Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

We had our neighborhood trick-or-treat last night, so today we're all coming down from a candy high. :) I hope you had a fun time with your little "treats"...we certainly did. I didn't get to go trick-or-treating (Daddy took all three), but I enjoyed having friends over for a potluck dinner and then passing out candy to the kiddos.

The past week was a busy one! We had the kids' school carnival and their class parties. I had signed up to bring cookies for my daughter's first grade class, with big intentions of baking something fun. Well, pregnancy complications have me off of my feet, so I had to come up with something else. Thankfully, one of my Facebook friends posted a picture of these cute little goodies and I immediately knew that I could easily sit at the table and prepare them. I seriously made them in less than ten minutes! So simple and cute!!

1 package fudge stripe cookies (My friend used Keebler mint cookies instead.)
1 package Hershey kisses (unwrapped)
1 tube gel icing (I used green, but any color would work.)


Turn the fudge stripe cookies upside down so that you see the chocolate coating part of the cookie. Use the icing to make a circle around the hole in the cookie. Place a Hershey kiss on top of the icing. Allow a few minutes to set.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A Day Late on My Meal Plan...

I'm just going to get right on it since I'm a day late. Our days go by so quickly that sometimes I lose track of which day is that a sign of old age?? I'm having to keep things pretty simple, as I'm not supposed to be on my feet a ton. With three previous preterm babies, my OB doesn't take any chances.

Monday--Pork Chops with Cinnamon & Brown Sugar Apples, steamed broccoli

Tuesday--Bacon, eggs, and biscuits We have spent all day at our four-year-old's field trip, so we're tired!

Wednesday--Grilled cheese and tomato soup

Thursday--Cheese quesadillas, pinto beans, avocado slices

Friday--Pizza night

Saturday--Mummy dogs, corn on the cob, fruit salad

Sunday--Dinner at my parents' house...yay!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Pork Chops with Cinnamon & Brown Sugar Apples

I recently had my hair cut by a new girl named Michelle. While she was cutting, we were discussing food. She told me about this recipe that she had recently made. I'm normally not a fan of pork, but this sounded too good not to try. Boy, am I glad I tried it...the apples alone are to die for! We never discussed measurements, so I don't have an actual "recipe" today. I eyed everything and it turned out great!

Pictures to come!

4 boneless pork chops (salt and pepper each side well)
3 apples (peeled and thinly sliced) I used Red Delicious apples.
1/2 stick butter
brown sugar

In a large sautee pan, spread the sliced apples in a thin layer. Sprinkle with a generous amount of brown sugar and cinnamon. Top with the butter cut into pieces. Cover the pan and cook over low-medium until a syrup begins to form.

When the syrup forms, move the apples over enough to give each pork chop a place to rest. Replace the lid and allow to cook for about seven minutes. Flip the pork chops/stir the apples and leave the lid off. Cook the chops for another 15 minutes or until done. I served this with a side of steamed broccoli. Simple and delish!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Pumpkin Spice Cake

I know that I've been swamping you guys with lots of baked good and not so many meals. I apologize. I have actually cooked quite a few new meals, but just haven't felt like posting them. Hopefully I'll get around to posting them this week.

With Halloween just six days away, I decided to "treat" you guys with another fantastic pumpkin and cream cheese recipe (this is for you, Amanda!). I was in the mood to bake earlier today, and I mixed this up in about ten minutes. So quick, so easy, and so delicious!

2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 3/4 cup brown sugar
4 eggs
1 can pumpkin
1 cup oil
1/2 cup pecans (chopped) *I didn't have any today. :(

1 package cream cheese
1 stick butter (softened)
4 cups powdered sugar
1.5 teaspoons vanilla
1 tablespoon milk (more if needed)

Preheat oven to 350.

Mix together the dry ingredients. Add the eggs, pumpkin, and oil. Blend in the nuts if you have them. Pour into a 9x13 casserole dish or mini loaf pans. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until done. Let cool completely. Frost. Refrigerate to store.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Meal Plan

I'm a day late, but I just didn't have much energy yesterday to even think up my weekly meal plan. I hope this Tuesday finds you all well!

Monday--My brother made us goulash, so I didn't have to cook!

Tuesday--Maple Glazed Meatballs over rice with steamed broccoli (Our friend made us these when I was so sick earlier this summer. I'm just taking them straight from the freezer to the crockpot. They're great freezer-friendly meals!)

Wednesday--Ranch mac & cheese (recipe coming!) with steamed peas

Thursday--Hot dog & marshmallow roast with our friends 3DudesandaDiva after she takes our family Christmas card pics

Friday--Leftover spaghetti sauce from this recipe over pasta (It makes a ton!), with a salad

Saturday--Grilled chicken drumsticks, baked potatoes, green beans

Sunday--Sausage & potatoes and ?? side

Monday, October 11, 2010

Pumpkin Bars

October means pumpkin patches, pumpkin carving, pumpkin bread, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin waffles, and pumpkin bars. I'll admit that I probably overuse pumpkin during the fall, but my kids love the taste; it's healthy, and great in so many recipes!

This was actually my first time to make pumpkin bars, but they are a new favorite! I got this recipe here. She has so many great recipes to try, and she agrees that these pumpkin bars are fabulous!

I do have pictures, but haven't downloaded them quite yet. They should be up later this evening.

Bar Ingredients:
4 large eggs
2 cups sugar
1 cup butter, melted
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Frosting Ingredients:
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional, but definitely needed, in my opinion!)

Preheat oven to 350.

In a large mixing bowl of an electric mixer, beat the eggs well, add in the sugar and butter and mix well. Add the pumpkin and vanilla and mix. Add the flour and spices and mix well. Spread in a 9 x 13-inch greased pan. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until done. Allow to completely cool.

For the frosting: In a small bowl, beat cream cheese, butter, vanilla and powdered sugar until just mixed. Stir in pecans. When the bars are cool, frost. Cut into squares and serve.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Meal Plan Monday

It's time to plan our meals for the week. Tomorrow is grocery day for us, so I have to put lots of ingredients on my list! I shop once every two weeks, with quick trips in between for milk, bread, and bananas. Some of the links below are to my recipes, and some are recipes that I plan to try for the first time.

I don't usually plan out our breakfasts and lunches, since we usually eat leftovers for lunch (the kids take sandwiches to school) and I make whatever strikes my fancy for breakfast. The meals below are for our dinners.

Monday--Leftover turkey sausage & spinach lasagna (made by a friend) with toast

Tuesday--Spicy cheese soup (recipe to come)

Wednesday--Chicken stuffed shells (This recipe is for chicken lasagna, but I'm using jumbo shells instead.), Caesar salad, French bread

Thursday--Roasted chicken, steamed veggies, Sweetie Pie's mac & cheese

Friday--Use leftover roasted chicken in this white chicken chili

Saturday--Sandwiches & leftovers night

Sunday--I'm making a big batch of Carie's Marinara Sauce, so we'll eat some of it with a pasta.