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Sassy Steak Marinade and Sauce

Reviewed: Mar. 1, 2009
I wish I could give this more stars, but we just didn't like it very much. It was too sweet for us. The marinade tasted great, but I think once cooked, the tomato brought out more of the honey's sweetness. I'm not sure if reducing the honey would make a difference for us. My only change was to add more garlic and garlic powder to the marinade, and I wasn't going to reduce the marinade for a sauce (no time) so I left the shrooms out. Oh! I used Craig's Cocktail Sauce recipe which uses A1 steak sauce, and I like the flavor this added to the marinade...
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Puddingwiches

Reviewed: Feb. 27, 2009
These were ok frozen, but we had a very hard time stopping ourselves from eating the pudding/PB mix before making the wiches. Now THAT rocked! But once frozen, they lost some appeal to us because the pudding was too hard with the crunchy crackers. The frozen pudding reminded us of a fudgesicle. I didn't have enough grahams so I used Nilla Wafers. I liked the size of the wafers better than half a graham sandwich. Those would probably taste yummy with banana pudding.
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Savory Garlic Marinated Steaks

Reviewed: Feb. 26, 2009
Making this AGAIN for dinner, and realized I haven't reviewed! I throw everything in a ziploc, marinade my steaks overnight, and usually broil. The only changes I make are to add extra garlic--1tsp powder, and leave out the liquid smoke (DH used to be a restaurant cook and hates the stuff). Such an easy way to spruce up steaks!
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Bacon for the Family or a Crowd

Reviewed: Feb. 26, 2009
YAY to this cooking method!!! I used thin bacon, and watched it closely toward the end. Half way though, I flipped the bacon and soaked up most of the grease with paper towels (easier than trying to drain a huge cookie sheet with hot bacon sliding around!). My advice, as others have stated: Lay a piece of foil loosely over the bacon then remove close to the end. Also, DON'T have the bacon slices touch or else you won't be able to get them apart. Woohoo! No more icky bacon grease splatters everywhere!
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Chicken-Fried Chops

Reviewed: Feb. 26, 2009
Even after two minor changes, this was still a bland dish. First, I don't normally brown my chops, but with my 99% success rate of dry chops, I was hoping that would help things. After 5 hours on low, my 1in thick chops were dry. My two changes: subbed 1/4 cup white wine for water (tasted great!), and added dehydrated mushrooms. Shortly before serving, I moved the sauce to a pot, added a slurry (1T cornstarch and 2-3T cold water) to thicken, then served over the chops and mashed taters. The gravy tasted great on the taters, and I may make plain gravy this way again. If I make the chops again, less cooking time, and more seasoning in the gravy.
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Old-Fashioned Green Beans

Reviewed: Feb. 26, 2009
I'd like to give this 4 stars, but can't because of the house's mixed reviews. We all agreed that this was a bit greasy, and needed some salt. I didn't add any because I thought the bacon would be salty enough, but the sugar cuts that. Some liked the sweetness of sugar, others didn't. I'll definitely make this again, draining some fat and adding a pinch of salt. It beats the standard steamed beans!
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Craig's Cocktail Sauce

Reviewed: Feb. 20, 2009
I halved the recipe because it makes a LOT--WAY too much for the 2 LBs of shrimp we had. I used 3 drops of Dave's Insanity hot sauce and some extra horseradish. I added the A1 at the end because I was hesitant of the flavor outcome. DH thought it needed less, but I thought it added the perfect flavor combo. USE THIS COCKTAIL SAUCE!!!
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Pizza Dough I

Reviewed: Feb. 18, 2009
I've made this a few times in a pinch, and when I need to empty my fridge. I add 1tsp garlic powder, 1tsp Italian seasoning. I use a foil-lined sprayed pan, and after gently stretching the dough out in my hands, spread the dough more in the pan. I find it's easier to make a few "personal" sized pizzas. I cook for 6min then add toppings before cooking the rest of the way. They aren't the prettiest pizzas, but you can't beat quick, easy, fresh, dirt cheap pizza!
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Mom's Chocolate Chip Cookies

Reviewed: Feb. 18, 2009
Delicious! I was tired of using the recipe from the choc. chip bag and ending up with flat cookies, so I tried this. Two years later, it's my only choc. chip recipe. I always double the dough, add 1/2tsp extra baking soda, and freeze most of the dough. I place scooped dough balls on a parchment papered cookie sheet, freeze, then store in a freezer bag. When I want a few cookies, I take out and cook on 375 for 11min. The cookies don't spread as much, but they still look and taste GREAT!
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Perfect Baked Potato

Reviewed: Feb. 18, 2009
Ok, I think I can make some pretty complex dishes sometimes, but for some reason, things like baked potatoes, boiling eggs, and making rice always fail! Thank you for getting this recipe "on paper" so I can now make one more simple thing correctly! LOL
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Baked Honey Nut Chicken

Reviewed: Feb. 16, 2009
This deserves at least 12 stars! 6 for taste, 6 for easy prep work. I'm not a big fan of sweet meat dishes but this is one I love, and is now a favorite go-to recipe. I've made this on chicken and pork, and we prefer it on chicken (only tried pecans--don't like walnuts). The key to this is to MARINATE THE MEAT IN THE EGG/HONEY MIXTURE. The longer it marinates the better. I also very finely chop the pecans in my processor, and do so in large batches so I have the nuts ready to go for quick-fix meals. Panko crumbs help with crispiness, and I don't think this needs any salt. I spray a foil lined pan with olive oil, and each side of meat before baking. Comes out crispy every time. The only downside to this dish is that leftovers lose their crispiness (still taste great though!).
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Iced Mochas

Reviewed: Feb. 15, 2009
We went through a faze of making too much coffee, so stumbling upon this recipe seemed like a great coffee saver. IMO, it's not worth the trouble. The coffee ice cubes always ended up getting stuck in the trays, and we couldn't come up with a method of getting them out. So, for a while we would use any salvaged cubes in plain old iced coffee. A nice way to have cold coffee without watering it down.
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Bread Machine Challah I

Reviewed: Feb. 14, 2009
I've never had Challah before so I don't know how it's supposed to taste, but I can tell you this bread ROCKS! I made it specifically for french toast (used the Fluffy French Toast recipe), and had to stop myself from eating it so there would be enough. I heated the milk and used warm eggs (put the uncracked eggs in hot water for 10min) to help activate the yeast. I used veg. oil instead of margarine, and increased the flour a little. I also made the dough in my bread machine but split in half after rise 2, placed in 2 loaf pans, let rise again then baked at 350 for 20min. I wrapped the cooled bread the night before using for french toast, but I should've left it out so it could dry out a bit more...
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Blueberry Buckle

Reviewed: Feb. 13, 2009
Oh SO delicious! The two changes I made to the recipe were using butter instead of shortening, and brown sugar instead of white (I used white for the crumble). I also coated the berries in flour to prevent sinking. This was incredibly moist--almost TOO moist with big juicy blueberries. I took others advice on cooking at 350, but I ended up with a puddle of butter on top after 30min. I was able to sop it up with a paper towel, increase the heat to 375, and cook for another 15 minutes, and it turned out perfectly.
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Ga Ga Clusters

Reviewed: Feb. 9, 2009
Yummy. I was going to try pouring the plain chocolate over marshmallows and pretzel but it never got to pouring consistency, so I added the peanuts, spread on a plastic wrap covered cookie sheet, stuck in the fridge and called it a night. DH's coworkers were happy to have "fudge" with peanuts instead of walnuts lol.
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Creamy Chocolate Frosting

Reviewed: Feb. 9, 2009
Ok... To everyone who complained about this being too runny... You're supposed to add the milk/liquid slowly, and to the consistency of your liking. "5Tbs" doesn't always mean you should use that exact amount. That said, I thought this was an ok icing. It's not very rich. It sets quickly so be careful about it becoming grainy/crumbly, and to add sprinkles to cupcakes as you go. I was able to BARELY frost 24 cupcakes (not heavily either). I think I'll use a different frosting next time.
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Split Pea and Ham Soup I

Reviewed: Feb. 9, 2009
I made very minor changes to the recipe... I reduced the amount of onion (not a big fan of 'em), made a mirepoix which I sauteed with butter in my crock pot over the stove. I threw in leftover chunked ham (didn't save the bone), and quickly browned with the mirepoix before taking off the stove and adding the peas. I used 2 cans reduced sodium/fat chicken broth, and the rest water. The only reason I'm giving this 3 stars instead of 4 is because the recipe is a bit bland even though I added minor flavor enhancing tricks. I ended up adding a bit of marjoram and hot sauce toward the end for more flavor.
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Sausage and Bow-Tie Pasta Florentine

Reviewed: Feb. 7, 2009
This ROCKED! I used red bell pepper instead of spinach since I didn't have any, but I can tell fresh spinach would definitely make this superb. I cooked the pepper pieces down a little before adding the garlic then threw in the broiled sausage to brown a bit more in the pan. I deglazed the pan with 1/4 cup white wine and cooked that down a little before adding the sauce, 1/4 cup Romano, and water from the pasta.
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Sun Dried Tomato and Asiago Cheese Bread

Reviewed: Feb. 3, 2009
A great bread, but I felt it was missing something (maybe a nuttier flour as stated by others). I used white and wheat bread flour (what I had), 4Tbs sun dried tomatoes, 1/2cup asiago, 1/2tsp garlic powder, and 1.5tsp yeast to make it less dense. After looking at my dough in the machine and seeing that it hadn't risen much, I remembered the reviews about longer rise times, so I hit the pause button on my machine 2x's. This loaf should be cooked at 1.5 lb and a light crust. My crust was very dark on the medium crust setting. I'll definitely make this again, and tinker with it to try figuring out what that missing taste is...
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Crab Dip

Reviewed: Jan. 28, 2009
This was really yummy, but I'll only make rarely since crab meat is so pricey! I used 1 can lump meat, and 1 can of mixed. USE REAL MEAT IF YOU WANT A TASTEY DISH! Here are my small changes: Added a few squirts of lemon to meat, reduced cream cheese to 8oz, used 1/4 cup minced onion and cooked it down first. I added 3TBS prepared horseradish, 4oz sour cream, a few dashes of cayenne, and topped with mozz. cheese and paprika (for color). Served with french bread and tortilla chips. Heated the leftovers the next day, and tasted just as good.
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