Mid-week!

Super cold here and supposed to get to below zero by Sunday – oh, joy . . . we’re supposed to be getting snow in the next few days but it doesn’t say ‘accumulation’ so I’m REALLY hoping it doesn’t stick! Went to Library Knit group this morning and there was a film of ice on the windshield – enough that it had to be scraped before I could drive. Oh well – it’s Michigan – what can I expect at this time of year, right?

Working on 2 baby blankets – one is a combination of pinks (like the ‘blues’ one I did & posted the photo) and the other is a new pattern (to me). I had purchased some very nice, soft dusty pink yarn and had done a good foot or more of another (new) pattern when I discovered I’d made a mistake about 2 inches down. Normally it wouldn’t be a big problem, but this time I did a Yarn-Over – which creates a HOLE (where one was NOT supposed to be!). I decided, instead of taking each stitch off of the needles, one-by-one, I would just remove the needles, unravel the yarn down to that row and resume – HA! WHAT FOLLY! This particular yarn being nice & soft AND SLIPPERY decided it had a mind of it’s own and unraveled ALL OVER THE PLACE – WAY PAST THE MISTAKE, etc! I tried, several times, to get all the stitches back on the needles before finally (in utter desperation) unraveling the entire thing and putting yarn & needles away (for several days). Finally found a different pattern and am (so far) happily creating – we’ll see where this goes! (I remember, many years ago, a knitter friend gifted me an entire bag of this same type of yarn, in at least 6 colors – she said she found it very frustrating because it was so slippery . . . guess I should have learned, right?)

LOTS of great soup/cold weather recipes coming in!

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

Chocolate Oatmeal Bars

Cookie Layer:
1 C. butter
2 eggs
2 C. brown sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 C. flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
3 C. quick-cooking oats

Topping:
1 (12 oz) pkg. milk chocolate chips
2 tsp. vanilla
2 T. butter
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 C. chopped nuts (poster uses pecans)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking pan with nonstick
cooking spray. In large bowl cream 1 C.
butter, brown sugar, eggs & vanilla. Add
flour, salt, soda & oats – mix well then
press into prepared pan. In another bowl
melt 2 T. butter & chocolate chips together.
Add sweeten’d/Cond’ milk, vanilla, salt &
nuts – mix until smooth. Pour mixture
over cookie layer & spread evenly over
top. Bake 20-25 minutes. Cool then cut
into bars. Makes 20 bars

(recipe: sugar-n-spicegals.com)
————————————–

Crockpot Northern Beans & Ham

1 (16 oz) pkg. dried Northern beans
3-4 meaty ham hocks/shank or meaty
ham bone (about 1 1/2 lbs)
1 small onion, diced
(1 pkg. Goya ham-flavored concentrate –
optional)
1 bay leaf
salt/pepper, to taste
1/4 to 1/3 C. light brown sugar

Sort dry beans for any pebbles – rinse under
cold water. In a large bowl soak beans in water
for 3 hours*; drain & rinse beans.

Add rinsed beans, onion, salt/pepper, bay leaf
& ham shanks/hocks/ham – chopped into large
chunks, to crockpot. Add enough water (or water
& broth) to cover beans by 2 inches (about 6-8
cups) & add Goya ham concentrate, if using. Cover
& cook on High first hour; turn heat to Low & cook
an additional 4 hours (OR) until beans are tender
& a bit creamy. Remove ham shanks or hocks,
pull off all meat. Remove bay leaf & discard;
return meat to crockpot & add brown sugar – stir.
If there is a lot of juice in the beans you can remove
1 C. before adding brown sugar – all depends on how
thick or thin you want the beans to be.

*NOTE: Poster does not soak beans overnight
because she says they cook tender after 5
hours of cooking.

(recipe: mommyskitchen.net)
——————————

Sauteed Chicken w/Veggies

2-3 boneless skinless chicken
breasts cut into bite-sizes cubes
2 T. olive oil
1/2 medium onion, diced
2 medium carrots, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
2 C. chicken broth
8 oz. spaghetti, broken into
small pieces (1 1/2 – 2 inches)
1/4 C. Parmesan cheese, grated
plus extra for garnish
2 C. broccoli florets
1 C. squash: zucchini, yellow, etc.,
peeled/cubed

Heat oil in large skillet over medium
heat. Add chicken, onion, carrots &
garlic – season with salt/pepper & cook
5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add
chicken broth & broken spaghetti – stir
to combine & submerge noodles in
broth. Cover with tight-fitting lid,
reduce heat to Low & simmer 5 minutes.
Uncover; stir in Parm. cheese – add broccoli
& squash. If liquid has been absorbed add
a small amount of water or broth. Cover &
simmer 5 minutes until veggies have
reached desired tenderness. Uncover;
sprinkle with additional Parm. cheese &
serve immediately. Serves 6-8

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

Best Taco Mini Meatloaves

1 lb. lean ground beef
1 lb. lean ground pork
1 pkt. taco seasoning mix
1 (12 oz) bag Doritos, crushed
2 eggs, beaten
1 C. shredded Mexican-blend
cheese
1 (16 oz) jar salsa

Meatloaf Topping:

8 oz. salsa
1 C. shredded cheese (your choice)
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Cover a baking sheet with foil. Place
all meatloaf ingredients in large bowl
& mix well then shape into mini loaves,
the desired size you want, using your
hands. Place loaves on prepared sheet.
Top with meat loaf toppings.
Bake about 30 minutes. (until internal
temperature is 160 degrees F.) (NOTE:
Poster make 7 mini loaves and they
took 30 minutes to bake.)

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

Quick ‘n Easy Ground Beef Stew

1 lb. lean ground beef
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 T. flour
1 1/2 C. fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 zucchini, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 1/2 C. beef broth
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/3 C. heavy whipping cream
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
3 medium unpeeled Yukon Gold/
Russet or red potatoes cut into
1/2 inch cubes
2 medium carrots, cut into small
pieces (about 1 C.)
2 T. chopped fresh parsley

Optional serving method:
Can serve ‘as is’ or over
cooked brown rice
=

In large skillet cook beef over
medium-high heat 5-7 minutes
stirring occasionally until thoroughly
cooked; drain. Stir in salt/pepper & flour.
Add mushrooms, cook 3 minutes,
stirring occasionally. In small bowl mix
broth, Worc. sauce, whipping cream &
mustard with a wire whisk – add to
beef mixture. Stir in potatoes, carrots &
zucchini. Reduce heat to Medium-low –
cover & cook 15 minutes until veggies
are tender & sauce is slightly thickened.
If sauce is too thin at end of cooking
time, increase heat to medium-high &
cook, uncovered, a few minutes until
liquid reduces & is slightly thickened.
Sprinkle top with parsley & serve.
Serves 4-5 (see optional serving method
above)

(recipe: mommyskitchen.net)
————————–

Crockpot Clam Chowder

1 yellow onion, diced
1 C. water
3 medium russet or yellow potatoes,
peeled/cut into cubes
2 (6.5 oz, ea) cans minced clams with
juice
1 C. frozen corn
1 C. cooked/crumbled bacon (poster
used a pkg. of real bacon bits)
3 ribs celery, cut into quarter-inch
pieces
2 C. milk
1 C. Half & Half
2 T. melted butter
1/2 C. flour
salt/pepper, to taste

Add onion, water, potatoes,
clams with juice, corn, bacon &
celery to crockpot. Cover & cook
on Low 4-6 hours. Place butter,
Half & Half, milk & flour in a
saucepan. Cook on Low & whisk
until it is thick & bubbly. Take
about 1/2 C. of liquid from crockpot
& mix into saucepan then add that
mixture to crockpot & stir. Salt/
pepper, to taste. Cover & cook on
Low an additional 30 minutes.
Makes 8 Cups of soup

(recipe: 365daysofcrockpot.com)
———————————-

3-Ingredient Peach Cobbler

1 large can peaches (or 2 smaller cans)
1 yellow cake mix
1 stick butter, melted

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In a 9 X 13″ baking dish pour peaches
including juices. Sprinkle dry cake mix
over top & smooth. Evenly distribute
melted butter on top of cake mix.
Bake 30 minutes

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

1 Banana Peanut Butter Cookies
(small batch: makes 12)

1 C. rolled oats (or quick-cooking oats)
1 ripe banana
1/3 C. smooth peanut butter
1 T. honey
1/3 C. chocolate chips
1 egg
1/2 C. chopped nuts of your choice

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a baking sheet with
nonstick cooking spray.
In bowl combine all ingredients
with a spoon. Roll mixture into
walnut-sized balls & place on
prepared sheet; mash each
cookie out flat with your hand
or a spoon. Bake 12-15 minutes.
Makes 1 dozen cookies

(recipe: thesoutherladycooks.com)

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

I’m planning on making a batch of
Bean Soup tomorrow – it’s a good
‘stick to your ribs’ meal for cold
weather.

Babysat my almost-2 yr old grandson
yesterday and he makes me laugh. My
throat was dry so I coughed – he said:
“Bless you!” so I said: “Thank you!”
then he said: “You’re welcome!” –
almost made me want to cough again
just to see if he’d repeat it! His Dad
said he can’t believe how much
personality is in such a little body –
he’s a riot – makes me laugh and
laughter keeps me young.

Enjoy your day!

Hugs;

Pammie

Advertisements

It’s SUNDAY! YAY!

It’s cold here in Michigan – in the 20-30’s most days & chilly but clear – NO SNOW! (I probably shouldn’t say that too loud). For this time of year in my state, that’s VERY unusual! We’ve had a few ‘light dustings’, nothing big AND I’M THRILLED! My cousin who lives in Iowa said he just shoveled 5 INCHES of what they were expecting as a ‘trace’ – YUCK! Yes, I know – we get snow every year but I really don’t like to have to wear boots, dress super heavy, slog through it/drive through it/worry about falling – getting car stuck, etc. For now – I’m just thrilled!

It’s been a quiet weekend; our church choir is back in action and this afternoon we’re back to practicing 4:45 – 6 p.m. then evening church. It’s kind of nice to get back to my ‘old’ routine of both knit groups, my special needs group, babysitting, church/choir – it’s been a nice ‘time off’, too. Hope you had some relaxation between the holidays.

Lots of great-sounding recipes coming in –

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

Chocolate Cobbler

Batter:

1 C. self-rising flour
3/4 C. sugar
2 T. cocoa
1/2 C. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
2 T. vegetable oil

Topping:

3/4 C. brown sugar
1/4 C. cocoa
1 3/4 C. water

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 8 X 8″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. In medium
bowl mix flour, sugar & cocoa. Add
milk, vanilla & oil – mix well until it
becomes a thick, brownie-like batter-
pour into prepared dish.
In a separate bowl stir together (topping
ingredients): brown sugar & cocoa – sprinkle
over batter. Very slowly pour hot water over
dry mixture & batter (do not stir).
Bake 40-45 minutes.

(recipe: southernplate.com)
——————————

Chicken Tortilla Soup

6 (6 inch) corn tortillas, divided
1 1/2 tsp. oil, divided
1/2 lb. boneless skinless chicken
breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
2 (14.5 oz., ea) cans chicken broth
1 C. thick/chunky salsa
1 C. frozen corn
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Cut tortillas into strips; toss with
1/2 tsp. oil & spread onto a rimmed
baking sheet. Bake 10-12 minutes until
crisp, stirring occasionally.
=
Finely chop remaining tortillas. Heat
remaining oil in large saucepan over
medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook &
stir 5 minutes. Add chopped tortillas,
broth, salsa & corn – bring to boil &
simmer on Medium-low heat 15
minutes. Serve topped with cheese &
tortilla strips. Serves 6

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

Salmon Foil Packets
(grill or oven)

4 salmon fillets (4-6 oz, ea)
1/2 lb. asparagus spears, trimmed
4 ears fresh corn (kernels sliced off)
1 red bell pepper, cut into 1″ pieces
4 T. butter, softened
1 tsp. minced garlic
2 tsp. minced fresh thyme
2 tsp. minced fresh parsley
1 tsp. lemon zest
salt/pepper, to taste

lemon wedges/chopped parsley,
for serving
=
Preheat grill to medium heat (OR)
Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Tear off 4 large squares foil & spray
with nonstick cooking spray. Arrange
salmon, asparagus, corn & bell
peppers in center of each foil square.
In small bowl mix butter, garlic, thyme,
parsley, lemon zest, salt/pepper. Season
salmon fillets with salt/pepper, to taste.
Drop spoonfuls of butter mixture over
each salmon packet. Fold over foil to
seal the packets. Bake (or grill) 15-20
minutes until salmon is cooked through
& veggies are tender. Sprinkle with
parsley & serve with lemon wedges
Serves 4

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

Onion Baked Potatoes in Foil
(oven and grill methods)

6 medium potatoes
1 (1 oz) pkt. onion soup mix (28 g.,
approx)
2/3 C. margarine or butter

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Mix marg (or butter) & onion
soup mix together. Using a sharp
knife, make crosswise cuts into each
potato about 1/2 inch apart ( you
want to make 4-5 cuts in each potato,
stopping about 1/4 inch from bottom
of potato – DO NOT cut through to
bottom. Using a butter knife, add a
dab of marg. (or butter/soup mixture
between each slice, dividing evenly
between all slices in all potatoes. Wrap
each potato in foil & place on a cookie
sheet. Bake 40-45 minutes until a fork
easily goes through the potato. Makes 6

Grill Method:
Follow same directions for preparing
potatoes but bake on Medium-High
grill heat with lid down 30-40 minutes
until a fork easily goes through the
potatoes.

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

Crustless Quiche

1 T. butter
8 oz. cremini mushrooms, thinly
sliced
1 shallot, minced
2 C. loosely packed fresh spinach
kosher salt, to taste
ground black pepper, to taste
8 large eggs
1/4 C. whole milk
1/4 C. oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes,
finely chopped
1/4 C. freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray a 8 or 9″ pie plate with
nonstick cooking spray.
In medium skillet over medium heat,
melt butter. Add mushrooms & cook,
undisturbed, 2 minutes. Stir & continue
to cook until mushrooms are tender &
golden, 5-6 minutes. Add shallot & cook
1 minute. Add spinach & cook until wilted,
1 minute more. Season with salt/pepper &
remove from heat. In large bowl whisk eggs,
milk, tomatoes, & Parmesan. Fold in
mushroom mixture & season again with salt/
pepper. Pour into prepared pan & bake 18-20
minutes, until eggs are just set. Let cool 3
minutes before slicing & serving.
Serves 6

(recipe: delish.com)
—————————

Crockpot Amish Cabbage Patch Soup

1 lb. ground beef
1 large onion, chopped
2-3 stalks celery, chopped (optional)
1 large green pepper, chopped
1 (14.5 oz) can kidney beans, drained/
rinsed
1/2 head cabbage, chopped
2 (14.5 oz, ea) cans beef broth
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
=
Optional toppings:
shredded Cheddar cheese
sour cream
=
In skillet, cook ground beef; drain &
place in crockpot.  Add onion, celery,
green pepper, kidney beans & cabbage
to crockpot. In a bowl whisk beef broth,
tomatoes, salt/pepper, chili powder,
cumin & garlic powder – pour over crock
pot ingredients. Cover & cook on Low
6-7 hours (or high about 4).  Top with
optional toppings, if desired.
Serves 8-10

NOTE: Can be made on the stove in a
large stew pot.

(recipe: thesoutherladycooks.com)
——————————
Greek Yogurt Waffles

2 C. flour
2 eggs
1 3/4 C. milk
1/2 C. plain Greek yogurt
4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. vanilla
dash salt
1 T. sugar
=
Preheat waffle maker & spray with
nonstick cooking spray. In a large
bowl beat eggs until fluffy then add
remaining ingredients & mix until
just combined. Pour desired amount
of batter on hot waffle maker & cook
according to manufacturers directions.
Serving size will depend on size of
your waffle iron. Makes approx. 6

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

Blueberry Pudding Cake
(NOTE: this recipe bakes as it rises
to the top of a 8 X 8″ baking pan but,
once out of oven, deflates to about
half – that’s fine!)

1 pint fresh, ripe blueberries
(frozen will work, also)
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. lemon zest
juice from half a lemon
1 C. flour
3/4 C. sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 C. whole milk
3 T. melted butter
1 tsp. almond extract
1/3 C. granulated sugar
1 T. corn starch
1/4 tsp. salt
1 C. boiling water

Preheat oven 350 degrees f.
Liberally butter a 8 X 8″ baking dish.
In a bowl toss blueberries with
cinnamon, lemon zest & juice – pour
into prepared pan. In medium bowl
whisk flour, 3/4 C. sugar & baking
powder. Whisk in milk, melted
butter & almond extract – pour evenly
over blueberries. In small bowl  mix
1/3 C. sugar with cornstarch & salt –
sprinkle over batter. Pour 1 C. boiling
water into pan OVER batter & place
in oven. Bake 30-40  minutes until a
toothpick inserted into center comes
out clean – but there is still blueberry
sauce at the bottom. Serves 4-6

(recipe: afamilyfeast.com)

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

I started a second dusty rose colored baby blanket
and, after having knit a good 1 1/2 feet (approx)
noticed I had made a mistake a good 10 rows
down – decided I’d rip it down to that and fix it.
Well . . . that was not a good idea, ended up just
ripping entire project up and am now looking
for a better pattern for that yarn. (I really liked
the look of the pattern – it was only 2 rows, BUT
it was almost ‘too easy’ – too easy to make
mistakes and too hard to fix them! I know there’s
other patterns out there just waiting for me to
find them!

Words from GRAMMIEPAMMIE: Keep your
chin up, stay warm, remember to get some
rest, remember to drink water regularly, and
do something that makes YOU happy!

Hugs;

Pammie

PS: Gas prices dropped 10 cents – to $1.99/9 – yay!

Entering into January

“Love is looking out for your friends”

TUESDAY, JANUARY 8

Here we are into the first full week of January – it’s gloomy & raining out but (YAY!) no snow! It seems almost strange to not have a bunch of ‘things that have to be done’ hanging over my head (not that I’m complaining, mind you!). Tonight is my Knit/Crochet group’s first ‘official’ meeting – I changed our day because I really didn’t think many would like to come out New Years Day (not that I was worried about the drinking factor – just didn’t think they’d want to ‘go out’). It probably threw a couple people off (we meet bi-weekly) -TURNS OUT WE HAD 20! but we’ll get ‘back in the swing of things’ very soon. I love meeting with ‘my ladies’ – no matter if there’s only a few or an entire ‘bunch’, it’s always a fun time of lots of laughter, tips/sharing with each other (almost the same with the Weds. morning Library group). It’s nice to be able to do something you love (knitting/creating with yarns) and share that with others who feel the same way. Just noticed today that I’m almost done with the ‘use up blue yarns’ blanket; didn’t really think I was that far along! (This is almost a copy of one I did in the Summer for a friend – same colors of yarns. It’s nice to be able to create a baby blanket using up smaller bits of yarn and still come out with something nice.)

(Going nuts here – computer is ‘doing it’s old thing again’- I copy & paste, it transfers to blog page in SUPER TINY print! UGH!

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

(Today: January 10th, Thursday – 2 days after above – it works again!) Spoke too soon; one recipe goes in fine, next one the title is good, recipe is in tiny print – UGH!)

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

Garlic Brown Sugar Chicken

2 T. butter
4 T. minced garlic
1 lb. boneless chicken tenders
6 T. brown sugar
salt/pepper, to taste

In skillet over medium-high heat, melt butter.
Add garlic & cook 2 minutes to brown it.
Season chicken with salt/pepper & add to pan.
Cook chicken 3 minutes on each side or until
no longer pink in middle. Sprinkle brown sugar
on top & heat until melted completely.
Serves 4

NOTE: cooking time may vary depending on
size of chicken tenders

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

Chunky Chocolate Jam Bars

1 1/2 C. flour
1 C. packed light brown sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1 C. butter, softened
1 1/2 C. quick-cooking oats
1/2 C. flake coconut
1/2 C. chopped pecans, toasted
5 oz. semi-sweet chocolate,
coarsely chopped
1 (12 oz) jar raspberry jam

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray bottom of a 9 X 13″ baking
dish with nonstick cooking spray.
In large bowl mix flour, sugar &
baking powder until blended. Cut
in butter using pastry blender or
2 knives, until mixture resembles
coarse crumbs. Add oats, coconut &
nuts – mix well. Press half mixture
onto bottom of prepared pan & sprinkle
with chopped chocolate. Top with jam
& remaining crumb mixture. Bake
25-30 minutes until ligthly browned.
Cool completely before cutting into
bars. Makes 32 servings

(recipe: kraftrecipes)
———————————–

Northwoods Pie (savory dish)

2 lb. ground beef
1 small onion, diced
1 lb. maple bacon
2 (28 oz, ea) cans Bush’s Maple Cured Bacon
Baked beans
4 C. shredded mozzarella cheese
salt/pepper, to taste

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large skillet brown ground beef & onion;
season with salt/pepper – drain excess
grease. In same pan, fry bacon until half-
way done (about 5 minutes on each side).
Season with salt/pepper & place cooked
bacon on paper towels to absorb excess
grease. In bottom of a 9 X 13″ baking pan
layer half the ground beef. Layer one can
baked beans on top. Next, layer 2 C. cheese &
half the partially cooked bacon. Continue
with same layers: ground beef, beans, cheese &
bacon. Cover with foil & bake 30 minutes until
cheese is melted & dish is bubbly. Serves 12

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

Crockpot Turkey Sausage
Soup w/veggies

1 (19.5 oz) pkg Italian turkey
sausage links, casings removed
3 large tomatoes, chopped
1 (15 oz) can garbanzo beans
(or chick peas) drained/rinsed
3 medium carrots, thinly sliced
1 1/2 C. cut fresh green beans,
cut into 1″ pieces
1 medium zucchini, quartered
lengthwise & sliced
1 large sweet red or green pepper,
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 bacil

In large skillet over medium heat
cook sausage 8-10 minutes until no
longer pink, breaking up into crumbles.
Drain & transfer to crockpot. Add
tomatoes, beans, carrots, green beans,
zucchini, pepper & green onions, In
large bowl whisk stock, tomato paste &
seasoned salt – pour over veggies. Cover
& cook on Low 6-8 hours until veggies
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
needed.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————————

Baked Chicken & Spinach Spaghetti

1 lb. uncooked spaghetti
4-5 oz. fresh baby spinach, chopped
2 C. cooked, shredded chicken
2 (15 oz, ea) jars Alfredo pasta sauce
1 (15 oz) tub ricotta cheese
1/4 C. sour cream
2 C. mozzarella cheese
1 egg
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Lightly spray 9 X 13″ baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray. Cook
spaghetti until just tender, 6-8
minutes; drain & return to pot.
Stir spinach into warm spaghetti
followed by chicken & Alfredo
sauce – mix well. Spread half of
mixture into prepared pan. In
medium bowl stir ricotta, sour cream,
1 C. mozz cheese, egg, garlic, basil,
oregano, salt/pepper. Spread mixture
on top of mixture in pan & top with
remaining spaghetti – sprinkle top
with remaining mozz. cheese. Bake
20-25 minutes until golden & bubbly.
Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Serves 8

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

Sauteed Zucchini & Tomatoes

1 T. canola oil
4 small zucchini, sliced, about 4 C.
1 (14.5 oz) can stewed tomatoes,
undrained
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper

Heat oil in large skillet over medium-
high heat. Add zucchini & cook 7
minutes until tender, stirring
occasionally. Add undrained
tomatoes, salt/pepper to skillet;
break up tomatoes with a spoon &
cook 2 minutes until hot. Serves 4

(recipe: readyseteat.com)
—————————–

Snickerdoodle Poppers

1 1/4 C. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 C. milk, room temp.
1/4 C. plain yogurt, room temp.
1/4 C. granulated sugar
3 T. butter, melted
vegetable oil, for frying

Coating:
2/3 C. granulated sugar
1 1/2 – 2 tsp. cinnamon

Filling:
1 box instant vanilla pudding mix
4 oz white chocolate

Combine 2/3 C. sugar & cinnamon –
set aside. In small bowl whisk flour,
baking powder & salt. In medium
bowl whisk milk, plain yogurt, sugar &
melted butter. Stir in dry ingredients &
mix just until combined.

In medium pot heat about 2 inches oil
to 350 degrees F.

Roll out about 1/2 T. dough into a ball
using your hands (roll gently) & place
ball into oil – fry until golden brown,
flipping when golden to cook evenly
on both sides. Work in small batches
because you have to work fast. Transfer
baked balls onto a paper towel-lined
plate to drain, then roll in cinnamon-
sugar mixture. Repeat with remaining
dough.
Prepare instant pudding mix & mix into
melted white chocolate. Transfer it
to a pastry bag with filling tip (or use
a zip lock bag with one corner trimmed).
Using a filling tip – poke poppers going
about halfway in, then squeeze in filling.
(If using ziplock bag, use a sharp/pointed
item like a chopstick to poke the holes,
then fill).
Makes 30

(recipe: omgchocolatedesserts.com)

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

It’s Thursday, my ‘day off’ – yesterday was
super busy/crazy – so glad I have today to
rest/relax/recoup! The weather is finally
Michigan/January: in the low 20’s, really
chilly/windy with light snow (nothing – yet-
to worry about, just a light dusting).

Gas prices JUMPED yesterday: I went to the
Library knit group & stopped to get gas just
before; price I paid was $1.94/9 – 2 hours
later that same place was registering: $2.09/9
that’s a FIFTEEN cents a gallon jump! (I had read
on Facebook that the prices would probably go
back up to the $3.00 range soon – guess they
were right!

Need to go for a small grocery shopping today –
low on the ‘staples’: bread & milk. Not sure yet
what’s for dinner – thinking Salmon patties &
homemade garlic mashed potatoes. We’ve gotten
in to a kind of ‘new thing’ around my house – at
Christmas I made a huge spinach/mixed greens
Greek-type salad (sliced tomatoes, sliced green
peppers, sliced cucumber, sliced red onion, Feta
cheese & slivered almonds) – it was a HUGE hit
and so we’ve kind of carried that on since then.
I’m able to get these really big rectangular boxes
of mixed greens so I take half out & put them in
a zip lock bag for later then construct the salad
in that box. When it gets low, I just add more
greens & ingredients – works really well and ALL
of my family here have been hitting it, even
youngest son who NEVER eats veggies! Amazing!
I like it because it’s a quick fix if I’m hungry! (By
the way, still working on ‘the diet’ – lost 16 lbs.
and am down to 169 lbs – don’t remember WHEN
I was that low before! Diabetic numbers are good,
too.)

Anyway, now that the blog IS working I’d better
send this one out. Finished the “Use up the blue
yarns” blanket:

The colors didn’t photograph well – at the bottom there’s blue/green/white variegated yarn then a medium blue, then more variegated, etc. Oh well –

I just started another blanket in pinks (same idea/different pattern but with white lines dividing the colors)

Have a GREAT day – remember to REST & stay WARM!

Hugs;

Pammie

Decorations DOWN – YAY!

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

Other things that happened:  Middle son turned 30 yesterday.

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

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

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

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

Crackerbarrel Fried Apples

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

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

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

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

To serve:

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

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

Cheesy Ham Bubble Bakes

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

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

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

Make-Ahead Eggs Benedict Toast Cups

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————————

Asian Chicken Thighs

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

Cooked rice to serve 5

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

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————–

Toasted Almond/Coconut Cream
Poke Cake

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

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

(recipe: bakeatmidnite.com)

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

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

Hope things are going well with you, also!

Hugs;

Pammie

Cookin’ up a big ole pot of Chili!

Even though our weather is not exactly ‘right’ for this time of year in Michigan (it’s in the 40’s today & sunny – no snow!) I felt like it was time to make a ‘stick-to-your-ribs’ pot of chili. I make a really big batch and it goes quickly with three guys in the house. (I like it because I make it one day then only have to reheat portions for the following days – easy!)

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

Ultimate Sugar Cookies
overnight recipe
(soft cookies – like Lofthouse)

1/2 C. unsalted butter (softened)
3/4 c. plus 2 T. sugar
1 large egg
1 egg white
1 1/4 tsp. vanilla
3/4 C. sour cream
1/4 tsp. salt
3 C. flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda

Frosting:
4 C. powdered sugar
1/4 C. unsalted butter, room temp.
1/4 C. shortening
1/4 C. milk
1/4 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. plus 1/8 tsp. salt
Optional additions:
food coloring
candy sprinkles
=
In medium bowl whisk flour, baking
powder, baking soda & salt. In another
bowl (of stand mixer) using elec. mixer
beat butter on medium speed 1 minute
until fluffy; add sugar & continue beating
until creamy & smooth – 3 minutes. Add
egg, egg white & vanilla; mix until smooth.
Mix in sour cream & salt – beat at Low speed
until combined. Slowly stir in dry ingredients;
beat at Low speed until just combined, scraping
down bowl as needed. Cover bowl & chill
at least 2 hours or overnight.
=
Preheat oven 300 degrees F.
Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment
paper (or a silicone mat). Using a 1 ounce
cookie scoop (or-roll dough into balls a little
smaller than a golf ball). Fill a cup with water
& moisten your fingertips as you press each
ball onto parchment paper. Form balls into
a circle that is about 2 1/2 inches in diameter.
Leave about 1/2 inch between cookies on
sheets. Bake 14-16 minutes until dough has
puffed up & is firm (do not let them brown)
Transfer to a wire rack & cool completely
before frosting.
===
Frosting:
In large bowl combine powdered sugar, butter,
shortening, milk, vanilla, salt & food coloring-
mix until well combined. Once cookies have
cooled completely, frost & add sprinkles (if
using). Allow frosting to set then store in air-
tight container.  Makes 28 cookies

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

Easy Jalapeno Popper Bites
(appetizers)

8 oz. cream cheese, softened*
3-4 green onions, thinly sliced
2 jalapeno peppers/seeded/diced-
use less or more depending on preference)
8 slices bacon, cooked/crumbled
8 oz. Pepper Jack cheese, shredded
4 oz. sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
48 tortilla Scoops chips

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Line 2 large baking sheets with
parchment paper. In medium bowl
stir cream cheese, green onions, jalapenos,
bacon, Pepper Jack & Chedd. cheese.
Place Scoops chips on baking sheets &
spoon a rounded teaspoon of filling into
each chip. Top with additional bacon &
cheese if desired. Bake 8-10 minutes until
filling is bubbly & cheese is melted.
Serve immediately.

*can use light cream cheese also

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

Crockpot Cashew Candy Clusters

24 oz. unsalted dry roasted cashews
4 oz. unsweetened dark baking
chocolate
12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 lb. vanilla almond bark
1 tsp. vanilla

Lay out paper (or foil) cupcake liners
(about 50) on a flat surface.
Spray 5 qt or larger crockpot insides
with nonstick cooking spray. Add
cashews, dark choc., choc. chips &
van/almond bark to bottom of crockpot.
Cover & cook 1 hour on LOW, stirring
every 15 minutes using a rubber spatula.
Continue cooking 1-2 hours more, stirring
every 30 minutes until all chocolate is
melted. Stir in vanilla extract. Using a
large kitchen spoon, scoop mixture into
cupcake liners & allow to cool completely
before eating or packaging. Makes about 50

NOTE: You can also add pretzel bits, dry
cereal, different nuts (or mini marshmallows
at very end as you’re spooning mixture into
cupcake liners).

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

Apple Cider Ham

9-10 lb. fully cooked, smoked,
bone-in half ham
whole cloves (optional)
1 3/4 C. apple cider (or apple juice)
divided*
2/3 C. light brown sugar
1/3 C. pepper jelly
1/4 C. honey
3 T. yellow mustard
1/2 tsp. Creole/Cajun seasoning
(or to taste) optional

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Line a roasting pan (that is just large
enough for the ham) with foil. Add
another section of foil for wrapping
loosely around ham. Trim ham of
excess fat & score on top of ham,
about 1-inch apart, creating a diamond
pattern. Stud pattern with whole cloves
if desired. Place ham, cut side down in
pan. Pour 1 C. apple cider on bottom of
pan, cover ham loosely with another
sheet of foil. Bake 30 minutes.
(Meanwhile):
In medium bowl combine brown sugar,
pepper jelly, honey, mustard & Creole/
Cajun seasoning to form a thick paste.
Remove ham from oven & uncover.
Pour brown sugar mixture over ham
using a spatula to spread all over. Add
remaining cider to bottom of pan; cover
ham loosely & cook 1 1/2 – 2 hours
longer, depending on size of ham,
basting with pan juices about every
20 minutes.
Remove foil for last 20
minutes of cooking time. Let rest 15
minutes before carving; dredge cut
slices in drippings before plating.
Serves about 12

*can also substitute ginger ale, Sprite
or 7UP.

NOTE: You can also garnish ham with
pineapple rings & cherries last 20
minutes of cooking time.

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

Tex-Mex Breakfast Casserole
(overnight recipe)

1 (14.5 oz) can diced potatoes (or
1 3/4 C. cooked/diced potatoes)
2 links cooked Chorizo sausage,
diced (3 1/2 oz)
2 (4.5 oz, ea) cans chopped green
chilies,undrained
2 C. shredded Colby-Monterey Jack
cheese
12 large eggs
1/2 C. chopped scallions
1/2 tsp. seasoned salt (like Adobo)
1 jalapeno pepper, sliced thin (seeded,
if desired)
4 oz. (1 small) Haas avocado, sliced
1 C. chunky mild salsa

Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. Place potatoes
in dish & top with chorizo, green chilies
& 1 C. cheese. In medium bowl beat
eggs, scallions & seasoning salt using a
whisk until well blended – pour over
potato mixture. Cover & refrigerate
overnight.
=
Remove from fridge
Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Bake, uncovered, 55-60 minutes until a
knife inserted near center comes out
clean. Top with remaining 1 C. cheese &
jalapeno slices. Bake 2 more minutes until
cheese melts. Cut into 10 squares & serve
with salsa & avocado. Serves 10

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
————————————

Company Rice

1 rib celery, thinly sliced
1 large carrot, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 T. butter
5 C. chicken broth
1 C. uncooked wild rice
1 C. uncooked long grain rice
2/3 C. dried cherries or cranberries
1/2 C. chopped pecans, toasted

In large sauce pan saute celery, carrot &
onion in butter until tender. Stir in broth
& wild rice – bring to boil. Reduce heat,
cover & simmer 25 minutes. Add long-
grain rice, cover & simmer 20 minutes
longer. Stir in cherries; cook 5 minutes
longer until liquid is absorbed. Just before
serving stir in pecans.
Serves 10

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————————

Crockpot Roasted Garlic Mashed
Potatoes

5 lb. red potatoes, washed, mostly
peeled (or you can completely peel)
& cut into chunks
3 cloves garlic
salt/pepper
1 tsp. chicken bullion granules
1 C. warm water
8 T. butter, divided
1/3 C sour cream
1/2 C. milk

Place potatoes in crockpot & sprinkle
generously with salt/pepper. Place
garlic in center of a small square of
foil & wrap up foil like a Hershey’s
kiss; place bundle in corner of crockpot.
Pour chicken bullion into water & stir
then pour over top of potatoes. Cut 4
T. butter into small pieces & place in
random spots over top of potatoes.
Cover & cook on High 4 hours (or Low
7-8 hours depending on how fast your
crockpot works). When potatoes are
fork-tender, remove tin foil packet,
open it & smash garlic using a fork –
add half of garlic into crockpot (If
you want more garlic flavor, you can
add a bit more after everything is all
mixed together – better to start with
a little bit at first). Pour milk, 4 T.
butter & 1/3 C. sour cream into
crockpot; using elec. mixer, blend
everything together until potatoes
are fluffy & smooth. You can add
more milk if they are too thick.
Taste & adjust seasonings/garlic.
Serves 10-12

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

Chewy Gingerbread Bars

3/4 C. butter, melted
1 C. sugar
1/4 C. molasses
1 egg
2 C. flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground cloves

Cream Cheese Frosting:

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 T. butter, softened
2 C. powdered sugar
1 T. milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla
dash salt
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 9″ baking pan with
nonstick cooking spray.
In bowl of stand mixer or large
mixing bowl pour melted
butter, sugar & molasses -beat
until well combined. Add egg &
beat until smooth. In separate
bowl mix all dry ingredients –
pour mixed dry ingredients into
mixer bowl & beat just until
combined. Press dough into
prepared pan. Bake 15-20
minutes (DO NOT over bake).
It is done when a wooden
toothpick is inserted into center
& comes out clean. Remove pan
from oven & allow to cool completely.
(bars will continue to cook at bit as
they cool.)

Mix all frosting ingredients together
using elec. mixer & beat until smooth.
Frost cooled bars & refrigerate 1 hour
then cut & serve. Store leftover bars
in fridge or freezer.

NOTE: This recipe can be doubled:
Use a large jelly roll pan (11 1/2 X
16″). Bake 20-25 minutes. Follow rest
of recipe directions.

(recipe: jamiecooksitup.net)

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

It’s going to be another crazy/busy week coming up –
just finished the Senior Choir’s Christmas program
this morning so that’s 1 check off – this Wednesday
is my special needs group’s Christmas dinner/program –
after that I’m pretty well FREE of big commitments
(at least until after Christmas!).

Started another baby blanket yesterday that’s a copy
of one I did a few months ago (a Feather & Fan pattern)-
I liked it so well I decided to do another one! Have a
little more knitting to do on the peach colored baby
blanket and a bigger amount of knitting on a red &
white striped scarf for charity (I’m not planning on
getting that done before the holiday).

Hope you are all in good health and enjoying the
Christmas season. I have a tiny bit of baking left
to do (I like to give loaves of bread for some of
my friends & cookies for our mail lady – those are
on my list for this week).

Hugs;

Pammie

 

PS: Gas Prices are now down to: $2.19/9  WOW!!!

Saturday

Happy “day after Black Friday” and two days after Thanksgiving! Don’t know about your house but we still have lots of leftovers which means I DON’T HAVE TO COOK! YAY!

Found more recipes to share with you –

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

Ok – it seems the ‘cut/paste’ is turning into miniscule print AGAIN! UGH! Will see what I can do about this. About the only way I can post right now is just type them into the post.

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

Caramel Apple Dessert Dip

1 (8 oz) block cream cheese, softened

1/3 C. sugar

1 (16 oz) jar caramel dip or thick caramel sauce

1/2 C. toffee bits

Place cream cheese in medium bowl &

beat using elec. mixer until smooth & creamy.

Add sugar & beat until thoroughly combined.

Spread mixture evenly in a 3-Cup serving dish.

Pour caramel/dip sauce over cream cheese &

spread evenly; top with toffee bits. Serve

with fresh sliced apples. Serves 8

 

(recipe: dinneratthezoo.com)


Crockpot Acorn Squash Soup

2 medium acorn squash cut into wedges/seeded

1 small yellow onion, finely diced

1 (32 oz) can vegetable broth

1 clove garlic, minced

1 T. fresy thyme leaves

1 T. fresh rosemary leaves

salt/pepper, to taste

Place wedges of squash into a 6 qt.

or larger crockpot. Add broth, onion,

garlic, thyme & rosemary. Cover & cook

on Low 4-6 hours until squash is tender.

Remove & place on a plate until cool

to the touch. Using a spoon, scoop out

the flesh from skin & place flesh back

in crockpot. Cover & cook an additional

20-30 minutes on Low until squash is

warmed back up. In small batches,

puree squash in a blender, being

careful while blending hot liquids.

Serves 6

 

(recipe: crockpotladies.com)


Thanksgiving in a Blanket

1 tube refrigerated crescent rolls

3/4 C. shredded, cooked turkey

3/4 C. prepared stuffing

3/4 C. prepared mashed potatoes

1 C. cranberry sauce

1/4 C. prepared gravy, warmed

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.

Line a large baking sheet with parchment

paper. On lightly floured surface, roll out

crescent rolls. Top with mashed potatoes,

turkey, stuffing & cranberry sauce (you

want small amounts of each). Roll up

& transfer to prepared baking sheet.

Bake 12-15 minutes until golden brown.

Serve with gravy, for dunking. Makes 8

 

(recipe: delish.com)


Thanksgiving Nachos

1 bag Ruffles potato chips

1 C. Gouda cheese, shredded

1 C. cooked, shredded turkey

1 1/2 C. leftover stuffing

1 Can cranberry sauce

1/2 C. turkey gravy

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.

Spread potato chips on a parchment

lined baking sheet. Top with half of

the cheese, turkey & stuffing. Top

with more chips & remaining cheese/

turkey/stuffing. Bake 8-10 minutes

until cheese has melted. Top with

dollops of cranberry sauce & garnish

with a drizzle of turkey gravy.

Serves 6

(recipe: delish.com)


No Bake Cranberry Cream Pie

2 (8 oz, ea) pkgs. cream cheese, softened

1 (14.5 oz) can whole berry cranberry sauce

1 (12 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed (or 1 1/2 C.

heavy whipping cream, whipped)

1 pre-made 9″ graham cracker pie crust

Place softened cream cheese in a stand

mixer with paddle attachment & beat

until smooth & fluffy, about 1 minute.

Remove cranberry sauce to a microwaveable

bowl; chop it up slightly using a fork &

microwave on Low setting 30 seconds to

1 minute (you want it softened up &

starting to break down but not melted).

Add this to cream cheese & beat until

smooth, scraping down sides of bowl

a few times. Remove bowl from mixer

& fold in Cool Whip then pour into

pie crust, smooth the top into a mound.

Freeze 6-8 hours or overnight.

Serves 8

(recipe: afamilyfeast.com)


Well, it seems we’ve had a small reprieve-
our weather is WARMER with light rain
which is melting the snow that was on
the ground! 

(Ok, this is weird – NOW the print size
WORKS! Not complaining, mind you!)
We’re supposed to get temps. in the
40’s today & tomorrow then back to
mid-30’s & snow (less than an inch)
for Sunday night & Monday. Oh well –
can’t complain – it IS Winter now!

Have you noticed the gas prices?
Ours dropped to an unheard of
$2.39/9 lately! WOW! I only needed
a quarter tank but gladly filled it up
with those prices! (Who knows how
long we’ll have that blessing!?)

Hope you are all well, happily enjoying
whatever you are doing this Saturday.

Hugs;

Pammie

Oooooooops! Forgot (for two days now) to
post these:

Baby blanket # 1 for Crisis Pregnancy Mobile Unit

This is the blanket made from the (already knit) middle square my friend
gave me many years ago. She gave me 6 knit squares she’d worked on as
test knits – she was trying out various patterns for a sweater & didn’t know
what to do with the ‘practice squares’ so she gave them to me. I used up
some of my extra baby yarns & just crocheted the border. I sent her a photo
of it & she said she wished she had more squares so she could see what
else I’d come up with to make out of them!

Git ‘er DONE day!

It’s in the low 30’s today and snowing – yuck (good thing: it’s small flakes – so far). Since today I didn’t have an exact agenda, I decided it was another of my GET THINGS DONE days! Started out by finishing the cream scarf (1 skein):

Next it was “MAKE THE FRINGE!” (a tedious job I really dislike – but I got it done!)

(these are the poor, pitiful scarves – I sewed some knit squares I found together to make 2 kids scarves – for the homeless, as well as the cream one above).

Next it was work on the boot toppers a bit; am half done with the first one (noticed, while knitting, that I’d dropped a stitch about 4 rows below so that was ‘fun’ trying to rip out the rows and then figure out just WHAT row I was on at that time – think it’s all good now).  Am thinking of starting another scarf today – found some really soft teal yarn that would make a nice kid’s scarf – we’ll see.

In the crockpot is a nice beef roast with potatoes & carrots (and a pkg. of dry onion soup mix – makes a great flavor) so dinner is ‘on the way’ – leaves me more time to do other things! (LOVE my crockpot!!!)

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

Layered Pumpkin Lush
(dessert)

Crust:
2 C. flour
2/3 C. butter, softened
3/4 C. pecans, chopped

Cream Cheese Layer:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 C. powdered sugar
1 C. Cool Whip, thawed

Pumpkin Layer:
2 1/2 C. milk
3 small boxes white chocolate instant
pudding mix
1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin
1 C. Cool Whip, thawed
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

Whipped Cream Topping:
1 C. Cool Whip, thawed
1/2 C. pecans, chopped

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray.

In medium bowl combine flour,
butter & 3/4 C. pecans – press into
bottom of prepared pan. Bake 15
minutes – allow to cool completely.

In medium bowl mix cream cheese &
powdered sugar; add 1 C. Cool Whip
& spread on top of cooled crust. In
large bowl mix milk, pudding mixes,
pumpkin, 1 C. Cool Whip & pumpkin
pie spice until smooth – spread on top
of cream cheese layer.

Spread another cup of Cool Whip on top
& sprinkle with remaining pecans. Chill
at least 3 hours until set. Serves 12

(recipe: norinesnext.com)
————————————

Scalloped Corn

4 T. unsalted butter
3 large eggs
1 1/2 C. Half & Half
1 T. sugar
2 (14 oz, ea) pkgs. frozen corn
(about 5 C.) thawed
1 1/2 C. coarsely crushed butter
crackers (like Ritz or Toll House)
1 C. shredded white Cheddar
cheese (about 2 oz)
kosher salt

Place oven rack in top third of
oven.
Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Spray a 2 qt. oval baking dish with
1 T. butter. In large bowl whisk
eggs and Half & Half together.
Add sugar, corn, 1/2 C. crushed
crackers, 1/2 C. Cheddar cheese &
1 tsp. salt. Pour mixture into
prepared dish, spreading to make
an even layer. Bake, uncovered,
utnil edges are set but center is
still wet, about 35 minutes. Melt
remaining 3 T. butter in small
dish in microwave (about 30 seconds).
Mix butter into remaining 1 C. crushed
crackers until evenly moistened –
sprinkle remaining cheese & buttered
crackers over corn. Continue baking
utnil edges are brown & top is set and
golden, 20-25 minutes more. Remove
from oven & let stand 5 minutes
before serving. Serves 10-12

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
——————————

Company Chicken Casserole

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 C. chicken broth
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 wedges onion
4 C. Herb stuffing mix (dry)
1/2 C. butter
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 pint sour cream
8 oz. frozen broccoli florets/cuts,
thawed (optional)

In a skillet place chicken breasts,
broth, garlic & onion over medium-
high heat – bring to boil. Turn down
heat to medium & simmer, covered,
15-20 minutes. Remove chicken &
shred with 2 forks. Reserve the broth.
In a 9 X 13″ baking dish melt butter.
Mix all ingredients together (including
chicken) & place in pan. Bake until
golden brown. Serves 8

(recipe: allmyrecipes.com)
—————————-

Oven-Baked Philly Cheesesteak
Sandwiches

1/2 lb. ribeye steak
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
kosher salt/black pepper
2 T. unsalted butter
1 green bell pepper, seeded/
sliced (or diced)
1/2 yellow onion, sliced
12 slices Provolone cheese,
each cut in half

6 Hoagie sandwich buns, sliced
in half

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Add butter to a cast iron skillet
& heat to medium high.
Place steak in a pan or bowl with
Wors. sauce, salt/pepper – stir to
coat & let marinate while prepping
veggies & while the pan is getting hot.
Add steak to hot pan & brown well
without moving 3-5 minutes until a
good crust forms. Flip & cook 3-5 minutes
until a similar crust forms – remove steak
from pan & add veggies. Slice steak
while veggies are cooking (2-3 minutes) –
remove pan from heat. Cut a ‘well’ into
6 hoagie rolls & add 2 pieces to bottom
of each bun. Add some steak, veggies &
top with 2 additional cheese half-slices.
Place sandwich halves in a baking pan
& bake 15 minutes until cheese browns.
Makes 6 sandwiches

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

Crockpot Sweet Potato Soup

3 lb. sweet potatoes, peeled/cut
into 1″ cubes (about 8 C.)
2 T. butter
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. dried minced onion
1 tsp. dried celery flakes
(optional)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. dried thyme
1/8 tsp. ground chipotle pepper*
6 C. chicken broth

Optional toppings:
sour cream
roasted pumpkin seeds

In 4-5 qt. crockpot combine all
ingredients except optional
toppings. Cover & cook on Low
5-6 hours until potatoes are tender.
Using a blender, cool soup slightly
then puree in batches; return soup
to crockpot & heat through. If
desired top with optional toppings.
Serves 8 (2 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 broth or water if
necessary.

*Chipotle pepper adds a touch of
smoky heat but can be omitted

TIPS/OPTIONS:
You can substitute 1 medium chopped
onion & 2 ribs celery instead of dried

If you prefer FRESH herbs: use 3/4 tsp
minced fresh thyme in place of dried

The potatoes will be tender in 5-6 hours
but they can be cooked longer since they
eventually will be pureed.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————————–
Chocolate Cookie Pudding

1 (6 oz) box instant chocolate pudding mix
2 C. cold milk
3 oz. cream cheese, softened
8 oz. Cool Whip, thawed
2 C. crushed (Oreos) chocolate sandwich
cookies, crushed/divided
3/4 C. chopped pecans

Place pudding mix & milk in a bowl &
whisk 2 minutes. Cover & refrigerate
5-10 minutes to thicken. In separate
bowl combine cream cheese & Cool
Whip – blend well. Cover the bottom of
a 8-Cup bowl with 1 C. crushed cookies.
Spread half of cream cheese mixture on
top, followed by half of pecans. Spread
all of the pudding on top of pecans.
Spread nuts with remaining cream
cheese & top with remaining cookies &
nuts. Cover & refrigerate until ready to
serve. Serves 6

(recipe: ourtableforseven.com)
====================

Tomorrow is another ‘all-day’ babysitting so
I’ll be able to (maybe) finish the crocheted
knitted square/blanket I mentioned in the
last blog post. Hope the weather ‘holds’ &
doesn’t get nasty – not looking forward to
driving in lots of snow.

Stay WARM, SAFE and have a GREAT
DAY!!!

Hugs;

Pammie

Winter is DEFINITELY here!

We’ve had snow now TWICE, each time around an inch – first time it melted right away but now? Nope. It’s a ‘balmy’ 25 degrees F. out there – got out my heavy winter jacket & also zipped my winter liner in my Sunday trench coat. Gloves & scarves out – I’m ready . . . I think.

New surprise – our local gas prices are down to $2.49/9! Can’t remember when I’ve seen anything below $2.59/9 so this is great (except when it hit $2.59/9 Sunday I filled up – so hope it stays that low for awhile!).

Went to my library knit group this morning and we were all chatting about how many Christmas gifts we’re creating. I thought I was good on that one (none!) but the other day I got to thinking about middle son’s new girlfriend (she’s not only naturally gorgeous but she’s got this ADORABLE personality – I loved her immediately!) – so guess who’s knitting a pair of oatmeal-colored cabled boot toppers now . . . hehehe. Still have the two red scarves to make red/white fringe for; still working on the two baby blankets and then I got the idea to knit another ‘quick’ scarf, so there’s that as well (good thing with that – it’s just a 1-skein wonder and I’m almost done with it – homeless/kids scarf). Yes, I know – I’m ‘nuts’ but I get bored just knitting one thing so I let my creativeness kind of wander a bit .

Went shopping at Meijer the other day SPECIFICALLY because they have (Meijer brand) young turkeys on sale for $. 37 a lb – got home after $100 – something purchases only to realize I totally forgot about the turkey! Good thing their sale is still on – got a 13.5 lb. turkey for $5.00! With my oldest (the chef) doing all holiday dinners at HIS house (and he buys the meats) this one will be perfect for just husband, middle son & me. I learned, last year from Oldest son’s girlfriend’s Mother, to prepared another dinner THE DAY AFTER for just us – that way we have lots of leftovers! WIN/WIN! I babysat my sweet 1 1/2 yr old grandson all day yesterday after they got back from a week’s vacation to Myrtlebeach S.C. Since he & his family are SO BUSY lately I tried to make a ‘bargain’ with him: Middle son works until 8 p.m., other grandparents won’t be able to come but for around an hour, our youngest won’t be coming – could we please SKIP the dinner this year & just focus on Christmas dinner? NOPE – he’s the chef & he’s COOKING! Oh well . . .

My sweet grandson 1 1/2 yrs old

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

Crockpot Pumpkin Dump Cake

1 (15 oz) can pumpkin puree
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
4 large eggs
1 1/2 C. sugar
2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp. salt
1 (18.25 oz) box yellow cake mix
1/2 C. butter, melted
1 C. chopped pecans (optional)

In bowl mix pumpkin, evap. milk,
eggs, sugar, pumpkin pie spice & salt-
pour into bottom of crockpot & spread
evenly. Evenly sprinkle dry cake mix
on top. Pour melted butter evenly over
top of dry cake mix then sprinkle top
with chopped pecans (if using).
Cover & cook on High 2 hours.
Serves 10

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

Roasted Sweet Potato Wedges

3 sweet potatoes (medium, scrubbed
clean)
2 T. olive oil
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. chili powder

Preheat oven 450 degrees F.
Cut sweet potatoes in half then
cut each half into 4 equal sized
wedges. Arrange wedges on a
rimmed baking sheet & drizzle
with olive oil. Sprinkle with
salt, pepper & chili powder –
toss to coat well with oil &
seasonings. Roast about 25
minutes until potatoes are
browned, crispy on the outside
& fork-tender on the inside.
Remove from oven & serve.
Serves 6

(recipe: addapinch.com)
——————————–

Easy Roasted Acorn Squash

1 acorn squash (medium, about 1 lb)
1 T. unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces,
room temp.
salt/pepper
2 tsp. dark brown sugar (or packed light)

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Place oven rack in middle of oven.
Cut squash in half lengthwise & scrape
out seeds (using a spoon). Cut a small
slice off the rounded side of each half
to help them lie flat. Using your fingers,
butter each half with 1 piece butter then
season generously with salt/pepper. Divide
sugar & remaining butter pieces evenly
among the 2 squash halves. Place halves,
cut sides up, on a baking sheet. Bake
45 minutes to 1 hour. Serves 2

(recipe: chowhound.com)
————————————-
Stuffing w/Sausage, Cranberries & Apple

8-10 C. bread, cubed*
1 lb. breakfast sausage
1 onion, diced
1 C. celery, chopped
1 1/2 T. fresh rosemary, chopped
1 1/2 T. fresh sage, chopped
2 tsp. fresh thyme, chopped
salt/pepper, to taste
1 Granny Smith apple, chopped
1 C. dried cranberries
1-2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 C. fresh parsley, chopped
2 1/2 to 3 1/2 C. turkey or chicken
stock (or broth)
8 T. butter, melted/divided

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place cubed bread in large baking sheet
& bake 5-10 minutes until dried out. In
large skillet brown sausage – remove
from skillet, leaving 1 T. of grease in
skillet. Add onion, celery, rosemary,
sage, thyme, salt/pepper to skillet &
cook over medium heat, stirring
frequently, until onions are translucent.
Place dried bread crumbs in very large
bowl. Add sausage, onion/herb mixture
apple, cranberries, eggs, 2 C. stock/broth
& 4 T. melted butter – mix until combined.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking pan with nonstick
cooking spray. Place stuffing mixture into
pan & press down lightly. Cover with foil
& bake 45 minutes. Remove stuffing from
oven & remove foil. Check consistency of
stuffing – add additional stock as needed &
drizzle with remaining 4 T. melted butter.
Return stuffing to oven, uncovered, &
continue baking 15-25 minutes until
stuffing is lightly browned on top. Top with
additional fresh herbs, if desired, & serve
immediately. Serves 12

*Suggested breads to use: Ciabatta, Sourdough,
French

(recipes: momontimeout.com)
———————————————

(I thought this one sounded interesting for a

savory side dish)

Mushroom & Leek Bread Pudding

6 C. (1/2 inch diced) bread cubes
from a rustic country loaf, crusts
removed
2 T. olive oil
1 T. unsalted butter
2 oz. pancetta*, small dice
4 C. sliced leeks, white & light
green parts (4 leeks)
1 1/2 lb. cremini mushrooms,
stems trimmed & 1/4″ sliced
1 T. chopped fresh taragon
1/4 C. medium or dry sherry
kosher salt/ground black pepper
1/3 C. minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
4 extra large eggs
1 1/2 C. heavy cream
1 C. chicken stock
1 1/2 C. grated Gruyere cheese
(6 oz), divided

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spread bread cubes on a sheet pan
& bake 15-20 minutes until lightly
browned. Heat oil & butter in a large
saute pan over medium heat. Add
pancetta & cook 5 minutes, until
starting to brown. Stir in leeks &
cook over medium heat 8-10 minutes
until leeks are tender. Stir in mush-
rooms, tarragon, sherry, 1 T. salt &
1 1/2 tsp. pepper – cook 10-12
minutes until  most of liquid evaporates
stirring occasionally. Turn off heat;
stir in parsley. In large bowl whisk eggs,
cream, chicken stock & 1 C. Gruyere.
Add bread cubes & mushroom mixture,
stirring well to combine. Allow to stand
at room temperature for 30 minutes to
allow bread to absorb the liquid. Stir
well & pour into a 2 1/2 to 3 qt. dish.
Sprinkle top with remaining cheese &
bake 45-50 minutes until top is browned
& custard is set. Serve hot.
Serves 8-10

*Pancetta is an Italian bacon

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
—————————

Crockpot Salsa Verde Chicken

3 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts
(about 4)
1 (16 oz) jar salsa verde (mild)
1/2 C. water

Place chicken in crockpot; pour
salsa & water over top. Cover &
cook on Low 4 hours (thawed chicken)
to 8 hr. (frozen).
Remove lid; using tongs, move chicken
to a cutting board & shred then stir
back into crockpot. Serves 10

NOTE: Can be used in tacos, burritos,
quesadillas, over cooked rice, in salads
or plain.

(recipe: 365daysofcrockpot.com)
———————————-
Raspberry Marshmallow Fluff Salad

1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed
2 C. mini marshmallows
1 (3.4 oz) pkg. instant vanilla pudding mix
1 (32 oz) tub vanilla yogurt
1 (12 oz) pkg. frozen raspberries

In large bowl mix yogurt & dry pudding –
stir until completely mixed together.
Fold in Cool Whip & raspberries (Raspberries
will soften while salad sets). Add marsh-
mallows & mix together. Cover & refrigerate
30  minutes (this will allow the raspberries
to soften). Fold salad with a spoon several
times after removing from fridge – raspberry
juice will spread throughout the salad.
Serves 15

(recipe: sugar-n-spicegals.com)
====================

Am still working at lowering my blood sugar
levels before reporting back to the doctor in
mid-December. I’ve mostly been cutting out
lots of carbohydrates/sugars and substituting
LOTS of water and vegetables. I’ve gone from
185 to 176.4* and the last time I tested my
blood in the morning it was 101!!! I don’t
remember EVER having a morning number
that low! YAY!!! Really hoping that my total
A1C (that’s the total of your blood numbers
for 3 months) comes back lower – that’s my
whole goal. Yes, it will make the holidays
more difficult eating-wise, but if I just stick
to what I started I should be OK – we’ll see!

*I should add I haven’t been doing any
exercise – I KNOW that if I did, it would
be lower – just been too lazy.

Hope you’re having a GREAT day!

Hugs;

Pammie

 

Yep, It’s MICHIGAN!

(Just saw this on Facebook – sure wish the sign was a precursor to how long the snow will stay… just sayin’) Woke up to a heavy coating of snow on the ground/cars/trees/bushes but the roads are (wet) clear so that’s good. It’s 33 degrees F. out (perfect snow temp.) and, looking at the forecast, we’ll be seeing snow today and tomorrow with temps. in the 30’s for days . . . oh joy…sigh. (If you’ve known me or read my blog for awhile you KNOW I don’t like winter – I TOLERATE it – time to drag out the heavy winter coat, gloves, scarf, etc. My oldest son is in South Carolina right now so I texted him a photo of the snow; his reply was: “SAVE it for us when we get home!” (he loves snow/skiing, snow boarding, etc.)

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

Cranberry/Pecan Pumpkin Bread

3 C. flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
2 C. canned pumpkin (not pumpkin
pie filling)
2/3 C. brown sugar
2/3 C. granulated sugar
1 C. applesauce (OR) canola oil
3 eggs, room temp.
1 T. vanilla
1 C. dried cranberries
1 C. chopped pecans, toasted

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray two 8 X 4″ loaf pans with nonstick
cooking spray & line with parchment
paper. In large bowl whisk flour, salt,
baking powder, baking soda & pumpkin
pie spice. In medium bowl whisk pumpkin,
brown sugar, granulated sugar, applesauce
(or oil), eggs & vanilla. Stir wet ingredients
into dry ingredients, mixing just until
moistened & combined. Fold in cranberries
& pecans, reserving a small amount of nuts
for topping, if desired. Pour half of batter
into each prepared loaf pan & bake 50-55
minutes or until a toothpick inserted into
center of loaf comes out clean. Cool for
10 minutes in pan before removing to a
wire rack to cool completely. Makes 2 loaves.

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
————————————–
Melting Sweet Potatoes

4 T. unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 tsp. chopped fresh sage
2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
2 lb. sweet potatoes, sliced 1″ thick
kosher salt/black pepper
1 1/2 C. chicken broth
honey, for drizzling

Preheat oven 475 degrees F.
Place butter, sage & thyme in a large
microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in
30-second intervals until butter is
melted, about 1 minute. Add potatoes,
1 1/2 tsp. salt & generous amount of
pepper – toss together. Place potatoes in
a 9 X 13″ metal baking dish in a single
layer (glass should not be used at this
temperature). Bake until potatoes are
a deep golden brown on bottom, about
15 minutes. Flip & continue baking until
a deep, golden brown on second side,
another 15 minutes. Pour in chicken
broth & continue to bake until potatoes
are soft & liquid is almost completely
reduce, about 15 minutes more. Transfer
to a serving platter, season with more
salt/pepper & drizzle with honey.
Serves 4

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
————————————

Simple Crockpot Potato Soup

1 bag frozen hash brown potatoes
2 (14 oz, ea) cans chicken broth
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 C. chopped onion
1/3 tsp. black pepper
8 oz. block cream cheese, cut into
chunks
=
Optional toppings:
chopped green onion
shredded Cheddar cheese
cooked/crumbled bacon
=
Combine frozen hash browns, chicken broth,
soup, chopped onion & pepper in crockpot.
Cover & cook on Low 5 hours. Stir in cream
cheese; cook 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Top with optional toppings.

(recipe: hisugarplum.com)
——————————

Easy Pork Chops w/Sweet Sour Glaze

4 (8 oz) pork chops, bone in, 3/4 to 1″ thick
salt/black pepper, to taste
2 T. unsalted butter

Glaze:
1/4 C. balsamic vinegar
3 T. honey
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
pinch crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
salt/black pepper, to taste

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Season chops with salt/pepper. In large
skillet melt butter over medium-high
heat; add chops & sear both sides until
golden brown, 2-3  minutes. Place chops
in oven & roast until completely cooked
through, 8-10 minutes (internal temp.
140 degrees F.)*

Glaze:
Combine balsamic vinegar, honey, garlic,
oregano, basil, thyme & red pepper flakes in
small saucepan over medium heat – season
with salt/pepper, to taste. Bring to boil; reduce
heat & simmer until slightly thickened, about
5 minutes.
Serve chops immediately with glaze.
Serves 4

*Cooking times may vary depending on size
& thickness of chops

(recipe: damndelicious.net)
——————————

Favorite Company Casserole

1 (6 oz) pkg. wild rice, cooked
3 C. frozen chopped broccoli, thawed
1 1/2 C. cooked, cubed chicken
1 C. cubed, cooked ham
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 (4 1/2 oz) jar sliced mushrooms,
drained
1 C. mayonnaise
1 tsp. prepared mustard
1/2 to 1 tsp. curry powder
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of mushroom
soup, undiluted
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 2 qt baking dish with nonstick
cooking spray & layer the first 6
ingredients in order listed in dish.
In a bowl combine mayonnaise,
mustard, curry & soup & spread
over top. Sprinkle top with Parm.
cheese & bake, uncovered, 45-60
minutes until top is light golden
brown. Serves 8

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————

Sauteed Carrots

2 lb. carrots, peeled
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
2 T. unsalted butter
1 1/2 T. chopped fresh dill or
flat-leaf parsley

Cut carrots diagonally into 1/4″
slices; you should have about
6 C. carrots. Place carrots, 1/3 C.
water, salt/pepper in a large
10-12 inch) saute pan – bring to
boil. Cover & cook over medium-
low heat 7-8 minutes until carrots
are just cooked through. Add butter
& saute another minute, until water
evaporates & carrots are coated with
butter. Turn off heat, toss with dill
or parsley; sprinkle with salt/pepper &
serve. Serves 6

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
——————————–

Crockpot Blueberry Cake

1 (7 oz) pkg. Blueberry muffin mix,
divided
1/4 C. milk
1 egg
1/8 tsp. cinnamon
1/3 C. packed brown sugar
1/3 C. butter, softened

Set aside 1/3 C. muffin mix.
Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray. In a bowl
stir together remaining muffin mix,
milk, egg & cinnamon – pour into
crockpot & spread evenly. In another
bowl add reserved muffin mix, brown
sugar & softened butter – cut together
until mixed thoroughly & crumbly –
spread over batter in crockpot. Cover
top of crockpot with 6-8 paper towels,
place lid & cook on High 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
When cake is done, turn off crockpot & let
stand 10 minutes. Loosen edges of cake
with a knife & serve.

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)

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

After several days of fiddling about with
various knitting patterns I FINALLY found one
that works for a child’s scarf (most didn’t
show the pattern using cream colored yarn) –
frustrating. Still working on the 2 baby blankets;
that will be a project for awhile, neither are
close to half-way done yet.

Hope you are all staying WARM & COSY (&
SAFE!).

Enjoy your day;

Hugs;

Pammie

Happy First of November!

It’s a chilly (45 degrees F.), rainy, gloomy day out there BUT it IS the first of November, so I’m not too surprised. Today will find me, very soon, going to the Post Office to deliver our 50 special needs group newsletters to be mailed off. My ‘kids’ really count on getting their newsletters so I have to be ‘on time’. Other than a quick stop at the grocery store, I’m home & ‘off’ for the day. Dinner will be a pork stir fry & rice – that’s all ready to prepare later.

Monday found me visiting my doctor’s office for an ’emergency’ visit – (like most women) – a bladder infection (sorry if this is Too Much Information). I knew the reason: I don’t drink enough liquids. Now on an antibiotic and feeling much better BUT, since it was a unscheduled visit, I agreed to take ANY of the other doctors in the practice. The lady doctor I got was very nice/very informative; during the visit she asked me if I knew what my recent blood sugar number was. (I’m Type 2 diabetic, no meds). I replied: 6.5 – she followed that up with “No, you’re 7.3!” I totally freaked! Last test done was May and the results I got from the hospital email said 6.5. (to explain – 6.5 is not real good, but it still keeps me off of being put on meds – 7.3, on the other hand, would mean meds – NOW!) I’ve been diagnosed diabetic for a good 8 years and have managed to keep my blood sugar numbers in the range that didn’t require medicines to regulate them for me . . . until now. My next regular doctor check up is second week in December so now I’m on a SUPER HUGE rush to get my numbers down before then. What does that mean? It means I put myself on another self-made diet . . . believe me, it’s no fun: very little to no carbohydrates (pasta, potatoes, rice, breads, cereals – all the good stuff) and more veggies & proteins. My weight has crept up a bit (was 185 at doctors) so this will also help reduce that number. I KNOW I’ve been really reckless with my diet, eating just about anything I liked (including late night chips & onion dip or ice cream. . . a ‘no-no’). Time to start over – again. I have a luncheon to go to this Saturday – looks like a SALAD is in my future! So – to wrap this up, MORE WATER & VEGGIES, NO ‘junk food’.

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

Caramel Apple Cobbler

1 box yellow cake mix
2 cans apple pie filling
1 jar caramel sauce
1 stick butter, melted

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. Pour
pie filling into dish & spread
out. Top with dry cake mix then
drizzle caramel sauce over top.
Pour melted butter on top &
bake 45 minutes.

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

Turkey Pumpkin Chili

1 large yellow onion, diced (about 2 C)
1 medium bell pepper, seeded/diced
6 cloves garlic, minced (or 3/4 tsp. garlic
powder)
1 1/3 lb. ground turkey or chicken
1 (15 oz) can white beans, drained/rinsed
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes with liquid
1/4 C. tomato paste, no salt added
1 (14 oz) can pumpkin puree
1 C. chicken or vegetable broth
2 T. chili powder
1 T. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon (or 1 T. pumpkin
pie spice)
2 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
4 C. baby spinach leaves

Toppings:
chopped avocado
sour cream
plain Greek yogurt
chopped cilantro
salsa
=
Liberally spray a large pot or Dutch
oven with nonstick cooking spray &
warm over medium-high heat. Add
onion & bell pepper; saute, stirring
occasionally, 7 minutes until onion
softens. Add garlic, stir & cook until
fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add
ground meat – using a spatula or
large spoon, break up meat as it
cooks – cook 6-7  minutes, until
fully cooked. Add beans, diced
tomatoes, tomato paste, pumpkin
puree, broth, chili powder, cocoa
powder, cinnamon, cumin, black
pepper (& optional cayenne pepper)
stir. Reduce heat & simmer 20-30
minutes, stirring occasionally.
Just before serving add spinach &
mix thoroughly. Serve with suggested
toppings. Serves 6

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
——————————–

Corn Fritters

1 (29 oz) can sweet yellow corn, drained
2 green onions, chopped
1/4 C. chopped cilantro
1 T. lime juice
3/4 C. flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
2 large eggs
1/4 C. milk
1 1/2 C. colby-jack cheese, shredded

Garnish: sour cream

Drain corn & dry with paper towels; place in a bowl
with green onions, cilantro & lime juice – toss to
combine. In another bowl mix flour, baking powder &
spices. Add dry mix to corn mixture & toss until all
coated. Whisk eggs & milk together & add to bowl
of corn along with cheese – mix until combined
evenly. Drizzle some oil in bottom of large pan &
heat to medium-high. Using a large cookie scoop
or 1/4 C. measuring cup, scoop mixture into pan
(you can probably fit 3 in pan if large enough). Cook
about 30 seconds then lightly press flat. Cook 2-3
minutes on one side then flip & cook another 2-3
minutes – repeat with remaining batter & any
additional oil, as needed. Remove fritters from
pan to a paper towel-lined plate. Sprinkle with
additional salt/pepper, if desired. Serve garnished
with sour cream. Serves 6

(recipe: realhousemoms.com)
——————————–
Crockpot Cheesy Sausage
Spinach Dip

1 lb. ground sausage, cooked/drained
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
8 oz. sour cream
1 can diced tomatoes & chilies
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
5 oz. pkg. frozen spinach – thawed/
drained
1/2 tsp. garlic powder

Combine all ingredients in 3-4 qt.
crockpot. Cover & cook on Low
2 hours, stirring occasionally.

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

Swiss Cheese Chicken Casserole

3-4 boneless chicken breasts*
8-10 slices Swiss cheese
1 (10 oz) can cream of chicken soup
1/4 C. plain Greek yogurt
1 (6 oz) box prepared stuffing mix (or
you can also use seasoned stuffing cubes)
1/2 C. butter, melted

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with nonstick
cooking spray. Lay chicken breasts flat
on bottom of dish; lay cheese slices on
top of chicken. In small bowl mix soup
with Greek yogurt until combined &
spread on top of cheese slices. Sprinkle
top of cheese with dry stuffing mix &
pour melted butter on top of all. Bake
30-40 minutes until chicken is cooked
through. (baking time may vary depending
on size of chicken). Serves 6-8

*Chicken should be enough to nearly
fill bottom of 9 X 13″ baking pan

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

Broccoli/Cheese Soup
(Copycat-Panera Bread)

1 T. melted butter
1/2 medium onion, chopped
1/4 C. butter, melted
1/4 C. flour
2 C. Half & Half
2 C. chicken stock
1/2 lb. fresh broccoli, chopped
into bite-sized pieces
1 C. carrot, julienned/grated
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
8 oz. grated sharp Cheddar cheese
salt/pepper, to taste
2 C. whole milk

In small pan saute onion in butter.Cook
melted butter & flour, using a whisk,
over medium heat 3-5 minutes until
you see a noticeable golden brown color
in pan. Slowly add chicken stock & whisk
to combine – simmer contents, covered,
20 minutes, stirring occasionally over
medium heat. Add broccoli, carrots &
sauteed onions; stir & add milk and Half
& Half. Cover & cook over Low heat 20-25
minutes but do not bring to a boil (may
cause milk to curdle). Add salt/pepper &
nutmeg. Continue cooking soup
on Low heat & slowly add grated cheese,
a handful at a time – stir to avoid clumps.
Once all cheese has been added & melted,
remove from heat & serve immediately.
Refrigerate any leftovers, after cooling, in
airtight container up to 5 days in fridge.
Serves 4

NOTE: You can puree half the soup in a
blender if you like.

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

Easy Pumpkin Pull-Apart Loaf

3/4 C. pumpkin puree (not pumpkin
pie mix)
1/2 C. sugar, divided
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 large egg
1 can (8 count) Pillsbury Grands Biscuits
(homestyle or buttermilk, not flaky)
1 tsp. cinnamon

Glaze:
1/2 C. powdered sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
3 T. heavy whipping cream (or milk)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 8 X 4″ or 9 X 5″ loaf pan with
nonstick cooking spray (for best
results, use the kind with flour). Stir
together pumpkin puree, 1/4 C. gran.
sugar, vanilla, pumpkin pie spice & egg
in a bowl. Open the can of biscuits & slice
each one in half horizontally. In small
bowl stir together remaining 1/4 C. gran.
sugar & 1 tsp. cinnamon. Coat each slice
of raw biscuit dough with cinn/sugar mix.
Lay one slice of dough flat in loaf pan –
spread some pumpkin mixture on top,
then place another biscuit piece on top.
Add more pumpkin mixture & continue
stacking, spreading & layering until you’re
out of biscuits & pumpkin. Bake about
18-24 minutes until top is golden & center
is cooked through. Cool before glazing.
NOTE: the center should not be raw but
will be moist & gooey. If the top starts
to brown too fast, cover with foil &
reduce oven temp. to 325 degrees F.

To make glaze;
Whisk powdered sugar, cinnamon &
heavy whipping cream until a smooth
sauce forms – drizzle over top of loaf.
Makes 1 loaf.
Store loosely covered up to 2 days

(recipe: crazyforcrust.com)

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

I’m almost half-way done with both baby
blankets (one is pink/white/mint green &
a light tan, the other is all peach). Also
started a ‘homeless’ men’s scarf in shades
of gray; had lots of various gray yarns so
I put them together – it’s ‘ok’ – will be a
warm scarf for someone. Now is the time
of year when I start knitting scarves – not
my favorite thing (kind of boring) BUT
they use up my yarns, so it’s a good thing.

Hope you are all WARM, in good health
and able to enjoy the Fall weather &
colors. Our neighbor’s Fire Bush is
resplendent in bright reds – really pretty.
Please remember: this Saturday/Sunday
is the TIME CHANGE – move your clocks
BACK ONE HOUR!
(gives you an extra
hour to sleep in!).

Hugs;

Pammie