Wednesday, February 19, 2014


Thanksgiving Point sends me a monthly calendar (Gazette) and in February 2014 there was this yummy recipe for truffles - easy and so good.

1-8oz package cream cheese, softened
3 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
3 cups semisweet chocolate chips, melted (I used milk chocolate)
1 1/2 t vanilla

1.  In a large bowl beat cream cheese until smooth.  Gradually beat in confectioners' sugar until well blended.

2.  Stir in melted chocolate and vanilla until no streaks remain.  Refrigerate for about 1 hour.

3.  Shape into 1-inch balls and roll in ground walnuts (or any ground nuts), cocoa, coconut, confectioners' sugar, or candy sprinkles.

Chicken-Rice en Casserole

from:  Betty Crocker’s New Picture Cook Book – 1970s
9 x 13 baking dish             Bake 350
° 40 – 45 minutes, covered                        12 servings

6 T butter
7 ½ T flour
2 ¼ t salt
1/8 t pepper
1 ½ c chicken broth
2 ¼ c milk

2 ¼ c cooked wild or white rice (3/4 c uncooked)
3 c cut-up cooked chicken
1 c sliced mushrooms
½ c chopped green pepper
3 T chopped pimiento
6 T slivered almonds

Heat oven to 350°. 

Make white sauce: Melt butter in saucepan over low heat.  Blend in flour, salt, and pepper.  Cook over low heat until smooth and bubbly.  Remove from heat and stir in chicken broth and milk.  Bring to boil and boil 1 minute, stirring constantly.  White sauce should be medium thick.  Remove from heat.

Combine:  Cooked rice, cooked chicken, mushrooms, green pepper, pimiento and almonds in large bowl.

Add: White sauce to rice-chicken mixture and stir together.  Sprinkle fresh or dry parsley on top.  Pour into greased 9 x 13 baking dish. Cover and bake.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Freezer Meals

After Evan broke his leg, so many people offered to help, and I just said, please bring a freezer meal.  I filled my freezer and it was wonderful.  After Evan got a little more mobile I realized how much freezer meals had relieved my stress during that time right after school until right before dinner.  It's so hard for me to cook if Evan is gone because little pipsqueak needs so much attention, and I don't want to wait to start preparing dinner until Evan gets home.  Anyway, once the meals mostly ran out, I decided to make a bunch more meals because they were so convenient.  I made about ten meals (the recipes below made more than one freezer meal) just before Christmas, and I have one left.  Each one usually lasted 2 meals, and sometimes even three.  So, add that to occasionally eating out and still preparing some meals, they've lasted 6+ weeks!

I found recipes just by googling and searching on Pinterest for freezer meals/crockpot freezer meals. Some of the recipes we liked, some we didn't as much.  I leaned toward the healthier-type recipes; maybe that was the problem!

Bean Enchiladas - ok (2 meals)
Slow Cooker Quinoa Chili - ok (1 meal plus leftovers)
Honey Lime Chicken - good! (one meal and so easy!)
Poppy Seed Chicken Casserole - good but super unhealthy! (one meal plus leftovers)
Mexican Haystacks - ok (2+ meals)
Beef & Barley Soup - good, but I hate stew meat from the grocery store, so I'll have to use a roast next time (1 meal plus leftovers)
Minestrone (2 big meals plus leftovers)

Since it's time to do some more freezer meals, I think I'll start by adapting my own favorite recipes, then it's food we're familiar with and we know we like.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Sloppy Joes

1 lb ground beef
1 green pepper
1/2 c grated zucchini
1/2 c grated carrot
1 onion
1/2 c. celery
1/2 c. ketchup
2 Tbs brown sugar
1Tbs mustard
salt to taste
1 1/2 Tbs worchestershire sauce
1/2 tsp chili powder

Cook ground beef with onion.  Drain and rince.  Add veggies and cook, add sauces and simmer.  Serve in buns.

Cyndee's Meat Loaf

1 1/2 lbs ground beef
3/4 c. oatmeal
1/4 c. chopped onion (or a lot more)
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 beaten egg
3/4 c milk

Mix together.  Shape with hole in the center.  Cover with sauce (below) and bake 1 hour at 350.

1/3 c ketchup
1 Tbs brown sugar
1 Tbs mustard

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

4 eggs
2 c. sugar
1 can (16 oz) pumpkin
1 c. oil (1/2 applesauce)
3 c flour (1 c. whole wheat)
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp ginger
1 tsp salt
12 oz chocolate chips

In large bowl, beat eggs, sugar, pumpkin, and oil until smooth.  Combine flour, baking soda, powder, spices, salt; add to pumpkin mixture a little at a time and mix well. Fold in chocolate chips.  Pour into 3 greased loaf pans.  Bake at 350 for about 40 min (have to check on this time, I didn't keep track very well).  Can also do muffins at 350 for 20-23 minutes, but we like it as bread better.  Makes 36 muffins.

Haylee's Corn Chowder

1/4 c. butter
2 1/4 c. water
2/3 c. chopped celery
4 c. potatoes, diced small)
3 sliced green onions
6 Tbs butter
6 Tbs flour
2 1/2 c. milk (or cream)
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 Tbs dill
16 oz frozen corn
2 c. grated cheese
1 c. cooked bacon (opt)

Simmer butter, water, celery, potatoes, and onion 20 min. (don't drain) in large pan. Melt 6 Tbs butter, stir in flour and add milk and seasonings in small sauce pan. After the 20 min, add corn to large pot. Cook a couple minutes. Add white sauce from small pan. Add cheese and bacon just before serving.