Thursday, February 23, 2017

store bought favorite: spiral slicer and ZOODLES!

Like me, my teenage daughter loves to dink around the kitchen.  Unlike me, she likes to just "go for it!" and doesn't mess around with a recipe.  I noticed she had placed the above item in my shopping cart- a spiral slicer (for $8.99!) so I went ahead and ordered it.  What's the harm in eating tons of vegetables, right?!  It arrived yesterday (two days later- I love it!!) so I grabbed a few items at the store today knowing she'd work some magic in the kitchen after school, which she did.  Within seconds she'd made zoodles and whipped up a really tasty dish that we enjoyed for an afternoon snack.  I look forward to trying carrots next.
P.S.  The spiral slicer was super easy to clean.

zoodles with tomatoes (my teenage daughter)
olive oil
medium sized zucchini, made into zoodles in seconds using the spiral slicer!
red pepper flakes
roma tomato, diced
handful of shredded mozarella
salt and pepper to taste

Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a pan with some red pepper flakes.  Add the zoodles and tomatoes and saute for a short bit.  Add shredded mozarella and use tongs to "fluff" around around cheese is melted.  Season with salt and pepper.

Friday, February 17, 2017

it's about LOVE- ward party

Primary is in charge of this activity and it's going to be a fun one- we just set up this morning.  Our ward congregation is going to enjoy an ice cream buffet followed by a service project.  For the service project, in the RS room we've set up a cookie/candy buffet with cellophane bags and gift tags so we can assemble goodie bags for friends and neighbors.  There are enough bags so that 100 can be distributed after the activity.  All we need to do before the activity is put toppings into glass pedestal dishes that we made for the last ward activity we hosted and set of the ice cream, warmed Nutella and whipped cream.  I am hoping for a good turn out!
(I made 100 paper flowers using Martha Stewart kits I found 80% off on clearance at Michael's.  That find was meant to be!) 

Saturday, February 11, 2017

tender, yummy beef


My teenager said I don't serve enough beef so I made this for dinner.  It turned out to be super flavorful and versatile.  We used the beef for sandwiches the first night then my daughter made some nachos grande that looked amazing.  The beef would also make a great filling for fajitas or red enchiladas (have you tried Trader Joe's bottled enchilada sauce?  So good!).

tender, yummy beef (pass the peas, please)
1 1/2 pounds beef bottom round roast pre-sliced ("carne asada" style)
1 envelope dry onion soup mix
1 onion, sliced into rings
1 green bell pepper, sliced into rings
1 cup water
whatever you need to make sandwiches, nachos, fajitas, etc. 

Spray slow cooker with nonstick spray.  Put the sliced meat into the slow cooker with the onion soup mix, onion and pepper rings.  Pour a cup of water over the top.  Cook on low 6-8 hours.  Remove meat, onions and peppers with a slotted spoon and serve it as you wish.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

yippee chippee valentines

I love Costco.  It just made Valentine's Day so easy (if I don't think about the Valentine's luncheon that I am hosting at my house that day).  Two of my kids will be passing out valentines at school so I needed 48 of something.  Sooner rather than later.  I didn't know what until I saw a box of 50 bags of chips at Costco.  I quickly Googled "valentines made from bags of chips" and what do you know- my children will have fun valentines!
I hope my kids are not disappointed that I did not consult them.  I'm pretty sure they wanted Harry Potter valentines.  Sorry kids!   If I have my way this will be our new go-to!

yippee chippee valentines
I was able to find some cute sayings and made some tags:
(I used a super cute font called Cupid de Locke which is a free downloadable font)
Classic, Sour Cream & Onion and BBQ:  Because a classic cannot be beat, I think you're super neat.
Cheetos & Doritos:  I hope this isn't too cheesy a way to say Happy Valentine's Day!
Cool Ranch: This might come across a little silly but I think you are COOL- really! 
Fritos:  This may be a little CORNY but- will you be my valentine? 

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

chicken alfredo soup

This is a really nice feel-good soup.  I doubled the recipe so I could take some to a friend...which I realize is risky when making a new recipe but I figured this one would be good.  I grabbed a few new cookbooks at the library last night and this is the first of several new recipes I'd like to try.

chicken alfredo soup (adapted from BH&G New Cook Book, 16th edition)
3 chicken breasts, cut into small pieces
4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into small pieces
2 cups shredded carrots
2 cups chopped celery
1 onion, chopped
4 cups chicken broth
2 jars light Alfredo sauce
1 envelope vegetable soup mix (I used Knorr Spring Vegetable Recipe Mix)
2 cups cooked broken whole wheat spaghetti 

In a dutch oven, cook chicken with carrots, celery and onion.  When chicken is no longer pink, add broth, alfredo sauce and vegetable soup mix.  Add spaghetti.  Simmer covered for 15 minutes.

meatballs with creamy mushroom sauce

It was one of those days when I had NOTHING planned for dinner. I had some meatballs in the freezer so went looking for a super speedy sauce to go with them and found this recipe.  They were a hit but honest to goodness next time I will make my own meatballs.  Packaged meatballs are just not as good as homemade.

meatballs with creamy mushroom sauce (adapted from
1 package meatball, 24 meatballs (I strongly prefer homemade!)
1 can cream of mushroom soup (I used Campbell's healthy request)
1/2 tablespoon dried parsley (fresh would be better but I was in a hurry, remember?)
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 can milk

For the sauce, whisk the soup, parsley, pepper, Italian seasoning, chili powder and milk together in a saucepan.  Bring to a simmer over medium heat then turn to low and simmer for 15 minutes.
Add cooked meatballs to the sauce and coat the meatballs with the sauce.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

ice cream pie

You can use this recipe for any kind of ice cream pie.  It just so happens I made two peppermint ice cream pies last month, put them in the freezer and forgot about them! :)  It's just as well- my family has been loving them and they're better appreciated a month after Christmas when the house is not as candy-filled.  Four ingredients and you have an impressive dessert- your kids' eyes will pop out of their sockets.

ice cream pie (pass the peas, please)
1 carton of any kind of ice cream (I used peppermint)
2 pre-made graham cracker pie crust (I used chocolate)
Hershey's chocolate sauce or Nutella
whipped cream

Let the carton of ice cream sit out for about 10 minutes to soften.
Scoop half the carton of ice cream into one pie crust.  Scoop the other half of the carton of ice cream into the other pie crust.  Use a spoon (and fingers) to spread the ice cream evenly into the pie crusts.
Cover with the plastic cover that came with the pie crusts and put into the freezer.
When ready to serve, cut each pie into 8 slices.  Pour chocolate sauce over the top or a big glob of nutella and top with whipped cream. Enjoy!