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From Johnna’s Kitchen: Pinwheel Cookies

Pinwheel Cookies PBThese fun cookies are surprisingly easy to make! And you can customize their look by adding in as many colors as you like, which makes them perfect for any celebration!

Pinwheel Cookies

Yield: approx. 48 (4 dozen) cookies


3 cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 ⅓ cups sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Red food coloring (or color/s of choice)

Note: this recipe uses one color (red); to make multi-colored cookies, divide the dough into enough sections, so there is a white base section, and/or one section per color being used. Three colors total is recommended (including the base layer). Otherwise, the cookies will be too large.


In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and salt.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the sugar and continue beating until the mixture is light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating between each addition, then add the vanilla.

Slowly add the flour in small portions and beat until combined. Remove the dough and separate it into two equal sections. Shape one half of the dough into a square, wrap it securely in plastic wrap and place it in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes. (This will be the white portion of the cookies.)

Return the remaining section of dough to the stand mixer bowl, and with the mixer on low, add the red food coloring until it reaches your desired color. Shape the dough into a square, wrap it securely in plastic wrap and place it in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes. (This will be the red portion of the cookies). Clean out the bowl to remove any red food coloring residue if adding more colors. For additional colors, repeat these steps as needed.

After 30 minutes, remove the dough from the fridge and roll each color separately into a rectangle about ⅛-inch thick.

Peel the top side of wax paper off each the red dough and the white dough, then sandwich the two layers together. If using more than two colors, repeat the layering process with each color. Cut the sandwiched layers in half, creating two rectangles.

Very lightly roll all layers together on both sections.

Starting at the shorter end of the rectangle, roll the dough layers as tightly as possible into logs.

Wrap the logs in wax paper, then in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 1 hour.

After 1 hour, remove the dough logs and roll them on the counter with the palm of your hand several times, so they keep a cylindrical shape. Return to the refrigerator for 4 more hours.

When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350ºF and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Remove the dough from the fridge and slice each log into ¼-inch rounds. Place the rounds approximately 2 inches apart on the baking sheets, as the cookies will expand when baked.

Bake the cookies for 9 to 11 minutes until pale golden brown, then transfer them to a rack to cool completely.

From Johnna’s Kitchen: Peppers and Eggs Sandwich

Egg Sandwich

Whether you believe it was a Chicago invention, or just something delicious you had growing up, this recipe for a peppers and eggs sandwich is a healthy, filling alternative to any standard meal.

Peppers and Eggs Sandwich


4 tbsp olive oil
6 green peppers, sliced
1 large onion, diced
1 clove of garlic, minced
12 eggs, scrambled, with salt and pepper
Garlic salt, pepper, and salt
One loaf of Italian bread


Heat a frying pan with oil until hot, then add onions, peppers, and garlic.

Sauté until browned, then season with salt, pepper, and garlic salt.

Slice Italian bread into approximately 4-inch sections, and fill with eggs and pepper mixture.

Add ketchup or condiments of your choice, or top with melted cheese.

From Johnna’s Kitchen: Deviled Eggs

JK-Photo Deviled EggsDeviled Eggs


Hard boil one dozen eggs. See our recipe for directions, if needed.

Peel eggs, and slice in half to separate whites from yellow, put whites to the side.

12 hard boiled yolks
½ cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
Dash of paprika
Dash of hot sauce
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
Salt and pepper to taste


Mix all ingredients together until smooth.

Fill white halves of eggs with yolk mixture, using either a tablespoon or a piping bag.

Arrange on a large serving plate.

Top with a sprinkle with paprika, as desired.

Put in the refrigerator to set for at least ten minutes.

From Johnna’s Kitchen: Oreo Lasagna

You can recognize Oreo cookies almost immediately; it’s the world’s best-selling cookie, with good reason!

Before you dive into chocolate decadence, twist open a few Oreos and read these fun facts (but save some for the recipe!)

Oreo cookies were first created in 1912 at the original Nabisco bakery in New York City (the factory is present day Chelsea Market) and sold in a tin for 30 cents per pound. The first Oreo cookie was sold in Hoboken, NJ.

When they first debuted, there was also a lemon meringue flavor of Oreos. The flavor was discontinued in the 1920s.

Women rather than men are more likely to pull their Oreos apart before eating them.

Oreos became Kosher in December 1997.

National Oreo Day is March 6th!

Oreo Lasagna


1 package Oreo cookies
4 tbsp butter, melted
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
¼ cup sugar
2 tbsp milk
12 oz. (=1 ½ cups) whipped topping
1 pkg. instant chocolate pudding

1 9×13 casserole dish


Spray a 9×13 casserole dish with cooking spray.

Prepare instant pudding according to package directions, then set aside.

Crush entire package of  Oreo cookies in a resealable bag, until broken down into crumble-sized pieces. Set aside 1 cup of crushed cookies for the topping.

In a bowl, stir in melted butter and crushed cookies from bag, until well combined. Pour mixture into the casserole dish and press flat, being sure to cover the entire bottom of the dish.

In a separate bowl, whip cream cheese with a hand-held mixer until light and fluffy.

Add the sugar, milk, and 1 ¼ cups of whipped topping to the cream cheese, and stir until well combined.

Pour the cream cheese topping layer over the Oreo layer, and spread out until smooth.

Pour all the chocolate pudding over the cream cheese layer, and spread out until smooth.

Spoon remaining ¼ cup whipped topping on top, and sprinkle the remaining crushed Oreos on top of the whip.

Chill for at least 4 hours, then serve and enjoy!

From Johnna’s Kitchen: Hot Crab Dip

c3YoqYou wouldn’t think hot summer days and Hot Crab Dip would go great together, but this easy, creamy treat is great for snacks, parties, or any time of the day!


1 lb. crab meat
2 8oz cream cheese
1½ tablespoon milk
1 small onion, chopped
½ teaspoon horseradish
Salt & pepper to taste

1-9×13 Pyrex baking dish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.


Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl.
Spray baking dish with cooking spray.
Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.
Pour into serving bowl, and serve with crackers and cocktail sauce.

From Johnna’s Kitchen: Baked Macaroni and Cheese


We’re sure that most people have had that delicious, cheesy dinner from the little blue box. What if we told you it was just as easy to make it yourself? Before diving into your next dinner, consider these facts:

Macaroni and cheese is the number one cheese recipe in the United States.

In any given twelve-week period, approximately one-third of the population of the United States will eat macaroni and cheese at least once. About half of all children in the United States will eat macaroni and cheese during this time period.

The most popular cheese used in macaroni and cheese recipes is Cheddar cheese.

In 1993, Crayola named one of their crayon colors “macaroni and cheese.”

This tried-and-true staple will have everyone asking for seconds!


1 lb. elbow macaroni
2 sticks butter
8 tablespoons flour
16 oz. cheddar cheese, grated
6 cups milk
salt & pepper
1 cup Italian bread crumbs

9×13 Pyrex baking dish

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.



Cook 1 lb. elbow macaroni according to the box directions, and set aside.

In a saucepan, melt 1 stick of butter over low heat.

When butter is melted, add 8 tablespoons of flour to the butter.

Stir the butter and flour until smooth, then add 6 cups of warm milk.

Continue to stir, and add 16 oz. grated sharp cheddar cheese.

Stir until the cheese is incorporated with the milk, butter, and flour.

Raise the heat to medium to medium-high, and continue to stir until cheese sauce is thickened, without coming to a boil.

Pour in the macaroni to the saucepan, then add a dash of salt and pepper. Stir until macaroni is coated with the cheese sauce.

Spray the bottom and sides of a 9×13 baking pan with cooking spray.

In a separate saucepan, melt 1 stick of butter over low to medium heat.

Once butter is melted, add 1 cup of bread crumbs to the butter, lightly stirring until breadcrumbs are coated with butter.

Pour the bread crumbs on top of casserole, and spread them out over the entire pan.

Bake on 350 for 30 minutes, until top is golden brown.

From Johnna’s Kitchen: Strawberry Pretzel Salad

This week we have three ingredients with interesting histories to make a unique – and delicious – recipe!

Strawberries: Members of the rose family, the strawberry plant is a perennial. This means if you plant one now, it will come back next year and the following and the year after that. It may not bear fruit immediately, but once it does, it will remain productive for about five years. Native Americans ate strawberries long before European settlers arrived. As spring’s first fruit, they were a treat, eaten freshly picked or baked into cornbread. The ancient Romans thought strawberries had medicinal powers. They used them to treat everything from depression to fainting to fever, kidney stones, bad breath, and sore throats.

Jell-O: There were four original flavors of Jell-O in 1904— lemon, orange, strawberry, and raspberry. More than just a great treat, Jell-O played a part in several epic films: in Cecil B. DeMille’s 1923 silent film, The Ten Commandments, Jell-O was used to aid in the parting of the sea effect. In the 1939 classic, The Wizard of Oz, the colorful horses in the Emerald City got their hues from Jell-O powders.

Pretzels: In 610 A.D. while baking bread, an Italian monk decided to create a treat to motivate his distracted catechism students. He rolled out ropes of dough, twisted them to resemble hands crossed on the chest in prayer, and baked them. The monk christened his snacks “pretiola,” Latin for “little reward.” Parents who tasted their children’s classroom treats referred to them as brachiola, or “little arms.” When pretiola arrived in Germany, they were called bretzels. Hard pretzels were “invented” in the late 1600s, when a snoozing apprentice in a Pennsylvania bakery accidentally overbaked his pretzels, creating crunchy, seemingly inedible, knots. Julius Sturgis opened the first commercial pretzel bakery in Lititz, Pennsylvania, in 1861. He received his original pretzel recipe as a thank you from a down-on-his-luck job seeker after Sturgis gave the man dinner. Until the 1930s, pretzels were handmade, and the average worker could twist 40 a minute. In 1935, the Reading Pretzel Machinery Company introduced the first automated pretzel machine, which enabled large bakeries to make 245 pretzels per minute, or five tons in one day.

Strawberries, pretzels, AND Jell-O? How can this be anything but amazing?

Strawberry Pretzel Salad


2 cups crushed pretzels
¾ cup butter, melted
3 T sugar
12 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
12 oz. whipped cream
2 cups boiling water
3 cups strawberries, sliced (leave some aside for top)

1-9×13 baking pan

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.


Combine melted butter and sugar. Stir in the crushed pretzels. Press evenly on the bottom of a 9×13 pan. Bake at 375 degrees F for 8 minutes. Let cool completely.

In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar, and whipped cream. Beat until smooth. Spread over pretzel crust. Make sure to get the cream mixture tight against the edges of the pan to prevent the Jell-O mixture from seeping through.

Bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Remove from stove and add Jell-O. Stir until Jell-O is dissolved. Add sliced strawberries. Pour over cream layer and put in the fridge for at least 4 hours.

Top with whipped cream and strawberries to serve.

From Johnna’s Kitchen: Spaghetti Squash with Peas & Parmesan

Actually a fruit, but known as a vegetable, “squash” comes from the Narragansett Native American word “askutasquash,” which means “eaten raw or uncooked.” Squashes come in many different shapes and colors including tan, orange, and blue. Did you know Presidents Washington and Jefferson grew squash in their gardens? The more yellow the squash, the more flavorful – and healthy! Spaghetti Squash is loaded with potassium, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, and other antioxidants. And – to add to the appeal – it’s low in calories (only 40 calories in one cup cooked), fat, sodium, and carbohydrates. So, if you are watching your weight, this veggie makes a tasty alternative to pasta and it’s high in fiber to keep you feeling full longer.

Serve this delicious dish as a side, or as a healthy “spaghetti” for the kids!

Spaghetti Squash with Peas & Parmesan


1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cup frozen peas
2 cups spaghetti squash, cooked
¼ cup parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
Garlic salt to taste


Poke spaghetti squash all over with a knife and cook in the microwave for 8 – 12 minutes until soft. If you don’t have a microwave, place the poked squash on a baking pan and bake at 375° F for 45 to 60 minutes.

Cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds, and scrape the flesh from the peel with a fork. It should flake off easily in strings, resembling spaghetti.

Heat olive oil and garlic in a pan until garlic is browned.
Add the cooked spaghetti squash, peas, and combine with garlic.
Cook until peas turn brighter green.
Season with garlic salt, salt and pepper, and sprinkle parmesan cheese on top.
Serve as a main or side dish.

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