The unseasonably cold temperatures and snow seemed to put me into hibernation early this year so I was ready for Winter Games in November. The only thing missing was the lake wasn’t frozen yet. With the temperatures bouncing around, fingers are crossed for a frozen lake by the end of January. To everyone going during the festivities, I have an easy and protein filled soup that is out of this world! A tasty dish you can enjoy by the warmth of your fireplace or make batches of it for guests heading out into the elements during the Winter Games. Don’t forget the Cheesy Bread. It is wonderful with the soup but also could double as an appetizer during happy hour.

I haven’t forgotten those of you with sweets on your mind. In fact, I provided two recipes just to make sure there is enough for all the skaters, snowmobilers, and sightseers during the 40th Anniversary of the Winter Games. There is so much to do I think I will even crawl out of my cave and enjoy some of the activities. Enjoy and be safe!!!

3 Bean Chicken Chili

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SERVES: 8

30oz Great Northern
Beans, NOT DRAINED

15oz Garbonzo Beans,
NOT DRAINED

15oz Black Beans,
RINSED & DRAINED

14oz Whole Kernel Corn,
NOT DRAINED

14oz Chicken Broth

4oz Diced Green Chili,
NOT DRAINED

11/2 lbs Chicken Breast

1T Olive Oil

1 Yellow Onion

2 Cloves Garlic

1 tsp Garlic

2 tsp Cumin

2 tsp Fresh Ground
Pepper

2 C Sour Cream

 

  1. Grill or bake chicken breast to 165 degrees (approximately 20 minutes.) Remove and dice.
  2. In a medium stock pot sauté onions and garlic till translucent. Add beans, corn, chicken,  broth, and spices. Simmer for 40 minutes. Add sour cream. Ready to serve!

Can be stored in refrigerator for 3 days or freezer for 30 days.

I really don’t like beans but I am crazy about this soup. It’s the kind that makes you lick your lips and want seconds. I can’t take credit for it. It came from my niece Noreen and sis Deb. But I doctored it up a bit, with the addition of black beans and upped the sour cream and omitted the heavy cream. Of course, I think my version is best! This soup is quick, easy and full of protein. You could even make it faster by purchasing grilled chicken breast pieces in the lunch meat section of the grocery store. Double the batch and freeze some individual servings for lunch or supper when you don’t feel like cooking and want a great meal.

Easy Cheesy Bread

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SERVES: 6

4 C Self Rising Flour

20 oz. Beer (I used West O, India Pale Ale) can also be purchased at
grocery stores.

1 tsp Salt

2 C Cheese (Suggestions: Cheddar, Parmesan, Gouda,
Mozzarella, Blue, Asiago, etc.)

Fresh oregano as a garnish for individual loaves

  1. Using a wooden spoon mix flour, beer, salt, and cheese till combined.
  2. Prepare a 6”x9” loaf pan or 6 vegetable tin cans with cooking spray. Pour thick batter evenly into pan(s). (Tin cans must be washed thoroughly on the inside and the paper removed on the outside).
  3. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-45 minutes. Cool 5 minutes, then run a sharp knife around the pan edge. Release the bread from the pan and let cool 15 minutes.
  4. Wrap individual loaves first in wax paper then brown paper and tie with twine and oregano.

If you think you are not a baker, this recipe will prove you wrong. Anyone can make this bread and be a successful bread baking aficionado. It only takes a couple of minutes to put together and there is no kneading, punching or re-kneading, or any other technical things to do. You just bake it and then eat it. How easy is that? Cheesy bread is a perfect accompaniment to the Three Bean Chicken Chili featured in this month’s issue.

P.S. The recipe calls for 20 ounces of beer so I needed to buy two, 12 ounce cans that equaled 24 ounces. Four ounces were left over. The only thing left to do was drink it. Yum!

Caramel Krispies

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SERVES: 16

½ C Butter

24 oz Mini Marshmallows

10 C Rice Krispies

4T Butter

11oz Caramel Bits or Caramels

14 oz Sweetened Condensed Milk

16 Snack Size Snickers Candy Bars

  1. Melt butter and marshmallows in microwave for one minute increments till melted. Fold in Rice Krispies till completely covered. Pour 1/2 of mixture on the bottom of a 9” x 12” buttered pan.
  2. Combine butter, caramels and milk in a small microwaveable bowl. Cook for 1 minute intervals till caramels are melted, stirring in between till melted. Mix thoroughly. Pour caramel over Krispies and spread out evenly insuring the entire surface is covered. Chill for 20 minutes
  3. Gently press remaining Krispie mix on top of caramel, covering it completely. Cut Snickers candy bars into thirds or fourths and press into Krispies. Chill for one hour.

Caramel, Snickers Candy bars plus Rice Krispie Bars? It’s a bull’s-eye! You will never want naked Rice Krispies after these jacked up bars. They just take a little extra work but the elevated taste is more than worth it. To make things easier, look for caramel bits versus whole caramels. You don’t have to unwrap the bits; they melt faster, plus they are made out of the same caramel that Kraft uses for their whole caramels. You can find them in either the candy or baking section at your local grocery store. 

Double Decker Brownies

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2-14 oz. Boxes Brownie Mix

1 1/2 C Peanut Butter
(Creamy or Crunchy)

4 C Corn Flakes

2 C Milk Chocolate Chips

1/2 C Mini Chocolate Chips

  1. Prepare brownie mix according to package instructions. Place batter of both boxes into a 9”x13” pan. Bake as directed.
  2. While brownies are baking, melt peanut butter and milk chocolate chips in a large microwave safe bowl for 30 second intervals till chips are melted. Stir well. Fold in corn flakes. While brownies are still warm, GENTLY spread cornflake mixture on top. Sprinkle mini chips on corn flakes.
  3. Chill in refrigerator for one hour. Remove and cut into 12 large squares. Store in airtight container for up to 1 week on the counter, 2 weeks in the refrigerator or 1 month in the freezer.

You might want to make a double batch and wrap each serving in plastic wrap or in a resealable bag. Place them in a basket so your guests can take a few with them. But don’t forget to save a couple back for yourself!

If you like brownies and if you like Scotcheroos, you will utterly LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Double Decker Brownies. It’s that old cliche, the best of both worlds. When I was looking for something sweet and tasty to enjoy during the Winter Games, I came across this recipe I had designed a long time ago. I had completely forgotten about it in my recipe box (yes, I still have a recipe box). When I pulled it out and read it over, my watery mouth fully remembered this recipe and now it’s at the top of the list for delicious snacks for the 2020 Winter Games.