Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday! Time has gone by way too fast this week. I have been on vacation all week cleaning and tearing down the Christmas decorations. I am sure everyone has some sort of plans this evening. Whether you are spending it with family or friends please remember to enjoy yourself and please drink responsibly.

I am sure that there are going to be a few resolutions going around as well. I started my resolution 3 weeks ago by starting a lo-carb diet. This has been the only way to lost weight for me (along with exercise) in the past.... Weight watchers and low fat diets do not seem to work. So I am beginning the journey again that I started 6 years ago. I am doing the Kris' version of the Atkins/South Beach Diet. The good news is that I have a 3 week jump on everyone else....(Going into my 4th next week). And down 12 lbs! ( which I am sure was water, so you can't tell!) So resolution #1 is too obviously loose some weight. #2 is to spend more time with family! I have really enjoyed the 2 years I have been back with my mom and dad. We have done a lot of things together that I probably wouldn't normally do if I still had my own place. I want 2011 to be special for them.... I do not want to relive the beginning of 2010 again.

2010 did not get off to a good start when my friend Cathie passed away in January. As time went by it was harder to imagine life without her here. I would think that she was not gone and go to pick up the phone and remember she was gone. She was in her mid-fifties and had a heart of gold. She was a great friend, mother, grandmother, daughter and sister. She was soo loved by everyone that she came in contact with. It is still hard to believe that she is gone.

Despite the fact that I lost a very dear friend I did end January on a positive note, I received a promotion at work. However I really did not get a chance to do my job all year until the last quarter. A summer filled with a hurt knee and a different route every week due to the fact that we were 4 men down didn't stop me from making my dream a reality. In July I did a something I have not done in about 6 years. I catered a party. It made me feel alive! I smiles on peoples faces when they come up to you and say this was the best food I have ever had! It makes you feel good!

The fall came and we were back on board at work by getting fully staffed. I was a little more relaxed until the bomb got dropped that they were possibly eliminating my position at work. I freaked at first and then I decided it is was it is. (I dislike that saying) So I decided that I had a few orders for Thanksgiving treats so I posted some pics on FB and boy did the orders start rolling in... Time went by too fast and soon it was Christmas and I had orders for then also. I am starting on making some valentines day ideas and posting them so people can order! I am excited to see what 2011 holds for me. So I hope this finds all of you a Happy and Healthy New Year!

And as always Mangia!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Holiday Baking

Last week I was on a roll... Holiday Baking has begun.... Made everything under the sun... Christmas Cut-Outs, 5 Chipper, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, Peanut Butter Blossoms, Cashew Drops, Covered Chocolate Cherry Cookies, Snicker Doodles, Chocolate Butterscotch Fudge w/Nuts, Russian Tea Cakes, Lemon Truffles, Cookie Dough Truffles, Peanut Clusters, Carmel Truffles and lets not forget the Chocolate Ho-Ho Yule Log!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Let me help with your holiday baking and party needs!

27 days until Christmas!~

Christmas orders will be taken until December 17th!  So please order early:

Ideas for Chritmas treats:

Cake Truffels
Cookie Dough Truffles
Krispie Truffles
Chocolate Covered Nuts
Almond Joys
Peanut butter balls

Christmas Cut-Outs
Snicker Doodles
5 chipper
Chocolate Chip bars
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Cashew Drops
Pumpkin Drops
Chocolate Covered Cherry Cookies
Peanut butter Kisses
Peanut butter Chocolate Chip
Magic Bars
Milky Way or Snicker Cookies

Chocolate Covered Chex Mix
Chocolate Covered Pretzels

Assorted Breads: Pumpkin, Banana, Blueberry and Coffee cake bread.

Cheesecake, Ho-ho cake, Orange delite cake, Lemon cake, Raspberry cake, Coconut cake! Pumpkin rolls, Brownies, Assorted desserts: Oreo, peanut butter pie dessert and Lemon Lush....Mini Cheesecakes....Fruit Pizza. Individual Fruit pizzas...

And the list continues....If you are having a holiday party and you need some appetizers let me know....



Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Turkey Day countdown~~ TWO WEEKS FROM THURS~!** Don't forget to order your pumpkin rolls!

OK so no one is probably running around like a chicken with it's head cut off yet.  You can still be prepared.... There is still time....  start shopping this week..... For those of you that have a Kroger there are some excellent deals out there with their MEGA SALE this week and if you clip coupons you can seriously pay nothing... which you should, you all say that you don't have time but come on people multi task..... I can be on Facebook and clip coupons at the same time. Here are some websites to go to.....,, and many more.  There are alot of couponing blogs out there too that update on FB! 

So let's head out to the grocery store and buy your non perishable items and remember the Coca-Cola of course ;-)


Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Taking Orders~

Thanksgiving is coming quick and I am getting slammed with holiday orders.  So anyone wanting pumpkin rolls, cookies, breads or cakes Let me know....No job too big or small, just want to make sure I have everyone taken care of in a timely fashion. Send messages to my inbox or email. Thanks!
Please leave me your E-mail address in my inbox so that I can e-mail you a menu!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Well good day everyone, oh how I missed you!  I thought the perfect way to get back to the blog is to chat about our upcoming fav holiday in the Brandi fam and that is Turkey Day!~
My mom is the most organized woman when it comes to planning a holiday gathering.  She will start making her plans, for dinner at my sisters in a few days.....and everything I have learned was taught to me by who else?  Mom! 
So to those out there that maybe having their 'first' Thanksgiving Dinner or to those that want to get more organized.  Here are some tips for you!
*  3 weeks before----- Let's think about how much space to you actually have.  Do you have a double oven?  Do you have a spare fridge in the basement or garage?  Start planning your menu.  How much can you make ahead? How much will have to stored?  Are you cooking the turkey in the oven or on the Weber grill?  We began cooking the turkey on the Weber grill because we had no more room in the oven.  It turns out so nice and juicy!  Now if you are cooking the turkey in the oven you have to choose recipes that will fit in the oven with the turkey and cook at the same temperature.
----If your guests ask what they can bring, answer very carefully.  Where are you going to put it, while socializing?  In the fridge that is full?  Is the spare fridge full?  Or maybe it will be cold enough to set outside or in the garage.   If your fridge and oven will be full then let them bring dished you can heat or reheat in the microwave.  Or have them bring something that can be brought in a crock-pot.  Or better yet, have them bring the rolls from the bakery or fresh homemade bread!
---Let's start making the list of menu items. Note off to the side how long those specific dishes take to bake.  What time should you put them in the oven.  Keep this handy for Turkey Day also.
2 weeks before----Start shopping.  Ok I know you think I am crazy however I of all people know what it is like in these stores the week prior.  So please save yourself the hassle and please start shopping now.  You can buy your non-perishable groceries this week.  Buy the turkey this week.  I am sure there are some deals. If not who really cares how much it cost for a little sanity?  Also, pick up some extra storage containers and zip-loc baggies! 
4 days before---  Start thawing your turkey.  You have no clue how many people do buy in advance and try to thaw out the day of Thanksgiving.  ALLOW 24 HOURS FOR EVERY 4 POUNDS.  SO A 15-16 POUND TURKEY WILL TAKE 4 DAYS TO THAW IN THE FRIDGE!
3-2 days before---  Final shopping.  Buy your veggies and perishables and anything you forgot.  Remember the stores are open in the AM on Thanksgiving but seriously you should be organized.  You can also set your table.  Cover with a clean old sheet.  Also, buy some extra carrots and celery and other items that you may need to make Turkey Noodle Soup!  PS don't forget the garnishes, parsley or kale for a veggie tray, napkins or of course the Coca-Cola!
1 day before---  Make ahead day.  Mashed potates, dressing, salad dressing, sides, desserts and breads.  Check out my sample menu.
TURKEY DAY--  Double check your list.  What time does the turkey have to go into the oven or grill?  Prep your turkey and start your appetizers.
What is on the Brandi Menu for TURKEY DAY? -- this is our standard menu
Turkey of course on the Weber grill.
Dad's secret homemade Italian Dressing.  I changed the name to Wop loaf.   My grandma use to stuff the turkey with this dressing, however we make it in loaf pans as serve it sliced.
Mom's homemade dressing.  She has put a little twist on it now and has added Italian Sausage and it is so yummy.
Make a head mashed potatoes.
Sweet Potatos
Corn Casserole (like corn bread)
cranberries (for my mom yuck)
Salad with homemade Italian Dressing
Rolls from Hamilton Bakery!
Dessert--- My brother in law makes homemade pumpkin and pecan pie.  I wonder if my friend Barb will make me a Lemon merigue pie since the whole family will be here this year!
I will make some truffles and I think I will attempt a Pumkin Roll.....
Need any other pointers let me know~

Well as always Mangia!~ 

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Brandi Reunion~~

On August, 21, 2010 we traveled to Northville for a Brandi Reunion!  One thing we all can do is cook ~  Had some wonderful eats with wonderful family.  It went by soooo fast.  But I do believe a good time was had by all!  Next reunion will be in Saginaw!  ~MANGIA~!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Handy Pantry List

Well it is almost time for the kids to go back to school and that means it is time for you to get your pantry back in order.  Here is a list of some good pantry stocking items to keep on hand.  Start building up your baked goods ingredients, so when your kids say mom can you make some cookies or brownies you can say sure!

What I would do is cherry pick your sale items until you get your pantry built back up.  Watch the sales at the stores.  A lot of the stores have "in house" specials, which are unadvertised.  Just take 10-20 minutes and walk through a store and look at the things that are on sale, that you didn't know.  Trust me I know we don't all have time.  But once you start doing it.  It will become part of your routine.  It only takes 21 days for something to become a habit!

Have these items in your pantry and you will always have what you will need for almost any recipe I post on here! 

Dry Goods:
Baking supplies:  Different kinds of chocolate chips, chocolate squares.  Baking powder and cocoa.  Baking soda, Biscuit mix, aka, Bisquick.  Canned frosting and Boxed cake mixes.  Brownie mixes.  Coconut Corn syrup, Cornstarch, Cream of tarter, Flour, Food coloring, J-ello, Honey, Pudding, Marshmallows, Rice Krispies, Evaporated Milk, Condensed Milk, Muffing mix, Pam cooking spray, Olive oil, Vegetable oil.,  Oats, Salt, pepper, shortening, Brown sugar and white sugar..

Canned goods:
Applesauce, beans: all kinds, black, northern, kidney, green etc., chicken and beef broth, creamed soups, fruits and fruit cocktail, green chilies, canned jalapenos, mustard and ketchup, mushrooms, olives, peanut butter, salsa, sauces: Alfredo, picante, process cheese, spaghetti and taco, tomatoes: diced, whole, sauce paste and stewed.  Canned tuna and Chicken.

boullion granules, beef and chicken, Tabasco, onion soup mix, taco seasoning, ranch dressing seasoning.  Vinegar: cider, red wine, rice and white.  Worcestershire sauce.

Bread:  pita or sandwich
Crackers:  graham, butter saltines, Garlic Triscuits, croutons, dry bread crumbs, Noodles: variety, small shells, big shells, spaghetti, elbows, rotini etc.  Rice, Stuffing mix.

Refrigerator Items:
Butter, Cream cheese, eggs, Parmesan Cheese, Jelly, Syrup, Mayo, Milk, Juice, Minced Garlic, Fresh Garlic, mustard:  Dijon and yellow, relish, biscuits, crescent rolls, pizza crust, salad dressings, shredded cheeses, mozzarella, shredded cheddar, Mexican blend, sour cream, soy sauce, tortillas and whipped cream!

Frozen Foods:
Bread dough, Chicken breasts, Fruits, ground beef, Meatballs, pasta, pastry shells, Pork chops, frozen veggies, cool whip, vanilla ice cream!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Dugeon office Part 2

Ok so I think I may found something to put the cookbook magazine's in.  I found these at where?  The dollar store!  Are they not cute, I mean they were only a dollar! I spent $40 bucks on some baskets however they did not fit, and yes I did take them back!

So I am going to post a pic side by side tell me which is better?
I think  I like it with the blue baskets and I think I will go get 2 more for the bottom shelf!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

"The Dungeon Office"

I got home from work tonight and I said to myself, 'self, no wonder you can't finish your cookbook, look at the mess you have been living in.' So I decided to tear apart the dungeon office.  I definitely have not been organized!  So I am really embarrassed to say that I took 2 before and 3 after pics.  At least I am  organized now!  Only so much you can do in a 6x6 space!

Did I do OK?  I have a hard time keeping my fav cookbook mags away from the desk. 
Let me know what I can do better here!

Looking for something to put the mags in.  I bought the top basket thinking they would fit and they won't!

This is sooo bad that the calendar on the wall said APRIL!

after. and i bought a new lamp!
New lamp on top of some cookbooks. 
It is a little short, but better than the
clunker that I had before!

And of course,

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Thanks to the Woodington's

Everyone knows that my dream is to finish my cookbook, but I also have a dream of being a caterer.  I love to cook for family and friends and most of all I love to see their happy faces after they eat!   On Friday my friends Becky and Jeff Woodington, along with Brad, Mary, Bob and Sue allowed me to cook for  their parents anniversary party.  I had a great time from planning to shopping to organizing and finally cooking the food.    The most pleasing part of Friday is that everyone came up to me and said that everything was wonderful and that is very pleasing to hear.  Could this  be a beginning to a wonderful thing?  A special thanks to my mom and dad for their help I couldn't have done it without them.  Also, a special thanks to Becky and Jeff, one of the nicest couples in the world! 
Congratulations Bev and Bob on 50 years together!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Garden Update

Cukes and Zucchini! Here is a green pepper!
Wow, look at how everything is flourishing!  can't wait to start picking and cooking with them all!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

My Momma~

Dear all family and friends....

We have had a very hard week in the Brandi family, we lost my Uncle Joe on Father's day evening and his funeral was on Thursday.  Joe was my father's last living brother.  Uncle Joe was a Veteren of the US AIR FORCE and he loved to golf back in the day.  I know that he always drove  a Ford.  He will be missed by all of us, especially his grandkids whom loved him soooo very much!

But on Friday the best news came yet.  My mom had her checkup appointmen with her Chemo DOC and he said that she is in the clear for now.  He is going to have her get another PET SCAN in September, just to monitor and make sure it stays away!  She is going in for some other tests but he said nothing to be worried about.  She looks great and I think she feels great too. And I have never felt better knowing that she is out of the woods!

I love my mom so much and I tell her that everyday when I leave for work or if I call her.  I try to call her during the day to check on her and my dad, but the last few weeks have been crazy and I haven't had the chance to..... I will get back on my schedule tho!

This is a weekend for celebrating!
Part of my fam!  Sus, Dawn, Al, Mom, Kellen, Mary, Jon, Fred, Steve, Brett and My dad

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Garden update!~ It is growing!

this is a cherry tomato!that is a flower, it will be a cucumber when it grows!
I cannot believe it, but the garden is growing.  Take a look at th pics this is week 2

I am sooooo excited!

Thanks to the best dad in the world for watering it everyday!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Busy week followed by a busy weekend!

Well we went to dinner tonight with the Brand's from Colorado, Battle Creek, and the McDonnell/Lutenski's tonight and then I hit the hay.  So now it is  2 AM and I am wide awake.  So I decided I would tell you about this weekend.  Busy Busy....

I told my brother that is town that he needed to go to the store with me tomorrow so I can get my dad a weedwacker.  Any suggestions on what to get?  I have to get up or I will just stay up and go to the store and get some strawberries  to make for today.  I have to keep trying in order to master them correct?  Then I am making some Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecakes~!

Dinner Sat Pm with Al and Sus and hopefully Jon and Dawn.  what  are the Brandi's serving?  What else?  Spaghetti!

I will post pics!

And I cannot forget that Sunday is my nephew Steve's big day.  Graduation Party~!  yeah!

So everyone have a wonderful weekend and of course,


Monday, May 31, 2010

Drum Roll Please

We have a winner.  My mom reviewed the suggestions of the names for the 1st cookbook and the winner is Denise Crawford!  Her suggestion was Kaleidoscope- A collection of recipes from Kris kitchen!  Thanks for everyone that participated. 

And thanks to Denise, I will be getting with you!Just going to take it easy to day!

Happy Memorial Day! 

Thank someone that is in the service!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Sunday Dinner, Pork Tenderloin on the Grill~

After all the hard work we did today an awesome dinner was had by all.  We made pork tenderloin on the grill and it was great!  We put the loin in a zip lock baggie and marinated it all night long.  Then we grilled it and it was nice and juicy and melted in your mouth.  Here is the pork on the grill and the after when we were getting ready to eat!  Mangia!~


These babies are as good as they look!  Did something different this time.  Put shaved chocolate on top.


Had to hurry up and put in the fridge it is so hot out!  This is Marsha's surprise.  However I had a bad container of strawberries, (a-hem  Bos), but I made one container.  I will still drop them off!


Saturday, May 29, 2010

Summer is here~

All this wonderful weather that we are having has kept me busy all week with all the Coca-Cola we have been selling.  So once again, I have not been able to blog this week.  However today I was a busy gal, I mowed the lawn, went shopping and found some time to make some great things to take to Kyle's house tomorrow.

First, I made the Bow Tie Pasta Salad and this time I made it with the tri-color bow ties, just to give it some extra color.  It looks wonderful! I can't wait for everyone to try it.  So if you are reading this and you are going to Kyle's tomorrow, look forward to this salad.

I also made the famous Garlic Jalapeno Dip! This is fab and once again I did not take a pic of this I will try to tomorrow.

I also have a special surprise for my friend Marsha.  I can't post it just in case the girls read this before they get over to see what I am dropping off.  Don't tell her, let her be surprised!~


Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sunny and 86* and my first giveaway!

Hello everyone from sunny Saginaw!  I know I have been bad all week not blogging for you, but I do have a good excuse!  I was busy!  Work and my stupid knee have prevented me from doing alot this week, however guess what.  I am here today!  I didn't make anything special this weekend, well except for my yummy garlic dip but I forgot to take a picture of it :(  But I did get alot of cleaning done. I cleaned the basement and did lots of laundry.  I also worked on my cookbook this weekend.  I did make one.  I have a lot on order, so 1 isn't putting a dent into it.  However there is light at the end of the tunnel.  I am getting closer to publishing it.  I am just waiting for them to get back to me!~  Isn't that exciting.  We are going to have a contest to see what the name of it should be!  I have an idea of what I want to call it, but suggestions are always good.  So lets see if anyone is thinking on the same page as me!  If I pick your name that you e-mail to me you  win! You will get a free cookbook.  If there are more than one winner I will give that person also a cookbook too!  So come on here we go send all suggestions to!  Thanks and as always..... Mangia~!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Lasanga Rolls

This is my first time making them, however I have had some in the past. About 10 years ago when I first started calling on Midland I ate Lasagna Rolls at LaLonde's Market in Midland. They have a wonderful lunch set up there, lots of hot dishes. Anyway getting back to my Lasanga Rolls, I made the recipe up myself so we will see when we taste them. This is a good recipe that you can make ahead. I actually made it for Monday nights dinner. And in less than a half of an hour I had these beauties put together. Then bake them while you are multi-tasking elsewhere around the house and wala! A make-a-head dinner has been made~


Cream Cheese Stuffed Chocolate Dipped Strawberries

Well my friend wouldn't give me the recipe, but I found another friend that has made them before and she gave me her recipe. These were sooo yummy. There is a secret ingredient in the cream cheese!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Do you want some cheese to go with that wine?

I really don't know that much about wine, nor do I have the taste for it. However many of you do like wine and are just learning about wine. So here is a little wine/cheese lesson for you!

Wine/Cheese Pairings

Hard Cheese

Aged Asiago/ Chianti, Sangiovese

Dry Jack/ Zinfandel, Cabernet Franc

Gruyere/ Bordeaux, Chardonnay, Zinfandel

Parmesan/Chianti, Barolo, Merlot, Reisling


Swiss/ Pinot Noir, Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc

Soft Cheese

Brie/ Shiraz, Maderia, Sauterne

Feta/ Beaujolais

Mozzarella/Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc

Ricotta/ Reisling, Chardonnay


Gorgonzola/ Champagne, Bordeaux, Shiraz

Roquefort/ Syrah, Port, Sherry, Cabernet Sauvignon


Cheddar/ Burgundy, Chardonnay

Gouda/ Merlot, Zinfandel, Reisling

Provolone/ Merlot, Pinot Noir, Syrah


Colby/ Merlot, Pinot Noir

Fontina/ Reisling, Rhone

Havarti/ Merlot, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay

Muenster/ Pinot Noir

Monterey Jack/ Zinfandel

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


After a long Tuesday at work I was surprised to come home to some wonderful aroma's coming from the kitchen. I grabbed a burger that was waiting for me on the stove and went to go say hi to my mom. Homemade burgers are the best. They were not made on the grill, however the George Forman works great too. My mom is having a good day today. She said there is another surprise today and it was this wonderful cinnamon nut bundt cake. Awesome. Doesn't matter what my dad makes it is all good. This cake was still a little warm. Bundt cakes always seem to be heavy and dry but not this one...... This was so moist you wanted more.... If I had the recipe I would share it but he hasn't given me this one yet.


Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

Today was a wonderful day in the Brandi household. We had dinner today with my brother and sister-n-law, home from Ohio and my sister and nephew over also. I didn't get a chance to take pictures of dinner, I will let you know what our menu was.... BBQ grilled chicken breasts and thighs, spaghetti salad ( posted the pic yesterday ) garlic toast and bar cheese, beanie weinies and raspberry cake for dessert, oh and brownies. My mom had phone calls from everyone today wishing her a happy mothers day and I truely believe this is one of the best ones ever!~

Happy Mother's Day to the best mother in the world!~


Saturday, May 8, 2010

Jack's Spaghetti Salad

Jack, who is my father is famous for his "spaghetti salad" but he uses rotini noodles instead of spaghetti. My dad cuts each veggie up so perfect. This salad is well known around the city, everyone loves it. His secret? He does not use McCormick's seasoning.... So there are only a few chosen ones that actually have his "secret spice ingredients."

Bow Tie Salad

I made this today for Mary Lynn's Mother's Day dinner......This recipe was given to me by Janet Young . It is so yummy, I had to add some red pepper for some color though JY.... It is still yummy.

Friday, May 7, 2010


Luscious Truffles. These little guys will surprise you and your taste buds.

Comes in the following flavors; Banana, White, Chocolate, Cherry Chip and Yellow.

Need 48 hour notice for orders, Cost: $10 for bakers dozen!

Summer Food Safety Tips

As the weather gets warmer and friends and family gather for picnics and reunions you do not really think about food safety... Follow these precautions:

1) When packing a cooler or picnic basket, wrap raw meat and fish separately from cooked foods in airtight containers or resealable plastic bags!

2) It is a good idea to have 2 sets of cutting boards, grilling utensils and platters, one for cooked food and one for uncooked foods.

3) Wash your fruit or veggies before you transport them.

4) Pack extra saran wrap or foil and baggies and containers for leftovers.

5) If you do not have access to soap and water bring moist towelettes and antibacterial soap that does not require water to wash dishes or work areas.

6) HOT FOODS should be eaten in 2 hours of being made!

7) Remove cold foods from the cooler right before serving.

8) Foods should not stay out longer than an hour...1 hour on days that are 85* or higher

9) Promptly store hot and cold left-overs in an iced filled cooler. If no ice remains in the cooler when you get home, play it safe and discard the food!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Lemon Cake

This Lemon Cake is sooo refreshing, the perfect Spring/Summertime dessert! What a treat this is. Please take this to a potluck and everyone want the recipe. Give it to them if you choose, or keep it as your speciality. This is so easy to do you will want to make it all the time!

1 pkg. lemon cake mix

4 eggs

1 box lemon instant pudding (prepare to pkg directions)

1 pkg. 3 oz. cream cheese

1/2 c. butter, softened

2 c. powdered sugar

1 1/2 t. vanilla extract

In a large bowl, beat the cake mix, eggs until well blended. Fold in pudding. Mix.

Fold into a 15 x 10 inch pan. Bake at 350*18-20 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool on wire rack.In a small bowl mix the cream cheese, butter sugar and vanilla, stir until smooth. spread over cooled cake. store in refrigerator.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Italian Soup

This soup my mom found in a cookbook, and it is wonderful. The flavor that this soup has makes you want more. Has all the flavor of garlic, and tomato along with the Italian sausage makes it yummy. Had this yesterday when I hurt my leg and it made me smile ;0). Please try it is really good!

Italian Soup

1 lb. Italian sausage, castings removed and sliced

2 medium onions, chopped

6 cloves garlic, chopped

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, chopped

2 cans white kidney beans, drained

2 cans chicken broth

2 cans diced tomatoes

1 t. dried basil

1 t. oregano

6 c. fresh spinach leaves, chopped

shredded Parmesan cheese

In a dutch oven, cook sausage and onions over medium until no longer pink. Add garlic cook 1 minute longer. Drain. Add Chicken, cook and stir until no longer pink.

Stir in beans, broth, tomatoes, basil and oregano. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes. Add the spinach and heat just until wilted. Serve with Parmesan cheese.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Lemon Struedel Cake

This cake is really good, however I love it cold. My mom always has some right when it comes out of the oven. Either way it is yummy!~

Lemon Struedel Cake

1 package lemon cake mix
1 1/3 c. water
3/4 c. egg substitute
1/3 c. unsweetened applesauce
3 T. poppy seeds


1 pkg. (8 oz.) cream cheese
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 can lemon pie filling


1/3 c. packed brown sugar
1/4 c. chopped pecans
3 T. flour
4 1/2 t. butter, melted
1/2 t. ground cinnamon
1/8 t. vanilla extract

1/2 c. powdered sugar
4 t. lemon juice

In a large bowl, combine the first 5 ingredients; beat on low speed for 30 sec. beat on Medium for 2 minutes. Coat a 13 x 9 with Pam. Dust with flour. Spread half the batter into pan.
For filling: In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and powdered sugar until smooth. Stir in pie filling. Drop by teaspoon fulls and gently spread over the batter. Top with remaining batter. Combine topping ingredients and sprinkle over the batter.
Bake at 350* for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool. Combine glaze ingredients and drizzle over the cake, refrigerate.


Baby Back Ribs & Red Potatoes with Carrots

These are the easiest way to cook ribs. Rub 'em and throw them in the crock-pot for a few hours. This was by far the best Rib and Potato dinner my mom has ever cooked. The ribs fall off the bone they were so tender. The potatoes were seasoned to perfection and the carrots and onions were added in to lock all the flavors together!

Please enjoy~

EZ crock-pot BBQ Baby backs!

1 pkg. baby back ribs, cut into eating portions... rub both sides of the ribs with garlic salt, season salt and pepper. Place in a crock-pot. Add a bottle of BBQ sauce. Top with thinly sliced onion. Cook 6-8 hours. Mmmm so tender.

EZ Red Potatoes

6 red potatoes, cut into half

3 carrots cleaned and chopped into 1" sections

1/2 small onion chopped

3T. vegetable oil

Salt and pepper

Wash and cut potatoes in half. If you wish for a decoration I peel one strip down the middle of the potato. Place cut side down in a greased pan. ( I just use Pam). Brush the potatoes with the oil. Add onion and carrots. Add salt and pepper to taste. Bake for 1 hour at 350* or until tender.


Saturday, May 1, 2010

Mary's Fruit Salad

Sorry I haven't been on all week but I have been so busy at work.

We just had this recipe at Dawn and Jon's house last week.... it is wonderful. It could almost be used as a dessert also.
My sister got this recipe and it is soooo yummy!

Mary's Fruit Salad

1 c. butter milk

1 small vanilla instant pudding

Mix together

Blend in 1/2 of a small cool whip


1 can fruit cocktail

1 can mandarin oranges

2 sliced bananas


any fresh fruit that you like, such as: blueberries, strawberries, pineapple or kiwi!

Mangia ~

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Carrot Cassarole

This past Sunday we had a family dinner with Don and Lois, Mary and Fred along with Steve and Jackie. We had a wonderful spread which included my new fav, Carrot Cassarole!

8 Cups sliced carrots or baby carrots
2 medium onions, sliced, trust me if you don't like onions it is still good
5 T. butter, divided
1 can cream of celery soup, undiluted
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. pepper
1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
1 c. seasoned croutons, I find that the larger ones work best, like Italian garlic!

Place carrots in a saucepan and cover with water; bring to a boil , boil until crisp and tender. Meanwhile in a skillet, saute` onions in 3 T. butter until tender. Stir in soup, salt, pepper, and cheddar cheese!

Drain carrots add to onion mixture; transfer to a greased baking dish, sprinkle with croutons.
Melt remaining butter and drizzle over the top of croutons. Bake uncovered at 350* for 20-25 minutes.


Sunday, April 25, 2010

Spring Salads

Salads are so popular during the spring and summer months I thought I would give you a recipe that the family loves.

You can add other nuts, sometimes I use walnuts, cashews, or pecans if I don't have the honey roasted
Martha Vineyard Salad

2-3 heads Romaine Lettuce

1 Medium Granny Smith Apple

1/4 c. cran-raisins

1 pear cubed

1 c. chopped honey roasted nuts

1 c. shredded swiss cheese


1/2 c. sugar

2 T. lemon juice

1/4 t. salt

1/3 c. apple cider vinegar

2 T. minced onion

2/3 c. Vegetable oil

Mix all the salad ingredients together and place in a large bowl. Mix all the dressing ingredients and place in a shaker jar. Pour desired amount over the salad.


Saturday, April 24, 2010

Pre - Orders

Everyone is screaming for my cook-books! So I decided to go public. If you are interested in a cook book, I am starting with Volume I, The Brandi Family Cookbook! I am taking pre-orders for them. I am not sure when they will be ready however that depends on how many I need to make, if you are interested send an e-mail to . What I do is get a journal book and hand write the recipes, it takes time and patience. Did I just say both of those things in the same sentence? I have neither! HAHA! The cost is $10.00. $5.00 covers the cost of the book. The other $5.00 I am donating to the American Cancer Society. (Probably locally, I will get in touch with the gang at Dr. Bartniks office to figure out where to send the money.) ~ They are wondrful people up there at his office and they are taking very good care of my mom and many other people!

In case you don't know, my mom has been diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma. Cancer if the Lymph Nodes. She is doing well. We are almost done with her Chemo treatments and when we get the news that she is cancer free then we are going to celebrate. This year is the big one for both her and me, she turns 80 and I turn 40!

She is the best mom in the whole wide world, epecially if she has put up with me all these years!~

So if you are interested please send me an e-mail!




Friday, April 23, 2010


After a tramatic day, I am pooped however not too much that I couldn't post Recipe #3, what to share, what to share, I think it will be one of my fav's :

Buffalo Chicken Dip

2 - 8 oz. cream cheese

1 can shredded chicken

1/2 c. Red Hot

1c. Ranch dressing

2 c. shredded colby-jack cheese

Mix ingredients together and put in a crockpot, stirring occasionally. When warm serve with tortilla chips, pita chips or crackers!~

It is so ez!


Thursday, April 22, 2010


We have started with a yummy spring appetizer, now lets add something sweet!

My FB friend Andi won't share her recipe for her Cream Cheese Strawberries, so I decided to serve this, they are great!

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/3 c. sour cream
3 T. confectioners' sugar (powered)
1 T. Milk
1/4 t. almond extract
1 pint fresh strawberries
1/4 c. graham cracker crumbs

In a bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add the sour cream, sugar, milk and extract. mix until smooth. Transfer to a serving bowl.

Place the strawberries and the crumbs in seperate bowls. Dip strawberries into cheesecake mixture, then into crumbs.


Wednesday, April 21, 2010


Spring is coming and I think that I will add one of my favorite recipes that I received from my cousin Franny. It is Bruschetta, which is an Italian version of salsa, but we eat it with french bread, haha not Italian. Also, the Roasted Garlic Triscuits are wonderful with it!

I have made some changes so we will call it:

Brandi Bruschetta

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 tube of Basil paste (found in the produce section of the grocery store)

4-5 garlic cloves, pressed

1/2 t. salt

1/4 t. pepper

2 cans diced tomatoes

2-4 fresh roma tomatoes diced

2 T. parmesan cheese, grated

1-2 loaves French bread, slice

Drain the diced can tomatoes and mix the rest of the ingredients together. If you press the garlic instead of mincing it you get this wonderful garlic aroma. It is wonderful.

*The reason for the basil paste is because of the wonderful flavoring. I swear the flavor is ten times more potent then fresh basil. It is awesome. You may use fresh basil. like 3T. or whatever your tastebuds like.

Now with the bread you can do one of two things, when you buy it fresh it in just wonderul sliced and served soft. However you can lay out the slices on a cookie sheet and brush with olive oil and rub with garlic also. If you have the grill on, you may grill the bread. You can then broil the bread until it changes color.

Also, don't forget the Roasted garlic Triscuits, they are


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Getting started....

I love to cook and bake. I love trying nw recipes! I have made 4 cookbooks for family, 3 were all of the recipes we have tried over the years..... then a kopy kat cook book which included recipes from all your favorite restaurants! If there is something that sounds good and you don't have time to try it send it my way and maybe I will try it.

I look forward to share new recipes with you!

Now my dream is to be a full-time caterer, however I have a full-time job and it does not permit me to do it, If anyone is interested in hosting a summer party or graduation party let me know and maybe my catering needs can be of service.

be patient as I grow my blogspot and my facebook page.

See ya soon,