Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Sandwich, Salad, Quesadillas, Bread, Soup (New Recipes of the Week~12)

Shredded Beef Coleslaw Hoagie

It sounded good and easy, but didn't taste all that great.

Caesar Chicken Potato Salad
Annie's choice! I prefer to have Caesar salad, grilled chicken, and roasted potatoes separate.

Bacon Avocado Quesadillas
8 bacon strips, fried and crumbled
1/2 pound mushrooms, sliced
2 Tbsp. butter, softened
4 flour tortillas
2 c. Co-Jack cheese, shredded
1 medium tomato, chopped
1 avocado, peeled and sliced
sour cream and salsa

Saute mushrooms in bacon drippings. Spread butter on one side of each tortilla. Place 2 tortillas, buttered side down, on a griddle. Top with bacon, mushrooms, cheese, tomato, and avocado. Cover with remaining tortillas, buttered side up. Cook over low heat 2 minutes, or until golden. Flip and cook 2 minutes longer, or until cheese is melted. Serve with sour cream and salsa. I omitted the mushrooms.

Another of Annie's picks. So far, I don't think any of us have ever tasted a bad quesadilla. Gooey cheese, buttery shell, crispy and salty. Mmmm.

Mozzarella Ranch Bread
2 c. Mozzarella cheese
3/4 c. Ranch salad dressing
1 loaf French bread
2 Tbsp. butter, melted

Combine the cheese and dressing in a bowl. Cut bread in half lengthwise; brush with butter. Place on baking sheet. spread with cheese mixture. Bake 350* for 10 minutes. Cut into 1 1/2 inch slices. I used hotdog buns and spread dressing on, then sprinkled cheese on top.

Why order cheese breadsticks at the pizza place when you can have these melt-in your-mouth yummies in no time flat? We seriously could eat these every.single.day.

White Chicken Lasagna

This recipe is very tasty; a THM qualifier. I didn't keep it around because it had too much cheese and butter and chicken; so it didn't fit my simple/healthy/quick/frugal criteria. The frugal part. Unless you have your own milk and are making your own cheese and butter! Or live in Wisconsin where you can buy those items super reduced.

Lentil Soup For The Soul

Though I love lentil stews, this one was average compared to some we've made. I forget just what about it wasn't that great, but I have enough others in my recipe-keeper book, that I'm not saving this one.

Monday, December 28, 2015

November Garden

We've had some mild weather in November.
The mums finally bloomed. Lettuce continued to grow. The parsley patch stayed green.

I used up the last of our jalapenos to make a batch of hot pepper jelly. While I had jelly jars out, I pulled some mulberries and strawberries from the freezer to make berry jam.

The few remaining plants in our garden...

Were dusted with snow...

Then covered in ice...

For several days, the end of November.

November harvest: 29 pounds
of squash, pumpkin, tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, carrots, red beets, and parsley.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Children Recognition

"Family Night" was the grand finale of a local homeschool 12, once-a-week, cooperative classes.

Annie's three classes this year were Social Studies, Art, and Science. The students wore one of their projects to family night: t-shirt screening, and displayed a science experiment. Annie made peanut butter cookies four different ways, omitting an ingredient each time. She had cookie crumbles to examine and sample of each recipe...they mostly turned out pretty good, even without soda, salt, etc.!

My other three "students" took to the stage.

Two of Riley's classes were Drama Skills and Choir. He took part in a few skits and performed in the two high school choral songs.

Sweet Caroline desired to perform on the violin. She chose "Beautiful Skies" as her playing piece.

Though we have some video clips of Miss Cora, I neglected to capture a photo of her debut this evening. Her music class sang "Silver and Gold Have I None" and "Joshua Fought the Battle of Jericho" in which she blew the shofar, heartily, twice. 

Also, in November, our family attended our first 4-H Awards Banquet. The three old enough to participate went on stage to receive their membership pins.

Riley's only project, Poultry, was cancelled for fair showing due to the avian bird flu circulating in these parts. 

Annie participated in Citizenship, Leadership, and Foods & Nutrition this year. She baked cookies, coffee cake, cinnamon rolls, and french bread for county fair judging. Her bread received a top blue ribbon! 

Caroline was involved in Performing Arts and Foods & Nutrition. She entered molasses crinkles, banana-blueberry muffins, and a fruit snack plate. She received blues on her muffins and fruit display.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

School Pictures 2015

We took some photos for the school year. The girls were a little more excited about it than the boy. Some of the days were windy, so we stepped into shady spots sheltered from the hair-mussing breeze. Naturally, those shots didn't turn out as nice as the sunshiny pictures! 

Years ago I took my little brother's senior pictures. I enjoyed moving around our yard arranging him this way and that, avoiding shadows and trying to get him to really smile!

Years before that, I recall my dad posing us children in front of his South Carolina flag hanging in the den, getting the lighting just right for his photography skills. And us grinning in front of Mom's pear kitchen curtained door. And smiling near a Rocky Mountain sparkling waterfall.

Now our son is editing his own phone snapshots and sharing pieces on social media...without himself as the object, of course.

Life circles. With personality, heredity, and environment mixed all up together. And continues to go around.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Pizza, Salads, and Cakes (New Recipes of the Week ~ 11)

Here are some of the new foods we ate in June and July. I've included the recipes of the dishes we liked well enough to eat again another time...

Turkey Divan Pizza

Wheat Harvest Lunches

Southwest Bean & Rice Salad

Fruit Swirl Cake

1 1/2 c. sugar
1 c. margarine/butter
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. almond extract
4 eggs
3 c. flour
21 oz. cherry pie filling (or flavor of your choice)

Blend sugar, margarine, baking powder, vanilla, almond flavoring and eggs on low speed in a mixer. Beat on high 3 minutes. Stir in flour. Spread in greased 10x15 jellyroll pan. Drop 1 Tbsp pie filling in 24 squares, Bake at 350* for 30 minutes. Drizzle with glaze while warm. Glaze: Beat 1 c powdered sugar and 2 tsp milk.

We stuck a blueberry on top because our family served this cake as part of a 4th of July Mystery Supper...red, white, and blue!

Campfire Stir Fry Pot

Susan's Shoofly Cake

3 c. whole wheat flour
1 c. oats
1/2 c. oil (we like coconut)
1 c. sucanat/sugar
3 tsp. baking powder
1 c. milk
1 c. molasses
1 c. boiling water
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla

Mix first 5 ingredients. Save 1 cup for the topping. Then add the rest of the ingredients and mix. Pour into a 9x13 glass dish or pan. Add 1 tsp. cinnamon to the topping crumbs before sprinkling on top of cake. Bake at 350* for 25-30 minutes.

Orange Avocado Chicken Salad

Friday, November 27, 2015

Sweet Caroline In Double Digits

Caroline turned T-E-N!

She requested a pumpkin cake
It was a bit more challenging to make than the online directions explained, but with orange frosting and a green stem, we still got the general idea on the finished product.

Tacos with cheese, lettuce, & tomato
Bean dip & tortilla chips
Relish tray with li'l sweet pickles

The gift opening could hardly wait until after supper. One gift bag had been setting for weeks on a high shelf. Another package arrived in the mail a few days before this momentous occasion. So we waited to enjoy dessert until after the revealing!
This is the girl that says Christmas and Birthdays are her favorite times of year because of presents for her.
She loved all the gifts she opened, then got to go on a "date" with daddy to pick out a...
bb gun (and gum).

Happy Birthday Sweet Caroline...bom, bom, bom...