Sunday Smatterings –

Hello, everyone! It’s now after 5 p.m. and I’m just getting around to writing you. Not much going on around here, only THREE more days of radiation and I’m done. I must admit, they warned me it would be rough going at the end, and they weren’t kidding. To describe the ‘fatigue’ the best way – my legs feel like they weigh 2,000 lbs each and I’m struggling to drag my body through each day BUT it will soon be OVER!!! YAY! My dear husband has pitched in and caught up the laundry, which was a BIG help. I made a batch of White Chicken Chili Soup (recipe is here in another post) yesterday so we can have that for more than one dinner. It’s funny, the first time I had it I wasn’t exactly sure I liked it, but it sort of grows on you – it’s almost become a ‘comfort’ food – easy to make, warms AND fills you up – great recipe!

Speaking of recipes, of course I have more for you-

===============

Cookie Balls

1 lb. chocolate sandwich cookies, crushed
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 lb. vanilla-flavored candy coating,
melted

In large mixing bowl, combine crushed
cookies & cream cheese to form a stiff
dough. Roll into balls; dip with a fork into
melted candy coating. Place balls on
waxed paper until set. Makes 36.
(recipe: lovetocook Marys Recipe Exchange)
————————————-
Waldorf Coleslaw

3 C. shredded cabbage
3 C. diced Granny Smith apples
6 T. raisins
3 T. coarsely chopped walnuts
3 T. plain fat-free yogurt
2 T. fat-free mayonnaise
1 T. honey
1 tsp. prepared horseradish
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Combine first 4 ingredients in a medium
bowl. Combine yogurt & remaining
ingredients, stirring well with a
whisk. Pour over cabbage mixture,
toss well. Cover & chill 2 hours.
Makes 10 servings.
(recipe: chebree1-RDJ-12/09/11)
———————————-
Creamy Almond Bars

Crust:
2 C. flour
1 C. butter, softened
1/2 C. powdered sugar

Filling:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. almond extract*

Frosting:
1 1/2 C. powdered sugar
1/2 C. butter, softened
1 1/2 T. milk
1 tsp. almond extract*
sliced almonds

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Mix & press crust ingredients into a
9 x 13 pan. Bake 20 minutes. Beat
cream cheese & sugar for filling
with an elec. mixer until smooth.
Add rest of filling ingredients and
beat until just mixed. Pour filling
mixture over crust; bake another
15 minutes. Combine all frosting
ingredients with a mixer. Frost bars
when they are cooled; top with sliced
almonds, if desired. Cut into 24
squares; serve immediately or
serve chilled. Store in refrigerator.

NOTE: * You could also use other
extract flavors, like lemon instead
of almond.
(recipe: Heather-justapinch.com)
————————————-
Ginger-Chicken Saute

1 1/2 C. water
1 C. quinoa, uncooked
2 tsp. oil, divided
4 small boneless, skinless chicken halves
1/4 C. Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing, divided
4 carrots, cut into 1/4 inch thick slices
1 T. minced ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 C. loosely packed bok choy cabbage
(1/2 in. thick)

Bring water to boil in medium saucepan.
Add quinoa;cover & simmer on medium
-low 15 min or until liquid is absorbed.
Heat 1 tsp. oil in large skillet on medium-
high heat. Add chicken; cook 5-7min. on each
side or until done (165F.) adding 2 T. dressing to
skillet for the last minute. Transfer chicken to
plate; top with reserved pan drippings. Cover
to keep warm. Add remaining oil, carrots,
ginger and garlic to skillet; cook 3-5 minutes or
until ginger & garlic are fragrant, but not browned,
stirring frequently. Stir in bok choy; cook 1-2 min. or
until bok choy starts to wilt. Add remaining
dressing; cook 2 min. or until carrots are crisp-
tender and liquid comes to boil; stirring
frequently.Spoon quinoa onto serving plates;
top with vegetables & chicken. Serves 4
(recipe: Kraft Foods)
——————————————————–
Turkey Shepherd’s Pie

1 lb. ground turkey
1 onion, chopped
2 C. brown gravy
8 slices American cheese
4 C. mashed potatoes

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Brown turkey and onions in large
skillet over medium-high heat;
stirring until meat crumbles & is
no longer pink; drain. Place turkey
mixture in greased 2 Qt. casserole
dish. Pour gravy over turkey; top
with cheese & mashed potatoes.
Bake 20 min. or until bubbly.
(recipe: KSTabby-Marys Recipe Exchange)
———————————————

Chicken Soup Au Gratin 

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 C. water
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 C. onions, chopped
1/2 C. carrots, peeled & chopped
1/2 C. celery, chopped
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream chicken soup
1/2 C. milk
1/8 tsp. pepper
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese

Combine chicken, water & salt in
saucepan over medium heat; simmer
until tender. Remove chicken, reserving
broth in saucepan; let cool, then dice
chicken and set aside.
Add vegetables to broth in pan; simmer
until tender. Stir in soup, milk and
pepper; add cheese and chicken. Heat
through, stirring until cheese melts.
(recipe: KSTabby-1_Comfort_Foods)
---------------------------------
Blueberry Breakfast Bread 

1 1/3 C.flour
3/4 C. quick cooking oats
1/3 C. sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
3/4 C. milk
1/4 C. vegetable oil
1 egg
1 cup blueberries, frozen 

Preheat oven to 400°F.
Grease or oil an eight inch round
baking pan. In large bowl, mix
together dry ingredients; do not
overstir.(batter should be lumpy)
Fold blueberries into batter.Pour
batter into pan and bake approx.
20 minutes; batter should pull
away from sides of pan.Remove
from oven and cool on rack.
Serve warm.
(recipe: Peg-Marys Recipe Exchange)
----------------------------
Layered Caesar, Shrimp & Pasta Salad 
1/4 cup KRAFT Light Classic Caesar
            Dressing*
1/4 cup Mayo with olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 pkg. (6 oz.) torn mixed salad greens, divided
2 C. medium shell macaroni, cooked, drained
and cooled
1 large  tomato, coarsely chopped
3/4 C. seasoned croutons
2  hard-cooked eggs, sliced
1/2 lb. frozen cooked cleaned medium shrimp, thawed
1/4 C.  KRAFT shredded Parmesan cheeseLayer dressing, mayo and garlic. Layer half the
salad greens, macaroni & tomatoes in 3 Qt. bowl;
cover with layers of remaining greens, croutons,
eggs, shrimp & cheese. Refrigerate dressing
mixture and salad 1 hour. Add dressing
mixture to salad just before serving; mix
lightly. Serves 6 – 2 C. per person
This salad can be made ahead and refrigerated
up to 4 hours before tossing with dressing
mixture.
* can substitute Light Ranch dressing for Caesar
(recipe: Kraft Foods)
——————————————-
Hot Corn Dip

1 (15 oz) can white corn, drained
1 (15 oz) can yellow corn, drained
1 (10 oz) can diced tomatoes w/green
chile peppers, drained
1 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese,softened
and diced
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
chopped fresh cilantro,
to taste

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In medium baking dish, mix
together all ingredients. Bake
30  minutes, or until hot &
bubbly.
(recipe: Mary Free-Marys
Recipe Exchange)
—————————————
Craft-wise, just finished knitting a hat for one of my special needs guys I drive each week (wasn’t sure what to give him for a present then he mentioned he lost his hat, so bingo – great present idea!) It’s a copy of the other red & white striped hat I posted a few posts ago. Still need to crochet a trellis-ribbon necklace for my friend who just finished chemo last week – she saw someone at church who was wearing one of the necklaces and said she really liked it, so another BINGO! moment for her present! This coming Wednesday is our special needs Friends & Family Christmas Gathering; just finished printing up, folding and sewing together with yarn 30 copies of our Christmas songs to put on the tables as decorations. We did this last year and the families & caregivers seemed to like it. It’s a wonderful evening for everyone: we serve a light supper – veggie trays & dips, sandwich wraps, chips and cookies which were baked by the church’s junior high school girls. Our ‘kids’ will recite a special verse, then sing 4 Christmas carols, then close the evening with our group’s favorite hymn: “Amazing Grace”. You haven’t lived until you hear almost 40 special needs students singing that hymn, they really put their hearts into it – lots of tears in the audience – it’s a great ending to a great night.

Hope you’re having a good day, it’s 34 degrees here and clear with some snow on the ground (not too much, just the right amount). Have you started driving around looking at Christmas lights in your neighborhoods? The other night I saw a (new to me) sight – a family had put out ON THEIR LAWN these little white lights that looked like little balls – the whole lawn was covered with them! Not hanging lights, but on the lawn/snow lights! You could see their house from quite a distance – very pretty effect! I saw something like that featured in a catalogue but those were individual balls which each had a switch to light them and were advertised to either sprinkle in your garden or wrap string around and hang from trees – the ones I saw the other night were very uniform in their placement, almost like they might be on a sort of net? (just tried to look up ‘outdoor fairy lights’ and learned that there are some now that are ‘solar’ – they absorb light during the day and give it off up to 8 hours, at night – interesting, none the less! )I love seeing something new when it comes to Christmas lights. I remember the first time I saw (what is now a ‘standard’) lights that cycled various colors and at various speeds – or those lights which are in clear plastic tubing you can wrap around stair railings (used outside).  Our house? Our house still has the ‘old’ electrical wiring and I wouldn’t DARE plug in outside lights for fear of blowing the whole house. (it was built in the 40’s).
Anyway, I’ve chatted enough to wear out your eyes, so I’ll close for now. Hope you are beginning to enjoy the Christmas Season!
Hugs;
Pammie

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. We have a few house up our way that do the lights thing (ours included) But it is not like in the subdivisions. I remember when I was first married my then husband would take us down in the residential areas of Outer Drive (in Detroit) where house after house was decorated. Almost like watching fireworks on the 4th of July! I did love those drives each year!


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