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!

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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

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Git ‘er DONE day!

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

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

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

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

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

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

Layered Pumpkin Lush
(dessert)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Scalloped Corn

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

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

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
——————————

Company Chicken Casserole

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

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

(recipe: allmyrecipes.com)
—————————-

Oven-Baked Philly Cheesesteak
Sandwiches

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

6 Hoagie sandwich buns, sliced
in half

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

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

Crockpot Sweet Potato Soup

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

Optional toppings:
sour cream
roasted pumpkin seeds

In 4-5 qt. crockpot combine all
ingredients except optional
toppings. Cover & cook on Low
5-6 hours until potatoes are tender.
Using a blender, cool soup slightly
then puree in batches; return soup
to crockpot & heat through. If
desired top with optional toppings.
Serves 8 (2 1/2 quarts)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Hugs;

Pammie

Winter is DEFINITELY here!

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

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

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

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

My sweet grandson 1 1/2 yrs old

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

Crockpot Pumpkin Dump Cake

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

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

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

Roasted Sweet Potato Wedges

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

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

(recipe: addapinch.com)
——————————–

Easy Roasted Acorn Squash

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

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

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

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

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

*Suggested breads to use: Ciabatta, Sourdough,
French

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

(I thought this one sounded interesting for a

savory side dish)

Mushroom & Leek Bread Pudding

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

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

*Pancetta is an Italian bacon

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
—————————

Crockpot Salsa Verde Chicken

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Hope you’re having a GREAT day!

Hugs;

Pammie

 

Yep, It’s MICHIGAN!

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

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

Cranberry/Pecan Pumpkin Bread

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

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

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

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

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

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

Simple Crockpot Potato Soup

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

(recipe: hisugarplum.com)
——————————

Easy Pork Chops w/Sweet Sour Glaze

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

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

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

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

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

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

Favorite Company Casserole

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

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

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
—————————

Sauteed Carrots

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

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

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
——————————–

Crockpot Blueberry Cake

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

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

(recipe: recipesthatcrock.com)

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

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

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

Enjoy your day;

Hugs;

Pammie

Thursday

Our weather is quickly moving to WINTER: days are in the high 30’s, dreary and sometimes wet. I finally switched from my light Spring/early Fall jacket to a warmer one (with gloves in the pockets – steering wheels get really cold!) so I’m slowly moving towards that next season (the dreaded Winter/Snow…sigh).

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

Crockpot Pumpkin Spice Cake
(w/cream cheese frosting)

1 box spice cake mix
1 C. pumpkin puree
1/2 C. water
1/3 C. canola oil
4 eggs
1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

Frosting:

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/3 C. butter, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
2 C. powdered sugar
chopped walnuts (optional topping)
caramel ice cream sauce for serving
(optional)

Line crockpot with parchment paper
(or crockpot liners). In large bowl beat
cake mix & remaining cake ingredients
until fully combined – spread into
crockpot. Cover & cook on High 1 3/4 to
2 hours until a toothpick inserted into
center of cake comes out clean. Remove
pot from crock & let cake cool 10-15
minutes then remove cake from insert
& cool completely before frosting.
Serves 12-14

Frosting:

Beat frosting ingredients until fully
combined & fluffy – frost cooled cake.
If desired, top cake with chopped nuts &
serve with a drizzle of caramel sauce.

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

One-Dish Smothered Chicken

4 boneless skinless chicken
breasts (about 2 lb.)
1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese
1 (6 oz) container plain Greek yogurt
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
3/4 tsp. seasoned salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
2 tsp. Italian-style breadcrumbs

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick spray. Place chicken in
dish; season lightly with salt/
pepper. In small bowl combine
Parm. cheese, yogurt, garlic powder,
seasoned salt & pepper. Spread
cheese mixture evenly over
chicken; lightly sprinkle bread-
crumbs over chicken (about 1/2 tsp.
per chicken breast). Bake, uncovered,
45 minutes. Serves 4-6

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

Sausage/Minestrone Soup

1 (16 oz) pkg. smoked sausage,
cut into rounds
1/4 C. butter (4 T.)
1/2 C. seeded/chopped green bell pepper
1 medium onion, chopped
1 C. chopped celery
1 C. chopped carrots
1 (15.25 oz) can black beans, drained/
rinsed (can also use kidney beans/chili
beans or almost any kind of beans)
2 (14.5 oz, ea) cans chicken broth
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes with
basil, garlic & oregano, undrained
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 C. rotini pasta, uncooked (can
also use macaroni or shells)

In a large skillet brown sausage, green
pepper, onion & celery with butter; add
to soup pot along with carrots, beans,
chicken broth, tomatoes, salt/pepper &
Worc. sauce. Bring to boil; cover & turn
down heat to simmer about 30 minutes
until carrots are cooked. Add pasta &
cook another 10-12 minutes until pasta
is tender. Makes about 10-12 servings.

NOTE: Soup keeps well in fridge for
several days & is good reheated

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

2 C. self-rising flour
2 C. buttermilk (can use regular milk)
2 C. shredded Cheddar cheese
1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
In large bowl whisk together flour,
cheese & garlic powder. Stir in milk.
Spray a 12-cup muffin tin with
nonstick cooking spray & fill each
cup. Bake 25-30 minutes.
Makes 12 muffins

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

Creamy Roasted Garlic/Spinach Orzo

1 whole bulb garlic
1 tsp. plus 1 T. olive oil, divided
1 3/4 C. uncooked whole wheat
orzo pasta
2 1/2 C. chicken stock
3 oz. cream cheese, cubed
1 (9 oz) pkg. fresh spinach, trimmed/
chopped
1/4 C. shredded Asiago cheese
1/4 C. milk
1 tsp. (salt-free) garlic pepper
seasoning blend
1/4 tsp. salt
2 T. minced fresh parsley

Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
Remove papery outer skin from
garlic bulb but do not peel or
separate the cloves. Cut off top of
garlic bulb, exposing individual
cloves. Drizzle cut cloves top with
1 tsp. olive oil & wrap in foil. Bake
30-35 minutes until cloves are soft.
Unwrap – when cool enough to
handle, squeeze garlic from skins.
In a Dutch oven, heat remaining oil
over medium-high heat. Add pasta &
cook, stirring, 2-3 minutes until lightly
browned. Add stock; bring to boil.
Reduce heat & simmer, covered,
10-12 minutes until pasta is tender
& liquid is absorbed. Stir in cream
cheese until melted; add spinach,
Asiago cheese, milk, seasoning blend,
salt & roasted garlic. Cook & stir until
spinach is wilted then sprinkle with
chopped parsley. Serves 6

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
———————————

Brussels Sprouts with Bacon

3 lb. medium Brussels Sprouts
2 T. vegetable oil
8 thick slices bacon (about 8 oz),
cut crosswise into 1/2″ strips
2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp. kosher salt (or more,
as needed)
fresh ground black pepper

Bring a large pot of water to boil &
salt water generously. Trim bottom end
of Brussels sprouts, leaving the core
intact – pull off dark outer leaves. Halve
through the core. Add sprouts to water
& cook, uncovered, until tender, about
6 minutes. Drain & rinse under cold
water (you can do this a day ahead).
In very large skillet or stew pot place
oil & bacon. Cook over medium heat,
stirring occasionally, until bacon is
crispy. Remove bacon with a slotted
spoon. Increase heat to medium-high
& add Brussels sprouts. Cook, stirring
occasionally, until brown & edges get
crisp, about 10 minutes. Stir in vinegar,
salt/pepper & bacon. Serve warm.
Serves 8

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
——————————

Bacon-wrapped Stuffed Chicken
Breast
(one pan meal)

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/4 C. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1/4 C. shredded mozzarella cheese
2 T. finely chopped parsley
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
salt/pepper – to taste
8 slices bacon
1 lb. small new potatoes, halved
(can use regular sized – cut into 1″
pieces)
2 medium zucchini, quartered length-
wise & cut into 1/2 inch pieces
(Optional garnish: chopped parsley)

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Line a sheet pan with foil & spray with
nonstick cooking spray. Using a small
knife, cut a slit lengthwise partway
across each chicken breast to create a
deep pocket. In small bowl mix cream
cheese, Cheddar & Mozz. cheeses,
parsley & garlic powder – season with
salt/pepper, to taste. Spoon cheese
mixture evenly into pockets in chicken.*
Use toothpicks to seal pockets shut.
Season top of each breast with salt/pepper
then wrap 2 slices bacon around each one;
place on sheet pan. Scatter the potatoes
around chicken – spray potatoes with nonstick
cooking spray & season with salt/pepper.
Bake 20 minutes; remove pan from oven &
add zucchini – season zucchini with salt/pepper
to taste & return pan to oven. Bake an additional
20 minutes. Broil for an additional 3-5 minutes
or until bacon is browned & crispy. Serve
immediately (with garnish, if desired(
Serves 4

*You can place the filling in a plastic bag &
snip the corner to create a makeshift
pastry bag – then squeeze the filling
into the chicken breasts.

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

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. ground cinnamon
1/4 C. cold butter, cubed
1/2 C. solid-pack pumpkin
1/2 C. buttermilk
1 tsp. vanilla

Spray a 9 inch square baking
pan with nonstick cooking spray.
In small saucepan, melt butter over
medium heat; add pecans & cook,
stirring, 2-3 minutes until pecans
are fragrant. Stir in brown sugar, cream
& honey; cook & stir until sugar is
dissolved & mixture begins to darken.
Pour into prepared pan. In small bowl
dissolve dry yeast in warm water. In
large bowl whisk 2 1/2 C. flour, sugar,
pie spice, salt, baking soda & baking
powder, & cinnamon. Cut in butter
until 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 inch square & cut into 16
squares. Arrange squares over pecan
mixture; 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
until golden brown. Carefully invert
onto a serving platter & serve warm.
Makes 16

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)

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

It’s hard to believe it’s already Thursday
in my “no babysitting” week; it’s been a
good one so far: Knit/Crochet group had
2 new ladies (total: 24 in attendance!).
Wednesday Library knit group had a good
number of ladies as well as my special needs
group – the weather is getting colder, my
guess is: people are looking for things to do
rather than stay cooped up at home. (Just a
guess – I could be wrong).

Tonight’s dinner will be spaghetti squash served
with tomato sauce with cooked hamburger in it
as well as fresh sauteed mushrooms & Parmesan
cheese – healthy AND tasty! (actually – I saw the
squash at Kroger & thought it would be a nice
change).

I’m still on my ‘restricted’ diet (to reduce my
diabetic A1C numbers; husband & I went out
to lunch today & I had a Greek salad with grilled
chicken on top – YUM! It’s not that I don’t know
how to eat – it’s just that I get lazy (and sometimes
desire the ‘not so good for you’ foods like potato
chips, ice cream, etc.) You get the idea. Weight-
wise I haven’t seen much of a change but I still
have until the second week in December to see
this through, hoping the weight (as well as the
diabetic #) will drop – we’ll see!

Hope you’re having a nice, relaxing (WARM)
day!

Hugs;

Pammie

It’s Monday!

Here it is, Monday, again – the beginning of my NO babysitting week – YAY! It’s typical Nov. weather – 50 degrees F. & gloomy (at least it’s not raining – yet…). I’ve heard people lately mentioning that there might be that dreaded “S” word coming towards the weekend (snow) but I’m trying my best to IGNORE that thought, for now.

Lots of nice Fall/Thanksgiving recipes comin’ in so I’ll start sharing them with you:

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

Cinnamon Roll Apple Crisp

1 (12.4 oz) tube refrigerated cinnamon
roll dough with icing (posters had 8 rolls)
4 medium apples, peeled/cored/sliced thin
(she used 2 Gala & 2 Granny Smith)
1/4 C. granulated sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
(icing from cinnamon roll pkg)

Crumble Topping:
1/2 C. unsalted butter, softened
1 C. light brown sugar, packed
1 C. old fashioned whole rolled oats
(not quick cook or instant)
1/2 C. flour
1 T. cinnamon (or to taste)
1/2 tsp. salt ( or to taste)
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. ground cloves

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Line a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
foil & spray foil with nonstick
cooking spray. Add the 8 rolls
to the pan, evenly distributed.
(poster put 2 rolls in each of 4 rows)
Flatten each of the rolls with your hand.
(they will not completely cover the pan
but will expand when they bake). Evenly
scatter the apples over entire surface of
pan, slightly layering as needed (as if you
were making a pie). Evenly sprinkle with
granulated sugar, cinnamon.

Crumble Topping:
In large bowl add all topping ingredients &
cut using 2 forks to combine into pea-sized
clumps. Evenly sprinkle topping over apples
& bake 40 minutes until top is lightly brown
& set. Evenly drizzle the icing packet &
serve immediately.

Option: Serve with whipped topping or
ice cream. Crumble is best warm & fresh but
will keep, airtight, at room temp. up to 4 days.

(recipe: averiecooks.com)
————————————-
Potato Leek Soup

4 medium leeks (dark green
stems removed)*
1/2 large white onion, chopped
2 medium russet potatoes, peeled/
cut into cubes
1 T. flour
1 T. butter
4 C. chicken stock (or vegetable)
1/2 C. 2% milk
salt/black pepper

*Wash leeks very carefully to remove
all grit. Poster cuts them horizontally
& separates into rings to make sure no
dirt remains; coarsely chop when washed.

In medium soup pot over low heat melt
butter then add flour. Using a wooden
spoon, mix well. Add chicken stock, leeks,
onion, potatoes – bring to boil. Cover &
simmer on Low 20-25 minutes until
potatoes are soft. Blend soup, in small
batches, in blender until smooth – adding
milk & adjusting salt/pepper, to taste.
Serve immediately. Serves 6

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

Cornbread Casserole

Chili:
1 T. olive oil
1/2 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 T. tomato paste
1 lb. ground beef
1 T. chili powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. dried oregano
kosher salt/ground black pepper
1 (15 oz.) can kidney beans, drained/
rinsed
1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes

Cornbread:
2 boxes JIFFY corn muffin mix
1 C. frozen corn
1 C. sour cream
4 T. butter, melted
2 large eggs

Topping:
sour cream
shredded Cheddar cheese
sliced green onions

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
In large pot over medium heat, heat oil.
Add onion & cook 5 minutes until soft.
Stir in garlic & cook 1 minute then add
tomato paste, stirring to combine. Add
ground beef & cook until no longer pink-
drain fat. Return mixture to skillet &
add chili powder, cumin & oregano – season
with salt/pepper. Add kidney beans &
crushed tomatoes – bring to boil, then
reduce heat & simmer 20 minutes.

Prepare Cornbread:
In medium bowl stir corn muffin mix,
corn, sour cream, melted butter & eggs
until combined.

Pour chili in to a 9 X 13″ baking dish –
spread evenly & top with cornbread batter;
spread to an even layer. Bake 20-25 minutes
until a toothpick inserted into center of
cornbread comes out clean.
Serve topped with sour cream, Cheddar
cheese & green onions.
Serves 8

(recipe: delish.com)
——————————–

Sunday Chicken

1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of mushroom
soup, undiluted
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of celery soup,
undiluted
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of chicken soup,
undiluted
1/3 C. butter, melted/divided
1 1/4 C. quick-cooking rice
1 broiler/fryer chicken (3-4 lb), cut up
salt/pepper, to taste
paprika

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray.
In large bowl combine soups, 1/4 C.
butter & rice; pour into prepared
dish & top with chicken pieces.
Drizzle chicken with remaining butter
& sprinkle with salt/pepper & paprika.
Bake, uncovered, 2 hours until chicken
juices run clear & rice is tender.
Serves 4-6

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————————

Crockpot Tuscany Pot Roast & Veggies

1 (3.5 – 5 lb) beef chuck roast
5-6 carrots, cut into chunks
5-6 medium russet potatoes,
peeled/cubed
1 (12 oz) jar beef gravy
1/2 C. white vinegar
1 packet dry Italian salad dressing
mix

Place roast in crockpot, add carrots
& potatoes. In medium bowl mix
beef gravy, white vinegar & dry
Ital. salad dressing mix – pour over
roast. Cover & cook 8 hours on Low.
Remove roast & veggies to platter
& serve. Serves 4-6

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

Ground Beef Stuffed Pepper Skillet

1 lb. ground beef
1/2 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 C. diced green bell pepper
1/2 C. diced red pepper
1 (14.5 oz) can fire-roasted diced
tomatoes
3/4 C. uncooked long-grain white
rice
2 C. beef broth
2 T. tomato paste
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 1/2 C. shredded Colby-Jack cheese
1 T. fresh parsley – garnish

Brown meat with onion & garlic
in a skillet over medium heat until
beef is fully cooked, crumbled & no
longer pink; drain. Add peppers,
diced tomatoes, rice, beef broth,
tomato paste, Ital. seasoning, salt/
pepper – stir & bring to a boil. Reduce
heat to simmer; cover & cook 18
minutes until rice is cooked through.
Fluff the rice with a fork & top with
shredded cheese. Cover & let cheese
melt over low heat. Garnish with
parsley, if desired. Serves 4-6

(recipe: iwashyoudry.com)
———————————

Walnut-crust Pumpkin Pie

Filling:
1 can pumpkin puree
3/4 C. heavy cream
3/4 C. whole milk
1/2 C. brown sugar
1/4 tsp. ground dry ginger
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. orange zest
2 eggs, separated

Crust:
1/3 C. walnuts
1 C. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 C. cold vegetable shortening
2-3 T. cold water

heavy cream, whipped, for topping

In medium saucepan mix pumpkin,
cream, milk, sugar, ginger, cinnamon,
salt & orange zest – scald by heating
just until it starts to boil – remove from
heat before it boils. In large bowl beat
egg yolks & very slowly, drizzle hot
pumpkin liquid into eggs until all of
liquid has been whisked in. (If you
add it too quickly, the eggs will scramble).
Place this mixture in fridge for 1 hour
to cool (save egg whites for later).

While mixture is cooling, make crust:
Place walnuts in a food processor & pulse
until they around ground but not so
much they start to puree or get gummy.
Add flour & salt – pulse a few times. Add
shortening & pulse a few times to mix.
Add a little water at-a-time & pulse after
each addition just until dough comes
together & is pliable. Scrape dough into
a 9″ pie plate & press in bottom & up
sides, making a decorative edge when
done. (Try not to roll dough, pressing it
in pie plate is easiest). Refrigerate crust
until filling has cooled.

After pumpkin mixture is cool:
Preheat oven 425 degrees F.
In bowl whip egg whites to stiff peaks &
fold into cooled pumpkin mixture then
pour filling into prepared pie crust. Bake
10 minutes then reduce oven heat to 350
degrees & bake 25-35* minutes more until
center is firm & a toothpick inserted into
center comes out clean. Whip heavy cream
for topping, if using & serve with pie.

*Poster noted: Their pie baked a total of
38 minutes (& original recipe stated 45
minutes baking time).

(recipe: a family feast.com)

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

This week I’ve decided to focus on feeling
better (getting there), knitting on my
projects, reading a little (2 new-to-me
Sidney Sheldon books from the library)
and relaxing – how about you?

QUICK REMINDER:
DON’T FORGET TO VOTE
TOMORROW!

Enjoy your day – Hugs;

Pammie

Happy First of November!

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

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

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

Caramel Apple Cobbler

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

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

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

Turkey Pumpkin Chili

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

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

(recipe: skinnytaste.com)
——————————–

Corn Fritters

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

Garnish: sour cream

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

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

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

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

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

Swiss Cheese Chicken Casserole

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

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

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

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

Broccoli/Cheese Soup
(Copycat-Panera Bread)

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

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

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

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

Easy Pumpkin Pull-Apart Loaf

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

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

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

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

(recipe: crazyforcrust.com)

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

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

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

Hugs;

Pammie

Saturday

It’s a chilly, dreary day out there BUT it’s Saturday and it’s also a DAY OFF for me – YAY! Ended up sleeping in a bit & woke up really groggy – ever do that? Today is a “No particular plans” day (except cooking dinner: pork chops, baked potatoes & asparagus). Yesterday was also a ‘OFF DAY” for me – got lots done. Decided to wake up early: got a lot of paperwork done for my special needs group (updating figures/addresses/etc.) then switched Summer/Winter clothes (glad that’s all done), managed to knit some on both baby blankets and a new mens scarf I’m ‘creating as I go’ (that means I’m not exactly sure how all the various yarn colors are going to work into the scarf – we’ll just have to see as we go! That’s called ‘creative license’ but I just call it ‘being creative – & crazy!)

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

Nutty Apple Bread Pudding

6-7 C. crumbled bread, broken
into about 1″ pieces
1 C. hot water
1 C. brown sugar
1/4 C. butter or margarine (4 T.),
melted
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
2 eggs
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 C. evaporated milk (can use
regular)
1 C. raisins
1 C. grated apple (1 large or 2
small apples, peeled & grated)
2/3 C. walnut pieces (or nuts of
your choice)

Optional toppings:
ice cream
caramel ice cream sauce

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray a 9 X 9″ square baking
pan with nonstick cooking spray.
Crumble bread in a large bowl &
pour hot water over bread. In
another bowl, combine remaining
ingredients (except nuts) & whisk
together. Add crumbs & mix with
a spoon – pour mixture into baking
dish. Sprinkle nuts over top & bake
35-40 minutes. Makes about 8
servings. Great with ice cream &
caramel sauce.

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

Make Ahead Breakfast Sandwiches

14 eggs
2 T. milk
1/4 tsp. seasoned salt
salt/pepper
12 small croissant rolls
1 (6 oz) pkg. sharp Cheddar cheese slices
1 (9 oz) pkg. sliced deli ham

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
In large bowl crack eggs; add milk,
seasoned salt, some salt/pepper
& whisk vigorously with a fork (you
want it kind of frothy). Spray a
9 X 13″ pan with nonstick cooking
spray & pour eggs into pan. Bake
15 minutes until eggs puff up & are
cooked through. Allow to cool about
5 minutes then cut into eggs the
same size as the croissants. Slice
croissants & add 1 slice egg to each
one, topped with ham & cheese.*
Spray another 9 X 13″ baking pan
with nonstick cooking spray & place
sandwiches in pan. Cover tightly
with foil & refrigerate until ready
to serve.
Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Place refrigerated pan in oven &
bake about 15 minutes until
sandwiches have heated through &
cheese is melted. Makes 12.

*Poster said she split the cheese in
half & put one half on bottom of
croissant & one on top of ham so
melted cheese would secure ham
in place.

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

Roasted Smoked Sausage & Potatoes

1 (16 oz) pkg. Kielbasa or smoked sausage.
cut into rounds
5 large potatoes, cut into 1-2 inch cubes
(or 2 lb. red potatoes)
1 small onion, cut into pieces or chopped
olive oil
kosher or sea salt
fresh ground black pepper
few sprigs fresh thyme (or 1/8 tsp. dried)
Tony Chachere’s creole seasoning, to taste
1/2 C. shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil;
drizzle with a bit of olive oil. In large bowl
add sausage rounds, potatoes & onions.
Drizzle with a few T. olive oil & season
to taste with salt/pepper, thyme & creole
seasoning; toss until well blended & pour
into prepared baking sheet – spread to
even. Bake 45 minutes turning every 15
minutes until potatoes are golden brown &
tender. Turn off oven.
Remove from oven & scatter shredded cheese
over mixture – place sheet back in oven about
5 minutes until cheese melts.

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

Crockpot Sausage/White Bean &
Pasta Soup

1 lb. breakfast pork sausage
1 small onion, chopped
1 T. dried basil
1 tsp. minced garlic
1 (14 oz) can chicken broth
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes,
undrained
1 1/2 C. water
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of celery soup
1/2 pkg. baby carrots or 3-4 carrots,
cut into pieces
1 C. dried Great Northern beans
1/2 C. elbow macaroni or pasta shells
1 T. black pepper
salt, to taste
1/2 C. cabbage, shredded (optional)

Brown sausage & onion with basil &
garlic in a skillet; drain & pour into crock-
pot. Add all other ingredients (except
pasta) to crockpot. Cover & cook on Low
7-8 hours (or High 4-5 hours). About an
hour before soup finishes cooking, add
pasta. Makes about 3 quarts soup

NOTE: This recipe can also be made on
the stove: Cook in large pot until beans
are tender. Add pasta (or shells) about
last 20 minutes of cooking time.

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

Fall Tortellini Toss

1 (9 oz) pkg. refrigerated cheese
tortellini
2 T. olive oil
1/2 lb. sliced baby portobello
mushrooms
1 3/4 C. cubed/peeled butternut
squash (about 1/4 inch cubes)
1/2 tsp. poultry seasoning
1 medium tart apple, chopped/
seeded
3 T. (thawed) apple juice concentrate
3 T. cider vinegar
1 green onion, thinly sliced
1/3 C. chopped walnuts, toasted
1/3 C. cubed, smoked Gouda
cheese (about 1/4 inch cubes)
2 T. minced fresh parsley

Cook tortellini accordg. to pkg.
directions. In large skillet heat
oil over medium-high heat. Add
mushrooms, squash & poultry
seasoning – cook & stir 6-8
minutes until mushrooms are tender.
Add apple, apple juice concentrate,
vinegar & onion – cook 2-3 minutes
until squash is tender. Drain cooked
tortellini; rinse with cold water &
place in a large bowl. Add squash
mixture, walnuts, cheese & parsley,
toss gently to coat.
Serves 12 (2/3 C. each)

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————————

Easy Stuffed Baked Apples

1 stick butter (salted or unsalted)
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C. brown sugar
1/2 C. flour
3/4 C. old fashioned oats
1/2 tsp. allspice
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
4-5 baking apples*
3/4 C. hot water
1 tsp. cinnamon
=
Suggested toppings:
Vanilla ice cream
Caramel ice cream sauce

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
In medium bowl melt butter;
add brown sugar, flour, oats,
allspice, cinnamon & vanilla –
stir until well combined. Slice
each apple in half vertically
& remove stems. Using a
spoon (or melon baller) scoop
out the core of each apple.
Pour hot water into bottom of
a 9 X 13″ baking pan & place
apples in pan, cut sides up.
Sprinkle each with cinnamon.
Stuff each apple half with
mixture until all apples are
stuffed. Cover with foil &
bake 20 minutes. Remove
foil & bake another 25
minutes. Serve warm alone,
or with vanilla ice cream & caramel
sauce, if desired.
Makes 8-10 apple halves.

*Great apples for this recipe:
Granny Smith, Honey Crisp,
Golden Delicious, JonaGold

(recipe: southernplate.com)

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

Hope you’re having a nice day!

Hugs;

Pammie

Been super busy – again . . .

As much as I’d like to be able to post more frequently, lately that seems to be a ‘lost’ hope. Today is Thursday and my first REAL day ‘off’ of any responsibilities – YAY! To give you an idea of just how  much I needed the break, I slept for 10 hours – just woke up about a half hour ago! Even though it was ‘supposed’ to be the other Grandma taking up the babysitting responsibilities, somehow it seems I got the job – again. I love my baby grandson and have fun with his goofy ways, but it gets to be a drag day-after-day. Yes, I ‘could’ say NO, but they don’t have another option! (the good thing is – they will be going on  vacation sometime soon, so I get a rest).

Am working on the next newsletter for my special needs group – that will have to go out before the end of the month. Last night, after our group meeting, Lois (head of our group) and I had a long discussion with the rest of the group leaders concerning how the ‘administration’ of the group will shake down after Lois (& I, eventually) leave. Her house & property have been purchased by a large conglomerate that will be building a hotel and other commercial buildings in their neighborhood. She, at that time, will be making plans to move farther away, thus the end of her leadership with our group (we’re talking about 1 1/2 years from now – hopefully). My husband has voiced his concern for me driving back & forth in the dark/snow, etc. (it’s about a 25 minute drive to the church) and said that maybe I should also retire at that time. I have decided that I will stay on for awhile (I’m thinking 4-6 months) after Lois leaves, just to help guide/direct those who will be in charge after us – hence the meeting last night. It was mentioned that we (Lois & I) write down all of the necessary things pertaining to how things are done/when certain events are done & how, who to contact, etc.  Leaving will NOT be a simple/easy thing but I’m pretty sure when it comes down to it, Lois & I ,both, will be ready. She has been with our group since it’s inception in 1990 and I joined the group Oct., 1993.

===========

Crockpot Cookies ‘n Cream Brownies

1/2 C. baking cocoa
1/2 C. butter, melted
1/2 C. brown sugar, packed
3/4 C. sugar, divided
1/2 C. flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla, divided
15 whole chocolate sandwich
cookies, crushed/divided*See NOTE
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
3 eggs, divided

Spray insides of crockpot with
nonstick cooking spray.
In large bowl mix cocoa, butter,
brown sugar & 1/2 C. sugar – mix well.
Beat in 2 eggs, one at a time. In
another bowl, mix flour & baking
powder – stir flour mixture into
cocoa mixture. *NOTE: Crush 12
cookies in a plastic bag. Stir 1 tsp.
vanilla & 12 crushed cookies. Spread
brownie batter in bottom of crockpot.
In a bowl beat together cream cheese**,
1/4 C. sugar, egg & vanilla until smooth-
pour over batter & spread out evenly;
crumble remaining cookies on top.
Place a few paper towels over top
of crockpot & cover with lid. Cook
on High 3-5 hours. Let cool & cut into
bars. Serves 12

NOTE: You can use a 6 qt. or casserole
crockpot BUT if you use a casserole
crockpot you run the risk of your paper
towel touching the top of your brownies.
You might want to remove any condensation
from lid periodically with a paper towel.

**You will want to make sure the cream
cheese mixture is smooth & fully mixed

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

Doritos Nacho Cheese Taco Bake

1 (9.75 oz) bag Nacho Cheese-flavored Doritos,
coarsely crushed (about 4 C., crushed)
1 lb. ground beef
1 (1 oz) pkg. taco seasoning mix
2/3 C. water
1 red bell pepper, diced
2 1/2 C. salsa or taco sauce
1 (15 oz) can corn, drained
2 C. shredded Mexican-blend or
Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. In large
skillet cook beef over medium-high
heat until no longer pink, about
5-7 minutes – drain. Stir in taco
seasoning mix, water & bell pepper –
sinner 3-4 minutes until thickened,
stirring frequently. Stir in salsa & corn.
Place half of crushed Doritos in bottom
of prepared pan – top with half of cheese;
spread beef mixture on top. Bake,
uncovered, 25-30 minutes until hot &
bubbly. Sprinkle top of casserole with
remaining crushed Doritos & remaining
shredded cheese. Place back in oven about
5 minutes until cheese melts.
Serves 8

NOTE: This recipe can be made smaller:
Cut ingredients in half & bake in 8 X 8″
baking dish.

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

Cheddar Bay Biscuits

2 C. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. granulated sugar
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp. Old Bay seasoning
1 C. sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
1 C. buttermilk
1/2 C. unsalted butter, melted/cooled

Topping:

2 T. unsalted butter, melted
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
Old Bay seasoning, to taste
1 tsp. parsley, minced

Preheat oven 475 degrees F.
Line a half-sheet pan with parchment
paper. In large bowl whisk flour, baking
powder, baking soda, sugar, salt, garlic
powder, cayenne & Old bay – stir in
cheese. In small bowl combine buttermilk
& melted butter. (Butter will harden as
it cools from being combined with butter-
milk.) Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients,
gently folding the two together using a rubber
spatula – mix until just combined. Scoop out
dough into 1/4 C portions, adding each biscuit
to the parchment-lined half-sheet pan – leave
1 inch between each biscuit; bake about
12 minutes, until golden brown.

While biscuits are baking:
Whisk remaining melted butter, garlic powder,
Old bay & parsley. Brush tops of baked biscuits
with mixture & serve warm. Makes 16 biscuits.

(recipe: allfood.recipes)
—————————————–
Spinach Artichoke Dip (with
Roasted Garlic)

16 oz. cream cheese
1/2 C. mayonnaise
1 (10 oz) pkg. frozen spinach, thawed/
drained/excess liquid squeezed out
1 1/2 C. Parmesan cheese (or Parmigiano
Reggiano)
1 (21 oz.) jar marinated quartered artichoke
hearts, drained/coarsely chopped
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. ground black pepper
2 heads garlic, roasted*

Dippers: chips, toasted baguette
slices, celery sticks

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Spray 3 qt. baking dish with nonstick
cooking spray. In large bowl combine
cream cheese & mayonnaise; mix until
well combined. Add spinach, cheese,
artichoke hearts, lemon juice, pepper &
roasted garlic – stir until combined; spoon
into prepared dish. Bake 20-25 minutes
until golden brown & bubbling.
Serve with chips, toasted baguette slices
or celery sticks. Makes 16 servings.

*How to roast garlic:
Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Cut top third of garlic (bunch) you want
to make sure the tops of all cloves are
exposed. Drizzle a small amount of olive
oil in a small cast iron skillet or baking
dish (can even use a small loaf pan). Place
garlic heads in dish (do not separate) &
drizzle a little more oil on top; sprinkle
with salt & pepper (optional). Cover
dish or skillet with foil & bake 40-50
minutes. Check to see if it’s ready by
piercing a clove with a fork – it should
be soft & slightly caramelized. Remove
from oven & squeeze out cloves by pressing
upwards from the root – squeezing the
individual cloves out of the head – they
will be soft & mushy & read to use

(recipe: momontimeout.com)
—————————————–
Pork Chops with Scalloped Potatoes

3 T. butter
3 T. flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 (14.5 oz) can chicken broth
6 pork rib or loin chops (3/4″ thick)
2 T. canola oil
salt/pepper – additional/optional
6 C. thinly sliced, peeled potatoes
1 medium onion, sliced
paprika & minced fresh parsley,
optional

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
In small sauce pan melt butter; stir
in flour, salt/pepper until smooth.
Add broth; bring to boil – cook &
stir 1 minute until thickened; remove
from heat. In large skillet brown chops
on both sides in oil; sprinkle with salt/
pepper, if desired. Spray 9 X 13″ baking
dish with nonstick cooking spray. Layer
potatoes & onions in prepared pan; pour
broth mixture over layers & place chops
on top. Cover with foil & bake 1 hour.
Uncover & bake 30 minutes longer until
meat & potatoes are tender. (If desire,
sprinkle with paprika & parsley.
Serves 6

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

Coffee Butter Cake

Cake:
1 box Duncan Hines Butter cake mix
1/2 C. salted butter, melted
1/2 C. prepared coffee
1/2 C. liquid coffee creamer, Half &
Half or heavy cream
4 eggs
1 (3.4 oz) box instant vanilla pudding
mix
1 heaping T. cocoa powder

Coffee Butter Sauce:
3/4 C. sugar
1/2 C. salted butter
1/4 C. prepared coffee
1-2 T. vanilla

Optional toppings:
Whipped cream
chocolate shavings
=
Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Liberally spray insides of Bundt pan
with nonstick cooking spray. Place
all cake ingredients in large bowl;
beat, using elec. mixer, until fully
incorporated & no lumps remain,
scraping down sides if needed, about
2 minutes. Pour batter into prepared
pan & spread evenly. Bake 40-45
minutes until a toothpick inserted
near center comes out clean. Remove
from oven & cool in pan 10 minutes.

Sauce:
Place all sauce ingredients in a medium
bowl or sauce pot. If using bowl, microwave
at 30 second intervals, stirring after each,
until butter is melted & sugar is completely
dissolved. If using sauce pot: cook over
medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until
butter is melted & sugar is completely
dissolved. Use a wooden skewer or fork to
poke holes all over top of cake while still
in Bundt pan. Pour hot sauce all over cake
& allow to cool completely before turning
cake out onto a serving plate. Garnish each
slice with whipped cream or a sprinkling of
cocoa powder or chocolate shavings.

(recipe: www.southernplate.com)

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

Our weather is still very “Fall-like” – most of
the leaves have turned colors & fallen off of
the trees; it’s in the 40’s & 50’s most days.
Today we’re lucky to have a SUNNY day (always
cheers me up!) and 45 degrees F.  Looking at the
coming rest of the week, looks like we’ll be
getting showers Friday – Sunday; that’s OK,
it IS Fall!

Hope you are all in good health. Sometime
today I hope to go through all my Summer
clothes & put them away, dragging out the
Winter sweaters/sweatshirts, etc. for the
next season of wearing. (I tend to put this
job off, as it just tends to remind me of how
close WINTER is!). Have a GREAT day!

Hugs;

Pammie

Getting some MUCH NEEDED rest!

Last night’s special needs group Harvest Party (Western theme)

There was also a ‘leaders’ photo taken but it hasn’t been posted yet, so this is (that I know of) the only other photo with me in it. The big gentleman in the back is “Pastor Dave”, he’s one of our leaders and the lady next to him is one of our moms (she brought some awesome cider & bakery donuts for the event). We had a good turn-out (about 45 kids + parents/helpers/caregivers). LOTS of hot dogs (we cooked 160, I think – my job, at that time, was plopping hot dogs on buns & slathering them (if they wanted) with chili. I managed to eat one hot dog & chili and snag a SUPER great chocolate sour cream donut – sure wished I had a cup of coffee to go with that donut – YUM! I was totally exhausted when I finally came home around 10:15 p.m. – it had been a crazy/busy day: grocery shopping really early (around 9:15 a.m.), then babysitting 1-4:30p.m., rush home & change clothes – drive to the church by 5:30 (got stuck in traffic, didn’t get there until around 5:50) then standing for 4 1/2 hours – lets just say I slept for ELEVEN hours straight! My body is not made for that kind of torture. I asked, yesterday, what was going on with the ‘other grandmother’s house – (hinting at “I’ve babysat 3 days this past week – what the heck?!”) I guess she will be pitching in again this coming week – sure hope so! Husband & I are supposed to go to a fund raiser dinner tonight (5 p.m.) but he gave me the ‘out’ “If you really don’t feel like going we could just mail them a check” – YES!!! So I’m taking that offer & staying home – SOoooooooo tired of running all week (and then there’s church twice tomorrow!). Decided dinner tonight will be Nachos – we love them and they’re not too hard to make (plus they feed us for several meals!) – BONUS!

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

Easy Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

1 tube Pillsbury Crescent Dough
sheet
1/3 C. 100% pure pumpkin
1/2 C. brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. cinnamon

Cream Cheese Frosting

Preheat oven 375 degrees F.
Unroll crescent dough onto waxed
paper. Spread pumpkin over dough;
top with brown sugar, nutmeg &
cinnamon. (NOTE: Roll into a large roll
from smaller end for bigger rolls)
Roll up & slice into 1″ pieces & place
on a cookie sheet*. Bake 21-23 minutes
until golden brown. Top with cream
cheese frosting.

*You can bake these in a casserole dish
or on a cookie sheet lined with waxed
paper – OR you can spray dish/sheet
with nonstick cooking spray for no
sticking.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
1/2 C. butter or margarine (or 8 T./
1 stick) softened
1 (8 oz) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
1 (16 oz) box powdered sugar (about
3 1/2 C.)

In large bowl beat butter & cream
cheese using an elec. mixer. Add vanilla
& powdered sugar – continue mixing
until frosting is smooth & of spreading
consistency.

NOTE: This recipe will frost a 9 X 13″
cake,(or) a round 2-layer cake (OR)
a dozen to 1 1/2 dozen cupcakes

(recipe: thesouthernladycooks)
———————————

Squash Gratin

3 T. unsalted butter
1 medium onion, chopped
1 T. chopped fresh thyme
1 small butternut squash, peeled/
cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 small kabocha squash*, peeled/
cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp. ground mace
kosher salt/ground black pepper
1 C. chicken or vetetable broth
1/2 C. heavy cream
1/4 C. breadcrumbs
2 T. grated Parmesan cheese
2 T. chopped fresh parsley
1/2 C. grated Gruyere cheese,
about 2 oz.

Preheat oven 400 degrees F.
Melt 2 T. butter in large ovenproof
skillet over medium-high heat. Add
onion & thyme; cook, stirring, about
5 minutes until onions soften. Combine
butternut & kabocha squash in large
microwave-safe bowl with 1 C. water.
Cover with plastic wrap & microwave
until squash is just tender, about 5
minutes. Drain & add squash to skillet
along with garlic, mace, 1 tsp. salt &
few grinds black pepper. Cook, stirring,
about 3 minutes. Add broth & cook
until mostly absorbed, about 5 more
minutes. Stir in heavy cream & cook
until slightly thickened, 2 minutes. Melt
remaining 1 T. butter in microwave & toss
with breadcrumbs, Parm. cheese & parsley;
season with salt & pepper – sprinkle over
squash then top with Gruyere. Transfer
skillet to oven & bake about 30 minutes
until golden. Let stand 5 minutes before
serving. Serves 6-8

*Kabocha squash: is a winter squash,
also known as Japanese pumpkin. It has
dark green stripes on the outside.

How to break down butternut squash:
Cut about 1 inch off bottom end using
a chef’s knife – scoop out seeds. Hold
squash against your body & remove
skin using a vegetable peeler; chop.

How to break down kabocha squash:
Quarter the squash using a chef’s knife;
scoop out seeds. Put each quarter flat-
side down & cut off skin using a paring
knife; chop the squash.

(recipe: foodnetwork.com)
————————————-
Farmer’s Breakfast

6 large eggs
1/3 C. milk
1/2 tsp. dried parsley flakes
1/4 tsp. salt
6 oz. bulk pork sausage
1 T. butter
1 1/2 C. frozen, cubed hash brown
potatoes, thawed
1/4 C. chopped onion
1 C. shredded Cheddar cheese

In a bowl whisk eggs, milk, parsley &
salt. In 9″ cast-iron skillet (or other
oven-proof skillet) cook sausage over
medium heat until no longer pink;
remove & drain fat. In same skillet,
heat butter over medium heat; add
potatoes & onion – cook & stir 5-7
minutes until tender; return sausage
to pan. Add egg mixture; cook & stir
until almost set – sprinkle top with
cheese. Cover & cook 1-2 more minutes
until cheese melts. Serves 4

NOTE: If you don’t have frozen hash
brown potatoes, use par-cooked cubed
potatoes

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)
——————————

Crockpot Pepper Jack Chicken

3-4 lbs. boneless skinless chicken thighs*
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. cumin
salt/pepper, to taste
1 (10 oz.) pkg. frozen whole
green beans
1 bell pepper -seeded/sliced
8 oz. fresh mushrooms, sliced
1/4 C. butter
10 slices Pepper Jack cheese

Place chicken in bottom of crockpot.
Season with garlic powder, onion
powder, cumin & salt/pepper. Layer
frozen green beans, mushrooms &
peppers. Season again with salt/pepper.
Top with butter; cover & cook on Low
4-6 hours until chicken is shreddable
when stirred. Stir chicken until shredded
then top with cheese. Cook on High
until cheese melts.

*You can use chicken breasts instead
of thighs but cooking time will likely
be less than with thighs. Watch closely
so you don’t dry out the chicken breasts.

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

Grandma’s Sausage Skillet Lasagna

2 lb. fresh hot Italian sausage*, casings
removed
2 C. diced onions
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 (16 oz) pkg. lasagna noodles.
breaking each noodle into 3 pieces
1 (64 oz) jar marinara sauce
1 c. ricotta cheese
6 T. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 C. shredded mozzarella cheese

In an oven-safe 12 inch nonstick skillet
brown sausage over medium-high heat,
breaking up sausage into small pieces.
Once sausage is mostly cooked, add onion
& garlic – cook 2 minutes more; drain grease.
Add lasagna noodles & carefully pour sauce
all over top. Using a spatula or wooden spoon,
move the noodles so the sauce can get to the
bottom & in between the noodles. Return to
heat & bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
Cook until noodles have softened, about 15
minutes. Stir & toss noodles occasionally so
heat is evenly distributed throughout to cook
the noodles.
In a small bowl stir ricotta & Parm. cheeses.
Preheat oven to BROIL
In large dollops, place ricotta cheese mixture all
over lasagna mixture in skillet & place under
broiler until cheese has melted & is bubbly.
Carefully remove from oven & let sit 10
minutes before serving. Serves 6

*You don’t have to use hot Italian sausage,
you can use your favorite type of sausage.

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

Chunky Apple Cake

1/2 C. butter, softened
2 C. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 large eggs
2 C. flour
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
6 C. chopped, peeled tart apples

Butterscotch Sauce:
1/2 C. packed brown sugar
1/4 C. butter, cubed
1/2 C. heavy whipping cream

Preheat oven 350 degrees F.
Spray 9 X 13″ baking dish with
nonstick cooking spray. In large
bowl cream butter, sugar & vanilla.
Add eggs, one at a time, beating
well after each addition. Combine
flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt &
baking soda in another bowl –
gradually add to creamed mixture &
mix well (batter will be stiff). Stir in
apples until well combined. Spread
into prepared dish & bake 40-45
minutes until top is lightly browned &
springs back when lightly touched.
Cool 30 minutes before serving.

In small saucepan combine brown sugar
& butter. Cook over medium heat until
butter is melted. Gradually add cream &
bring to slow boil over medium heat,
stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
Serve with cake.

Serves 12-14

(recipe: tasteofhome.com)

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

Weather-wise, it’s chilly (40’s & 50’s) with
light rain & overcast. Just looked at the
local weather forecase & nearly dropped
my coffee cup:  From NOW until 10 p.m.
Sunday night: Rain, possibly mixed with
snow showers, breezy, high near 54 degrees F,
little or no snow accumulation expected.
YUCK!!! NOOoooooo! Not what I was
expecting to read – for sure! Rest of the
week is temps around 45-50 (with no snow
mentioned). Oh well – time to get ready –
winter is coming! (I still have to go through
my Summer/Winter clothes & switch them
out – that’s a task for this coming week, NOT
today, for sure!).

Hope you are gradually adjusting to the changes
in the weather. Stay warm & healthy if you can –
maybe enjoy a nice hot cup of something & relax
a little with a book or a NAP!

Hugs;

Pammie