Tuesday, June 26, 2012


Most mothers strive to make nutritious, fun lunches for their children.  This can be an enjoyable challenge in the summertime because you are not limited to what you can pack into their lunch boxes.

This happy little meal is a spin-off on the favorite "pigs in a blanket."

It couldn't be easier, people. The kids could probably make these themselves.  Get them to help assemble - they'll love it.  You need three ingredients:

crescent rolls
mozzarella cheese sticks

Roll out the crescent roll dough and lay a few slices of pepperoni on top.  Cut a mozzarella cheese stick in half and lay at the widest end.  Roll up toward the point and bake according to the directions on the can of crescent rolls.

You could serve this with marinara or pizza sauce - or not, as we did.

Add some fruit and a glass of milk and you've got yourself a healthy lunch that your kiddos won't mind devouring.  Victory. 

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Mother Rene's Sugar Cookies

My maternal grandmother's name is Irene and as long as I can remember, we've always called her "Mother Rene" ("Rene" as in "green").  This is her sugar cookie recipe.  They are light-as-air wafers of goodness. If you like a denser, teacake-like texture, look elsewhere.

They are a snap to make!

Flattening them before baking makes them even crisper.  I think the cream of tartar, vegetable oil, and powdered sugar are somewhat unusual in a sugar cookie recipe - but the end product will literally melt in your mouth.

Mother Rene's Sugar Cookies

Makes 3-5 dozen, depending on size
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 vegetable oil
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-1/8 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

Cream butter with paddle attachment of a mixer.  Gradually add sugars, then oil, eggs, and extract.  Combine the dry ingredients and slowly add to the butter mixture. Cover and chill dough 2 hours.  Shape into 1" balls and place 3" apart on a cookie sheet.  Flatten each cookie slightly with the flat bottom of a drinking glass dipped in sugar.  Bake at 375 degrees for 5-8 minutes.  Do NOT over bake - take them out of the oven before they begin to brown.

Tips:  The thinner the cookie (i.e., the more you flatten it out), the crisper it will be in the end.


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