Sunday, March 31, 2013

What's for Eats? March 31, 2013

Happy Easter!!

Boy what a busy and exhausting day!! I spent half the day cooking and the other half doing laundry. I swear, with the amount of laundry we have each week, you'd think we were a family of 6, not 4. Everything is caught up and ready for the week, so I'm happy about that. Tomorrow I'll clean the house from top to bottom and hopefully relax a bit before we're back to school.

The kids really loved their Easter baskets. We went really simple this year with a chocolate bunny, Reese's Pieces, a book and bubble kits. Unfortunately Queenie has a cold, which woke her up this morning at 6am. Momma is in need of an early bedtime, LOL. My mother in law is coming to spend the week with us, so next week should be interesting. Here is my plan for dinners, which is subject to change

  • Easter leftovers- scalloped potatoes, deviled eggs, ham, rolls, veggies
  • beef brisket, warm cabbage salad, Southern Buttermilk Biscuits (new recipe)
  • leftovers
  • Pasta Fagioli soup
  • crock pot lasagna (new recipe) with salad
  • leftovers
  • Black bean burgers with potato salad

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Kool-Aid Coloured Eggs

The kids, Hubby and I coloured Easter eggs this morning. I totally forget to buy a kit, but thankfully I had seen this method floating around the internet for the past week or so. I can't really credit a source on this one, since SO MANY bloggers/recipe sites are sharing this. Google Kool-Aid Eggs and you'll get a ton of results, LOL.

Anyway, since I had a ton of Kool-Aid in the cupboard, from last summer, I decided to go ahead and try this. If you have a big variety of colours, this method is fabulous and a total no brainer. I thankfully I had neat flavours like ice blue raspberry lemonade (which turned the eggs a beautiful light blue colour) and strawberry-kiwi (which was a beautiful light pink hue), because flavours like cherry, strawberry and fruit punch are pretty much the same. So the key here is to get as many colours as you can, of the drink mix (remembering that all the red flavours will be the same tint of red).

The kids had a blast and Hubby had to create his yearly Star Wars egg. This year with the vibrant red colour, he decided to create a Darth Maul egg (which is a Sith Lord in the SW series). Mr.B loved it so much, he decided to attempt a Storm Trooper. I think it's pretty cute!

Kool-Aid Coloured Eggs

a variety of Kool-Aid drink mix packets, in assorted colours
disposable cups or narrow dishes

Pour 2/3 C water into each disposable drink cup. Add 1 packet of drink mix into each cup; stir to dissolve. Dip cooked eggs (shell on) into desired colours. For darker colours, let eggs sit for several minutes in desired colour. Refrigerate after colouring.

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Super Saturday Show & Tell

Friday, March 29, 2013

30 Minute Dinner Rolls

With Easter 2 days away, I wanted to share these 30 Minute Rolls, I found over at Real Mom Kitchen, with you. I discovered these one day, when I had made a stew and I had totally forgotten to get the ingredients for bread dough, into my bread machine. I decided to search for a quick dinner roll recipe and the photos on RMK hooked me and I made the rolls. I had my reservations about a recipe for rolls that could be made in 30 minutes, though. Would they rise enough, or would they be totally dense? I was also a bit worried about the amount of yeast. Would they taste to bitter, or yeast like?

The trick to these rolls is that the dough isn't like regular bread dough. It is a bit more wet, therefor sticky. I'm sure if more flour was added to make the dough nice and smooth, these totally would not work in 30 minutes. So, don't worry, sticky slightly wet dough is good! These baked up beautifully and were fluffy with a pillowy soft inside. The kids absolutely loved these, and I'm very happy that I have an awesome quick dinner roll recipe, for when it is super hectic in the kitchen, like during the holidays.

30-Minute Rolls
found at Real Mom Kitchen

1 cup plus 2 Tbsp warm water
⅓ cup oil
2 Tbsp yeast
¼ cup sugar
½ tsp salt
1 eggs
3½- 4 cups flour

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 9x13 inch baking dish or 12 cup muffin tin.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine water, oil, yeast, and sugar. Allow mixture to sit for 15 minutes. With a dough hook, mix in salt and eggs and 2 of the cups flour until combined. Add remaining flour ½ cup at a time; until a somewhat sticky dough is formed. Spray your hands with cooking spray and shape dough into 12 balls and let rest for 10 minutes.

Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes until tops are golden brown. Makes 1 dozen.
Original recipe from Suzie Roberts author of "Girlfriends on The Go"

This post linked to

What's Cookin' Wednesday
Wednesday Extravaganza
Somewhat Simple
Tasty Thursday
Full Plate Thursday
Thursday Favorite Things
Talkin' About Thursday

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Are you Bloglovin?

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

I remember reading a while ago that Google reader is on it's way out. Not sure if I thought it wouldn't happen, but I've been hearing about it more and more lately. So, I decided to find a new way to follow all of my favourite blogs (over 100 of them!) and for others to follow me, once GR disappears. I decided to go with Bloglovin, since I've been seeing more and more blogs with BL follow buttons.

I know some of you are already following me on Bloglovin and I was happy to see that. I just wanted to give everyone else a heads up as to where to find me, once we aren't able to use Google Reader anymore.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Baked Italian Citrus Sole

If there is one thing I'm sure my kids will eat, it's fish. Though their favourite way to eat fish is battered and fried, I try to bake it more often than most. Not only is it more healthy, I love switching up flavours. Sole is such a nice light fish, that you don't want to over power it too much. Lately I've really been into lemon and butter baked sole, but when I found some pine nuts in the freezer, I decided to go in more of an Italian direction with this recipe.

 The kids really enjoyed this. Broiling the fish quickly and for a short period of time, makes for a very tender fish. I used Pampered Chef's Citrus Basil Rub and that paired with fresh lemon juice was a nice fresh contrast with the buttery pine nuts. Finished off with some fresh basil, this fish seems elegant, with no fuss at all!!


Baked Italian Citrus Sole
printable version

8 filets of sole
2 Tbs butter, melted
juice of 1 lemon
3/4 tsp Pampered Chef Citrus Basil Rub
1/3 C toasted pine nuts, chopped
1 Tbs fresh basil, chopped

Preheat your oven to the broil setting. Place oven rack in the upper third portion of your oven.

Place fish on a rimmed baking pan (similar to Pampered Chef's Large Bar Pan). In a small bowl, mix the melted butter, Citrus Basil rub and lemon juice. Pour over each fish filet and place under broiler and cook for 3 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle each fillet evenly with pine nuts. Return under broiler for 3 more minutes, until the fish flakes easily. Sprinkle with fresh basil, before serving.
Serves 4.

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In & Out of the Kitchen
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Work it Wednesday
What I Ate Wednesday

Monday, March 25, 2013

Simple Supper Tuesday #10

 Welcome back to Simple Supper Tuesday, the party featuring QUICK, EASY recipes, perfect for those busy weeknights. So, please share your crock pot, 30 minutes or 5 ingredient recipes (easy desserts are also welcome)!!

Last week's recipe(s) with the most CLICKS

 Homemade Ramen Noodle Soup- Rants From My Crazy Kitchen

Oven-fried Chimichangas- Mother on a Mission

Cheep Chicks- the domestically impaired guide to the retro kitchen arts

Recipe that caught my EYE

Chocolate Banana Snack Cake- 21st Century Housewife

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Party Rules

1. Please link up Crock Pot and/or EASY recipes only (simple desserts are also welcome)
2. Please link back to THIS post on Hun... What's for Dinner?
3. Please use link to direct recipe, not to your home page.
4. Please visit others and leave comments if a recipe catches your eye

Sunday, March 24, 2013

What's for Eats? March 24, 2013

Wow, what a week!! I feel like today is the first day I am actually able to relax. Which is crazy, because I have a mountain of laundry I need to tackle. Yesterday was Queenie's birthday party. We went for a Princess theme and asked all her friends to attend in princess attire. Everyone showed up as their favourite Disney Princess and they all looked so beautiful.

I had a blast browsing on Pinterest, at all the awesome Princess party ideas. I took one idea for the center pieces and bought two different sized glass flower vases and filled them with pastel coloured candy. In one I placed some flower and butterfly shaped lollipops in one vase and a scepter in the second. Then after digging in the $.50 bin at Micheal's for about 20 minutes, I found some awesome jeweled flower stickies and an awesome ribbon I used to tie around the vases. The girls loved the center pieces and snacking on the Smarties and Mini Eggs. Everyone had a ton of fun, Emily said it was the best birthday party yet and I loved seeing all those little girls dressed up as princesses.

We've been eating out way to much the past few days, so it's time to get back on track and back on budget. Hubby is off today, works tomorrow and is off Tues, Wed. I'm hoping to get a good deal on ham somewhere, for Easter Brunch. Other than that and a few things like milk and bread, I'll be cooking out of the pantry and freezer this week. Here is the plan

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Fried Pickles- #SurpriseRecipeSwap

It's time for this months Suprise Recipe Swap. Where a bunch of us food bloggers are assigned each others blog, to choose a recipe and make for ourselves. This month, the blog I was assigned was Mom's Test Kitchen. Jaime, the voice behind Mom's Test Kitchen, is a wife and Mom to one precious little girl. Her blog is jam packed full of simple, delicious Southern inspired dishes. If you're looking for the perfect date night snack, quick dinner ideas and/or kid approved recipes, Jaime has it all!

While browsing Jaime's blog, this recipe for Fried Pickles caught my eye. I love ordering fried pickles when we go out, so thought I'd give these a try. They seemed quite easy to make and Jaime's picture was mouthwatering. Since my parent's were visiting, I thought it would be a great treat for my Mom and I.

I couldn't find any pickle chips, so we decided to take baby dills and slice them in half. After a quick trip in the seasoned flour and egg, the pickles were ready for the hot oil. These fried up in no time and we decided to serve them with Ranch dressing. I loved the breading, which wasn't oily at all and we quickly gobbled them down with our dinner.

Fried Pickles
Adapted from Mom's Test Kitchen

1 cup flour
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon sugar
2 large eggs
Oil for frying
1/2 jar of dill pickle chips

1. Heat oil in a large skillet, enough oil to fill the skillet about 2 inches deep.
2. In a shallow dish, mix together the flour, garlic powder, salt, paprika and sugar.
3. In another shallow dish, lightly beat the eggs.
4. Working in batches, coat your pickles in the flour mixture making sure the flour sticks. Shake off any excess flour.
5. Coat the pickles in the eggs.
6. Dip them back in the flour mixture. Shake off the excess again.
7. Place in your heated oil and fry the pickles until they are golden brown on both sides.
8. Transfer them to paper towels or brown grocery bags to drain.
9. Serve hot with dip of choice - I love them with Ranch or 1000 Island

If you're a food blogger and would be interested to take part in the Surprise Recipe Swap, you can sign up here.


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See Ya in the Gumbo
In & Out of the Kitchen
You're Gonna Love It
Recipe Box
Tasty Tuesday

Monday, March 18, 2013

Simple Supper Tuesday #9

Welcome back to Simple Supper Tuesday, the party featuring QUICK, EASY recipes, perfect for those busy weeknights. So please share your crock pot, 30 minute, or 5 ingredient recipes (easy desserts are also welcome)!!

 Last week's recipe(s) with the most CLICKS

Chicken CilantroSoup- R&R Workshop

             Starburst Jelly Bean Cookies-Real Housemoms

                                       Eggplant Pizzas- Beela Bakes

Recipe that caught my eye

          Crock Pot Lime Chicken Enchilada Stacks-                            What's Cooking in the Burbs

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Party Rules

    1. Please link up Crock Pot and/or EASY recipes only (simple desserts are also welcome)
    2. Please link back to THIS post on Hun... What's for Dinner?
    3. Please use link to direct recipe, not to your home page.
    4. Please visit others and leave comments if a recipe catches your eye

Sunday, March 17, 2013

What's for Eats? March 17, 2013

Happy St.Patrick's Day!!!

My parents are visiting us, this week (they got here on Thursday) and we've finally celebrated Christmas with them, LOL. So, last night we had a turkey dinner with all the fixins, which means tons of turkey leftovers!! I love turkey leftovers! Also this week is Queenie's Birthday (On Wed) though we aren't having her Princess Tea Party until Saturday. Mom and I will be busy shopping and making decorations for the party.

Hubby starts a mini vacation on Wed. He'll be off until Wednesday of next week, with inventory on the Monday. That will give us time to get a few renovations done, around the house. Kind of hard with parties, visitors and family around, but we should be able to at least re paint the popcorn ceiling and replace the towel rack in the half bath. Painting of the living room/entry way will have to wait for warmer weather. So, this is my meal plan for this super busy week

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Lemon Lime Crinkle Cookies

An Old Irish Blessing

May love and laughter light your days,
and warm your heart and home.
May good and faithful friends be yours,
wherever you may roam.
May peace and plenty bless your world
with joy that long endures.
May all life's passing seasons
bring the best to you and yours!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!!! OK, I know it's tomorrow, but this morning the kids and I got together and made some green cookies. The were super excited to show my parents their St. Patrick's creations and though the kitchen looked like we had dusted everything with powdered sugar, seeing them so happy about making cookies, was worth the clean up.

These cookies are super easy. I just changed up a Lemon Crinkle cookie, to suit the ingredients I had on hand. We used lemon cake mix, lime zest and lime juice and of course some green food colouring. Mr.B insisted on making some clovers for my photo set up and I can't get over how well his cutting skills are developing. Everyone enjoyed the cookies, even though my Dad thought they looks a little weird, due to them being green, LOL. A great quick and easy St.Patrick's day treat.

Lemon Lime Crinkle Cookies
Adapted from Brown Eyed Baker
printable version

1 (18.25-ounce) package lemon cake mix
2 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
Zest of 1 lime
juice of 1 lime
½ teaspoon lemon extract
1/3 cup confectioner's sugar
3-5 drops green food colouring, or green gel colouring

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking mat.

2. Pour cake mix into a large bowl. Stir in eggs, oil, lime zest, lime juice and lemon extract and green food colour, until well blended.

3. Place confectioner's sugar in a bowl. Drop heaping tablespoonfuls of dough into balls and roll in confectioner's sugar until lightly coated and place on baking sheet.

4. Bake for about 10 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned. Cool for 2-3 minutes on the cookie sheet and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely

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Thursday, March 14, 2013

Fettuccine with Lemon Shrimp & Cookbook Review

With Spring knocking on our doors, I bet many of us are thinking about dreaded swim suit season. I was just talking with my girlfriends about finally donating my 'skinny' clothes, since I hadn't worn them in almost 3 yrs. For me being skinny was a double edged sword. My family always knew how active my Crohn's disease was, due to what size I was wearing. If I was skinny, I was having a major flare up, which meant I was hardly eating, and in constant pain. For the past 3 yrs, after my latest operation and my new ostomy, I've been feeling normal and healthy again. And boy can my family tell, LOL. Though I'm not proud of being over weight, I am happy that I am finally able to live my life again. No more pain, so debilitating that all I could do is lay on the couch with heating pads and wishes of being able to live a normal life.

But feeling well hasn't been all it's cracked up to be. For almost 17 yrs, I had to watch what I ate, or hardly eat at all. Being hungry was better than being in pain. Once the pain was gone, eating became pleasurable again, but I never put into account that my body had become accustomed to eating so little. Slowly the pounds started to stick and though I am eating a healthy diet (mixed with indulgences), I need to focus on making changes that will help me be able to enjoy food and reduce my weight. That's where FRESH & HEALTHY DASH DIET COOKING, by Andrea Lynn and Matt Kadey, comes in. Originally developed by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet is a flexible and balanced eating plan designed for a healthy lifestyle. This diet is most effective for weight loss because it is easy to follow and incredibly nutritious (not to mention DELICIOUS).

When I first got this book to review, I was interested to see what sorts of recipes would be in it. Many weight loss books ask you to eat strange foods, that let's face it, many of us don't eat. I LOVE that this book is full of super healthy recipes, that use everyday ingredients that real people will have in their fridges and pantries. Choosing what recipe to share with you guys was difficult, not because nothing appealed to me, but because I've marked off so many recipes to make. I went with this pasta recipe because my kids love shrimp, in any shape way or form, so I knew it would be a hit. This recipe is super easy to put together. Dinner will literally be on the table in under 30 minutes! It comes together in a snap and it is extremely delicious. I did make 1 change and that was to season the shrimp with some Pampered Chef All Purpose Dill Mix, which we all loved. I also threw some chopped asparagus in with the pasta, for it's final minutes of cooking. Everything was delicious and we really enjoyed the light lemony sauce that coated the pasta, shrimp and asparagus. A great recipe for Spring, and a great way to start your journey to a healthier you!

Fettuccine with Lemon Shrimp

1 lb whole grain fettuccine
3 1/2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil, plus more if needed
Grated zest and juice of 2 lemons
1/2 C grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1 (16oz) bag of frozen uncooked shrimp, thawed
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced

Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally. Meanwhile, make the lemon sauce: In a medium bowl, combine 3 Tbs of olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, and cheese. Set aside. Drain the pasta in a colander, reserving 1/4 C pasta water, return the pasta to the pot, toss with a drizzle of olive oil and keep hot.

Season the shrimp with salt and pepper (and Pampered Chef All Purpose Dill seasoning if using). Heat the remaining 1/2 Tbs olive oil in a large saute pan, or skillet over medium-high heat. Add the shrimp and garlic and saute until the shrimp is pink, 2-3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Add the reserved pasta and pasta water to the pan with the shrimp along with the lemon sauce, stirring to mix. Taste and adjust the seasonings as needed.

DO THE DASH Shrimp are one of the few foods that contain a decent amount of vitamin D. On top of its bone-building efficiency, vitamin D has been shown to reduce the risk of several diseases like certain cancers and heart disease.

SHOPPING TIP When possible, select farmed or wild caught shrimp from North America which is a more sustainable choice than the imported shrimp which is currently dominates the market.

This post linked to

What's Cookin' Wednesday
Somewhat Simple
Full Plate Thursday
Talkin About Thursday
Tasty Thursday
Thursday Favorite Things

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Pizza Baked Spaghetti #LMDConnector

 It's March Break here in Ontario and the kids and I have been enjoying our much needed break from our school routine. Sleeping in, relaxing, playing board games, fun little outings. It's a refreshing change from our regular schedule! Yesterday, we went to our local rec center and swam for a few hours. By the time the kids and I got home, we were tired and famished. So, after browsing on Life Made Delicious, the kids decided on this recipe for dinner. We had all the ingredients, so we got to work.

 The kids LOVE to help Hubby and I in the kitchen and this was a great recipe for them to get involved in. I set Queenie up with a plastic knife and pepperoni and let her go to town on cutting them into quarters. I set up Mr.B with the cheese and the grater and he was done in no time flat. It only took about 10 minutes to get this all prepped and ready for the oven. Then after a quick clean up we got to work on a salad. The kids absolutely loved this "pizza-ghetti" as they liked to call it. They both gave it a few hundred thumbs up and all plates were scraped clean. Even Hubby enjoyed some leftovers when he came home late last night. Super simple and very reminiscent of lasagna, this recipe is sure to give your family the fuel it needs to keep going this March Break!!

 “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.”

Pizza Baked Spaghetti
adapted from Life Made Delicious

12 oz (227 g) uncooked spaghetti
1 lb (500 g) bulk Italian pork sausage
2 jars (14 oz/398 mL each) pizza sauce
3/4 cup (175 mL) diced pepperoni
1 cup (250 mL) ricotta cheese
1/3 cup (75 mL) grated Parmesan cheese
2 eggs, beaten
2 cups (500 mL) shredded mozarella cheese
Fresh basil, if desired

Heat oven to 350ºF. Spray 13x9-inch (3 L) baking dish with cooking spray. In Dutch oven (large pot), cook and drain pasta as directed on package, using minimum cook time. Return spaghetti to Dutch oven.

Meanwhile, in 10-inch skillet, cook sausage over medium heat until no longer pink; drain. In Dutch oven, toss spaghetti, sausage, pizza sauce and pepperoni.
In medium bowl, mix ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese and eggs. Spoon half of spaghetti mixture into baking dish. Dollop with ricotta mixture; spread evenly over top. Sprinkle with 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese. Top with remaining spaghetti mixture. Sprinkle with remaining 1 cup mozzarella cheese.
Bake uncovered 30 to 35 minutes or until bubbly. Garnish with basil.

Cooking Tips:
Break spaghetti in half before adding it to boiling water to cook. Bulk pork sausage is the raw meat that hasn't been stuffed into the casing. If you can't find it, you can buy raw sausages, slit the casing with a knife and remove the meat.

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See Ya in the Gumbo
In & Out of the Kitchen
Manic Monday
You're Gonna Love it Tuesday
Tasty Tuesday
Recipe Box
Wednesday Whatsits
Work it Wednesday  
What I ate Wednesday

Monday, March 11, 2013

Simple Supper Tuesday #8

Welcome back to Simple Supper Tuesday, the party featuring QUICK, EASY recipes, perfect for those busy weeknights. So please share your crock pot, 30 minute, or 5 ingredient recipes (easy desserts are also welcome)!!

 Last week's recipe(s) with the most CLICKS

Chocolate Ho Ho Cake- Six Sister's Stuff

Recipe that caught my eye

Garlic Parmesan Pork Chops- Clarks Condensed

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Party Rules

    1. Please link up Crock Pot and/or EASY recipes only (simple desserts are also welcome)
    2. Please link back to THIS post on Hun... What's for Dinner?
    3. Please use link to direct recipe, not to your home page.
    4. Please visit others and leave comments if a recipe catches your eye