Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Kit layout

Here's another layout I created using my Inspired to Scrap Jan. kit.  I added the pink cardstock and the flowers from my stash.  I used this for one of my challenges during the Whimsical Winter Crop.  Have you used your kit yet?

Pumpkin Biscuits

I have been out of the habit of sharing recipes so I am trying to get back into it.  I love browsing through other blogs to find new recipes so I want to share in the fun. :)

We've made these several times and they are soft and yummy. My oven never gets quite hot enough...it usually hovers just above 400.  Even so, these still turn out tasty. This photo is not the best...it was the last lonely biscuit...a little thin from being part of the third round of cut outs.  But I forgot to take a picture of the nicer ones. LOL Anyhow, we had these with Orange Honey Butter which was fun for a change but I think we prefer plain old butter.  These are not too sweet...just a little.  They are a great with almost any sort of meal!

Pumpkin Biscuits
2  cups  all-purpose flour (add more if sticky)
3  tablespoons  sugar
2  teaspoons  baking powder
1  teaspoon  ground cinnamon
1/2  teaspoon  baking soda
1/2  teaspoon  salt
1/4  teaspoon  ground nutmeg
1/4  cup  chilled butter, cut into small pieces
3/4  cup  fat-free buttermilk (Or combine 3/4 TBS white vinegar with 3/4 cup skim milk)
1/2  cup  canned pumpkin

1. Preheat oven to 450º.
2. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Combine flour and next 6 ingredients (flour through nutmeg); cut in chilled butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal.
3. Combine buttermilk and pumpkin; add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead lightly 5 times. (I don't usually even knead that much...just enough to barely make the dough hold together...you don't want to over work dough for biscuits.)
4. Roll or gently pat dough to about 1/2-inch thickness (I make them more like 3/4-1 inch thick). Cut into 12 biscuits with a 2 1/2-inch biscuit cutter. Place the biscuits on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray.
5. Bake at 450° for about 11 minutes or until golden. Serve warm with 1/4 cup Orange-Honey Butter.

Orange Honey Butter
Mix 1/4 cup softened butter with 2 tsp honey and 1/2 tsp grated orange peel. Add more honey or orange to your taste.


Monday, January 17, 2011

Menu Planning Monday

Another week of meal plan sharing...yay me! :)

We tried a new blueberry muffin recipe this morning-yummo. The recipe is from Smitten Kitchen- http://smittenkitchen.com/2010/08/perfect-blueberry-muffins/ . We made them as mini muffins.  It made exactly 24 nice "big" fluffy mini's. It is always so cute when the kids are waiting for treats to bake (Ellie does this funny little trying-not-to-smile-smile. LOL)

Tried any new recipes lately? 

Here's our plan for the week.  Easy stuff...you know, since I have sooooooo much time to spend cooking in the kitchen. ;)
Monday- Stinky Chicken (don't let the name fool you...this is delicious! It's a recipe from the Scrapshare cookbook...but basically chicken, potatoes and green beans baked with butter and a packet of Italian dressing mix).
Tuesday- Garlic Shrimp, grilled veggies, rice
Wednesday- Tacos
Thursday- Chicken and lentil soup (been on the menu for a couple of weeks and it keeps getting pushed back!), cornbread muffins (I will try to remember to get a photo of these...it's an easy and tasty recipe I have been making for a few years!)
Friday- Kielbasa with beans and rice
Saturday-Fried rice with meat and veggies (whatever we have...I make it up as I go!), Egg Foo Young
Sunday-Crockpot italian cream cheese chicken over pasta, a veggie

Find more meal plans and recipes at http://www.orgjunkie.com/

What are you making this week?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Whimsical Winter Crop!

We have a big crop going on this weekend!  I hope you will join us for fun, challenges, games and prizes!

You could win one of these:

Or something else fun!  We'll also have some great class and kit specials going on!!
See you there. :)

Spinach Salad

We have two favorite spinach salad recipes.  I am sure I posted these before but when I made all of the blog changes, I accidentally deleted a bunch. Anyhow, here they are! I hope you enjoy them. :)

Warm Spinach and Mushroom Salad

4 slices bacon
2 eggs
2 teaspoons white sugar
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 tablespoons water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 pound spinach
1/4 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced

Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Crumble and set aside. Reserve 2 tablespoons bacon fat.
Place eggs in a saucepan and cover completely with cold water. Bring water to a boil. Cover, remove from heat, and let eggs stand in hot water for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from hot water, cool, peel and cut in wedges.
Return 2 tablespoons bacon fat to skillet, stir in sugar, vinegar, water and salt. Keep warm.
Wash and remove stems from spinach, dry thoroughly and break into pieces in salad bowl. Pour warm dressing over and toss until coated.
Top salad with mushrooms and bacon, garnish with egg.

Spinach Salad (from my friend, Christine)

(beware of little fingers stealing the "goodies" out of this! LOL)

Fresh Spinach leaves
Pine Nuts

¼ cup each of balsamic vinegar and olive oil
1-3 cloves crushed garlic cloves
4 TBS brown sugar
*Combine first three ingredients in a large bowl. Mix dressing ingredients then toss everything together when ready to serve.

Black Bean Soup

Here's an easy and tasty recipe I said I'd share with you.  This is filling and is low in calories/WW points. I am not familiar with the new WW points plus, so this is the old point value.

Black Bean Soup
(the original recipe is "spicy" black bean soup but my kids can't handle too much spice so I took it out.  We did however add a big scoop of spicy salsa to the adult bowls this time and it was a yummy addition.) I think this one is from my friend, Becky. :)

Black Bean Soup
POINTS® Value: 3
Servings: 8 (about 1 ½ cups each)
1 medium onion(s), finely chopped
4 medium garlic clove(s), minced
3- 15 oz cans canned black beans, undrained
1 tsp ground cumin (or more!!)
14 1/2 oz fat-free
chicken broth, or vegetable broth
10 oz canned tomatoes with green chilies,

11 oz canned yellow corn, drained

1. Coat bottom of a large stockpot with cooking spray. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until onions are soft but not brown, about 5 minutes.
2. Place one can of beans in blender; add sautéed onion mixture and cumin. Cover and blend on high until smooth, about 30 seconds. Pour mixture back into stockpot. (**I ususally just combine steps 2 and 3 and blend it all in the pot with my hand blender.  I also blend the tomatoes so my kids don't eat around them. lol).
3. Place second can of beans and broth in blender and puree until smooth; add to stockpot.
4. Stir third can of beans (do not puree first), tomatoes and green chilies, and corn into stockpot. Bring to a boil, lower heat to medium and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes.

**Serve with chips, avacado or toppings of your choice.  (Extra pts.)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Sketches, sketches and more sketches! (plus a peek!)

I am so excited about our next class- a sketch class! (Feb.1-15) We have 15 sketches plus a couple of bonus double page sketches to share along with samples, tips and techniques by our Inspired to Scrap Design Team and Guest Designers.

I love sketches because you can use them and adapt them to fit your needs...use any papers, photos, etc. that you want.  I also love the challenge of trying to get them all completed during the class period (without deadlines, I don't think I would ever get any scrapping done!)

Here's a peek at one of my sketches this class-
I hope you will consider joining us and challenging yourself to complete at least 15 layouts in February!  We have several fun prizes lined up- little things and big things!!! It's going to be a blast...see you there.


Monday, January 3, 2011

Menu Planning Monday

 Happy Monday!  This is going to be a really crazy busy month for me...menu planning is going to help ease a bit of the stress and help us stick to our budget.  I have healthy meals planned for the week to help us stick to our healthy eating goals (baked and ate too many cookies last month! LOL) This is an old photo that I have already posted, but I don't have a new one right now so this will have to do. :) This is tonight's dinner- yum!

Do you have a plan for the week? Here's mine-

Monday- Lean and Green Chili, steamed cauliflower
Tuesday- Tacos and beans
Wednesday- CP Santa Fe Chicken, rice
Thursday- Black bean soup with chips and guacamole (I can't believe I haven't shared this recipe...I will take a pic and post it later in the week!)
Friday- Garlic chicken with broccoli
Saturday- Split Pea soup with bread
Sunday- Lentil and chicken soup
For more menu planning ideas, visit http://www.orgjunkie.com/ !!  

My lovely blog visitors