Miracle Soup

It’s called Miracle Soup because it’s so easy! Make as little or as much as you would like.

          • 2-3 Cans fat-free Chicken Broth
          • 1 & 1/2 pounds ground turkey
          • 1 TBS. Salt
          • 1 TBS. Parsley
          • 1 TBS. Basil
          • 1 TBS. Chopped Garlic
          • 1 Cup each:
          • Celery, Onion, Green Pepper, Carrots, chopped
          • 1/3 cup uncooked barley
          • 1 can French-style Green Beans
          • 1-2 cans red Kidney Beans
          • 1-2 cans Italian Stewed Tomatoes

        In a large soup, kettle I sauté garlic with a small amount of oil. Add turkey and brown. Add broth, salt, parsley, basil, onion, green pepper, celery, carrots, barley, and a dash of pepper and the stewed tomatoes.
        Simmer slowly about an hour or until vegetables are done. Add green beans and kidney beans and heat another 15 minutes. Thicken gravy with flour, if desired, serve with a garden salad and hot crusty bread. This recipe also freezes well.

        Note: Add any other vegetable that you might like. I like red peppers. Enjoy!!!

      • To make this more points friendly subtract the barley and add some cabbage which you can chop up.

        Maribeth Dackel

Turkey Scallopini

Turkey Scallopini


This is a quick-cooking meal made with turkey breast slices. This recipe is a winner when you only have a few minutes to fix a satisfying meal. Instead of the flour/egg/bread crumb combo (featured below the recipe), I use Extra Crispy Shake & Bake.


  1.  package (17.6 ounces) turkey breast cutlets
  2. 1 package Extra Crispy Shake & Bake
  3. 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  4. PAM
  5. 2 tbs Olive Oil
  6. Minced fresh parsley
  7. Lemon Wedges


  1. Flatten turkey to 1/4-in. thickness.
  2. Mix package of Shake & Bake and Parmesan Cheese in a bowl and mix well.
  3. Then Place on a shallow plate.
  4. Cover each Turkey Cutlet with the Shake & Bake and Parmesan mix.
  5. Chill for half an hour.
  6. Spray a large skillet with PAM and heat olive oil over medium-high heat;
  7. Cook turkey for 2-3 minutes on each side or until meat is no longer pink and the coating is golden brown.
  8. Sprinkle with parsley & lemon wedges.

Note: I like using my cast iron skillet and when I do that I just use the olive oil.

Alternate Mix:

  1. 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  2. 1/8 teaspoon salt
  3. 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  4. 1 large egg
  5. 2 tablespoons water
  6. 1 cup soft bread crumbs
  • In a shallow bowl, combine the flour, salt, and pepper.
  • In another bowl, beat egg and water.
  • In a third shallow bowl, combine bread crumbs and cheese.
  • Dredge turkey in flour mixture, then dip in the egg mixture and coat with crumbs.
  • Let stand for 5 minutes.

*Follow the cooking directions above.*

Maribeth’s Italian Meatballs

I played around and made these for Jack’s dinner. I did not eat them, but I did a quality control taste test and these really are good! If you give it a try, let me know what you think!

Preheat Oven 350 degrees F

2 slices Italian bread, stale
1/3 cup cold water
1/2-pound ground pork
1/2-pound ground beef chuck
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 medium onion, grated (about 1/4 cup)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large egg, beaten
Freshly ground black pepper
A little olive oil
¼ tsp red pepper flakes.

1.    Break up the bread or pulse into crumbs in a food processor. In a small bowl toss the breadcrumbs with water to re-hydrate.
2.    In a large bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, pork, and beef, Parmesan, parsley, salt, onion, garlic, red pepper flakes, and egg and mix until combined. Season the meat mixture with pepper.
3.    Using your hands, gently form the meat mixture into slightly larger than golf ball-sized balls. (Packing the meat mixture too tightly together will result in tough meatballs). Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours.
4.    Spray with non-stick spray a glass dish. 8 X 12 and place the meatballs into this.
5.    Cook in oven 30-40 minutes or until meatballs are done.
Serve with spaghetti and a nice sauce over this. A great Saturday night meal!

Maribeth Dackel

Maribeth’s Stuffed Cabbage


Maribeth’s Stuffed Cabbage

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit

2 quarts water
1 large green cabbage (about 2 1/2 pounds)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1/2 cups cooked rice
8 ounces ground beef
8 ounces Italian Sausage
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tsp dried parsley flakes
1/2 medium green pepper, finely chopped
1 celery stalk with leaves, finely chopped
4 cups tomato sauce (I like an Italian meat-sauce)
1/2 cup sour cream, plus more for garnish


  1. Using a paring knife, remove the center core of the cabbage.
  2. In a large nonreactive stockpot, bring 2 quarts water to a boil.
  3. Add cabbage and cook 2 to 3 minutes or until outer leaves are bright green and tender.
  4. Lift cabbage from water, and remove outer leaves. Return cabbage to boiling water, and repeat brief cooking and removal of leaves until all leaves are cooked. Reserve 2 cups of cabbage cooking water.
  5. Trim thick center vein from the bottom of each leaf. Reserve four large outer leaves to line the bottom of the pan.
  6. In a medium skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and garlic, and cook until golden and tender, about 8 minutes.
  7. In a large bowl, combine onion mixture, rice, beef, sausage, salt, pepper, parsley flakes, green pepper, and celery. Stir to combine.
  8. Add mixture to one cabbage leaf. Fold sides of cabbage over the filling, and, starting with the stem end, roll the cabbage up. Repeat with remaining leaves and filling.
  9. Line a 5-quart Dutch oven with reserved outside leaves. Transfer stuffed cabbage leaves to Dutch oven.
  10. In a large bowl, combine tomato puree and the reserved 2 cups of cabbage cooking water.
  11. Pour some of the tomato sauce over cabbage to almost cover. Bring to a boil and immediately reduce to a gentle simmer; cover.
  12. Place in the preheated oven Cook for 1 hour 20 minutes. Or until cabbage is very tender, adding additional tomato sauce as needed.
  13. Place sour cream in a small bowl, and ladle in about 3/4 cup of tomato sauce from the cooked stuffed cabbage rolls. Whisk to combine.
  14. Add sour cream mixture back to Dutch oven, and stir to combine. Serve with additional sour cream.



French Onion Chicken Bake


This French Onion Chicken Bake is so easy to make and delicious. A seasoned chicken breast smothered in French Onion Soup and topped with shredded Mozzarella (or Grueye) cheese.

  • Ingredients:
  • 6 (4 oz.) chicken breasts, raw
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp seasoned salt
  • 2 tbsp  canola oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, peeled & sliced
  • 1 (10 oz.) can French Onion Soup ( I use Progresso)
  • 1/2 cup shredded Mozzarella (or Gruyere)
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a skillet pan (or cast-iron skillet) add oil.
  • Add sliced onions. Saute the onions in oil until softened and translucent.
  • When onions become soft, place onions on a plate and set aside.
  • Using the same skillet, add a little more oil.
  • Season each chicken breast with paprika, garlic powder, and seasoned salt.
  • Place seasoned chicken breasts into prepared skillet.
  • Cook for 5-7 minutes on medium-high, on both sides or until chicken breasts are golden brown.
  • Add onions back into the skillet with the chicken breasts.
  • Pour in the can of French Onion Soup.
  • Simmer the chicken and onions in the soup for 2-3 minutes-this will allow the soup to caramelize the chicken.
  • If using a cast-iron skillet top each chicken breast with cheese. (otherwise-transfer chicken, onions, and sauce into an oven-safe baking dish and top with the cheese.)
  • Place skillet or baking dish in a preheated oven.
  • Cook for 10-15 minutes or until bubbly.



Banana Bread!

Banana Bread: My Favorite!


I know pumpkin bread is really popular about now, and I love pumpkin bread,  but even more delicious to me is banana bread, which is my favorite.  Fortunately, it’s easy, and a great use for those bananas sitting on the shelf.

Time: 10 mins prep, 40-50 minutes baking.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

1 c. sugar
1/2 c. butter
2 eggs
3 very ripe bananas
2 c. flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ginger
1/2 nutmeg
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 cup milk

Mash your bananas, then add your sugar, eggs, and butter.  Mix thoroughly.  Sift your flour, spices, and soda together and add them to your wet ingredients.  Mix it all up until you have a somewhat stiff batter.  It’s much thicker than cake batter. Which is why I like to use a little milk to smooth it out. I also tend to double the batch as this freezes well.

Spray your loaf pan with non-stick spray.  I just LOVE using the little loaf pans.  They gift easily, for one.  Also, while I can’t seem to stop at one slice of bread, I do have to stop at one loaf.  This recipe makes 3 little loaves if you want to go that route too.

Bake for 40-50 minutes, until you pass the toothpick test (where you stick it into your bread and it comes out clean).  For my little loaves, usually 40 minutes.  For a traditional loaf, closer to 50.

Jack and I have both been enjoying the bread. It is soooooo good!


It’s All In A Day

On Saturday I:

  • Walked the dogs, hung the bird feeders and had a cup of tea.
  • Made breakfast, cleaned it up and got dressed.
  • Went with Jack to a WW II Museum in Wolfboro, NH.
  • Drove to Jack’s favorite Chinese Buffet for lunch.
  • Was able to eat white rice, egg drop soup, and some plain cookies.
  • Came home, got Heavenly Jam Batch #1 on the stove.
  • Sterilized the lids and caps and jars.
  • Cooked the jam for an hour, added the pectin and cooked it another 20 minutes.
  • Canned 12 jars of Peach Jam at 4 PM.
  • Got out a 7-pound chicken and seasoned it, tied it up and put it in the rotisserie to cook for 2 hours.
  • I got Batch #2 going on the stove.
  • Sterilized the lids and caps and jars.
  • Cooked the Jam 1 hour, added pectin and cooked another 20 or so minutes.
  • Canned 12 jars of Peach Jam at 6:30 PM.
  • Cooked two baked potatoes.
  • Sat down for a few minutes and then the chicken was done and I served dinner to Jack and me.
  • At 8 PM I finished the dinner and the cleanup and I could sit down!
  • Bedtime will come in a few minutes, and quite frankly I am exhausted!



Another Day

Well, yesterday, after my disaster with the last batch of Heavenly Jam, I set about peeling, pitting and setting about two batches of Jam to work on today.

The biggest problem is that doing the prep work is so labor-intensive. What to do, what to do?

Well, this is what I did:

  1. I cooked the peaches for one minute and fifteen seconds, then toss them in ice water and the skins seemed to slip off very easily. Then I crushed the peaches in my hands until they were in tiny bits.
  2. I juiced the oranges and removed all the pulp inside then tossed the rinds in my food processor and shredded them. This was in place of me sitting there finely chopping them into ribbons.
  3. Then I did sit and dice the cherries. That was a bit labor-intensive, but there is no quick alternative.
  4. I measured out the sugar and mixed it all well, covered them, put that in a cool place and set it to rest.
  5. Later on today I will carefully cook and can these two batches and then I am done!

Jack wants to go to a World War II Museum today and although I would usually be thrilled by this, today I would be happier to stay home, do my jam, and rest. But, he sort of guilted me into it, so I will go.

Meanwhile, I will be making him pancakes this morning. He got a box of pancake mix when we went shopping the other day and wants them for breakfast. Okay, one more thing to cook. As well as a rotisserie chicken for dinner.

Pass my apron!


Usually, I cook and can my Heavenly Peach Jam in early August. But for us, this year, our peach crop is still not completely ripe.

Our Spring was very wet, very cold and very late. Our Apple and Peach trees blossom in mid-May, but this year it was the first week in June!

Thus the Peach Crop is small and late. We have all the supplies that we need to make the Heavenly Jam, but it will be the weekend before I can even start.

It got me to thinking back to when my friend Emily lived next door. She would come over and the three of us would work, Dipping the peaches in boiling water for a minute, tossing them in ice water and then peel off the skin and then we would take out the seed, and chop the peaches.

Em and MeEmily and I back in August 2006.

Yes, Jack, Emily and I were a great team and the prep time went fast and we talked and joked and had fun. Below you will see some of the Jam we made together.

24 Jars Of Heavenly Jam & A New Hair Cut

I sure miss Emily and I wish that she lived closer! Of course, she and her husband are expecting baby boy #2 any day now, so I don’t think she would be up for jam making.

So on Wednesday I will be preparing the peaches and setting the Jam to rest before cooking it up on Thursday and canning it.

The Recipe can be found HERE

A little aside, if you share this recipe, I am all for it, but please be sure to credit me. Recently someone “borrowed” one of my very own recipes and took credit for the recipe. For the first time in my 60 years, I felt bad. Perhaps it was because I’d worked hard to create that recipe. In any case, use whatever you would like and please don’t forget me!