Tuesday, April 22, 2014

New But Classic

BAP and SSP love meatballs.  They are often requested when Daddy is out for the evening. One week we ate Porcupine Meatballs every night. Tonight I thought I would try a variation of classic meatballs. I think the boys will love them, since there is cheese in every bite. Mmmm...  I will serve with pasta, garlic bread (if it is wanted) and of course steamed broccoli.

Stuffed Meatballs Simmered in Sauce
adapted from:

1 T olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 (28oz) can crushed tomatoes
1 t Italian Seasoning
1 t salt
1/4 t pepper

1 large onion, finely chopped
1 egg
1 garlic clove, minced
1 t salt
1/2 cup oatmeal
1 t Italian Seasoning
1/2 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese
8oz ground beef
8oz Italian sausage
3 string cheeses (cut into 4ths)
olive oil

For the sauce. In a dutch oven heat olive oil. Add onions; saute until translucent.  Add tomatoes, Italian Seasoning, salt and pepper. Reduce heat to low and simmer at least 20minutes.
For meatballs.  Preheat oven to 400.  In a large bowl combine all ingredients (except olive oil and string cheese). Form into 12 meatballs.  Stuff one chunk of string cheese in center. Roll and make sure cheese is covered.  Place in greased 9x13pan.  Brush with olive oil.  Bake 20minutes.  Remove from oven and place in simmering sauce.  Cook for an additional 20minutes.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter

Happy Easter!  Jesus Christ is risen. He is risen indeed; Alleluia!  Today we celebrate with gooey cinnamon rolls.  These rolls are splendid. Even though I have never had a cinnabon cinnamon roll, these were outstanding; even if they are gluten free.  BAP loved them too; he had 2 (and probably would have eaten the whole pan if I would have let him).

Cinnamon Rolls
adapted from:

2/3 cup milk, warmed
2 T butter, melted
1 T yeast
1/4 cup white sugar
1 1/2 cups gluten free flour mix
1/2 t baking soda
1 T baking powder
1 egg
2T olive oil
1/2 t vanilla

1/4 cup butter, softened
2 T cinnamon sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar

4 T butter, softened
4oz cream cheese
1 1/4 cup powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 10inch cast iron skillet.
In a mixing bowl combine milk, butter and yeast with sugar; add egg, oil and vanilla.  In a separate bowl combine flour with baking powder and baking soda.  Stir until just combined.  Dump on to a greased piece of parchment paper.  Pat out with greased fingers into a 12inch square.  Smear with softened butter; sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and brown sugar. Using the parchment paper as a guide, roll up jelly roll style.  Cut into 8 pieces. Place in cast iron skillet.  Bake for 25minutes. While rolls are baking mix frosting ingredients until smooth.  When cinnamon rolls come out of the oven, drizzle with frosting.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Wonderful Sweet Boy

Today is BAP sixth birthday.  He is beyond thrilled.  However we will not fully celebrate today since it is Holy Thursday, the start of the Holy Triduum.  Instead we will party on Easter.  About a week ago I made some meatballs for dinner. BAP was a bit skeptical since there were veggies included in the pan.  However after trying them he declared them delcious.  This recipe is for him; he even helped make it.  HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BAP! We love you.

Sweet & Sour Meatballs
adapted from:

2 pounds ground beef
2 eggs
1/2 cup oats
1 t salt
1/4 t pepper
1/4 t garlic powder
1 1/2 t Worcestershire sauce

1 cup brown sugar
3 T cornstarch
1 3/4 cup pineapple juice (from a 20oz can of pineapple chunks with enough water added to equal)
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 1/2 T soy sauce
1 1/2 t Worcestershire sauce
pineapple tidbits
1 chopped bell pepper
1/2 onion, sliced thin and in half

Combine all meatball ingredients in a bowl. Form into 30 individual meatballs. Brown in hot oil. Set aside in a greased 9x13pan.  In a saucepan, combine brown sugar, cornstarch, pineapple juice/water, vinegar, soy sauce, and Worcestershire sauce. Heat over medium heat until thickened. Pour over meatballs.  Top with bell pepper, pineapple and onions.  Bake at 350 for 30-45minutes. Serve over rice or noodles (I did brown rice).

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Family Favorite

Growing up I only remember having this once.  However it was a staple for my husband; many easy casseroles were. He loves this casserole; as do BAP and SSP.  After hard grueling work as a CPA, my husband on occasion desires some old fashioned comfort food.  This recipe did the trick.

Crockpot Tater Tot Casserole
adapted from:

2pounds ground beef
1/2 large onion, diced
1 T minced garlic
1 t garlic powder
24oz tater tots
3 1/2 cups frozen veggies (I had a mix of corn, beans, peas and carrots)
1 can potato broccoli and cheddar soup (like this)
1/2 cup milk
1 1/2 cup shredded cheese
1/2 cup shredded cheese

Brown and drain ground beef with onion. Stir in salt/pepper/garlic powder. Put half the tater tots on the bottom of a large greased crockpot (mine is 6qt). Sprinkle with ground beef mixture. Pour UNthawed veggies on top. Top with 1 1/2cups shredded cheese. Pour soup and milk over.  Top with remaining tater tots.  Cook on LOW for 3hours. Then during last 15minutes of cooking top with remaining cheese; cover and watch it melt.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Well Done, Faithful Crockpot

About a month ago I made some delicious pulled pork.  I had some apple juice that I needed to use and so this recipe was dinner.  I love that it was a cinch to make and put together.  We loved it.

Apple Cider Pulled Pork
adapted from:

2 pounds pork sirloin roast
1 red onion, sliced
1 cup apple juice
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 t cinnamon

Place half the onions in a greased crockpot. Place pork on top of  the onions. In a measuring cup stir together the cider, vinegar, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt/pepper. Pour over roast. Top with remaining onions.  Cook on LOW 6-8hours. Shred with two forks. Serve with buns and BBQ sauce.  Superb!

Friday, April 11, 2014

What Is That...Tofu?!

Yes, I did buy tofu...but won't ever do it again!  I was looking for a protein alternative for meatless Fridays during Lent (so I bought a 4 pack).  It was not bad but not the best either.  I think I will just do meatless, in the old fashioned rice and beans sort of way....unless I try making tofu again with Mexican seasoning instead of Asian flair.

Vegetarian Lettuce Wraps
adapted from:

1 (14oz) Firm Tofu, pour water off
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 t sesame oil
1/4 t powdered ginger
1T sugar

2T Sriracha sauce
1T maple syrup
2 t sesame oil

In a non stick pan drizzle about 2 T olive oil.  Dump in drained tofu.  "Brown" as you would do ground beef for tacos/spaghetti.  Pour in soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger and sugar.  Mix around until all (or most) liquid is evaporated. In a small bowl combine Sriracha, syrup and sesame oil. Serve in bibb lettuce leaves (wrapped up taco style) and drizzled with sauce.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Old Rut

Why is that I seem to fall in the "old rut" ? Whenever my husband is busy on the job, the boys and I seem to enjoy the same things EVERY time.  Tonight I thought I would make a new and improved version of our stand-by of Dino bones.  I have so many rice krispies (I bought several bags, to satisfy that krispie treat tooth - the last batch was really sweet so further makings have been put on hold).

Funky Dino Bones
adapted from:

1 cup butter, melted
3 T Dijon mustard

2 1/2 cups rice krispie cereal
3/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1 packet Ranch Dressing mix

6 chicken breasts, halved and each half cut into 3 or 4 pieces

In a bowl combine melted butter and mustard stir well.  In another bowl combine cereal (slightly crushed), cheese and ranch dressing mix.  Place a piece of parchment paper on 2 cookie sheets. Grease well. Dip chicken in butter/mustard mixture.  Then in rice krispie mixture. Coat well.  Place each 'bone' on the rack (about 3 full breasts per rack).  Lightly spray with cooking spray. Bake at 350 for 45minutes until golden. Enjoy with your favorite dipping sauces (Ranch, ketchup, bbq sauce, etc).