3 Cheese & Pepper Stuffed Manicotti

Do you find yourself looking for delicious meal alternatives for meatless Monday that will satisfy the entire family? This is our family’s go-to dish – manicotti shells stuffed with 3 cheeses and sauteed peppers and onions and baked to perfection.

3 cheese and pepper stuffed manicotti

The best part about this recipe is how versatile it is! You can make all kinds of substitutions to use up what you’ve got on hand.

3 cheese and pepper stuffed manicotti (5)

I’m sharing the recipe and tutorial over on HowDoesShe.com, so pop by and check it out. I promise you’re going to love it!


Slow Cooker Herb Bread

Did you know that you can make bread in your slow cooker? You can, and it’s easier than you might think. Here is a recipe that I use and love, and it can be tweaked to create several artisan style breads! Here is the recipe:
Slow Cooker Herb Bread
1 tsp Sugar
1 1/3 cups Warm Water (slightly warmer than room temperature)
1 envelope active dry yeast (or 1 scant Tbsp)
*In a large bowl, dissolve sugar in the warm water, then sprinkle the yeast on top. Let it stand for 5-7 minutes, or until the yeast starts to foam. Stir to dissolve the yeast. *
2 cups flour
1 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp cooking oil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp ground sage
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1 tsp salt
1 more cup flour 
Add the next 8 ingredients to the yeast mixture and beat in a mixer on low until moistened, then on medium for 2 minutes. If you do not have a mixer, you may mix by hand. 
Work in the second amount of flour. If you have a mixer, use the dough hook attachment to “knead” for a couple of minutes. If you have no mixer, you can work in the second amount of flour by hand and knead until the dough becomes more elastic. 
Grease your slow cooker and place the dough into the middle. You can smooth out the top of the load with a wet spoon or your hand, or you can leave as-is. 
Place 5 paper towels in between the lid and the slow cooker (to absorb the excess moisture so your loaf won’t turn out mushy on the top), and place a wooden tooth pick (thick ones) between the paper towels and edge of slow cooker to allow for a little steam to escape.
Cook for 2.5 hours on high. DO NOT lift the lid, if at all possible. When it is done (you will smell it becoming fragrant), turn off the slow cooker and loosen the sides with a knife. Turn it out onto a cooling rack until cool. DONE!
Variations: You can omit the seasonings (except the salt) completely for a regular loaf, or try adding different variations of seasonings to try different flavors. 


Red Velvet Crepes!

How was your “LOVE” day? Were you spoiled? Did you get to spend some time with those you love? It was so fun to read, on facebook, all of the status updates filled with messages of love and devotion to others, and to see the photos of little ones dressed in reds and pinks, holding armfuls of cute little cards and candies. I miss those days in school!

I had a lovely lunch date with my hubby at our favorite Chinese buffet (amazing food), then I set to work making something I have NEVER made before – crepes! Now, these weren’t your run-of-the-mill crepes (is there such a thing?). These were red velvet crepes with mascarpone cream filling, and drizzled with chocolate ganache. I feel so “Martha Stewart” even typing that! I found the recipe HERE, and her instructions were very easy to follow. Here is how mine turned out:

After a minute, or two, the ganache thickened up even more than in the photo, above, which made it easier to drizzles. I made the cream filling earlier in the day and kept it in the fridge until I was ready to serve them. I didn’t buy actual Mascarpone cheese, but “faked” it with cream cheese, sour cream, and heavy cream. For every 8oz of cream cheese, you add 1/4 cup sour cream, and about 1/8 cup heavy cream. You could also substitute straight plain greek yogurt (since this isn’t for baking, just for a filling). It turned out SO good!

The crepes, themselves, took a minute to figure out. I think I was trying to make them TOO thin, at first, but after my second try, I had it down 🙂
It was a big hit with every one in the family – even my pickier eaters. I mean, it’s practically like having dessert for breakfast (or, in our case, dinner!)
Be brave. Give them a try. You will LOVE them!