jenn's chicken enchilada soup

my friend jenn gave me this recipe a few weeks ago and we're just trying it for the first time today. you need black beans, diced tomatoes, frozen corn, an onion, a bell pepper (color of your choice), enchilada sauce, cream of chicken soup, milk, pepper jack cheese, and chicken breasts.

let's get started! pour your tomatoes,

black beans (drained and rinsed),

10 oz. frozen corn,

1/2 diced onion and bell pepper...

into the crock pot.

the recipe calls for 4 chicken breasts, but i've learned a trick. if you filet each breast in half, it's like you have four, when really you only have two. we could never eat that much chicken, so i always half the amount the recipe calls for and filet the breasts in half. works like a charm.

voila! one is now two!

place those on top of your veggies in the crockpot.

now in a separate bowl, whisk together your enchilada sauce and cream of chicken soup.

then slowly whisk in your milk until it's all combined.

now pour the liquid on top of your chicken breasts in the crock pot,

like so.

and now my favorite part: cover and cook on low 6-8 hours. isn't that always the best part of crock pot cooking? i love it.

a few minutes before you're ready to eat, take the chicken out.

shred with two forks,

like so!
now pour it back into the soup,

and add your cheese.

stir to mix/melt,

and serve. enjoy!

fyi, i felt like a little something was missing, so i think in the future i might buy some of those tortilla strips that you get on salads/soups in restaurants...just for a bit of crunch. i don't know. i just felt like it needed something. but that's just my opinion. it was still super yummy.

delish! thank you jenn!

jenn's chicken enchilada soup

1 15 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 10 oz package frozen corn (or a little more than one cup)
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped yellow, green, or red bell pepper
1 10 oz. can enchilada sauce
1 10.75 oz. can condensed cream of chicken soup
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup shredded pepperjack cheese
4 chicken breasts

in a crock pot, combine drained beans, tomatoes, corn, onion, and bell pepper. place chicken breasts on top of mixture. in a large bowl, whisk together enchilada sauce and soup. gradually whisk in milk until smooth. pour sauce mixture over ingredients in the crock pot. cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours. remove chicken and cut up or shred into bite-sized pieces. add chicken back into soup. top with pepperjack cheese and serve.


christmas fudge

my mom's recipe. it's just plain chocolate fudge, and it's REALLY really good. pretty simple, but after seeing what goes into it, you may want to limit your intake. and fyi, barometer matters to fudge, so don't make this on a cloudy day. sunny only, or it won't set. so let's get started. you'll need 1/2 pound of butter, 8 oz. marshmallow creme, a large can of evaporated milk, 4 1/2 cups sugar, 1 tsp. vanilla, a large package of chocolate chips (i use semi-sweet), and an 8 oz. (HUGE) Hershey bar.

start by putting the chocolate chips, hershey bar, marshmallow creme, and vanilla in a large bowl.
then in a large saucepan, combine the butter, sugar, and milk.

boil for 8-10 minutes.

after 10 minutes, pour your mixture into your chocolate/marshmallow bowl. this is important! don't add the chocolate to the saucepan, or the fudge won't set. add the hot mixture to the chocolate.
and stir.
and stir some more.
and stir some more some more.
once it's well-combined and completely mixed together (and the chocolate is all melted), pour into a 9x13 pan.
smooth with a spatula, and....you're done! leave it for 4-6 hours to set.
pretty easy, and really good!

mom's fudge

1 large bag of chocolate chips
8 oz. hershey bar
7 oz. jar marshmallow creme
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 lb. margarine or butter
4 1/2 cups sugar
1 large can evaporated milk

in a large bowl, put the chocolate chips, chocolate bar, marshmallow creme, and vanilla together. set aside. in a large sauce pan, melt 1/2 lb. butter, then combine with sugar and milk. boil 8-10 minutes. pour the hot mixture into the mixing bowl with the chocolate and marshmallow. mix well, making sure it is well combined and the chocolate is all melted. pour into a 9x13 and leave it several hours to set.


mom's sugar cookies

beware, folks. these are an all-day thing. like ALL DAY. i was still frosting cookies at 11 pm and started them in the morning. but, well, it's christmas. we're supposed to spend the day in the kitchen at christmastime, right? so here we go. i'm giving you the regular recipe, but i doubled it. as long as i'm going to this much work, i might as well make a ton of them. so you may want to double the portions i show you here. you'll want 3/4 cup butter, softened; 1 cup of sugar; 2 eggs, beaten; 1/2 tsp. vanilla; 2 1/2 cups flour, 1 tsp. baking powder, and 1/2 tsp. salt.

i like to soften my butter in the bowl (just slice it up and leave it for twenty minutes or so);

toss in your sugar,

then mix up your eggs and add those too, followed by the vanilla.

mix until well combined.now i added flour, one cup at a time. after i poured in the first cup of flour i also added the baking powder and salt. (well, noah did. notice the transformers band-aid).
mix well, then keep adding flour a cup at a time until you have the right consistency.

not quite ready, keep adding. since you have to roll these out, it has to be stiffer than regular cookie dough.

once you've added all your flour in and the dough is relatively stiff, stick your dough in the fridge for 3-4 hours.

once it's good and cold, clean your countertop really well (i use several clorox wipes, then let it dry) and sprinkle it with flour. rub your hand over the flour to get it all over the countertop, then rub your hand on the rolling pin to flour it up as well. grab half of your dough (1/4 if you doubled it) and roll it out into a circular shape. not too thin, these are really better if they're a little thicker. then the fun part: cut out. my kids had a blast helping with this part.

you'd think i'd have a picture of the shapes cut out on the pan. you'd be wrong. i thought i did...somehow i missed it. anyway, lay them on a baking sheet and bake at 400* for 8-9 minutes.

once they're cool, start frosting. you can make your own, but really, why bother? it's like eighty-nine cents for a can of frosting and sooo much easier. just add 3-4 drops of food coloring and get frosting.

there. masterpiece, no?
they're actually really, really good, and they freeze! just lay them on a baking sheet and flash-freeze for 30 minutes, then toss them into a ziploc. easy as pie. one tip: make sure not to overbake the cookies. if they get brown at all, they're crunchy, and nobody likes a crunchy sugar cookie. they should be soft. so test a few out, if they're cooking too fast you likely made the dough too thin. either adjust your cooking time or the thickness of your rolled-out dough. have fun!

mom's sugar cookies

3/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup of sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt.

(you may want to double those portions to make a larger batch).
mix the butter and sugar together until well blended. add your eggs and combine, then add the vanilla. once it's all combined, add one cup of flour, the baking powder and the salt. mix well. continue adding flour a cup at a time until it is well-blended and semi-stiff. refrigerate dough for 3-4 hours. clean and flour your countertop. roll 1/2 of your dough into a circle, then use cookie cutters to cut out shapes. bake at 400* for 8-9 minutes (don't let them turn brown on the edges); cool; frost; enjoy!