Apr 27, 2010

P-Dub's Chicken with Tomatoes and Garlic

Whenever I'm having a down day, I love to mosy on over to Pioneer Woman's blog for a good chuckle. I love her style of writing and her recipes are i.n.c.r.e.d.i.b.l.e. My latest venture was her Chicken with Tomatoes and Garlic. It was scrumptious! And so easy to make, for once, the younger two scarfed it down (they don't like chicken)! I also made bowtie pasta to go along with it, and placed the chicken and sauce over the pasta.

Chicken with Tomatoes and Garlic

8 pieces chicken legs or thighs (I actually used chicken breasts (or, sawdust, as my Dad likes to call them) I used 3 breasts, and cut them in half

salt and pepper to taste
3 Tbl olive oil
1 Tbl butter
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can whole tomatoes- I had a large jar of canned diced tomatoes from our garden that I used
2 Tbl tomato paste
Fresh herbs: Basil, Parsley,Sage, Rosemary
8 cloves of garlic
1/2 C white cooking wine- you could also use red, if I had Marsala wine on hand, I would have used that
freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400, salt and pepper your chicken.

Melt oil and butter in a large pan, brown chicken on both sides, about 2 minutes. Remove chicken from pan, and add cooking wine; scrape the bottom of the pan to get all the bits up. Cook for one minute, then add the tomatoes, with their juice and the paste. Add salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil and turn off heat. Add plenty of fresh herbs, and the 8 cloves of garlic. Add the chicken and transfer to a baking dish (covered) and cook for one hour.

Remove from oven, and take the lid off. In the meantime, cook pasta to al dente. Drain pasta and add to a large serving dish. Check the sauce, if it is too thin, you can a bit more paste to thicken it up.

To serve, place pasta on a plate, add chicken with sauce over the top, and sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese and fresh parsley!

Linking up to:
Tasty Tuesday
Tempt My Tummy Tuesday

Apr 25, 2010

Birthday Party!

My sweet (it pained me to write this part, she isn't on my good side right now) Emma Jo turned 7 last Friday. We had been counting down the days to her birthday since February, so I was a teeny tiny bit excited that her day had finally come! We had her little girlfriends over for a 2 hour party on Saturday. Boy, was I glad that we only did two hours, having 9 girls and one boy was enough! When the girls got here, we opened presents first. After the three minutes (lol) of that, I had the girls sit down for a craft. I had purchased foam bulletin boards that were circle shaped. I laid out several kinds of paper and once they picked out their favorite paper, I cut out a circle with my Cricut machine and they pasted it on. I also had several flower stickers they put on and at the end of the party I printed out pictures of the whole group so they could paste that on the bulletin board. They turned out very cute!

Of course my favorite part of the party was the CAKE!!!
This was my first time using fondant, and let me tell you, I cannot wait to use it again! Very easy to make and easy to use.
Emma LOVED it! It was a little hard to cut into it, with as much work went into it!! I made a boxed chocolate cake, but then used my all time fave Pioneer Woman's frosting for the filling and the crumb coat. Delicious!
We played one game which was pass the present. We played music, and everyone passed the present around, whoever had it when the music stopped, they opened one layer of wrapping paper (I had wrapped it with 8 different layers). Whoever ended up unwrapping the present at the end got to keep it, the girls thought that was such a blast! At the end of the party, I did a scavenger hunt to find the girls' treat bags which were filled with scrapbooking supplies. I was able to find crown shaped chipboard scrapbooks for .25!!!
Besides my two fighting and making me crazy, it was a wonderful party!
Linking to:

Apr 19, 2010

Indian Chicken Korma

I love, love, love trying new recipes. Truly, I do, and probably make 3-4 new ones a week. However, if you ever see me in a restaurant, 98% of the time you will find me eating a burger and fries. I don't want to have to PAY for something I don't like, so I usually keep it simple. I will actually get made fun of if I order something different. True story.

Now, at home I will try anything. So, in one of my Taste of Home magazines, I found this recipe for Chicken Korma and thought I would give it a try. I thought it was AMAZING!!! Definitely comfort food for me, I loved the cinnamon and curry flavors and how well it meshed with the chicken. The only change I made was that I used sweet potatoes instead of white, only because that was all I had. I LOVED it with the sweet potatoes.

Chicken Korma
1 large sweet potato
1 large onion, chopped
1 cinnamon stick
1 bay leaf
3 whole cloves (I omitted these because I don't like them:)
1 Tbl canola oil
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp. minced fresh gingerroot
2 medium tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1 tsp. salt
1/2 c. sour cream
hot cooked rice
Place sweet potato in boiling water and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until tender. In a large skillet, saute the onion, cinnamon, bay leaf in oil until onion is tender. Add the chicken, garlic, curry and ginger; cook and stir one minute longer. Stir in the tomatoes, salt and potato.
Cover and cook for 10-15 minutes until chicken is no longer pink. Remove from heat; Discard cinnamon stick, bay leaf, and cloves. Stir in sour cream, serve with rice.
Linking up to:

Apr 18, 2010

Weekend Treasures

We had a gorgeous weekend full of sun and fun! It was so nice to hang out at home with NO (and I mean no) plans. I will enjoy these as they come, because as soon as summer hits, it seems to be non stop on the weekends. Not that I'm complaining, mind you.

On Saturday, Rachel and I went to the Grande Depot which is a home decor/gourmet foods type of place. It's the kind of place that when you open the doors, you hear the angels singing. Until you realize it's just Muzak piped outside. Oh well. So Rachel and I head in, looking for nothing in particular, but have some birthday money to spend. Yippee!! I found this spice rack in the clearance section for $16. It was a light oak color that I promptly spray painted black and distressed the edges. I love it when your daughter sees something she likes and then exclaims how she can just spray paint it different! I also found the spice bottles for $2 a piece. And no, I won't leave them this way, silly! I plan on wrapping them with ribbon and creating tags for them. I needed something for my dining room table, but didn't want anything big. I had a vase ($1.75 at Crafts Direct) on hand that I hot glued some ribbon and paper flowers on, and added rock from the side of our house and fake flowers that I got on clearance. I love how this turned out, especially since I am soooooo not ok with fake flowers. Don't know why, I have just never gotten into them.
We also finally bought curtains for our patio door, it is amazing how much it completes a room! I have more pics to post (soon to come), a couple other things I bought, and an amazing sign that I got from my Mom for my birthday.
Linking up to:

Apr 14, 2010

Let's Eat Cake!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Birthday cake, that is! I need your best-ever chocolate-whatever cake recipes!!! Tomorrow is my birthday (35) and I want to make myself a cake. I looooooove chocolate and caramel and yummy buttercream filling and frosting and everything!! So, would you be so kind as to send me your absolute to-die-for recipes??!!

P.S. I'll be spending my time cleaning up my basement that flooded. AGAIN. Grrrr....

Apr 11, 2010

Sunbutter Pancakes

Every Tuesday morning is pancake morning for breakfast (remember I do daycare and must.have.schedules.), so I am always on the lookout for new pancake recipes. I found this one on (ta-da!) allrecipes.com. These pancakes go down on my list of fave cakes. They are light, fluffy and the kind that melt-in-your-mouth.

These were supposed to be peanut butter, but being that we have a nut allergy in the family, I improvised with sunbutter. We give these two thumbs up!

Sunbutter Pancakes

1 C. flour
2 Tbl. sugar
1 1/2 Tbl. baking powder
1 large egg
1/3 C. sunbutter
1 C. milk
2 Tbl canola oil

Whisk together dry ingredients. In a separate bowl whisk egg and sunbutter, add milk and oil and add to dry ingredients.

Linking up to:

Tasty Tuesday

Tempt My Tummy Tuesday

Apr 9, 2010

Need Bloggy Help!

Ok ladies, I need your help. I want to categorize my recipes on my blog so that you see them on the sidebar. How exactly do I do this? I know I have to add the label gadget, but then what? Help! Please??

Crockpot Overnight Oatmeal

My girls love oatmeal, but it's usually the instant packet kind, not that there is anything horrible about it, but I would prefer it to be the homemade kind. I found this recipe on allrecipes.com and decided to try it out and oh.my.gracious. It is SO delicious and full of flavor! I put it in the crockpot around 9:30 the night before and it was perfect at 6:00 in the morning. If you've never tried steel cut outs, now is the time, it has a different texture than the traditional oatmeal and mixed with the apples and cranberries makes it all that much better. Now, I modified this to our liking, I used whole milk and eliminated the nuts (my girls aren't big nut fans).

Overnight Oatmeal
2 cups steel cut oats
2 cups diced apples
1 cup dried cranberries
3 cups water
1 cup milk
1 Tbl cinnamon
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
2 tsp butter

Combine ingredients in your slow cooker, set on low and let cook overnight!

Verdict? Delicious! Alayna and Emma loved it, Rachel didn't think there was much flavor. I will absolutely be making this again:)

Apr 5, 2010

Cash For Candy!

Every yeeeaaaarrrr we deal with candy over load. Seriously, it starts in October and lasts through Easter. No lie. I get so tired of arguing over how many pieces of candy they can have. So, today I decided to bribe them. I said I would give them 10 cents for every piece of candy they gave me. Those little turkeys made me broke! Emma made $6, Rachel $5.50 (that was a bit of an issue, she thought she would make more...) and Alayna shelled out $4 worth! Besides making momma happy tossing the candy, it was a great math lesson for them, counting all that change! Although they tried their best to get me to give them 10 cents for EACH m&m, silly girls. Momma ain't that dumb...

Slow Cooked Beef Fajitas

After enjoying authentic Mexican food for a whole week, I knew I needed to find some good recipes to make at home. Especially after realizing that mailing guacamole and pico de gallo wouldn't be an option (insert grumble here). I was so taken away with the food at our resort. Authentic, gourmet, delicious Mexican food. So, I immediately tried a new guacamole recipe and promptly threw it away (faaaar too much lime juice, very bitter). Bummer. Then I tried a pico de gallo recipe that just didn't cut it. Crud.

Feeling a bit of an after-vacation let down, I found this recipe on allrecipes.com. It is made in the slow cooker which works PERFECT for me! And the Mexican Rice is so tasty with the fajitas, even the girls loved it!

Slow-Cooked Steak Fajitas

1 (1 1/2 pound) beef flank steak
1 can diced tomatoes with garlic and onion, undrained
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 medium onion, sliced
1 medium green pepper, julienned
1 Tbl. fresh minced cilantro
2 tsp. cornstarch
1 Tbl water
flour tortillas, sour cream, salsa

Thinly slice steak across the grain into strips; place in 5 qt. slow cooker. Add tomatoes, garlic, cumin, chili powder and salt. Cover and cook on low for 7 hours. Add onion, peppers and cilantro Cover and cook 1-2 hours longer or until meat is tender.

Combine cornstarch and water until smooth; gradually stir into slow cooker. Cover and cook on high for 30 minutes or until slightly thickened. Fill tortilla up with meat mixture, sour cream and salsa.

And just for the record, this picture doesn't do it justice, lol!

Linking to:
Tasty Tuesday
Tempt My Tummy Tuesday
Crockpot Wednesday

Apr 1, 2010

Happy April Fool's Day!

This is what the kiddos enjoyed for snack today..."meatloaf" and "kool-aid". The meatloaf is actually a rice crispy bar (made out of cocoa crispy cereal) and a fruit leather on top. The kool-aid is jello, hee-hee!! Unfortunately the kids are getting to wise for me, and rolled their eyes and sighed. However, when Rachel came home from school she asked if I had anything up my sleeves (yes, Kleenexes for this darn sinus infection) and I said no, that I had been too sick. I think she sulked for a minute before realizing that I DID have something up my sleeve:)

Oh the fun of trickery....