamed corn to the cornbread for a change.
A cup of cheddar cheese, and a can of diced green chilies are also a good addition.

My mom has been making this for years, and everyone loves it... Great with chili. Or stew,

You can  make into 12 muffins also.* add ½ T. more baking powder (single batch=12muffins)

Should look nice and toasty brown on the top when done... 
Rich, delicate and sweet... best kind of corn bread in my opinion.


Delicious Thai chicken salad recipe

This salad is perfect for those hot summer days.... Which is exactly what you need for these summer days lately... For a heartier salad as a main dish, you could add more chicken, or even some cooked shrimp.

We have been making this salad for special functions for years, if you like it spicier, just add more chili oil, or add some chili pepper flakes.

The Dressing is also good just tossed with noodles and chicken or shrimp, either hot or cold.

Hope you enjoy!

Thai Chicken Salad 

Dressing:( I double or triple this)
1 ½ T. peanut butter
2 T. sugar
2 T. soy sauce
1 T. cilantro
1 T. green onion-chopped fine
2 ½ T. salad oil
½ t. sesame oil
½- 1 t. ground red pepper
1 t. white or rice vinegar


Quantities are not set, we just buy the ingredients, and fill the size bowl that is needed to feed the amount of people that are present. The Napa Cabbage gives this salad a nice crunchy texture.

Nappa cabbage,  green leaf lettuce, and or romaine lettuce or combination
shredded carrots
Chinese pea pods
Bean sprouts- fresh or canned
water chestnuts-1 can sliced
red onions thinly sliced, or chopped
1 pkg. Fresh Chinese noodles, cooked and cooled, cut to manageable size
2 cup cooked chopped chicken
sesame seeds
mandarin oranges

Mix dressing ingredients together and completely chill to set the flavors, several hours.
Make salad and toss together,  chill.
You can put dressing on whole salad or let each person use amount wanted. we like to have extra because it is so delicious. 

You can also break up pkg. of dry Ramen noodles and sprinkle on top for an extra crunch.

Hope you enjoy it as much as we do.....

~ Brat~

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