Another great week and end!

crochet a day

It’s another gorgeous Fall-like day here in my neck of Michigan; temps in mid 70’s, sun shining, slight breeze – really nice. I know that Fall is coming ( you can almost feel it) but for now, I’m content to be delusional in thinking SUMMER will keep going – forever!

Still working on yellow baby afghan but decided that since I’m going to deliver three baby blankets Weds. to Crisis Pregnancy Center, I should start another one! (Yep, I’m nuts!) I found a baby yarn I’ve been contemplating for awhile now – tried it once a few months ago for another project and decided it didn’t work well so I stashed it. This one is a variegated: aqua blue, medium lime green, white; I have three skeins of it so am starting out with it and seeing just how far one skein will go. If it makes a good amount of afghan, I’ll just keep going with the other two skeins. If it doesn’t, I’ll ‘fill in’ a bit with white or maybe medium lime green – we’ll see. This is the same pattern I’m using as the previous ‘velour/chenille’ scarf I’m knitting for the homeless shelter  – VERY easy pattern, just 2 rows! Sometimes I like using something that’s kind of ‘mindless’ where you can just sit & knit, not really having to worry about counting stitches/rows, etc.


Apple Cider Donut Cake

1/2 C. unsalted butter, softened
2 large Granny Smith apples, peeled/
1 1/2 C. apple cider
1/2 C. milk, room temp.
2 1/2 C. flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 C. sugar
1/2 C. light brown sugar, packed
3 large eggs, room temp.
1/4 C. vegetable oil
1 tsp. vanilla

Cider Glaze:
1/4 C. butter
1/4 C. sugar
1/8 C. water
1/8 – 1/4 C. hard cider (I
imagine you could use regular
cider, it just wouldn’t be as strong

Cinnamon Sugar Coating:
6 T. granulated sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a Bundt pan with nonstick
spray. In medium saucepan place
apples & cider & bring to boil over
medium heat. Reduce heat to medium
& simmer 10-12 minutes until apples
are fork-tender. Remove from heat,
cool a few minutes then place in
food processor or blender – puree.
Measure out 1 Cup & stir milk into
that. (NOTE: remaining mixture in
blender can be used over yogurt or
oatmeal or heated slightly & drizzled
over ice cream).
In medium bowl combine flour, baking
powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, cloves
& cinnamon. In large bowl cream butter,
sugar & brown sugar on medium speed
using elec. mixer,until light & fluffy. Add
eggs, one at a time, until incorporated. Add
oil & mix well. Add flour mixture & apple/
milk mixture alternately in three additions,
scraping bowl as needed & mixing after
each addition. Add vanilla & beat to combine.
Pour batter into prepared pan & bake
35-45 minutes until a toothpick inserted
near center comes out clean. Remove from
oven & place on cooling rack 10  minutes
before removing from pan – place cake on
cooling rack to cool at least 30 minutes.

Melt butter, sugar & water over medium-
high heat – bring to boil & let boil 1-2
minutes. Remove from heat & immediately
add cider, stirring to combine. Place a baking
sheet under a wire rack. Using a pastry brush
or marinade brush, cover cooled cake with
glaze (do this in several steps, allowing glaze
to sink into cake then doing it again).

Cinnamon-Sugar Coating:
Combine sugar, cinnamon & nutmeg in small
bowl. Sprinkle warm, glazed cake with mixture
using fingers to rub it into sides of cake.

(recipe: Runcible Eats)

Stuffed Chicken Parmesan

3 chicken breasts, boneless/skinless
salt/ to taste
1 C. shredded mozzarella
2 C. flour
6 eggs, beaten
2 C. bread crumbs
1 C. oil (for frying)
3 C. tomato sauce
1/2 C. Parmesan cheese, grated
2 T. basil

Cut a horizontal pocket in each
chicken breast & stuff each with Mozz.
cheese. Press edges of chicken together to
seal the pocket. Place flour, eggs, & bread
crumbs in three shallow dishes. Being
careful to keep chicken from opening, dip
each in flour, shaking off excess. Dip next
into egg then bread crumbs, coating each
evenly. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Fry each chicken breast until golden brown
on both sides. Place 2/3rds of tomato sauce
evenly on bottom of a baking dish & place
chicken breasts on top. Top each with remaining
tomato sauce & sprinkle with Parmesan & basil.
Bake 20 minutes. Serves 3


Crockpot Greek Potatoes

3 lb. fingerling potatoes, halved
2 T. olive oil
2 T. unsalted butter
juice of 1 lemon (zest before
squeezing – need zest later)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 T. dried oregano
1 tsp. smoked paprika
kosher salt/ground black pepper,
to taste
zest of 1 lemon
2 T. chopped fresh parsley

Spray insides of crockpot with nonstick
spray. Place potatoes, oil, butter, lemon
juice, garlic, oregano & paprika in crock;
season with salt/pepper. Cover & cook on
Low 4-5 hours or High 2-3 until potatoes
are tender. Serve immediately garnished
with lemon zest & parsley, if desired.
Serves 4


Jalapeno Cheddar Corn Muffins

1 C. plus 2 T. flour
1 C. cornmeal
1/2 C. sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 C. buttermilk*
1/2 C. oil
2 eggs
1 C. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
2-3 small jalapenos, chopped (2-3 T.)**

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large bowl mix flour, cornmeal,
sugar, baking soda & salt – toss with
fork. In large (2 Cup) measuring cup
place buttermilk, oil & eggs – whisk
to combine using fork. Pour wet
ingredients into dry & stir a little
using a wooden spoon (do not over-
mix). Add cheese & jalapenos to
batter – stir until there are no more
streaks of flour. Line muffin tins with
cupcake liners & spray with nonstick
spray. Pour batter into tins & bake 12-15
minutes until tops spring back when
lightly tapped. Remove from oven &
allow to cool in pans 5 minutes.

*If you don’t have buttermilk –
Pour 1 T. vinegar or lemon juice in a
2-Cup measuring cup & fill rest (up
to the 1 C. line) with milk – stir &
let stand 5 minutes – now you have

**Depending on how hot you want
your muffins, you might want to remove
most of the seeds inside the jalapenos,
as they hold the heat, using only the
flesh of the jalapenos (your choice)


Creamy Zucchini & Spinach Rigatoni

3 C. rigatoni pasta, uncooked
1 tsp. oil
1 zucchini, sliced
1/2 lb. sliced fresh mushrooms
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T. flour
1/4 tsp. dried basil
1/4 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
1 C. chicken broth
4 oz. cream cheese, cubed
1 (6 oz) pkg. baby spinach leaves
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese,

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Cook pasta in large saucepan as
per pkg. directions, omitting salt.
Heat oil in large skillet on medium
heat. Add zucchini, mushrooms &
garlic; cook & stir 3-4 minutes until
zucchini is crisp-tender. Add flour &
seasonings; cook & stir 1 minute. Stir
in broth; cook & stir 2-3 minutes until
thickened. Add cream cheese; cook
& stir 2-3 minutes until melted. Drain
pasta & return to pan. Add zucchini
mixture, spinach, Parm. cheese & 1/2
C. mozzarella; mix lightly – spoon into
2 Qt. casserole dish sprayed with
nonstick spray; top with remaining
mozzarella. Bake 10 minutes until
mozzarella is melted.
Serves 6 (1 1/3 C. ea)

(recipe: Kraft recipes)

Crockpot Blueberry French Toast
Overnight recipe – uses a crockpot
with removable liner

1 C. brown sugar, packed
1 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 C. butter, melted
12 slices white bread
1 1/2 C. fresh or frozen blueberries
5 eggs
1 1/2 C. whole milk
1 T. vanilla
1/2 tsp. salt

Garnish:  whipped cream, additional
blueberries, powdered sugar

Mix brown sugar, butter & cinnamon in
a bowl. Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick spray. Sprinkle 1/3 brown sugar
mixture evenly on bottom of crockpot.
Place 6 slices bread on top & sprinkle
another 1/3 brown sugar mixture on top;
top with blueberries evenly across top.
Cover with remaining bread; sprinkle
rest of brown sugar mixture on top. In
separate bowl mix eggs, milk, vanilla &
salt; pour evenly over all. Use a spoon to
gently press bread down. Cover &
refrigerate crockpot liner overnight. Place
crockpot liner in crockpot, cover & cook
on Low 3-4 hours. It is done when it is
set & golden on top. Serve sprinkled with
powdered sugar & a dollop of whipped
cream on top with some blueberries.
Serves 6-8


This is another busy week coming up: Knit Night
Tuesday, Weds. is a Fund Raiser Dinner for our
Special Needs group (6-7 p.m.) followed by the
regular group night (7-8:15 p.m.) so I guarantee
I’ll be pretty tired at the end of that night. There
are a few other things going on Thurs/Fri. but
Saturday is another Moms2Moms sale – YAY!
Still looking for a small/fold up high chair and
a small walker (like I had when my boys were
little) – the walkers they have now days are
HUGE and take up WAAAY too much room for
my small house. (AND there’s another baby
sale in 2 weeks – going to both with the Mom-to-
be and her mom, so should be fun!) I’m still a
bit amazed seeing her Mom ‘in action’ – since
this is their first grandchild she’s going APE-CRAZY
with the baby buying thing! Can’t say this baby
will not be SPOILED! Oh well – I’m letting her have
her fun, it’s nice to see her really excited for this
new addition (we still don’t know boy/girl).

It’s a nice, quiet afternoon – just had a really nice
‘spur of the moment’ Little Caesar’s $5 specials
pizza, salad & breadsticks (dear husband just
said, on the way home from church, “Hey, how
does pizza sound?” YES! Works for me – no
cooking and there’s enough for dinner, too!
SCORE! Have some leftover pork roast/carrots
& potatoes (enough for maybe, two). I LOVE
my crockpot – just throw in a pork or beef
roast, sprinkle it with a packet of dry onion
soup mix, add some carrots & potatoes and
let ‘er cook all day! (I decided this time to see
if I par-cooked the veggies, would they NOT
come out al dente – I don’t like the carrots
a bit crunchy. Just put them in a pot of
water & boiled them until they were about
half-cooked, drained then threw them in
the crockpot with the meat – IT WORKED!)

Hope you’re having a NICE, RELAXED day!




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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. hey boiling the vegetables ahead is a great idea.

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