The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 271 – 277 (Week 40)

October 8, 2012 at 10:25 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Hello again friends, and welcome back!  Hope you’ve all had a perfectly wonderful week, and a glorious weekend!  Here we are at Monday again, I know, I’m behind, but I think you’ll forgive me…

Last week was interesting.  Work was crazy, end of the month always is, but this one was crazier than the last few.  Half our group is new people, less than 3 months in, and the senior coordinator was out for the week, so I became the go-to person.  I know I am approachable, I try very hard to be that way, but I felt like there were whole days where I didn’t get any of my own work done because I was so busy answering everyone else’s questions!  It’s nice to be needed again, but come on…

Anyway, all the family were relatively healthy for a change, knock on wood!  William didn’t miss any school.  Mike missed one day of work, but I think it was more of a mental health kind of day.  James got called in for extra hours at his job, makes for a nice pay check.  I think I need to plan a day off, just for me…

So I did a little cooking during the week, nothing Earth shattering, but some fun new dishes.  Of course, I pretty much HAD to cook considering I spent almost $500 in groceries last weekend.  But it all came in handy, and I got to try out the new recipes!  YEAH!  Looking forward to trying even more new stuff this weekend, trying to put together a plan for what I want to cook, make sure I have everything I need on hand.  Working on trimming down the shopping list, trimming down the grocery budget, and maybe trimming down the family a little!

Anyway, here we go…


Mongolian Beef

1/2 lb beef tenderloin, thinly sliced against the grain

1 Tbsp corn starch

2 cloves minced garlic

1/4 tsp ground ginger

3 Tbsp soy sauce

1 1/2 Tbsp honey or agave nectar or sugar

1 tsp rice wine or dry sherry

2 Tbsp water

3 green onions, cut into 1″ pieces, green part only

1-2 Tbsp vegetable oil or canola oil

Stir together soy sauce, honey, water and wine.  Set aside.

Heat oil in pan over medium heat.  Dredge the beef in corn starch, shake off the excess.  Add the beef to the hot pan and quickly saute until lightly browned.

Add in garlic and ginger, saute for a few seconds.  Add the sauce you set aside earlier.  The sauce should quickly come to a boil.  Lower heat and simmer, stirring constantly.  Continue to cook until the sauce thickens and glazes the beef.

Toss in the green onions at the last minute, mix, and serve!

Adapted from a recipe I found on cHow Divine

Sorry, I didn’t get photos, but then mine didn’t look anywhere near as pretty as hers did!  But it was yummy…

Orange Chicken

4 boneless skinless chicken thighs, trimmed of excess skin and fat (as much as you can without being too anal) and cut into bite sized pieces

1 Tbsp orange flavoring

1 Tbsp garlic, minced

1 Tsp ground ginger

2 Tbsp honey

1 Tsp corn starch

2 Tbsp vegetable oil plus 1 Tsp sesame oil for frying

Put the oils in a large skillet, heat on medium.  Add in chicken, saute until no longer pink.  Add in orange, garlic, ginger, honey and corn starch, mixing well to coat chicken, sauce will thicken quickly.  When chicken is done through, remove from heat and serve!  Really good with fresh steamed rice…

Vegetable Egg Rolls

1 head cabbage, shredded very fine

12 baby carrots, shredded very fine

2 Tbsp Hoisin sauce

1 Tbsp teriyaki sauce

1 Pkg egg roll wrappers

Oil for frying

Mix cabbage, carrots and sauces together.  Spoon about 2 Tbsp of the mixture into an egg roll wrapper, fold up bottom and tuck in filling.  Fold in two side corners, dampen final corner and roll closed.

Fry about 2 minutes per side in hot oil until golden brown.  Serve with your favorite dipping sauce.

Left over rolls (those supper yummy half whole wheat Virginia light rolls I made last weekend…)


SW Egg rolls with cheese

I had made about 3 dozen of those south west style egg rolls with the taco seasoned beef and black beans inside, we had 17 left after our little munch fest.  Well, I put those in a big deep pan, covered them with shredded cheese and baked them at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes.  They crisped up a little on the exposed edges, but sort of tasted like mini burritos with the melted cheese, and made for a nice meal!


Pork Chops Everglades

6 boneless skinless porkchops

Everglades original seasoning (the green kind)

Heat a large skillet over medium, add in the chops.  Sprinkle over Everglades seasoning instead of salt and pepper, make sure you sprinkle both sides (when you turn them).  I have no idea how much we used, but it sort of looked like we had used it in place of salt and pepper, so liberally sprinkled, but not coated with seasoning.  Saute until done through and browned on the outside.

Sauteed green beans with garlic

About 1/2 lb fresh green beans, ends removed, cut into 1″ pieces

1 Tbsp minced garlic

3 Tbsp butter

Melt butter in large skillet over medium heat, add in garlic, mix a little, add in green beans and saute about 10 minutes or until beans are bright green and crisp tender.  Serve!

Fruit Salad

This was a fun fruit salad for me, because William helped me cut up everything!

1 medium Gala apple

1 medium Bartlett pear

1 medium Dragon fruit

About 30 large red grapes

Cut the apple and the pear into 8th wedges, remove seed cores, slice into thin bite sized pieces.

Cut dragon fruit in half.  Spoon white seeded core out of pink skin, making sure to remove all the skin pieces, it’s not edible.  Cut white fruit into small bite sized pieces.

Cut grapes into quarters.

Toss all this together, and serve!


Jet’s Pizza

Yeah, we had take out…  we needed a night off!


Bacon Cheeseburgers

1 lb ground beef

1/2 lb bacon (about 8 pieces)

1 egg

Salt and pepper to taste

Sliced cheese of your choice

Burger buns

Mix ground beef, egg, salt and pepper together, mix VERY well, until beef is really smooth rather than crumbly.  Form into 4 patties.  Fry in a large pan over medium heat, flipping as needed to keep from burning.  Cook until medium well, or however YOU like your burgers.  We like ours ever so slightly pink at the very center and slightly crispy on the outside.

Cook the bacon crispy, break each piece in half, give each burger four half strips of bacon, cheese and toppings of your choice, serve on fresh burger buns, YUM!

Tots – yeah, frozen tots, cooked to package directions, whichever way you like to cook them.  I prefer them fried, but that’s not very healthy, so I usually bake them…  boring, but OK.


Fried Chicken Nuggets

3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, trimmed and cut into small tenders or large nuggets, your choice

1 cup whole wheat flour

1/4 cup Everglades seasoning (the orange version this time)

1 Tbsp fresh ground black pepper

Heat 3-4 Tbsp vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium heat.

Mix the flour and seasonings together in a large shallow bowl.  Add the chicken a few pieces at a time to this mix, let it sit for a minute or two on each side.  Shake off any excess and add to hot pan.  Cook about 4-5 minutes per side, or until done through.  Remove to paper towel lined serving dish.  Cook in batches until all chicken is done.  Serve!

Chicken gravy – made from a mix, yes I cheated a little, but it wasn’t thickening the way I wanted, so I added some of the flour mixture from coating the chicken, made it really tasty!

steamed veggies – broccoli, peas, green beans

Microwave Brownies

4 Tbsp flour

4 Tbsp sugar

2 Tbsp cocoa powder

2 Tbsp oil

2 Tbsp water

Pinch salt

Mix everything together in a coffee mug or shallow bowl.  You can add in a few chocolate chips or some nuts if you want, just don’t go overboard on the chocolate chips, it doesn’t cook as well.  We’ve been adding about 2 Tbsp chocolate chips and about a dozen nuts.  I like pecans, Mike likes almonds, they both work well!

Microwave 1 minute plus 10-15 seconds, allow to cook 5 minutes before serving.

Really good with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top!


We went to Mom’s to celebrate Dad’s birthday, a couple weeks late, but at least we didn’t take all those colds and infections over there with us!  Burgers, baked beans, potato salad, chips…  LOVE picnic food!!

Oh, and I did my nails Saturday, between loads of laundry, tell me what you think!

Had fun with this one!

Anyway, that’s it for last week…  Already working on this week, probably not a lot new, but some good stuff nonetheless…

Until then, eat well, love well, live well!!


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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 264 – 270 (Week 39)

September 30, 2012 at 10:16 pm (Food) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Hello again friends, and welcome back!!

Everyone was actually healthy, no one missed any work or school, feels like we should celebrate!!  And it was a pay week, so of course we went a little overboard this weekend, but that’s nothing new.

The only stories for this week revolve around my fun day yesterday, the rest of the week was kind of quiet.  But, it was a pay week, so we did the Friday night out, more on that a little further down.  And then Saturday…

Started the day getting my nails done, getting my toes done (hurt a bit, but SO worth it!), got my hair cut.  William joined me for this part of the trip, he likes to sit in the massage chair while I get my nails done.   Then we made a quick trip into Winn Dixie to see what meats they had on special.  Got two pot roasts, two packs of boneless pork chops and stir fry beef for $32.

Then it was off to Game Stop to get William the current free character for Pokemon, and he put a game on order.

Next, my first trip to the local Oriental Market.  WOW!  I could spend a whole day in there if I didn’t have William sitting the car waiting!!  Maybe next time…  But I did get some cool food for Saturday movie night.  More on that below.  And I think I found the elephant I want for my desk, but I didn’t want to spend the $8 that day…  kind of glad I didn’t get him this week, since I ended up spending almost $400 on groceries at Walmart later!!  Still haven’t figured out how I spent so much, I didn’t feel like I got that much, but I think prices are going up little by little.  Have to pay more attention to the individual items next time, see if I can figure it out…

So, sort of a “me” day, sort of a “me and William” day, sort of a shopping day, all in all, a very GOOD day, even if it was expensive.


Spaghetti with Beef and Sausage Sauce

1 box Dream Fields angel hair pasta, cooked to package directions

1 pound ground beef

1 pound mild Italian sausage

1 jar of your favorite pasta sauce

Brown and drain ground beef and sausage together, crumbling as fine as you can.  Put the meat back in the pan, add in the sauce, and heat while you cook the pasta.  Serve topped with Parmesan cheese.


Pork Roast Everglades

1/2 pork loin roast, about 2-3 pounds

1 quart water (will NOT cover the roast, that’s OK!!)

1/8 cup original Everglades seasoning (the green one)

Put everything in the crock pot, set on LOW, cook 8-10 hours.

Remove from pot, slice and serve!  We had some steamed veggies along with this, it was YUMMY!!!


Chicken Bacon Ranch Wraps

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts

1 pound bacon

Dry Ranch dressing mix

Flour tortillas

Cook the bacon crispy, set aside.

Clean any excess skin or fat from the chicken, cut into very small pieces, cook over medium heat just until no longer pink.  Sprinkle with about 2-3 Tbsp dry ranch dressing mix, mix well and cook about 2 minutes more.  Remove from heat.

Spoon a couple large spoonfuls of chicken into a tortilla, add in 2 slices bacon, cheese if you want it, and a little bit of prepared ranch dressing, wrap and serve!

Bacon Grilled Cheese

William’s idea…

Basically, we saved a few slices of cooked bacon from the wraps, and put them inside a grilled cheese sandwich, and it was AWESOME!


James brought us Wendy’s for dinner


Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza, Yogurtology, comic book store

Gotta say, the pizza was REALLY good, the yogurt was over priced and just not that good.  The store was cool, and William enjoyed it, but it was just GOOD, not GREAT, and for $20, it should have been AMAZING!!!


Steamed buns with chicken (purchased at the Oriental market – OK, not great)

Steamed dumplings with chicken (same as above)

Fried dumplings with chicken (same as above – would have been better deep fried rather than pan fried)

Quick cheesecake (I bought a graham cracker crust, and a container of Philly pre-made cheesecake filling, and put them together)


Southwest Egg Rolls

Egg Roll wrappers

2 pounds Ground beef

2 cans Black beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 cup Taco seasoning

1 1/2 cups Water

Brown and drain ground beef, add in water, taco seasoning and beans, mix well, cook until sauce thickens, remove from heat, allow to cool at least 1 hour.

Put an egg roll wrapper on a plate, spoon in about 2-3 Tbsp filing.

Fold up bottom, tighten up the filling inside, fold in the sides roll forward, dampen the last open tip of the wrapper and finish rolling.  Repeat with remaining filling and wrappers.

When done, fry in oil over medium heat, about 1-2 minutes per side or until golden brown.  Serve with your favorite salsa.

Vegetarian Egg Rolls

Egg Roll Wrappers

1 head cabbage, shredded extra fine

12 baby carrots, shredded extra fine

3 Tbsp Hoisin sauce

2 Tbsp Teriyaki sauce

Mix the cabbage, carrots and sauces.

Lay an egg roll wrapper on a plate, spoon in about 2 Tbsp filling.

Fold up bottom and tighten up the filling a little.

Fold in the sides, and roll ONCE.

Dampen the last tip with water and finish rolling.

Continue filling wrappers until you run out of filling or wrappers.

When done, fry in oil heated over medium heat, about 1-2 minutes per side or until golden brown.

Remove from oil to paper towels, serve with your favorite sauce, I prefer Duck sauce since the Hoisin is a little spicy.

Southwest Wonton Bites

Wonton wrappers

Leftover filling from the SW egg rolls above

Put the wonton on a plate, put in about 1 tsp filling, dampen two edges of the wrapper.

Fold over into a triangle.

Dampen the two furthest corners and fold in towards each other.

Repeat until you run out of wrappers or filling!

Fry in oil over medium heat, almost exactly 1 minute per side, just a few seconds more maybe, or until golden brown.

Serve with salsa!

Mongolian Beef

About 1 pound stir fry beef

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 tsp ground ginger

3 Tbsp soy sauce

1 1/2 Tbsp honey

1 Tsp rice wine

2 Tbsp water

3 green onions, green part only, cut into 1″ strips

2 Tbsp oil for frying

Put oil in frying pan, heat over medium heat.  Add in beef, cook just until no longer pink.  Mix the rest of the ingredients (except the onion) in a cup, pour over beef, add 1 Tbsp corn starch or flour to thicken, cook about 8-10 minutes or until sauce is slightly thickened.  Add in onions and serve!

Orange Chicken

4 – 5 boneless skinless chicken thighs

2 Tsp orange extract

2 Tbsp honey

1/2 Tsp ground ginger

1 Tsp minced garlic

1 Tbsp flour or corn starch

Trim chicken thighs of any large pieces of skin or fat, cut into very small pieces.  Cook over medium heat with just a touch of oil, cook until no longer pink.  Add in remaining ingredients, stir well, cook just until sauce thickens.  Serve!

Virginia light rolls (sort of!)

This is a recipe I got from my mom, but I have no idea where she got it, and I changed it!

1 Cup + 1 Tbsp milk, warmed about 1 min in microwave

3 Tbsp honey

2 large eggs

6 Tbsp butter cut into small pieces

2 1/4 cups white bread flour

2 cups whole wheat flour

1 1/2 Tsp salt

2 Tsp yeast

4 Tbsp melted butter for brushing

Put milk, honey, eggs and butter into the bread machine pan.

Add in the flours.  Make a small well in the center, add salt and yeast.

Set the machine for DOUGH, hit start and go do something else for an hour!

Turn the dough out onto a floured towel, knead with a little whole wheat flour for just a couple minutes.

Line a 13″ x 9″ baking pan with parchment paper.  Pull globs of dough off the pile, roll into balls and put into pan.  You should get 15 balls, pan should end up 3 across and 5 rows.

Cover, let rise for 45 minutes.

Heat oven to 375 degrees.  Bake 25-28 minutes, brushing with melted butter at the 15 minute mark.

Serve with butter and honey!!

Bacon Egg and Cheese Casserole

12 eggs

1 Cup half and half (fat free)

1/2 cup grated Parmesan

1 cup shredded Mexican blend cheese

1 pound bacon

2 Tbsp flour

Cut the bacon into small pieces, cook until crispy, drain.

Mix the eggs, half and half, cheeses and flour, pour about 2/3 into a greased 13″ x 9″ dish.  Sprinkle about 2/3 of the bacon into the eggs, push it down into the eggs.

Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.  Serve!

Bacon Egg Cheese and Spinach Casserole

Take the rest of the egg mixture and bacon, pour into a greased casserole dish (or in my case a souffle dish), add in about 1 cup frozen spinach thawed.  Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour 15 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.  Serve!

And that’s it!  I cooked all day, and my feet hurt, but it was ALL so good!!

So until next time, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 225 – 228

August 18, 2012 at 10:49 pm (Food) (, , , , , , , , , , )

Yeah, yeah, I’m behind again, but you already knew that, right??  Miss me??  LOL!

What a week!  Work was crazy, but I finally feel like I’m getting a handle on it, but not quite like I’m “one of the gang” yet.  Still feel a little like an outsider.  Loosing another person in a couple weeks, probably getting another new one, too.  It’s like a revolving door!

Got William all set for school, ran into someone I know from a past job, that was kind of cool.

Treated myself to a day out this morning.  Went and got blo0d work done, got my hair trimmed, got my nails and my toes done, went grocery shopping.  What a shopping trip!  Getting ready for back to school lunches, spent over $400 on groceries, but should more than last us two weeks!!

Anyway, it’s movie night, so I’m trying to write this between movies.  We just watched The Hunger Games, and now we’re getting ready to watch Wrath of the Titans.  This could be a very disjointed entry…

Let’s see, Wednesday, we ordered pizza from Jet’s, pepperoni pizza, bacon breadsticks, very good this time!

Thursday was open house at William’s school, we had McDonald’s for dinner.

Friday we went to Five Guys, bacon cheeseburgers, fries, YUM! (and we determined that we are eating out entirely too much!)

And tonight, I made…

Teriyaki Egg Rolls

Egg roll wrappers

1 small head cabbage, shredded

About 6-8 baby carrots, shredded

about 4 Tbsp teriyaki sauce

Diced cooked pork chops

Mix the cabbage, carrots, pork and sauce in a bowl.  Spread about 2 Tbsp of mixture on an egg roll wrapper, fold over bottom, fold in sides, roll towards final tip, dampen tip slightly to seal.  Repeat until you run out of wrappers or filling or both!  Fry in hot oil over medium heat about 3-4 minutes per side.  Serve with your favorite sauce, like sweet and sour, duck sauce or soy sauce.  YUM!

Egg Rolls

Egg roll wrappers

1 small head cabbage, shredded

About 6-8 baby carrots, shredded

about 4 Tbsp soy sauce

Diced cooked pork chops

Mix the cabbage, carrots, pork and sauce in a bowl.  Spread about 2 Tbsp of mixture on an egg roll wrapper, fold over bottom, fold in sides, roll towards final tip, dampen tip slightly to seal.  Repeat until you run out of wrappers or filling or both!  Fry in hot oil over medium heat about 3-4 minutes per side.  Serve with your favorite sauce, like sweet and sour, duck sauce or soy sauce.  YUM!

Egg Roll Bites

Leftover filling from egg rolls

Wonton wrappers

Put about 1 Tsp filling in the middle of a wonton wrapper, dampen two sides, fold over to make a triangle and seal, pinch together two corners so you get sort of a tortellini looking thing, dampen corners so they stick, deep fry until golden brown, serve!

Oh, and I made a cook new sauce to go with the egg rolls…

Home Made Peach Plum Sauce

4 plums, pitted and pureed

2 peaches, pitted and pureed

2 Tbsp vinegar

1 Tbsp brown sugar

1 Tbsp dried onion flakes

1 Tsp crushed dried red pepper flakes (or if you don’t have that, a pinch of cayenne pepper)

1 clove garlic, minced (about 1/2 Tsp)

1/2 Tsp ground ginger

Mix everything in a sauce pan, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, stirring frequently, about 10 minutes, remove from heat and allow to cool before serving.

So, that’s about it for tonight.  Thinking pot roast for Monday, going to Mom’s tomorrow to get James’ car, having burgers again, but home made this time!

So until Monday probably, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 220 – 221

August 11, 2012 at 7:57 pm (Food) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

Hello again friends, and welcome back!  Hope you are all having a relaxing weekend.

Mine started out a little hectic, had to go get a new battery in my car, and let me tell you, I was not happy!  Last time I had to get one, Walmart did this thing where if the battery was less than 4 years old, they prorated the original cost and refunded you part of the purchase price, so my last battery cost something like $30.  NOT this time around!  It was almost $90!!!  All I can say is it better last more than 2 1/2 years this time!!!  And thank goodness James put gas in the car, because I won’t be able to until Friday now.

Then it was off to the bead shop, had to get some gold wire to do a repair for a friend, and it was SO reasonable, I got enough to make myself a bracelet, BONUS!  I love Breezy’s Beads in Brandon, they are just so awesome, reasonable, and it’s just FUN to go there!!  So one thing off my list of things to do this weekend.

Once I got home, folded some clothes, fixed a necklace, finished some craft projects I have been working on all week, now I have some cool decorations for my desk.  William and I did a couple loads of dishes, got the kitchen all cleaned up, and did a bunch of cooking!!

So here are the recipes of the day!

The first one was William’s idea, and it turned out really well.

Meatball Buns


Bread machine!!

7 1/2 ounces warm water

2 cups whole wheat flour

1 cup bread flour

2 Tbsp dry milk

3 1/2 Tbsp sugar

1 Tsp salt

3 Tbsp butter

1 1/2 Tsp bread machine yeast

Put the water in the pan.  Add in the flour, dry milk, sugar and salt.  Tap to level, then push a little into the corners.  Add the butter in the corners.  Make a small well in the center, add the yeast.  Set to DOUGH and push start!

Once it’s done, pour out the dough onto a floured surface and let rest for 15 minutes.

Take pieces about twice the size of a meatball, and wrap it around the meatball, shape into a ball, put onto a greased pan, repeat until it’s all gone.  Cover with a dry cloth and let sit 45 minutes.

Bake 20 minutes at 350 degrees, serve with spaghetti or marinara sauce to dip!

Teriyaki Egg Rolls

Egg roll wrappers

1 small head cabbage, shredded

about 4 Tbsp teriyaki sauce

Leftover shredded chicken

Mix the cabbage, chicken and sauce in a bowl.  Spread about 2 Tbsp of mixture on an egg roll wrapper, fold over bottom, fold in sides, roll towards final tip, dampen tip slightly to seal.  Repeat until you run out of wrappers or filling or both!  Fry in hot oil over medium heat about 3-4 minutes per side.  Serve with your favorite sauce, like sweet and sour, duck sauce or soy sauce.  YUM!

Along with this we had some fried smoked sausage and some taquitos also fried in oil, they came out really crispy, YUM.

And then we tried our hands at cake pops!  Wow, talk about a pain in the butt!!  Even with a cake pop maker, it took over an hour to cook them all, one box mix makes something like 5 dozen baby cake pops.  Now we have to frost them all, and we have a tray that holds one dozen at a time, so needless to say, we have ONE DOZEN completed!  Next time, buying a styrofoam slab to work on…  But they are tasty, and cute, and William had fun helping!!

So, that’s what we’ve done today, actually turned out to be a good day all in all.

Until tomorrow, then, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 186

July 7, 2012 at 10:35 pm (Food) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Hello again friends, and welcome back!!  Hope you’re all having a nice weekend.  I know mine started out well!

It’s been a really busy day for me.  Started off by running out and getting McD’s for breakfast.  Then, dropping off a take-home test at the local medical lab.  Unfortunately, there is only one office of our lab that’s open on Saturdays, so I had to drive out to BFE (Valrico) at 10 AM.  Then I went and got my toes done, LOVE sitting in that massage chair!!  When that was done, I slipped next door to the hair salon and got all my hair chopped off!!  Been debating about doing it for a year, finally decided it was time.  Turns out, though, my hair isn’t as curly as it used to be, so it doesn’t look like the photo, but it should be REALLY easy to deal with in the mornings!  And it’s already a lot cooler.  I’ll have to get one of the guys to take a photo so I can post it and show off…  after I’ve had a chance to play with it a little!  It was too funny though, the stylist asked me if I wanted to color my hair to cover the white ones, I told her no way, I earned every one!!

Then it was off to Walmart, two page grocery list, we were out of almost everything, which is why I had to run out to get breakfast this morning.  Had a major sugar crash, had to shuffle my way to McD’s to eat some lunch, guess I shouldn’t have waited so long between meals, or pushed so hard!  After sitting for about 20 minutes and eating something, I finished up my trip.  Mike and William both needed new shorts.  Meats, veggies, pasta, shampoo, make-up, new toothbrush since mine literally fell apart last week, dairy, vitamins, new grass seed spreader since our old one fell apart last month, etc… it was quite the list!  Plus I had about $15 worth of coupons, not my best total ever, but not my worst either!  I about had a heart attack when I saw the total bill, but at least we had the money, so it won’t be an issue!  And, I won’t have to shop like that again for quite a while.

Anyway, seems the boys read comics all day, started the laundry, not sure what else they did.  They were stuck here without a vehicle, so I guess there wasn’t a whole lot they could do!

So, on to the food.  I was a busy girl after I finally got home…  three hours at Walmart wore me out, but I had a Coke and a snack, and I was back!  Here we go!!

Southwest Egg Rolls

1 pkg egg roll wrappers

1 pound ground beef

2/3 cup water

1/4 cup taco seasoning

1 green pepper, finely chopped

3 green onions, finely chopped

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp chili powder

1 Tbsp taco seasoning

1/2 cup shredded cheese

Small dish of water for dipping (I’ll explain in a minute)

Brown ground beef, drain excess grease, return to pan.  Add in 2/3 cup water and 1/4 cup taco seasoning, mix well, simmer until thickened.  Allow to cool about 10 minutes.

Mix meat, peppers, onions, beans, spices in a large bowl.  You can sautee the peppers and onions if you choose, I prefer them a little crunchy.

Spoon about 2 Tbsp of this mixture onto an egg roll wrapper on the diagonal.  Fold over the bottom corner and tuck in the filling.  Fold in the two side corners. Lightly dampen the top tip with water, and roll the filled roll over this corner, sealing with the water.  Repeat until you run out of wrappers and or filling.  Somehow, I managed to get exactly enough of each, and had no leftovers!

Heat about 1/2″ of vegetable oil in a wide skillet over medium heat.  Fry the rolls, about 5 or 6 at a time, in the hot oil until golden brown, turning once.  I think they cooked about 2-3 minutes per side at the beginning, and more like 1 1/2 – 2 minutes towards the end.

Remove from oil to paper towel lined tray.  Serve with ranch dipping sauce, salsa, guacamole, whatever YOU like with your Mexican food!

Asian Egg Rolls

2 boneless skinless chicken breasts

1 pkg egg roll wrappers

1/2 head cabbage, shredded really fine

10-12 baby carrots, shredded really fine

About 2 Tbsp soy sauce

1/2 Tsp ground ginger

Remove excess skin and fat from chicken, chop into very small pieces, cook until nicely browned in a skillet, no added fat or oil.

Allow to cool a little, while you mix the cabbage, carrots, ginger and soy sauce together in a large bowl.  Add in warm chicken, mix well.  Spoon about 2 Tbsp of this mixture onto an egg roll wrapper on the diagonal.  Fold over the bottom corner and tuck in the filling.  Fold in the two side corners. Lightly dampen the top tip with water, and roll the filled roll over this corner, sealing with the water.  Repeat until you run out of wrappers and or filling.  I had about 1/2 cup of filling left over this time.

Heat about 1/2″ of vegetable oil in a wide skillet over medium heat.  Fry the rolls, about 5 or 6 at a time, in the hot oil until golden brown, turning once.  I think they cooked about 2-3 minutes per side at the beginning, and more like 1 1/2 – 2 minutes towards the end.

Remove from oil to paper towel lined tray. Serve with soy sauce, sweet and sour sauce, duck sauce (my personal favorite), or whatever sauce you like with your Chinese food!

Taco Bites

1/2 pkg wonton wrappers

About 1 cup prepared taco beef (I actually made a little extra when making the beef for the above Southwest Egg Rolls, worked out well!)

Lay out a few wonton wrappers, spoon about 1/2 tsp filling onto each one, dampen two sides, fold over into a triangle and seal with your finger tips.  Repeat until you run out of filling and wrappers.

Fry in vegetable oil over medium heat about 1 minute per side, or until golden brown and crispy.  Remove from oil to paper towel lined tray to drain.  Serve!

Not a bad meal if I do say so myself!  And lots of leftovers for tomorrow.  YEAH!

And I have some nice fresh fruit for dessert, cantaloupe, honey dew and pineapple, YUM!

So, until tomorrow, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 180 & 181

July 2, 2012 at 8:15 pm (Food) (, , , , , , , )

Hello again friends, and welcome back!  I guess I’m stuck in an every-other-day kind of rut now.

Happy Monday!  Hope you all had a good beginning to the week.  Going to be a short week for many of us, but the holiday is in the middle of the week, so it’s sort of weird.

Had a doctor’s appointment today, also sort of weird.  Sat there for over an hour before I got to see the PA, I usually see her not the doctor and I’m OK with that part, but I hate the waiting!  And it’s SO cold in that office, I always feel like a popsicle when I leave.  Had more bloodwork while I was there, too, joy.

End of the month at work, cleaning up all the leftovers from June, actually got a lot done!  Felt good to be so productive!

Mike had a quiet day, most of his clients didn’t show, so he did a lot of catch up stuff, too.

I kept the boys busy today, got them to cut the grass, edge, sweep up the mess, scoop the cat box and unload the dishwasher.  James is now at work, got called in, likes the extra hours.  William is packing…  lucky little bugger is going to Disney with his friend and his mother for two days!  He doesn’t leave until Wednesday, but he’s already running around picking up things he might need and putting them in a bag.  Think he’s a little excited???  I was just a little evil when I told him…  I said, I have bad news, no drive-in, no sleep-over Tuesday night, no cookout Wednesday.  His face fell, you would have thought he lost a pet!  Then I told him WHY, and that he was going to Disney, if he was a cartoon he would have been bouncing off the walls and his eyes would have popped out of his head!

So, anyway, on to the cooking.  Can’t say I’ve done anything overly complicated, but I’ll give you what I got!

Sunday night, we had spaghetti with marinara sauce and meatballs, and bread sticks.  Pasta from a box, sauce from a jar, frozen meatballs, and bread sticks from Pilsbury!  Absolutely nothing from scratch, not that I couldn’t, I just didn’t.

Tonight, we had home made popcorn chicken, baked potatoes, and leftover home made egg rolls.  Guess I could share a couple of those recipes with you…

Egg Rolls (vegetarian this time)

Egg roll wrappers

1 small head of cabbage

1 small bag of baby carrots

2 Tbsp soy sauce

1 Tsp ground ginger

Remove the stem from the cabbage, and chop it into small chunks.  Put the chunks into an electric chopper or food processor, chop until very fine.  Repeat as needed until whole head is shredded.  Repeat with carrots.  Mix cabbage, carrots, soy sauce and ginger in a mixing bowl until well blended.

Put a wrapper on a plate in diamond shape, spoon about 2 Tbsp filling across center, fold up bottom corner and snug in filling, fold in two side corners tucking in tightly, dampen final point with water, and roll filled center over moistened tip, sealing well.  Repeat with all wrappers and filling until you run out of something.  I ran out of wrappers before I ran out of filling, but that’s OK!

Heat some vegetable oil in a skillet, about 1/2″ deep, over medium heat.  Fry each egg roll about 2-3 minutes per side, or until golden brown.  Remove to paper towel lined platter, serve warm with your favorite dipping sauce!

Popcorn Chicken

3 large boneless skinless chicken breasts

About 1 cup flour

About 1/2 cup Everglades seasoning

Trim any excess skin or fat from the chicken, cut into bite sized pieces.

Mix flour and seasoning in a plastic container large enough that you can add in the chopped chicken, cover, and shake well to coat all pieces!

Heat vegetable oil about 1/2″ deep in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add in chicken pieces, not too many at a time, and not too close.  Cook about 2-3 minutes per side, turning at least once, or cook until chicken is cooked through and light golden brown.  Serve with dipping sauce of your choice, or just plain!

I think I’ve shared the perfect baked potato recipe a few too many times, so I’m not going there this time around.  But you know they’re good if you’ve tried making them!

So that’s it for tonight!  Until tomorrow, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 170-173

June 24, 2012 at 9:28 pm (Food) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Wow, I took quite a break this time.  So sorry to my friends out there!!  I feel like I let you guys down!  I certainly didn’t mean to take that much time off, it just got away from me.

So, let’s see…  my last post was Wednesday, what’s happened since then?

Thursday, nothing special, the usual, Mike’s late night, James worked, William and I ordered pizza for the second time this week.  I know, I’m being SO lazy!

Friday, Mike stayed home, couldn’t sleep Thursday night, so he and William hung out for the day.  They went to the comic book shop, got boxes for their growing collections.  Went to Cold Stone Creamery, I was HIGHLY upset with them!  I had been practically begging to go last weekend, and we talked ourselves out of it.  BUMS!!!  We had Taco Bell for dinner, talk about lazy!  But, in my own defense, it was pouring down rain, and all the meat in the house was frozen, so we had to eat something, and I didn’t want pizza for a third time!  Picture if you will, me in the car at the drive through, with an umbrella sticking out of the window so I can actually place my order.  Wish someone had been brave enough to stand out in the rain long enough to take THAT photo!

So let’s see, Saturday is always movie night, unless the boys decide to play video games instead.  We actually watched four movies I think, had munchie type foods, which I will share in a minute.  Mike figured out how to hook his computer up to the new monster TV, so we can do Netflix, or things we’ve bought from iTunes, or whatever else he’s got on his computer.  It’s actually pretty cool.  Plus, we made a little trip to Walmart, picked up things for our munchfest, and picked up a combo pack movie of both Sherlock Holmes films, so that’s where we started our evening.  I had forgotten how good the first one was, and the second was just as good, if not better.  William fell asleep during the last movie around 1AM.  I think we turned in around 1:30, heard James come in from work, but was too lazy to get up, get dressed and say “hi”.  So, recipes:

BBQ Meatballs and Sausages

1/2 bag Great Value frozen homestyle meatballs

1 pkg Lil Smokies cocktail sausages

1/2 LARGE jug Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce

Put all this into a crock pot, cook on LOW 8 hours or HIGH 4 hours.  Serve about 6 meatballs and 6 sausages in a bowl, or put out toothpicks and let everyone help themselves, depends on your setting.  These are really good for a party, at which the toothpick idea is best.

We also had frozen Taquitos, Pizza Rolls, chips and dip…  OOO, I can give you that recipe, too!

French Onion Dip

1 x 2 cup container sour cream

1 package dry French onion soup mix

Mix the soup mix into the sour cream, put it in the fridge for about an hour before serving.  Serve with rippled chips!

And we also had root beer floats…

Root Beer Float

Put one large scoop vanilla ice cream into a large mug or glass, pour over root beer carefully, it will foam up a LOT (the foam actually tastes kind of good), you can scoop off the foam so you can fill up the root beer.  Top with whipped cream and serve!

And of course, I had my usual fresh fruit cup later in the evening.  I still have cantaloupe, honey dew and grapes in the fridge, and today I picked up a pineapple, going to see if I can get James to cut it up for me tomorrow.

So that was it for yesterday!  Today, I cooked, and cleaned, and cooked some more!  Got lots to share!!

Chicken Cordon Bleu Casserole (updated version!)

3 large boneless skinless chicken breasts

1 pkg diced ham

1 pkg sliced Swiss cheese

1 family sized can cream of mushroom soup

1 tbsp milk

2 boxes chicken flavored stuffing mix

3 cups water

1 stick butter

Clean chicken of any leftover skin or fat, cut into small bite sized pieces.  Mix in diced ham, and set aside.

Pour stuffing mix into a large bowl.

Put water and butter in a microwave safe measuring cup, heat on high 4-5 minutes or until hot and butter is completely melted.

Pour over stuffing and mix very well, making sure all liquid is absorbed.  Spoon into pans of choice.  Usually, I do this as one dish in a 9″ x 13″ baking dish, but tonight I was feeling a little adventurous, so I used four small individual casserole dishes and one 8″ x 12″ glass casserole.  I put about 2 heaping spoonfuls of stuffing in the bottom of each small dish and spread it out, then put the rest in the larger dish and spread it out.

I ppread about 2 heaping spoonfuls of chicken and ham over each small dish, and the rest over the large dish.

I got to get extra cheesy tonight since I needed to cover everything with cheese, so each small dish got two slices overlapping, and the large dish got the usual 8 slices overlapping.

Mix the soup and milk together in a bowl.

I spread two heaping tablespoons over the small dishes, and the rest over the large dish.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.  If using these small dishes, might I suggest that you let them sit about 15 minutes before serving, they are VERY hot!

The extra cheese and the diced ham made this SO much better than the original recipe!  Next time, I’m thinking I need to kick it up just a little more and maybe add some bacon and use ranch dressing somehow instead of the soup.  This just has SO much potential!

After dinner, I worked on making some things for lunches and such for this week, so here are a couple more recipes for you:

Grilled Pork Egg Rolls

3 grilled pork chops (I did mine on my George Foreman grill, since it’s POURING down rain!)

9 egg rolls wrappers (because that’s all I had left, I really could have used a whole package, which I think is 20)

About 1/4 head of cabbage, shredded very fine (I used the electric chopper)

About 25-30 baby carrots, shredded very fine

1/2 tsp ground ginger

1/2 tsp garlic powder

Soy sauce to taste (I just sprinkled until it looked and tasted right to me, maybe 3 tbsp?)

Chop pork chops into roughly 1/2″ slivers.

Mix the shredded cabbage, shredded carrots, chopped pork and spices in a large bowl.  Allow to set in the fridge for about an hour if you have the time, let all the flavors combine before stuffing your egg rolls.

Place one wrapper on a plate, fill with about 2 tbsp filling, NOT heaping!

Fold up bottom first.

Fold in sides next.

Dampen point with water, and roll.  Set aside until ready to fry.

Put vegetable oil in a large skillet, and heat over medium heat.  Cook about 3 minutes per side, or until golden brown and crispy.

Serve with duck sauce, soy sauce or sweet and sour sauce, that’s completely up to you!  These are great reheated, best if refried, but can be heated in the oven.  I don’t recommend reheating in the microwave, but you can if you want.

And last but not least, I made my newest favorite dish…

Roasted Brussels Sprouts

1 carton Brussels sprouts (I find them in my produce section, I think the carton is about a pound)

1/4 cup chopped pecans

1/4 cup bacon bits, or crispy bacon pieces

4 Tbsp honey

2 Tbsp butter

Remove ends and loose leaves from sprouts.  Cut small sprouts in half, medium sprouts in quarters, and large sprouts into 8 wedges.  Set aside.

Melt butter in a medium skillet.  Add chopped sprouts, cook until lightly browned and sizzling.  Add in nuts, bacon bits and honey, mix well, cook about 2 minutes more.  Remove from heat and put in oven safe dish with cover.  Cook at 350 degrees for 1 hour.  Serve hot!

So, that’s it for today!  Finally got through it all.  Hopefully I won’t have any more big breaks and get back to being regular with my postings.

Until tomorrow, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 156-158

June 9, 2012 at 7:50 pm (Food) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Yeah, I’ve been sort of out of touch the past couple of days, got WAY behind on posting!  I’m sorry!!!

So, welcome back, hope you’re having a great weekend, and experimenting in the kitchen.  I tried a couple of new things tonight, some success, some not so much, but fun trying!

Been a normal Saturday around here.  Cleaning up the kitchen.  Getting laundry done.  Grocery shopping.  Spent way too much time on the computer today, off and on, reading mail, getting caught up with a friend I haven’t talked to in about 8 years but suddenly found on LinkedIn, and of course did a little cooking.  So here are the recipes of the day:

Crock Pot Chili

2 large cans red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 large can diced tomatoes

1 pound ground beef

1 Tbsp garlic powder

2 Tbsp chili powder

1 Tsp salt

1 Tsp pepper

1 Tsp cumin

2 Tbsp taco seasoning blend

2 Tbsp dried onion flakes

Brown ground beef, do not drain.  Put everything in the crock pot, mix well, cook on LOW at least 5 hours, longer is always better in the crock pot.  Serve hot topped with shredded cheese!

Home Made Sort-of Hummus

2 cans chick peas, one drained

1 cup plain Greek yogurt

1 Tbsp garlic powder

1 Tsp salt

1 Tsp pepper

Put chick peas and juice from ONE CAN in a blender, use liquify setting to turn them into mush, make sure to get all the chunks.  Add in the yogurt and spices and blend again until everything is smooth.  Serve with chips or pitas.

So after we all tried this “as is”, I started experimenting, because this was a little bland.  All I can say is…  too much garlic!  Oh well, it was cheap enough to make, I can make more tomorrow if I want.

Home Made Egg Rolls

1/2 head cabbage, shredded very fine

1 cup baby carrots, shredded very fine

1 Tsp ground ginger

1 Tsp minced garlic

1/2 cup diced leftover meat (I used ham tonight)

1/4 cup soy sauce

Egg roll wrappers

Mix everything except the wrappers in a medium bowl.  Place 1 heaping tablespoon on the center of an egg roll wrapper.  Fold in two opposite corners, fold over a third corner and tuck around filling, use a little water to dampen the last corner, roll wrapped filling over onto dampened corner and seal.  Place sealed edge down in hot oil over about medium heat, cook about 1-2 minutes, turn over and cook other side.  Cook until golden brown and crispy.  Serve!

Yogurt Pie

1 cup yogurt of choice (I like Yoplait original, just about any flavor)

1 container cool whip (medium container, not the tiny one and not the pig tub)

1 deep dish pie crust, cooked to package directions for empty pie shell

Mix yogurt and whipped topping with mixer, spoon into prepared pie crust, heaping up in center, will be VERY full!  Refrigerate at least two hours before serving.  Cut into pie shaped wedges and serve!  You can also add fresh fruit on top before serving if desired.

So, that’s it for tonight.  Until tomorrow, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 125

May 6, 2012 at 10:25 pm (Food) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Hello again friends, and welcome back!  Hope you all had a spectacular weekend!

Well, what can I say…  It’s been an interesting weekend!  The craft show yesterday, and then we tried to do something cool today, but it just didn’t work out, so I cooked and chopped and did laundry and puttered around the house…

We got up early, not too early, but early for a Sunday for us, made a nice breakfast of pancakes, scrambled eggs with cheese, and sausage.  Got everyone ready to go, and out we went.  Up to the movie theater we go, thinking we might be able to get tickets to The Avengers…  YEAH RIGHT!  The show we were trying for, and the next two shows, were sold out, and there was a line!  There’s NEVER a line on Sunday mornings!!  ARGHHHHH!!  So we headed back home, I dropped off the boys, and headed off to Walmart to get groceries for the week.  Not what we had planned, but what needed to be done.  Got a trash can for outside, only been here almost six years, no rush right?  Got a new pair of shoes for work, something comfortable but not sloppy.  (had to throw out a couple pairs of “work” shoes recently, they finally wore out)  And then…

I cut up lettuce, tomatoes, green pepper for salads.  Watermelon and cantaloupe for my fruits this week. (last couple of weeks have been pineapple, papaya and mango plus red grapes, but the last pineapple wasn’t that great, so I’m thinking the season is over.)  I shredded cabbage in my handy little chopper I got for Christmas, I can use that in salads, in recipes, or make some cole slaw.  I sliced up some nice young yellow squash, made a couple of steamer bags for a lunch or dinner.  Then put my pork chops in a marinade to soak for a while before dinner.

Next, I made mini meatloaves for later in the week, had everything thawed out, had to cook it, figured it will be a quick dinner later this week, or lunches for someone.  Here’s the recipe in case you missed it the last time:

Mini meatloaves

1 cup ketchup

4 tbsp packed brown sugar

1 tsp ground mustard

2 eggs, beaten

4 tsp Worchestershire sauce

3 cups bread crumbs, cracker crumbs, corn flake crumbs (basically whatever type of filler you like)

3 tsp onion powder or flakes

Salt and pepper to taste

1/2 tsp garlic powder

3 pounds lean ground beef, or mixed beef and sausage (mix 2:1 beef and sausage)

In large bowl, combine ketchup, brown sugar and mustard. Remove 1/2 cup to be used on top of cooked loaves. Add eggs, Worchestershire, cereal/bread crumbs, seasonings.  Mix well, let set for 5 mins.  Add meat(s) and mix very well.

Press mixture into 18-24 muffin cups and bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes.  Drizzle/top with remaining sauce mixture reserved earlier. Bake 10 minutes longer, or until meat thermometer reads 160 degrees.

Leftover loaves are freezeable!  Thaw frozen loaves and reheat at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.  Can also be microwaved for 1 minute each.

And here’s what I did for dinner:

Marinated Pork Chops with Fruit

6-8 boneless pork chops

Good Seasons Italian dressing (make with olive oil and apple cider vinegar)

1 Granny Smith apple

1 D’Anjou pear

10-12 baby carrots

2 Tbsp butter

Mix up some Good Seasons Italian dressing (using olive oil and apple cider vinegar) per the package directions.  Place 6-8 boneless pork chops in a 9 x 13 baking dish, pour the entire bottle of dressing over the chops, pick up each chop to make sure some of the dressing gets underneath as well, and put the dish in the fridge for a few hours at least.  Mine set for about 4 hours all together.

Core and 8th both the apple and the pear.  Slice each 8th into small slices.  Slice the baby carrots into rounds.

In one pan, cook the apple, pear, carrots in butter until soft but not mush.

In another pan, cook the pork chops until done through.

Place the chops on a serving platter, top with the fruit mixture, serve!

I kept some of the apples, pears and carrots out of the pan and served them on top of the salad, keeping those flavors going in different dishes.  It actually worked really well!

I also had some baked potatoes around, since I cooked a whole bag of them last weekend and froze most of them so I would have them around.  The recipe for these is REALLY simple, but makes GREAT baked potatoes!

Perfect Baked Potato (I actually found this recipe on the web)

1 bag (5 lbs) baking potatoes (Russets work really well)

Olive oil

Kosher salt

Wash the potatoes well, and remove any eyes.  Dry them!!  Rub the potatoes with olive oil, pierce once on each side (total four sets of fork holes) then sprinkle liberally with Kosher salt.

Now this next part is up to you, but I prefer pans…

Bake either directly on the oven rack, or in a pan.  The only drawback to the pans is you have to cook a few minutes longer.  And if you do like I did and cook a whole bag at one time, it takes a LOT longer! (almost 2 hours total, but SO worth it!)

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour on the rack, or 1 hour 15 minutes in a pan.  Turn once about half way through to ensure even cooking and no hard spots in the skin.

When done (you can tell by poking with a fork, when it’s easy to poke it’s done) serve!  Cut it open, top it with your favorite combination of toppings, or keep it simple with butter and salt.

You can freeze them after they are cooked, and reheat in the microwave using the baked potato setting (about 7 minutes) from frozen, or thaw and reheat about 3 minutes in the microwave.

Anyway, it was a cooking kind of day, and somehow I missed making William’s lunch sandwiches, so I guess I know what I’m doing in the morning!  Had enough today…

Until tomorrow, eat well, love well, live well!

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The Great 2012 Cooking Extravaganza! Day 107

April 18, 2012 at 12:10 am (Food) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Hello again friends, and welcome back!!  Hope you are having a terrific Tuesday!  I know I am!!!  🙂

Started my day getting William a good breakfast so he would be ready for FCAT’s.  Two whole weeks of testing, reading, science, math, I feel bad for the kids!!

Then, I went off to an interview with a temp agency, took a typing test (think I came in around 50 WPM, which is actually good for me, I’m NOT a typist!), data entry (no idea what I scored, but her words were “I can see you’ve done data entry before!”), and talked about a job with a company that manages foreclosed homes, doing things like arranging cleaning, arranging yard work, arranging maintenance, etc.  Thought it went well, she said she was sending this company my test results and resume, she would let me know…  well, about an hour later I get a call, can I come for an interview tomorrow morning!  So I guess I look good on paper, now I just have to impress them in person!  I just need someone to let me in the door, and let me show what I can do, and I know I can do any job I put my mind to!  And this one actually sounds interesting to me!  I am SOOO ready for something different.

So, since I spent about an hour yesterday chopping up fruits and veggies, I knew I had to make something good for dinner.  BUT, since it’s officially William’s birthday today, and he got cash, he wanted to go shopping first.  So off to Game Stop we went, after picking James up from work (so after 5), hit rush hour traffic, hit every light we possibly could, at least there wasn’t a line at the store!  He picked a game, ended up being the wrong game, but we can take it back tomorrow, and this time he knows what he wants!

Anyway, got home after 6, no idea what I was making, but I knew I had partially thawed hamburger to work with, so:

Hot Brown and Lumpy (yeah, I’m looking for a better name!)

1 pound hamburger

1 pound noodles of choice, cooked to package directions (I had leftover egg noodles from a couple nights ago)

2 cups water

6 Tbsp brown gravy mix

Brown hamburger, crumbling very well while it’s cooking, drain any excess fat.  Return to pan, add water and gravy mix, simmer about 10 minutes or until thickened.  Add in cooked noodles, mixing well, simmer just until everything is heated through.

We had broccoli, cauliflower and carrots mixed together as one side dish, peas as a second, fresh salad (lettuce, cabbage, cucumber, carrots, green pepper, tomato) and fresh fruit salad (pineapple, papaya, grapes).  Everything tasted awesome!!

Enjoy!!  Until tomorrow, eat well, love well, live well!!

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