Monday, January 30, 2012

Meal Plan Monday~ Jan 30, 2012

Happy Monday!

I just wanted to start off by letting you all know that I'm the first guest poster over at Infinite Life Fitness. I was asked to share one of my favourite healthy recipes and I quickly knew which one I wanted to send. Thanks to my friend Lyndsay, The Kitchen Witch, for introducing me to such a wonderful recipe!

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I've been exhausted for the past few days, and Hubby and Mr.B both have colds, so I'm not sure if it's just my body fighting hard not to catch what ever crud is going around. So, even though I'm posting a meal plan, I still reserve the right to flake out and not follow it, if I do end up sick, LOL. That and the fact that I have no idea if I'll actually make it to the store this week, is making this week's meal planning a wee bit stressful. So, here is the tentative plan for the week

  • Chicken soup/stew, using leftover roast chicken from Sunday night, with honey oat bread
  • Creamy Pistachio and Mango Chutney Pork Tenderloin (new recipe) with skinny au gratin potatoes
  • Perfect Fall Pork Chops (new recipe)
  • homemade pizza with tossed salad
  • Hubby's ribs with baked potato bar (broccoli, cheese, salsa, sour cream, chives, bacon, chili-toppers)
  • Easy Black Bean Veggie Casserole (new recipe)
  • Leftovers
Head on over to OrgJunkie.com, for tons of other great meal plans!!

    Saturday, January 28, 2012

    Peanut Butter, Chocolate Chip & Pretzel Bars

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    They say a picture is worth a thousand words. You eat with your eyes first. That was totally the case when I first saw the recipe that accompanied the original recipe, to these sinfully delicious bars. Has that ever happened to you? You see a picture of food and know immediately that you have to get into that kitchen and make it? It doesn't happen too often here. Usually it's "hmmm, that looks good, I'll mark it for later", but the photo accompanying this recipe made my tummy rumble so loudly. I just HAD to make it!

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    This recipe couldn't be easier too. Think chocolate chip cookies, mixed with pretzels, sprinkled with more pretzels and drizzled with a peanut butter chocolate. Crazy right??!!?? We totally flip over peanut butter filled pretzels and the thought of adding chocolate chip cookies into the mix, blew my mind. I could just taste the sweet, salty, chocolate combo and it made my mouth water thinking about it. I did make a few changes to the original recipe. I added peanut butter to the cookie batter and cut down on the sugar a bit. These are crazy good!! I seriously had to give most of them away to my neighbours, because I would have eaten these all night. The kids thought they were phenomenal too, and have been asking for some, since their first bite. These look awesome and taste even better!



    Peanut Butter, Chocolate Chip & Pretzel Bars

    Adapted from Food &Wine and Brown Eyed Baker, via Dinner with Julie
    printable version

    1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
    1/4 C smooth peanut butter
     2/3cup light brown sugar
    1/3 cup sugar
    2 large eggs
    2 tsp. vanilla
    2 cups all-purpose flour
    1 tsp. baking soda
    ½ tsp. salt
    1-2 cups chocolate chunks or chips
    1 1/2 cups pretzel twists, coarsely broken (divided)
    1/3 cup peanut butter
    1/4 cup chocolate chips

    Preheat the oven to 350°F and butter a 9×13″ pan.

    In a large bowl, beat the butter and peanut butter, with both sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs and vanilla. Add the flour, baking soda and salt and stir until almost combined; add the chocolate chips and 1 cup of the pretzel pieces and stir just until blended.

    Spread the batter evenly in the pan and bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden. In a small bowl, melt the peanut butter and chocolate chips in the microwave or over low heat, stirring until smooth. Sprinkle the bars with the remaining crushed pretzel pieces and drizzle with the peanut butter-chocolate mixture. Let cool until set, then cut into squares or bars. Makes about 2 dozen bars.

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    This post linked to

    Baking with Bizzy
    Foodie Friday
    Sweets for a Saturday
    Weekend Potluck

    Thursday, January 26, 2012

    The Perfect Beef Stew

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    Have you ever loved eating something, but just never were able to make a really good version of it? That was the case with stew. I love stew! It's warm, comforting, hearty and perfect for those cold winter days. But, I've never been able to find a recipe that made me say "oh yeah, THIS is stew!!". Well, I decided that I was going to go into the kitchen and make the perfect stew, even if we had to eat stew all winter. And, I think I've done it!

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    I really enjoyed this one. The beef melted in your mouth, the sauce was velvety, savoury, intoxicating. The kids ate this one with gumption and so did I. In fact it was so good, I hid the leftovers in the fridge, so I could have them for lunch the next day. Don't tell hubby.... hiding beef is sacrilege, LOL. I really think the addition of the red wine is what makes this stew. I normally don't cook with wine, since I've never really enjoyed drinking it, but this past year, I've ventured into the world of wine and have found a few that I'd actually enjoy drinking. So please, use a red wine that you would enjoy drinking, when making this stew!

    Beef Stew
    printable version

    1 1/2 lbs lean stewing beef, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
    1/2 C flour
    1/2 tsp salt and pepper
    oil, for searing the meat
    3 small shallots, cut into thin wedges
    1 carrot, chopped
    1 rib celery, finely chopped
    1/2 C red wine ( I used Cotes de Rhones)
    2 C low fat, low sodium beef broth
    1 C water
    3 springs fresh thyme
    2 bay leaves
    salt and pepper
    3 C potatoes, cut into 1 inch cubes
    1 C frozen peas
    1 Tbs cornstarch
    1 Tbs water

    In a dutch oven, or heavy bottomed pot, heat 2-3 Tbs oil (such as vegetable oil), over medium high heat. Before starting, using paper towels, pat the beef cubes dry. This will ensure a nice sear on the meat, and that melt in your mouth goodness. In a bowl, combine the flour and 1/2 tsp salt and pepper. Coat dried pieces of beef in the flour. Shaking of the excess flour, place the beef cubes into the hot pot; in a single layer. You may need to do this in batches. Let meat develop a nice brown crust, before turning the beef over to brown the second side; this will take 3-4 minutes. Place browned pieces of meat in a bowl and save for later.

    Once all the meat is browned,reduce the heat to medium and add in shallots, carrot and celery; scraping up some of the brown bits at the bottom of the pot. Cook for 3 minutes, then add the red wine; once again scraping up the brown bits. Let wine cook down for 5 minutes and add the beef broth, water, thyme sprigs and bay leaves. Season with salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and add the beef back into the pot. Simmer, covered,  over low heat for 2 hrs.

    After 2 hrs, add in potatoes, cover and simmer for 30-40 minutes; until potatoes are tender. Add in peas, to warm through. If you'd like a thicker sauce, mix the cornstarch with water and slowly stir into the pot. Let simmer 5 minutes, to thicken, stirring occasionally. Remove thyme and bay, check for seasonings and serve.

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    This post linked to

    Full Plate Thursday
    These Chicks Cooked
    Fit and Fabulous Friday
    Friday Favorites

    Tuesday, January 24, 2012

    Steamed Cod with Gingered Tomatoes~ Chinese New Year &VH Sauces

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    Yesterday, was the start of the year of the Dragon. That's right, Chinese New Year, started yesterday. Chinese New Year is the most important of the traditional Chinese holidays. In China, it is known as "Spring Festival". It is the longest and most important festivity in the Chinese calendar and it's origin is itself centuries old. It is tradition that every family thoroughly cleans the house to sweep away any ill-fortune in hopes to make way for good incoming luck.The Dragon, is the only mythological and “free spirit” of the Chinese Zodiac.This year we celebrate luck, prosperity, longevity, wealth, happiness and peace.

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    The kids and I really had fun getting ready for our feast. We made a paper dragon (in photo above) and paper lanterns. The kids really love learning about different cultures and enjoyed the tidbits of information I shared during out meal.

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    I was excited to use VH Sauces for our Chinese New Year dinner. My Mom used VH sauces, when I was growing up, so I know that the sauces are delicious, affordable and reliable. When a particular brand has been around for so long, you know it's good. For our meal, I chose fish, because it signifies good luck. I was intrigued by the combination of tomatoes and ginger. Something I had never thought of putting together. This was absolutely fabulous! The fish was flaky and tender and went perfectly with the tart tomatoes and sweet ginger. It was very different and delicious way to prepare fish and the kids were crazy for it.

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    To accompany our fish, I also prepared some spring rolls and served it with a VH Hoisin Dip. The dip was sweet and savory, with a nice garlic-y undertone. It went very well with our salty vegetable spring rolls. The kids prefered regular plum sauce, with theirs, but us adults enjoyed this kicked up version, that wasn't overly sweet.

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    I really enjoyed celebrating Chinese New Year with the family. But, on those nights where we just don't have time to celebrate, we happily enjoy VH Steamers. These are a great way to add some Asian flare to your life, in just a matter of minutes. Full of amazing flavour, these steamers are perfect for those nights when life is just too busy. We enjoy them as a quick lunch as well. My favourite flavour is Zesty Orange Chicken, with tender pieces of chicken, crunchy vegetables and a slightly sweet citrus sauce. Whether is a special Holiday, or just any old day of the week, VH Sauces gives you tons of tasty meal ideas!

    “Disclosure – I am participating in the VH Chinese New Year Celebration program by Mom Central Canada on behalf of VH.  I received compensation as a thank you for my participation. The opinions on this blog are my own.”

    Steamed Cod with Gingered Tomatoes

    Adapted from VH Sauces

    Ingredients

        PAM® Original Cooking Spray
        4 x 6 oz (175 gr) cod fillets, boneless
        2 cups (500 mL) grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
        1 cup (250 mL) VH® Sweet & Sour Sauce
        ¼ cup (60 mL) fresh cilantro or basil, coarsely chopped
        4 tsp (20 mL) fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped

    Directions

        Preheat oven to 375˚F ( 190˚F), spray 4 large sheets of foil with PAM® Original Cooking Spray, foil should be large enough to hold 1 piece of fish.
        On the middle of each piece of foil place ½ cup (125 mL) tomatoes, 1 tsp (5 mL) ginger, 1 piece of fish and cover with ¼ cup (60 mL) of VH® Sweet & Sour Sauce. Sprinkle each filet with 1 tbsp (15 mL) cilantro.
        Close up foil packages and cook in oven on lowest rack until fish is cooked through, about 15 minutes. Serve immediately.

    Serve with cooked white rice.



    Spring Rolls with Hoisin Dip
    Adapted from VH Sauces

    Ingredients

        24 ready-made spring rolls
        ½ cup (125 mL) VH® Garlic Hoisin Sauce
        ½ cup (125 mL) VH® Plum Sauce
        1 tsp (5 mL) sesame seeds (optional)

    Directions

        Cook spring rolls as directed on the package.
        In a small bowl stir together VH® Garlic Hoisin Sauce, VH® Plum Sauce and sesame seeds.
        Serve dip with hot spring rolls.

    This post linked to

     See ya in the Gumbo
    Things That Make you Say: Mmmmm
    Delicious Dishes
    Hearth and Soul
    Tasty Tuesday

    Monday, January 23, 2012

    Meal Plan Monday~ Jan 23, 2012 & an Award

    Happy Monday!!

    I should also say Happy Chinese New Year! That's right, today we start to celebrate the year of the dragon. Look for my post and our celebrations, coming up this week. Other than that we don't have much going on this week. Hubby is working, Mr.B is going to school and Queenie and I will do our thing at home. My healthier attempts at eating and exercising is going well. I'm really enjoying working out; a lot more than I thought I would, LOL. I still get horrible sugar cravings, but I'm hoping I can get passed those soon.

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    I have a few repeats in my menu this week. I kept forgetting to take my pork shoulder out of the freezer (something I'm bad about remembering), so I'm hoping to get to that this week. Tonight, we'll be celebrating Chinese New Year with an amazing Asian inspired meal. I think I'm as excited, as the kids are, LOL. So, here is my plan for the week (in no particular order)

    • Root beer Pulled Pork sandwiches, with bean salad
    • baked pork taquitos, with spicy black beans
    • braised chicken thighs, with couscous
    • Pasta with beef and rapini
    • Steamed Cod with Gingered Tomatoes and Spring Rolls with Hoisin Dip (Chinese New Year)
    • Minestrone with bread machine garlic bread
    • leftovers
    Head on over to OrgJunkie.com, for tons more great meal plans!

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Last night Kristen, from Forkful of Comfort, was awarded her first blog award. As a winner of this Versatile Blogger Award, she has to name some other bloggers she thought were also deserving of this award. She picked me as one of them and I couldn't be more thankful.

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    Now, it's time to name a few other bloggers, who I think deserve this too

    Cravings of a Lunatic

    Ms.EnPlace

    The Kitchen Witch

    Cooking with Libby

    Everyday Mom Meals

    Go on over and check them out!!!

    Friday, January 20, 2012

    Celebrate Chinese New Year with VH Sauces~ Giveaway!

    Hi everyone! Did you know that it will soon be the Chinese New Year?

    This is the most important of the traditional Chinese holidays. In China, it is known as "Spring Festival." This year, Year of the Dragon, we’re celebrating the only mythological and “free spirit” of the Chinese Zodiac.What better way to celebrate luck, prosperity, longevity, wealth, happiness and peace, than with some delicious and flavourful meal solutions that are sure to be crowd-pleasers all year long.

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    To help you and your family celebrate this fun and exciting Chinese Holiday, Mom Central along with VH Sauces would like to give one of you a chance  to win a Chinese New Year gift pack valued at $60!

    All you nee to do is leave me a comment telling me-  What’s your favourite VH Sauce / Steamer flavour? That's it! Please include your email address, so I can contact you if you win.

    Extra entries:

    1. Follow HunWFD? via Google Friends Connect (by clicking 'join this site', in the right side bar) and leave me a message saying you are- 1 entry
    2. Follow me on Twitter and leave me a message with your Twitter name- 1 entry
    3. Follow me on Facebook and leave me a comment with your Facebook name- 1 entry
    4. Share this giveaway on Facebook or Twitter and leave me a comment saying you did so- 1 entry for each
    The giveaway will run until Feb 10th, 2012 and is open to Canadian residents only.  Readers may enter across multiple blogs, but may only win one prize. 

    Tuesday, January 17, 2012

    Healthy Peanut Butter Balls

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    Part of my healthy eating plan is to seriously cut down on sweets and dessert. The thing is, I find that most nights (especially after dinner) I crave a little something sweet. And if I don't get it, sometimes it's not pretty. Like exorcist, not pretty... It makes me feel like a failure, to crave sugar and let it affect my moods the way it does. So, I've been trying to find and think of healthy sweet treat recipes, that I could enjoy in moderation. I saw a recipe for Healthy PB Balls on Pinterest and altered it to suit my likes and what I had on hand. The result are phenomenal and I don't feel guilty indulging after dinner. Right out of the freezer, these little balls of goodness are fantastic.

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    These are not as creamy and smooth as your typical Peanut Butter Balls. These are studded with crunchy oats, wheat germ and flax meal. I find I like all these fillers, because I actually have to chew something, which makes me take longer to eat them, and I get to savour and enjoy them better. I decided to coat a few with cinnamon sugar and a few with cocoa powder. I prefer the cocoa powder covered ones when they are frozen and the cinnamon sugar ones at room temperature. Yes, I know..... I'm weird. This is going to be a staple in our house from now on. Even the kids love them and I it makes me happy that they are eating something that is super good for them, without complaining.

    Healthy Peanut Butter Balls
    printable version

    1 C light creamy peanut butter (natural peanut butter would be great as well)
    2 Tbs honey
    3/4 C large flake rolled oats
    1 tsp wheat germ
    1 tsp flax meal
    2 tsp sweetened shredded coconut, toasted
    cocoa powder and/or cinnamon sugar, to coat

    In a bowl, mix together the peanut butter and honey, until well combined. In a separate bowl, combine the oats, wheat germ, flax meal and coconut, mixing well. Pour the dry ingredients into the peanut butter mixture and mix until well combined. The mixture will be dry at first, but keep mixing, it will combine into a smooth mixture. Spoon heaping table spoonfuls out and form into a ball. At this point you can roll the balls into the cocoa powder, or cinnamon sugar. If desired leave plain.

    Cindy's notes: I find these are more firm if left in the freezer. You can eat them straight from the freezer, no need to thaw.

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    This post linked to

    Hearth and Soul
    Things that Make you say: Mmmmm!
    Delicious Dishes
    Tasty Tuesday
    See ya in the Gumbo 
    EMM: Church Supper 
    Fit and Fabulous Fridays

    Monday, January 16, 2012

    Meal Plan Monday~ Jan 16, 2012

    Happy Monday everyone!!

    I'm in such a wonderful mood today. I had the opportunity to Skype with some of the great ladies I met during my journey through the Real Women of Philadelphia Canada contest. These are the best bunch of ladies, that I am so happy and proud to call my friends. We have all grown, by leaps and bounds with the confidence the contest gave us and have all celebrated small successes this year. It's great to have a great group of foodie friends to bounce ideas off of and to vent to, LOL.

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    Well, my first week of healthy eating and exercise went well. I have to say that I feel wonderful and my moods have been constant and great, LOL. I still have tiny sugar cravings, but thanks to some friends who are also trying to be healthier, I've found great alternatives and recipes. Look for a few of them this week! I've yet to do an official grocery trip, but did pick up a few proteins this past weekend. So our menu will be simple, healthy and delicious (I hope). Here's our menu for the week

    • Pulled Pork sandwiches with a bean salad
    • baked pork taquitos, with spicy black beans
    • Spanish Potato and Green Olive soup (new recipe) with Honey Oat Bread
    • Homemade pizza (new recipe) with a salad
    • Omelets with fruit salad
    • Partridge fingers with oven fries/sweet potato fries and a salad (brought over from last week)
    • Leftovers
    Head on over to OrgJunkie.com, for tons of other great meal plans!

      Friday, January 13, 2012

      Grilled Fish Tacos with Creamy Avocado & the Fibre 1 Chill Challenge

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      As I mentioned in previous posts, I've started working on being healthier. Both in what I eat, and by getting more exercise in each day. I know that during the winter, we tend to go into hibernation mode and turn into couch potatoes. I mean who wants to go out in that cold weather. Well Fibre 1 and the Running Room are teaming up to bring you the first ever Fibre 1 Chill Challenge. They would like you to get off that couch and leap into an extra day of fitness. The best part is..... it's totally easy. All they're asking for is 20 minutes of walking, or running at any of the participating Running Room locations. See, that isn't so hard now is it? So register and, on Feb 29, get off that couch and get active!

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      Sometimes, exercise isn't enough. Sometimes, you have to make better eating choices. I know that though we never really ate unhealthily, I could have been doing more, to get us eating right. Small things like eating more fish, using low fat cheeses, dressing or sour cream. All of those things are great ways of cutting calories, while still having great flavour. That's why I am totally excited that General Mills Life Made Delicious has great healthy recipes, on their website. Not only are they healthy and delicious, they're super easy too!! I was able to get dinner on the table last night, in about 15 minutes. Can you believe that?!?!

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      Not only are these fish tacos quick and easy, they taste awesome too. I really loved the spicy Taco seasoning on the fish. The creamy avocado added a zesty creaminess, that was perfect with the tender fish. We seemed to prefer them on whole wheat tortillas, rather than hard tacos. I never thought the kids would be eating fish tacos, but Mr.B quickly wolfed two down, LOL. Since it's the dead of winter here, there was no way I was grilling, so I adapted the recipe and broiled the fish for a few minutes on each side. I will include broiling instructions at the end of the recipe.


       “Disclosure: I am part of the Life Made Delicious Blogger program and I receive special perks as part of my affiliation with this group. The opinions on this blog are my own.”


      Grilled Fish Tacos with Creamy Avocado Topping
      Adapted from Life Made Delicious

      Halibut is a fresh, healthy spin on traditional tacos.


      Ingredients:

      1 avocado, pitted, peeled and diced
      2 tbsp (25 mL) chopped fresh cilantro
      1/3 cup (75 mL) reduced fat ranch dressing
      1 pkg Old El Paso* Smart Fiesta* Hard Taco Dinner Kit
      1 tbsp (15 mL) vegetable oil
      1 1/2 lb (750 g) halibut, skin removed, cut into 1-inch pieces
      1 cup (250 mL) shredded lettuce or mixed salad greens
      1 small tomato, diced

      Method:

          Heat gas or charcoal grill. In medium bowl, mix avocado, cilantro and dressing. Set aside. Heat taco shells as directed on package.
          Brush fish with oil. Sprinkle fish with 2 to 3 tsp taco seasoning mix. Place halibut in grill basket. Place basket on grill over medium heat. Cover grill; cook 5 to 10 minutes or until fish flakes easily with fork, rearranging twice. Fill taco shells with fish, lettuce, avocado mixture and tomato.

      Cindy's notes: to broil, place fish onto a rimmed baking sheet. Brush with oil and sprinkle with taco seasoning. Place under broiler for 4 minutes. Flip fillets over and sprinkle with remaining taco seasoning. Place under broiler for 3-4 more minutes, until fish is opaque and flakes easily.

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      This post linked to

      Full Plate Thursday
      These Chicks Cooked
      Friday Favorites
      Foodie Friday
      EMM:Church Supper

      Tuesday, January 10, 2012

      Nutty Blueberry-Maple Oatmeal

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      Last week, my friend Jeanine, from the Baking Beauties, asked me if I'd be interested in doing a six week diet and exercises program with her. I was already toying with the idea that I needed to buckle down and loose some weight, so I quickly agreed. Let's face it, you're more likely to succeed when there is someone there rooting you on, encouraging and suffering right along with you, LOL.

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      As part of my healthier eating, I decided to make some new yummy oatmeal recipes. I am not a big oatmeal fan. In the past, if I were to eat it, I would drown it with brown sugar. Knowing that there would be no way of loosing weight following my bad oatmeal habit, I played around with flavours and came up with this one. And I truly enjoyed it! I ate the whole bowl, without the thought of "why am I doing this to myself" playing through my head. The addition of vanilla makes the oatmeal taste sweeter, without the added sugar. I love the crunch of the toasted coconut and walnuts. The bursts of fresh blueberries just add a nice bright surprise. Now I'm actually excited about eating oatmeal, that isn't swimming in sugar!

      Nutty Blueberry-Maple Oatmeal
      printable version

      2/3 C water
      1/3 C large flake old fashion oats
      1 Tbs maple syrup
      1/4 tsp vanilla
      1/4 C walnuts, chopped
      2 tsp sweetened shredded coconut
      1/4 C fresh blueberries

      In a small pot heat water to a boil. Add oats, maple syrup and vanilla. Reduce heat and simmer until tender and thick; about 10-15 minutes.

      Meanwhile, toast walnuts and coconut in a small skillet, over medium heat; until coconut is the same colour as the walnuts. Set aside.

      When the oats are tender, add in the blueberries (saving a few to garnish) and most of the walnut/coconut mixture. Garnish with remaining blueberries and nuts.

      1 serving

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      This post linked to

      Delicious Dishes
      See ya in the Gumbo!
      Hearth and Soul
      Tasty Tuesday
      Things That Make you Say: Mmmmm

      Monday, January 9, 2012

      Meal Plan Monday~ Jan 9, 2012

      Happy Monday!

      The kids and I all caught the crud, a few days ago. It started with Queenie, last Thursday and snowballed from there. I think it has hit her the worst, and I'm planning of bringing her in to see the Dr, this afternoon. Her cough sounds too suspicious for me to just let it run it's course. My throat, which has been killing me, finally feels better today. It's a good thing, because we are back to school, after 2 weeks of winter break. I hope we get back into the routine quickly; I've grown accustomed to sleeping until 8:30.

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      We ended up staying at my Mother in law's house last week and didn't return until late Friday night. So, I wasn't able to get to most of last week's meal plan. Since I've yet to do groceries, I'll just carry it over and add a few new dishes. I did find a Moose roast in the freezer and am hoping to make something with that. Here is what I have planned this week

      • Turkey Stir Fry
      •  baked partridge fingers with oven fries and peas
      • Tacos with Tex Mex couscous (new recipe)
      • Ratatouille with Chickpeas, Naan bread
      •  chicken and black bean enchiladas (new recipe)
      • Pancakes with fruit salad
      • leftovers
      Head on over to OrgJunkie.com, for tons of other great meal plans!!

        Saturday, January 7, 2012

        Stuffed Savory Ham and Cheese French Toast

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        This past week, we all went to my Mother in law's to celebrate second Christmas. We spent a really nice time in Buffalo, visited Hubby's side of the family and had a few fun adventures. One of my gifts from my sister in law was a cookbook. A whole cookbook full of breakfast and brunch recipes. I was super excited and when I had the chance, I quickly looked through it, to decide what to make first. I decided to go with this recipe, because my mother in law had all the ingredients on hand.

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        This recipe is super easy. I love the simplicity of it, but the results are phenomenal. Creamy gooey cheese, slightly flavoured with green onion, pairs perfectly with the salty smoky ham. I wasn't sure about topping it with syrup or powdered sugar, but the sweetness added a nice balance to the savory french toast. This one is definitely a keeper and I'm sure we will be enjoying these on those special weekend mornings.

        Stuffed Savory Ham & Cheese French Toast

        Adapted from 500 Breakfast and Brunch Dishes
        printable version

        4 oz cream cheese, softened
        1 C Cheddar cheese, shredded
        2 scallions, finely chopped
        salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
        4 slices of ham (preferably black forest)
        8 thick slices day-old white bread
        4 eggs
        1/2  milk
        few shakes of hot sauce, to taste
        butter and vegetable oil, for cooking
        powdered sugar and maple syrup, to serve

        In a medium bowl, mix the cream cheese and Cheddar with the scallions. Season with salt and pepper. Spread 4 slices of bread generously with the filling, lay a slice of ham on top of each one, and top with the remaining bread slices, making 4 sandwiches.

        In a shallow dish, whisk together the eggs, milk, salt, pepper, and hot sauce. Dip each sandwich in the batter, turning to coat both sides and allowing each side to soak up some of the batter. Do not soak too long or the sandwich will fall apart when you lift them.

        In a large skillet, heat a little butter and vegetable oil. When it's good and hot, lay some sandwiches in the skillet and cool them to a rich brown. Turn and cook the other side. Keep warm while you make the rest. Serve immediately, with a sprinkling of powdered sugar and with maple syrup on the side.

        Serves 4

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        This post linked to

        These Chicks Cooked
        Full Plate Thursday
        Foodie Friday
        Friday Favorites
        Gooseberry Patch Recipe Round Up

        Monday, January 2, 2012

        Meal Plan Monday~ Jan 2, 2012

        Happy Monday and Happy New Year, once again!!

        I'm still reeling from the fact that we are in 2012 already. The past year just flew by and makes me wish I had a pause button. But I am glad the new year is upon us. We have some pretty exciting milestones happening in the Jamieson household this year. First would be my 10th wedding anniversary. Yes, it's hard to believe that it's been 12 years since I met Hubby and 10 years since we got married. I just love how everyday seems new and that we still enjoy being together and love each other with so much passion. The second milestone will be Queenie starting school this Fall. She will be entering Junior Kindergarten and we are both really excited. I can't wait to see her blossom into an independent little lady. I'm sure I'll be in tears her first day, but I'm also anxious to get more time to focus on myself.

        Which brings me to new things that will be happening here on Hun...What's for Dinner? My goal over the next few month, to a year, is to loose weight. I have a good 50+ lbs that I'd love to say good bye to, so you'll be seeing a lot of healthier, lower calorie meals. I'll still post some indulgent stuff, on occasion, but for the most part, I'll be focusing on healthier eating. We don't really eat un healthily, it's just what I get into, once the kids are in bed, that is getting me in trouble.

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        That being said, this week's menu will be quite interesting. I haven't done groceries since before Christmas, so I'll be using up what it in my freezer and pantry. I also roasted up a nice 15 lb turkey for New Years day, so I'll be using those leftovers this week. We plan on  heading down to Buffalo NY, to visit Hubby's family, so I'm sure one of those days we'll be eating out. So,here is my plan for the week
        • Turkey Stir Fry
        • Quick Cassoulet (using leftover turkey)~new recipe
        • out with Hubby's family
        • baked partridge fingers with oven fries and peas
        • Ratatouille with Chickpeas, Naan bread
        • chicken and black bean enchiladas~ new recipe
        • leftovers
        Head on over to OrgJunkie.com, for more great meal plans!!

        Sunday, January 1, 2012

        Irish Cream Rocky Road Waffles~ Happy New Year!!

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        Happy New Year everyone!!

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        I just can't believe how quickly the last year has passed. I wonder if 2012 will be as adventurous for us, as was 2011. To celebrate the New Year this morning, I decided to treat Hubby and I with a special breakfast. This past Christmas, we had brought a bottle of Irish Cream to add to our coffee on Christmas day. Everyone forgot about it, so back home it came. While talking about it with my Mom, I came up with the idea of making Irish Cream Rocky Road Pancakes. But this morning as I was preparing to make breakfast, I decided that pancakes wouldn't be able to stand up to the Rocky Road toppings. Waffles are heartier, so they wouldn't be overwhelmed by the chocolate, nuts and marshmallows.

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        These were phenominal! I loved how the Irish Cream transformed into a creamy undertone and paired perfectly with the rocky road aspect of the waffles. These had just the perfect amount of sweetness, with the addition of the toppings. I did make a 'virgin' version for the kids, who really enjoyed having chocolate and marshmallows for breakfast. These could even be served as dessert, if sweets for breakfast isn't your thing.

        Irish Cream Rocky Road Waffles
        printable version

        3 Tbs butter, melted
        2 Tbs sugar
        3 egg whites
        2 C flour
        3 tsp baking powder
        1/2 tsp salt
        1/4 C Irish Cream liquor
        1/2- 3/4 C milk
        1/3 almonds, chopped
        chocolate chips
        mini marshmallows
        caramel sauce (option)

        In a small skillet, toast almonds over low heat; 3-5 minutes (you will smell when they are ready). Set aside for later.

        In a bowl, beat the egg whites and sugar until light and frothy. Add in melted butter and Irish Cream; mix well. Stir in flour, baking powder. Add milk, 1/4 C at a time, until a thick batter is formed (it should ressemble very thick pancake batter). Fold in 1/4 C of the toasted almonds.

        Preheat your waffle iron. Once it is ready, spray grates with non stick cooking spray. Pour 1/3 C of batter onto hot grates. Close lid and cook for 5 minutes; until waffles are golden brown. Transfer waffles to a baking sheet and sprinkle with chocolate chips, mini marshmallows and remaining toasted almonds. Place under broiler for 2-3 minutes; until marshmallows start to brown. Serve with a drizzle of caramel sauce, if desired.


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