Nicole’s Cookies

These are from one of Dad’s coworkers from years ago. It is probably our favorite cookie recipe. Don’t let the looks of these cookies fool you, there is nothing healthy about them. ūüôā I made a triple recipe for our CAP promotions last week, which our stand mixer couldn’t handle, so I had to mix it by hand.

2 cups butter, softened
2 cups white sugar
2 cups brown sugar, packed
2 teaspoons vanilla
4 eggs
4 cups flour
5 cups rolled oats, ground in blender (5 cups of oats, not 5 cups of oat flour)
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
8 ounces Hershey bar, ground in blender (before oats?)
2 cups milk chocolate chips
2 cups white chocolate chips (and/or toffee bits?)
3 cups pecans or walnuts, chopped in big pieces

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cream butter and sugars together.  Add vanilla and eggs.
Mix dry ingredients together.  Mix into creamed mixture.
Add ground chocolate bar, chips and nuts.
Scoop onto greased cookie sheet using 1/8 cup measuring cup (golf ball sized balls).  Place about 2 inches apart (16 per sheet).  Press down slightly.
Bake for apx. 12 minutes – don’t¬†over-bake¬†or cookies will be too crisp once they cool.
Makes about 112 cookies.

Mixing by hand. 

The finished cookie dough

Formed cookies

Orange Refresher

This has always been a favorite. It’s especially refreshing during the summer!

1 can (6 oz) frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup dry milk powder
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 cup cold water
10 – 12 ice cubes
orange slices and mint, optional

Combine the first five ingredients in a blender and process at high speed.  Add ice cubes, a few at a time, blending until slushy.
Garnish with orange slices and mint if desired.  Serve immediately.


These are some of my favorite kitchen tools. They come in a variety of sizes and shapes. We own the 1 inch, 1.5 inch and 2 inch dishers.

-The smallest one I use for truffles, which gives me perfectly shaped truffles and cuts down on time and mess.

-The medium is usually used for cookies. We form them ahead of time and get the exact same cookie size every time.

-The large is used for cupcakes, muffins, biscuits, mashed potatoes, rice, and meatballs

Strawberry Lemon Trifle

This was more or less an experiment because I’ve never really made a trifle before. The lemon pudding/curd was so delicious with the strawberries and pound cake so I knew it was going to be a delicious combination.¬†

2 -3 ¬†pound cakes, cut into 1″ cubes
2 pounds Strawberries, sliced and tossed with a few tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2/3 cup water
2/3 cup lemon juice
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 package instant vanilla pudding , made with 3 cups of milk
2 cups heavy whipping cream, or Cool Whip or Ready Whip

Combine sugar, cornstarch and lemon zest in a pan. Gradually add water and lemon juice. Cook over
medium heat, stirring constantly until thickened. Cook 1 minute longer. Remove from heat.
Gradually stir 1/4 hot mixture into eggs; add to remaining hot mixture, stirring constantly. Cook over medium
heat for 1 minute or until thickened. Let cool completely.
Combine cooled lemon curd with pudding. This is more or less to taste. It should taste like a strong lemon
In a trifle bowl (or glass bowl, or wine glasses), layer half the pound cake. Top with some lemon pudding.
Top that with strawberries and then a layer of whipped cream.
Repeat layers but do not top with whipped cream till ready to serve.

Claire’s Tuna Salad

We had a fun time at Kayak Point for a picnic dinner. I love how it was hailing just a couple days ago and was gorgeous enough today to have a picnic! I made this for dinner along with Strawberry Basil Salad . This is by far my favorite way to prepare tuna!

2 cans white albacore tuna, drained really well
2 -3 tablespoons Garlic Expressions Salad dressing (which we usually buy from Haggen)
1/2 cup Relish, Or more if needed
1/2 cup Mayonnaise, or more if needed
carrots, chopped into tiny bits
celery , chopped into tiny bits
onion, chopped into tiny bits

Combine all ingredients. Start out with a small amount of mayonnaise and add more as needed.
Can also add chopped peppers or any other vegetables. Usually served with bread, pita, pita chips, taco chips, rice cakes or vegetables.
 Tastes delicious with served with head lettuce or sprouts.

Split Pea Soup

This is one of those recipes that always sounds disgusting, but it is so delicious, warm and comforting.


2 1/4 cups dry green split peas
8 cups cold water
8 teaspoons chicken bouillon
1 meaty  ham bone (optional)
1 cup onion, chopped
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon marjoram
2 cups carrots, chopped
1 cup celery, chopped
1 cup corn

Rinse peas.
In a large pot combine the peas, water, chicken bouillon, ham bone, onions, pepper and marjoram.  Bring to
a boil.  Reduce heat.  Cover and simmer one hour, stirring occasionally.
Remove ham bone.  Cut off meat and return it to the pot.
Add carrots, celery and corn.
Cover and simmer 30 minutes.  Season.

Baking Powder Biscuits

This is our other biscuit recipe. I love the crispy bottom and top and how simple it is to make. This was the first recipe I ever made by myself.

1 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup milk

Mix dry ingredients.
Cut in butter.
Add milk all at once.  Stir just until moistened.
Drop by tablespoons onto greased cookie sheet.  Bake at 450 degrees for 11-15 minutes.

Can add 1/2 c. cheese.
Can brush with 1/4 cup melted butter and herbs (1/2 t. garlic salt, 1/2 t. basil).

White Trash

This is by far one of the most¬†addictive¬†recipes we own. It can be made with any variety of cereal and can have any nuts and dried fruits added as well. I’ve also added fish crackers before.


2 cups Cheerios
3 cups Rice Chex
3 cups Corn Chex
2 cups pretzels
1 cup dry roasted peanuts (optional)
1 cup plain or crispy M&Ms
1 package white almond bark

Mix Cheerios, rice chex, corn chex, pretzels and peanuts in large bowl.
Melt white candy and pour over mixture.
Stir in M&Ms.
Spread on wax paper to cool.  Break into pieces.
Notes: to mail, put mix in Ziploc bag and stick in a box. ¬†It doesn’t need any packing.

Makes 12 – 14 cups.

Strawberry Basil Salad

I saw strawberries and basil in the store and knew I had to make a salad with those ingredients added. It was probably the tastiest salad I have ever tasted. I used this dressing recipe and cut down the sugar to only a 1/4 cup. I think goat cheese would be a tasty addition. 

Spinach (or lettuce of choice)
Onions, very thinly sliced 
Chicken, cut into tiny cubes 
Basil, chopped roughly 
Arrange ingredients in order given above. 

Pork Rub

This is delicious with roasted veggies and cold applesauce. Mom adds a little more pepper than this recipe says.

1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon allspice
2 pounds pork tenderloin
olive oil

Mix spices and sugar.  Rinse roasts.  Pat dry.  Spray or oil roasts and rub seasoning mixture into it.  Roast as