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March Recipes

Banana Cream Pie Lush

      Pouch (17.5 oz.) Betty Crocker Sugar Cookie Mix.
         Butter and Eggs
         (as called for on the cookie 
mix pouch for drop cookies)

1/3    Cup Butter (melted)

1 1/2 tsp. Vanilla (divided)

      pkg. (8 oz.) Cream Cheese (softened)

      Cup Powdered Sugar 

      Tub (12 oz.) Cool Whip Topping (thawed)

      Medium Bananas (firm, cut into 1/4 inch 

         slices, about 2 1/2 cups) 

      Boxes (3.4 oz. each) Jell-O Banana Cream Flavor Instant Pudding and Pie Filling Mix

      Cups Milk (cold)

      Medium Banana (firm, cut into 1/4 inch slices, about 1 cup)

Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Make and bake the drop cookies as directed on the pouch. Cool completely, about 30 minutes. Set aside 4 cookies for garnish. 

In a food processor, process half of the remaining cookies to coarse crumbs. Remove to a medium size bowl. Continue to process the second half of the remaining cookies to coarse crumbs; add to the bowl. Stir in the melted butter and 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla until well blended. In an ungreased 13x9 inch glass baking dish, press the cookie crumb mixture firmly in the bottom. Set aside.

In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, powdered sugar and remaining 1 teaspoon vanilla with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth, scraping down the sides of bowl frequently. Beat in 2 cups of the whipped topping. Spread over cookie crust. Place 2 1/2 cups banana slices in a single layer over the cream cheese mixture.

In another medium bowl, beat dry pudding mixes and milk with a whisk about 2 minutes or until thick. Drop by spoonfuls over banana layer, spread evenly over top. Drop remaining whipped topping by spoonfuls over pudding layer; spread evenly. Cover and refrigerate 4 hours. When ready to serve, crush remaining 4 cookies. Sprinkle crushed cookies over top of whipped topping and arrange the remaining 1 cup of banana slices. To serve cut into 6 rows by 4 rows. Keep leftovers covered and refrigerated. Serves 24.


Smoky Sausage n Rice Casserole

2    Tbsp. Extra-virgin Olive Oil (divided)

12  oz. Italian Chicken Sausage Links (cooked, slices into 1/4 inch slices)

1    Red Bell Pepper (diced into 1/4 inch pieces) 

1    Orange or Yellow Bell Pepper (diced same)

1    Cup Onion (diced to 1/2 inch pieces)

1    tsp. Dried Basil

1/2 tsp. Salt

1/4 tsp. Black Pepper

1    Cup Instant Brown Rice (uncooked)

2    Cloves Garlic (minced)

Pinch Red Pepper Flakes (optional)

1    Cup Low-sodium Chicken Broth

1    (15 oz.) Can Fire Roasted Tomatoes (in their juice)

Fresh Parsley (optional for garnish, chopped)

Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a large nonstick skillet with a tight-fitting lid, over medium-high heat. Add the sausage slices and cook for a few minutes on each side, until browned, about 5 to 8 minutes total. Remove to a plate, blot with paper towels to remove excess oil and set aside. With a paper towel, carefully wipe the skillet until mostly clean. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the bell peppers, onion, basil, salt and pepper and cook until the onion begins to soften and brown, about 3 minutes. Add the rice and garlic and red pepper flakes, stirring to coat the rice. Cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the chicken broth and caned tomatoes with their juice, stirring well. Bring to a boil, stir again, then cover and simmer on low heat for 5 minutes.

Stir in the reserved sausage slices until evenly distributed, then re-cover the skillet and remove from the heat. Let stand 5 minutes, until most of the remaining liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender. Sprinkle with parsley and serve warm. Serves 4


Creamy Mushroom Pasta

      Tbsp. Olive Oil

3/4    lb. Fresh White Mushrooms (sliced)

1/4    lb. Fresh Shiitake Mushrooms (stemmed and sliced)

Salt and Black Pepper (to taste)

      Cloves Garlic (minced)

      oz. Sherry

      Cup Chicken Stock

      Cup Heavy Whipping Cream

      oz. Fettuccine Pasta

1 1/2 tsp. Fresh Thyme (chopped)

1 1/2 tsp. Fresh Chives (chopped)

1 1/2 tsp. Fresh Tarragon (chopped)

      Tbsp. Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese (freshly shredded, divided)

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook and stir the mushrooms in the hot oil with a pinch of salt until the juice from the mushrooms evaporates and the mushrooms are browned, about 10 minutes. Stir garlic into mushrooms and cook for 1 minute; pour in the sherry and cook until the wine is nearly evaporated. Mix the chicken stock into the mushroom mixture; season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat, cook until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.Pour the cream into the mushroom mixture, stir to combine and simmer for 5 minutes. Mixture will foam and thicken slightly.Fill a large pot with lightly salted water and bring to a rolling boil. Add the pasta, bring back to a boil and cook pasta over medium-high heat until cooked through but still ?rm, about 8 minutes. Drain but do not rinse the pasta; transfer to a large serving bowl and keep warm. Stir thyme, chives and tarragon into mushroom sauce and turn off the heat; mix 1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese into sauce until cheese has melted.Pour all the mushroom sauce and half the mushrooms over the pasta, reserving about half of the mushrooms in the skillet. Toss pasta in sauce until coated; top with remaining mushrooms and remaining 1 tablespoon Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese for garnish.