Tag Archives: Youth cooking

Macaroni and Cheese A La Burkholder…

I have a wonderful college friend who used to “dog sit” for Matt and I when we still lived in New Hampshire (our first “baby” was a black labrador named Taylor).  Her payment was always a meal of Macaroni and Cheese a La Burkholder.  It is also one of my girls’ favorite meals, and both of the older two are pretty adapt at cooking it.

They think that it is an "All American Meal"...

They think that it is an “All American Meal”…

JP–from Nebraska to New York City–this one’s for you!

Needs:  Butter, Flour, Milk, Cheddar Cheese,  whole wheat macaroni noodles, and all BEEF hot dogs (I like the Wrangler brand best)

Directions:  In a sauce pan on medium/medium low heat melt 2 tablespoons of butter.  When melted, blend in 2 generous tablespoons of flour followed by 1 and 1/4 cup of milk.IMG_3573

Stir the mixture until the white sauce thickens and bubbles.  Be patient–it is best if the sauce thickens adequately!IMG_3576

Turn the heat down to low and use a cheese grater to grate a bar of sharp cheddar cheese into the sauce and mix until it is melted.IMG_3579

While you are preparing the sauce, boil water on the stove top and cook the macaroni noodles until soft (whole wheat noodles usually take about 10 minutes in boiling water).  Strain the noodles when they are cooked and put them in a casserole dish.IMG_3570

Cut up 4-5 hot dogs into small pieces and mix them in with the noodles.  Finally, mix the cheese sauce in with the hot dogs and noodles.IMG_3583

Cook in a 350 degree oven for about 30 minutes.  Enjoy 🙂

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The Hamburger Queen…

Now that Megan has *perfected* the art of building a charcoal grill fire, she is attempting to pass along her vast knowledge to her younger sister while at the same time learning to properly patty and cook the cheeseburgers that they both love to eat.

Can you tell that her daddy is an engineer?

Can you tell that her daddy is an engineer?

The double cuteness does a very nice job of hiding the oneryness.

The double cuteness does a very nice job of hiding the orneriness…

Interestingly, Megan found that making hamburger patties was not quite as easy as she thought it would be… Packing the hamburger together into a strong patty ensures easier and more even cooking on the grill!

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Once the fire was ready, the *expertly made* burger patties went on the grill (unfortunately the Daddy burger was not quite packed well enough and split into three pieces during this process…).

She mostly managed to get it put back together...

She mostly managed to get it put back together…

Flipping the burgers also took more savvy than she originally thought…But after a few tries she was successful! And, soon it was time to add the cheese and then serve.

And the mandatory ketchup smiley face :)

With the mandatory ketchup smiley face 🙂

There were generally smiles all around during dinner, so an unanimous vote determined that (despite the challenges) our Cowgirl/Chef was a masterful burger maker in training…

The fresh strawberries and whipped cream added to the smiles...

The fresh strawberries and whipped cream was a tasteful way to end dinner!

What is your favorite type of burger?  Megan is looking for ideas for her next Hamburger Queen dinner!

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Megan’s Enviable Enchiladas…

My cowboy loves grass finished bison meat.  He shared some with us this weekend and my favorite 11 year old cowgirl chef used it to make enchiladas.  The following recipe is also really good with grain or grass finished beef hamburger.  It’s your choice!IMG_3017

Enchilada needs: 2# ground meat, 8-10 soft whole wheat taco shells, package of Provolone cheese, 1/2 package of Mozarella cheese, package of McCormick Enchilada sauce mix, 8 ounce can of tomato sauce, Parmesan crusted “shake and bake” seasoning, water.IMG_3020

  • In a frying pan, cook meat until done. Put in a healthy shake of Parmesan crusted “shake and bake” seasoning while browning the meat.
  • In a sauce pan: combine tomato sauce, water and enchilada mix (Megan only used half a package of the sauce mix because she do not like spicy food).  Bring the sauce to a boil and then simmer for 5 minutes to thicken the sauce.
  • Combine the sauce with the cooked meat and stir.
  • Grate provolone cheese onto the whole wheat soft taco shells.
  • Add meat and sauce to each taco shell.  Roll it, and place it seam down in a lasagna pan.
  • Pour extra meat sauce onto the top of the rolled tacos.
  • Grate mozzarella cheese over the top of the tacos.
Bake for approximately 20 minutes in a 325 degree oven (until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbling).

Bake for approximately 20 minutes in a 325 degree oven (until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbling).

Serve alongside your favorite vegetable and enjoy!

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Megan’s Easter Hamballs…

We were blessed to have family visit us for Easter weekend.  Not only did we celebrate the Easter holiday with good times, but my favorite 10 year old cowgirl/chef celebrated her 11th birthday.

She started the big day early helping me to exercise calves at the feed yard, and practicing her dance moves on top of the hay bale pile...

She started the big day early helping me to exercise calves at the feed yard—followed by practicing her dance moves on top of the hay bale pile…

One of Megan’s favorite meals is hamballs.  The meat dish is actually a Cozad tradition and is made from ground ham.  My husband is a master at preparing them, and he and Megan always have fun when they create their masterful hamballs together.

They taste awesome--even if they aren't made from beef...

They taste awesome–even if they aren’t made from beef…

Hamball needs:  Two pounds of ground ham loaf, one egg, two pieces of shredded whole wheat bread, one handful of oatmeal, twelve shakes of pepper, eight shakes of minced onion, six shakes of tarragon, four shakes of garlic powder, a generous helping of parmesan cheese.

Use a large bowl to combine the ingredients...

Use a large bowl to combine the above  ingredients…

Blend the ingredients by hand...

Blend the ingredients by hand…

Form the mixture into balls and place in a pyrex dish...

Form the mixture into balls and place in a pyrex dish…

Sauce needs:  Cup of water, 2 and 1/2 cups of apple cider vinegar, and 3/4 of a cup of brown sugar.  Mix the liquid ingredients together and pour over the hamballs.  Cook an hour in a 400 degree oven.

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Enjoy!  After all, they have the birthday girl’s seal of approval 🙂

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Megan’s Magnificent Homemade Pizza…

When Matt and I lived in New Hampshire, there was a little pizza parlor about a mile away from the Dartmouth College campus where we could go to get “take and bake” pizza.  What I loved most about the take and bake was the option of getting a whole wheat crust.

Ah, those where the days before wrinkles and gray hair!

Ah, those where the days before wrinkles and gray hair!

When we moved to Nebraska, my mom bought us a bread maker and we started making our own home made pizza with whole wheat crust.  I love it best with cheese, hamburger, and broccoli.  Megan only agrees to put broccoli on it if I give her a direct order (she would tell you that direct orders are common place in our house)…You can be creative with the toppings or you can be boring like me and always have it the same 🙂

Tasty, Tasty!

Tasty, Tasty!

Needs:  Whole Wheat Crust = 1 and 1/8th cup of warm water, 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil, 2 cups of whole wheat flour, 1 cup of bread flour, 1/3 of a cup of rye flour, 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of sugar, 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of dry yeast, and 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of salt (optional–we do not put salt in ours).

IMG_2395Add all ingredients into the bread maker in the order given above (if you include salt–put it in after the sugar).  Set the bread machine on the “dough” cycle.  It takes about an hour for our machine to blend it into dough.

Needs: Pizza = 1 and 1/2 pounds of hamburger (browned and cooked thoroughly), 1 can of pizza sauce, grated 1lb of mozzarella, grated 1/2lb of marbled chedder/jack cheese, and chopped fresh broccoli (not quite an entire head).  Matt and Megan sometimes gang up on me and sneak in some pepperoni!

She tossed it with such exuberance that the pictures were all blurry...

She tosses it with such exuberance that the pictures come out blurry…

When the dough is finished in the bread maker, toss and stretch it before placing it on a pizza stone (this is Megan’s favorite part–watching her learn to toss the dough is hilarious).  Add pizza sauce, then burger (meat), then broccoli (vegetables), then the cheese is last.

It takes a little bit of encouragement on my part to get Megan to put on enough broccoli!

It takes a little bit of encouragement on my part to get Megan to put on enough broccoli!

Cook in a 350 degree oven for 45 minutes.  Let stand for a few minutes (5-10) before slicing and serving.  This recipe makes a thick crust pizza.  You can add more toppings if you would like!

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