If you have a question or comment, please e-mail me at marinscreations@yahoo.com

Friday, February 27, 2009

Sweet and Sour Chicken

This recipe is so yummy!
3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into chunks
salt & pepper
1 cup cornstarch
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup canola oil

1. Season chicken with salt & pepper. Dip chicken in cornstarch, then in egg.
2. Fry battered chicken in hot canola oil over medium heat just until browned (not cooked through).
3. Place browned chicken in a single layer in a 9x13 baking dish.
4. Pour sauce over chicken (see recipe below), and bake at 325 degrees for one hour, turning chicken every 15 minutes.

Sauce: whisk together the following
3/4 cup sugar
4 Tbsp. ketchup
1/2 cup vinegar
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. garlic salt

If you like extra sauce you can make a second batch in a saucepan. Bring it to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and stir constantly till thickened (about 6-8 minutes).

Crock Pot Beef Stroganoff

1 lb. cubed beef stew meat
1 10.75oz. can Golden Mushroom Soup (not cream of mushroom)
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 envelope of onion soup mix
1/4 cup water
4 ounces cream cheese
dollop of sour cream
small can of mushrooms

1. In your crock pot, combine beef, soup, onion soup mix, onion, Worcestershire, and water.
2. Cook on low for 5-6 hours (until meat is tender).
3. A half an hour prior to serving add mushrooms.
4. Add cream cheese and sour cream just prior to serving.
5. Serve over egg noodles.

*if your family likes it extra "saucy", then double Golden Mushroom Soup and water

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Chicken Fried Chicken

30 saltine crackers
2 Tablespoons flour
2 Tablespoons potato flakes
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 egg
1/4 cup vegetable oil
6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts halves

1. Place crackers in a large Ziploc bag. Crush crackers until they become coarse crumbs. Add flour, potato flakes, seasoned salt, and pepper.
2. Beat egg in a shallow bowl. Begin heating oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
3. Dredge each piece of chicken in egg, then place in Ziploc bag and shake to coat.
4. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook chicken in skillet for 15-20 minutes, turning frequently (about every 3 minutes or so). Juices should run clear and breading should be a crispy golden brown.

This has plenty of flavor by itself, but serving country gravy over top would be really yummy too!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Thick N' Hearty Chicken Cheese Soup

1 cup carrots, sliced
1/4 cup chopped green onion
3 Tablespoons butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk
1 10.75oz. can chicken broth
1 12.5oz. can of canned chicken
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/8 teaspoon black pepper

1. In a medium saucepan, cook carrots and green onion in butter until tender, about 10 minutes.
2. Stir in flour.
3. Slowly add milk, chicken broth, Worcestershire sauce, and pepper.
4. Cook, stirring until thickened and bubbly.
5. Stir in chicken and cheese.
6. Cook and stir over low heat until cheese melts.
Thanks to Nelda Evans for this recipe!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Sour Cream & Chicken Enchiladas

16oz. sour cream
2 cans cream of chicken soup
1 large can of canned chicken or any pre-cooked chicken
1 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese
4 oz. diced green chilies and 1/2 cup diced onion (I substitute green onion for the green chilies)
1 dozen flour tortillas
1. Mix sour cream, cream of chicken, chicken, cheese, green chilies, and onion in a medium mixing bowl.
2. Warm tortillas.
3. Spread mixture on each tortilla and roll. Place in a 9x13 baking dish.
4. Pour remaining mixture over top the rolled tortillas. (you can sprinkle a little more cheese on top if you'd like.)
5. Bake for 25 minutes at 350 degrees, or until heated through and cheese is melted.

Spanish Rice

1 1/2 cup white rice
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 glove garlic, minced
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup water
1/2 Tablespoon cumin
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 8oz. can tomato sauce
1. Brown rice in oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic. Saute.
2. Add all remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Simmer 20-30 minutes with lid on.
Check periodically, add more water if necessary, but DO NOT STIR. Cook until rice is tender and liquid is gone.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Lazy Susan

This was a Pottery Barn Kids inspired project. If any of you get their catalog then I'm sure you've seen their $49.00 version of this. My version on the other hand only cost $6.50!

So I loved the idea of having all the kids art supplies all in one place. The buckets are screwed in place and stable so there's no chance for spilled buckets! Wouldn't this look so cute on the kids table in the playroom?!
I did however have a hard time finding a wooden lazy susan for this project because everything now a days is plastic or stainless steel. I ended up finding this one second hand for $4.00. I bought the buckets on clearance at Walmart but any of the buckets at Target's dollar spot would be cute too. I wanted mine to be non-gender specific since I have both a boy and a girl.
What you need:
wooden lazy susan
sand paper
spray paint
5 buckets
5 short screws
What you do:
1. Scuff up the lazy susan with sand paper just enough to break through the finish.
2. Spray paint the lazy susan, I did about 3 coats. Let dry over night or longer.
3. Measure or just eye ball the position you want the buckets in, and make a slight pencil mark on the lazy susan for each one.
4. Poke a small hole on the inside center of each bucket to start your screws.
5. Position each bucket and screw down tightly, making sure your screw does not go through the wood entirely or it will prevent the lazy susan from spinning.
*If worse came to worse and you couldn't find a wooden lazy susan, you could always buy a plastic one and glue the buckets down.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

St. Patrick's Day Decor

Time to switch it up again! I'm actually really happy with the way this one turned out. I bought my little Leprechaun at Hobby Lobby, then sprinkled confetti (pots of gold and gold and green stars) around him. I then wrapped shamrock wire garland (dollar store) around the outside. I was worried about the wire garland being to "cheapie" looking, but I think it turned out cute.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Crock Pot Pork Loin Roast

2-3 lb. pork loin roast
1/2 onion, diced
6 Tablespoons of brown gravy mix (equiv. 2 envelopes)
2 cups water

1. Place pork loin in crock pot. Sprinkle roast with diced onion.
2. Prepare gravy as directed on package then pour over roast.
3. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, depending on the size of your roast.
4. Slice and serve, drizzling gravy and onions over top.

Fettucine Alfredo w/ Chicken

I got this recipe out of a book that is supposed to be restaurant copy-cats. This is supposed to be a copy-cat of Olive Garden's fettuccine alfredo. Since I've never had their fettuccine alfredo, I can't tell you that it tastes the same, what I can tell you is that it tastes really good!

8 oz. cream cheese, cubed
3/4 cup gated Parmesan cheese (1/2 cup is plenty)
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup milk
16 oz. fettuccine noodles, cooked & drained
chicken (optional)

*if you have chosen to add chicken, which I did, cook completely prior to starting sauce. I brushed six chicken tenders with olive oil and seasoned with Johnny's garlic seasoning (from Costco). Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

1. In a medium saucepan combine cream cheese, Parmesan, butter, and milk. Stir constantly over medium heat until smooth. Toss over pasta.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

Hugs & Kisses
Happy Valentine's Day! I thought I'd just share the banner I made. I purchased these letters at JoAnn's, (I'm sure you've all seen these there), they were actually in the Clearance isle, my favorite, and they were X's and Q's that I converted into O's! After all who wants X's and Q's right? I do! Just something simple and fun. I just threaded them on some pink ribbon I already had.

Embellished Apron....by request

I received a request a few weeks ago that I embellish a store bought apron. I bought this apron at Walmart for $2.99, it also comes in a canvas color as well.

*Always wash the apron before adding any embellishments.
So I decided to start of with a monogram. I freehanded a letter M onto a piece of Steam-A-Seam (can be purchased at any craft store). You can also trace onto the Steam-A-Seam as well. I then cut it out and followed the directions on the package. I did the same for the little birdies as well. I thought the apron still needed something...so I decided a pocket! I am going to use this apron as my craft apron so a pocket would be handy to keep scissors and pens in. I just zig-zag stitched the pocket on.

I think all in all, I made this for under $4.00! I already had the red dotted fabric and the Steam-A-Seam, so $3.00 for the apron and .75 cents for the fat quarter of floral fabric. Not Bad!

Thanks for the request Monica! I really enjoyed making this. If anyone ever has any requests, let me know, I'd be glad to help!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Before & After....Mirror


Sorry, these pictures didn't turn out to great. I got this mirror second hand for $15 and gave it a little make-over. I sanded and primed it then gave it a few coats of Sugar Egg Pink by Martha Stewart. I am doing a shabby princess theme for my little girl's room so the worn and refinished look is what I'm going for. This just happens to be the first piece I've actually finished. I still have the bed, dresser, hutch, and night stand to go....although, they won't be pink. Pictures of those to come.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


1 pound spicy Italian sausage
3/4 pound lean ground beef
1/2 cup minced onion
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 (28 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
2 (6 ounce) cans tomato paste
2 (6.5 ounce) cans canned tomato sauce
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil leaves
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 tablespoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
12 lasagna noodles
16 ounces ricotta cheese
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 pound mozzarella cheese, sliced
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1. In a Dutch oven or skillet, cook sausage, ground beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and water. Season with sugar, basil, Italian seasoning, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley. Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.
2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
4. To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce. Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of mozzarella cheese slices. Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella, and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil: to prevent sticking, either spray foil with cooking spray, or make sure the foil does not touch the cheese.
5. Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Baby Back Ribs

This is the highly anticipated recipe many of you having been waiting for. I decided I'd better post it after getting complaints for not putting it in the ward cookbook. It is another one of my MIL's recipes.
1 rack of PORK baby back ribs (not spare ribs)
1 tablespoon Montreal Seasoning (McCormick’s)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 bottle bbq sauce (we like Joe's BBQ & KC Masterpiece Original)

Whisk together Montreal Seasoning, olive oil, and soy sauce. Brush rack of ribs with marinade. Heat barbeque to medium/high heat, brown each side of the ribs (top up) and remove from grill. Place ribs on large piece of HEAVY DUTY foil on a cookie sheet and generously cover in bbq sauce. Seal foil around ribs and wrap one more time with heavy duty foil to avoid leaks. Bake for 3 ½ -4 hours at 275 degrees.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Spinach & Artichoke Dip

1 14oz. can artichoke hearts, drained
1/3 cup Romano cheese, grated
3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 10oz. package frozen chopped spinach, thawed & drained
1/3 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
1. In a food processor/blender, place artichoke hearts, Romano cheese, Parmesan cheese, and garlic. Chop it but don't grind it. Set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, mix spinach, heavy cream, sour cream, and Mozzarella.
3. Stir in artichoke mixture.
4. Place in an 8x8 baking dish and bake for 25 minutes at 350 degrees.

Serve hot!