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Chicken Gnocchi Soup

3 Tbsp butter                           2 Tbsp olive oil

3/4 onion, diced                        1/2 C carrots, diced

1/2 C celery, diced                   4 cloves garlic, minced

Coarse salt & black pepper   1/3 C flour

4 C chicken broth                    1.5 C Half & Half                             

2 C cooked white chicken, shredded*

1 lb potato gnocchi                 3 C fresh baby spinach

1 Tbsp chopped fresh basil    Fresh Parmesan or Romano


     In a large Dutch oven, heat oil and butter over medium heat.  Add onion, carrots, celery and garlic.  Season with salt and pepper.  Cook until tender over medium-low about 10 minutes, stirring often.

     Sprinkle the flour into the pot and stir into vegetables.  Cook 3 minutes, stirring often.  Stir in the chicken broth 1 cup at a time, followed by the half & half. 

      Add the cooked chicken.  Bring to a simmer and maintain for 20 minutes stirring often.  Stir with salt and pepper to taste.

      Cook the gnocchi separately according to package directions.  Add to the soup along with the spinach.  Simmer until spinach wilts.  Stir in basi.  Serve with grated cheese.

      Tastes just like the Olive Garden version — so perfect for a cold winter night. 



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1 pound bacon

2 cups milk

8 eggs

1 teaspoon seasoned salt

1 teaspoon ground black pepper

2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

1 onion, chopped

1 green bell pepper, chopped

3 red potatoes, thinly sliced

5 mushrooms, sliced

Place bacon in a large skillet and cook over medium-high heat, turning occasionally, until evenly browned, about 10 minutes. Drain bacon slices on paper towels, reserving 1 tablespoon bacon grease. Crumble bacon into pieces.

Grease a 9×13 inch casserole dish with reserved bacon grease.

Place milk, eggs, seasoned salt, and black pepper in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed until smooth and pale, about 5 minutes.Add bacon pieces, cheddar cheese, onion, and green bell pepper; beat until combined, about 2 minutes more.

Layer potato slices in the bottom of the casserole dish. Pour egg mixture over potatoes. Arrange sliced mushrooms on top. Cover casserole with aluminum foil.

Refrigerate over night. Bake in 350 degrees preheated oven, about 35 minutes. Remove aluminum foil and bake until eggs are set, about 30 minutes more.



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Niki’s Sweet Potato Dumplings

2 cans crescent rolls                              2 cups water

2 cups sugar                                             1 ½ stick of butter

1 tbsp vanilla                                           1 tbsp cornstarch

1 pkg sweet potato patties (cut each in ½)

Cinnamon for sprinkling

Preheat Oven to 350º. Unroll crescents. Place potato piece in wide end. Tuck sides around potato; does not have to be completely sealed. Place pointed end down in baking dish.

In saucepan, combine sugar, water, butter and cornstarch.  Heat over medium heat, stirring to make sure that cornstarch doesn’t clump.

Remove from heat when fully combined and melted. Add vanilla. Pour over dumplings and sprinkle with cinnamon. Bake at 350º for 35-40 minutes.

 Oh so good! Thank you Niki from Commerce Title for sharing this sweet treat!

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Crane House Pumpkin Bread

1 Cup Corn Oil                                           4 Eggs

2/3 Cup Water                                            3 1/3 Cups Flour

2 Cups Canned Pumpkin                          1 1/2 tsp. Salt

1 tsp. Nutmeg                                             1 tsp. Cinnamon

2 tsp. Baking Soda                                     2 Cups Sugar

Grease and flour 3 loaf pans. Combine oil, eggs, water and pumpkin by hand or by mixer. Add flour, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon, baking soda and sugar. Bake at 350 for one hour or until toothpick comes out clean! Stays moist for days!

I found this recipe many years ago in a vintage cookbook, “Fanny Pierson Crane, Her Receipts 1796” while serving as a docent at the open hearth kitchen at Magnolia Mound Plantation.  The recipes were originally prepared in the 18th century manner and adapted for today.

This recipe has become a family treasure and favorite … I makes it year round!  May it become a staple in your kitchen too!

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Southwestern Sweet Potato Salad

3 Tbsp. olive oil divided

3 Tbsp. lime juice

1/2 C chopped red onion

1 tsp. minced garlic

1/4 C chopped cilantro

1 Tbsp. jarred jalapeno slices

1/2 C chopped red bell pepper

2/3 C black beans drained and rinsed (I used whole can)

2/3 C frozen corn thawed (I used whole bag)

6 cups peeled sweet potato chunks (about 2 1/2 pounds)

salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven 425°F. Coat foil lined baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray. On prepared pan, toss together sweet potatoes, salt and pepper and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Roast about 30 minutes or until potatoes are crisp and cool. In large bowl, combine sweet potatoes, red bell pepper, red onion, corn, black beans and cilantro. In blender, puree lime juice, garlic, jalapeno and remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Toss with potato mixture and serve. Soooo Good!!

Compliments of our good friend Holly Clegg and her cookbook Eating Well To Fight Arthritis. We pray for Holly as she is in hospice care right now and want her to know her recipes continue to bless us.


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Slow Cooker Turkey Chili w/ Sweet Potato and Black Beans

1 Can (15oz.) cooked black beans, drained and rinsed

2 Tbsp. avocado or olive oil, divided                 1 Tbsp. chili powder

3 Cups peeled & diced sweet potatoes                 2 Garlic cloves minic

1 Pound lean ground turkey                      1 Large onion, finely diced

2 Cups vegetable or chicken broth                 1/4 Tsp. paprika

1 Tsp. Jalapeno pepper, minced                 1 Tbsp. tomato paste

1/4 Tsp. black pepper                                1 Tsp. salt

1/2 Tbsp. ground cumin                            1/4 Tsp. dried oregano

Topping for serving: hot sauce, diced avocado, sour cream or plain Greek yogurt, shredded cheese, diced onions, salsa, thinly sliced green onion, etc.


In a large pan over medium heat, add 1 tbsp. olive oil and saute sweet potatoes for about 5 minutes, until softened. Season lightly with salt and pepper while sauteing. Add sweet potato mixture to slow cooker. Turn up heat to medium-high. In same pan, add 1 tbsp. olive oil. Saute onions, jalapeno pepper, garlic and ground turkey, stirring & breaking up the meat. Cook until meat is no longer pink & onions softened, about 4-5 minutes. Season lightly with salt and pepper while sauteing. Drain off any grease. Add meat mixture and remaining ingredients to the slow cooker, stirring until well combined. Slow cook on LOW for 6-8 hours or on HIGH for 3-4 hours.


From our teammember Laura: “every one of my 4 children love it! And it lasts for several meals!!”


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Chicken Enchilada Casserole

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6 chicken breasts– boiled,chopped/shredded

2 boxes– frozen spinach                       3 white onions

3-16oz. containers sour cream             2 tbsp. butter

12 oz. monterey jack cheese                 1 cup chicken broth

2 cans cream of chicken soup              20 corn tortillas

3 Tps chopped jalapeno                        2 Tps jalapeno juice

1/2 cup pace picante sauce                   3/4 cup milk

4 cans small diced green chiles (21oz. total)

Boil chicken. Microwave spinach to thaw and drain. Sautee onions. Mix all ingredients– except tortillas and 1/2 cup of the cheese. Layer tortillas and mixture in a casserole dish, top with cheese. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Makes 2 casseroles!

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with this family favorite. Ole`!


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Baird Family Thai Chicken

1 lb chicken breast, cut into strips                 1 med carrot, sliced

1 Tbl Thai red curry paste                               1Tbl olive oil

1 med onion, sliced into strips                       1 Tbl corn starch

1 med zucchini, cut into bite size                  1-14oz can coconut milk

1 red bell pepper, cut into bite size               2 Tbls chopped, fresh                                                                         basil leaves



Heat the oil in a skillet over med-high heat. Add the chicken and cook for about 4 minutes. Add the onion and Thai curry paste, stirring to coat the chicken. Cook for 3 minutes then add the remaining vegetables. Cook for about 3-4 minutes until the chicken is done and the vegetables are just cooked but not too soft.


Dissolve the cornstarch in the coconut milk, then pour into skillet and stir. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 1 minute. Turn the heat off and stir in the basil. Serve over rice immediately.

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Claire’s Taco Soup

1lb ground beef                                       2 tbsp taco seasoning

1 can of corn (15oz)                               1 1/2 tbsp dry ranch mix

2 cups of salsa                                         2 1/2 cups of beef broth

2 small cans of green chilies (9oz)      1 can of black beans (15oz)

OPTIONAL FOR TOPPINGS: sour cream, shredded cheese, tortilla chips, cilantro

In a large pot cook ground beef, crumbling and stir occasionally until browned.

Add corn, salsa, chilies, black beans, taco seasoning, dry ranch mix and mix together well

Pour in beef broth and allow to simmer on medium/low for 30-40 minutes

Serve and top with optional toppings.


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Sweet Potato Sausage Bake

4 Cups peeled and sliced sweet potatoes

4 Cups thinly sliced unpeeled tart apples

2 tsp. minced onion                               2 tsp. salt

1/2 Cup maple syrup                             1/2 Cup apple juice

1/4 Cup melted butter

1 lb. pork sausage (I prefer hot or maple flavored)

1/3 Cup dry bread crumbs

1/3 Cup raisins

Preheat oven to 350.  Grease a 2 qt. oblong casserole.Arrange alternating layers of apples and sweet potatoes in the casserole.  Sprinkle each potato layer with onion and salt.  Thoroughly combine syrup, apple juice and butter, pouring over mixture.  Cover and bake for 1 hour.

Brown sausage.  Drain and mix with bread crumbs.  Uncover casserole and spread sausage mixture on top.  Bake an additional 20 minutes, uncovered.  Sprinkle with raisins.

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