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Italian Casserole

Reviewed: Nov. 2, 2013
easy and tasty
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Edwardsville, Illinois, USA
Living In: Champaign, Illinois, USA

Chewy Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Reviewed: Oct. 26, 2013
I accidentally decreased the flour to 2 cups (apparently I can't read) but they were a great texture. I think next time, I'd increase the peanut butter by another half cup and reduce the butter a tad to compensate. They aren't super peanut buttery, but they're a great cookie. I used mini chocolate chips and dropped them by a regular-sized cookie scoop and baked for 10 minutes - they look like they came from a bakery. I'll definitely make these again!
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Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Champaign, Illinois, USA
Living In: Chicago, Illinois, USA

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Amazing Muffin Cups

Reviewed: Oct. 26, 2013
Easy and delicious. I've made this several times now and they always come out great. The potatoes were crispy - I used Ore Ida country style hash browns and they turned out great. I don't like peppers and chives so I left those out, but I don't think it mattered a bit. The sausage was mild but flavorful and the eggs came out great. This would make a great on the go breakfast, too. A keeper for sure!
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Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Champaign, Illinois, USA
Living In: Chicago, Illinois, USA

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Absolutely Ultimate Potato Soup

Reviewed: Oct. 25, 2013
I thought the tarragon and cilantro gave this a strange flavor. Maybe without these two things it would be fine? I also substituted milk for cream and was still plenty creamy.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Rockford, Illinois, USA
Living In: Champaign, Illinois, USA

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Pumpkin Bread I

Reviewed: Oct. 25, 2013
Yum! Keep in mind this makes 3 small loaves and not one big one (like I'm used to making.) Never used applesauce before--you can't even taste it and it makes it so moist. Definitely a keeper!
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Rockford, Illinois, USA
Living In: Champaign, Illinois, USA

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Delicious Ham and Potato Soup

Reviewed: Oct. 21, 2013
This is a great recipe. I add carrots but otherwise don't change a thing. I like that it calls for milk and not heavy cream---although I guess the butter makes up for it. Oh, well, is a great meal for a cold fall or winter night. I get a loaf of french bread to dip in slices as we eat it. YUM!
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Rockford, Illinois, USA
Living In: Champaign, Illinois, USA

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Apple Squares

Reviewed: Oct. 21, 2013
This was "OK" but not great. Too much sugar topping, for one thing. Overall pretty bland. Nothing I or family members would have trouble resisting or anything. Sorry, but when I am going to splurge on treats they better be worth it!
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Rockford, Illinois, USA
Living In: Champaign, Illinois, USA

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Tasty Tender Pork Tenderloin

Reviewed: Oct. 21, 2013
I was disappointed in this recipe, since after reading the reviews I was looking forward to making a really tasty pork tenderloin for my family. It also seemed very easy to make. It was easy, but that was the only plus in my opinion. All we could taste was SWEET. I even cut back the honey as others suggested. The meat had no flavor. It was almost candied. I don't mind some sweetness, but this was all wrong.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Rockford, Illinois, USA
Living In: Champaign, Illinois, USA

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Easy Cheesy Hash Browns

Reviewed: Oct. 19, 2013
You can't go wrong with potatoes, cheese and sour cream as far as I'm concerned. I didn't have corn flakes, so I smashed up some crackers for the top instead. Also I scaled it down quite a bit because with just me in the house, I thought I'd be better off not tempting myself with a big batch :)
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Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Champaign, Illinois, USA
Living In: Chicago, Illinois, USA

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German Spaetzle Dumplings

Reviewed: Oct. 9, 2013
I made this today, it was great and I'm thinking it's a good base recipe. I think next time I'll add some green chili's and cumin and serve mixec with roasted garlic and Mexican cheese. I also used a potato ricer and it seemed just fine.
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Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Champaign, Illinois, USA
Living In: Newport News, Virginia, USA

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Savory Breakfast Muffins

Reviewed: Oct. 8, 2013
As I always do the first time, I made this recipe as written. Next time I'll add more bacon and fresh corn instead of canned. I also think a can of chopped chilis and/or mexican corn and cheese would be a good change up in flavor. Much better than those egg/sausage biscuits I've been making!
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Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Champaign, Illinois, USA
Living In: Newport News, Virginia, USA

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Roasted New Red Potatoes

Reviewed: Oct. 4, 2013
Great standard recipe. I mean, how can you mess this one up? Sprinkle with some parsley (maybe even parmesan) and you have a super easy side dish.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Rockford, Illinois, USA
Living In: Champaign, Illinois, USA

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Sage Pork Chops

Reviewed: Oct. 4, 2013
My father-in-law normally eats without much comment, but he said it was one of the best pork chops he had ever had. I was so happy to have stumbled across this recipe. Easy to make but tastes like you've slaved away in the kitchen all day.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Rockford, Illinois, USA
Living In: Champaign, Illinois, USA

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Cheeseburger Soup I

Reviewed: Sep. 29, 2013
Had this tonight for dinner and it was really great. Next time I am putting it in a bread bowl and not putting in the celery (just did not seem to fit) Side note to the directions that step three needs to be done in a separate skillet; you are making a rue and then adding the thickened mixture to the soup which thickens the soup.Without reading ahead this could really mess up your soup. Overall GREAT fall soup.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Living In: Champaign, Illinois, USA

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Extreme Chocolate Cake

Reviewed: Sep. 11, 2013
I followed the recipe for the cake almost exactly and was told by a co-worker that these were the best cupcakes he'd ever had. Ever. I have to agree - I don't normally do well with scratch cakes and this one was amazing. The cake was even good without frosting. The only changes I made: I used dark chocolate cocoa, and I topped them with Simple & Delicious Buttercream Frosting and used vanilla bean paste in it. I made them in my convection oven as cupcakes; they baked for 25 minutes at 325 degrees. They were just perfect - this is going to be my go-to recipe from now on. Thank you!
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Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Champaign, Illinois, USA
Living In: Chicago, Illinois, USA

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Jen's Pressure Cooker Pot Roast

Reviewed: Sep. 7, 2013
I know this is a weird review to post, but I remade this recipe with turkey instead of chuck roast because it's leaner. I browned and pressure cooked it, but only for 30 minutes since it's a smaller cut of meat. It turned out incredible. I made mashed potatoes instead of roasted, but next time I will put the potatoes in with the turkey. Thank you for the inspiration to try the pressure cooker with turkey - delicious!
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Photo by MagicallyDelicious

Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Champaign, Illinois, USA
Living In: Chicago, Illinois, USA

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Smoky Grilled Pork Chops

Reviewed: Aug. 30, 2013
Too salty, so reduced seasoned salt by half. Otherwise very tasty and so easy!
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2 users found this review helpful

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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Rockford, Illinois, USA
Living In: Champaign, Illinois, USA

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Vegan Agave Cornbread Muffins

Reviewed: Aug. 23, 2013
I used 1 Tbsp. of maple syrup and 1 Tbsp of olive oil. I also added about 3/4 cup (I didn't measure) of fresh blueberries, because I was trying to duplicate a muffin I had recently. They're great!Plenty sweet (and I like my sweets) with the 1 Tbsp of syrup. Doubling the recipe is a good idea - I wish I had done that!! But they're so quick to make, I'll make another batch tomorrow.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Champaign, Illinois, USA
Living In: Rolling Meadows, Illinois, USA
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JELL-O Patriotic Mini Fruit Tarts

Reviewed: Jul. 28, 2013
I made these two steps easier, if that's possible :) I used Jell-o premade pudding cups because I wasn't making a full batch, and I used mini phyllo cups instead of pie crust. They took minutes to put together, and they were really tasty. They'd make a perfect last minute sweet treat anytime.
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Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Champaign, Illinois, USA
Living In: Chicago, Illinois, USA

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Mexican Chocolate/Salted Caramel Cake in a Mug

Reviewed: Jul. 25, 2013
RE: My recipe - Thanks for the review and I agree that the Kraft caramel was a bit *sticky*. I used an off brand in my trials that were not so sticky. So I think next time I'm going to try caramel topping and see how that works. Maybe even melting the caramels and mixing in a bit of cream and salt then adding it in the middle of two layers. The original recipe stated to cut the caramels in half and roll in Kosher salt - salted caramels!! BTW, that is NOT a picture of my recipe, I'm not that good!! :-D
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Photo by Deep Creek Diva

Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Champaign, Illinois, USA
Living In: Newport News, Virginia, USA

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