Decorations DOWN – YAY!

My husband helped me take the tree off the baby grand piano; my job was to de-construct it & put it all back in the box. This year I came up with a GREAT solution to the base coming off right during our lifting the tree – happens EVERY year! This year I used Gorilla tape & taped the base to the stand – YES-it worked! I was a bit surprised that the taking-down of all the decorations yesterday went much smoother and faster than putting them all up. All that remains is waiting for youngest son to wake up so I can put the tree & lights away (storage is in his room).

Other things that happened:  Middle son turned 30 yesterday.

(for some reason I did a horrible job of writing this time, but it’s his favorite: double chocolate brownies, so he didn’t care.

Finished the PEACH colored baby afghan for Crisis Pregnancy centers – in the photo it looks kind of pink; couldn’t seem to get the colors adjusted but you get the idea.

I found a circa-1940’s scarf pattern on line and decided it would make a great baby afghan pattern; funny thing is: it seems VERY familiar! It’s VERY close to a scarf/afghan pattern I learned many MANY years ago while working All Nights at the phone company! The pattern I found on line calls for 10 rows – I started on row 10 and really didn’t like how it broke up the flow of the pattern so I did my own ‘adjusting’ – now it ‘flows’ like the pattern above, no breaking up after so many rows! I found a really nice, soft ‘dusty rose’ colored yarn at Meijers so that will be my next ‘new’ project (still working on the ‘use up extra yarns’ afghan – about 3/4ths done with that one).

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

Crackerbarrel Fried Apples

2 C. apple juice, plus 1/2 C. apple juice
4 large Golden Delicious apples,
with peel on, cut into 1/2″ wedges
3 T. cornstarch
1 tsp. apple pie spice
4 T. sugar

In medium skillet combine 2 C.
apple juice & sliced apples – simmer
gently until apples are fork-tender
but not mushy, turning apples
frequently. Remove apples from juice
using a slotted spoon & place in an
oven-safe dish. In a blender combine
remaining 1/2 C. apple juice, cornstarch,
apple pie spice & sugar – blend a few
seconds until smooth. Whisk mixture
into hot apple juice in skillet & cook,
stirring constantly on medium-high
heat until it bubbles & becomes
thickened & smooth. Pour thickened
mixture over apples & serve.

(recipe: americantimesfood.com)
——————————
Crockpot French Onion Soup

3 large yellow onions, sliced thin
3 T. butter
2 T. brown sugar
2 T. Worcestershire sauce
2 T. garlic, minced
64.5 oz. beef broth (Six 10.75 oz, ea)
cans
1 whole bay leaf
1 sprig fresh thyme (or 1 tsp. dried)
=
6 slices French bread, sliced
1 C. Swiss cheese, shredded
1 C. Parmesan cheese, shredded
=
In medium skillet add butter, sliced
onions & brown sugar – saute until onions
become translucent & caramelized. To
a 4 qt. crockpot (or larger) add onions,
beef broth, garlic, bay leaf & thyme.
Cover & cook 4-5 hours on Low.

To serve:

Turn on oven broiler
Add soup to ovenproof bowls & top with
1-2 slices French bread; top with both
cheeses. Place bowls on a cookie sheet &
place under broiler 1-2 minutes until
cheeses are melted & bubbly. Serves 6

(recipe: crockpotladies.com)
———————————-

Cheesy Ham Bubble Bakes

1 (6 oz) pkg. (Oscar Mayer) smoked
ham, chopped
3/4 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 (12 oz) can refrigerated buttermilk
biscuits (10 biscuits)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 8 muffin cups with nonstick
cooking spray.
In large bowl combine ham & cheese.
Cut each biscuit into 4 pieces & add to
ham mixture – mix lightly then spoon
into muffin tins. Bake 20 minutes until
puffed up & golden brown. Cool 10
minutes before removing from pan.
Serve warm. Makes 8

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

Make-Ahead Eggs Benedict Toast Cups

6 English muffins, split
1 envelope hollandaise sauce mix
12 slices Canadian bacon, quartered
1 tsp. black pepper
1 T. olive oil
6 large eggs
1 T. butter

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray 12 muffin tin cups with
nonstick cooking spray.
Using a rolling pin, flatten muffin halves
& press into muffin cups. Bake until
lightly browned, about 10 minutes.

Prepare hollandaise sauce accordg. to
pkg. directions; cool slightly. Sprinkle
bacon with black pepper. In large skillet
cook bacon in oil over medium heat until
partially cooked but not crisp. Remove
to paper towels to drain. Divide bacon
among muffin cups. Wipe skillet clean.

Whisk eggs & 1/2 C. cooled hollandaise
sauce until blended. In same skillet, heat
butter over medium heat. Pour egg mixture
into skillet; cook & stir until eggs are
thickened & no liquid egg remains. Divide
egg mixture among muffin cups & top
with remaining hollandaise sauce. Bake
8-10 minutes until heated through. Serve
warm. Makes 12

Overnight Option:
Refrigerate unbaked cups, covered,
overnight. Bake until golden brown,
10-12 minutes.

Freezer Option:
Cover & freeze unbaked cups in muffin
tin until firm. Transfer to an air-tight
container & return to freezer. To use,
bake cups in tin as directed, increasing
time to bake to 25-30 minutes. Cover
loosely with foil, if needed, to prevent
overbrowning.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————————-
Ground Beef Barley Soup

2 qts. water
2 meaty beef soup bones
2 beef bouillon cubes (or 2 tsp.
beef bouillon granules)
1 lb. ground beef
1/4 to 1/2 C. medium pearl barley
1 large carrot, diced
1 small onion, chopped
3-4 medium potatoes, peeled/
diced
2 tsp. garlic salt
1 tsp. onion powder
2 tsp. dried parsley
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper

In large Dutch oven bring water &
soup bones to a rapid boil; add
bouillon. Stir in ground beef in
small amounts – reduce heat.
Cover & simmer 1 1/2 hours until
meat comes off bones easily. Remove
bones. Strain broth; cool &
chill – skim off fat. Remove meat from
bones; dice & return to broth along
with remaining ingredients – bring to
a boil Reduce heat; cover & simmer
about 1 hour or until vegetables are
tender. Serves 10-12 (about 2 qts)

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————————

Asian Chicken Thighs

5 tsp. olive oil
5 bone-in chicken thighs,
skins removed
1/3 C. water
1/4 C. packed brown sugar
2 T. orange juice
2 T. soy sauce
2 T. ketchup
1 T. white vinegar
4 cloves garlic minced
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp. Chinese 5 spice powder
2 tsp. cornstarch
2 T. cold water
sliced green onions (garnish)

Cooked rice to serve 5

In large skillet heat oil over medium
heat; add chicken & cook 8-10
minutes per side until golden brown.
In small bowl whisk water, brown sugar,
orange juice, soy sauce, ketchup, vinegar,
garlic, pepper flakes & 5-spice powder –
pour over chicken. Bring to boil, reduce
heat & simmer, uncovered, 30-35 minutes
until chicken is tender, turning chicken
occasionally. In small bowl mix cornstarch
& cold water until smooth – stir into pan &
bring to boil. Cook & stir 1 minute until
sauce is thickened. Sprinkle top with green
onions, if desired. Serve with cooked rice.
Serves 5

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————–

Toasted Almond/Coconut Cream
Poke Cake

1 (2 layer size) white cake mix (plus
all ingredients needed on box to make
cake
1 tsp. almond extract
1 box coconut cream instant pudding mix
(use directions for ‘pie filling’)
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
1/2 C. toasted coconut
1/4 C. tasted sliced almonds

Prepare cake as per box directions but
add the 1 tsp. almond extract with
wet ingredients. Bake in a sprayed
9 X 13″ baking pan & bake as per
pkg. directions for that size pan.
When baked, remove from oven &
cool 15 minutes. Using the handle of
a wooden spoon, poke holes on top
of cake (about 6 holes across/10 holes
down) with holes about 1 inch apart.
Beat pudding mix & milk in small bowl
1 minute; pour over top of cake & press
mixture into holes. Cover & refrigerate
4 hours (the longer, the better). Frost
top of cake with Cool Whip before
serving & cover top with toasted
coconut & toasted almonds.
Serves 12

(recipe: bakeatmidnite.com)

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

Woke up to a light dusting of frost – it’s all gone
and the sun is shining brightly! LOVE the sunshine!
It always seems to charge my energy and give me
more ‘get up and go’, if you know what I mean!
Tomorrow starts a new week – finally back to my
‘old’ schedule of knit groups, special needs group,
babysitting, church/choir – it’s been a nice, peaceful
time of rest but I’m ready to learn new choir songs,
meet with my knit ladies and get back to ‘my’ normal!

Hope things are going well with you, also!

Hugs;

Pammie

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Enjoy your back to normal. THe baby afghan is lovely


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