Key Lime Pie

Tart and tangy. Cool and creamy. I love Key Lime Pie. After recently paying about $5.50 for one slice at a restaurant I decided that was highway robbery and I there isn’t any reason why I shouldn’t make my own more often. It is so easy and so delicious. And it doesn’t even cost $5.50 to make an entire pie all your own.

5 egg yolks, beaten
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup key lime juice
1 (9 inch) prepared graham cracker crust

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Combine the egg yoks, sweetened condensed milk and lime juice. Mix well. Pour into unbaked graham cracker shell. Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes. Allow to cool completely. Top with freshly whipped cream and garnish with lime slices, if desired.

Easy Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream

I am attracted to recipes with the word “easy” in the title, not because I don’t enjoy cooking, but sometimes life just calls for easy. I have had this one sitting in my recipe box for ages. You can make it as written or add your favorite flavorings. If you want to add fresh fruit, just reduce the half-and-half to one cup and add in 1 cup of pureed fruit of your choice—blueberries, peaches and cherries all sound good to me.

2 cups half-and-half
2 cups whipping cream
1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
2 Tablespoons vanilla extract.
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, mixing well. Freeze in an ice cream maker by following the manufacturer’s directions. Before eating, allow ice cream to “ripen” in your refrigerator’s freezer, if desired. Freeze any leftovers.

Try it with this cake if you are feeling adventurous.

Dutch Oven Cherry Chocolate Surprise Cake

Summer is Dutch oven season at our house. In honor of my husband I am posting this recipe that he has made a couple of times with great results. Bon appétit!

1 chocolate cake mix; prepared as directed
1 (20 oz) can cherry pie filling
1 (8 oz) brick of cream cheese
1 egg
3 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Pour prepared cake batter into a greased 12 inch Dutch oven. Spoon cherry pie filling into clumps over cake batter. In a small mixing bowl cream together cream cheese, egg, sugar and vanilla until smooth. Drop by tablespoons over the top of the cake.
Place lid on oven. Bake using 8-10 briquettes bottom and 14-16 briquettes top for 1 hour or until top center of cake springs back when touched.
Serve warm with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Bean Burritos

Feed your family a tasty and easy meal for cheap! It’s a win/win!


1 clove garlic

1 chopped onion

in 1 tablespoon olive oil.

Stir in:

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 cup sour cream

1/8 tsp cumin

salt and pepper

1 can green chilies, optional

Fill 4 to 8 flour tortillas with bean mixture. Place in a 9x13 baking dish. Cover with 3/4 cup salsa or 1/2 can enchilada sauce. Cover with grated cheese. Bake in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for 20 minutes or until heated through.

Salsa Fresca (Fresh Summer Salsa)

This is a delicious and refreshing way to use up some of those tomatoes you probably have starting to get ripe in your garden.

2 very large tomatoes

4 or 5 green onions

1 Tbsp of Anaheim green chili OR 2 dashes cayenne pepper (use gloves when handling hot peppers)

2-4 Tbsp fresh cilantro (more or less—you know me, I go with less.)

1/4 to 1/2 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp minced garlic (like the kind in a jar) or 1 clove fresh garlic, minced

salt (to taste)

Finely chop the tomatoes, onions, chili and cilantro. Stir in the garlic and cumin. Season to taste with about one teaspoon of salt. Serve with your favorite tortilla chips or use as a condiment for tacos, taquitos or Amy’s Chicken Mexican Casserole. :)

*For a winter substitute, replace the tomatoes with whole canned tomatoes (whirled in a blender or food processor), the green onion with white onion and the chili with a small can of Ortega canned chiles. Puree equal amounts of tomato and chiles and add chopped onion and other spices to taste. This can be bottled for a longer shelf life if desired.