Old Fashioned Sugar Cookies

Old Fashioned Sugar Cookies

Classic rolled and cut out cookies for any holiday or just because it's a Tuesday!
Cook Time10 mins
Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Cookies
Author: Cher


  • 1/2 Cup Shortening Crisco is best. Butter flavored if you can find it.
  • 3/4 Cup White sugar
  • 1 Egg
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp Dry grated orange peel
  • 2 Cups White Flour
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 2-3 Tab Milk


  • Cream shortening and sugar.
  • Add egg and beat well.
  • Add vanilla and orange peel.
  • Add dry ingredients. Mix well. Add milk a little at a time until dough is soft and will hold its shape. A bit like the consistency of modeling clay.
  • Cover bowl with plastic wrap and chill several hours.
  • Roll 1/8 inch thick on lightly floured surface. Cut in shapes using cookie cutters of your choice. Sprinkle with sugar or leave plain to frost and decorate later.
  • Bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Leave on pan for about 8 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.

Cheesy Tuna Noodle Casserole


Cheesy Tuna Noodle Casserole

Comfort food at its' best! Nothing beats creamy, cheese noodles and albacore tuna to warm your heart and your belly, too!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr 5 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8
Calories: 425kcal
Author: Cher


  • 3 cans Albacore tuna (Costco brand is the one we choose.)
  • 2 cans Cream of Mushroom Soup condensed
  • 1 can Cream of Chicken Soup condensed
  • 3 cups Milk
  • 1/2 cup onion chopped fine or 1/4 cup dried minced onion
  • 1 tsp Johnny's Garlic Bread Seasoning or use garlic powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • pepper to taste
  • 2 cups Cheddar Cheese shredded (we like Costco Mexican Cheese shreds)
  • 8 cups Curly egg noodles uncooked
  • 3/4 cup butter (margarine can be substituted if desired)
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • Paprika to taste


  • In a large pot, boil the noodles per package directions until al dente'. Drain. Do not rinse. Put in the frozen peas so they cook along with the noodles. 
  • While the noodles are draining in the colander, put the butter in the pot. Melt over medium heat and add 1/4 cup white flour. Stir constantly until it makes a roue. Slowly add milk, cook and stir over medium heat until thickened. 
  • Add the soups, onions, spices and shredded cheese.  Stir until combined. If it's too thick, add more milk 1/4 cup at a time until desired consistency. It should be thickened like a gravy but no thicker. You want to be able to mix it well with the noodles. 
  • Drain the tuna, break up into bite size pieces and add to the mixture. Pour the mixture over the noodles and then pour it all into a well greased pan. I use a quarter sheet cake size pan or a large casserole dish. Lightly sprinkle paprika over the top to make it look pretty. 
  • Bake uncovered at 375 degrees F for approximately 40-45 minutes or until it's all bubbly and heated through. Let rest 10 minutes before serving unless you like molten cheese lava hitting your tongue! 


Author note: Get the GOOD tuna. Don't use that cheap stuff that looks like cat food. You want a nice bite of tuna on your fork. Not mushy leftover bit they swept off the production floor! You're worth it!

American Chop Suey AKA Goulash


American Chop Suey (Goulash)

The hot, filling, good for your budget meal that everyone (almost everyone) asks for no matter what the season is. 
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time6 hrs
Total Time6 hrs 30 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 10 people
Calories: 325kcal
Author: Cher


  • 1 1/2 lb ground beef lean
  • 1 cup celery chopped
  • 1 cup onion chopped
  • 2 can tomatoes crushed or chopped
  • 1 can whole kernel corn (do not drain)
  • 1 cup peas frozen
  • 1 can tomato sauce 15 oz.
  • 1 can tomato soup condensed 10.75 oz.
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 3 tbsp sugar white or brown
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 cup macaroni noodles dry
  • 1 cup chopped bell pepper (can be omitted)


  • In a large skillet over medium high heat, saute the ground beef and the onion for 5 to 10 minutes, or until meat is browned and crumbly. Drain thoroughly. Put the mix into a large soup pot (at least 10 quarts)
  • Add to the large pot, the corn (with liquid), peas, spices, soup and tomatoes. Stir gently. 
  • Add one soup can of water and one tomato can of water. Heat over medium heat, stirring often so the tomatoes don't stick to the bottom of the pan.
  • Cook the macaroni noodles al dente, according to the package directions. Drain. Add to pot and stir. Serve.


This dish can also be cooked in a slow cooker. Prepare the meat, celery and onions the same way as above but put everything in a slow cooker instead. Cook for 4-6 hours on low. Add the macaroni about 30 minutes before serving. 
Author tip: The macaroni can be prepared the day before, drained, cooled completely, and stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container and added 30 minutes before serving.   
Don't try to add the macaroni at the start of cooking. If you leave the noodles in the soup too long, they'll turn to mush. 

Approximate Equivalents in Cooking

3 Teaspoons 1 Tablespoon
16 Tablespoons 1 Cup
1/4 Cup 4 Tablespoons
1/3 Cup 5 1/3 Tablespoons
2 Cups 1 Pint
2 Cups

1 Quart

2 Pints 1 Quart
1 pound Brown Sugar 3 1/2 Cups
1 Pound Granulated Sugar 2 1/4 Cups
1 Pound Powdered Sugar 3 3/4 Cups
1 Pound Butter or Butter Substitute 2 Cups
1 Pound Shortening

2 Cups

1 Pound Cheese 4 1/2 Cups, Grated
1 Pound Flour 3 3/4 Cups
1 Pound Graham or Whole Wheat Flour 3 1/3 Cups
1 Pound Corn Meal 3 1/4 Cups
1 Pound Raisins, Seeded 3 Cups
1 Pound Dates, Pitted 2 2/3 Cups
1 Pound Dates, Unpitted 3 1/2 Cups
3-Pound, Dressed Chicken 1 1/2 Pounds or 4 1/2 Cups, Cooked and Diced
1 Square Chocolate 2 Tablespoons Cocoa
1 Cup Broken, Uncooked Macaroni 2 2/3 Cups, Cooked
1 Pound Uncooked Meat 2 3/4 Cups, Cooked and Ground
1 Cup Uncooked Rice 4 Cups, Cooked
1 Cup Broken, Uncooked Spaghetti 2 Cups, Cooked

No. 1 Can 1 1/2 Cups
No. 2 Can 2 1/2 Cups
No. 2 1/2 Can 3 1/2 Cups
No. 3 Can 4 Cups
No. 10 Can 13 Cups

The Pillsbury Bake-Off® Contest Recipes From Your Home State

Pillsbury Bake-Off recipe winners in your home state  is such a fun section to wander in. I’m rarely disappointed when I use a recipe by Pillsbury.

I used to buy the little recipe books at the grocery store checkout counter displays all the time. I have quite a collection and used to use them quite a bit. Now, with the internet so easy to search by keyword and/or ingredient, I find it much simpler to find ideas online. But I’ll never part with my little books since I still like to sit with a cup of coffee and look them over.

These Peanut Butter Brownie Cookies are going to be in my kitchen before the weekend is over!

And this Ham and Cheese Omelet Bake is tomorrows’ breakfast since I have leftover ham from yesterday!  YUM!

Breakfast Cheesecake Bars

breakfast cheesecake
-2 cans Pillsbury butter crescent rolls
-2 (8oz) packages cream cheese (softened)
-1 cup sugar
-1 teaspoon vanilla
-1/4 cup butter (melted)
-Cinnamon & sugar (I used about 1/4 cup sugar and 1 tbs cinnamon)Instructions:

Unroll and spread 1 can crescent rolls on bottom of un-greased pan. Combine softened cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla. Spread mixture over crescent rolls. Unroll and spread remaining crescent rolls over mixture. Spread melted butter over the top and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes.

Crockpot Oatmeal

crockpot oatmealPlace 2 sliced apples, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1 tsp cinnamon, pinch salt in the bottom of the crock pot.
Pour in 2 cups of oatmeal, 2 cups of milk and 2 cups water.
Do NOT stir.
Cook overnight for 8 – 9 hours on low.

Cheddar Bacon Ranch Cheese Ball

16 ounces softened cream cheese
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup cooked and chopped bacon
⅛ cup DRY Ranch Dressing mix
¼ cup chopped green onions
1 cup chopped pecans ( optional, good with or without ) .
In medium bowl combine cream cheese, cheddar cheese, bacon, ranch mix, and green onions. Mix well and form into a ball. Roll cheese ball in pecans and refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.

Parmesan Upside Down Baked Potatoes


7 red potatoes, washed and cut in half
2-3 tablespoons butter
6 tablespoons shredded Parmesan cheese
garlic powder
sea salt
freshly cracked pepper1). Preheat oven to 400F. Melt butter in the bottom of a 9×13 glass pan.2). Sprinkle Parmesan cheese and seasonings over butter. Place potatoes cut side down and sprinkle more seasonings on top of potatoes.

3). Bake for 40-45 minutes or until cooked through. Allow to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before serving.

That’s not a cookbook!

better homes and gardens vintage cookbookI received my first Better Homes and Gardens cookbook in 1975. You know, the one with the red and white checkered cloth covers? I used that book so much the pages were falling out, some of them were stuck together or had been stuck and were now torn from separating them. So by the early 90’s I thought it would be fun if I’d go treat myself to a new copy of the book. This was before they shrink-wrapped them so you don’t know for sure what’s inside until you buy it. But back then you could flip though the pages at will.

The crisp, clean pages were such a treat to fondle. No sticky spots, no coffee spills, no pages glued together from dripped egg whites. But wait. This looked odd. They’d changed the format. I flipped through to the cake section and I was appalled.

The chocolate cake recipe in the old book began with
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
…and so on.

The new book had changed the ingredient list quite a bit. Now it read:
1 box of chocolate cake mix
2 eggs
1/3 cup oil…

What? Excuse me? Aren’t there instructions right on the cake box? Why would I need to buy a cookbook that has the exact same instructions that you can get on the boxed mixes? I thought maybe I was mistaken and maybe this was the quicky cooking section. So I started looking under the main course index for a spaghetti sauce recipe.

Again I read:
1 jar of your favorite spaghetti sauce
1 lbs. ground beef
I pkg of onion soup mix…

My audible gasp could be heard two aisles away. That’s not my idea of “cooking”. That’s “slam some crap together and call it food because you’re too busy to bother with real food” cooking. I didn’t buy that new cookbook. Instead I went to the stationary department and picked up some of those little white binder ring page enforcers (remember those?) and put my old cookbook back together. I’m still using that thing and the kids argue over who’s going to inherit it. Of all the crap I’ve collected over the years, lost or misplaced and replaced, I’m glad I have one thing they all value!