and so it begins – THE HOLIDAYS!

First thing this morning I was looking over all the 5 grocery store flyers for my area, attempting to come up with some sort of idea of what I’m preparing for next week’s dinner. Mind you, my oldest son will be having the dinner at his house & I’m bringing half of the ‘sides’ and the desserts (other grandma is doing the rest). Now that we’ve had one Thanksgiving/Christmas dinner experience with ‘other grandma’ I now have a better idea of what’s expected of me. Her version of both dinners involves COLD sides: macaroni salad, potato salad, cole slaw, etc. whereby I was raised on HOT sides: sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, etc. And she also does something I’ve never heard of before: she cooks an entire holiday dinner the day before FOR HERSELF & HER HUSBAND, then they have their ‘feast’ the day AFTER the holiday. OK…different. Why is that important? When it comes to offering leftovers to take home, she doesn’t want any, as she already has a full dinner at home. Different (or strange, whichever you want to think); I’ve learned not to ‘go against the flow’ and just keep on plugging, so to speak. She also does not do desserts, so that leaves me. What am I bringing? I HAVE NO IDEA! (am thinking about the first dessert below – for starters)

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

Pecan Pie Bars

2 C. unsalted butter, room
temp/divided
2 C. light brown sugar, divided
2 T. vanilla
2 C. flour
1/2 C. light corn syrup
1/4 C. heavy cream
1 lb. pecans, chopped

Preheat oven 250 degrees F.
Line 9 X 13″ baking dish with
parchment paper. In large bowl
using elec. mixer, cream 1 C.
butter & 1/2 C. brown sugar until
light & fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Add 1 T. vanilla & mix to combine.
On Low speed, add flour & mix
until flour & butter have come
together. Place dough in prepared
pan & using your fingers, press
dough evenly in pan. Bake 15
minutes until crust is light brown
around edges. Cool in fridge or
freezer. (Leave oven on).

In 4 qt. saucepan over medium-
high heat, combine 1 C. butter,
1 1/2 C. brown sugar & corn syrup;
stir until well blended. Bring to boil &
stir frequently 3 minutes. (mixture will
get light & airy). Remove pan from heat;
add heavy cream & vanilla; stir to combine.
Add pecans & stir until they are completely
coated. Remove crust from fridge/freezer –
pour topping over crust; using a spatula
to spread in an even layer. Return pan to
oven & bake 25 minutes until topping
is set (it will move slowly when you
jiggle the pan). Allow bars to cool
completely before cutting into squares.
Makes 20 bars

(recipe: dinneratthezoo.com)

——————————-

Ham & Egg Cups

6 slices deli-style ham
6 eggs
1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
black pepper, to taste

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray muffin tin cups with
nonstick cooking spray. Line
bottom of muffin tin cups with
individual slices of ham. In a
skillet, scramble 6 eggs as
desired; scoop eggs evenly
into cups; sprinkle tops with
Cheddar cheese & black pepper.
Bake 10-12 minutes until cheese
is melted & ham is baked.
Makes 6 cups

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

Chicken/Quinoa/Brown Rice Soup

1 onion, chopped
2 C. carrots, chopped
2 C. celery, chopped
2 T. olive oil, divided
1 1/2 lb. chicken thighs (can use
frozen)
16 C. water
12 tsp. chicken base (or chicken
bullion)
1 1/2 tsp. ground thyme
1 tsp. poultry seasoning
1 tsp. parsley
2 bay leaves
salt/pepper
2/3 C. quinoa
3/4 C. brown rice
5 C. fresh spinach, chopped small

Heat large, deep skillet over
medium-high heat. Add 1 T.
olive oil – when oil is hot, add
veggies & sprinkle with salt/
pepper. Cook until crisp-tender,
about 5 minutes. Carefully
scoop veggies out & set aside.
Place chicken in a soup pot; add
hot water, chicken base/bullion,
seasonings & sprinkle with salt/
pepper, to taste. Bring to boil
over High heat (making sure it
doesn’t boil over). Once you have
a rolling boil, turn heat to medium
& allow chicken to cook through,
about 20 minutes. Using same
skillet you cooked veggies in,
heat to medium-high – add 1 T.
olive oil. When oil is hot, add quinoa
& brown rice. Stir & allow both to
get toasted (it will start to smell
kind of nutty, about 5 minutes.)
When chicken is cooked through,
remove from pot & shred using 2
forks then place back in pot.
Carefully pour quinoa/rice into pot
& bring to boil. Cover with lid (with
slight gap for steam). Cook 20
minutes until grains are soft & cooked
through. Add veggies & simmer just
until heated through. Remove pot
from heat; add spinach to pot & stir.
Taste soup for seasoning, adding more
salt/pepper, if needed. Serves 6-8

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

Baked Cranberry/Orange Stuffing-
crusted Chicken

1/2 C. mayonnaise
1/4 C. dried cranberries
1/2 tsp. grated orange peel
4 boneless skinless chicken breast
halves (about 1 1/4 lb)
1/2 C. seasoned cubed stuffing mix,
finely crushed

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Combine mayonnaise, cranberries &
orange peel in medium bowl. Arrange
chicken on baking sheet & evenly
top with mayo. mixture then sprinkle
with stuffing crumbs. Bake 20 minutes
until chicken is thoroughly cooked.
Serves 4

(recipe: hellsmanns.com)
———————————

Jalapeno Popper Wonton Cups

12 wonton wrappers
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. sour cream
12 oz. bacon, cooked/crumbled-
(reserve 2 T.)
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
(reserve 2 T.)
3-4 jalapenos, seeded/chopped

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 12 muffin sups with cooking
spray. Place 1 wonton wrapper in
each muffin cup; Bake 8 minutes
until lightly browned. Remove from
oven & cool slightly. In medium bowl
mix cream cheese, sour cream, bacon,
Ched. cheese & chopped jalapenos.
Spoon filling into cups then sprinkle
tops with reserved bacon & cheese.
Return to oven & bake 8-10 minutes
until wontons are golden brown &
cheese is melted. Makes 12

(recipe: lemontreedwelling.com)
————————————
Bacon-Blue Cheese Dip

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 C. sour cream
1 (5 oz) container crumbled
blue cheese
2 T. ranch dressing
1/2 C. cooked/crumbled bacon
4 green onions, sliced

Dippers;
crackers, bread or fresh veggies

In small bowl combine cream
cheese, sour cream, blue cheese
& ranch dressing – blend until smooth.
Stir in bacon & onions. Serve with
suggested dippers. Serves 8

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

2-Ingredient Pumpkin Cake
(with Apple Cider Glaze)

Cake:
1 box yellow cake mix
1 (15 oz) can pumpkin puree

Glaze:
1 1/2 C. powdered sugar
3 T. apple cider
3/4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a small (7 X 11 X 2″ pan)
with nonstick cooking spray.
In mixer bowl beat dry cake mix
& pumpkin puree until well mixed.
Mixture will be very thick; pour
batter into prepared pan. Bake
28 minutes until a toothpick
inserted into center comes out
clean. Do not overbake. Let cool
5-10 minutes in pan; flip pan
onto a platter.

Glaze:

In large bowl combine powdered
sugar, apple cider & pumpkin
pie spice. Glaze should be thick
but pourable. Add more sugar or
cider if needed to achieve desired
consistency. Pour glaze over cake
while cake is still warm. Reserve
some glaze to pour over each slice
when served. Serve warm or at
room temperature.

 (recipe: americantimesfood.com)

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

Our weather is a bit confusing: kind of like “Make
sure you look at the weather report before planning
your day”. Yesterday was overcast with light rain &
in the 30’s. Last night when I went to choir practice
at 4:30 p.m. it was very lightly sprinkling. When I
came out after evening church (a little after 7 p.m.)
I couldn’t really tell if it was raining heavily OR it
was huge snow flakes! It kept up until I got close
to home (about 15 minutes later) then it was just
a light rain again…go figure; sigh. Right now
(1:30 p.m.) it’s 41 degrees F. , overcast but I can
live with that. Am trying to decide if I want to
venture out to go pick up “on hold” library books
& a quick trip to Krogers, or put it off. IF I do that,
will have to wait until Weds or Friday. Tomorrow
starts back babysitting BUT – I don’t have to go
until 1:30 p.m. . . . YAY! That means I probably
will be there until around 5/5:30 – not bad!

Hope, for your ‘first day of the week’ you’re
having a GREAT day!

Hugs;

Pammie


 

 

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Halloween, 2017

WE HAD TRICK OR TREATERS!

Surprise! In my last blog entry I explained that we NEVER get beggars at our house because we live on a main road (speed 45 MPH) so when the time comes, we just turn off our lights & chill until trick or treating hour is over. Last night, while happily playing a solitaire game on my computer, I hear my cell phone. I answer, only to hear my oldest son say: “Mom, come open the door!” I go to the door and this is what I found! They said that since my grandson is too young for Halloween, they decided to just go visit the grandparents, for fun! Baby was super grumpy – he’s getting a top tooth in, but after a bit of goofing on my part, he was back to his usual happy self – even let out a few very loud “Dadada’s! It was a very nice surprise!

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

Apple Pie Bread Bowl
(appetizer)

1 bakery round loaf of bread
5 assorted apples (Gr. Smith, Honey
Crisp, Gala) peeled/sliced
2 T. lemon juice
1/4 C. granulated sugar
1/4 C. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
pinch salt
1 T. unsalted butter, melted
sugar, for sprinkling top
caramel syrup, warmed,
for serving

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Slice top off bread, hollow out
insides, creating a bowl (reserve
carved out bread for dipping)
In large bowl mix apples, lemon
juice, sugar, cinnamon & salt until
well combined. Transfer to inside
of bread bowl, making sure to fully
stuff it. Place top of bread back on;
brush bread all over with butter &
sprinkle with sugar. Wrap loosely
in foil & bake 1 hour until mixture is
tender & bread is golden. Drizzle
with caramel & serve. Serves 6-8

(recipe: delish.com)
——————————–
Tuscan White Bean Chicken Soup
(crockpot)

2 (15 oz., ea) cans cannellini beans,
drained/rinsed
1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes, reserve
juices
1 (32 oz) box chicken or vegetable broth
1 1/2 C. carrots, diced
1 1/2 C. celery, diced
1 C. yellow onion, diced
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 bay leaves
1 sprig rosemary
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
kosher salt/black pepper, to taste

Parmesan cheese, grated – optional
garnish

Place chicken, carrots, celery, onion &
garlic in crockpot. Add cannelini beans &
diced tomatoes (with juices); pour in
chicken broth. Season generously with
salt/pepper then add bay leaves,
rosemary sprig, oregano, thyme, basil &
red pepper flakes. Stir well then cover &
cook on High 3-4 hours or Low 6-8 hours
until chicken is thoroughly cooked. Using
2 forks, remove chicken to a plate &
shred – return chicken to pot & stir.
Serve hot, garnished with Parmesan
cheese, if desired. Serves 8

Optional: Place all ingredients (uncooked)
into a large resealable plastic gallon-sized
bag; squeeze out all remaining air & freeze
for up to 6 months before cooking.

(recipe: 12tomatoes.com)
—————————————–

Smoked Sausage/Potato Casserole

3 C. potatoes peeled/cut into cubes when
cool (approx 1 lb)
4 T. butter
4 T. flour
2 C. milk
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 lb. Velveeta cheese, diced
1/2 C. sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
1 lb. skinless smoked sausage
1/8 tsp. paprika

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Cut sausage in half, lengthwise then
chop into 1/2 inch ‘half-moon’ cuts.
Cook in skillet about 15 minutes,
turning frequently to slightly brown.
Place cooked/diced potatoes in a
2-qt. casserole dish. Add cooked meat
& gently mix. In a sauce pan, over
medium heat add all remaining
ingredients (except Chedd. cheese &
paprika) – heat until warm, melted &
smooth. (Use a whisk & stir constantly).
Pour sauce over potatoes & meat;
sprinkle shredded sharp cheese on
top then sprinkle paprika evenly
over top. Bake 35-45 minutes.

(recipe: Mike Suddaby-Facebook)
—————————–

Buffalo Chicken Rollups

2 (8 oz, ea) pkgs. cream cheese,
softened
1 (1 oz) pkt. ranch seasoning mix
1/2 C. wing sauce
1 1/2 C. shredded, roasted chicken
(OR) 2 (5 oz, ea) cans canned
chicken, drained
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 C. chopped green onion
6 (10 inch) flour tortillas

Ranch salad dressing, for dipping

Using stand mixer or in large bowl
using elec. mixer, mix cream cheese &
ranch seasoning until well combined.
Mix in wing sauce then use a rubber
spatula to stir in chicken, cheese &
green onions. Spread mixture evenly
onto tortillas. Roll up tortillas &
refrigerate 3 hours. Slice into rounds
& serve with bowl of ranch dressing
for dipping. Refrigerate any leftovers.
Makes approx. 60 rollups

(recipe: mymagazine)
————————————

Asian Apple Slaw

1/2 C. mayonnaise
1 tsp. soy sauce
2 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
1/2 T. grated fresh ginger (or
1/2 tsp. ground ginger)
1 (16 oz) bag coleslaw mix
2 green onions, chopped
1 Granny Smith apple, cut into
thin strips

In large bowl combine mayo,
soy sauce, sugar, vinegar &
ginger. Stir in remaining
ingredients & chill 1 hour.
Serves 8

(recipe: hellmanns.com)
———————————-

Caramel Apple Cheese Ball

2 (8 oz, ea) blocks cream cheese,
softened
1/4 C. caramel sauce, + more for topping
1 T. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
pinch of salt
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 C. Granny Smith apple, finely
chopped
2 C. pecans, toasted/chopped
=
crackers, for serving

In large bowl with elec. mixer, beat
cream cheese with caramel, lemon
juice, cinnamon & pinch salt until
combined. Fold in cheese & apples;
transfer to a sheet of plastic wrap &
shape into a ball. Freeze until firm,
30 minutes.
To plate:
Add chopped pecans to a plate.
Roll cheese ball in nuts, then transfer
to a serving platter. Drizzle with more
caramel & sprinkle with more salt,
if desired. Serve with crackers.
Serves 8-10

(recipe: delish.com)
———————————–

Crockpot Spicy Kielbasa Jalapeno Dip

1 lb. kielbasa sausage, diced small
16 oz. cream cheese
1/3 C. mayonnaise
1/3 C. apricot preserves
1/4 C. fresh seeded/chopped
jalapeno pepper
2 T. hot sauce

Optional dippers:
chips/corn chips
crackers
sliced crusty bread

In medium skillet brown diced
sausage over medium-high heat,
stirring occasionally until browned;
add to crockpot with remaining
ingredients – stir to combine. Cover
& cook on Low 2-3 hours. Serve
with chips, crackers or slices of
crusty bread. Serves 8

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

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins

Cream Cheese Filling:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 egg
4 T. sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
1 1/2 C. mini chocolate chips

Muffins:
1 1/4 C. pumpkin puree
3/4 C. sugar
1/2 C. vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 1/2 C. flour
1 T. pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Line 24 muffin tins with paper
liners.

Cream Cheese Filling:
Beat cream cheese, egg, sugar &
salt together in large bowl using
elec. mixer. Stir in chocolate
chips.

Muffins:
Beat eggs, sugar, pumpkin puree &
oil until smooth using elec. mixer.
In separate bowl, mix flour, baking
soda, baking powder, salt & pumpkin
pie spice – mix into pumpkin batter.
Divide batter between muffin cups.
Use a small spatula or back of a spoon
to make an indent in middle of each
muffin batter. Add a scoop of the cream
cheese mixture to center of each one.
Bake 17-21 minutes until a toothpick
inserted into pumpkin part of muffin
comes out clean. Makes 24

(recipe: thegunnysack.com)

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

Had to go out today for a few errands and BOY –
it’s CHILLY out there! 37 degrees F. is NOT the
temperature I was expecting – time to get out
my heavier jacket (before finally dragging out
my VERY heavy winter coat). Brrrrrrrr!

Gas prices jumped a bit lately from $2.49/9
to $2.69/9 – guess it’s to be expected, eh?

Hope you stay warm & cosy – enjoy your day!

Hugs;

Pammie

Another “Hurry up & wait” day

Another issue of my special needs group’s newsletter is due to be mailed IMMEDIATELY but . . . I’ve been awaiting final approval of the date for our group Christmas dinner. Apparently, the lady in the church office who would be giving us final approval is NOT IN today so I’m sorta freaking out a bit. The lady that does the printing is OUT & they need to be mailed ASAP. To make a long story short(er) finally got the call the printing lady is IN: After a quick revise on the event listing in the newsletter, I’m off to pick up the printed copies; church office closes at 4 p.m. and it’s 3:26 (picked them up, they’re folded & in envelopes – just waiting for traffic to clear a little in front of my house & they will be trecked to the Post Office to mail. SIGH!)

LOTS of yummy sounding recipes coming in – hard to chose which ones to share!

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

Caramel-Apple Cheesecake Dip

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
to room temp.
1/2 C. caramel sauce, warmed
1/2 C. chopped pecans
3-4 sliced apples, for serving

On a serving plate pour caramel
over softened cream cheese block.
Top with chopped nuts & serve
with apples. Serves 6

NOTE: to keep apple slices from
browning, dip in lemon juice before
serving. (they will not taste like lemon)

(recipe: delish.com)
——————————

Crockpot Spaghetti Squash & Cheese

2 spaghetti squash – washed
1 C. chicken broth
salt/pepper, to taste
2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese
1 C. shredded Parmesan cheese
1/3 C. heavy cream

Pour broth in crockpot. Cut squash
in halves; scoop out seeds with a
spoon (discard seeds); pierce halves
with a knife 5-6 times. Salt & pepper
insides & place, cut sides down, in
broth. Cook on High 4 hours. Carefully
remove halves & cool a few minutes.
Holding halves with a thick kitchen
towel, scoop out squash. (throw away
outer skin) Return scooped out portion
to crockpot. Add cheeses & stir well.
Cover & cook on High 5-10 minutes until
cheese melts. Stir in heavy cream & taste/
adjust seasonings, if needed. Serves 12

NOTE: this is a very cheesy dish – if you
don’t want it as cheesy, you may want to
reduce the amount at the end.

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

Butternut Squash & Sausage Soup

1 large butternut squash (4 – 4 1/2 lb.)
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium tart apple, peeled/coarsely
chopped
2 tsp. olive oil
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. dried marjoram
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg
6 C. chicken broth
4 fully cooked Italian sausage
links, chopped
4 large carrots, chopped
2/3 C. plain Greek yogurt
4 tsp. minced fresh sage
1 tsp. cider vinegar

Optional toppings:
Corn bread croutons
plain yogurt

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Cut squash in half lengthwise;
discard seeds. Place squash,
cut side down, in 15 X 10 X 1″
baking pan sprayed with nonstick
cooking spray. Bake, uncovered,
45-60 minutes until tender. Cool
slightly; scoop out pulp.

In a Dutch oven, cook onion &
apple in oil until tender. Add
garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Stir
in seasonings; cook until fragrant,
about 10 seconds. Add broth &
squash; bring to boil. Reduce heat;
simmer, uncovered, 15-20 minutes
to allow flavors to blend. Cool
slightly. Place mixture in a blender,
in batches; cover & blend until
smooth. Return pureed mixture to
pan; stir in sausage & carrots –
bring to boil. Reduce heat; cover &
simmer 15-20 minutes until carrots
are tender.

Just before serving, stir in 2/3 C. yogurt,
sage & vinegar. Serve topped with
croutons and/or yogurt if desired.
Serves 8 (3 1/4 quarts).

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————————

Bacon/Cheddar Potato Cakes

6 slices bacon
4 C. cold, leftover mashed potatoes
2 eggs
2-3 cloves garlic, grated or finely
chopped
6-8 green onions, finely sliced
1 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese

Place bacon in large, deep skillet
over medium-high heat; cook
bacon, turning occasionally, until
evenly browned & crisp, about
10 minutes. Remove to paper
towel-lined plate; crumble. Leave
drippings in skillet & add garlic &
green onions – saute 1-2 minutes
until slightly soft; drain. Mix mashed
potatoes, eggs, onion powder, salt/
pepper in a bowl. Stir in crumbled
bacon, cheese & sauted garlic/onion.
Form mixture into 8 patties. Heat
bacon drippings over medium-high
heat & pan-fry patties until crisp
on each side, about 4 minutes per
side. Drain on paper towels & serve.
Makes 8 patties.

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

Pumpkin Mac & Cheese with
Roasted Veggies
(possibly overnight recipe,
depends on whether you use
a fresh pumpkin, or canned)

1 pumpkin (about 28 oz) OR
1 (15 oz) can pumpkin puree
1 (16 oz) pkg. cauliflower florets,
cut into 1″ pieces
1 (16 oz) pkg. Brussels sprouts,
quartered
1 1/2 tsp. olive oil
3/4 tsp. kosher salt
1 (12 oz) pkg. rotini pasta
1 1/2 T. butter
1/4 C. onion, minced
2 T. flour
1 1/2 C. milk
2/3 C. chicken or vegetable broth
5 oz. grated sharp Cheddar cheese
4 oz. fresh grated Gouda cheese
2 T. fresh grated Parmesan cheese
kosher salt/black pepper, to taste
pinch nutmeg

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Line 2 large baking sheets with foil;
spray with nonstick cooking spray. Toss
cauliflower & Brussels sprouts with
olive oil/season with salt & spread in
even layer on prepared sheets.

NOTE:
if you are roasting the pumpkin yourself:
cut top off pumpkin (like you were carving
a jack-o-lantern); cut pumpkin into quarters.
Scoop out seeds (can save to roast, if desired).
Rinse & lay out quarters on a baking sheet to
dry overnight. Place dried pumpkin on sheet
pan & roast with other veggies 35-37 minutes,
stirring veggies & rotating pans halfway
through cooking time until veggies are soft &
have begun to brown around edges & pumpkin
is soft if pierced with a knife. Remove from oven;
when cool enough to handle, remove pumpkin
from skin (discard skin) & place pumpkin in a
food processor. Puree until smooth, adding
water by the tablespoon if needed, until smooth.
While veggies are roasting, bring large pot of salted
water to boil & cook pasta accordg. to pkg. directions,
omitting salt – drain. Over medium heat melt butter;
add onion & cook on Low 2 minutes. Add flour &
cook 1 more minute until flour is golden & well
combined. Add milk & broth; whisk, raising heat to
medium-high until boiling; cook about 4-5 minutes
until thickened slightly. Season with 3/4 tsp. salt,
nutmeg & pepper. Once it begins to thicken, stir in
pumpkin puree & cook until heated through, about
2 minutes. Remove from heat; add cheeses – mix
well until melted. Add cooked pasta & stir well.
Fold in roasted veggies. Serves 8

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
———————————-
One-Skillet Steak

1/3 C. flour
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 1/2 lb. beef cubed steak
3 T. vegetable oil
1/3 C. mayonnaise
2 T. balsamic vinegar
1 T. Dijon-style mustard

In a shallow dish combine flour,
salt/pepper – mix well. Completely
coat cubed steak with mixture. In
large skillet heat oil over medium-
high heat – saute steaks 6-8 minutes
turning once, until juices run clear.
Place steaks on a covered serving
platter. Drain excess liquid from
skillet & reduce heat to Low. In small
bowl whisk mayonnaise, vinegar &
mustard; add to skillet. Return steaks
to skillet – completely coat steaks
with mayonnaise mixture. Cook
3-4 minutes until heated through.
Serves 4

(recipe: mrfood.com)
———————————-

Crockpot Fresh Breakfast Bake

12 large eggs
3/4 C. canned evaporated milk
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1 1/2 C. Cheddar cheese, shredded
1 1/2 C. mozzarella cheese, shredded
2 lb. potatoes, thinly sliced (poster uses
Russets & doesn’t peel them)
1 1/2 lb. breakfast sausage (pork or
turkey, cooked/drained/crumbled)
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1/2 C. green onions, sliced

Serving Options:
Parmesan cheese
Paprika

Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick spray. In medium bowl mix
eggs, evap. milk, red pepper flakes,
salt/pepper, 1 C. of each cheese.
Place half of sliced potatoes in
bottom of crockpot. Spread half
of cooked sausage on top; sprinkle
half of onion then half of remaining
cheeses on top – repeat layers:
potatoes, sausage, onion, cheeses.
Carefully pour egg mixture over
all making sure the top all gets
covered. Sprinkle green onions on
top. Cover & cook on Low 5-6
hours or High 3 hours until eggs
are set. Sprinkle top of cooked
casserole with (optional) Parmesan
cheese and/or paprika before
serving. Serves 8

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

Pumpkin Pie Dippers

1/2 C. pumpkin puree
1/4 C. sugar
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
2 (store bought) pie crusts
egg wash, for dough (1 egg
mixed with 1 T. water)
2 T. cinnamon sugar

caramel sauce, warmed in
microwave, for dipping

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Pumpkin Pie mixture:
In medium bowl mix puree,
sugar & pie spice. On a floured
work surface, roll out one pie
crust. Spread pumpkin mixture
all over, leaving 1/4 inch border.
Top with second pie crust &
brush all over with egg wash;
sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.
Using a pizza or pastry cutter,
slice into ‘fries’ then transfer
to a parchment-paper lined
baking sheet. Bake 15 minutes
until golden. Serve with warm
caramel sauce for dipping.
Serves 6-8

(recipe: delish.com)

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

Our weather is chilly, rainy/windy & 41 degrees F.
(with the sun occasionally popping out – go figure!)
Tomorrow night is halloween – because we live on
a major road, we don’t get any ‘beggars’ – that’s
OK. When our sons were younger I’d buy each of
them a bag of their favorite candy bars and we’d
be done with it (this was after they were too grown
to trick-or-treat). Since they’re all now ‘out of the
house’, I just get a small bag for husband & I (hey,
we like chocolate, too!).

Hope you have a warm, safe day!

Hugs;

Pammie

and there is JOY

Yesterday found my husband and I at another funeral – two in less than a week. This one was for my choir director at the church we both attended for 16 years. She was 87, her husband had preceded her in death a good 10+ years ago; she has had dementia for at least 5+ years and I haven’t seen her since her husband’s funeral. Two funerals – two celebrations of a life WELL-LIVED! Both of the funerals were filled with JOY! Singing, many memories shared – I’m SO glad we went! Both of the ladies who died were Christians, so we know that they are at peace with the Lord. During the funeral yesterday the pastor asked for a show of hands of how many people in the service were touched in some way, musically, by my deceased friend – at least 30 people raised their hands. She was a very talented lady (played organ/piano, directed choirs, ensembles, hand bells, taught choir for 30+ years in the Pontiac school system) – she was well loved & remembered. Along with all the memories was the re-connecting with people we haven’t seen in a good 20 years! On one of the photo memory boards was (I believe) the only photo ever taken of that church choir – to get to see some of those very people all these years later was such a JOY! Pictures were taken, lifes adventures caught up – one of the ladies I’ve known since high school but haven’t seen in so many years – JOY! Yes, some funerals are very sad affairs, and rightly so – but these two were CELEBRATIONS! I hope that when it’s my time to go, people have a JOYOUS time remembering the friendships, the stories, etc.  A LIFE WELL-LIVED, AS UNTO THE LORD.

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

 Pumpkin Dip

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese,
softened
2 C. powdered sugar
1 (10 oz) jar pumpkin butter*

Suggested dippers:
sliced apples
graham cracker sticks
‘Nilla wafers
ginger snap cookies

Using elec. mixer, beat cream
cheese & sugar on medium speed
until smooth. Add pumpkin butter
& mix well. Place in a serving bowl
& chill at least 8 hours.

*can substitute 1 small can
pumpkin, 1 tsp. cinnamon &
1/2 tsp. ground ginger

(recipe: aroundmyfamilytable.com)
——————————
Pumpkin Dump Cake

1 small can pumpkin (not pumpkin
pie filling)
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk (or
coconut milk)
2 eggs
1 C. sugar
3 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 box yellow cake mix
1 C. whole pecans
3/4 C. melted butter

Garnish: whipped cream or
Cool Whip

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking pan with
nonstick cooking spray. In large
bowl combine pumpkin, evap.
milk, eggs, sugar & pumpkin
pie spice – mix until well blended.
Pour mixture into prepared pan.
Evenly sprinkle (dry) cake mix
over top of batter & sprinkle
pecans on top. Pour melted
butter over top of mixture.
Bake 50 minutes. Check for
doneness by inserting a knife
or toothpick into center – when
removed, toothpick should come
out fairly clean. Allow cake to cool
before cutting. Serve warm, room
temp. or cold.

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

Tomato-basil Tortellini Soup

1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes
1 (16 oz) pkg. refrigerated cheese
tortellini
4 C. chicken or vegetable stock
1 C. heavy cream
1 C. yellow onion, finely chopped
1/3 C. fresh basil, chopped plus
extra for garnish (if desired)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 carrot, peeled/diced
2 T. olive oil
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
kosher salt/black pepper, to taste
Parmesan cheese, grated – garnish

Heat 2 T. olive oil in large pot or
Dutch oven over medium-high
heat; add onion & carrot. Saute
10-12 minutes, stirring frequently,
until onions are translucent – season
generously with salt/pepper. Add
minced garlic – cook 1-2 minutes then
add 1/3 C. basil, chicken stock,
canned tomatoes & red pepper flakes.
Stir well & bring to boil; reduce heat to
Low & simmer 20 minutes until
thickened – taste & adjust seasoning.
Add tortellini & let simmer 15-20
minutes more until pasta is al dente.
Pour in heavy cream & Parm. cheese
(if using) – stir together. Transfer
to serving bowls & serve hot, garnished
with more Parm. cheese & fresh basil.
Serves 6

(recipe: 12tomatoes.com)
————————————

Crockpot Chili

2 lb. lean ground beef
2 (16 oz, ea) cans kidney beans,
drained/rinsed
2 (14.5 oz, ea) cans diced
tomatoes, undrained
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
2 medium onions, chopped
1 green pepper, seeded/chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 T. chili powder
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper

Optional garnishes:
shredded Cheddar cheese
thinly sliced green onions

In large skillet cook beef over
medium heat until no longer
pink; drain & transfer to crockpot.
Add next 9 ingredients. Cover &
cook on Low 8-10 hours. Top
with desired garnishes. Serves 10
(2 1/2 quarts)

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————————

Crescent Roll Taco Pizza

1 lb. ground beef
1 pkt. dry taco seasoning mix
2 (8 oz, ea) tubes crescent rolls
1 (16 oz) can refried beans
2-3 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
(or Mexican blend)
1/2 C. chopped tomatoes
1/4 C. sliced bacon olives
4 chopped green onions

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
In skillet brown ground beef; drain.
Following pkg. directions, add taco
seasoning to beef. Place unrolled
crescent rolls into rectangles in a
11 1/2″ X 16 1/2″ jelly roll pan (or
cookie sheet). Press dough on bottom
& 1/2 inch up sides to form a crust;
bake 11-13 minutes. Place refried
beans in microwaveable bowl &
microwave 1 minute – spread over
baked crust. Add beef mixture &
spread evenly; sprinkle with cheese,
tomatoes, black olives & green onion.
Bake 3-6 minutes more & serve hot.

(recipe: 1krecipes.com)
————————————

Sausage-stuffed Small
Pumpkins

2 C. water
1 C. uncooked brown rice
2 tsp. chicken bouillon granules
1/2 tsp. curry powder
1 lb. bulk Italian sausage
4 C. fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 small onion, chopped
2 shallots, minced
1 clove garlic minced
5 T. dried currants
1/4 C. chicken broth
1 tsp. poultry seasoning
1/2 tsp. rubbed sage
1/4 tsp. dried majoram
1/2 tsp. garlic powder

In large saucepan bring water,
rice, bouillon & curry powder
to boil; reduce heat, cover &
simmer 45-50 minutes until
tender. In large skillet cook
sausage over medium heat
until no longer pink; drain.
In same skillet saute mush-
rooms, onion, shallots 3-5
minutes until tender. Add
garlic, cook 1 minute longer.
Reduce heat, add currants,
broth, poultry seasoning,
sage & marjoram. Return
sausage to pan; cook &
stir 5-7 minutes until liquid
is absorbed. Remove from
heat; stir in rice.
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Wash pumpkins; cut a 3 inch
circle around each stem –
remove tops & set aside. Remove
& discard loose fibers; save seeds
for another use (if desired). Prick
inside of each pumpkin with a
fork; sprinkle insides with salt &
garlic powder. Stuff with sausage
mixture & replace tops. Place
pumpkins in a 9 X 13″ baking
pan. Add 1/2 inch of water
to pan. Bake, uncovered, 30
minutes. Cover loosely with foil;
bake 45-50 minutes longer until
tender. Cut each baked pumpkin
into four wedges to serve.
Serves 8

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————-

Glazed Kielbasa Bites
(appetizers)

2 (13 oz, ea) pkgs. kielbasa
1 (20 oz) can pineapple chunks,
drained (reserve 1 T. juice)
3 T. teriyaki sauce
1 T. cocktail sauce (or chili sauce)
1 T. honey

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Slice kielbasa into 1-inch pieces.
Place kielbasa & pineapple chunks
in a 9 X 9″ baking dish. In a bowl
whisk reserved pineapple juice, teriyaki
sauce, cocktail sauce & honey; pour
over kielbasa & pineapple; stir well.
Bake, uncovered, 20 minutes stirring
once during baking. Once finished
cooking, carefully take toothpicks &
skewer 1 slice kielbasa & 1 pineapple
chunk – place on a serving plate.
Makes 30 servings

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

Maple-glazed Pumpkin
Coffee Cake

2 C. flour
1 C. sugar
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 egg
1/3 C. butter
1/2 C. milk
1 C. pumpkin puree
2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

Streusel topping:
1/2 C. chopped walnuts
1/4 C. flour
1/2 C. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 C. butter

Glaze:
1 C. powdered sugar
2 T. milk
1/2 tsp. maple flavoring

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. In large
bowl mix flour, sugar, baking
powder, salt, egg, butter, milk,
pumpkin & pumpkin pie spice;
pour into prepared pan.

Streusel topping:

Combine all streusel ingredients
in a bowl then sprinkle evenly
over batter. Bake 40-45 minutes.

Maple glaze:
Mix glaze ingredients & drizzle
over top of coffee cake.

(recipe: thegunnysack.com)

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

There are times when it seems like my days
all blend into one big calendar of ‘gotta do’s’ –
you know, those days when you’re almost not
sure of what DAY it is because EVERY day is
filled with places to go/things to do! Finally,
today I get a ‘do nothing special’ day  – YAY!
I’ve been rushing around getting things done,
going where I was needed but today I’m still
in my jammies with my coffee, just perusing
the ‘net and relaxing. Our weather has finally
turned to FALL/MICHIGAN/Halloween weather-
as I well remember my childhood trick-or-treating
experiences – it was ALWAYS cold, gloomy &
rainy – don’t remember many that weren’t! We
went from 60’s/70’s weather to ‘you’re lucky if
we hit the 60’s!’ I woke up yesterday & looked
at the outside thermometer and it was reading
39 degrees F.!!! Noooooooooo – say it isn’t so!
(I even heard tell of us getting the “S” word
in the next 10 days! UGH!) Oh well – ya live in
a Northern State – what do you expect, right?

Hope you are staying nice & warm and are
able, sometime during your day, to take
a few minutes to relax & let your body
and mind REST – if only for a few minutes.
It helps Soooooo much!

Hugs;

Pammie

 

Last GORGEOUS Sunday – probably

Our weather is gorgeous – 71 degrees F., sunny with a slight breeze; it’s supposed to start getting colder as of tomorrow, so I’m hoping to soak up some of the last of the Fall SUN while I can. The leaves are turning colors, lots of great apples available to eat/bake with, cider (yum!) it’s a great season (except for the fact that we KNOW that dreaded “S” word is in the offing . . . snow). Being that I live in the Great Lakes, we never quite know when Fall ends & Winter begins . . . could be months away or as quickly as next week!

The other grandma posted a photo on Facebook so I just had to share:

This is our oldest son, his girlfriend & their (really cute) son – he just turned 8 months. He’s working on tooth #3, still crawling & pulling himself up on everything (couches/chairs, etc.). The “Dadada” & “Mamama” stopped for now – he’s just a very HAPPY baby! Still babysitting one day a week for about 6 (sometimes more) hours & I’m happy with that schedule – just enough to enjoy him but also just enough to kinda wear me out, too.

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

LOTS of great recipes to share:

Pumpkin Ice Cream

4 bananas, mashed
1 C. pumpkin puree
1/3 C. honey
1 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

Blend all ingredients together,
place in 8 X 8″ or 9 X 9″ pan &
freeze.

(recipe: facebook)
—————————
Turkey Sausage Soup w/fresh
Vegetables

1 (19.5 oz) pkg. Italian turkey
sausage links, casings removed
3 large tomatoes, chopped
1 (15 oz) can garbanzo beans
or chickpeas, drained/rinsed
3 medium carrots, thinly sliced
1 1/2 C. fresh green beans,
cut into 1 inch pieces
1 medium zucchini, quartered
lengthwise & sliced
1 large sweet red or green
pepper, seeded/chopped
8 green onions, chopped
4 C. chicken stock
1 (12 oz) can tomato paste
1/2 tsp. seasoned salt
1/3 C. minced fresh basil

In large skillet cook sausage over
medium heat 8-10  minutes until
no longer pink; break into crumbles
& drain. Transfer to crockpot. Add
tomatoes, beans, carrots, green
beans, zucchini, pepper & green
onions. In large bowl whisk stock,
tomato paste & salt; pour over
veggies in crockpot. Cover & cook
on Low 6-8 hours until vegetables
are tender. Just before serving stir
in basil. Serves 10 (3 1/2 quarts)

Freezer Option:
Freeze cooled soup in freezer
containers. To use: partially thaw
in fridge overnight. Heat through
in a saucepan, stirring occasionally &
adding a little stock if necessary.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————————–

Amish Butternut Squash
Casserole

2 1/2 lb. butternut squash
2 carrots
1 C. rolled oats (uncooked)
12 oz. green peas
1 T. butter
2 eggs, beaten frothy
pinch salt
5 T. cinnamon-sugar
1/2 T. vanilla

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Boil squash & carrots together
until carrots are tender – cool.
Slide skin off carrots, being
careful with squash, remove
seeds & peel. Blend carrots &
squash together – do not over
blend, preserving some texture.
Add cinnamon sugar & salt,
frothy eggs to carrot mixture.
Spray an 8″ loaf pan with nonstick
cooking spray. Mix about 1/2 C.
oatmeal into carrot mixture; sprinkle
some of oatmeal into pan to coat the
cooking spray. Gently fold in peas;
pour mixture into prepared pan.
Sprinkle remaining oatmeal on top
& dot with butter. Bake 30-40
minutes until brown on top.
Once baked it can be served
immediately or frozen for later
use.

(recipe: recipelion.com)
—————————–
Homemade Beer Cheese Dip

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, room
temp.
1 C. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1/4 red onion, finely diced
3 green onions, finely chopped
1 pkt. dry Ranch salad dressing mix
1/2 C. beer (any beer works, poster
used dark stout)
1/2 C. cooked, chopped bacon
fresh ground black pepper, to taste

Mix all ingredients in large bowl;
refrigerate overnight for best results

(recipe: recipelion.com)
———————————
Pumpkin Zucchini Bread

Bread:
1 C. granulated sugar
1 C. light brown sugar, packed
2/3 C. canola oil
4 large eggs
2 1/2 C. flour
1 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. baking powder
1 T. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. ground ginger
3/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 (15 oz) can pure pumpkin
2 C. grated zucchini

Frosting:
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 C. powdered sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
2-4 T. milk

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray two 9-inch loaf pans
with nonstick cooking spray.
Line bottom of pans with
parchment paper. In large
bowl combine sugar, oil &
eggs until blended. Add flour,
baking soda, baking powder,
cinnamon, cloves, ginger, nutmeg
& canned pumpkin – mix until
just blended. Fold in shredded
zucchini. Divide batter evenly
between loaf pans. Bake 60-70
minutes until a toothpick inserted
in center of loaf comes out clean.
Remove from oven & cool 5 minutes
in pan. Remove from pan & cool
completely on wire rack.

Frosting:
Beat cream cheese with powdered
sugar, cinnamon & milk. Add more or
less milk for desired consistency.
Spread over cooled bread.
Makes 2 loaves

(recipe: shugarysweets.com)
—————————————

Spinach/Bacon Mac & Cheese

3 C. medium pasta shells, uncooked
1 (6 oz) pkg. baby spinach leaves
4 slices bacon, chopped
2 T. flour
2 C. milk
2 C. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese,
divided
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 1 1/2 qt. casserole with
nonstick cooking spray.
Cook pasta in large saucepan accordg. to
pkg. directions omitting salt; add spinach
to boiling water for last minute. Cook &
stir bacon in large saucepan until crisp.
Remove bacon with slotted spoon from
pan, reserving drippings. Add flour to
drippings; cook & stir 1 minute or until
bubbly. Gradually stir in milk – bring to
boil, stirring constantly, cook & stir
3-5 minutes until thickened. Add 1C.
Cheddar & Parmesan to saucepan; cook &
stir 2-3 minutes until melted. Add pasta
mixture & bacon; mix well then spoon
to prepared casserole dish. Top with
remaining Cheddar & bake 20 minutes
until heated through. Serves 6
(about 1 C. each)

(recipe: kraftrecipes.com)
—————————–

Cheddar/Tomato Dumplings
(fluffy dumplings in a rich
tomato-based sauce, fresh herbs
& gooey cheese.)

2 T. finely chopped onion
1 T. finely chopped green bell
pepper
2 T. vegetable oil
1 C. flour
1 (28 oz) can whole, peeled tomatoes
(or two 14.5 oz ea. cans)
1 T. minced celery leaves
1 tsp. sugar
salt/black pepper, to taste

Dumplings:
1 C. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 T. shortening
1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1/2 C. milk

IN large skillet saute onions & bell
pepper in oil until tender. Add 2 T.
flour; stir well. Gradually blend in
whole tomatoes, breaking up with
a spoon. Add celery leaves, sugar,
salt/pepper & bring to boil over
medium heat. Cook & stir 2 minutes.
Reduce heat; cover & simmer 5
minutes.
Dumplings
Combine flour, baking powder & salt
in a bowl; cut in shortening until
crumbly. Add cheese; stir in milk
just until moistened. Drop by
tablespoon onto simmering
tomato sauce. Cover & simmer 20
minutes until a toothpick inserted
into center of a dumpling comes
out clean (Do not lift cover while
simmering).
Serves 6

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

Crustless Pumpkin Pie

4 eggs, beaten
1 (15 oz) can pumpkin
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
1 1/2 C. sugar
2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp. salt
1 (18.5 oz) box yellow cake mix
1 C. chopped pecans or walnuts
1 C. butter, melted

Optional:
whipped cream
Cool Whip
chopped nuts
cinnamon

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large bowl combine eggs,
pumpkin, evap. milk, sugar,
spice & salt – mix well & pour
into ungreased 9 X 13 baking
dish. Sprinkle dry cake mix & nuts
on top. Drizzle top with melted
butter (do not stir). Bake 45
minutes – 1 hour, testing for
doneness with a toothpick.
Serve with optional toppings.
Serves 8-10

(recipe: gooseberrypatch.com)

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

Enjoy your day!

Hugs;

Pammie

Thoughts on a Thursday –

It’s a lovely Fall day – sun shining, slight breeze, mid 60’s – a great day to get out and DO things! I used my day wisely and got several ‘outside’ things done, items brought in the porch, etc. Am also, slowly, getting the next special needs group newsletter assembled; this takes time, mostly for getting dates confirmed with others in charge. (keeps me out of trouble, right?)

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

Turtle Cookie Bars

Crust:
2 C. flour
1 C. firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 C. butter, softened

Second Layer:
1 C. pecan halves or chopped
pecans
2/3 C. butter
1/2 C. firmly packed brown sugar
1 C. milk chocolate morsels

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Combine first 3 ingredients in large
bowl; beat at medium speed using
elec. mixer until blended. Pat mixture
firmly into an ungreased 9 X 13 pan.
Arrange pecans over crust. Combine
2/3 C. butter & 1/2 C. brown sugar in
a saucepan – bring to boil over medium-
high heat, stirring constantly. Cook 3
minutes, stirring constantly. Pour mixture
over pecans & bake 15-17 minutes until
golden & bubbly. Remove from oven;
sprinkle with chocolate morsels. Let
stand 2-3 minutes until slightly melted.
Gently swirl chocolate with a knife,
leaving some morsels whole (do not
spread). Let cool on wire rack at room
temperature until chocolate is set then
cut into squares.

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

Parmesan-roasted Sheet
Pan Dinner

1 1/2 lb. baby gold potatoes, cut
into bite-sized pieces
4 T. butter, melted/divided
2 tsp. garlic powder, divided
1/4 C. Parmesan cheese, grated
1/4 C. Italian breadcrumbs
1 tsp. salt, divided
1/2 tsp. pepper, divided
1 lb. Brussels sprouts, trimmed/
halved
12 oz. kielbasa sausage, cut into
rounds
1/2 tsp. dried parsley

extra Parmesan cheese for topping

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Lightly spray a 13″ X 18″ baking sheet
with nonstick cooking spray. In large
bowl combine potatoes, 2 T. butter
(melted), 1 tsp. garlic powder, 1/2 tsp.
salt, 1/2 tsp. black pepper, Parm. cheese
& bread crumbs – mix until potatoes are
coated. Spread potatoes in even layer
in baking sheet. Combine Brussels
sprouts, 1 T. melted butter, 1/2 tsp. garlic
powder, 1/2 tsp. salt & 1/4 tsp. pepper
in bowl & toss to coat. Spread in even
layer on baking sheet. Combine sausage,
1 T. melted butter, 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
& 1/2 tsp. dried parsley in bowl & toss
to coat. Sprinkle mixture over potatoes &
Brussels sprouts in pan. Bake 25 minutes;
stir mixture & continue cooking an additional
20-25 minutes until potatoes are golden
brown. Top with additional Parm. cheese.
Serves 4-6

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

Crockpot Chicken & Rice Soup

6 C. chicken stock
1 C. uncooked rice (white/brown or wild)
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 large onion, diced
3 carrots, peeled/diced into 1/4″thick
rounds
2 parsnips, peeled/diced into 1/4″ thick
rounds
3 stalks celery, diced
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. dried rosemary
2 bay leaves
1 1/2 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/4 C. corn starch
1 lb. whole bella mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 T. chopped fresh parsley

Place in crockpot: chicken stock, garlic,
onion, carrots, parsnips, celery, thyme,
rosemary & bay leaves – stir. Place on
top chicken breasts. Cover & cook on
Low 6 hours. Remove chicken from
crockpot & shred using 2 forks. Reove
1/2 C. of soup broth into a small bowl
& whisk in corn starch until smooth. Stir
cornstarch mixture back into crockpot
along with shredded chicken & mush-
rooms. Cover & cook on Low 30 more
minutes. Remove bay leaves (& discard);
serve soup immediately, garnished with
chopped parsley, if desired.  Makes
6 large servings.

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

Swamp Dip
(I know – weird name, but it
sounds yummy!) Named by
the Univ. of Fla. “Gators”
football team

1 (10 oz) box frozen chopped
spinach, thawed
1/2 C. (jarred) drained/chopped
roasted red bell peppers
1 (8 oz) tub sour cream
1 C. mayonnaise
2 T. finely chopped yellow onion
2 T. lemon juice
1 pkt. dry vegetable soup mix
pepper, to taste
dash ground red pepper, optional

Suggested dippers:
tortilla chips, pita chips or bagel
chips

Thaw spinach completely; squeeze
dry in paper towels – transfer to
large bowl. Add red peppers, sour
cream, mayonnaise, onion, lemon
juice, veg. soup mix, pepper &
grnd. red pepper – mix well.
Refrigerate at least 30 minutes
before serving. Serve with tortilla
chunks, pita chips or bagel chips.

(recipe: recipelion.com)
——————————

4-minute Spicy Garlic Shrimp

2 T. olive oil
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 to 1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
24 jumbo shrimp, peeled/deveined,
tails left on
2 tsp. grill or steak seasoning blend (like
Montreal Steak seasoning by McCormick)
1 lemon, zested & juiced
1/4 C. chopped parsley leaves

Heat large skillet over medium-high heat.
Add oil, garlic, pepper flakes & shrimp –
season with grill seasoning or salt/pepper &
cook shrimp 3 minutes until just pink. Toss
with lemon zest & juice. Sprinkle chopped
parsley on top & pour onto serving platter
or in large bowl (leave garlic in pan).

Seafood tip: Unless you live somewhere that you can
get freshly-caught fish that’s never been frozen, buy
your shrimp in the frozen section of your store. Most
seafood at the seafood counter has already been frozen
and there’s no way to tell how long it’s been sitting in
the case after being thawed. If you thaw your own you
can control how long until it’s cooked. Thaw shrimp in
a colander while running cold water over it continuously
until it’s completely thawed.

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

Chili Mac Casserole

1 C. uncooked elbow macaroni
2 lb. ground beef
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes,
undrained
1 (16 oz) can kidney beans,
drained/rinsed
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
1 (4 oz) can chopped green chilies
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 C. shredded Mexican cheese
blend
thinly sliced green onions,
optional garnish

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray.
Cook macaroni accordg. to pkg.
directions. In large nonstick skillet
cook beef, onion & garlic over
medium heat until meat is no longer
pink; drain. Stir in tomatoes, beans,
tomato paste, chilies & seasonings.
Drain cooked macaroni & add to
mixture in skillet. Transfer mixture
to prepared pan. Cover with foil
& bake 25-30 minutes until bubbly.
Remove foil; sprinkle top with cheese
& bake 5-8 minutes more until cheese
is melted. Top with sliced green
onions, if desired. Serves 10

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————————

Crockpot Pumpkin Pecan Bread
Pudding

8 C. day-old bread cubes
1/2 C. toasted pecans, chopped
1/2 C. cinnamon chips (like choc. chips)
4 eggs
1 C. canned pumpkin
1 C. Half & Half
1/2 C. brown sugar, packed
1/2 C. butter, melted
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/8 tsp. ground cloves

Optional:
vanilla ice cream
caramel ice cream topping

Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray & place
bread crumbs in bottom with
cinnamon chips & chopped
pecans. In large bowl whisk
eggs, pumpkin, Half & Half,
brown sugar, melted butter,
vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg,
ginger & cloves – pour over
bread & stir to coat. Cover &
cook on Low 3-4 hours until
a knife inserted into center
comes out clean. Serve warm
topped with vanilla ice cream &
caramel ice cream topping, if
desired. Serves 8

(recipe: thegunnysack.com)

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

Today is one of my ‘easy’ days – no babysitting,
nothing in particular to get done (that I haven’t
already done). Babysitting is getting a ‘little’
easier – he’s very mobile with the crawling but
pretty much stays by me & plays (You’ll usually
find me sitting on the couch). He’s working on
another tooth (#3) so drooling is the ‘norm’ but
he’s such a happy baby (see below 7 1/2 months)

He loves to pull himself up on the
side of the couch and then breathe
heavily at me (photo is the face I
see regularly)! For awhile a few weeks
ago he was saying “Dada” & one day
“Mamama” but now he’s given that
up – it’s OK, it will come.

Enjoy your day;

Hugs;

Pammie

Happy Monday!

Photo from last year’s special needs group Harvest Party

Well, friends – I survived the Harvest Party/Dance! This past Friday found me helping out from 4:30 – somewhere after 9 p.m. (when I got just too tired to keep on keeping on, so I went home! – party ended at 8:30). We had a lot more people come than we thought would BUT we were prepared! Our leader bought 270 hot dogs! (We cooked 150 and there were leftovers . . . but I was just too tired to even care about bringing some home…sigh). The kids had a great time chatting/eating/dancing so it was all worth it. I’d say we had about 45 kids? attend and about 10 teens from the church volunteered to help out, also.

I have been getting in SO MANY yummy sounding recipes I just couldn’t resist sharing some:

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

 Holy Cow Cake

1 (18 oz) box devils food cake mix
1 1/3 C. water
1 1/4 C. vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 (8 oz) jar caramel ice cream topping
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed
milk
1 C. Butterfinger candy bars, crushed
1 (12 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
8 oz. cream cheese, softened

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Lightly spray 9 X 13″ baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray. In bowl
mix dry cake mix, oil & eggs using an
elec. mixer – blend on Low speed
1 minute; scrape sides of bowl & mix
on medium speed 2 more minutes.
(batterh will be thick) Pour batter into
prepared pan, smoothing top evenly.
Bake 35-38 minutes until cake springs
back when lightly pressed with your
finger & just starts pulling away from
pan sides. Remove from oven & poke
holes in top of cake using a drinking
straw or chopstick. Cool on wire rack.

Topping:
Place caramel topping & sweetn’d
cond. milk in small bowl & stir to
combine. Spoon mixture over warm
cake so it can seep down into holes.
Measure out half of crushed candy
bars & sprinkle pieces over cake.
In large bowl mix Cool Whip & cream
cheese – blend using elec. mixer on
Low speed until smooth & combined.
Spread mixture over candy-covered
cake. Sprinkle remaining crushed
candy on top & refrigerate 20
minutes before cutting into squares &
serving.
Store cake, covered in waxed paper,
in fridge up to 1 week.

(recipe: americantimesfood.com)
———————————

Roasted Autumn Veggie Soup

2 lb. sweet potatoes (about 4 medium)
2 lb. carrots (about 8 large)
1 1/2 lb. parsnips (about 6 medium)
2 large onions, quartered
6 cloves garlic, peeled
1/4 C. canola oil
3 (32 oz, ea) cartons chicken broth
1 C. evaporated milk
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
minced fresh parsley & sage,
optional garnishes

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Peel & cut sweet potatoes, carrots &
parsnips into 1 1/2″ pieces; place in
large bowl. Add onions & garlic; drizzle
with oil & toss to coat. Spray two
15 X 10 X 1 inch baking pans with
nonstick cooking spray & divide
veggies between pans. Roast 40-50
minutes until tender, stirring occasionally.
Transfer veggies to Dutch oven. Add broth,
milk, salt & pepper & bring to boil. Simmer,
uncovered, 10-15 minutes.Cool soup
slightly & puree in blender in batches.
Return to pan & heat through. Serve
with optional garnishes. Serves 12 (4 quarts)

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————–

Southern Smothered Pork Chops
(crockpot)

4 center-cut pork chops
1/4 C. flour
3/4 tsp. poultry seasoning
1/2 tsp. salt
2 T. olive oil
1 1/2 C. chicken or beef broth
1 medium onion, chopped

Suggested ‘sides’:
cooked mashed potatoes (for 4)
cooked rice or noodles (for 4)

Pour flour, poultry seasoning &
salt in zip-lock bag – shake to mix.
Add chops & shake until lightly
coated. Heat heavy skillet large
enough to hold all chops over
medium-high heat. Add oil &
heat until it shimmers. Place
chops in pan & saute 2-3 minutes
per side until golden brown. Remove
chops from pan & add 2 T. flour
mixture from bag to skillet; stir a
few seconds to cook flour. Add
about 1 C. broth & cook, stirring,
to lift any browned bits from pan.
Add remaining broth & turn off
heat. (Reserve remaining flour
mixture for later).
Place onion in bottom of crockpot &
lay chops on top. Pour liquids from
pan over chops. Cover & cook on
High 2 hours. Remove about 1 C.
of liquids from crockpot into a
small bowl; stir in remaining flour
mixture from bag & mix until
completely smooth. Return this
mixture to crockpot, stirring to mix.
Cover & cook 30-45 minutes more.
Serves 4

(suggested sides: mashed potatoes or
cooked noodles or rice)

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

Roasted Corn Chopped Salad
with Lemon Vinaigrette

1 can whole kernel corn
2 Romaine hearts, finely chopped
1 shallot, thinly sliced
1/4 C. slivered basil leaves
1/4 C. crumbled feta cheese
1/4 C. lemon juice (fresh from 1
large lemon)
2 T. prepared Dijon-style or
stone ground mustard
2 T. honey
3 T. olive oil

Drain & pat corn dry. Add 1 T. oil to a
skillet & heat to searing hot. Add corn
carefully & let roast 6-8 minutes,
stirring only occasionally, until it
develops a nice brown caramelization;
remove from heat & let cool.
Add chopped romaine & shallots to a
large bowl; crumble feta into bowl &
add cooled corn. In small bowl whisk
together lemon juice, mustard, honey &
remaining 2 T. olive oil to make dressing.
Drizzle dressing over salad & toss. Serve
immediately Serves 4

(recipe: slowcookergourmet.net)
———————————–
Crockpot Crustless Pumpkin Pie

1 (15 oz) can pumpkin
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
3/4 C. brown sugar
1/2 C. flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking powder
2 eggs, beaten
2 T. butter, melted
2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

Combine all ingredients in crockpot;
stir to combine. Cover & cook on
Low 2-4 hours. Serves 6

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)
———————————–
7-Layer Chicken Enchilada Dip

2 T. butter or margarine
1 box Hamburger Helper “Cheesy
Enchilada” flavor
1 3/4 C. water
1 C. milk
1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained/
rinsed
2 C. chopped deli cooked rotisserie
chicken
1 (16 oz) can refried beans
1 C. sour cream
1 C. shredded Mexican-blend cheese
(OR) 1 C. Cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4 C. chopped pickled jalapeno chilies
1 tomato, diced

tortilla chips

In 10-inch skillet melt butter over
medium heat. Stir in uncooked rice
(from Hamb. Helper box); continue
cooking 2-3 minutes until rice starts
to brown. Stir in water, milk, seasoning
packet (from Hamb. Helper) & black
beans – heat to boiling. Reduce heat,
cover & simmer 20 minutes, stirring
frequently. Stir in chicken; cover &
remove from heat – let rest 5 minutes.

Spread refried beans on 14-inch serving
platter. In small bowl,  mix sour cream &
topping (from Hamb. Helper box) – spread
over beans. Top with hamburger mixture,
cheese, jalapeno chilies & tomato. Serve
with tortilla chips for dipping.

(recipe: Mike Suddaby-FB, from Old El
Paso)
————————————–

Cheesy Bundt Bread

3 C. flour, sifted
1 C. sharp Cheddar cheese, grated
1 C. Parmesan cheese, grated
2 large eggs
3/4 C. sour cream
3/4 C. plain Greek yogurt
1/2 C. unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp. baking soda
1 T. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a Bundt pan with nonstick
cooking spray. Mix flour, baking
soda, baking powder, salt, garlic
& onion powders in large bowl
until combined. Whisk eggs, sour
cream & yogurt together & pour
into dry mixture. Add melted
butter & stir to combine. Mix
cheeses into mixture & pour into
prepared Bundt pan, spreading
evenly to edges. Bake 50-55
minutes until a toothpick inserted
close to center comes out clean.
Remove from oven & cool 10
minutes before slicing. Serves 8

(recipe: 12tomatoes.com)
=======================

Our weather is now typical Fall in Michigan –
temperatures in the 50’s & 60’s (although
it’s supposed to get up into the 70’s later
in the week – YAY!).

Knit project wise: still working on ONE baby
blanket in my old Plume pattern (lime green) –
have about 1/4th done. Finally made an
executive decision last night & ripped out
another baby blanket I’d been working on;
not really fond of pattern and kept making
big mistakes 10-12 rows BELOW where I’d
been working – time for that one TO GO!
I know I’ve got tons of patterns so it won’t
be difficult to start another one (this one
was a baby teal yarn). Working on one scarf
for homeless – really pretty yarn I obtained
from a yarn swap (variegated colors of tans,
greys & white).

Went to the library today to pick up some
books I had on hold and saw a new flyer:
they will be starting a KNIT GROUP at my
local library Weds. 10-12p.m. starting in
January. (I nicely asked if they would mind
my putting my business card by their
display and they said NO – kinda expected
that. My group meets in the evening, theirs
during the day – oh well….) I ‘did’ think of
attending their group just to see what it’s
like – we’ll see. Their flyer said bring your
own supplies, so it sort of sounds like my
group except they don’t offer any help –
will consider…later.

Hope you are enjoying your day – it’s
really sunny & breezy out today – in
low 60’s (had to get gas & go to library
so I got to enjoy it a little).

Hugs;

Pammie

I’m not ready . . .

Tonight is my special needs group’s “Harvest Dance Party” and I’m just not ready . . . let me explain: it’s going to be BIG (because not only will our kids be there, but several other groups have been invited), it’s going to be VERY loud (that’s a given when my kids get excited, and it’s going to be LOOoong (I need to be there at 4 p.m./it doesn’t start until 6:30, ends 8:30 so you can guess I’ll be PRETTY TIRED when I finally get to go home after helping clean up. Yes, I love getting together with my ‘kids’ but I’m just not ready for this level of  WILD/LOUD! This past Wednesday found our room packed with kids – it was our Music/Birthday night. What was different this time? We’re finally getting back some of our kids- the church we meet at is undergoing a huge re-building and the parking lot has been a nightmare for anyone with physical disabilities or wheelchairs (dirt, rocks, no lighting at night, etc.). Recently they’ve added parking lot lighting (YAY!) but it’s still pretty treacherous for wheelchairs so quite a few of our group homes just haven’t been coming. With more kids in our room this Weds. it was loud, hectic and almost overwhelming but we survived. Because of the construction, our group has been moved back to our ‘old’ room (the one we asked to be taken out of due to lack of room for wheelchairs) so now that we’re back in that room – it’s CROWDED! Oh well, eventually it will be better – we’ve been assured that the building project will be suspended as of the end of October – still not sure where that leaves our group but we’ll see. All that said – I’m going to put on my BIG GIRL PANTS and go to this dance/party with a big smile, hoping to help out wherever needed. (It’s a Western/Cowboy theme – I bought a red bandanna & am wearing a denim shirt – (western is NOT my style, so I’m going to be quite the CITY cowgirl…hehehe).

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

Pumpkin Pie Cake

1 (29 oz) can pumpkin
2 boxes spice cake mix
1 bag milk chocolate chips
(optional)

1 tub cream cheese frosting

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 11 X 18″ baking sheet
with nonstick cooking spray.
Combine pumpkin, cake mixes &
(chocolate chips, if using) together
in large bowl, mix well & pour into
prepared pan. Bake 25-30 minutes.

NOTE: You will not use eggs, oil or
water in the cake – the pumpkin
adds the moisture.

When cake is cooled, frost with
cream cheese frosting
===
This recipe can be halved:
1 box spice cake mix
1 (15 oz) can of pumpkin
1/2 bag chocolate chips (optional)

half tub cream cheese frosting

Use a 9 X 13″ baking dish sprayed
with nonstick spray. Bake 350 degrees
F. for 20-25 minutes

(recipe: thecreativemom.com)
————————

Balsamic Chicken w/Roasted
Vegetables

8 (4 oz ea) boneless skinless
chicken thighs, trimmed of fat
1 tsp. kosher salt
fresh black pepper, to taste
10 medium spears asparagus,
ends trimmed, cut in half
2 red bell peppers seeded,
cut into strips
1 red onion, chopped in large
chunks
1/2 C. carrots, sliced in half
long, cut into 3 inch pieces
5 oz. pkg. sliced mushrooms
1/4 C. plus 1 T. balsamic vinegar
2 T. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, smashed/roughly
chopped
1/2 tsp. sugar
1 1/2 T. fresh rosemary
1/2 T. dried oregano or thyme
2 leaves fresh sage, chopped

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Season chicken with salt/pepper.
Spray 2 large baking sheets with
nonstick cooking spray. Combine
all ingredients together in large
bowl-use your hands to mix well
then arrange everything onto
prepared sheets – spread out in
an even layer. (VEGGIES should
NOT touch chicken or chicken will
steam instead of roast). Bake
20-25 minutes until chicken is
cooked through & veggies are
roasted & tender. Serves 4

(recipe: skinnytste.com)
———————————–
Hearty Sausage & Bean One Pot

1 medium onion, peeled/cut in
half & sliced
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 lb. fresh Italian sausage, casings
removed
1/2 lb. fully-cooked smoked sausage,
sliced diagonally into 1/2 inch slices
1 (16 oz) can cannellini beans, drained/
rinsed
1 (16 oz) can chick peas, drained/rinsed
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 C. chicken broth

Spray large saucepan with nonstick
cooking spray. Add onion & garlic – cook
over medium heat 2-3 minutes until
onion is softened. Add Ital. sausage to
pan & cook, stirring, 3 minutes. Add
sliced smoked sausage & cook 3-5
minutes until Ital. sausage is cooked
through & not pink. Pour off drippings;
stir in remaining ingredients. Mix gently,
cover & reduce heat to Low – simmer
5 minutes. Uncover & cook over medium-
Low heat 5-10 minutes to blend flavors.
Serves 5

NOTE: You can also add rice or noodles to
soup – they soak up the sauce.

(recipe: mrfood.com)
———————————-

Braised Red Cabbage

2 T. butter
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 medium red cabbage, shredded
(about 8 C.)
1 tart apple, peeled/cored & sliced
1 T. sugar
1 T. red wine vinegar
1/2 C. good red wine
1 bay leaf
salt/ground black pepper

Melt butter in Dutch oven or soup
pot. Add onions & saute over medium
heat until soft, about 7 minutes. Add
cabbage, apple, sugar, vinegar, red wine
& bay leaf. Stir & simmer on Low 30-40
minutes until cabbage is tender. Remove
bay leaf & season with salt/pepper.
Serves 6

(recipe: cookstr.com)
—————————–

Grilled Ranch Potatoes

2 lb. baby potatoes, halved
1/4 tsp. olive oil
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 packet ranch salad dressing mix
kosher salt
ground black pepper
Ranch dressing – for drizzling
chopped fresh chives, for garnish

Preheat grill to Medium heat. In
large bowl toss potatoes with
olive oil, lemon juice & ranch
seasoning mix. Season with salt/
pepper & toss to coat. Thread
potatoes onto skewers & grill
until tender & lightly charred,
15 minutes. Drizzle with Ranch
dressing & garnish with chives.
Serves 8

(recipe: delish.com)
——————————–

Pumpkin Pie Spiced Popcorn Balls

12 C. popped popcorn
1 (16 oz) bag regular sized marsh-
mallows
1/4 C. butter
1 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
8 oz. white chocolate chips
1-2 T. shortening
1/2 C. fall colors sprinkles

Lay out several sheets of waxed
paper on counter.
Heat butter in LARGE sauce pan over
medium heat until melted. Add
marshmallows & stir until
completely melted. Add pumpkin
pie spice – remove from heat & stir
in popped popcorn. Make sure
your hands are clean & spray
them with nonstick cooking spray.
Gently scoop up popcorn mixture &
press into a ball shape; place balls
on waxed paper.
Add white chocolate chips &
shortening to a deep bowl. Melt
accordg to pkg. directions in
microwave in 30 second increments,
stirring in between, until completely
melted & smooth. Dip balls in white
chocolate & then in sprinkles – place
back on waxed paper until chocolate
is hard.

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

Cheesy Meatball Bake

1 lb. ground beef
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/4 C. finely grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 C. breadcrumbs
1 egg
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 C. milk
2 C. marinara sauce
2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
2 T. chopped parsley (garnish)

In large bowl combine ground beef,
garlic, Parm. cheese, breadcrumbs,
egg, salt/pepper & milk – mix until
thoroughly combined.
Preheat broiler.
Spray bottom of a 9 or 10″ skillet with
nonstick cooking spray. Form meatballs
approx. 1 1/2 inches in diameter & place
in a single layer in pan. Broil 8-10 minutes
until meatballs are cooked through &
browned on top.* Drain any fat/liquids in
pan. Pour marinara sauce over meatballs
& sprinkle cheese over sauce. Broil 3-5
until cheese is melted & browned.  Sprinkle
with parsley & serve immediately. Serves 4

*It does not say in the recipe, but I would
probably turn the meatballs at about 4 minutes
to make sure all sides are cooked.

(recipe: dinneratthezoo.com)
———————————

Peanut Butter Pudding Dessert

1 C. flour
1/2 C. cold butter, cubed
1 1/2 C. chopped cashews, divided
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese,
softened
1/3 C. creamy peanut butter
1 C. powdered sugar
1 (12 oz) tub Cool Whip,
thawed/divided
2 2/3 C. cold milk
1 (3.9 oz) pkg. instant chocolate
pudding mix
1 (3.4 oz) pkg. instant vanilla
pudding mix
1 (1.55 oz) milk chocolate candy
bar, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place flour & butter in food processor;
cover & process until mixture resembles
coarse crumbs. Add 1 C. nuts; pulse a
few times until combined. Spray 9 X 13″
baking dish with nonstick cooking spray &
press mixture into pan to form a crust.
Bake 25-28 minutes until golden brown.
Remove & cool completely on wire rack.
In small bowl beat cream cheese, peanut
butter & powdered sugar until smooth;
fold in 1 C. Cool Whip – spoon over crust.
In another bowl whisk milk & both pudding
mixes 2 minutes; let stand 2 minutes until
soft-set. Spread mixture over cream cheese
layer. Top with remaining Cool Whip mixture
& sprinkle with chopped chocolate &
remaining nuts. Cover & refrigerate at least
1 hour before serving. Serves 12-16

NOTE: You can substitute your favorite pudding
flavors; use almond butter in place of peanut
butter or use dark or white chocolate bars for
topping. You can also use fresh whipped
cream instead of Cool Whip.

If you are transporting this dessert during the
summer/warm weather, you can freeze this
dessert 20-30 minutes to keep it cold en route.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)

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

Our weather has finally changed: it’s really COLD/
WET/RAINY/GLOOMY today! Woke up at 7 a.m. &
you would have thought it was the middle of the
night – it was DARK!!! Glad I don’t have to go out
until later today – it’s supposed to get down to
56…it’s 56 RIGHT NOW! Looking at our weather
forecast – we don’t get sun until Monday, but
still a HIGH of 56! UGH! (Here’s where I insert
my desire for INDIAN SUMMER! One can hope,
right?)

Hope you are staying warm & cosy – enjoy a
little something warm (tea, coffee, etc.) and
maybe a little added ‘extra’ (cookie, doughnut,
etc.) just to keep you ‘fortified’…hehehe.

Hugs;

Pammie

Welcome, Monday!

It’s been a quiet weekend, not much going on (which is a GOOD thing!). Waiting for youngest son to come over and FINALLY enjoy his Dairy Queen Peanut Butter Cup ice cream cake! He’s busy and it’s been in our freezer since his birthday beginning of AUGUST!!! (fear not – it’s not freezer burned).

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

Caramel Apple Dip

1 (8 oz) block cream cheese, softened
1/3 C. sugar
1 (16 oz) container caramel dip or
thick caramel sauce
1/2 C. toffee bits

Sliced apples, for dipping

Place cream cheese in medium bowl &
beat with elec. mixer until smooth &
creamy. Add sugar & beat until thoroughly
combined. Spread mixture in an even layer
in a 3-cup serving dish. Pour caramel dip/
sauce over cream cheese mixture – spread
in even layer. Top with toffee bits & serve
with sliced apples. Serves 8

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

Creamy Tomato Tortellini Soup

4 (14.5 oz, ea) cans Italian stewed
tomatoes
4 T. flour
4 T. butter, melted
2 tsp. salt
pepper
1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 C. Half & Half
1 C. chicken broth
12-24 oz. pkg. tortellini

Place tomatoes in a blender;
add flour, butter, salt & a dash
or two pepper – blend until
very smooth. Pour mixture into
a large soup pot & bring to
boil over medium-high heat
while stirring. Reduce heat &
cook 2-3 minutes. Bring large
pot of water to a boil; add a
little salt & cook tortellini
so that tortellini are easy to
bite through, 2-3 minutes. Drain
pasta in colander & rinse under
cold water. Add Half & Half and
baking soda to pot with soup; stir
to combine. (it will froth up a bit)
Allow soup to cook & thicken,
stirring occasionally, about 8-10
minutes. Warm 1 cup chicken
broth in microwave & add to soup,
stirring to combine. Add tortellini
just before serving.
Serves 6-8

NOTE: If soup gets too thick add a
little more chicken broth.

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

Cider-glazed Chicken

3 T. unsalted butter, divided
4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
3/4 C. apple cider & 1 T. , divided
1 T. Dijon mustard
2 tsp. chopped fresh sage
3 apples, cored/thinly sliced
salt/pepper, to taste

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
In large OVEN-SAFE skillet melt 1 1/2
T. butterover medium heat; season
chicken generously with salt/pepper.
Cook,skin-side down, until golden, about
8 minutes. Turn chicken, add cider &
place pan in oven – roast 20 minutes.
Remove chicken to a plate. Whisk mustard
& sage into cider drippings in pan – season
to taste with salt/pepper; pour sauce over
chicken.

While chicken is cooking:
In another skillet, cook apples in remaining
butter over medium-high heat 5 minutes.
Add remaining tablespoon apple cider, turn
heat to High & cook 1-2 minutes more. Season
with salt & serve alongside the chicken.
Serves 4

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

Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice

3 T. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. ground ginger
1 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 1/2 tsp. ground allspice
1 1/2 tsp. ground cloves

Place all ingredients in small jar &
shake to combine. Use as you
would for store-bought pumpkin
pie spice. Store with tight lid, in
cool, dark pantry for up to 6 months.

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

Cracker Barrel Mashed Potatoes

6 large potatoes, peeled/cubed/boiled
1 (8 oz) can evaporated milk
1 stick margarine
salt/pepper, to taste

After potatoes are boiled & drained,
add margarine – a slice or two at a
time, to pot until all is melted – mix
well. Using an elec. mixer, whip
potatoes while adding a little
evap. milk at a time until creamy.
Season with salt/pepper. Serves 4

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

Crockpot Chicken Taco Chili

1 small onion, chopped
1 (15.5 oz) can black beans,
drained/rinsed
1 (15.5 oz) can kidney beans,
drained/rinsed
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen corn kernels
2 (10 oz, ea) cans diced tomatoes
with chilies
1 (4 oz) can chopped green chili
peppers, chopped
1 pkt. taco seasoning mix
1 T. cumin
1 T. chili powder
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/4 C. chopped fresh cilantro

Combine beans, onion, chili peppers,
corn, tomato sauce, diced tomato,
cumin, chili powder & taco seasoning
in crockpot – mix well. Nestle chicken
into mixture in crockpot to completely
cover. Cover & cook on Low 8-10 hours
or High 4-6 hours.
One half hour before serving:
remove chicken & shred – return to
crockpot & stir in. Top with fresh
cilantro. Serves 10

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
—————————–

Cheese & Pumpkin-filled
Manicotti

1 (8 oz) pkg. manicotti shells
1 (15 oz) tub ricotta cheese
2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese,
divided
1 C. canned pumpkin
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese
2 large egg yolks
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 (24 oz) jar garlic spaghetti sauce,
divided

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Cook manicotti shells accordg.
to pkg. directions for al dente;
drain. In large bowl mix ricotta
cheese, 1 C. mozzarella cheese,
pumpkin, Parm. cheese, egg
yolks & nutmeg; spoon into
manicotti. Spray 9 X 13″ baking
pan with nonstick cooking spray
& spread 1 C. spaghetti sauce
into bottom of pan-spread out.
Top sauce with stuffed manicotti.
Pour remaining spaghetti sauce
over top & sprinkle with remaining
cheese. Bake, covered, 25-30
minutes until cheese is melted.
Serves 7

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————————

Fruit & Yogurt Muffins

2 1/4 C. flour
2/3 C. brown sugar
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 C. milk
2 eggs
1/4 C. butter, melted
3/4 C. vanilla yogurt (or
your favorite flavor)
1 tsp. vanilla
1 C. dried fruit, your choice

Topping:
1/4 C. flour
1/4 C. brown sugar
1/2 C. old fashioned oats
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 T. butter, softened

Muffins:
Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray a 12-count muffin tin with
nonstick cooking spray OR line
with cupcake papers. In bowl
whisk flour, baking powder &
salt. In another bowl beat sugar &
eggs. Add in melted butter, vanilla,
yogurt & milk – beat until just
combined – do not over mix.
Fold in dried fruit & spoon batter
into prepared cups.

Topping:
Combine all topping ingredients &
sprinkle on top of muffins. Press
lightly into dough. Bake 15-18
minutes until lightly brown.
Makes 12 muffins

(recipe: ourtableforseven.com)

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

Our weather is still holding out nicely: still
in the 70’s during the day (occasional rain)
but still really Fall-like. Lots of colorful leaves
on the trees and ground – makes you want to
go for the cider, doughnuts, caramel apples,
all things pumpkin, etc.

Hope you’re having a GREAT day!

Hugs;

Pammie

SO HAPPY and PROUD!

Last night was the Pick Up date for all of the lovely knitted & crocheted baby items for the upcoming Detroit Veterans Hospital’s Annual Baby Shower. The lady who is the Women’s Coordinator for the event told us there will be 17 Moms attending the shower. This year our group donated 87 knit & crocheted items! 24 blankets, 42 hats, 11 sets of booties, 2 snuggle sacks and 8 baby headbands – I’d say we MORE THAN covered the moms this time! (I was going to post all of the photos, but there are 17 photos, so I decided not to). The ladies in my group continue to amaze me with their generosity – so happy they participated in showing love to these Vets Moms!

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

Caramel Apple Slab Pie

2 1/4 C. flour
3/4 tsp. salt
2/3 C. butter-flavored shortening
8 T. cold water
1/3 C. flour
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
3 1/2 lb. Granny Smith apples,
peeled/cored & cut into 1/4″
thick slices (10 cups)

Crumb Topping:
1 C. quick-cooking rolled oats
1 c. packed brown sugar
1/2 C. flour
1/2 C. butter

Homemade Caramel:
1 C. brown sugar
4 T. butter
1/2 C. Half & Half
1 T. vanilla
pinch salt

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray 15 X 10 X 1″ rimmed
sheet pan with nonstick spray.
Dough:
In large bowl combine flour &
salt; using pastry blender or
2 forks, cut in shortening until it
resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle
1 T. cold water over mixture & toss
with a fork. Repeat, using 1 T. water
at a time until it is  moistened, then
knead dough into a ball. On lightly
floured surface, roll dough into a
19X13″ rectangle. Wrap dough around
rolling pin & unroll dough into prepared
pan. Ease dough into pan & up sides,
being careful not to stretch it. Trim
dough to 1/2 inch beyond edge of pan.
Fold dough edge over & flute as desired.

In extra large bowl combine sugar,
1/3 C. flour, cinnamon & apples – toss
to coat. Spoon mixture onto dough &
spread evenly.

Crumb Topping:
In large stir oats, brown sugar & flour.
Using a pastry blender, cut in butter
until topping resembles coarse crumbs –
sprinkle on top of apples in pan. Bake
40-45 minutes until apples are tender. If
it is starting to brown too fast, cover top
with foil the last 5-10 minutes of baking.
Cool slightly.

Homemade caramel:
Place all ingredients in medium saucepan
over medium-low  to medium heat. Cook,
while whisking gently, 5-7 minutes until
thicker. Turn off heat. Serve warm or
refrigerate until cold. Drizzle caramel on
top of apple slab pie then serve.
Serves 25

(recipe: therecipecritic.com)
——————————————

 

Cheesy Baked Zucchini

4 C. shredded zucchini
1 C. Bisquick baking mix
1 C. shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 C. chopped scallion
2 T. chopped parsley
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. seasoned salt
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 C. vegetable oil
4 eggs

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. In large
bowl combine all ingredients &
mix well – pour into prepared
dish. Bake 25 minutes until
golden brown. Cut into squares
& serve. Serves 15

(recipe: mrfood.com)
——————————–
Garlic/Parmesan/Asparagus

1 lb. fresh asparagus, trimmed
1 clove garlic, minced
2 T. butter, melted
1 T. grated Parmesan cheese

In large skillet bring 1/2 inch
of water to a boil. Add asparagus &
garlic; cook, covered, until asparagus
is crisp-tender, 3-5 minutes; drain.
Toss asparagus with butter & cheese.
Serves 4

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
————————————

Hawaiian Macaroni Salad

12 oz. elbow macaroni
1/2 C. grated carrot
1 rib celery, finely diced
1 C. mayonnaise
3 T. pineapple juice
2 T. apple cider vinegar
salt/pepper, as desired

Cook macaroni per pkg.
directions; drain/cool.
Add grated carrot & celery &
mix. Whisk mayo, pineapple
juice & vinegar then pour over
noodles – toss to combine. Add
salt/pepper, to taste. Chill until
ready to serve. Serves 6

(recipe: slowcookergourmet.com)
———————————

 Crockpot Pepper Steak

2 lb. beef sirloin cut into
2″ strips
garlic powder
3 T. vegetable oil
1 beef bouillon cube
1/3 C. hot water
1 T. cornstarch
1/2 C. chopped onion
2 large roughly chopped green
bell peppers
1 (14.5 oz) can stewed tomatoes
with juice
3 T. soy sauce
1 tsp. granulated sugar
1 tsp. salt

Heat oil in large skillet over medium
heat; season beef strips with garlic
powder then brown in oil. Once
browned, place strips in crockpot.
In large bowl mix bouillon cube with
hot water – dissolve then add cornstarch
& stir to dissolve; pour mixture over meat
in crockpot. Add onion, green peppers,
stewed tomatoes, soy sauce, sugar &
salt – stir to combine. Cover & cook
3-4 hours on High or 6-8 on Low.

(recipe: 77easyrecipes.com)
———————————-       
Homade Pimento Cheese Spread

2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. mayonnaise
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. onion powder
4 oz. diced pimentos, drained
1/2 tsp. dried mustard

Using elec. mixer, in bowl mix
cheese & cream cheese together –
mix 2-3 minutes. Add mayo &
mix again. Add in seasonings –
stir everything together then
mix in pimentos. Refrigerate
at least 10-15 minutes before
using.

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

Chicken & Spinach Pasta Bake

8 oz. uncooked rigatoni pasta
1 T. olive oil
1 C. chopped onion
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen spinach,
thawed
3 C. cooked/cubed chicken breasts
1 (14 oz) can Italian-style diced
tomatoes, undrained
1 (8 oz) container (Philadelphia)
chive & onion cream cheese
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 1/2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Cook pasta accordg. to pkg. directions;
drain. Spread oil on bottom of 9 X 13″
baking pan & add onion in single layer.
Bake 15 minutes just until tender.
Transfer onion to large bowl. Drain
chopped spinach well, pressing between
layers of paper toweling. Stir in cooked
rigatoni, spinach, chicken & next 4
ingredients – into onion in bowl. Spoon
mixture into prepared dish & sprinkle
evenly with shredded cheese. Bake,
covered, 30 minutes. Uncover & bake 15
minutes more until bubbly.

(recipe: facebook)
——————————

Crockpot Blueberry/Lemon Cobbler


Filling:

32 oz. blueberries, fresh or frozen
1/2 C. sugar
3 T. lemon juice (juice from 1 lemon)
1 T. lemon zest (zest from 1 lemon)
1/4 C. flour

Topping:

2 C. flour
3/4 C. sugar
1 T. lemon zest (zest from 1 lemon)
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 C. butter (2 sticks, chilled/
cut into bits)
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
2 tsp. vanilla

vanilla ice cream or whipped cream,
for topping cobbler, if desired

Spray insides of crockpot with nonstick
spray. Place blueberries in bottom of
crockpot; sprinkle lemon juice on top.
In medium bowl mix sugar & lemon
zest, working zest into sugar with your
fingers to release the lemon oils in the
zest. Add flour & stir with a fork to
evenly combine flour with sugar. Sprinkle
mixture evenly over berries & toss to
combine.

Topping:

In medium bowl, mix flour, sugar, lemon
zest, baking powder, salt & nutmeg using
a fork until well combined. Using 2 butter
knives or a pastry cutter, cut in cold bits
of butter into flour mixture until it
resembles a coarse meal with small pea-
sized pieces of butter. In small bowl whisk
eggs & vanilla with a fork & gently toss
egg mixture into flour/butter mixture
until moistened & dough starts to hold
together & create clumps of dough.
Sprinkle cobbler topping evenly over
blueberries in crockpot. Cover opening
of crockpot with paper towels or a clean
kitchen towel; cover with lid. (toweling
will absorb any condensation that will
collect on lid while cooking, preventing
it from dripping onto cobbler.) Cook
on High 3-4 hours until you can see the
juices from the blueberries bubbling
around edges of crockpot. Check
cobbler at 3 hour mark & only cook
for additional time if needed. Turn
off crockpot & carefully remove lid
& toweling. Let cobbler cool slightly
before serving. Serve with vanilla
ice cream or whipped cream, if
desired. Serves 8

(recipe: crockpotladies.com)

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

I know that this week has been very trying
for SO many people in our country – prayers
sent out for all those that battled the storms &
fires – I can’t even imagine.

I noticed in our local paper that they are saying
the gas prices will rise due to the recent weather
situations; yesterday I observed our local station’s
prices are up to $2.59/9 (from $2.39/9) – it’s
understandable. I would imagine produce will
greatly increase in price as well as other items
that would normally be shipped by land; we’ll
see.

Our weather is in the low 70’s during the day,
sunny (supposed to rain tomorrow).

Hoping you are all in good healthy and safety;

Hugs;

Pammie