~ Shopping List ~

  • 4 medium ripe tomatoes
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 2 cucumbers, peeled, seeded & chopped
  • 2 tender celery stalks
  • 1 medium red onion
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 4 cups tomato juice
  • 1/4 cup balsamic or red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Worcestershire sauce to taste

Optional:  tabasco sauce

~ What to do ~

Mix all ingredients in bowl.  Slowly add to food processor.  Blend until smooth.  Add salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce to taste.  Let sit in refrigerator for a couple of hours.  Serve cold.


Peanut Butter Cookies

~ Shopping List ~

1/2 cup shortening
1.25 cups packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup peanut butter
1 egg
3 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1.75 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt

~ What to do ~

Preheat oven to 375 degrees (F).  In a medium bowl, cream together shortening, brown sugar and peanut butter until smooth.  Stir in egg, milk and vanilla.  Combine flour, baking soda and salt; stir into the peanut butter mixture.  Roll into small balls, cover in sugar.  Place on un-greased cookie sheet.  Lightly flatten using a fork (creating a cross pattern).  Bake for 8-10 minutes.  Allow cookies to cool for 5 minutes on cookie sheet before transferring to wire rack to cool completely.

Fun alternate:  Form cookies into letters to spell out messages (I love you, Happy Birthday, Merry Christmas, etc.)


Mama’s Pizza Crust

This simple thin crust is a perfect subtle base for any pizza.

~ Shopping List ~

1 package yeast
1 cup warm water
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2.5 cups flour

~ What to do ~

Preheat oven to 425 degrees (F).  Dissolve yeast in water, add sugar, salt and oil.  Add flour.  Allow dough to rest 5 minutes.  Then knead a few minutes and roll into 2 large crust.

Add sauce and toppings to taste and bake.


Mama’s Potato Soup

Simple yet satisfying.  This soup is perfect for those cold rainy days.

~ Shopping List ~

4-6 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
1 small onion, chopped
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup milk
4 tablespoons flour
salt & pepper (to taste)

Optionals: bacon, cheese

~ What to do ~

Fill large heavy bottom pot half-way and bring to a boil.  Add potaotes, onion and butter, cooking until potatoes are soft.  Separately mix milk, flour, salt and pepper.  Add to potato mixture.  Continue cooking until the soup reaches your desired thickness.

Optional serving suggestions:  using a thick cut bacon, cut into small cubes and pre-cook.  Add with the milk mixture.  If you want to add cheese (cheddar and/or monterey jack work wonderfully) add also with the milk mixture.


Mama’s Pasta Chili

Landing somewhere between a chili and spaghetti, this non traditional chili is always a favorite for kids and adults alike.

~ Shopping List ~

1lb ground beef
1 can chili beans
tomato sauce (4 cans)
1 medium to large onion
chili pepper (to taste)
spaghetti (to taste)

Optionals: cheese, corn chips

~ What to do ~

Brown ground beef with onion in a large heavy bottom pot.  Mix all remaining ingredients except the spaghetti adding water to achieve desired thickness.  Bring to a boil and add spaghetti.  Use cooking time recommended on the package for spaghetti.

Optional serving suggestions:  crush a small handful of corn chips in bottom of the bowl, top with chili, then top with cheese.

*This chili is excellent prepared the day before and reheated.