I marinade for about 15 - 20 minutes (if I don't go to the butcher) in citrus juice & olive oil. Last night it happened to be tangerine, olive oil, pepper, salt and some Emeril's seasoning.
Let is sit out to room temp about 5 - 10 minutes before you put it in your pan. I always use a grill pan, I'm not sure why but I think I like the look of grill marks more than anything else.
Preheat your grill pan to a very high temp.
Sear on each side for exactly 3 minutes for thinner steak, 4 for thicker steak and 5 for a very thick steak. I still like my steak a little pink in the middle.
Let rest, uncovered for about 7 minutes - do not cover with foil otherwise there will be more carryover cooking and your steak will be overcooked. Ick, tough and chewy. Also, the citric acid helps to break the tough muscle tissue if you don't purchase your steak from the butcher (I happen to be cheap once a month).
I used about 5 - 6 any brand medium size potatoes. I like leftovers, so this is enough for lunch the next day.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Roughly cut potatoes into the same size wedges.
Put into a bowl and coat with olive oil, emeril's seasoning, garlic POWDER, salt & pepper. I think I also used Greek seasoning last night. I use garlic powder instead of garlic salt so they don't get too salty - you can always add salt after they've crisped up in the oven.
Bake for 35 - 40 minutes. I like my potatoes crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, none of those uncooked potatoes for me. I also do not touch them when they are in the oven, I don't stir them, I just don't touch them. Screw the mixing up - that's too much effort and I like to watch reruns of the Young & the Restless while I'm making dinner and that's an extra step.
Sadly, there's no leftovers for me to put a picture with. I'll have to make them again.
Work has been a little odd lately (I mean like, you walk in and you know that something's up but no one's saying anything), so recently I've been loving going home to a glass of wine and a homemade chicken pot pie. So that's what's for dinner tonight.
Plus I have this weird knot in the back of my neck. It's on the right side, so it doesn't hurt if I turn my head to the left. Right now my body is facing right and my head is looking left at my computer. I think I'm going to start laughing my ass off if anyone looks at me funny.
Yeah, weirdo Monday it is...
The food though, the food was what I loved and still love today. Finnish pancakes are an absolute staple in almost every Northern Minnesotan home (along with knowing how to batter fry fish correctly, yum!). Plus they're easy, cheap and pretty fun to make. Plus they look funny too! It makes for good morning conversation!
2 large eggs
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup flour
1/8 tsp salt
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon margarin (I use Country Crock with calcium)
2. Put 1 tablespoon margarine in a pie plate. Melt in the oven.
3. While melting margarine, beat eggs and milk together, add salt, sugar and flour.
4. Remove pan with melted margarine, pour mix into pan. Return to the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until puffs up and edges are golden brown.
A good topping besides syrup is always apples & cinnamon. Actually, you can even sprinkle the pancake with cinnamon before you put it in the oven. The possibilities are endless!!!
But for Secret Santa this year, my person loves them. I broke down last night and I made them. Since I've never made them because I absolutely hate them, I used this recipe and I actually liked them. I mean, I hate oatmeal raisin cookies and I ate a full cookie.
Chewy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
America’s Test KitchenIngredients:
1 1/2 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp nutmeg, freshly grated
1/2 tsp salt
16 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened but still cool
1 c. packed light brown sugar
1 c. granulated sugar
2 large eggs
3 c. old-fashioned rolled oats
1 1/2 c. raisins
-Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare 2 baking sheets.
-Whisk flour, baking powder, nutmeg, and salt together in medium bowl and set aside.
-Either by hand or with an electric mixer, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy.
-Add the sugars and beat until fluffy, about 3 mins.
-Beat the eggs in one at a time.
-Stir the dry ingredients into the butter-sugar mixture with a wooden spoon.
-Stir in the oats and raisins.
-Working with generous 2 Tbsp of dough each time, roll dough into 2-inch balls.
-Place the balls onto the prepared baking sheets, spacing them at least 2 inches apart.(NOTE: Flattening the balls somewhat, into a disk shape, I found makes for more even cooking here)
-Bake until the cookie edged turn golden brown, 20 to 25 mins. (NOTE: Keep an eye on them here. You do not want to overbake. Take them out right before you think they are "done" and they will finish cooking on the cookie sheets)
-Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for 2 mins.-Transfer the cookies with a wide spatula to a wire rack.
-Let cool at least 30 minutes.
I used a mix of white raisins, regular raisins and craisins instead of using all regular raisins. Also, I rolled the dough like I would a hamburger patty - kinda round, but more disk shaped. I heard on some FoodNetwork show the other day that this made cookies bake more evenly.
Well, I hope they're a hit! Because again, I say, I hate oatmeal raisin cookies.
Yeah, I've been kinda lazy since September. I don't know why I'm not as motivated anymore. I guess work has been crazy and I really like to have either a glass of wine or a bottle of beer when I get home from work. I used to to do Pilates 3 - 4 times per week. How many times a week do I exercise now???
Yep, the epitome of laziness. I mean, I play Guitar Hero - that's exercise, right? I park at the back of the parking lot at work and I walk up and down the stairs during the day. Plus every time I leave or come back to the apartment I HAVE to take three flights of stairs. That's not too bad.
I had a salad and a sandwich yesterday. Today I made tomato soup instead of cracking open the Campbell's. I cleaned the bathroom. I cleaned the kitchen. I walked to the gas station earlier today.
Oh yeah, and I hate the New Year's resolution of losing weight. Seriously, I mean you can make that resolution every and any day of the year. I would much rather make a resolution to go to Paris or to save money in a 401k than to lose weight. That task of losing weight is just so daunting. If I've gained 10 pounds since May, I think that I can probably lose that weight again just by doing what I was doing when I was motivated.
So motivation, here I come!
Oh yeah, and here's my tomato soup recipe:
2 cans diced tomatoes
1 can tomato sauce
2 small onions, diced
4 garlic cloves
1 brick of cream cheese (1/3 fat or whatever it is)
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp rosemary (I had fresh on hand)
1 can of chicken broth
Sweat the onions and garlic together for 5 - 6 minutes. Add all other ingredients except cream cheese.
Then in batches, puree the soup in a blender and return to the hot pan. Add the cream cheese. Simmer for 20 minutes or until you can tell the onions have been fully cooked and are tender and the cream cheese is melted and creamy.
Honestly, you don't have to add cream cheese, I just had it on hand. It's still good without the cream cheese too!!!
The crazy thing is, at home I'm not very organized at all, but then I go to work and I'm colored coded OCD about my files. And I'm organizing other people's files as well. I think I'm going to color code our files at home. That might make it easier, I'll have to use the same categories that I use at work so I don't confuse myself. I associate a category with a color: red - financial, purple - personal, yellow - reference, green - internal departments, orange - external departments, blue - samples/ideas/etc...
At work, we keep financial files for 7 years so my red category is usually arranged according to fiscal year, one person that I'm organizing, I'm doing by vendor - it's easier for him to see his files that way. By vendor also helps when you use several people a lot in one year or in one month. I also keep personal files for people, so they have places to put their PTO statements and things like that. Warranties and invoices are also saved, along with meeting notes and promotional samples. As you can tell, I keep a lot more organized at work than I do at home! I just need to keep the energy going from work to home!
Here's my categories that I'm going to use at home, these are easy for me to see:
Red - bills
Green - bank statements, credit card statements, tax info
Blue - warranties, instructions
Pink - Personal stuff for me
Yellow - personal stuff for CJ
Ok, since today was payday I'm on a hunt for a USB cord and a new filing system.
Ugh. I hate organizing. Oh well, it needs to be done!
I absolutely love their fake it, don't make it recipes. They're all very easy, usually 5 - 6 ingredients in which you already have them on hand. On Wednesday I didn't have chicken, so I made beef pot pies with cream of broccoli and for frozen veggies, I had the Italian combo. I also added some Italian seasoning and a pinch of crushed red pepper.
1 8-ounce bag frozen mixed vegetables
2 refrigerated piecrusts (such as Pillsbury)
1 10 ¾-ounce can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup milk
2 cups chopped cooked chicken or turkey
½ teaspoon garlic salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
Preheat oven to 375° F.
Defrost the vegetables in a microwave for about 3 minutes. Cut 2 piecrusts into quarters, to yield 8 equal pieces. Coat the inside of 4 small aluminum-foil pans (4 ½ inches in diameter, 1 ¼ inches deep) or 4 ramekins with vegetable cooking spray. Line the bottom of each with a quarter of crust, molding it with your fingers to fit. In a large bowl, stir together the soup and milk; add the remaining ingredients. Spoon about 2/3 cup of the mixture into each pan or ramekin. Top each with a piecrust quarter. Pinch the edges together and cut vents in the top. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until golden brown.
NUTRITION PER SERVING: CALORIES 572(0% from fat); FAT 32g (sat 6g); PROTEIN 25mg; CHOLESTEROL 61mg; CALCIUM 71mg; SODIUM 1221mg; FIBER 3g; CARBOHYDRATE 46g; IRON 3mg
This year I'm hosting his mom and dog. Yep, they're flying all the way down from Minnesota. Even the dog. The dog is old and to put it honestly, I'm worried that something will happen to the dog, like end up in Asia and not here in Indiana. I actually had a horrible dream the other night that the dog died and I had to bring it to Canine Companions so that it could be taken care of. I'm not telling the husband about that one!
My mother-in-law is kinda particular about her food. So I'm making something other than turkey.
Apple, onion and sausage stuffing
Caramel apple crisp
Mashed potatoes and gravy
I think I might even attempt a pumpkin cheesecake. We'll see if I get a springform pan at Target on my lunch hour today.
Wish me luck for my no-turkey Turkey Day.
So here's my holiday baking list. I hate to say it, by myrecipes.com is my new best friend! The following recipes are from there, and I just can't wait to get started!
Double Chocolate Chunk Cookies
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups uncooked quick-cooking oats
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 (11.5-ounce) package semisweet chocolate chunks
2 (1.55-ounce) milk chocolate candy bars, grated
1 cup chopped pecans, toasted
Beat butter and sugars at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Add eggs and vanilla, beating until blended.
Pulse oats in a food processor to a fine powder. Combine oats, flour, and next 3 ingredients in a large bowl; gradually add to butter mixture, beating well. Stir in chocolate chunks, grated chocolate bars, and pecans. Drop dough by 1/4 cupfuls onto lightly greased baking sheets.
Bake at 375° for 10 to 14 minutes or until desired degree of doneness. Remove cookies to wire racks to cool completely.
Mississippi Mud Cookies
1 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup milk chocolate morsels
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. miniature marshmallows
1. Microwave semisweet chocolate morsels in a small microwave-safe glass bowl at HIGH 1 minute or until smooth, stirring every 30 seconds.
2. Beat butter and sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; add eggs, 1 at a time, beating until blended after each addition. Beat in vanilla and melted chocolate.
3. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt; gradually add to chocolate mixture, beating until well blended. Stir in chopped pecans and 1/2 cup milk chocolate morsels.
4. Drop dough by heaping tablespoonfuls onto parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Press 3 marshmallows into each portion of dough.
5. Bake at 350° for 10 to 12 minutes or until set. Remove to wire racks.
Caramel-Pumpkin Cheesecake with Gingersnap Pecan Crust
With a yummy gingersnap cookie crust, this creamy pumpkin cheesecake is just what you need to wow your dinner guests during the autumn season. Prep: 29 min., Cook: 1 hr., 35 min., Other: 9 hrs.
12 crisp gingersnaps
1 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup chopped pecans
1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
4 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 2/3 cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup canned unsweetened pumpkin
8 tablespoons whipping cream, divided
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
3 tablespoons caramel topping
Process first 4 ingredients in a food processor until finely ground. Add butter; pulse 8 to 10 times or until blended. Press mixture into bottom and 1 1/2 inches up sides of a 9-inch springform pan.
Bake at 350° for 20 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack.
Beat cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Add granulated sugar, beating just until blended. Reserve 3/4 cup cream cheese mixture for topping; cover and chill. Add eggs, 1 at a time, to remaining cream cheese mixture, beating just until blended after each addition.
Combine pumpkin, 5 tablespoons whipping cream, and next 3 ingredients; add to cream cheese mixture, beating just until blended. Pour batter into prepared crust.
Bake at 325° for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Turn oven off. Let cheesecake stand in oven, with door closed, 1 hour. Remove from oven, and run a knife around edge of pan, and release sides. Cool on a wire rack. Soften reserved cream cheese mixture; spread evenly over cheesecake. Drizzle caramel topping over cream cheese layer; gently swirl with a knife to create a marbled effect. Cover and chill 8 hours. Store in refrigerator.
Tip: Make sure you don't cut into the cheesecake when swirling the caramel layer.
Yum! I just can't wait to get started - maybe I'll make something tonight!
People try and make money on some of the craziest things ever. Take for example my "donate" button on the bottom of this page. I wonder how many people will donate to me to try new recipes. Seriously, that's what the money will go for if anyone ever donates. (Oh, yeah, it's a secure, paypal thingy too) I will wait until I have enough to try something fun and dynamic. But then again. Who knows what will happen?
If someone donates, it may even go to my hubby's tuition - law school takes the cake over being a foodie and a bad organizer. Yes, maybe the money will even go to trying to help me become organized. At this point, I don't know, I'm just doing it for shits & giggles to see if anyone donates.
50 cents is ok too - I can buy one whole twizzler at Kroger for that much!!!
I have also decided that I hate the smell of vinegar. It's hilarious for me to read about green cleaning and then realize that I have to use vinegar. The stuff made me puke at french camp. Seriously, how can I turn green if I can't stand the smell of the stuff??? (But, I do use red wine vinegar and balsamic vinegar for cooking, the smell is still there, but at least it's kinda masked)
Also - http://www.gaiam.com/ is the perfect place to buy environmentally "challenged" people Christmas gifts. I say "challenged" because I still see people who claim to be environmentally friendly using plastic bags and driving SUV's. That does not make me happy. Gaiam also offers stuff for sale that's been fairly traded with a variety of different cultures. I think I enjoy looking at those items the most.
The picture that's not me is from Seventh Generation products. Gaiam sells their products online but they are also available in most stores. Target carries their cleaning products, Kroger carries their stuff too! I can hardly believe it - green products in a Republican state! But, lo-and-behold, Indiana is certainly good for some things. The Dalai Llama visited this past week. I can't complain about that!
I am in shock at myself. Seriously. I'm usually good at giving old clothes to Goodwill, but for some reason, parting with household items is the hardest thing in the whole entire world for me to do.
Yesterday I was watching VH1 and they had a special on the top 25 worst decorating habits. One stuck out in my mind - THROW STUFF AWAY YOU DON'T LIKE.
So I did.
Whoops, there go the old candles since last fall that don't have much wax left in them.
Oopsie, the old yarn that I really can't crochet anything with, and there go the old coasters that I made when I was 14. I hate the scent of one candle, yet I kept it anyway because it was a gift. Well, that went into the garbage as well.
The fajita pans that we don't use very often - those will be on ebay and probably in the facebook marketplace soon. They take up room in my cubboard and I originally and stupidly bought them for CJ thinking that he would cook more. I was obviously wrong. I can let go of those...
Also, I have this stupid fake Santa basket for Christmas cards. That will be going to Goodwill because I found a new one that I like from Pier 1. I love retail therapy.
Also, all of the books that I've read, I'm making a library out of them. I will lend them out. I'm not afraid to do so!
I also need to get rid of two really awesome bar stools. They take up room behind our couch where I could actually be storing stuff. So, those will be listed on the facebook marketplace as well. And probably ebay. Maybe I'll even post 'em on Craigslist. I don't know, whatever. I just need more room in our tiny, one bedroom, 640 square foot apartment. I'm about to go crazy!
Oh, oh... Also, I need to find boxes to store DVD's in. The stupid DVD holder rack is bugging the bejeezers out of me - I'm not one for clutter anymore and I like things put away and closed behind doors. I'm ready to start organizing the DVD's and get those into our entertainment cabinet. That's going to be hard work!!!
From the county where drunk driving is considered a sport, comes this true story.
Recently a routine police patrol parked outside a bar in MINNEAPOLIS, MN. After last call the officer noticed a man leaving the bar so apparently intoxicated that he could barely walk.The man stumbled around the parking lot for a few minutes, with the officer quietly observing. After what seemed an eternity in which he tried his keys on five different vehicles, the man managed to find his car and fall into it. He sat there for a few minutes as a number of other patrons left the bar and drove off.
Finally he started the car, switched the wipers on and off--it was a fine, dry summer night--,flicked the blinkers on and off a couple of times, honked the horn and then switched on the lights. He moved the vehicle forward a few inches, reversed a little and then remained still for a few more minutes as some more of the other patrons' vehicles left. At last, when his was the only car left in the parking lot, he pulled out and drove slowly down the road.
The police officer, having waited patiently all this time, now started up his patrol car, put on the flashing lights, promptly pulled the man over and administered a breathalyzer test.
To his amazement, the breathalyzer indicated no evidence that the man had consumed any alcohol at all!
Dumbfounded, the officer said, "I'll have to ask you to accompany me to the sherriffs office. This breathalyzer equipment must be broken."
"I doubt it," said the truly proud non-drinker. "Tonight I'm the designated decoy."
Tomorrow it will be chicken pot pie. I don't think I'll be able to pound anything with those ingredients though. Oh well, save for tonight!
Here's the recipe that I'm going to stick to. It's from myrecipes.com (my current favorite website):
Chicken Stuffed with Goat Cheese & Garlic
4 ounces goat cheese, softened
3 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil, divided
1 tablespoon minced garlic
4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 (25.5-ounce) jar fat-free Italian herb pasta sauce
3 whole garlic cloves
3 cups hot cooked fettuccine (about 6 ounces uncooked pasta)
Combine goat cheese, 2 tablespoons basil, and minced garlic; set aside.
Place each chicken breast half between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap, and pound each half to a 1/4-inch thickness using a meat mallet or rolling pin. Divide the cheese mixture evenly among breast halves. Roll up jelly-roll fashion. Tuck in sides; secure each roll with wooden picks.
Heat the pasta sauce and whole garlic cloves in a large skillet over medium heat; add chicken. Cover and cook 25 minutes or until chicken is done. Serve over pasta. Garnish with 1 tablespoon basil.
- Chopping onions, green pepper and zuchinni and freezing them
- Making apple cinnamin bread
- Making beer bread with Sam Adams Oktoberfest
- Cleaning the bathroom floor
- Making calzones & freezing the uncooked calzones (then bake at 400 degrees for like 15-20 minutes or until golden brown)
- Making potato soup
I am going to be a cooking and chopping fiend tonight, as I'm working ALL stinkin' weekend long for Homecoming and trying to finish up family pics & wedding pics. Jeez, Louise, what have I got myself into?
http://www.nature.org/initiatives/climatechange/calculator/. Calculate your estimated amount of carbon per year. Caution: it will be in the TONS. And that's a lot of carbon.
Talk about the environment and you know how I'm a treehugger!
Let me post about somethings that can save the environment as well as your money!
You'll end up being happy that you went to the above address and printed it out. I have a copy tacked to my cubicle (ah man, don't start with me on cubicle living).
Tonight, on your way home from work stop and get the good light bulbs. They really do help. Also, at Kroger they have canvas grocery bags, buy a lot. I think they're only 50 cents. Research household cleaners and how to make your own enviromentally friendly kind. Since they're homemade, they actually save you money too.
Being big on the environment doesn't mean spending your whole paycheck on crap. It means redusing, reusing and recycling. Just remember - for the most part, things that you do to save money mean that they probably also help the environment too.
8 ounces lean ground beef
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
1/2 (10 ounce) package frozen, chopped spinach, squeezed dry
1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled
1/4 cup sliced pitted black olives
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint, divided
1 1/2 cups reduced sodium tomato sauce
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Spray a medium baking dish with vegetable cooking spray; set aside.
Cook noodles according to package directions, but do not add salt. Drain.
Meanwhile, spray a medium nonstick skillet with vegetable cooking spray. Heat over medium heat. Add beef and onion. Cook, stirring, until browned, about 5 minutes. Place mixture on a paper towel-lined plate; drain.
In a medium bowl, combine spinach, ricotta cheese, feta cheese, olives and 2 tablespoons mint. Spread 1/2 cup tomato sauce in prepared dish. Top with 3 noodles. Spread some spinach mixture over noodles. Top with some beef mixture. Spoon 1/4 cup tomato sauce over beef mixture. Continue layering with remaining noodles, spinach mixture, beef mixture, and sauce. Cover with foil. Bake until filling is heated through, about 30 minutes.
Sprinkle with remaining mint. Serve immediately.
3/4 cup Parmesan cheese - grated
1/2 cup Butter or margarine
1/2 cup Milk
8 ounces Fettuccine; cook - drain, drizzle with EVOO & toss to coat
2 tbsp parsley, roughly chopped
Salt & Pepper to taste
In large saucepan combine cream cheese, Parmesan, butter andmilk, stirring constantly until smooth. Toss pasta lightly withsauce, coating well. Top with parsley, season with salt and pepper. Leftovers freeze well.
My dream job is totally being Anthony Bourdain and traveling the world and eating like crap whilst being thin and smoking and drinking like the fabulous person he is.
I'm in love. With Mr. Bourdain's job.
Check out this website: http://www.lulu.com/en/products/cookbooks/
It has a TON of ideas, the only thing is, I'd be baking and cooking like no other for the next month trying to get pics of all my food!!! Maybe that wouldn't be so bad afterall...
Cheddar Chive Beer Bread
PreparationStir together first 5 ingredients; pour into a lightly greased 9- x 5-inch loaf pan.
Bake at 350° for 45 minutes. Pour melted butter over top. Bake 10 more minutes.
Peanut Butter Bread
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup peanut butter
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Combine dry ingredients. Add milk and peanut butter. Pour into a greased 8 by 4 by 3-inch loaf pan. Bake for approximately 50 minutes. Serve with your favorite jam.
I'm combing all the dry ingredients, putting them in a nice jar and then attaching the recipe to the jar. Easy, simple and super cheap! I'm still looking for more good recipes to give.
PreparationHeat oven to 400° F.
In a large bowl, combine the beef, soup mix, cheese, parsley (if using), eggs, and saltines. Add the water and combine.
Transfer the meat mixture to a baking dish and form it into a 9-inch loaf. Bake until cooked through, about 40 minutes. If using barbecue sauce, remove the meat loaf from oven after 25 minutes and pour the sauce over the top. Return to oven for about 15 minutes more.
To Freeze: Wrap the uncooked meat loaf in a large sheet of aluminum foil and cover with plastic wrap. Store for up to 3 months.
To Reheat: Thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Cook according to the recipe.
Cube 3 Idaho potatoes, 1 inch cubes
Salt & Pepper
2 tbsp butter or margerine
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
2 tbsp fresh herbs, whatever you have on hand, basil, parsley, etc...
1 Brown gravy packet
1/4 lb browned ground beef/sirloin
1/4 cup chopped green onions
1 tbsp grill seasoning (I use McCormicks)
Boil the potatoes until VERY soft - I think it's about 15 minutes, maybe longer depending on your potato cube size. Drain and put them back into the hot pot. Mash them with a potato masher or a fork if they're very soft. Add in the milk, margarine, cheese, herbs, salt & pepper. Stir to combine.
While your potatoes are boiling, brown your meat, add the steak seasoning. Then add your gravy packet, let cook for 1 minute. Then add your 1 cup of water, whisk all together. Let bubble and reduce down.
Serve with a salad. Yes, my meal does consist of just mashed potatoes because I can't stop eating them. Yum!!!
2. You can sing the rap to the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and can do the Carlton.
3. You know that "WOAH" comes from Joey on Blossom
4. If you ever watched "Fraggle Rock"
5. It was actually worth getting up early on a Saturday to watch cartoons.
6. You wore a ponytail on the side of your head.
7. You got super-excited when it was Oregon Trail day in computer class at school.
8. You made your mom buy one of those clips that would hold your shirt in a knot on the side.
9. You played the game "MASH"(Mansion, Apartment, Shelter, House)
10. You wore stonewashed Jordache jean jackets and were proud of it.
11. You know the profound meaning of "WAX ON , WAX OFF"
12. You wanted to be a Goonie.
13. You ever wore fluorescent clothing. (some of us...head-to-toe)
14. You can remember what Michael Jackson looked like before his nose fell off and his cheeks shifted
15. You have ever pondered why Smurfette was the only female smurf.
16. You took lunch boxes to school...and traded Garbage Pailkids in the schoolyard.
17. You remember the CRAZE, then the BANNING of slap bracelets
18. You still get the urge to say "NOT" after every sentence.
19. You thought your childhood friends would never leave because you exchanged handmade friendship bracelets
21. You ever owned a pair of Jelly-Shoes.
22. After you saw Pee-Wee's Big Adventure you kept saying "I know you are, but what am I?"
23. You remember "I've fallen and I can't get up"
24. You remember going to the skating rink before there were inline skates.
25. You have ever played with a Skip-It.
26. You remember boom boxes and walking around with one on your shoulder like you were all that.
27. You remember watching both Gremlins movies.
28. You thought Doogie Howser/Samantha Micelli was hot.
29. You remember Alf, the lil furry brown alien from Melmac.
30. You remember New Kids on the Block when they were cool...and don't even flinch when people refer to them as "NKOTB"
31. You knew all the characters names and their life stories on "Saved By The Bell," The ORIGINAL class.
32. You know all the words to Bon Jovi - SHOT THROUGH THE HEART.
33. You just sang those words to yourself.
Heat your grill pan to high heat. Spray with cooking spray. Drizzle your bunch of asparagus with olive oil, salt & pepper and Emeril's Cajun Seasoning. Grill for approx. 7 - 8 minutes per side. Cover with tinfoil tent until done with chicken.
Parmesan Crusted Chicken
1/2 cup of flour
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
Salt & pepper to taste
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 - 4 chicken breasts
1/2 cup prepared tomato sauce/marinara sauce, heated in the microwave.
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
Mix together bread crumbs, parmesand cheese, salt & pepper and then the garlic powder into a shallow dish. Put the beaten egg in a shallow dish and the flour in a shallow dish.
Keep the grill pan to medium-high heat. Spray with cooking spray.
This is like your breaded chicken. Dredge the chicken in the flour first, then the egg and finally the parmesan cheese mixture. Then put the chicken in the grill pan. Brown on each side for 3 minutes, then stick the whole pan into the oven for 10 - 12 minutes or until chicken in done.
Top the chicken with the heated tomato sauce. I like the Prego Tomato Basil Pasta Sauce.
This morning I pulled all of MY stuff out of the closet and hung up my new hanging rack thingy. I don't think there are better words to describe it. I put away all of my summer stuff, pulled out sweaters and long sleeve shirts. I packed away all of my shorts and tank tops (except for a few, I have sweaters that I like to wear over tanks) and put them in clear airtight bins at the top of the closet. My husbands not here to clear out his stuff, so that'll have to wait until he has a free weekend.
I've realized that I have too many clothes. I started a bag for donations and it's already filled. Tomorrow I will drop it off at Goodwill. I feel better knowing that I'm ready for Fall (even though it's already here) weather. I don't need any more clothes, I counted dress shirts, dress pants, jeans and the like so that way I know exactly what I have. I just need new bras (but then again, I can always shop at Vickie's right???) and maybe some new underwear.
The next step - color coding. We'll see how that goes. For now, I'm alright with my shirts on the top rung and my pants and skirts on the bottom rung.
The only thing is... I wonder how long it will last...
Did not come. Dang it! Well, I guess for free shipping, you can't really complain! The website did say 7 - 10 days. Oh well. This weekend!
Last night I made a HUGE pot of homemade chili. I only had 1/4 lb of ground beef in the freezer, which was fine because beans are better for you anyway. So here it is! You can add or omit anything that you think is too spicy. This is my fall recipe with my SECRET INGREDIENT as well.
1/4 lb ground beef up to 1 lb of beef
2 cans of Chili ready spicy beans (I buy the Kroger brand)
1 can tomato sauce (a large can)
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can of pinto beans
1 can black beans
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp cumin
1/4 cup grainy mustard
1/2 tsp cinnamin (yes, this is the secret ingredient)
2 tbsp hot sauce (more or less depending on how spicy you like it)
Salt & pepper to taste
1 bag of frozen corn (optional)
1 large onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 - 3 tbsp olive oil
Like I said, this is for a HUGE pot of chili that you can freeze and use for the next month. It's worth it! You can ladel this stuff into individual glad containers and take it out as you want it.
Throw the onions, garlic and olive oil into a very large stockpot. Cook until onions are tender, then throw in the beef to brown. The onions will become clear as the beef cooks.
As soon as the beef is brown, throw everything else in except for the corn. Wait to put the corn in until about 5 - 7 minutes before the chili is done cooking.
Simmer for 25 - 30 minutes to make sure that the beans have combined their flavors with the spices.
Serve topped with cheese, green onions and crusty bread.
PreparationWhisk together flour and 1/3 cup chicken broth until smooth.
Combine remaining chicken broth and next 3 ingredients in a Dutch oven. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 8 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Gradually stir in flour mixture. Cook, stirring often, 5 minutes.
Stir in milk and 8 ounces shredded cheese. Cook mixture over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until cheese melts. Top each serving of soup with 1 teaspoon cheese, 1 teaspoon bacon pieces, and 1 teaspoon chopped green onions.
Note: We recommend freshly shredded cheese (versus the preshredded variety) for additional creaminess and even melting.
I saw this at myrecipes.com - I've never had potato soup with broccoli before, so this is going to be my new trial recipe. We'll see - it does sound good!!
Ok, it's the plan for Sunday then. No Jungle Room, just complete and utter organization.
Whoops, I mean chaos. I just hope I can do laundry in the same day so that way I can make sure that ALL of my clothes fit back into the closet!!!!
Oh and here's one for the Gopher fans:
Minnesota, hats off to thee!
To thy colors true we shall ever be.
Firm and strong, united are we.
Rah! Rah! Rah! for Ski-U-Mah.Rah!
Rah! Rah! Rah!
Rah! for the U of M.
'Almost Like Starbucks Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins'
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. ground cloves
4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
2 c. sugar
2 c. cooked or canned pumpkin
1 1/4c. vegetable oil
8 oz. pkg. cream cheese
chopped nuts (optional)
Preheat oven to 350.
Mix all incredients. (Except cream cheese and nuts) (I mixed all dry together, then mixed in the wet...) Fill muffin tins (greased or papers) half full. Put 1-2 tsp. cream cheese in the middle, pressing down slightly. ( I cut the 8oz. bar of cream cheese into 24 squares) Sprinkle with chopped nuts. ( I used walnuts)Bake at 350 for 20-25min. or until a toothpick comes out clean from the muffin part. Let cool in pan for 5 min. before moving to a cooling rack to cool completely. Makes 24 miffins.
Black Bean Soup with Bacon
2 cans of black beans
6 slices of bacon
1 small onion, roughly chopped, reserve 1 tbsp for topping if preferred
1 cup of water
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp cumin
1/2 tsp of cayenne
Salt & pepper to taste
Hot dogs - sliced if you want
Crisp the bacon first, remove and pat off the fat. Throw the onions into the pot with the bacon drippings. Heat until clear, then add the beans, cumin, chili powder, cayenne, salt & pepper and hot dogs. Add the water as well and heat all the way through until very warm. Serve in coffee mugs, topped with cheese & onions.
Roasted Red Pepper Soup
- 1 cup of olive oil.
- 3 tablespoonsof minced or diced garlic.
- 2 medium sized jars of Roasted Red Peppers.
- 2 cups of heavy whipping cream.
- Salt, pepper, paprika, cayenne.
- A handful of pine nuts.
- A handful of fresh basil.
1) Place the cup of oil and the garlic in a large soup pot and cook on lowest heat for 2 to 3 minutes.
2) Open both jars of roasted red peppers and set aside half of the oil that is in the jars.
3) Place roasted red peppers and remaining oil that was in the jars into blender.
4) Blend until smooth; work your way from the lowest blender setting to the highest.
5) Without stopping the blender, very slowly pour remaining oil that was in the jars through the top of the blender to create an emulsified mixture.
6) Pour red pepper mixture into soup pot and turn up heat to maximum.
7) Add heavy whipping cream; substitute half-and-half if desired.
8) Add salt, pepper, paprika and cayenne to taste; I suggest about 1 to 2 teaspoons each.
9) Keep a close eye on the soup, as it will greatly expand in the pot when it comes to a boil.
10) Reduce heat to medium when soup comes to a boil and let cook for about 5 minutes. Avoid overcooking the soup as it will Rbreak' and you'll see the oil separate to the top.
11) Slowly toast pine nuts on lowest setting until golden brown; chop coarsely and add to soup.
12) Thinly slice the fresh basil and either mix into soup or sprinkle over individual servings
One Hundred Years of Solitude
The Wednesday Letters - Jason F. Wright
Playing For Pizza - John Grisham
Giving: How Each of Us Can Change The World - Bill Clinton
God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything - Christopher Hitchens
Suite Francaise - Irene Nemirovsky
Shattered Dreams, My Life As A Polygamist's Wife - Irene Spencer
Bones to Ashes - Kathy Reichs (um, duh, I am always reading one of her books)
Play Dirty - Sandra Brown (um, another author that I'm always reading)
1 can of chili-ready beans (can be store brand, I buy Kroger Chili Hot beans)
1 can of pinto beans
1 can of kidney beans
1 packet of chili seasoning, mild, or whatever. I like Hot.
1 lb. browned ground beef or ground sirloin, whatever's on sale.
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
Optional: 2 baking potatoes, peeled & roughly chopped
Combine all into crockpot. Cook for 7 - 8 hours on low, 4 - 5 on high.
If you have time and want to cook after work:
Two swirls of olive oil around a large pan, put in the onions & garlic, simmer until the onions are clear, about 3-4 minutes. Put beef in pan and brown (who cares about the fat, right? No, if you want to drain the meat, brown the meat first then add the onions, we usually buy lean beef though). Do not use potatoes in this recipe, as they won't be tender enough unless you microwave them first.
Add everything else to the pan and simmer on medium for about 25 - 30 minutes.
1. Buy a closet doubling rod at walmart.com
2. Switch the shoe organizer from the bedroom closet door to the hall closet door to store cleaning supplies, hats, mittens, etc... Also, get an over-the-door hanging hanger thingy from walmart.com to hold the mop & broom.
3. Put over-the-door hangers over the bedroom closet door instead of the hall closet door.
4. Get more drawer organizers and make CJ go thru his sock drawer to pitch what he doesn't like. (Oh, and throw out old underwear & stained T-shirts at the laundromat, he won't notice them gone anyway).
5. Get a bill organizer. Put the bills on the day they are due on the calendar so you see EXACTLY the day you need them in the mail.
4 pork chops
2 tbsp grainy mustard, such as "Grey Poupon"
1/4 - 1/2 cup olive oil
Pepper & a LITTLE salt to taste
1 tbsp worchestershire sauce
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp paprika
1 bay leaf
Combine all ingredients for the marinade in one dish. Combine with a whisk. Put the pork chops in a glass dish or in a ziploc bag. Pour marinade over pork chops. Marinade for 1 hour to overnight in the refrigerator.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Sear meat for 3 minutes on each side in a grill pan. Then put in oven for 10 - 12 minutes. Let the chops rest for 5 minutes.
Serve with mashed potatoes & gravy (with juices from the grill pan) or wild rice.
Penne, marinara, ricotta, red peppers, onions & garlic.
I made a fake-out lasagna dish because I didn't actually have a pan for the really big lasagna pasta pieces. It didn't turn out too badly, but I wish that I would've had fresh basil and oregano. I guess I could've used the Greek seasoning that we have as well, but oh well!
Red Pepper, Onion, Ricotta & Penna Lasagna Fake-Out
1/2 lb penne, cooked to al dente
2-3 cups marinara sauce
1 small tub ricotta
1 red pepper, sliced thinly
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Fresh basil - maybe 1/2 cup
1/4 - 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees
Coat a medium pan with olive oil, toss in the red peppers, cook for 3 minutes then add onions and garlic. Cook for 4 more minutes or until onions are clear and soft. Season with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, Put 1 cup of marinara in the bottom of a glass baking dish. Add 1/2 the pasta. Top the pasta with the ricotta cheese. Then put the red peppers, onions and garlic on top of the ricotta. Add the rest of the pasta. Top the pasta with the rest of the marinara and if you have it, shredded parmesan. I just used the crappy stuff in the plastic containers. Worked out well. Top that with the basil.
Stuff into the oven and cook until heated through and the cheese on the top is brown and crusty.
Not too bad for making it up myself I do have to say!!! Plus I also have lunch for today, woo hoo!!!
Brie En Croute
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, pre-packaged
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 cup walnuts
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 (8-ounce) wheel Brie
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 egg, beaten
Crackers, for serving
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Defrost puff pastry for approximately 15 to 20 minutes and unfold. In a saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Saute the walnuts in the butter until golden brown, approximately 5 minutes. Add the cinnamon and stir until walnuts are coated well. Place the walnut mixture on top of the Brie and sprinkle the brown sugar over the mixture. Lay the puff pastry out on a flat surface. Place the brie in the center of the pastry. Gather up the edges of the brie, pressing around the brie and gather at the top. Gently squeeze together the excess dough and tie together with a piece of kitchen twine. Brush the beaten egg over top and side of Brie. Place Brie on a cookie sheet and bake for 20 minutes until pastry is golden brown. Serve with crackers. To give a special look, cut extra pastry into heart or flower shapes and bake until golden.
2 1/2 cups reduced-sodium chicken stock
3 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
2 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and finely chopped
1 stalk celery, finely chopped
4 tablespoons salted butter
1 medium onion, finely chopped
12 small mushrooms, finely chopped (just buy the fresh, chopped ones, it's easier)
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
5 tablespoons plus 2 cups flour
1 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
2 teaspoons salt
Ground black pepper
2 teaspoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley (get the stuff that's already chopped)
2 1/2 cups chopped cooked chicken
1/4 cup frozen sweet peas (or more!)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
5 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cubed
1/2 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
2 teaspoons minced fresh sage
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp. well-shaken buttermilk
Egg wash (1 egg yolk whisked with 1 tbsp. milk)
1. In a medium saucepan over high heat, bring chicken stock to a boil. Add carrots, potatoes, and celery. Lower heat to medium and cook until vegetables are tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Drain vegetables, reserving stock; set both aside separately.
2. In a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan, melt salted butter over medium heat. Add onion and cook until golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook 5 minutes. Add fresh thyme and 5 tbsp. flour and cook 2 minutes. Slowly add milk, whisking constantly, until combined, then add stock and cook, stirring often, until mixture thickens, 8 to 10 minutes. Season with nutmeg, 1 tsp. salt, and pepper to taste. Add parsley, chicken, cooked vegetables, and peas and divide filling evenly among 6 or 7 ovenproof containers (8 to 10 oz. each), leaving the top 1/4 in. unfilled.
3. Preheat oven to 425°. Unless you actually want to make biscuits, just buy Pillsbury's Brand biscuits and stick one on top of each of your ramekins. That works the best. The rest of the recipe is mostly for over achievers who want to make homemade biscuits. That's totally not me.
To make biscuit topping, sift remaining 2 cups flour with baking powder, baking soda, and remaining 1 tsp. salt. Using your fingers or a pastry cutter, work in unsalted butter to form a coarse meal, working quickly to keep the butter from warming up and melting into the dough. Stir in cheese and sage. In a separate bowl, whisk together egg and buttermilk and add to the flour mixture, stirring gently until a shaggy dough forms.
4. Lightly flour a counter, a rolling pin, and your hands. Divide dough into 2 balls. Roll out first ball to a 1/4-in. thickness, then use a 2 1/2-in. biscuit cutter to cut into rounds, scraping and rerolling dough as needed. Repeat with second ball.
5. Place 3 rounds of dough on each potpie, overlapping as necessary (any unused rounds can be baked on their own as biscuits). Brush dough with egg wash, put potpies on a cookie sheet lined with aluminum foil, and bake until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbling, 17 to 22 minutes.
And yet with Photoshop I can do ANYTHING. Man, see what being a photographer does to you... In any case, two weeks ago I had this fabulous conference in Indy with famous Photoshopper Ben Willmore. He has this blog ( www.whereisben.com) which I enjoy reading because he can do these fabulous things. Of course, if I were to spend the whole year in an RV with my D70 & my D80 and WiFi, I think I could do anything with Photoshop too.
But then again, someone has to make a living in my household... because Law School students make CRAP for a living. Seriously.
8 ounces uncooked angel hair pasta
While the pasta cooks, melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and rind; sauté 1 minute. Add juice; cook 1 minute or until liquid almost evaporates.
Combine milk and eggs in a small bowl; stir well with a whisk. Add pasta mixture and milk mixture to pan; stir well. Cook over low heat 3 minutes or until milk mixture is slightly thick, stirring constantly (do not boil). Stir in dill, salt, and nutmeg. Serve immediately.
Thank you Nesties (giving credit to whom it is deserved is part of copying recipes, right?) So here's a recipe that I will have to try, as I love macaroni!I've been trying to find some good casserole recipes, but those are kind of hard to come by, that's because my mom is the best casserole chef that I know and I can't help but compare ALL tuna casseroles to hers! So for this pasta I'm excited to try it because my mom has NEVER made anything like this before.
8 oz. Package elbow macaroni
1 medium onion, diced
1 lbs. Lean ground beef or turkey
1 tsp. sugar
½ tsp. basil
dash of black pepper
1 6 oz. can tomato paste
½ lb. Sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
½ cup bread crumbs
¼ cup butter
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 ½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. oregano
1 ½ tsp. chili powder
28 ½ oz. can tomatoes
1 pint creamed cottage cheese
2 Tbsp. Butter melted
¼ grated parmesan cheese
1. Cook macaroni until tender as directed on package.
2. Rinse with cold water, drain thoroughly.
3. Melt ¼ cup butter in a deep skillet, add onion and garlic. Cook until transparent.
4. Add meat and cook until brown, add seasonings, tomatoes & tomato paste.
5. Simmer slowly for 1 ½ to 2 hours. Stir occasionally.
6. Combine cottage cheese and macaroni. Pour a little sauce in a buttered 2 ½ qt. Casserole.
7. Top with one third of macaroni mixture, one third of shredded cheese.
9. Use last one third of sauce on top.
10. Combine melted butter, bread crumbs and parmesan cheese. Sprinkle over top.
11. Bake uncovered in a pre-heated 325° oven for 1 hour.
12. Let stand for 10 minutes before servings.
Grilled Red Pepper and Eggplant
Coat 2 red bell peppers, cut into wedges, stems and seeds removed, and 8 1/2-inch slices eggplant with olive oil. Grill; arrange on a platter. Top with 3 Tablespoon olive oil and 1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar. Add 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh oregano and 1/2 cup crumbled feta. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
I saw the above on MSN earlier today - I've been wanting to try more veggies that I don't normally eat. I've never made eggplant before so this looks like it'd be pretty easy to try!
And I guess, since CJ's been such a poop lately, I definitely don't feel bad cooking things that he doesn't like or doesn't want to try! That's normally how it works, you don't like my food, you eat your own. I guess that I'll try this later this week.
I'm daunted at the thought of doing laundry this weekend. I feel like I'm climbing up Mount Everest. The pile up is just more than I can take! There has to be at least $25 worth of laundry to be done at the laundromat. We don't have a washing machine or a dryer, so we're stuck paying for it until we have a place that has them. But I actually have ways of organizing this much laundry.
1. Sort out colors, whites & towels/linens. You should have three piles so far. Sometimes I put reds, blacks and khakis in their own piles depending on how much laundry I have. Tomorrow calls for at least six piles. This is the easy part.
2. Give each pile its own basket or laundry bag. This works incredibly well if you go to the laundromat because that way as each load is done, you can fold and put the load into the car without waiting for another one to fill up your basket. Plus, I have a ganglion cyst in my wrist, so the lighter that baskets, the easier it is!
3. Put your laundry soap, Oxyclean, bleach, dryer sheets and whatever else you use in the bottoms of your laundry baskets - that way you don't have to make an extra trip from the car into the laundromat. Also - stick some hangers in your basket for the clothing that you don't want to iron later on. It makes it easier to just Febreeze your shirts and pray to God that they look good when you don't have time to iron in the morning.
4. Pretreat your stains BEFORE you go to the laundromat, that means doing this while you're sorting.
5. Voila! You go to the laundromat, you're all sorted and ready to do the laundry! How easy is that???
Ok, one more tip that I should've put at the beginning, when you take off your clothes each day, put them into the different baskets so that they're already sorted and you don't have to sort them before you go to the laundromat!
Now it's time for Mrs. McTatty to do the laundry. Where the clean clothes will go when I get done, I'm not exactly sure.
Menu for One Night Only:
Chicken With Garlic Croutons
Provencale Potato Ragout with Green Olives
5 cups water
2 cups chopped peeled celery
1 1/2 cups sliced carrots
1 1/4 cups diced onion
1 cup diced peeled potato
1 cup chopped Granny Smith apple (1 large apple)
1 cup sliced leek
1/2 cup chopped peeled artichoke
3/4 teaspoon salt
3 thyme sprigs
2 garlic cloves
2 bay leaves
Combine all ingredients in a Dutch oven; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 40 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Discard thyme and bay leaves. Place vegetable mixture in a blender in 2 batches; process until smooth.
Chicken With Garlic Croutons:
12 ounces French bread, cut into 2-inch cubes
1 (4-pound) roasting chicken
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
1 navel orange, halved
2 bay leaves
4 garlic cloves, minced
Thyme sprigs (optional)
Preheat oven to 450°.
Place bread cubes on a baking sheet. Bake at 450° for 5 minutes; set aside.
Remove and discard giblets and neck from chicken. Rinse under cold water; pat dry. Trim excess fat. Sprinkle salt and pepper over chicken. Squeeze orange over a bowl to extract juices. Place 1 orange half, bay leaves, and 3 tablespoons orange juice in neck cavity. Lift wing tips up and over back; tuck under breasts. Place chicken, breast side up, on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. Pierce skin several times with a meat fork. Insert meat thermometer into meaty part of thigh, making sure not to touch bone.
Bake chicken at 450° for 50 minutes or until thermometer registers 180°. Place croutons around chicken, and cook an additional 10 minutes.
Remove chicken from pan, reserving pan drippings. Cover chicken loosely with foil; let stand 10 minutes. Discard skin. Arrange croutons on a jelly-roll pan. Drizzle pan drippings and garlic over croutons, stirring to coat. Bake at 450° for 5 minutes or until crisp. Garnish with thyme sprigs, if desired.
Provencale Potato Ragout with Green Olives
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 cups thinly sliced onion
3 1/2 cups coarsely chopped seeded tomato
4 cups cubed peeled baking potato (about 2 pounds)
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
6 thyme sprigs
3 garlic cloves, crushed
3 bay leaves
1/2 cup sliced green olives
Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, and sauté 10 minutes or until soft, stirring frequently.
Add tomato; cook 10 minutes or until the liquid almost evaporates, stirring frequently. Add potato and next 6 ingredients (potato through bay leaves); bring to boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 40 minutes or until potato is tender, stirring occasionally.
Stir in olives; cook an additional 5 minutes. Discard thyme and bay leaves.
1 (8-ounce) package small elbow macaroni
Cook pasta according to the package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain. Lightly coat pasta with cooking spray or you can drizzle olive oil on it too - whichever you have on hand.
Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add onion and carrot, and sauté 4 minutes. Add garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add ground beef; cook 5 minutes or until browned, stirring to crumble. Add tomato sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Cook for 2 minutes or until most of liquid evaporates.
Add pasta to beef mixture in pan, stirring to combine. Spoon pasta mixture into an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. I use a Le Creuset pan, but it can be glass or ceramic, I'd use ceramic.
Place milk, flour, nutmeg, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt in a medium saucepan; stir with a whisk until blended. Cook over medium heat 2 minutes or until thickened, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add 1 cup cheese, stirring until smooth. Pour cheese mixture over pasta mixture; stir. Top evenly with remaining 1/2 cup cheese. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Exactly! That's what I thought! I found this on myrecipes.com for a basic cornbread recipe. I've never exactly thought I could make cornbread, but this is so dang easy! I can't help but make it once a week!
2 cups buttermilk self-rising white cornmeal mix
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 cups buttermilk
Heat a well-greased 9-inch oven-proof skillet at 450° for 5 minutes.
Stir together all ingredients in a bowl. Pour batter into hot skillet.
Bake at 450° for 20 minutes or until golden brown.
I put paprika on top or sometimes even cayenne pepper. Also, what's really good is is you put a sprinkle of sugar on top just before you bake it (I don't know why that sounds so weird, but it tastes really, really good!)
Also - this calls for you to put the batter into a hot skillet. I just shove a muffin tin into the oven while it's warming up. Then when I'm about to put the batter into the tin, I spray it with PAM. It comes out easy. Otherwise you can just pour it into a well PAM'ed cast iron skillet. The bread's a little harder to get out, but it still tastes really good!!!
I decided that it's time for me to grow a spine and try to make quiche. I found this recipe on the food network website and I tweaked it to my liking. I'll be in Minneapolis this weekend, so I'm going to try and make it tonight or tomorrow night. We'll see how busy I am!
1 (9-inch) prepared pie shell (unbaked) that you get in the baking aisle
1 cup grated Swiss
1/2 cup grated marbled jack
3 tablespoon grated Romano, plus another handful
1/2 cup chopped medium onion
1 cup broccoli florets (fresh)
1 1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon salt & pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 cup milk
1/2 cup half-and-half
7 or 8 cherry tomatoes if you like them, I do
Preheat oven to 425 degree F.
Sprinkle the cheese over the bottom of the pie shell, then evenly distribute the onion, broccoli, and mushroom over the cheese layer. Mix the eggs and the spices together in a bowl. Add the milk and half-and-half and mix well. Pour over contents in the pie shell.
Cut the cherry tomatoes in halves and place, cut side up, in a ring on top of the mixture. Sprinkle the extra handful of Romano over top. Bake for 15 minutes. Turn oven down to 300 degrees F and bake an additional 45 to 55 minutes or until cake tester inserted in middle comes out clean.
1. I put all the photos (I hand printed, enlarged, etc... myself in college, so they're still a little smelly, but at least I have them ALL) into plastic sleeves so that I could put them all into a 3-ring binder.
2. As I shoved them all into the 3-ring binder, I didn't really organize them by time period or subject, because I just wanted to get them out from under the bed and away from the desk, the bookcases in the living room, and just out of the living room, period.
3. When I have more time, and when I get new portfolios, I will most definitely organize by subject. But as you can tell, there's not too much time in my life for doing these things in one day. Plus, we don't have much money for organizing - I mean, we live in a 640 square foot apartment for Pete's sake. I'm not about to spend money when we're not going to live here forever!
I definitely feel much better, but I know that when I only have time for some things, that's all that I have. I've been very good about trying to follow the flylady.com's schedule, but I'm not exactly about to "shine my sink" on a nightly basis - as I wake up the next morning and CJ's usually made a mess of it again anyway. I'll have to train him.
- 3 or 4 chicken breasts
- one jar of salsa
- one can of drained & rinsed black beans
- one pack of taco season OR 1 tbsp chili powder and 1 tblsp cumin and salt & pepper
- 1 package frozen corn (optional)
- 8 oz sour cream
Cook until chicken breasts are done (6-8 hours on low). Take chicken out, shred, put back into the crockpot along with frozen corn and sour cream. The sour cream cannot be cooked all day because it is a dairy product - put in 30 minutes before you are ready to serve this meal. Put in tortillas or serve over rice.
I don't usually make this with sour cream because my hubby's not a big fan. With the leftovers we make nachos and quesadillas. I also do a cheesy chicken dip too if there's enough left over and bring it to work the next day with tortilla chips.
I always treat people the way that I would like to be treated and here I don't get much in return, and so my mom always told me, "Don't you hate it when karma bites you in the ass???"
Dilbert's Words of Wisdom
1. I can please only one person per day. Today is not your day. Tomorrow's not looking good either.
2. I love deadlines. I especially love the swooshing sound they make as they go flying by.
3. Tell me what you need, and I'll tell you how to get along without it.
4. Accept that some days you're the pigeon, and some days you're the statue.
5. Needing someone is like needing a parachute. If he isn't there the first time you need him, chances are you won't be needing him again.
6. I don't have an attitude problem. You have a perception problem.
7. On the keyboard of life, always keep one finger on the escape key.
8. I don't suffer from stress - I'm a carrier...
9. Everybody is somebody else's weirdo...
10. Never argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level then beat you with experience.
WAYS TO KEEP A HEALTHY LEVEL OF INSANITY IN THE WORKPLACE
Page yourself over the intercom. (Don't disguise your voice.)
Find out where your boss shops and buy exactly the same outfits. Always wear them one day after your boss does. (This is especially effective if your boss is a different gender than you are.)
Come to work in army fatigues and when asked why, say, "I can't talk about it".
Send email to the rest of the company telling them what you're doing. For example "If anyone needs me, I'll be in the bathroom."
Phone someone in the office you barely know, leave your name and say "Just called to say I can't talk right now. Bye".
"Hi-lite" your shoes. Tell people that you haven't lost your shoes since you did this.
Put up mosquito netting around your cubicle.
Every time someone asks you to do something, ask them if they want fries with that.
When someone hands you a piece of paper, finger it, and whisper huskily, "Mmmmmmm, that feels soooooo good!".
Put your garbage can on your desk. Label it "IN."
Determine how many cups of coffee is "too many."
Put decaf in the coffeemaker for 3 weeks. Once everyone has gotten over their caffeine addictions, switch to espresso.
Walk sideways to the photocopier.
Leave the copy machine set to reduce 200%, extra dark 17 inch paper, 99 copies.
While riding an elevator, gasp dramatically every time the doors open.
If you have a glass eye, tap on it occasionally with your pen while talking to others.
When driving colleagues around insist on keeping your car windshield wipers running in all weather conditions "to keep 'em tuned up."
Say to your boss, "I like your style" and shoot him with double-barrelled fingers.
Babble incoherently at a fellow employee then ask "Did you get all that, I don't want to have to repeat it".
Reply to everything someone says with "that's what YOU think?".
Practice making fax and modem noises.
Make beeping noises when a large person backs up.
Kneel in front of the water cooler and drink directly from the nozzle.
Finish all your sentences with the words "in accordance with prophesy."
Signal that a conversation is over by clamping your hands over your ears and grimacing.
Shout random numbers while someone is counting.
Staple papers in the middle of the page.
Publicly investigate just how slowly you can make a croaking noise.
TYPE ONLY IN UPPERCASE.
type only in lowercase.
dont use any punctuation either
Repeat the following conversation a few times: "Do you hear that?" "What?" "Never mind, it's gone now."
As much as possible, skip rather than walk.
When nearly done, announce "no, wait, I messed it up," and repeat.
Ask people what gender they are.
While making presentations, occasionally bob your head like a parakeet.
Sit in the car park at lunch time pointing a hair dryer at passing cars to see if they slow down.
Ask your co-workers mysterious questions and then scribble their answers in a notebook. Mutter something about "psychological profiles".
Why not try some of the following neat little exercises, not only will it make meetings more interesting but your fellow workmates will become suddenly more alert and maintain a respectful distance. By following these simple guidelines during important meetings, you too can be an unmitigated success:
Discreetly clasp hold of someone's hand and whisper: 'can you feel it?' from the corner of your mouth.
Draw enormous genitalia on your notepad and discreetly show it to the person next to you for their approval.
When refreshments are presented, immediately distribute one biscuit to each of the attendees, then systematically smash each one with your fist in front of them.
Wear a hands free phone headset throughout once in a while drift off into an unrelated conversation, such as: 'I don't care if there are no dwarfs, just get the show done!'
Write the words 'he fancies you' on your pad and show it to the person next to you while indicating with your pen.
Respond to a serious question with: 'I don't know what to say, obviously I'm flattered, but it's all happened so fast'.
Use Nam style jargon such as 'what's the ETA?', 'who's on recon?' & Charlie don't surf'.
Reconstruct the meeting in front of you using action figures and when anyone moves re-arrange the figures accordingly.
Shave one of your forearms.
Draw a chalk circle around one of the chairs then avoid sitting on it, when the meeting starts. When someone does eventually sit in it, cover your mouth and gasp.
Turn your back on the meeting and sit facing the window with your legs stretched out. Announce that you 'love this dirty town'.
Walk directly up to a colleague and stand nose to nose with him for 1 minute.
Mount the desk and walk along its length before taking your seat.
Reflect sunlight into everyone's eyes off your watch face.
Gargle with water.
Repeat every idea they express in a baby voice while moving your hand like a chattering mouth.
Gradually push yourself closer and closer to the door on your chair.
Pull out a large roll of bank notes and count them demonstratively.
Bend momentarily under the table then emerge wearing contact lenses that white out your eyes.
Drop meaningless & confusing management speak into conversations such as:' what's the margin, Marvin?"When's this turkey going to get basted?" If we don't get this brook babbling we're all going to end up looking like doe-eyed labradors'
Produce a hamster from your pocket and suggest throwing it to one another as a means of idea-exchange.
Use a large hunting knife to point at your visual aids.
Announce that you've run off some copies of the meeting agenda. Then hand out pieces of paper that read:My secret agenda1 Trample the weak2 Triumph alone3 Invade PolandRe-collect them sheepishly and ask everyone to pretend they haven't seen them.
Attempt to hypnotise the entire room using a pocket watch.
Leave long pauses in your speech at random moments. When someone is prompted to interject shout 'I AM NOT FINISHED'.