Category Archives: Side Dishes

A couple of easy peasy salads for your turkey day table…..

A couple of easy peasy salads for your turkey day table…..

Not sure why I’ve not posted these recipes — they are two of my most requested.  My fantastic mother-in-law introduced me to the Oriental Crunch Salad, and my brother won’t let me come for Thanksgiving lunch if I don’t bring the Pineapple-Cranberry Salad.  I love CRUNCH, and these salads live up to the challenge.  It’s not too late to serve to loved ones on your Thanksgiving table tomorrow (or whenever you gather for the holiday)!

Happy Thanksgiving!

~Connie Kaye

Oriental Crunch Salad

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1 16oz. bag shredded coleslaw mix
6 green onions, chopped (with greens)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup oil
1/4  cup tarragon vinegar
1 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1 cup sunflower seeds
2 pkg ramen noodles, flavor packets discarded
1 stick butter

Mix together the shredded cabbage and chopped green onions.  Set aside.

Mix sugar, oil, vinegar and soy sauce together.  Stir/shake well until sugar is dissolved.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.  (I do this in a jar and shake the heck out of it)

Brown almonds, sunflower seeds and ramen noodles in margarine or butter.  Drain on paper towels and store in plastic bag until ready to serve.  Careful not to burn

You can make everything ahead of time.  Keep separate until about 15 minutes before serving time.  Put the crunchies over the slaw and pour the dressing over all.  Stir well.


Pineapple Cranberry Salad

Pineapple-Cranberry Salad

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1 can (20 oz) crushed pineapple (undrained)
2 pkg (4 serving size) raspberry flavored jello
1 can (16 oz) whole cranberry sauce
1 red apple, choppedf
2/3 cup chopped pecans

Drain pineapple, reserving juice. Add enough cold water to juice to measure 3 cups; pour into saucepan.  Bring to boil; remove from heat.  Add jello mix and stir for 2 minutes or until dissolved.  Stir in cranberry sauce.  Pour into serving bowl, and refrigerate for 1.5 hours or until slightly thickened.

Stir in pineapple, apples and pecans.  Refrigerate until firm.  Yummo!



Mystery solved….what to do with leftover spaghetti noodles

Mystery solved….what to do with leftover spaghetti noodles

In a very random conversation last week at work, my friend shared that she had made a frittata with leftover spaghetti (no sauce, mind you).  I replied “I always make too much and throw it out”.  Laura is with us today to share a super easy, economical and delicious  way to use that leftover spaghetti (who doesn’t cook too much)???


Meet Laura

She found that this frittata is a great way to use up left-over spaghetti, and her family of three ate the whole thing and asked for it again the next night.  I plan to try it soon, but I think I’ll have to mix it up with a few different meats cuz I live with Mr. All Meat Pizza – you could use browned sausage, canadian bacon, ham, etc.  If you do try one of these alternatives to the bacon that Laura used, we would love for you to come back and comment below!

Step 1 involves chopping up the cooked spaghetti:


Step 2 – whisk the eggs and milk, and adding the yummy (bacon and cheese) ingredients:



The Final Frittata!

I could most definitely snarf a piece of that right now!  I’m sharing Laura’s recipe below, and hope that you enjoy as I certainly plan to!  Thanks for dropping by to get in on Laura’s quick weeknight meal!

~Connie Kaye

Spaghetti Frittata

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6 eggs
1 ½ cups cut-up cooked spaghetti
2 slices of chopped cooked bacon
1 cup of shredded cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 350.  Spray a 9 inch round pie plate with non-stick cooking oil.

Whisk the six eggs in a separate bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. Laura added a Zesty no-salt substitute to give it a little more flavor without adding additional salt.

Stir in the 2 slices of pre-cooked bacon, ½ cup of shredded cheese and chopped spaghetti. (Laura used the Mexican four cheese blend because that is what she had on hand and wanted to use up.)

Pour the blended items into the pie plate and sprinkle with the remaining ½ cup of cheese.  Bake for 30 min. or until center is set.

It’s been awhile…..


Hello my cooking friends out there!  I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted, but there have been some significant life events happening around here.  In the space of a couple of days, we welcomed our first grandchild into the world, while losing my mom.  So, you can already guess that little Oakley will joining me occasionally on here 🙂

I want to share a recipe that I made on Christmas (well, I didn’t make it, I just thunk it up) – there wasn’t any left for seconds!  I had decided to make my favorite risotto recipe, Mushroom and Pea Risotto but thought I would try adding asparagus, knowing my family loves it.  The best part is that my MIL asked “how can I help” and from there it was on!!!  She’s one of my fave peeps in the world, and she was kind enough to stand and stir for about 40 minutes.


Meet Debbie, the happy risotto maker!


The final delicious product!

Click on the link above for the recipe, but substitute a bunch of blanched asparagus.  You will love!  Oh, and I want you to meet to newest Kansas City Chiefs fan, Oakley:

Oakley was a little sleepy for the recent K State bowl game win, but she was awake to learn the tomahawk chop during the KC Chiefs AFC WEST CHAMPION game (yeah, she did nap a little during halftime).

Hope you had a wonderful and safe holiday, here’s to 2017!

~Connie Kaye

Cheesy Chili Rice


At our house, anything that even vaguely leans toward Mexican food is the bomb!  I’m sharing this easy side dish that goes with anything:

chili rice

Meet Cheesy Chili Deliciousness

Take cooked rice, throw in a little this and that, and voila, in 20 minutes you’re good to go!

Hope you enjoy, and are cheering for the 2015 WORLD SERIES CHAMPION KANSAS CITY ROYALS on Sunday for their home opener.  It also happens to be my birthday, so I’ve declared it a national holiday!!!!


~Connie Kaye

Cheesy Chili Rice

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2 cups cooked rice
1 cup chopped green onions
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
4 oz. can of chopped, drained green chiles
Salt and cayenne pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients and place in a greased casserole dish, sprinkling with parmesan.  Dot with butter and bake at 450 degrees for 20 minutes

Fresh Asparagus Risotto


I had never made risotto until last fall, but if you have a little extra time to devote, it’s really amazing.  I adapted this recipe from Rice Select arborio rice, which is risotto.  If you don’t know what arborio rice is, here ya go — little pasta thingys that look like rice.  They turn really smooth and creamy with whatever you throw in with them.  Not hard to make, and I encourage you to give it a whirl.

I bought fresh asparagus and of course, had to try it while I was chopping – so sweet and delicious.   I’ll be buying more soon for roasting on the grill or other recipes.  Here’s the final product:

a risotto

Have patience and it’s worth it, plus whatever white wine doesn’t go into the risotto, drink it 🙂   Hope you enjoy, and if you have variations, please share in the comment section below.   And, if you like this recipe, try my Mushroom and Pea version.   Like what you see here?  If you’re not following my blog, enter your email address and you’ll have some easy dishes delivered right to your inbox.  Thanks, and keep cooking!

~Connie Kaye

Fresh Asparagus Risotto

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3 cups water
2 cups chicken stock or broth
3 tbsp butter or margarine, divided
1 lb. fresh asparagus spears, with the woody root ends snapped off, diagonally sliced into 1 inch pieces
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 cups uncooked arborio rice
1/3 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste

Heat water and broth in 2 qt saucepan over medium heat until it comes to a simmer.  Reduce heat to low and keep warm.  Meanwhile, melt 2 tbsp butter in large saucepan over medium heat; add asparagus and cook until tender crisp.  Remove asparagus; set aside.

In same saucepan, cook onion in remaining 1 tbsp butter until soft.  Add rice and stir 2 to 3 minutes, careful not to burn.  Add wine; stir until absorbed.  (drink rest of wine)  Increase heat to medium high; stir in 1 cup water-broth mixture.  Cook uncovered, stirring frequently until liquid is absorbed.  Continue this process, one cup at a time, allowing each cup to absorb before adding more liquid.  (you may need more wine at this point)  Cook until rice is tender and mixture has a creamy consistency, a total of 25-30 minutes.

Stir in asparagus, cream, cheese, salt and pepper.  Stir until mixture is creamy, about 2 to 3 minutes.  Serve immediately, and refrigerate any leftovers.

Yummy Potato Casserole


This is not your traditional tater casserole.  Nothing healthy about it, but with Easter approaching, I wanted to share as it would be a delicious addition to your meal.

Keep in mind that this casserole may use shredded frozen potatoes and cheddar cheese, but you use HEAVY CREAM – nope, no canned soup in this baby.  I now use only sharp cheddar but you could go with your favorite.  And, for those of you who want to make it and leave it, I’m pretty sure a slow cooker would work on this.


Happy St. Patty’s Day, and enjoy!

~Connie Kaye

Potato Casserole

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4 cups shredded hash brown potatoes
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
salt and pepper
1 1/2 heavy cream
Optional:  thinly sliced or minced onion

Alternate layers of potatoes and cheese (and onion, if using), using salt and pepper to taste.  One you have all of the taters and cheese in casserole dish, pour cream over it.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 min covered, then remove lid and continue for another 10-15 minutes uncovered so cheese is bubbly.


Cranberry Glazed Sweet Potatoes

Cranberry Glazed Sweet Potatoes

I scored this recipe off The Kitchen, thank you Katie Lee, and although it was touted as a Thanksgiving and holiday recipe, I made it tonight and we enjoyed it with marinated, grilled flank steak (amazing).  This was super easy and delish, and if you don’t want to include the glaze, the roasted sweet potatoes were to the moon on their own (I had to do a little tastey tastey).

Again, I almost burnt the almonds while toasting (saute in butter) because I multi-task too much, and was hoping that KSU could pull off a win 😦   Anyway, here’s my taters, drizzled with EEO, then add salt and fresh cracked pepper:

sweet pots

In the oven they went while I enjoyed the beautiful weather outside.  Made the glaze ahead of time and just let it chill (remember, EASY recipe):

glaze for pots

Here’s my final product, and it tastes much better than it looks, but that’s typical cuz I’m not a photographer, and my new phone got wet and died in the rainstorm out in the cove at the lake this summer 😦

finished sweet pots

Yes, I need to break loose and buy a new one (with insurance.)   This weather makes me miss boating life, so am sharing a pic of my boat, which I miss!  Can’t wait for March!!!!


Actually looks better now since I’ve added a KSU and American flag to the antenna!

Enjoy this time leading up to the holidays, and pray for our friends in France and those working so hard to keep us safe here in America, where we are soo lucky to live!  I know I have followers from several other countries, so prayers to you as well for your safety!

~Connie Kaye

Cranberry Glazed Sweet Potatoes

  • Servings: depends
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Approximately 5 medium sweet potatoes, or 3 large
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup cranberry juice cocktail
3 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup sliced toasted almonds

On a baking sheet, toss together the sweet potatoes, oil and salt and pepper. Roast until the potatoes are golden brown and cooked through, 30 to 40 minutes.

In the meantime, in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, reduce the cranberry juice by half. Add the brown sugar, butter and cinnamon, stirring to dissolve and incorporate.

When the potatoes come out of the oven, add them to a large bowl. Pour the glaze over top and toss to coat completely. Serve topped with the toasted almonds.