Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Sloppy Joe, Sloppy Joe, Slop Slop Sloppy Joe

A healthier version of Sloppy Joe's that even my 5 yr old liked!!

1-1.5 lbs lean ground turkey

1/4 C. diced onion

1/2 C. ketchup

3 tbs BBQ sauce

1 tbs yellow mustard

1 tbs cider vinegar (red wine vinegar works too)

1 1/2tsp. Worcestershire sauce

1/2 tsp. celery salt

1/4 tsp. pepper

For serving

bulky whole wheat rolls

1. In a large skillet saute onion until translucent, add turkey and cook until no longer pink.

2. Add all remaining ingredients to onion and meat mixture heat thoroughly and serve on bulky rolls.

I served with store bought sweet potato fries and dill pickles.
I have also made my own Sweet potato Fries these will heat up the meal a bit

2-3 sweet potatoes sliced into wedges

3-4 tbs olive oil

2 tbs garlic powder

1-2 tbs Cayenne pepper

Amounts depends on how much heat you want and how many potatoes you use. In general you want the potatoes coated evenly with olive oil and a sprinkling of the seasonings use more for stronger flavor.

Preheat oven to 425 drizzle olive oil in bottom of 13x9 pan. Add potatoes and shake pan to coat potatoes with olive oil evenly. Sprinkle the garlic powder and pepper on the potatoes bake for 45minutes. I check them half way through the baking process flip as needed.

final thought....Heat up the Sloppy Joe by adding 2 tbs of Franks hot sauce or the hot sauce of your choice.

Whats on the needles?

Waffle Hat for my husband, finally he is getting the hand knit hat he has been asking for, he better wear it LOL


The Easiest Meat Pie EVER

This recipe was given to me by an aunt and it is the easiest thing to make, great for entertaining. The only thing that takes time is the baking.

Easy Meat Pie

1 lbs ground lean ground
1 store bought pie crust (top and bottom)
1 can cream mushroom soup
1 small onion diced
1 egg
1 c. bread crumbs

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9" pie pan line with one pie crust then set aside.
2. Mix raw hamburger, soup, onion, egg and bread crumbs in a large bowl.
3. Add mixture to prepared pie crust and top with second pie crust, crimp edges and put a 1" slice in the center of the top crust to vent.
4. Bake for 1hr to 1hr 10 minutes.

I served this for dinner with steamed broccoli and it made for an easy prep dinner. Cooking time is long but prep time is quick!!


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Winter Warmies

The Winter Warmies are finished here is a picture of the finished product. I made the newborn size and my son is 13lbs & 23", the yarn I used was cheap and it knit up lovely. These are going to be SUPER warm not sure he will ever wear them. The weather has been unseasonably warm here in Southern New England this winter season no need for woolen pants.... but who knows maybe we will get a few more cold days before Spring and he can get some wear out of them. Either way they were a fun quick knit.

Thanksgiving dinner in one dish

In the wake of my returning to work in 2 weeks; I am trying to find quick homemade meals that my family likes specifically my 5 yr old. She loves Shepard's Pie! Finding something the 5 yr old likes is key, it makes the few hours in the evening we have together as a family so much better. Dinner is a more pleasant experience if she likes whats being served.

I mixed up the way I make Shepard's Pie and this was a huge hit.

Thanksgiving in a Bowl - Shep Pie

1-1.5lbs ground turkey
1 can 15 oz cream corn
1 can 10.5 oz turkey gravy
1 tsp. season salt
1 box of 3 cheese mashed potatoes (you can make your own mashed but these are yummy and much quicker) 2 pouches come in a box prep both. I have tried many brands and Betty Crocker is the tastiest and the consitancy is closer to homemade.
1 can 15 oz of Cranberry Sauce

1. Preheat oven to 350
2. In a large skillet saute ground turkey until no longer pink add the season salt and the gravy continue to cook until bubbling, then transfer to a 2 Quart casserole dish.
3. Prepare mashed potatoes according to the directions on the box and set aside.
4. Top the turkey with the cream corn then layer the prepared mashed potatoes on top of the corn covering completely.
5. Bake for 30minutes at 350
6. Before serving drop a few tablespoons of cranberry on top, serve with the extra cranberry on the side.

This is a classic dish that I have mixed up quite a bit some variations include:

ground beef with beef gravy, mixed vegi's and garlic mashed
ground beef, cream corn, plain mashed - the classic version my mom made
ground beef with beef gravy, mushrooms, peas and plain mashed
ground turkey with turkey gravy, cream corn, mashed sweet potatoes

Next variation will be with ground chicken and.....

Mix it up all varieties seem to be winners in my house.

On a finally note, dont be afraid of the dreaded boxed mashed potatoes formerly known in my house as "fake" mashed potatoes. I used to obsess with making my own mashed potatoes for Shepard's Pie I am OVER that, it takes too long and makes a huge mess! I have now found that the boxed varieties can actually make the dish tastier. I have tried many varieties and Betty Crockers are the best in my opinion and come in so many fun flavors.

Eat & Enjoy!!!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Halftime Chicken Parm

The New England Patriots are going to the SuperBowl Wahoooooo!!

While watching my favorite football team advance to the Super Bowl I whipped up homemade Chicken Parm during half time. I had already made lots of picky food for my family to munch on while watching the game so I did NOT feel like spending a lot of time in the kitchen prepping dinner, SO I whipped up chicken parmesan during half time it was ready to pop in the oven at the end of the game. Here is what I did!

Halftime Chicken Parm

1-1.5 lbs boneless chicken breasts (skip tenderizing and buy thin skinless chicken breast)
1 c. Italian bread crumbs
1 tsp Italian seasoning
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
1/4 c. parmesan cheese
1 egg
1 tbs water
1 jar of store bought spaghetti sauce or 4 c. homemade sauce ( make a large batch of homemade sauce and freeze so you always have homemade sauce on hand).
1 lbs. whole wheat linguine
2 c. Italian blend shredded cheeses
olive oil

1. Coat a skillet with olive oil and heat over med heat. While oil is heating tenderize each chicken breast and cut in half set aside
2. In one small bowl beat egg with water and in another small bowl mix bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, salt, garlic powder and Italian seasoning.
3. Dip each breast one at a time, in the egg mixture then in the bread crumb mixture, coat evenly. Place the coated breasts in the skillet and brown on each side about 5 minutes each side.
4. Transfer the chicken to a 13x9" pan top with sauce and the 2c. Italian blend shredded cheeses.
5. Refrigerate until ready to bake (no more than 24hrs). Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.
6. Serve with whole wheat linguine and Italian bread.

Wow I was pretty impressed I was done preparing this dish by the time the second half of the game kicked off.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Maternity leave is too short

As maternity leave comes to an end I realized the one thing I set out to do during this time (besides care for and spend as much time as possible with my little guy) was to put all my recipes down in a blog AND I failed at least so far..... I do still have 2.5 weeks and I hope to get a few more down. Here it goes

This is a hearty soup I came up with on one of the very few cold days we have had this winter.

Potato Corn Chowder
3lbs. diced potatoes
1/2 a sweet onion diced
1/2 C. thin sliced carrots
1/4 cup butter
4 tbs. precooked bacon bits
3 C. water
3 C. milk
1C. chicken stock
3 tbs. flour
1 can cream corn
1 tsp. thyme
2 tsp salt

1. Steam diced potatoes in the microwave until just tender and set aside (this saves time if you prefer cook them in boiling water, drain and set aside).
2. In a large pot melt butter over med. high/med heat, add bacon and onion. Saute until the onion is tender and translucent. Add the flour to the butter, onion and bacon mixture to create a paste, stir constantly to avoid over cooking. Gradually add the 3 cups milk stirring constantly until thickens.
3. At the same time in a separate pot add water and chicken stock bring to a boil and add carrots cook until carrots are tender.
4. To the milk mixture add the carrot mixture (do not drain), potatoes, cream corn, thyme and salt. Bring to a boil stirring frequently to avoid sticking.

Note - to achieve desired soup thickness add 2 tbs of flour to 1/2c. of chicken stock and add to the boiling soup, I did this once to thicken it up a bit, depends on what you prefer.

Here is what is on the needles.....
I am calling them Winter Warmies for Samuel but they are known as longies the pattern is free and can be found on Ravelry at the link below


Final thought.... maternity leave is too short and I was fortunate to have more time than most. A mom should be able to stay home for the first year of a babies life, that is my opinion... It seems just as I got my little guy on a routine and as he is doing more than eating and sleeping I have to leave him. He is doing so many amazing things each day and it is going to be so tough to leave him to go back to work....