Christmas Chocolate Bundt Cake

We love to make traditions in my family.  One of them is making our holiday Chocolate Bundt Cake…..I made this
one for a family get together at Christmas time. 

Chocolate Bundt Cake

 This is my favorite Chocolate Cake recipe.  It is from All It is a rich and easy chocolate cake that you can use a boxed mix to start with and just doctor it up. It’s full of delicious richness, from the sour cream, pudding mix and the chocolate chips. It has a delectable cream cheese icing. It’s to die for good!

 I played around while it was baking and rearranged some of my Christmas stuff. I’m only enjoying it for another few days and then I’ll have to do the dirty job of putting Christmas away.

 Which is depressing so I’m not going to think about it today…..I’m going to the movies instead……yippee!

 I’m really good at denial and not facing up to responsibilities….especially on my winter break from teaching school.  I just like sleeping in….eating lots of snacks and cold cereal….and NOT making dinner….

 But I still like dessert…(.nobody said anything about dessert…)……yeah it’s still a staple around these parts….. The recipe for too much chocolate cake is HERE.

Can you believe one of my neighbor GUYS brought over this delectable pecan pie? Yeah….I know…..A GUY WHO MAKES PIE! !   wHaT the HeCk? How can that be?  My husband can barely make a pancake! 
Banana bread…cranberry bread….cinnamon rolls…English Toffee….Caramel Apples…we had
 lots of stuff from wonderful neighbors and friends! 

Here I am right before everybody came over Christmas morning…I’m busy making food….go figure! 

Too many treats….I’m getting chunkier by the minute! 

Here was my bundt cake all ready for the fam………yummy! 

Cream Cheese icing on Bundt cakes is my favorite too!  Then I
decorated with red and green sugars and a holly and ivy candle ring and
some purchased glittery peppermint cake toppers…..super cute!  

Chocolate bundt cake….so rich and easy….

And even prettier with all the toppers and doo dads and sprinkles….

Here’s to a happy holiday…a happy new year….and to losing a few pounds…..
but….just not this week…..(yeah I’m good at procrastinating too! are you surprised?)

AND let’s make that a New Year’s Resolution…..and THAT is not till NEXT year…and that’s a whole 3 days away!   For today….let’s dig in! All ya need is a cold glass of milk to go with it~  And then I’m going to see Tom Cruise (Mission Impossible) or Robert Downey Jr. (Sherlock Holmes)  mmmhmmm……. Happy 2012  Ya’ll!

Mango Green Apple Cole Slaw

I posted my first recipe on It is a cole slaw recipe and it is really sweet and good. I love it for a side dish when I’m making any kind of fish. It’s a little sweet and a little tart from the mango and green apple. So anyway, if you are sick of Christmas sweets like I am….(I’m lying….I’m eating a Chocolate covered cherry as I type this…try a chopped salad. Yum.
Crunchy Mango-Green Apple Coleslaw Recipe

Recipe for Mango Green Apple Cole Slaw


  • 1 small head of cabbage chopped up in small chunks.
  • 1 medium granny smith apple diced
  • 1 small,ripe mango diced
  • 1 chopped carrot (or 8 sliced mini carrots)not shredded
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds (long fat style)
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup wine or rice vinegar (both work well)
  • 1 1/2 T of lime or orange juice
  • dash of pepper
  • dash of Lawrys or salad seasoning to your taste


  1. Coursely chop up all the ingredients. Then in a small bowl whisk mayo, sugar, vinegar, lime or orange juice and seasonings to your taste. Pour over salad right before serving. For less calories use less of the dressing and it’s still yummy.

 Here we are HAVING FUN WITH FOOD in the kitchen the other night. I had my family over for lasagna and salad, and then we decorated Christmas cookies with the little kiddos.

This is just a dollar store plastic…great way to separate the candy for decorating cookies

My granddaughters getting into frosting their sugar cookies

My son Devin made a gingerbread “lady with body parts” I’m so proud. 

Even my youngest grandbaby got into it…Josie is only a year old! 

Marisa, almost 5 loved it the best….she has baking in her genes….

Christmas Cookie Decorations 

Christmas Sugar Cookies….Megan’s gettin into it! 

Josie’s just happy to be here….

 This is a fun tradition we’ve had in our family for many years. I do this in my classroom for the kids, either decorating sugar cones to look like green iced Christmas trees, or gingerbread men, or sugar cookies. And I bring the extra candy home for the kids to do a few decorative cookies too.  It’s been going on for probably 15 years.

I ate the whole cookie grandma! 

Even the guys got into it….

We made some awesome sugar cookies Dudes! 

Sugar cookies are a fun family tradition….

Our creations….mostly kid made…..

A few had a whole bottle of sugar dumped on them…..can I say….big mess?  Luckily our doggie
walked around licking up stray candy all night….He’s probably nauseous today! :O

Kiddie sugar
cookies….it was a sweet night….

Merry Christmas! 

Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup with Homemade Noodles

Homemade Noodle Chicken Noodle Soup…Fast, easy and super yummy! It’s my Grandma-in-law Ruth’s recipe. She was a professional cook her whole life. 

My husband’s Grandma Ruth was a dietitian and cooked big mounds of food in hospitals. Once when John and I were newlyweds she was over at his parents house for a visit and she taught me how to make homemade noodles.

I boiled up my 3 bone-in chicken breasts first….they make the best broth…or use a whole chicken cup up. 

  Anyway, let’s make some egg noodles tonight to go with some chicken breasts I just bought on sale at the market for only 99 cents a pound! COOL Deal!

Here’s some of my noodle ingredients….not the parsley…that’s just to add to the soup….oops! 

  I’m glad I have a little piece of history learning to cook from a master cook. She was what John still calls “A Lunch Lady” because she cooked for large groups of people in a big community kitchen her whole life. She was really good at all kinds of breads.

I’m gonna add a little bit of butter to my noodles to make them richer…I hope they stay fluffy! 

  She started out with a mound of flour and made a little “well” in the center where she cracked egg yolks into it.  Then she slowly mixed those eggs into a paste with her hands. I don’t remember much else. But when the dough was done we made long strips of it using a pizza cutter and it was really fun.
I have always LOVED playing in the kitchen since getting my first Easy Bake Oven when I was 5 or 6.

Mix up the melted (cooled) butter with the 2 eggs mixture….whisk away! 

Guess what my little Marisa Belle is getting for Christmas? You guessed it. Her own Easy Bake Oven!
Won’t her mommy just LOVE that? Yeah. She’s gonna be doing the cooking with her… I hope she doesn’t hate me.  I just LOVED my little blue Easy Bake Oven when I was about her age….

  So after studying 4 different recipes, I’m going to add 1 tablespoons of melted butter to the 2 eggs and add 1/4 teaspoon baking powder to the 2 1/2 cups of flour and 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 cup milk. Mix it all up in a bowl and let your dough hook knead for 3 or 4 minutes.

I’m going to add 2 bullion cubes to my broth for a bit more flavor

I got these bone in chicken breasts for 99cents a pound….look for bone in for a better broth,  OR
just pick up a rotisserie chicken….use half for lunch sandwiches…..and then boil the rest of the whole chicken for the soup! It makes an excellently seasoned soup with just all the spices they add in the store!  EASY TOO! 

 Most recipes call for flour salt and eggs and that’s about it. But just like really good homemade bread. And I think butter will make them tastier. Also many recipes call for baking powder. I like my noodles fluffy. So I add a little pinch of baking powder too.  Too much flour will make them dense. So watch the flour as you are adding it.  When the dough is just a bit sticky, stop adding flour.

Roll out your dough  for your homemade noodles in a long rectangle…I’m shooting for 4 inch strips….
Roll them AS THIN as you can get them….they always plump up when boiling them….

I use all these extra strips too…they just aren’t as pretty as my neater noodles….snicker….

 Most recipes tell you to chill the dough or let it “rest” or whatever but I’ve never been that patient. So I just dive right in. Roll them out thin as you can and use a pizza cutter to cut into 1/4 inch strips about 4 inches long. Then let them dry a bit

I just use a pizza cutter to roll out my dough….then set them out on a paper towel to dry for an hour or two….

 . Most recipes call for hours of drying. Again, I never wait that long, but I try to wait an hour and a bit laying them on a dry towel while I chop my veggies and debone and cut up my hot boiled chicken for the soup.

Saute your onions a bit before adding to the broth…

I thought this cute and colorful bowtie macaroni would be fun for a Christmas brunch macaroni salad with artichoke hearts…
I’ll post a great recipe soon using this cute stuff! Only $1.50 a bag at Fresh Market!!
 I think this would be a great neighborhood gift,
maybe with some cute salad tongs to go with it for a favorite neighbor? 
I diced up my onion, sauteed it a bit, then chopped up my celery and carrots and threw them in ….then  7  minutes later the noodles…. they will take another 7 or so minutes to fluff up….by then your veggies will be tender…
They start to plump up right away!
I threw my noodles right in to cook but here is the warning…they WILL suck up lots of broth…so
it is actually better to boil them in salt water instead and then add to the soup after 15 minutes….
Be sure to check your baking powder with  a 1/2 teaspoon test in warm water to be sure it is still fizzy,
If it is not, that means it is old and expired and you need to get a new can….it will make your noodles flat and dense if it is not working,
NOT light and fluffy the way you’d want them….

My finished Chicken Noodle Soup…Yum! 

Egg Noodles Recipe

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter


  1. In a large bowl, stir together the flour and salt. Add the beaten egg, . Knead dough until smooth, about 5 minutes. Let rest in a covered bowl for 10 minutes.
  2. On a floured surface, roll out to 1/8 or 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into desired lengths (I do 1/4 x 4 inches)
  3. Allow to air dry before cooking (1 to 2 hours). Drop into 2 quarts of boiling, salted water for about 10 to 15 minutes. drain, then add to Chicken soup when veggies are tender.  
  4. Note: You COULD drop them into soup to cook, but I find that it will suck up all of your broth and not leave you with as much liquid. So I’d recommend boiling them in salt water till they are fluffy and done. Then add to the soup.  
So homemade Chicken noodles and soup takes me a good 90 minutes to make. They are worth the extra effort once in awhile. And they make a nice soup to freeze for a cold, snowy, winter day when hot soup is exactly what you’d love to come home to…. mmmmm….

Chicken Noodle Soup homemade is really so Delicious! 
And healthy too! And low calorie too!  What’s not to love? 
And don’t ya love my Grandbabies wearing their Christmas shirts?  Too cute! 

Chicken Soup Recipe
2 1/2 to 3 cups of shredded or diced white chicken meat
1 cup celery
1/2 to 1 cup baby carrots sliced
1 small onion diced  (saute a bit in butter till clear)
2-21/2 quarts water (use the boiled chicken water and add 2 to 3 bullion cubes)
1 teaspoon Johnny’s seasoning
1/4 teaspoon lemon pepper (add to taste)
dash of pepper
Boil the chicken (I used 3 breasts with rib meat attached and bones attached) Add 2 bullion cubes. Chop veggies and add and boil on medium for 7 -10 minutes or until tender. Take dried egg noodles and add 1/2 to 3/4 of the recipe to a salt water boiling pot.   You could freeze half the recipe for another time.  When they are fluffy and done, dry them on a paper towel and then add them to the soup. Season.  Then enjoy!  

    Christmas Cupcakes & Gingerbread Cake

    I loved the ideas I read on Crystal and Company’s website. She makes cupcakes toppers out of candy. Her link is HERE for cute pirate cupcakes tutorial. I do a pirate party every year so I am copying her idea for sure.

    There are so many cute things to put on top using candy, toothpick toppers, sprinkles, designing an animal face with candy, and making stripes and polka dot designs with candy and edible things.

    Here are a few that I loved.

    Cute Cupcake Toppers from Current Catalog


    This cute Christmas set of toppers is from, a stationery store online. It is only 99cents! My classroom Christmas party will be more fun with the kids being able to choose their own cute toppers for the cupcakes they decorate. And look how easy! The link for these cute toppers is HERE at Current.

    free printable holiday christmas cupcake toppers baking bake it pretty
    Free Cupcake Topper Printables


    Another cute topper with some FREE PRINTABLES I found at Bake it Pretty blog HERE. She occasionally has a free printable for all kinds of holiday stuff. All you need here is a color printer to make some really cute cupcakes!

    Cute Reindeer Cupcakes for Christmas Day!

    The Amateur Gourmet has a tutorial on making these cute reindeer cupcakes with curly pretzels and M &Ms. I think kids could totally do these and have a great time at a winter party. All you need is chocolate cupcakes and frosting and vanilla wafers and some little candies.  The rest is so easy!  Katy’s tutorial is HERE at Amateur Gourmet.

    Tips for Melting Candy Wafers for Decorating Cupcakes……

    1.Use a double boiler.
    2. Use low heat.
    3. Don’t boil it too fast or it turns to a ball.
    4. Stir pretty regularly.
    5. If you use a piping bag, let the melted candy cool for 10 minutes so it doesn’t burn your hands as you pipe
    6. Once molds are filled put them in the fridge to harden, or between color layers.

    Have fun making Christmas cupcakes….. Here’s my latest yummy obsession…Gingerbread men and Gingerbread Cake!

    Gingerbread Cake with YUMMY ICING! 

    Finished gingerbread cake….

    Finished cake with cream cheese icing….

    I got this DIVINE recipe from Jaime Cooks it Up. She is a true master in the kitchen. I loved these decadent and easy bars so check it out if you want the recipe. It’s easy and it is HERE at her website.

    Cut up and added some cute picks…

    The icing is my favorite….cream cheese mixed with butter and powdered sugar. It makes anything taste better I think.


     It was soooo rich and yummy. It would make a great addition to any Holiday dessert bar.

    Turkey Enchiladas (or use chicken)

    I love this easy chicken recipe. But I made a Turkey on Sunday and I have all this leftover turkey meat. So I’m going to use my Chicken Enchilada recipe and make them with turkey instead!

    I chopped up about 2 1/2 cups of white turkey meat into diced pieces.  I diced up an onion and sauteed it in 2 tablespoons of butter.

    Sauteed onion in a bit of butter…

    Then I added 1 1/4 cups sour cream, 1/2 cup of heavy whipping cream, 1/3 cup of your favorite mild or medium salsa, and a can of diced green chilies and a can of cream of chicken soup.  Most of the time I add 1/4 cup milk to it too just so it’s nice and moist.

    Chicken Enchilada ingredients

    I diced up turkey for these Turkey Enchiladas

    Lastly  I add a little Lawry’s or Johnny’s (get at Costco) seasoning and a shake of chili powder. You could add cumin if you like it a little spicy. I seriously just do 2 or 3 little shakes of each. I just like lots of flavor.

    Mix the green chilies, onion, sour cream and cream of chicken soup…

    Then I spray a 9 x 13 pan and get out the flour tortillas. I had some leftovers of 2 different sizes so I just cut the larger ones down with my kitchen scissors. They still don’t match but really, who cares. I’m not having the queen for dinner, right?

    Spray Pam on a 9 x 13 pan…then grate your cheddar or jack cheese up…

    I prefer jack cheese but all I had was medium cheddar…so it works too…

    Add the heavy cream and and a little milk and mix up your filling…..

    Scoop into a flour tortilla and top with the cheese….EASY! 

    Get ready to roll it up….leave the seam on the underside in the pan….

    Here I am messing up my island…I’m a messy cook!

    Luckily, I have a deal with Mr. Moss; I do the cooking, he will clean up the dishes…
    but I always have to clean off the counter mess I made….oh well…..he’s my
    weeknight dishwasher….

    Then I mix about a half cup of sour cream with 3 tablespoons of salsa stir that up. I top each enchilada with the mix so the tops are moist and stay that way during baking.

    This topping will keep your enchiladas moist while baking…
    Then sprinkle a bit more cheese on the top…


    2 1/2 Cups of chicken or turkey meat diced
    1 1/4 cups of sour cream
    1/2 cup heavy cream
    1 can Cream of Chicken soup
    1/4 cup milk
    1/2 cup mild or medium salsa
    1 small can diced green chilies
    1 small onion diced and sauteed
    Dash of Lawry’s seasoning salt to taste
    Dash of chili powder (optional)

    1 1/2 cups cheddar or jack cheese.

    Roll up and bake in flour tortillas in a foil covered 9 x 13 pan  for 30 minutes at 350.

    Here they are ready for the oven…looks yummy doesn’t it?  Huh? 

     This makes a great lunch the next day too. I always pack one in Tupperware and it is just as tasty the next day! My hubs loves these in his lunch…..  : D

    I toasted up some pecans for a salad… Just put them in a frying pan with a little granulated sugar to toast…
    Then when the sugar starts to melt just stir them around for a few minutes. They turn out looking like this…

    And boy are they good on a raspberry vinaigrette salad….I have dried apricots and green pepper too…

    Here’s my finished enchiladas….add some salsa and chips and you are good to go! 

    Finished enchiladas…. Yummy! 

    When serving add a slice of avocado and a dab of sour cream to each one.  That makes a really pretty and appetizing plate. Add chips and salsa and a side salad and  Enjoy!

    Fun New Baking Tools!

    I’ve been shopping with the masses!  And I’ve received some cool gifts lately that I’m adding to my cookwear and serving arsenal.  I love them!  I have to share!

    My daughter got me this Mini Bundt Pan for my birthday. Can’t wait to use it! 

    My favorite new thing is a mini bundt pan set.  I’m going to do some cute bundt cakes this week and do some ring the doorbell and run fun to some of my favorite neighbors! It is so easy to make a cream cheese icing or just shake some powdered sugar on them. They are great and beautiful either way!

    I’m making Gingerbread men with my 2nd grade class this year…so I bought 2 pans….

    I love these two cookie sheets I only use at Christmas time.  They make darling but kinda puffy sugar cookies. But my granddaughters LOVE them.  I think my coworkers will too.  I’m baking treats this year instead of buying anything.

    LOVE this darling little crock…great for sauces or dips….
    These crocks are the cutest color of cranberry!  

    I got these cute new crockery trays from Tai Pan Trading. I thought the little one would be great for an artichoke dip that you bake.  Then the pita or pretzel chips can be layered on the pretty “holly and ivy” tray.  I also have a bowl to match for the cheese ball, but it was in the dishwasher. We used it for raspberry jam at Thanksgiving and just finished it up this weekend.

    This Christmas silicone tree mold will be fun to play with! 

    These silicone molds have so many uses. You can fill them with kind of a concentrated punch and freeze them to add to a punch bowl.  You can make brownies or bar cookies with them. You can use them as individual jello molds.  I got this one on clearance after Christmas last year. Can’t wait to use it!

    Wasn’t Costco nice to hand out a neat cookbook on the way out  of the store on Black Friday? 

    I’m gonna be using my new Good Housekeeping Magazine for the cute Holiday Cookie Collection! 

    Cute crocks I can use for holiday gifts. Only $2.00 each! 

    These little green crocks were buy one get one free at Tai Pan Trading this week. I thought I could fill each
    one with a homemade cheese ball and add a bag of chips and a cute Christmas spreader. These would make very special gifts for my very special friends. I shoulda bought a dozen!

    I got this for just a couple of bucks…..good for veggies or fruits Christmas morning….

    I also bought some decorations for my new “silver and ice blue” tree for my great room.  I know I don’t have enough decorations yet, but it is coming along.  In the meantime I think I’ll be enjoying my new servingware. Aren’t they soooo cute?  And I got them all on such a bargain.  Happy Christmas shopping!