HAPPY HOMEMAKER & MENU PLAN MONDAY week 44 of 2017

How was your weekend? Mine was productive and quite pleasant weather wise. I went to my first craft festival of the season on Saturday where I ran into a couple friends and received a wonderful Christmas Eve party invitation.

I am working on a 2 year update on the HOUSE FROM HELL that will be up in a few days. Other than that I am just doing EVERYTHING I can to prepare for selling the house and move on ASAP which we are hoping to do just after the doctor gives me the ALL clear after surgery.

OUTSIDE MY WINDOW & THE WEATHER OUTSIDE

We appear to be having a few days of fall weather finally with cool evenings and pleasant days, but they are going to be short lived it appears.

ON THE BREAKFAST PLATE

English muffin with Peanut Butter and coffee

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

  • LAUNDRY… just a couple loads
  • LIVING AREAS… mostly tidy, but need to do floors like always
  • KITCHEN… quite clean actually
  • STUDIO… now a storage room
  • YARD… nothing as we head into November
  • BLOG… still doing some recipe updating and planning for future posts

CURRENTLY READING & TELEVISION / DVR

I’m still reading the Bridge to a Better Life by Ava Miles. Just can’t seem to stay awake long enough to finish a book.

The Holiday Baking Championship(11/9) and Guy’s BIG Project(11/5) both start in the next couple weeks.

  • BIG BANG THEORY and the new YOUNG SHELDON when it returns later this week
  • NCIS, NCIS NEW ORLEANS and NCIS LA, CRIMINAL MINDS, S.W.A.T. starts this week
  • MADAM SECRETARY, SCANDAL, DESIGNATED SURVIVOR
  • CHICAGO FIRE, CHICAGO PD, CHICAGO MED later this season
  • BRAVE, VALOR, SEAL TEAM
  • LAW & ORDER SVU, BLUE BLOODS, HAWAII 5-0
  • MACGYVER, SCORPION, BLINDSPOT, ORVILLE, WISDOM OF THE CROWD
  • Z NATION, WALKING DEAD, FLASH, DC LEGENDS, INHUMANS
  • THE GOOD PLACE, AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE, SPEECHLESS, GREAT NEWS
  • THIS IS US, ONCE UPON A TIME, THE GOOD DOCTOR
  • GUY’S GROCERY GAMES, BEAT BOBBY FLAY, BOBBY AND DAMARIS

CRAFTS / PROJECTS

I’m saving this category for recuperation time!

MENU PLANS FOR THE WEEK

MONDAY
TUESDAY
WEDNESDAY
THURSDAY
FRIDAY
SATURDAY
SUNDAY
BREAKFAST
ENGLISH MUFFIN with PEANUT BUTTER & COFFEE
SCRAMBLED EGGS
FRUIT SMOOTHIE
FRUIT & COFFEE
SCRAMBLED EGGS
FRENCH TOAST
BACON & EGGS
LUNCH
FRUIT & CHEESE
SOUP
MEAT ROLL-UPS
SALAD
MEAT & CHEESE
C.O.R.N.
??
DINNER
BROWN SUGAR PORK CHOPS
C.O.R.N.
OUT
OUT
OUT
OUT
LOADED GARLIC BREAD
DESSERT

SUCCESSFUL RECIPE LINKS FROM LAST WEEK

HEALTH & BEAUTY TIPS

HOMEMAKING/COOKING TIP

 

ON MY MIND / THINGS THAT ARE MAKING ME HAPPY

We are FINALLY moving forward!!! Looks like surgery will be in the next 2-3 weeks (they are working out a schedule with the hospital which I should know later today hopefully) and will only limit Thanksgiving! DR. said that I can do Christmas as long as everything is in teeny tiny bites! YAY Christmas is my favorite. The biggest drawback will be that it is a 6 hour surgery to fix what the previous doctor had done, I’ll be in the hospital for 2 days and ZERO lifting or straining of ANY kind for 8 weeks or so. I am so not a sit around girl, but am amassing a list of sit still projects to TRY and keep me occupied.

When we met with the doctor we discussed all the pros and cons of both surgeries and determined the best course of action. There are always concerns and risks, but after talking it all over with the doctor I’m feeling pretty good about the decisions.  I never thought I’d be a statistic for late night lawyer commercials, but apparently I now am.  Evidently the “BIO MESH” previously used is now being routinely found to be faulty.  The surgeon was wonderfully explicit and even drew easy to follow diagrams about how he was going to do a permanent fix. I’m all for NEVER going through this again.  I’m going with the adage that third time is a charm. Originally, pretesting, the surgeon didn’t think he’d be able to do a 3rd fix, but after testing he found that the bio mesh is all but missing, or so he suspects from what he saw on the EGD. I’m very happy my surgeon has gotten rave reviews from patients and doctors alike and what he has to say about this more permanent fix. The only drawback is that it will be a lengthy surgery so he can make sure it’s all done right.

Here’s how it this all started. In 2011 I had my cancer surgery which went wonderful and I began the long trek back to health and fitness.  All in all, I was already pretty healthy and fit – I mean I cook from scratch, perimeter shop without the junk food and eat extremely little fast food. I don’t really drink, have never smoked or done drugs.  The oncologist said that those things probably helped save my life as the cancer had nothing to feed on in my body.

But, the length of surgery caused another problem.  Turns out I had a Hiatal hernia that my cancer doctor didn’t fix while she was in there and the stomach acid seeped up and started eroding my esophagus as I laid on the operating table for such a lengthy surgery. So, a year later I had to have another operation to remove part of the shredded esophagus and rebuild the valve.  Then 9 months later an allergic reaction to a prescription they gave me for my Fibromyalgia started lowering my potassium levels and shutting down my heart. I collapsed, literally close to death.  Fortunately, hubby insisted they take me to the hospital despite the idiot ambulance driver who was convinced I’d been drinking (strongest thing I EVER drink is iced tea) and tried to get me to sign a waiver so he didn’t have to transport me. The hospital staff worked quickly to revive my potassium to a safe level and life went on.  When I came to though out on the street I became violently ill.  A few weeks later I knew something was wrong (I had torn open the repair) and several weeks after that, I had surgery to repair my stomach and esophagus, AGAIN.

Fast forward a few years later and guess what? Here we are again.  Turns out I appear to be a statistic, a part of those late night commercials for the class action suits against products that fail. I have been doing research and it appears from the last article I read that the type of mesh used to previously repair my stomach failed 17 out of 24 times – not very good odds in my opinion.  I cannot eat most foods, I cannot sleep flat in a bed and I’m still having issues with syncope/balance so I’m going to do what is necessary to get back to a regular life.  I know this ALL happens for a reason, but I’m READY for it to be over!!!

We do know I will be a liquid diet for quite a few weeks , but now know that I will only miss Thanksgiving and Christmas will be an extremely small meal, but real food. Have I mentioned that I’m looking forward to 2018 and the start of a new season of life?

I have begun again amassing cooking magazines and simple projects like changing over the address book, password book, etc… for when I’m laid up.  Unfortunately, this surgery will leave me with ZERO lifting, stretching or straining for 8 weeks – literally cannot lift anything heavier than a bag of flour. I will be unable to do much more than walk, MAYBE LIMITED SLOW TREADMILLABSOLUTELY no lifting, no stretching, etc… I figured I would use the time to read, develop some ideas for new recipes and work on updating the blog compilation. I might be able to do a few simple craft projects too.

FAVORITE PHOTO FROM THE CAMERA

We did take a little adventure last week…

INSPIRATION

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

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

STUFFED MARSALA CHICKEN

STUFFED MARSALA CHICKEN

4 chicken breasts
6 slices of mozzarella (about 1/4 inch thick)
16 sun-dried tomatoes (I use the ones packed in olive oil and Italian herbs)*
1/2 cup baby spinach (optional)
2 tablespoons avocado oil
8 mushrooms, sliced thin
1 large shallot, sliced thin
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup sweet Marsala wine
1/4 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup heavy cream
Salt & pepper to taste
2 green onions, sliced thin (optional)

  • Heat oil or butter in a skillet over medium high heat.
  • Add mushrooms and shallots, sweating until caramelized.
  • Cut a horizontal pocket into each chicken breast being careful not to go all the way through.
  • Stuff each breast with one slice of mozzarella, 4 sun dried tomatoes and a spoonful of mushrooms and shallots.
  • Secure with baking bands or toothpicks.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of avocado oil in the same large skillet.
  • Brown chicken breasts on both sides.
  • Move to casserole dish and bake at 350° for 15-20 minutes depending on size of your chicken breasts.
  • Meanwhile using the same skillet heat remaining tablespoon avocado oil over low heat.
  • Add garlic and cook until fragrant; less than 1 minute.
  • Add sweet Marsala wine and reduce by half.
  • Add chicken broth and cook on high for 1 minute.
  • Reduce heat to low.
  • Add cream and simmer until slightly thickened approximately 5-7 minutes; whisking frequently.
  • Salt & pepper to taste.
  • Top chicken breast with 1/2 mozzarella slice and allow to melt.
  • Spoon sauce over warm chicken.
  • Top with optional green onions.

Linking up to FULL Plate Thursday.

Save

AN ADVENTURE – THE HARD WAY

Life has been so topsy turvy lately and we both just needed a break.  We decided to take a day and visit a favorite park of ours, Brazos Bend State Park.

There is a don’t touch or pester the alligators rule and as long as everyone behaves there are no issues seeing the alligators via their natural habitat.  They are not caged or fenced and people just know to leave them alone and enjoy the park.  There are also several wonderful birds, turtles and old mossy trees to enjoy making this a truly unique experience.  Boots and Alien Cows is a post from a few years back if you are interested.

On our way to the park I kept a look out for Alien Cow. It had been several years since we’d seen him, but we ALWAYS look just for fun.

But, the universe had another idea on how we were going to spend our day. The park closure changed our day big time. Alligators wander off from the park during the best of times, but the flood waters were 4 1/2 feet in the park and the estimate is that 300-350 alligators just floated out of the park in floodwaters along with several venomous snakes. There was a pretty informative article here if you’re interested. Here are some images from GOOGLE to give you an idea of what a trip to Brazos Bend is like.

Personally I fear the cotton mouth snakes more than the alligators.  The park itself has been flooded during the last 3 BIG floods – Memorial Day 2015, April 2016 and Hurricane Harvey 2017 which was the worst and forced the park closure so pathways, ponds and signs could be re-created.  This time they lost several buildings too.  The wonderfully informative Ranger at the front gate told us they were slated to re-open November 7th so we will try again after that time. I’m anxious to see how it’s changed.

So we decided to head for the coast, Freeport in particular just because we had never been there, but once again the universe had another idea as a HUGE fire detoured us. Fortunately it was a very nice day and we went with the flow to Surfside Beach.

The beach was absolutely perfect and many people were out enjoying it just like us, including the pelicans and surf birds.

This is an area that builds its house on HUGE pillars because of strong storm surges during storms and hurricanes.  While most places appear to have gone unscathed here, there were several still in need of repair and many already undergoing a rebuilding.

And no road trip for us would be complete without major roadwork in our path.

Save

Save

HASH BROWN HAM & CHEESE QUICHE

I found this recipe in an old Taste of Home magazine that I bought at a library book sale – best book sale I’ve been too in a long, long time. I spent $9.80 at the sale and then calculated the retail prices of all the books and magazines plus tax ($309.73) and found I saved $299.93 when all was said and done!

I did make a few changes to the original recipe. I have to tell you this was one of the easiest brunch items I’ve ever made. Crisp and tasty too!




 

hubby approvedLinking up to FULL Plate Thursday.

Save

Save

ITALIAN STUFFED CHICKEN

Coating the chicken breast with homemade Italian dressing inside and out helps keep this chicken juicy and adds so much flavor as the dressing combined with the marinade from the sun dried tomatoes constantly bastes the chicken as it bakes.

ITALIAN STUFFED CHICKEN
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup sun dried tomato tapenade
2 slices Mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup spinach leaves, washed and dried
2 tablespoons Avocado or olive oil

DRESSING
1 tablespoon mayonnaise*
1 tablespoon White Wine Vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons avocado or olive oil
1/2 teaspoon Oregano
1/4 teaspoon Basil
1/4 teaspoon Parsley
1/2 teaspoon Thyme
1/4 teaspoon Marjoram
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Whisk together dressing ingredients until well blended (it will not be pourable, but that’s what you want).
  • Cut a slit in each breast to create a pocket, but not all the way through.
  • Stir together the ricotta cheese and sun-dried tomato tapenade.
  • Coat the inside of the pocket with the dressing.
  • Add ricotta sun-dried tomato mixture, spinach leaves and a slice of cheese.
  • Coat outside of chicken with dressing on both sides.
  • Seal with toothpicks.
  • Heat oil in cast iron pan over high heat.
  • Add chicken and sear both sides quickly until golden.
  • Transfer pan to oven and bake 15-20 minutes until cheese is melted and bubbly and chicken is cooked through.
  • Rest for 5 minutes.
  • Drizzle with any juices that leaked out.

NOTE*: Most people would use a Dijon mustard, but I’m allergic to mustard so substitute mayonnaise and make up the flavor in herbs.

Linking up to FULL Plate Thursday.

Save

Save

Save

Save

CHILI DOG CASSEROLE

CHILI DOG CASSEROLE
1 Jiffy Corn muffin mix
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 package Ball Park ALL beef hot dogs
1 can chili with beans
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon chipotle chili powder

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Spray 8×8 baking dish with non-stick spray.
  • Prepare muffin mix batter per package instructions adding the garlic powder, chipotle chili powder and brown sugar to the batter.
  • Pour half the batter into the baking dish.
  • In a skillet over medium high heat, brown hot dogs on all sides.
  • Lay hot dogs on top of batter in a single layer.
  • Spread chili evenly over the hot dogs.
  • Sprinkle 3.4 of the onions over the chili.
  • Spread 3/4 cup of the cheese over the onions.
  • Spread remaining batter over cheese.
  • Bake 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  • Sprinkle remaining cheese and onions on top and serve.

MAGIC DUST SLAM DUNK HOT WINGS

MAGIC DUST SLAM DUNK HOT WINGS from Chris at NibbleMeThis He originally ran this recipe over at OUR Krazy Kitchen when I hosted that food blog.

36 chicken wing pieces (wingettes and drummettes)
CHRIS’ DRY RUB (I use my MAGIC DUST instead of Chris’ rub though – recipe below)
1 1/2 teaspoon Lawry’s Season Salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon oregano

TOSS SAUCE
1/2 cup hot sauce (I use Frank’s Original)
1/3 cup butter
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

DUNK SAUCE
3/4 cup ranch dressing
2 tablespoon diced roasted red pepper
2 tablespoon cilantro, finely minced

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Mix the “dunk sauce” together and refrigerate.
  • Wash and dry the wing pieces REALLY well* and season with the dry rub.
  • Cook the wings for 25 minutes and then flip the wings.  Cook another 25 minutes or until crisp and cooked through.
  • Meanwhile, whisk together the “toss sauce” over medium heat.
  • Toss the wings in the toss sauce and put back in the oven for another 5-10 minutes.
  • Serve with the Dunk Sauce and enjoy

NOTE* This helps get a crisp skin.

TAMY’S MAGIC DUST (my go to dry rub that I keep on hand)

1/2 cup sweet paprika
1/4 cup finely ground sea salt
1/3 cup superfine sugar
1/4 cup chipotle chili powder
2 tablespoons ground black pepper
1/4 cup garlic powder

  • Mix all ingredients together until well blended.
  • Store in an airtight container.
  • Shake before each use.

MAGIC DUST NOTE: I can’t use it because of allergies, but a great addition to this recipe is 2 tablespoons of Colemna’s dry mustard.

Linking up to FULL Plate Thursday.

Save

Save

CHILI MAC CASSEROLE

CHILI MAC CASSEROLE
3/4 cup uncooked elbow macaroni
1 pound ground sirloin
1/2 pound ground pork
1 large shallot, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 can petite diced tomatoes (DO NOT DRAIN)
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
4 ounce can chopped green chiles, drained
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons chipotle chili powder
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
2 cups shredded cheese of choice (I use cheddar or a jack and cheddar mix)
2 green onions, sliced

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Spray 9×9 baking dish with non-stick spray.
  • Cook macaroni al dente per package directions. Drain.
  • While macaroni is cooking, brown beef and pork in large skillet along with shallots and garlic.
  • Drain off all fat in a colander.
  • Add tomatoes, chiles, black beans, tomato paste and seasonings to skillet and blend well.
  • Add meat back in, stirring to blend.
  • Add macaroni and gently stir to combine.
  • Transfer mixture to prepared baking dish.
  • Baked covered 30 minutes until bubbly.
  • Uncover and add cheese, baking another 5 minutes until cheese is completely melted.
  • Sprinkle with green onions for garnish.

Save

Save

CARAMEL STUFFED AUTUMN SNICKERDOODLES

Another fun find on facebook that I altered to out taste. I mean who doesn’t like a snickerdoodle? and caramel? and cinnamon sugar? Put them all together and you have something really special for the fall season.

CARAMEL STUFFED AUTUMN SNICKERDOODLES yields 12 cookies adapted from DELISH
3/4 cup spiced apple cider
1 1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup butter (1 stick), softened
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon molasses
1 egg
1 teaspoon PURE vanilla
Cinnamon sugar, for rolling
12 unwrapped caramel candies, cut into 4 pieces each

  • Preheat oven to 350° and line two baking sheets with silicone mats or parchment paper.
  • In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the apple cider to a simmer, cooking until reduced to about 2 tablespoons. Let cool.
  • In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl using a hand mixer, beat together butter and brown sugar.
  • Add egg, vanilla, molasses and apple cider mixing until well blended.
  • Add flour and mix JUST until combined.
  • Scoop about 2 tablespoons of cookie dough into a ball then flatten it slightly with your hand.
  • Press 4 caramel pieces into the center of the dough, covering and sealing the caramel entirely with dough.
  • Reshape it into a ball and roll in cinnamon-sugar.
  • Place on cookie sheet and repeat with remaining dough and caramels.
  • Freeze for 20 minutes.
  • Bake until the cookies are golden around the edges and set in the middle, 10-14 minutes.
  • Let cool for on pan for 5 to 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Linking up to FULL Plate Thursday.

Save

Save

HAPPY HOMEMAKER & MENU PLAN MONDAY week 43 of 2017

WOW is this year moving fast! We had a nice weekend that ended way too fast.  Saturday was an uncle’s 75th birthday party and we went and picked up my aunt’s caretaker from year’s past that can no longer drive and lives 45 minutes away to bring her to the party and take her home after the party so Saturday was pretty full.  I was able to see 3 cousins that I don’t normally get to see often as we all live in 4 different cities in 2 different states. We had a great visit full of love and laughter accompanied by 2 of my cousin’s munchkins stealing the show as they had fun.

We woke up Sunday to a storm whose wind was rivaling hurricane Harvey and heavy rain so the day quickly turned into a do nothing day where we made brunch, watched football and racing while really doing nothing at all.

The long awaited day is finally here.  WRONG – 12:05 UPDATE -doctor’s office just called and rescheduled for Thursday saying he was in an emergency surgery that was taking longer than expected. I know this ALL happens for a reason and I don’t want to be unreasonable, but this ALL began LAST November 2016!!!! I’m READY for it to be over!!!

All of my testing is done and my follow up appointment with the doctor for all the test results and to set a surgery schedule is later today Thursday so I’m a bit apprehensive until I know more. We do know I will be a liquid diet for quite a few weeks and will more than likely be missing both Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners so I will be doing a combo holiday meal for hubby, myself and the good uncle just before surgery and then freezing meals for hubby.

OUTSIDE MY WINDOW & THE WEATHER OUTSIDE

We’re supposed to be down in the 80’s all week and sunny.  As long as the humidity stays low, that’s okay by me. I’d prefer a proper fall, but I’ll settle for a mild Indian summer since we haven’t had a proper frost here.

The term Indian summer usually means warm and dry with above normal temperatures after the first cold spell or frost of the season, but just for trivia’s sake it does not have a positive origin.  It refers to a period of time after the settlers had experienced the first frost of the season and were preparing for a long winter.  The settlers had let their guard down and the Indians had taken advantage of the settlers being unprepared according to farmer’s almanac.

ON THE BREAKFAST PLATE

Fruit smoothie and coffee

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

  • LAUNDRY… quite a few loads this week, towels, bedding and clothing
  • LIVING AREAS… plan on doing a deep clean today and tomorrow
  • KITCHEN… pretty clean
  • STUDIO… is mainly storage these days so nothing going on there
  • YARD… nothing much after the weekend storms, just too wet to do anything
  • BLOG… some recipe updating, future post planning and holiday post planning

CURRENTLY READING & TELEVISION / DVR

I’m reading the Bridge to a Better Life by Ava Miles.

The Holiday Baking Championship(11/9) and Guy’s BIG Project(11/5) both start in the next couple weeks.

  • BIG BANG THEORY and the new YOUNG SHELDON when it returns in November
  • NCIS, NCIS NEW ORLEANS and NCIS LA, CRIMINAL MINDS
  • MADAM SECRETARY, SCANDAL, DESIGNATED SURVIVOR
  • CHICAGO FIRE, CHICAGO PD, CHICAGO MED
  • LAW & ORDER SVU, BLUE BLOODS, HAWAII 5-0
  • MACGYVER, SCORPION, BLINDSPOT
  • Z NATION, WALKING DEAD, FLASH, DC LEGENDS
  • THE GOOD PLACE, AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE,
  • THIS IS US, ONCE UPON A TIME
  • GUY’S GROCERY GAMES, BEAT BOBBY FLAY, BOBBY AND DAMARIS

CRAFTS / PROJECTS

I’m beginning to work on Christmas cards.  I’d like to have them finished and ready to mail just after Thanksgiving.

MENU PLANS FOR THE WEEK

 
MONDAY
TUESDAY
WEDNESDAY
THURSDAY
FRIDAY
SATURDAY
SUNDAY
BREAKFAST
FRUIT & COFFEE
SCRAMBLED EGGS
FRUIT SMOOTHIE
FRUIT & COFFEE
SCRAMBLED EGGS
KITCHEN SINK FRITTATA
BACON & EGGS
LUNCH
FRUIT & CHEESE
SOUP
MEAT ROLL-UPS
SALAD
MEAT & CHEESE
C.O.R.N.
??
DINNER
SLAM DUNK WINGS & SALAD
PANZANELLA SALAD
CHILI CHEESE DOG CASSEROLE
GRILLED STEAKS AND SALAD
STUFFED CHICKEN MARSALA
DESSERT
 BANANAS FOSTER BREAD

SUCCESSFUL RECIPE LINKS FROM LAST WEEK

HEALTH & BEAUTY TIPS

HOMEMAKING/COOKING TIP

ON MY MIND / THINGS THAT ARE MAKING ME HAPPY

As always I’m praying for world peace, SERIOUSLY! I hate waking up to so much tragedy through the world more and more frequently.

I’m also praying that the doctor has great answers today in my follow up appointment.

FAVORITE PHOTO FROM THE CAMERA

I’m still moving right along on getting ALL but the essentials packed.  We still don’t know when we will be moving, but at least we’ll be ready! I love bubble wrap.

INSPIRATION

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

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

KITCHEN SINK FRITTATA

Frittatas are one of the best vehicles for leftovers in my opinion.  So many people make frittatas out to be their arch nemesis, but for me frittatas are the best way to clean out the refrigerator before grocery day. They really are fairly simple, it’s just about the right proportions, seasoning and NOT over baking.

There are 3 main things to remember when making a frittata and then a few more things to remember.

  • The first is you need plenty of flavor, so if your leftovers are bland be sure to add extra seasoning that compliments your ingredients.
  • The second is to make sure your ingredients don’t fight each other. For example, you don’t want to combine liver and onions with hot wing chicken.
  • The third is to make sure your egg mixture is sufficient enough to cover your proteins and that your cheese choice compliments your proteins. I ABSOLUTELY recommend using a cast iron pan for ALL frittatas for an even bake.
  • The most important thing to remember for a fluffy frittata is to use FULL fat dairy and cheese whether it’s milk or sour cream. The full fat makes for a richer custardy texture. I personally like a rich buttermilk. Adding anything less than full fat is like just adding water.
  • If you’re not using leftovers, be sure to use FULLY cooked proteins and/or any vegetables (things like ham, tomatoes and mushrooms) that could release excess moisture while baking. tomatoes and mushrooms.
  • Bake just until set, DO NOT OVER BAKE!

KITCHEN SINK FRITTATA serves 4-6

2 cups chopped proteins
1/2 cup chopped vegetables
6 LARGE eggs
1/4 cup of WHOLE milk
appropriate seasonings, to taste
3/4 cup grated cheese
2 tablespoons butter

  • Preheat oven to 350° .
  • Melt butter in cast iron pan.
  • Whisk together the eggs, milk and seasonings.
  • Mix together the proteins and vegetables.
  • Stir in the majority of the cheese, reserving some for topping just before serving.
  • Pour egg mixture over top making sure to cover everything.
  • Bake for 20-30 minutes until JUST set.
  • Top with remaining cheese and serve immediately.

INSIDE OUT CHICKEN POT PIES

Most of you know that I ONLY cook from scratch.  I have to admit though that one of my favorite comfort meals from being a kid was SWANSON’S Chicken Pot Pie.  I have tried for years to duplicate that exact recipe from scratch.  Alas, I concede – scratch will have to wait! Here is the recipe I have come closest with. This particular sauce actually turns out more like a gravy and is perfect for this combo! Now I am trying a beef version tonight that will be scatch!

INSIDE OUT CHICKEN POT PIES
serves 4
1 1/2 pounds chicken tenders, cut into bite sized pieces
1 small Vidalia onion, halved and sliced
3 stalks celery, sliced thin
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cup frozen peas and carrots
3 tablespoons butter
4-6 ounces cream cheese, softened
salt and pepper to taste
1 box Pepperidge Farm Puffed Pastry defrosted per package directions
1 package KNORR Hollandaise Sauce prepared per package
1 egg white + 1 tablespoon melted butter

  • Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in large skillet.
  • Add celery and onion, sauteeing until almost carmelized.
  • Add remaining butter to melt.
  • Add chicken pieces, salt and pepper to taste, sauteeing until chicken is cooked through.
  • Add cream cheese and blend well.
  • Add peas and carrots, stirring to coat.
  • Preheat oven to 400°.
  • Cut pastry sheets in half.
  • Lay one half of each pastry sheet on cookie sheet.
  • Spoon a generous portion of the chicken mixture into the half of each sheet.
  • Fold the other half up and over, sealing the edges well.
  • Whisk together the egg white and melted butter and then brushing each pie with the mixture.
  • Bake 15-20 minutes or until golden and pastry is puffed.
  • Top each pie with a ladle full of sauce.
  • Enjoy.

Linking up to FULL Plate Thursday.

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save