Friday, December 11, 2009

Chocolate Chip Cookies - soft

I love treats and cookies are no exception but rarely do I eat a chocolate chip cookie that I'm totally in love with. They're usually to dry or hard for my liking. Then my best friend in college introduced me to these. The recipe actually came from her hubby and I've never made another chocolate chip recipe since. I think the vanilla pudding is the key ingredient and keeps them soft and moist - even after sitting for days! I brought these to a meeting last week and they were goggled up pretty quick - give them a try - they definitely won't disappoint!

The total points for the entire recipe is a tad over 175. I used a tablespoon to drop mine on the cookie sheet and it yielded 73 cookies which made each of mine around 2 1/2 weight watcher points. If you make yours smaller or larger adjust the points accordingly.


1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup butter
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
4 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 small packages of instant vanilla pudding
1 bag of chocolate chips


1. Cream both the sugars with the butter.

2. Add the eggs and vanilla.

3. Sift and add flour, soda, and pudding.

4. Add chocolate chips.

Cook time:

Bake at 375 for 6 minutes.


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Baked Ziti with Spinach and Sausage

Here is one of my newest most favorite blogs:

Your Homebased Mom

I found many lovely recipes that I'm just dying to try and yesterday when we had the missionaries over I gave this one a shot. (This is my picture before I popped it in the oven - head on over to her site to check out much more appealing pictures of the yummy dish)!

Baked Ziti with Spinach and Sausage. It was heavenly. And eating the leftovers today tasted like something straight out of Olive Garden. So head on over to her place and check out the other recipes she's got. No reason to go out to eat next month for my birthday, I told the hubby I want him to make me the Penne Rustica - it looks -to die for-!!!

My most favorite part of the dish - you can make part of it the night before. That way when the craziness of life and screaming kids gets in the way I just had to boil the noodles, do a few last minute things, and mix it all up!

Baked Ziti with Spinach and Sausage

This makes 11 - 1 cup servings. Each serving is 8 weight watcher points.

I ate a 1/2 cup (4 points) with a nice size salad and 1 roll and that was plenty for me. Of course I was REALLY wanting more but I maintained my self control :)


1 pound sweet or hot Italian sausages (I used 4 links - sweet)

1/2 C chopped onion

3 large garlic cloves, chopped (I use the already minced kind)

1 28-ounce can diced peeled tomatoes

1/4 C pesto (I used the CLASSICO - traditional basil pesto in a jar because it was the cheapest)

10 ounces ziti or penne pasta (about 3 cups), freshly cooked

4 cups or handfulls of baby spinach leaves

6 ounces grated or cubed mozzarella cheese

1 Cup grated Parmesan cheese


Cook sausage, onion, and garlic until sausage is cooked through. Add tomatoes with juices. Simmer until sauce thickens slightly, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Add pesto. Season sauce with salt and pepper(I ended up forgetting to add any salt or pepper and it tasted fine). You can prepare up to this point a day ahead and refrigerate. Bring mixture back to simmer before continuing (I just stored mine in a glass dish and reheated it in the microwave before moving on).

Preheat oven to 375° F. Lightly oil 13 x 9-inch glass baking dish. Combine pasta, spinach, mozzarella and 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese in large bowl. Stir in warm/hot tomato mixture. Place in prepared baking dish. Sprinkle remaining 2/3 cup Parmesan cheese over. Bake until sauce bubbles and cheeses melt, about 30 minutes.


Saturday, December 5, 2009


Asparagus are BY FAR one of my most favorite vegetables to have at dinner! They are so healthy, delicious, and oh so easy to make!

I take one bunch of asparagus and trim off the bottoms. Then I toss them in a tad (like 1-2 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil) then lay them on a baking sheet and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Then I cook them at about 400 until the desired firmness/softness is reached

1/2 the bunch (1-2 WW points)

I thought by getting the toddler involved would make her more prone to wanting to eat them - ha ha ha - no such luck - playing with them did however keep her entertained the entire time I was making dinner! I never knew vegetables could talk and have such elaborate interactions with one another - it was quite cute to watch :)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Store-bought Cinnamon Rolls

I heart cinnamon rolls.

Nothing warms my heart or expands my belly like a giant gooey Cinnabon.

I have made different homemade cinnamon rolls in the past and this Thanksgiving I had wanted to make some for breakfast. However, I knew with all the other food I'd be cooking (since I was hosting this year) and with my mommy waking me up at 5am to go shopping that day I wasn't going to have the time or really feel to up for the task.

So I bought these. Rhodes GIANT cinnamon rolls. NOT the ANYTIME ones. I let them rise overnight and after shopping in the morning we baked these beauties. They were good. And even better after that sat for awhile and were reheated later - my favorite. Let's just say these were gigantic and didn't last very long in our house - I definitely gobbled down more than my fair share - that's for sure!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Apple/Crasin Salad

This has got to be my all time favorite salad. It's quick, healthy, and oh so yummy.

(1 cup lettuce, 1 TBSP. dressing, 1/2 a small apple, a tad of craisins, and a tad of bacon = 3 WW points)

- 1 head of lettuce - whatever kind you like. I usually go for green leaf lettuce.
- about 1/2 - 1 cup of craisins.
- a couple of tablespoons of real bacon bits (the soft kind in the bag- way easier than frying and crumbling your own bacon - and healthier too!)
- 1-2 chopped apples (any kind you like will do)
- as much Poppyseed dressing as you like. I prefer T. Marzetti's.

1. Mix it all together and ENJOY!