January 10, 2012


Here a few more recipes that I have in my arsenal. I have not yet made the Baked French Toast one, but how can you go wrong with a Paula Deen recipe??

This first recipe is one that I received from my friend Becky at my wedding shower in Michigan. Her husband is a chef and created this version of Mac & Cheese. It is now my go to recipe and I always receive compliments on it when I make it for potlucks! It is definitely not for those on a diet that's for sure!

Baked Mac & Cheese

1 box ridged penne pasta (cooked)
2 T butter
2 T plus 1 t flour
1/2 t garlic powder
1/4 t curry powder
2 c heavy whipping cream
5 slices american cheese
1 c shredded cheddar cheese (i use whatever shredded cheese i have handy)
1/2 sleeve crushed ritz crackers

In medium saucepan melt butter, add flour and stir till bubbly and blonde in color, add spices and stir. Add whipping cream and bring to a boil - add cheeses and stir till melted. Add cooked penne pasta to cheese sauce and mix, pour into 9 inch greased baking dish. Cover w/ ritz crackers - bake @ 350 for 15 minutes, or till bubbly. ENJOY!!

I found this recipe on Pinterest and had planned to make it for Christmas morning but with Jay having to scoot on over to the farm to get chores done, I decided to save it for a later date. I will be making this Thursday (which means I better assemble it Wednesday night). I'm sure it will be delicious though!

Pecan Praline Baked French Toast

1 loaf French bread (13 to 16 ounces)
8 large eggs
2 cups half-and-half
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Dash salt
Praline Topping, recipe follows
Maple syrup

Slice French bread into 20 slices, 1-inch each. (Use any extra bread for garlic toast or bread crumbs). Arrange slices in a generously buttered 9 by 13-inch flat baking dish in 2 rows, overlapping the slices. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, half-and-half, milk, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt and beat with a rotary beater or whisk until blended but not too bubbly. Pour mixture over the bread slices, making sure all are covered evenly with the milk-egg mixture. Spoon some of the mixture in between the slices. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.

The next day, preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Spread Praline Topping evenly over the bread and bake for 40 minutes, until puffed and lightly golden. Serve with maple syrup.

Praline Topping:

1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup chopped pecans
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and blend well. Makes enough for Baked French Toast Casserole.

When I make Lasagna, I don't really follow a recipe. I just layer it all together and hope for the best! I have been making this with sausage for years now (got the idea from an ex-boyfriend's step mom, thanks Sue!), and now when I have Lasagna w/ hamburger it just isn't quite right to me. I also like it extra cheesy and melty, so I add in shredded cheese and parmesan cheese between my layers! Yum! I have also done a 'white' version using alfredo sauce, I add thawed chopped spinach (frozen box) that has been well drained/squeezed to the sauce as well.


9 lasagna noodles, cooked slightly underdone
1 lb sausage, browned & drained
1-1.5 jars pasta sauce
2/3 c cottage cheese or ricotta
1/3 c parmesan cheese
1 egg, lightly beaten
shredded cheese
extra parmesan cheese

Mix pasta sauce w/ cooked & drained sausage. Mix together cottage/ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese and egg. In 9x9 greased baking dish pour in ½ ladle of meat mixture, then top w/ a couple dollops of cheese mix, spread both around bottom so there is an even layer of sauces. Lay down 3 noodles side by side, trimming to fit in pan. Pour in a ladle (or two or three) of meat sauce and spread around, top w/ cheese mixture and spread out. Sprinkle a bit of shredded cheese over this, then add in a bit of parmesan cheese. Lay in 3 more egg noodles, repeat meat & cheeses, then top w/ last 3 egg noodles. Finish off with the sauces and then sprinkle some parmesan cheese down, top w/ a liberal layer of shredded cheese. Bake at 350 for 30-45 minutes or until cheese is nice and melted and gooey!

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