Thoughts on a Thursday

Yes, it’s been in the 90’s all week (a few promises of thunderstorms but they never came true). Bright, sunny day with a little breeze – SO GLAD I’m HOME! I was supposed to babysit for around 6 hours today but then grandson came up sick & his dad said he didn’t want me to catch whatever it was, so I’m home! YAY! I ‘did’ venture out awhile ago – sometimes when you’re in charge of a group of people things get a bit ‘dicey’ so I was scoping out locations for my knit group. Because of Covid 19 Panera Bread (where we’ve ‘been’ meeting for years now) is only 50% open and only if you sit with someone in your family (that doesn’t work for a group of 14+ unrelated women). That led to me trying to find a suitable substitute – I found a lovely shaded area, easy to find, good parking – only problem NO BATHROOMS. (There was a port-a-potty off a ways away) Our location is in the same place where our local Farmers Market Fruit & Veggie stand sets up end of July – end of September which makes me trying to find a quick ‘new’ place of utmost importance. I thought I had that covered – there’s a pavilion 2-3 minutes away from where we are now but . . . once again, NO BATHROOMS. The ladies began to grumble; several gave me suggestions for other places and I’ve now officially checked them both out. One is a water park which is closed for the summer due to the virus BUT they’re open to drive in/have a pavilion and port-a-potties. (The ladies were grumbling about that idea). Next place is where we’ve met every year in the past to do the historical Log Cabin Day – I just came home from there and THEY HAVE REAL BATHROOMS WHICH ARE OPEN! They are cleaned once a day – now I’m awaiting verification that they are NOT locked in the evenings (we would be there 4-6/7 p.m. every week). Ah, the fun of trying to please ladies! (I know – I CAN’T please everyone, but I sure want to try!)

Carrot Cake Muffins w/Maple
Cream Cheese Frosting

1/3 C. canola
1/2 C. walnut or pecan pieces
1 3/4 C. flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon (plus more
for dusting)
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
3/4 C. packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 C. unsweetened applesauce
1 tsp. vanilla
2 C. coarsely grated carrots

Frosting:
1/4 C. whipped cream cheese
1 T. maple syrup
=
Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray 12 muffin tin cups with
nonstick cooking spray (or use
paper liners)
Spread nuts on a small rimmed
baking sheet & toast in oven
about 3 minutes – let cool slightly
then finely chop.

In medium bowl whisk flour, baking
powder, cinnamon, baking soda,
salt & nutmeg.
In a large bowl whisk brown sugar,
oil & eggs until well combined.
Whisk in applesauce & vanilla;
stir in carrots. Add dry ingredients
to wet in 2 or 3 batches, mixing
each addition until just combined.
Stir in nuts until just incorporated.
Scoop batter into prepared tins.
Bake about 20 minutes until a
toothpick inserted into centers
comes out clean. Transfer to
wire rack to cool completely,
the remove muffins from tin.

While muffins are cooling,
prepare frosting:

In small bowl combine cream cheese
& syrup, beating until smooth.
Transfer mixture to a small ziplock
bag, pushing frosting to one corner.
Snip off about 1/2 inch of bag
corner (to create a piping bag).
Squeeze a dollop of frosting onto
each muffin. Dust muffin tops
with cinnamon (if desired).
Makes 12 muffins

(recipe: The Oakland Press, July
5,2020)
—————————-
Quinoa Greek Salad

2 C. chicken stock
1 C. quinoa (uncooked)
1/2 C. red pepper, diced
1/2 C. green pepper, diced
1/2 C. cucumber, diced
1/4 C. green onion, diced
1/4 C. black olives, sliced or whole
1/4 C. red onion, diced
3 oz. feta cheese

Dressing:
1/4 C. lemon juice
2 T. olive oil
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 tsp. basil, chopped
1/2 tsp. oregano, chopped
black pepper, to taste
=
Heat chicken stock in a
saucepan – bring to boil. Stir
in quinoa; reduce heat to
medium-low & cover. Cook
15 minutes until liquid is
absorbed. Transfer to a large
bowl & cool.
Stir veggies & feta into cooled
quinoa. Whisk dressing ingredients
together & pour over salad. Toss
to coat. Serves 6

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
————————–

Apple Coleslaw

3 C. chopped cabbage
1 carrot, scraped & shredded
2 unpeeled apples/chopped
(poster used 1 red/1 green
Delicious)
1/4 – 1/2 C. chopped onion
(poster used purple, can use
regular or green onion)
1 tsp. celery seeds (or 1/2 C.
chopped celery)
1/2 C. mayonnaise or Miracle Whip
2 T. honey
1 T. granulated sugar
2 tsp. white vinegar
1/8 tsp. black pepper
pinch salt

In large bowl combine cabbage,
shredded carrot, apples, onion &
celery – toss. In a bowl whisk mayo,
honey, sugar, vinegar, pepper & salt –
pour over slaw & mix well with a
spoon. Refrigerate 2-3 hours before
serving. Serves 8 (makes about 4 C.)

NOTE: You can use red or green
chopped peppers, raisins, or nuts.
You can use lite mayo, omit sugar or
use sugar substitute

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

Crockpot Chicken Tetrazzini

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken
breasts or tenders
1 can cream of chicken soup
(undiluted)
1 (.6 oz) pkt. Italian Salad Dressing
mix
1 T. minced garlic
1/4 C. butter
8 oz. cream cheese, cut into cubes
=
Cooked noodles to serve 6
=
Place all ingredients in crockpot
except cream cheese. Cover &
cook on High 3 hours (or Low
7 hours). Add cream cheese; stir
& cook an additional 1/2 hour
until cream cheese melts (no
lumps). Stir using a wooden
spoon to break up the chicken.
Serve over cooked noodles.
Serves 6

(recipe: southernplate.com)
————————-

Broccoli Beef

1 lb. flank steak, cut into thin strips
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. ground white pepper
1/2 C. soy sauce
1 T. brown sugar
5 cloves garlic, minced
11-inch piece of fresh ginger,
peeled/grated
1 T. cornstarch, optional
1 T. sesame oil
1/2 yellow onion, sliced
1 large head broccoli, cut into florets/
blanched

Cooked rice to serve 4

Optional garnishes:
1 T. toasted sesame seeds
3 scallions, sliced on the bias
=
Season beef with salt & pepper. In
small bowl whisk soy sauce, brown
sugar, garlic, ginger & cornstarch
(if using). In large nonstick skillet
over high heat, warm 1/2 T. sesame
oil until just smoking. Add beef &
cook, stirring occasionally, until meat
is just about cooked through. Transfer
to a plate. Add remaining 1/2 T. oil to
skillet; add onions & cook about 8
minutes until softened. Add blanched/
drained broccoli – cook 1 minute then
add reserved garlic sauce – stir to coat.
Return beef to skillet & cook about 3
minutes more until beef is cooked through
& sauce has reduced slightly. Transfer
to serving plates over rice. Sprinkle
tops with sesame seeds & scallions.
Serves 4

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
—————————-
Grilled Basil & Tomato Chicken

8 Roma tomatoes, divided
3/4 C. balsamic vinegar
1/4 C. fresh basil, thinly sliced
2 T. olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. salt
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

Cut tomatoes into quarters & put
in a food processor. Add vinegar,
basil, oil, garlic & salt – cover &
process until smooth. Pour 1/2 C.
mixture into a small bowl; cover &
refrigerate until serving time. Pour
remaining mixture into a large
ziplock bag – add chicken. Seal bag
& turn to coat chicken. Refrigerate
1 hour.
=
Heat grill over medium heat.
Remove chicken from bag, discard
marinade. Grill chicken, covered,
4-6 minutes per side until golden
& juices run clear. Cut remaining
tomatoes in half; grill 2-3 minutes
per side, until tender. Serve chicken
with grilled tomatoes & reserved
tomato mixture. Serves 4

(recipe: gooseberrypatch)
——————————–

Grilled Jalapeno Poppers

24 fresh jalapeno peppers
12 oz. bulk pork sausage
12 slices bacon, strips halved
=
24 toothpicks (soak in water if
wooden)
=======
Wash peppers & remove stems.
Cut a slit along one side of each
pepper – remove seeds; rinse &
dry peppers.
In a skillet cook sausage over medium
heat until no longer pink; drain.
Stuff peppers with sausage & wrap
with bacon – secure with a toothpick.
Grill peppers, uncovered, over medium
heat for about 15 minutes until tender &
bacon is crisp, turning frequently.
Makes 24

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
————————

Fruit Pizza

Crust:
2 C. flour
1 tsp. salt
8 oz. cream cheese, cubed
1 C. cold butter, cubed
1 egg, beaten

Topping:
1 (3.9 oz) box instant vanilla
pudding mix
1 1/2 C. cold milk
1 tsp. almond extract
1 C. whipping cream

Fresh Fruit ideas:
sliced peaches
strawberries
blueberries
black berries
raspberries
cherries
peeled/sliced kiwi
sliced bananas
=
In bowl of a food processor, place
flour & salt. Add cubed cream cheese
& butter – pulse until large crumbs
start to form, 10-15 pulses. (If you
grab some dough & it holds together
after you squeeze it, it’s ready). Pile
dough in a large circle & wrap in
plastic wrap – refrigerate 1 hour.
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Roll out dough to fit in a rimmed
sheet pan (18 X 13 X 1″) Flatten
dough to fit pan. Prick dough all over
with a fork & brush on beaten egg.
Bake 15 minutes until golden brown.
(It will shrink slightly). * Let crust
cool completely.
=
Filling:
In large bowl beat milk, dry pudding
mix & almost until smooth & thickened.
In another bowl beat whipping cream until
stiff peaks form – fold cream into pudding
mixture then spread evenly on crust. Top
with sliced fruit & serve.
(Poster noted that she thinks this tastes
best after being refrigerated an extra 1-2
hours before serving.) Serves 16

*If you don’t want the crust to shrink
slightly you can omit using the egg & place
parchment paper on top of dough. Add
dried beans or lentils (or pastry weights)
on top to weight down the dough, then
bake.

(recipe: laurenslatest.com

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

Hope you are able to stay cool, safe
and in good health during this ‘season of
craziness’.

Hugs;

Pammie

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