Menu Plan Monday – Week of November 30, 2015

I’m back at work after a week off.  So it’s back to the daily grind.

On Saturday, I asked the boys what they wanted to have for dinner.  The Imaginative One asked for brown sugar ham and the Wee One asked for chicken noodle soup.  Actually he asked for chicken nugget soup.  At least that was the joke on Saturday.  The Wee One loves chicken noodle soup.

Continue reading “Menu Plan Monday – Week of November 30, 2015”

Lesser Known Recipes – 2010

Here are lesser known recipes from 2010

I started my blog in 2010 and then stopped it for a year and half in 2014 until September 2015.  I’m going through all the recipes I’ve posted in the last 5.5 years.  According to the stats, these are the lesser known recipes on my blog.  Some of them need pictures which I hope to get on the blog soon.

Onto the list:

Continue reading “Lesser Known Recipes – 2010”

Snickerdoodle Oatmeal

Snickerdoodle oatmeal
Snickerdoodle Oatmeal

Snickerdoodle Oatmeal

 

Stars of the recipe:

  • ½ c. quick cooking oats
  • ⅓ c. milk of your choice
  • ⅔ c. water
  • pinch of salt
  • ¼ tsp. butter
  • 2 tsp. maple syrup
  • 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)

 

Steps:

  1. In a large microwavable bowl, combine oats, milk, water, and salt.
  2. Microwave on high for 2 minutes.
  3. Top with butter, maple syrup, and cinnamon.  
  4. Stir to combine.
  5. Top with sugar and chopped pecans or walnuts if desired.
  6. Enjoy!

For a printable version of the recipe, click here.

Happy Eating,
Traci

Honey Vanilla Creamer

I made this for my coffee and then shared it with Hubby.  Hubby loves the flavor combination.

honey Vanilla Creamer #3Honey Vanilla Creamer

Stars of the recipe:

  • 1 (14 oz.) can of condensed milk
  • 1 3/4 c. heavy cream or milk
  • 1/4 c. honey
  • 2 tsp. vanilla

Steps:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a mason jar or some other type of jar.
  2. Shake the ingredients until combined.  (I shake it up each time I use the cream.)
  3. Use about 1 Tbsp. or more in your coffee.
  4. Enjoy!

Happy Eating,

Traci

The Boys’ Top 5 Favorite Christmas Treats

As soon as Thanksgiving is over, we will start our annual Christmas making and baking.  The boys look forward to this annual tradition.

Hopefully, this tradition becomes a favorite childhood memory.  I know they look forward to the treats and have been begging for “test runs” of some of their favorite treats.

Here are some of their top 5 favorite treats I make every year:

Continue reading “The Boys’ Top 5 Favorite Christmas Treats”

Menu Planning Monday – Week of November 23

Menu Plan Monday

Hello!  Happy Thanksgiving week!

Last week, I didn’t make a menu so our eating was kind of crazy.  Actually it was crazy part of the week.  This week I’m going to have a plan since it’s Thanksgiving week.  I need to simplify my life this week.

My Menu

Monday – Leftovers from Saturday’s and Sunday’s meals – either chili or cheeseburger pie – If you don’t want either of those, then you can make yourself a sandwich.

Tuesday and Wednesday – One day we are going to have pumpkin chili and the other day we are going to have pulled pork sandwiches from the freezer.  We have new bbq sauce from Jungle Jim’s that Hubby wants to try.

Thursday – Thanksgiving Dinner (Link with menu and printables)

Friday – Leftovers

Prep for this week:

Monday – peel and cut potatoes, soak potatoes in water, peel and cut up carrots, hard boil the eggs in the oven, pull out the Cool-Whip from freezer

Tuesday – peel eggs & put in red beet/vinegar mixture, drain potatoes and cook in the slow cooker, make mashed potatoes, make the pumpkin pie sheet cake, make the makes it own crust apple pie, & white salad

Wednesday – Make Honey Glazed Carrots, Macaroni and Cheese, and Stuffing, Cut up veggies for veggie tray, Make Mini Monkey Bread for breakfast and Young’s Dairy Pumpkin Muffins, pull out rolls, cranberry relish, and pumpkin butter out of the freezer

Thursday – Make green bean casserole and sweet potato casserole, Bake the rolls, Whip the whipping cream, put together the relish and veggie tray, ENJOY the dinner

Have a great Thanksgiving!
Traci

 

Pudding Fruit Dip

About 15 years ago, my mother-in-law and father-in-law were on the Adkins’ diet.  They created a dip/ dessert that we used to eat with cut strawberries.  Their recipe contained sugar free pudding.  Usually the pudding was either cheesecake flavored or white chocolate flavored.

When I was a new teacher, I would make this recipe with regular pudding to take to carry ins.  One of the retired teachers loved this dip.  She would request it every time there was a carry in.

I posted this recipe back in 2010 when this blog was still new.  I didn’t have any pictures to go along with the recipe.  This would be a good side dessert for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner.  You can serve it with a tray of fruit.  That way people can pick and chose their favorites.

Pudding Fruit Dip

Stars of the recipe:

  • 1 c. heavy whipping cream
  • 1 small box of pudding mix (I highly suggest white chocolate flavor or cheesecake flavor)

Steps:

  1. Pour the whipping cream into a mixing bowl.
  2. Open the box of pudding and pour it over the whipping cream.
  3. Using a hand mixer, whip the pudding and whipping cream until it is stiff.  (I usually start at the lowest setting and gradually move toward the highest setting.)
  4. Serve.

Thanksgiving Menu with Printables

Countdown to Thanksgiving

It’s a week until Thanksgiving so I thought I would share my menu for next week.  I’m including the grocery list and a printable of the menu with links to all of the recipes on my two cooking blogs.

The grocery list is divided into different areas of the grocery store.  It also has a key to all the recipes so you can cross out the ingredients you don’t need if you are not going to cook those recipes.

You could also visit my Countdown to Thanksgiving for other recipes if you would like something different then what I put on my menu.  🙂

665566_10200175426371816_185399719_oFor starters, I’m going to have a veggie tray and a relish tray.  I’m going to have carrots, celery, cucumber, and sweet peppers on the veggie tray.  I’m going to make or buy some ranch dip and hummus for the veggie tray.  I’ll probably put out some peanut butter for the boys.  They love celery with peanut butter.  I got black and green olives, bread and butter and dill pickles for the relish tray.  Simple but delicious.  🙂
I’m going to make the veggie tray on Wednesday so it’s ready.  The relish tray won’t take long so it will be done right before people come on Thursday.

My mother-in-law is making the turkey.  I’ve provided a great recipe for a turkey breast recipe.  It also includes an easy gravy dish.

Onto the yummy part of the meal:
On Wednesday, I’m going to cook the stuffing, macaroni and cheese, and mashed potatoes.  They are going to be put into baking dishes to be warmed up on Thanksgiving.
On Thursday while I’m serving Thanksgiving lunch to the veterans, I’m going to have the green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, and honey glazed carrots cooking away.
I’ve already cooked up the cranberry relish and froze it so it’s one less dish to worry about.

I included two breads with the menu.  One is a sweet bread baked as muffins.  We love Young’s Dairy pumpkin bread around here.  I’ve decided it would better served as muffins for Thanksgiving.  You certainly bake it ahead of time and then freeze it.  Take them out of the freezer on Wednesday to thaw out.
The other bread is my pull apart dinner rolls.  You need a bread machine for these rolls.  If you don’t have a bread machine, fill free to change up the bread with already bought rolls.  Anything to make your life easier.  I’ve already made the dough and then flash froze the rolls.  I’ll pull those out of the freezer on Wednesday and then let it rise and then bake them before leaving to serve the veterans.

I have 3 desserts and homemade whipped cream on the menu.  You could make these desserts on Tuesday and then store them in the fridge until Thursday.  Grandma’s White Salad is better when it sits for a while.  The other two recipes are for the Makes it’s Own Crust Apple Pie and Pumpkin Pie Sheet Cake.  I would make the whipped cream on Thursday morning though.  It doesn’t take long to make – five to ten minutes.

I hope you enjoy my Thanksgiving Day dinner menu and it’s a blessing for you.

ThanksgivingGroceryList

ThanksgivingDinner (1)

Happy Eating,
Traci

Slow Cooker Green Bean Casserole – Countdown to Thanksgiving

Countdown to Thanksgiving

Green bean casserole is a frequent dish on many peoples’ Thanksgiving table.  I’ve changed it up by using frozen green beans instead of canned green beans.  So it has more of a fresh taste to it.

I’m going to cook it up in my casserole crock pot on Thanksgiving Day.  Right before dinner, I’m going to place the crock in the oven to brown up the French onions.

Slow Cooker Green Bean Casserole

Slow Cooker Green Bean Casserole

Stars of the Recipe:

  • 1.5 (10.75 oz) cans of cream of mushroom soup
  • 1/2 c. of milk
  • 1 (6 oz.) can of French fried onions, divided in half
  •  2 (12 oz.) bags of frozen green beans
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • salt and pepper to taste

Steps:

  1. In a large bowl, combine the soup, milk, salt, pepper, and onion powder.
  2. Add the green beans and half of the French fried onions.  Stir to combine.
  3. Place in the crock sprayed with cooking spray.
  4. Cook on high for 2 and 1/2 hours.
  5. Add the other half of the French fried onions.
  6. Place crock without lid in the oven preheated to the 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Bake for 10 minutes.
  7. Serve!

Happy eating,
Traci

Slow Cooker Stuffing – Countdown to Thanksgiving

Countdown to Thanksgiving

Hubby and the Wee One love stuffing.  So when I made this stuffing, they thought it was delicious.  In fact, they took seconds when I served this side dish.

This is also any easy side dish.  It only takes about five minutes to prepare.  Then I allowed the slow cooker do the cooking.

My plan is to make the stuffing on Wednesday.  Then I will put it in a dish to be warmed up on Thanksgiving.

Slow Cooker Stuffing #1

Slow Cooker Stuffing

Stars of the Recipe:

  • 2 boxes Stove Top stuffing (I bought turkey flavored.)
  • 3 c. chicken broth
  • 1 (10.75 oz) can of cream of mushroom soup

Steps:

  1. Spray the crock with cooking spray.
  2. Place all the ingredients in the crock.
  3. Stir together until combined.
  4. Cook on low for 2 to 4 hours.

Happy Eating,
Traci

Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes – Countdown to Thanksgiving

Countdown to Thanksgiving

My mother-in-law usually makes the mashed potatoes for family meals.  In recent months, I’ve made them 3 times for our Sunday dinners.  During those 3 times, I’ve made the potatoes too smooth, too lumpy, and then just right.  Just like the Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

This is the recipe for the just right mashed potatoes.

(I used Yukon gold potatoes for the mashed potatoes.  I highly recommend them.  Yum!)

Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes #1

Slow Cooker Mashed Potatoes

Adapted from the Yummy Life

Stars of the recipe:

  • 5 lbs. Yukon gold  or russet potatoes, peeled and cubed into 1 inch cubes
  • 2 c. water
  • 1 c. chicken broth (I used another cup of water and used a tsp. of better than bullion instead.)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 (12 oz.) can of evaporated milk
  • 6 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 8 oz. sour cream

Steps:

  1. Soak the peeled and cubed potatoes for 30 minutes or longer.  This helps avoid gluey potatoes.  (You could also prep the potatoes the day before.)  Drain and rinse the potatoes before putting them in the crock.
  2. Spray your crock and then add the potatoes, water, and broth.
  3. Cover and cook on high for 4 to 6 hours or until fork tender.
  4. Drain the potatoes and then place back in the crock.
  5. Add the salt, pepper, and butter.  Using an electric mixer or potato masher, mash the potatoes.
  6. Add the milk, sour cream, and cream cheese.  Mash until desired consistency.
  7. Serve right away or keep in the slow cooker on keep warm for up to 2 hours.

I made mine and served some for dinner.  Then I took the rest and put into the freezer for future meals.  Each freezer bag has about 2 c. of the mashed potatoes.

Pumpkin Pie Sheet Cake – Countdown to Thanksgiving

Countdown to Thanksgiving

I’ve been told stories of my grandpa and Uncle Corky loving pumpkin pies so much that their mom would bake extra pies just for them.  Know-it-All is also a lover of pumpkin pies.  He can eat them during the whole entire year not just in fall.

This cake is the best of both worlds.  It’s not just a pie.  It also has a cake like crust.  Yum!  Serve it with homemade whipped cream spiced with pumpkin pie spice.  Extra yum!

Pumpkin Pie Sheet Cake

Pumpkin Pie Sheet Cake

Adapted from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe

Stars of the recipe:

Crust:

  • 2/3 c. granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2  tsp. salt
  • 1/2 c. butter (1 stick), melted (I usually place the butter in a microwavable bowl for a minute.)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 lrg. egg (Poke the egg yolk with a fork.)

Filling:

  • 2 lrg. eggs
  • 3/4 c. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin
  • 1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk or 1 c. heavy whipping cream

Steps:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Farenheit.
  2. Prepare the crust by mixing the sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt.  Pour the melted butter, vanilla, and egg.  Stir to combine.
  3. Press the dough into the bottom of a lightly greased 9 by 13 in. baking pan.
  4. Prepare the filling:  Using the same bowl (make sure there is no dough clumps left in the bowl), whisk the eggs until light and creamy.  Stir in the sugar, salt, pumpkin pie spice, and pumpkin until combined.  Stir in the evaporated milk or cream.
  5. Pour over the crust.
  6. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until a knife inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  7. Cool completely.
  8. Serve with whipped cream.

Keep in the fridge.

Happy eating,
Traci

Crockpot Sweet Potato Casserole – Countdown to Thanksgiving

My grandma used to make a sweet potato casserole like this one.  In fact, this is one of the recipes she sent to me when I was down in Walt Disney World on my College Program.

Then when I married Hubby his dad would make this sweet potato casserole for Thanksgiving.

As you can see, this casserole has a lot of memories attached to it.  So when it was time to think about what I was going to make for Thanksgiving, I knew I needed to find a crockpot recipe similar to the casseroles my grandma and father-in-law would make.

This one is one that I’m going to serve for Thanksgiving.  Speaking of Thanksgiving, this is the first year we are going to host the Thanksgiving dinner.  Last year I did most of the cooking but we had it over at my mother-in-law’s house.  This year it is going to be at our house.  Argh!  The problem is we keep inviting people to our little house.  So far we are up to either 11 or 12 if everyone comes.  That may not seem like much but if we get any more we will have to relocate to my mother-in-law’s since she has a little bit more room.

 Sweet Potato CasseroleCrockpot Sweet Potato Casserole

Adapted from Recipes that Crock

Stars of the recipe:

  • 2 (40 oz) cans of sweet potatoes, drained
  • 1/3 c. plus 2 Tbsp. butter, melted and divided
  • 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1/3 c. plus 2 Tbsp. brown sugar, packed and divided
  • 1 Tbsp. orange juice
  • 2 eggs, beaten (Poke the yolks first – It’s easier to beat it after you poke the yolks.)
  • 1/2 c. milk
  • 1/3 c. chopped pecans
  • 2 Tbsp. all purpose flour

Steps:

  1. Spray your crock with cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, mash the sweet potatoes.
  3. Add 1/3 c. melted butter, 2 Tbsp. sugar, and 2 Tbsp. brown sugar.  Mix until well combined.
  4. Add orange juice, eggs, and milk.  Beat until combined.
  5. Place the sweet potato mixture in the crock.
  6. In the bowl you used, combine the 2 Tbsp. Melted butter, 1/3 c. brown sugar, 1/3 c. chopped pecans, and all-purpose flour.
  7. Spread pecan mixture over the sweet potato mixture.
  8. Cover and cook on high for 3 to 4 hours.

I used a crockpot casserole dish for this recipe.

Happy Eating,
Traci

Homemade Hot Chocolate – Christmas Making and Baking

This is our family’s newest favorite hot chocolate.  The boys drink it with marshmallows or my homemade whipped cream.  The Imaginative One also loves to sprinkle cinnamon on his hot chocolate.

I’m sure you will love this hot chocolate as much as my family.

Hot Chocolate MixHomemade Hot Chocolate

adapted from Add a Pinch

Stars of the recipe:

  • 3 1/2 c. sugar
  • 2 1/4 c. cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp. salt

Steps:

  1. Combine all ingredients in an air tight container.

To prepare the hot chocolate:

  1. Pour 1 cup of milk into a mug.
  2. Add 2 Tbsp. of the mix.  Stir.
  3. Microwave for 45 seconds.  Stir.
  4. Microwave for 45 more seconds.  Stir.
  5. Enjoy!

We like it with homemade whipped cream and marshmallows.

To make it for a Christmas present:

Place 10 Tbsp. of the mix and 1/2 c. mini marshmallows in a bag with directions on how to prepare the mix.

Happy eating,
Traci

Pull Apart Dinner Rolls – Countdown to Thanksgiving

I’ve made these rolls twice.  They are fairly easy to make with the use of a bread machine.

People love the fluffiness of the rolls.  They also love the deliciousness of these rolls.

These would be a great addition to your Thanksgiving table or for Sunday night dinner.

Pull Apart Rolls

Pull Apart Dinner Rolls

Stars of the Recipe:

  • 1 c. lukewarm water
  • 2 Tbsp. softened butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 c. sugar
  • 3 1/4 c. BREAD flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 3 tsp. yeast

Steps:

  1. Always add the wet ingredients to the bread pan first.  This is so the yeast is away from the liquid before the kneading begins.
  2. Place the ingredients in the pan in this order:
    1. butter
    2. egg
    3. water
    4. sugar
    5. flour (cover ALL of the wet ingredients)
    6. yeast (Create a shallow well in the center of the bread flour – Place the yeast in that well.)
    7. salt (Sprinkle around the sides of the pan but NOT over the yeast.)
  3. Set your bread machine to the dough cycle.  Periodically check on your dough.  Add a tablespoon of water at a time if the dough looks dry.
  4. Once the dough is finished, place the dough on a lightly floured surface.
  5. Cut the dough in half and then the half in half until you get roll sized dough pieces.  (14 pieces)
  6. Tuck each piece into a round ball.  Place in a sprayed round cake pan so that they are touching.  (I get 14 in a cake pan.)
  7. Allow to rise for another 1/2 hour in a warm place.
  8. Bake at 375 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes.
  9. While they are still warm, rub a stick of butter on them.
  10. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese – Countdown to Thanksgiving

I have an app called Timehop.  When I was looking at my Timehop for Sunday, I found a recipe I had posted a recipe for Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese.  I had 3 of the necessary ingredients already.  When the Imaginative One and I went to the store, we got the final ingredient.

This cream cheese would be great for a simple Thanksgiving breakfast.

Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese #2Pumpkin spice cream cheese

Stars of the recipe:

  • 1 (8 oz) container of whipped cream cheese
  • 1/4 c. brown sugar
  • 1/4 c. pumpkin puree
  • 2 -3 tsp. pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon

Steps:

  1. Place all the ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  2. Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, mix all ingredients until well combined.
  3. Enjoy!

I had mine on a plain bagel.  Yum!

Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese

Happy eating,
Traci

This is linked to Whimsy Wednesdays.

Beenie Weenies

I’m reposting this recipe since I didn’t have any pictures of the dish.

This is an easy meal to put into the crockpot.  It made more than enough food for my family of four that I put half of it in the freezer for another meal.:)

Beenie Weenies #2 Beanie Weenies

Stars of the recipe:

  • 2 small cans of pork and beans or one large can
  • 1 small can of Great Northern beans, drained
  • 1 16 oz. package of hot dogs, sliced
  • 1 lrg onion, chopped
  • 1/4 cup of ketchup
  • 3 Tbsp. of mustard (or more to taste)
  • 2 tsp. Worchestershire sauce (or more to taste)
  • 1/2 cup of brown sugar, packed
  • 4 slices of bacon, cooked and chopped

Steps:

  1. Place all the items in the crockpot.  (I gave it a stir.)
  2. Cook on high for 3 to 4 hours or low for 6 to 8 hours.
  3. Enjoy!  I served mine with green beans and biscuits with apple butter.

Menu Plan Monday – November 9, 2015

Menu Plan Monday

The weather has changed in our area.  It’s gotten cooler so we are going to have soup three times this week.

Three of the meals are going to use bulk cooked hamburger.  Having already cooked hamburger helps with assuring we have delicious meals for dinner.

On Saturday, I found a ham on sale for $1.19 a pound.  Since it was such a good price, I bought one and cooked it in the crock pot for our Sunday night dinner.  I used part of the ham and one of the bones for our split pea soup.  Yum!  Hubby took one look at the soup and said “There is a lot of meat in here.”  He was one happy man.  We still have a lot of the ham for him to eat for lunch.

Onto the menu:

Monday – Split pea soup and homemade rolls

Tuesday – Spaghetti and cheddar bay rolls

Wednesday – Vegetable beef soup and left over cheddar bay rolls

ThursdayPulled pork sandwiches (freezer) and homemade French fries

FridaySkyline chili over left over spaghetti noodles and homemade white bread

Printable Version

What is on your menu this week?

Happy eating,

Traci

Weekly Ramblings – November 8, 2015

I usually do the weekly ramblings on Saturdays.  This week I’ve decided to do this blog post on Saturdays.

This week I’ve posted three recipes for the Countdown for Thanksgiving series.

Countdown to Thanksgiving

  1.  Creamy Mac and Cheese is a new favorite of ours.  It’s a delicious side dish or even as a main dish for a meatless Monday.
  2. Creamy Fruit Salad is a favorite of mine.  It’s my own version of a salad from a local meat market.
  3. Makes It’s Own Gravy Turkey Breast and Easy Gravy is a main dish my mother-in-law raved about for a week after I served it to her.

Creamy Mac and Cheese #2

Landes Meats Creamy Fruit Salad

Makes It Own Gravy Turkey Breast (Pics deleted by accident)
Makes It Own Gravy Turkey Breast (Pics deleted by accident.)

I also reposted my Aunt Janet’s Pecan Cookies this week.

My Aunt Janet's Pecan CookiesThe boys and I have started what the Imaginative One calls the proto-types of the Christmas baking.  On Friday night, we made peanut butter blossoms.  The batch is almost gone because it’s one cookie we can’t can’t stop at one.

Yesterday Wee One and I tried out a candy recipe.  It’s an easy two ingredient recipe.  The candy is also delicious.

On my Timewarp today, I found a recipe I posted 6 years ago for a pumpkin spice cream cheese.  After church today, I went and got the missing ingredient for the recipe.  I had 3 of the 4 ingredients at the house.  I will posting the recipe later this week.  It’s absolutely delicious.

This morning I also made Honey Vanilla Creamer for my coffee.  It’s absolutely delicious.  It’s another recipe I’ll share in the next couple of weeks.

I haven’t forgotten my promise of a giveaway after the 31 day challenge.  The giveaway prize has been bought.  However, I am going to delay the challenge until after the holiday mailing season.  The giveaway will be in January.

I’ll see you tomorrow with our weekly menu!

Happy eating,

Traci