Friday, December 17, 2010

update/Christmas Goodies

Our family has welcomed a new addition. That's right, I had our third boy just days before Thanksgiving. He's been a joy--besides those middle of the night times! ;) Thankfully, he's still in that teeny-tiny-sleeps-a-lot-of-the-time mode, so I've been able to make some goodies with the kiddos. Here's our Christmas goody menu:
Cut-out cookies

Gingerbread cookies

pretzel/rolo treats

Oreo truffles

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Kool-Aid Cookies

Yesterday I read a book from start to finish--mostly during naptime, but a little bit after the kids were in bed for the night. It the latests from a fun series by Joanne Fluke, the Hannah Swensen Mysteries. Each book in the series has a handful of recipes sprinkled throughout the book, since the main character, Hannah, is the owner of a cookie shop. I've collected several of these books and checked the rest out from our local library. If you're looking for a fun read with a mysterious twist, I'd definitely recommend this series. This book, Apple Turnover Murder, had several recipes that I'm hoping to try. Today, I tried a fun cookie recipe, they call them Watermelon Cookies, but I'm adapting them. The watermelon flavor that the title they use refers to comes from Kool-Aid and I only had one packet of Kool-Aid on hand--Strawberry Kiwi. I plan to try these again with various flavors of Kool-Aid, so I decided to change the name. :) Here's their recipe, then I add a few comments at the end.

Kool-Aid Cookies (Watermelon Cookies)


1 package (.17 oz) of Kool-Aid powder (the kind w/out the sugar added)
1 and 2/3 cup white sugar
1 and 1/4 cups softened butter (2 and 1/4 sticks)
2 large eggs, beaten (w/ a fork is fine)
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
3 cups of all-purpose flour (pack it down when you measure it)

1/2 cup white sugar in a bowl

1. Mix the Kool-Aid with the white sugar
2. Add the softened butter and mix until it's fluffy
3. Add the eggs and mix well
4. Mix in the salt and baking soda and make sure they're well incorporated
5. Add the flour in half cup increments, mixing after each addition
6. Spray cookie sheets with cooking spray or use parchment paper
*7. Roll dough balls one inch in diameter using your hands (or a cookie scoop about 2 tsp. size works well)
8. Roll the dough balls in the white sugar and place them on baking sheet
9. Bake at 325F for 10-12 minutes or until they're just beginning to turn golden around the edges--you don't want to overbake.
10. Let them cool on the cookie sheet for 1-3 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
Yields approx. 6 dozen cookies

* These can be made into cutout cookies at this step.

Just a couple notes:
~ I left mine on the cookie sheet to cool and they were fine.
~ I like my Kool-Aid a little strong and think these might be even better (although they are good, don't misunderstand!) if they had just a bit more of the Kool-Aid mix. Next time, I'm thinking of halving the recipe (6 dozen cookies is a lot!) but adding more than half of the Kool-Aid packet. I'll let you know how it turns out. :)

Recipe adapted from Joanne Fluke's Apple Turnover Murder, check her out at

Menu Monday...err, Tuesday!

Whoa, has it really been nearly 3 months since I updated this thing? Yikes! You can see where blogging has been on my priorities lately. Just an update, in case you didn't already know, I'm pregnant with baby #3--due just before Thanksgiving. So there really hasn't been a ton of cooking around these parts! I am loving the grill though--so tasty and the clean up is pretty easy, too!
Here's a look at our menu for the week:
Monday: hamburgers on the grill, watermelon, baked beans
Tuesday: Spaghetti and Meatballs, homemade bread, salad
Wednesday: leftovers
Thursday: brats, potato salad, baked beans, chips
Friday: pizza
Saturday: Tacos, cheesey rice, salad
Sunday: leftovers

Monday, February 22, 2010

Menu--Request and Dedication :)

This one is for my sweet friend, Nancy. Nancy lived down the street from me until last Friday. She told me on Thursday that she really wanted me to keep updating the blog, so at her request, I dedicate this update to her! ;)

It's a light week b/c we're traveling to visit my in-laws and grandparents this weekend, but here it is:
Monday: Chicken Spaghetti (from a freezer meal swap)
Tuesday: BBQ pork sandwiches from the Boston Butt Recipe
Wednesday: leftovers
Thursday: Sticky Chicken, rice, rolls and veggies
Friday-Sunday: travel

Monday, February 8, 2010

Menu Monday

Hello...I'm back, at least today! Here's what we're serving up at our house this week--that is if everyone gets healthy and decides to eat:

Monday: Curry Chicken and Broccoli w/ rice
Tuesday: Manicotti w/ salad and garlic bread
Wednesday: leftover night
Thursday: Breakfast-waffles, eggs, and bacon
Friday: Pizza, salad and corn
Saturday: Parmesan Chicken w/ Spaghetti
Sunday: leftovers (if I don't schedule two leftover nights, we waste food!)

White Chicken Chili

This recipe comes from one of my favorite people in the whole world, Tina G. She got it from another friend, who probably got it from another friend--I love that about recipes! :) This recipe freezes wonderfully!

White Chicken Chili

*This recipe makes enough for you to serve your family for dinner and freeze the other half...or have LOTS of leftovers!! :-)

1 Can Family Size Chicken & Rice Soup
1 can kidney beans—rinsed/drained
1 can black beans—not rinsed if you like a little extra flavor ;-)
1 can Rotel Tomatoes and Green Chilis, any “heat” variety...I use “Original”
1 can sweet yellow corn, undrained
1 tsp. Cumin
3 chicken breasts, cooked and cubed OR 1 large can of chunk chicken

Directions: Cook and cube chicken, if necessary. Dump all ingredients into pot, add ½ “family-size soup can” of water. Bring to boil, lower heat and simmer for 30 minutes.

Serving suggestion: Best served with corn chips, a few spoonfuls of shredded “Mexican blend” cheese, and a little dollup of sour cream :-)

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Freezer Meal Swap

Last week, a few friends and I swapped meals for the third time. If you haven't heard of a freezer meal swap or have heard but are skeptical, I say keep reading. Whoever thought of this idea is brilliant and I want to hug them. :) I spend one day cooking for several hours and come away with 6 meals that I've prepared. I freeze one for myself and take the other five to our swap. I come home with five different frozen meals. My family has tried recipes that I probably wouldn't have thought of or tried. And on those days when I know I'm going to be running here and there, I can relax and know we'll still be eating a home-cooked quality meal with next to no effort of my part. It's wonderful. We're currently trying to add two more people to our swap so that we can have 8 meals frozen. By the way, I don't have an extra freezer or even a large freezer. We have a side-by-side fridge/freezer and it still works. :)
Also, we communicate back and forth via facebook email about what we're going to make and the recipes and instructions for reheating.
I'll list the names of a few that we've tried that have frozen well and if you're interested, I'll try to post the recipes soon--just comment and ask for them and I'll gladly do that! :)

Freezer Meal Swap Recipes:
Beef and Bean Burritos
Honey Glazed Pork Chops
Spaghetti Pie
White Chicken Chili
Taco Soup
Vegetable Beef Soup
Turkey/Chicken Pot Pie
Cheesey Chicken Strips
Chicken Quiche
Sloppy Joes
Baked Ziti
Spanish Rice Bake

I think there's more, but that's a start! Also, Terra has some great freezer meal recipes on her site. Check it out! :)