Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Pie crust

Tonight I'm feeling ultra fatigued so I think I better blog early.
Seriously the best pie crust I've EVER EVER made and one of the best I've ever eaten.

Pie Crust
2 sticks frozen salted butter thawed for about 15 minutes
1/2 cup ice cold water
1 1/2 cups flour

Process or cut in butter with flour until mealy. Thank goodness for food processors! Add water. Blend until all dough pulls away from side of bowl. Thank goodness again for food processors. Dough will be on the wet side. Trust me here. Chill in fridge for about 15 minutes. GENEROUSLY flour counter. Allow yourself ample counter room. Roll dough to desired thickness. Makes 2 deep crusts. DO NOT OVERWORK YOUR DOUGH! Generously flour the counter and make sure you have AMPLE room so you do not have to reroll!

I used this dough for a quiche and an apple pie. It worked well for both! E

Monday, April 26, 2010

Pinto Beans

Sometimes you score---

These were WAY WAY good and SO good for ya.
Yesterday I cooked a ham, so it will be ham ALL week with various sides.

Lets cook beans!

Start with 1 lb. pinto beans. Soak overnight in water. Drain and rinse. Pick out nasty ones. Enter crock pot. Grease crock pot with canola oil. Add beans. Cover with water about 2-3 inches above bean line. Add 5 beef bouillon cubes. Add 2 heaping capfuls of canola oil. Stir all. Cook away for 10 hours on low. After cooking add Lawry's Seasoned Salt to taste and fresh black pepper. (I usually season each bowl of beans individually not the big pot. The kids like to season their own). 1 word here---YUMO! I hope you do not plan on eating beans all week b/c chances are they will be gone or close to gone that night!

We ate these beans with ham, Mexican cornbread, greens and sour cream. Sour cream you ask? Remember what the "old timers" drank with this meal----hmmm-----buttermilk? Same idea. Fresh cilantro is good here too. ec

Sunday, April 25, 2010


I sit here tonight--at the table--blessed. It is late--er. The older kids are with Airl at SDC and I am here with my Mo. Have you ever stopped to think how blessed you are to feed your children? Tonight I am thinking this as I sit and feed him his baby oatmeal. He loves to eat and I love to feed. I was thinking about how "whipped" nursing him makes me---and I have enough to eat.

Imagine what those mommas feel like who don't have enough to eat themselves but still yet give their very last drop of energy/milk to their young.

I often think God must have something grand in mind for those of us who have enough to eat and clothes on our back. I hope and pray I am able to fulfill even part of what he has in mind for me. NO, I hope and pray I am able to fulfill EVERY part of his will for me.

"Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine according to his power that is at work within us."---- from Paul's letter to the Ephesians, I believe.

Enjoy your dinner tonight and remember to tell him thanks. I felt like Ma earlier. I cooled a cherry pie in my window sill---I'll post pics later.


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Is the kitchen closed again---you loafin?? DREAM ON! Cake and Steak.

Have you ever tried to type with a 6 month old suckin on ya?? It can be done and I'm here to prove it!

The kitchen is not closed. In fact it is birthday cake time which presents challenges and lots of fun. Give this one a try--way to cool and looks exactly like the title implies.

Hornets Nest Cake
1 yellow cake mix
2 cups whole milk
1 cup chopped pecans
1 bag of butterscotch chips
1 small box vanilla instant pudding

Make pudding per package directions-2 cups milk/wire wisk/you get it. Fold in cake mix. Mix will still have small lumps. Spread into greased 9X13 pan. Sprinkle cake with butterscotch chips then pecans--order important here. Bake for 35-40 minutes at 350 degrees. DON'T OVERBAKE. This was way to cool. It looked exactly like a hornets nest. My daughter loves bugs and being outside so I thought this might be fun. Oh and it tasted delicious. Delicious I say-we all thought so--and did you notice how easy? No mixer involved. I am not a huge butterscotch fan so I did not use a whole bag of chips, nor did I use an entire cup of pecans bc I'm tight. I used about 3/4 bag of chips and 1/2 cup nuts and had GREAT results. The pecans end up looking like hornets.

Bring Me Some More Steak
2 lbs. thick sirloin
large storage bag
black pepper
Italian dressing-I used Robust Italian
garlic powder

Put large steak or singles in storage back. Pour in desired amount of dressing for marinade-You don't have to use a ton--just so meat is well covered. Add an obsurd amount of black pepper---I said obsurd. I did not use fresh ground here. Add 2-3 tsp. garlic powder. Squish it all around REAL well. Make sure meat is covered. It would probably work best to make mixture and then add steak--so much for afterthoughts. Let meat marinate for 6-12 hours. Remove from fridge about 1 hour before you plan to cook it. This is important. Place about 1 T. olive oil in non stick skillet. Bring to medium--high--high heat. Add steak. Sear 1 minute on each side. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 3-4 minutes per side depending on how you like your steak cooked. This was delicious. We loved it. So tender and full of flavor. I like sirloin b/c it is so lean. Oh and that obsurd amount of pepper---don't be afraid. The meat is far from spicy or hot--its not at all---just delicious.

Monday, April 19, 2010

I love Chicken and Noodles

so basic-but I REALLY love it. Try this variation--mix it up a little--make it your own. OWN IT!

Chicken and Noodles
#3-4 large chicken breasts--cooked and cut up into medium size pieces--I like to season mine with chicken base and ground pepper--I poach my breasts on the stove and save the broth.
chicken broth
12 oz. egg noodles
1/3 cup sour cream
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 soup can of milk
freshly ground pepper

Boil egg noodles in reserved, strained broth (you may need to add water to reserved broth if you do not have enough volume to boil noodles)--can use canned broth as well. Drain noodles. Mix all ingredients and enjoy! I serve this with sweet peas. So easy and so comforting.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Mrs. Cheek's kitchen is back open-Lentils

So I had no idea what I was doing but wanted to try cooking lentils. It worked.

Lentil Soup-Cheek Style
1 lb. Lentils-rinsed
3 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 onion, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
2 cans diced tomatoes
8 cups low sodium chicken broth--I make my own from store bought chicken base
seasoned salt
1 tsp. sugar
fresh ground pepper
4 T. olive oil

Here we go. Coat bottom of dutch oven with olive oil. Heat to med-high. Add veggies-except for lentils. Season veggies w/seasoned salt, pepper and sugar. (Find a seasoned salt you REALLY like. My favorite is one from Tastefully Simple.) Cook veggies for about 5 minutes-till browned a bit. Add chicken broth--this will "deglaze" the pan. Add lentils. (I assume you know to stir, right?) Bring to boil. Boil for about 4 minutes--stirring occasionally. Cover. Simmer (low-medium heat) for about 15-20 minutes. Add more broth if desired depending on how soupy or stewpy you want your soup. Add tomatoes now and heat through. The Lentil Soup is now ready to enjoy! Serve w/freshly ground pepper.

Friday, April 16, 2010

This is a Good One-Minestrone Soup

I was rackin' my brain tonight for something to share. I'm tired girls. I bought Subway last night w/my Subway card(thank you Tera for the Bday gift!) and tonight Grandpa Red took us to eat fish. So Mrs. Cheek's Kitchen has been closed.

After all that rackin' I remembered this little pearl.

First of all, check out your local down-home meat store. They can have tremendous meat at ok prices. The one just down the road from me has been open for years. I remember going with my grandfather on special occasions to buy steaks. They open at 5:30 A.M. and in addition to selling meat, also sell plate lunches and breakfast-- and homemade pie and cookies.

I knew they had GREAT meat, but who knew they made their own greaseless sausage? Yes girls thats right-QUALITY SAUSAGE!!!--a hard find. The owner swore to me it wasn't greasy--I reluctantly bought and immediately fell in love! Now, I can eat and cook no other. Did I mention the seasonings are great too?--not too hot---not too wimpy. So I said all that to say---Check out your local meat shop--you might just fall in love!

Minestrone Soup
1/2 lb.--1 lb. Quality Breakfast Sausage
2 cans Minestrone Soup (Progresso Brand)
1 can Diced Tomatoes with Green Pepper/Onion
optional--another can of diced tomatoes--I like those petite diced--I'm a BIG tomato fan!
Fresh ground pepper
Shredded or grated parmesan cheese

Brown sausage. Drain off grease(if there is any). Mix all ingredients in stockpot and heat to medium. Serve with shredded or grated parm. I LOVE EASY.

at Rush/Mo/the loaf--(precooked)

Rush/Pea-eatin'Mo/AuGratinPeas/Strawberry Cake

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Be patient with me. . . /meatloaf/chicken breasts

this blog will get better.

2.5 lbs. ground beef--lean works best
6 slices of bread soaked in 1 1/4 cup milk--I use whole wheat bread--if you use white bread (which is good too) cut back on milk to about 1 cup--I also use skim milk
4 eggs plus 1 white
3/4 tsp. seasoned salt
1 1/2 cups grated parmesan-canned stuff
1/2 cup minced fresh parsley.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Soak bread in milk. Beat eggs/white. Mix all ingredients together with clean hands. Form beautiful loaf. (Mine measures about 9x4x3inches. This is approximate.) Place in foil lined 9x13 pan. Bake for about 45 minutes. Pull from oven and smear loaf with tomato gravy. Back to oven for about 15more minutes. Wonderful.

Note. . . You DO NOT have to make the fancy beautiful loaf, you could. . a. Press mixture into 9x13. Nothing fancy, but it eats. Bake for about 45 minutes total. b. Divide into two 9x5 loaf pans. Total bake time 1 hour. c. Press into whatever size casserole dish you desire---just adjust your baking time based on dimensions of loaf. My mom never made the fancy loaf--she just pressed mixture into casserole pan. This recipe REALLY makes alot(obviously). Feel free to 1/2 it!

Tomato Gravy
1 can petite diced tomatoes
2/3 cup ketchup
2/3 cup bbq sauce
2 squeezes of mustard--about 1 T.
dash or two of hot sauce

Serve with meatloaf. The Tomato Gravy REALLY takes the meatloaf OVER the top!

Frozen Chicken Breasts in Crockpot
Place desired amount of frozen chicken breasts in crockpot--Mine were the Great Value variety. I used about 1 lb. of breasts. Cover with can of cream of chicken soup. Place crock on low and bake about 8 hours. These shredded perfectly for Mexican Chicken. Could be used for any chicken dish!

Grow Mo Mo Grow

My poor children--given the profoundest of names--and then cursed----with crazy nicknames invented by their mom. And she really calls them that--the nickname that is--until they get hmm. . . about school age. I don't know about me sometimes.

So back to the title. Sweet Mo Mo. (Mo for short). He continues to grow and thrive and become the apple of his mother's eye. There seems to be something about that 3rd that makes you think you could have 6 and be just fine. Sometimes I feel so selfish to even wish I had more to hold..more to love. I am so thankful for 3 healthy children. Thank you God again. So love your babies up tight today. Remember how blessed you are and hopefully time will permit you to gather with them around the table tonight--no matter what you serve.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Fry Momma Fry--Fried Pork Chops and Taters

Fried pork chops-EASY

#4-6, 3/4 inch lean chops no bone
1 1/2 cups white flour
seasoned salt or cavendars or salt, pepper, herbs (whatever flavor you like; flavor the flour generously--I probably used 3 tsp.or more of Cavendars)
plastic gallon storage bag (large "ziploc")
2 beaten eggs
canola oil

Mix flour and season salt in large storage bag. Beat eggs in deep bowl. Dredge chops in flour, then eggs, then back in flour. Shake off excess flour, but don't be skimpy-fine line here. Pour oil to depth of 1/2 inch in skillet-I use a non-stick skillet. Heat to med-high. Test the oil by dropping small pinch of flour in oil. If it sizzles nicely, and doesn't burn up, you are probably ready. I use a 12 inch skillet and cook on electric burners. It takes my oil about 5 minutes to get to the correct temperature. Drop (lay) chops in. I only cook 2 at a time so I can watch them close and control the oil temp. Cook 4-5 minutes per side until deep golden brown. Yum. I served w/bbq sauce and ketchup. I should have made gravy but no time.

"Fried" Potatoes
3 cans sliced new potatoes rinsed and drained in cold water
canola oil
salt, pepper, garlic

Wipe previously used for pork chops skillet down with paper towels. Coat bottom of skillet with canola oil--just a nice coating--no need for excess. Heat oil to medium high heat. Drop taters in, season, toss around in pan, season, and fry baby fry. Takes about 6-7 minutes. Yum.

Shrimp pizza

I had some leftover shrimp. So. . .

1 thin pizza crust in can
3/4 cup marinara sauce (I used leftover plain Prego)
shrimp--whatever amount you have--peeled, deveined, detailed--cut in small pieces
pineapple rings--whole can
1/2 red pepper-julienned into strips
mozarella shredded--about 8 oz.
grated parmesan cheese-canned is fine--whatever amount you like--I like alot
Italian seasonings seasoning
red pepper flakes--if you can take the heat!

Chances are you know how to make a pizza but in case you do not. . . Pre-Bake crust per package directions. Add marinara sauce and desired amount of shrimp, pineapple, and red pepper. Add cheeses. (I did season shrimp with garlic and lemon before adding to pizza.) Sprinkle pizza generously with Italian seasoning. Bake per directions on crust package. DELICIOUS and so pretty. Bottom line of this is do whatever you want with this combo of toppings!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

A night off. . .

Dream on girls! But I did take it ez--baked potatoes, green beans and leftovers. The crew had eaten out for lunch after the circus, so I knew I could go minimal tonight. If you haven't tried canned green beans w/shelly beans, try them. I love them. I normally mix them with 1 can plain green beans. (I like Allen's brand). On all canned vegetables,drain and rinse before cooking(thanks Marla). The veggies taste MUCH fresher and lose the metal taste. Do yourself another favor re: green beans--its called bacon grease--you better be savin' it!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Cream cheese glaze

I don't like lots of icing on cakes for just my family to eat around here. I invented this a few nights ago and really liked it. I used it on the Cherry Red Velvet Cake from earlier today.

4 oz, 1/3 less fat cream cheese--really soft---nuke if needed
about 1/3-1/2 cup skim milk--add to your desired consistency
4 packets of Splenda--you could use leftover cherry juice to sweeten, but I accidentally discarded.

whip together and pour over cake. Really good and easy. e

Frozen ground beef+crockpot

I knew the day was going to get busy quickly. I also knew what I had in the freezer. I pulled out 1 lb. frozen ground beef this a.m. around 8. I left it out on kitchen counter hoping it would thaw quickly. It was 93% lean(I think this is one of the reasons this recipe worked--bc the beef was so lean). Around 11, I get the crazy idea to try the still FROZEN ground beef in the crock. Well guess what--it worked. I cannot believe this worked.

Tasty tacos
1 lb. half frozen ground beef, broken up into 6 big chunks
taco seasoning packet
1/2 chopped medium onion
handful shredded carrots--trust me here--it is good in tacos.
2 T. water
canola oil

grease crock with canola oil. Add veggies. Add 1/2 capful oil to veggies. Mix with hand. Top with chunks of still frozen ground beef. Sprinkle on taco seasoning and water. Cook on high 4 hours.

When I returned home, meat was fully cooked. I simply used spoon to mix all together and break up chunks. Yum.

Addendum--you can stop here. OR make your meat go further and the kids eat more veggies> > > I added 1 can rinsed, drained pinto beans and 1/2 can corn.

All this strawberry talk. . . . Chocolate Cherry Cake

Come on girls. Don't forget about cherries. Ok, I did make a strawberry cake this week, but this a.m., thank God I don't have to work today, I whipped up a little something different. My kids and hubbo LOVE cherries. So here we go. . .

1 Box Red Velvet Cake Mix-I like Duncan Hines. (Be sure and load up on cake mixes when WM has them 78 cents around the Holidays--that way you don't feel bad when you screw one up!)
3-4 eggs--(farm fresh if you have them). If you want a denser cake-more pound cake like use 4. If you crave fluffier texture, use 3. I used 3--would have been good either way.
1/3 cup oil
1 cup water
1 jar marschino cherries---drained--save juice for frosting.

Preheat to 325. Grease a bundt. To grease I pour 1 capful of oil into my pan, swirl it around, use my hands to coat, then turn pan upside down to drain off excessive oil. This trick works very well and is easy. Mix all ingredients except cherries on low until combined. Increase mixer speed to medium. Mix one minute. Gently pour in cherries. Continue mixing another 1-2 minutes on medium. Do yourself a favor and DO NOT over mix. Pour batter into pan. Since fruit is involved use a knife and swirl it around in batter to make sure fruit is evenly distributed. Bake 45-50 minutes. Let cool 15 minutes in pan on wire rack. Gently turn pan over now to release cake. TADA--masterpiece. We have already sampled and we likey!

We'll work that frosting out later. Give me some time girls. The laundry is calling.

I will be posting pics later. I cannot wait to show off my little sweet peas!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Pancakes--Cheeky style

My kids love breakfast--and pancakes. Check the quantity here. And guess how many I got-NONE--Thats right NONE. I guess I forgot to mention Hubs loves them too. I did sample one--2 pinchs or so-they were yum. I really believe in a good breakfast. I also believe in sneaking in extra fruit and veggies whenever possible. Did I mention my kiddos are only 5 and 4? And I had to feed my 4 y/o a 2nd breakfast 1 hour after this one?

2 cups whole wheat pancake mix
1 cup applesauce
1-2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 cup milk--may need a splash more--just check batter
2 capfuls canola oil
pinch of salt
1 small egg
makes about 14 cakes

Mix all ingredients. Do not overmix. Let batter rest 2-3 minutes. Preheat griddle to 300. Bake for 3ish minutes per side. I know this is a long baking time but due to the fruit--they need it! Yum.

Leftover Easter Ham

my favorite way.

Loaf of French or Italian bread--From your local supermarket
1 lb. of your favorite cheese--I used Baby Swiss
about 1-2lb. left over ham
olive oil
Italian seasoning

Slice bread lengthwise with bread knife--get it---wait where is my camera---no not there. Ok, cut it like you are making world's biggest Hoagie Roll. Got it? You now have a top and a bottom--like a Big Hogie Roll. Pile that sucker up with meat and cheese on both halves of the Large Hoagie Roll. Ham first, then cheese. Place in 375 oven open face for about 10-15 minutes. Remove from oven and close the large sandwich. Slice crosswise. Now mix together 3 parts olive oil to 1 part Italian seasoning--i.e. 3 T. olive oil/1 T. Italian seasoning. Serve with sandwich. YUMO!
Baby rating-N/A
Kid rating-7
Hubs rating-7
Me-7-the flavored oil really took it up a notch.

Baked Potatoes---in the crock pot

Ok. This was pretty cool. Who knew? Maybe you did.

Desired amount of small baking potatoes
small amount of bacon grease
canola oil

Scrub the fire out of potatoes in warm, slightly soapy water. Rinse and dry well.
Grease crock pot with small amount of bacon grease. Mix equal parts bacon grease and canola oil--You don't need much. Coat each potato with grease mixture. This part if fun. I love it when they get slippery in your hands. Place potatoes in crock so they form single layer. Sprinkle with salt. Bake on high for 4 hours. Pretty easy and pretty good. The skin is fab!

Dinner is EASY when part of it is already done!

Augratin Peas

for a 6 month old!

So I guess it is obvious now--how much I enjoy cooking. Well guess what--I love to cook for my baby too. Tonight I made him augratin peas. Guess what--he loved them.

2 heaping T. sweet peas--I use canned rinsed about 100 times and drained
1 1/2 oz. bottled water
1/4 scooper of powdered formula

Baby rating: 10 (everything I do in his eyes is a 10!)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Jalapeno cornbread

I hope I spelled the title correctly! Anyway you get it. Jiffy cornbread mix IS NOT my favorite. But, I had it and it needed to be used, so away I went.

1 box Jiffy
1 small can green chilis
1/2-1 cup whole kernal corn. (I used canned-rinsed and drained)
1 egg--farm fresh ALWAYS best
bacon grease
shredded cheddar(if desired--I like sharp cheddar freshly shredded)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Grease pan with bacon grease--I use 8 inch cast iron skillet and melt bacon grease in oven--You don't have to do this. You could just spray small pan with "Pam". Mix remaining ingredients. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and add cheese if desired. Bake for another 10 minutes. Corn bread is good with and without cheese. Enjoy with big pot of beans.

Country Style Pork Ribs-Cheek style

Country Style Pork Ribs-Cheek style

Ok, let me first point out a few things about these knock off ribs. They are lean. They are cheap. They are delicious when cooked properly. This recipe is what I like to call a 2-1-1

Country Style Pork Ribs

Start with 1 1/2-2 lbs ribs
1/2 cup bbq sauce of your choice-I like the cheapo kind from the discount grocery store--Actually it is Hunt's original--but it was CHEAP
1/4 cup Italian Dressing--I used Robust Italian
1/4 cup H20--thats code for tap water

Mix all liquids ingredients. Place pork in a (greased)dutch oven or small casserole pan. Season with fresh ground pepper. Pour mixed ingredients over pork. Cover. Bake at 225 degrees for one hour. Remove from oven. Turn ribs over and add additional bbq sauce as desired. I added about 1/3 cup--just eyeball it. Cover and bake an additional hour. Remove from oven. Keep covered but let cool about 1 hour. Then remove ribs and shred meat. Return meat back to sauce. Simply delicious. (I'll add Airl and the kids' ratings after we eat this tonight. I sure thought this was good). Did you catch the 2-1-1?

Chicken Fried Steak--EASY

1 to 1.5 lbs. cube steak at room temp
1.5 cups seasoned flour--I use Lawry's and fresh pepper. Go Easy with Lawry's.
1/2-1 cup milk-room temp best. at least not super cold.
canola oil for frying
medium sized fry pan--I like cast iron, but sometimes just use non-stick

Soak cube steak in milk. Longer is better but not necessary if in a hurry. Last night I soaked for about 1-2 minutes. 15-20 minutes would have been better. Heat oil to medium high heat. This does not require a lot of oil--about 1/2-3/4 inch high in skillet.(Depending on your dieting mood). Dredge soaked meat in flour 1 piece at a time. Give it a nice coating but be sure to shake off excess flour. To test oil temp drop in a bit of flour--just a pinch. If it sizzles nicely and doesn't burn up immmediately--you are probably good. I usually just cook one piece of meat at a time if using my smaller skillet. It is easier to control the heat and the meat does not take long to cook. I sometimes do have to adjust the temp. of the oil down after adding the meat. Just watch it. CLEAR ALL KIDS FROM KITCHEN B4 frying. Cook meat 2-3 minutes per side. Try to turn it just once. (its ok if you have to turn it twice but once is best). This is really really delicious and terribly easy even on a work night. Last night I didn't have time for cream gravy, so I cut it up like steak fingers after cooking and we ate it with ketchup.

Cheek kids rating-8.
Hubs rating-7 (it wasn't perfect and didn't have gravy.)

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

I keep my promises-BEANS

I dig beans--home cooked beans.

1 bag pintos (the smaller bag)I think it is 1 lb.
3/4-1 pound ham cut into small pieces(more of less, depending on how much you like, this amount gives enough flavor). I ALWAYS use leftover ham. Thank you Easter.
couple strips of bacon cut into small pieces--don't need much for good flavor
fresh black pepper
Lawry's Season Salt
1/2 medium onion-diced small

Soak beans overnight. Combine beans, both meats and onion in crock pot. Spray crock pot with "Pam" first. Sprinkle generously with fresh pepper. Mix together well--I use my clean hand. Cover with water approximately 2 inches above bean line. Cook on low 8-10 hours. After cooking, sample. Add Lawry's as needed. Remember Lawry's comes out of container fast and is SALTY. Don't oversalt. You can ALWAYS add more. Delicious with canned greens. I eat the beans like soup with the greens mixed in.

Monday, April 5, 2010

A big time

Ok so this is way fun for me. Gees am I lonely or what? I had a thought tonight as I was doing the dishes. We are so blessed. Every night you, me, lots of people in America decide what to put or not put on the dinner table. How spoiled we are to have that luxury. Thank you God for blessing us.

Homemade biscuits-Wow them

This is really SO EASY. Do not be intimidated. They are simply delicious. So flaky. Just right. You can do this!

Brooks' Biscuits

3 cups self rising flour
2 cups buttermilk (I make my own using 1 T. white vinegar to just under 1 c. milk to equal 1 cup buttermilk)
1 cup plain vegetable shortening--I do recommend name brand here.

This recipe can be easily halved. Cut shortening into flour until crumbly using hands. Yes your CLEAN HANDS. Slowly add milk, working ever so gently with your hands until incorporated evenly into dough. It will be sticky but this is more than ok. Stop and enjoy how that dough feels in your hands. Remember you are the master of the dough. Lightly flour surface to prevent stickage. Pat out dough to about 3/4inch thickness. Use hands only! Add little more flour if needed to prevent stickage to hands and counter. I use the rim of a baby bottle to cut the perfect sized biscuits. If you have a fancy biscuit cutter, by all means use it here, but a cup or baby bottle rim works well too. Dust off any excess flour on the biscuits and place on greased cookie sheet. Bake at 400 until golden brown--about 12 minutes depending on biscuit size. Delicious. May take some practice, but hey what doesn't?

This one is pretty pathetic--Don't tell Airl. After the homemade biscuits, its time for gravy--chocolate that is--come on I know you can do this one.

Airl's Chocolate Gravy

1 package cook and serve chocolate pudding (small box)
2 cups milk.

Yes thats right. It's delicious too. Make according to package directions and serve over biscuits. My secret is out.


I forgot to mention the shredding of the chicken in the previous post. See revised edition. Yes I know, lets not forget the essentials Mrs. Cheek.

Chicken Cheekurritos--EASY

So often I get inspired from others for new dishes. I take a recipe and make it my own--Cheek style. I invite you to do the same! Please share back with me!
Marla inspired these. I will post a picture of her later(as soon as I learn how). She is so pretty on the inside and out.

1 lb. nasty frozen chicken breasts (They need to be the cheap kind---you know the kind that has broth and parts added. They aren't that nasty--just kind of funny shaped---kind of large I've noticed---well large when frozen, they change dimensions upon thawing). Go ahead and thaw them for this recipe.
1 can black beans--drained and rinsed
1 can whole kernal corn-drained and rinsed.
1 can mild Rotel--off brand is fine.
1 crockpot sprayed with "Pam"-please you know I don't use name brand cooking spray!
cumin powder, garlic powder, salt and fresh pepper
1 package flour tortillas--I used whole wheat

Place chicken breasts in crock. Season with 1/2 tsp or so of all above spices. Add in additional ingredients. Cover with lid and cook for 3 1/2 to 4 hours on High.

Arrive home late. Remove lid from crock. Shred chicken using fork. YOU WILL NOT BELIEVE HOW TENDER IT IS! Mix all back together. Sample. Add a pinch more of above spices if desired. I LOVE CUMIN---take it easy of fake garlic-it can get OUT OF CONTROL quickly. Get cranky b/c you are so hungry. Fix milks, baby food and Airl's "crystal light". Get crankier--Instruct children ONCE again to wash their sweet little paws before eating. Warm tortillas and stuff with chicken mixture. Serve with sour cream, shredded cheese(I like extra sharp), salsa and cilantro. Simply delicious and WAY too easy and healthy to be THAT good.

Of note---You will not believe the quantity this makes. Tomorrow--beans.
Pictures of family coming SOON!

Sunday, April 4, 2010


KICK A CHOC. CAKE--borrowed and tweaked

1 Butter recipe cake mix
1 cup Canola oil
1/4 cup water
4 eggs--farm fresh ALWAYS best
6 oz sour cream
1 small box instant chocolate pudding
1 package milk chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325'. Mix all ingredients by hand except choc. chips until well blended. Don't over mix. Stir in chips. Pour into greased bundt cake pan. Cook 50minutes-1 hour. This is so good it doesn't need frosting. BUT, of course I frosted mine with a simple powdered sugar glaze(milk and sifted powdered sugar). Wonderful.

For Will. . . and Marla Sue---Easter recipes

Oven Roasted Asparagus

1 lb. asparagus--thin stalked is always best.
salt--I prefer sea salt
fresh ground pepper
aluminum foil
1 T. olive oil
1-2T. lemon juice

Preheat oven to 425. Wash and dry asparagus. Cover cookie sheet with aluminum foil. Place asparagus on foil in single layer. Drizzle olive oil over all. Salt and pepper generously. With hands mix together well so each piece is covered with goodness. Place in oven for 7ish minutes--depending on width of stalk. Immediately upon removing from oven, drizzle with lemon juice. Mix again--not with hands this time---, so each piece is coated with lemon juice. Delicious and SO good for ya!

Really Good "Fluff" and so good for ya

2 small packages sugar free strawberry jello
1 small container whipped topping--I used light
16 ish oz cottage cheese--I used 1 percent
1 can crushed pineapple, drained and rinsed
1 can mandarin oranges, drained and rinsed

Mix together cottage cheese and jello. Add fruit, stir. Fold in whipped topping.
Simply delicious. So good and so easy. Chill for 2-3ish hours.

Elvis Presley breakfast

bread--any kind--great way to use up aging/old bread!
peanut butter--I like a mix of crunchy and creamy

Make sandwiches with peanut butter and sliced bananas-desired amounts of each.
Melt butter in medium heat skillet. (About 1/2 T. per sandwich). Add sandwich. Increase heat to medium high. I usually do about 1 sandwich at a time. Its easier this way. Cook about 1-2 minutes per side, until bread is nice and toasty and pb melty. This is so good. Be sure and move sandwich around skillet so bread gets nice and buttery. Get that butter on the sides of the skillet. WE DON'T WANT TO WASTE GOOD BUTTER. And please do not insult Mrs. Cheek by using MARGARINE of any sort. Butter only! Serve with honey. My kids and hub love this.

More later. This is going to be fun. Real fun.

My Kitchen

So my favorite place to be--when awake anyway. It isn't big. My stovetop and oven are 20 plus years old, and sometimes dirty. My microwave is a hand me down. My oven doesn't heat to the correct temp! Two people cannot stand at the fridge at the same time. Its cluttered and always smells of whatever I've just cooked. Did I mention the range hood is a little aged and lets face it--it just doesn't work right. OH AND Don't eat off the floor. So if you enjoy the smell of bacon (or sausage)---welcome aboard. (FYI---the countertops are clean and so is the sink! Anne raised me right!)My joy, my anxiety medicine, my fun---cooking.