a little late but I’m still around!

Thanksgiving went well – husband just informed me we are now down to “just turkey” – his ‘afternoon snack’ just wiped out the mashed potatoes, gravy, green bean casserole and wild rice stuffing! Looks like there will be turkey pot pie in the very near future at our house!

Hope you all had a great holiday; I’m still not quite into the ‘holiday’ spirit – I’m not a big fan of decorating so have to kind of push myself into the ‘getting ready for Christmas’ theme. I’ve managed to order 2 Christmas presents – pretty pathetic, eh? I also ordered (through Groupon) a 4-person pass for my oldest son & his family to visit one of our local ‘treasures’: the Christmas Walk at Meadowbrook Hall/Estate in Rochester, Michigan. This is a gorgeous estate which originally belonged to the Dodge (as in motor car) family and the local florists decorate most of the house and estate with beautiful scenes, Christmas trees, wreaths, etc. When my sons were younger we did the tour of the estate and it is well worth it. (also found a DVD of some Gilbert & Sullivan operas my husband loves and doesn’t have) – that’s it . . . I’m just not overflowing with gift ideas this year! How about you?

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

Cranberry Apple Crisp

3 C. chopped, peeled tart apples
2 C. fresh or frozen cranberries
1 C. sugar
3 T. flour

Topping:
1 1/2 C. quick-cooking oats
1/2 C. flour
1/2 C. packed brown sugar
1/2 C. butter, melted
1/4 C. chopped pecans

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 11 X 7″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray.
In large bowl combine apples,
cranberries, sugar & flour & pour
into prepared dish. In another bowl
mix topping ingredients until crumbly;
sprinkle over top of apple mixture. Bake
50-55 minutes until fruit is tender.
Serves 6-8

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————-
Easiest Peanut Butter Fudge EVER!

2 C. sugar
1/2 C. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 C. peanut butter

Spray or grease a sided baking
pan. (recipe did not give size but
photos look like a loaf pan or a
8 X 8″)
In a saucepan bring sugar & milk to
a boil stirring constantly (do not turn
heat on High) Once it comes to a
full rolling boil, boil 2 1/2 minutes then remove
from heat. Stir in peanut butter & vanilla
& pour into prepared pan. Let chill.

(recipe: facebook)
——————————-

Crockpot English Pub Split
Pea Soup

1 meaty ham bone
1 1/3 C. dried green split peas,
rinsed
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 large carrot, chopped
1 sweet onion, chopped
4 C. water
1 (12 oz) bottle light beer
1 T. prepared English mustard
1/2 C. 2% milk
1/4 C. minced fresh parsley
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg

minced fresh parsley, optional garnish

Place ham bone in 4 qt. crockpot. Add
peas, celery, carrot & onion. Combine
water, beer & mustard; pour over veggies.
Cover & cook on High 5-6 hours or until
peas are tender. Remove ham bone from
soup. Cool soup slightly, trim any fat &
remove meat from bone (discard fat & bone).
Cut meat into bite-sized pieces & return to
crockpot. Stir in remaining ingredients. If
desired, top with minced parsley.
Serves 8 (makes 2 qts)

NOTE: For a less chunky soup, puree in batches
in a blender or food processor.

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
————————

Pumpkin Ginger Soup

1 (3 lb) sugar pumpkin, halved/seeded &
quartered
6 fresh thyme sprigs
1 1/2 T. olive oil
1 tsp. kosher salt
ground black pepper, to taste
1 T. butter
2 large shallots, chopped
3 C. vegetable or chicken broth,
plus more, if needed
1 T. fresh grated ginger
3 fresh sage leaves, chopped
1/8 tsp. fresh nutmeg, plus more
for garnish
1/4 C. plain Greek yogurt

Garnishes:
chopped chives
pepitas (pumpkin seeds) optional

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Lightly spray a baking sheet with
nonstick cooking spray. Place pumpkin
& thyme on sheet & drizzle with olive
oil; season with 1/4 tsp. salt & pepper-
gently toss to combine & arrange in a
single layer. Roast 60-65 minutes, stirring
halfway through until pumpkin is fork-
tender. Cool then remove peel. In a large
stockpot or Dutch oven heat butter over
medium heat. Add shallots & cook, stirring
occasionally, 4-5 minutes. Stir in pumpkin,
ginger, broth & sage. Season with 3/4 tsp.
salt & black pepper to taste. Bring to boil
then remove from heat. Puree using an
immersion blender (or regular blender,
in batches being very careful) until
smooth. Add yogurt & blend again.
Pour into 4 bowls & serve immediately
with chives plus more yogurt, pepitas,
chives & ground nutmeg, if desired.
Serves 4

NOTE: Soup can be frozen: Omit yogurt &
garnishes until ready to serve. Portion
cooled soup into ziplock freezer bags &
lay bags flat in single layer in freezer. Transfer
soup bags to refrigerator the night before
reheating then reheat over low heat,
stirring occasionally, until heated through.
Add yogurt & garnishes & serve.

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
——————–

Sky-high Brunch Bake
(note: using 9-inch springform
pan & substitute)

1 (17.3 oz) pkg. frozen puff
pastry (2 sheets) thawed
6 eggs, beaten/divided (note:
reserve 1 T. eggs for later)
1 C. ricotta cheese
dash hot pepper sauce
2 (10 oz, ea) pkgs. frozen,
chopped spinach, thawed/
well drained
4 slices bacon, cooked/crumbled
1 1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 C. chopped red bell peppers

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray springform pan with nonstick
cooking spray. Unfold pastry sheets &
roll out 1 sheet to an 11 inch square.
Roll out remaining sheet to a 12 inch
square & use to line the bottom & sides
of pan. In large bowl mix all eggs (minus
reserved 1 T. egg) with ricotta, hot sauce
& spinach. Layer half each: bacon, Cheddar,
ricotta mixture & peppers in crust – repeat
layers. Cover with remaining pastry sheet;
fold under edges then tuck inside pan. Brush
pastry with reserved egg & cut steam hole
slits in top crust. Bake 45-55 minutes until
golden brown. Cool 10 minutes. Run a knife
around the edges of the pan to loosen crust
before removing rim. Serves 12

NOTE: can be baked ahead & refrigerated for
several hours or overnight. When ready to serve,
bake, uncovered in 350 degrees F. oven 30-40
minutes until heated through.

If you don’t have a springform pan:
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Can be baked in a greased 9 X 13″ pan
instead. Roll out bottom & top pastry
sheets to fit dish. Line dish with foil withthen
ends of foil extending over sides of dish.
Spray with nonstick cooking spray. Bake
35-40 minutes until golden brown. Let
stand 10 minutes then use foil ‘handles’
to life from dish before cutting to serve

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

Sausage Dip

1 1/2 lb. bulk pork sausage
2 1/2 C. chopped fresh mushrooms
2 medium green peppers, chopped
1 large tomato, seeded/chopped
1 medium red onion, chopped
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
2 (8 oz, ea) pkgs. cream cheese, cubed
1 C. sour cream

Tortilla chips, for dipping
=
In large skillet over medium heat, cook
sausage until no longer pink; drain. Add
next 8 ingredients & cook until veggies
are tender. Reduce heat to Low; add
cream cheese & sour cream – cook &
stir until cheese is melted & well
blended (do not boil). Serve warm with
tortilla chips. Makes 48 servings (6 C.)

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————————-
Twice-baked Potato Casserole

6 medium russet potatoes
4 T. butter, softened (more for pan)
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 C. sour cream
1 1/2 C. whole milk
2 3/4 C. shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
10 slices cooked/crumbled bacon
5 green onions, sliced
3/4 tsp. garlic powder
kosher salt/ground black pepper, to taste

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Scrub potatoes then place directly on oven
rack – bake until soft & easily pierced,
1 hour to 1 hr, 15 minutes depending on size.
Remove from oven & let cool slightly. Slice
warm potatoes in half & remove flesh using
a spoon – place flesh in large bowl (discard
skin). Mash flesh & butter, cream cheese, sour
cream & milk – stir to combine until butter &
cream cheese is melted. Fold in 2 C. Cheddar,
3/4 ths of bacon, 3/4ths of green onion &
garlic powder – season with salt/pepper. Brush
a medium baking dish with butter & scoop
potato mixture into dish. Smooth top & sprinkle
remaining 3/4 C. Cheddar on top. Bake about
20 minutes until cheese is melty. Turn oven to
BROIL. Broil about 2 minutes until golden.
Let cool 10 minutes then top with remaining
bacon & green onions. Serves 6

(recipe: delish.com)
———————————-

(You could probably substitute turkey!)

Orange Chicken & Veggie Stir Fry

4 chicken breasts, cut into 2″ cubes
3/4 C. flour
1/4 tsp. salt
2 T. olive oil
5 large carrots, cut up small
1 onion, chopped small
2 bell peppers, cut into strips
6 stalks celery, cut up small
salt/pepper, to taste

Sauce:
3/4 C. fresh orange juice
1/4 C. soy sauce
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
2 tsp. rice vinegar
1/2 C. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. sesame oil
pinch red pepper flakes
2 T. corn starch
1 C. chicken broth

Suggested serving:
Cooked rice to serve 6
====
Heat a large skillet & add 1 T. oil.
In small bowl combine flour & 1/4
tsp. salt – dredge chicken pieces in
mixture until well covered. When oil
is hot, gently place chicken pieces in
skillet & cook until golden all over (about
10 minutes). Remove from pan & place
on a plate. Add 1 more T. oil to hot skillet
& cook veggies over medium-high heat
until crisp-tender – about 10 minutes.
In a medium saucepan add all sauce
ingredients – whisk until well combined &
bring to boil-it should thicken up. When
veggies are cooked add thickened sauce &
chicken to pan – stir well & serve.
Serve over cooked rice – serves 6

(recipe: jamiecooksitup.net)
———————-

Cinnamon Roll Muffins

Muffin Batter:
2 C. flour
1 T. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 C. sugar
3 T. butter, melted
1 C. milk
1 egg

Cinnamon mixture:
3 T. butter, melted
1 C. brown sugar
1 T. cinnamon
dash salt

Frosting Glaze:
1 T. butter, melted
1 T. maple syrup
1 tsp. vanilla
2 T. milk
1 C. powdered sugar
dash salt

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Line muffin cups with paper liners
(recipe makes 15 muffins) & spray
liners with nonstick cooking spray.
In medium bowl mix (from muffin batter):
flour, baking powder, salt & sugar – stir
with a fork. In large glass measuring cup
melt 3 T. butter; add 1 C. milk & stir to
combine. Add 1 egg & whisk into mixture-
pour into dry ingredients & stir but not
completely. Do not over mix.

Cinnamon mixture:
Melt butter in small bowl; add brown
sugar, cinnamon & dash salt – stir to combine.
Fold half of cinn. mixture into batter & stir
just until no streaks of flour. Fill muffin
cups a little more than half full. Sprinkle
remaining cinnamon mixture over top of
each muffin. Bake 12-15 minutes until a
toothpick inserted into center of muffin
comes out clean. Allow muffins to rest
in tin 5 minutes then transfer to a wire
rack to cool. (glaze will go on warm muffins)

Glaze:
In small bowl combine melted butter,
maple syrup, vanilla, milk, powdered
sugar & salt – whisk until smooth & glossy.
Drizzle over warm muffins.
Makes 15 muffins

(recipe: jamiecooksitup.net)

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

About 2 weeks ago I was getting a bit bored with
just working on the two baby blankets and came
up with the idea of crocheting some of my various
baby yarns into a granny-square baby afghan. I
found a crochet pattern which made a slightly
different granny square than I was used to, so I
went with that. It went very quickly so that I’m
considering making another one! It was fun
and the supplies didn’t take up a lot of room in
my knit bag. Here’s the blanket:

We’ve been lucky recently with our weather – after our 8 1/2 inches of snow about 2 weeks ago, it’s all melted and now it’s just cold and wet (raining – but it’s not turning into the white stuff – YAY!) Our forecast calls for highs in the 30’s all week and some rain so I really don’t mind that at all. You can walk & drive in rain!

Hope you are all in good health;

Hugs;

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

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

 

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!

Starting “The List”

As the days draw closer to Thanksgiving I’ve started thinking about Christmas gifts – not an easy task. I’ve been cruising Amazon & managed to order a few things but some of the people on my list are rather difficult to buy gifts for – they either HAVE everything they want OR they are so brand-specific it gets ‘muddy’ trying to come up with something they’ll like – WITHOUT RESORTING TO JUST GIVING A GIFT CARD! Know what I mean? Yes, I ‘could’ knit/crochet something but that, in itself, takes time. Am thinking about knitting more spa cloths for oldest son’s girlfriend (did that last year & she really liked them) but, again, TIME crunch! How are YOU doing on you list? Started yet? I noticed in my email “In” box that two gifts I ordered have arrived – YAY – it’s a start! Baby grandson is another one that’s hard to buy for: other grandma practically buys out the store when it comes to his gifts. I’m not one to compete with anyone, just want to get him something – am thinking of going clothes, simply because he has TOO MANY toys already! (He’s only 1 1/2 and she’s already bought him tons of toys for 4 & 5 year olds! His closet is FULL of toys he’s never even played with yet, not counting his room floor is covered with toys that were too old for him – like puzzles – the pieces are scattered everywhere – he’s TOO YOUNG! UGH! (Ah, the plight of a grandma . . . sigh).

Babysat yesterday for 9 long hours – managed to finish TWO baby blankets – YAY! Am looking at starting a new scarf with a pattern I haven’t done in a good 10 years+ – the pattern is either called: “Ball Band” or “Mosaic” – uses two yarns together to make what looks (to me) like bricks:

Not the best photo but you get the idea. I remember I was really struggling with how to knit this pattern when a good (expert knitter) friend said: “Here – it’s EASY – you just do this!” and she was right. Now remembering that 10+ years later resulted in me checking videos on YouTube but once I saw it done, it’s a snap! Think it would make a nice scarf pattern (although it takes awhile to knit – we’ll see).

LOTS OF HOLIDAY RECIPES!!! GOTTA SHARE!

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

Upside-down Cranberry Pecan
Cinnamon Rolls

1 (13.9 oz) tube Pillsbury cinnamon
rolls (with icing) any flavor (poster
liked the orange ones best)
1/2 C. dried cranberries
1/4 C. light or dark brown sugar
1/4 C. chopped pecans
4 T. butter, melted

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
In small bowl stir together brown
sugar & butter – spread in bottom of
a ungreased* 9″ cake pan – sprinkle
top with cranberries & pecans. Open
rolls & arrange in pan over cranberries/
nuts. Bake 20-25 minutes until lightly
browned on top. Remove from oven &
turn upside-down onto a large serving
plate – do not remove pan. Let stand
5 minutes before removing pan. Place
cinnamon roll icing in a plastic bag &
knead until warm & pliable. Cut corner
off bag – drizzle over rolls.

*you don’t need to grease pan BUT it
does need to be nonstick

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

Turkey Meatloaf

3 C. chopped yellow onions
(2 large)
2 T. olive oil
2 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. ground black pepper
1 tsp. fresh thyme leaves
or (1/2 tsp. dried)
1/3 C. Worcestershire sauce
3/4 C. chicken stock

1 1/2 tsp. tomato paste
5 lb. ground turkey breast
1 1/2 C. plain dry bread crumbs
3 extra-large eggs, beaten
3/4 C. ketchup

Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
In medium pan over medium-low
heat, cook onions, olive oil, salt/pepper &
thyme, about 15 minutes. Add Worc. sauce,
chicken stock & tomato paste – mix well &
allow to cool to room temp. In large bowl
combine ground turkey, bread crumbs, eggs
& onion – mix well & shape into a rectangular
loaf on an ungreased sheet pan; spread ketchup
evenly over top. Bake 1 1/2 hours until internal
temp. reads 160 degrees F. & meatloaf is cooked
through (Placing a pan of hot water in oven
under the meatloaf will prevent the top from
cracking). Serve hot, at room temp. or cold in
a sandwich. Serves 8-10

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
————————-

Bacon-wrapped Green Beans

1 lb. fresh green beans
10-12 slices thick-cut bacon
(poster used regular bacon)
2 T. butter
1 T. brown sugar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. Wash &
thoroughly dry beans then season
with salt/pepper. Bundle together
5-8 beans (depends on size of beans &
amount of beans you got for one lb.)
Using a slice of bacon, wrap it around
the center of the beans to hold them
together – lay them seam-sides down,
in baking dish – repeat with remaining
beans & bacon. Heat a small saucepan
over Low heat; add butter, brown
sugar & garlic – whisk until butter melts.
Using a pastry brush, brush mixture over
top of each bundle. Cover with foil &
bake 35 minutes. Remove foil; bake
10-15 minutes longer (NOTE: poster
said it took more like 25 minutes for her
to get the bacon somewhat crisp – she
still ended up putting them under the
broiler to crisp up the bacon).
Poster noted it made 10-12 bundles

NOTE: Poster noted that the beans are
cooking in bacon fat – next time she
plans on cooking them in a roasting pan
& using a wire rack so that the beans still
get the juices of the bacon but the majority
of the fats will drip down into pan.

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

3-Ingredient Cranberry Salad

2 (15 oz, ea) cans whole cranberries in
sauce
2 (14 oz, ea) cans mandarin oranges,
drained
1 C. chopped walnuts

Mix ingredients together – Makes
about 8 servings

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

Roasted Sweet Potatoes w/
Honey & Cinnamon

4 sweet potatoes, peeled/cut into
1″ cubes
1/4 C. olive oil, plus more for
drizzling
1/4 C. honey
2 tsp. cinnamon
salt/black pepper

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Lay sweet potatoes out in a single
layer on a roasting tray. Drizzle oil,
honey, cinnamon, salt/pepper over
potatoes. Roast 25-30 minutes until
tender. Remove from oven & transfer
to a serving platter. Drizzle with more
olive oil. Serves 4

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
————————–

Maple Crockpot Ham

4-6 lb. fully cooked bone-in ham
1/2 C. maple syrup
1/2 C. unsweetened applesauce
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

Lightly spray insides of crockpot
with nonstick cooking spray. Remove
ham from pkg & discard any flavoring
packet. Check end of bone for a
plastic cap (if present, discard). Using
a sharp knife, score skin & fat of ham
about 1/8 inch deep by making cuts
about every 2 inches all the way across
the ham (this allows flavor to more easily
penetrate into the ham while cooking) –
place ham in crockpot. Cover & cook
3-4 hours on High (or 5-6 hours on Low)
until meat is tender in internal temp.
reaches 140 degrees F. Baste once with
juices in crockpot. (do not baste repeatedly
as removing the lid from the crockpot drops
the temperature & increases cooking time.)
Remove ham to a serving platter or cutting
board. Tent with foil to keep warm & allow
it to rest 10-15 minutes before slicing.
If desired, drizzle a tiny bit of warm maple
syrup over ham slices for an added touch
of maple.

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

Lovin’ Onions Casserole

1 T. butter
7 onions, coarsely chopped (about
7 C.)
1/2 C. self-rising flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/4 C. (5 oz) shredded Cheddar
cheese, divided
1 1/4 C. (5 oz) shredded Monterey Jack
cheese, divided
1 T. jarred jalapeno peppers, drained/
chopped (optional)

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 1 1/2 qt. casserole dish with
nonstick cooking spray. In large
skillet over medium-high heat, melt
butter – add onions & saute about
10 minutes until softened. In medium
bowl combine flour, salt/pepper. Add
1 C. of each cheese; mix well. Add
jalapeno peppers (if using) & cooked
onions – mix well & pour into prepared
dish. Combine remaining cheese &
sprinkle evenly over top. Bake 30
minutes until cheese is melted &
bubbly. Serves 8

(recipe: mrfood.com)
——————————-

Eggs Benedict Casserole
(1 hour or overnight)

1 (12 oz) pkg. English muffins,
cut into 1-inch chunks
1 (6 oz) pkg. Canadian bacon,
cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 1/2 C. shredded Muenster
cheese
8 eggs
1 1/2 C. milk
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 (.9 oz) pkt. hollandaise sauce
mix, prepared accordg. to pkg.
directions
1 T. chopped chives

Spray a 3-quart casserole dish
with nonstick cooking spray. Layer
half the muffin pieces, half bacon
& half cheese in dish – repeat
layers one more time.
In medium bowl whisk eggs, milk, salt/
pepper – evenly pour over casserole &
cover with foil. Refrigerate at least
1 hour or overnight.

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Bake casserole (foil covered) 30 minutes.
Remove foil & bake 20-25 minutes until
eggs are set. Warm hollandaise sauce in
small saucepan & drizzle over casserole.
Sprinkle top with chives & serve
immediately. Serves 6

(recipe: mrfood.com)
———————————

Pecan Pie

1 (9 inch) pie crust (homemade or
store-bought) chilled
1 C. brown sugar
1 C. corn syrup
1/4 C. unsalted butter
2 tsp. cornstarch
1 T. water
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
4 large eggs
1 1/4 C. chopped pecans

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
On floured surface roll out chilled
pie crust using a floured rolling pin.
Lightly flour the inside of a 9-inch
pie pan then transfer pie dough to
pie pan. Lightly flour inside of the
dough, fold over the edges &
refrigerate while you make the
filling.

Filling:
In medium saucepan melt sugar,
corn syrup & butter until sugar is
no longer grainy. Dissolve cornstarch
in water & whisk into sugar mixture.
Remove mixture from heat & stir in
vanilla & cinnamon. In medium bowl
whisk eggs then whisk 2-3 T. of sugar/
corn syrup mixture into the eggs. Whisk
egg mixture into remaining sugar/corn
syrup mixture. Spread pecans in bottom
of pie dough then pour filling mixture
over top. Bake 50-60 minutes, place a
piece of foil (or a pie shield) over top
after about 30 minutes to prevent the
crust from burning. Allow pie to cool
& set at room temp. at least 4 hours
before serving.

NOTE:
Store pie at room temp. 1-2 days or in
fridge up to 4 days. Baked & cooled
pecan pie can be wrapped tightly &
frozen for up to 2 months. Thaw in
fridge overnight before serving.

(recipe: realhousemoms.com)

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

Weather-wise we’re doing pretty good –
temps in the mid-30’s/cloudy (gloomy) &
80% chance of snow (but only less than
1/2 inch possible). Rest of the week it’s mid-
30’s & tiny chance of snow Monday but the
week looks pretty clear (of snow) so that’s
a good thing for those who might be traveling.

Our Thanksgiving dinner is slowly getting whittled
down to (maybe) 7  – that means cooking smaller
amounts of side dishes (which is good). Still not
exactly sure ‘what’ side dishes but will probably
be the ‘same old/same old’ (Green Bean Casserole,
Wild Rice stuffing, Husband’s Garlic Mashed
potatoes and ??? desserts. It’s getting harder to
fathom all the carbs due to me trying my hardest
to lower my blood sugar levels AND/lose weight
(good thing: as of yesterday I’m down 10 lbs.) and
sugar #’s are good – now just have to keep it up.

Hope your Holiday plans (if you’ve started) are
going well. Stay WARM and safe – try to do something
today (even if it’s something little) for yourself:
Take a nap, read a book, have a cup of your favorite
hot beverage – SOMETHING!

Enjoy your day!

Hugs;

Pammie

The Day After! (also called “I survived!”)

Last night was the ‘big event’ for the Detroit Veterans Hospital’s Baby shower donations and the ladies (once again) knocked my socks off! We had a grand total of 133 items! The breakdown: 17 blankets, 47 baby hats, 18 toddler headbands, 24 bibs, 1 sweater & pants, 2 sweater/hat/mittens sets, 2 baby sacks, 19 pr. booties and one (very adorable) knit zebra!  Each year things ‘shake out’ differently – for the most part, we usually have a LOT of blankets and then other items; not this year! I’ve decided I’m going to just stick to headbands & blankets. Here are a few of the photos:

One of our ladies is an expert knitter & she loves to create these hats & booties – there’s a pumpkin set, an eggplant set, a strawberry set & 2 (pink & blue sets) with pea pods attached to the hats. She was having fun this year doing the red/white/blue Star hats.

                Another lady sewed baby bibs using flannel & terry cloth! There’s 14 of them!

                                        my headbands

The VERY adorable zebra is upper left corner (I tried my best to photo him but he’s FLOPPY. She’s another expert knitter & created the sweater sets all ‘out of her head’! WOW!

                    Three of my blankets (not very good lighting)

(There’s a total of 15 photos, so I only included some) I was so proud of all my ladies – there were even a few donated items from OTHER knitters who knew of our project but aren’t in the group!

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

Spiced Zucchini Bars

2 C. flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
3 eggs, beaten
1 C. oil
2 C. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. lemon juice
1 C. raisins
2 C. zucchini, grated
3/4 C. chopped nuts
1 (16 oz) container cream cheese
frosting

Preheat oven 325 degrees F.
Grease & flour a 15 X 10″ jelly roll
pan. In bowl combine flour, baking
soda, salt & cinnamon. In another
bowl whisk eggs, oil, sugar, vanilla &
lemon juice. Gradually add flour
mixture to egg mixture – fold in
remaining ingredients (except
frosting). Pour into prepared pan
& bake 25-35 minutes until lightly
golden. Cool completely then
spread with frosting. Cut into bars.
Makes 3 dozen bars

(recipe: gooseberrypatch.typepad.com)
————————————
Honey Soy Chicken Breasts
(a few hours marinade or overnight)

1/4 C. honey
1/3 c. light soy sauce
1/2 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
4 cloves minced garlic
1 T. finely grated fresh ginger root
4 large chicken breasts, skinless
but not boneless

Stir together all ingredients (EXCEPT
chicken) & pour into a large ziplock
bag. Add chicken & marinate in fridge
a few hours or over night.

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Place marinated chicken on a foil-
lined cookie sheet & bake, uncovered,
about 45 minutes until chicken is
fully cooked (using a meat thermometer,
internal temp. of chicken should be 170
& 180 degrees F.). DO NOT throw away
the marinade. While chicken is cooking,
simmer it in a saucepan over low heat
& brush on chicken about every 10
minutes as it cooks. Serves 4

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

Grandma’s Sunday Roast

3 C. beef broth
2-3 lb. beef chuck roast, trimmed of
excess fat
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. crushed rosemary
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
2 lb. red or yellow potatoes, cut
into large chunks
1 lb. fresh green beans, trimmed
1 lb. baby carrots
2 T. Worcestershire sauce
2 T. cornstarch + 2 T. cold water

Press all seasonings (salt/onion powder/
garlic powder/rosemary/paprika) onto all
sides of roast. Pour beef broth into crockpot;
add roast. (You can brown the roast before-
hand – brown each side in 1 T. heated oil
in a skillet for 3 minutes per side).
Cover & cook on Low 4 hours.
Remove lid & add veggies; drizzle with
Worc. sauce – cover & cook 4 hours more
on Low.
Remove lid; scoop meat & veggies onto
large platter & loosely tent with foil.
In small bowl stir cornstarch & cold water
until smooth – stir mixture into juices in
crockpot. Turn heat to High & let thicken;
stirring. (You can also thicken the gravy on
the stove in a pot if you desire).
Serve roast with veggies & gravy.
Serves 6-8

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

Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad

1 (12 oz) box tri-colored rotini (or any
color)
1 (3.8 oz) can sliced black olives
1 (5.75 oz) can sliced green olives
6 oz. fresh broccoli, chopped
6 oz. fresh cauliflower, chopped
1/4 C. sunflower seeds
1/4 C. (Hormel) real bacon pieces
1 pkt. dry Ranch salad dressing mix
1/2 C. mayonnaise
1/2 C. sour cream
1 C. milk

In medium bowl mix Ranch dressing mix,
sour cream, mayonnaise, milk – whisk
together; cover & let thicken 30 minutes.
Cook pasta; drain & rinse in cold water –
pour into a large bowl. Add olives, broccoli,
cauliflower, sunflower seeds & bacon to
noodles – pour ranch dressing over & toss
to fully coat. Chill 1 hour for flavors to
blend then sprinkle more bacon pieces
on top before serving. Serves 12

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

Last Minute Green Beans

1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, undrained
2 (14.5 oz, ea) cans green beans, drained
1 onion, chopped
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper

Place drained green beans in medium
saucepot; add onion, tomatoes with
juice, salt/pepper -stir. Bring to slight
boil over medium-high heat. Reduce
heat to Low. Cover & simmer 10-15
minutes.

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

Bacon/Cucumber/Tomato Salad

6 slices bacon
3 C. large cut chopped cucumber
3 C. large cut chopped tomatoes
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/3 C. mayonnaise
1/8 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. Creole or Cajun seasoning
1/2 tsp. garlic powder

Cook bacon until crisp; drain on
paper towels – chop when cool
enough to handle, reserve a pinch
for garnish.
Toss cucumber & tomatoes together –
season with salt. Mix together
mayonnaise & seasonings; add to
tomatoes & gently toss. Add remaining
bacon to salad – gently toss, taste &
adjust seasonings. Transfer to a serving
bowl & garnish with a sprinkle of
Creole or Cajun seasoning & reserved
bacon. Serve immediately or refrigerate
1 hour to chill. Serves about 4

NOTE:
Old Fashioned Cracker Salad:

Prepare salad as above omitting
cucumber & adding 1/2 C. chopped
Vidalia onion or 2 large green onions,
sliced. Double mayonnaise amount –
stir in 1 sleeve saltine crackers, coarsely
broken. Mix well, adding additional
mayonnaise if needed to moisten.
Serve immediately or (if refrigerating)
wait to add crackers until just before
serving. Also good with one boiled/
chopped egg added.

(recipe: deepsouthdish.com)
———————————-
Grilled Steak/Potato & Mushroom Kabobs

1 lb. steak cut into 1″ chunks
8 oz. fresh mushrooms
1 lb. small potatoes
1/4 C. olive oil
1/4 C. balsamic vinegar
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. dried rosemary
1/2 tsp. dried oregano

In a rimmed baking pan add steak chunks &
mushrooms. In a medium bowl whisk oil,
vinegar, garlic, salt/pepper, rosemary &
oregano -pour over steak & mushrooms
in pan. Cover & refrigerate at least 2 hours
=
Meanwhile, boil potatoes in large pot of
salted water until just tender, about 8-10
minutes – drain & cool slightly. Thread
marinated steak chunks, mushrooms &
potatoes, alternating, onto skewers.
Heat grill to medium-high heat. Grill kabobs
10-12 minutes, turning once, until meat is
cooked to desired doneness. Re-season with
salt/pepper & serve immediately.
Serves 6

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

Easy Copycat Thin Mint Cookies

1 C. chocolate (dark, semi-sweet or coating/
confectionery wafers)
3/4 tsp. mint extract
15-18 Ritz crackers

Place a layer of waxed paper on a cookie
sheet.
Melt chocolate of your choice (in micro-
wave or in a saucepan). Add mint extract
to melted chocolate (this might cause
the chocolate to thicken up a bit, depending
on what type of chocolate you use). Dip
crackers in chocolate (poster says she drops
the cracker into the chocolate & flip it around
using a fork – remove carefully using two forks –
Let excess chocolate drip off & place on
prepared waxed paper. Cool & store cookies
in fridge. These cookies are best eaten straight
from the fridge. Makes 15-18 cookies

(recipe: craftcookingmama.com)

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

Our weather has been pretty nice – not too hot;
today it’s hovering around 72 degrees F. & sunny.
Looks like we’ll be having highs from 78 to 82 for
the rest of the week – I LIKE that!

Not much else new; working on another baby blanket
(I know . . . . what ELSE do I knit, right?).

I’m not sure if the ‘other’ grandma is back from their
cabin but (so far) I haven’t been asked to babysit this
week – I’m GOOD with that; can always use the break!
I’ve already texted that the only days I’m free next week
are Wednesday (If needed, otherwise it’s my Library Knit
group 10-12 & my special needs group 6:15-9) and Friday!
We’ll see what shakes out . . .

Have a GREAT day!

Hugs;

Pammie

and now it’s Friday!

Been a rainy couple of days here – weather is still in the 80’s & 90’s. Babysat yesterday from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. and am back at it again today 1 p.m. – ? Got some granny squares crocheted – actually only have one more white square to go and I’m ready to sew them together – YAY! Started the sewing yesterday and got 4 rows done so it should go by pretty fast. Was going to add this one to the charity blankets but then got invited to a baby shower where they know it’s going to be a boy, so this will work just fine. Will probably add a hat & booties and a few other ‘goodies’ to the present.

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

4 Hour or Overnight Fruit Salad

3 large eggs, beaten
1/4 C. sugar
1/4 C. vinegar
2 T. butter
2 C. green grapes
2 C. miniature marshmallows
1 (20 oz) can pineapple chunks,
drained
1 (15 oz) can mandarin oranges,
drained
2 medium firm bananas, sliced
2 C. heavy whipping cream, whipped
1/2 C. chopped pecans

In double boiler over medium heat,
cook & stir eggs, sugar & vinegar
until mixture is thickened & reaches
160 degrees F. Remove from heat &
stir in butter – cool.
In large serving bowl combine grapes,
marshmallows, pineapple, oranges &
bananas – add cooled dressing & stir
to coat. Refrigerate 4 hours or overnight.
Just before serving, fold in whipped
cream & pecans. Serves 12-16

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
————————————
Crockpot Parsley Smashed Potatoes

16 small red potatoes (about 2 lb)
1 rib celery, sliced
1 medium carrot, sliced
1/4 C. finely chopped onion
2 C. chicken broth
1 T. minced fresh parsley
1 1/2 tsp. salt/divided
1 tsp. black pepper/divided
1 clove garlic, minced
2 T. butter, melted

additional minced fresh parsley

Place potatoes, celery, carrot & onion
in 4 qt crockpot. In small bowl mix
broth, parsley, 1 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp.
black pepper & garlic – pour over
vegetables. Cover & cook on Low
6-8 hours until potatoes are tender.
Transfer potatoes to a 15 X 10 X1″
pan – discard cooking liquid &
vegetables. Using bottom of a measuring
cup, flatten potatoes slightly. Transfer
to a large bowl; drizzle with butter.
Sprinkle with remaining salt & pepper –
toss to coat. Sprinkle with additional
parsley. Serves 8

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

Grilled Cube Steak & Greek Corn Salad

3 T. olive oil
2 T. red wine vinegar
2 T. chopped fresh oregano
and/or mint
1 tsp. honey
kosher salt/black pepper, to taste
1 English cucumber, peeled/chopped
1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
1 small red onion, diced
1/2 C. crumbled feta cheese (about 4 oz)
1/3 C. pitted green olives, sliced
2 ears corn, shucked
1 1/4 lb. cube steaks*

Preheat grill to High
In medium bowl whisk olive oil, vinegar,
herbs, honey, 3/4 tsp. salt & a few grinds
black pepper. Remove 2 T. of mixture to
a large bowl. Add cucumber, tomatoes,
red onion, feta & olives to bowl with oil
mixture & toss to coat. Grill the corn,
about 8 minutes until charred in spots,
turning occasionally – remove to a cutting
board. Season steaks with salt/pepper.
Working in batches, if necessary, grill
steaks until edges start browning, about
2 minutes. Flip & cook until browned
on other side, about 30 seconds – transfer
to bowl with reserved oil mixture & toss
to coat. Cut kernels off corn cob & add
to salad. Serves 4

*If you can’t find cube steak, a top round
steak pounded with a meat mallet will
work.

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

Sausage-stuffed Zucchini Boats

4 medium zucchini, cut in half
lengthwise
1 T. olive oil
8 oz. sweet loose Italian sausage
8 oz. hot loose Italian sausage
1 clove garlic, minced
1 small onion, chopped
2 medium vine-ripened tomatoes,
chopped
kosher salt/black pepper
1/2 C. Parmesan cheese, finely
grated
1/2 C. Mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/4 C. breadcrumbs
2 T. chopped fresh parsley

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Using a teaspoon, scoop out flesh of
zucchini (so they resemble boats).
Place in 9 X 13″ baking dish – chop up
the ‘flesh’ from the insides.
In medium saute pan over medium-
high heat, add olive oil & heat through.
Add both Ital. sausage & cook 4 minutes.
Add garlic, onion, chopped zucchini
flesh, tomatoes & salt/pepper (to taste).
Cook until softened, about 4 minutes.
In medium bowl add Parm. & Mozz.
cheeses, breadcrumbs & parsley – mix
to combine. Spoon & mound sausage
mixture into zucchini boats. Sprinkle
breadcrumb mixture on top & bake
20 minutes until golden brown.
Makes 8 ‘boats’

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
———————————–
Lemon Zucchini Bread w Crumb Topping

Cake:

1 C unpeeled zucchini – finely shredded
(can do in food processor – do NOT squeeze
or dry zucchini – makes bread moist)
2 T. fresh lemon juice
2 T. lemon zest
1 1/2 C. flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 C. sugar
1/4 C. cooking oil
1 egg
2 T. lemon juice

Crumb Topping:
1/4 C. + 2 T. flour
1/4 C. sugar
2 T. melted butter
1/4 C. rolled oats

Glaze:
1 C. powdered sugar
1 T. lemon juice
1 tsp. lemon zest

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a loaf pan with nonstick
cooking spray.
In medium bowl add 1 1/2 C. flour,
1/2 tsp. baking soda, 1/4 tsp. baking
powder, 1/4 tsp. salt, shredded zucchini
& lemon zest. Add 3/4 C. sugar, 1/4 C.
cooking oil, 1 egg & 2 T. lemon juice.
Using a wooden spoon, mix until just
combined (it’s important to not over
stir the batter). Pour batter into prepared
loaf pan.

Crumb Topping:
In small bowl mix together crumb
topping ingredients – using a fork
mix until a loose crumb mixture forms.
Sprinkle crumb topping over bread batter.
Bake 50-55 minutes until golden brown.
Cool on wire rack 10 minutes. Carefully
flip bread over & place bread on wire rack
to finish cooling.

Lemon Glaze:
In small bowl mix together Lemon Glaze
ingredients until well blended & sugar
has dissolved. Once bread has cooled,
drizzle glaze over top of Crumb Topping
using a tablespoon – allowing glaze to
run down sides of cake. Let bread set until
glaze hardens, 15-20 minutes. Glaze will
hold crumb on top of bread & also soaks
into bread.

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

Bacon/Avocado Pasta

1 (12 oz) box fusili pasta
4 sliced bacon, diced
2 avocados, halved/seeded/
peeled & diced
2 Roma tomatoes, diced
1/3 C. diced red onion
1/4 C. fresh basil, sliced thin
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 C. olive oil
2 T. lemon juice (fresh squeezed,
more or less, to taste)
1 T. lemon zest
kosher salt/black pepper, to taste

In large pot boiling/salted water
cook pasta accordg. to pkg. directions;
drain well. Heat large skillet over
meidum-high heat; add bacon &
cook until brown & crispy, about
6-8 minutes; transfer to paper
towel-lined plate. In large bowl
combine pasta, bacon, avocado,
tomatoes, onion & basil. Stir in
Parmesan, olive oil, lemon juice &
zest, salt/pepper, to taste. Serve
hot or cold, garnished with Parmesan
cheese, if desired. Serves 6

(recipe: yummly.com)
—————————–
Cheesy Tomato/Spinach/Olive
Pasta

1 1/2 C. dry fusili (or other) pasta
2 tsp. olive oil
2 small tomatoes, chopped
2 tsp. garlic, minced (2 cloves)
1 1/2 C. tomato sauce
5 C. fresh baby spinach (or
1 C. thawed/well drained frozen)
1/3 C. chopped black olives
1/4 C. chili flakes (or more, to taste)
1 C. grated Mozzarella cheese
1/2 C. grated Parmesan cheese
salt/pepper, to taste

Make Sauce:
Heat oil in a skillet on medium-high
heat. Add chopped tomatoes – saute
3-4 minutes. Add garlic & olives, saute
1 minute. Add tomato sauce, then
spinach – stir until wilted & heated
through, about 2-3 minutes. Stir in
chili flakes.

Finish Pasta;
Add Mozzarella & Parmesan cheeses to
sauce &stir until melted (or leave Parmesan
on the side, to pass). Add salt/pepper (if
needed – olives are salty so may not be
needed). Serves 3-4

NOTE: Poster serves with warm crusty bread &
butter or garlic bread.  This pasta is also great
reheated the next day.

(recipe: yummly.com)
——————————-

Crockpot Cinnamon Roll Mixed-Berry
Cobbler

1 (16 oz) pkg. frozen mixed berries
1 C. sugar
1/4 C. corn starch
1/4 C. water
1 T. vanilla
1 (12 oz) tube refrigerated cinnamon
rolls with icing

In large bowl mix water & cornstarch
together; add sugar & mix well. Pour
berries into mixture & gently stir
until berries are coated evenly –
pour into crockpot & mix well. Place
cinnamon rolls in a single layer on top.
Cover & cook on High 3-4 hours.
Serve with icing drizzled on top.
Serves 8

NOTE: Poster used a 2.5 qt. crockpot

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)

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

This has been one of those weeks where
not much has been accomplished, but that’s
OK. Started reading a true story/murder
mystery called “The Monster of Florence”
by Douglas Preston. I am a big fan of Mr.
Preston’s writings, especially those combined
with Lincoln Childs – together they write some
really interesting tales. This book, however,
is a true story and was said to be one of the
unsolved crimes of Italy – I guess the actual
killer was never found although the writer
suggests he & another newspaper journalist
might have actually met the person – strange.

Hope you are having a good day – try to stay
healthy. I just noticed yesterday that all of my family
are FINALLY done with the coughing thing!
YAY! That was one nasty ‘bug’ – finally put
the Robitussin back in the cupboard. I was
beginning to get a bit worried because
choir will be starting up in September and
I sure didn’t want to attempt singing while
still struggling to BREATHE without coughing!


Hugs;

Pammie

Happy Saturday!

It’s a typical Michigan Winter day – temps around 29 degrees F., no ‘extra’ snow (yet) – it did give us about 1 1/2 inches more yesterday which made driving home a bit touchy. Yesterday! I babysat from 10 a.m. – 3:30! YAY! All went very well, had a great time wrestling with (as my husband calls him) “Da Baby” – he’s a little over 9 months old now, 5 teeth (with another one coming soon); he can walk pretty well now – loves making ovals & circles – he can even walk backwards – surprising!

IT’S FINALLY DONE! KEVIN’S BLANKET/LOVEY!

This is the photo I had to work from – the request was to “TRY” to (somehow) copy it, if I could. My dear, sweet special needs guy, Kevin, has slept with this since he was a baby (and still does) – he’s almost ‘loved it to death’. His Mom asked if I could see what I could do. Originally it was Mint green & white (now it’s sage & cream). With some struggles finding that funny sort of ‘hole/stitch’ at the right top of the photo, I plowed on. Since I really had no idea just ‘where’ the hole pattern went in the entire blanket, I just sort of ‘winged it’ – his Mom said: “Do what you can”. Remembering that I’m a KNITTER who’s a beginner Crocheter, here is the finished crocheted blanket/lovey:

It’s 28 inches wide by 40 inches long (if you flip the photo, the bottom is a reverse of what you’re seeing in the photo). There are mistakes and it’s not perfect, but I think, for what it’s going to be used for, it should work. (He wads up his old blanket & tucks it under his head/face when he sleeps.)

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

 Crockpot Turtles Candy

4 C. pecans, chopped
2 lb. almond bark
12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
6 oz. chocolate baking bar
2 (12 oz, ea). pkgs. Rolo candies,
unwrapped*
candy sprinkles – optional

Place pecans, almond bark. choc.
chips & choc. baking bar in crockpot
set on Low. Cover & heat 1 1/2 – 2 hours
until melted. Uncover & stir until evenly
combined. Line 2 baking sheets with
parchment paper (or silicone mats). Lay
Rolos candies on paper, 2 inches apart.
Using a small cookie scoop**, scoop choc.
mixture, a little at a time, on each Rolo –
repeat until all Rolos are covered. Top
each candy with sprinkles, if desired.
Allow candy to cool until hardened.
Makes about 96

*If you want more caramel in each
bite, you can substitute caramels
in place of Rolos.

**If you don’t have a cookie scoop, you
can use a heaping Tablespoon/measuring
spoon.

(recipe; realhousemoms.com)
————————————-

Cheesy Spinach Bundles
(appetizers)

1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen chopped
spinach, thawed, well-drained
1/2 c. shredded Mozzarella cheese
1/3 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 C. (Kraft) Philadelphia Chive &
Onion cream cheese spread
1 egg, separated
1 (8 oz) tube refrigerated crescent
dinner rolls

Preheat oven 375 degrees F>
Mix first 4 ingredients & egg yolk
in large bowl until blended. Open
rolls & separate into 8 triangles.
Cut each triangle diagonally in
half. Spoon 1 T. spinach mixture
in center of each triangle. Bring
corners of dough to center over
filling, overlapping ends. Pinch
ends together to seal & place on
baking sheets. Beat egg white
lightly & brush on tops of bundles.
Bake 12-15 minutes until golden
brown. Serves 8

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

Broccoli Casserole Dip

4 slices bacon
1 head broccoli cut into
small florets (about 3 C.)
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/3 C. mayonnaise
1/3 C. sour cream
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
3 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
kosher salt
ground black pepper
1/2 C. crumbled Ritz crackers
1/4 C. butter, melted

crackers, for serving

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In large nonstick skillet cook
bacon over medium heat until
crisp – remove bacon from
skillet & transfer to paper towel-
lined plate. Reserve 2 T. bacon
fat in skillet. Add broccoli florets
& cook until crisp-tender, about
4 minutes. Chop bacon &
broccoli into very small pieces. In
large bowl combine cream cheese,
mayonnaise, sour cream & garlic
powder – mix until smooth. Fold
in cheese, cooked broccoli & bacon.
Season with salt/pepper & transfer
to small baking dish. In small bowl
combine crumbled crackers with
melted butter – toss until combined.
Scatter mixture on top of dip in dish.
Bake 15 minutes until cheese is melted
& cracker topping is golden & crispy.
Serve warm with crackers for dipping.
Serves 6

(recipe: delish.com)
———————————-

Spicy Sweet Potato Hummus

2 cloves garlic
1 (14.5 oz) can chickpeas,** drained/rinsed
SEE next ingredient
**1/2 C. liquid from chickpea can (at
most)
4 T. lemon juice
1 1/2 T. tahini
1/2 tsp. salt
2 T. olive oil
1 medium sweet potato, roasted
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
1 tsp. cayenne pepper (if
you don’t like spicy, cut amount
to 1/2 tsp.)

Add garlic to food processor & process
until chopped. Add chickpeas, lemon
juice, tahini, salt, olive, roasted sweet
potato & spices – process 1-2 minutes
(mixture will be pretty thick & not
completely smooth). Slowly add in
reserved liquid & process until hummus
reaches your desired consistency.
(Poster noted she used 1/2 C.)

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

Bacon-Cheddar Cornbread Loaf

1/2 C. melted butter
1/2 C. sugar
2 eggs
1 C. milk
1 C. flour
1 1/2 C. cornmeal
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
6 slices bacon, chopped in small
pieces
1 C. fresh or frozen whole kernel corn
1 C. Cheddar cheese, shredded or cubed
2 T. fresh rosemary, sage or chives

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 5″ loaf pan with nonstick
cooking spray. Fry bacon until crisp;
transfer to paper towels. Whisk
melted butter, sugar, milk & eggs in
a bowl. In another bowl whisk flour,
cornmeal, baking powder & salt.
Gently stir dry flour mixture into wet
ingredients until combined & moistened,
but not over mixed. Fold in cheese, bacon
crumbles, herbs & corn using a spatula,
until incorporated. Pour into prepared
loaf pan & bake 30 minutes, topping
with extra cheese after 20 minutes of
baking time. Bread is cooked when middle
is set & edges are golden brown.
Serves 6-8

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

Crockpot Philly Cheese Steak
Casserole

2 lb. chip steak (or) 2 lb. cube steaksk
cut into strips
1 green pepper, cut into strips
1 red pepper, cut into strips
1 onion, thinly sliced
1/2 lb. mushrooms, sliced
1 T. olive oil
3/4 tsp. kosher salt
3/4 to 1 tsp. fresh ground pepper
1/4 lb. pepperoni, thinly sliced
8 oz. Provolone cheese, thinly
sliced

In medium skillet saute mushrooms
in oil until softened & light brown,
about 5 minutes – add to crockpot
along with rest of ingredients EXCEPT
Provolone. Cover & cook on Low
6 hours. Stir well & divide among
6 bowls. Cover each bowl with
Provolone & add some cooking juices
to each bowl to melt the cheese.
Serves 6

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

Ranch Potatoes

8-10 medium potatoes, peeled/
cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 can cream of mushroom soup,
undiluted
1 1/4 C. milk
1 envelope dry ranch salad dressing mix
1 1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese,
divided
salt/pepper
6 slices bacon, cooked/crumbled

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray.
Place potato cubes in saucepan, cover
with water & bring to boil – cook about
10-12 minutes until potatoes are almost
tender; drain then place in prepared pan.
In a bowl mix soup, milk, dry dressing mix,
1 C. cheese, salt/pepper to taste & pour
over potatoes. Sprinkle crumbled bacon &
remaining cheese on top. Bake, uncovered,
25-30 minutes until potatoes are tender.

(recipe: Mike Suddaby-Facebook)
——————————
Pecan Chicken Salad

4 C. cooked/chopped chicken
breast (OR) two 15 oz. cans
1 1/2 C. sliced seedless grapes
(red or white)
1/2 C. chopped celery

Dressing:
1 T. sugar
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
1 T. lemon juice
3/4 C. chopped pecans
1 C. mayonnaise

Mix all ingredients together;
place in a serving bowl.

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

Chicken with Sour Cream Gravy

4 boneless skinless chicken breast
halves (about 2 lb)
1/4 C. butter
2 C. chicken broth
1 C. sour cream
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
2 T. flour
salt/pepper, to taste

Cooked egg noodles for 4

In large skillet melt butter over
medium heat. Add chicken &
cook until very lightly browned
on both sides but not cooked
through. Add broth & reduce
heat to Low about 10 minutes
until chicken is cooked through.
Remove chicken & place on a
plate. Add sour cream, garlic
powder, salt/pepper to skillet;
continue cooking on Low while
stirring until sour cream is
melted & fully incorporated.
Remove about 1/2 C. of liquid
from skillet & stir flour into
liquid until smooth then pour
back into skillet. Using a wire
whisk, whisk until gravy is
thickened & smooth again. Add
chicken back to skillet & turn to coat.
Serve chicken & sauce immediately
over cooked egg noodles.
Serves 4

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

Oreo Cookie Balls-3 Ingredients!

1 (14 to 19 oz) pkg. Oreo cookies
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 pkg. white almond bark (OR) 24 oz.
white chocolate chips*

*Almond bark contains no nuts – it is
a candy coating that may be found
near the chocolate chips in stores.

Cookies:
Crush Oreos very fine-either by using a
food processor or placing in a ziplock
bag & crushing them with a mallet or
rolling pin.
In a large bowl, using elec. mixer mix
cream cheese & crushed cookies – mix
until well blended. Scoop out & form
into 1-inch balls – place on waxed paper
until ready to dip.

Coating:
Melt almond bark (or white choc. chips):
1 of 2 methods: Place in microwave-safe
bowl & microwave in 30 second intervals,
stirring after each, until melted & smooth
(OR) Melt in a saucepan until fully melted
& smooth.
Dip each cookie ball in melted mixture then
place on waxed paper to cool completely.
Store in airtight container in fridge.
Makes 60-70 balls.

(recipe: southernplate.com)

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

I’m slowly but surely feeling better – still
stuffed up but functioning OK. Tonight (6 p.m.)
is our final choir rehearsal for tomorrow’s
Christmas program – I’m going to TRY to
sing tonight – we’ll see what happens!

It’s now NINE days until Christmas; oldest
son let me know last night that we’re doing
Christmas dinner at 2 p.m. (at his house). I
have no idea what meat he’s doing but I’m
doing the ‘same old’ sides: garlic mashed
potatoes, corn casserole, green bean casserole,
(black olives – oldest’s favorite), probably a
repeat of the wild rice casserole (middle son’s
girlfriend – and now middle son are VEGAN –
they both said they loved the casserole so
here goes one more time!) and 2 desserts.
It’s a tradition in my family to bake a “Happy
Birthday, Jesus” chocolate cake so perhaps
that might be one of the 2 desserts – we’ll
see. Here’s a photo of one from a few years
ago:

Hope you are all able to remain in good
health while finishing up these days before
the holiday. While choosing the recipes to
post today I noticed I still have a LOT of
appetizer & cookie/candy recipes to post
so those will be coming in the next few
days.

Stay warm & take a few minutes to rest/
relax while going through your very busy
day!

Hugs;

Pammie

More Holiday Recipes!

Today our temperatures are in the low 30’s with a light dusting of snow on the ground (supposed to get more later…sigh). I’m still feeling stuffy & ‘not my best’, am trying to decide if going to church tomorrow is a good idea (I hate to miss).

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

Lots of appetizers & dips!

Shrimp & Crab Dip

8 imitation crab sticks
1 1/2 C. cooked shrimp
1/2 C. onion,chopped
1 C. chopped celery
1/2 C. black olives
1 1/2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
3/4 C. mayonnaise

Place crab, shrimp, onion, celery &
black olives in food processor &
process until smooth. In a bowl
mix crab mixture, Cheddar cheese &
mayonnaise until combined. Chill
2 hours. Serve with crackers

(recipe: hoteatsandcoolreads.com)
——————————-
Hot Creamy Sausage Dip

1 lb. Bob Evans zesty hot roll
sausage
5 green onions, chopped/divided
1 C. sour cream
1/2 C. mayonnsie
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1 (2 oz) jar chopped pimientos,
drained

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 1 quart baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray.
In large skillet over medium heat
brown & crumble sausage until no
longer pink; drain & remove from
heat. Add all remaining ingredients
except 1 green onion & mix. Pour
mixture into prepared dish. Bake
20-25 minutes until bubbly. Garnish
with remaining chopped green
onion. Keep warm.
Serve with Melba toast, sesame or
wheat crackers.
Refrigerate leftovers. (Can be reheated
for later serving.

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

Fried Ravioli (appetizer)

1/2 C. Panko bread crumbs
1/2 C. Italian seasoned bread crumbs
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
10-14 store-bought fresh ravioli (NOT
frozen) – poster used Jumbo Four
Cheese)
2 eggs, room temp.
1/3 C. milk
oil for frying

Marinara sauce, for dipping (optional)

In shallow bowl combine bread crumbs,
Ital. seasoning & salt. Whisk eggs &
milk in another bowl. Dip raviolis in
egg mixture, then into bread crumbs
to coat. Repeat a second time so they
are double-coated – place them on
a wire rack.  You can either deep-fry
or pan fry raviolis. Heat oil to 350-
375 degrees F.
Raviolis take about 3 minutes to
cook; flip over about halfway through
to make sure they are cooked evenly.
Once golden, remove to a paper towel-
lined plate. They will puff up slightly
when cooked. Serve warm or room temp.

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
——————————-
Warm Spinach Feta Cheese Dip

2 T. olive oil
7 C. fresh spinach (7 C.
fresh spinach=1 C. frozen,
thawed)
If you use thawed, you don’t
need to saute it
3 cloves garlic, minced
7 oz. cream cheese
1 C. Feta cheese, crumbled
1 C. plain Greek yogurt

Dippers:
rolls, chunks of baguettes,
crackers, pretzels

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
In large oven-safe skillet heat oil;
add spinach & saute until soft*.
Add garlic & saute 1-2 more minutes.
Turn off heat. In large bowl using electric
mixer, combine cream cheese,
crumbled Feta & Greek yogurt-
stir in sauteed spinach/garlic &
pour all back into skillet. Bake 15-20
minutes in oven until heated through.
Serve with dippers. Serves 6-8

(recipe can be doubled – you can
use frozen spinach, thawed & excess
water squeezed out.

*If you can’t fit all the spinach in
the skillet, half it & wait until it shrinks
enough to add the rest.

(recipe: iwashyoudry.com)
————————–

Bacon-Asparagus Dippers

8 slices bacon, sliced in half
lengthwise
1 lb. asparagus, trimmed
fresh ground black pepper

Caesar salad dressing for dipping

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Line a large, rimmed baking sheet
with parchment paper & top with
a cooling rack. Carefully wrap
each asparagus spear with a
piece of bacon in a spiral; repeat
with rest of bacon/asparagus &
season with pepper. Place on
rack & bake 28-30 minutes until
bacon is crispy. Serve with Caesar
salad dressing for dipping.
Makes 16 spears

(recipe: delish.com)
——————————-

Jalapeno Popper stuffed Mushrooms

20 button mushrooms, stems removed
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 C. Cheddar cheese, shredded
8 slices bacon, cooked/chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded/minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
kosher salt
ground black pepper

chopped chives – garnish

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
In large bowl combine cream
cheese, Cheddar, bacon, jalapeno
& garlic – season with salt/pepper.
Stuff mushroom tops with mixture
& transfer to a baking dish or sheet.
Bake 25 minutes until mushrooms
are cooked & mixture warmed through.
Garnish with chopped chives & serve.
Serves 20

(recipe: delish.com)
——————————-

Cream Cheese Fruit Dip

1 (7 oz) jar marshmallow creme
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese

Fresh fruits for dippers:
orange slices/wedges, strawberries,
chunks of banana, etc.

In medium bowl using elec. mixer,
blend both ingredients until smooth.
Chill, if desired. Serve with any fresh
fruits.

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

Sheet Pan Chicken Nachos

1 (10 oz) can Ro*Tel diced
tomatoes & green chilies,
drained – liquid reserved
1 (16 oz) can refried beans
1 (6 oz) bag corn tortilla chips
1 C. shredded, cooked rotisserie
chicken
1 C. shredded Cheddar & Monterey
Jack cheese blend (4 oz)
1/4 C. sliced green onions
1 (2.25 oz) can sliced black olives,
drained

Optional toppings:
sour cream
guacamole
sliced jalapenos

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Reserve 1/2 C. drained tomatoes.
Stir together remaining tomatoes &
reserved liquid with refried beans
in medium bowl. Arrange chips on
large baking sheet. Top with bean/
tomato mixture & shredded
chicken – sprinkle top with cheese.
Bake 5 minutes until cheese melts.
Top with reserved tomatoes, green
onions & olives. Garnish with
optional toppings & serve
immediately. Serves 6

NOTE: You can replace the
chicken with cooked ground
beef

(recipe: readyseteat.com)
——————————-

Crockpot Chicken/Enchilada/Queso Dip

3 (8 oz, ea) blocks cream cheese
2 C. rotisserie chicken breast
(or 2 poached breasts, shredded)
1 can chopped green chilies
1 1/2 C. shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 1/2 C. salsa verde
1 T. chopped green onions
1 plum tomato, diced

tortilla or corn chips, for dipping

Combine all ingredients (except
chips) in crockpot – reserving some
chopped tomato  for garnish. Cover
& cook on Low 1 1/2 hours until
all is melted. Stir & cover with
reserved tomatoes. Serve with
chips. Serves 10

(recipe: delish.com)
——————————-
Crockpot Easy Mexican Party Dip

1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/2 C. sour cream
1 C. Mexican-style shredded 4-cheese,
divided (Kraft)
1 (15.5 oz) can black beans, drained/
rinsed
1 (16 oz) jar thick/chunky salsa
2 green onions, sliced
1/4 C. chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray.
Mix cream cheese, sour cream & 3/4 C.
shredded cheese until blended – spread
on bottom of crockpot. Top with beans,
then salsa. Cover & cook on Low 3-4
hours. Top with onions, cilantro &
remaining cheese.
Makes 40 (2 T. ea) servings

(recipe: kraftrecipes.com)
———————————-
Crockpot Swedish Meatballs

1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can beef broth
1 pkt. dry onion soup mix
2 T. A1 steak sauce
2 lb. frozen meatballs
8 oz sour cream (1 C.)
1 (16 oz) pkg. egg noodles

In crockpot mix soup with beef
broth, onion soup mix & A1 – stir
well. Add in frozen meatballs; cover
& cook on Low 6-8 hours or High
3-5 hours. Stir in sour cream. Cook
egg noodles accordg. to pkg.
directions; drain. Mix cooked noodles
into meatball mixture & serve. Serves 6

(recipe: thecountrycook.net)

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

Still working on the ‘lovey’ for my special
needs friend – I’m just over half done – YAY!
(Monday husband & I go to the doctors,
so he said we can stop at JoAnn’s, if I need,
to pick up more yarn for this project).

Hope you are enjoying your day – STAY
HEALTHY – if you can!

Hugs;

Pammie

PS: Every year I procrastinate when it comes
to putting up Christmas decorations and this
year is no different. As a child I loved getting
to do that – as an adult, not so much. So far
we have 3 snowmen (statues) ‘up’, that’s it
(and those I got down last week!).

and so it begins – the winter sniffles…

Woke up yesterday with my head all stuffed up, now I sound like a man with a very deep voice – sigh. I don’t really ‘feel’ sick, just head’s all stuffed up (that will really go great this Sunday for choir, eh?). Oh well, it could be worse (AND I AM going to see the doctor Monday about the vein thing, so it’s all good).

Weather is getting more ‘wintery’ – woke up to 22 ‘balmy’ degrees, a light dusting of snow on the ground & sunny. It’s supposed to warm up a bit (am planning on going shopping a little later when it’s a bit warmer – I hope). According to our local weather report we’re due for 1-3 inches of snow in the next 2 days so I want to get most of my shopping done before then. Low temperatures for the next week or so, in the 20’s with highs of 30’s (oh, joy) – time to get out my HEAVY winter coat!

Lots of recipes, all sorts – some for holidays/parties, some just everyday – here ya go:

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

Peppermint Bark Fudge

Chocolate Layer:
1 can sweetened condensed milk
3 1/2 C. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 tsp. peppermint extract

White layer:
1 can sweetened condensed milk
3 1/2 C. white chocolate chips
1 tsp. peppermint extract

Topping:
15 mini peppermint candy canes,
crushed

Line a 11″ X 7″ glass baking dish
with parchment paper. In heavy-
bottomed saucepan pour 1 can
sweetn’d/cond. milk, choc. chips &
1 tsp. peppermint extract – heat over
Low heat. Stir often – when choc. is
fully melted & well incorporated *(about
5-8 minutes),remove from heat & pour
into prepared dish. Clean the saucepan:
prepare White Layer the same as first.
When chocolate is fully melted, pour
over first layer in dish. Sprinkle crushed
candy canes over top, evenly. Allow to
set up at least 1 hour (you can refrigerate
to speed up the process). Slice into squares.
Serves 24

*If you notice chocolate is heating too
much & getting thick & crumbly, turn
heat down.

(recipe: eazypeazymealz.com)
———————————–
Cheesy Mac & Cheese

1 1/2 C. elbow macaroni, cooked/drained
accordg. to pkg. directions
2/3 C. evaporated milk
1 egg, beaten
1/3 C. sour cream
4 T. butter or margarine, softened
2 C. sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
1 C. Velveeta cheese (OR) 8 oz, cut
into pieces – if you don’t like Velveeta,
just add 3 C. Cheddar instead of 2)
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. salt

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
To cooked/drained macaroni add butter
& cheese – mix well. Beat egg, milk, sour
cream, pepper/salt together with a wire
whisk & add to mac & cheese. Spray a
casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray
& pour mixture into dish. Cover dish with
foil & bake 50-60  minutes. Serves 6

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

Chicken Tortilla Soup

1 lb. chicken, cooked/shredded
1/2 tsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
1 C. chopped onion
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
2 (14.5 oz, ea) cans chicken broth
1 can whole kernel corn
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1 T. lemon juice
1 C. salsa (your choice)

8 oz. corn tortilla chips
1/2 C. cheese, shredded
(your choice)

Heat olive oil in large saucepan;
add garlic & onion – cook until
onion is translucent. Stir in
remaining ingredients (except
chips & cheese). Simmer 20
minutes. Pour into bowls &
top with chips & cheese.
Serves 4

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

Crockpot Ham

7-9 1/2 lb. ham
juice from a 20 oz. can of
pinapple rings
1 C. brown sugar

Place ham in crockpot; pour
juice over ham & pack brown
sugar over ham. Cover &
cook on Low 6-8 hours.

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)
—————————-
Crockpot Sweet Potatoes

6 sweet potatoes
butter – to taste
brown sugar – to taste
cinnamon – to taste

Pierce each potato with a fork
several times & place in crockpot.
Cover & cook on High 3-4 hours.
Split potatoes & mash insides with
a fork. Top with butter, brown sugar
& cinnamon, to taste. Serves 6

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

Beer Cheese Dip
(overnight recipe)

8 oz. cream cheese, room temp.
1 C. sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4  of a red onion, finely diced
3 green onions, finely chopped
1 pkg. dry Ranch dressing mix
1/2 C. beer (any beer works)
1/2 C. chopped bacon, cooked
hot sauce, to taste
ground pepper, to taste

Suggested dippers: pretzels

Mix all ingredients together in large
bowl; refrigerate over night for best
results.

(recipe: recipelion.com)
—————————-

Baked Mozzarella/Marinara Dip

1 T. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 (32 oz) bottle marinara sauce
1 lb. fresh mozzarella cheese
2 T. fresh basil, chopped very fine
pinch red pepper flakes
kosher salt/black pepper

1 crusty baguette, sliced/toasted
for dipping

Preheat oven 300 degrees F.
Heat oil in medium oven-proof
skillet over medium heat. Add
garlic & saute until golden, 3-5
minutes. Add marinara sauce; stir
in basil, red pepper flakes, salt/
pepper – bring to simmer then
remove from heat. Add mozzarella
to center of dish & transfer to oven.
Bake 20-25 minutes until cheese is
melty. Sprinkle pepper over cheese
& garnish skillet with more chopped
basil. Serve warm with toasted
baguette pieces. Serves 12

(recipe: delish.com)
————————————-
Butterscotch Almond Toffee

2 C. (1 lb) butter
2 C. granulated sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 C. slivered almonds
3/4 C. butterscotch chips
3/4 C. milk chocolate chips
1 1/2 tsp. shortening, divided

Line a 15 X 10″ (jelly roll size)baking pan
with foil & lightly spray with nonstick cooking
spray. In heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine
butter, sugar & salt – melt over medium-high
heat, stirring until sugar is completely
dissolved. Clip a candy thermometer to side
of pan & continue cooking/stirring until it
reaches 290 degrees F. Stir in vanilla & slivered
almonds; pour into prepared pan. Tap the pan
to spread toffee evenly. Place pan on a rack to
cool. In small bowl combine butterscotch chips
& half of shortening. Combine choc. chips &
remaining shortening in separate microwave-safe
bowl. Microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring
in between, until chips are fully melted & smooth.
Using a spatula, spread butterscotch & choc. on
top of cooled toffee. Refrigerate at least 30
minutes to set the chocolate. Break into pieces &
serve. Serves 24

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
========================

After going on several crochet sites I was
able to locate the one ‘fancy/hole’ stitch
and master it. Worked on my ‘lovey’ blanket
for my special needs friend last night and am
about half-way done! Took awhile to get my
bearings on just exactly how I wanted to
design this (his Mom said do whatever I want,
she’s just happy I’m giving it a try!). Since I’m
not a crocheter per se (more a knitter who
knows basic crochet stitches) it’s a good effort;
perhaps in the hands of a real crocheter it would
look more professional, but for what it’s intended,
it will work.

Hope you’re having a good day!

Hugs;

Pammie