Bean Salad

It must be delish! I love beans & greens & it fits all so well together.

From the Recipe Box

My mom and her sisters were big on bean salad.  Growing up in Minnesota, salads either had mayonnaise, whipping cream or vinegar in them.  This recipe from her infamous recipe box is of the vinegar variety.  She was always looking for ways to pump up the flavor volume and Feta cheese won this round for me.

So, why bean salad?  Reason #1, mom lived in constant fear of Sam and Ella and this salad could sit out safely.  Reason #2, there were so many potlucks and luncheons, I think the contributors were often hard pressed to come up with something different.  My theory is the competitive nature of the buffet table.  The only way to get rid of all that adrenaline was to bring the best dish.  Those were different time.

Bean salads came in 2 basic varieties:  beans of the legume family or from the green bean family.  Mom…

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7-Layer Tortilla Pie

From the Recipe Box

I love meatless dinners.  If the focus is Mexican, I love it even more.  I don’t remember what I was looking for when I spotted this recipe on the Internet.  I’ve had consistent good luck with the recipes I’ve tried from allrecipes.  I’ve been holding on to it for awhile, waiting for just the right moment.  Cooking from the pantry seemed like the perfect time.

2 (15 ounce) cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed

1 cup salsa, divided

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained

1/2 cup chopped tomatoes

7 (8 inch) flour tortillas

2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese

1 cup salsa

1/2 cup sour cream

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a large bowl, mash pinto beans.  Stir in 3/4 cup salsa and the garlic.

In a separate bowl, mix together 1/4 cup salsa, cilantro, black beans…

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Chicken Spaghetti

From the Recipe Box

I had willing victims for dinner tonight and decided to make something new.  I’ve had this recipe saved forever, but just couldn’t make up my mind about it.  Tonight’s taste testers are big chicken Alfredo fans, so I thought they might be the perfect ones for this recipe.

This recipe is from Ree Drummond, the Pioneer Woman.  To be upfront, I’m not usually a fan.  I used to love her blog, but I don’t enjoy her TV show.  I have very strange prejudices.   Once I’m over something, I’m totally over it, or in this case, her.

I had a new sous chef this afternoon and we decided to change things up from the recipe as written.  If you would like to see her recipe as she wrote it, it’s all over the Internet.  I know I advocate making a recipe as written the first time out, but I didn’t have…

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Tuna Pie

From the Recipe Box

This is such an easy squeezy meal.  The whole family will like it and it’s another pantry friendly recipe.  This recipe originated with the Great Marjorie.  As I’ve told you ever so often, mom was such an adventurous cook, always looking for the next great idea.  The original recipe called for salmon and fresh dill, but I didn’t always have that.  However, I always had tuna.  Even if you didn’t want tuna or salmon, you could still get protein from the biscuit base and the creamed peas.

The other thing I found is how special it can look.  For some reason, pie is classy looking.  Put a cream sauce with peas on top and people feel loved.  I made this for more than one or two birthdays.  Give it a try; I think you will be surprised with how versatile it is.

2 ¼ cups flour

3 teaspoons baking powder

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Rhubarb and Berry Upside-Down Cake


The New Vintage Kitchen

I had a small bag of rhubarb in the freezer, as well as some cherries and raspberries, so this upside-down cake was made with frozen leftovers from last year. It did not taste left-over at all!


My ornamental “Snow Fountain” cherry tree is in flower, and that means my fruit cherry tree is not too far behind, although it will be quite a while yet before they are ready to pick and eat. I knew I had some stashed in the freezer that were calling to me. Alas, I didn’t have as many cherries as I thought, but I found my last bag of rhubarb and some raspberries from last season as well. They asked to be invited!

Use any fruit, fresh or frozen

You can use any fruit in this, fresh or frozen. My mom always made pineapple upside-down cake with maraschino cherries, and eating that combination is a…

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Chocolate Chunk, Walnut and Cinnamon Cookies

Sunshine and Savory


Yesterday morning when we woke up, Dennis said to me “I’m really looking forward to having some of the cookies you’re going to make me today.” I replied with “I’m making you cookies today?” But, actually, I was really planning on making Dennis cookies, only I hadn’t told him. I wanted to try and make a chocolate chip cookie of some sort with cinnamon in it, but hadn’t mentioned to Dennis that I was going to be making them on Monday. I guess that’s one reason we’re so good together. A lot of times, we’ll be thinking the exact same thing. It’s crazy. Maybe it’s because we’ve been together for about a million years … even though it still feels like only a few years have gone by. We started dating after my junior year in high school and have been married almost 33 years.

The cookies I made yesterday…

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A Pancake Picnic

Still Life, With Cracker Crumbs..

After our Saturday night indoor campout, it seemed only natural to follow up with a pancake breakfast picnic on Sunday.

We have a system here in our house – Billy makes the pancake batter, and I am the cook. It’s challenging, because the three of us all like our pancakes served differently. Wyatt likes tiny pancakes, like half-dollar or smaller even. I like my pancakes a gentle golden brown, and Billy likes his dark brown, almost bordering on overdone. So, I have my work cut out for me when I cook! Over time Billy has come up with the perfect recipe for our family as well, after much experimentation, and honestly, they are seriously perfect, at least in my opinion. They smell so good while they are cooking even! If you are interested in trying them, I’ve added his recipe! It’s not fancy but it’s good. And keep in mind…

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