Looking for something to feed the kids? Need a great dessert to take to a gathering?
In the mood for a delicious soup, salad or whatever? Look no further.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Lemon Whoopie Pies




I thought I would save time and just direct you to this link.

I made these today. I followed the recipe exactly except that I made them smaller – about 1 Tablespoon of batter for each cookie. The plan was to give them away, but I couldn’t part with them. So much for the weekly exercise – now I’m going to have to start all over again.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Mini Breakfast Quiches

Breakfast is definitely my least favorite meal of the day. I would say most days I skip it because I get busy and forget or there just isn't anything that sounds good. I haven't wanted to eat cold cereal for a few years now so if I do eat breakfast it's usually toast. Well, toast can get a little bit boring. I was excited when I saw this recipe on Our Best Bites. I was even more excited after I made them this morning. They are just the perfect thing to solve my breakfast problem. They were tasty, easy and much more fancy then my regular breakfast. One of my favorite things about them is they can be frozen and reheated when you are ready to eat them. So, my plan is to eat one of these with a piece of toast every morning. The flavors of these little quiches can be easily changed by choosing different veggies. I really loved the combinations in the recipe. I know the recipe says you need to use foil liners, but I just sprayed my muffin tin with pam and they came out just great.

4 eggs
1 C egg substitute*
3/4 C shredded low-fat sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 C shredded Parmesan cheese
1/4 C cottage cheese
5 oz frozen spinach (that's half a standard frozen box)
1/3 C roasted red peppers, diced (jarred, or make your own)
1 oz finely diced ham, canadian bacon, or crumbled bacon (about 1/4-1/3 C)
1/4 C finely diced onions
1/4 t kosher salt
1/8 t black pepper
1/2 t hot sauce

foil muffin tin liners

*1/4 egg substitute = 1 whole egg, so if you're using all eggs, or some eggs and some egg whites, you can adjust accordingly.

Preheat oven to 350

Thaw spinach (you can nuke it in the microwave) and squeeze out all the liquid. Putting it in a clean kitchen towl and ringing the heck out of it works well. After it's drained of all the liquid, give it a rough chop.

In a bowl, combine all ingredients and stir well.

Place foil cupcake liners in the muffin tins and spray with cooking spray. Don't forget this step! And yes, they really do need to be the foil ones. If you have a silicone muffin pan, those work great and you don't need to line them. My silicone pan makes them taste like soap, so I don't go there. As you're dividing the egg mixture into the muffin cups make sure to keep stirring it so all of the ingredients are well-dispersed. My pan takes about 1/4 C in each hole and it fills them up perfectly. You want them to fill right up to the top.

Place in the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes. The tops should be just barely set on top. Over-baked eggs get tough and spongy so don't do that! They'll puff up while baking and then sink down when cooled. You can store them in an airtight container in the fridge, or freeze them. When reheating in the microwave, make sure to take off the foil liner! And if you're reheating from frozen, I try to take them out the night before so they can thaw in the fridge. Then when you microwave them, set them on a folded paper towel to drain excess moisture.

Oatmeal Pumpkin Pancakes

My sister-in-law, Dani, gave me a recipe for some yummy oatmeal pancakes. I had some pumpkin that needed to be used up, so I thought it would be good to use some in the recipe. They turned out really good! We really like the regular recipe, but everyone agreed that it was even better with the pumpkin. Here is the recipe... I'll also put the recipe for the regular oatmeal pancakes for those who may not love pumpkin, or just don't want to use it.

Oatmeal Pumpkin Pancakes

1/4 c. melted butter
1 1/4 c. buttermilk
1 c. pumpkin puree
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
2 c. quick oats
1/2 - 3/4 c flour (I usually have to use about 3/4 c.)
3 Tbl sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
dash of cloves

Mix everything together well and cook just under medium heat (these are pretty dense, so you don't want to cook them too high or they won't cook all the way through). Make sure to spray your pan well. Top with your favorite syrup, or some other clever topping. Makes about 12 pancakes. These are very filling, so I recommend making them a little smaller than your average pancake.

**To make regular oatmeal pancakes: leave out pumpkin and use 2 c buttermilk or about 1 c regular milk.

**For either recipe: Add more flour, if too runny, or more milk, if too thick.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Minestrone Soup

Heather asked me to post this a couple of weeks ago, so since I'm so on top of things, I'm posting it now.  I love Minestrone Soup.  I've been making this one for a few years now, and I just can't find one that beats it.  I think the key is the can of Bean with Bacon soup.  I don't love condensed soups, but the smoky flavor in this one really makes the difference. I got this recipe from the Mormon Essential Celebrations cookbook, by Julie Badger Jensen.

1 lb. pork sausage- (I just use ground pork so I don't have to mess with the casings.  I've tried using bulk Italian sausage, but it just overpowers the soup.)
4 c. water
2 stalks celery, diced
2 large carrots, diced
1 (10 oz) can beef broth
1 can bean with bacon soup
1 28 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 T. sugar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 t. dried oregano
1 t. salt
1/2 t. pepper
1 cup cooked noodles (optional)

Brown sausage in a large pot.  Drain off fat. Add remaining ingredients except noodles, and stir together. Simmer uncovered over low heat for at least 1 hour. Add cooked noodles before serving.

This soup tastes even better the next day.

The noodles are completely optional, but there are some in my family that are more likely to eat a soup that has noodles.  If you do add the noodles be sure to cook them first before adding them, otherwise they soak up a lot of the broth.

Crock-pot option: You can make this in your crock pot, by browning the sausage, and then dumping everything except the noodles in the crock pot and cooking on low for the day.  Then just add the noodles before serving.

This soup also freezes well.  Again, just freeze without the pasta, and then add it before serving.