Friday, December 3, 2021

Midwest Pecan Pie - BEST EVER RECIPE!

Recipes at the Top * Chit-Chat at the bottom!  

Midwest Pecan Pie


Unbaked pie crust

¼ cup melted butter (real butter not margarine)

1 cup sugar

1 cup clear Karo

4 eggs (yes, use all four)

¼ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla

½ T flour

2 cups shelled pecans



Preheat oven to 325 degrees/bake.

Sprinkle unbaked crust dough with a little flour and then place the rolled dough in a pie plate. Trim the edges and create whatever edging you prefer. I pinch mine using my right thumb/index finger to pinch dough around my left index finger.  It isn’t gorgeous, but works pretty good! (Do not prick the bottom of the crust.)  Set aside until the filling is ready to be poured into the unbaked crust.

In a medium mixing bowl, melt the butter.  (I melt in the microwave.)  Add sugar and Karo syrup and mix until well combined.  (Doing in this order cools the butter down before adding the eggs.)  Add eggs and other ingredients (except the nuts) and stir until well mixed/smooth.  Last, add the pecans and stir again to fully combine.

Pour into crust.

Place pie on a regular cookie sheet/sheet pan to catch any drips.  Place all in oven.

Bake 1 hour or until a knife inserted comes out clean.  (I baked mine an extra five minutes.) 


The chit-chat:


Unbelievably, it had been a few years since I had eaten a really delicious pecan pie and this past Thanksgiving, I set out to find a good recipe.  This is that recipe!  So – I’m saving it here never to be lost again!


My husband’s “Aunt C” always made the pecan pies for our Thanksgiving dinners and I LOVED THEM!  Sweet and buttery with a slight hint of vanilla.  They were the Thanksgiving dish that I dreamed about all year (while the rest of the family dreamed of Aunt C’s beef & noodles ladled over my mother-in-law’s fluffy mashed potatoes). 

In 2019, Aunt C was a little under the weather (so Sam’s Club prepared the pies that year).  Eek.  Not the same compared to Aunt C’s dreamy pecan pies.   Sadly, we lost Aunt C in 2020.  We miss her terribly, even more than we miss her cooking.

In 2020, we chose to celebrate Thanksgiving with our own small immediate families rather than doing the large family dinners of years’ past (one word=covid). I made my own pies for Thanksgiving 2020.

My 2020 pecan pie was not good (pretty much like the whole, dang year, I guess).  I didn’t like that pie one bit.  I used the recipe on the Karo syrup bottle and it tasted only like sugar and nuts to me.  It wasn’t the juicy, buttery/vanilla combo that I was used to eating as cranked out by Aunt C.  Also, I should mention (in case anyone forgets) that holiday dishes are to be “taken with a grain of salt” since anything that can go wrong on holidays, pretty much does.  Don’t we all have stories of holiday dish fails? LOL.  So, it wasn’t just my pecan pie that was a fail in 2020.  It was also the year Jr./the huge red dog jumped in the back seat of my Honda Civic and promptly stepped right in the one and only pumpkin pie!)  2020 was not the year for Thanksgiving desserts apparently, lol. 


I decided this year, 2021, to try to find Aunt C’s recipe. 


I wasn’t able to find Aunt C’s recipe, but her sister (Doug’s Mom) DID have a pecan pie recipe that called for four eggs and half a stick of butter.  I was SURE THIS was closer to Aunt C’s dreamy pecan pie.


Ta-da!  It WAS the pie of my dreams and so I’m sharing it here.  Oh how I wish, that Aunt C had given us lessons on how to make her noodles, her stuffing and many of the other dishes we love that can only be made by Aunt C.  Good food is pretty special to folks.  It takes us “home” even when we can’t get there, whether that’s down south in Florida, to Aunt C’s kitchen, or to our last home (that burned, along with my recipes) in Hickory Grove.   

Seriously, nothing takes you back like your favorite dish as made by one of your favorite peeps.


Hope your family likes our favorite recipe for pecan pie.  It is a keeper for sure and I know you’re going to love it.

P.S.  This pie EVEN won over a non-pecan pie eater.  Mr. Kenney had never in his life tasted pecan pie until the other night (after bowling).  He tasted a nibble first, then more, then a whole piece.  He's been chipping away at it ever since.  Nothing like trying pecan pie for the first time at at 57.  LOL.  Crazy man.




Monday, December 7, 2020

Leftover Cranberry Sauce - Two Ways!

 Recipes at the Top!  Chat-chat at the bottom!

Surprise Muffins (Cranberry Sauce)

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking POWDER
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup oil (I used vegetable oil)
  • Leftover cranberry sauce (about 1 cup)
  • Colored sugar/sprinkles if you have some
  • 12 cupcake papers or spray the pan well.


PREHEAT OVEN to 350 degrees and place liners in muffin tin (12)

COMBINE:  In a mixing bowl, combine all dry ingredients.

COMBINE SEPARATELY:  In a separate dish, add milk, oil and egg.  Blend well.

COMBINE:  Wet and dry ingredients and stir well to make a thick batter.

MUFFIN TIN:  Spoon one scoop (like 1 heaping Tablespoon) of batter in each cup of a 12-muffin tin.  Spread it around a little to cover the bottom of the cup.

ADD CRANBERRY SAUCE:  On top of the batter in each cup, add a Tablespoon of cranberry sauce to each cup.

TOP:  Top with another scoop of batter.

SPRINKLE:  If you have colored sugars or sprinkles, shake some on!

BAKE approximately 25 minutes at 350 degrees.

WAY #2


  • 1 cup cranberry sauce (I used homemade- recipe HERE)
  • 2 cups prepared whipped cream (I used homemade-recipe HERE) but cool whip would be just perfect also
  • Optional:  Could add drained crushed pineapple, nuts like pecans or walnuts.  (I didn't use anything and it was just a piece of heaven!)


Combine roughly two parts whipping cream/cool whip to one part prepared cranberry sauce and stir it up.  Chill (or just eat from the bowl if no one is looking). 


The Chit-Chat!

I rid my fridge of the last of the Thanksgiving leftovers yesterday with the precious bowl of Homemade Cranberry Sauce and a dish of Homemade Whipped Cream which I had left at my daughter's house.  I dearly love homemade cranberry sauce so I wasn't letting a single bit of THAT go to waste!  I make it with just cranberries, sugar, and water so no weird spices or fruit in it.  It's so yummy!  I've recently been inspired by a favorite frugal blog and I couldn't toss that cranberry sauce without making an effort at Remaking it into something wonderful.

First up - I made some Surprise Muffins with cranberry sauce in the centers.  They are delicious!  I often made these Surprise Muffins for my girls when they were growing up.  I typically add jam in the middle.  Our favorites are grape, apricot, and apple butter but I assumed cranberry sauce would be equally fantastic.  It really was even better than regular jam because the cranberry sauce held it's shape and really made a nice little surprise in the center!  These muffins were so yummy with my coffee Sunday morning and were even more moist and delicious leftover today!

After making the muffins Sunday morning, I still had a little Homemade Cranberry Sauce leftover.  I decided to simply combine the leftover cranberry sauce with some leftover Homemade Whipped Cream.  

Let me tell you, this combo is delicious!  The creamy sweet whipped cream combined with the tart fruity cranberry sauce just made a perfect little treat.  I was so glad I tried it because who really needs jello salads with tons of ingredients and lots of steps when you can just stir a few things together... like TWO things!  (Note to self to remember this next Thanksgiving.)  I could have added crushed pineapple and some nuts but I didn't have any and didn't want a big dessert in the fridge since I'm the only person eating it.  But definitely adding extras would make a little dabble of whipped cream and a little dabble of cranberry sauce go even further if you have a family to feed.

It's always nice to know you used every bit of something.  Tightwad success with these two dishes! LOL

Enjoy everyone!  


Monday, November 23, 2020

Crockpot Pineapple Pork Loin - Easy and So Delicious!



Crockpot Pineapple Pork Loin

  • 2- 3 lb pork loin (not the same as pork roast or pork tenderloin)
  • 2 Tablespoons oil 
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  •  23.5 oz can chunk pineapple (not drained)

TRIM:  Trim the fat off as best you can from the pork loin

BROWN:  Brown the meat on all sides in a skillet before adding to the crockpot.  (Not absolutely required but makes makes a richer flavor.

ADD:  Add pork loin to the crockpot.

SPRINKLE:  Sprinkle with garlic powder and salt/pepper.

TOP:  Top with pineapple, the juice, and soy sauce.

SPREAD:  Spread brown sugar evenly over the pork loin.

COOK:  Cook on low 6-8 hours OR on high 4-5 hours until fork tender.

OPTIONAL:  You could thicken the juice (before serving) with a mixture of a little flour blended into cold water and stirred in, then heated to thicken (like for gravy).

SERVE:  I served mine with rice and mashed potatoes (because Big Daddy doesn't like rice) and steamed vegetables.


Hello everyone!  

I made a new to me recipe last night and since it was such a winner, I decided to post here for future reference.  I definitely will be making this again.  

Pineapple Pork Loin tastes very much like Hawaiian Chicken except it's a ton easier.  The combo of pineapple and soy sauce is just over the top wonderful.  Doug and I both loved it!  If you like pork and sweet, asian flavors, you're going to love it too.

Lately, my Gerbes / Dillons grocery has been having huge discounts on pork loin.  I found several for $1.29/lb.  Cannot beat that!  Pork loin is our favorite cut of pork and I like to keep a few in the freezer for meals like this, for slicing as pork chops, and for making our go-to Tangy Pulled Pork.  Pork loin is lean and that's a must have at our house.

If you are looking for a cozy Sunday Supper, or weeknight crockpot meal, try this Pineapple Pork Loin.  You will love it and will be adding it to your family favorites!