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Sassy's Southern Kitchen

Our Family’s Favorite Thanksgiving Recipes!

UPDATE: This is a post that I put up every Thanksgiving, however, you may notice that over the years the recipes have been adapted to fit our health needs. Feel free to alter these recipes to fit your taste-buds and health needs! I hope that you and your family and friends enjoy spending the Thanksgiving holiday together. God bless you all!

Today I am sharing our family’s favorite Thanksgiving recipes that have been passed down to me through the generations, some of them are Southern Baptist favorites and others are more unconventional. The first one I am sharing with you is my personal favorite, this is my grandmother’s recipe, she makes it every year and it is always delicious.

Brown Sugar & Spice Sweet Potato Casserole: 5-6 sweet potatoes, 1 cup brown sugar, 1 cup cane sugar, 1/4 cup flour, 3/4 cup milk, 1/2 stick butter, 2-3 eggs, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1/4 tsp. nutmeg. Boil sweet potatoes whole for 30 minutes, remove skins. Mash the sweet potatoes in a large baking dish and stir in milk, eggs, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg until combined. In a small bowl, mix together cane sugar, flour, and additional cinnamon. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the sweet potatoes. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.

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Next up, the turkey!

Ingredients: 1 16-20 pound fresh turkey, 1 tbsp. garlic, 1 tbsp. basil, 1 tbsp. rosemary, 1 tsp. black pepper, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tbsp. cumin, 1 tbsp. no salt seasoning, 12 tbsp. melted butter, 1 whole onion, 4 whole carrots, 4 pieces of celery, 1 bell pepper (optional). Halve all of your vegetables. Remove turkey from bag, stuff the cavity with the veggies. Mix together spices and softened butter, rub the butter mixture over the surface of the turkey until coated. Place the bird in a oven safe bag and refrigerate overnight. The next morning, place turkey (still in oven bag) in a roasting pan. Cook at 425 degrees for one hour, reduce heat to 345 degrees and bake for an additional 3 to 3 1/2 hours. Carve turkey and serve while warm.

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Cornbread Dressing has long been a traditional Thanksgiving food for our family, the original recipe was created by great-grandmother, this is Queenbee’s  favorite and a southern baptist classic.

Southern Cornbread Dressing: 1 pan of cornbread (crumbled), 2 cups Pepperidge Farm Herbed Stuffing, 2 cups low sodium vegetable broth, 4 cups low sodium chicken broth, 3 eggs, 1/2 yellow onion (diced), 4 stalks celery (diced), 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. black pepper, 1 tsp. Italian seasoning, 1 tsp. basil, 2 tsp. parsley flakes, 1 tsp. no salt seasoning. Combine all ingredients in a large casserole pan, mix well. Add more broth if needed. Bake at 350 degrees for 50  minutes.

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Many like to have Broccoli & WIld Rice Casserole as a Thanksgiving side, but we have always preferred Broccoli & Cheese Casserole.

Classic Broccoli & Cheese Casserole: 1 medium head of broccoli, 1 10 oz. can cream of mushroom soup (or 4 eggs whisked together with 1 cup of sauteed mushrooms), 1 cup crushed Club crackers, 1 cup grated cheddar cheese. Steam broccoli for 20 minutes, combine with soup (or egg substitute) in a baking dish, stir well. Top with cracker crumbs and cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

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We can’t forget dessert! This is one of my mom’s classic recipes, no one makes it better than her!

Chocolate Pudding Pie with Meringue Topping: 3/4 cup brown sugar, 2 tbsp. flour, 1/4 tsp. salt, 4 tbsp. cocoa, 1 1/2 cups milk, 4 tbsp. butter, 3 egg yolks, 3 egg whites. The Pie Filling: Melt butter in a large saucepan. Meanwhile, bake your prepared pie crust at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes. Remove from oven and let sit. Combine all remaining ingredients in the saucepan. Whisk until combined, be careful not to burn. Remove from heat and pour into prepared pie crust. Set aside and top with chocolate chips (optional). The Meringue: Place egg whites and and two tablespoons of sugar into the bowl of a mixer and let sit on the stove while you make the pie. Using the whisk attachment, mix on high for 5 minutes or until light and fluffy. Spread the meringue evenly over the pie filling and bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until the meringue is golden brown.

As you can see, we got a little carried away with the meringue:)

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I hope that you enjoy these recipes as much as we have over the years!

 

 

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Fruit & Seed Broccoli Salad

Hello again! If you thought the last post couldn’t get any weirder, then prepare yourself for this one! Have you ever wondered why we have to be healthy? I mean, come on, why is it necessary for us to bring pain to muscles we never knew we had through killer workouts, only to fill our starving stomach with food that tastes overly healthy? Because we all know what happens when you eat too many greens. I apologize for that image, moving on….Anyone out there who is desperately trying to eat healthier knows the feeling you get halfway into a diet plan. Picture it, you’re scrolling through your favorite blogs, and then….it happens. You see ANOTHER salad recipe featuring greens mostly made up of water, some type of filler such as rubbery grilled chicken, and an ingredient to scald your esophagus and distract from the rubber chicken, such as a low-calorie, overly sour-tasting vinaigrette. You proceed to make this salad, against your better judgement, and by the time you take the first bite. This thought enters your mind:

Image result for this salad tastes like i would rather be fat

All of us yo-yo dieters know that feeling. And I can promise you that any salad recipes I share on this blog, few though they may be, DO NOT taste like you’d rather be fat. Take this recipe, for example. One day Queenbee (my mom) wanted me to make the family an broccoli salad. She made it clear that she does not like that bag of broccoli slaw from the store that tastes like shredded cardboard and weeds from the garden. So, I set out to prove that salad can be both low-calorie and good. And I believe that I did it. But that is up to you to discover, so let’s dive right into a pool of broccoli and thick, but oh so lusciously low-calorie dressing, shall we? Hey! That was even better than a intro to a cooking show!

The Ingredients: 1 bag Green Giant broccoli florets, 1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries, 1/4 cup sunflower seeds, 1 cup light mayo, 2 tbsp. sugar, 1 tsp. RAW apple cider vinegar.

Chop the broccoli florets into dime-sized pieces. In a salad bowl, toss together the obligatory greens, the imitation raisins, and the brown, cone-shaped bits from a bag that claims sunflower seeds are good for you. In a separate, small bowl, whisk together the mayo, sugar, and the wolf in sheep’s clothing (vinegar), until well combined. If the dressing is too thick for your taste, add a couple of tablespoons of milk. Add the dressing to the salad, toss well. Refrigerate for thirty minutes or serve immediately.

Here’s another one of my compelling photos with perfect lighting, doesn’t this picture make you want to eat broccoli salad?;P

DISCLAIMER: Please ignore the receipt from ******* where we spent approximately ***.**, the heart-shaped wooden coaster that is totally not a failed Pinterest craft, used rubber spatula, and nondescript plastic wad you see in the background of this un-cropped picture.:)

I’m Done (+ Homemade Buckeye Candies)

I’m done. I’m done pretending to be a woman on Food Network with way too much makeup on trying to convince you that some unusual combination of ingredients is delicious. I’m done pretending to be something I’m not. I am not a Food Network star. I am not a professional chef. I am not a celebrity. I am not a manufacturer of advertisements about food. And I am most certainly NOT a photographer (as you may have noticed). Here is what I am. I am a sassy girl who loves Jesus, a sister, a daughter, a friend, a college student, a horseback rider, a cook, a baker, a comedian (sort of….at least…I think I’m funny…..), a writer, a blogger, and more. That is who I am. And that is who I will be from now on in regards to this blog. If you cannot accept me as an average American who likes to blog and share recipes, then this blog is not for you. However, if you enjoy reading humorous excerpts from my wacky brain, then this blog is for you. I plan on letting it all out. I will hold nothing back (within reason). Forget New Year’s resolutions! No one follows through on those anyway. Am I right? Who here has made a resolution to eat healthier and exercise more….and caved a month in for this totally valid reason:

Image result for ain't nobody got time for that

Where was I? Oh yes. I’m being the rebel that I am and making an End of the Year resolution. To be un-apologetically me. So, if you can’t handle that because you are terrified of who the real person is behind the curtain of this blog……and find yourself saying this:

Image result for the door's right over there meme

Then feel free to escape through the exit hatch. But, if you are brave, feel free to stay awhile. We just might learn something together! In light of my newly found freedom, I will share a semi-original recipe sure to expand your waistline and clog your arteries.

WARNING: THIS IS NOT A HEALTHY, GLUTEN-FREE, VEGAN, ARTIFICIAL-STUFF FREE, CALORIE-FREE, OXYGEN-FREE RECIPE.

But it is dairy free! Haha!

This is a little something I like to call, Orbs of Peanut Butter Goodness Swaddled in a Cozy Blanket of Dark Chocolate…….(hey, that’s what I should call my first cookbook! Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha.)…..otherwise known to common people as buckeye candies. THESE ARE SO GOOD!

How to Make and Eat Orbs of Peanut Butter Goodness Swaddled in a Cozy Blanket of Dark Chocolate:

In a medium mixing bowl, combine 1 cup of creamy peanut butter, 1 tbsp. dark brown sugar, 4 tbsp. of softened butter, and 1 tsp. molasses using a hand mixer fitted with the beaters. Beat until smooth. Slowly add 1 1/2 cups of powdered sugar (mix on low speed at first or you will coat your person, your kitchen, and your entire home in an explosion of powdered sugar, how do I know this? Don’t ask….). When the mixture looks like a bowl full of peanut butter and other stuff mixed together, put it in the freezer for fifteen minutes. When the time is up, form the mixture into twenty orbs of equal size. Dip the orbs into some dark chocolate that you borrowed/found (finder’s keepers!) and melted in the microwave at thirty second intervals. You might want to use a toothpick to dip the orbs, as all other efforts are fruitless. Trust me. I had dark chocolate on my hands, clothes, face (I wonder how that got there?)…..Refrigerate the buckeyes until firm. Then eat as many as your guilt will allow.;)

That’s all for now folks,

Love,

Sassy

 

Recipes for College Students: Harvest Pear and Brown Sugar Oatmeal

Hello again! Here’s an indulgent little treat for all you college students who are ready to treat yourselves after suffering through long months of schooling. Because we all know that every now and then, you deserve a little something special. This Harvest Pear and Brown Sugar Oatmeal combines all your favorite Autumn flavors with a classic southern comfort feel. You can use any kind of oats that you like, if you want a high fiber content, use the suggestions below. If you are sensitive to fibrous foods, use quick oats, the pantry staple, or old fashioned oats instead. Enjoy!

The Ingredients: 1 diced pear, 1/3 cup steel cut or rolled oats, 2/3 cup half and half, 1/4 cup vanilla almond milk, 1 tbsp. dark brown sugar, 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon, 1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg.

Combine the steel cut oats and half and half in a small pot and let the mixture sit for ten to fifteen minutes (you could use this time to get ready for work, school, etc.). When the time is up, cook the oats over medium heat until they soak up most of the liquid, about five minutes. Add the almond milk, diced pear, sugar, and spices. Reduce the heat to low and cook for another few minutes. Pour the oatmeal into a serving bowl and top with extra pear slices, whipped cream, butter, etc.

Fruit, Nut, and Chocolate Granola Bars

Autumn is here! Where I live the weather has been absolutely gorgeous, perfect for all those outdoor activities that one can enjoy during the gorgeous fall weather. When you’re in and out of the house on those autumn days, there’s nothing better than a protein-packed snack to refuel on before heading back outside! These fun granola bars are the perfect snack for children and adults of all ages! Not only do kids love them, but they can help you make them, as there are no knives or dangerous kitchen tools involved. I hope that your family enjoys these as much as ours did!:)

The Ingredients: 2 1/2 cups rolled oats, 1/3 cup lightly salted peanuts, 1/3 cup lightly salted cashews, 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, 1/3 cup raisins or golden raisins (or both!), 1/4 cup dark brown sugar, 1/3 cup honey, 4 tbsp. butter, 1-2 tsp. molasses, 1/2 tsp. sea salt.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Pour the rolled oats and nuts onto the baking sheet, toss them together and gently shake the pan to distribute the ingredients into a flat layer. Toast the oat and nut mixture for 8-10 minutes, stirring halfway. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan or pot over low heat, melt together the butter, brown sugar, honey, and molasses, whisking constantly. When the sugar is dissolved, turn off the heat. In a medium mixing bowl, combined the wet and dry ingredients, tossing them together with a pair of tongs. Line 8 inch cake pan with parchment paper and press the granola bar mixture into the pan. Decorate the granola bars with extra chocolate chips and raisins…:) Refrigerate the bars for one hour if you want soft bars, and two hours or more if you want firm bars.

Vegetarian Baked Burritos

Hello again! So sorry that I’ve been MIA around here lately. The demands of school and life have been overwhelming as of late. However, I am happy to say that I will have a week of freedom before returning to the grind, so you can look forward to me posting here more regularly again. Here in the mountains autumn colors are just starting to peek through, they seem to be taking their time this year. Naturally the cooler temperatures are giving me a craving for comfort foods of all kinds. When I was considering what I should post today, i remembered a new recipe that was unexpectedly delicious, and had a funny backstory. Here’s how it went down, I was making a baked burrito dish, when El Gastronomo had a run in with the beans draining in the sink. Let’s just say the beans did not survive. So, in desperation I decided to use black-eyed peas as a substitute, and it was….delicious! Turns out that baked black-eyed peas, with the right spice blend, taste similar to re-fried beans! This being so, I am happy to present to you an Easy Weekday Dinner sure to put a smile on your family’s face!

The Ingredients: 9 flour tortillas, 2 cups cooked brown rice, 1 cup black eyed peas, 1 chopped yellow onion, 2 chopped bell peppers, 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese, 2 chopped tomatoes, 1/4 tsp. black pepper, 1/2 tsp. cumin, 1 tsp. garlic powder, 1 tsp. onion powder.

Begin preheating your oven to 375 degrees. Sauteed the chopped vegetables until tender.  In a medium mixing bowl, combine the black eyed peas, rice, 1/2 cup of the cheese, the spices, and the cooked vegetables. Mix well. To fill the tortillas, use an ice cream scoop and put two scoops into each tortilla. Form the filling into a log shape, leaving a 1/2 inch on either side. Fold the end closest to you over, tuck in the ends on each side, and roll tightly to finish. When all the tortillas are filled, grease a baking sheet and place them seam side down onto the pan. Cover the burritos with the remaining cheese and the tomatoes. Bake for fifteen minutes. Serves 9. Enjoy!

The Breakfast Cereal Revolution Part 1: Chocolate Chip Granola Chex

Calling all college students, fellow bloggers, and individuals bored with their breakfast choices! Who wants to be free from the stereotype of an entire box of cereal being only one flavor? Who wants to make a budget friendly breakfast that is relatively healthy and delicious? What if you could take plain cereal, and transform it into any flavor you want? You would no longer be confined to an entire box of the same flavor. There would be no such thing as stale breakfast cereal in your house! If you agree with any or all of the previously stated concepts, then…..you’ve come to the right place. Step into my office, and we will make breakfast cereal….great again. Sorry, I just couldn’t resist. In this part of the series, we will be taking ordinary rice Chex, you know, that stuff in the back of the cabinet that everyone ignores, or convulsively swallows on their way to the grocery store to buy something better? Yes, that stuff. Those crunchy, flavorless squares that absorb milk much too quickly, soon becoming a crumbled mush in the bottom of your cereal bowl (shudder). Today we will make these into something amazing, something delicious, something…..great again (sorry). All you need for this recipe is basic ingredients, a microwave, and a few simple tools.

The Ingredients: 1/2 cup rice chex cereal, 1 tbsp. honey, 2 tsp. butter, 2 tsp. sugar, 1/4 tsp. molasses or vanilla, 1 tbsp. chocolate chips, 1/2 banana.

In small, microwave safe bowl, whisk together the sugar, butter, and honey until the mixture is well combined. Microwave for thirty seconds. Stir in the chex cereal while the mixture is still warm. If eating immediately, chill the cereal in your fridge for five to ten minutes before consuming. Pour a half cup of your favorite milk or dairy-free milk over the cereal, plus banana slices and chocolate chips, and enjoy! Makes one serving. You easily double or triple this recipe and store the finished cereal in a sandwich bag in your refrigerator for up to three days. Then all you have to do in the morning is pull out a bag of cereal, and serve it up the way you like it! Feel free to experiment with different toppings!

Total Calories: 323-330 calories for one serving (not including milk)

Happy Belated Birthday Friar Tyst!

Happy Birthday Friar Tyst! You are a great brother! Thank you for all the work that you do each day by caring for the chickens, doing various outdoor projects, and helping me every day with all my cooking projects! One of my favorite things about you is your talent for making people laugh. Every time that I am sad or frustrated you always cheer me up by reminding me to not take life too seriously. Another thing I appreciate about you is your wisdom about life and dedication to the task at hand. As is customary for these posts, I would like to take the time to list out some of the qualities that make you all that you are!

Easygoing: You are an easygoing kind of guy. You take life at face value and tend to go with the flow. Not much bothers you. You are someone who can be relied upon.

Tasteful: You have an excellent taste in pretty much everything (you get this from Queenbee). You care about items having quality and integrity. You are also tasteful in your conversation and interaction with others.

Humorous: As previously mentioned, you have a way of finding the humor in every situation. You bring comic relief during tense situations and remind people of the importance of laughter. In short, you are full of it!

Active: You are always moving and shaking. If there is something to be done, especially if it involves the outdoors, you are the guy to do it. You enjoy playing outdoor games and sports, and you are enthusiastic about activities that have a physical element to them.

Noble: The dictionary defines a noble person as someone who “has or shows fine personal qualities or high moral principles and ideals.” I believe that you are the very definition of this word. You care deeply about people and about doing what is right, regardless of the cost.

In short, you are a meaningful and valued member of this esteemed cooking team, and I could not do life without you!

Now, let’s see what the birthday boy had for dessert…..:)

Triple Chocolate Birthday Cake

The Ingredients: 1 Swiss chocolate cake mix, 1/2 yellow cake mix, 4 eggs, 3/4 cup vegetable oil, 3/4 cup water, 1/4 cup sour cream, 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, 1/2 bag white chocolate candy melts, 2 tbsp. unsweetened cocoa powder (optional, this will give the chocolate layers a dark chocolate flavor).

In a large mixing bowl, using your hand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, mix together the chocolate cake mix, 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup oil, 3 eggs, the cocoa powder (if using), and the sour cream. Mix until fully combined, or about three minutes on medium speed. Fold in the chocolate chips with a rubber spatula until just combined. Divide the chocolate batter between two cake pans lined with parchment paper, set aside.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. In a small mixing bowl, using your hand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, mix together half a box of yellow cake mix with one egg, 1/4 cup oil, and 1/4 cup water. Mix until fully combined, or about a minute on medium speed. Pour the batter into a cake pan lined with parchment paper. Bake all of the cake layers for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer the cake layers onto a cooling rack and let come to room temperature. Melt the white chocolate and spread it evenly over the yellow cake layer, let the chocolate harden before moving on to the next steps.

Milk Chocolate Buttercream

The Ingredients: 1 1/3 sticks softened butter, 3 cups powdered sugar, 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, 2-3 tbsp. milk of choice.

In a medium mixing bowl, using a hand mixer fitted with the beaters, beat the butter until it has a whipped consistency. Alternate adding one cup of powdered sugar and one tablespoon of milk, beating after each addition. The finished product should be thick, but creamy, not dry. Spread a thin layer of frosting on the bottom cake layer, top this layer with the yellow cake layer. Do not frost the yellow cake layer. Top this with the final layer and spread the icing evenly all over the outside of the cake. Feel free to decorate with addition white chocolate. If desired, place the cake into the freezer for thirty minutes before serving, or serve it as is, just know that this is a VERY soft cake. Serves 10 (or so).

Please disregard my sad attempt at cake decorating (some of the cake crumbled under my heavy-handed icing skills).

Soft-Baked Monster Cookies


The monster cookie is a well loved treat that has been enjoyed by adults and children alike for as long as I can remember. I’ve noticed that there are many different variations of monster cookies out there today, some people like to add nuts or rice krispies, some enjoy peanut butter chips instead of peanut butter, and some people add pretzels for that salty-sweet kick. Consider this recipe as the base for greatness; this is the classic monster cookie upon which you can build a masterpiece. Not that these aren’t a masterpiece……they’re actually really good………………………..

Image result for this is awkward meme

Any-who, this is a great cookie recipe that you can tailor any way you want. Hope you enjoy it! I would have written my customary long post that praises every aspect of the recipe, but, college classes started back a few weeks ago, and…..

Image result for i ain't got time for that

Where was I? Oh yes:

Image result for cookie monster meme

Okay, enough memes, I’ll stop…..for now!;)

The Ingredients: 1 stick softened butter, 1/2 cup sugar, 1 cup dark brown sugar, 2 eggs, 3/4 cup creamy or chunky peanut butter, 1 1/2 (level) cups unbleached all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 cups quick oats, 1 tsp. baking powder, 1/2 tsp. baking soda, 1 tsp. salt, 3/4 cup milk chocolate m&ms, 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips.

In a large mixing bowl, using a hand mixer fitted with the beaters, beat together the butter and sugar until smooth and creamy. Add the peanut butter, mix until well combined. Add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Whisk together the dry ingredients in a separate bowl and incorporate the dry into the wet slowly, until just combined. Add the chocolate chips and candy, mix until just combined. Refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes to one hour. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, bake the cookies for 8-10 minutes. Serve warm. Makes two dozen cookies.

 

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