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Tag Archives: easy to make

Cookie Cheesecake Bars

I love cheesecake bars because it’s cheesecake, bite-sized!

I wasn’t sure how they’d turn out, because I’ve had mixed results with this magazine.  The only problem I had was that the cream cheese mixture didn’t pour over the cookies and crust really well, so it had a cookies and cream kind of appearance.  Which is what it tasted like, come to think of it.  So while it doesn’t look very pretty (or in nice layers like it did in the magazine), they taste really good!

I think next time I make these, I’ll mix the cookies and the cheesecake together.  Or maybe I’ll add the cookies to the crust.  I crushed them by putting the cookies into a plastic bag and using a rolling pin.


Cookie Cheescake Bars

Slightly adapted from Betty Crocker Best Baking Recipes


  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups coarsely crushed Oreo’s


  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, beat 2 cups of flour, the brown sugar and butter on medium speed.
  3. Press mixture into ungreased 13×9 inch pan for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown.
  4. Beat cream cheese, granulated sugar, 1/4 cup flour and the eggs until thick and fluffy.
  5. Sprinkle cookies over the crust, then pour the cream cheese over the cookies.
  6. Bake 12 to 16 minutes or until the topping is set.
  7. Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes and then refridgerate for about an hour, or until firm.

Whole Wheat Spaghetti with Buttery Tomato Sauce

I love spaghetti.  It’s one of my favorite foods ever, and it doesn’t matter how it’s made, as long as I can eat it.  For one of my favorite foods, I don’t eat very often.  But when I do, I’m always amazed by how versatile spaghetti is.

Like spaghetti sauce.  For the longest time, I wasn’t a fan.  I had no problem eating my spaghetti plain with parmesan cheese.  But I’m warming up to spaghetti sauce, especially because you can do it so many ways.  And sometimes, I’m all about cleaning out the pantry, which can work out really well with something like spaghetti.

This spaghetti is so good!  Especially the sauce.  To me, it was more sherry than buttery, but then again, that is what I get for tasting it while it’s cooking.  It’s simple and doesn’t take forever to make which is always a plus.  Enjoy!

Whole Wheat Spaghetti with Buttery Tomato Sauce

Adapted from the July/August issue of Everyday with Rachael Ray


  • 1 pound whole wheat spaghetti
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 to 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/3 cup dry sherry
  • 1 can (28 to 32 ounce) whole tomatoes (preferably san marzano, but any kind you can get is good)
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 onion, chopped (optional)


For the pasta:

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Salt and add the pasta.
  2. Cook pasta just shy of all dente.
  3. Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta water, than drain the rest of the water.

For the tomato sauce:

  1. In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat until foaming.  Stir in garlic (and onions if using) for 2 to 3 minutes, then add the sherry.
  2. Stir in the tomatoes and season with salt and pepper.  Lightly crush the tomatoes with potato masher.
  3. Bring the sauce to a bubble.  Lower the heat and then simmer for 20 minutes.
  4. Add the nutmeg, reserved water and pasta.
  5. Toss to combine, serve and topped with grated parmesan cheese.

Almond Toffee Blondies

I was in the mood for blondies and a recipe for Toffee Blondies caught my eye.  I think I love blondies even more than brownies, because blondies are brownies without the chocolate.

And sometimes I want a n0-chocolate brownie.  Blondies are certainly interesting.  I just love the texture and taste of them.  This one caught my eye because of the toffee.  I’m surprised the bag of toffee pieces last long enough for me to use it for the blondies, because I love toffee!  I need more toffee in my life, because I really don’t eat enough of it.

I would definitely make these again, because they are sweet, chewy and delicious.

Brown Butter Toffee Blondies

Adapted From Best Baking Recipes Magazine; makes about 16 squares


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted and browned
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 egg
  • 2/3 cup toffee bits


  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Spray 8-inch square pan with cooking spray.
  2. Mix flour, baking powder and salt in a small bowl and set aside.
  3. Beat butter, vanilla and almond extract, egg and brown sugar on low speed until combined.
  4. Gradually add flour mixture.
  5. Stir in half (1/3 cup) of the toffee.
  6. Spread batter into pan and sprinkle with remaining toffee.
  7. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out almost clean.
  8. Cool on a wire rack and serve.

Chorizo And Eggs

I have a confession to make.  I love eating breakfast for dinner.  And I have no problem eating dessert for breakfast.  If eating a meal at the “wrong” time of day can be done, I’ll totally do it.

I’ll admit that I didn’t make this for breakfast.  I did, since it is a breakfast food.  But I didn’t make it in the morning, because I give myself just enough time to take a shower and eat a quick bowl of cereal or something before going to work.     I really wanted something more than cereal that I could just heat up.

So I decided that it was time to make chorizo and eggs.  I really like that the recipe is for 2, because I didn’t have to worry about halving it or having leftovers.  And I had just enough for the recipe, so it all worked out.  It was so easy to make, and I’ll definitely be making more!  I might even double it next time…

Chorizo and Eggs

Adapted from Aggie’s Kitchen


  • 1 package soyrizo (or 2 links fresh chorizo)
  • 4 eggs, whisked
  • shredded cheese (Mexican blend or cheddar)
  • hot sauce
  • chopped tomatoes or chopped onions (both are optional)


  1. Cook soyrizo until you get the color/texture you want.  If using real chorizo, cook until it is no longer pink.
  2. Add eggs and as much cheese as you want, and scramble until it is cooked all the way through.
  3. Serve with hot sauce, tomatoes and onions and enjoy!

Tomato Egg Drop Soup

Remember those tomatoes I talked about last week?  I used them in this soup!  This recipe caught my eye, because it’s an interesting take on Egg Drop Soup.  I’d never think to add tomatoes to it, but it does make Egg Drop Soup a lot more interesting, and adds a different flavor to the soup.

As it turned out, the weather was a little bit cloudy, and it looked like it was going to rain, so soup turned out to be the right thing to make!  Enjoy!

Tomato Egg Drop Soup

Adapted from Into The Vietnamese Kitchen


  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of canola or neutral oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, choppped
  • 3/4 pound ripe tomatoes, cored and coarsely chopped
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1/3 pound ground pork (or tofu or other vegetarian alternative)
  • 5 1/2 cups water
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • Black pepper


  1. Heat the oil over medium heat in a large saucepan.  Add the onion and cook for around 4 minutes.  Or until it’s soft and fragrant.
  2. Add the tomatoes and salt, cover, and cook for 4 to 6 minutes.  Or until the tomatoes are a thick mixture.  Stir occassionally, and lower the heat if neccessary.
  3. Uncover and add the fish sauce and pork.  Add water, raise the heat to high, and bring to a boil.  Lower the heat to a simmer and cook for about 15 to 20 minutes.  Leave the pot uncovered.
  4. Just before serving, bring the heat to a simmer.  Taste and add extra salt or fish sauce if needed.  Turn off the heat, pour in the beaten egg into the soup in a large circle, and stir to break up the egg.
  5. Sprinkle with pepper and serve.

Taco Soup

It’s been raining pretty much all weekend, so it seemed like a good time to make more soup!  I really do love soup, because it’s so easy to make.  Plus, sometimes, it’s nice to have a bowl of soup.

Unfortunately, all you can see is the broth and the cheese, which is on top of the sour cream.  Well, in the picture above, you can kind of see something on the bottom, which is the beef.  You can see it a little better in the picture below.  I sadly didn’t have any tomatoes, but I would imagine tomatoes would make it even more awesome than it already is.

I love tacos, and I’ve made one or two other versions of taco soup before, but I really like this recipe, so I’ll probably stick with this recipe.  Unless I come across another recipe for taco soup, in which case, I’ll probably have to try out it.  So enjoy the recipe!

Taco Soup:

Adapted from Rachael Ray’s Book Of 10


  • 2 tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 to 1 1/2 pounds of ground beef (or vegetarian alternative)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon  each of ground cumin, ground coriander and chili powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon oregano
  • 3 garlic gloves, chopped
  • 1 quart vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1 15-ounce can stewed tomatoes (optional)
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped (optional)


  1. Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a soup pot.
  2. Add the ground beef, and brown it, breaking it up with a wooden spoon.
  3. Season with garlic, onions (if using), salt, pepper and spices.
  4. Stir to combine and cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Add the tomatoes (if using) and stock.  Bring to a boil.
  6. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
  7. Ladle into bowls, and garnish with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkle of grated cheddar cheese.

Hot Chocolate

I love hot chocolate.  How can you not?  It’s chocolate!  That you can drink!  What’s not to love?

I’ve been getting a little creative with my hot chocolate lately, trying some with peppermint extract, which was yummy!  But then a cool idea came to me.  Chocolate and orange are a good combination, right?  So why not put some orange extract in my hot chocolate?  It came out so good!

It’s something that’s popped into my head, and I’m glad it did, because both turned out really well.  Definitely a lot better than I expected.  There are no pictures for today…because I forgot.  But I’ll be back with pictures and a recipe on Monday.  Enjoy the hot chocolate recipe!

Hot Chocolate


  • 1 cup milk
  • a couple spoonfuls of chocolate milk mix (Nesquik is good; so is Ghiradelli’s ground sweet chocolate mix)
  • 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract or orange extract


  1. Heat milk in the microwave or on the stovetop.
  2. Add chocolate, and either peppermint extract or orange extract.
  3. Enjoy!