16 December 2010

Best Party Ever! Buffalo Chicken Dip

 Every year Michelle Adams has the most amazing Christmas party. We do a gift exchange where we steal what we want from someone else and they have to trade in turn. We have yummy warm soups. We eat cookies and do crafts. We stand around and talk (cause we're girls). And this year Michelle had something new that added a special bite to the party: Buffalo Chicken Dip! I started out eating it with chips but I ended up eating it with a spoon, it was so yummy. And when Michelle gave out the recipe, I realized how fast and easy it was to make. So here it is for your own holiday pleasure. And sometime, instead of eating it with chips, fill a sandwich with it instead. To die for!

Michelle Adams' Buffalo Chicken Dip

4-6 chicken breasts, boiled and shredded (I personally used two cans of canned chicken and it was faster)
12 oz bottle of Frank's Buffalo Chicken Hot Sauce
2 - 8 oz. pkgs. cream cheese
16 oz bottle Hidden Valley Ranch Salad Dressing
4 oz crumbled Bleu Cheese
8 oz shredded Monterey Jack Cheese

Mix hot sauce with chicken and spread in bottom of 9x13 baking pan.
In saucepan, combine cream cheese and salad dressing on medium heat until smooth. Add Bleu Cheese and stir for one minute, until blended well.
Pour cheese mixture over chicken and sprinkle with Monterey Jack.
Bake at 350 for 30 to 40 minutes until sides are bubbling orange and cheese is melted. Do not brown top.

09 December 2010


I have been wanting to put this casserole in my blog because it's super fast and easy and very very tasty. However, until recently I've been calling it Mexican Mess and that just isn't very clever. SO, now that I have a better name for it, I can blog it. :D


1 can black beans
1 can dark red kidney beans1 can whole kernel corn
1 can cream of celery or cream of chicken soup
1 can chicken
1 cup salsa
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp salt

6 soft-taco size flour tortillas
2 cups crushed corn tortilla chips
12 tostada style tortilla rounds

8 oz shredded Mexican blend cheese (usually sold in bags with a little seasoning in it)

Heat the oven to 400F and grease the bottom of a 9x13 pan. Pour the canned items and the salsa in a bowl and mix well. Add spices and mix well again.

If you're using the flour tortillas, cut them in halves and place 6 halves in the bottom of the pan with the flat sides to the sides of the pan and the round sides to the center. If you're using chips, just dump half of them on the bottom of the pan and if you're using tostada rounds cover the bottom of the pan with half of them in an even manner. Then spread half of the bean/salsa mixture over your tortilla layer, repeat the tortilla layer again and pour the rest of the mixture on top of that; kind of like a Mexican lasagna. Cover the top with the shredded cheese and bake for 35 minutes or until the cheese is melted and starting to brown.

Serve hot with extra chips or cornbread! Olé!

Raspberry Bagel Bake

I love breakfast Casserole and I'm always looking for a new way to combine breakfast ingredients. A couple Saturdays ago I hit upon a combination that really had my family clamoring for more.

Raspberry Breakfast Bake

2 1/2 bagels (5 bagel halves)
1 cup softened cream cheese
1 tsp sugar
1 cup raspberry jam
1/2 pint raspberries (one clamshell package from the grocery store)
6 eggs
1/2 cup cream

Preheat oven to 400F and grease a 8x8 pyrex-type baking dish. Cut the bagels into bite size pieces and layer half of them in the bottom of the baking dish with the outside of the bagels on the bottom. Mix the raspberry jam, sugar, and cream cheese together in a bowl and spread over the layer of bagels. Scatter the raspberries over the top, then put the rest of the bagel pieces on top of the fruit and spread layer with the outside of the bagel pieces up. Mix up the eggs and cream and pour evenly over the top of the bagel layers. Bake at 400F for 30 minutes or until the eggs are set and the top is golden brown. Serve in squares with a drizzling of buttermilk syrup or maple syrup!

24 June 2010

Wondermous Eats Breakfast Casserole

Last night I didn't really want to make dinner and nothing in the fridge inspired me......until I spotted the kielbasa sitting on top of the eggs next to the cheese. And I said "mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm"......and this recipe was born. Our family liked it so much we burned our mouths...on the seconds.

Wondermous Eats Breakfast Casserole

6 medium red potatoes
olive oil
1 tsp dried dill (4 tbs or so of fresh dill)
kosher salt to taste
1 link kielbasa sausage
6 eggs
1/2 cup milk
1 cup shredded cheddar
1 cup shredded mozzerella

Preheat Oven to 400. Microwave the potatoes (don't forget to pierce them with a fork!) for 12 minutes. Meanwhile, drizzle olive oil over the bottom of a 9x13 glass pan. When the potatoes are done, smash them into the pan gently (no need to make mashed potatoes, just break them up a bunch). Sprinkle the dill and salt over the potatoes.

Dice the kielbasa into chunks and lay them all over the potatoes. Mix the eggs and milk together until totally blended, then pour over potatoes and sausage. Top with cheeses, cook for 25 minutes in the oven. Devour shamelessly. No vegetables or healthy foods were harmed in the creation of this recipe.

20 May 2010

Baked Mac and Cheese

I know what you're thinking. "But Slap-Dash, if you want really fast and cheap mac and cheese you just buy Kraft!" And I totally agree. I wouldn't have explored the realm of baked mac except for two things. A couple of seasons ago on Bones, Booth made a big deal about baked mac and cheese being divine, and I've wanted to try it ever since. (I tend to think that anything Booth likes must be heavenly. Cause, you know. It's Booth!) Also, yesterday I bought a block of Gruyere cheese.

The display said that the cheese was "creamy, sweet and mild", which is everything I need and want and adore in a cheese, so I was sold. Got it home, opened it up, and cut myself a slice. Can I just tell you? It did not taste like food. It tasted how armpits and feet smell. It wasn't fit for a goat. I gagged, which is amazing because I have very little gag reflex.

Disappointed and out 6 bucks, I brushed my teeth three times and hit the internet. Apparently the stuff tastes better melted, and a lot of the recipes I found were for...you guessed it, baked mac. Unfortunately, half of the recipes called for stuff I didn't have. So, I made up my own recipe and it turned out great, and pretty fast! (As in, under 40 min, not as in, Kraft fast.) Oh, you might want to serve this up with a salad. It is very fatty and delicious so you will need at least one veggie to appease your conscience.

Slap-Dash Baked Mac and Cheese

Box of pasta

1 stick butter, cut in half
3 tbs flour
2 cups milk
1 cup Gruyere cheese (or Swiss, or sharp Cheddar, if you're cheap or unadventurous)
2 cups cheddar, divided
salt to taste

Half bag of Chex mix, Bold flavor (don't substitute)
6 Club or Ritz crackers
1/2 cup Frenches fried onions

Preheat the oven to 350. Put the pasta on to boil, and cook to al dente. Meanwhile,  in another pot put half the butter in to melt. Add flour and whisk into a roux. Pour in milk and stir til thickened, over medium heat. Add cup of gruyere and cup of cheddar cheese, and mix until melted. Add salt. When sauce and pasta are finished, mix together and spread in a stoneware baker or a pyrex dish, set aside.

For topping, melt the other half of the butter in a bowl in the microwave. Toss in the chex mix, crackers, and fried onions, and crush into fine crumbs. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top of the pasta, and spread the buttered crumb mix on top of that. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the whole thing is piping hot. Devour! :D

27 March 2010

Potato Top Casserole

Jed had some serious reservations about marrying me. I have long believed that one of the main reasons I was able to talk him into asking me was because I could make Potato Top Casserole. The first time he ate it, we weren't even dating; it was just our apartment visiting his apartment for dinner. (In fact, some other guy who wasn't invited followed me like a dog over to the dinner, I was mortified because it meant no one would even look at me because they thought I was there with him. Ew.) I'd never seen anyone eat anything as fast as Jed ate that casserole. And when everyone was done, he finished off the rest of the pan. o_O

I learned to make the dish at a farmhouse in Wyoming (that was another roommate adventure, too long a story). The farmhouse mom who taught me how to make it was kind and loving and very competent. (I was also enamored of her dishwasher; as a cattleman's wife, she had one that could wash all the butchery equipment and stuff...it was bigger than my apartment room.) I couldn't believe that something so homey and delicious could be so easy to make; it is a comfort food, pure and simple. It's become a family favorite..or to be more specific, a Jed favorite.

Now perhaps you've heard of the dish as Tater-Tot Casserole. That's how I learned it...but I dislike tater-tots with a passion. I prefer to use Ore-Ida Crispers french fries, or some kind of inexpensive frozen hashbrowns. Both serve the same purpose as tater-tots and taste better. You can choose whatever frozen potato product that you and your family like. This dish fits whatever pan you're using, too...so you can modify the ingredient amounts based on the pan you use. If you don't have kids or are not entertaining, this works just as well in an 8x8 pan, you can likewise go larger if you've got a crowd to feed. I'm going to give the amounts for a 9x13 glass dish.

Potato-Top Casserole

1 1/2  lbs lean ground beef
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 an onion, thinly sliced
8 oz shredded cheddar cheese, or the equivalent in sliced cheese
two cans cream of something soup (I prefer mushroom, Jed prefers chicken. Celery works too)
Your choice of frozen potatoes

The trick is to layer everything evenly, like a lasagna. Smash the beef down into a glass 9x13 pan in a thin layer. It should cover the whole bottom of the pan evenly. Sprinkle salt and pepper over the beef (you can even splash on a bit of Worcestershire sauce.) Spread the onion slices evenly over the seasoned beef. Next, sprinkle the shredded cheese in a layer on top of that, or if you're using slices of cheese, lay them out evenly. Carefully spread the condensed "cream of" soup over the cheese with a spatula (it may seem easier to switch these two layers, but the "cream of" soup will soften and mingle with the potatoes better than the cheese.) When all you can see on top is the soup, cover it all with the frozen potatoes. Bake at 400 for 45 minutes, or until you can see that the beef is no longer pink and the potatoes are golden. Devour!

When I made it for myself the first time, it ended up swimming in grease. I had to call my friend's mom and ask what I did wrong. "We grow our own beef, dear. It is extremely lean." Well, that doesn't help! My advice is to choose beef that is 90% lean or more if you're going to make this dish. It's healthier anyway.

18 March 2010

Broccoli Salad with Lemonade Dressing

I like to go to Church activities where there is food. I always assumed as a kid that food at a church activity was a Mormon thing, then I found out it's really just a church thing. Churches everywhere and everywhen have picnics and potlucks. It doesn't matter what religion you are, if you love God and you worship Him correctly, you get hungry doing so. Also, worship makes you want to socialize after. Cool, huh?

Anyway, I usually bring dessert to Church activities because it's kind of a fail-proof thing; if you bring something with chocolate, you don't bring any home. Unlike funeral potatoes or jello salad or whatever else bland thing people bring. The only time I don't bring dessert is if chili is called for, then I step up and do my duty by bringing one of the best chili's out there, the recipe for which is the original post in this blog.

But for tonight's Relief Society meeting, I didn't get the sign-up sheet cause I was sick on Sunday. So when I called to see what I could bring, the dessert slots were taken...and I was asked to bring a salad. Vegetables aren't my strong suit and low-fat rabbit food doesn't suit me at all. But I have a secret weapon, that will stand me in good stead here...broccoli salad.

Once I hired on for the evening at a big fancy wedding at my ward in Pasadena. I earned $50 putting out the food and arranging it prettily and making sure it still looked good after people had dug into it. It was a fun, if exhausting job. But better than the $50, I was well rewarded with a plate of the food at the end of the night. The broccoli salad was the crowning emerald jewel on that plate and I hadn't ever had one as good since then. But sometimes elements combine to make a miracle and that happened for me as I set out to recreate it.

First, Jen Jackson and I ran into each other at Market Basket and she was buying broccoli slaw. A bag of broccoli stems and carrots and cabbage all shredded to perfection. No florets. It looks fantastic and is easy to use (I've since made eggrolls with it too, wonderful). Also, when I was playing with proportions and online recipes to get the right dressing, I didn't have vinegar on hand so I substituted lemon juice. I was afraid it would be too sour, so I added a little more sugar than I would have. Voila! It's almost exactly as that long ago wedding salad, only easier.  Yay for the inventor of broccoli slaw, and yay for Jen Jackson. And yay for you if you read this whole rambling blog before you printed up the recipe. :D

Broccoli Salad with Lemonade dressing


1 bag broccoli slaw
1/2 cup almonds
1/2 cup Craisins
1/2 cup shredded cheese
5 slices bacon, cooked and chopped into bits


1 1/4 cups mayonnaise
4 tbs lemon juice
1/3 cup sugar

Place the dry salad ingredients together in a bowl, mix thoroughly. Mix dressing in a separate container, then pour on salad. I like to shake the salad in the salad bowl with the lid on to get the most coverage. Chill for 10 minutes, or until served.

16 March 2010

Slap-Dash Hot Crash Potatoes

Sorry about not blogging for a couple of weeks. We have all been sick on and off and have had many large events going on. I'm exhausted! I had considered putting up a recipe of something I like to serve when my kids are sick, and then I realized: I hate sick food. Chicken soup, jello, seven-up...they make me sick just thinking of them. When my kids are sick, they don't get to eat. Or I say, toast or applesauce, you choose. I guess I'm a very impatient nurse. When I'm sick, I either don't eat at all or I eat regular. Bleh, chicken soup.

In any case, since St. Patty's day is coming up, and everyone knows potatoes are Irish, I will instead regale you with a recipe that changed the way our family eats potatoes. (The recipe is, however, Australian, not Irish.) Ree Drummond, the Pioneer Woman, put this recipe up at her blog already, but since I modified it for my own tastes and time constraints, I'll give you the Slap-Dash version.

Slap-Dash Hot Crash Potatoes

* 12 whole red potatoes (or however many you want to eat)
* Olive Oil
* Stick of butter, melted.
* Kosher Salt to taste
* Black Pepper to taste
* Dill (or rosemary, if you like that better)  to taste

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add in as many potatoes as you wish to make and cook them until they are fork-tender. I actually microwave mine in my large micro-cooker from Pampered Chef, with a half-cup of water or so in the bottom. It's WAY faster.

On a sheet pan, generously drizzle olive oil. Place tender potatoes on the cookie sheet leaving plenty of room between each potato.

With a potato masher, gently press down each potato until it slightly mashes, rotate the potato masher 90 degrees and mash again.  They should look a little like cookies-- separate from the others but with lots of what Ree calls "Crispy, Flavorful Surface Area".

Pour butter all over the tops of the potatoes. Sprinkle potatoes with kosher salt, fresh ground black pepper and whatever green bits you like to make it pretty and smell nice. I like Dill best, as we've discussed before.

Bake in a 450 degree oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.

Mmm, they get so crispy around the edges and are soft and full of flavor in the middle. Seriously, my family only eats potatoes another way if we have to. These are really impressive for guests and they go with any meat or any style of dinner. Feel free to serve them with your Corned-Beef and Cabbage tomorrow (just know, I personally won't be eating those no matter what holiday it is!).

02 February 2010

Kay's Pancakes and Buttermilk Syrup

Sometimes the in-law relationship is intense. There are thousands of mother-in-law jokes and I know everyone doesn't always get along with their mothers-in-law.

Not me. My mother-in-law is someone that, had I been given a choice, I might have chosen her for my own mother, or sister, or best friend. It was just pure luck and blessings that I got her for my very own mother-in-law, allowing me to have her AND Jed without any weirdness. ;)

Kay Kelsey is amazing at many, many things. The first amazing skill of hers that I was introduced to was her cooking. Living out in the middle of nowhere with a family of nine gave her some pretty serious training along with her native talent. Kay can really crowd-please. But no matter what else she serves up, nothing compares to waking up in silent, rural Idaho to the smell of Kay's pancakes, knowing there's buttermilk syrup to be had as well.

During family visits, these pancakes are made for hours. Mike gets up at some unholy hour before the sun, and Kay gets up with him like the wonderful wife she is. A few hours later, grandkids pop up with growling tummies. Then visiting kid/parents (it's weird, being both the kids and the parents) moan and groan and show up looking scary and wanting pancakes too. Kay delivers.

Now, as the Slap-Dash Chef, I have to say normally I'd just advocate getting the "just-add-water" style pancake mix. But I know quality when I taste it and once you've tried these, you can't go back. Sometimes you just have to make breakfast special.

And buttermilk syrup? Sounds weird you say. Well, it's divine. Absolutely, hallelujah from heaven divine. Grandkids have been known to demand to return home for their own bottle of buttermilk syrup if Grandma doesn't have any. It is sweet and mild and goes on anything really, anything. We've tried it on croissants, pancakes, berries, waffles, apple pie, ice-cream, sweet potatoes, chocolate cake, muffins....pretty much any baked good benefits from it, along with any veggie you'd put brown sugar on (squash, carrots, yams). I promise, once you've made one batch for your family, they will want it on everything.

Buttermilk Syrup

(Will temporarily foam up and double in size, so use a big pot.)

1 cup butter
2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup buttermilk

Bring to a boil, then boil for 45 seconds. Then remove from heat and add:

1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp  baking soda (this is when it foams up a lot)

Stir until well blended and foaming subsides. Use immediately on Kay's pancakes or store in the fridge and warm up when needed.

Kay's  Pancakes

2 cups flour
2 tbs sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tsp soda
2 tsp baking powder

2 eggs
2 cups buttermilk
2 tbs oil

Combine dry ingredients well, then mix in wet ingredients until well blended. Pour onto hot griddle and flip when the edges bubble. I use a quarter cup measure to dole out the batter onto the griddle but you can make your pancakes smaller or larger as you please.

The recipe is easy to remember because it's two of everything except salt. Sometimes I substitute one cup of the flour with whole wheat flour, and lots of times I add dashes of flaxseed in with the flour.

Voila! Perfect Saturday breakfast, or any time you want to impress your in-laws. ;)

29 January 2010

Coconut Curry Cream Rice

Sometimes I like to just mix things that I like and see if they go together. Hot buttered rice is something I love to eat with just a little cream and sugar, and this recipe stemmed from that snack. I added more and more things that I thought might go together well until I had a dish that you can use as a side dish for dinner or a dessert. It's sweet and creamy and though simple, turns out quite impressive.

If you're a peanut allergy person, omitting the peanut butter doesn't harm the recipe.

Coconut Curry Cream Rice

2 cups hot cooked rice

2tbs butter
1 tsp cornstarch
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 can of coconut cream (well mixed)
1 tsp crunchy peanut butter
1 tsp McCormick curry powder
1 tsp sugar
3 tbs flake coconut

Cook rice while preparing cream sauce. In a medium saucepan, melt butter and add cornstarch, making a roux. Pour cream and coconut cream in, stirring or whisking over medium heat until thick and smooth. Add crunchy peanut butter and stir until melted and evenly mixed in. Add curry powder and sugar and stir until even. Add coconut and pour sauce over cooked rice, stirring to mix evenly. Serves 4-6 as a side dish with Indian or Polynesian food or by itself as a dessert.

20 January 2010

Chimi-Chili Dogs (Oh baby.)

A word on leftover chili: Chimi-Chili Dogs. Yes, it's exactly what it sounds like...chili and a hot dog in a tortilla, fried. OH, so very fried and delicious. They used to make these at A&W, (maybe they still do, who knows?!) and I loved them. Then I figured out how easy they were to make and I ADORED them!

If you tried my chili recipe and you're  a family of less than 8, you probably found you had leftover chili. While this is not a problem in and of itself, lots of leftover chili can get boring over time. So before that ever happens, I make chimi-chili dogs instead. If I'd been especially smart, I would have posted this two days after the chili recipe, but I didn't even think of it till this holiday weekend. :(

This meal is fantastic in that you can make as many or as few as you have the ingredients for. (If there's only a few leftovers, make them for yourself when no one is looking. The rest of the family doesn't need to know you eat better than they do at lunch.) If there's enough for everyone, you can top them with sour cream, salsa and/or avocados for a full meal.

Chimi-Chili Dogs

Leftover Chili
Hot Dogs (I like Oscar Meyer Beef ones)
Vegetable oil

Pour enough oil into your pot to cover half a burrito, (about an inch or so) then begin heating the oil on medium.

Assemble the chilidogs burrito style. Put a tortilla down, then a hot dog on one end of the tortilla (not in the middle).  Then spoon about a 1/4 cup of the chili on top of that. Fold in the sides on the ends of the hot dogs first, then roll from the side with the hot dog to the side without. It should look like a taco bell burrito.

Once you've made a couple of the burritos, the oil should be hot. Put one or two in at a time, flap down (I use these monsters, because I'm afraid of hot oil. But if you're less of a wimp, you can use regular tongs or your hands.). After a couple of minutes they should be ready to be turned over (again with the tongs) and left for another couple minutes.

That's right! In less than 10 minutes you can delight in a crispy-on-the-outside, oozing-and-gooey-and-meaty-on-the-inside Chimi-Chili Dog! Your taste-buds will thank you ( but your waist might curse you.)

(Apparently I'm in a parenthetical mood, sorry).

15 January 2010

To-die-for Cauliflower Soup

I'm a huge fan of The Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond. I started reading her blog for the love story she wrote about her and her cowboy hubby, but I stuck around for the recipes and photos. I originally found today's recipe on her website, but what I'm posting here is my modification of her recipe.  The best part about this soup is it is both a cream and a broth soup, so it has all the creamy richness of a cream soup without being so heavy you still feel it two hours later in your tummy.

And don't give me any business about not liking cauliflower. The taste in the soup is super mild and it's a lot lighter weight than potato. I've tried the recipe with potato instead of cauliflower and it's good but just not good enough. Also, if you have the ingredients handy this only takes about half an hour or less. Dinner in a hurry, without the hassle!

Cauliflower Soup

1 stick butter
1/2 onion, finely diced
1 carrot, finely diced (honestly, I buy bags of baby carrots instead of whole carrots. This works well with  about 8 or so of those.)
1 large head of cauliflower, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon dill
1 quarts chicken broth
2 cups heavy cream
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup milk
salt and pepper, to taste

Chop the onions and carrots very fine. It's especially fast if you have one of these. In a big four quart pot melt 4 tablespoons butter, half the stick. Add the onion and carrots cook for a few minutes, or until it starts to turn brown. Add cauliflower and dill and stir to combine. Cover and cook over very low heat for 15 minutes. (Ok, truth here, I almost always use dill even if the recipe calls for something else. It's personal preference. The original recipe called for 2 tbs parsley and if you like that yucky stuff, you can use that instead.)

After 15 minutes, pour in chicken broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and allow to simmer.

In a medium saucepan, melt the other half stick of butter. Put the cornstarch in the butter and whisk until combined, then add cream. Whisk till thickened. Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup milk.

Add mixture to the simmering soup, stir well. Check seasoning (ie, taste it!) and add more salt or pepper if necessary. Let simmer on low until ready to serve.

If you are the privileged one that gets to eat the leftovers, this soup is even better the next day or the day after that (if there's any left at all). It's hard to believe, but it's true. This soup is so hearty you don't even need meat in it to make a meal, but totally feel free to add a can of canned chicken to it if you want some extra protein in a hurry. It tastes fantastic both ways. Also, I like to add cheese to it sometimes. Drop some grated cheddar in, like half a cup, if you feel like it. Enjoy!

08 January 2010

Slap-Dash Chili

I'm starting with my chili recipe for a few reasons:

It's perfect for this cold winter Friday.
It's already typed up, therefore easy to post.
It has won first place in our church congregation's chili cook-off.
It's one of my family's favorite recipes.
I made up the recipe myself, so you'll get some idea of what I'm all about here.

Slap-Dash Chili

1 can premade chili or chili starter (Nalley is the best, but you put in what you like or can find)
1 can black beans
1 can dark red kidney beans
1 can navy beans
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can diced chilis
1 lb hamburger
dash kosher salt
dash black pepper
1/2 onion, chopped fine
1 cup salsa
8 oz grated cheddar cheese


Rinse beans, drain tomatoes and pour all canned goods into the crockpot and start it. Meanwhile, brown burger and add onion, salt and pepper. Make sure to drain off grease when finished. Mix the burger/onions into the bean mixture. Add salsa and cheese to crockpot mixture and stir in well. Set your crockpot to the desired time. Should you choose to leave it going for 8-10 hours, add a cup of water so it doesn't burn or get too thick.

If you choose to make it in a pot on the stove instead, you'll do things in a different order. Brown the meat and onions; add salsa, salt and pepper. When meat is thoroughly cooked, drain off grease. Rinse and drain the beans and tomatoes, add to the meat, and dump in the chilis and the can of chili. Add 1/2 cup of water and stir well.  For the finishing touch, add the cheese and mix in thoroughly. Cook on medium heat until heated through, then serve. We like it best with cornbread.

This feeds at least 8 people, you may have leftovers unless someone gets greedy.

Welcome to the Slap-Dash Chef!

Martha, I ain't.  I'm a mother to four hardy kids (three boys and a princess) and the wife of a very forgiving man. We're all in a white house in New England, living the American Dream (especially now that I have a Honda Odyssey.) I am just a regular, American girl. I still think of myself as a girl even though I'm 30+. I still imagine to myself that if I don't get a particular chore done, it's okay, because my mom will be along soon to do it for me. (And sometimes, she is!) I'm lazy about housework, my food is delicious but usually ugly, my kids are brilliant but a bit unkempt.

So what qualifies me to write this blog? Over the course of my marriage (currently 9.5 years and counting) I've somehow managed being a full-time housewife and mother and still found time to be myself. I've collected some delicious recipes and figured out some kitchen shortcuts that make life easier. And I'm continually learning organization and housekeeping tools that might help you, too. If you are a Martha clone, you probably won't enjoy this blog. But if you're just a regular person looking for some yummy food, and maybe a few laughs about life and raising a family, then welcome!

You should know, my goal is to put up at least one recipe a week, and I will do my best. But I can't guarantee anything. You should also know, that nothing I put up here will be low-fat, organic, super-fancy or take more than an hour and 15 minutes to make. Yeast and I are not friends...there will be no bread recipes. I've got a large stockpile of recipes to put up, but I will run out at some point so if you want to share, by all means! Please send me recipes that work for you. Some of my recipes are my very own, tried and true, made-up-entirely-by-me recipes. Some will be recipes from my very favorite food blogs and cookbooks that have been modified by me to fit my life and kitchen style. The rest are recipes from friends and family. I'll give credit where credit is due whenever possible.

You'll also probably have to put up with the occasional photo, poem, link, rant, trip down memory lane, or plug. If you choose to skip over all that and just grab the recipe, that's fine. If you like what you read or discover that one of my recipes is yummy and works for you, then please pass on a link to a friend. And please visit the links to the left there; some are the websites of  family and friends, some are websites that are influential to me, and one is the print shop selling my own artwork. ;)

I'm looking forward to the journey that is food blogging! Thank you for joining me!