Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Homemade Cream of Mushroom

Homemade Cream of Mushroom Soup

1/4 cup sliced mushrooms, sauteed in butter
2 Tbsp. butter
1/2 cup flour
4 cups milk
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp parsley
To make cream of mushroom soup, simply sautee the contents of one bag with an additional 2 tbsp. butter. Mix 1/2 cup flour with 1 1/2 cups milk until smooth. Slowly add to mushrooms, whisking constantly. Then slowly add another 2 1/2 cups of milk. Whisk until smooth and bubbly.

Add 1 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. pepper, and 1 tsp. parsley flakes. Remove from heat. Soup will thicken as it cools. Feel free to add more milk to reach desired consistency.

Makes the equivalent of 3 cans cream of mushroom soup.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Healthy Blueberry Muffins

healthy blueberry muffins

This simple recipe is for breakfast or dessert. I made so many, we snacked on them all day long.

This past week, I picked up a 1/2 pint of organic blueberries from my local CO-OP just to bake muffins. My family absolutely loves blueberry muffins, so I wanted to spoil them just a bit. Instead of baking regular size muffins, I got out my fun mini-muffin pan and made a load of muffins. It made it so much easier to snack on them through out the day and we had just enough for breakfast the next morning.

to make 12 muffins.

  • 3/4 cups low fat milk
  • 1/2 cup natural applesauce
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries

Preheat oven 400ºF degrees. Spray muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray.

Blend milk, applesauce, egg in a small bowl and set aside.
Stir flours, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Make a well in the center and pour wet ingredients into the well. Stir with a spoon just until the flour is moistened (batter will be lumpy). Fold in blueberries. Divide batter among muffin cups. Bake until golden brown; regular size muffins bake in 18 to 20 minutes, mini-muffins bake in 10 minutes. Immediately remove from pan.

Use a small cookie dough scoop to portion out the batter. It really does make it easy and they're fun to use.


I haven't made this 5-star Southern Living recipe
for more than a year, but it was once my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe. No wonder. A crisp outside, soft middle, just enough chocolate and combo of nuts make this one remarkable cookie. It took first prize in the chocolate chip cookie category in a previous festival and remains a favorite treat in many Eureka Springs kitchens. Maggie McCarthy, Dallas, Texas, came up with this recipe, and it was first published in the February 2006 issue of Southern Living. When I made this half batch, and then ate them, I remembered why I liked them so much. These are really top-notch cookies that could easily be made into "super cookies" with 1/4 cup or more of dough. The texture is similar to the Levain Bakery chocolate chip cookies, only with more chew from the oats. But be sure to use quick-cooking (1-minute) oats and not the instant or 5-minute for best results. I didn't change much on this recipe, because it's so good to start with. I did sub some Stevia for sugar, Smart Balance 50/50 Butter Blend for butter, added coffee flavor and increased the chocolate chips slightly. If you make these, they'll become one of your favorite chocolate chip cookies, too.
Oatmeal-Chocolate Chip Cookies
Adapted Half Batch from Southern Living
Rating: 10 out of 10

10 Tbsp. Smart Balance 50/50 Butter Blend, or butter
1/4 cup sugar (or 1-1/2 tsp. Stevia)
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 egg (2 Tbsp.)
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2 tsp. strong coffee or coffee brandy
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. sea salt
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups quick, 1-minute, rolled oats (not instant)
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (I used Hershey's Special Dark)
1/4 cup toasted chopped walnuts
1/4 cup toasted chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 375F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In large bowl, by hand, beat butter till smooth; gradually add sugars, beating again till smooth. Add egg, vanilla, coffee, baking powder and sea salt, beating till smooth and well combined. Stir in flour till it's absorbed, then stir in oats, chips and nuts till ingredients are well distributed. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls onto prepared baking sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes, or till just barely done. Cool on wire racks. Yield: 19 2-1/4" cookies