Monday, April 13, 2009

Ham Fried Rice Surprise

This was NOT what was supposed to be for dinner tonight. I was going to make a hash with leftover Easter ham and sweet potatoes. However, the bag of frozen diced orange things in my freezer were not sweet potatoes. They were carrots. SURPRISE! Luckily I thought to taste them before I dumped the whole bag into the skillet. So I just didn't use the whole bag, cut back on the amount of ham I was going to use and added some precooked rice with raisins I had in the fridge. It was FANTASTIC!!! It was so good, mom made me go make some more rice so I could make another batch of it.

Ham Fried Rice
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 cup sliced celery
1/2 cup diced onion
1 cup diced carrots
2 cups cooked rice
1/4 cup raisins
1 cup shredded or diced ham
1-2 tbsp of ham juice/drippings
salt and pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a heavy skillet until smoking hot. Carefully add the carrots, celery and onion. Stir fry until onion is translucent and beginning to color. Add the rice and raisins and mix into the vegetable mixture. Toss in the ham and mix it in along with the ham juice. Add salt and pepper and heat the mixture thoroughly.

Sunday, April 12, 2009


I hope everyone had a great Easter. I've been doing some baking this week. not for Easter, but just because. The first cake I made was from scratch, the second one used a mix. I'll try to give you the recipes, but I have a tendency to not measure. First is the homemade cake. This is a basic 1-2-3-4 cake. Look at the ingredients list and you'll see why!

Chocolate Chip, Pecan and Coconut Cake

1 cup oil
2 cup sugar
3 cups self rising flour
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla, coconut or butter extract/flavoring
8 tablespoons liquid (I used water, but feel free to use what you have)
1 1/2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped pecans
1 1/2 cup angel flake coconut

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare your pan by spraying with nonstick spray (I use Bakers Joy when I bake). Whisk the oil, sugar and eggs together until light and lemony in color. Stir in the flour, incorporating it well. Add the liquid and mix well. Stir in the pecans, chips and coconut, blending well (lots of's a deep cake!). Pour the batter into your prepared pan(s). Bake until golden brown and a tester comes out clean (not including melted chocolate chips!).
Allow to cool on in the pan for about 10 minutes. Turn out onto a rack to finish cooling. Frost, glaze or leave plain as you like.

This one is a dump cake. You basically dump everything into your pan, stir it up and put it in the oven. Lots of people use pie filling, I find that too sweet, so I use either canned or fresh fruit. Use whatever is in season.

1 cake mix
1 can of fruit, drained, juice reserved
1/2 cup nuts

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Read the directions on the back of the cake mix. Gather those ingredients together, using the juice from the fruit instead of water. Dump the fruit into the bottom of an 8x8 pan, then the nuts, then sprinkle the cake mix on top. In a separate bowl, mix the eggs, oil and liquid. Pour over everything and mix it together lightly. Place in the oven and bake until set. It should take about 30-45 minutes. Allow to cool until you just can't stand it!