Hope you’re safe & warm!

Our weather has been unseasonably WARM lately – with some rain. We’ve been ‘enjoying’ 40’s (today it’s 30’s) but it’s raining with a chance of a WHOLE LOT of nasty coming. Ice Storm Warning/Flood Warning, rain/freezing rain; high today of 35 degrees F. but tomorrow it will be 26 degrees F. with a possible chance of snow – Yep, it’s MICHIGAN! (we might not be going to church tomorrow – we’ll just have to wait & see).

I’m done babysitting after 2 days of it; ‘almost’ 3 yr old grandson totally amazes me – it’s like a toddler with a 40+ yr old mind. I was sewing up a baby bootie while he played with his trucks. He said: “Grandma, Look!” I raised my head & said: “OK!” He instantly replied with: “NO, PUT YOUR GLASSES ON & LOOK!” (How does an almost 3 yr old kid know that I can’t see squat without my glasses!???) Yesterday he asked me what my favorite number and food was – I replied: “Three and pizza”. “GREAT IDEA! he said – DAD, that was a GREAT IDEA!” (who knows what he’s thinking!???)

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

Easy Banana Cake
(for all those leftover bananas!)

3 bananas
8 T. butter, softened
3/4 C. brown sugar
1/2 C. granulated sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs, room temp.
1 1/2 C. flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
3/4 C. chopped walnuts, (optional)

Maple Butter Frosting

8 T. butter
8 oz. cream cheese, room temp.
1 tsp. maple extract
2 1/2 C. powdered sugar
1/2 C. chopped walnuts (optional)
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Lightly spray 9 X 13″ baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray (or)
line with parchment paper. In large
bowl beat bananas & butter until
thoroughly combined. Add sugars &
mix with butter/banana mixture. Mix
in vanilla & eggs, one-at-a-time,  mixing
until completely combined. In a small
bowl combine flour, baking soda, baking
powder & salt – gradually add to wet
mixture, stirring just until combined.
(fold in chopped nuts, if using). Pour
batter into prepared pan & bake 23-27
minutes until a toothpick inserted into
cake comes out clean. Allow cake to
cool completely.

Brown Butter Maple Frosting

Melt butter in a small skillet over medium
heat, stirring occasionally. (butter will start
to foam & then start browning – you should
be able to smell a nutty aroma when it’s
ready). Remove from heat & allow to cool
at least 30 minutes. Beat cooled/browned
butter & cream cheese together until
completely blended, light & fluffy. Beat in
maple extract & powdered sugar – a half
cup at-a-time. Spread frosting onto cooled
cake & sprinkle top with chopped nuts if
desired.

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
—————————

Dump & Go Beef Noodle Soup

1 lb. ground beef
1/2 C. chopped onion
2 (14.5 oz, ea) cans Italian stewed
tomatoes
2 (10.5 oz, ea) cans beef broth
2 C. frozen mixed vegetables (OR)
1 (15 oz) can mixed vegetables
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/ C. uncooked medium egg noodles

In a Dutch oven cook beef & onion over
medium heat until meat is no longer pink;
drain. Add tomatoes, broth, veggies &
seasonings – bring to a boil. Add noodles;
reduce heat to Medium-Low. Cover & cook
10-15 minutes until noodles are tender.
Serves 8 (2 quarts)

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

Twice-Baked Potato Casserole

8 medium potatoes, scrubbed/dried
2 T. olive oil
1 T. kosher or sea salt
3/4 lb. sliced bacon, cooked/crumbled
2 C. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
3/4 C. mayonnaise
3/4 C. sour cream
5-6 green onions, sliced
salt/pepper, to taste

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Rub potatoes with olive oil & salt –
place on a baking sheet. Bake
45-60 minutes until tender when
pierced with a fork, flipping potatoes
halfway through baking time.
Let cool 15 minutes.

REDUCE oven heat to 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 9″ (or 9 X 13″) baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray.
Cut potatoes into bite-sized pieces &
place in a bowl. (pieces might fall
apart – that’s OK). Stir in may & sour
cream.

Set aside 1/3 C. cheese, 3 T.
bacon, 2 T. sliced green onions for
topping the casserole

Stir in remaining ingredients & spoon
into prepared dish. Top with reserved
cheese/bacon/onions.
Cover with foil & bake 30 minutes,
removing foil last 10 minutes.

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
—————————

Crockpot Pork Chops w/ Caramelized Apples & Onions

4 pork chops
3 Granny Smith apples, peeled/
cut into pieces
2 yellow onions, sliced into rounds
1/3 C. packed brown sugar
kosher salt/black pepper, to taste
=
Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray & layer onions
then apples on bottom. Sprinkle brown
sugar over top. Season chops with salt/
pepper generously on both sides & place
on top of apples. Cover & cook on Low
4 hours. Serves 4

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

Tuna Noodle Casserole

1 (10.5 oz) can cream of mushroom
soup*
1/2 C. milk
2 T. chopped pimiento (optional)
1 C. frozen green peas
2 (5 oz, ea) cans tuna in water, drained
4 oz. (about 2 C.) medium egg noodles,
cooked/drained
2 T. plain dry bread crumbs
1 T. butter, melted

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Stir soup, milk, pimientos (if using), peas,
tuna & noodles into a 1 1/2 qt. casserole
dish. Stir bread crumbs & butter into a
small dish. Bake casserole 20 minutes until
hot & bubbling. Stir tuna mixture & sprinkle
top with bread crumb mixture. Bake 5 more
minutes until top is golden brown.
Serves 4

*a reader of the site recommended using
Campbell’s Garlic Mushroom soup for
added flavor

(recipe: campbells.com)
———————————

Crockpot Cheesy Bean Dip

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 C. sour cream (or plain Greek yogurt)
1 (16 oz) can refried beans
2 T. taco seasoning mix
1 1/2 tsp. onion powder
1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
8 oz. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese,
divided
=
Tortilla chips, for dipping
=
In large bowl blend all ingredients
except shredded cheese. Spoon half
of mixture into crockpot & layer with
half the shredded cheese. Add remaining
cream cheese mixture & top with remaining
cheese. Cover & cook on Low 4 hours –
serve with tortilla chips.
Serves 12

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

Chocolate Brownie Cake

1 box chocolate cake mix
1 box fudge brownie mix
4 large eggs
1 1/4 C. water
1 C. oil

Ganache: (chocolate glaze)

1 C. heavy whipping cream
1 (12 oz) bag semi sweet chocolate
morsels
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F. Spray a
Bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray
or use the butter/flour method. Combine
first 5 ingredients in large bowl & whisk
2 minutes until most lumps are gone.
Pour batter into prepared pan & bake
50-55 minutes. Remove cake from oven
& allow to cool in pan up to 5 minutes.
Carefully turn cake out onto a cooling
rack & cool 30 minutes.

Ganache:

Place heavy whipping cream in a large
microwavesafe bowl. Heat about 2
minutes – you want the cream to be
just boiling. Carefully pour choc. morsels
into cream (it may rise up & bubble –
that’s OK). Let stand 5 minutes. Whisk
chocolate & cream until shiny & smooth,
about 1 minute then pour over cooled
cake & serve.

(recipe: 1krecipes.com)

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

Depending on the weather, I might be home
doing more knitting. Still working on the Zig Zag
mint green afghan – I like the looks of it but it’s
‘fussy’ – that means I can usually only knit about
8 rows before I’m more than DONE wanting to
knit on it again for awhile. The other Two-Color
Star Stitch afghan is about 3/4ths done – I keep
plugging away on both of them as well as try to
add to the knit baby booties; think I have something
like 15 prs. now. It takes me about an hour to knit
a pair of premie booties & about a 1 1/2 hrs. to
knit a larger set.

Hope you are all in good health & adjusting to
our New Year. Last week was a rather rough
week – just goofy things happening, almost
every day. Finally, by Thursday evening, after
babysitting, I decided I needed something –
so I ordered Jet’s PIZZA! YAY! We really like
their deep dish Veggie pizza with garlic/
Parmesan crust – that just hit the spot!

Hugs;

Pammie

Closing in on the last few days of this year!

Our weather here in Michigan is really being goofy lately (I’m not complaining, though) it’s been in the 40’s, no snow & today it’s gloomy & raining. Weather report is predicting up to 2 inches of the white stuff somewhere around Tuesday – oh, goody BUT it doesn’t look like any more is coming for the rest of the week – HOPEFULLY!

Lots of recipes coming in and I thought you might like some for the upcoming New Year’s Eve festivities you might be attending or hosting.

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

Glazed Ham & Cheese Rolls

1 stick salted butter
1/2 T. Worcestershire sauce
2 T. brown sugar (light or dark)
1/2 T. mustard ( yellow or Dijon)
1 (12 oz) pkg. King’s Hawaiian Sweet
Rolls (pkg. of 12)
12 slices black forest ham (1/2 lb)
12 slices Monterey Jack Cheese (or
8 oz shredded)

For Dipping:
Raspberry preserves
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In small pot melt butter with
Worc. sauce, brown sugar & mustard
until thoroughly melted & combined.
Remove rolls from pkg. & slice through
all rolls (while still attached), cutting
them in half horizontally ( like hamburger
buns). Brush glaze mixture onto both
cut sides of rolls, being generous with
glaze, covering well. On one side of rolls
add sliced ham then top with cheese.
Place tops on rolls & brush tops with
leftover glaze mixture. Place rolls in a
baking dish. Cover tightly with foil &
bake 25 minutes.
Serve rolls with warmed raspberry
preserves for dipping.
Makes 12

(recipe: thecountrycook.net)
—————————–
Cranberry Habanero Cheese Puffs

1 pkg. frozen puff pastry (one
half of 17.3 oz pkg), thawed
1 (8 oz) pkg. (Kraft) Hot Habanero
Cheese, cut into 16 cubes
3 T. orange marmalade
3/4 C. fresh cranberries*

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Cover a baking sheet in parchment
paper.
Unfold pastry onto a cutting board;
cut into 16 squares Place in a single
layer on prepared sheet. Bake 15-20
minutes until pastry is puffed & golden
brown. Remove from oven.
Top each ‘puff’ with a cheese cube; press
into pastry with the rounded handle of
a wooden spoon to make level with top
of pastry. Top with a little marmalade &
cranberries – bake 7-10 minutes until
cheese is softened. Let stand on sheet
5 minutes until cheese is melted then
transfer to a serving plate.
Makes 16

*You can prepare using thawed frozen
unsweetened cranberries, also

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

Bacon-wrapped Scallops

2 lb. large sea scallops, patted dry
1 lb. bacon slices, cut in half
crosswise
1/4 C. maple syrup
2 T. soy sauce
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
salt/pepper, to taste
2 T. chopped parsley

Preheat broiler.
Spray a sheet pan with nonstick
cooking spray.
Wrap a slice of bacon around each
scallop & secure with a toothpick;
arrange in single layer on sheet pan.
In small bowl mix maple syrup, soy
sauce, garlic powder, salt/pepper –
brush half mixture over top of each
scallop. Broil 10-15 minutes until
bacon is crisp & scallops are cooked
through. Brush remaining sauce over
scallops halfway through cooking
time. Sprinkle with parsley & serve.
Serves 6

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

Crockpot Mac & Cheese

2 C. dry elbow macaroni noodles,
large or small
8 oz. cream cheese, cubed
2 C. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
2 C. shredded sharp white Cheddar
cheese
2 C. milk
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Topping:
1 C. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
(optional)
=
Cook pasta on stove accordg. to pkg.
directions (not any longer). Get
other ingredients ready while pasta cooks.
Drain pasta immediately after done cooking
& add to crockpot with remaining ingredients
& stir. Cover & cook on High 2 hours. Stir
pasta twice during cooking time – once at the
hour mark & once at the 1 1/2 hr. mark – be
gentle when stirring.
When cooking time is up, add more cheese to
top; cover & cook 5-10 minutes to melt cheese.
Serves 6

(recipe: themagicalslowcooker.com)
———————————

Crockpot Sausage Dip

4 (8 oz, ea) pkgs. cream cheese, cubed
2 (16 oz, ea) pkgs (Jimmy Dean)
original breakfast sausage
1 (10 oz) can RoTel tomatoes &
chilies
1 (10 oz) can hot Rotel tomatoes &
chiles
=
tortilla chips, for dipping
=
In a skillet over medium heat brown
both pkgs. sausauge – drain & break
into crumbles. Place cubed cream
cheese into crockpot. Add sausage &
both cans RoTel (with juice). Cover &
heat on High 1 hour, stirring occasionally,
until dip is well mixed & heated through.
Reduce heat to warm/low & serve with
tortilla chips.
Makes 10 cups

(recipe: food.com)
———————————–

Baked Bacon Cheese Dip

8 oz. cream cheese, softened
12 oz. sour cream
1/2 C. mayonnaise
1 T. hot sauce
8 oz. sharp Cheddar cheese, grated
3 oz. mozzarella cheese, grated
4 oz. Pepper Jack cheese, grated
4 green onions, thinly sliced
12 oz. bacon, cooked/crumbled
1/4 C. Parmesan cheese, grated

1 round sourdough bread (about 16 oz)
=
Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Cut top off bread & scoop out insides,
leaving 1-inch layer of bread in bowl.
Brush insides with olive oil & place on
a baking sheet – bake 10 minutes.
In large bowl combine cream cheese, sour
cream, mayo, hot sauce – mix until combined.
Stir in Cheddar cheese, Mozz, Pepper Jack,
green onions & bacon. Carefully spoon filling
into bread bowl & top with Parmesan cheese.
=
Reduce oven heat to 375 degrees F.
Bake bread 45 minutes-1 hour until dip is
heated through & cheese has melted completely.
Serve immediately.
Makes 24 servings

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
—————————
Bacon/Ranch/Beer Cheeseball

8 oz. cream cheese (2 pkgs)
2 C. finely shredded Cheddar (or
Mexican cheese blend) cheese
1 oz. pkt. Ranch dip mix
1/3 C. beer (poster used Negra Modelo)
5 slices bacon, cooked/crumbled
2 T. pimento peppers, drained
3 green onions, sliced
1/2 C. pretzel crumbs
=
Pretzels, for dipping
=
In large bowl beat cream cheese until
light & fluffy. Beat in shredded cheese &
dip mix until thoroughly combined. Slowly
pour in beer & continue mixing until fully
incorporated. Stir in bacon, peppers &
green onions. Line a small bowl with plastic
wrap. Spoon cheese mixture into bowl so
that it takes on the shape of the bowl. Use
ends of plastic wrap to wrap up the cheeseball
firmly. Place bowl in fridge & let set up for
24 hours.
=
Remove cheeseball from fridge &
remove plastic wrap.  Press pretzel
crumbs into sides of cheeseball. Serve with
additional pretzels for dipping.
Makes 12 servings

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
————————-
Bacon Cream Cheese Deviled Eggs

10 hard boiled eggs
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
2 T. mayonnaise
2 tsp. Dijon mustard (or plain yellow)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper (or white
pepper)
4 strips bacon, cooked/crumbled
3 T. chopped chives

Cut boiled eggs in half length-wise &
remove yolks. In a bowl beat cream
cheese with mayo until fluffy – add in
egg yolks, mustard, salt/pepper & beat
until smooth (test for seasoning & adjust
salt/pepper, if needed). Stir in bacon &
chives – reserving some for garnish.
Spoon or pipe filling back into egg white
halves & sprinkle tops with bacon &
chives (if desired). Keep refrigerated until
ready to serve. Serves 20

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
———————————
Bacon-wrapped Chicken
Teriyaki Bites

1 lb. boneless/skinless chicken
breasts
1 lb. bacon, slices cut into thirds
1 (20 oz) can pineapple chunks in
100% pineapple juice
3/4 C. low-sodium teriyaki sauce
3/4 C. brown sugar

wooden toothpicks soaked in water
for at least an hour

=
Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces.
Drain juice from pineapple (save juice).
Cover & refrigerate chunks until needed.
Combine juice & teriyaki sauce in large
ziplock bag or bowl – add chicken pieces.
Seal & refrigerate 1 hour, turning bag
once – or stirring if  in a bowl.
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place brown sugar in a shallow dish or bowl.
Line a broiler pan with foil & spray with
nonstick cooking spray. Working in batches,
wrap each piece of chicken with a strip of
bacon & roll in brown sugar. Push a toothpick
through a pineapple chunk  then through the
bacon-wrapped chicken – place on prepared
broiler pan.
Bake 20-25 minutes until chicken is cooked
through, turning pieces once.
Turn on broiler & broil 2-3 minutes per side
until bacon is crispy. (keep an eye on them
as the toothpicks can burn).
Serve immediately.
Serves 8

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
—————————–

Brownie Cheesecake Ball

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened*
1/4 C. butter, softened
1/4 C. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 C. coarsely crumbled bite-sized
brownies, divided**
1/4 C. finely chopped pecans,
toasted

Suggested Dippers:
vanilla wafers
shortbread cookies
pretzel sticks
strawberries
=
*NOTE:
Unwrap cream cheese & place in a
microwaveable bowl. Microwave on
High 10 seconds just until softened.

**NOTE: you will need to crumble
about 16 (1 1/2 inch) brownies to
get the 2-C. measure needed
=
In large bowl using elec.  mixer beat
cream cheese, butter, sugar, vanilla &
1 1/2 C. crumbled brownies until blended.
Refrigerate 45 minutes until firm.
=
Combine nuts & remaining crumbled
brownies in a shallow dish or pie plate.
Shape cream cheese mixture into a ball;
roll in nut mixture until evenly coated.
Refrigerate 2 hours. Serves 16

(recipe: myfoodandfamily.com)

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

This coming week will seem a bit strange for me
as there are NO scheduled activities on the calendar!
No Tues. Knit Group, Wed. Library Knit Group,
Weds. special needs group – just babysitting (hoping
I only get 1-2 days of that). Love my grandson but
also love being home, too.

Finished youngest son’s black scarf with red fringe &
he said he likes it. Decided to start another NEW pattern
baby blanket – this one is using mint green yarn and a
Zig Zag pattern – 8 rows, kind of like knitting lace, have
to concentrate on every row but it keeps my mind busy.
(using my new wooden needles – they have fine tips &
I LOVE them!)

 

Hope you have a GREAT week!

Hugs;

Pammie

and here are MORE recipes!

Easy Carmelitas Cookies

1 (30 oz) tube refrigerated chocolate
chip cookie dough
1 (11 oz) bag caramels (Kraft)
1/4 C. evaporated milk
1 C. semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Line a 9″ square baking pan with
parchment paper. Slice a little more
than half the dough into 1/4″ rounds
& place in single layer on pan. Use
your fingers to press the dough into a single,
solid, even layer. Bake 20-25 minutes until
just golden. Remove from oven & let cool
slightly. In a microwave-safe container
combine unwrapped caramels & evap.
milk – microwave on High 1 minute. Stir &
heat in 30-second intervals until caramels
are completely melted. Sprinkle choc. chips
over slightly cooled cookie crust & drizzle
caramel on top of chips. Crumble remaining
cookie dough (should be less than half
tube remaining) over top of caramel (does
not have to be perfect or even). Return to
oven & bake 12-15 minutes until just beginning
to turn golden brown. Let cool to room temp.
then refrigerate at least 2 hours. Let stand at
room temperature before cutting. Serves 16

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
—————————–
4-Ingredient Shortbread Cookies

1 C. butter ( 2 sticks)
2 1/2 C. flour
1/2 C. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. salt

Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Cut each stick of butter into 8 pieces
& place on a plate. Butter should be
cool (not cold) but not soft or melted.
Place oven racks at upper third & lower
third of oven.
Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment
paper.

In food processor, add flour, sugar & salt –
pulse a few times. Add half the butter
pieces & pulse a few times. Add remaining
butter & run processor in five-second bursts
until dough comes together, less than
1 minute – scrape sides if needed.
Pour mixture onto counter top. Using a small
scoop*, scoop out 24 portions onto counter.
Roll each piece with your hands and place
12 balls on each sheet, spaced evenly – press
down to about 1/4″ thick. Use a fork to press into
each cookie then turn fork & do again, making
a cross-hatch pattern. Bake 15 minutes – rotate
pans & racks & bake another 10-15 minutes until
tops start to turn golden & bottoms are lightly
browned (total 25-30 minutes). Remove with
a spatula to cooling racks & eat warm or cooled.
Store in air tight containers. Makes 24 cookies

*Poster used a #40 scoop – each cookie ball
weighed a little over a half ounce.

(recipe: afamilyfeast.com)
————————
Crispy Baked Wontons

1/2 lb. ground pork
1/2 lb. extra-lean ground turkey
1 small onion, chopped
1 (8 oz) can sliced water chestnuts
1/3 C. soy sauce
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp. ground ginger (can also use 3/4 tsp.
fresh grated ginger)
1 (12 oz) pkg. wonton wrappers*

Sweet & sour sauce, optional**
=
Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray baking sheets with nonstick
cooking spray.
In large skillet cook pork, turkey & onion
over medium heat until meat is no longer
pink; drain & transfer to a large bowl. Stir
in water chestnuts, soy sauce, egg & ginger.
Place 1 wonton wrapper on the counter
with one point facing towards you. (Keep
remaining wrappers moist, covered with a
damp paper towel until ready to use). Place
2 heaping teaspoons of filling in center of
wrapper. Fold bottom corner over filling;
fold sides towards center over filling. Roll
towards the remaining point. Moisten the top
corner with a little water & press to seal –
place on prepared baking sheet & repeat with
remaining wrappers & filling.
Bake 10-12 minutes until golden brown, turning
once. Serve warm, with sweet & sour sauce,
if desired. Makes about 4 dozen.

NOTE: Freezer option:
Freeze cooled baked wontons in a freezer
container, separating layers with waxed paper.
To use, reheat on a baking sheet in preheated
400 degrees F. oven until crisp & heated through.

*Wonton wrappers can usually be found in the
chilled part of the fruit/veggie aisle

**Sweet & sour sauce can usually be found in
the “International” aisle of most grocery stores

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————

Creamy Chicken Rice Soup

1 T. canola oil
1 medium carrot, chopped
1 rib celery, chopped
1/2 C. chopped onion
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
1/3 C. uncooked long grain rice
3/4 tsp. dried basil
1/4 tsp. black pepper
2 (14.5 oz, ea) cans chicken broth
3 T. flour
1 (5 oz) can evaporated milk
2 C. cubed, cooked chicken breast

In large saucepan, heat oil over medium-
high heat; saute carrot, celery & onion until
tender. Add garlic; cook & stir 1 minute. Stir
in rice, seasonings & broth – bring to boil.
Reduce heat; simmer, covered, until rice is
tender, about 15 minutes. Mix flour & milk
in a small bowl until smooth & stir into soup.
Bring to boil; cook & stir until thickened, about
2 minutes. Stir in chicken; heat through.
Serves 4

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————

Garlic Parmesan Cheese Ball

11 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/3 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 C. mayonnaise
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 tsp. garlic powder (or 1/2 to 1 tsp.
minced garlic)
3/4 C. chopped walnuts, optional

Assorted fresh cut vegetables and/or
crackers
==
In large bowl combine first 5 ingredients &
shape into a ball. Roll in walnuts if desired.
Wrap ball tightly with plastic wrap & chill
2 hours. Serve with vegetables and/or
crackers. Makes about 2 Cups

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————-

Crockpot Parmesan Scalloped Potatoes

2 lb. Russet potatoes, thinly sliced
3 C. whipping cream
1/4 C. fresh parsley, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
3/4 C. freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Lightly spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray. Layer potatoes
in bottom. In a bowl mix all (except
Parmesan cheese) ingredients & pour
over potatoes. Cover & cook on Low
5 1/2 to 6 1/2 hours (or High 2 1/2 to
3 1/2 hours) It is done when potatoes
are tender. Sprinkle Parm. cheese on top;
Cover & cook an additional 30 minutes.
Serves 8

NOTE: Poster said you can either stir in
the Parm. cheese or leave on top – your
choice.

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

Crockpot Cranberry Chicken

1 broiler/fryer chicken (3-4 lb),
cut up
1 (14 oz) can whole-berry cranberry
sauce
1 C. BBQ sauce
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 rib celery, finely chopped
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Hot cooked rice to serve 6
=
Place chicken in crockpot. In small bowl
combine cranberry sauce, BBQ sauce,
onion, salt/pepper – pour over chicken.
Cover & cook on Low 5-6 hours until
chicken is tender. Serve with rice

Freezer option:
After cooking, cool chicken – cover &
freeze with sauce in freezer containers.
To use: partially thaw in fridge overnight.
Reheat in a foil-lined 9 X 13″ baking pan
in preheated 325 degrees F. oven until
heated through, covering if necessary
to prevent excess browning.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
————————

Hash Brown Breakfast Casserole

1 (16 oz) pkg. bacon, diced (can also use
ham, sausage, veggies, etc.)
1 onion, diced
8 eggs
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. hot sauce (optional)
4 C. frozen hash browns, thawed
8 oz. sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
6 oz. Swiss or Gruyere cheese, shredded
1 (16 oz) tub small curd cottage cheese
(optional topping: fresh snipped chives)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. In a large skillet
add bacon & cook over medium heat until
crisp; add onions & cook until translucent.
Remove from heat & drain on paper towel.
In large bowl whisk eggs, salt/pepper & hot
sauce. Add hash browns, shredded cheeses,
cottage cheese, bacon & onions – mix to
combine. Scoop mixture into prepared dish
& bake 35-45 minutes until center is set. Let
casserole rest 5-10 minutes before serving.
Top with fresh snipped chives, if desired.
Serves 12

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
—————————-

Peanut Butter Snowballs

1 C. powdered sugar
1/2 C. creamy peanut butter
3 T. butter, softened
1 lb. white candy coating, coarsely
chopped
chopped peanuts, optional

Line a baking sheet with waxed paper.
In a bowl combine sugar, peanut
butter & butter – chill in freezer 30
minutes unitl easy to handle. Shape into
1 inch balls & place on prepared sheet.
Freeze 30 minutes until firm.
Meanwhile –
Melt candy coating in a microwave-safe
bowl. Dip balls in coating & place on waxed paper
to harden. If desired, sprinkle with chopped
peanuts. Makes 2 1/2 dozen

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————————-

Caramel Apple Sheet Cake

2 C. flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1 C. sugar
1 C. brown sugar (loosely packed)
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 C. butter
1 C. water
1/2 C. buttermilk
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanlla
2 C. chopped apples

Glaze:
1/2 C. butter
1/4 C. milk
3 1/2 C. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 C. caramel sauce
dash salt

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray a large cookie sheet (poster
used a 11 X 17″ rimmed cookie sheet)
with nonstick cooking spray.
In large bowl using elec. mixer, add flour,
baking soda, salt, sugar, br. sugar & cinnamon-
mix to combine.
In a medium saucepan add butter & water –
bring to boil over medium-high heat. Pour
into dry ingredients & mix on Low speed
2 minutes. Add buttermilk, eggs & vanilla –
mix to combine. Fold in apples.
Pour batter into prepared pan & spread
evenly – make sure apple pieces are
evenly distributed. Bake 17-20 minutes
until a toothpick inserted into center comes
out clean.

Glaze:
In large glass measuring cup add butter &
milk. Heat in microwave until melted. Add
rest of glaze ingredients & whisk to combine.
Pour glaze over cake while cake is still warm.
Serve immediately or cool & serve at room
temp. Serves 16-20

(recipe: jamiecooksitup.net)

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

Hope you are all in good health and beginning to
enjoy the Christmastime. I managed to get all of
the Christmas decorations up yesterday (except
for the major tree which I’ll attempt to get up in
the next few days). So far, ‘things to do’ are
proceeding ‘on schedule’ so I’m happy.
Babysat for 4 hours today and he slept for
almost all of that so I managed to get almost
2 pairs of baby booties knit; I sort of put that
project on hold about a month ago and decided
it was time to start knitting them again.

Stay healthy & warm!

Hugs;

Pammie

It’s been a quiet week . . .

Our weather has been GREAT (for me, at least) – it’s been in the 40’s, clear (a little rain) and NO SNOW! YAY! Managed to get a tiny bit of Christmas shopping done yesterday – like years past, I’m just ‘not feelin’ it. The older I get the more I would be content with just one small tree & no extra decorations (guess that’s because I’m the one doing all the dragging down, setting up, etc. of all the ‘stuff’). Anyway, am TRYING to ‘get in the mood’. I had originally planned on knitting some cotton spa cloths for several people but that kind of went by the wayside. Working on the 2 baby blankets & started another crocheted granny square one.

Like many people in our ‘older’ years, we once again needed to go over our Medicaid details with our provider. I’m sure you’ve all heard the commercials about making sure you sign up BEFORE Dec. 7th! (trying to make this a short story). We got our call Weds. evening – both my husband & I wanted to adjust our plans a bit. We got a very helpful, nice young lady; both of us were on house phones so she could speak to us. Almost done with husband’s plan and her computer screen froze. She promised to call us back quickly. No call – that evening, entire next day – finally we get a call at about 11:15 pm – yes, it was her. It seems that not only HER screen but the entire program locked up! To sum it up, we spent the next 45 minutes frantically rushing through all of both plans – my husband & I both on a house phone and on our own computers – CRAZY! She was very patient and kept asking if the final details reached our computers – NO. At the last minutes she had to do a phone/verbal confirmation for my plan but we got it done – YAY! Today I just now turned on my computer (about 6:30 p.m.) and 12 confirmation emails arrived! TOO funny! Well, at least NOW both my husband & I are covered with plans that work better for us AND save us a little $$$.

===========

Cinnamon Roll Poke Cake

Cake:
1 box vanilla or white cake mix plus
ingredients to make cake (eggs, oil, water)

Filling:
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
4 T. melted, salted butter
1/2 C. brown sugar, packed
2 tsp. cinnamon

Frosting:
4 oz. cream cheese, softened/room temp.
1/3 C. butter, softened/room temp
2 C. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 T. heavy cream or milk
=
Cake:
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. Prepare
cake mix accordg. to pkg. directions &
pour into prepared dish. Bake accordg.
to directions. After baking, allow to cool.
Using the end of a wooden spoon, poke
holes (in about 1-inch intervals) into top
of cooled cake.

Filling:
In small bowl whisk sweetnd cond. milk,
melted butter, brown sugar & cinnamon.
Pour filling into holes in cake & spread it
out using a butter knife or back of a spoon.

Frosting:
In medium bowl, mix cream cheese & butter
using an elec. mixer. Slowly mix in powdered
sugar, vanilla & milk (or heavy cream); mix
until smooth – spread onto cake. Sprinkle some
cinnamon sugar on top of frosting then
refrigerate cake 1 hour to allow cakes filling
to set. Serves 9

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

Warm, Layered Black Bean Dip

2 (15 oz., ea.) cans black beans, drained/
rinsed
1/4 tsp. ancho chili powder (or just regular
chili powder)
1/4 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. salt
3 poblano peppers roasted – (see note below)
1/3 C. cilantro leaves, packed
1 T. olive oil
1/3 C. corn, drained
1/3 C. diced tomato
4 oz. queso cheese, shredded/divided
=
Suggested dippers:
Corn chips, bruschetta, tortillas
=
Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
In a saucepan over medium heat, heat
beans. Add chili powder, cumin, salt/pepper –
combine well. When beans have warmed, mash
them. Add 1/4 C. (or more) of the shredded
cheese – mix well. If needed, add some of the
bean juice for a smooth consistency. Using a
food processor, place cilantro, peppers & 1 T.
olive oil – process until smooth; spread
mixture in bottom of an oven-safe dish.
Spread cilantro/pepper mixture over bean
mixture. Add tomato & corn then remaining
cheese. Bake 10-15 minutes until cheese
melts & begins to brown. Serve with dippers.
Serves 4

NOTE:  peppers – if not roasting peppers, make
sure you seed them before using – unless you
want it spicy.

(recipe: yummly.com)
——————————

Crispy Cheese & Bacon Potatoes

1/2 lb. bacon, cooked crisp/crumbled,
reserve 2-3 T. bacon grease
3 Russet potatoes (extra large, peeled/
chopped into 1/2 – 3/4″ pieces – about
6 C. worth)
1 tsp. kosher salt
3/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1 1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese (or
Mexican blend)
3 green onions, sliced thin

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Place reserved bacon grease on a sheet
pan. Place potatoes on pan & toss with
tongs to thoroughly coat. Sprinkle with
salt/pepper & spread potatoes out in
single layer. Bake 20  minutes; stir well &
bake an additional 20 minutes. Stir again,
making sure none of potatoes are sticking
to the tray. Bake another 15 minutes. Remove
from oven, stir again & sprinkle generously
with shredded cheese & crumbled bacon.
Return tray to oven & bake 2-3 minutes until
cheese has melted. Top with sliced green
onions just before serving. Serves 6

(recipe: barefeetinthekitchen.com)
———————————

Crockpot Stuffed Pepper Soup

1 lb. extra lean ground beef
1 C. onion, diced
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes with
basil, oregano, garlic
2 C. green peppers (and/or red peppers)
chopped
1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
3 C. beef broth
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1 C. cooked rice*

Brown beef & onions in skillet over
medium heat; drain & place in crockpot.
Add tomatoes (& juice) and rest of
ingredients. Cover & cook on Low
6-8 hours. Serves 8

*poster adds the rice before cooking;
some people like to add it at the end of
cooking.

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

Crockpot Lasagna

1 lb. ground beef
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (29 oz) can tomato sauce
1 C. water
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 (8 oz) pkg. no-cook lasagna noodles
4 C. mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 1/2 C. 4% cottage cheese
1/2 C. grated Parmesan cheese

In skillet cook beef & onion over
medium heat until meat is no longer
pink. Add garlic, cook 1 minute; drain.
Stir in tomato sauce, water, tomato
paste, salt & oregano. Spread 1/4th
of this mixture into ungreased crockpot.
Arrange 1/3 of noodles over sauce, breaking
to fit if necessary. Combine cheeses; spoon
1/3 of mixture over noodles – repeat layers
twice & top with remaining meat sauce.
Cover & cook on Low 4-5 hours until noodles
are tender. Serves 8

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————

Chili Skillet

1 lb ground beef
1 C. chopped onion
1/2 C. chopped green pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (16 oz) can kidney beans, drained/
rinsed
1 C. tomato juice
1/2 C. water
4 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. salt
1/2 C. uncooked long grain rice
1 C. canned or frozen corn
1/2 C sliced ripe olives
1 C. shredded Cheddar or Monterey
Jack cheese
thinly sliced green onions (optional)

In large skillet over medium heat cook
beef, onion, pepper & garlic until meat
is no longer pink; drain. Add next 7
ingredients; simmer, covered, until
rice is tender, about 25 minutes.
Stir in corn & olives; cover & cook 5
minutes. Sprinkle with cheese; cook,
covered, until cheese is melted, about
5 minutes. If desired, top with green
onions. Serves 4

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————–

Lemon Cream Cheese Bars

2 (8 oz, ea) tubes refrigerated crescent
roll dough, divided
2 lemons, zested/juiced/divided
2 (8 oz, ea) pkgs. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. granulated sugar
2 T. butter, melted
3 T. granulated sugar

Preheat oven 350 degrees F. Line the
bottom of a 9 X 13″ baking dish with foil*
& spray with nonstick cooking spray. Press
1 tube dough into bottom of prepared
pan, stretching to the edges. In a bowl mix
the zest of 1 1/2 lemons & juice from 2 lemons.
Using an elec. mixer, beat cream cheese &
1/2 C. sugar into lemon zest mixture until
smooth & creamy – spread over crescent
roll dough layer. Unroll 2nd can of dough &
layer over cream cheese mixture, gently
stretching dough to edges. Brush melted
butter over dough layer. In a bowl mix
remaining lemon zest & 3 T. sugar – sprinkle
over butter. Bake about 30 minutes until
top is golden brown. Allow to cool about
20 minutes. Lift dessert from baking dish
using foil & transfer to a cutting board.
Cut into squares, leaving on foil. Return
dessert to baking dish & refrigerate until
chilled, at least 1 hour. Makes 24

*Allow foil to drap over edges of pan,
making foil ‘handles’

(recipe: allrecipes.com)
——————————

Microwave Peanut Brittle

1 C. granulated sugar
1/2 C. light corn syrup
dash salt
1 to 1 1/2 C. shelled raw peanuts
(can use regular or pecans)
1 T. butter or margarine
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. vanilla

Spray a baking sheet generously
with nonstick cooking spray. In a
3-qt. microwaveable bowl combine
sugar, corn syrup & salt; stir in nuts.
Microwave on High 9-10 minutes
until light brown (be sure to watch-
microwaves vary).
Stir twice while cooking (very hot –
be very careful not to get burned)
Stir in remaining ingredients – mixture
should be light & foamy. Quickly spread
as thin as possible onto prepared baking
sheet. Let cool & break into pieces.
Makes about 1 lb. brittle

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)

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

Our ‘midwest’ weather is about to change &
get MUCH colder by Weds it’s supposed to be
a HIGH of 22! (good thing is – we might get a
little rain but it says 30% chance of snow
Weds – here in Michigan, that’s nothing!).

Hope you are all staying healthy & warm;

Enjoy your day!

Pammie

and how are YOU doing?

It’s been a busy week so far – my husband & I attended a retired Telephone Operators luncheon yesterday and I saw someone I haven’t seen in over 35 years! We had a nice chat with old friends then stopped at Crossroads Pregnancy Center to deliver the three baby blankets I featured in the last post – it’s always nice to have someone really appreciate my efforts – they were thrilled. I told them I would be back in about 3 months with more.

I stopped at Kroger after my library knit group today and they are in FULL SWING with all the Thanksgiving food stuffs. Honestly, I’m not at all ready for this holiday – just don’t seem to be in ‘the mood’ but that doesn’t count, right? The day WILL go on and I WILL cook food & bring it to my oldest son’s house for that day. I’m getting LOTS of holiday recipes coming in so I knew I had to post soon.

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

Butter Pecan Layer Cake

2 2/3 C. chopped pecans
1 1/4 C. butter, softened/divided
2 C. sugar
4 large eggs, room temp.
2 tsp. vanilla
3 C. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 C. whole milk

Frosting:
1 C. butter, softened
8 to 8 1/2 C. powdered sugar
1 (5 oz) can evaporated milk
2 tsp. vanilla
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Grease & flour three 9″ round baking
pans.
Place pecans & 1/4 C. butter in a separate
baking pan & bake 10-15 minutes until toasted,
stirring frequently.
In large bowl cream sugar & remaining until
light & fluffy. Add 1 egg at a time, beating well
after each addition; stir in vanilla. Combine
flour, baking powder & salt; add to creamed
mixture alternately with milk, beating well
after each addition. Stir in 1 1/3 C. toasted
pecans. Pour mixture into prepared pans & bake
25-30 minutes until a toothpick inserted into
center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes before
removing from pans to wire racks to cool
completely.
=
Frosting:
In a large bowl cream butter & powdered sugar;
add milk & vanilla – beat until smooth. Stir in
remaining toasted pecans. Spread frosting
between layers & on top & sides of cake.
Serves 16

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

Butternut Squash Panzanella Salad

6 C. cubed day-old French bread
(bite-sized cubes)
3 T. olive oil
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. salt

Salad:
4 C. peeled/cubed butternut
squash (1 1/2″ cubes)
1 1/2 C. sliced fresh mushrooms
1/2 C. olive oil, divided
1/2 tsp. salt, divided
1/2 tsp. black pepper, divided
6 C. fresh argula or fresh baby
spinach
6 T. sherry vinegar
3 shallots, thinly sliced
1/2 C. salted, roasted almonds
6 T. crumbed goat cheese

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Toss bread cubes with oil, chili
powder & salt – spread evenly on
ungreased 15 X 10 X 1″ baking sheet.
Bake about 5 minutes until golden
brown. Transfer to a large bowl & cool.

Spray another 15 X 10 X 1″ baking sheet
with nonstick cooking spray.
In another large bowl combine squash &
mushrooms. Add 2 T. oil, 1/4 tsp. salt &
1/4 tsp. pepper – toss to coat. Transfer
to sprayed sheet & toast until tender,
20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add arugula & squash mixture to toasted
bread. In small bowl whisk vinegar, shallots
& remaining oil, salt/pepper – drizzle over
salad; toss gently to combine. Top with
almonds & goat cheese. Serve immediately.
Serves 8

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————————–

Roasted Honey Sweet Potatoes

6 medium sweet potatoes, peeled/
cut into 1-inch cubes
1/3 C. honey
1/4 C. olive oil
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. black pepper

Spray a 15 X 10 X 1″ rimmed baking
sheet with nonstick cooking spray.
Preheat oven 375 degrees F. Place
potatoes in large bowl. In another
bowl whisk honey, oil, salt, cinnamon
& pepper – add to potatoes; toss to coat.
Transfer to prepared baking sheet & roast
45-50 minutes until tender, stirring once.
Serves 12

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————————
Fresh Ginger Carrot Salad

2 (8 oz, ea) cans unsweetened crushed
pineapple, undrained
3 1/2 C. shredded carrots
1 C. raisins
3/4 C. sweetened shredded coconut
1/2 C. chopped walnut
1 1/2 C. plain yogurt
2 tsp. minced fresh gingerroot.

Drain crushed pineapple, reserving
3 T. juice. In bowl combine pineapple,
carrots, raisins, coconut & walnuts. In
another bowl combine yogurt, ginger &
reserved pineapple juice – pour over
carrot mixture & toss gently to coat.
Refrigerate at least 1 hour before
serving. Serves 6

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————

Crockpot Holiday Ham

7 lb. cooked, bone-in ham (or spiral
cooked ham)
1 C. brown sugar
2 C. pineapple juice
1/2 C. maple syrup

Place ham in large crockpot, flat
side down. Rub brown sugar all
over sides of ham then drizzle
with juice & syrup. Cover & cook
on Low 4-6 hours. Serves 12

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

Crockpot Sausage Dressing/Stuffing

7 C. seasoned stuffing cubes or croutons
1 medium tart apple, chopped
1/3 C. chopped pecans
1 1/2 tsp. rubbed sage
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 lb. reduced-fat bulk pork sausage
1 large onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 (14.5 oz) can chicken broth
2 T. butter, melted

Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray.
In large skillet cook & crumble sausage
with onion & celery over medium-high
heat until sausage is no longer pink.,
4-5 minutes; drain. In large bowl combine
first 5 ingedients then mix with stuffing.
Stir in broth & butter – place in crockpot.
Cover & cook on Low 3-4 hours until
apple is tender, stirring once.
Serves 12

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
————————

Bacon Cheese Ring
(appetizer dip)

3 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1/2 C. shredded Mozzarella cheese
1/2 C. mayonnaise
1 C. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. bacon bits
1/2 C. chopped green onions
1 (16 oz) jar strawberry preserves
1/4 C. pecan pieces

Butter crackers, for dipping
=
In large bowl mix shredded cheeses.
Add gr. onions & bacon bits – mix in
softened cream cheese & mayo. Be
sure not to make mixture too creamy or
it may not hold it’s form.

Spray a serving plate with nonstick cooking
spray. Sprinkle edges with pecan pieces –
place cheese mixture in center into a
ball-shape. Top with strawberry preserves.
Serve with butter crackers. Serves 12

NOTE: another tester used Pepper Jack
instead of mozzarella

(recipe: cdkitchen.com)
—————————

Cranberry Swirl Cheesecake

Sauce:
3/4 C. fresh cranberries
1/4 C. sugar
1/4 C. water
1/2 tsp. fresh orange zest

Crust:
3 oz. gingersnap crumbs (from 12
gingersnap cookies)
1 oz. pecans, crushed
1 1/2 T. light butter, melted

Cheesecake:
8 oz cream cheese
1/4 C. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 (6 oz) tub plain Greek yogurt
2 egg whites
2 T. fresh lemon juice
1 T. flour

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place oven rack in middle of oven
Line a 8 X 8″ baking pan with waxed
paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on
all sides.

Sauce:
In small saucepan combine cranberries,
sugar, water & orange zest. Cook until
cranberries begin to burst & mixture
turns soupy, 6-7 minutes. Remove from
heat; allow to cool.

Crust:
In small bowl combine gingersnap
crumbs, crushed pecans & light butter.
Stir to  moisten crumbs then pour into
prepared baking pan. Spread in an even
layer, using bottom of a drinking glass
to help ensure the crust is even.

Cheesecake:
In medium bowl using elec. mixer,
beat cream cheese, sugar & vanilla
until smooth. Add yogurt, egg whites,
lemon juice & flour, mixing until just
combined. Pour mixture into pan over
crust & smooth with a spatula. Add
cooled cranberry mixture to a food
processor – puree until smooth (if
mixture is too thick, add 1/2 T. water).
Use a spoon to drop sauce over cheesecake
then swirl sauce with a butter knife.
Bake 25 minutes.
Allow to cool to room temp. & refrigerate
several hours to get well chilled. Once
chilled, cut into squares. Serves 9

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)

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

Because I had fun crocheting the last baby blanket AND
because I have so many small balls/skeins of baby yarn
I decided to try a (new to me) FLOWER granny square
& make a blanket out of leftover yarn. It’s going well
but because the squares are only 4 inches I will need
48 to complete the blanket (and then crochet an edge
around it). With that project, now I’m up to 3 baby
blankets and the baby booties – keeps me busy & out
of trouble!

Hope you are well and into the Fall/Thanksgiving
preparations. Weather-wise we have been blessed
with slightly warmer temperatures which have VERY
NICELY melted a LOT of the 8 1/2 inches of snow we
got last week. Roads & sidewalks are clear, driving is
great – walking is great and I’m happy! I don’t mind
a bit chilly – it’s the icy/mounded snow I worry about.

Stay warm & healthy;

Hugs;

Pammie

and HEeeeeeere’s Winter – full blast!

Yes, I live in Michigan and yes, we get the cold weather BUT – in mid-November? NO! I can remember Thanksgiving celebrations many years ago when we would get a light dusting of snow but 4-6 INCHES 2 weeks BEFORE Thanksgiving? NO!!! Yes, I read in our local paper a few days ago that we ‘might’ get an Arctic blast but really – 4-6 INCHES? It started during the night and is still coming down. I remembered to call a snow plow removal guy this morning to get signed up – that much snow will definitely bury our driveway. I don’t have anywhere to go today but my sons might. Ah, the fun . . . sigh.

Managed to start another baby blanket using the Star Stitch (same stitch was in one of the blanket photos from the last post.) It’s an easy stitch and, this time, I just decided to go with white and a blues/white variegated yarn, in stripes – looks nice so far (and this pattern goes rather quickly).

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

Pumpkin Spiced Snickerdoodles

1 3/4 C. (white whole wheat) flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
1 C. sugar
1/4 C. butter, softened
1 T. honey
1 tsp. vanilla
1 large egg
3 T. sugar
1 T. pumpkin pie spice

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray 2 baking sheets with
nonstick cooking spray. In medium
bowl combine flour, baking soda &
cream of tartar, stirring with a whisk.
In large bowl combine 1 C. sugar & butter;
using elec. mixer on medium speed, beat
until well blended. Add honey, vanilla &
egg – beat well. Gradually add flour
mixture to sugar mixture; beating
until just combined. Cover & chill
10 minutes.
In medium bowl combine 3 T. sugar with
pumpkin pie spice, stirring with a whisk
to combine. With moist hands, shape
dough into 42 (1-inch) balls. Roll balls
in sugar/pumpkin mixture & place
2 inches apart on baking sheets. Slightly
flatten with a fork.
Bake 5-7 minutes (cookies will be
slightly soft). Cool on sheets 2 minutes
then remove from pans & cool completely
in wire racks. Makes 42 cookies

(recipe: skinny taste.com)
————————–

Crockpot Turkey Breast w/Gravy

1 1/2 T. unsalted butter or olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 carrot, peeled/chopped
1 rib celery, chopped
6 cloves garlic, peeled/crushed
1/3 C. flour
2 C. chicken broth
1 C. water
1/4 C. dry white wine (can use water)
2 T. fresh sage
2 bay leaves
1 (5 lb) turkey breast, bone in/skin on
(removed later), trimmed of fat
salt/pepper

In a 12-inch skillet over medium-high
heat, melt butter. Add onion, carrot,
celery & garlic – cook 8-10  minutes until
onion is soft. Stir in flour; cook until
golden brown, about 2 minutes. Stir in
1 C. broth & scrape up any browned bits
on bottom of pan – smooth out any lumps
& pour into crockpot. Add remaining
broth, water, wine, sage & bay leaves to
crockpot. Season turkey with salt/pepper &
place skin-side-up in crockpot. Cover & cook
on Low 5-7 hours (until turkey reaches
165 degrees F. with an instant-read
thermometer). Transfer turkey to a cutting
board & tent loosely with foil – let it rest
20 minutes. Let liquid in crockpot set 5
minutes then remove the fat from surface
using a large spoon. Strain liquid into saucepan;
discard celery & bay leaves. Simmer until
thickened, about 15 minutes. Season with
salt/pepper, to taste. Discard skin & carve
turkey – serve with gravy. Serves 10

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
————————–

Easy Garlic/Cheddar Biscuits

2 T. butter, melted
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 T. fresh chopped parsley
2 C. Bisquick baking mix
3.5 oz. shredded sharp Cheddar
cheese
2/3 C. milk

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Line a cookie sheet with parchment
paper. In small frying pan melt butter;
add half garlic & saute on Low heat
1 minute. Remove from heat; add
parsley. In large bowl combine Bisquick
mix, Chedd. cheese & remaining garlic.
Stir in milk & mix (do not over mix).
Drop batter by heaping Tablespoons
onto prepared sheet. Bake 10 minutes.
Brush or drizzle tops with melted
butter. Bake 5 more minutes until
lightly browned on bottoms.
Makes 14 servings

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
—————————-
Brussels Sprouts Gratin

16 oz. brussels sprouts, trimmed of
outer leaves/sliced in half
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
black pepper, to taste
1/2 T. butter
1/3 C. chopped shallots
2 T. flour
3/4 C. milk
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. fresh thyme
1 T. grated Parmesan cheese
2 oz. grated Gruyere cheese, divided

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray a 8 X 12″ gratin or casserole
dish with nonstick cooking spray. Add
brussels sprouts & season with salt/
pepper. Spray more cooking spray
over sprouts & place in lower third
of oven. Bake 15 minutes, toss &
bake an additional 10 minutes.
MEANWHILE =
Heat a medium nonstick pan over
medium heat. Add butter & melt; add
shallots – cook until softened, 4-5 minutes.
Sprinkle flour over shallots  & whisk 1-2
minutes (making a roux). Add milk & stir
with a wooden spoon until roux is
incorporated into milk. Cook over medium-
low heat 4 minutes, stirring until sauce thickens.
Add fresh thyme, Parm. & half grated Gruyere
into sauce – stir until cheese melts & is
incorporated into sauce. Pour over brussels
sprouts & top with remaining cheese. Bake
15 minutes until top is lightly browned &
bubbly. Serves 6

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
—————————-

Carrot Ginger Soup

1 T. unsalted butter
1 large white onion, chopped
3 C. vegetable broth
1 lb. peeled baby carrots
1 T. grated fresh ginger
1/4 C. sour cream
kosher salt
white pepper, to taste

Optional garnish:
2 T. fresh micro greens or chives
=
In large pot or Dutch oven melt
butter over medium heat; add
onions & cook, stirring often,
until onions are soft, 5-6 minutes.
Add broth, carrots & ginger – cover &
bring to boil. Reduce heat & simmer
until carrots are soft, about 30 minutes.
Add sour cream (using an immersion
blender or, in batches, in regular blender);
carefully blend until smooth. Bring soup back
to boil; adjust salt & pepper to taste. Ladle
into 4 bowls, garnish with a little more sour
cream & fresh chives, if desired.
Makes 5 Cups

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
——————————

Paprika Chicken Thighs w/Rice

6-8 chicken thighs (bone in/skin on)
2 T. olive oil
2 T. butter
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 T. smoked paprika
1 tsp. garlic powder
pinch cayenne
1/2 C. chopped green onions
1/2 C. chopped sweet green or
red peppers
2 C. chopped baby spinach
1 (14.5 oz) can chicken broth
2 C. heavy cream
2 C. instant white rice
=
Optional garnish: chopped
green onions
=
In large skillet heat butter & olive
oil. In a shallow pan (like a pie plate)
combine salt, pepper, paprika, garlic
powder & cayenne. Roll each chicken
thigh in mixture & brown in skillet on
both sides until skin is cooked & blackened.
Remove thighs from skillet. Add green onion
& peppers to skillet & cook. Add baby spinach &
pour in broth & heavy cream – stir & bring to a
low boil. Add rice & simmer 3-4 minutes. Add
chicken back to skillet. Cover & simmer about
15 minutes. Remove from heat & let stand
5-10 minutes before serving so rice will soak
up liquid. Garnish with chopped green onions,
if desired. Serves 6-8

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

Crockpot Autumn Apple-Pecan Dressing

4 C. soft bread crumbs
1 C. saltine crackers, crushed
1 1/2 C. apples: peeled/cored/chopped
1 C. chopped pecans
1 C. onion, chopped
1 C. celery, chopped
2/3 C. chicken broth
1/4 C. butter, melted
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. dried sage

Combine bread crumbs, cracker
crumbs, apples, pecans, onion &
celery in bottom of crockpot. In
a small bowl mix remaining ingredients
until well blended. Pour into crockpot &
toss to coat. Cover & cook on Low 4-5
hours until dressing is puffed & golden
around edges. Serves 12

(recipe: gooseberrypatch.com)


Skinny Apple Cobbler

Apple filling:
2 1/2 lbs. Gala apples, peeled/cored/
sliced 1/4″ thick
1/2 C. honey
2 T. cornstarch
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
pinch salt
2 T. fresh lemon juice
1/2 C. water

Topping:
1/4 C. white whole wheat flour
1/4 C. flour
2 T. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
2 T. chilled whipped butter
1/3 C. buttermilk
1 T. canola oil
1 tsp. light brown sugar, unpacked

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray 6 (8 oz) ramekins with
nonstick cooking spray.
In large, heavy pot combine all
apple filling ingredients – simmer
on Low heat 25 minutes, gently
stirring occasionally until apples
are soft. Divide into prepared
ramekins.
In medium bowl whisk flours,
gran. sugar, baking powder, baking
soda & salt. Cut in chilled butter
(MUST be cold), using a pastry
cutter (or 2 knives) until pebble-
sized pieces are formed. In small
bowl combine buttermilk & oil –
mix well. Add to dry mixture & mix
until just moistened, careful not to
over-mix. Spoon batter over apples
in ramekins. Sprinkle tops with
brown sugar & bake 30  minutes until
apples are bubbling & topping is
golden. Let stand 8-10 minutes before
serving. Makes 6

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)

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

Tomorrow night is my knit/crochet group
at Panera. As I posted on Facebook – ‘come
if you’re feeling ‘adventurous’! The weather
report says that it’s supposed to be clear by
tomorrow (no more snow) but I’m not really
sure I trust that report. Right now it’s a ‘balmy’
27 degrees F.; supposed to be a High of 25
tomorrow & no new snow expected until
Wednesday night and that’s just a ‘chance’ of
snow showers – we’ll see.

Glad I got out all my winter clothes – went
from short sleeved tops & jumped straight
into heavy sweatshirts! Oh well – that’s life,
right? Gotta ‘roll with the punches’, or so
they say.

Stay warm & healthy;

Hugs;

Pammie

A little drive in the country

Today I ‘attempted’ to deliver the three baby blankets to my new charity: Crossroads Center in Auburn Hills, MI. It’s about a 20 minute drive – beautiful day, I found it without much trouble EXCEPT the one thing I forgot to do: check their hours! Yep – closed Friday, Saturday, Sunday! Oh well – it was a nice little drive in the ‘country’. Here are the blankets:

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

Some really tasty-sounding recipes are coming in so I wanted to share.

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

Magic Pumpkin Layer Cake

1 box yellow or white cake mix
(plus ingredients to make cake)
1 (30 oz) can pumpkin pie filling mix
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
2 eggs
1 (3.5 oz) box instant vanilla pudding mix
2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice, divided
1 C. cold milk
1 (8 oz) tub Cool Whip, thawed

Optional topping/decoration:
mini cinnamon chips
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with nonstick
cooking spray. Prepare cake mix accordg.
to pkg. directions & pour into prepared
pan.
In a bowl mix pumpkin pie mix, eggs,
evap. milk & 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice –
stir well & pour slowly onto cake batter
over entire cake. Bake 50-60 minutes.
(Cake will look a bit darker than what you’re
used to – that’s OK). Cool cake completely
(at least a couple hours)

Once cake is cooled, prepare topping:
Topping:
In a bowl combine instant pudding mix with
1 tsp. pumpkie pie spice; pour in cold milk &
whisk until pudding  begins to thicken. Gently
fold in Cool Whip & spread over cooled cake.
(sprinkle optional topping on top)
Serves 12

NOTE: You can serve this immediately but
poster recommends refrigerating at least
1 hour before serving.

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

Chicken & Summer Squash
(crockpot)

3 lb. boneless skinless chicken
breasts
2 (10.5 oz, ea) cans cream of
chicken soup
4 small summer squash, sliced
(poster used yellow squash)
16 oz. sour cream
1 large yellow onion, diced
1 1/2 C. Cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 T. butter, room temp.
1 C. bread crumbs
dried parsley, optional garnish
paprika, optional garnish

hot cooked rice or pasta to
serve 8

Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick spray. Place chicken
breasts in bottom of crockpot. In
large bowl mix soup, sour cream,
onion, cheese, garlic salt, pepper
& butter. Fold in sliced squash &
mix well to coat – pour over
chicken. Sprinkle bread crumbs on
top. Cover & cook on Low 8 hours
or High 4-5 hours. (chicken should
be fully cooked when it reaches
165 degrees F. using a thermometer).
Serve over hot cooked rice or pasta
& garnish with dried parsley and/or
paprika. Serves 8

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

Crustless Spinach, Onion, Feta Quiche

1 medium onion, diced
6 oz. baby spinach
3 large eggs*
1/2 C. flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
pinch cayenne pepper
1 1/3 C. milk
1/2 C. feta cheese

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Lightly spray (using nonstick
cooking spray) a 10 inch quiche/
tart pan (or pie plate). In medium
skillet cook onion with a bit of
vegetable oil (or cooking spray)
over medium-high heat until
translucent & tender. Add spinach
& cook until spinach wilts. Set
aside to cool for a few minutes.
In large bowl whisk eggs, flour &
baking powder. Whisk in milk then
stir in spinach mixture – pour into
prepared dish & top with feta cheese.
Bake 25 minutes until center is set
& outside edge is golden brown. Let
stand 5 minutes then slice & serve.
Serves 6

*NOTE: original recipe called for
2 eggs & 1/2 C. Egg Beaters (liquid
substitute)

(recipe: myskinnypoints.com)
———————————

Crockpot Cinnamon Roll Casserole

1 (12.4 oz) can refrigerated
cinnamon roll dough
1/2 C. whipping cream
4 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
3 T. maple syrup
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
(sugar icing – optional, often
included in dough container)

Remove dough from can; cut
each piece into quarters. In large
bowl combine whipping cream,
eggs, vanilla, maple syrup, cinnamon
& nutmeg; whisk until smooth.
Place three-fourths of quartered
pieces in bottom of 4-quart crockpot.
Pour cream mixture on top & layer
remaining pieces on top. Cover &
cook on High 1 hour 45 minutes. If
your dough came with icing, drizzle
over warm casserole before serving.
Serves 4-6

NOTE: For a more festive flavor: omit
nutmeg & mix zest of 1 clementine
orange with 1 T. granulated sugar –
sprinkle over top of casserole instead
of using icing.

(recipe: cooktopcove.com)
————————————

Eggplant & Tomato Sauce (or
can be used on pasta)

1 medium eggplant, cut into 1/2
inch cubes
4 cloves garlic, smashed & chopped
2 T. olive oil
1 (28 oz) can plum tomatoes, do
not drain)
salt/black pepper, to taste
chopped basil or parsley – optional
garnish

Heat oil in large, deep skillet over
medium-high heat. When hot, saute
garlic in oil. Add eggplant & cook
about 3 minutes, until it begins to
soften. Coarsely chop the tomatoes &
add to skillet along with juices. Season
with salt/pepper & simmer, uncovered,
15-20 minutes. Add chopped herbs,
if using & serve over your favorite
(cooked) pasta. Serves 4 (3/4 C. sauce
each)

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

Bacon/Cheddar/Beer Cheese Dip

8 oz. cream cheese, room temp.
2 C. (8 oz) shredded Cheddar cheese
1/2 C. sour cream
1/2 C. beer
3/4 C. bacon bits
1 C. cooked yellow corn
3 T. diced jalapenos
1/3 C. salsa
=
green onion, sliced
limes – optional, for serving
cilantro – optional, for serving
=
In a large saucepan add cream
cheese, Cheddar cheese, sour cream &
beer over medium heat. Heat, stirring
regularly, until fully melted & smooth.
Add bacon bits, corn, jalapenos & salsa –
stir until well combined. Remove from
heat & pour into a serving bowl. Garnish
with green onions, limes, cilantro &
any other additional garnishes. Serve
warm.

(recipe: yummly.com)
—————————-
Peanut Butter French Toast

2 T. butter
4 slices white bread
1/2 C. creamy peanut butter
2 T. grape jelly
3 eggs, beaten
1/4 C. milk

(optional garnish: powdered sugar)
=
In a nonstick skillet over medium
heat melt butter.
Make 2 sandwiches with bread,
peanut butter & jelly. In a bowl
whisk eggs & milk. Dip each sandwich
into egg mixture & place in hot pan.
Cook sandwiches on each side (about
2-3 minutes per side) until golden.
Serve sprinkled with powdered sugar.
Serves 2

(recipe: gooseberrypatch.com)

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

Our weather has definitely kicked in to high
gear – it was 33 degrees F. when I got up today
and now it’s a ‘balmy’ 34! Light dusting of snow
on the ground but a beautiful clear blue sky so
even if it’s cold, it’s nice. (meaning: can be
tolerated with warm clothes/jacket/gloves).

This ‘no-babysitting’ week has felt strange (don’t
get me wrong – I’m not complaining, just commenting).
I was supposed to go out to lunch with a friend on Monday
but she cancelled. Tuesday was a kind of non-day – just
grocery shopping. Wed. Knit Group & special needs
group, yesterday – nada . . . just made my family’s
favorite dinner: Meat & Potato Pie (it’s basically just
a meatloaf in a 9 X 13″ pan frosted with mashed
potatoes then topped with Cheddar cheese – put it
under the broiler to melt the cheese – they love it.
Today – not much planned, either! Sure feels weird
with NO PLANNED things to do! I’m kind of tossing
around making another baby blanket with either
6 or 7″ squares using up a lot of baby yarns – we’ll
see. Problem with that is: the yarns are various
‘weights’ – some are baby weight, some are worsted
but that’s a problem for me to figure out, right?

Hope you’re having a GREAT day! Remember to
look outside & enjoy a little of God’s creations!

Hugs;

Pammie

and now . . . a new Month!

Along with the change of months came our first SNOW! Yes, it’s Michigan (land of the “You never KNOW when you’re going to get SNOW!). Woke up yesterday with a light dusting and temperatures in the 30’s – Brrrrrrrr! Babysat at 8:30 a.m. so had to scrape off car windshield for the first time this season – sigh. Today it’s on & off – gloomy then sunny, slight wind & 45 degrees F. Looking at the forecast for later on today – 60% chance of snowfall & rain – oh, goodie…

With all the babysitting yesterday (8:30 – 6 something p.m.) I got a lot of knitting done! Still working on my special needs girl’s scarf (about 3/4ths done), about the same amount done on a crocheted baby blanket and working on the new blanket with the new (super favorite) yarn.

Also wanted to add a Halloween photo from my oldest son & his family (minus older grandson):

 Nothing like characters from Toy Story 2!

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

Crockpot Pumpkin/Cinnamon Roll
Casserole

1 (21 oz) can pumpkin
2 tubes refrigerated cinnamon rolls
(12 oz, ea) Reserve icing
1 T. pumpkin pie spice

Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray. Cut cinnamon
rolls into fourths – place a single layer
on bottom of crockpot (reserve icing).
Spoon pumpkin over top then sprinkle
top with pumpkin pie spice. Continue
layering rolls then spice).
Cover & cook on Low 2 1/2 – 3 hours until
sides are golden brown & rolls are set. Drizzle
icing over top & serve warm.
Serves 8-10

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

Panera Autumn Squash Soup

2 T. olive oil
1 (2 lb) butternut squash, peeled/seeded &
cut into 1″ cubes
2 medium carrots, peeled/chopped
2 large shallots, chopped
kosher salt/ground black pepper, to taste
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 T. brown sugar, packed
2 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. curry powder
4 C. vegetable broth
1 C. apple juice
1 C. water
1/2 C. pumpkin puree
2 T. cream cheese, softened
heavy cream – optional

Topping:
1 T. olive oil
1/2 C. toasted pumpkin seeds
1/2 tsp. chili powder
kosher salt

Soup:
In large pot over medium heat heat oil.
Add squash, carrots & shallots – season
with salt/pepper. Cook, stirring occasionaly,
until beginning to soften, about 5 minutes.
Stir in garlic, br. sugar, ginger & curry powder –
cook until vegetables are beginning to caramlize,
about 2 more minutes. Pour in broth, apple
juice & water – bring to boil then reduce to a
simmer – cook until vegetables are soft, about
10 minutes.
In small bowl whisk together pumpkin puree &
cream cheese until well mixed – pour into pot
& stir to combine. Using an immersion blender,
puree soup until smooth (Can use a regular
blender, in batches, being very careful of hot
soup). Season with salt/pepper – stir in desired
amount of heavy cream, if using.

Topping:
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
On a medium baking sheet toss pumpkin seeds
with oil & chili powder – season with salt. Bake,
shaking pan halfway through baking time, until
seeds are crunchy & golden, about 10 minutes.
Let cool completely.

Serve soup topped with toasted pumpkin seeds.
Serves 6

(recipe: delish.com)
———————————–

Chicken, Spinach & Artichoke Taquitos
(appetizer)

1 1/2 C. cooked/shredded chicken
1 (8 oz) cream cheese, room temp.
1 (14 oz) can artichoke hearts
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen chopped spinach,
thawed/drained/squeezed dry
1 tsp. chili powder
kosher salt/ground black pepper, to taste
18 small corn tortillas
2 1/2 C. shredded Monterey Jack cheese

olive oil – for brushing
salsa – for dipping
sour cream – for serving
=
Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Spray large baking sheet with nonstick
cooking spray. In large bowl combine
chicken, cream cheese, artichokees,
spinach & chili powder – season with
salt/pepper. Place tortillas on a micro-
wave safe plate & cover with a damp
paper towel. Microwave 30 seconds,
or until warm & pliable. Spread about
1/4 C. filling on one end of tortilla then
sprinkle a little cheese next to filling.
Roll up tightly & place, seam sides down,
on baking sheet – repeat with remaining
filling, cheese & tortillas.
Brush taquitos with oil & bake until
crispy & golden, flipping halfway
through cooking time 15-20 minutes.
Serve with salsa & sour cream for dipping.
Makes 18 taquitos

(recipe: delish.com)
——————————

Crispy Parmesan Roasted Potatoes

4 C. baby red potatoes, skins on,
cut into 1″ cubes
3 T. olive oil
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. paprika
4 T. freshly grated Parmesan cheese,
divided

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Line a baking pan with parchment
paper. In large bowl combine chopped
potatoes with oil, garlic salt, sea salt,
pepper, paprika & 2 T. Parm. cheese –
mix well to ensure each potato is
evenly coated – transfer mixture to
prepared baking sheet, moving
potatoes around until they are one
even layer. Bake 15 minutes. Remove
from oven & mix. Bake another 25-
30 minutes, mixing every 10 minutes
until potatoes are soft in middles but
crispy on outsides. Remove from oven &
sprinkle last 2 T. Parm. cheese on before
serving. Makes about 8 servings.

(recipe: yummly.com)
———————————

Dump & Bake Chicken Cordon Bleu

1 (22 oz) jar Alfredo sauce (about 2 1/2 C.)
2 C. chicken broth
1 C. white wine (or substitute with an
additional 1 C. chicken broth)
1 (16 oz) pkg. uncooked rotini pasta
1 C. grated Swiss cheese, divided
1 C. cooked, diced chicken
1 C. cooked, diced ham
1/4 C. breadcrumbs combined with:
1 T. melted butter
optional garnish: chopped fresh parsley

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with nonstick
cooking spray. In large bowl whisk
Alfredo sauce, chicken broth & wine
until completely smooth. Stir in uncooked
pasta, 1/2 C. cheese, chicken & ham. Cover
tightly with foil & bake 40 minutes.
Remove dish from oven & stir – check pasta
to make sure it’s al dente (firm but just about
finished cooking). If it’s still too hard, cover
dish & return to oven until it’s al dente.
Once pasta is al dente & sauce has thickened,
sprinkle remaining 1/2 C. cheese on top &
sprinkle with buttered breadcrumbs. Bake,
uncovered, 5 more minutes until cheese is
melted & breadcrumbs are golden brown.
Garnish with parsley, if desired. Serves 6-8

(recipe: theseasonedmom.com)
——————————

Caramel Apple Dump Cake
Oven & Crockpot recipe

1 box yellow cake mix
2 (21 oz, ea) cans apple pie filling
1/2 C. caramel sauce or topping
2 sticks butter, melted, or sliced

OVEN:
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spoon both cans of pie filling into
bottom of 9 X 13″ baking dish &
spread evenly. Pour caramel evenly
over top; sprinkle dry cake mix
evenly over top. Place thinly sliced
pats of butter evenly on top (or
drizzle melted butter on top).
Bake 50-60 minutes.
Serves 12

Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!
===
Crockpot:
Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray. Layer ingredients
the same as above. Cover, placing a layer
of paper towels between edges of crockpot
top & lid (not touching cake) to catch any
water droplets that may form on lid).
Cook on High 2 hours (or) Low 4 hours
Serves 12

(recipe: soulfullymade.com)
===================

Hope things are going well for you and you’re
in GOOD health! Now is the time to get out
the warmer clothes, cocoa mix and warm
slippers.

Enjoy your day!

Hugs;

Pammie

Tuesday

Last night found my husband and myself sitting in the rain in 50 degree weather watching our oldest grandson’s last football game. They won 28 to 0! It was a good (but wet) game – glad we went; almost his entire family (extended as well) attended so he had a good showing of support.

Today found husband & I at our regular doctors for our 3-month check up. I’m diabetic so our dr. insists on the ‘every 3 month’ visit – husband just likes to tag along & bug the doctor. We have a GREAT doctor – great sense of humor, really quick-witted – it’s a joy to go there. Glad to report my weight is doing very well (down to 171) and blood sugars are good, too – yay! We ‘celebrated’ by going out to lunch; I had a taco salad (YUM!)

===========

Sweetened Condensed Milk Pumpkin Bread

3 C. flour
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. (freshly grated) nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
4 eggs, room temp.
4 T. butter, melted
1/4 C. canola oil
1 (14 oz) can sweetened cond. milk
1 (15 oz) can pumpkin puree
3/4 C. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Place oven rack in top third of oven.
Grease & flour 2 (8 X 4″) loaf pans
(poster used glass loaf pans)

In large bowl whisk flour, salt, cinnamon,
nutmeg, cloves, ginger, baking soda &
baking powder. In another medium bowl
whisk eggs, butter, oil, sweetnd cond. milk,
canned pumpkin, sugar & vanilla. Whisk
wet ingredients into dry & mix to combine.
Divide batter between prepared pans, evenly.
Bake 45-50 minutes until a toothpick inserted
into center of loaf comes out clean. Do not
over bake. Cool 10 minutes then remove from
pans & cool on wire racks.
Can be eaten warm or when cooled.
Cover & refrigerate leftovers.
Makes 2 loaves

(recipe: afamilyfeast.com)
———————————

Crockpot Brown Rice Mushroom Risotto

1 C. diced onion
2 T. butter
1 clove garlic, minced
8 oz. sliced mushrooms
1 C. long-grain brown rice
1/2 C. broth (or 1/2 C. water & 1/2
tsp. chicken bouillon)
2 C. chicken broth
1 C. water
1/3 C. grated Parmesan cheese
salt/pepper, to taste
1 T. white wine vinegar

Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray.
In a microwave-safe dish stir onion,
butter, garlic, mushrooms, rice &
1/2 C. broth – microwave 4 minutes,
stirring every 90 seconds – pour into
crockpot. Stir in 2 C. broth & water;
cover & cook on High about 3 hours.
Stir in Parm. cheese, salt/pepper, to
taste, & vinegar. Serve immediately.
(Poster says it tastes best served right
away) Serves 6

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

Mushroom-stuffed Pork Chops
GRILL

2 tsp. olive oil
2 T. thinly sliced green onions
1 (8 oz) pkg. fresh mushrooms, coarsely
chopped
2 tsp. snipped fresh rosemary (or 2 tsp.
oregano)
1/8 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper
4 boneless pork chops, cut 1″ thick
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

Stuffing:
In large skillet heat oil over medium
heat. Add green onion – cook 1 minute.
Stir in mushrooms, rosemary, salt/
pepper – cook & stir 2-3 minutes until
mushrooms are tender. Remove from
heat.
Trim fat from chops. Cut a slit (a ‘pocket’)
in each chop by cutting from fat side almost
to, but not through, the opposite side. Spoon
stuffing into pockets in chops (if necessary,
secure with wooden toothpicks). Brush chops
with Worc. sauce; season chops lightly with
additional salt/pepper. Grill chops on rack of
an uncovered grill directly over medium heat
about 20 minutes until juices run clear, turning
once halfway through cooking time.
Remove toothpicks & serve. Serves 4

(recipe: food.com)
——————————-

(Low Carb) Sheet Pan Chicken Teriyaki

2 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts
cut into bite-sized pieces
2-3 C. broccoli florets
2-3 C. cauliflower florets
2 green onions, diced

Sauce:
1/2 C. teriyaki sauce
2 T. honey
1 tsp. sriracha sauce
=
Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray a large, rimmed baking sheet
with nonstick cooking spray.
In small bowl stir together sauce
ingredients. Place chicken & veggies
on baking sheet & drizzle with all
of the sauce – toss to coat. Bake about
30 minutes, stirring halfway through
cooking time) until chicken is no
longer pink in center & veggies are
cooked to your desired doneness.

(recipe: southernplate.com)
—————————-
Enchilada Dip

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 (7 oz) can chopped green chiles,
undrained
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. chili powder
1 1/2 C. Mexican-style (Kraft) finely
shredded Four Cheese, divided
1/2 lb. boneless, skinless chicken
breasts, cooked/finely shredded
=
Crackers or baked pita triangles, for dipping
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In medium bowl using elec. mixer
beat cream cheese, chiles, seasonings
& 1 C. shredded cheese. Stir in
chicken & spread on bottom of a
9-inch oven-proof plate.
Bake 20-25 minutes until dip is heated
through. Sprinkle top with remaining
cheese & let stand 10 minutes.
Serves 18

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

Crockpot Minestrone Soup

1/4 C. Zesty Italian salad dressing
1 C. onion, chopped
1/2 C. celery, sliced
1/2 C. carrot – peeled/sliced
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 (15.5 oz) can kidney beans, drained/
rinsed
2 (14 oz, ea) cans vegetable broth
3 C. water
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 1/2 to 2 C. small shell pasta, uncooked

Optional: 1 lb. ground mild sausage,
browned/drained
==
Optional topping:
fresh grated Parmesan cheese (or 4-cheese
Italian blend)
=
Place all ingredients (except uncooked
pasta & topping)
in crockpot – stir. Cover & cook on Low
8 hours (or High 4 hours).
Place uncooked pasta into crockpot;
stir, cover & cook on High 30 minutes
longer (it’s done when pasta is tender).
Sprinkle with fresh grated Parmesan
or 4-cheese Italian blend cheese, if desired.
Serves 6

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

Pumpkin Pie Squares

1 C. flour
1/2 C. quick-cooking oats
1/2 C. packed brown sugar
1/2 C. cold butter

Filling:

2 (15 oz, ea) cans solid-pack pumpkin
2 (12 oz. ea) cans evaporated milk
4 large eggs
1 1/2 C. sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. salt

Topping:

1/2 C. packed brown sugar
1/2 C. chopped pecans
2 T. butter, softened

Optional topping:
Sweet whipped cream (OR)
Cool Whip (thawed)
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray.
In large bowl combine flour, oats
& brown sugar – cut in butter until
mixture is crumbly. Pour batter into
prepared pan & bake 20 minutes
until golden brown.
Beat filling ingredients until smooth;
pour over crust & bake 45 minutes.
Combine topping ingredients &
sprinkle over filling. Bake 15-20
minutes until a knife inserted into
center comes out clean. Cool, then
refrigerate until serving. If desired,
serve with optional toppings.
Makes 20

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)

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

Things are going good here – don’t remember if I mentioned
one of my special needs girls asked if I would knit her a scarf;
she wanted either orange or purple. I found 2 colors of purple
at the yarn swap and have tried numerous times to make it
work (changed needles, changed yarns, changed patterns)
only to get VERY frustrated. Seems the one ‘yarn’ I picked up
is actually cotton & merino wool (more like a very soft dish-
cloth yarn) – just didn’t like the feel of it when knitting and
it didn’t show off the pattern well, either. Finally I went to
Meijers store and bought 2 large skeins of a really nice sort-
of grape colored yarn – what a difference! I have already knit
up MORE than all the other attempts in the past with this.
I think she’ll like the scarf when done – will ask her tomorrow
if she thinks she might like fringe on it. Sometimes ya just have
to go with your instincts – I would have driven myself crazy
trying my hardest to make that other yarn work.

Hope you’re having a good day!

Hugs;

Pammie

It’s Friday already! Wow!

It’s another brisk (52 degrees F) clear day – sun shining, a slight breeze to blow around all the leaves that are either falling or already on the ground. I managed to get out early & do a few errands, come home & paint some of the ‘little houses’ that I put out on our window ledge during the summer and now am on the computer.

Tonight is my special needs group’s Harvest Party so dinner will have to be something quick & easy. My middle son the other day asked when we could have Nachos again for dinner so that’s what’s on the menu at my house tonight! The good thing is: they like them AND there will be enough for another meal tomorrow! YAY! Next up will be a Meat & Potato Pie (my husband’s favorite).

I have been blessed this week with NO BABYSITTING! The two days I could be available, the baby’s Mom was off and now SO AM I! Can’t say I’ve done anything really ‘extra’ with my time but: we did have my knit group’s Yarn Swap Tuesday evening and I actually think this was THE LARGEST batch of donated yarn EVER! (I started the group in Sept., 2007). Everyone took what they wanted (I kept 4 small skeins of baby yarn) – I took 4 HUGE bags of yarn the next day to the Library Knit group & they took what they wanted. We STILL donated 4 BIG  bags of yarn to Children’s Village where they teach young people to knit & crochet.

I’m currently working on 3 blankets, two knit & one crochet plus starting a scarf for one of my special needs students. Lots of knitting being done lately.

Monday last we went to my oldest grandson’s football game and they won 14 to 6; froze my little ‘whatevers’ some and the last game is this coming Monday night. One more ‘freeze’ and we’re done for the season! It was cute – my baby grandson kept getting into the excitement of the crowd by standing up and yelling:
“Go Big Brudder – GO! WIN!” The people around us were laughing because he was doing that no matter WHO was winning but it was cute.

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

Caramel-Pecan Pumpkin Pull-Aparts
(overnight recipe)

1/4 C. butter, cubed
1 C. chopped pecans
3/4 C. packed brown sugar
1/2 C. heavy whipping cream
1/4 C. honey

Dough:
1 (1/4 oz) pkg. active dry yeast
1/4 C. warm water (110-115 degrees F.)
2 1/4 to 2 1/2 C. flour
1/4 C. sugar
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 C. cold butter, cubed
1/2 C. solid-pack pumpkin
1/2 C. buttermilk
1 tsp. vanilla

Spray a 9″ square baking dish
with nonstick cooking spray.
In small saucepan melt butter over
medium heat. Add pecans; cook & stir
2-3 minutes until pecans are fragrant.
Stir in brown sugar, cream & honey –
cook & stir until sugar is dissolved &
mixture begins to darken. Pour batter
into prepared pan. In small bowl
dissolve dry yeast in warm water. In
large bowl, whisk 2 1/4 C. flour, sugar,
pie spice, salt, baking soda, baking
powder & cinnamon – cut in butter
utnil crumbly. Add pumpkin, buttermilk,
vanilla & yeast mixture – mix well.
Turn dough onto a floured surface
& knead gently 8-10 times, adding
additional flour if needed. Roll dough
into a 9″ square. Cut into 16 squares &
arrange over pecan mixture in pan.
Cover with plastic wrap & refrigerate
overnight.
=
Remove pan from fridge 30 minutes
before baking.

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Uncover pan & bake 24-28 minutes or
until golden brown. Carefully invert onto
a serving platter & serve warm.
Serves 16

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————

Chicken-Fried Steak w/Sawmilk Gravy

Steaks:
6 pieces cub steak, about 2 lb.
salt/black pepper, to taste
1 C. flour, divided
25 saltine crackers, crushed
1 tsp. seasoned salt
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
2 eggs
1/3 C. milk
oil for frying

Gravy:
1/4 C. flour
1 1/2 – 2 C. whole milk
=
Steaks:
If your cube steaks are more than 1/2″
thick, you will need to pound them until
thin*; season lightly with salt/pepper.
On a plate (or pie tin) place 1/2 C. flour.
In a shallow bowl mix remaining 1/2 C. flour,
crushed saltines, seasoned salt, garlic powder &
cayenne pepper. In another shallow bowl whisk
eggs & 1/3 C. milk. Dredge cubed steak in flour
then dip in egg mixture then coat in cracker
mixture – continue process for rest of steaks &
place them on a large baking sheet. In a large
skillet (preferably cast iron) heat about 1/2 inch
vegetable oil or shortening over medium heat.
Cook steaks in 2 batches about 4-5 minutes per
side then remove to a paper towel-lined baking
sheet to drain excess oil.

Gravy:
Once steaks are finished cooking remove excess
oil from pan, leaving about 1/4 C. remaining.
Add 1/4 C. flour to pan; whisk & cook over
medium heat 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk
& cook until thick. Whisk constantly & season
to taste with salt & black pepper – pour over
steaks when serving.
Serves 6

*Pounding steaks provides additional tenderizing
as well as allowing for more even cooking.

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

Crockpot (low carb) Pizza Soup

1-2 lb. ground sausage, browned/drained
2 C. marinara sauce
1 (14.5 oz) can beef broth
1 C. water
16 oz. cream cheese, cubed
1 (4 oz.) can mushrooms, drained
1 (2.25 oz) can black olives, drained
1 T. Italian seasoning
1 C. mini pepperoni (or chopped regular)

Optional garnish: shredded mozzarella cheese
=
Combine all ingredients (except garnish)
in 6 qt. crockpot. Cover & cook on High 2-3
hours (or Low 4-5 hours), stirring occasionally.
Serve topped with optional garnish, if desired.
Serves 8

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

Crockpot Artichoke Dip

28 oz. canned artichoke hearts,
drained
2 C. shredded Monterey Jack Cheese
16 oz. cream cheese, softened
2/3 C. Half & Half
1/2 C. diced green onions
1 T. diced jalapeno pepper
=
Suggested dippers:
chunks of French bread, cut up fresh
vegetables, pita chips or crackers
=
Place all ingredients in a 3-5 qt. crockpot;
stir to combine. Cover & cook on Low 30
minutes to 1 hour – stirring twice during
cooking time. Dip is done when all cheeses
are melted & gooey.
Turn crockpot to Warm to serve straight
from crockpot (OR) spoon dip into a
serving bowl. Serves 12

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

Mushroom Risotto

18 oz. crimini or Baby Bella mushrooms,
cleaned/quartered
1 T. unsalted butter
1 T. olive oil
pinch salt

Rice Preparation:
2 T. unsalted butter
2 T. olive oil
1 C. onion, diced
1 C. dry Arborio rice
1/3 C. dry white wine (or water)
2 1/2 C. chicken stock
3/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese
salt/pepper, to taste

In medium saute pan melt 1 T. butter &
1 T. olive oil; add mushrooms & saute
over medium-high heat until lightly
browned, stirring frequently. Sprinkle
lightly with a touch of salt; saute another
1 minute. Remove from heat.
Rice:
In medium heavy-bottomed saucepan,
melt butter & olive oil over medium-high
heat. Add onion – saute 5 minutes until onions
are translucent. Add rice, stirring frequently,
2-3 minutes until rice is just starting to turn
lightly golden. Quickly pour in wine & allow
liquid to boil & be absorbed into rice. Pour
1/4 C. chicken stock to rice, stirring constantly.
(If necessary, adjust heat for a medium simmer).
Add more stock, 1/4 C. at a time, adding more
stock as most but not all of liquid has been
absorbed, before adding more stock. Cook
rice & stock approx. 25 minutes until rice is
tender, but not mushy. Turn off heat when
there is still some liquid remaining in rice.
Stir in Parmesan cheese, mushrooms & salt/
pepper – stir to combine completely. Remove
from heat & cover – let stand 5 minutes before
serving. Serves 4-6

NOTE: Risotto may be reheated by adding
some additional chicken stock & stirring to
incorporate stock into risotto.

(recipe: afamilyfeast.com)
————————–

Layered Enchilada Bake

1 lb. ground beef
1 large onion, chopped
2 C. thick & chunky salsa
1 (15.5 oz) can black beans,
drained/rinsed
1/4 C. Zesty Italian salad dressing
2 T. taco seasoning mix
6 (8 inch) flour tortillas
1 C. sour cream
1 (8 oz) pkg. (Kraft) Mexican-style
finely shredded Four Cheese

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. In large
skillet over medium-high heat
brown meat with onions; drain.
Return meat mixture to skillet;
stir in next 4 ingredients. Arrange
3 tortillas in single layer on bottom
of prepared dish. Cover with layers
of half each: meat mixture, sour
cream & cheese – repeat layers.
Cover with foil & bake 40 minutes
until heated through & cheese is
melted, uncovering after 30 minutes.
Let stand 5 minutes before cutting &
serving. Serves 6

(recipe: kraftrecipes.com)
—————————–

Pumpkin Pie Dip
(dessert)

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
2 C. powdered sugar
1 C. solid-pack pumpkin
1/2 C. sour cream
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
=
Gingersnap cookies – for dipping
=
In large bowl using elec. mixer, beat
cream cheese & powdered sugar until
smooth. Beat in pumpkin, sour cream &
spices until blended. Transfer to a serving
bowl & serve with gingersnap cookies.
Refrigerate any leftovers.
Makes 4 cups dip

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————————-

Old-fashioned Clove Cookies

1 stick butter (8 T./  1/2 C.) softened
1 C. brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 egg
1 C. flour
1 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 C. chopped pecans or walnuts

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Lightly spray a cookie sheet with
nonstick cooking spray. In large
bowl using elec. mixer, cream butter,
brown sugar, vanilla & egg. In another
bowl whisk flour & ground cloves – add
to creamed mixture. Fold in nuts. Drop
batter by tablespoons onto sheet.
Bake 10-12 minutes. Makes about 2 dozen

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks.com)

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

Hope you’re in good health and enjoying this Fall weather!

Hugs;

Pammie