Yum

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Pumpkin Cheesecake and a Cookbook Review

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 I love cake mixes! I know that some people frown upon cake mixes, because they are full of preservatives and what not, but I like them. The main reason I like them, is because they are very versatile. You can use cake mixes to make cookies, cakes and even in this case,  as a crusts. Not to mention that I've yet been able to find a cake recipe that will make an amazing moist and fluffy cake, the way cake mixes do. So, when I was asked if I'd be interested to review Complete Cake Mix Magic- 300 Easy Desserts Good as Homemade, by Jill Snider; I quickly accepted. I am IN LOVE with this book. I've dog eared almost every page to try and try them I will, LOL. This book has every dessert recipe imaginable and they all use a cake mix, in one way or another. There are cakes, coffee cakes, cookies, bars, cheesecakes; just about any dessert you can think of. With a section for Special Occasion Cakes, frostings, glazes and other toppings, you are certain to find a recipe to fit your mood and your occasion.


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I decided to try the Pumpkin Cheesecake on page 143, since Fall is in the air and I have some pumpkin puree still in the freezer, from last year. Since I always have a variety of cake mixes on hand, I was pleased to see that this recipe used Spice cake mix. It is one of my favourites to use, in pumpkin recipes. I was curious to see how the crust would turn out, with the cake mix being combined only with melted butter, but it was delicious; almost cookie like. The filling is creamy, sweet and has a beautiful warmth from the pumpkin pie spice. I do not make baked cheesecakes all that often, but this one was easy, simple and turned out beautifully.

Pumpkin Cheesecake
adapted from Complete Cake Mix Magic
printable version

Crust:
1 pkg spice cake mix
1/2 C butter, melted

Filling:
1 1/2 lbs of cream cheese (3- 8oz pkgs)
1 can (14oz) sweetened condensed milk
1 can (14 oz) pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie filling)
4 eggs
1 Tbs pumpkin pie spice

Topping
1 1/2 C whipping (35%) cream
1/4 C confectioner's sugar, sifted
1/4 C toasted almonds ( I used pecans and pumpkin seeds)
Caramel Sauce to drizzle

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

  1. Crust: Combine cake mix and melted butter. Mix well. Press firmly on bottom of pan. Set aside.
  2. Filling: In a large mixer bowl, beat cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk, on high speed for 2 minutes. Add pumpkin, eggs and spice. Beat for 1 minute longer or until smooth. Pour over prepared crust. Bake for 55-60 minutes or just until set. Run knife around edge of pan to loosed cake. Cool completely on a wire rack, then chill for 2 hours or overnight.
  3. Topping: Beat cream and confectioner's sugar to stiff peaks. Spread over cheesecake. Sprinkle with almonds. Chill until serving. Store leftover cheesecake in the refrigerator.
Variation: Bake cheesecake in a 13- by 9-inch pan at 350 degrees F for 30 to 35 minutes. You can cut this into large dessert pieces or small cookie-tray-size treats.


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 This post linked to

Recipe Box
Cast Party Wednesday
Full Plate Thursday
Thursday's Treasures
Tastetastic Thursday
Tasty Thursday

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Every Day with Rachael Ray~ Chicken and Corn Chili

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 I've always been a big fan of food network television and have been watching it for over 10 yrs now. It is one of the things that helped me become the cook I am today and it has helped me think outside the box, when it comes to eating and cooking. Seven years ago, when I was on bed rest with Mr.B, the television became my best friend, when Hubby left for work. I would watch it for hours and discovered a cute little cook named Rachael Ray. I loved her 30 minute meal show, since I knew that once I had kids, my life would turn into a pile of dirty diapers and bottles, LOL. I would watch her show religiously. Every night at 4pm, the TV would be tuned to the Food Network and I would watch Rachael in action. It got to the point that when Mr.B was learning to walk and talk, he would come racing into the room at the first sound of the 30 Minute Meal theme song. Achel Yay, as Mr.B called her, was the one show he would settle down to watch with Mommy.


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I was beyond excited when I heard she was making the jump to daytime TV and I try to watch her show everyday.... unless life gets in the way. With the show came the Magazine- Everyday with Rachael Ray. Anytime I had some extra spending money, you could be sure that the magazine mysteriously made it's way into our shopping cart. This past year, I decided to treat myself and get a subscription and every month I look forward to seeing the magazine in the mail box, waiting for me to sit with a cup of tea and to read it from cover to cover, once the kids are in bed. I've made quite a few of Rachael's recipes over the years and I can say that they've all been winners for our family. In the October issue of EDWRR there was a feature called Chili 10 Ways. With the colder temperatures finally here, you can bet that I was eyeing those recipes up. The feature gives you a basic chili recipe, then gives you 9 variations on the basic recipe. The Chicken and Corn Chili caught my attention, since I was intrigued by the chicken, corn and potatoes.


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This chili is like no other. I loved how flavorful it was and how easy it was to make. I used baby red potatoes and the butteriness of them, mixed with the spicy broth was heaven. The kids loved this version way better than the chili I usually make and I enjoyed eating this for lunches, days prior to making it. Why is it that dishes, like chili, always takes better the next day?? Just like many of Rachael's recipes, this was quick, easy and perfect for a cold fall day.

Chicken and Corn Chili
adapted from Every Day with Rachael Ray

2 Tbs vegetable oil
2 large onions, chopped
3 Tbs minced garlic
1/3 C ancho chili powder
1 Tbs ground cumin
1 Tbs dried oregano
coarse salt and pepper
1 tsp cayenne
1 qt chicken broth
2 red potatoes, chopped
3 C corn
1 can chopped chiles
1 1/2 C raw chicken, chopped
1 C heavy cream
2 C shredded Jack cheese


In a large dutch oven, heat the oil over high heat. Add the onion and stir over medium-low heat, until soft, 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and chicken broth, scraping the pan. Add the chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt, pepper, cayenne and potatoes; simmer until tender, 10 minutes.Add in corn, chiles and raw chicken; simmer for 10 minutes.Stir in 1 C of heavy cream and shredded cheese, until the cheese has melted. Serve with oyster crackers and chives.

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 This post linked to

Tuesdays at the Table
Tasty Tuesdays
See Ya in the Gumbo
Hearth and Soul
Delicious Dishes
Kitchen Dreaming Chili Cook Off

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Frosted Chocolate, Zucchini-Banana Bars

Frosted Chocolate, Zucchini-Banana Bars


 Though the weather is getting colder, I'm still trying to hold on (a tiny bit) to summer. So, I've still been cooking and baking with zucchini. I really love baking with it, since the kids aren't really fond of it in savory dishes, but will devour any dessert with zucchini in it. This time I decided to pair it with something that I always have in my freezer; ripe bananas. Years ago, I remember making fantastic banana bars with cream cheese frosting, so I decided to alter the recipe a little. By adding cocoa powder, zucchini and chocolate chips, I got a sinful dessert.


Frosted Chocolate, Zucchini-Banana Bars: Hun...What's for Dinner?


These bars, or should I say sheet cake, are so moist. I loved the banana and chocolate flavours paired with the sweet and tangy cream cheese frosting. Let's face it- Cream Cheese Frosting is good on pretty much anything, LOL. The kids loved these and I loved that they were getting extra nutrients, without even knowing it. A little indulgent and a little healthy; the perfect dessert combination in my books.

Frosted Chocolate, Zucchini-Banana Bars
printable version

 1/2 cup butter, softened
 1 1/4 cups sugar
 3 eggs
 1 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 2 medium)
 1 cup shredded zucchini (about 1 small)
 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
 2 cups all-purpose flour
 1/4 cup cocoa powder
 1 teaspoon baking soda
 Dash salt
 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

    FROSTING:
 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
 1/2 cup butter, softened
 4 cups confectioners' sugar
 2 teaspoons vanilla extract


In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, bananas, zucchini and vanilla. Combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt; stir into creamed mixture just until blended. Fold in the chocolate chips.

Transfer to a greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan. Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack.

For frosting: in a small bowl, beat cream cheese and butter until fluffy. Add confectioners' sugar and vanilla; beat until smooth. Frost bars.



Frosted Chocolate, Zucchini-Banana Bars: Hun... What's for Dinner?


This post linked to

Foodie Friday
Weekend Potluck
Foodie Friends Friday
Sweets for a Saturday
Church Supper 
Scrumptious Sundays

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Homemade Pigs in a Blanket

Homemade Pigs in a Blanket- Hun, What's for Dinner?


 Once a month, on a Friday night, we have a special movie night. We get home from school, change into our PJs and pick out a few movies. One for dinner, then one for after dinner. Some night we do themed movie nights, like our Harry Potter Movie Night, but most nights we just have a picnic in the living room, while watching one of our many favourite children's movies. One of the kids most requested movie night dinners, is Pigs in a Blanket, or Blankie Pigs as Queenie calls them. When I first made these, I used canned crescent rolls and the kids were not fans at all. So, I decided to try them again, using my favourite pizza dough recipe and they are a huge hit.


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The dough gets nicely browned and crispy on the outside, and it's nice and soft on the inside. It really compliments the hotdogs well. You can even cut the strips of dough thinner and wrap the dogs willy nilly for mummy dogs.The kids love to dip theirs in ketchup, while I am more of a mustard person. I serve these with some veggies and dip and we have a great picnic dinner. Simple, easy and delicious.

Homemade Pigs in a Blanket
printable version

1 1/2 to 2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp RapidRise Yeast
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup very warm water (120 to 130F)
2 tablespoons olive
8 to 12 hotdogs
1 egg

In large bowl, combine 1 cup flour, undissolved yeast, and salt. Stir very warm water and olive oil into dry ingredients. Stir in enough remaining flour to make soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 4 to 6 minutes. Cover; let rest on floured surface10 minutes.(can olso be made in bread machine or stand mixer)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

After the dough has rested, divide it into 2 pieces. Take 1 piece of dough and roll it into a rectangle, about 1/4 inch thick. Using a sharp knife, or pizza wheel, cut 1/4-1/3inch strips of dough. Take one strip and wrap it around the hot dog, leaving a bit of the hot dog peaking out from each end. Place on a cookie sheet, that has been lightly sprayed with non stick spray. Repeat with remaining hot dogs.

In a small bowl, whisk the egg with a splash of water. Brush the dough wrapped dogs with the egg mixture. Bake pigs in a blanket in your preheated oven, for 20-25 minutes; until the dough is nicely golden and cooked through. Serve warm, with your choice of ketchup, or mustard.


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 This post linked to

Recipe Box 
Cast Party Wednesday
Tasty Thursday
Thursday's Treasures
Tastetastic Thursday
Full Plate Thursday

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Smoky Sausage and Corn Chowder

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 I am so excited about the cooler temperatures. I LOVE the transition from Summer to Fall! The days get cooler, but are still sunny, the wind is crisp and I get to cook comfort food again. Soups and chowders are some of my favourite cold weather meals to make. You can throw just about anything in a pot, with stock and/or milk, and it'll come out tasting fantastic. I had leftover corn on the cob that I wanted to use up, so I thought of pairing it with some nice spicy sausage, for a chowder. Thicker than soup, but thinner than stew, chowder is truly a comfort food in this house.


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I loved the flavours in this chowder. The licorice-y fennel from the sausage, the warm sage, nice sweet corn and smokey bacon. What an amazing flavour combo!! This chowder was creamy, hearty and hit the spot. The kids loved it and were excited to be eating sausage in a soup type dish, LOL. Everyone ate to our hearts content and enjoyed the first comfort food of the season. Evertime I make chowder, I am reminded of an episode of the Simpsons, where the guy keeps telling the French waiter to say Chowdah..... Say it- Chowdah!! LOL.

Smoky Sausage and Corn Chowder
printable version

6 slices bacon, chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 1/2 C fresh corn kernels
1 lb Italian sausage (mild or hot) removed from casings
1/2 tsp ground sage
1/4 C flour
2 C low sodium chicken stock
2 C low fat milk
salt and pepper to taste
2 green onions, chopped on the bias

In a dutch oven, or heavy bottomed soup pot, over medium heat, cook the bacon until crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon, to a paper towel. Drain bacon fat, reserving 2 Tbs of fat, at bottom of pot. Add in corn and cook until it begins to brown slightly; about 5-7 minutes. Add in sausage, breaking it up with a spoon and cook 3 minutes; until it begins to brown. Add in onion, garlic, peppers and season with sage. Cook until onions soften; about 4 minutes. Sprinkle mixture with flour and cook for a few minutes, to remove the raw taste of the flour. Slowly add in the chicken stock, while stirring constantly, to prevent lumps. Stir in the milk and let simmer until the chowder is nice and thick; about 20 minutes. Garnish with bacon and green onion, before serving.


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This post linked to

Tasty Tuesday
See Ya in the Gumbo
Tuesdays at the Table
Delicious Dishes
Hearth and Soul
What's Cooking Wednesday
Real Food Wednesday
Saturday Dishes

Monday, September 17, 2012

Meal Plan Monday~ Sept 17,2012

Happy Monday!!!


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Well, we are half way through the month of September and the cooler temperatures have been toying with us. We will have a few glorious cool and breezy days and them Boom! It's hot as heck again. Not that I am complaining, because I will take summer over winter any day, but I'd like to have a bit of Fall weather. I'm longing for comfort food, for warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves, for fuzzy socks and warm sweaters, to snuggle on cold nights with hot chocolate. It's my favourite season and I want it to last longer than it does, LOL.


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This week, we don't have a whole lot going on. Hubby and I do have a golf date with our BFF. I'm going to drive the cart, since I don't golf. Hubby suggested I try golfing, but I'm not sure if I'm ready to humiliate myself with a bunch of strangers around..... you never know though, I may try it. It's a short week for Queenie, who only has school on Mon and Wed, so I'll be trying to think of fun outings on her days home from school. She is totally loving it though, so that makes me very happy. I'm hoping to have more time for dinner this week. Here is what I have planned

  • Tuna Cakes with Mushroom and Kale Penne
  • peameal bacon sandwiches with sweet potato fries
  • Smothered Pork Chops with mashed potatoes and green beans
  • waffles with fresh fruit
  • Chiard (brought over from last week)
  • roast chicken Caesar salads
  • leftovers
Head on over to OrgJunkie.com, for more great meal plans!!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Small Batch Pear Butter

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Fall is in the air, and with that brings Fall produce. Pumpkins, apples, pears, squash; all are showing up on grocery store shelves at affordable prices. So, I took this opportunity to make some pear butter. I've had apple butter before and really wanted to try making my own pear butter. I was able to find a 2 Litre basket of pears at a really good price, so brought one home. My original intention was to make a pear tart, but I kept putting it off and my pears kept getting more and more ripe. So, I peeled and chopped them and threw them in a pot, and turned them into pear butter.


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I kept this recipe simple, because I wanted to wonderful flavour of the pear to shine through. A touch of lime zest and juice, for tartness and nice warm vanilla; are all this delicious pear butter needs. You can't even taste the lime that much; all you get is sweet pears with a nice vanilla undertone. So far we've used the pear butter on crackers, with cream cheese, on scones and on English muffins. Super easy, and oh so delicious!!

Small Batch Pear Butter
printable version

2 Litres (a little over 4 lbs) pears, peeled and chopped
1 C sugar
zest of 1 lime
juice of 1 lime
1/4 tsp salt
1 vanilla bean, cut in half length wise

Place pears into a medium heavy bottomed sauce pan; over medium heat. Add in sugar, salt, lime zest and juice. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean and add seeds and bean to the pot as well. Stir to combine and to melt the sugar. Cook, stirring frequently, until mixture comes up to a boil. Reduce heat to very low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until mixture reduces and becomes quite thick; about 1-2 hrs. Remove vanilla bean and puree with an immersion blender; until smooth. Pour hot pears into sterilized half pint canning jars and place lids. Let cool on counter, to seal jars.


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This post linked to

Weekend Potluck
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Foodie Friday
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Church Supper

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Grilled Turkey and Brie with Apricot and a Cookbook Review

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Most of you know I love cookbooks. I haven't counted, but I can confidently say that I have over 100 cookbooks in my collection. Most of them however are still packed into boxes, in the basement, waiting for appropriate space to put them in. Every once in a while, I wander down stairs, pick a few cookbooks and bring them back upstairs to read. If I find a really great recipe, I make it right away; but mostly I like to read them from front to cover, bookmarking recipes that I am hoping one day to try. When I was approached by the Robert Rose Publishing company about reviewing some cookbooks for them, of course I jumped at the chance. With so many great new cookbooks out there, I love being able to read them, bookmark recipes and share them with you.


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Today I would like to talk about a book that is sure to appeal to just about anyone. 150 best grilled cheese sandwiches by Allison Lewis, is brimming with amazing mouth watering grilled cheese recipes. In this book, you can find recipes for just about every meal, during the day. From breakfast, to desserts; you'll be able to find a recipe that is sure to fill your craving. I also love that there is a section on condiments with recipes for homemade mayonnaise, barbecue sauce and even pimento cheese. Having such a sweet tooth, I was initially drawn to the dessert sandwiches, but after reading through the whole book, I had many others bookmarked. One that really caught my attention was the Turkey and Brie with Apricot grilled cheese. I've never really had Brie before (something about it being coated in moldy like fuzzy white stuff, LOL), and I thought a grilled cheese sandwich would be a great way to introduce myself to it.


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This sandwich is phenomenal!! The bread is crisp, the cheese is soft and melty, the salty turkey mingles so well with the sweet apple and jam. I did not have any apricot jam, so I used some homemade red pepper jelly. I really loved the savory spiciness that it added to the sandwich. I also used Paula red apples and  some ciabatta bread, rather than sourdough. This was pretty much heaven on bread, in my opinion. I also love that it is relatively healthy, for a grilled cheese sandwich.

Grilled Turkey and Brie with Apricot
adapted from 150 best grilled cheese sandwiches

8 slices sourdough bread (1/2-inch/1 cm thick slices)
2 Tbs butter or margarine, softened
1/2 C apricot preserves or jam
8 oz thin sliced maple glazed turkey
4 oz Brie, sliced
2 medium Granny Smith apples, thinly sliced

  1. Brush one side of each bread slice with butter. Place 4 slices on a work surface, buttered side down. Spread remaining 4 bread slices equally with apricot preserves. Top equally with turkey, Brie and apples. Cover with remaining bread slices, buttered side up, and press together gently.
  2. Place sandwiches on preheated panini grill or in a large skillet over medium heat and cook, turning once if using a skillet, for 3-4 minutes or until golden brown and cheese is melted. Serve immediately.


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This post linked to

See Ya in the Gumbo
Delicious Dishes
Tuesdays at the Table
Hearth and Soul
Tasty Tuesdays

Monday, September 10, 2012

Meal Plan Monday Sept 10, 2012

Happy Monday!!


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Well, it's the second week of school and both the kids are loving it. Queenie had her first official day on Friday and did amazingly well. Her teacher wrote a letter for us JK parents, with a few lines describing every student. She said Queenie was very kind and gentle and so pleased to be at school. I love that the teacher took the time to do that for us parents, it's something I will love to look at, as she grows and remember such a big day in her life. Mr.B loves his teacher and I am pleased with who he got this year as well. As, a volunteer, I've talked to a few teachers and love that I can get a vibe from each one. His teacher is always smiling and attentive when she accompanies them outside for dismissal, it makes me feel like she is invested in her class.


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This week will be my first week, of being home alone, on Mon and Wed. My nephew recently left for Alberta and I got a small glimpse into how I will feel when my kids leave for college. I am proud of him, but at the same time am scared and worried. I waited until he left, before shedding a tear and will miss having him with us. I haven't really made a menu for this week yet, so please forgive me if this one seems a little incomplete.
Head on over to OrgJunkie.com, for more great meal plans!!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Lemon-Blueberry Zucchini Loaf

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 We still have a bunch of zucchini and the fridge and I've been trying to think of ways to use it up, that the kids will enjoy. A sure fire way is in desserts, since who can say no to something sweet?? Every summer, I make my regular zucchini loaf, but this year I wanted to change it up. I had some fresh blueberries in the fridge, so I decided to make some blueberry zucchini loaf. Then I though, WAIT! Lemon goes really well with blueberry, so why not make a Lemon-Blueberry Zucchini Loaf? I'm sure glad I did, because this sweet bread was not only pretty, it was really yummy.
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I especially loved the tart and tangy glaze I made to top the loaf. This sweet bread is so tender and moist and you can't even tell there is zucchini in it. I made two loaves to share with our neighbour and tied a cute ribbon on it, to make it look more elegant. They said they loved it and that the glaze was amazing and addictive, LOL. These would be super cute as mini loaves, tied with ribbons, to give as teacher gifts, or to neighbours.

Lemon-Blueberry Zucchini Loaf with Tart Lemon Glaze
printable version

   1/4 C sugar
   4 C flour
   2 tsp baking powder
   2 tsp baking soda
   1 tsp salt
   4 eggs
   1/2 C canola oil
   1 1/3 C sugar
   1 C milk
   Juice of 1 lemon
   Zest of 1 lemon
   2 C grated zucchini
   1 1/2 C fresh blueberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 2- 9×5″ loaf pans and coat sides with 1/4 C sugar; set aside.

In large bowl combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add in blueberries, toss to coat and set aside.

In medium bowl, beat eggs with sugar, until light and fluffy. Add in the canola oil and blend well. Add the milk, lemon juice, and lemon zest and blend until well combined. Stir in zucchini, until evenly distributed in mixture.

Add this mixture to the dry ingredients and blend everything together, until just combined.

Pour batter into prepared loaf pans and bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes; or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack and cool completely. While loaf is cooling, you can make the glaze.

Lemon Glaze

    1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
    Juice of 1 lemon
    1 Tbs lemon zest

In a small bowl, mix the powdered sugar, lemon juice and zest until well blended. Spoon glaze over cooled loaf. Let glaze set, then serve.


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This post linked to

Recipe Box
Tasty Thursday
Full Plate Thursday
Tastetastic Thursday
Thursday's Treasures
Foodie Friends Friday
Foodie Friday
Weekend Potluck
Church Supper

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Egg in a Hole and a Cookbook Review

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Something that is always in my grocery cart, when I go shopping, is tortillas. We just love them and use them for just about everything. Mostly for sandwiches and enchiladas, but I've used tortillas to make Mexican S'mores, that are quick easy and super yummy. So, when I was asked to review Tortillas to the Rescue Cookbook by Jessica Harlan, a book containing 100 Quick & Easy Recipes using tortillas, I was in! I love this book and it is already full of earmarked pages, of the recipes I would like to try. There are recipes for just about everything in this book. Appetizers, salads, soups, mains, breakfast and even dessert. For this post however, I wanted to share a super clever twist on Egg in a Hole. The kids love regular egg in a hole, so I decided to give this one a try.


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This was really awesome!! I love the way the tortilla crisps up, the gooey cheese paired with the creamy beans and that runny egg, that adds even more creaminess. I did have a bit of trouble with ours, because I somehow did not read the 'use a non stick skillet' part, LOL. So please, use non stick..... it'll save your children from hearing you curse at the tortilla as it sticks to you pan. I decided to serve these with a quick guacamole, mixed with beans and tomato.


Egg in a Hole- Hun... What's for Dinner?



Egg in a Hole
Tortillas to the Rescue Cookbook

1 (14 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
2 C shredded Monterey Jack cheese (8 oz)
8 medium (8-inch) flour tortillas
2 Tbs unsalted butter, or more as needed
4 large eggs
kosher salt and black pepper

  1. Divide the black beans and cheese among 4 tortillas and top each with a second tortilla to form quesadillas. Spray a medium nonstick skillet with cooking spray and heat it over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium, place a quesadilla in the skillet, and cook until the underside is lightly browned and the cheese inside begins to melt, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the quesadilla over and cook until the second side is lightly browned and the cheese is melted, 2 to 3 minutes longer. Remove the quesadilla to a cutting board and repeat with the remaining quesidillas. Use a 3-inch round cookie cutter or pairing knife to cut a whole in the center of each quesidilla.
  2. Return 1 quesadilla to the pan, still over medium heat, and place a small dab of butter on the pan in the center of the hole. When the butter melts, carefully break the egg into the hole. Let cook until the white is completely set and the yolk is cooked to your liking. Season with a sprinkle each of salt and pepper. Repeat with remaining quesadillas and eggs. Serve hot.

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 This post linked to

Tasty Tuesday
Delicious Dishes
See Ya in the Gumbo
Tuesdays at the Table
Hearth and Soul
Real Food Wednesday
Cast Party Wednesday
What's Cooking Wednesday

Monday, September 3, 2012

Meal Plan Monday~ Sept 3, 2012

Happy Monday!!
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Tomorrow we are finally back to school!!! This year it will be a very bitter sweet moment, since Queenie is starting Junior Kindergarten. That means she will be attending school 3 days a week and she is SO excited!! We were very lucky and she happened to get the same teacher Mr.B had in Kindergarten. She is the most vibrant and kind woman, and we couldn't be happier to be spending 2 more years with her. Mr.B is heading to grade 2, which means he will now be in the big yard, with the bigger grades. I am a little worried, but trust that we raised a smart, trustworthy little boy.
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This week's menu, Im hoping, will be simple and satisfying. I need something I can throw together before leaving to pick up the kids, or once we get home, while helping the kids with homework. I hope my plan will stick and that we don't end up eating cereal or sandwiches all week long, LOL. Here is my plan, bringing over a few dishes from last week.

  • roasted chicken and cauliflower (new recipe) and a salad
  •  vegetable soup with rolls
  • spaghetti and meatballs with garlic bread sticks
  • Shrimp Newburg with rice and steamed broccoli
  • Homemade Pizza and salad
  • Man Pleasing Chicken (Pinterest) with mashed potatoes and roasted beets
  • Leftovers
Head on over to OrgJunkie.com, for more great meal plans!!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Zucchini Oatmeal Cookies

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 Saturdays are market days. The kids and I get up early, have a quick breakfast and head to the Farmer's Market. We love browsing the stands, sampling desserts, maple syrup, hemp seeds. Then I let the kids pick out 1 fruit or vegetable that they would like to take home. Last week, we came home with quite a bit of zucchini, which pleased me, since I hadn't taken the time to bake with it yet this summer. First on the baking agenda was oatmeal cookies. I had seen some on Pinterest, so I decided to alter my favourtie oatmeal cookie recipe and incorporate zucchini. Check out my step by step video, below



These cookies are super simple to make and turn out tender and chewy. I love adding yogurt covered raisins, since it gives a second layer of sweetness. The kids loved these and didn't even know there was zucchini in them. Once I told them, Mr.B looked at me as if I told him I had cooked up our pet cat, LOL. But that didn't stop him from enjoying the cookies. I told them that zucchini is so delicious, you can even put it in cookies. Now I hope they eat the zucchini lasagna I plan on making, LOL.

Zucchini Oatmeal Cookies
printable version

3/4 C butter or margarine
2/3 C brown sugar
2 eggs
1 C flour
1 C whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 C zucchini, grated
1/2 C yogurt covered raisins
1/2 C walnuts
1 C large flake oatmeal

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spray cookies sheets with non stick spray and set aside

In a medium bowl, cream the margarine and brown sugar; until light and fluffy. Add in eggs and beat to combine. Mix in cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves, to ensure they are well incorporated. Add flour, whole wheat flour, salt and baking soda; mix with a wooden spoon until combined. Fold in zucchini, oats, raisins and nuts.

Drop by heaping tablespoonfuls onto prepared cookie sheets; about an inch apart. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until edges begin to brown and centers are set. Cool a few minutes on cookie sheets, before removing to cooling racks.

Makes 2 dozen large cookies.


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