Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Wordless Wednesday {linky}


We had a Halloween Party this past weekend. And what did I go as? Crazy Cat Lady, of course!! Mainly because of the big running joke everyone has of me....or maybe its not a joke? Maybe this is a flash-forward! AHHHH Now THAT is scary!

Crazy Cat Lady
Personally, I think I look HIDEOUS!

Anyone want to guess what my husband is??
Hint: its 2 characters combined into 1!

Latest Pinterest craft....confirms the crazy cat lady theory!

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Monday, October 29, 2012

Broccoli Cheddar Soup (crock-pot)


1/2 cup green pepper, chopped
1/2 cup onion, chopped
2 tablespoons butter or 
2 tablespoons margarine 
1 (10 ounce) can cream of chicken soup 
1 1/2 cups milk 
1 lb Velveeta cheese, cubed [half of the big box they usually come in]
1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped broccoli

  • Saute onion and green pepper in onion.
  • Add all ingredients in crock-pot.
  • Cook on low for 3 to 4 hours.
  • Stir well and serve with crackers
recipe from Food.com

Like Soup? Check these out!

Friday, October 26, 2012

FBF: Povitica


click image to see full post from 10/27/2011

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Pumpkin Granola


5 cups quick cooking oats
2 cups chocolate rice crisp
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
1 (15 ounce) can of pumpkin
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup light or dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup sliced almonds
3/4 cup chopped walnuts
3/4 cup chopped pecans

  • Place two oven racks on the top and bottom 1/3 of the oven. Preheat the oven to 300°. Set aside two baking sheets with sides lined with a silpat, liner, parchment paper or aluminum foil. 
  • In a large bowl, combine both oats, brown rice crisp and pumpkin pie spice. 
  • In a separate bowl, combine the canned pumpkin, honey, brown sugar, canola oil and vanilla extract. 
  • Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. 
  • Pour the granola on the baking sheets, splitting evenly between the two baking sheets. With a silicone spatula (or any other flat tool), push down the granola to make a compact, flat and even layer of granola. 
  • Place the baking sheets in the oven for 20 minutes (one on the top, one on the bottom). 
  • While that is in the oven, chop your nuts and combine them in a bowl and set aside. 
  • With a large spatula flip over the granola, cut the larger clumps in half and add the nuts to the baking sheet. 
  • Bake for another 20 minutes stir around and break up any clumps that wouldn’t fit in one bite. 
  • Bake for a final 20-30 minutes, until completely dry and golden brown. Let the granola cool completely on the baking sheets.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Wordless Wednesday {with Linky}


The Spouses' Club I'm a part of had an 80s theme this month. Of course, we go all out! I even found a crimper for my hair.... (that was a big hit...literally!)

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Pumpkin Scones


2 cups all-purpose flour
7 Tablespoons sugar
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
6 Tablespoons cold butter
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
3 Tablespoons half-and-half
1 large egg [I used egg replacer for a friend and it worked just fine too!]

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. 
  • Lightly grease a cookie sheet or line with parchment paper. 
  • Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and spices in a large mixing bowl. 
  • With a fork, pastry knife, or food processor, cut butter into the dry ingredients until mixture is crumbly and no chunks of butter remain. Set aside. 
  • In a separate mixing bowl, whisk pumpkin, half and half, and egg. Fold wet ingredients into dry ingredients. 
  • Form the dough into a ball. Pat out dough onto a lightly floured surface and form it into a 1-inch thick circle (about 9 inches across). Use a large knife to slice the dough into 8 or 12 (for smaller portions) equal portions, similar to how a pizza is cut. 
  • Place on prepared baking sheet from step 2. Bake for 14–16 minutes until scones turn light brown.
  • Place on wire rack to cool.
Spiced Glaze:
1 cup powdered sugar 
3 Tablespoons powdered sugar [use if needed to get the right consistency]
2 Tablespoons whole milk [I used Almond milk, absolutely delish!]
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg 
1 pinch ginger 
1 pinch ground cloves

  • Mix all the ingredient, stirring until all combined. If its too runny, add a little more powdered sugar, stirring until completely mixed in before adding more.
  • Drizzle or brush over the scones. Let completely dry (it will harden as it dries).
recipe directly from Moms Who Think.com

Like pumpkin? Try these recipes!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Beef & Black Bean Chili


1/4 cup olive oil 
2 pounds beef, cut into 1/2-inch cubes 
Salt and freshly ground black pepper 
1 large red onion, finely diced
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tablespoons ancho chili powder 
1 tablespoon ground cumin 
1 bottle dark beer 
5 cups chicken stock, or canned low-sodium or water
1 (16-ounce) can chopped tomatoes, drained and pureed
1 tablespoon honey 
2 cups cooked or canned black beans, rinsed and drained
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

  • Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over high heat. Season the beef with salt and pepper, and saute until browned on all sides. Transfer the meat to a plate and remove all but 3 tablespoons of the fat from the pan. 
  • Add the onions to the pan and cook until soft. Add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add the ancho powder, pasilla powder, and cumin and cook an additional 2 minutes. Add the beer and cook until completely reduced. 
  • Return the beef to the pot, add the chicken stock, tomatoes and honey, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium, cover the pan, and simmer for 45 minutes. 
  • Add the beans and continue cooking for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat, add the lime juice, and adjust seasonings.
2 ripe Hass avocados, peeled, pitted and diced 
1/2 red onion, finely diced
Lime juice 
Salt and pepper 
Cilantro leaves, chopped

  • Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and season with salt and pepper.
8 oz sour cream
1 tsp cumin
  • Mix sour cream and cumin together in small bowl.
  • Serve a dollop in each bowl of chili.
recipe derived from FoodNetwork.com Bobby Flay

Friday, October 19, 2012

FBF: Heaven in a Single Bite


click on image to see full post from 10/18/2011

Thursday, October 18, 2012


2 (14 oz) cans diced tomatoes, with juice
1 cup finely diced celery 
1 cup finely diced carrots 
1 cup finely diced onions 
1 tsp dried oregano or 1 T fresh oregano 
1 T dried basil or 1/4 cup fresh basil 
4 cups chicken broth 
½ bay leaf 
½ cup flour 
1 cup Parmesan cheese 
½ cup butter 
1-1/2 cups half and half, warmed
1 tsp salt 
¼ tsp black pepper 

  •  Add tomatoes, celery, carrots, chicken broth, onions, oregano, basil, and bay leaf to a large slow cooker. Cover and cook on LOW for 5-7 hours, until flavors are blended and vegetables are soft. 
  • About 30 minutes before serving prepare a roux. Melt butter over low heat in a skillet and add flour. Stir constantly with a whisk for 5-7 minutes. Slowly stir in 1 cup hot soup. Add another 3 cups and stir until smooth. Add all back into the slow cooker. 
  • Stir and add the Parmesan cheese, warmed half and half, salt and pepper. Add additional basil and oregano if needed (the slow cooker does a number on spices and they get bland over time, so don't be afraid to always season to taste at the end). 
  •  Cover and cook on LOW for another 30 minutes or so until ready to serve.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Wordless Wednesday {{w/ linky}}


After 12 years, I finally finished my degree. It wasn't because I took 1 class a year...seriously...hahaha I got married after my junior year and went off and did the kids and military thing....then decided last year it was time to finish the last one!

Now I'm debating if I should try for my Masters in Education.... hmmmm another 10 years maybe?

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Monday, October 15, 2012

Pumpkin Pie Latte

Everything pumpkin at this time of the year! I've found some recipes that I couldn't resist...and I'm sharing with you!

1 1/2 cups coffee, frozen, partially thawed [don't use bold or extra bold--it will be too bitter]
2 Tbsp. pumpkin, canned
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. pumpkin spice, ground
1 Tbsp sugar
1/2 cup half & half [or use "pumpkin pie spice creamer for an added boost in the flavor!]
  • Mix all the ingredients in a blender and process until smooth.
  • [optional] Top with whipped cream and a dash of cinnamon.

Friday, October 12, 2012

FBF: Cranberry and Apple Cake


click on image to see full post from 10/11/2011

Monday, October 8, 2012

Grilled Chicken Thighs with Pineapple Relish


1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp ground cumin
3/4 tsp salt, divided
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs
2 cups cubed fresh pineapple (about 1/2 pineapple)
1/2 cup fresh corn kernels
1/3 cup red bell pepper, finely chopped
1/4 cup fresh basil, thinly sliced
3 tblsp red onion, finely chopped
1 tblsp cider vinegar
1 tsp sugar

  • Combine garlic powder, cumin, 1/2 tsp salt and pepper in smal bowl; sprinkle over chicken.
  • Grill chicken on grill over medium-high heat until done. About 4-7 minutes each side.
  • Meanwhile, combine remaining 1/4 tsp salt, pineapple and remaining ingredients in a medium bowl. 
  • Serve relish over chicken.

Friday, October 5, 2012

FBF: Apple Pastry


click on image to see full post from 10/6/2011

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Melon Gazpacho with Frizzled Prosciutto


5 cups cubed peeled cantaloupe
4 cups ripe peaches, chopped
1/2 cup water
2 tblsp shallots, minced
2 tblsp fresh lemon juice
1 tblsp sherry vinegar
3/8 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp olive oil
4 oz thinly sliced prosciutto, cut into ribbons
4 tsp fresh mint, chopped
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

  • Place first 7 ingredients into a blender and process until smooth. (in batches if necessary)
  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add prosciutto; cook until crisp. Drain on paper towel.
  • In large sauce pan over medium heat, pour in melon mixture and cook until heated through (about 10 minutes).
  • Pour soup into bowl or bread bowls and top with prosciutto, mint and pepper.
Can anyone see me in the picture? I spy!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012



More foster kitties....

"Mr Grey" (the grey one...duh) went back to the shelter to be adopted...he got big enough! Bitter-sweet moment. =) But another one did come back...his name is "Cujo." He's a orange and white tabby, less than 4 weeks old. So tiny! Time to fatten him up!

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Pumpkin Cookies *Best Ever!*

*best ever!*

1 cup butter, room temperature 
1/2 cup sugar 
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar 
1 cup canned pumpkin 
1 egg 
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
2 cups flour 
1 teaspoon baking soda 
1 teaspoon baking powder 
2 teaspoons cinnamon 
1/4 teaspoon salt 
Penuche Glaze 
3 tablespoons butter 
1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar 
1/4 cup milk 
1 1/2-2 cups confectioners' sugar 

  •  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
  • Have ready some ungreased baking sheets.
  •  In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and the sugars together until light and fluffy. Blend in pumpkin, egg and vanilla extract. 
  • In separate bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Mix flour mixture into butter-sugar mixture.
  • Drop tablespoonfuls 3 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes until golden around the edges. Remove warm cookies and transfer to racks. Let cool completely for a least one half hour, then frost with glaze. 
  • For Glaze:. In a medium saucepan, heat butter and brown sugar over medium heat until bubbly. Cook, stirring constantly, for one minute or until slightly thickened. Beat in the milk. Blend in confectioner's sugar until the glaze is smooth and spreadable. Using a silicone basting brush, which I love and use religiously now, or a butter knife to spread glaze on cookies is the best tip. (Please note; this glaze will harden fairly quickly. I suggest that you keep the saucepan over the stove on the lowest heat possible to prevent it from hardening.)

recipe directly from Food.com

Monday, October 1, 2012

Grilled Pineapple & Pancetta Pizza


4 oz pancetta, diced small
1 fresh and ripe pineapple, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch thick rings
1 tblsp vegetable oil
2 tblsp sugar
6 scallions, root ends trimmed
3 tblsp olive oil, divided
Kosher salt to taste; more to taste
1/4 cup uncooked grits or polenta, for rolling the dough
1 ball prepared pizza dough, at room temperature [Pillsbury makes a great crust!]
1/2 cup Onion Marmalade [recipe below]
6 oz Camembert cheese, sliced [or Mozzerella cheese]
2 tblsp flaked sweetened coconut, toasted
Red pepper flakes, optional

  • Cook the pancetta in a small skillet over med-high heat until crispy, drain on a paper towel. Reserve for topping.
  • Brush pineapple rings with veg oil and sprinkle sugar over both sides. Let sit 5 minutes. Brush scallions with oil and sprinkle with salt.
  • Preheat the grill over medium-high heat.
  • Place the pineapple and scallions on the cooking grate directly over the heat and grill until the pineapple is well marked and the scallions are limp and charred in spots (3-5 minutes). Remove from grill. Chop scallions, reserve for topping.
  • Roll out pizza dough using grits to prevent sticking. Grill dough over INDIRECT low heat until bottom is lightly browned.
  • Flip over dough and top with marmalade. Top with cheese. Artfully arrange the pineapple rings on top. Sprinkle with the pancetta and scallions. Finish grilling the pizza until the bottom is lightly browned and toppings are melted and heated through.
  • Remove from grill, sprinkle with toasted coconut, and season with salt and pepper. Slice and serve immediately.

Onion Marmalade:
2 tblsp olive oil
1 tblsp unsalted butter
3 large yellow onions, thinly sliced and roughly separated into rings
1 tsp kosher salt
  • Heat the oil and butter together in a large, heavy saute pan (like a Dutch oven) over medium heat. When butter bubbles, add the onion rings and salt and cook, covered, for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are all a deep golden color, about 20 more minutes.
  • This will keep, tightly covered, in the fridge for up to 2 days. I suggest making this ahead of time to save time when the rest of the pizza is made.
Toasted Coconut Flakes
  • Place coconut flakes in a saute pan over med-high heat and stir until the flakes are lightly browned.
I highly suggest you not drop this on the ground...like I did on my first attempt. So. Not. Cool.

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