Tag Archives: Recipes

My Morning in Photos: The “Is It Spring Yet?” Edition











Filed under Photos

Bread Machine Recipes: Dinner Rolls

file000153779528These are by far the absolutely best bread machine rolls that I have tried. I make them often, at least once or twice a week, and they go quickly in my home. In fact, I’ve had to make extra batches of these rolls and send them home with guests. My eldest child is now an expert at forming them.

Sometimes I make 12 dinner rolls. Other times I form the dough into only eight rolls and use them for sandwiches or burgers.

The rolls are so easy to make, because you use a bread maker to form the dough and put it through the first rise. The recipe has the added goodness of powdered milk, which gives it a smooth texture as well as the bonus of calcium.

And now, on to the recipe!

Bread Machine Rolls

Add the following ingredients to your bread machine in the order that is recommended by the machine’s manufacturer.

1 cup of whole wheat flour

2 cups of bread flour (or eliminate the whole wheat and just go with 3 cups of bread flour)

3 tablespoons of sugar

1 teaspoon of salt

1/4 cup powdered (dry) milk

1 cup of warm water (microwave the water for 50 seconds or run the tap until it is warm)

2 tablespoon of softened butter

2-1/4 teaspoon of active dry yeast (or one packet)

Select the dough cycle on your machine and press start. Check the machine after five minutes to ensure that you have a nice rounded ball of dough. Add water or flour one tablespoon at a time if needed. Make sure not to over do any additions, or your rolls will suffer.

When the dough cycle is done, gently punch down the dough by kneading. Form the rolls. I vary the size. You can make 12 small dinner rolls or eight or nine sandwich or burger rolls.

Lightly spray cookie sheets and then place the rolls on the sheets. Allow the rolls to rise for about 40 minutes. One great way to do this is to place the sheets in a cold oven with a pan full of very hot water. The water will keep the rolls warm and moist as they rise.

When the rolls are done rising, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Brush a light coating of egg white and water on the tops of the rolls to give them some shine, if you like, although this step isn’t necessary. Bake the rolls for 15 minutes or until they are golden brown.


Filed under Recipes

TVP Saves Money

save moneySince it is Friday, I thought it would be a good time to share a money-saving tip about using TVP. We often get tired of cooking by Friday and want something quick and easy for dinner.

TVP, or texturized vegetable protein is quick to cook, full of protein and very cheap. Often used as a meat substitute, TVP can extend many meals, providing nutrition for very little money.  TVP comes dried, so it lasts practically forever. You can purchase it at your local natural food store or even a chain such as Whole Foods. You can get it in a non-GMO version, which basically means that it hasn’t been genetically modified, as so many of our plant and vegetable products usually are.

Tonight, I’m putting my money (or should I save savings) where my mouth is and using some TVP to make healthy, vegetarian and really cheap Sloppy Joes. Since I am also making homemade buns thanks to my bread machine, the meal is literally costing us less than $5 to feed our family of five, and that includes a can of ready-made Sloppy Joe sauce and some frozen veggies on the side.

What is your favorite ingredient to use to save money?

1 Comment

Filed under Saving Money

Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread

This post originally appeared on Families.com

zucchini breadOoh, does my house smell good today. I just finished baking two loaves of double chocolate zucchini bread. The aroma reminds me that the holidays are coming soon. Now the only question is do I freeze one or leave them both out for the family to gobble all up?

Zucchini bread is a lot easier to make than you might think. The most tedious part is grating the zucchini, but I have a short cut for you. I use the grating attachment on my food processor, which makes the grating a very quick step. Most food processors come standard with that grating blade, but if yours doesn’t, just use the standard blade.

When it comes to beating and mixing, if you have a stand mixer, now is the time to make use of it. Just make sure to remove the bowl from the mixer and stir in the grated zucchini and the chocolate chips by hand.

I adapted this recipe from an old Taste of Home recipe–just tweaking it a little bit. The recipe makes two 8-in. x 4-in. loaves.

And yes, those are our 1960s era countertops.


2 scant cups sugar

1 cup canola oil

3 eggs

3 teaspoons vanilla extract

2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup baking cocoa

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

2 cups peeled and shredded zucchini

1 scant cup of chocolate chips


In a large bowl, beat the sugar, oil, eggs and vanilla until it is well blended. Separately, combine the flour, cocoa, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and baking powder; gradually beat the dry ingredients into sugar mixture until blended. Stir in the zucchini and the chocolate chips.

Evenly loaf distribute the batter pans between two loaf pans that you have coated with cooking spray.

Bake at 350° for 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.

If you liked this recipe, you might also like the Bread Machine Cinnamon Rolls Recipe!

1 Comment

Filed under Home

My Morning in Pictures

The wind gusts are swaying the trees today and making a lot of noise.


For breakfast, I made Strawberry Banana Cream Oatmeal in the crockpot. You can get the recipe here.



There is homemade chicken stock simmering on the stove, right now.


I’m still de-cluttering and organizing. This was the junk drawer.



This guy got caught last night licking out the roasting pan .


Leave a comment

Filed under Photos

Bread Machine Recipes: Cinnamon Rolls


Did I mention that I love my bread machine? Nah, I bet I never did. Anyway, I LOVE my bread machine, because it helps me provide all sorts of yummy bread things.

One of the kids’ favorite things to ever come out of the bread machine is the cinnamon roll recipe. I have to confess that I have been known to sneak one or two for snacks well after breakfast is done.

The nice thing about this bread machine recipe is that it makes two pans of cinnamon rolls. We generally eat one pan over the course of a day or two and freeze the other for a quick breakfast that feels special. While the recipe feels decadent, I estimate it to cost somewhere around $1.25 to make. Not bad at all.

Here is the recipe.

Bread Machine Cinnamon Rolls


1 cup plus 2 tablespoons warm milk

3 tablespoons canola oil

1 egg, lightly beaten plus 2 egg whites

1/2 cup sugar

5 cups bread flour

1 teaspoon salt

3 teaspoons bread machine yeast


4 tablespoons butter, melted

1-1/3 cup brown sugar mixed with 1 tablespoon cinnamon


1 quick “gluggy” of milk–about 5-6 tablespoons

1-1/2 cups confectioners sugar

4 tablespoons butter, softened

1 teaspoon vanilla

  1. The dough ingredients go in the bread machine in whichever order your machine recommends (usually wet first, then dry then yeast).
  2. While the dough is in the bread machine, mix up the filling.
  3. After the dough cycle is finished, roll the dough into a large, long  rectangle on your counter. I usually make a long snake shape, place it on the counter lengthwise, and then roll it up and back. If the dough is hard to work with, let it rest for five minutes.
  4. Spread the dough with the melted butter and then the sugar and cinnamon mixture.
  5. Roll up the dough.
  6. Using a sharp knife, and cut the dough into rolls and place them cinnamon side up (cut ends) in two greased round cake pans.
  7. Bake at 325 degrees for 20 minutes or until they are nicely browned. Spread the icing on the rolls while they are hot. You can also freeze and reheat these rolls, which I often do!


Filed under Home