Thursday, February 19, 2009

March Food Storage Month

March will be "FOOD STORAGE" month here at Cricket's Cafe. Yep...there will be recipes and tips from some of my favorite sites like....

OR..... And a few more.

We will have a great contest for the best recipe/food storage story. Contest rules will follow in a few days. So start thinking about your favorite recipe using your food storage and your favorite food storage you lived off your food storage while out of work,or during an emergency, or just something funny that you and your family still laugh about. It's up to is your story!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Phyllis Trimble's Frosted Banana Bars

This recipe was submitted by my friend Phyllis Trimble. These bars are amazing and one of my very favorites. Thanks Phyllis, now the rest of the world can love them as much as I do!


½ cup butter – softened
2 cups sugar

3 eggs
1-1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (about 3)
1 tsp vanilla extract

Combine and add to creamed mixture and mix well:
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
Pinch salt

Pour into greased 15x10x1 baking pan. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes or until bars test done. Cool.

½ cup butter – softened
1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
4 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract

Cream butter and cream cheese in mixing bowl. Gradually add confectioners sugar and vanilla, beat well. Spread over bars.

Makes 3 dozen

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Food Storage Sites

Hi Everyone.....not sure if you have noticed but along the right side there are a few sites listed for food storage. These are amazing ladies who have spent a lot of time putting together wonderful food storage sites that simply amaze me. I thought I had a great food store thing going on...nope...mine isn't even good let alone great. can be and it will be.

There are many out there but these are some of my favorites. Check them out if you want some really good ideas, recipes and information. If you are just starting out, or even more advanced at food storage I'm sure you will find ideas you can use.

Marsh is going to be Food Storage Month at Cricket's Cafe. I will be posting recipes that use food storage, and helpful hints. If you know of other food storage sites that have helped you or have any hints or great recipes using food storage make sure to send them to me at

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Pumpkin Bread

Phyllis Trimbles

Cream: ½ cup margarine or shortening

1 cup sugar

2 eggs

Add: 1-3/4 cup flour

½ tsp nutmeg

¼ tsp ginger

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp soda

¼ tsp cloves

½ tsp salt

¾ cup pumpkin

¾ cup chocolate chips or nuts (1/2 package)

Bake 1 hour at 350

For cookies: Bake for 15 minutes

For cake: 1-1/2 recipes, cook for 30 minutes

Small loaf pans: at least 30 minutes (if over 2” thick)

Tortellini Salad

Submitted by Phyllis Trimble

This sounds like something I would like to make for dinner on a hot summer day. Follow it up with a piece of cold pineapple pie...Yum!

1 package (9 oz) fresh cheese-filled spinach tortellini

2 small zucchini, sliced

2 small tomatoes cut into wedges

1 can (7 oz) artichoke hearts, drained and quartered

1 can (3-1/2 oz) sliced ripe olives, drained

1 pound shrimp, cooked, peeled and deveined

½ cup chopped fresh basil leaves

Grated parmesan cheese

Italian Herb Dressing (or anything that is spicey)

Cook tortellini as package directs, drain. In a large bowl, gently toss all ingredients except cheese. Sprinkle with parmesan.

Italian Herb Dressing: in small bowl, wish together ¾ cup olive oil, ¼ cur red wine vinegar; 1 clove garlic, minced; ¼ tsp dried tarragon leaves. Season with salt and cracked black pepper to taste. Makes about 1 cup.

Phyllis Trimble's Brownie Cake

I can't wait to make this. Phyllis makes the best banana bars in the world. So I am sure these is just as good.

Brownie Cake

2 cups sugar

3 Tbsp cocoa

1 cup water

½ cup oil

1 square margarine

½ cup milk + 1 tbsp vinegar + 1 tsp soda

2 eggs

2 cups flour

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups marshmallows(set aside)

Mix all ingredients together except Marshmallows.
Spread in a 11 x 14 pan and bake 14-16 minutes. (Check for doneness)
Romove pan from oven and put marshmallows on top. Return to oven for about 3 more minutes.Frost immediatly!!


1 square margarine

2 tbsp cocoa

2 cups powdered sugar

1/3 cup evaporated milk (use less if using regular milk regular milk)
Mix together and put on cake.

Kristi Evans Bread Dip

 This recipe has been affectionately renamed Cricket's Crack cause they say it is so addicting.
But I can only take credit for making it over and over again. The recipe is not mine, and I am not even sure where it came from.
The first time I had this was at a party I went to at my friend Kristi's.(That is her sweet family in the photo above) I was addicted the minute I tasted it. Every time I take it some place I am always asked buy many people for the recipe. Now when I take it someplace I just take a long a few copies of it. If you are asked to bring something to a party, I can guarantee you they will love it and want you to bring it over and over again!

Bread Dip

16 oz. sour cream
16 oz. mayo
2 Tbsp. dried dill weed
One package "Budding" ham.
One loaf (you may want to get two)french bread.

**The ham is sliced very thin and comes in small packages that hang on hooks in the section where you get your pre-packaged lunch meat.Budding or Budding is the Brand name. I am not sure on the spelling but it is close. If your store doesn't carry that brand choice something similar.

Chop ham...I usually chop mine into pieces about the size of a dime.
Mix ham, sour cream, mayo and dill together.
Cut French bread up into one inch pieces.
Dip bread into mixture and is sooooo good!

You can eat it right away but I like mine in the fridge for about an hour first.

**NOTE** I have noticed that sour cream comes in 16 oz. but mayo comes in 15 oz. That is fine. The recipe just calls for equal parts mayo and sour cream but one ounce has not made any difference. If you are worried about the fat and calories you can use fat free mayo and sour cream. There is a slight taste difference but very little. I only make this for special occasions so I just use the regular stuff.
Be prepared, once you take it someplace they will always want you to bring it.
Thanks Kristi for a recipe that has made me the hit of several parties...LOL

Cricket's Spicy Potato Wedges

These potato wedges are soooo good. I also substitute sweet potatoes sometimes. That sweet and spicy taste mixed together is really great.

Spicy Roasted Potato Wedges.
* 5 russet potatoes cut in 1/2 wedges
(about 3 1/2 lbs.)
* 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
* 1 Tbsp. paprika
* Salt and Pepper to taste
* 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
* 1 tsp. dried thyme
* 1 clove garlic minced. (I use the kind in the jar because I hate messing with garlic)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
In large bowl combine potatoes, oil, paprika,salt, pepper,cayenne and thyme.
Toss well to coat.

Divide potatoes between 2 rimmed baking sheets spreading out in a single layer.
Bake for 20 minutes.
Remove from oven and flip potatoes over.
Sprinkle with garlic.
Put pans bake in oven and bake for an additional 20 minutes.

**NOTE** The first time I made these I cut the potatoes a little thicker than I should have and they took a little longer to cook to be tender. Just poke them with a fork to make sure they are done to your likeness.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Sharon's Chicken Recipe

Sharon Starling submitted this and said her sweet daughhter Juliana sent it to her.
Sounds Yummy and is even Weight Watcher Friendly!

Chicken Breasts with Avocado Salsa
prep:4 min cook: 15 min

1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp garlic salt
1/2 tsp chili powder
4 (4 oz) boneless/skinless chicken breast halves
1 tsp vegetable oil
1/2 c bottled chunky salsa
1/2 cup diced peeled ripe avocado
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1. Combine first 3 ingredients; sprinkle over both sides of the chicken
2. Heat oil in a large non-stick skillet over med-high heat. Add chicken; cook 5 min. Turn chicken, and add salsa to pan. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 7 minutes or until chicken is done.
3Transfer chicken onto individual serving plates. Stir avocado and cilantro into pan; cook just until thoroughly heated. Spoon salsa mixture over chicken.
Yield: 4 servings (serving size: ! chicken breast and 1/4 c salsa mixture)

Exchanges: 4 very lean meat, 1/2 fat
Per serving: KCal 177 (30% from fat); PRO 27g; FAT 5.7g (sat 1.0g); CHO 3.4g; FIB1.6g, CHOL 66mg; IRON 1.4 mg; SOD 357 mg;CALC 28 mg

Friday, February 6, 2009

We Have A Winner

Well...actually 2 winners. Tammy sent me an email with a picture...WAY TO STEP IT UP TAMMY!!! And Patti made a comment about how good she and her daughter Betty thought the Oreo Truffles were and I got them about the same time. So...our first contest will have two winners. Congrats to Tammy and Patti! I am going to post Tammy's since she was such a sweetie and sent a picture.Your copies of the magazine will go out on Monday.

Hi Cricket,
Today I used the cake mix cookie recipe from your fun new blog,
Wow these were super fast, easy and YUMMY!
I made them out of a Devil's Food cake mix. I added a little flair by turning them in to turtle cookies by adding some pecans and drizzling a little caramel on top. There a hit at our house and took only minutes to make a homemade treat....which any busy mom will appreciate!
Thanks for the awesome recipe Cricket!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Our First Contest

To kick things off with the new blog, we are having a contest. The first person to use one of these recipes and leave a comment will win this brand new, hot of the presses issue of Better Homes and Garden's "Easy Family Food" I have not even peeked inside. It is filled with all easy, fun and fast recipes to please everyone in your family.

Triple Berry Crumble

This will be really good this summer when all the berries are in season!

Triple Berry Crumble


1 1/2 cups fresh blackberries
1 1/2 cups fresh raspberries
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
4 tablespoons white sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 1/2 cups butter


Preheat oven to 350 degrees
In a large bowl, gently toss together blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, and white sugar; set aside.

In a separate large bowl, combine flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.

Cut in butter until crumbly. Press half of mixture in the bottom of a 9x13 inch pan. Cover with berries.

Sprinkle remaining crumble mixture over the berries.

Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until fruit is bubbly and topping is golden brown.

Apple Cider Pork

I just found this recipe on another blog and thought it sounded sooo good. Maybe pull it apart and make a sandwich. Maybe add a side of black beans and rice for a Spanish flare...or just use your imagination!

Apple Cider Pork

1-2 lb. pork loin roast
4 cups apple cider (or apple juice)
4 cubes bouillon
2 Tbsp. ground dry mustard

Place all ingredients in the crock pot and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours (or on high for 4 to 6 hours).

Note: If you don't have a crock pot, you can do this on the stove top as well. Sear all sides of the roast in a large frying pan. Add the cider and seasonings and simmer on low for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Brittany's Trail Corn

Trail corn

4 cups of air popped popcorn
1/2 cup craisin, dried fruit
2 tbsp chocolate chips
1/2 cup oatmeal squares (cereal)

1.Serving size: 1 1/4
2.Place 1 cup of popcorn into 4 sandwich bags, followed by 2 tablespoon cereal, 2 tablespoons dried fruit, and 1/2 tablespoon chocolate chips.
3.Shake each bag to distribute the ingredients.
store up to 3 days

Sharon Deem's Potato Soup

Potato Soup
6 potatoes - diced
enough water to cover potatoes
one onion diced
salt to taste
Boil potatoes & onion till potatoes are ready to mash. (abt. 20 min.)
2 stalks celery & leaves diced.
Cook until potatoes are mush (abt. 15 min.) then mash with potato masher. Add:
6 - 8 strips bacon (cut in small pieces, fry & drain then add to soup). Cook for 5 min.
one can (12 oz.) can milk. Heat through. Serve.

Sharon Deem's Cinnamon Rolls

Easy Cinnamon Rolls

3/4 C. + 2 T. warm water
1 1/2 T. yeast
1/4 C. sugar
1/4 C. oil
Mix then let rise for 15 min. Add:
1 egg (beaten)
3/4 t. salt
3 C. flour
Knead till smooth, then let rest for 10 min.
Roll out, spread with butter, sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.
Roll up. Cut into about 1 inch widths. Place
in greased pan, greasing top of each roll. Let rise for
15 min. Bake at 375 for 10-15 min. Don't over bake.

3/4 cube butter or margarine - softened
3 C. powdered sugar
milk (scald) or orange juice

Sharon Deem's Cake Mix Cookies

Cake Mix Cookies

1 box any flavor cake mix (Spice is very good, but any flavor will work)
2 eggs
1 cube butter melted (1 stick)

Mix cake mix, eggs and butter, beat until smooth
Drop by teaspoonfuls onto GREASED cookie sheet
(don't place too close together, depending on the cake mix, these cookies will spread)
Bake at 350 degrees for 7 to 10 minutes

Ali's Squash Sautee

Ali is a wonderful friend I met at Anastasia's Attic. We hit it off right away and she sure is a cutie. Thanks Ali, this sounds yummy and with all my friends who have gardens in the summer I am sure they will want to try this one.

Squash Sautee

What You Need
2 zucchini, sliced
2 yellow squash, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil
2 Tbsp. grated parmesan cheese

Make It

COOK zucchini and squash in hot oil in large skillet on medium heat 3 min., stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook an additional 3 min. or until vegetables are crisp-tender.
REMOVE from heat; stir in mozzarella cheese and basil.
SPRINKLE with Parmesan cheese.

You can always omit the yellow squash and use 4 zucchini instead. Can also add onion or whatever your heart desires to the mix, this recipe is versatile!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Jane's Chinese New Year Candy

This was submitted by my good friend Jane in Florida. She is a great cook!

Chinese New Year Candy

12 oz. Chocolate morsels

12 oz. Butterscotch morsels

5 oz. Can Chinese noodles

12 oz. Can cocktail peanuts

Melt morsels together in the top of a double boiler. Add peanuts and noodles, stir to coat all. Drop by teaspoon onto a wax paper covered cookie sheet. Chill for 15 minutes. Store in a closed container in the fridge.

Easy and everyone loves it. We make it almost every year

Easy Oreo Truffles

These are sooooo easy to make and are a big hit whenever I take them to a party or give them as a gift.

Cricket's Easy Oreo Truffles

1 pkg. (1 lb.2 oz) Oreo cookies
1 pkg. (8 oz) Cream cheese, softened
2 pkg. (8 oz each) Bakers semi sweet bakers choolate,melted

Crush 9 of the cookies to fine crumbs and set aside for later.
Crush remaining cookies in blender or food processor to fine crumbs,
mix with cream cheese and blend well. Roll dough into 42 balls.

Dip in melted chocolate, place on wax paper covered baking sheet. Sprinkle with reserved cookie crumbs. Refrigerate until firm, about one hour. Store in refrigerator.

**For easy dipping use two forks to allow excess chocolate to run off. I also use my hands to mix the cream cheese and cookie crumbs instead of the blender, it just works better for me.