Sunday, April 11, 2010

Happy 101 and My Promise

Lots of you know by now what makes me happy and maybe you don’t. Happiness is a part of being healthy.  Remember... laughter, a happy laughter, is the best medicine. Erin at Dropped Stitches has given me a Happy 101 Award.

Thanks Erin!

Here are 10 of many things that make me happy, make me smile, make me giddy:)

1. Jesus
2. Holly (and Richard)
3. Jackie
4. kitties
5. beautiful weather
6. finding vintage treasures and junk
7. gardening, growing veggies and flowers
8. sweet music
9. my home, its my space
10. nice gestures from others

I’m passing lots of happiness along to my others readers because I want to know what makes you happy… so if you wish; grab this award because it is presented to all of you who read this. Get happy with me!!  Spread a little happiness!

Now for the recipes that I promised you; because you asked…Slap Yo Mama Italian Bake, Hush Puppies, and De Lime in De Coconut Cheesecake.

**  Slap Yo Mama Italian Bake
           ~3 meats, 3 veggies, 3 jars of sauce, 3 pastas, 3 cheeses!

1 pound ground beef
1 pound pkg. Italian sausage, casings removed
1 small pkg. pepperoni
1 small bell pepper
1 small onion
1 small pkg. fresh mushrooms, rinsed

Three different boxes of the pastas of your choice: bow tie, spiral, ziti…etc.
Approx. 6-8-ounces of each, cooked according to pkg. directions

3-4 jars of your favorite spaghetti sauce, I use 3 different flavors
8 oz pkg of shredded mozzarella cheese
8 oz pkg of shredded Colby/Monterey jack cheese
8 oz pkg of shredded fresh Parmesan cheese (not grated)

Brown all three meats together, drain and rinse.
Sauté mushrooms, onion and peppers in olive oil.
Boil pastas just until tender, do not over cook. Drain.
In a very large bowl mix all ingredients together except cheeses. Gently stir well to avoid tearing pasta to pieces.
Spoon into 2 large 9x13 baking dishes sprayed with Pam…sometimes I have enough for a third smaller dish which I send over to my parents. 
Top with the 3 cheeses.
Bake at 350* until bubbly and the cheese is toasty and melted. Approx. 30 minutes.
Serve with toasted Garlic Cheesy Bread and a fresh green salad and iced tea.

This is a great make-ahead dish for a crowd. We eat one and freeze the other for later when I don’t want to cook. To freeze, press plastic wrap all the way down against the cheese and seal against the sides of the dish. Cover with aluminum foil and the lid if it’s a Pyrex dish. Using a sticky note on top; write the name of the dish and the cooking directions. This dish is a great one to take to a friend, a reunion, or a church dinner.

** Southern Hush Puppies
           ~Mama’s Recipe

1 cup white Cornmeal
1/2 cup flour
1 heaping tbsp. Sugar
1 tsp. salt
2 tbsp baking powder
¾ cup buttermilk
1 egg, beaten
1 med. Onion, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped, optional

Mix all dry ingredients together. Add milk, egg, onion, and pepper. Mixture will be thick but should not be dry. If a little dry, add a little more buttermilk. Carefully drop batter from a small spoon into a deep fryer of peanut oil, turning as they brown to a golden color. Drain on paper towels.
Serve southern style with fried catfish, any other fish, shrimp or seafood!

**  De Lime in De Coconut Cheesecake
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
½ cup sweetened shredded coconut
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon grated lime zest
3 tablespoons butter, melted
4 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
4 eggs
1 (15-ounce) can sweetened cream of coconut milk
½ cup sour cream
2 teaspoons grated lime rind
1/4 cup freshly lime juice
Whipped cream and Lime wedges for garnish (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 325F.
2. To prepare crust, combine all ingredients with the bowl of a food processor. Process until just blended. Press in bottom and about ½ inch up the sides of a 10-inch spring form pan.
3. To prepare filling, place cream cheese in a large bowl and beat with a mixer at medium-high speed until smooth. Reduce speed to low and add eggs, 1 at a time; beat well.
4. Add remaining filling ingredients and beat well, scraping bottom and sides of the bowl occasionally. Scrape filling into crust.
5. Bake 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool to room temperature on a wire rack. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Garnish with whipped cream and lime wedges, if desired. Serves 12.

Note: I made this in a 9 ½ inch pan and it would not hold all of the batter…so don’t even try to put too much in one pan either…it WILL cook over and out of the pan. I speak from experience!

So get your happy cooking self ready and enjoy. Let me know what makes you happy. Here’s wishing you a happy and blessed week full of joy. Oh and go pay Erin a visit…she’s a cool knitter with an Etsy shop, a former pediatrician, and she loves to cook.



Erin Wallace said...

I'm gonna have to give that Slap Yo Mama Bake a try - sounds AMAZING. And the hush puppies too, since I am keeping a list of new ways to use my deep fryer.
Have a great week!


I think the thing that makes me happiest is when I feel total contentment in a day. .. that rarely happens on a daily basis. I love the hymn you have playing , nice to sing along to . another thing that makes me happy. music. and reading great blogs like yours.

daily mom said...

it is so wonderful to see the things and people who make you happy. you make me happy! love all the recipes! thank you.

Mary @ Neat and Tidy said...

Everything sounds yummy; thanks for sharing!

Mama Holli said...

So glad to see your Happy Award! You make lots of people HAppy! Love the the recipes!!!
Bless you today my friend!

Christina said...

these all sound delicious. i have to try the puppies first. yummy!
congrats on your award, you so deserve it.

Kamana said...

you share so much of the happiness in you with your delicious recipes. i have got to try those hush puppies.

Delwyn said...

Hello Cora
I have popped in from Susan's place.
I love the tenor of your attractive wholesome blog, and plan to visit often.

Happy days

amelia said...

yummy recipes, those hush puppies look good!
I've been meaning to ask you how the etsy store is going?

The Real Me! said...

Hi Cora, I'm stopping by from the Gooseberry Site. It's nice to meet you and I have to tell you that your recipes (the hush puppy one especially) are making me drool! They sound so yummy.
I hope you have a fabulous weekend.

Julie said...

Hi Cora! Just read about you at Gooseberry Patch--aren't they wonderful?! I was their blog last week--hard to answer those questions about myself! Loved your answers!

Loved getting to know a bit about you--sounds like you have a lot of fun!

These recipes looks fabulous--going to give them a try!

Hope you're having a wonderful day!