Everyday Mom's Meals: October 2012

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!!!

It's finally here! If your kids are anything like Monkey, and I think most are, the only countdown bigger than the one to today is the one coming up in about a month towards December 25th! Children everywhere are sitting in classrooms right now watching the minutes tick away just trying to contain themselves until they can get home, don their witches hats, pirate swords, superhero capes and princess tiaras. When Monkey gets home, he is convinced he needs to change right away, and trick or treating should start promptly at 3:45 pm. Well, our city council sees things differently and therefore made trick or treat hours from 6-8 pm, which means I have 2 hours to fill the void with some Halloween fun so I don't have to hear "Is it time yet?" every 5 minutes. So, I'm going to surprise him with these for a yummy, festive after school snack! I know he is going to think they are too cute and be surprised at what lies underneath. Hopefully these will lessen his urge to run out the door a little bit until that magical witching hour. From my family to yours, I wish you and your little ones a very "spook-tacular" and fun filled day!


My Monkey as Captain America

Ghost Pops From Pinterest
1 banana, cut into thirds
1 (6 oz) container very vanilla yogurt
1 c. sweetened flaked coconut
Candy sticks
6 pieces of chocolate puff cereal

Spread each piece of banana with yogurt, coating liberally. Roll in coconut, pressing to adhere. Dip each piece of of cereal in yogurt and press into banana for eyes. Freeze for 1 hour to set.

Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Oct. 31, 2012
Halloween at Very Good Recipes
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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Candy Overload

On November 1st, parents across this country, from one coast to another, will all be dealing with the same problem. TOO MUCH candy! Little ones will bring it home by the bagful on Halloween night, and even after picking through and probably disposing of some, there will still more than enough to feed an entire army for months! Or, many of you might have a different kind of candy problem. You bought bag after bag to hand out to the little ghosts and goblins, but only a tenth of what you anticipated rang your doorbell. So, if you find yourself with one, or both, of these problems come Thursday morning, I've got a great resolution for you that is yummy and easy at the same time. Why not take some of those candy bars and turn them into another dessert? How about adding in some fruit so you can feel better about eating it? When I saw this idea I thought it was pretty ingenious, and not just because it contained my favorite candy bar of all time. And yes, before you ask, I'm the mom that when I go through my son's candy bag at the end of the night, is sure to sneak a couple for myself. Don't judge...you know you do it too! So if you find yourself very "candy happy" and want to use some of it in a new,unique way, this salad is just the answer!

Apple Candy Bar Salad 
1 (3.4 oz) box French vanilla instant pudding
3/4 c. milk
1 1/2 c. Cool Whip
2 large honeycrisp apples, cored and chopped into bite sized chunks
2 Snickers candy bars (regular size), chopped
1/2 c. coconut
1 small chocolate bar, optional

With a wire whisk, combine 1/2 of the pudding mix and milk. Whisk for 2 minutes and let rest for 2 minutes until soft set. Fold in Cool Whip and remaining pudding mix. Stir well to combine. Add apples and candy bars. Stir. Add coconut. Stir well. Using a lemon zester, grate chocolate over the to to garnish. Chill until serving.

Shared on Mandy's Recipe Box Oct. 30, 2012
Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Oct. 31, 2012
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Nov. 1, 2012
Shared on The Country Cook Nov. 2, 2012

Mandy‘s Recipe Box
Featured On

Adapted from Taste of Home

Monday, October 29, 2012

Two Weeks and Counting

As some of you know, for the second year in a row, I've been selected as a Top 10 Finalist for the Reader's Choice Recipe Contest sponsored by our hometown newspapers. As a finalist, I received two tickets to the Taste of Home cooking show where the winners will be announced on November 13th. Last year was my first time attending a cooking show, and it was so much fun! I learned a lot, had some yummy things to eat, and even got some nice samples to take home. So like I told my family, even if I don't win again this year, it will be an enjoyable evening full of food! But in honor or this upcoming event, I wanted to share a tasty Taste of Home recipe I saw in one of their more recent issues. We are huge mushroom eaters, and any time I see them paired with pasta, my eyes light up and my stomach growls. This was actually published including turkey, as a great use for leftovers after Thanksgiving, but I wanted to keep it strictly meat free. Not for any other reason than it left more room for extra mushrooms!! The flavor of the baby portobellos is so deep, any mushroom lover will gobble this up, rather you include the turkey (Ha! Gobble up turkey) or not! Two more weeks and I will finally know my recipe contest fate, but either way, I'll have a great time learning so new dishes from one of my favorite recipe sources!

Portobello Mushroom Bake Adapted from Taste of Home
1 lb. rotini pasta
1 lb. baby portobello mushrooms, sliced
3 large garlic cloves, grated
1 TBS butter
2 TBS olive oil
3 TBS flour
1 1/2 c. milk
1/3 c. heavy cream
1/2 c. shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
1 1/2 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste

Cook pasta according to package directions. Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 8x11 baking dish with non stick spray. In a large skillet on medium heat melt butter in olive oil. Add mushrooms and garlic. Cook until browned and tender, about 7 minutes. Sprinkle with flour and cook 2 minutes. Slowly add milk and cream, stirring constantly. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Add 1/4 c. Parmesan to mushroom mixture and stir well to combine. When pasta is cooked, drain well and return to hot pot. Add mushroom mixture and stir. Add 1 cup mozzarella cheese, salt and pepper. Pour into prepared dish and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan. Bake for 20-25 minutes until browned and bubbly.

Shared on Make Ahead Meals Oct. 29, 2012
Shared on Mandy's Recipe Box Oct. 30, 2012
Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Oct. 31, 2012
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Nov. 1, 2012
Shared on The Country Cook Nov. 2, 2012

Pasta at Very Good Recipes
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Sunday, October 28, 2012

Church Supper #62

Good Morning and welcome to another Sunday! I hope this finds you enjoying your weekend and ready to share in some good fellowship and great food!

Thanks for stopping by today. I truly appreciate you sharing with our foodie family!
Please link up your favorite recipes from the week. And remember I wish you God's blessings all week long!
 " Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!" (Philippians 4:4)

 Last Week's Most Viewed Recipe:
Congrats! Please feel free to grab my "Featured On" button!

Now, let's eat!


1. Feel free to link up as many recipes, but recipes ONLY please, as you like!

2. Link up to your ACTUAL recipe, not just your homepage. Much easier to find you that way!

3. Include a link back to EMM on your recipe post or grab my button!

4. Leave comments so I can visit you back!

5. Visit at least 2 other sites and tell them you joined them at my Church Supper!

6. Follow my blog here w/ GFC and on Facebook :)

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Weekend Company {Guest Blogger Amber}

Good Morning and welcome to the last weekend of October. Yes, you read that correctly. Hard to believe, right??!! But to celebrate, my guest is sharing an awesome autumn recipe that I could absolutely see on your Thanksgiving table. So beautiful and festive.

Today's guest blogger has such an interesting story to tell. I have known Amber since high school, but we've really reconnected over the last year through Facebook...and FOOD! She too is a mama and a blogger; and I have so much respect for how she has totally revamped her family's eating habits. But I will let her tell you more about that. Please welcome Amber to EMM~

Hi, I’m Amber from Whole Foods for Whole Families, and I’m excited to be doing my first-ever guest blogging post here for Krista. Like most of you on here, I LOVE food. But our family eats a little differently. My husband and I follow a Paleo lifestyle – grain-free, dairy-free and legume-free. Since I started eating this way about 6 months ago, I have cured my Chronic Fatigue and GERD, lost 8 lbs (I’m a size 2), and have enjoyed more energy, clearer thought processes (no more brain fog!) among other things. My husband has also had noticeable changes to his health; he’s lost 25 lbs (and counting), his cholesterol levels have come into a healthy range, his skin has cleared up all over his body (his back used to be red and bumpy, now it’s super soft and smooth) and he has much more energy, just to name a few.

But the biggest change has been with my youngest daughter, Little A, now 4-and-a-half-years-old. When she just turned three, she became very sick after having a routine surgery to remove her adenoids and insert a new set of ear tubes. She was diagnosed with Chronic Benign Neutropenia of Childhood which is a fancy way of saying that her neutrophils, the white blood cells that fight bacteria, are chronically low. After taking her to one of the best pediatric hospitals in the country, we were left with no treatment options, just a wait-and-see approach. This wasn’t good enough for us. I didn’t want to sit around, waiting to see if my child was going to fall seriously ill again, so my husband and I researched and researched… and then we researched some more. Our research led us to how our diets can affect our health so we completely changed the way we eat. After being gluten- and dairy-free for a year, Little A’s health has completely transformed. She used to be sick nearly all the time with constant fevers, colds, runny noses and ear infections (even after having ear tubes). Winter time meant endless trips to the pediatrician, but the first winter after we became gluten-free, neither Little A nor my oldest, Big C, had to go to the doctor. Not even once. For us, that was a huge deal! In fact, Little A has not had one fever since going gluten-free. She also put on weight, her skin no longer looks pale and pasty, the dark circles under her eyes have diminished and she is full of much more energy while requiring less sleep. The transformation of Little A’s health has inspired me to blog about our journey on my site in the hopes of helping other families find their path to health as well.

But enough about me; let’s get down to some food. I promised Krista I would come up with a recipe that was gluten-free but without any of the “weird” ingredients we gluten-free people tend to use. I didn’t want to post a recipe that required ingredients most people don’t have, like almond flour or coconut flour, staples in a Paleo diet. And I also wanted to come up with a good fall recipe, something you can make as a special treat for Halloween or even the upcoming holidays. This recipe for Baked Apples is easy, but the results look impressive. And it tastes unbelievable. I’ve been making this for years, long before we became gluten-free, and I’m happy that one of my old favorites still has a home in my new dietary repertoire. I hope you enjoy, and if any of you have any questions about eating and living a gluten-free lifestyle, please stop by my site or my Facebook page and drop me a message.

Baked Apples
4 apples, cut in half across the equator
¼ cup pure maple syrup
1 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup chopped walnuts
½ tsp vanilla extract
4TBSP butter, divided

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Scoop the seeds and core out of the apple halves, creating an opening inside the apple to hold the syrup. Place in an 8x8 square baking dish.
In a small saucepan, gently heat syrup and cinnamon over low heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until syrup has slightly thickened, about 2-3 minutes. Off the heat, stir in walnuts and vanilla extract. Pour syrup over apples, filling the openings created from the cores. Divide the butter into 4 equal parts and place pats of butter on top of the apples.
Bake for 30-40 minutes until apples are tender. Ladle syrup drippings over the apples. Serve warm.

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Menu Plan Oct. 28- Nov 2

*New Recipes
Links to recipes on blog

We are trick or treating early at my mother in law's and having supper with her

Ham and Cheese Sliders
Mac n Cheese
Baked Cranberry*

Tasty Chicken Tostadas*
Veggies with Salsa Dip*

Happy Halloween
Grilled Cheese
Tomato Soup

Cappellini Con Fungi Fresca
Garlic Bread

I'm going out with the girls.
The boys will have leftovers

Friday, October 26, 2012

It Was SO Monday....

So I think most of us can say that we are not huge fans of Mondays. Or should I say Monday mornings. As the day goes on, I'm fine, but the minute the alarm goes off that first morning after 2 days off, I groan, I moan, I try to rationalize how I can ignore it...and then I suck it up and hit the shower. Now like I said, as the day progresses, I'm good...that is until the curse of Monday morning drags on during the entire day. You know what I mean. The kind of day that everything goes wrong, anything you go to do takes twice as long, and if **it can happen, it will! Well, that was the kind of Monday I was having a couple weeks ago. First off, I hadn't slept well the night before, so I was extra exhausted. Then I was late getting to where I needed to be that morning because I had hung out at the house waiting on the mail...only to remember it was Columbus Day. Then even though I was late, I stopped by the bank to do my normal Monday business...only to remember it was Columbus Day. (Do you see a pattern?) Then after cleaning my mom's house, we were on our way to lunch and needed to stop by her post office...only to remember it was Columbus Day. Yep, it took 3 times for me to remember!! (I told you I was extra tired!) Then the next few hours went fine. Mom and I had lunch, we did a bit of shopping (she treated me to a few nice things...this would wind up being the highlight of my day) and I even got new shoes. That always helps to make the day better, right ladies! Then I headed home to pick Alex up from school, do homework, housework and start supper. This was about the time the day went to hell in hand basket. I got the pleasure of doing extra laundry because Alex had found the wet grass during a game of soccer. I discovered even more surfaces in the house that needed cleaned. I got dirt on my shirt, so instead of changing I just put on my pjs. Alex, having to have his clothes washed due to those pesky grass stains, was in his undies playing video games... and that's when the phone rang. It was my husband. It wasn't a "I just called to say I love you" call. It was a "I just got a flat tire, and need the spare in the back of your car" call. Yep, I got the pleasure of driving 30 minutes north of our house to take him the spare, of course hitting every red light possible, only extending the trip.  And before you ask, yes, I went in my pajamas and my child did put clothes on, but they were ones from the hamper, and his shirt was on backwards (which I didn't notice until we returned home) Yep, we were those people. Thank God nobody saw us! By the time we got home, I knew the pasta supper I had planned was not going to happen; but luckily I had these planned for later in the week and I knew I could have them on the table and us eating before too long. Thank goodness for meal plans that can be adjusted at the last minute if need be! These were quick, tasty and the perfect Monday, I need a break before I cry, supper!

Ham and Cheese Crescents
6 slices deli ham, cut into quarters
1 (8 ct) can crescent rolls
8 slices Velveeta singles cheese (found in dairy section), cut into pieces to fit rolls
1/4 c. honey mustard
Poppy Seeds

Preheat oven to 375. Unroll crescents and separate. Using 1 piece of cheese per roll, lay cheese out fitting onto roll. Using a pastry brush, spread with honey mustard. Add three quarter pieces of ham. Roll up, wide edge to thin. Sprinkle with poppy seeds. Press gently to adhere. Lay on baking sheet and cook 15 minutes until golden brown.

Shared on The Country Cook Oct. 26, 2012
Shared on Make Ahead Meals Oct. 29, 2012
Ham at Very Good Recipes
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Thursday, October 25, 2012

One Pot Short

A few weeks back it was a cold, dreary Sunday and comfort food was on our menu. Comfort food in the form of Beef and Noodles. And in our house, if those are on our table, there is a big bowl of mashed potatoes right next to them! It's the only way we eat them....no exceptions! So as I ventured into the kitchen, taking the ingredients out of the cupboards, beginning my prep work I remembered one very important detail since the last time I made this meal. One of the two big stock pots I had was scorched, ruined and now resides in a garbage dump somewhere. So I had one pot to prepare the beef and noodles in, but what was I going to do about the potatoes? I could borrow one from my friend 3 doors down, I could drive the 20 minutes to my mom's house and borrow hers, I could head to the Walmart down the street and buy a new one...but to be quite frank, none of those sounded like good options. Why? I don't know if you are grasping just how cold it was this day, (Okay, on the scale of cold, it wasn't freezing, but after a week of 60s and one 80 degree day, 43 felt like the arctic tundra!) and I simply did not want to leave the house. So after the 60 seconds it took me to determine what ever solution I was going to come up it needed to be something "in house", it finally came to be. My Crock-Pot! Of course! Put the potatoes in some water, cook them all day. And then continue as planned. Why not? All I needed was to achieve the same goal as boiling them. Lucky for me, it worked perfectly! I am so glad to have this little tip in my back pocket! How easy when you are cooking a huge meal, or when you have company! Especially since after they are mashed, you can put them back in the slow cooker to keep warm throughout the whole evening. I knew there were more reasons to love my Crock-Pot, and I'm so happy I discovered this one. Because I'm telling you right now, beef and noodles with no mashed potatoes would mean riots at my house!

Crock-Pot Mashed Potatoes
2 1/2 lbs. russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1/4 c. milk
1/4 c. butter, room temperature
Salt and Pepper to taste

Place potatoes in Crock Pot. Add just enough water to cover. Set on HIGH and cook 4-5 hours until fork tender. Drain. Place in a large mixing bowl. Mash with a potato masher. Add butter and milk. Using an electric mixer, whip until smooth. Add salt and pepper. Stir to combine. If placing back in Crock-Pot to keep warm, turn heat to LOW and stir occasionally. Garnish with extra butter and pepper if desired.

Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Oct. 25, 2012
Shared on The Country Cook Oct. 26, 2012

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Indoor Campout

A couple weeks ago Mr. Everyday had Saturday night plans with "the boys" celebrating a friend's birthday, and so Monkey and I were on our own for the evening. This type of thing doesn't happen often in our house on the weekend, so I wanted to make sure I made it a super fun time for the little man and I. When I get a chance to hang out with him, I want memories to be made! Well, this happened to only be a few days after his brand new Avengers sleeping bag arrived in the mail, and he was dying to try it. See, I bought it for our upcoming trip to Pennsylvania over the Thanksgiving holiday, and he just couldn't wait that long to use it! After all, a boy's very first sleeping bag is a very big deal. I knew it was going to be super chilly so having an actual camp out was not an option, so and indoor one it would be~complete with new pajamas, snacks and a movie! Our indoor camp out turned into a super-hero themed one with Spiderman 3 as the movie, Batman on the pjs, and of course the Avengers sleeping bag! I knew s'mores would be the perfect snack, and I could make my Mint Chocolate ones I shared over the summer, but I wanted something a little more autumn inspired. So with taking the ingredients of a regular s'more and tweaking them just a little, I got something that is the perfect treat for a fall bonfire, camping trip or even indoor camp out!

Pumpkin Ginger S'mores
Ginger Snap Cookies (small size)
Pumpkin Spice Marshmallows
White Chocolate Baking Bar, cut into small pieces

Roast marshmallows to desired doneness. (We like ours burnt!) Place a chocolate piece on cookie. Top with marshmallow and another cookie. Smoosh and enjoy!!
*NOTE* If you don't have the Pumpkin Spice marshmallows. Use original ones and add 1/8 tsp pumpkin pie spice to each s'more!

Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Oct. 24, 2012
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Oct. 25, 2012
Shared on The Country Cook Oct. 26, 2012

Pumpkin at Very Good Recipes
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Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Make Your Kids Say "Ewww"...

Do you have anything planned fun planned for Halloween? A costume party? A classroom party? Maybe you are just like me and while you don't have a big gathering to attend, you still want to make the day as fun as possible for you little ones. And maybe like me you enjoy the fact that not only can you be the coolest mom ever with a sweet treat, but you also get a little thrill of totally grossing them out! If this is the case, then why not have something easy to make, fun to say and yummy to eat waiting on them after school on Halloween? Can you imagine the kiddies walking through the front door asking "Mommy, can we have a snack?" And you answering with "Sure, I've some worms in dirt for you." The looks of horror on their faces would be priceless (In fact, you might want to have the camera ready!) This is actually something I remember eating as a kid at our church Halloween party, and it was always so much fun! Eating something that sounds so gross always makes it taste better! Let's face it, with kids (especially boys) the more gross something sounds, but tastes great, the more they will love it! So, if you are looking for a entertaining, yet simple dessert for Halloween night when the ghosts and goblins stop by to say "Boo", I've got you covered!

Worms in Dirt
1 (3.4oz) package instant chocolate pudding
2 c. cold milk
1 (8oz) tub Cool Whip
1 (16oz) package chocolate sandwich cookies
Gummy Worms (I used the sour variety)

In a large bowl, combine pudding and milk. Whisk constantly for 2 minutes. Allow to set in fridge for 5 minutes. In a large plastic bag, add cookies and crush with a rolling pin. When pudding is set, add Cool Whip and half the crushed cookies. Stir well until mixture is all the same color. In small plastic cups place 1 TBS remaining crushed cookies. Spoon pudding mixture into another plastic bag, and cut corner off to make a pastry bag. Pipe pudding into plastic cups, filling about 3/4 the way. Top each with about 2 TBS remaining cookies and gummy worms.

~Join me for Tasty Tuesday on Formula Mom~

Shared on Mandy's Recipe Box Oct. 23, 2012
Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Oct. 24, 2012
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Oct. 25, 2012
Shared on The Country Cook Oct. 26, 2012
Kids at Very Good Recipes
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Monday, October 22, 2012

Ground Beef Overload

All of you have heard me say that we are so incredibly lucky to always have a side of beef (and various other meats too) in our deep freezer. There was a day we weren't as lucky and I remember the cost of buying meat each week, and it wasn't cheap. And with a growing boy to feed, our family, even though there are only 3 of us, goes through a lot of meat! Last month, just as we were nearing the end of our supply it was time for another cow to be butchered and we were once again bringing home enough meat to fill our chest freezer to the brim once again. Each time we "refill" alongside the roasts and steaks, there is always an abundance of hamburger. Package after package, it is definitely what we end up with the most. So when I know there are more than enough packages to go around, I start to come up with as many recipes as I can using ground beef. Let's face it, it's kind of the "go-to" meat for busy moms. From burgers and sloppy joes, to casseroles and tacos, there are an infinite possibilities to what a mom with hungry eyes staring at her can do with a pound of ground beef. These sandwiches are a great new twist on a classic loose meat (basically a sloppy joe without the sloppy) and are just as easy to make. They would also be terrific cut into smaller portions for a tailgate party! If you have ground beef "coming out of your ears" too, maybe I just helped you use some it!!

Cheesy Hot Beef Sandwiches Adapted from Pillsbury
1 1/2 lbs. ground beef
1 small green bell pepper, finely diced
8 oz. Cheddar-Monterey Jack Cheese
2 tsp. dried parsley
1 envelope French onion soup mix
1/4 c. water
1 large loaf French bread
Salt and Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 350. In a large skillet, brown beef seasoned with salt and pepper until no longer pink. Drain if necessary. Return to skillet. Add green pepper, parsley, water and soup mix. Stir well to combine. Add cheese a little at at time allowing it to melt and combine. Cut bread lengthwise. Carefully remove inner part of both halves, leaving 1/2 inch around edges. (Basically make 2 bread "boats".) Carefully spoon meat mixture into both halves, pressing down. Gently flip top half onto bottom and wrap in double layer of foil. Place on baking sheet and cook 20-25 minutes. Cut into sections to serve.

Shared on Make Ahead Meals Oct. 22, 2012
Shared on Mandy's Recipe Box Oct.  23, 2012
Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Oct. 24, 2012
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Oct. 25, 2012
Shared on The Country Cook Oct. 26, 2012

Ground Beef at Very Good Recipes
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Sunday, October 21, 2012

Church Supper #61

Good Morning and welcome to another Sunday! I hope this finds you enjoying your weekend and ready to share in some good fellowship and great food!

Thanks for stopping by today. I truly appreciate you sharing with our foodie family!
Please link up your favorite recipes from the week. And remember I wish you God's blessings all week long!
 " Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!" (Philippians 4:4)

 Last Week's Most Viewed Recipe:
Congrats! Please feel free to grab my "Featured On" button!

Now, let's eat!


1. Feel free to link up as many recipes, but recipes ONLY please, as you like!

2. Link up to your ACTUAL recipe, not just your homepage. Much easier to find you that way!

3. Include a link back to EMM on your recipe post or grab my button!

4. Leave comments so I can visit you back!

5. Visit at least 2 other sites and tell them you joined them at my Church Supper!

6. Follow my blog here w/ GFC and on Facebook :)

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Weekend Company {Guest Blogger Erin}

Good Morning! Are you as happy as I am that the weekend is once again upon us? Did you have a good week? I hope so. We actually get a 3 day weekend this week because Monkey had Fall Break yesterday, and believe me, the extra day was much appreciated!  It seems like the weeks are going by faster and faster, with us already into the last half of October already!

Today I have a real treat for you. My dear friend Erin is back once again with such a decadent recipe the pictures had me drooling the minute they showed up in my inbox.

For those who don't know, Erin and I have been friends for over 20 years now, and while life may get in the way of us seeing each other as much as we would like to, we always find a way to catch up, and immediately pick up right where we left on. So, when she is kind enough to drop by EMM to share something delicious, it's extra special for me because it's as if we are sitting down over a cup of coffee, sharing something we both love...food.

~So please welcome her back, sit down, and stay a bit~

Good Morning!  Happy Saturday to all!  I am so honored to be guest blogging again here on Everyday Mom’s Meals.  Krista and I have been friends for over twenty years now and I can honestly say, without a doubt, we will be friends for the rest of our lives.  I love watching her blog grow and develop and I am always impressed with the new and exciting things she has to offer!

Today I would like to share with you a recipe that is near to my heart.  You see, I was born and raised in Indiana and I love my cornfields!  I would have been perfectly content to spend my days on familiar ground; but God had bigger plans for me, and in 2004 I graduated from college, got married and moved to Ohio.  I love Indiana and I always will; but now my life is in Ohio.  I’m not a Hoosier and I’m not a Buckeye, so what am I?  I’m a Hoosier-Hioan!  That is what inspired me to create this cake.  I have been to a lot of church suppers in my life, and there was always a sheet cake.  Always.  At least in Indiana!  The sheet cake was a novel concept to all my new church friends here in Ohio.  I’ve made lots of sheet cakes, white ones, chocolate ones, all good in their own right.  I’m always looking for ways to improve on favorite recipes, so when I made my chocolate sheet cake recipe, I decided to kick it up a notch.  I started by adding whipped cream – good, but common.  Then it came to me…..BUCKEYES!  I make buckeyes at least once a year.  Yummy peanut butter and chocolate bites no one can resist.  My cake had the chocolate; it just needed the peanut butter!  I tinkered with a basic peanut butter sauce until I got it just right.  Served on my rich chocolate sheet cake, with whipped cream on top, the sauce was PERFECT.  And so the Hoosier-Hio cake was born, a Hoosier cake at heart with a little bit of Buckeye for excitement.  Enjoy!

Hoosier-Hio Cake
by Mrs. Erin King

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease 18 x 13 inch rimmed baking sheet. 


2 c. flour
2 c. sugar
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
2 eggs, plus 2 yolks
2 tsp vanilla
¼ c. sour cream
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
4 Tbs unsalted butter
¾ c. vegetable oil
¾ c. water
½ c. dutch-processed cocoa powder

Chocolate Icing:

8 Tbs (1 stick) butter
½ c. heavy cream
½ c. dutch-processed cocoa powder
1 Tbs light corn syrup
3 c. powdered sugar
1 Tbs vanilla

Peanut Butter Sauce (recipe follows)
Whipped Cream

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda and salt.  In another bowl, whisk egg yolks, vanilla and sour cream until smooth. 

Heat chocolate, butter, oil, water and cocoa in a large sauce pan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until smooth, about 3-5 minutes.  Whisk chocolate mixture into flour mixture until incorporated.  Whisk egg mixture into batter, then pour into prepared baking pan.  Bake until toothpick inserted comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes. 

About 5 minutes before the cake is done, heat butter, cream, cocoa and corn syrup in a large saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until smooth.  Off heat, whisk in powdered sugar and vanilla.  Spread warm icing over hot cake.  Let cake cool to room temperature, for about an hour, then refrigerate until icing is set, about 2 hours.  Bring back to room temperature before serving. 

Peanut Butter Sauce:

1 c. peanut butter (I only use Jiff.)
splash vanilla
2 tsp heavy cream

Mix together in a microwave safe dish.  Microwave on high for about 2 minutes, stirring after first minute.  Drizzle warm sauce on cake right before serving, garnish with whipped cream.

Meal Plan Oct. 21- 27

*New Recipe
Links to recipes on blog

Grilled Steak
Green Bean Casserole Stuffed Mushrooms*
Cottage Cheese

Scrambled Eggs with Cheese
Pancake Muffins*

I'm having dinner with a friend.
The boys will have pizza.

Lemon Chicken Noodle Soup

Thursday Leftover from last week
Smoked Sausage

Walking Tacos

Adam is going hunting and I'm having a date night w/ Monkey!

Friday, October 19, 2012

'Tis The Season

No, not that season. Not quite yet! (Although being the Christmas fanatic I am I can tell you there are officially 67 days until Santa will be making his appearance.) The season I am referring to is soup season. More specifically, Crock Pot soup season! During autumn there is just something about a big pot of soup cooking on the counter top all day, making the house smell amazing and having your entire family drooling by dinner time. I love knowing I can have a warm, comforting supper for them to sit down to after a cold and dreary day. And that is exactly the kind of day we were having when I made this easy yet delicious soup for the first time. I love Cream of Mushroom soup, but can't say I enjoy the canned variety much. I have no issue with canned soups and not only use them a lot in recipes, but also have no problem popping open a couple cans for a simple lunch or even supper. (We are huge tomato soup and grilled cheese fans!) But there is just something about the cream of mushroom kind that while if in another dish I am okay with, just eating it as is doesn't thrill me. So I figured why not try my hand at a homemade version, utilizing my favorite soup side kick, my Crock Pot. And I am so happy I did! This was the most amazing cream of mushroom soup I've ever had! It was creamy, smooth and packed full of mushroom flavor! Probably because unlike the condensed version, it didn't have just a few small bites of mushrooms. It had big slices of fresh mushrooms; and after cooking all day, their flavor was only more concentrated. If you love using your Crock Pot this time of year too, and are always looking for new soups to warm your stomach and soul alike on a chilly day, give this one a try tonight!

Crock Pot Cream of Mushroom Soup
1 lb. button mushrooms, sliced
3 1/4 cups chicken broth
1/4 c. onion, finely chopped
1 TBS butter
1 c. sour cream
2 TBS flour
1 c. half and half
Salt to taste
Lots of black pepper
Dried Parsley for garnish

In a large skillet melt butter over medium heat. Add mushrooms and onion. Saute until mushrooms are soft, about 7 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Place in crock pot and add chicken broth. Cook on LOW for 6 1/2 hours. Add flour to sour cream and stir well to combine. Add sour cream and half and half to crock pot. Whisk well. Turn heat to HIGH and cook for 30 minutes more. Garnish with extra black pepper and parsley.

Green Giant Winner

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Feel Good Bread

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Nature's Pride Bread for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

I am a bread fanatic. Seriously, growing up, most nights bread and butter were a side dish at our table. And to this day, I am the girl who will fill up on the bread and be full by the time the entree comes! But I know I'm not getting any younger and I need to make sure the bread I'm enjoying so much is also good for me, not to mention my son. So I am turning to my friends at Nature's Pride Bread
At Nature's Pride they make bread the natural way. Every slice is just that...100% natural. Their breads never contain artificial colors or flavors. No high fructose corn syrup. No trans fat. No artificial preservatives. Normally, that long of a list of "no's" would not be a good thing, but in this case, it is a great thing! Because without all of those to hide the natural flavor, you are left with bread that allows the best flavors nature has to offer to shine through. 
I love a good sandwich, and the key to one is starting with great bread. Look at this yummy example:

Market-Fresh Picnic Sandwiches
8 slices Nature's Pride® Multi-Grain bread
  • 4 leaves Romaine or other lettuce
  • 2 Roma tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • 4 thin slices red onion
  • 1/2 medium cucumber, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 medium red bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 2 teaspoons red wine and olive oil vinaigrette salad dressing or light bottled vinaigrette salad dressing
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese with tomato and basil
  • 4 thin deli-slices smoked turkey
Arrange a lettuce leaf on four slices of Nature’s Pride Multi-Grain bread. Top with tomatoes, red onion, cucumbers and red bell pepper strips. Drizzle each with 1/2 teaspoon vinaigrette and sprinkle each with 1 tablespoon feta cheese. Top with turkey and remaining slice of Nature’s Pride bread. Cut in half and serve.

I love a sandwich that eats like a meal! Plus one that includes fresh, wholesome ingredients! Nature's Pride Bread is the perfect base to build a beter sandwich!
Be sure to visit Nature’s Pride on Facebook for a chance to win FREE bread for a year, just by becoming a fan and "liking" their page! A new winner is selected every Monday!
So, what is your favorite fall recipe to use Nature's Pride Bread in?

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Thursday, October 18, 2012

Autumn In A Bite

When you think of this time of year I'm guessing many things come to mind, but I bet  if someone says "autumn foods" one and one thing alone pops into your head...pumpkin! Sure we enjoy pumpkin flavored things year round, but let's face it, they never taste as good as they do from about October 1st to December 31st. (Yes, I realize Thanksgiving is the big holiday where pumpkin is the star, but in my family we enjoy pumpkin pie every Christmas Day, so our season is extended!) From carving them into spooky scenes and then making Roasted Pumpkin Seeds to buying every last can of pumpkin puree' we can gets our hands on, fall is definitely when pumpkin has it's moment in the spotlight. So when I saw these on Pinterest I knew I had to try them with my very first can of pumpkin of the season. Now I will be totally honest with you, mine do not look like the originals, those were much prettier, but hey, they still taste fabulous and my "boys" didn't had never seen them so they thought I was a genius! To me, these taste like a mini pumpkin pie with the perfect amount of icing. I'm such a sucker for icing. You could put it on a gym sock and I'd eat it! If you're having a Halloween party, these would be the perfect little bite, or even as a treat for your child's class (if your school allows that). Or better yet, if you are planning a huge Thanksgiving buffet, why not make a few batches of these instead of pies that take so much effort? You could make a ton of these in the time it would take you to make just a few big pies. I hope you are enjoying all your favorite fall flavors (yeah, try saying that 5 times fast), including everyone's number one!

Mini Pumpkin Crescent Bites From Baked In
1 (8ct) can crescent rolls
4 TBS butter, melted
1 TBS brown sugar
1 c. pumpkin puree
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 TBS milk
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 375. In a small bowl combine melted butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and nutmeg. Stir well. Lay out crescent rolls into 4 rectangles. Crease perforations with finger sealing closes. Using a pastry brush, equally brush the butter mixture over each rectangle. Then spoon an equal amount of pumpkin onto each (about 1/4 cup). Spread out using a spatula. Carefully roll up each rectangle and cut into 1 inch pieces. Lay each piece into a section of a muffin tin. Bake for 16-19 minutes until browned. While cooking, combine powdered sugar, vanilla and milk. Stir well. When bites are done cooking, remove to a cooling rack. Cool for 10 minutes. Drizzle with icing. Allow to set. Drizzle with a touch more icing and serve.

Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Oct. 18, 2012
Shared on The Country Cook Oct. 19, 2012

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Copycat Fall Favorite

While I think of this recipe as one that would be more enjoyable in fall, to be honest, I will order the original winter, spring, summer and fall. They are something I enjoy as a side dish for both breakfast and dinner any time we visit our local Cracker Barrel. But I do admit to making them more often at home when the leaves are changing, the pumpkins are abundant and apple season is in full swing! They are another recipe that works great as a side or add a little whipped cream for a warm easy dessert. In fact, many times I will order them with my meal and then save them until the end making them my dessert. They would also work great as a "topper" for things like oatmeal or French toast during a weekend breakfast or brunch. Another tip for you~ if you have some apples laying around that are starting to "turn" and aren't quite as crisp as they should be, this is a great use for them. In fact, that's exactly what I used when I made this batch. Remember that $9 bag of apples I told you about when I shared my Cinnamon Dip? Well, I had just a few left in that bag and they needed to be used ASAP, so this was what came to mind.  However or whenever you decide to serve them, they scream autumn and are a warm, comforting side dish on any chilly fall day!

Fried Apples
6 medium apples, cored and sliced (I like the peel left on)
1/4 c brown sugar
1 tsp lemon juice
1/4 c. butter
1/8 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg

In a large skillet, melt butter over medium hit. Evenly spread apples in skillet. Drizzle with lemon juice. Gently stir. Sprinkle with brown sugar and salt. Stir to coat. Turn heat down to low, cover and cook for 10-15 minutes until apples are tender. Add cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir gently. Remove into serving dish and drizzle with extra syrup in pan.

Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Oct. 17, 2012
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Oct. 18, 2012
Shared on The Country Cook Oct. 19, 2012
Apples at Very Good Recipes
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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Frozen Is My Friend

In a perfect world I would have a fish market just down the street where I could go and get fresh seafood any day I wanted, every day if I wanted. But alas, this is northern Indiana and while some of our supermarkets have a nice seafood counter, it's just not quite the same. Yes, I can go to the nearest Kroger and get some fine looking fish and seafood out of their case, and it tastes great, but sometimes I wish for what we were lucky enough to have in Florida during our summer beach vacation. When I shared my Fried Oysters and Crispy Cajun Shrimp with you I told the story of how we love visiting the market as soon as the boats come in with the fresh catch of the day~ it doesn't get more fresh than that! Not to mention taking out the "middle man" makes it so much more affordable. In fact, the only problem with using my supermarket's seafood counter is that it can get a bit pricey. But I have found one way around this...bagged frozen shrimp. I can find various sizes, tail on or off, EZ peel, already deveined, etc at an economical price to feed our family of 3. Yes, I still buy fresh, but I save that for special occasions when we are home in the Hoosier State. Other nights when I just want shrimp for an "everyday" supper I turn to the frozen and they work really great in recipes. And I have found that since I discovered this little trick we are able to eat shrimp more often because I'm not waiting for those special occasions or trying to find room in the grocery budget for them. If you are blessed to live on a coastline where seafood is at your fingertips any time you wish, I am green with envy. But if you are like me and want to cook with shrimp but not break the bank, check out the frozen section the next time you are at your store. You might be just as pleasantly surprised as I was!

Shrimp Stir Fry
1 12 oz bag (71/80ct) frozen deveined shrimp, thawed
1 c. frozen broccoli, thawed
1 c. frozen asparagus, thawed and cut into 1 inch pieces
3 medium carrots, peeled and julienned into 1 inch pieces
4 scallions, greens only, cut on a diagonal into 1 inch pieces
2 small green bell peppers, seeded and julienned into 1 inch pieces
2 (4 oz) cans mushrooms, drained
1/4 c. teriyaki sauce
Soy sauce to taste
3-4 TBS vegetable oil
Salt and Pepper to taste

To begin, make sure all thawed veggies and shrimp are VERY dry. Preheat vegetable oil in an electric skillet to 375. The key to this is making sure the oil is screaming hot and the ingredients are super dry. You don't want spatter if water hits the oil. When oil is hot, add carrots, mushrooms, peppers and broccoli. Stir and cook for 5 minutes. Add asparagus and scallions. After about 2 minutes, add shrimp, season with salt and pepper and cook until pink and opaque. At this point, turn heat down to 325. Add teriyaki sauce and soy. Stir and let flavors combine until veggies are completely cooked and flavors are combined, about 5-7 more minutes. Serve over rice, noodles or on the side with some egg rolls.

Shared on Mandy's Recipe Box Oct. 16, 2012
Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Oct. 17, 2012
Shared on The Country Cook Oct. 19, 2012
Shrimp at Very Good Recipes
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It's Fall Ya'll WINNER

Thanks to everyone who entered my autumn inspired giveaway for this super cute prize package. All the entries have been put into the random number generator and the winner is...

Lauren Guilbeau

Check your inbox for my email!!

You have 48 hours to respond to claim your prize!