Happy Thursday!

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Yep, we’re still ‘in the deep freeze’ but add about 2 more inches of snow to that. Last night while at my special needs group it started snowing – and the drive home was treacherous (normal speeds 45-50; I drove home 25 – 35, max! EVEN on the expressway!) VERY grateful my entire family was safely at home; middle son decided that he wanted to treat the family to POWERBALL tickets (you know – just IN CASE we might win!). Problem with that? They had to be turned in before 11 p.m. LAST NIGHT! When I got home I certainly did NOT want to drive in the nasty, slippery snow again – finally youngest son volunteered to take them to the closest 7-11; he went & arrived back home safely . . . no, we didn’t win anything. Oh well – best intentions and all that . . .  (I’m not one for gambling of any sort so he really had to take his time explaining to me how to fill out my portion of the powerball ticket – ah, yes, you CAN teach an old lady new tricks). That said, I’m not planning on doing that again – in my brain the odds are just too crazy to even comprehend. When Michigan first got the lottery for two weeks I bought one ticket each week ($1.00 each); when I lost two weeks in a row my logic said: “I might just as well have put a match to the money for all the good it did me” . . . end of story-I don’t gamble. (To each their own).

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

Butterscotch Dump Cake
(crockpot)

1 (16.5 oz) box Duncan Hines
Caramel cake
1 stick plus 2 T. butter
1/2 C. milk
1 C. butterscotch chips
1 3/4 C. boiling water

caramel ice cream sauce-
for drizzling on top

ice cream, for serving with

Turn crockpot on Low for 10-15
minutes before beginning to make
cake. Reserve 1 C. cake mix; melt
stick of butter.Place remaining cake
mix in large bowl; pour in melted
butter & 1/2 C. milk; stir until most
of lumps are out & batter is thick &
smooth. Pour this mixture into
crockpot. Sprinkle butterscotch chips
on top (optional: you can drizzle
about 1/4 C. caramel sauce on top
if desired). Take 1 C. reserved cake mix
& place in separate shallow medium
bowl. Melt 2 T. butter in microwave.
Pour melted butter & boiling water
together; stir until well mixed. Pour
over rest of cake in crockpot. Cook
2 hours until cake has set in middle.
(If it takes longer than 2 hours you
can turn up to High for about 30
minutes until middle part is set,
then turn back down to warm).
Serve with ice cream & drizzle
additional caramel sauce over top
of servings.

(recipe:facebook.com-Crockpot Moms)
————————————–

Italian Chicken & Dumpling Soup

3 T. butter
2 T. olive oil
3/4 C. diced onion
1/2 C. diced carrots
1/2 C. diced celery
4 garlic cloves, minced
salt/pepper
1/3 C. flour
4 C. chicken broth
1 1/2 C. Half & Half
2 C. cooked chicken, shredded
or cut into small bites
1 lb. potato gnocci*
3 C. fresh baby spinach,
stems removed
1 T. chopped fresh basil
fresh grated Parmesan cheese
and/or Romano cheese (for
serving)

In large soup pot or Dutch oven
heat butter & oil over medium heat.
Add onion, carrots, celery & garlic,
season with salt/pepper & cook until
tender over medium-low heat, about
10 minutes, stirring often. Sprinkle
flour into pot & stir into vegetables;
cook 3 minutes, stirring often. Stir in
chicken broth, 1 cup-at-a-time, then
Half & Half. Add cooked chicken; bring
to a simmer & cook 20 minutes, stirring
often. Season with salt/pepper. Cook
gnocci separately according to pkg.
directions; add to soup along with
spinach. Simmer until spinach wilts.
Stir in basil & serve with grated cheese.
Serves 6

*You can usually find gnocci either in
the chilled section (in grocery store)
where they have prepared pizza crusts,
or in the frozen foods section.

(recipe: cinnamonspiceandevertyingnice
.com)
——————————————

Mexican Tuna Salad

1/2 tomato, diced
1/2 green bell pepper, diced
1/2 white onion, diced
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
2 cans albacore tuna, drained
1 T. lime juice
1 T. lemon juice
salt/pepper, to taste

crackers

Mix all ingredients together in a
large bowl; refrigerate at least
1/2 hour before serving. Serve
using crackers for dippers

(recipe: Courtney Luper-Facebook)
———————————–

4-Ingredient Porcupine Meatballs

1 lb. ground beef
1 (6.8 oz) box Beef Rice-a-Roni
1 egg
2 1/4 C. water

Place beef in medium bowl.
Pour contents of Rice-a-roni into a
bowl (save seasoning pkt for later)
Add egg & mix together using your
hands then shape into 25 golf-ball
sized meatballs. Heat large, deep
skillet over medium-high heat; care-
fully place meatballs in pan & brown
on top & bottom. Pour water into a
large liquid measuring cup. Add
seasoning pkt. & stir to combine.
Pour liquid over top of meatballs;
reduce heat to medium-low & allow
liquid to simmer. Cover pan & simmer
30-40 minutes until liquid has been
absorbed & rice/pasta in meatballs
are cooked through. Makes about
5 servings

(recipe: jamiecooksitup.net)
—————————————

Creamy Turkey & Noodles

1 (16 oz) pkg. farfalle (bowtie),
cooked, omitting salt
pasta, uncooked
1/4 C. butter
1 onion, chopped
1 (16 oz) pkg. frozen mixed
vegetables (carrots/corn/green
beans/peas)
6 T. flour
2 C. milk
2 (7.5 oz, ea) pkgs. (Oscar Mayer)
roasted turkey breast, chopped
2 (10 3/4 oz, ea) cans cream of
chicken soup
1 C. sour cream
1 (8 oz) pkg. (Kraft) 3 cheese
shredded cheese

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray two 9 X 13″ pans with
nonstick cooking spray.
Melt butter in Dutch oven or large,
deep skillet over medium heat. Add
onions, cook & stir 4 minutes until
crisp-tender. Add frozen vegs; cook
4 minutes until thawed, stirring
frequently. Stir in flour until
blended; cook & stir 1 minute.
Gradually stir in milk; bring to a
boil & cook, stirring, 2 minutes until
thickened. Remove from heat; stir
in turkey, soup & cour cream. Drain
pasta & add to sauce, stir until
evenly coated. Spoon  mixture into
prepared dishes & top with cheese.
Cover with foil & bake 30 minutes
until heated through, uncovering
last 10 minutes. Serves 16 (1 C.
each)

(recipe: kraftrecipes.com)
——————————–

Hawaiian BBQ Chicken Tenders
(crockpot)

1 1/2 – 2 lb. boneless skinless chicken
tenderloins
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
pinch ground black pepper
1/4 C. plus 2 T. BBQ sauce
1/4 C. pineapple juice (or OJ with
pineapple juice)
1 C. frozen pineapple chunks

Sprinkle each tenderloin with salt,
garlic powder & pepper – place in
crockpot with pineapple chunks.
Whisk together BBQ sauce & juice;
pour over chicken. Cover & cook on
Low 5-7 hours or High 3-4 hours
until chicken is fully cooked.

Optional: Melt one T. butter in a
skillet. Place seasoned chicken
tenderloins in skillet. Cook 1-2
minutes on each side until lightly
browned then place in crockpot.

(recipe: crockpotgourmet.net)
————————————-

Easy Mushroom Risotto

1 T. canola oil ( do not use
olive oil-it does not have
a high enough smoke-point)
1 lb. fresh mushrooms, thickly
sliced
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
12 oz. arborio rice
1/2 C. dry white wine
32 oz. chicken stock, room temp.
1/4 C. heavy cream, room temp.
2 T. crumbled gorgonzola cheese*

Heat canola oil over medium-high
heat in large saucepan. Add mushrooms
& cook until all liquid has been
released/evaporated & mushrooms have
browned. Reduce heat to medium; add
onion & cook 4-5 minutes until onions
are soft & translucent. Add garlic, cook
1 minute. Add arborio rice, stir until rice
is coated with onion mixture & looks
glossy 2-3 minutes. Add wine & stir until
almost completely evaporated. Add 1/3
of chicken stock; cook at gentle simmer
& stir until stock has been mostly absorbed,
about 5 minutes. Add second 1/3 of stock;
stir 5 minutes more. Add remaining 1/3
stock & continue stirring until risotto is
creamy & just-tender, about 5 minutes
more. Risotto should have a slight
firmness – add a small amount of water
if risotto needs to cook any longer. Stir
in heavy cream & gorgonzola, stirring
until cheese is melted into risotto. Season
with salt/pepper, to taste, adding more
gorgonzola if desired.

*taste & add more if a stronger flavor
is preferred.

(recipe: thewickednoodle.com)
—————————————–

Bacon/Potato/Egg Casserole

1 lb. bacon, cut into 1/2 inch strips
1 yellow onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, seeds removed &
diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
12 large eggs
1 C. milk
3 C. frozen diced potatoes
(don’t have to defrost or cook)
2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese,
divided
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 green onions, chopped

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13 baking dish with
nonstick spray. In large skillet
cook bacon over medium heat,
stirring occasionally (cook until
crispy brown). Remove bacon &
place on a paper towel-lined
plate.Roughly chop bacon. Add
onion & red pepper to skillet &
cook until tender; add garlic &
cook 2 minutes. In large bowl
beat eggs & milk using a whisk.
Stir in cooked vegetables, potatoes,
1 C. shredded cheese. Set aside
3/4 C. bacon & stir in remaining
bacon to mixture. Season with
salt/pepper & pour into
prepared dish. Top with remaining
cheese & green onions. Bake 20
minutes so that eggs start to set
up. Carefully add remaining bacon
to top of dish & bake an additional
20 minutes until eggs are firm &
top is slightly brown. Let stand
10 minutes before cutting into
squares & serving. Serves 10

(recipe: twopeasandtheirpod.com)
—————————————–

Hawaiian Cheesecake Bars

2 C. flour
1 C. sugar
1 C. butter
2 (8 oz, ea) pkgs. cream cheese –
total 16 oz, softened
4 T. sugar
4 T. milk
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
16 oz. crushed pineapple, drained
2 C. flaked coconut
2 T. melted butter

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Cream together flour, 1 C. sugar &
1 C. butter; pat mixture into ungreased
9 X 13 baking dish. Bake 15-20 minutes.
Cool slightly. Mix together cream cheese,
4 T. sugar, milk & eggs; fold in vanilla &
drained pineapple. Spread mixture
over baked crust. Combine coconut &
2 T. melted butter in a small bowl;
sprinkle over pineapple layer. Bake
15-20 minutes.

(recipe: Mary’s Recipe Exchange)
=======================

Just had a discussion with  middle son about
my chicken pot pie which brought about a
memory: I first started making that after he
spent the night at a friend’s house – the
Mother there had prepared frozen pot
pies
(those little ones in the tins) and my
son thought they were really tasty (YUCK!
I grew up eating those – we were relatively
poor and you could buy them for about
25 cents apiece ‘back in the day’). My son
kept bugging me to buy some – I refused
but got to thinking: “They shouldn’t be
too difficult to make” – and the end is
history. (I’m not a pastry baker so using
the refrigerated, prepared pie crusts
works best for me AND I think they taste
really good, too.) On the tail end of that
thought I also remembered youngest son
had dinner at a friend’s house many years
ago and came home praising that mom’s
chicken parmesan; I asked him how she
made it and was a bit surprised: frozen,
breaded chicken cutlets (?) and spaghetti
sauce. Since he also insisted on my
attempting to make these I set out to
try to make them ‘better’. Here’s my
‘updated’ version:
=======
Pam’s Chicken Parmesan

3 skinless boneless chicken breasts
(try for the thick ones)
1 jar (your choice) spaghetti sauce
1 pkg. REAL shredded Parmesan
cheese
(not the Kraft stuff in a
plastic can/jar)


Preheat oven 350 degrees
Slice chicken breasts in half horizontally.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick spray. Pour a little spaghetti
sauce on the bottom of the prepared
dish. (HERE I cook the chicken
breast halves in the George Foremann
grill until fully cooked) Place the
chicken halves on top of the sauce
& pour a little more sauce over them.
Bake 25 minutes; remove from oven
& top with Parmesan cheese – return to
oven to bake about 35 minutes
longer. Serves 4

NOTE: you will probably have some
spaghetti sauce left over. You can also
substitute shredded mozzarella cheese
if you can’t find the real Parmesan.
===========
I have no actual plans for this day – yet;
knit about 8 rows on the baby blanket
for Crisis Pregnancy. I texted the lady in
charge of that just to ‘touch base’ with
her, since I don’t believe I’ve given her
any blankets since around Oct/November
of last year. She was happy to hear from
me but said she won’t be able to do a
‘pick up’ for another couple weeks – GOOD!
I told her I really wasn’t ready for a pick
up yet, anyway – now that I know I’ve
got at least 2 weeks I can hustle a little
and finish this blanket for her! (this one
is just basic white with fuzzy yellow/orange/
red stripes – no fancy stitches, just basic
knitting – it’s a ‘CAN DO’ in two weeks or
less, as long as I keep on plugging at it!

Stay warm, relax a little and try to take
a little time out to ENJOY YOUR DAY!

Hugs;

Pammie

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6 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Right now it’s 61 degrees here in Oklahoma. I’m wearing corduroys, a long sleeved turtleneck and a quilted vest, but I’m thinking I won’t need a jacket when I walk up the hill to our community craft group meeting. Now last week it was in the 20’s so….. You never know, it’s Oklahoma. We are prone to ice storms here which no one likes.

    • Wow – your weather almost sounds like Michigan with it’s constantly changing temperatures! Stay warm (when it’s cold) and enjoy your craft group!

  2. Thx for the mushroom risotto recipe, just perfect for a cold wintry day. 🙂

  3. I’m out here Momma

  4. Winter has reminded us we live in the Midwest this week! Try and keep warm 🙂


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