Grilled Cheese Sloppy Joes

I love this concept of combining two of the most all American sandwiches together.  This is truly an awesome sandwich.  I like it... a lot... maybe too much.  Another bonus to this sandwich besides tasting amazing, is it is super easy to make a big batch of them.  Here's the skinny...
Sloppy Joe meat [click for recipe]
sandwich bread
butter, softened
sliced American cheese
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Butter one side of all the pieces of bread.
 Place slice of bread buttered side down on cookie sheet.  Lay down a piece of cheese.
Dollop on some Sloppy Joe meat, and then another piece of cheese.  Place another piece of bread on top with buttered side facing up.
Place another cookie sheet of the same size as the bottom sheet on top of the sandwiches.
Place sandwiches in the oven for about 4 minutes, or until bread is toasted and cheese is melted.  Let them sit for a few minutes before serving.  Slice them up and enjoy!

Homemade Cheese Crackers

I'm a sucker for homemade crackers.  Especially homemade crackers that involve cheese.  My kiddos also love cheese crackers.  So this recipe is great for the whole family.  I make them in place of Cheez-Its and Goldfish.  It's nice knowing what ingredients are in your kids' snack.  Homemade is always better and these crackers are a cinch to whip up.  Here's the DL...
1 cup flour
4 Tablespoons cold butter, cubed
1 cup grated mild cheddar cheese
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1-4 Tablespoons water
In a food processor combine flour, butter, cheese, salt, and cayenne pepper and pulse until crumbly, resembling cornmeal.
Add 1 tablespoon of water and pulse.  Continue adding water 1 tablespoon at a time until dough forms.
Place dough in gallon size Ziploc bag.  Using a rolling pin roll dough out.
Bag will crease up.

So every once in a while open up the bag and smooth out the wrinkles.  Then reseal the bag and continue rolling.
Roll dough out until it fills up the bag.  Place dough on a flat surface and chill for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Carefully cut the edges of the plastic bag open to reveal dough, be careful not to touch the dough.
Cut dough into one inch squares (I like to use a ruler for this part, keeps my lines straight).  Or you can use a cookie cutter at this point if you want the crackers to be a certain shape.
Place dough squares on ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake for 18-20 minutes.  Let cool completely and enjoy!  Store in an airtight container.  Makes about 100 square crackers.

Crock Pot Lasagna

I'm always looking for good meals to make in my crock pot for those busy days... or days I don't feel like making dinner.  When I first saw a recipe for lasagna in the crock pot I was skeptical.  The noodles didn't need to be precooked, you just layer all the ingredients in the crock pot and walk away- I'm not buying it.  But I had to give it a try.  I was pleasantly surprised when the lasagna tasted and looked like, well, lasagna.  It was wonderful!  Way, way simpler than traditional lasagna and it taste the same.  This really is such an easy meal to pull off.  You can tweak it to suite your fancy, use chicken, forget the spinach, go meatless, use ricotta... however you like your lasagna.  When you've got a busy day just layer this lasagna in your crock pot and walk away, you won't be disappointed come supper time.  Here's the skinny...
3 cups Red Sauce
1 pound cooked ground beef or ground Italian sausage
1/4 cup water
9 lasagna noodle, uncooked
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
2 cups spinach, uncooked
1 1/2 cups cottage cheese
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
11/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
Spray the inside of the crock pot with non-stick cooking spray.
Combine the ground beef and red sauce.
Combine the cottage cheese, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, and 1 teaspoon of the Italian seasoning.
Spread 1/2 cup of the meat sauce on the bottom of the crock pot.  Gently pour the water on top.
Place noodles on top, breaking them up as needed to cover most of the crock pot. Usually takes about 3 noodles.
Spread a third of the cottage cheese mixture on top of the noodles.
Sprinkle half of the spinach on top.
Spread a third of the red sauce on.
Sprinkle on 1/2 cup of mozzarella.
Repeat the layering process again: about 3 noodles, half of remaining cottage cheese mixture, remaining spinach, half of remaining red sauce, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese.
For the final layer place in remaining noodles (or whatever is needed to cover the top), remaining cottage cheese mixture, remaining red sauce, 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese.
Cover and cook on low for 4 hours (if you need it to be in there a little longer, put it on warm after 3-4 hours until you're ready to eat).
30 minutes before you're ready to eat sprinkle on remaining 1/2 cup of mozzarella and the 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning.
Let the lasagna stand in the crock pot turned off with the lid removed for 10 minutes before serving.
Cut it up and enjoy!
*I read one recipe where the lady needed it to be in the crock pot for 6-8 hours so she set her crock pot on high for about 45 minutes and then set it on warm for the rest of the time.  I have not tried this, but I think it would work.  This lasagna is pretty fool proof.