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Quick & Tasty Meatballs

by Jennifer Ranger on 07/12/14

Does this scenario sound familiar?  It's about noon on a hot summer day, dinner time will be fast approaching and somebody's got to cook something but you're dreading heating up the kitchen to get the job done.  The answer?  Slow cooker to the rescue!

While most folks relate the slow cooking crock to cold winter days, the truth is that these great inventions are super convenient year 'round, and they don't heat up your house like using the oven does.  Throw in a few ingredients, cover, turn it on high and you'll have a nice tasty dinner waiting for you in just a few hours.  Try our easy recipe for Quick & Tasty Meatballs and you'll see what we mean!

Quick & Tasty Meatballs
1  Pound of lean ground beef
1  Onion, diced
1  Egg, beaten
1/2 Cup milk
1  Cup plain bread crumbs
1/2  Teaspoon salt (more if desired)
1/4 Teaspoon black pepper
1  Teaspoon powdered garlic
1  Teaspoon ground cumin
1  Cup barbeque sauce
1.  Preheat your cooker on high while preparing the meatballs.
2.  Place all ingredients except the barbeque sauce in a medium bowl and combine very well. Roll the mixture into 1" balls and carefully place them, side by side, in the crock.  Cover and cook on high for 4 hours.  Serve with your favorite potatoes or rice and a crispy green salad, and get ready to hear lots of compliments from your happy family!

Homemade Peachy Marshmallows

by Jennifer Ranger on 06/22/14

Making marshmallows at home is so easy, you'll wonder why you've never done it before!  It takes only a few minutes to create your own batch of light, puffy marshmallows, and they make a great gift too!  Give my recipe for Homemade Peachy Marshmallows a try and let me know what you think.  Have fun, and don't lick your fingers!

Peachy Marshmallows
1  Pack unflavored gelatin
3  Tablespoons peach flavored jello powder
1  Cup cold water
1 1/2 Cups sugar
1  Cup light corn syrup
Pinch of salt
2  Cups powdered sugar
2  Cups corn starch
Note:  Have a 9 x 13 inch pan ready before you begin.  Spray it lightly with a non stick coating, then generously coat the entire inside with the combined corn starch and powdered sugar.
1.  Combine the gelatin pack & the jello powder into the bowl of your stand mixer and pour 1/2 cup of the water over it.  Set aside.
2.  Combine the sugar, corn syrup, salt and remaining water in a small sauce pan, cover, and heat over a medium flame until the mixture reads 240 degrees on a good candy thermometer.  Don't stir.  Remove it from the heat immediately when it reaches the proper temperature.  Be very careful with the hot syrup!
3.  Turn your mixer on the low setting and carefully pour the hot syrup down the sides of the bowl.  Next, turn the mixer to high and beat air into the syrup for 12-15 minutes.  Use a rubber spatula to transfer the  mixture into your pan.  Lightly dampen your hands to help pat out the marshmallows into the pan and spread it into the corners.  Sift the powdered sugar & cornstarch over the top and allow to cool for at least 8 hours before cutting into squares using a pizza cutter.  Sprinkle all sides again with the powdered sugar mixture.  Seal in an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to a month.

Jennifer Ranger

Creamy Glazed Shortbread Cookies

by Jennifer Ranger on 05/10/14

Pass the plate of cookies and get out of my way.  These beauties are seriously yummy.

Quality ingredients give this simple little sweet a real nice dose of delicious that won't be easy to turn down.  The question quickly becomes how to keep them in the house but not eat too many at once, or more honestly put, how to avoid devouring them all in one sitting.  Alas, this is a dilemma that each poor soul will have to answer for themselves, because I'm busy eating cookies.

On to the recipe!


4 cups flour
1 cup sugar
4 Teaspoons baking powder
1 Pound butter, softened to the consistency of shortening
2 eggs
2  Rounded tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
2  Teaspoons vanilla extract

3  Cups powdered sugar
1  Teaspoon vanilla extract
3  Tablespoons water
Red food coloring

1.  Whisk all dry ingredients together in a large bowl.  Cut in the butter.  Whisk the eggs, yogurt and extract together, then add to the dry ingredients.  Mix thoroughly until all is combined.

2.  Divide the dough into three sections.  Roll the dough out, one section at a time, on a well floured board to about 1/2 inch thickness.  Cut with square or round biscuit cutters.  

3.  Place cookies on an ungreased baking sheet about 1 inch apart.  Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 10-12 minutes, or until the bottoms just begin to look golden.

4.  Mix all glaze ingredients together very well.  Cool the cookies for 5 minutes before spooning 1 teaspoon of glaze over each cooking.  Allow glaze to dry before storing cookies.

Jennifer Ranger

Chocomole - Chocolate Avocado Pudding To Die For!

by Jennifer Ranger on 04/27/14

Think creamy, think dense & chocolatey, think smooth & sweet.  And oh yes, think nutritious. 

Chocomole is a dessert you can feel good about, one that seriously nourishes your body even as it glides sweetly over your taste buds.  Each bite is a little spoonful of dense, deep chocolate heaven that provides over 20 vitamins and minerals.  The recipe is also very quick to prepare, and is easily adaptable to your own tastes.  Choose to use dairy, or add coconut or almond milk instead.  One taste of this ultra creamy, good for you dessert, and you'll be hooked.

2  Ripe avocados, peeled and diced
1/2 Cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4  Cup honey
3  Tablespoons sugar
2  Teaspoons vanilla extract
2  Teaspoons ground cinnamon (don't omit this!)
1  Teaspoon espresso powder
1/4 Cup cream (other choices:  lowfat milk, almond or coconut milk)

Combine all ingredients in an electric blender and blend until smooth and creamy.  Refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving.

Jennifer Ranger

Make Sweetened Condensed Milk At Home & Save!

by Jennifer Ranger on 04/01/14

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The delicious work continues! 

Recipes for our upcoming cookbooks are being kitchen tested even as we write this. Watch our blog for a sneak peek at recipes from the upcoming books.  Check Watch our blog for a sneak peek at recipes from the upcoming books.  Watch our blog for a sneak peek at recipes from the upcoming books.  

Left:  Homemade Chocolate Marbled Marshmallows