Christmas Chicken Pie


Although this recipe takes some time to prepare, it's very good and has become a Christmas tradition at our house. I usually serve it with Cream of Vegetable Soup and crescents or dinner rolls.

1 prepared pie dough


1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup flour
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon marjoram
1 teaspoon sage
6 chicken thighs - poached and shredded
1 pound ground pork - browned
5 slices bacon - cooked and broken into 1-inch pieces
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon water

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Press one half of pie dough into the bottom and sides of a greased 2-quart baking dish. For gravy, melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Stir in flour and cook until mixture thickens & bubbles. Gradually stir in chicken broth, salt, pepper, and spices. Cook until thickened. In bottom of baking dish, layer half of chicken, sausage, bacon and top with remaining chicken. Pour gravy over meat. Top with remaining rolled-out pie crust. Trim and crimp edges. Cut slits in top for steam to escape. Bake 1 1/2 hours. Combine egg yolk with water and brush over top of crust. Bake 5 minutes more. Makes 8 servings.

Christmas Breakfast Ideas

I always try to serve our family something special for breakfast on Christmas morning. Here are a few ideas to share with your family this holiday weekend. 

Click HERE for more holiday breakfast ideas. Enjoy the moments . . .

Candied Sweet Potatoes


Here's an old family favorite for the holidays. Enjoy!

2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2" chunks
1/3 cup butter
3/4 cups brown sugar
1 cup pecan halves
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2-3 cups miniature marshmallows

In a large saucepan, cover sweet potato chunks with water. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 5-7 minutes until slightly tender. Drain and place in a greased baking dish.
Top with slices of butter. Sprinkle with brown sugar, pecans, cinnamon, salt, and pepper. Top with marshmallows. Bake in preheated 375 degree oven until marshmallows are golden brown, about 15-20 minutes. Serves 6-8.
Click here for a printable version of this recipe.

Stollen ~ Christmas Loaf


Here is a traditional German recipe for Stollen, including the surprise marzipan treat in the center. I hope you'll enjoy it!

1/2 cup raisins
1 cup chopped candied fruit
2 tablespoons orange juice

1 tablespoon rum
2 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup slivered almonds
1/2 cup warm water
2 packages yeast
1 cup milk
1 cup butter
3/4 cups sugar
2 eggs
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon lemon rind
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
6-7 cups flour
10 oz. marzipan

In medium bowl, combine raisins, candied fruit, orange juice, and rum. Let soak for 1 hour. Add almonds and toss with 2 tablespoons flour. 

In glass measuring cup combine warm water and yeast. Let stand 3-5 minutes. Melt butter and add milk. Heat until warm (110 degrees). In large bowl, stir together yeast and milk mixture, sugar, eggs, salt, lemon rind, almond extract and nutmeg. Stir in 5 cups flour.

Turn dough onto lightly floured board and knead 5-8 minutes, adding remaining flour as needed to make dough smooth and elastic. Knead in reserved fruit mixture, 1/3 cup at a time. Shape into a ball and place in greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise until double, about 1 hour.

Punch dough down on floured surface and divide in half. Roll each into 8X14 oval. Roll the marzipan into a rope and place in the center of the dough. Fold the dough over to cover it; pinch the seams together to seal. Place the loaf, seam side down, on a lightly greased 15X10 baking sheet. Brush with 1 tablespoon melted butter. Let loaves rise for 30-45 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake 25-30 minutes until golden brown and sounds hollow when lightly tapped. Transfer to wire racks and cool. Sprinkle with powdered sugar.Makes 2 loaves.

Rose McCauley's Gooey Brownies

Rose McCauley has been writing for over a decade and has five books published. A retired schoolteacher who has been happily married to her college sweetheart for over forty years, she enjoys their growing family of three children and their spouses and five lovely, lively grandkids! She loves to hear from her readers. You can reach her through her website

Rose's latest book release: Christmastide at Bald Head Island
Literature weaves its way through the hearts of the Jordan family women. Matriarch, Grace Jordan, has a particular affinity for William Shakespeare. Just as his play, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, spins a tale of the planning of one wedding but ends with three ceremonies, Grace and her two daughters, Rosalind and Miranda, discover rekindled love while planning Rosalind's daughter, Jane Anne's Christmas wedding. In a twist of fate, ceremony plans change. However, just like Elizabeth Bennett and Anne Shirley from Jane Austen and Lucy Montgomery's respective classic tales, all four Jordan women discover what—and who—will make them truly happy

Rose's Gooey Brownies

1 Devil's Food cake mix
1 egg
1 stick butter (softened)

8 oz. package cream cheese (softened)
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 stick butter (melted)
1 16 oz. box powdered sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Combine first three ingredients and mix well. Pat into lightly greased 13x9 baking dish. 

To prepare filling, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add eggs and vanilla. Add butter; beat. Add powdered sugar and mix well. Spread over cake mixture. Sprinkle with chopped pecans and chocolate chips. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes. You want the center to be a little gooey, so don't over bake. 

Herbed Parmesan Spread


Here's a delicious recipe to make this holiday season. Serve with your favorite crackers. It's also great added to your favorite mashed potato recipe or served over a hot seared rib-eye steak.

1 garlic clove, minced
4 oz. salted butter
8 oz. cream cheese
3 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon chopped dried chives
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons dill weed
1/2 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon dried ground thyme
1/2 teaspoon ground pepper

In a food processor, combine all of the ingredients and pulse until it forms a ball when mixed. Transfer to a small serving bowl or form into a ball. Cover with plastic wrap and store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Makes 1 1/2 cups.
Click here for a printable version of this recipe.

Greek Pot Roast

I love when it starts to get colder outside--time to turn on the oven and bake breads, casseroles, or cook roasts in the dutch oven. Here's a recipe I like to serve my family. Enjoy! 

3 1/2 pounds boneless chuck shoulder or rump roast
2 tablespoons canola oil
salt and pepper to taste
1 medium onion, chopped
1-8 oz. can tomato sauce
1/2 cup dry red wine
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon wine vinegar
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 cup water
6 medium potatoes, quartered
6-8 whole mushrooms
4 carrots, peeled and sliced
1 onion, peeled and quartered
2 green peppers, seeded and cut in squares

Heat oil in dutch oven and sear meat on all sides. Remove meat and season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside. In dutch oven saute onion until transparent. Add tomato sauce, red wine, brown sugar, wine vinegar, garlic, bay leaf, and cumin. Stir together and add water. Bring to a slow boil. Return meat to dutch oven. Cover and simmer for 2-3 hours, until tender. Add more water as needed. Add vegetables. Cover and simmer another 30-40 minutes until potatoes and carrots are tender. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve. Serves 6-8.

Wine Recommendation: Francis Coppola Director's Cabernet Sauvignon 2013

Orange-Glazed Cranberry Fruitcake


Here's a recipe I made for the first time last Christmas and absolutely LOVED. It makes 4 small loaves, so I kept one for myself and gave the rest as gifts, which were received with glad reception. It seems, even those who don't care for fruitcake, enjoy this recipe! Yay! 
Here's to Fruitcake!!

2 cups dried cranberries
1/2 cup dried chopped pineapple
1/2 cup chopped dates
1/2 cup chopped figs
1/2 cup chopped golden raisins
1/2 cup rum
10 oz. candied red and green cherries, chopped
1 cup salted butter
2 cups sugar
1/4 teaspoon Fiori di Sicilia (This stuff is some today. It lasts a long time.)
4 eggs
3 3/4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup orange juice
2 cups chopped pecans

1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup orange juice
3 tablespoons rum

To prepare the fruit, in a large bowl, mix cranberries, pineapple, dates, figs, and raisins with the rum. Microwave on high for 1-2 minutes. Stir and set aside to cool. 

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease 4 small loaf pans. In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar. Add Fiori di Sicilia and eggs, beating one-at-a-time. In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add to egg mixture alternately with juice. Add to this the undrained fruit, candied cherries, and pecans. Spoon the batter into each loaf pan, filling about three-quarters full. Bake for 45-55 minutes until cakes are golden brown at the edges and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool for 10 minutes, and then turn out onto a wire rack. 

While the cakes are baking, prepare the glaze in a small bowl. Combine sugar, orange juice, and rum, stirring often until sugar has dissolved. Brush the tops of the warm cakes with a coat of glaze on the tops and sides. When the cakes have completely cooled, wrap in plastic wrap and allow to rest for 24 hours before serving or giving as gifts to let the flavors fully blend. May refrigerate cakes for up to a month--but if they last that long, brush with sugar syrup or rum weekly before serving. Makes 4 small loaves. 

Russian Tea Cakes

This is a recipe I like to make during the holidays or for special tea parties.

1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup raspberry/apricot preserves
1/4 cup powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In mixing bowl, cream together butter and powdered sugar. Add vanilla. Blend in flour and salt and mix thoroughly. Roll tablespoons of dough into 1 inch balls. Place on lightly greased cookie sheets. Press down center with thumb or spoon. Fill center with a teaspoon of preserves. Bake 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Cool on wire racks. When cool, dust with powdered sugar. Makes 2 dozen.