Monthly Archives: January 2013

Vegan Banana Nut Bread

During the holidays I was seriously craving some Banana Bread. Like. Seriously. I also wanted to make a Vegan version for a friend of mine. Because she’s a sweetheart and I like making things for my friends. I doubled this recipe and made two loaves, one for her and one for us, I need to make this again very soon because my daughter loved it and so did I. I ate it everyday until it was gone!

Vegan Banana Nut Bread (1)

Recipe From: Dairyfreecooking.about.com

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cups white granulated sugar (I prefer unrefined cane sugar)
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • 3/4 t. baking soda
  • 3/4 t. salt
  • 3/4 t. cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup plain soy milk or almond milk
  • 1 t. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 cups mashed banana, from about 4 large very ripe bananas
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 2 T. maple syrup
  • 1 t. vanilla extract
  • Walnuts (optional)

Preparation:

1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly oil a 9″x5″ loaf pan and set aside.

2. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugars, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.

3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the soy milk and cider vinegar and let stand for 2 minutes. Add the mashed banana, canola oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract, whisking until well combined. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, mixing until just combined (do not overmix!). Fold in the walnuts if using and pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for about 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted into the center emerges clean. Allow the bread to cool on a wire cooling rack for 20 minutes before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature

Vegan Banana Nut Bread

Dear Madison – Part IV

Dear Baby Maddie,

I’m calling you this because I’ve referred to you as Baby Maddie for quite some time, maybe not to you, but talking about you, and since I feel like my time with you alone is limited, I feel the need to be a mushy mommy today. It’s been awhile since I last wrote you. Fall to be exact. Right before you turned two to me more exact.

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I have no excuse except for the everyday busyness we endure on a regular basis. Once your birthday came and went we were in full swing to the holidays. Here we are on Thanksgiving……we went to Aunty Jo Jo’s.

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Then once that passed Christmas came before we knew it. Not only Christmas but with the sale of Nunny’s house, that meant we were moving ourselves. To our new home. To the home where you will now grow up in.

Homes

Before I get ahead of myself let’s go back to Christmas. You were so fun this year! We enjoyed it as much as we possibly could but with moving a week later we had a lot going on. We had to get some packing done but wanted to enjoy the holiday as much as we could. You loved the lights on everyone’s houses, you loved opening gifts, you were such a good girl, I truly enjoyed this holiday more than I could have imagine given the stress we were all under. Here you are decorating our tree with Daddy, I promise you my baby girl this will be the last little tree you have to decorate……….BIG, FAT and REAL from here on out!

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You even helped Nunny and TT decorate their last tree at Mommy’s childhood home!

Nunnys

You had such a good time visiting at Memere’s house on Christmas Eve. You got your very first tea set!

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Here you are Christmas morning, no clue as to what you are about to see under the Christmas tree!!

Christmas 2012

While we were in the middle of packing and moving we made sure to keep you extra busy! We had play dates, had a winter storm and went to Mommy groups. You finished up at your daycare, bittersweet for us!

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Winter 2012

Then came the big weekend we had all been waiting for! You went off to Memere’s for the weekend and Mommy and Daddy Moved into our dream house. We packed, lugged, unpacked, cleaned and made it a home as much as we could in the 48 hours you were gone. Your room was the first room to be done, we wanted you to come home and have your very own space where you would feel comfortable. (And hopefully sleep well!!) which you did for the most part. You sleep habits sure have changed recently, you must be getting Mommy ready to get up in the middle of the night again for when Baby F. comes along! UGH….Here is your new room sweet baby girl. I hope you like it.

Maddie's Room

Now it’s been super challenging since we moved. We are slowly settling in but you are testing our limits like crazy! You aren’t listening like you used to. You have tripled your vocabulary, the sentences are starting. It’s been so fun. I love the things that come out of your mouth, Daddy and I just wish you were listening like you used to. My patience have been pretty low lately with being pregnant and being sick. Mommy’s sorry. It’ll get better…….I bet you can’t wait to find out if your having a little sister or a little brother huh!! It doesn’t matter because your going to be a great big sister baby girl.

Daddy’s been so busy working on the new home but he always makes time for you boo. ALWAYS. Last weekend he took you to the new lake and took you for a ride in your new sled or as you call it “boat”.

Daddy Day2Daddy Day

 

Your getting so big. Learning so much. We can’t even believe our eyes. We are amazed by you more and more everyday Boo.

Chicken Parm for #SundaySupper and #SauteExpress

Pssssst………guess what????? Guess who I am working with again????  I was so ecstatic to find out that I was one of the lucky chosen bloggers to work with Land O Lakes® and their new product!! Let me introduce to you a seasoned butter & olive oil saute starter called, Sauté Express® Sauté Starter!!!! I can’t think of an easier way to make a good, healthy, hearty, quick, weeknight meal. YES all of those things in a beautifully wrapped little square my friends. How you ask? Visit your local store that sells  Land O Lakes® Saute Express, choose one of these awesome recipes that my fellow #SundaySupper bloggers have come up with, whip out your favorite saute pan…………and wala! Dinner is ready on a busy night!

You have to take my word for it, you trust me right? I’ve used  Land O Lakes® products before and I’ve never been disappointed. Remember my awesome Glazed Chicken w/Butter and Pecan Rice? Yup that was Land O Lakes® product too!! Once I was introduced to Sauté Express® Sauté Starter I looked and looked for a recipe, it took me a whole day of glancing through their website, other people’s ideas, I really wanted to try something of my own and I already had a rough idea of what I wanted, I just couldn’t piece it together, I really never “made it” happen until I actually cooked it and then proceeded to eat almost the whole dish. Hey I’m eating for two remember! I’m so glad that I just went with my thoughts on this dish because it was awesome! So flavorful, I already started selling it to my sister the next day when she had some for lunch. She’s a single gal, doesn’t love cooking like I do, likes to cook healthy but quickly. I think I have her sold!

 

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I know, I know, enough talking, let’s get down to the details!

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Chicken Parm Tenders over Spinach & Orzo

Serves: 4
Recipe From: Momma @ Momma’s Meals
Cook Time: 30 Min.

Ingredients:

1lb. of Chicken Tenders (Any chicken is fine, breasts, cutlets)
1 box of frozen Spinach, thawed
1 can of diced tomatoes
1/2 box of Orzo
1/2 cup of egg whites
1/2 cup of Italian bread crumbs
3 Squares of  Italian Sauté Express® Sauté Starter
Parmesan Cheese

Helful Hints to Save on Time:

  • Make Orzo ahead of time to save on cooking time. Make on a Sunday and pop it in the fridge until your ready to cook the rest of this delicious dinner on a busy week night.
  • You also do not have to bread the chicken, I made it both ways and the flavor of this product makes both ways perfect! It eliminates steps and makes it a bit healthier if you just saute the chicken rather than bread it first.  I now have realized that the true “Chicken Parm bread feeling” did not have to be done.
  • In order to make this dish even quicker, get everything out and ready to go, it happens so fast every thing will be right their by your saute pan. Take your frozen spinach out of the freezer that morning to let it thaw out, open it and get it ready to throw together!

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What to do:

  • If the Orzo has not been previously made, make according to package directions and set aside. I did this ahead of time and had it by the stove ready to go.
  • In a small bowl add the egg whites. In another small bowl add the breadcrumbs. Dip each piece of chicken (whether it be the tenders or the cutlets) into the egg whites and then dip it into the bowl of breadcrumbs and coat well. Repeat with all of chicken.
  • While you coat the chicken heat a saute pan on medium heat and add a square of Italian Sauté Express® Sauté Starter, once it starts to melt add the chicken in piece by piece sauteing it with the block of seasoning. Add a half a block of the Italian Sauté Express® Sauté Starter to finish the chicken. Cook until no longer pink inside. (times differ depending on the type of chicken used)

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  • Place the chicken on a serving dish and cover it with a piece of tinfoil. Add the last block and a half of the Italian Sauté Express® Sauté Starter. Once it’s almost melted add in the cooked orzo, spinach and diced tomatoes. Mix well until everything is incorporated together.
  • Add chicken to the top of the Orzo Pasta and transfer back to the serving dish. Sprinkle with cheese. Wala. Dinner is served!

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Go check out  Land O Lakes® and the rest of their Sauté Express® Sauté Starters and buy them ASAP!!!

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/LandOLakes
Twitter: @landolakesktchn
Pinterest: @landolakesktchn
Instagram:@landolakesktchn

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Now onto the rest of #SundaySupper recipes, remember their are four different flavors!!!

Sauté Express® Chicken Recipes:

Chicken Florentine Pasta by Supper for a Steal

Creamy Lemon-Chicken w/ Artichokes by girlichef

Chicken Parm Tenders over Spinach & Orzo by Momma’s Meals

Sizzling Chicken and Green Bean Stir-Fry with Almond Cilantro Rice by Mama.Mommy.Mom

Garlic and Herb Chicken Fettuccine by in the Kitchen with KP

Italian Chicken Pasta Wrap by Big Bears Wife

Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Chicken & Mushrooms by The Messy Baker

Creamy Chicken Enchiladas by That Skinny Chick can bake

Shells with Chicken and Pancetta by The Foodie Army Wife

Capellini Pomodoro with Italian Herb Chicken by Mom’s Test Kitchen

Garlic and Herb Chicken Pasta Toss by Ruffles & Truffles

Sauté Express® Fish and Seafood Recipes:

Easy Cajun Shrimp Pilaf by Daily Dish Recipes

Crabmeat stuffed Flounder Roulades by The Girl in the Little Red Kitchen

Cod Fillet with Lemon Pepper Ginger Sauce by Kimchi Mom

Herb Lemon Butter Tilapia with Sauted Veggies by Crispy Bits and Burnt Ends

Blackened Tilapia Po’ Boys by Juanita’s Cocina

Tomato-Basil Shrimp with Orzo and Feta by The Weekend Gourmet

Sauté Express® Ham and Pork Recipes:

Ham and Vegetable Frittata by Magnolia Days

Savory Butter and Olive Oil Pork Chops by In the Kitchen with Audrey

Skillet Lemon Pepper Pork and Orzo by Family Foodie

 

Land O Lakes® wouldn’t be  Land O Lakes® without a Giveaway!!

1. The giveaway is for a coupon for one free package of Land O Lakes Saute Express.
2. The giveaway is for United States Residents only
3. One requirement to win is to comment on my post about this product/recipe.
4. Like Momma’s Meals on Facebook.

Join the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter each Sunday. We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET and you do not want to miss out on the fun. Follow the#SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more fabulous recipes and food photos.

We have a special Pinterest Board to Showcase #WeekdaySupper with Sauté Express® Sauté Starter we will feature a new recipe every day for the next month.

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Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here → Sunday Supper Movement.

Disclosure: The author received a full-value coupon redeemable for Sauté Express® Sauté Starter for recipe development and review purposes. All opinions are my own.

Superbowl Sunday Favorites

I remember the highest traffic day I had last year was for Super Bowl Sunday. Though I appreciate the audience I’m not banking on that this year. I’m writing this post to offer my readers the very best Game Day foods this Momma has to offer! These are my own picks, from my own experiences, snacks that I’ve made for my friends and got great feedback on.

Making appetizers is one of my favorite things to do. Nothing beats a little bite of yumminess. I serve them a lot at my get together’s because I love making a bunch of little dishes!! It gives me the chance to try new recipes because instead of making an actual dinner for our guests I get to make a few different picky dishes! I have what’s called an Appetizer Night a lot for my husband and myself or even when we have another couple over. This allows me to make them ahead of time, I always choose food that I can either prep ahead and finish quickly when people arrive or something I can actually make a head of time and reheat when people are hungry and ready to chow down!!

I’m making a bunch of munchy foods for Super Bowl Sunday myself, I hate football but I love entertaining and I love when people enjoy my food. As I type this, I am also planning my menu!! We are also having a Pampered Chef/Housewarming party the weekend after the Super Bowl and I think I’ll be doing a bunch of small Appetizers/Snacks for that party as well so this post is to my benefit too, nothing like putting all of my favs all in one place!! Oh and these are in no particular order either…….just my picks.

Party Fav #1

Good Ol’ Fashion Pizza Bites: These are super easy to make and you can make them with either crescent rolls or actual pizza dough, I’ve tried them both ways. You can really fill them with whatever toppings you like on your pizza. What I would do with this party pleaser is prepare them, roll them and get them on a baking sheet before your guests arrive so all you have to do it pop them in the oven for 10 or so minutes! Make a fun dipping sauce to go with them, put some spice in your sauce!!

Pizza Bites

Party Fav #2

Spinach Cups: I actually made these for the Super Bowl last year and they were a hit. The actual filling for them was to die for! I haven’t  made them since and now that I’m writing about it I want to try them again!

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Party Fav #3

Salsa Roll Ups: I made these last year too, I’ve also made them for a few other occasions too. Oh and they are made for Weight Watcher peeps too!! BIG hit. Super simple. Make ahead. End of story. If you want to make another version of this snack with a little meat to it, check out my St. Patty’s Day Party  from last year, same gist but it has some meat in it!! YUMMY!

Party Fav #4

Wings and Things: Who doesn’t want Wings on Game Day?????? I don’t even eat them and they are must have in this house……I would do anything for my hubby, he’s been working so hard lately making our new house a home that on Game Day I’m spoiling him rotten with either Drumsticks with Heat, Spicy Fried Wings or Baked Sweet Chili Wings, I haven’t decided on which one, but all three are worth mentioning here because he LOVED all of them, I probably won’t do the Fried ones just because they are SOOO bad for you, BUT what he wants he gets that day!!

Spicy Fried Wings

Party Fav #5

Meatball Sliders! Not just any Meatball Sliders guys, Cheesy Stuffed Meatball Sliders!!! These were to die for, serve them in a slider bun or as is with some tooth pics! If you want to go all out, use ground beef instead of Turkey, I try to stay a little on the healthy side so I do ground Turkey. These will be sure to please any crowd!

Party Fav #6

Puffs Puffs Puffs!! Puffs of Pepperoni, these neat little snacks I made called Pepperoni Puffs. I’m making these for game day this year because it’s been awhile since I’ve made them and they are super easy. They are also super easy to make a head of time too. You can make these the day before and refrigerate them, pull them out on game day and heat them up in your oven! Wala-Simple!  Not to mention the quick and easy 6 ingredients it has!

Pepperoni Bites (9)

Party Fav #7

Sausage Rolls – This is a quick and easy make for Game Day. I’m actually attempting to make a Ham & Cheese Roll just like this for my daughter tonight for dinner! (Stay tuned) this is a great snack for everyone and anyone! Serve it with a side of sauce and dip as you eat!

Sausage Rolls (8)

AND NOW A FEW SNACKS FOR YOU VEGETARIANS OUT THERE……..OR IF YOU JUST FEEL LIKE BEING HEALTHY!

Party Fav #8

Humus and Cucumber Dip – I know it doesn’t sound appealing, if you don’t like humus you won’t like this dip, but if you do, you will LOVE this dip….sounds like an odd combo but it tastes awesome together and it’s healthy!!!! Snack away on Game Day and feel good about it!

Party Fav #9

Vegetable Spring Rolls - It looks intimidating, it looks hard, but I promise you, it’s EASY!!! VERY EASY. EASY PEASY!! They cooked awesome in the oven too, they are healthier when you bake them in the oven, I was hesitant on how they were going to come out but they were awesome. OK. Now. I. Want. Some.

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Party Fav #10

PIZZA!! Who doesn’t love Pizza! How about a healthy Pizza?? A Vegetarian Pizza that is NOT boring. These are seriously addicting! They are made in little bite size pieces for the convienance of your guests! You can’t just have I promise you that. Super easy and a great snack you can make ahead of time, actually I advise you to make this ahead of time, it’s even better chilled :)

Veggie Pizza (10)

Well there you have it my friends!! I may not like football, but I love cooking for friends and family so I can’t wait to get my butt in the kitchen and make up a bunch of these picky foods! What’s on your menu for Game Day????

Featured Friday – Steph’s Bite by Bite

It’s that lovely little day of the week called Friday again my friends! That makes me happy. Featured Friday makes me happy. The blog I’m featuring today makes me VERY happy. I’d like you to all meet Stephanie from Steph’s Bite by Bite! (I know too cute huh!) Stephanie blogs about her adventures in the kitchen, her workouts (god bless this woman, she loves to run!!), and her days of becoming a first time Momma!!! Yup she is expecting a baby boy come the end of March!!! So happy for her, nothing makes me happier than getting to congratulate a new Momma. I don’t even remember how I came across her little bloggie, but one of my favorite parts about it (besides the yummy recipes of course!) was all the pregnancy related posts she has. It just struck close to home for me because I had just recently discovered we were expecting baby #2, we are exactly three months apart! So check out her Pregnancy Related articles on Baby Conner here. Her article on revealing the sex of her baby also gave me the idea of doing something special for our loved ones when finding out what Baby F. is next month! We did something similar with my family when we found out we were expecting a baby girl the first time around, sooooooooooo anyone reading this should expect a nice surprise at my Pampered Chef/Housewarming party next month!! :)

You’ll quickly learn that Steph’s favorite thing to eat is peanut butter and chocolate. Sometimes together. Sometimes separate. She’s also a crazed coffee maniac, lover of ice cream, and salad beast consumer. Love the combo’s, so my kind of gal! :) Besides those lovely combo’s Stephanie is also passionate about health and fitness but also in desperate need of a piece of cake…every day.” Everything in moderation.” is her thought, and I love it. I love that she is health concious but also loves to indulge when the mood strikes!! She also loves pushing herself to the limits, realizing that she’s stronger than she thinks, creating treats in the kitchen that bring people together, and exploring life. How can you not fall in love with this girl after reading that bio!!

One more thing before I name a few of my favorite recipes from Miss Stephanie! If you are expecting, or will be expecting again at some point, you have to check out her post on maternity wear, she’s got some pretty neat stuff  I must say. I agree with her thought process, it always makes us woman feel “prettier”, more “alive”, more “womanly” when we dress up, being pregnant doesn’t mean we still can’t feel those things. I felt exactly that way the first time around, this time around, not so much only because I’m a SAHM now and yoga pants is just the way to go, but I still like my cute maternity wear that I get to wear when I go out OUT!!

OK onto the good stuff…………FOOD. I really wanted to bake something from Steph’s list because she has such awesome treats on her blog. I wanted to break out the new Kitchen Aid Mixer and bake away, however it just didn’t happen this week between still getting my house decorated, other blog responsibilities, a teething toddler,  and YET another sinus infection for this Momma, it was close to  impossible. However here is my list of things I will be trying from her VERY soon!!!

Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Balls

Banana French Toast in a Mug

Blueberry Coffee Cake in a Mug

Pretzel Tots

So what did I decide to make???? A nice, warm, comforting dish on a perfect night that we all needed it. It’s like 5 below here!

Steph's Bite by Bite (1)

Beef Pot Pie 
Servings:  4 pot pies

1 tablespoon olive oil

3 pounds of stewing beef, that’s cut in to chunks

1 large onion, diced

3 carrots, diced

3 celery stalks, diced

8 ounces mushrooms, sliced

1 cup frozen peas

2 cloves garlic, crushed

2 teaspoons onion powder

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon dried rosemary

1 teaspoon paprika

2 bay leaves

2 cups beef broth

1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon cornstarch

2 tablespoons milk

salt & pepper to taste

1 roll ready-made puff pastry, thawed

1 egg, beaten

Heat olive oil in large pot over medium-high heat, add in the beef, cooking until brown (about 8-10 minutes). Remove beef from pot to a small bowl and set aside. I’m on of those people that stay organized while cooking, I usually get everything ready before I even start!

Steph's Bite by Bite (2)

In the same pot, cook the onion, carrots, and celery for 10 minutes or until soft and fragrant. Add in the mushrooms and garlic and cook for another 5 minutes, then add in the onion powder, dried herbs, paprika and bay leaves. Pour in the stock and add the browned beef back into the pot. Stir to combine everything and reduce the heat. Cover the pot and allow the stew to simmer on low for 1 1/2 – 2 hours.

Mix cornstarch and milk in a small bowl. Check to make sure that beef is fork tender. When it is, turn the heat up to medium-high and stir in your frozen peas. Then add in the cornstarch mixture. While the filling cooks on a high simmer continue to stir it until it thickens. This can take about 10 minutes.

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Divide the beef filling between 4 oven-proof dishes. Roll out the puff pastry slightly and cut into squares that will fit over the tops of the dishes. To secure dough to dishes, pinch the pastry against the rim of each dish. Cut 2 slits into each pie to allow the steam to escape and brush the pastry with the beaten egg.  Bake the pies for 30 minutes or until the pastry is cooked through, puffy, and golden brown.

Steph's Bite by Bite (4)

The only thing I changed up was I added another 2 cups of beef broth because we like more broth, every time I make soup or anything I always double the recipe! Can I just say OMG about this dish……..OMG OMG OMG……..it was awesome, I was loading the dishwasher that night and I actually said out loud to myself “OMG that was sooooo good!!”

Steph's Bite by Bite (5)

 

Lets thank Steph for Co-Hosting with me today and wish her lots and lots of luck with her new little bambino. From one Momma to another Momma……..”Your life is forever blessed.” Now go visit Steph’s Bite by Bite and show her some bloggie love!! Tell her this Momma sent you!

Szechuan Green Beans & Ground Turkey

I found this recipe on a blog I came across last fall, it quickly became a favorite of mine. Another blog that concentrates on making dishes healthier. I made this dish awhile back but never got around to posting it because of how busy I got, I figured I’d keep it around to post when I got busy, well here I am……….BUSY BUSY. I can still remember this dish like it was yesterday. I had no idea it was going to cost as good as it did. I’m always looking ways to jazz up the basic ground turkey recipe so when I came across this……… I was sold!!

Szechuan Green Beans &  (9)

Recipe From: The Lemon Bowl
Serves: 4
Prep time:  10 mins
Cook time:  15 mins
Total time:  25 mins
Ingredients:
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 3 garlic cloves – grated
  • 2 tbs ginger – grated
  • 1 lb green beans – trimmed
  • ½ c chicken broth
  • 1 tbs corn starch
  • 3 tbs soy sauce – low sodium
  • 1 tbs hoisin sauce
  • 2 tbs rice vinegar
  • ½ tbs chili garlic paste (more or less to taste)
  • Fresh  Mushrooms or canned
  • 8 oz water chestnuts – sliced
  • ½ tbs sesame oil

Szechuan Green Beans &  (2)

Instructions:
    • Pre-heat a large wok or deep pan over high heat and spray with non-stick spray.
    • Add ground turkey, garlic and ginger.

Szechuan Green Beans &  (4)

    • Using a potato masher or wooden spoon, break down the turkey and cook until browned. (Don’t be afraid of color! Brown = flavor. Move away from the pan for a minute – it’s ok, really!)
    • In a small bowl, whisk together chicken broth, corn starch, soy, hoisin, rice vinegar and chili garlic paste; set aside.

Szechuan Green Beans &  (5)

    • Once turkey is browned and bits and pieces are sticking to the pan, add in green beans and broth/soy mixture.

Szechuan Green Beans &  (7)

    • Saute 3-4 minutes then add water chestnuts and sesame oil.
    • Cook an additional minute or two then serve. Great with brown rice.

Szechuan Green Beans &  (8)

Nutrition Information:
Calories: 211
Fat: 3g
Saturated fat: .3g
Carbohydrates: 16.5g
Sodium: 640mg
Fiber: 3.8g
Protein: 31g
Cholesterol: 70mg

Loving Two

When I first found out we were expecting I immediately was consumed with guilt. YES GUILT…..the guilt of having to share my love with another child. I know it comes naturally, I know that a mother’s love is endless and there is always room to share, I know all of this, but I still felt this ache in my heart every time I spend time with my Madison. I still glance at her from time to time and wonder if I’ll ever miss this time, if I’ll ever miss the time alone with her. People say I won’t, people say that I’ll still make alone time with Madison and life will just happen. I want to believe it, I do believe it. It’s just more of the emotions I think any mother of one, expecting another goes through. I know this because I know plenty of people that are either pregnant and feeling the same way, or parents of more than one child already that have told me all of this.

A few week ago a blogger friend of mine read this poem and thought of me, enough to send it to me, how sweet is she!!?? I started crying before I even started reading it. I then read it again later that same night to my husband and cried all over again. So until the spring when this little one is due to enter this world, for the next six months, I’m just going to enjoy every second I can with my daughter. I thank both of my children for giving me the gift of motherhood.

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Loving Two

I walk along holding your 2-year-old hand, basking in the glow of our magical relationship. Suddenly I feel a kick from within, as if to remind me that our time alone is limited. And I wonder: how could I ever love another child as I love you?

Then the child is born, and I watch you. I watch the pain you feel at having to share me as you’ve never shared me before.

I hear you telling me in your own way, “Please love only me”. And I hear myself telling you in mine, “I can’t”, knowing, in fact, that I never can again.

You cry. I cry with you. I almost see our new baby as an intruder on the precious relationship we once shared. A relationship we can never quite have again.

But then, barely noticing, I find myself attached to that new being, and feeling almost guilty. I’m afraid to let you see me enjoying this new child, as though I am betraying you.

But then I notice your resentment change, first to curiosity, then to protectiveness, finally to genuine affection.

More days pass, and we are settling into a new routine. The memory of days with just the two of us is fading fast.

But something else is replacing those wonderful times we shared, just we two. There are new times – only now, we are three. I watch the love between you grow, the way you look at each other, touch each other.

I watch how this new baby adores you – as I have for so long. I see how excited you are by each of this baby’s new accomplishments. And I begin to realize that I haven’t taken something from you, I’ve given something to you. I notice that I am no longer afraid to share my love openly with both of you.

I find that my love for each of you is as different as you are, but equally strong. And my question is finally answered, to my amazement. Yes, I can love another child as much as I love you – only differently.

And although I realize that you may have to share my time, I now know you’ll never share my love. There’s enough of that for both of you – you each have your own supply.

I love you – both. And I thank you both for blessing my life.

Author Unknown x

I hope this happens for me….I know their will be loads of new things for me and my family. There will always be NEW firsts for Madison, only now she gets to share them with a sibling. I have a sister. Though we didn’t get along growing up, we are closer than ever now. She adores my child as her own. I trust her with my life, if I didn’t she wouldn’t have gained the relationship that she has with my daughter. I’m so thankful for that. I want my daughter to be thankful for that. Here she is with her TT, who she adores.

TT

I want to see the benefits of having two kids,  see what it’s like to share that love. I know I will in time. In my own time.

Retro Recipes for #SundaySupper

When Retro Recipes came up for this weeks theme I racked my brain on what to make. I started to think back to my childhood and I know I’ve already made a few staples from that time so I had to keep thinking of the PERFECT dish. Then I thought about my late grandmother and how much of a great cook she was. Then the dish came to me. I also got to make it in the casserole dish that she made it in EVERY single time she made it. My grandmother passed unexpectedly almost two years ago the day before my daughter was baptized. It was a sad day for all of us but I’m forever grateful that she got to meet my baby girl. She had such a heart for babies (especially baby girls since she had 4 sons but 6 granddaughters) Gosh she adored Madison. When she passed and we went through her belongings, I picked a few things from her kitchen, this casserole dish being one of them. I swear my belly tells me it’s the dish that makes this complete but I’d like for some of my readers to try it and tell me just how good it really is! She made it for every holiday and family dinner we had! It was her “thing”. Believe it or not this was my first attempt at this dish and I was NOT disappointed. Though I got quite a few items from her kitchen, her recipe box was not one of them, I was bummed, but when we moved two weeks ago I saw this recipe sitting on my moms desk, that told me it was the dish to be for this event!!  I also found a way to cut down on the fat as well :)

Join the #SundaySupper group as we cook up some great Retro Recipes. Isabel, from Family Foodie, founder of #SundaySupper is our gracious host this week. Let’s take a walk down memory lane and recall some of our favorite dishes growing up! Join us Around the Family Table tonight at 7pm Eastern Time and share your favorite Retro Food Memory with us!

Retro SS (3)

Mem’s Broccoli Casserole

2 10 oz. Pkgs. of Broccoli
1 Can of Cream of Broccoli Soup
1/2 Cup of shredded cheddar cheese
2 eggs, scrambled (I used one egg and one egg white)
1 Cup of Sour Cream (you can use mayo, it’s actually what my grandmother used)
4 tbsp. of butter (I used margarine)
1 Sleeve of Ritz Crackers

What to do:

Chop up the broccoli into small pieces, removing the stems off of the large pieces. Place in a bowl with water and microwave for 5 minutes. Drain.

In a casserole dish (1-1 1/2 quart dish) mix the cream of broccoli, cheddar cheese and sour cream together. Add the steamed broccoli and mix well to combine. Beat the eggs in a separate bowl and pour it into the mixture as evenly as possible.

Preheat oven to 350 F. Crush the crackers in a sealed zip-lock bag. Use a rolling pin or soup can crushing them up as much as possible. Pour them on top of the broccoli mixture and place the 4 tbsp of butter  on top scattering pieces throughout the top.

Cook covered for 40 min. Uncover and cook let cook for 5-10 more to brown the top.

Retro SS (1)

I served mine with Kielbasa the night I made this because it’s one of my daughters favorites, I even got her to eat some of this casserole, my grandmother would be so proud!!! I used sour cream to make it a little more healthier and I have to say, I didn’t even notice the difference!!!! :) I wish my grandmother could have had some! Now onto what the rest of the group has made this week, lets go back in time and share everyone’s Retro Recipes!

Retro SS (2)

Sunday Supper Retro Appetizers:

 Sunday Supper Retro Salads:

 Sunday Supper Retro Breads and Sandwiches:

SundaySupper Main Dishes:

Sunday Supper Retro Sides and Veggies:

 Sunday Supper Retro Desserts and Cocktails:

Join the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter each Sunday. We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET and you do not want to miss out on the fun. Follow the#SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more fabulous recipes and food photos.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here → Sunday Supper Movement.

Featured Friday – The Meltaways

I’m excited to kick off the first Featured Friday for 2013!! I took a few weeks off so I could move and get my family settled in our new house. This week Pam, another #SundaySupper member is Co-Hosting with me!! Pam blogs over at The Meltaways! Let’s give her a warm welcome from our kitchen to hers!! :) Every person I’ve “met” over at the #SundaySupper crew I have begun to adore in every way possible and Pam is just one of them!

Pam’s blog started out as a place to chronicle her journey to a healthier life while both herself and her husband Randall lost weight and got stronger for  themselves, for each other, and for their son, Daniel.

Now……it’s so much more than that. Not only does she share her weight loss trials and triumphs, but other aspects of their lives. Let’s face it, sharing our weight with people we know is not the easiest thing, in fact, it’s just down right hard. Well Pam shares her weight with not just people she knows, but the whole entire world. To me that means she means business!! Pam used to maintain a food blog, From Apples To Zucchini, but decided at the beginning of 2012 to bring back the health focus to her kitchen. She also hopes to share what her family is eating that may help them along this journey. In an effort to show everyone that eating healthy can be delicious and satisfying it’s Pam’s goal to provide calorie and fat information on as many new recipes as possible, hopefully adding this information onto the older important recipes with time.

Please enjoy the other features Pam offers as well, including her homemaking posts her homeschooling posts, as well as her love for their favorite place in the world.

Again, not an easy week to pick a recipe. Pam has some great one’s! Some scrumptious ones! Some mouth watering, you just have to go whip up now recipes! I’m not sure how this one caught my eye. When choosing a recipe from a Co-Hosts website I always choose one that I can make for my family for dinner that week. It may contain meat, it maybe a crock pot meal, it may be a casserole dish, I do try and choose a recipe that coincides with what I have going on during that week. Well since this Momma is getting back to the swing of things here in her new kitchen, I went with a dish I could prepare a head of time and pop in the oven when I went to pick up my daughter at daycare. I SOOOOOOOOOO made the right pick! This dish was SOOO good and I will surly be making it again, I also think it would make a great brunch dish because it has the egg and cheese in it, I don’t think it’s that bad for you either!! SCORE for this Momma!

Recipe Adapted From: The Meltaways
Serves: 6
Calories per serving: 385
Fat per serving: 9.5 grams

The Meltaways (1)

Baked Ravioli Frittata

Ingredients:

  • 1 (1 lb 9oz) package frozen cheese ravioli (I used a 12 oz pkg. they were smaller ravioli’s)
  • 8 large eggs (I used 4 and 4 egg whites)
  • 1/4 c shredded Parmesan
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 c. fat free half and half (I used almond milk)
  • 1 to 1 1/2 c. shredded Italian Blend Cheese
  • 3 tbsp chopped fresh parsley

The Meltaways (2)

Instructions:

  • In a sprayed baking dish line the frozen raviolis in two layers on top of one another
  • in a bowl, beat eggs, half and half, Parmesan and onion powder together and pour over ravioli
  • Sprinkle cheese on top and scatter parsley over cheese
  • Cover with foil and bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes
  • remove foil and bake for 5-10 minutes more to brown cheese

The Meltaways (3)

What’s Up Momma? I tired….

Well we have officially been in our new house for a week now. I’m trying to remember that it took us no less than two months to pack up our condo, that it will probably take us the same amount of time to unpack and “really” make it home! UGH….I really had no idea how much work it was.

When I bought my first condo at 23 I didn’t go with much, I was leaving my mom and dad for the very first time in my life. I never went away to college, I had never lived on my own before, my father was dying, it was a tough time, yet it was an exciting time for me. I went with the cloths on my back and bought all new furniture with my then boyfriend. Two years later, when things didn’t work out and I thought my life was over I moved back home to get back on my feet and figure out what I was going to do. I again went home with the cloths on my back and barley anything else. Five years later I moved to NH when I met my husband. Again, I moved with the cloths on my back and together we bought some new furniture. So this, this was a HUGE move for us! However we are here now, that’s the important part, making it a home is supposed to be the fun part. I have to be honest for a minute, it hasn’t been fun. I thought unpacking my kitchen would be fun. It wasn’t. It was exhausting. I thought unpacking my master bedroom, with the to die for walk-in closet in it would be fun. It wasn’t. I’d like to think it’s because I’m pregnant. I’d like to think it’s because we are in the dead of winter and I’ve been sick with either a head cold, chest cold or this time around, a throat cold……..this one even ended with layringitis! (yes a dream for my husband). Here is the best bed anyone could ever sleep on. I bought this set for myself a year before I moved in with my husband and since it didn’t fit in our condo bedroom it stayed at my moms………it was worth the wait because let me tell you, since we’ve been sleeping in this bed….I’ve never slept as well as I have been and so has my hubby.

6

I never thought I’d say that I’m sick of shopping, but I am. I went from having 3 windows to about 20 so I’m in need of way more blinds and curtains. NOT a fun job, I suck at measuring, I suck at hanging and my hubby is so busy with other stuff that I feel like I have to give the hanging of curtains and pictures a go. Here is day two of the big move……we were bombarded and surrounded by boxes for at least a week!

5

Lets talk about the other thing I’ve been sucking at these days too. Cooking. Anything. :( This is a big upset for me. The first few months of my pregnancy I had no energy or stomach to do more than boil water! Now I’m finally not tired 24/7 and I’m officially in my new kitchen……however I’m still sucking. I thought it was just because I had a lot on my mind and have been so busy the last few weeks, or should I say months! Then my first week in our new home I was took upon myself to warm up some pizza for my husband and I for lunch. I like to warm it up in the oven because it keeps the crispiness. So I did what I always do, thew it on some tinfoil, popped it in the oven at 350 and walked away. I was unpacking a box 2 rooms away when I heard my husband screaming from upstairs, “Hun, what is going on?” Now this was in a voice I had never heard from him before, I immediatley got defensive and said “What, what, what is wrong” as I walked into the kitchen smoke had already filled the entire downstairs, except the room I was in of course. He literally jumped down the flight of stairs and asked what I was making in the oven. I said I’m warming up pizza, I assumed something was seriously wrong with this stove. He opened it and I could see a huge flame coming from the bottom of the stove. He said WTF…….he tried to put the fire out with a dish rag, it wasn’t working. Then he opened the draw at the bottom of the stove, low and behold, my kitchen mitt was on fire! The man, husband, daddy that he is immediatly grabbed the mitt and brought it outside to dump in the snow. He proceeded to open every window and air out the house. I can’t believe I’m admitting this, but I went from an electric stove to a gas stove and I had no idea what the difference was, apparantley with an electric stove you can use the draw at the bottom as storage, which is what I’ve always done, heck thank got I had that in my condo, I kept all of my pots and pans in their. Well I guess with a gas stove the draw is meant to be a broiler. How was I to know? Don’t worry I didn’t take offense when my husband came home with three brand new fire extinguishers the next day!! :)

Then I attempted a simple recipe I found through another food blogger friend of mine, I’m not sure what I did wrong, I followed the recipe to a T, the only thing I changed was I used homemade pasta sauce vs. jarred, figuring it would be better that way, however since my sauce was frozen it was more watery than most sauces and, well the dish just wouldn’t cook, my sister and I picked around the edges and ate the cooked dough and the middle of the pizza pie was all dough!! Whoopsy. Then the next night I made a pot roast, which I’ve done a million times before, however I used different potatoes than usual and I must have bought a cheaper cut of meat (which I’ve done before, you’d think I’d have learnt by now) and it took over 9 hours to cook and the meat was tough. Come last night I felt pretty defeated, I even told my husband that we are having take out from here on out through the rest of this pregnancy. :( I’m blaming it on pregnancy but who knows, I feel like I’ve lost my “place” in the kitchen. I have to confess………I’m bumming. Mom said that cooking with a gas stove is a lot different than an electric one that I have to give it some time, I had no idea that it could be that different!!

Madison is settling in, she is doing really well at her new daycare, we love it their, the teaches are so nice and friendly, they keep her busy when I drop her off so she doesn’t even have time to be sad or upset, one day I was lucky to even get a kiss good-bye! She is loving seeing Nunny and TT everyday, it’s nice that they can say good night or see her off to school in the morning. She is still getting used to her playroom, she hasn’t quite figured out yet that the WHOLE room is hers. That she can go and play whenever she wants, she used to play in the same room we were hanging out in so I think it’ll take some time for her to play on her own. Here she is one morning, our first week……..so much stuff, you can barley see her!

4

After a week of all day/night unpacking and putting things together, take-out, and visits from family and friends, Andy and I finally had a date night. Like we used to, we put Boo to bed, had dinner and watched a movie, well…..half the movie! We agreed every Friday night will be date night, most of them in, but some out :)

3

I will forge ahead though, I won’t give up. I’m back to Featured Friday, so stay tuned, Friday I have a fellow #SundaySupper member in my kitchen Co-Hosting with me! Then our theme for #SundaySupper this week is Retro Recipes, Then and Now. I decided to choose a dish from my childhood that I hold near and dear, so stay tuned for some great Retro Recipes!!

2

Here we are at 16 weeks. Me and my lil peanut! I’ve never been as tired as I am, I’ve never felt as fat as I do today, however I’ve never felt as beautiful as I do right this very minute. I may not be that fond of pregnancy this time around but I’m staying positive and remembering why as woman we do this. I look over at my daughter (how cute is she) and I remember just why, it’s all worth it.

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