Hot Coffee

“Need a pick me up?”

I’m a coffee nut. Daily do I imbibe at the carafe of the dark mysterious brew. Today I bring you….

Gift Hint #1 – Homemade Coffee Syrups for the coffee lover in your life. Ahem….me, please.
December favors flavors of peppermint, gingerbread, or go for the classics; vanilla, raspberry and caramel.

Winter Warming Peppermint Latte
Billy’s Favorite Gingerbread Spiced Coffee Syrup
Make Your Own Coffee Syrup

Now, if you will excuse me, I’m going to go have another cup of coffee.

Hot Coffee

“Need a pick me up?”

I’m a coffee nut. Daily do I imbibe at the carafe of the dark mysterious brew. Today I bring you….

Coffee Shop Pumpkin Syrup

Ever want that crisp fall flavor in your coffee; at home and without having to pay a small fortune? Now you can! Just whip up a batch of this wonderful syrup and enjoy the flavors of fall; Mmmm pumpkin pie in your hot cup of coffee. Add a spoonful of this syrup and a dollop of cream and sit back and savor the goodness in a cup.

Now, if you will excuse me, I’m going to go have another cup of coffee.
Hmm. Now, just who took my syrup!

Ranch Chicken Tenders

My yummy ranch tenders.

My girls love chicken nuggets dipped in ranch dressing. And I was tired of plain baked boneless chicken breast and not having the girls eat it, so I adapted a friend’s recipe for Ranch Chicken Bites. Her’s required a deep fat fryer which I don’t have.

I took about two pounds of boneless chicken breast and cut it up into tenders and bites. I marinated the cut up breast in ranch dressing overnight.

After the chicken marinated, I rolled the pieces in breadcrumbs. Baked them in the oven at 350 F for about 20 minutes.  The bites came out very tender and a bit light on the ranch flavor. I need to add ranch powder to the breadcrumbs just to see how it would taste. This was a big hit with my girls!

The Blog of the Moment: Inside BruCrew Life

I love to read. From growing up to even now, I’m most often found with my nose buried in a book. This also makes me a horrible blogger. It’s not that I don’t read or follow; trust me my reader feed says otherwise; it’s that I rarely comment.

But when an exceptional blog stands out; when I get excited to see what the next posting is about, I have to share this gem with everyone.

Inside BruCrew Life is one of those rare blog treats.  Jocelyn of BruCrew writes what I call a kitchen blog. She covers food and lots of it! But the most spectacular feature of her blog is the photographs. She takes high quality, vivid photos of the recipes she features. It’s hard not to get excited and run off to the kitchen to whip up those recipes.

I love looking at the photos as much as making the recipes!
So, please take a spin on by her site and enjoy!
I’m sure you’ll fall in love with her site as much as I have.

Inside BruCrew Life


DSCN1327 Recently our grocery shopping had gotten out of hand. Me and my husband were making the classic mistakes, going to the store without and list and going hungry. The surprising result to this folly was several bags of yellow onions piling up in the pantry. With the oniony abundance, I have sought new ways to deliciously cook them. Of course I had to do steak, onions and mushrooms. Ah, the flavor of sautéed onions and mushrooms piled high on medium rare London broil is to die for. 

I can make a great liver and onions, but for us that’s a once a month meal. It is also the catalyst that started the over buying of onions. So I’m on the hunt for great recipes.

5 Bean Beef and Tomato Soup

2 1/2 C Kidney Beans
1 C Pinto Beans
1/2 C Chick Peas
1/2 C Lentils
1/2 C Split Peas

Rinse dry beans and pick over for stones. Place in crock pot and cover with water. Add one bay leaf. Put the pot on high and let cook for about four hours.

1 15 oz can of fire roasted tomatoes
1 15 oz can of chopped tomatoes, onions and green peppers
7 cubes of beef bouillon

When beans are tender, add both cans to the pot and stir. Take about two cups of liquid out and add the bouillon cubes to it in a separate container. Smash up cubes and return broth to the pot. Stir well.

1 lb ground beef
4 to 5 cloves garlic

Smash and chop the peeled garlic. Add to fry pan with the beef. Brown and drain off the grease. Add to the pot and stir. Let cook for about an hour more for the flavors to meld. Add salt and pepper to taste.


I made this soup last week as my larder was going bare. I have plenty of dry beans but I didn’t want to eat a passel of plain kidneys. This came out surprisingly well much to every ones gastric enjoyment.

Spinach Quiche

I made this for a potluck and it had some great reviews so I’m posting the recipe. I do have one small word of warning. I don’t tend to measure my spices and just shake the bottle to my hearts content so all spice amounts are true guesstimates,

This recipe has been adapted from : “The Best 50 Quiches” 1997 Bristol Publishing Enterprises, Inc.
ISBN 1-55867-203-6

Classic Quiche Shell

1C plus 2 TBS of Flour
Pinch Salt
1/4 t of black pepper
1/4 t of ground ginger
3 TBS cold butter or a baking margarine. I use Blue Bonnet light margarine.
3 TBS vegetable shortening. I use butter flavored Crisco.
2-5 TBS very cold milk -just enough to form a ball

Preheat oven to 450 F. Chill all equipment before starting. Add flour, salt, black pepper and ground ginger in a bowl. Mix well. With a pastry blender, cut in butter and shortening into flour until mixture is like fine crumbs. Add cold milk 1 tablespoon at a time and mix dough until it starts to form a ball. Do not force it to form; several clumps are just fine. Lay out plastic wrap and place ball in the middle. Cover with another sheet of wrap. You can chill it or freeze it at this point. But it does need to be cold and not slimy to roll out. When ready roll out dough to size of pan. Remove one of the wraps and line the pan. Remove wrap. Prick with a fork over the entire surface, including the sides. Partially bake shell on lowest rack of oven for 8 to 10 minutes or until pastry is set; it may be lightly browned. Check after 5 minutes and gently push down puffy spots. Cool for at least 10 minutes before filling.

Makes one 9-inch quiche shell.


1 C whole milk
3 eggs
dash of nutmeg, optional

Beat ingredients together until well blended.

Spinach Quiche a la Isabella

1 box of frozen spinach
8 ozs of Colby Jack cheese, shredded
pinch of salt
1/8 t of black pepper
1/8 t of ground ginger
1/4 of garlic powder – Lawry’s Garlic Powder; coarse ground with parsley
pinch of nutmeg

Preheat oven to 375 F. Defrost spinach and squeeze dry to remove excess water. Form spinach into a squeezed log and snip up the log into a bowl; so that its a finer texture. Take half of the Colby Jack and mix well into the spinach. Add all the spices and mix well for even distribution. Pour in the custard and stir until uniform consistency. Pour custard spinach mixture into shell and top with the remaining cheese. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes , or until custard is set and the top is lightly browned. A knife inserted in the middle of quiche should come out clean. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

Makes one 9-inch quiche.