Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Mom's Healthy Fruit Salad

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe #15

We paired this together with the {Grilled Chicken Ratatouille} we made the other night. It was a kind of last minute sweet addition to our meal. Mom had picked up some fruit and we had to go for it! We love any kind of fruit salad, especially when its healthy! HEY-O! 

Mom calls this WALDORF SALAD

FF Vanilla Yogurt
3 Apples
Pecans, or any other nuts {optional}

Cut the grapes in half. Cut, peel and core the apples and chop about 2 stalks of celery. Really, as much as your prefer! Then combined it with 2 cups of yogurt. Refrigerate it for about 20 minutes. Top with pecans or your choice of nut. That's it! Its the perfect last minute sweet dessert to add to all the hard work you did for the meal. Perfection!

*The celery cuts the sweetness of it, so feel free to omit if you would like, personally I LOVE celery. Next time oranges are definitely making it in the mix too! 

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Grilled Chicken Ratatouille

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe #14

The name alone intrigued me to make this one! When people asked what I was making that night, I felt very proper and Martha-like....my dream :) I found this recipe on a site that offers 20 easy grilled chicken recipes, which I always have in abundance in my freezer. I found this recipe {HERE}. Check out those other 19 while your at it!! I was very easy, I brought out the classic George Foreman, and grilling the veggies were so delish! My only suggestion would be to marinate the chicken in the rub for maybe 30 minutes or so. It was just a little plain on the inside, other than that it was great. The herb mixture was very good, and it was my first time ever using marjoram. 

As I've stated before in previous posts...I really am working hard on making this "Year of trying NEW THINGS" as healthy as possible. It all reminds me of my very best friend in the whole wide world: JORDAN!  Definitely "JORDAN APPROVED!" She has been begging me to include her in my blog forEVER now :) But as I am talking about leading a healthy lifestyle there is no one more worthy of a special blog post dedication! 

Jordan Jordan Jordan.....what to say about Jordan. HeHeHe...this could get interesting! Jordan has the best personality of anyone I know. We first met at church and a short time later we became inseparable on a trip to CHI-town for a wedding. She is absurdly competitive {for instance, when in Chicago, barely knowing each other, we were in our hotel playing Speed and she made us play over and over until she won the game :)} Little stuff like that... Until this past year she may have been the only real Lion's fan and is not afraid to tell anyone :) It's what everyone loves about her. She has the best silent laugh anyone has ever "heard" and on top of all of that, she is a wonderful person all around, and anyone would be blessed to call her a friend, but I'm lucky enough she is my BESTEST!! :) 

As long as I have known J, she has been a very healthy person. Constant work outs, eating right and dresses cute....always! Anyone would agree. Well, over the past year J has been diagnosed with Crohn's disease {BTW, "Crohn's isn't recognized by my spell check. Hil MAY have gotten it right on that sign :) Jordan, you should get that fixed poster child!}. It's been a crazy year, and she has definitely had her ups and downs with it all. Although this is something that she will have to live with for the rest of her life, she hasn't ever been negative about it. In fact she has done a lot to help raise awareness and is now the "OKC poster child" for the OKC Crohn's walk and will have the opportunity to share her testimony of how God has healed and given her strength. 

While all of this stuff was going on last year it made me think of how interesting her situation is. A person who her entire life has dedicated herself and time to be as healthy as possible, running a full marathon, multiple halves and eats like a rabbit, could be diagnosed with this disease which is normally discovered by living an unhealthy lifestyle, similar to mine!! She is a very strong and wonderful woman and I couldn't say more nice things about her!

Anyways, that is just a few things I could possibly talk about J Brock! One day I'll cook together a blog that just lists all of the hilarity there is to talk about that girl! 

Friday, January 27, 2012

Southwest Breakfast Burrito {leftovers}

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe #13

Yea for leftovers....and so so so many more to come this year! :) Well I figured I would make this one of my new recipes. This is the leftovers of {THIS} recipe. Healthy too! 

First you will need to preheat the Broil option on your oven

Now, scoop up your serving of Southwest Breakfast Bake and cut it up into small pieces and microwave for about a minute {I did this because I wasn't sure if it would be warm enough on broil without burning the tortilla}

Now scoop this onto your reduced fat tortilla with whatever toppings you enjoy! I chose some extra cheese and frozen tri-colored peppers I keep in the freezer {an absolute STAPLE, I use them on EVERYTHING!!!}

Broil this for about 4 minutes. WATCH THEM....I burn too often on Broil, and my oven cooks hot. 

Then I put some salsa and a little quac. Perfect leftover meal, if you can't tell I LOVE breakfast burritos! :) 

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Southwest Breakfast Bake

300 Recipes in 1 Year Challenge
Recipe #12

This is a healthier version of your everyday breakfast casserole. YEA!!! This challenge would be 100% easier if I could just pick any indulgent dessert I come across! I really am working hard on finding a balance in this. 

I got this recipe {HERE}

I double this recipe, which I realized calls for about 10-12 eggs. That's a lot of cholesterol, fat & calories! So I opted for 1/2 a cup of regular egg beaters & 2 cups of egg whites.  I also used turkey sausage & reduced fat cheese. Top with salsa and you are good to go!

Dreamy Crock Pot Oatmeal

300 Recipes in 1 Year Challenge
Recipe # 11

I absolutely love oatmeal!! LOVE IT! Have you tried Quaker Oatmeal Bars? Have you tried them heated up? It's a perfect on the go breakfast. Well, I first saw this on Pinterest and I was taken aback. How come I have never thought about jazzing up my oatmeal before? Why did I feel the need to confine myself to those packets? Although those packets are nothing short of a wonderful breakfast, I am just in love with this fancier way to enjoy my favorite breakfast food!

Recipe found {HERE}, on this VERY cute site!

The recipe said 7-8 hours and it stuck to the sides a lot and it was a little burnt on the edges, so I highly recommend getting the liners and bumping your time down a bit. Next time I make this I'll post on if the lesser time works better. When I reheated mine I just added a bit of milk and warmed it in the microwave. So good! Must make for a cool Saturday morning sometime!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Fruity Fresca Sangria

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe #10

This recipe MAY be cheating....just a bit. I've never made it before, but it's just TOO easy to be called an actual recipe :) 

I love mixed drinks. They are fun, typically fruity and perfect for get togethers! The only thing is that they can get costly & pretty complicated. And I am NO bartender! So this recipe is perfectly cheap and great for a large number of people, and only 3 ingredients! The other thing I love about this recipe is that it includes that beautiful, fizzy, oh so wonderful drink FRESCA. Oh, did you know it has ZERO CALORIES?!?! HOLLA!! :) 

Directions {doubled}:
2 bottles of any white wine
1 liter of fresca
frozen or fresh fruit
oh yeah, THAT'S IT!! 

Sorry for the lack of "fancy" picture. BUT Kortny has the super cute Christmasy drink dispenser that I put it in! So that makes up for it, right?

Another great use for Fresca... a drink called Mango Wango invented by Sandie Graves. She just combines it with mango rum. Amazing!! :) 

Sopapilla Cheesecake

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe #9

Well, apparently I've been living under a rock. I have NEVER had sopapilla cheesecake. It's like the past me knew that the present me would be needing an easy, delicious recipe for the year of 2012! I actually made two of them the night before and kept them in the fridge. After a long Saturday at work, that was just what I needed for my late January Christmas' with Jake's fam & with Bryson, Matt & Kort. {Now that all of my Christmas gifts have FINALLY been given I will be able to share with everyone all my DIY gifts!!....Coming SOON!}

I got the recipe from this website {HERE}.

I only used 2 cans of crescent rolls & I suggest that after it cooks, let it set for a bit, just to let the middle harden a little bit, although the ooey gooey-ness isn't all that bad!

If there is someone around who is really good at Tetris, have them put the crescents on; it took a lot of finagling on my part :)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Muslin Pillow

This post is long past due. Like, before Thanksgiving past due. But I have a very good reason. I was very mad at this pillow for a long time, and I've finally forgiven it enough to write about it. I got so frustrated during this {super simple} sewing process. Nothing was going right, it was kind of late at night and my mom {who is experienced} kept skipping steps in the tutorial we loosely followed and I would get confused. It turned out well in the end and it is dang cute on our new couch!

Here is my finished product

I got the inspiration {HERE}. We used her basic measurements, but mom kind of had me go on my own...so we just kind of played it by ear. 

I don't know if I was just not in a sewing/crafting mood, {I had just finished my Lamp ReVamp and may have been just tired} but I just was losing patience too easily. 

Right now it is on our brand new couch as decoration only. No one is allowed to use it, regardless of how soft the pillow or how gentle they "promise" to be. I worked too dang hard!! :)

Here is my tutorial...this is not going to be quite step by step, or 100% accurate terminology, but I'll attempt....it has been 3 months after all ;)

18in pillow, pillow form, or pillow stuffing. {I used stuffing}
Hot Glue Gun {for the fabric flowers}
1 yard muslin {this includes the muslin fabric flowers}
At least 20 inches each of 3 other fabrics 
      *If you look at the other tutorial, you will see her measurements done like this:

          So, in MY mind I could of had them cut just 4 inches, 2.5 inches & 5.5 inches....simple and cheap. 
          Well, Thank goodness mom was there because she mentioned that your pattern runs length wise, so 
          you need to cut the 19/20 inches length wise on patterns that matter. All 3 of my patterned fabric ran    
          length wise, whereas really only her green and brown damask one did.

We did the front side of the pillow first. You can use however much of each fabric you want, but with an 18 inch pillow we decided to do about 7 inches muslin and split the rest of the 11 inches between the other 3 fabrics, kind of depending on how big their design is. 
For instance, we wanted all of this heart pattern on the pillow. Make sure you cut at least 1/2 inch extra on each side to make room for your stitch.

This was probably the point where things went crazy....with the kind of technology there is today, you would think sewing machines would become slightly more user friendly!! Once started sewing, I kept going crooked or my thread would mess up....it was disastrous! 

Now you will want to pin together your fabrics, make sure your fabric all folds the same way, so there is no weird bulging. Like this...

This stitch was optional, it is just for decoration and a little extra reinforcement.

I don't have any pictures of the back, but we did an "envelope" closure and sewed on buttons for decoration. You just sew two 9 inch strips to each side and have the extra meet in the middle. Stitch the bottom of each and then stuff. 

I also did 3 muslin fabric flowers and put a pearl in the middle of them. Sorry, I was super irritated at that point and was not in the snapping pictures mood. 

Like I said, this is definitely not the greatest tutorial, but one day when I become an actual *seamstress*, I'll be able to do more step by step instructions. 

Here is the finished product! Super proud, and so not in a hurry to tackle sewing again quite yet :) 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Easy Potato Soup

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe #8

I'm obsessed with the crock pot right now. I have actually made this before, but added kielbasa sausage, so I'm counting it as something new :)

I also doubled the recipe because Jake & Mo loved it so much! I set it up before I went to work and when I came home I added the cream cheese and sausage and voila! Dinner!!

The recipe is from this website {HERE}. It is a really cute site, her tag line is "A pinch of June Cleaver, A dash of Martha Stewart and a whole lotta Mommy". I recently started watching {anything & everything} Martha  and I'm more than obsessed!! I love everything she does, and hey who said a little jail time isn't worth it to achieve your dreams? :) haha

This is a perfect cold day recipe and the ingredients are nothing wild. We have some kept in the freezer for some safe keeping :)

Hamburger Pie

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe #7

I had an extra lb of hamburger meat so I went to Pinterest for help. The first appetizing thing that came up was a recipe for Hamburger Pie. I made this for Hil & Mo, my pickiest critics and they loved it! Not one leftover :)

I got the recipe {HERE} from a site called MomsWhoThink.com  They have a lot of 30 minute meal options.

Spiced Kisses

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe # 6

I got this delectable bite size cookie recipe from a Weight Watchers magazine, excited to say these cookies are 2 points each. I went into this recipe thinking it would be a lot harder than what it was, BONUS! Such a simple recipe ESPECIALLY since it yields 56 cookies! Perfect party recipe. 

First preheat your oven to 350 degrees & line 3 cookie sheets with nonstick foil

Unwrap 56 {ish} chocolate kisses {I did a combo between Rolos, Hershey Kisses & Hershey Kisses with Almonds}

Spread about 1/2 cup of sugar on a plate

Now, knead together until combined the following ingredients in a separate bowl...

Until it looks like this...

Now form dough by rounded teaspoonfuls into 1 inch balls

Roll in sugar until covered

Place 16 balls on 1 baking sheet 2 inches apart. 

Bake for 9 minutes, or until cookies are puffed and just set in the center.

Gently press kisses {or rolos, or kisses with almonds} of each cookie 

*Hershey kisses worked the best, the ones with almonds and the rolos melted, it all tasted great just not quite as pretty

Let them set for 1 hour until chocolate is cool.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Cheddar Bacon Dip

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe #5

O.M.Cheesy Goodness! This dip is amazing! It is from the same blog as the previous "Crack Bread" recipe, which can be found {HERE}. I'm starting to think you can't go wrong with a packet of Ranch seasoning....coming from a girl who isn't a huge fan of Ranch dressing. I took this dip to a football watch party {ROLL TIDE!! What a strange outcome! But that is what I love and hate about college football. Its very unpredictable. Plus elephants are WAY COOLER than tigers and the ONLY team that can rock Gold & Purple are the Vikings.}

The only thing about this dip that I did differently was when I refrigerated it for 24 hours, it was very difficult to dip, so I opted to "thaw" it a bit and kind of over did it in the microwave and it came out warm...but delicious. I actually preferred it. I suppose you could use the same recipe and cook it for about 20 minutes with just a layer of cheese on top and go until its melted. I'll try it next time. But in this case I did everything as I was told but just put it in the microwave for about a minute. A PERFECT treat to take to your Superbowl watch party

Monday, January 9, 2012

Crack Bread

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe #4

I stumbled upon this recipe {HERE} which I found through Pinterest and I have made 2 recipes from this blog. They are beyond easy. She calls it Crack Bread and so far she is not a liar! I'm sure I'll be using a few more of her recipes throughout the year. 

It calls for a loaf of sourdough bread, so I had an exciting {I may be using that term too loosely...} time going to the bakery section of Target. Normally I'm too tempted by their donuts or muffins to even attempt to go over there, so I just keep it at a safe distance while I pick up my grapes :) 

As I was prepping this, Mo was upset that it required the second heating, haha :) 

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Lemon Pepper Chicken

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe #3

Tonight I was cooking for one, so I decided to go easy and healthy. I actually didn't follow a recipe on this one....but its pretty self explanatory. I just looked up online how long to cook chicken in the oven and followed accordingly. 

First I marinated my chicken overnight in Lemon Pepper Marinade. I marinated it frozen and by the time it came to cook it was defrosted. I don't know if that is a proper way at all, but I am not a seasoned defroster, so when I can get around it, I do. 

Before sticking it in the oven I seasoned it with Lawry's, pepper, garlic salt and put a little bit of new marinade (I didn't quite use all of the bottle when originally marinating so that I could put it on my cooked chicken and veggies) on top. 

I cooked each side of the chicken breasts for 15 minutes at 375 degrees. When flipping I seasoned the other side. It cooked perfectly! Super easy....one day I'll try a more DARING chicken dish, but I can't help but be super paranoid with that stuff :/ 

As for my veggies: I'm absolutely obsessed with zucchini, so I always look for it in those frozen packs that you just stick in the microwave. Walmart, where I usually do my shopping (ugh...I dislike it greatly, I wish they had HEB's in OK!!!) never has a California blend...ever! But I can't help shopping there because they are so cheap. Sometimes I go to Target, especially for their grapes. They have the absolute best grapes ever! But I get in trouble because their clothes and housewares are just so cute!! And I always feel like they never have everything on my list (which I don't think is ever too demanding...). There is always Homeland, but I feel like they are so overpriced when it comes to what you get in return. HEB on the other hand is always CLEAN & CHEAP & their selection is great. Well, this blog got off on an unexpected grocery shopping tangent....sorry!! Where I was going with this was....Target has the Cali blend that you can microwave, and it is THE BEST!!! 

We have Zoe right now and she is such a great blog buddy! Her snoring has such a soothing tone :) Molly and I were talking tonight and if I get married before I have a niece, Bry and Zoe will be walking down together. (It may just happen anyway...I mean, wouldn't she be just ADORABLE in a jeweled head piece and a tutu?)

Friday, January 6, 2012

Chick-fil-A Nugget Knock Off

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe #2

I'm not going to lie to you, these are not as good as the perfect piece of chicken Chick-fil-A produces. But, they are not that far behind. A fairly easy recipe too if you don't mind the whole frying thing. I think I'm going to try and bake them next time. I can tell you 100% that I will NEVER fry another piece of food again until I get one of those fancy wire cage things that you can just dip into the oil. Ugh :/ Zoe did not appreciate that I  had the oil too hot at first, she barked and then immediately hid. 

Here are the goods you need!
Serves about 4 people {35ish nuggs} 
2-4 Hour prep time

4 chicken breasts
2 cups of milk
2 eggs
2 1/2 cups of flour
4 TBSP of powdered sugar {for sure the special ingredient!!}
4 TSP of salt
2 TSP of pepper
Peanut Oil

First you will need to whisk your eggs and slowly pour in the milk into a bowl. Then cut up your chicken breasts into bite sized pieces and trim off any fat.

Put cut up chicken into the egg and milk mixture for 2-4 hours and just keep it in the fridge. I took mine out and left it on the counter for the last 30 minutes so that it wasn't so cold going into the oil.

After the chicken is finished marinating you will want to start heating about 2 inches of oil on medium heat. {This is where Zoe went crazy because the directions I used said that if you drip a little water into the oil and just sizzles a little and doesn't pop it is at the right temp, but if it pops a lot it is too hot. Well, mine popped A LOT!! I suggest buying a handy thermometer and wait until it becomes 350 degrees.} combine your dry ingredients into a bowl and mix them pretty well.

Take your chicken and coat them with the flour mixture, making sure to get it all covered. 

Depending on how big your pot is, put in about 8-10 nuggs at a time turning them over after about 1 minute. 

After a few minutes take them out {check the bigger ones to make sure there isn't any pink in the middle} and drain them on a paper towel covered plate. 

These guys were delicious and I was very excited that I had some left over packets of CFA's Honey Roasted BBQ Sauce, my absolute FAVE!!! Like I said, not quite as good as Chick-fils, my guess is something in the batter... but anyways you can definitely taste the powdered sugar and the extra touch of sweet was very good! 

Thursday, January 5, 2012

French Breakfast Puffs

300 Recipes in 1 Year
Recipe #1
I've had these on my mind ever since I first flipped through Pioneer Woman's cookbook. They remind me of the "Cinnamon Puffs" we get at the Chinese Food places, except more like a muffin. They are super delicious and easier than I thought which is a nice added bonus. Another thing I love....everything was in my pantry all ready...SCORE! It is a wonderful breakfast/dessert muffin that everyone should try. Today. I didn't do anything differently, but PW's says it makes 12, and mine made 16. Ugh, I just HATE when that happens, it's the absolute worst :/ Well, enjoy!! Here is my very first recipe of the year! Yeah me :) 1 down, 299 more to go!

300 Recipes in 1 Year Challenge

Happy 2012 Everyone! I'm excited for this one. I've got a lot to be thankful for and a lot to look forward to in this upcoming year....new business prospects with Zoe Lane {woo HOO!!} and some fun resolutions that I'm going to try out. Normally I'm not a huge "rez" person, but last year's "non-rez" worked out very well for me. It is all about not setting yourself up to fail. Last year I simply said, I'm going to cook more. More than never cooking is a good start, and I tried a lot, failed a little and definitely enjoyed my way around the kitchen. 

On NYE we kept it low key and decided for a game night, and our friends Kev & Ash cooked us dinner. For dinner they made all new things that none of us had tried before. Everything was delicious. Our steak included a new marinade, we had grilled squash with feta cheese, a corn and mac n' cheese casserole and a soft sangria. It was fun trying new things, and it led to a discussion with Jake about how this year we are going to support each other more and have a year of Trying New Things!! :) 

Well, that being said, I really wanted to go through a cookbook this year; but I just couldn't decide on one...there are so many good ones out there! My "trying new things" year includes trying & mastering meat dishes. I'm the worst at cooking chicken and I'm too scared to try anything crazy like ribs, brisket or anything else that doesn't include browning hamburger or sausage. I also wanted to master the art of the crock pot, and learn more about spices, seasoning and marinades. ALL OF THAT PLUS I wanted to try a lot more healthy recipes. So if you know of that cookbook you just let me know!! 

What I finally decided was that I'm just going for a set number of recipes. Ready for this number: 300. Scary just to type it.... but its doable. Honestly it is a goal, if I miss it by twenty or so, I won't see that as a fail {That's 280, uh hello, I'll be THRILLED!} By the way, did I mention that they have to be 300 NEW recipes? Haha, wish me luck!! And if you have any that you want me to taste test before you give it a go, let me know!! :) Get ready for a lot of Pinterest inspired dishes and the rest of Pioneer Woman's thing I haven't tried yet. I'm positive that they won't all be the best, but I sure do hope that this will be a fun and challenging year around the kitchen. Again, WISH ME LUCK!!!!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...