Monday, December 9, 2013

Nutchos Treats


I started participating in a cookie exchange 3 years ago with my neighbour and her circle of friends. The first year I had NEVER done an exchange before, read the instructions wrong, and didn't make enough cookies. I was soooo embarrassed. I was also completely shocked when I was asked back the next year! And thank goodness I was because someone makes these every year and I realllllly wanted the recipe! 

I asked her what they were called and how to make them and I've made them several times since. The combination of the sweet chocolate and salty chips and peanuts is ADDICTIVE. You've been warned...

Nutchos Treats

2 10 oz bags semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 10 oz bag peanut butter chips
2 cups roasted salted peanuts
1 bag (7oz) plain rippled potato chips

1. In a double boiler melt the chocolate and peanut butter chips together.
2. In a seperate bowl add the peanuts and crushed potato chips. 
3. Pour the chocolate mixture over the chip/peanut mixture and mix to coat thoroughly.
4. Drop by the tablespoonful into waxed paper lined baking sheets and refrigerate until set.

Store in the fridge.

Makes about 6 dozen.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Hamburger Helper - Momma's Little Secret

So tonight I'm flying solo on the whole dinner/bathtime/bedtime deal. It's a fairly regular occurrence with a 12 hour shift working husband. Today was especially crazy though because right after school pick up my youngest daughter had ballet. Monday is a rush rush rush day. 

I wasn't thinking (brain was still on weekend mode) and I forgot to plan dinner. I went down to the pantry in my basement and looked around. There I spotted these:


I don't usually make this sort of thing, I tend to cook from scratch 85% of the time, but I was told by the good people over at General Mills that they've tweaked the recipes and reduced the sodium in their Hamburger Helper meals so I pulled the Creamy Stroganoff off the shelf and headed to the freezer. Luckily I had some precooked hamburger in there thanks to some wise words of advice from my friend Tara, so I pulled that out too. 

Dinner came together in minutes. My kids loved the pasta and I loved that there was only one pan to clean!


If you haven't tried Hamburger Helper in a while, or have never had it, I suggest you try it. It has saved our diner time a few times already!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Homemade Raspberry Cheesecake Ice Cream


I got an ice cream maker this summer. It was a gift and I was so excited. It's something I've always wanted but probably would never have bought myself. My excitement was a pale comparison though to my kids'. The screaming and jumpy-clapping and pleas to make strawberry ice cream RIGHT NOW PLEEEEEEEASE were epic. 

Sadly we discovered we had to wait 24 hours for the bowl to freeze, which turned out to be a stroke of luck because I had NO idea how to actually make ice cream! I read a few recipes, found a chocolate one that sounded good and after 24 hours of "is it ready yet?" every 20 minutes we made our first batch of ice cream. And it was glorious! There really is nothing like homemade.


 

We tried a few more flavours and then I got brave and decided to create my own recipe. My first thought when I was trying to decide what to make was cheesecake. I had just been to my favourite local farm stand and bought a big basket of raspberries and I was dying to use them.  It was a match made in heaven. 

If you don't have an ice cream maker there are tutorials online on how to do it "the old-fashioned way" that are fun and entertaining for the kids. 




Print this recipe


Homemade Raspberry Cheesecake Ice Cream    

3 cups heavy cream
1 cup whole milk
150 g whipped cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
2 cups fresh raspberries
2 tbsp sugar

Directions:

1. Put the raspberries and 2 tbsp of sugar into a bowl and mix to coat. Set aside and allow to macerate*.
2. Pour the cream and milk into a heavy bottomed saucepan and place over medium-low heat.
3. Add the sugar to the milk/cream mixture and store until the sugar is dissolved.
4. Remove from the heat and put in the fridge for an hour to cool.
5. Remove from the fridge and using a hand mixer, begin to whip the milk/cream/sugar mixture and add the vanilla and cream cheese. Blend until thoroughly combined.
6. Pour into an ice cream maker and follow your appliance's manufacturer instructions.
7. Pour 1/2 the ice cream into a plastic container and top with 1/2 the raspberries and juice. Top with the remaining ice cream and then the raspberries.
8. Pu the ice cream into the freezer and allow to set for a few hours.

Scoop and serve when the ice cream has reached desired consistency.


 *macerate - to soften or break up by soaking. The sugar does this to the berries.

Print this recipe  

Friday, June 7, 2013

Life Made Delicious – Recipe round-up

Hi folks! I've been MIA from blogging for a while, this end of school year stuff has me running all over like a chicken with my head cut off. And when I AM home I have a VERY precocious one year old who has been keeping me on my toes. Let's just say I'm regretting my kitchen reorganization as I hear muffin tins and cooling racks flying across the kitchen floor 20 times a day.

I wanted to take a minute to show you what I've been posting over at my LMD blog in case you've forgotten to go over there to check it out!

Easter Trifle

Yes, I know Easter is over with, but I can't be the only one with chocolate still kicking around right? 




Maple Pecan Cheese Spread

Do you say puh-cahn or pee-can? I'm with the south on this and pronounce it puh-cahn, but either way you say it this is one tasty little nibbly!




Cream puffs that don't take hours to make? Whaaaa? Yes, I'm totally serious. Try them.


There will be more to come shortly as I put to bed all the school registration papers, Home and School Association calendars, and volunteer luncheons/school concerts/ field trips and get back to work!

Amanda

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Stop! Thief!

Twice in the past two weeks I have been alerted to people posting my recipes on their Facebook pages, without my permission and without any credit to me or links to my blog. Obviously, my site is viewable to the world. Anyone can come to my blog, view my recipes and photos, download one of my lovingly created PDFs and print it off to use at home. I want to share. That was my goal.

But along with that my blog is a record of family recipes and recipes I've created to pass down to my kids. A lot of work goes into each post. Research, testing, photography, editing, writing, more editing, promotion and a little blood, sweat and tears. Every time these Facebook page administrators copy my photos and text and paste them onto their pages, without any reference to the fact that I WROTE IT AND THEY DIDN'T it's plagiarism, plain and simple. But on top of that it's a little piece of my family history broken off and passed off as someone else's, and that's what really bothers me.

Yes I don't earn a living off my site, but I could, if traffic were routed to my site instead of just stealing my text and photos. So please, if you want to repost one of my blog recipes, respect the law, respect Internet ethics, respect ME and ask permission. Chances are I'll be flattered and give it whole-heartedly. And then do the right thing and link back to my site instead of just taking it all and leaving me in the dust pretending that it's your content. Cause it's wrong. It's illegal. And it's a really douchebag thing to do.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Italian Wedding Soup



I've been on a big soup kick lately. I'm enjoying always having a pot on the stove for anyone to enjoy when they get hungry.

For some strange reason I had a craving for Italian Wedding Soup yesterday. It's weird because I've only ever had it once, and that was about 10 years ago! That's a long time to hold out on a second taste. There are a ton of variations to this recipe based on which region of Italy it's coming from. I texted my friend Sara whose husband is Italian and asked her for her recipe. She told me how her husband's nonna taught her how to make it, and then I threw my own spin on it. I must have done something right because my picky two year old passed up pizza for a bowl and gobbled it up! And the best thing about this soup? It's ready to eat in half an hour!


For another great soup recipe, check out my Crockpot Beef and Barley Soup recipe on my LMD blog.

Printer Friendly Recipe


Italian Wedding Soup

1/2 lb lean ground
1/2 lb ground pork
1/4 cup finely diced onion
1/4 cup finely diced parsley
1 egg
1/4 cup light cream
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup panko (bread crumbs)
3 cups chicken stock
3 cups water
2/3 cups acini di pepe pasta
3 cups spinach

Directions:

1. Mix together the beef, pork, onion, parsley, egg, cream, garlic and panko until thoroughly incorporated.
2. Roll into 1/2 " meatballs and set aside.
3. Bring the chicken stock and water to a slow boil and drop in the meatballs.
4. Season with salt to taste and add the pasta and spinach.
5. Simmer until pasta is cooked.
6. Serve with fresh grated Parmesan.

Printer Friendly Recipe

Friday, February 1, 2013

Good Eats Friday: Superbowl Eats

I recently joined a little Facebook group with other food bloggers in an attempt to become inspired and get my blogging mojo back. Seems to be working cause Here I Am!

Every week we'll be sharing recipes with each other and YOU! This week I pulled a recipe from my archives for Superbowl. My One Bite Potato Skins are easy and the perfect carb for your superbowl spread. Want some more ideas? Here you go:




Think outside the box with Andrea's Thai Salmon Burger Sliders from A Peek Inside the Fishbowl! I never think of salmon for guy food, but these would be amazing!



Or how about a spin on traditional Chili with Don's Leeky Chilee from Foodie Prints. White chili will definitely leave an impression with your guests!




How about Pub Style Chicken Curry from Candace at Life In Pleasantville? They play football in India! .... What do you mean it's not the same thing? Pfft, whatever! There's a ball... and kicking.... same thing.

Not into the Superbowl Sunday bru ha ha? Then sit down with a glass of wine, or cup of tea, and read this post by my friend Becky about  How To Avoid Dinner Planning Stress over at A Little Bit of Momsense and get a jump on next week's dinners!

Happy eating!
Go Niners! (my husband made me say that!)


Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Elephant Ears


I grew up in and around Ottawa, Ontario Canada. It is a beautiful city and I have many MANY fond memories of living there. One of the biggest is going to Winterlude. If you're unfamiliar with Winterlude go ahead and click here and check it out... I'll wait... 

For a quick break down, Winterlude is a winter festival in Ottawa that takes place the first three weeks in February with attractions all over the city, the biggest being skating on the Rideau Canal. You bundle up, strap on your skates, and take a trip down the largest skating rink in the world while looking at snow sculptures and sipping on hot chocolate. 

When you're tired from skating you head over to a BeaverTails shack and get yourself a piping hot, fresh from the fryer, coated in cinnamon and sugar doughy treat. To me, nothing says winter more than sitting in a snow bank eating a BeaverTails pastry with my mitts on so my fingers don't freeze off!

Since we moved almost 8 years ago I haven't made it back for Winterlude. I know some year soon I will because I want my kids to experience it. In the mean time, I remembered that my grandma had a recipe for something very similar, which she called Elephant Ears! I dug around in the stack of cookbooks I have from her and found it today and got to work. My kids had their first yummy fried dough treat while watching the snow softly falling. Our kitchen might not have the caché of the world's largest skating rink, but at least they're getting a taste for one of my most beloved childhood memories (BTW, they LOVED them!). I can't wait to take them for a real BeaverTails pastries someday.


Elephant Ears

2.5 cups warm water (80-90˚F)
3 cups all-purpose white flour
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp dry active yeast

vegetable oil
butter, melted
cinnamon
sugar

Instructions:

1. Mix the flours together and set aside.
2. To the warm water add the sugar and yeast. Stir and cover, let sit for 10 minutes.
3. Add water/yeast mixture to the flour mixture and mix until it forms like bread dough (add more flour/water as necessary).
4. Take the dough out of the bowl and knead for about 5 minutes.
5. Put the dough back into the bowl and cover with a tea towel and let rise for 3 hours.
6. Take the dough out of the bowl and knead again for a few minutes and then shape into a log.
7. Cut the log into 1" slices and roll out with a rolling pin to between 1/4" and 1/2" thick.
8. Heat about an inch of oil in a deep frying pan to 375˚F.
9. Gently place a piece of rolled out dough into the oil. Fry until lightly golden brown flipping to cook both sides. This only take a minute or so.
10. Remove from the oil and place onto paper towels to drain.
11. Melt butter and brush over one side of the beaver tail. Place dough butter side down into a mixture of cinnamon and sugar to coat and enjoy!

For some other great toppings why not try Nutella and whipped cream, maple syrup or even garlic butter and shredded cheese!


Sunday, November 11, 2012

Chia Seed Gel

Chia Seeds (yes, the very same Chia that you see advertised in Chia Pets) are amazing. They're tiny little round, black or white seeds (that somewhat resemble poppy seeds) that when come into contact with moisture, form a gel coating around itself. This gel coating, comprised of water and cellulose, more than double their bulk and help you to feel full with less food ('a dieter's dream' they're called) and are packed with a lot of goodness. 

Chia seeds are full of protein, fiber and have more Omega 3s per gram than salmon! They keep you feeling full longer and give you more energy than a cup of espresso. And because of their unique structure and water retention, you can turn them into a gel and use the gel to replace up to half the required fats in any recipe reducing the fat and increasing the fiber and protein. Amazing right? I'm hooked! I like to add a teaspoon of chia to my yogurt, I sprinkle it on my salads and I'm just starting to experiment with it in baking. Google Chia Seeds for yourself and read up on this amazing ancient grain. Seriously. Do it.