Thanks for stopping by Recipes From The Heart Of Your Home. Don't forget to check out the Christian resources we have linked to on the left of the page. I am a Christian wife and mother, doing my best to take care of my family and be a good steward of the wonderful blessings God has given us. I enjoy cooking for my family and doing it unto God for His glory. I love to cook from scratch when it's affordable and not too time-consuming and I especially love to bake. Lots of family and friends ask for my recipes so I've decided to put them on a blog so they can get them or anyone else who wants them. I think you can make good quality, good tasting food at a fraction of the ready-made price and it doesn't have to break your budget. Please let me know how these recipes turn out. They're our family's favorites. I'll be updating this blog as often as I can. Enjoy and God bless!


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Friday, December 14, 2012

Cappuccino Jello - Refreshing dessert - tastes like iced coffee!

This recipe is a variation off a Coffee Jelly recipe I found which is something that is apparently served in Japan.  The idea sounded interesting but I don't like coffee so much, but rather coffee flavoring in things.  That recipe needed some cream and sugar I thought, so I decided to make up Cappuccino Jello.  This turned out really tasty and tasted just like an iced coffee or a frappuccino.  Really yummy and healthier than the artificial coloring and flavoring fruit varieties at the store.  Even the kids loved it too!

Cappuccino Jello

3 cups boiling water
1/4 cup instant coffee (I think Nescafe tastes the best, a lot of varieties are bitter and nasty)
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup half and half (you could probably use milk too)
2 packets unflavored gelatin

Stir boiling water, instant coffee, and sugar together until dissolved.  Add the 2 packets of gelatin to a bowl with the half and half or milk.  Wait 1 minute and then stir it with a whisk.  Add it to the water mixture and whisk until well dissolved, about 5 minutes.  Put in fridge in dessert cups or container for 4 hours or more until well chilled and set.  To serve, top with whipped cream or cool whip if desired and caramel sauce for an even tastier treat.  I topped mine with cool whip and homemade caramel sauce and it tasted like a caramel frappuccino.  It was so yummy!  Without it, it tasted like a plain cappuccino which was a bit plain for me and too coffee tasting, but I loved the extra flavor the caramel sauce added and the creaminess from the cool whip.

You could also try adding fudge sauce or chocolate syrup instead on top.  You could also substitute flavored or non-flavored brewed coffee instead of the instant coffee and water if you prefer.  To make a thicker, more jello jigglers style jello, add another packet of gelatin.  You could then cut it in cubes.  You can half this recipe if it makes too much or if you have a smaller family than me.  If you really like the taste of coffee, try 4 cups of coffee with no half and half (which is then coffee jelly) and you can adjust the sugar to your liking.  Have fun and mix it up! 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Hot Fudge Sauce

This hot fudge sauce recipe makes a rich, chocolatey, thick hot fudge sauce that is a great compliment to lots of desserts.  No need to spend a ton of money on a small jar of fudge sauce at the store that has all those chemicals in it and doesn't even taste good.  Try this recipe!  It would be great to give in decorative half pint mason jars for a delicious gift.  Make sure it stays refrigerated.

Hot Fudge Sauce

1 3/4 cups heavy cream (I use half and half because it's cheaper or you can use evaporated milk, but it tastes a little different)
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, cut into small pieces
2 3/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1/8 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract

In a heavy bottomed saucepan over low heat, bring the cream just to a boil then add the brown sugar and stir just until it dissolves.  Add small pieces of butter and mix until completely melted, then stir in the chocolate chips.  Wait a few minutes for chocolate to soften before folding it in with a spatula.  Stir in the salt and vanilla extract and blend until well incorporated.  Let cool for 15 minutes.  It will thicken as it cools.  This recipe makes a lot and you could easily half it.  It stores in the fridge for weeks. It's the consistency of a soft fudge when in the fridge, so it's too thick to drizzle on top of things.  To soften, scoop out desired amount into microwave safe bowl and microwave in 15 second increments and stir.  It doesn't take much to soften it at all and you don't want to scorch it.

This sauce is great drizzled over ice cream, cheesecake, brownies, cookies, or whatever you like!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Berry Sauce - Great for yogurt, ice cream, pancakes, or whatever!

Some of the sauces I have made are pineapple, blackberry, mixed berry, peach, cherry berry, strawberry, cherry, and orange pineapple.

Berry Sauce

9 cups of crushed berries
6 cups sugar (can use more or less, depending on tartness of berries)

I used to make my sauces by crushing berries, but I inevitably got some large pieces of berries and chunks here and there in my sauce and I didn't care for the texture very much.  Now, whenever I make a sauce or jam, I puree my fruit in the blender.  It gives a great smooth and thicker texture and no more chunks or lumps in my sauce or jam.  It looks really pretty too!

Combine berries and sugar in a large saucepot.  I typically will double this recipe to make more pints at a time.  Bring slowly to a boil, stirring until sugar dissolves.  Ladle into pint or half-pint jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace.  Wipe rims of jars to make sure they're clean, top with lids and rings.  Process 15 minutes in a boiling water bath canner.  Often times I will make a few half-pints too, along with my pints.  I process them the same amount of time and then I have great gifts to give to friends.  My favorite sauce I've made so far is Cherry Berry Sauce which had cherries, blueberries, blackberries, and strawberries, all mixed together.  So delicious!  It kind of tasted like one of those Edy's 100% berry fruit bars in a melted form. 

This is a picture of my Homemade Sweetened Vanilla Yogurt topped with my Cherry Berry Sauce, fresh blueberries, and Skillet Granola.

Homemade Sweetened Vanilla Yogurt - Thick, creamy, and way better than store-bought and cheap too!

I searched high and low on the internet for a homemade sweetened vanilla yogurt recipe to no avail.  So, I had to make up my own through trial and error.  This yogurt is so delicious, super-thick and healthy for you.  No need to waste your money on those ridiculously expensive Greek yogurt containers to get thick yogurt.  Best of all, it's really easy to make homemade yogurt.  No special equipment or ingredients needed.  No yogurt makers, coolers, starters, or anything.  Those are gimmicks anyways for people to make money off of you and totally not necessary.  Don't buy into it.

Homemade Vanilla Yogurt
1 gallon whole milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
6 tbs. vanilla extract
1 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup cold milk
3 envelopes unflavored gelatin (optional)
The recipe may seem complicated by all the directions, but  I just like to leave all my notes and tips in there so there's no confusion on how to make it.  But, if you have any questions, just ask. 

This recipe is for a gallon of yogurt, which is what we make (we have 5 in our family) and it lasts for a few weeks or maybe longer without spoiling.  We just usually have it all eaten up by then.  You could half this if necessary.

1) I take one gallon of milk and put it in a large pot on the stove on medium heat.  I warm it up to 180 degrees.  I use a meat thermometer, or you could use a candy thermometer just fine.  It takes somewhere around a half hour on our stove.  I've accidentally forgotten about it on the stove before and it's gotten up to 220 and still had it work, although the pot was about to boil over at that point.  I don't stir my pot either, but just let it sit.  This makes it really easy.  It will get a skin on top like cooked pudding will, but I just take a whisk and scrape it off and dump it in the trash once it's cooled down.  It's much easier than having to stir the pot non-stop and I've never had my milk scorch or burn this way despite not stirring it.  If you don't heat it at least up to 180, it won't set right.  So, once your milk is up to 180, take it off the burner and let it cool to 110 degrees.  It takes much longer to cool than to warm up, about an hour.

2) I take the skin off like I said, and then mix 1 1/2 cups of sugar into the pot with a whisk until dissolved.  We used to use 2 cups of sugar, but since we like to add a fruit sauce and granola on top of our yogurt, it can be a bit too sweet.  1 cup of sugar was too sour for us, but do it to your tastes.  I also add 6 tbs. of vanilla extract and whisk that in. 

3) In a small bowl, I take about 1/2 cup of cold milk and take 3 envelopes of unflavored Knox gelatin.  I've used 2 envelopes and it didn't thicken it up.  When I used 4 envelopes, it was like eating yogurt Jello.  Not the right consistency.  3 is just right.  You can omit this step entirely if you don't want to use gelatin.  It still makes a delicious and very thick yogurt, but when you use the gelatin, it stays really thick and we just love it this way.  Sprinkle your gelatin on top of the cold milk in the bowl and let it sit for about 2 minutes, then stir.  It will be the consistency of baby rice cereal or a soupy oatmeal.  Then, whisk it in quickly into your sweetened warm milk.  Make sure you get out any lumps.  If you add the gelatin straight to the warm milk, it will set up the gelatin and it won't mix in.  If you let the gelatin sit in the cold milk too long, it will get too thick to mix in the milk and won't dissolve easily.  The trick is to just wait a few minutes until soupy, then stir it in quickly.
 This is what it looks like after a few minutes.
  This is the soupy consistency once it's stirred.

4) Then, add 1 cup of unsweetened plain yogurt.  I like to use Dannon plain yogurt in a 32 oz. container.  That container has about 4 cups of yogurt and will last my family about a month and still be fresh and make 4 gallons of yogurt.  Some people say you can use your homemade yogurt as a starter, but I've never done that.  Since my yogurt is sweetened and thickened, and not plain, I don't know if it would work anyways.  Also, I've heard that the more you use your homemade yogurt as a starter, the more sour each batch gets.  I just simply buy the store-bought plain yogurt instead.  Whisk the plain yogurt into your pot very slowly. If you whisk it too fast, you'll mess up the cultures and it won't set right.  Just whisk slowly until most of the yogurt is mixed in well.
Then, pour your milk mixture into a container.  I use 2 glass Pyrex 2.75 qt. containers with lids.  This holds exactly 2 gallons for me.  
I take two thick bath towels and lay them on my counter and stack my containers inside.  I wrap the towels around the containers to keep them insulated.  

5) I let it sit for 14 hours.  I've done anywhere between 8 and 20 hours before, but 14 seems to work pretty good for me.  Depending on the temperature inside your house and the time of year, it may affect how long you want it to set out.  Then, after 14 hours, set your yogurt in the fridge.  Don't stir it or mess with it, but let it sit in the fridge for about a day to set up and get cold.  Then, enjoy!  Once you dig into the yogurt, after a while, some whey will separate out.  You can simply use it in a recipe or smoothie, or drain it off.  If I don't use the gelatin, when the whey separates from the yogurt over time, the yogurt tends to get soupier and soupier and mixes in with the whey.  I would then use it in smoothies or something.  But, when I use the gelatin, the yogurt stays thick and doesn't mix in with the whey.  It stays thick to the end and we love how thick and yummy this yogurt is.
 This is how thick the yogurt still looks after being dug into several times.  It holds it's shape well.

This is great served with a homemade fruit sauce.  (I make this all the time by making a jam recipe and just not using pectin.)  Top with fresh fruit and Skillet Granola and you have a delicious breakfast! 

Your Savings:
This is way cheaper than buying store-bought yogurt and it tastes way better and fresher and has only a few ingredients.  You can make many types of flavored yogurts by simply changing the type of sauce you top it with.  To make 4 gallons of homemade yogurt, it would cost whatever 4 gallons of milk costs (or free, if you have your own cow).  Lets say around $14, plus a container of store-bought plain yogurt, approximately $3, plus the minimal cost of sugar and vanilla and a little more if you use the gelatin packets.  Lets say around $19 to make 4 gallons of yogurt.  If you bought 4 gallons of store-bought vanilla yogurt, that could run you around $48 if 32 oz. yogurt cost you around $3.  That's a savings of almost $30, more or less depending on the cost of your ingredients.  Much cheaper if you have a dairy cow.  This is a cheap and healthy way to make a delicious breakfast for your family.  Throw yogurt in smoothies or make homemade yogurt popsicles.  So good!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Cheese Blintzes

(This is not my picture, but looks the most like it that I could find. When I take a pic, I'll post it.)

These cheese blintzes weren't very hard to make and went over really well at our weekly church potluck this past Sunday. I've never tried cheese blintzes before this recipe, so I have no idea if they're the way they're supposed to taste, but either way, they were really good!

1 (1 pound) loaf white bread (I used wheat)
4 tablespoons white sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon (I made up my own cinnamon sugar without the recipe and I used probably double the amount of cinnamon sugar called for and had more cinnamon in it too. It added a lot of flavor with the extra cinnamon sugar.)
2 (8 oz.) packages cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons milk
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup butter melted

1)Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a cookie sheet generously with non-stick cooking spray.

2) Trim crusts from bread and roll the slices flat with a rolling pin. (I didn't bother to trim the crusts and it was quicker and still tasted fine.)

3) In a pie plate, combine sugar and cinnamon to make a mixture.

4) In a large mixing bowl, with electric mixer, mix softened cream cheese, milk, sugar, and vanilla until smooth. Spread this mixture onto each slice of flattened bread. (I laid all my slices out on the counter and spread it out on all of them before rolling them up to make sure each slice was evenly coated and that I didn't run out.) Roll up bread with filling in the middle and cut in half. Using a pastry brush, brush the halves with melted butter, evenly coating it. Then, roll each half in the cinnamon sugar. Coat it well. Then put the blintzes on the prepared cookie sheet. Repeat for all blintzes.

5) Bake for 10 minutes. You can serve these hot, cold, or lukewarm. They taste good all ways. See which you prefer best!