HAPPY HOMEMAKER & MENU PLAN MONDAY week 39 of 2017

I hope everyone had a GREAT weekend. It took me all week, but I finally got caught up from being gone and even though I wasn’t able to get everyone visited from last HHM, I PROMISE to be back on track this week! I also finally caught up on all my laundry from the broken washer and with hubby’s help moved one of the recliners into the bedroom so I can sleep better until after surgery and recovery. I CANNOT lay flat and sleeping is difficult at best.  The recliner isn’t comfortable either, but at least I’m not choking.

OUTSIDE MY WINDOW & THE WEATHER OUTSIDE

We just can’t seem to catch a break weather wise.  We’re still supposed to be in the 90’s this week, but at least it has been a little better humidity wise, especially in the mornings.

ON THE BREAKFAST PLATE

I’m at the point where I’m drinking more and more of my meals waiting on my surgery so breakfast is a PROTEIN DRINK and COFFEE so I can eat dinner later.

AS I LOOK AROUND THE HOUSE / WEEKLY TO DO LIST & HOUSE PROJECTS

  • LAUNDRY… WHEW after last week I’ll settle for today’s 2 loads.
  • LIVING AREAS… I did a serious deep clean last week and everything still looks pretty good.
  • KITCHEN… LOL my kitchen is always in various states of food prep, but all in all is pretty clean this week.
  • STUDIO… is a complete wreck as I have made it my staging area for ebaying and packing up the house.
  • YARD… the post hurricane/ flood grass re-seed is growing fairly well and hubby will mow and edge later this week.
  • BLOG… I’m still working on combining into this blog the recipes from my old blogs.

CURRENTLY READING & TELEVISION / DVR

Most of the new shows begin this week so we’ll do a lot of DVRing and try them one at a time until we narrow the list to our new favorites.

I’m reading You Say It First by Susan Mallery.

CRAFTS / PROJECTS

I’m working on a mixed media canvas that I hope to have finished soon so I can show you.

MENU PLANS FOR THE WEEK

MONDAY

TUESDAY

WEDNESDAY

THURSDAY

FRIDAY

SATURDAY

SUNDAY

BREAKFAST

PROTEIN DRINK and COFFEE

PROTEIN DRINK and COFFEE

PROTEIN DRINK and COFFEE

PROTEIN DRINK and COFFEE

PROTEIN DRINK and COFFEE

QUICHE LORRAINE

PANCAKES & BACON

LUNCH

SALAMI & CHEESE WRAPS

GRILLED CHICKEN & TOMATOES

SOUP & SANDWICHES

MAC & CHEESE WITH HAM

SALAD & FRUIT

OUT

BACON BRUSSELS SPROUTS SOUP

DINNER

STIR FRIED CHICKEN WITH SNAP PEAS & BASIL

BLT MAC & CHEESE

KING TOT CASSEROLE

PANZANELLA SALAD

NOT YOUR MAMA’S MEATLOAF

SHEPHERD PIE BITES

TACHOS

DESSERT

PB & BANANA CHOCOLATES

SNICKER DOODLES

SUCCESSFUL RECIPE LINKS FROM LAST WEEK

HEALTH & BEAUTY TIPS

HOMEMAKING/COOKING TIP

ON MY MIND & THINGS THAT ARE MAKING ME HAPPY

We’ve been doing A LOT of research this past week and have narrowed our search to 2 different regions.  One we are fairly familiar with from a search a few years back, the other is close enough to check out for a few days before my surgery.  I’m still pretty worked up about how things have worked out with helping family here with this house and TOTALLY PISSED OFF that it caused us so much grief and pain, not to mention how much money it has cost us. We would have to stay here for at least 10 years to get our money back.

On another note, but along the same topic it appears our fears regarding my uncle being pursued by a gold digger are true.  We were recently notified (by her) in an almost threatening way that she has his power of attorney and that we should deal directly with her from now on.  As far as I’m concerned she still doesn’t exist as she was the one notifying us without any legal proof – so she can go jump in a lake. The uncle I’ve known all my life would NEVER forsake the little family he has left without being under undue influence or duress.

FAVORITE PHOTO FROM THE CAMERA

Gunny gets a few more treats now that he’s older.  He’s made it clear that he wants them served on a plate from here on out.

The post hurricane Harvey thunderstorms have been amazing and left us with some interesting skies. There are still debris everywhere and traffic beyond belief, but it looks like most things are getting back to normal.

INSPIRATION

Be sure to link up with Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom for Happy homemaker Monday and with Laura at I’m an Organizing Junkie for Menu Plan Monday.

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MARRY ME CHAMPAGNE CHICKEN

I got this recipe from a friend when we were in Michigan in 2006.  Evidently, it was ALL the rage back there several years before, but I’d never heard of it before.  I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it.

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/4 cup Wondra flour for dredging
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons AVOCADO oil
2 1/2 cups fresh sliced mushrooms
1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup champagne**

Prepared Noodles

  • Generously salt and pepper each breast.
  • Lightly dredge chicken breasts with WONDRA flour
  • In a large skillet, lightly brown chicken breasts to a nice golden brown in oil.
  • Once browned on both sides, add onions, mushrooms and champagne.
  • Cook over medium heat, champagne should boil a little, for approximately 1/2 hour. When chicken is tender, transfer chicken to a platter.
  • Pour cream into skillet.
  • Simmer about 5 minutes, until slightly thickened.
  • Pour sauce over chicken breasts. Serve.

NOTE** For a twist I will sometimes use a flavored Moscato instead of champagne.

COUNTRY BOB’S FUDGE & MEATLOAF

Back in 2009 I was contacted by a nice man from Country Bob’s All Purpose Sauce and asked if I would be interested in doing a product review. I said I’d love to. In just 2 days time a box was on my stoop with bottles of sauce and recipe brochures. I had this little niggling in my brain though. I could not figure out why the name of this sauce sounded so familiar. I tried to find the sauce locally and failed until I finally found it at a Walmart store 30 miles away. You have to remember I lived rurally at the moment. That is when it occurred to me where I had heard the name before. I had won a cookbook awhile back over at Forgetfulone, but was never able to prepare any of the recipes because I couldn’t find the sauce. I had marked a multitude of recipes to try and now I finally can. I found 2 meatloaf recipes, 1 from the brochure which is extremely similar to hubby’s favorite one that I have made for years and years and a sour cream recipe from the book that I decided to try. In the end the recipe I made was a combination of both recipes and hubby all but licked his plate. He kept telling me to find out where to get more of this sauce. He even put it on his mashed potatoes and thought that was just scrumptious. Normally he would use ketchup on his meatloaf, but tonight he used Country Bob’s All Purpose Sauce. He decided Country Bob’s All Purpose Sauce is our new ketchup.

All I can say is that I was sooooooooooooooooo pleasantly surprised by the flavor. Hubby can’t say anything, he’s too busy licking the bowl. You have to try Country Bob’s All Purpose Sauce and start with this fudge recipe. One of the greatest things about this recipe besides the awesome flavor is the consistency. How many times have you made fudge and weren’t sure it would set up okay or it turned out dry? That will never happen with this recipe. This recipe is truly foolproof.

COUNTRY BOB’S INCREDIBLE FUDGE
12 ounces Velveeta cheese*
2 sticks butter
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate
2 tablespoons Country Bob’s All Purpose Sauce
2 pounds powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans (optional)**

  • In a microwave safe bowl combine the Velveeta, butter, Country Bob’s All Purpose Sauce and chocolate. Microwave on high 2-4 minutes, stirring every minute until mixture is smooth and well blended.
  • Pour the powdered sugar into a large mixing bowl. Add the chocolate mixture gradaully while beating with an electric mixture until well blended.
  • Beat in the vanilla.
  • Stir in the nuts.
  • Pour into a greased 9×13 pan.
  • Cover and chill until firm.
  • Store in the refrigerator.

*When I made a second batch of this recipe. it worked better cubed before microwaving
**I exchanged this for Heath Bar bits and loved it

COUNTRY BOB’S SOUR CREAM MEATLOAF ala TAMY
3 pounds ground beef
1 bunch green onions, sliced thin
1/2 cup + Country Bob’s All Purpose Sauce
3/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup milk
2 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon white pepper

  • Mix all together.
  • Pour additional sauce over the top.
  • Bake 1 1/2 hours.
  • Pour off any excess moisture.
  • Let stand 5-10 minutes.
  • Serve.
  • Makes wonderful sandwiches with the leftovers.

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KRAB SALAD & HOMEMADE 1000 ISLAND DRESSING

KRAB SALAD & HOMEMADE 1000 ISLAND DRESSING
KRAB SALAD
8 ounces Louis Kemp Crab, finely chopped
1 stalk celery, finely chopped
1/3 cup minced red onion
salt and pepper
mayo (about 1/4 cup)
Romaine lettuce
Roma tomatoes, sliced
Snap peas, halved

  • Wash lettuce, peas and tomatoes. Arrange on plate. Salt and pepper.
  • Mix crab, celery, onion, salt and pepper together until well blended using enough mayonnaise for desired consistency.
  • Place a large scoop of crab salad over the romaine mix.
  • Serve over chopped romaine lettuce, sliced tomatoes and snap peas.
  • Top with dressing.

1000 ISLAND DRESSING
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons sugar
3 teaspoons sweet pickle relish
1 heaping tablespoon minced red onion
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
salt and pepper

  • In a mini blender blend all ingredients to desired consistency.

He all but licked his plate and drank the rest of the dressing straight from the bottle.

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CREAMY CHEESY CHICKEN ENCHILADA SOUP

CREAMY CHEESY CHICKEN ENCHILADA SOUP serves 8

This soup is a true fiesta of flavors.

1 tablespoon avocado oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 green yellow pepper, seeded and chopped small
10 ounce can red enchilada sauce
8 ounces cream cheese, cut into small pieces
14 ounces rustic diced tomatoes
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed well
1 small can green chiles, drained well
1 can white shoe peg corn kernels, drained well
2 cups chopped rotisserie chicken
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
2 green onions, chopped fine
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese

  • Heat the avocado oil in a large saucepan, over medium heat.
  • Add the onion and bell pepper pieces and cook for about 5 minutes until the onion is soft and translucent.
  • Add the enchilada sauce and cream cheese pieces, cooking until the cheese has completely melted.
  • Add the diced tomatoes, black beans, corn and stir to incorporate.
  • Add the chopped chicken breast and chicken broth, stirring and cooking for about 10 to 15 minutes just until the soup is heated through. DON’T boil this soup or the cream cheese will curdle.
  • Remove from heat and top with green onions and jack cheese before serving.
  • Garnish with your favorites.  I used cilantro and crisp bacon tonight.

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SLOW COOKED MEATBALLS

On the weekends when we are going to be home all day, I LOVE the smell of something scrumptious cooking and this recipe is one of my favorites. The great thing about this recipe though is that it’s great for working moms during the week too.
SLOW COOKED MEAT BALLS
1 1/2 pounds ground beef*
4 slices stale sourdough bread made into crumbs
1 JUMBO egg, beaten
1 medium Vidalia onion, finely chopped
1 can cream of golden mushroom soup
1 1/2 cups beef broth
1 can diced tomatoes with garlic and herbs
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon thyme
1/2 teaspoon basil

  • With your hands mix together the ground beef, bread crumbs, egg, onion and half the seasonings.
  • Form into 1 1/2 inch meatballs.
  • Spray the bottom of the slow cooker lightly with PURE.
  • Gently lay the meatballs in the bottom of the slow cooker.
  • Mix together the soup, broth and tomatoes.
  • Pour over meatballs.
  • Cover and cook 7-9 hours on low.
NOTE: I like to make my own ground beef when brisket is on sale. It makes for a richer tasting beef flavor! Thank you Tyler Florence!

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ROAST PORK TENDERLOIN &/OR TROPICAL GLAZED PORK TENDERLOIN

This is my favorite method of cooking pork tenderloin. Bring the tenderloin to room temperature 30 minutes before cooking. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Lightly coat your ovenproof skillet with oil and sear the tenderloin over a medium-high heat and brown all sides. Salt and pepper to taste while searing.

If you’re using a glaze, apply it now.  The glaze I like is in the recipe below.

Place skillet in the oven and roast 15 to 20 minutes per pound, until internal temperature is 145 degrees. Remove from the oven, tent the pork with foil and let it rest about 5 minutes before serving. If you don’t use a glaze, make a quick pan sauce by deglazing the skillet with chicken broth, wine, fruit juice or another flavorful liquid.

Take its temperature ~ The tenderloin’s small size and leanness make it extremely susceptible to overcooking. The National Pork Board suggests cooking to a final internal temperature of 160 degrees, which can be achieved by cooking to 155 degrees and removing the tenderloin from the oven to rest 10 minutes (the temperature will rise several degrees). But, gourmet chef’s prefer removing the pork at 145 or 150 degrees (it is perfectly safe at this temperature) and letting it rest for 5 minutes.

For a glazed version try this recipe:
TROPICAL GLAZED PORK TENDERLOIN
2-3 pound pork tenderloin
1 cup apricot pineapple preserves
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup pineapple juice
  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  • Whisk together brown sugar and pineapple juice.
  • Blend in preserves.
  • generously salt and pepper the pork loin.
  • Spread a small layer of the glaze on the bottom of the roasting pan.
  • Lay the pork loin on top and spread the remaining glaze on top and along the sides.
  • Baste as necessary
  • Bake 45 minutes or until meat thermometer reads 150 degrees.

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CHICKEN HORSERADISH MAC & CHEESE

CHICKEN HORSERADISH MAC & CHEESE

8 ounces macaroni or campagnelle noodles, prepared according to package directions
1/2 pound bacon, diced
1 large shallot, diced small + 2 cloves garlic, minced
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided 2 1/2 + 1 1/2
3 tablespoons WONDRA flour
2 teaspoons DIJON mustard
1 1/4 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
2 cups small diced rotisserie chicken
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon creamy horseradish
1/3 cup Boar’s Head Horseradish Cheddar cheese, grated
1 cup grated Gruyere Cheese
2 cups EXTRA sharp white cheddar cheese
1/2 cup grated Asiago Parmesan Cheese
2 tablespoons finely chopped Italian Parsley
1/3 cup finely crushed Keebler Club crackers
1 tablespoon butter, melted
2 tablespoons powdered Parmesan Cheese

  • Preheat oven to 450°.
  • Lightly butter a 9×9 baking dish.
  • In a large skillet brown bacon until crisp and crumbly.
  • Remove bacon with slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
  • Add shallots and garlic to bacon drippings, sauteing until soft.
  • Add the 2 1/2 tablespoons of butter.
  • When butter is melted whisk in the flour making a roux.
  • Whisk in the mustard.
  • Whisk in creamy horseradish.
  • Gradually and alternately add the milk and cream, whisking constantly.
  • Add the salt, blending well.
  • Bring to a SLOW rolling boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring constantly.
  • Strain into a large mixing bowl and discard any solids.
  • Add ALL cheeses quickly, stirring constantly until melted and a smooth consistency.
  • Add in the cooked noodles, chicken pieces and 3/4 of bacon pieces stirring to coat.
  • Fold the noodle mixture into the baking dish.
  • Blend together 1 1/2 tablespoons melted butter, powdered Parmesan Cheese and crackers.
  • Sprinkle on top of noodles.
  • Bake 20-25 minutes until bubbling and golden brown. During last 5 minutes top with remaining bacon pieces.
  • Remove from oven, cover with foil and rest 10 minutes before serving.

 

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HOT WING SALAD aka VOODOO CHICKEN SALAD

Do you play games on facebook?  I have to admit I do.  But, I digress, I play a few of the games while sitting on hold or watching TV late at night.  One of the things that came to mind was CAFEWORLD 6-7 years ago and I thought, “are these real recipes?”  So, I did a search for some of the cool ones and I did find a recipe for VOODOO CHICKEN SALAD, but it was nothing like I expected so I am made my own!
HOT WING SALAD aka VOODOO CHICKEN SALAD
Romaine Lettuce, torn and washed
1 large Heirloom tomato, diced
1 small red onion, sliced thin
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces

2 cups Flour
1 teaspoon each salt and pepper
1/2 cup Frank’s Hot Sauce
hidden valley ranch dressing mix (DRY) OR Good Seasons Italian dressing mix (DRY)

1 teaspoon lime juice
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/2 cup crumbled Bleu Cheese
  • I prepare the chicken breasts the same as you would HOT WINGS.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Wash and dry the chicken pieces.
  • Mix together the flour and seasonings in a plastic ziploc bag. Using a ziploc bag makes it easy to throw away the whole mess after dredging all the chicken pieces and it helps you coat every possible spot of the chicken pieces.
  • Add chicken a few pieces at a time and coat them well. Set chicken pieces aside.
  • While you’re doing this, have the butter melting in the pan. Start with 4 tablespoons and add as necessary, but make sure you don’t run out dry.
  • Once all the chicken has been dredged start frying. After you have the pan full pepper the pieces again. Don’t turn the chicken until you can see blood. You only need to turn the chicken one time. Brown evenly and then set aside on paper towels until all pieces have been fried.
  • As the last batch is frying melt 4 tablespoons of butter in a flat bowl. To that add 1/2 cup of Frank’s hot sauce.  Whisk them together well.
  • Spray a cookie sheet with PURE.
  • Dip each piece of chicken into the hot sauce mixture and put on cookie sheet.
  • After you’re all done and if you have hot sauce & butter mixture left, pour a little over the top of each wing.
  • Bake for 30 minutes.
  • Toss the torn lettuce, onion and tomatoes with the lemon and lime juice.
  • Add cooled chicken pieces and bleu cheese crumbles.
  • Pour on the desired amount of dressing and toss well.
  • Enjoy!

MARINATED ROAST TURKEY BREAST with HONEY CRISP APPLE GRAVY

MARINATED ROAST TURKEY BREAST with HONEY CRISP APPLE GRAVY
1 boneless skinless turkey breast (about 1 pound)
1/2 cup Cabernet Sauvignon
1/4 cup Bragg’s Liquid aminos
2 tablespoons Ken’s Italian dressing
1 teaspoon Litehouse freeze dried garlic
1 teaspoon Litehouse freeze dried red onion
1 teaspoon orange peel
1 tablespoon Bertolli white balsamic reduction
1 Knorr homestyle chicken gel
2 tablespoons butter, sliced into several slices

  • Whisk together the wine, liquid mains, Italian dressing, garlic, red onion, orange peel, white balsamic reduction and chicken gel.
  • Add water and whisk until well blended.
  • Place turkey breast in a ziplock bag that is in a baking dish.
  • Pour marinade over, seal and refrigerate for 2-8 hours.
  • Preheat oven to 400°
  • Remove turkey breast and place in baking dish.
  • Pour marinade over top.
  • Roast uncovered for 15 minutes.
  • Rest breast in foil while preparing the gravy.

GRAVY

1 Just Beechnut HoneyCrisp Apples (baby food)
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour

  • In a small saucepan combine baby food and remaining liquid in roaster.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.
  • Melt the butter in a microwave safe bowl.
  • Whisk flour into butter to create a roux.
  • Add roux to saucepan, whisking until desired thickness.

NOTE: There is plenty of salt and pepper seasoning within these ingredients so do NOT add more salt and pepper.

HAPPY HOMEMAKER MONDAY week 38 of 2017

I hope everyone had a great week. we were away the entire week and despite my best intentions I never did get around to visiting everyone during the evenings in the hotel. We were away at hubby’s unit military reunion. Unfortunately, it was poorly organized and planned and was not at all what he was hoping for along with many hotel issues so he no longer wants to participate with the unit one and will only do the divisional ones from here out.  We had gone to the divisional one in June and had a great time as it was well organized and planned with events.  We just got back late last night so I will do a quick abbreviated HHM this week with a follow up in a few days once I’ve downloaded the pictures and pulled my thoughts together.

The other part of this trip was to search for our next and hopefully last community.  Despite online research that looked promising reality fell short of our hopes and dreams. So, we are still searching for that perfect community balance for our wants and needs.

OUTSIDE MY WINDOW & THE WEATHER OUTSIDE

The weather was beautiful while we were gone according to my neighbor, but looks like it will be excessively warm and thunderstormy again now that we are home.

ON THE BREAKFAST PLATE

COFFEE!! The coffee at the hotel last week was terrible!  I am so in need of decent coffee.

AS I LOOK AROUND THE HOUSE / WEEKLY TO DO LIST & HOUSE PROJECTS

  • LAUNDRY… the washer went on the fritz just before we left so I now have 10 or so loads to do after I get it fixed today.
  • ALL LIVING AREAS… a little bit of a wreck since we just got home last night so that will be my priority today as well as getting some groceries.
  • KITCHEN… also a wreck, but I am doing a deep clean today.
  • STUDIO… part of the deep clean too
  • YARD… hubby will take care of mowing and edging
  • BLOG… recipe updating and planing for future posts. 

CURRENTLY READING & TELEVISION / DVR

I need to do some catch up on whatever is on the DVR and then sit down to do some programming for the new season.

MENU PLANS FOR THE WEEK

I will be sitting down next and planning a menu and a grocery list so this menu is a serious work in progress.

MONDAY
TUESDAY
WEDNESDAY
THURSDAY
FRIDAY
SATURDAY
SUNDAY
BREAKFAST
 COFFEE
SCRAMBLED EGGS
FRUIT SMOOTHIE
FRUIT & COFFEE
SCRAMBLED EGGS
LUNCH
DINNER
TATCHOS
DESSERT

SUCCESSFUL RECIPE LINKS FROM LAST WEEK

HEALTH & BEAUTY TIPS

HOMEMAKING/COOKING TIP

INSPIRATION

Be sure to link up with Sandra at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom for Happy homemaker Monday and with Laura at I’m an Organizing Junkie for Menu Plan Monday.

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CHICKEN CHILI in eager anticipation of FALL

A few years ago I made up this recipe when I was home without a car and the pantry was all but bare.

QUICK & EASY CHICKEN CHILI
3 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, frozen
2 cups homemade chicken broth, frozen
1 can cream of potato soup
1 jar dried beef, chopped
1 Williams chili mix package
1 can chopped green chilies
  • Place frozen chicken breasts on the bottom.
  • Pour green chilies over chicken pieces.
  • Top with cream of potato soup.
  • Top with frozen broth.
  • Sprinkle chili seasoning mix on top of chicken broth.
  • Top with beef pieces.
  • Slow cook on high for 2 hours. Reduce to low for 6 hours. Or cook on low 10 hours.