Category Archives: Recipes

DIY Dry Laundry Soap

Happy Monday!  I finally had a weekend halfway off to catch up on some much needed house work and to run some errands. My home had been so neglected…but it’s ok! I’ve never been so ok with my house being such a mess. It’s a mess because I’ve been so busy…being busy is good! It means that I am living a life! Don’t get me wrong, I still wish I had a couple of little minions to help with laundry!  😉

Speaking of laundry, I hate it. I hate washing it. I hate drying it. I hate folding it. I hate it. I don’t know how me, my husband and my 5 year old can accumulate so much dirty laundry within a week. I. Don’t. Get. It.  I’ll tell you what else I hate…I hate buying laundry soap. I’m pretty sure most laundry soap we buy is 95% water. It’s way too expensive and if you buy the cheap stuff your clothes suffers the consequences. SMH!

About a year ago, I decided to start making my own laundry soap. I started making liquid soap and that worked out ok. I could make lots of soap at a time and I saved lots of money. I just didn’t like the texture of the soap. So I eventually perfected my own dry detergent. It makes about 25 cups of laundry which equals about 200 loads of laundry. Shocking huh!   The secret is that it is super concentrated and only takes 2 tablespoons of the mix per load. The worst part of making this detergent is believing that 2 tablespoons is enough for 1 whole load…but it is! 🙂

I wish I could tell you who I got this recipe from but the truth is that I’ve tweaked it so much that I wouldn’t know who to give credit to.  This is super easy to make and can save you hundreds of dollars a year! YES…I said HUNDREDS!

This is the recipe that works for me and my family. I bought all my supplies at Wal-mart:

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Cast of characters: Oxi Clean – $7, Zote bar soap – $ 0.97, Fels-Naptha bar soap – $0.97, Super Washing Soda – $3.24, Borax – $3, Baking Soda – $2.24 and a container to store your soap in – $5. Optional: Downy Unstopables -$6.

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1. You want to begin by grating 1/2 of the Fels-Naptha bar with the smallest sized grater you have.

Side Note: Fels-Naptha: The soap comes packaged in paper similar to bar body soap and is most often found in the laundry section of a supermarket or grocery store. It is intended for the pre-treatment of stains by rubbing the dampened product on a soiled area prior to laundering. The manufacturer claims it to be most effective in removing chocolate, baby formula, perspiration, and make-up. The brown soap is particularly effective in removing the sap of poison ivy, where it has touched the skin but not yet inflamed the area.

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2. Do the same to 1/2 of the Zote bar.  When you are done grating both bars put both into a food processor and process for about a minute. The idea is to get the soap as powdery as possible. I do this just because if you leave it in ramen noodle form (lol…that’s a joke) it tends to separate from the rest of the mixture easily. So if you have a food processor…put it to use! If you don’t…it’s ok! 🙂

Side note: Zote: It’s gentle on delicates and baby clothes, gets out tough stains and brightens whites. But that’s just the beginning. Zote may be the world’s most versatile household soap – use it for laundry, bathing, dishes, and it even helps keep the bugs away!

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3. Put your powder concoction aside and pull out the Borax, baking soda, washing soda and Oxi Clean. You are going to pour two heaping cups of Borax and washing soda into your storage container. Then pour the entire tub of Oxi Clean and the entire box of baking soda into the container.

Side Note: Why Baking Soda? – It is less alkaline than soap and much less alkaline than other cleaning  products such as chlorine bleach. This makes it excellent for use as a cleaning  product, as the skin can stand prolonged contact with that.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/4963244

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4. Next you will add the Zote and Fels-Naptha mixture to the storage container.

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5. This next part is optional. I am a freak about my clothes smelling really good so I add a bottle of Downy Unstopables to my mix. I’ve tried using other “crystals” but I have found that a little bit of Downy Unstopables goes a long way. You don’t have to add anything. The zote and Fels already help the detergent smell fresh…but if you want too…go ahead! 🙂

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6. This is what your mixture will look like. The next step is to shake it like a salt shaker….but MAKE SURE THE LID IS SECURE. Don’t get too crazy. Lol.

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and voila! This is what your finished detergent will look like. You will have to shake it between every couple of uses. It only take two tablespoons per load to get your clothes clean and smelling good! Like I said from the beginning…that is the hardest part…believing that your clothes is actually going to get clean with such a small amount of detergent. Have faith…it does get clean!  🙂

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After you are done making your detergent you can put the rest of the soap bars in a plastic baggie and store them for the next batch!

This batch cost me $23.42 to make….with supplies left over. If I have done my math right…which it’s possible that I didn’t…that’s about $0.11 per load! (I hate math as much as I hate laundry!)

I hope this helps your family cut back on spending money on water based detergents and I hope you love it as much as I do! Oh…and before I forget! The way I tested this detergent was by washing my stinky kitchen rag (after a good day of cleaning and degreasing) with a load of towels. I used the 2 tablespoons and when the load was done I was proud to say that my kitchen rag was clean as a whistle! Try it!

Have a great week lovelies and be blessed! – Moni ❤

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Cherry Cheesecake Cookies

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About a year ago I came across this heavenly recipe. I wish I could accredit the correct source but unfortunately I don’t remember what blog I stole this recipe from; however, I will be honest and say that I found this somewhere on Pinterest.

I’ve never, ever been a cookie fan. They are way to much work for me. I like simple quick cake recipes instead! 🙂 These cookies, however, are so amazing that I usually don’t mind doing the work. (Which really isn’t that much work….and that’s probably why I love them so much!)  If you THINK you have the best cookie recipe in the world, you are sadly mistaken.

These cookies have the texture of a cookie but the goodness of a cheesecake!  This recipe made me about 5 dozen cookies; tis the reason I don’t make them often…I tend to eat them all!

Here is what you need:

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3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 1 teaspoon salt, 2 1/2 sticks butter (20 tablespoons), softened, 2 (8 oz) packages of cream cheese, softened, 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, 2 large eggs, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, graham cracker, pecan bits and a can of cherry pie filling.

This time I also used blueberry filling. They were not as tasty as the cherry filling but the point is….use whatever your little heart desires. 🙂

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I started by combining the flour, baking soda and salt in a mixing bowl and set it aside.

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I then turned to my ginormous mixing bowl (because that’s all I have) and combined the softened cream cheese, butter and sugar.

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I then mixed with my trusty $5 mixer that I bought at Dillard’s ages ago for about 3 minutes…or until you see it all mixed pretty well.

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When that is all mixed up I then added the eggs and vanilla extract and continued to mix for about a minute.

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I slowly started to add the flour mixture to the wet mixture….very slowly…because sometimes I end up with a huge mess of flour!

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As you add all of your flour, your mixture should begin to thicken up and look like this. ^
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I then covered my ginormous mixing bowl and put it in the fridge for about 30 minutes….or 10 because I’m impatient. The dough is a lot easier to work with if you let it firm up a bit….so you should really leave it for at least 30 minutes. 🙂
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While my dough was firming up some, I got out my handy little Ninja chopper and crushed my graham crackers….yes I still have my Christmas tree up. 😉
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…then I added a large spoonful of pecans to my crackers. 🙂

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Once all that jazz what prepared, I got my workplace ready. I got my fillings and the crackers out and I lined two cookie sheets with PARCHMENT paper….umm…did you guys know that wax paper is not the same as parchment paper???  (Wax paper doesn’t like the oven…FYI!)
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I then got my dough out of the fridge and made little two-inch balls and rolled them in my graham cracker pecan mixture.

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I rolled out as many as I could put on my cookie sheets which were about 30.
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To make room for the filling I used a round teaspoon and pressed each cookie. It’s perfect for these little cookies!

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I then went on and put a cherry or a couple of blueberries in each cookie. Make sure and put some of the actual filling in there too….that’s the best part!

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I popped them in a 350 degree preheated oven for about 13 minutes. Be careful because these cookies are kind of easy to burn…trust me…I should know. 😉  As long as the bottom of the cookie is a toasty brown you are still good!

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When the cookies are done take them out and let them cool for a bit…which I personally think is the hardest part of the recipe. Hehe! Then get to baking your second batch! 🙂

This is my favorite cookie ever! Make sure and share with your neighbors! Be blessed!  – Moni ❤

Cherry Cheesecake Cookies

  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 (8 oz) packages of cream cheese, softened
  • 2 1/2 sticks butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 8 whole graham cracker rectangles
  • pecan bits
  • 1 can cherry pie filling

Instructions: In a  bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt.  Set aside. In another bowl, beat cream cheese, butter and sugar for about 3 minutes.  Add eggs and vanilla and mix until combined.  Reduce mixer speed to low and slowly add flour mixture.  Cover the dough and refrigerate until firm. Preheat oven to 350 and line baking sheets with parchment paper. Roll dough into 2 inch balls, then coat completely in graham cracker crumbs.  Place 2 inches apart on baking sheet.  Using a rounded spoon, create an indentation in the center of each cookie and place a cherry in the center. Bake until cookies are toasted, about 13 minutes. Let them cool for about 10 minutes or so.

Stephanie’s Chicken Tortilla Soup

So I have this friend; she is beautiful,  smart and a great mommy. Everything that comes out of Stephanie’s kitchen is ridiculously delicious. I’ve been lucky enough to have tried many of her dishes!

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For one of our Bluprint Marriages night she made this amazing tortilla soup. I finally asked her for the recipe and tried it this weekend. It was so easy to whip it together! With her permission I decided to share this quick and simple recipe. I think this is something you can add to your winter menu that the whole family would enjoy.

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I had never had tortilla soup before BP marriages night. It just never sounded that great to me. I grew up in a very Mexican household and we never made tortilla soup.  It always sounded really Americanized to me…and it kind of is. Either way…it doesn’t matter because it is really delicious!

Here is the main cast of characters:
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1 rotisserie chicken, 8 cups of chicken broth, 1 large can of rotel tomatoes,  2 cans of black beans (rinsed and drained), 2 cans of corn, 2 cans of diced green chilies, 1 stick of butter and white rice (this is optional).

You will also need salt, pepper, garlic powder and  2 heaping tablespoons of flour. For the toppings, I used tortilla chips, avocado, cheese and yummy green onions. (Not shown in photo)

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The first step in Stephanie’s directions is to melt a stick of butter in a stockpot. Once it is melted add the two spoonfuls of flour and whisk. This will give the soup a little thickness.  Once that is mixed well then add about a teaspoon of salt, garlic and pepper. You can add more later if you wish.

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Once all of that is combined, you can add the 8 cups of chicken broth.

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Once the flour mixture and chicken broth is thoroughly combined add the cans of drained black beans, cans of corn, rotel and green chilies. Mix and bring it to a boil.

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While that is boiling start shredding your chicken. I’m about to say something crazy. Up until recently I always cooked my own chicken for recipes like this…I don’t know why I never thought about using a rotisserie chicken from Sams. One day my friend called me out on it and I was so ashamed that I didn’t already do this!

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Add your perfect chicken to the pot and leave it to boil some. I left mine for about an hour but I think 30 minutes will do. Right before I turned off the stove, I added two tablespoons of sour cream and let it melt in.

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Then fill a bowl with soup grab your toppings and VIOLA! Stephanie’s original recipe didn’t call for white rice; however, I decided to add some. It would be great with or without it. I cooked it in a separate pot and added it as I served it. I hate soggy rice. Lol.

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The best thing about this soup is that it taste so much better the next day. The flavors just melt into each other and create some sort of tortilla soup goodness!

I hope y’all give this recipe a try. I promise you will love it! Have a blessed week! – Moni ❤

Stephanie’s Chicken Tortilla Soup

  • Rotisserie Chicken
  • 1 Stick of Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons of Flour
  • 8 Cups of Chicken Broth
  • 1 Large can of Rotel
  • 2 Cans of Black Beans
  • 2 Cans of Corn
  • 2 Cans of Diced Green Chiles
  • Sour Cream

Toppings

  • Tortilla Chips
  • Chopped Green Onions
  • Mexican Blend Cheese
  • Avocados
  • Lime
  • White Rice

Instructions: Melt a stick of butter in a stockpot. Once it is melted add the two spoonful’s of flour and whisk. This will give the soup a little thickness.  Once that is mixed well then add about a teaspoon of salt, garlic and pepper. You can add more later if you wish. Once all of that is combined, you can add the 8 cups of chicken broth. Once the flour mixture and chicken broth is thoroughly combined add the cans of drained black beans, cans of corn, rotel and green chilies. Mix and bring it to a boil. While that is boiling start shredding your chicken.  Add chicken to the pot and leave it to boil some. I left mine for about an hour but I think 30 minutes will do. Right before I turned off the stove, I added two tablespoons of sour cream and let it melt in.

Then make your rice in a separate pot and fill a bowl with soup, grab your toppings and enjoy your soup!

Last Minute Thanksgiving Dessert – Grape Salad

Happy Thanksgiving!  There is so much to be thankful for! I just got home from Wednesday night bluprint service at church and it was amazing. God is definitely moving within this ministry. I’m excited for the things to come in 2014. 🙂

Anyway, about an hour ago I was scrambling around trying to figure out what I was going to take to Mom’s house tomorrow. You see, we had planned on staying in town this year but last night we decided to go ahead and make the trip to good ol’Dimmitt! I hate showing up empty handed to family gatherings so I had to think fast. I’ve had plenty of pie this week so I decided to make this amazing grape salad! I have found various versions of this recipe and they are all divine.  It’s super easy and took me about 25 minutes to prepare.  Here is what you need:

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2 lbs of seedless purple grapes, 2 lbs of green seedless grapes, 8 oz of cream cheese, 8 oz of sour cream, 1/2 cup of white sugar, brown sugar, pecans and 1 tspn vanilla extract (not shown).

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Start out by please rinsing your grapes!  Lol no one likes grainy grapes! 😉

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Then in a separate bowl you will combine the cream cheese, sour cream, sugar, and vanilla and mix with a mixer until it’s smooth.

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When the mixture is smooth fold in your grapes and add a handful (or more) of pecans.

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Once it is all mixed well then you can sprinkle the brown sugar and top with more pecans. This time I added some marshmallows too!

You can eat it just like that but I really love it after it has been chilled for a couple of hours.

I hope you and your family are blessed this Thankgiving!  Enjoy! – Moni ❤

5 Can Hearty Chili

There is only one thing I love more than fall…winter! There is something about the cold weather that really makes my home…well home. I love cuddling with my family. I love how my make up sets in the mornings.  I love Christmas lights. I love hot chocolate. I love soup and I love CHILI!  I’m not patient enough to make chili from scratch…so this is the next best thing for me! 🙂 I stole this recipe from my sweet sister Maggie, I eventually made it my own. It is super simple and goes great with crackers or Green Chili Cornbread!

This is what you need:
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A package of ground beef, 1 can of ranch style beans, 1 can of minestrone soup, 1 can of beef broth, 1 can of whole kernel corn, 1 can of diced tomatoes and green chilies rotel.

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Season and brown your ground beef to your liking. I use salt, pepper, cumin, and garlic. Occasionally, I put chopped onions but I didn’t have any today.

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This is where it gets really complicated. When your ground beef is about 90% browned, drain the grease and add the rest of the ingredients to the pan you cooked your ground beef in. (It’s ok if your meat is still a little pink. It will finish cooking in the next process.)

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Set your stoves heat setting to medium and let it simmer for about 30 minutes or so.

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It will eventually thicken up some and that’s how you know it is ready. 🙂  Like I said before, this will taste great with crackers or the Green Chili Cornbread  below! 🙂

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I hope you all give this recipe a try! At first I was a little skeptical but now it’s one of my favorite recipes to make during the winter season! My husband loves it because its really hearty and meaty. It’s a perfect MAN MEAL! 😉  I think you could easily throw the cooked beef and other ingredients in the crockpot and get the same results.  🙂

I hope you like it! – Moni<3

5 CAN HEARTY CHILI

  • 1 Package of ground beef
  • 1 Can of ranch style beans
  • 1 Can of beef broth
  • 1 Can of minestrone soup
  • 1 Can of whole kernel corn
  • 1 Can of rotel

Season and brown your ground beef to your liking. I use salt, pepper, cumin, and garlic. Occasionally, I put chopped onions but I didn’t have any today.

When your ground beef is about 90% browned, drain the grease and add the rest of the ingredients to the pan you cooked your ground beef in. (It’s ok if your meat is still a little pink. It will finish cooking in the next process.)

Set your stoves heat setting to medium and let it simmer for about 30 minutes or so.

It will eventually thicken up some and that’s how you know it is ready. 🙂

Green Chili Cornbread

Happy Wednesday! This weekend I posted the recipe I use for Thanksgiving turkey. So I thought I would share one of the sides I make along with it, green chili cornbread!  I originally acquired the recipe from here; however, I decided to try something new and add green chilies to it!  It came out amazing! Here is what you need:

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Jiffy Cornbread Mix, 8 oz. sour cream, 2 eggs, can of whole kernel corn (drained), can of cream style corn, can of green chilies and 2 tablespoons of melted butter (not shown).

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This recipe is ridiculously simple. You just mixed all the ingredients together, pour it into a buttered pan and pop it in the oven for 45-50 minutes!

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This is the finished product. We were so anxious to get into it that I forgot to take a picture before we cut into it! 🙂 This recipe can easily be doubled but make sure and adjust the baking time.

This is going to go absolutely with your turkey or any winter Chili you plan on making!

Blessings – Moni ❤

Green Chili Cornbread

  • Jiffy Cornbread Mix
  • 8oz. Sour Cream
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 Tbsp, of Melted Butter
  • 1 Can of Cream Style Corn
  • 1 Can of Whole Kernel Corn (Drained)
  • 1 Can of Green Chilies

Mix all ingredients together, pour in a buttered pan and bake for 45-50 minutes.

Overnight Turkey

I went grocery shopping the other day at my local United Supermarket and found a 23lb. turkey for $0.57 a pound! I brought it home and my husband was just as excited as I was! I was going to save it for Thanksgiving but my husband is a truck driver and had a long layover in Albuquerque so I decided to surprise him when he got home. We can eat turkey all day, every day…especially in November!

This is the recipe that I’ve used for about three years and I love it!  It’s a mix between Mom’s recipe and my mother in laws recipe. You will want to start the seasoned butter the day before to give it enough time to cool. This is what you need:

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Lipton onion soup mix, a couple of lemons, celery, butter, pineapple juice, salt, thyme, rosemary, garlic powder,  poultry seasoning and of course a turkey! 

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The day before melt two sticks of butter.
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You are then going to add about a tablespoon of each of these ingredients plus one package of onion soup mix (not pictured) to the melted butter.

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Once all the ingredients are added then your going to put the mixture in a ziplock bag and freeze it.

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The next day you will start with your defrosted and rinsed turkey. Make sure and take the neck and giblets out. The first time I made a turkey I forgot to take out the giblets. Lol.

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After your turkey is cleaned and patted dry, chop up the lemons and some celery and stuff them inside the turkey like so.

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(I failed to get photos of the frozen butter but I’ll explain it.)
After your turkey is stuffed with the lemons and celery take your frozen herbed butter out of the freezer and chop it up into quarter size pieces. Take a knife and slide it under the skin of the turkey to loosen it up some. Once it is all separated a bit start sliding your butter quarters in between the skin. This will give the turkey a yummy buttery flavor. If you have butter left over like I did rub it over the top of the turkey.

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Now you are ready to out the turkey in the oven bag. (Oven bags are heaven sent! 😉 Make sure and slit it at the top right before you put it in the oven!) Once it’s in there I added about two cups of pineapple juice. This gives it an amazing tangy flavor and helps with moisture.

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Secure the bag and stick it in the roasting pan you are planning to use.

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Then stick your turkey in a preheated 350 degree oven for an HOUR. I started mine at about 11:00 PM.

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In one hour lower the temperature to 225 degrees and let it cook all night. I woke up at around 8:00 AM and the little pop up that came with the turkey had already popped up. I then raised the temperature back to 300 degrees and left it for 30 minutes.

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After the 30 minutes are up, check the temperature and make sure it reads at least 165 degrees. Once it does then your done! Your turkey will have a crispy buttered skin and a juicy inside!

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Excuse the chunk missing on the side…I couldn’t help myself. Haha. If you have any questions please let me know! 🙂

I hope this helps make your holiday season yumilicious! -Moni