Friday, October 30, 2009

Happy Samhaim--Happy Halloween

Well at about 2pm tomorrow I am going to have 3 little boys decend on the house and be expecting a halloween party.And as of now I have done very little to prepare for it.I had good intensions of doing some stuff for it today but was lazy and spent some quality time with my little Tinkie.I have to make cupcakes--dip some cookies and decorate them like ghosts--decorate some chocolate candy bars to look like bugs--color and cut out the posterboard for the bean bag toss-and find something to substitute for beanbags (I've thought about using balled up socks)--and make the finger sandwiches and probably something else I'm forgetting at the moment.....oh and decorate the front room....LOL hubby has said that if he can escape the house for a little time at the shooting range that he'll help me.....And I'm going to hold him to it!


Well my little Tinkie is slowly but surely getting back to normal.Her surgery was Thursday.That evening when I picked her up from the vet I was so worried about her.It was like she was so weak it felt like I could feel every bone in her body.All she wanted to do was curl up on my chest and sleep.I hope the pain medication is working.She gets it twice a day.She's not eating as much as before but I guess that's to be expected.She is still sleeping alot more than usual but today she started getting around a little more and wanted so badly to play.I will still feel more relaxed when the stitches are out in 12 days........

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Well tomorrow is the BIG day...........

Tinkie's having her doggie surgery done tomorrow....and "mom" is a nervous wreck...going to try stay busy and do the errands and stuff I usually do on friday a day early....LOL I think the hubbs is nervous about it all too-he keeps asking "are u sure u want to do this?" and in his speak that's his way of saying "I wish you wouldn't" LOL....but I don't want to deal with the issues of her "going into heat" and puppies and all even though she's an inside dog I just don't want to deal with it-and the vet says it'll be better for her health in the long run anyway...sooo I'm putting my trust in his expertise.....I don't know WHAT I'm going to do without my little shadow for so long tomorrow.....

Sunday, October 25, 2009

a busy sunday

Chicken and dumplings.................

Cranberry-Grape jelly---HOMEMADE!

It was sooo good!

It got really chilly here last night-I think it got down to 38*F,so this morning I got up with the idea of making chicken and dumplings-good stick to your ribs food when the mercury takes a nose-dive.I chopped up some skinless,boneless chicken thighs and some chicken tenders I had stashed in the freezer and cooked them in some chicken stock I made a few weeks ago.I made some dough for dumplings by using some boxed baking mix.They turned out better than the other time I made chicken and dumplings.LOL But we won't talk about that disaster.Hubby came home and had a bowl and said "needs more dumplings".I wasn't in the mood to make another batch from scratch so because he was going to the store anyway, I told him to just get me some canned biscuits.It turned out nice-even thickened the broth better than the scratch dumplings I added first.I think next time I'll do it with canned biscuits instead of homemade dumplings.Sorry,it's just easier for me this way.

A few weeks ago I got a holiday recipe mag and found a quick and easy homemade jelly recipe I wanted to try.Instead of the usual fruit,it had juice and red hots.But I wanted a different flavor so I picked up some cran-grape juice and a box of pectin.Since there are 3 diabetics in the house I was trying to cut back on the added sugar so I didn't add any sugar to the first batch.And I'm not sure if it was that or if the pectin was bad but it just didn't set.I picked up some "no extra sugar needed" pectin from the store when I went yesterday and tried again.BINGO! It worked like a charm.It is so delish.I can't wait till spring to try it with fresh fruit.I'm also going to get a bunch of different juice blends and make this quickie jelly for what few gifts we give out this year.It was sooo fun to make my own jelly! (Yeah, I can be easily entertained!)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Julie's Secret Cookies

I have 2 different versions of this recipe.Everyone just raves over these cookies each time I make them.They are an adaptation of Paula Deen's "MONSTER COOKIE" recipe on food network.

Julie's Secret Oatmeal Cookies
3 eggs
1 1/4 cups packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 cup splenda type sugar blend
dash of salt
1TSP vanilla
1 12oz jar of creamy peanut butter (I use the one with the lowest carbs)
1 stick softened butter
2TSP baking soda
4 1/2 cups quick cooking oats (NOT INSTANT)
**heat oven to 350*F

In large mixing bowl combine the eggs and sugars----add salt,vanilla,peanut butter,butter,and baking soda--mixing well--stir in the oats--mix well--bake for about 10mins--

I drop onto cookie sheets using a small ice cream scoop--

With 3 diabetics in the house we need something to satisfy our sweet tooth.This definately does it without alot of sugar.These cookies are delicious.You can also add nuts,fruits,or candy pieces for a different taste.

Honey,this was outstanding tonight.........

Whenever I ask hubby if he liked dinner or how it was,I'll usually get "it was ok" or "it was good"...but tonight I didn't even have to ask.He came to find me to compliment me on dinner.LOL I made beef stew in the crock pot.Kinda just threw it all together and let it cook half the day. LOL Didn't even use a recipe!

Hubby's fave beef stew-made in crockpot
large package of beef stew meat (cut into chunks)
few cups of frozen mixed veggies
1 large can of diced tomatoes (with juice)
veggie juice (like v8)

This time I had reserved some of the cooking liquid from the roast that I made a few days ago and froze it,so I added that instead of the veggie juice (because it had veggie juice in it already).Next time he said he wants me to try it with ground chuck(kinda like a hamburger stew).He ate like 4 bowls that I saw.He was a happy man!

productive Saturday evening

Well,really it's been a productive afternoon and evening.I was in the kitchen from about 4pm until now as I type this it's almost 7pm....I wanted to try out a couple of recipes.One for our party saturday which I'm not sure I'll use now.And another that I thought about using as xmas gifts for the few people we will be gifting this year.I tried out something called a HIDDEN TREASURE BROWNIE CAKE-from one of Land O Lakes special edition recipe mags.The recipe showed it baked as cupcakes.I couldn't find my larger cupcake pan and didn't have any of the mini size liners so I went ahead and made it like a brownie.

Hidden Treasure Brownie Cakes
1/2 cup land o lakes butter (GASP! I used generic butter)
2 (1 ounce each) squares of semi sweet baking chocolate (I only had unsweet)
3/4 cup sugar (I used 1 cup of generic "spenda" type blend)
1TSP vanilla
2 eggs
1/2 cup AP flour
1/4 TSP salt
HERSHEY kisses
**heat oven to 350*F

you're supposed to pour the batter into liners like you're making cupcakes and then put a kiss into the middle "hiding it" and bake them like regular cupcakes

It didn't turn out like I had thought but it's still good---just DIFFERENT than what I expected from what the pic in the mag shows.LOL

I think for our party I will just use a regular chocolate cake mix and add a kiss in the middle--easy,quick,foolproof! And once frosted I think I'll either sprinkle some halloween type sprinkles on and maybe add another kiss on top.

Another recipe I tried today was one for CANDY APPLE JELLY from a TOH holiday recipe mag.It calls for using apple juice but I thought it would be fabulous with another type of juice so I got cran-grape juice.

4 cups cranberry-grape juice
1 package of powdered fruit pectin

In a saucepan,bring juice and pectin to a full rolling boil-stirring constantly.Let boil for 2 minutes.Remove from heat,skim off any foam on top.Pour into containers.

In the recipe it calls for using jelly jars and sterilizing them but it was just for our home use so I could test it out so I just used a plastic "jar" type container.I'm hoping to have it for breakfast in the morning.I hope it turns out LOL.

Getting ready for halloween

Well,this little witch is getting ready for next weekend.I'm having a few kids over so zach can have a halloween party.Today,I'm going through the recipe mags and making a shopping list,making a few decorations-hoping the ones I ordered come in LOL.I gave hubby orders to move a few things out of my way so I can get the living room "company ready".It's going to be 2 days post surgery for my little Tinkie-pooh so I'm not sure how she's going to be feeling.If she's not up to alot of kids and excitement,I can just keep our side of the house closed off and have movies and games downstairs out of her way.For games I'm planning on a bean bag toss game where they throw small beanbags (gotta get/make those) through posterboard cutouts of pumkins with each marked as a different point value-but no matter how they do each little one will get a goodie bag.The other game I've had on my mind is the one I remember from a school carnival I went to back in like 1978 or 1979 (way too long ago)-where there is a sheet hanging across a clothesline and someone is on the other side of the sheet and you "fish" for your prize.I'm getting each kid a little hotwheels car and maybe a gummy body part candy for prizes.I hope the weather's nice where it can all be done outside but if not it's stuff that can be easily done inside.As of now,I'm planning on finger sandwiches for the grownups and corndogs for the kids--apple slices,chips and homemade ranch dip,hidden treasure brownie cupcakes (with a chocolate kiss hidden in the middle of the cupcake),and nutter-butter cookie ghosts (basicly you dip a nutter butter cookie in white chocolate and paint two eyes or a face on with decorator gel icing).The pics make it look simple.We'll see.I plan on doing a trial run on the brownie cupcakes this afternoon or whenever I can get the kitchen to myself.Right now grandpa has the tv blaring in the den and I just can't concetrate with alot of noise around me!(The kitchen is kinda hooked onto his "den" and it's just soooo noisey.)The hubby went out to see my dad about joining their hunting camp.So we'll see how that goes-I hope he doesn't get lost.It's way out in the "woods" and this will be the first time he's ever gone without me riding shotgun to give him directions LOL.And my little ghoul is playing wii fit in his bedroom-half naked LOL.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

wednesday oct 21,2009

Today I opened the freezer and had NO IDEA what to make for hubby....Pulled out some ground beef and it looks like it'll be spaghetti.I'm going to make a huge batch and freeze some meat and sauce.DONE.Even though I didn't want to leave the house today,hubby gave me a sad story and asked me to go get him something,so I made a trip to walmart.No matter how much I threaten and complain about it we always seem to end up going like 3xs per week and that doesn't count the weekends.Oh well.Picked up a roast to throw in the crockpot so i won't have to cook tomorrow and I decided to run by the allergy dr and get my shots a day early so maybe just maybe I can relax at home and DO NOTHING tomorrow! We'll see how that goes.I picked up a cheesy pizza for Zach and some kind of chicken/garlic white saucey pizza for myself-it looked good anyway.I'll cook my chicken burger and brussel sprouts tomorrow.

Oct 20,2009

I pulled the last package of hashbrown casserole out of the freezer and a small thing of mini ears of corn.I made cubed pork steaks.At least that's what my husband calls them.Quick and easy.Just what I needed yesterday.


Today my little Tinkie is 6 months old!!!

Monday, October 19, 2009

flat biscuits up and had it in my mind I was going to make biscuits this morning-got them all cut out and they looked pretty on the baking sheet but something happened and most of them came out flat-and they fell apart and crumbled when I cut them open to butter them.Tasted good but I was NOT a happy baker this morning! LOL Hubby and grandpa left for a dr appointment,so I had the kitchem to myself a while.I tried another batch using another recipe.This time,I used the recipe on the back of the WHITE LILY flour.These definately turned out better than the food network recipe (sorry AB).They were fluffy and soft inside--but only 4 of them rose to where you could actually tell it was a biscuit though LOL.I'm wondering if it's how I'm rolling them out and cutting them.HMMMMM Something to ponder.I am definately going to work on perfecting my biscuit recipe this week.There's nothing worse that a sweet little SouthernBelle that can't make a good biscuit!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

a beautiful Sunday afternoon

Brown and drain meat.Add veggies-I had corn,green beans,and celery.I added a can of tomato paste and a can of tomato sauce plus a little veggie juice and mixed well.Pour into casserole dish and top with shredded cheddar cheese.Top that with mashed potatoes and bake until the cheese is melted. I used instant potatoes because I had some on hand.

It's been really chilly the past few days here in East Central Mississippi.The kind of weather that makes you want soup.I picked up a cute little butter nut squash at the store the other day with the intent to make soup-didn't get around to it until today though.It turned out very good.I peeled it,seeded it and cut it into cubes as best I could.It was a small squash so it was easier to cut than the bigger ones.I pulled a handful of chopped onion into a few tbs of olive oil and grated a little ginger in.I cooked that while I chopped the squash.I added all of a small container of chicken stock (forgot I had some homemade stashed in the freezer LOL).I added the squash and added a little salt and let it bubble until the squash was tender.Then I pulled the pot off the heat and pulled out the "stick" blender.I buzzed it until the squash was a smooth as I wanted and then added the last of the shredded rotisserie chicken I had left in the fridge.I made my son ramen noodles for lunch and had a handful leftover so I tossed those in too.It was delish,but next time I'll just stick to the chicken.The noodles were a bit much. For the guys,I made authentic shephard's pie.I call it "authentic" becasue I made it the traditional way using tomato paste/tomato sauce instead of a can of creamy soup.Usually,I eat it too so I have to omit the tomato but today I knew I wasn't in the mood for that so I made it the regular way.I don't think I've ever made it that way for my husband before.I had enough to make two large casserole pans of it.I plan on sticking one pan plus any leftovers in the freezer for quickie meals or take to work meals for the hubby.After lunch I let the kid and puppy play out in the red dirt in the back yard again.They are hilarious.One day I'm going to remember to take the video camera with me.Today was a beautiful,slightly crisp fall day.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Tired Friday

Tinkie's Trick or Treat doggie shirt.
Today,I had good intensions to get up after hubby left for work and to run a few errands and hit Petco,Rite Aid,and the only store in town (walmart LOL),but I guess my body had other intensions.I was just soooo tired it wasn't funny.I'm battling wills with my blood sugars again.When they are high-I feel tired,irritable-and according to the calendar I'm supposed to be getting a visitor any day now so PMS is probably mixed in there too.I got up this morning and made breakfast (frozen biscuits,maple sausage and scrambled eggs).I got online for a bit and it hit me like a ton of bricks.I was just exhausted.I managed to get a shower and laid down for a bit while hubby got ready for work and he asked if I was going out any today and I said yeah.He could see I was tired so said let it all wait till saturday and he will go with me so it won't be such a load to do by myself.I had to go to the drug store because I was out of necessary medicine.I came back and let the kid and puppy play out in the back yard-didn't stay too long because it was kinda chilly and windy.I found a good deal on pizza at PJs if I ordered online so I did and got one without sauce and that was a late lunch and the leftovers will be hubby's supper-that and the rest of the taco-tamale pie from last night.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Oct 15

Taco-Tamale Pie

Chicken and yellow rice

Birdie Bread

Tonight the guys are getting taco/tamale pie.I made myself some chicken and yellow rice using the rest of the yellow minute rice I had in the pantry,a few ladlefuls of homemade chicken stock,and 1/3 of a rotisserie chicken.I used the "leftovers" from the rotisserie chicken to make the stock.

Birdie Bread-It's for the BIRDS!

A few years ago,my husband read in a bird magazine that some people supplemented their parrot's diet by making either egg biscuits or birdie bread for them.Ever since,we've made birdie bread for our Red-Lored Amazon Parrot.He loves it and even acts "deprived" if he doesn't have it.I suppose it would be OK for humans to eat too since all ingredients are all natural but I haven't tried it LOL.

1 package jiffy cornbread mix
1c mixed veggies
1 small-medium "jar" of babyfood (veggies or fruit flavor)

Prepare the cornbread mix as directed on the box but using the same amount listed for milk but use WATER--add the veggies and babyfood.Mix well.Bake until golden brown.
**sometimes I'll add in a handful of birdseed or sprinkle the seeds over the top if I'm feeling spiffy!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Some of my family's fave recipes

Taco Salad

1 package of shredded lettuce
2-3 large diced tomatoes
1 package shredded mexican style cheese (or plain chedded)
2 bottles of russian salad dressing
1-2 lbs of ground beef (or turkey)
diced onion (optional)
package of taco seasonings
frito chips or "salad" type taco bowl/shell

In skillet,saute onions and brown meat until done-drain well----add the taco seasonings and as much water as package instructs and cook over medium-low heat until done---In large bowl add the shredded lettuce,diced tomatoes,shredded cheese and dressing-add meat--stir well until mixed--serve over frito corn chips.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Oatmeal Brownie Bars

a "makeover" recipe from ToH

1/3 cup butter-softened
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup sugar blend for baking (ie splenda)
2 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup applesauce (recipe said unsweet but I used cinnamon)
2 tsp vanilla extract
1cup all purpose flour
1cup quick cooking oats
1/4 cup baking cocoa
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup nuts (if desired-I left them out)

1/3 cup butter-cubed
1/4 cup baking cocoa
1/4 cup fat free milk (I used 2%)
2 cups confectioner's sugar

In large bowl beat the butter and sugars until well combined----beat in the eggs,buttermilk,applesauce and vanilla---in separate bowl combine the flour,oats,cocoa,baking powder and salt----slowly add to the butter mixture being sure to mix well--STIR in the nuts if desired--

spread batter into a 15x10" pan coated with cooking spray----bake at 350* for about 25 mins or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean--cool completely

For frosting----In a small saucepan melt the butter---whisk in cocoa and milk until smooth---bring to a boil--remove from the heat and whisk in the confectioner's sugar--whisk/stir until smooth--immediately spread over the bars-let stand until frosting is set--cut into squares


Tuesday's Supper

Creamy penne pasta with peppers and peas-one of those steam in bag meals-delicious.

Green beans and red potatoes--delicious

gotta add a little butter

Tinkie pooh update

Tinkie and Zachary sacked out after a long day of play.
On the Tinkie front,the days are ticking down till her surgery.I hope the pet insurance I enrolled in IS legit and I do get some of the money back.We're going to have her spayed/neutered and micro chipped.That's going to be roughly $200 out of pocket so anything that I get back will be welcomed.The vet is also going to do a skin test to see if we can figure out why her hair is thinning out so bad in some spots.The one by her ear seems to be getting worse.Ever since we went out to play in the back yard last week she's been limping.She won't let me look at her foot to see if it she has a splinter or boo boo on it.It comes and goes too.She was also kinda stepped on that afternoon too.So I'm hoping it's just that and nothing too serious.She lost a tooth a few weeks ago.She's been chewing kinda funny when we give her doggie bones so I'm wondering if she has lost more than one puppy tooth.She hasn't been eating all her doggie food the past few days.So I'm wondering if that's why--maybe she's having a hard time chewing.I meant to pick up some kinda of softer food the other day but forgot.I'll have to do it if I go back to the store this week.She loves scrambled eggs-and the vet said it was ok for her to eat some-just to try and stay away from the fat,so I've been making her a scrambled egg white for breakfast--she gets half and the parrot gets half.I'll be glad when the whole surgery deal is over though LOL.We got some cute video of her and if i can figure out how to upload it I'll post it here-for now it's on facebook.We swear this dog is trying to talk.She was saying MAMA....Now she's saying OWWWW! Hubby likes to play rough and tussle with her and get riled up.He'll say OWWW when she nips him or bumps him with her nose (she knows she can't bite so she'll bump you with her nose if you're playing rough and she wants to bite ya LOL).

Spaghetti Sunday

yellow squash cleaned and cut into circles-boil until tender-drain and place in baking dish-add cheddar cheese (any type) and bake till cheese is melted


Green Beans-trimmed,blanched and cooling-ready to hit the freezer

apple pie filling---I processed apples because it was quicker than chopping--added nutmet and cinnamon and a little sugar--added a few TBS of flour and cooked it till it was hot and bubbly

add to pie shell and bake at 375* till pie shell is done and "filling" is somewhat browned and firm

This past Sunday,the hubby wanted spaghetti.He picked up a HUGE bag of mini french style loaves of bread so I buttered and sprinkled a little garlic on and toasted.That was delicious.I made cheesy squash as a side dish to whatever I had.LOL Must not have been too good if I can't remember what it was huh? LOL I made an apple pie and used the last frozen pie shell I had.It turned out good---I should have put more sugar in it but it was nice.Hubby said next time to leave the apples chunkier,so I'll have to try that.Yesterday I made hubby one of those "box desserts" he picked up at the store-one that you basicly make a version of a candy bar-he wanted chocolate/peanutbutter.It's good but messy and could probably be made better if I made one from scratch.Gotta think about that.......Tuesday it's going to be "fried" porkchops.Not sure on what sides yet.I know hubby will want mashed potatoes LOL.I got another one of thoes saucy pasta steamer thingies that I will probably make for myself-hubby didn't like it too well,but I thought it was delicious! I also blanched some green beans I got at the store-I didn't want them to ruin before I could use them,so I cut them,blanched them,cooled them and froze them.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Recipe for a Dreary Saturday

A big pan of deliciousness!

I used the scrap dough toward the end to make some smaller "tea biscuits" for Zachary.

He gobbled them up! Poopy behind him is looking for any crumbs he may drop!

We go through ALOT of biscuits.Hubby likes a big hearty breakfast that usually involves sausage,biscuits and scrambled eggs.We have used everything from those huge canned biscuits (you know which ones I mean) to the ones in the bags in the frozen section.They are ok but just don't have that same pinache that homemade ones do.I've been meaning to see if I can make some and freeze them so we can have our own frozen biscuits.Do not try making biscuits on tiled countertops---that's a recipe for a MESS! I didn't have any parchment paper so I could do it properly on the table,so I pulled out my cutting board and rolled them out on there.That worked OK but I know it will be better with parchment paper.I can get more space and not worry so much about a sticky,flour mess to clean up.I made a batch for hubby this afternoon and made another batch and stashed them in the freezer.I'm going to bag and tag them when they are done.Maybe that can become a regular weekend project-making biscuits and freezing them for later.I can live with that.I've been looking for ways to make home made products instead of getting the processed stuff we usually buy from the store.Now I know the bags of biscuits are about $3 a bag and that's not going to break our budget, but if I can find a way to make it myself,I consider that all the better!I used Alton Brown's recipe on Food Network for SOUTHERN BISCUITS.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Gotta love leftovers

Supper Friday was leftovers.For me I kinda cleaned out the fridge from last night's supper-I had leftover chicken and rice and a fruit salad.For the chicken and rice yesterday,I boiled 3 skinless breasts with a good pinch of spices,salt,garlic,and the rest of a zippie bag of chopped onions I had in the fridge.I used the last of the yellow rice and "chicken flavor" rice I had in the pantry-those little singe serve minute rice thingies.after the chicken cooled I shredded it and kinda just dumped it all together and added a few ladles of the broth the chicken cooked in.It was delish!I'm going to learn to do yellow rice from scratch and do that next time.That could definately become a staple dish in the menu plan I'm still trying to put together.I chopped up a huge apple and squeezed lemon juice over it.I added a can of tropical fruit salad.Delicious.I also had one of the last slices of the infamous pie from the other day.The husband and his dad had leftover KFC from lunch today.All in all it was a good day-I didn't have to cook other than breakfast (gotta have a break sometime) and the hubby even did the dishes.He usually does them on the weekends.And this is going to be a long weekend-he's off through tuesday afternoon when he will start a new work schedule.So I am going to take full advantage of it and have him do a few things on the "honey do" list and let him do as many loads of dishes that he wants!**wicked laughter** Seriously,he's a good husband--he does help around the house--maybe not the way I would prefer it to be done,but he helps and that counts.I let the puppy and kiddo trapsey around in the backyard some this afternoon and they both headed straight for grandpa's piles of red dirt that dot the backyard.He's supposedly filling in holes or something LOL.Both the kid and puppy dug and played and ran till their little hearts and tails were content,filthy,and tired! I gave the kiddo a bath already and am going to get the pup a bath in a few mins.Gotta get hubby to help me-gotta have an extra pair of hands to hold her while I scrub her clean! She is sacked out under the computer table as I type listening to the rainstorm that's brewing outside.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Tinkerbelle's treasure stash

Tinkie naps/hangs out under my computer desk on an old pillow and fuzzy blanket.She has things hidden all over the house-under my bed,in her half of the sewing room closet,under the sewing room table,EVERYWHERE.This morning,I noticed she kept digging at the pillow and whining like she was trying to get something.So I pulled the pillow back and she got back there and pulled out a milkbone she had "buried"-I saw chewie sticks and chew squares (rawhide sticks and squares-they really calm her down).I pushed the pillows back into place and she is sitting there munching happily on the milkbone.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Recipe for Sweet Potato-Almond Pie

Simple Syrup (from Food Network)

1cup water
1cup sugar

In a saucepan,combine the water and sugar over medium heat.
Bring to a boil,reduce heat,and simmer for 5 minutes-stirring
until the sugar is fully dissolved.Remove from heat and allow
the syrup to cool.Store in fridge.

**I found the recipe for Sweet Potato Pecan Pie in a ToH magazine-I'm allergic to pecans and pecan trees,so I improvised using almonds.Instead of the corn syrup the recipe calls for I used the same amount of the above simple syrup.The original recipe calls for using refrigerated pie pastry but I used a refrigerated pie shell-basicly the same thing already rolled out and in a tin foil pan.

Sweet Potato-Almond Pie

1 frozen pie shell (thawed)
1 1/2 cups mashed sweet potatoes
1/3 cup 2% milk
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1TBS reduced fat butter (melted)
1/4 TSP salt
1/2 TSP vanilla
1/2 TSP ground Cinnamon
1/4 TSP ground Allspice
1/4 TSP ground Nutmeg
1 egg
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/3 cup simple syrup (or corn syrup)
1TBS reduced fat butter
2/3 cup slivered Almonds (or chopped pecans)

Heat oven to 350* and bake for 45-55mins

In a small bowl,combine the potatoes,milk,brown sugar,
butter,vanilla,salt and spices.Pour into the pie shell and
spread evenly.

For Almond layer--In another bowl,whisk the egg and brown sugar
together until smooth and blended.Add the syrup,butter,and vanilla.
Mix well.With spoon,stir in the almonds.Pour over the sweet potato layer.
Bake at 350* for 45-55mins or until a knife inserted in middle of pie comes out
clean.Cool completely on a rack-chill for at least 3 hours.

*****best used with a DEEP DISH PIE SHELL---and if in doubt, place your pie onto a
separate baking sheet to bake or you just might have to do some oven cleaning!

Supper Oct 7,2009

SORRY-I got out of order with my pics and haven't figured out how to arrange them without deleting them all and uploading again! LOL It took me a while to figure out that you should start with your end pic first....This BLOG stuff gives me a headache sometimes! ;)

Mashed-potatoes--Yes,I'm woman enough to admit that I used potato flakes.I'm trying to empty the pantry and this was what was available.Hubby loves them. Quick and Easy.

After cooking the angus burger patties,I turned the heat off and added a few TBS of butter to the drippings in the pan.I added some flour,salt,pepper,and "roasting" seasonings to the pan and whisked it around until the flour was a nice peanut butter color.I cooked the flour a few mins to get the "pasty" taste out and added water to it until it was the consistentcy that I liked.I ended up having to add more salt and pepper.I let it cook a few mins and served it over both the potatoes and the burger steaks.

Quinoa bubbling away--Instead of using just water I used a can of chicken broth and water.I added black beans and a zippie bag of corn that I had in the freezer.It was delicious!

After discouraging hubby from getting take out for supper,I told him I'd make the same thing he would have gotten at take out and it would taste better-and be healthier for him.He mumbled "whatever" and went to sleep for the afternoon.Hubby works night shift--at least for another 2 nights.He's been on this shift for the past 6 months and this time pulled the mid shift--he'll work from like 2pm-10pm.It'll take a while to get used to this new schedule--it always throws Zachary off for a while.But back to supper...I made burger "steaks" with carmelized sweet onions and gravy for the guys.I made myself a breaded chicken breast but it turned out to be blackened chicken! LOL Not sure if the olive oil was too hot or the spices I used weren't right for it,but it turned out pretty crispy and dark-just like blackened chicken! (I'm having a rough day ain't I?-do I sound like a sweet little southern bell?) LOL I made quinoa with black beans and corn,and mashed potatoes for the guys (I'll admit it,it was potato flakes-I'm trying to clear out the pantry).I used 1/2 a carton of mashed sweet potatoes for the infamous pie.I had a few scoops with my supper and put the rest back so I can try the pie again.I forgot to take a pic of the full meal (guess I was so mad about the pie).Hubby isn't fond of quinoa-reminds him of rice which I have to beat him to get him to eat,but he got some in with his supper tonight.I gave it to Grandpa tonight too-we'll see how he likes it.Hubby said "he won't like it,it's new".I told him the Indians ate it for thousands of years.He said yeah,grandpa ain't an Indian LOL.We'll see if he likes it.My family is crazy!!!!

Sweet Potato-Almond Pie

First layer of the pie--Sweet Potatoes,allspice,butter,vanilla,milk,cinnamon,brown sugar

Second layer--simple syrup,almonds,1 egg,brown sugar

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

15 bean Soup with Kelbasa

This has turned out to be a guy-pleaser in our house.On one of those discovery health shows a few years ago,I saw that beans have some nutrient that is good for a guy's "health" (wiggles eyebrows) shall we say.It turned out to be a joke that I made the bean soup whenever I wanted to get the husband in a "happy mood".

I take a package of 15 bean soup (without seasonings-too salty for my taste) and cook in crockpot until tender.I add whatever seasonings catch my eye (chili,cumin,taco,salt,pepper,red chili flake) and chop up a few links of kelbasa into bite size chunks.I usually use turkey kelbasa.

I add the kelbasa as close to the end cooking time of the beans as I can so it will still heat up without being cooked to mush.Sometimes I serve over rice.Sometimes with corn bread.Whatever I have handy.It's a definate cool weather favorite in our house-and not for the "health benefits"! AHEM! That's what's for supper tonight---I wonder if it will make hubby "happy" today?
I had a ham monte cristo sandwich for supper....YUM!

Oct 6 breakfast

Chicken spinach feta sausage--I turned around to do something else for a sec and I think I let it get chopped a little too fine!

Found the scret to cooking the perfect scrambled eggs.COOK THEM ON LOW heat-saw that on foodnetwork back a while ago and my eggs have been coming out wonderfully every since!

Alright,I'll confess-they are NOT homemade! They are the from the frozen section.I want to get organized/handy enough to where I can make a batch and freeze them so I can have scratch biscuits anytime without all the fuss.**sigh** One day......

When I texted hubby to let him know I had turned off the house alarm this morning (so he won't try to come in and set the darned thing off at like 7am! LOL),I asked what he wanted for breakfast.He asked if we had anymore hash.Um,NO! I had the last of the leftovers in a sandwich for breakfast yesterday. But we did have more chicken sausage in the freezer (no hashbrown potatoes though).This morning it was chicken-spinach-feta sausage hash with biscuits and scrambled eggs.Hubby was not fond of the hash today LOL.Not sure if it was because it tasted different LOL or if I kinda got busy doing something else and let the processor chop it too fine! It was good,but sunday's hash was definately better!
And yes,we use paper plates.Personally it doesn't really make a difference,but the husband thinks that if we use paper plates,it'll mean fewer dishes to wash.UM,maybe like 3 few plates....But we still have to wash the pots and pans I made dinner in so what's a few more things in the dishwasher.Grandpa thinks that way too.Whatever!

Monday, October 5, 2009


Slice the squash very thin and cook until it kind of carmelizes.This is something that the hubby's mom and housekeeper would make when he was little.I sauteed it in a little olive oil and with a little salt and ALOT of pepper.

I really didn't know WHAT to make for dinner tonight.I picked up a couple of pounds of yellow squash at the store today and I knew I wanted that,but had no clue what to cook with them.I fished around in the freezer and pulled out some turkey kelbasa and made brown rice(grandpa doesn't like pasta) and cheesy italian pasta (one of those veggie steamer bags).Dessert was a fruit salad with pineapple,banana,mango, and pear.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Rainy Sunday morning breakfast

Chicken-apple sausage and diced hashbrowns cooking in a little olive oil.

I drained in a collander to make sure it wasn't greasy.

Add a few fried eggs and hubby was a happy man this morning!

Hubby doesn't think it's a proper meal without some sort of "meat"-I'm trying to convince him otherwise.When he asked "what's for breakfast"this morning,I popped open the oven door and showed him the biscuits he asked "that's it?" LOL.So along with the eggs,I made homemade chicken-apple sausage hash.I put some chicken- apple sausages "links" into the processor and got them nice and chopped.I found a half bag of diced hashbrown potatoes in the freezer and cooked them together in a little olive oil (the chicken sausage is lean compared to other sausage).Can I say BRAIN-BLAST!!!! That was delish! I am never buying canned hash again.This was so good I can't tell you! Definately another favorite!

Saturday, October 3, 2009


How tall this fall? Zachary is 4ft2--6 1/2 yrs old--exactly 1 foot shorter than his mom~!

Tinkie sporting her new red shirt and red harness~she matches my purse!

OK,I'm ready! Can we go now!?

Well,I was up sick half the night and got up feeling so weak that hubby called the gun safety class leader for me and asked if there would be another class soon-so I will be taking the one in the spring.I was so weak when I got up this morning my knees were shaky. I think it had something to do with my blood sugar-once overnight I got up to check it and it was like 63--WOAH time to eat something.Then I over did it (counted carbs wrong) and woke up with it high.I should know how to do that better by now but it's still a challenge.I hate diabetes!!

We went back to bed and laid around being lazy a few hours and hubby helped his dad out in the backyard for a bit.Then we decided OK we need to get out of the house for a bit.We took Zachary and Tinkie to Lazy Acres Pumpkin Patch (it's also a christmas tree farm).Tinkie did really well in the car.She would snooze a little and look out the window some and then fall back asleep.LOL She did really well for being on her leash for only the second time.She ran around and was so excited seeing all the new people and enjoyed being out in the warm sun.One attraction that they have is that they do a pig race where they let the piggies out of their pen and they run around a circle track back to their feed bowls-it's absolutely HILARIOUS.We didn't see that this year but said hello to the piggies.We thought Tinkie might have over done it-she got really panty and laid down and was just acting so worn out-kinda scared us a little.We made her drink some water and we rested a little and hitched a ride back to the country store on a tractor driven hay ride.She liked that I think-except for all the tractor noise!We only stayed about 2 hours I would say.Might have stayed longer if Tinkie wasn't with us,but we had a blast! Zach picked out a HUGE pumpkin.I told him we might try and go back again later this month if it gets cooler.I want to go again when the christmas tree farm part is open,I've never been to that.They have a "sleigh" pulled by reindeer I think.All in all it was a pretty good afternoon.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Getting ready for Halloween

OOOOH I love this little guy--he's a HELMET WARRIOR from HAWAII--meant for protection.

A fall wreath I made 2 or 3 years ago.....

4 little pumpkins all in a row.....and a witch house on the top shelf---these stay out all year in my sewing room/office.
Basketball pumpkin and scary face pumpkin.Right now on the table in the living room-they didn't fit right in the window this year.Not sure where they will go next.
Glass pumpkin on curio in living room-I want to get a bigger one.

Mandatory window clings......

Hubby made me put the yellow ribbon on it-not sure if I like that part or not.This is a new decoration this year.

Are you a good witch or a bad witch? Little wiz of oz witch in curio cabinet in living room.

A little Bewitched? This stays out all year-on the wall in my sewing room/office.

Going a little batty? LOL This is one of the first decorations I bought.It's in the window of my office/sewing room.