Good Dip

This recipe comes from my husband. I hold this dish as proof that when it comes to food, I married into the wrong family. My husband’s family eats this as a meal, explaining that it contains all four food groups–meat, dairy, fruit/vegetable, and grain. How can I argue with that kind of logic?

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs mild sausage
  • 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 t. ground black pepper
  • 2 lbs. Velveeta
  • 16 oz. cream cheese
  • 2 cans Ro-tel tomatoes
  • 16 oz sour cream
Assembling "Good Dip" ingredients
Assembling “Good Dip” ingredients

Brown the sausage with the onion. Add the black pepper to the sausage.

Browned sausage and onion with black pepper
Browned sausage and onion with black pepper

Melt the Velveeta and cream cheese. Stir the melted cheese, Ro-tel tomatoes and sausage together in a slow cooker.

Cheese mixture with Ro-tel tomatoes and sausage
Cheese mixture with Ro-tel tomatoes and sausage

Continue heating until the cheese mixture is warm. Add the sour cream last making sure the dip does not reach a boiling temperature after the sour cream is added. This will cause the sour cream to curdle. Even though it is not harmful, it is very unappetizing.

"Good Dip"
“Good Dip”

Serve with corn tortilla chips so that you get your final food group and can justify this as a meal.

 

Broccoli Cheese Casserole

This is a side dish that my husband’s mother makes for Thanksgiving. Although I have her recipe, I have found my version to be just as tasty. Don’t forget you can always make extra to stick in the freezer and bake later.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 packages of frozen broccoli
  • 4 cups of cooked rice
  • 16 oz. Velveeta
  • 16 oz. cream cheese
  • 2 small cans of chopped green chilies
  • 1/2 t. poultry seasoning
  • 1/2 t. black pepper
  • 1/2 t. garlic powder
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1 cup evaporated milk

NIGHT BEFORE

Cook the rice according to the package instructions. You can also cook the rice in broth instead of water for extra flavor. 2 cups of uncooked rice should yield 4 cups of cooked rice.

cooked rice
cooked rice

Cook the broccoli in the microwave on high for about 3 minutes. Melt the Velveeta and cream cheese in the microwave until they blend smoothly.

Velveeta and cream cheese--melted and blended
Velveeta and cream cheese–melted and blended

Mix all of the ingredients in a large mixing bowl.

mixing the ingredients in a large bowl
mixing the ingredients in a large bowl

Pour into a 9×13 casserole dish.

broccoli cheese casserole--oven ready
broccoli cheese casserole–oven ready

Cover an refrigerate or freeze until you are ready to bake

BEFORE SERVING

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Bake for about 35-30 minutes until the casserole is bubbly and turning golden brown.

Bubbly and brown broccoli cheese casserole
Bubbly and brown broccoli cheese casserole

Asparagus Casserole

This is a recipe a stumbled upon when I had a couple of packages of frozen asparagus I wanted to use up. The result was stunningly delicious. However, since it is a little more expensive than most dishes I make, I tend to reserve this for special occasions.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 packages of frozen asparagus or 1 1/2 lbs.  fresh asparagus
  • 8 oz Velveeta
  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 1/2 t. garlic powder
  • 1/2 t black pepper
  • 1 can tiny shrimp
  • 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese
  • 6 oz can of French fried onions

NIGHT BEFORE

Chop the asparagus into 2 inch pieces.

asparagus
asparagus

Distribute the pieces in an 8×8 inch casserole dish. Melt the Velveeta and cream cheese.

Velveeta and cream cheese
Velveeta and cream cheese

Blend together until smooth.

Melted Velveeta and cream cheese with tiny shrimp
Melted Velveeta and cream cheese with tiny shrimp

Then, stir in the garlic powder, black pepper and tiny shrimp. Spread the cheese mixture over the asparagus.

Cheese mixture spread over the asparagus
Cheese mixture spread over the asparagus

Sprinkle the cheddar cheese on top.

asparagus casserole--ready for the oven
asparagus casserole–ready for the oven

Cover and refrigerate.

BEFORE SERVING

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Bake the casserole covered for 35 minutes. Top with the French fried onions. Return to the oven for another 5-10 minutes.

Asparagus Casserole
Asparagus Casserole

Serve hot.

Cranberry Orange Bundt Cake

So, you have extra cranberry sauce from the holidays? I get really excited about this recipe. In fact, I would make cranberry sauce just to use in this cake recipe. Actually, the cranberry sauce is optional since the cake is absolutely wonderful as is. However,  I think the cranberry sauce makes a wonderful addition. This recipe is for a 12 cup bundt pan, but I often make half a recipe and bake it in my 6 cup bundt pan. That means you only have half the guilt when you devour the entire cake. Reduce the baking time to about 55 minutes if you are using only half the recipe.

CAKE INGREDIENTS

  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 sticks of butter
  • 3 cups of flour
  • 1/2 t. baking powder
  • 1/4 t. baking soda
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1 cup sour cream or Greek yogurt
  • 6 eggs
  • 1/2 t. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 t. orange extract
  • 5 drops of yellow food coloring (optional)
  • 3 drops of red food coloring (optional)
  • zest of 2 oranges
  • leftover cranberry sauce (optional)

ICING INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 pound powdered sugar, sifted
  • juice of 2 oranges

Grease and flour a 12 cup bundt pan.

greased and floured bundt pan
greased and floured bundt pan

Cream together butter and sugar with a mixer until fluffy.

butter and sugar creamed together
butter and sugar creamed together

Add eggs and mix another couple of minutes. Mix together flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a separate bowl.

flour. baking powder, baking soda, and salt
flour. baking powder, baking soda, and salt

Add half of the flour mixture to the butter mixture. Mix together with the mixer. Add the sour cream. Mix until smooth. Add vanilla and orange extract, food coloring (if desired), and remaining flour. Mix until smooth.

orange cake batter
orange cake batter

Fold in the orange zest and pour the batter into a greased and floured 12 cup bundt pan.

orange cake batter in a bundt pan
orange cake batter in a bundt pan

Spoon leftover cranberry sauce on top of the cake batter.

orange cake with cranberries--oven ready
orange cake with cranberries–oven ready

Bake in a preheated oven at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for about 1 hour and 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let it cool in the bundt pan for about 10 minutes before removing.

Cooling before removing
Cooling before removing

While the cake is cooling, mix together powdered sugar and orange juice. Remove the bundt cake from the pan.

waiting for icing
waiting for icing

Drizzle with icing.

orange cranberry cake--ready to eat
orange cranberry cake–ready to eat

Serve warm or room temperature.