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Monthly Archives: January 2011

I make a menu plan every month, now we don’t ever follow it to the “T”, but it helps so much with keeping cost down, and minimizing waste.  Anything listed with an * next to it means it is in my freezer right now ready to go!  Hope this inspires you…

1~Ham and Cheese Baked Ziti *

2~Cam’s Ribs*, Twice Baked Potatoes*

3~Coconut Lime Chicken over rice*

4~Homemade Pizza

5~Grilled Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo with whole wheat Pasta

6~Sub Sandwiches, Christmas Salad

7~Chicken Gouda lasagna*

8~Sausage Biscuits and gravy*, Peaches*

9~Chicken Caccitore

10~Beach BBQ, Stuffed Red Skin Potatoes*

11~Homemade Spaghetti Sauce and Bubble Bread

12~Cam’s ribs*, Asian Chicken wing*s, potato skins

13~Beef Pot Roast with Veggies

14~Pork Loin Ragout*

15~Shanghai Stir Fr*y with Brown Rice

16~Prime Rib* Subs and Tossed Salad

17~Ham and Potatoes Au Gratin*

18~Homemade BBQ Chicken Pizza

19~Chicken wings*, Philly Cheese Steak* Crostini

20~Ribs*, Slow Cooker Baked Potatoes

21~Chicken with Roasted Red Peppers, Jacksonville Carrots*

22~Southwestern Chicken Pot Pie*

23~Hot Subs, spinach Chicken Curry Salad

24~Pioneer Woman’s Sloppy Joes

25~Road Trip with HSY

26~Road Trip with HSY

27~Ginger~Peach Glazed Ham*, Cheesy Potatoes

28~Pioneer Woman’s Beef and Bean Burritos


There are some new recipes that I try and think “eh..maybe I would make it again”‘  Then there are times when it is a home run for all, or most I should say.  Gavin, he’s my pickiest eater of the bunch, even pickier that Matt.  However, tonight something strange happened.  I have been joining my “dear friend” in cooking through a slow cooker article from Midwest Living and I tried something fabulous.  It was so simple and easy I thought it would be a dud (because quite often lots of fuss= fab dinners!) Everyone loved this dish, and Gavin…well he asked for seconds.  He licked his plate clean not once, but twice!  So here it is, we will be adding it to our “Family Favorites” list…

2lbs of boneless skinless chicken breast

place in crock pot

then mix

1/4 C butter

1 pk dry Italian dressing mix

1 can cream of mushroom soup ( I know, I NEVER use this stuff, but trust me on this one!)

4oz cream cheese spread with chives and onions (I used Meijer brand)

1/2 cup chicken stock or broth

Mix it all up and pour over the chicken and let it cook 5-6 hours on high

Now, here is where my recipe says to serve it over rice or angel hair pasta, but the smell coming from my kitchen was screaming egg noodles!  Try it and see if you hear the same thing.

I cooked the egg noodles and mixed them in to the slow cooker and served with steamed green beans with sea salt.  Yum!

There are so many little things that can make a house feel like a home.  New friends feel like old friends.  A church feel like family.  Here are just a few things that have made us feel at home…….

The sound of children thundering through the upstairs while imagining it is another world

Our walls being painted the same color as our previous home…we had no idea how much we loved these colors

The smell of laundry coming up from the basement on a very productive day

Hooks full of handmade hooded towels disguised as exotic animals at the end of the stairs

A  new apron..enough said

A kitchen full of chatter, kids, and clatter

Friends on Sunday mornings

Friends on Wednesday nights

Sweet spots to sit and have coffee with the Lord early in the morning

A full house every Sunday night

So many people, so eager to help

Wonderful little hills for sledding all around the house

New, beautiful bedding for the girls…sweet answers to prayer

The laugh and smile of a little red-headed baby boy

A cozy snuggle with my hubby late at night

The distinct smell of the church, freshly cleaned, reminding me of our first visit here

Cookbooks nestled next to the table so I can refer to them often

The possibilities of the den…soon to be a family gathering place

Teachers who truly love and care for our children

So many things and people have made us feel so much at home here…So excited to see what is yet to come.

I have no idea why this is called Christmas Salad.  I asked the friend who gave it to me, and she had no idea why it was named Christmas Salad either.  It is a wonderful dressing for any day…and I suppose on Christmas as well.

Spring mix salad greens

mandarin orange segments, cut in half

red grapes, cut in half

candied pecans ( melt some sugar, add warm pecans, and spread out immediately)


cider vinegar

vegetable oil


So sorry, I have yet to write down the measurements for the dressing.  It was given to me as a “to taste” thing.  I will update once I measure it out.

I have a friend who makes great salads.  She gave me this recipe and the next time I made it…she asked for the recipe!  The only difference is the cheese I used in the salad itself.  Here it is, and you can switch it up by changing the toppings and cheese.

1/2C vegitable oil

1/2 C sugar

1/2C white vinegar

1t dry mustard powder

1t dry onion

1t poppyseed

mix together and store in refrigerator

As for the salad itself, I like to use

Spring mix or another darker lettuce blend

sliced  fruit, such as pear, green apple, or fresh strawberries

dried cranberries, or dried cherries

chopped pecans

and a lovely cheese such as shaved asiago or feta

We love biscuits and gravy.  This savory dish will fill your home with the aroma of Thanksgiving day!  Most of my family loves these biscuits, but I will also make a few buttermilk biscuits to serve along with the gravy for a couple of my boys.

Please note, this recipe makes 24 servings. You can divide and freeze accordingly.

2, 6-7lb turkey breasts. Roasted, and cut into chunks

Then in a large stock pot (or in large pan over 2 burners) ;

melt 3/4C butter

then add

2lbs diced carrots

6 diced celery ribs

cook till tender, then add

2T garlic

24 minced fresh sage leaves

4t dried thyme

cook 5 min, then add

1 C flour, stir in to blend


10C turkey stock (canned or homemade)

2C white wine

salt and pepper to taste

simmer for 15 min. and add turkey chunks to the mixture.  Cook for another 15 min at a low simmer.

divide and freeze

Cornmeal Biscuit mix

makes 24

Using a food processor, mix together

4 1/2 C flour

1C plus 2T yellow cornmeal

2T baking powder

2 1/4 t baking soda

2 1/4t salt

4 1/2T sugar

1C plus 2T butter

place 1 1/2 C dry mix in freezer bag for 4 biscuits


When ready to use bring to room temp, and place in bowl. Add 6T buttermilk, stir to form a ball.  On a lightly floured surface, pat into a large square, cut into 4 squares.  Bake on cookie sheet and bake @400 for 15min.

So often I am asked if I share recipes…of course I do.  Where would we be if we all chose to keep delectable yummy goodness to ourselves?  So thus begins this new category on my blog entitled “Recipes for my Dear Friend” .  This will hopefully cut down on the amount of times I e-mail or hand write my most coveted and shared delights. I do have a dear friend, in fact several.  We share our hearts, coffee (or tea)  and recipes of course.  Some dear friends I have known for many sweet years, and some for just a while.  So enjoy, and if you ever want any recipe from me just ask me if it is posted for you… my” dear friend”.