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Friday, February 29, 2008

French Market Chocolate Chiffon Cake

By Rachael Rizzo

My issue (well, one of them) is that I eat quite a lot. The reason I eat most of the time is because I am emotionally tied to my food. Every time I bite into something it reminds me of a certain place in time. It is definitely a blessing and I need to make it be not a curse. It is something I have to work on transforming.

As soon as I bit into this beautiful Chocolate Chiffon Cake I was taken back to the French Market in Disneyland. French Market has always been my favorite restaurant in Disneyland since I was a kid. I always loved the New Orleans Square setting, the buffeteria style food, the classy tables, and the lively jazz band. When you are there you feel absolutely at peace with the world, with the nice outside air and the happy people. You can see the beautiful french style buildings around you, the clear blue lake with the Mark Twain next to you, and the Haunted Mansion right in front of you. It is so very aesthetic. The band plays New Orleans jazz and it absolutely compliments the food, making it even more lively. Even if the band isn't playing you can hear the murmur of people all over the park enjoying themselves. Before you even walk in the door you can smell the aroma of fresh clam chowder and fried chicken. What I immediately zap into when I taste this cake is that moment when I bite into the dessert. Ever since I was little I have been getting their chocolate cake. They have these great chocolate cakes with pictures of the characters on the front. There is nothing like that cake and all the memories of the moments I have in that one spot. That is why I will always make this lightly rich chocolate chiffon. It is always yummy. Next time I go to the French Market you better bet I will be in the same table upfront with my little chocolate cake.....feel free to say hi.....

Here's the recipe to send you back to your own memories....I hope you enjoy it.*

Ingredients: 1/2 cup baking cocoa, 1/2 cup of baking soda, 3/4 cup very hot water, 1 and 3/4 cup of cake flour, 1/4 tsp cream of tarter, 7 eggs separated, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 cup sugar, 1 and 1/4 cup of Splenda, 1/2 cup vegetable oil, and 2 tsp vanilla extract.

Ingredients for Icing: 1/3 cup of butter, 2 cups of confectioners' sugar, chopped pecans, 3 to 4 tbs hot water, 2 squares unsweetened chocolate melted and cooled, and 1 and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract.

1) Eggs should stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes. In a large bowl, put together the cocoa and water. Stir until it is smooth in texture. Cool for about 30 minutes. In another large mixing bowl the flour, sugars, baking soda, and salt go together. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, oil and vanilla. Then add the dry ingredients along with the cocoa mixture. Beat with a mixer until blended. In another bowl beat egg whites and cream of tarter (with clean beaters) until stiff peaks form. Slowly fold into the mixture.

2) Carefully put batter into an ungreased 9.75 inch tube pan. Cut through batter (with knife) to remove air pockets. Bake on the lowest rack at 325 degrees for 60 minutes or until top springs back when touched. Immediately invert pan and cool on wire rack. Run a knife around sides and center of tube pan. Invert cake onto a serving platter.

3) Melt butter in a pan. Remove from stove. Then you stir in the confectioner's sugar, chocolate, vanilla, and water. Then have fun drizzling over the cake. Sprinkle with pecans.

4) Enjoy!

*Sources started with a Taste of Home recipe and progressed into my own.

Rachael Rizzo has been acting since she was nine years old. She uses her experience to write about what the things she loves mean to her (mostly movies and baking). She is twenty-three years old and resides in beautiful Oregon.

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Thursday, February 28, 2008

Easy Spaghetti Recipes

By Rachel Paxton

Spaghetti has always been a favorite family meal. My teenage daughter will eat leftover spaghetti for breakfast, lunch, and as a mid-afternoon snack. Not everyone loves spaghetti so much that they will go to that extreme, however, and the same meals can getting boring after awhile. Here are some ways to jazz up this old favorite:

Italian Sausage Spaghetti

  • 2 lbs. Italian sausage

  • 48 oz. spaghetti sauce

  • 1 (6 oz.) can tomato paste

  • Green pepper, sliced thin

  • 1 lg. onion, sliced thin

  • 1 tbsp. Parmesan cheese

  • 1 tsp. parsley flakes

  • 1 c. water

Place sausage in skillet and cover in water. Simmer 10 minutes; drain. Meanwhile, place remaining ingredients in crock pot. Add drained sausage and cover; cook on low 4 hours. Increase to high; cook 1 hour more. Cut sausage in bite-size slices and serve over cooked spaghetti. Sprinkle with more Parmesan, if desired.

Irish Italian Spaghetti

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 2 tbsp. vegetable oil

  • 1 lb. ground beef

  • 1 tsp. salt

  • 1/4 tsp. pepper

  • Dash of red pepper

  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder

  • 1/2 tsp. tabasco sauce

  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup

  • 1 can condensed tomato soup

  • 1 (8 oz.) package spaghetti

  • 1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese

Brown onion in oil. Add meat and seasonings. Brown lightly, cover. Simmer 10 minutes. Add soups, cover and simmer 45 minutes. Cook spaghetti. Cover with sauce and Parmesan cheese.

Baked Spaghetti

  • 1 c. chopped onion

  • 1 c. chopped green pepper

  • 1 tbsp. butter or margarine

  • 1 (28 oz.) can tomatoes with liquid, cut up

  • 1 (4 oz.) can mushroom stems and pieces, drained

  • 1 (2 1/4 oz.) can sliced ripe olives, drained

  • 2 tsp. dried oregano

  • 1 lb. hamburger, browned

  • 12 oz. spaghetti, cooked and drained

  • 2 c. shredded Cheddar cheese

  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup

  • 1/4 c. water

  • 1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese

In a large skillet, saute onion and green pepper in butter until tender. Add tomatoes, mushrooms, olives, and oregano. Add ground beef. Simmer, uncovered for 10 minutes. Place half of the spaghetti in a greased 13x9x2-inch baking dish. Top with half of the vegetable mixture. Sprinkle with 1 c. cheddar cheese. Repeat layers. Mix soup and water until smooth; pour over casserole. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake, uncovered, at 350 degrees for 30 to 35 minutes. Six to 8 servings.

Chicken Spaghetti Casserole

  • 1/2 c. margarine

  • 1 c. chopped red bell pepper

  • 1 (4 oz.) can sliced mushrooms, chopped

  • 1/4 c. chopped hot pepper rings

  • 2 c. chicken broth

  • 1/4 c. flour

  • 2 c. cooked chicken, chopped

  • 1 (4 oz.) can diced pimento

  • 1 tsp. salt

  • 1 oz. chopped slivered almonds

  • 1/2 lb. spaghetti, broken

  • 4 slices American cheese

Melt margarine and cook peppers and mushrooms until tender; add flour and blend well. Add chicken broth. Cook and stir until thickened. Add chicken, pimento, and seasonings; heat and add almonds.

Cook spaghetti in boiling water for about 9 minutes. Drain and mix with previous ingredients. Place in casserole dish and cover with slices of American cheese. Heat at 325 degrees until cheese is melted (approx. 30 to 45 minutes). Serve.

About The Author

Rachel Paxton is a freelance writer and mom who is the author of What's for Dinner?, an e-cookbook containing more than 250 quick easy dinner ideas. For more recipes, organizing tips, home decorating, crafts, holiday hints, and more, visit Creative Homemaking at

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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

How to Braise Meat

By Efrona Mor

“To Braise” means browning in fat and cooking covered in a small amount of liquid. It’s a method used to tenderize and intensify flavors in meat or vegetables. Usually inexpensive cuts of meat are best suited for this style of cooking, so it’s an affordable gourmet meal with little fuss.

Listed below are the 4 basic steps to braising meat, and an example chart for different meats and their cooking times, followed by a recipe for: Braised Ginger Beef with Pomegranate Sauce.

1st Start by choosing a cut of meat. Lamb or beef shank, pork or beef shoulder roast, top blade steak, brisket, chuck roast, and short or back ribs are the most common beef, lamb and pork braising choices. Most are tougher cuts of meat with high levels of protein known as collagen. Collagen cooked at low temperatures for long period’s converts to gelatin in the braising process which in turn tenderizes the meat and creates a rich thick sauce. So don’t think you need to buy a tender cut of meat to end up with a good meal. In the end tougher cuts of meat are better for creating the richest flavor and thicker sauce. The secret is in the gentle slow cooking. Chicken and fish are also great choices, however, chicken should not be skinless and bone in is best, preferably legs and thighs, and for fish, shark and swordfish cuts will hold up better than others.

2nd Then brown in fat. Depending on your recipe, most meats are browned first in a small amount of fat for color and flavor enhancing. Using a Dutch Oven or large heavy pot with a tight fitting lid, add your fat, heat to a hot temperature, add the meat and brown on all sides. Usually browning takes 10-20 minutes and is a process that does not cook the meat all the way through, it’s a surface cooking called browning or searing to lock in flavor. Most commonly meat is left whole for braising, but if meats are cut, remember same size portions are the best for even cooking.

Tips: For successful browning, foods must be dry and free of moisture or steaming not browning will result. Also not crowding your pan will allow moisture to escape during the browning process and give you a properly browned item.

3rd Then add your liquid. Liquids can include, wine, apple juice, water, broth or etc. Liquids, however, should not cover the meat. Usually no more than a ¼ - 1 cup is needed and sometimes no liquid is added depending on the recipe. Also at this point other items can be added, onions, garlic, spices, vegetables and etc.

4th Cover and cook on a very low heat, over a stove top, in a slow cooker or in the oven usually for 1 to 4 or more hours, depending on the recipe. Oven cooking is most effective, due to even heat from all sides which offers the best flavor and tenderizing results, along with a less fussy project. ( braising temperatures are 145-300 degrees, inexperienced cooks, however, should not cook below 185-200 without proper equipment for temperature control, meat can spoil if improperly cooked on to low a heat, if there is a simmer (small bubbling) going on in the pot you know your temp is not to low)

Example Cooking Times:

Lamb Shank, four to six shanks each one pound, 2 ½ hours

Shoulder roast 3-4 pound, 3½ - 4 hours

Top blade steaks, 2 ½ to 3 pound, 1 ½ inch thick, 1 ½ to 2 hours

Brisket, 3½ to 5 pound, 1 ½ inch thick, 3-4 hours

Back ribs, 3-4 pounds, 2x2x4 inches, 1 ½ to 2 ½ hours

Short ribs, 3-5 pounds, 2 ½ to 4 hours

Boneless chuck roast, 2½ -3 pounds, 2½ hours

Chicken, bone in, 1 hour

Swordfish, 2-4 pounds, 1 inch thick, ½ to 1 hour

Ginger Beef with Pomegranate Sauce

3 - 4 pound Brisket or Shoulder Roast

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

3 inches of fresh ginger, sliced ¼ inch thick

15 large garlic cloves, pealed and left whole

1/3 cup soy sauce

1/3 cup pomegranate syrup (most stores carry this)

1/3 cup brown sugar

Wash the brisket and dry excess moisture from the surface of the meat.

In a heavy pot with tight fitting lid or Dutch oven, heat the oil and brown the brisket and onions together for about 7-10 minutes. Turn the brisket to evenly brown on all sides.
Add the remaining ingredients, cook for about 3-5 minutes until sugar is melted and sauce becomes hot, stir well, cover and bake in a 300o oven for about 3-4 hours, stirring once or twice to baste the meat. (a slow cooker can also be used and will require no stirring, however I like to stir and baste once just because I enjoy checking the progress)

For stove top cooking, cover and keep flame low, and sauce at a slow simmer, stirring about every 30-45 minutes. Cook the brisket for about 3-4 hours, or until meat is tender and sauce has thickened.

If sauce has not thickened to desired thickness when the brisket is ready; remove meat and lid, then reduce for a couple minutes.

Slice meat and arrange on a large platter, pour the sauce over the top and garnish with cherry tomatoes and or parsley.

Efrona Mor

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Thursday, February 21, 2008

Baked Potato Skin Recipe - Nacho Baked Potato Skins

By Donna Monday

If you’ve ever ordered baked potato skins in a restaurant, you know how mouthwatering good they are. Now you don’t have to wait for the restaurant version. Here’s a tasty South of the border baked potato skin recipe that will have you saying – ole!

6 medium baked potatoes

1/4 cup butter, melted

1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 cup Monterey Jack cheese (with or without jalapeno peppers), shredded

Toppings (salsa, sour cream, guacamole, chopped fresh tomato, sliced green onion, sliced black olives, fresh cilantro)


Wait until baked potatoes have slightly cooled. Cut potatoes lengthwise into quarter sections. Scoop out the pulp of each quarter section – leave at least 1/4-inch left inside. Refrigerate extra pulp to use later.

Brush both sides of the potato skins with melted butter. Sprinkle the inside of the potato skins with seasoned salt and the cayenne pepper. At this point, if you don’t wish to serve these right away, you can cover them and refrigerate for up to 24 hours.

Preheat broiler.

Place potato skins (skin side up) on an unheated broiler pan or rack. Broil 3 to 4 inches from top of broiler for about 3 minutes. Turn potato skins over (skin side down) and sprinkle with cheese. Broil for another 2 minutes or so. Serve potato skins with toppings of your choice.

=> Baked Potato Skin Recipe: Cheesy Potato Skins

This baked potato skin recipe is for cheese lovers. The baked mashed potato pulp is used to create the delicious filling. Sun dried tomatoes add an earthy flavor.

4 medium baked potatoes

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, finely shredded

1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded

1/3 cup sun dried tomatoes in oil, drained and finely chopped

1/4 cup green onion, sliced

1/4 cup sour cream (light or fat free)

2 tablespoons fresh parsley

Salt and ground black pepper


Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Allow baked potatoes to cool before using. Cut potatoes lengthwise into quarter sections. Scoop out the pulp of each quarter section – leave at least 1/4 inch left inside. Set the extra pulp aside.

Place potato skins (skin side down) on a baking sheet. Sprinkle skins with salt and pepper. Bake for 15 minutes.

In a medium sized bowl, mash up the remaining potato pulp with a potato masher. Mix in the parmesan cheese, mozzarella cheese, dried tomato, green onion, sour cream and parsley.

Spoon mashed potato mixture into each potato shell. Sprinkle ground black pepper on top. Bake 15 minutes or until potato skins are heated all the way through.

=> How to Bake a Potato in the Oven

Russet potatoes are best for baking.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Scrub potatoes with a vegetable brush until clean. Pat dry with paper towels. Prick each potato a few times with a fork. If you want softer skins, rub potatoes with shortening or wrap them inside aluminum foil.

Bake potatoes for 40 to 60 minutes until tender.

Easy to make – fun to drink

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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Taco Salad Recipe

By John T Pratt

Everyone loves my Taco Salad and they always want my recipe! I think this is one of the best around - whether you choose the meat or vegetarian version!

We've eaten taco salad since we were kids, and there's just so many good ways to modify this recipe. How I make Taco Salad now is basic and simple and "it works". It's tasty, quick, and fast! Is there room for improvement? I don't think so - I think if you make this recipe "as-is" without modification you'll just love it! The only thing you should have a choice over is what kind of meat to use. The choices for meat are ground chuck, chicken, or fake meat (Morningstar ground meat crumbles substitute).

Taco Salad Recipe Ingredients You'll Need:

  • 1 lb meat (boneless chicken, ground chuck, or Morningstar Vegetarian ground meat crumbles)
  • Salt, Pepper, Chili Powder, Garlic Powder, Cumin - to season meat
  • 1tbsp minced garlic (preferred from a jar)
  • 1 head of lettuce chopped
  • 3 large or 5 medium tomatoes diced
  • 1 medium sweet or red onion (or one bunch diced green onion)
  • 1 packet Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix (not dip mix)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 bag Doritos or Restaurant style tortilla chips (crushed)
  • 1 packet shredded colby jack or taco cheese (8 oz)

This is so easy to make, just start your meat cooking on the stove, and cook on med-high for 5 minutes. If using chicken or morningstar you may need some oil in the pan first - just a few table spoons. Once it's cooked 5 minutes add the seasonings which are about 1tbsp chili powder, 2 tbsp Cumin, 1 tbsp garlic powder and salt and pepper to taste, cook another 8-10 minutes or until meat is thoroughly cooked.

The trick to making this Taco Salad Recipe quickly is to get as much done while the meat is cooking as possible. I usually start the meat, and immediately get an extra large mixing bowl (4-6qt) out and all the veggies. While the meat cooks I dice the tomato and lettuce and onion. I toss it all in the bowl with the tbsp of minced garlic and thoroughly mix it up. In a medium bowl mix the cup of milk, cup of mayonnaise and packet of Hidden Valley Ranch - then set aside. Open one end of the tortilla chip bag, and crush the chips up finely (without destroying the bag).

Add the chips and shredded cheese to the bowl with the veggies and mix well again. Add your meat and mix well again. Last add the Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing and mix well again and you have some easy to make and very tasty Taco Salad!!

I hope you liked this recipe, and I think your family will love it too!

John Pratt usually writes on his blog at JTPratt's Blogging Mistakes, but his love of cooking always seems to have him writing his best recipes on his daughter's web site Kieil's Handpicked Recipes! If you want to learn how to cook some of the tastiest dishes from scratch, including pizza and bread - be sure to stop by and visit!

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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Famous Scottish Fish Soup - Cullen Skink

By May Cropley

The famous Scottish fish soup made with smoked haddock is called Cullen Skink. Scotland produces delicious fish and this famous, very rich and tasty soup recipe originates from the fishing village of Cullen, in Morayshire, in the north-east of Scotland. At one time this fish would have been cheap and plentiful, and this dish would have been served regularly. But of course with the shortages of fish in the North Sea today, it is now more expensive to buy.

The word "Skink" (which means “essence” in Gaelic) is a soup which was originally made with shin of beef (it was a sort of soup-stew) , but the main ingredients for the Cullen Skink is smoked haddock and potatoes. The traditional way of cooking it was using “Finnan Haddock”, which needs to be skinned after cooking. This is a very fiddly way of making it, but the recipe below is a bit easier.

This Cullen Skink Recipe makes a filling and rich soup and although it can be a meal by itself, it makes a very unusual starter (providing your guests like fish of course). Serve it with thick slices of homemade crusty bread and unsalted butter.

Cullen Skink Recipe

A large smoked haddock (weighing around 2lb)

1 large onion, finely chopped.

2 pints pints (1200ml) milk

1 large potato chopped finely

Salt and pepper

1 bay leaf

Chopped parsley


  • Skin the haddock before cooking.

  • Place the smoked haddock with milk and bay leaf, in a large pan.

  • Poach gently for a few minutes.

  • Remove fish from pan.

  • Add onion and potato to pan and cook gently until soft.

  • When the vegetables are soft, remove the bay leaf.

  • Liquidise the milk, onion and potatoes until they are like a smooth cream. (If you don't have a liquidiser, try a food processor. If you don't have that, then use a potato masher although you won't get such a good smooth creamy texture).

  • Return to the pan, and add the flaked haddock.

  • Season with pepper. (You probably won't want extra salt, as the smoked fish usually provides enough salt).

  • Add chopped parsley.

  • Serve with homemade bread and unsalted butter.

May Cropley lives in the Kingdom of Fife in Scotland, and is passionate not only about the place with its lovely fishing villages and beaches, but also the history and the ancient castles and palaces, the people, the food, (including recipes) the music and art, poetry, the culture and all things Scottish. All of this, and the Home of Golf at St Andrews are featured on her website.

For further recipes check out Authentic Scottish Food Recipes

Visitors to May's website can contribute Scottish Recipes and Scottish poems.

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Thursday, February 14, 2008

Amish Soup Recipes

By Kara Kelso

Good things come to those who wait! These two Amish soup recipes do take a little time to make, but are well worth it. Each use basic ingredients which aren't hard to find, and whole chicken.

Amish cooking can be a wonderful experience, as long as you take the time to make the recipes right. Be sure to also see our website for other recipes, including more Amish recipes, soup recipes, chicken recipe ideas, and much more.


3 lb. chicken
2 qts. water
2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 c. chicken stock
2 c. celery, chopped
2 c. carrots, chopped
1 tart apple, chopped
1 c. onions, chopped
Dash pepper
4 c. egg noodles

Place chicken in kettle with 2 quarts water. Cover until tender (about 2 1/2 hours). Remove chicken from kettle and strain broth. Debone chicken and return to kettle with strained broth. Add chicken stock, celery, carrots, apple, onions, and pepper and cook until vegetables are tender. Add noodles and cook 8-10 minutes.


2 lbs. cut up chicken
5 c. water
1 med. onion, chopped
2 tbsp. chopped parsley
1/2 c. chopped celery
2 c. corn
Salt and pepper
1 c. flour
1 egg, beaten
1/4 c. milk

Simmer chicken in boiling water, remove bones and skin. Strain the stock. Return to pot, add onions, celery and corn. Simmer till vegetables are tender. Mix flour with egg and milk. Rub mixture with fork till it crumbles. Drop crumbs in soup. Cook 10 more minutes covered. Serves 3 to 4.

Need some more recipes? Be sure to see our website below for more great recipe ideas.


About the Author: Kara Kelso is the mother of two, and owner of For more quick and easy recipes, visit:

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Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Turkey Sandwich Recipe Contest- Monte Cristos and Pasta Fagioli

B Shannon (Shivering) W.

A Monte Cristo sandwich paired with Pasta Fagioli makes a delicious and quick dinner.

olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 carrot, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T basil, rubbed
1 bay leaf
hot pepper flakes to taste
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can white beans
1 can kidney beans
2 potatoes, diced
4 cups chicken broth
2 cups zucchini, diced
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup small shells pasta, cooked (or your favorite)
freshly grated Parmesan cheese

In a large pot over medium heat, add olive oil. When hot, add onion and carrot and sauté five minutes. Add garlic and sauté about a minute. Add seasonings and stir.

Add tomatoes, beans, potatoes and broth. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat, cover and simmer about 10 minutes. Add zucchini and simmer 10 more minutes. Taste and add salt and pepper as desired.

Serve topped with pasta and Parmesan.

Monte Cristo
8 slices smoked ham
8 slices smoked turkey
4 slices Swiss cheese, about 4 ounces
4 slices bread (I used whole wheat)
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
2 T butter
mustard or mayo as desired

For each sandwich, place 4 slices each of ham and turkey and 2 slices Swiss cheese between 2 slices of bread. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the egg and milk. Dip sandwiches in the egg mixture, turning carefully, til well coated and all of the mixture is absorbed.

Melt butter in a large frying pan on medium heat. When pan is hot and butter is browning, place sandwiches in pan and cook slowly for 8-10 minutes; turn and continue cooking til cheese is melted and both sides are golden brown. Top with mustard or mayo.

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Monday, February 11, 2008

What's for Dinner? Steak Wet Burritos

by Shannon (Shivering) W.

To save a little time, I used taco seasoning mix from Sam's Club for the steaks. You could also use a good canned red enchilada sauce for the top but I always make my own. The sauce I used can be found here:

Any measurements are approximate.

2 large beef steaks, well trimmed
1/4 cup taco seasoning mix
1/2-1 cup beef broth
chopped onion

Combine ingredients and slow cook on high for three to four hours, or til meat is very tender. Remove from slow cooker and shred. Reserve any juices for another meal.

burrito-sized flour tortillas
1 cup Mexican rice
Mexican blend cheese, divided
1 recipe red Mexican sauce

Preheat oven to 350°.

Add about 1 cup each shredded beef and rice to each tortilla. Sprinkle generously with cheese.

Fold sides and roll up. Place in 9 x 13 pan.

Pour sauce over the top. Sprinkle generously with cheese.

Bake til hot and bubbling.

Served with sour cream and homemade salsa.

Awesome! One of my favorite meals.

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Thursday, February 7, 2008

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

By Shannon W

This is one of my favorite varieties of hummus. I have made this with tahini and without, depending on whether I have it on hand.

If you like hummus a little thin, feel free to reserve the liquid from the beans and blend it in at the end.

2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 (15 ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained
1 T tahini (optional)
drizzle of olive oil
juice from 1 lemon
1/2 cup roasted red peppers, well drained
1 pinch cayenne (optional)
2 T fresh parsley, chopped
salt and pepper to taste

In a blender or food processor, combine garlic, garbanzo beans, tahini, oil and lemon juice. Process til smooth.

Add peppers and cayenne, if using; process til the peppers are incorporated. Transfer hummus to a small bowl and mix in parsley and salt and pepper. Taste and adjust as desired.

Cover tightly and chill at least an hour.

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Tex Mex Mahi Mahi, Plantains and Hash Brown-Chile Bake

By Shannon W.

2 large mahi mahi steaks
2 plantains
1 lb. tomatillos, husked
1 package hash browns
1 can chili hot beans, lightly drained

I came up this easy tex mex style meal.

You also get to use water, salt and pepper, oil and up to three other ingredients. My extras were southwest seasoning blend, fresh lime juice and monterey jack cheese sauce

Toss fish with oil, juice from one lime and seasoning. Marinate an hour.

Fry hash browns in oil til crispy. Season liberally.

Simmer tomatillos with oil, water and some lime juice til softened. Set aside to cool.

Heat beans. Mash well. Stir in 3/4 of cheese sauce.

Layer hash browns in baking pan. Top with bean and cheese mixture. Pour remaining cheese sauce over the top. Bake til bubbly.

Grill fish. Toss sliced plantains with lime juice and a little seasoning.

Serve fish with hash browns and plantains and top everything with tomatillo sauce.

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Easy Mexican Foods Recipes for a Delicious Meal

By Gaylene Haver

If you have some time on your hands and want to prepare a healthy meal, then you should try Mexican foods recipes. Not only are they easy to prepare; their ingredients can also be found just about anywhere.

The easiest traditional Mexican food to prepare is the ground beef, and there are a lot of ground beef recipes to choose from. Some of the most popular ground beef recipes are the beef Enchiladas and the all-time favorite beef Burritos. Both of these food dishes are not only easy to prepare but are also very delicious and healthy. They will be a sure hit with your family.

Beef casseroles are another great Mexican beef recipe that children of all ages love. Such country recipes are not hard to find as the Internet has a wealth of ethnic food recipes for you to choose from.

But the Mexican food entrée that will always be special to children and adults alike is the Mexican Tortillas with Enchilada sauce. You can simply fry the Tortillas, drain them of excess oil and make a variety of dips and sauces that will go well with the Tortillas. For easy recipes of these dips and sauces, you should definitely try the Internet. This southern food recipe together with hamburger meat dishes has always been one of the most popular party food recipes.

A delicious Mexican meal is never truly Mexican if you don't include Mexican desserts in the menu. A good Mexican dessert highly reminiscent of American desserts is the ice-cream sundae. Here, you can use any vanilla ice-cream and top it off with a very hot Mexican chocolate fudge and cajeta cream sauce. There is always the chocolate-banana Burrito, which is delicious as well as easy to prepare.

These easy Mexican foods recipes can be found in the Internet. Simply type in the relevant keywords in your search engine bars and you will soon have thousands of traditional Mexican food recipes as well as dessert and comfort food recipes that you can use for the casual lunch at home or even a party.


Do you want to quit your day job?


Hello, my name is Gaylene and I am the owner of GMH Global Ventures, LLC. After years of raising a family and a career in the mortgage business, I decided to try my hand at a new venture, a career on the internet. My goal is to preserve and pass on food recipes from my family and friends.

When we think of traditional food, we think of wonderful places that we have enjoyed delicious meals, Sunday at Grandma's, Moms house during special occasions or a party at friends. When we are just hungry, we have our own kitchens where we all make our favorites, cook our specials, or even try something new. The Pleasure of Food is here to help you add to your list of favorites.

All the recipes have come from old hand written recipe cards or found in boxes or cook books that have been handed down to friends and family. GMH Global Ventures is grateful to the owners of Tres Mi Hija's for sharing their recipes and visual illustrations on their great Mexican specialties. Our aspiration is that others around the world will want to share their favorite recipes too..

Thank you


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Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Shrimp Scampi

Recipe courtesy Emeril Lagasse, 2003

2 pounds shrimp, peeled and deveined - tails left on
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil
1 small onion, sliced thinly
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
1 lemon, juiced
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup shrimp stock, recipe follows
2 tablespoons cold butter
2 tablespoons chopped parsley leaves
Lemon slices, for garnish

Rice, as accompaniment
Season the shrimp thoroughly with salt and pepper. Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add enough oil to lightly coat the pan. Add the shrimp and quickly saute until just starting to turn pink, but not cooked through. Remove from the pan and set aside. Add the onions and saute just until they begin to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another 30 seconds. Add the lemon juice, white wine, and stock, and reduce by 2/3, about 5 minutes. Add the shrimp back to the pan and swirl in the butter. Finish with the parsley and check for seasoning. Garnish with lemon slices and serve over rice.

This recipe can be found at

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Friday, February 1, 2008

A Recipe For Selling Success and Baja Fish Tacos

By Steve Martinez

Mmmm, there is nothing like a great fish taco on a Sunday afternoon. Particularly, when the taco is a Baja fish taco, made fresh from a great recipe with all the right ingredients. At our house, my wife is often experimenting with Rachel Ray recipes. Rachel Ray has become a favorite of her viewing time on television. The recipe for Rachel's Baja fish tacos delivered excellent results and I highly recommend you try them on a warm summer afternoon with a cold Mexican beer soon.

I shouldn't be too surprised that my fair skinned wife, a Tacoma, Washington native of German heritage could fix the best tasting Baja fish taco I've ever tasted. It wasn't the cook, although I will never tell her this, it was the successful recipe she followed. The same is true with selling. It isn't the salesperson; it is the selling process they follow.

The Recipe For Sales Success

Months ago, I was interviewing a struggling salesperson who was enjoying sales, but didn't like the up and down roller coaster sales results. My goal was to uncover the root of the problem. Following my instincts, we began talking about her selling process only to discover that she didn't have one. We began talking about her successful selling experiences and tracing her steps to the sale. I asked her to carefully retrace each of her sale successes, so I could map them out for her. We did this for several sales to confirm my suspicions. What she didn't realize is that she was following a consultative, solution selling process each time she was successful. Naturally, she was elated to discover her recipe for selling success. We mapped out her selling process like a road map to success, so she wouldn't get lost in difficult selling situations.

As a result of her discovery, she began following her sales process for every sale and her roller coaster ride in sales ended. As her confidence grew, she mastered her selling process. Nothing could get her off track from following the six steps to the sale. She also began applying the magical seventh step of getting referrals, which boosted her success off the charts.

Automating the Selling Process Delivers Greater Results

I lost track of my sales student when she took a new job as sales manager for another company. She would enjoy learning how the Selling Magic selling system automates the process she used to correct her ailing sales. She is a perfect student for the system. She learned that following a recipe for success is better than winging it and she would appreciate the advantage of technology to perform her daily tasks.

It is unfortunate that the business owner of the company she worked for won't return my telephone calls. I want to introduce the Selling Magic selling system to him, so he will never have to worry about a salesperson leaving again. Why, because my automated selling system follows the selling process and is tied to the company not the salesperson. If the salesperson leaves, the system stays and it is the Selling Magic system that follows the selling process. Actually, in many cases a salesperson will find it difficult to leave a selling system that does 80% of the work for them. We invite you to learn more about our selling process and our automated selling system.

Steve Martinez is the leading authority on automating and systematizing the selling process for the Printing Industry. His company, Selling Magic, LLC teaches business how to simplify, balance and automate the complex selling process.

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