Easy Italian Casserole

Years ago I sent away for Betty Crocker's Creative Recipes with Bisquick ©.  The pages are all worn and stained because I've used it so much.  This is just one of our favorites from that book.

1 lb. ground beef                                                          1/4 tsp. salt

1/2 cup chopped onion                                                 1/4 tsp. pepper

1 clove garlic, crushed                                                2 cups Bisquick baking mix ©

1 can (15 oz) tomato sauce                                          1/2 cup milk

1 tsp. sugar                                                                    1 egg

1/2 tsp. dried oregano leaves                                      8 slices American cheese

1/2 tsp. dried basil leaves                                            1/4 cup parmesan cheese

Cook and stir ground beef, onion and garlic in skillet over medium high heat until beef is brown, drain.  Stir in tomato sauce, sugar oregano, basil, salt and pepper.  Heat to boiling, stirring constantly.  Reduce heat and simmer uncovered stirring occasionally for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, heat oven to 400 degrees.  Grease square 9 x 9 x 2 pan.  Mix baking mix, milk and egg.  Spread half the mixture in pan. Top with 4 of the cheese slices.  Spoon beef mixture over cheese.  Top with remaining cheese slices and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Drop remaining dough by spoonfuls onto cheese.  Sprinkle with paprika if desired.  Bake uncovered until light brown, about 20 minutes.


Mariachi Drumsticks

These are so quick and easy to make you'll love to make them for all your get togethers or just as a snack.

11/2 cups crushed plain tortilla chips

1 Package Taco Seasoning mix

18 to 20 Chicken drummettes


In a large plastic bag combine the crushed tortilla chips with the taco seasoning mix.  Dampen chicken with water and shake off the excess. Place a few pieces of the chicken at a time in the plastic bag and shake thoroughly to coat with chip mixture. Arrange chicken on a greased microwave-safw pie plate in "spoke" fashion with thick ends of chicken toward the outside edge of the plate.  Cover with wax paper. Microwave at MEDIUM-HIGH (70% power) 8 to 10 minutes or until chicken is crispy, turning plate after 5 minutes.  Serve with salsa for dipping.


Velveeta © Salsa Dip

Quick, easy and delicious!

1 lb. Velveeta © cheese spread, cubed

1 - 8 oz. - jar Salsa

2 Tblsp. chopped cilantro

In a saucepan, stir together cheese and salsa over low heat until cheese is melted.  Stir in cilantro.  Serve hot with tortilla chips. Microwave directions:  Microwave cheese and salsa in a 1 1/2 quart microwave-safe bowl on HIGH for 5 minutes or until cheese is melted, stirring after 3 minutes.  Stir in cilantro and serve as directed above.


Zucchini Nut Loaf

This is one of the best "quick breads" I've ever had.  Serve it warm with a little butter spread on it, you'll love it!

1 1/2 Cups All-purpose flour                                     1/4 tsp. grated lemon peel

1 tsp. cinnamon                                                             1 Cup finely shredded zucchini

1/2 tsp. salt                                                                    1 Cup Sugar

1/2 tsp. baking soda                                                     1 Egg

1/2 tsp. Nutmeg                                                             1/2 Cup vegetable oil

1/4 tsp. baking powder                                                 1/2 Cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Grease an 8 x 4 x 2" loaf pan, set aside.  Stir together flour, cinnamon, salt, soda, nutmeg, baking powder and lemon peel.  In a mixing bowl beat together zucchini, sugar and egg, add oil and mix well.  Stir dry ingredients into zucchini mixture, fold in nuts.  Pour into prepared pan and bake for 60-65 minutes or until done.  Cool in pan for 10 minutes.  Remove from pan and cool thoroughly. Wrap and store overnight.


Bananas Foster Tart

I love Bananas Foster but "flaming" and me just don't go together.  With this dessert I get the same great taste but it's a lot less dangerous.

1 Pillsbury ©  Refrigerated Pie Crust          2/3 Cup firmly packed brown sugar

2 Medium Bananas, sliced                                1/4 Cup whipping cream

4 1/2 tsp. light rum **                                       1/4 Cup Butter or margarine

2 tsp. grated orange peel                                    1/2 tsp. Vanilla

2/3 Cup chopped Pecans                                    Vanilla Ice Cream, if desired

Heat oven to 450 degrees.  Prepare pie crust as directed on package for one-crust baked shell using a 9" pie pan.  Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until light golden brown.  Cool 5 minutes.  In a small bowl, combine bananas and rum, toss to coat.  Sprinkle orange peel evenly in bottom of baked crust.  Arrange bananas in single layer over peel and sprinkle with pecans. In a heavy medium saucepan, combine brown sugar, whipping cream and butter.  Cook and stir over medium-high heat for 2 to 3 minutes or until mixture comes to a boil.  Cook an additional 2 to 4 minuts or until the mixture is thickened and a deep golden brown, stirring constantly.  Remove saucepan from heat, stir in vanilla.  Spoon warm filling over bananas and pecans.  Cool 30 minutes.  Serve warm or cool with ice cream.. Store in refrigerator.  **To substitute for rum, combine 1/2 tsp. rum extract with 4 tsp. water


Frikadeller (Danish Meatballs)

This is a recipe taken from an obscure book on Denmark.  They make a wonderful meatloaf, great meatballs for spaghetti or just with gravy and noodles.

1 1/2 lbs. Ground chuck                                1/3 Cup Bread crumbs

1 Egg (Beaten)                                                 1/2 tsp. Pepper

1/2 Cup Chopped onion                                  1/3 Cup Milk

1 1/4 Tblsp. Flour

Combine all ingredients well, but don't overdo.  Form into 30-35 meatballs and brown well in oil until cooked through or put into a microwave/oven safe loaf pan and cook on HIGH for 10 minutes in Microwave then into a 350 degree oven for an additional 20 minutes.


Upside-Down German Chocolate Cake

Oh my gosh, my friend Gail made this one for me for my birthday and it is the BEST cake in the world.  Try it and see if you don't agree.

1 German Chocolate cake mix                        1 (8 oz.) Package cream cheese

1 Cup Coconut                                                    1 lb. box Confectioners sugar

1 Cup Chopped pecans                                      1 stick butter or margarine, melted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour a 9 x 13" pan.  Sprinkle coconut and pecans in bottom of pan.  Prepare cake mix as directed on box.  Pour cake mixture on top of pecans and coconut.  Mix cream cheese, confectioners sugar and melted butter or margarine.  Spoon this on top of cake mixture and pull through the cake mixture just a little.  Bake for 40 minutes only.  Remove cake even though it may not look done.  Let cool about 1 hour before cutting.


Ham n' Cheese Chicken Roll Ups

Serve with noodles or rice, some crusty dark bread and a salad and your meals complete.

4 Skinless, boneless Chicken breasts                        1 Can Campbell's © condensed Cream of Broccoli soup

4 Thin slices cooked Ham                                              1/3 Cup Milk

4 Thin slices Swiss cheese                                            1/4 Cup sliced green onions

2 Tblsp. Vegetable oil                                                      1/4 tsp. Dried Thyme leaves, crushed

Flatten chicken to even thickness using either the palm of your hand or the flat side of a meat mallet.  Place 1 ham slice and 1 cheese slice on each breast half.  Roll up chicken from narrow end, jelly-roll fashion,  Tuck in ham and cheese if necessary and secure with wooden toothpicks.  Heat vegetable oil in a 10" skillet over medium-high heat, cook chicken rolls 10 minutes or until browned on all sides.  Spoon off fat.  Stir in soup, milk, onions and thyme.  Heat to boiling then reduce heat to low.  Cover and cook for 10 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink, stirring occasionally.  To serve, remove toothpicks and spoon some sauce over chicken rolls, pass remaining sauce.  Garnish with chopped parsley if desired.


Italian Pasta Salad

I prefer a creamy pasta salad with mayonaise but this one is so easy and good I had to include it here.

3 Cups (8 oz.) uncooked tri-color rotini, cooked and drained              1/2 Cup each chopped red bell pepper and red onion slices

1 Cup Kraft  © grated Parmesan cheese                                                 2 Cups Broccoli Flowerets

1 (8 oz.) Bottle of Kraft © House Italian Dressing                                 1/2 Cup Pitted ripe olive slices

Mix together all ingredients in a large bowl until well blended, chill and serve.


Veal Milanese

1 1/2 lbs. veal cutlets                         1 1/2 Cups bread crumbs     

2 eggs                                                   1/4 Cup Romano cheese

Pinch of Salt                                        1/4 tsp. pepper                       

1/4 tsp. pepper                                     1/2 tsp. oregano

1/8 tsp. oregano                                  1 clove of garlic, minced

1 clove of garlic, minced                   1 tsp. dried parsley

                                                               Salt to taste    

                                                               Butter or oil

                                                               Lemon wedges

Pound cutlets on both sides. Beat the eggs and add a pinch of salt, the first set of pepper, oregano and minced garlic. Mix together bread crumbs, Romano cheese, the other pepper, oregano, garlic, the parsley and salt to taste. Dip cutlets in egg mixture, then in seasoned bread crumbs, coating both sides. Fry in butter or oil over medium heat until cutlets are golden brown on both sides. Serve hot and garnish with lemon wedges.


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