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Showing posts from 2019


Top Ten Recipes of 2019

As we come to the end of 2019 it is a pleasure to present to you our Top Ten Recipes that were the most popular with you this year. We have a variety of foods and cuisine very typical of our country cottage meal plans that we present each week. As a special end of the year bonus I am including a popular Garden post that you really loved this year. Most of our recipes are prepared from our garden herbs and vegetables then go straight to our table. Thanks so much for making this post possible, it was a joy to have you visit the cottage and enjoy the food with us! Leave me a comment and let me know what your favorite was this year.


Sausage Crescent Bites

It's time to put together some great appetizer's for the party season. We love these Sausage Crescent Bites, they are very flavorful and so easy to put together. I always make a double recipe because with our group 1 recipe is never enough. I have used this recipe for a very long time and have taken it to parties and have served it many times here at the cottage, they are even amazing for brunch!


Whats For Dinner Next Week,12-29-19

It is hard to believe that we are making our last meal plan for 2019, this year has gone really fast. We have traditional foods that we like to have on this the last week of the year. My Grandmother would always remind the family to be sure and eat your Black Eyed Peas on New Years to bring you good luck in the new year. So I am reminding you to be sure and eat your Black Eyed Peas or some other food that your family has passed down as bringing you good luck for the coming year. As we end this year I want you to know how much I appreciate your sharing Whats For Dinner Next Week with me every Saturday. Many thanks to all of you faithful readers, some of whom have been coming for years, you are the greatest!


Full Plate Thursday, 464

It is time for our Top Ten Views from last weeks party that you choose with your page views. I always look forward to this Top Ten to see what you are trending on Full Plate Thursday! As we approach the end of this year my thoughts go to how much I enjoy this party each week and the wonderful post that you share with all of us. I am very grateful that you make the choice to share your amazing talent with us each and every week. I am so happy to see you at the party today I can't think of anyone I would rather share the last party of 2019 with than YOU!


Cranberry Fluff

Cranberry Fluff is one of those classic holiday favorites with many of my friends. I was visiting with my friend Sandra about an event we were planning and the Cranberry Fluff was a recipe that she brought up, she said that it was one of her Dad's favorite and she had been able to make it for him last year just before he died. I surprised her and  made it for the event in honor of her Dad. Often times a classic recipe will bring memories of loved ones passed and present and what sweet memories they are. I love this recipe and never know if it is a salad or dessert, and does it really matter, it just delicious!


Whats For Dinner Next Week, 12-22-19

It's Christmas week and the cottage is all a buzz with last minute preparations for the Christmas festivities. I have made my meal plans several weeks ago and cooked as many things as I could and have them in the freezer and all of that prep work for recipes will sure pay off in the holiday schedule. We are expecting family and friends this week and hosting some activities so we will be all ready for the joy of the season.


Retro Holiday Punch

My friends Jennifer and Sandra are enjoying a cup of my Holiday Punch. I have been making my Holiday Punch for many years. I was a newly wed the first holiday season that I made the punch. We didn't have slow cooker's then so we just kept it warm in a stock pot on the stove, then we would pour it up into a pretty tea pot to serve. It is the kind of punch that I can keep some on hand when friends drop by to say hello over the holidays and it is great to serve for large or small gatherings.  I had a small informal gathering for our Study Group and they all wanted the recipe for the Holiday Punch, and I promised to share with them and what better way than to share with all of you!


Full Plate Thursday,463

Welcome to Full Plate Thursday, our last party before Christmas! We have had so many wonderful recipes, table decor and awesome food related post this month and some of them are featured today, hope you will have time to check them out. I hope that you are taking the time to really enjoy the season and fellowship with friends and family. Thanks so much for being a part of the Full Plate Thursday community, it is very special because you are very special!

Christmas Note Next Week We Will All Be Busy With Our Families and Friends We Will Be Posting Full Plate Thursday On Thursday, December 26,2019 Hope You Will Be There With Lots Of Your  Wonderful Post!


Texas Praline Fudge

When the pecan harvest begins here in our part of Texas, I start getting hungry for our Texas Praline Fudge. If a recipe has the word Praline in it, then it has me right there. This fudge is a very special treat here at the cottage and I always get so excited to make it and even more excited to eat it! If there are plans to serve the fudge for a special occasion it must be guarded or guess what, there won't be enough for your special occasion, yes this has happened to me. I had to take my photo's fast, the line was forming for the fudge. I am so glad there was enough on the plate to share with all of you, enjoy!


Whats For Dinner Next Week,12-15-19

When we have only 10 days before Christmas, then every hour of every day begins to be more important than the last. We will be meal planning forsure to help us move through this season with a little more ease and way less stress. When I think about some special recipe for a special meal I jot it down so I can include it with the next meal plan. It truly is a wonderful time of the year and I love the joy of every minute!


Full Plate Thursday,462

Welcome to Full Plate Thursday, come on in by the fire and get comfortable. I sure am glad to see you today and hope you are enjoying the season. It doesn't seem possible that it is only 14 days til Christmas. So many wonderful parties, great recipes and fun to be had, lets get started! We have some fantastic holiday recipes, creative decor and food related post to enjoy today from some very talented blogger's. Thanks so much for spending some time with us and we hope to see you at the party with your awesome post!


Christmas Eve Tamales

Our family has a long tradition of serving Tamales on Christmas Eve with other Tex Mex sides. For many years we would serve the standard pork tamales, then we got creative and now have different combination's of Tamales, we even have dessert tamales. Making homemade Tamales is quiet a process, but if you have a family gathering it can be a lot of fun. I am including a Tamale Tutorial for you today along with some of our favorite Christmas Eve Tamales. Be sure and let us know what your favorite will be.


Gifts From Miz Helen's Kitchen 2019

We love giving homemade gifts to our family and friends all year round, but we especially enjoy it at Christmas time. We grow a large garden in the warmer months and we preserve a big part of that harvest every year, then that becomes one of the special gifts that we like to share with family and friends. I love to bake something for a special party or place a jar of jelly into a gift basket. The gifts that I give every year are made with and filled with love. When I give or receive a homemade gift I know just how much love has gone into that gift. I wish that it was possible to share a gift from this collection with each of you, but know that it is in my heart and I am passing along all that love to each of you!


Whats For Dinner Next Week,12-8-19

Meal planning is a must during this time of the year,when we are so busy with friends and family enjoying the beauty and love of the season. There are so many fun activities in our area that we get to attend only a few of them as time doesn't allow us to go to everyone. I want things to be simple so I don't have to spend time wondering up and down the market trying to make a meal from whatever appears in the basket. The money I save by meal planning sure helps with the food budget allowing me to have more to spend in other areas.


Full Plate Thursday,461

Welcome to Full Plate Thursday and December, the month with all the special recipes for parties, family gatherings and so much more. Today we are featuring the Top Ten from Thanksgiving Week, that you have picked with your page views. Be sure and stop by to check out these talented bloggers. We sure are looking forward to the recipes, table decor and food related post that you will be sharing with us today. We are so busy here at the cottage, decorating, planning menus, and putting the final touches on party planning. We are hoping on getting some awesome ideas from you! Thanks for coming today and hope to see you at the party!


Retro Green Bean Casserole

I remember when my Mother would proudly set this classic retro recipe for Green Bean Casserole on the table for a Sunday meal or some other special occasion. It was the very latest recipe for green beans and everyone just loved it. The Green Bean Casserole would show up at Church covered dish dinners and at family functions and I still see this recipe at some of the same functions. Today I am making this retro dish from my Mothers recipe. To the best of my knowledge it has not been altered through the years that our family has made the recipe. We don't make the recipe so much anymore, but every now and then we make it and the memories come flooding back. As I record so many family recipes here to share with my family and all of you, I knew we had to have this special old Retro Green Bean Casserole, so that all of our Granddaughters can enjoy it one day.


Slow Cooker Spiral Ham With Pineapple

Slow Cooker Ham is a recipe for any occasion, this ham can go to a cover dish event, a holiday meal, or a special family gathering. The recipe has a special sauce plus part of the ham is put aside for your next pot of ham and beans. Our Slow Cooker Ham recipe is very easy to put together and is ready to eat in a few short hours. If you have limited oven space for holiday cooking, then the slow cooker is the way to go freeing up precious oven space. The flavors in this recipe make this ham very special and one that you will want to make over and over.


Holiday Cookie Exchange Link Party

Welcome To The 2nd Annual Holiday Cookie Exchange Link Party Cookies and Christmas just go together and what more fun at Christmas and Hanukkah than a great Cookie Exchange Party with your friends.  I am looking forward to the awesome collection of cookies that we will have here. At the end of the party I hope we have some fabulous cookie recipes to take home that we can enjoy for years to come! Thanks so much for bringing your cookie recipes to share with us, we will cherish the love that has gone into everyone of your recipes!


Whats For Dinner Next Week, 12-1-19

We had a wonderful thanksgiving and sure hope you did to.Here it is time to make another meal plan. There are so many wonderful recipes to cook this time of the year and seems like not nearly enough days to get it done. Making meal plans this time of the year allows me not only to make great meals plans but to use some of my left overs which will sure strecth the food budget. Extra money is always nice to have especially this time of the year!


Full Plate Thursday,460

I am so happy to welcome you to our Thanksgiving Edition of Full Plate Thursday. Come on in and join us for our Top Ten Views from last week, which we have each month on the last party of the month. We have some very talented bloggers that are featured and you chose them with all of your page views. Our cottage is all a buzz with the prep work for a Thanksgiving feast, we feel so grateful and very blessed! Thanks so much for being a part of this community and sharing your awesome talent with us each weeks, we are all blessed with your presence.


Baked Turkey and Ham Sandwich Roll

Our Baked Turkey and Ham Sandwich Roll is a great baked sandwich roll that can be made with left overs and can be served in a very short cooking time.  A delicious recipe that can be made ahead of time and reheated just before serving. The combination of this sandwich has a great flavor that will keep you coming back for seconds. The recipe can be served as an appetizer, a nice lunch or lite dinner.


Whats For Dinner Next Week, 11-24-19

Meal Plan's become very important for holiday plans and this week we will be working on the Thanksgiving meal plan. I will be planning to do as much prep work on the meal as is possible and that will be key to having a relaxed day to spend with friends and family. I love thanksgiving and all the traditional recipes that we use on our meal plan. This year we will have 1 empty place at our table, to represent one of our family members that is currently deployed out of country. One year in the early 90's we had 3 empty places at our table for family members who were deployed out of country. As our loved ones gather round the table we will be remembering all those who have passed down our way of life and kept the freedoms of this life sacared, we shall be forever grateful! 


Full Plate Thursday,459

Welcome to Full Plate Thursday,459 I am so happy to see you here today. We have some cider on the stove, lots of delicious food on the table and a warm fire, come on in and enjoy the fellowship and all the wonderful blog post that we will have this week. Be sure and stop by the very talented bloggers who are featured this week with great post.  Notice Thanksgiving is next week, already! Our Full Plate Thursday, 460 will post early next week on Tuesday, November 26th Hopeing this will allow you  to spend more time with your friends and family.


13 Pumpkin Dessert Recipes

We have some traditional desserts that we always put on the meal plan for a holiday meal and these are some of our favorite Pumpkin desserts. From time to time we raise pumpkin in our garden and there is nothing like fresh roasted pumpkin or a fresh pumpkin pie. We make Roasted Southwest Pumpkin Stew,
and Roasted Pumpkin Enchiladas with Pumpkin Sauce both a family favorite, but the very best is a Pumpkin dessert and I am giving you a great collection of Pumpkin Dessert Recipes to choose from today.


12 Holiday Brunch Recipes

When the holidays come our family and friends will be gathering and sharing meals together. One of the favortie meal times we share is Brunch and I love to make a brunch casserole that can serve a lot of people and allow me to enjoy spending less time in the kitchen. This is a collection of  Brunch Cassroles that our family and friends really enjoy and I hope that you will enjoy them to.


Whats For Dinner Next Week,11-17-19

Meal plans are so important especially this time of the year when our families are so busy with special events. It has been unusually cold here in our area so it is nice to keep some homemade potpourri simmering on the back burner, it helps the house smell good and puts moisture back in the house.  Potpourri Ideas 6 cups water 2 or 3 cinnamon sticks orange peal from 1 orange lemon peal from 1 lemon 1 tablespoon cloves Simmer In An Open Sauce Pan
Max is curled up by my side, I have gathered my recipes and checked the inventory, all set to go, glad you are here to help me!


Full Plate Thursday,458

I am so excited to see you today at Full Plate Thursday! Come in and find your place at the table we are sharing some fabulous fall recipes today and will be enjoying great table decor and information from talented bloggers. We have one of the best linky communities on the web and are grateful you are a part of it! Be sure and visit the awesome features today and we can't wait to see what you will be sharing today.


Baked Pepper Jelly Brussels Sprouts

Often times when I am developing a recipe, it just comes together, from what I have on hand. The day I put this recipe together, I had a basket of Brussels Sprouts from the farmers market, some bacon, and green onions. I always keep a well stocked pantry for my meal plans, so I had several items that would give great flavor. This is the recipe that I came up with and it is just delicious! I have made it several times since that day and it has been a big hit with friends and family.


Pumpkin Roll Breakfast Bake

This recipe for Pumpkin Roll Breakfast Bake will give your guest something real special to wake up to. When we have weekend guest or just a very special brunch I love to serve a nice breakfast bake, I like to serve it with a little fruit, syrup or a very special sauce. This recipe will have your family and guest coming back for seconds, it has wonderful warm flavors and is so easy to put together, it will be on your table in no time.


Whats For Dinner Next Week, 11-10-19

It is time to make our meal plan for the week, and we will not be out on the screen porch today. We are going to be sitting by the fire sipping a cup of hot chocolate, it is cold here and when the temperatures are down I look to warm and cozy meals for my family. We will be having some out of town guest this coming week so we are excited about making a meal plan so I will have more quality time to spend with my friends. I have checked all of the inventories and have gathered the recipes, lets get started on the meal plan.


Full Plate Thursday,457

Welcome to Full Plate Thursday, we are so happy to see you today! Come on back and grab a cup of apple cider and gather round the fire with us while we enjoy all the wonderful dishes that you are sharing today. Be sure and take a look at all the delicious food, and exciteing tips from some very talented blogers that we have featured today. Thanks so much for coming today, I always look forward to seeing all of you at the party!


Crock Pot Mixed Potato Gratin

The color and flavor of this mixed potato gratin recipe is divine. This is a recipe that you will definitely want to serve for your special occasions. We have used a mix of sweet potatoes and gold Yukon potatoes with a decadent herb sauce for the potatoes to slowly bake in. I have used my buffet style crock pot which allows a great presentation for such a beautiful side dish. This is a great dish to take to a covered dish event or a family gathering. You can do other things while this is slowly cooking and will be ready to set on the table with very little effort. This is on the top of my list for any holiday meal.


Nutty Cranberry Pumpkin Poke Cake

Just a few of my friends dropping over this evening for a Grateful Gathering. I am serving this delicious Nutty Cranberry Pumpkin Poke Cake. It is a new recipe and sure hope that they like it. I often times test my new recipes on my Gathering Group, what better way to have a true taste test. I will let you know what they think at the end of the post.


Whats For Dinner Next Week,11-3-19

November is here, the month of gratitude and food. I am always excited to make the meal plans for November with the wonderful fall foods that our family really enjoy. The fall festivals are abundant in our area with all the local organizations featuring the hand crafts of their membership hoping to raise funds for each of the chairtable causes. I am personally involved with an organization that provides food from a food pantry all year round. We are so blessed and consider it joy to be able to give back in some small way.


Full Plate Thursday,456

Welcome to Full Plate Thursday and our Top Ten Views from last week. We feature the Top Ten Page Views on the last week of the month. It is always my pleasure to feature all of your wonderful post and the great talent that we have in this community. We are having lots of fun here at the cottage this week and are ready for all the little spooks that will come to the door to enjoy some of the treats! Thanks so much for being a part of our special gathering and hope you will find that special treat that you will just love!


Sheet Pan Roasted Squash

We love roasted vegetables here at the cottage. As we harvested the last of the garden for this year we are enjoying these wonderful squash in a delicious recipe. I have combined a very flavorful marinate for the vegetables that is packed with herbs that enhance the squash. We don't usually have any left overs from this sheet pan recipe, but if you should it is great the next day in a salad or a delicious pot of soup.


Honey Apple Skillet Chops

We had a recent visit to the apple orchard and couldn't resist using some of the wonderful apples in this great fall recipe. I love the flavors of fall and the combination of spices that bring warm and cozy flavors and our Honey Apple Skillet Chops is defiantly one of those recipes. This skillet of goodness takes very little time to put together and your family will love the combination.


Whats For Dinner Next Week,10-27-19

What a week we had here at the cottage, it was just one storm after another. According to the national weather bureau we had 10 tornadoes in our area on Sunday night ranging from and EF1 to a EF3. Thank God we are all fine here and the cottage property was spared. I am happy to sit down with a cup of tea and look forward with a new meal plan for next week. We will  be getting ready for the trick or treaters this week so we will be including some special treats just for them. The pumpkins are carved and the decorations are ready, when I finish the meal plan we will just sit back and enjoy the week!


Full Plate Thursday,455

Welcome To Full Plate Thursday I am so happy that you are here at the party today! We are featuring some very special fall decor, recipes and food related post today and hope you will visit these talented bloggers. I am sure looking forward to the wonderful post that you are sharing today, you are a very special part of our community and thanks so much for coming today! Our North and East Texas area was hit with 10 tornadoes on Sunday night. They ranch from a EF1 to EF3, according to the National Weather Bureau. I want to thank all of you who inquired as to our safety. We are just fine and our property was spared, as most of the damage was several miles from us and we are so grateful for being spared. I hope you will join me in our thoughts and prayers for those who were affected and the rebuilding journey ahead.


Retro Chili Pie

Our Retro Chili Pie recipe has evolved from a sack of Frito's with Chili to this baked casserole that our family loves. When I was in High School mercy me, (that was a very long time ago), we would go to the concession stand at half time and get a Tiger Special, then when my kids were in High School it was called a Bulldog Special. That special was a small bag of Frito's with a couple dips of chili poured over it a sprinkling of onions and cheese with a plastic spoon. We would walk around eating our special, which some people began to call a walking taco. We had to be in formation (I was a twirler with the band) at the half way mark of the 3rd quarter,) so we would eat fast! In our family the recipe has evolved to a casserole that we call Chili Pie.


Instant Pot Pinto Bean Soup

Pinto Beans are a staple here at the cottage and I love this recipe for the Instant Pot. I don't always remember to soak the beans overnight and this recipe allows me to cook the dry beans and have them on the table in a very short time. The blend of flavors for these beans are a combination of the region that we came from and are a part of our family. My Grandmother had a pot of pinto beans on the back burner of her wood burning stove most of the time and we have come a long way since that time, but the flavor has not changed.  Our Pinto Bean Soup is very versitle as a soup, side dish and addition to several other recipes.


Whats For Dinner Next Week, 10-20-19

I am so glad you have stopped by today to help me plan this weeks meal plan. It is always so much fun to research and brainstorm recipes with a friend. When my daughter was visiting recently we were researching some recipes to pass along to another family member. It is beautiful weather here so we are able to really enjoy sitting on the screen porch, working in the garden a bit and getting our home ready for the winter months. I am headed out to the barn to check some of my inventory before completeing this meal plan.


Full Plate Thursday,454

Hello everyone, we are so happy to see you today and hope you enjoyed your drive to the country. We are enjoying beautiful fall colors right now and at last some cooler fall temperatures. The recipes are full of fall flavors and the tables are beautifully decorated with pumpkins and fall leaves. We have some lovely features from some very talented bloggers this week that I hope you will enjoy. I am looking forward to the party today and what you will be bringing to share with us. Thanks so much for coming to the party and being a part of our very special Full Plate Community!


Baked Candied Sweet Potatoes

We love Sweet Potatoes and our Baked Candied Sweet Potatoes are simply delicious, making this recipe a favorite. These fresh sweet potatoes are baked in a maple syrup and gives this a very special flavor. This is a side dish that will go to a covered dish event or be the star of a family dinner. This is a recipe that can be made ahead of time and heated up right before serving.


Slow Cooker Chicken and Cornbread Dressing

Our Slow Cooker Chicken and Cornbread Dressing recipe is one of our favorites this time of the year. We love Chicken and Dressing here at the cottage and this is a great recipe that give's you a lot of freedom while it cooks. My Grandmother used to make a dish very similar to this and I have rolled in all together for the slow cooker.  I like to have this for Sunday Dinner, when we come home from church and open the front door, that amazing smell of warm cozy dressing is slowly following you back to the kitchen.


Whats For Dinner Next Week,10-13-19

I am sitting on the screen porch just reflecting on the awesome visit we have had with our daughter in the last 2 weeks, so glad she got to come see us and sad that she had to get back to her life.  Meal planning this time of the year may cover a game day, coverdish events and slow cooking comfort food. I have gathered all my recipes and checked my inventory to make a great meal plan for the week and so happy that I can share it with you!


Full Plate Thursday,453

I am so glad to see you today, fall is such a beautiful time to take a drive to the country. In the fall we have so many fun events in our area, Friday Night Football, Game Days, Fall Festivals and lots of wonderful food. I can't wait to see what foods you have for special events in the fall and the wonderful recipes, table decor and food related post that you will be sharing for the party today. Many thanks for coming to the party today and sharing your amazing talent with us!