Easy Guacamole Recipe

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Guacamole is quick and easy to make with avocado, lemon or lime, cilantro, garlic and salt. I have always loved avocados but in the last few months, they have become a staple on our menu.  I eat them pretty much every chance I get.  I also really love guacamole, but the recipe I was using was complicated and called for a list of ingredients, including sour cream.  I knew there had to be a simpler way. So I asked my resident Mexican food expert, Jacqui, how she makes guacamole.  She told me avocado, lime, and cilantro plus salt and garlic if I wanted.  Well, that sounded easy enough.  Except I only had lemons on hand and no cilantro. Then I discovered freeze dried cilantro at the grocery store and it has changed my life.  Now I can make all those Mexican recipes I love but never make because I never have fresh cilantro.  I love this stuff! The first dozen times I made this guacamole, I just used a fork and mashed it all together.  But then I realized that my ... [read more]

Homemade Cajun Seasoning

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Cajun seasoning

Make your own Cajun seasoning with just a few spices that are already in your spice cabinet!   A few weeks ago I made Shrimp Etouffee for the first time and it has quickly become a favorite dinner.   One of the ingredients in the etouffee recipe is Cajun seasoning. Of course you can buy Cajun seasoning, but I prefer to make my own seasonings whenever I can - like my homemade taco seasoning and Italian salad dressing mix.  I like to be able to control the amount of salt in the seasoning and in this case, the amount of heat. Homemade seasoning mixes are easy to make.  I generally make a large amount and then store the mixes in a Tupperware spice shaker to keep them fresh longer.  The Cajun seasoning mix is good for about 3 months, but will last longer in a Tupperware shaker. This Cajun seasoning recipe is actually from my friend, Suzy.  Suzy's quite the cook but alas she doesn't have a blog for me to send you to.  She actually won a Taste of Home cooking competition a ... [read more]

Gluten Free Pancakes Made with Almond Flour

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gluten free pancakes

Gluten free pancakes made with almond flour are a delicious way to pack a healthy punch at breakfast - or dinner! Made in the blender with almond flours these gluten free pancakes are ready in a hurry, too. When my family  went gluten free earlier this year, I checked out many different sources to find gluten free recipes.  I'm not a big fan of gluten free flour mixes, so I stick mainly with almond flour and coconut flour.  I purchased The Gluten Free Almond Flour Cookbook by Elana Amsterdam to help me learn how to cook with almond flour.  I haven't yet gotten past the pancake recipe! My family loves pancakes and waffles.  I found a great gluten free waffle recipe, but wanted an option with less eggs for pancakes.   I really like this pancake recipe, but it was way too sweet and I kept burning the pancakes.  So I gradually cut back on the agave nectar and found that about 1 Tablespoon helps to make the pancakes less sweet and not burn quite so easily.  You still have to cook ... [read more]

Slow Cooker Ribs

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Slow Cooker Ribs from Growing Up Gabel @thegabels #recipe

Slow cooker ribs are the perfect main dish for a Super Bowl party.  Cook the ribs in the slow cooker, while you do other things, then simply grill or broil with barbecue sauce for 15 minutes and the ribs are ready to serve! You will need: 3 1/2 pounds pork spare ribs 1/4 cup packed brown sugar 1/2 teaspoon pepper 1 teaspoon salt 3 Tablespoons liquid smoke 2 cloves garlic, finely diced 1 medium onion, sliced 1/2 cup cola Barbecue sauce In a small bowl prepare a rub by mixing together the brown sugar, pepper, salt, liquid smoke and garlic. Remove ribs from package or wrapping  I bought a package of Farmer John's Spareribs at Smart & Final that was over 8 pounds and contained 2 racks of ribs. I cooked up one rack, as seen above, which was right around 4 pounds, and froze the other rack for later. For a party, I'd use 2 slow cookers and cook them all. Cut racks of ribs in to 4 equal parts - or however many pieces you need to fit them in ... [read more]

Homemade Blueberry Donuts

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Baked Blueberry Donuts

Baked donuts are a fun breakfast or treat! These blueberry donuts are drizzled with a lemon glaze for a delicious flavor combination. We are a family of donut lovers, but really, who doesn't love donuts?  I've tried frying donuts a few times and while they are yummy,  I've been wanting to try baked donuts.  This summer I just found two heart shaped donut pans on clearance at a store in Michigan so I snatched them up and our baked donut journey has begun. I thought that baked donuts would be heavy and dense like the cake donuts at the donut shop.  Turns out you can make light fluffy baked donuts! In fact, the texture of these reminds me more of a Krispy Kreme donut than a cake donut.   The cake flour probably helps with the density.   My flour ratio is only because I ran out of cake flour -- use 3 cups if you have it! My glaze ended up very, very light and it soaked right in to the donuts.  If you want to actually see the glaze and have it rest on top, you may want to add ... [read more]