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Friday, January 28, 2011

Friday! Yeah :)

Hey people - we made it through to another Friday!  TGIF.  For some reason it has seemed like a really looooooooooooooong week.  I got my required amount of workouts at SNAP in and I am feeling the burn, really I am.  Since you all know that I enjoy cookies a great deal I have to get my required amount of workouts in just to keep the cookies (somewhat) at bay.  The weekend here usually means my hubby will be home and so will my son.   This means I cook and bake to keep them fed.  Here is what I plan to make them for breakfast tomorrow before Ken and I head to Brainerd for Heather's basketball game (GO SPARTANS!).

Morning Mix Up
2 c. frozen hashbrowns
1 c. chopped, fully cooked ham
1/2 c. chopped fine onion
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
6 eggs
salt & pepper
1 c.  shredded cheddar cheese

Saute potatoes, onions and ham for about 10 min, in a saute pan coated with the vegetable oil.  Beat the eggs together and stir into the mixture.  Cook over medium heat until the eggs are done.  Stir in the cheese, and salt & pepper to taste!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


For Christmas, my good friend gave me a magnet sign to hang on the refrigerator, the sign says "A balanced diet is NOT a cookie in each hand", she indicated that when she saw it she immediately thought of me - why I wonder - because she knows that I am a direct relative of Cookie Monster  :)  I must note that I hung this sign on my fridge right next to the magnet sign that says, "I can only please one person per day, today is not your day and tomorrow doesn't look good either!"  Ha!  Well, I must say that as I am reaching into the freezer to grab a Cocoa Gingerbread cookie (left from Christmas) I do glance at my sign - but alas, it does not stop me!  In light of this information that I am certain you are happy I am sharing with you; on to today's recipe (which is actually for bars (but hey, they are the next best thing to cookies!)

Turtle Bars
2 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 c. butter
1 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk (I use the fat-free kind)
1 large egg
1 tsp. vanilla
1 c. pecans, coarsely chopped
3/4 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 c. toffee & chocolate baking bits (such as Heath)

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine the flour, powdered sugar, and butter, Stir or mix until a crumbly dough is formed.  Press the dough firmly into a greased 9 x 13 inch cake pan.  Bake until just golden, about 13 minutes.  Whisk together the condensed milk, egg, and vanilla.  Pour the filling over the baked crust.  Sprinkle the pecans, chocolate chips and toffee pieces evenly over the filling.  Bake until the filling is set, the edges are golden brown and the toffee is melted, (about 25 minutes).  Cool completely in the refrigerator.  (about 2 hours)  EAT - while glancing at your fridge magnets! (if you choose)  :)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Appliances . . .and Chili

All of the appliances we have in our households make our lives so much simpler than that of our ancestors, that is until one of them dies . . .speaking of which, my dryer decided to go to Appliance Heaven last night.  Sooooooooo I have two kids home from college plus all of the regular weekly laundry - I am currently washing it all so that I can take it all at once to the laundromat to dry it.  Not my idea of fun - but at least I don't always have to do my laundry at the laundromat.  Since this is going to occupy a good chunk of time today and I want to be done before football games start, I am whipping up some chili for supper, since it doesn't take much work or time.  Here is my recipe for what I call:

6 can Chili

1# lean ground beef
1/2 onion chopped fine
Brown together until beef is cooked.
Pepper to taste
Stir in:
3 cans (16 oz.) beans, with the liquid - you can use whatever you prefer, kidney, pinto, etc.
2 cans (15 oz.) diced tomatoes with the juice
1 can (15 oz.) tomato sauce
1/3 c. brown sugar
3 tbsp. chili powder

Stir all together and let simmer.  If you prefer more chili seasonsing, add it.  If you want spicier chili I add a dash of cayenne powder as well.

Thursday, January 20, 2011


I live in Minnesota and today I am allowed to complain of the cold.  Yes I know, I live in Minnesota, but I don't totally blame myself, I blame my ancestors.  They decided this was a good state to settle in and few of us have gotten out since!  The nice thing about today is that the sun is shining - even though it is not providing us with any snow melting warmth it is still shining and in January in Minnesota that is an accomplishment.  If you are planning to stay home once you get home tonight - here is a quick, yummy treat you can whip up and even have your kids help out  :) 

Yummy Squares
1/2 c. butter
1 pkg. butterscotch chips
1 c. peanut butter
1 c. mini marshmellows
1/2 c. coconut

Butter a 9" cake pan.  Melt the 1/2 c. butter, peanut butter and butterscotch chips in a saucepan together until smooth.  Stir in marshmellows.  Pour into pan.  Sprinkle the coconut on top.  Refrigerate and then serve! 

Keep Warm!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Bachelors & Meatballs . . .

As I type this, I am not 100% certain how my Blog Title relates to one another but here goes.  Last night I was busy, so had to tape (yes, I said tape) I do not yet have DVR - although I wish I did!  SOOOO I just now finished watching my taped episode of the Bachelor.  I know there are many people out there who do not watch the Bachelor or Bachelorette - I cannot say I am one of those people.  I can say I am one of the people who has watched every single episode of every single season . . .why I am not certain, I think it's perhaps a guilty pleasure - no thinking required and it's easy to get wrapped up in wanting people to find happiness!  On that note, some of the Bachelors have certainly been Meatballs - ha - there is no denying that it's a fact as true as the fact that most of the Bachelor/Bachelorette relationships don't end up lasting.  So to continue with the meatballs - here is today's recipe:

Sweet & Sour Meatballs
1 egg
2 tbsp. milk
1 c. bread crumbs (seasoned)
2 tbsp. chopped onion
1 # lean ground beef
1 tbsp. corn starch
3/4 c. unsweetened pineapple juice
1/2 c. BBQ sauce
1/4 c. water
1 c. whole berry cranberry sauce
Cooked rice

Mix the first 5 ingredients together, shape into 1" meatballs.  Brown meatballs.  In a bowl, combine the next 4 ingredients until smooth, add the cranberry sauce.   Pour over the browned meatballs in your skillet.  Bring to a boil and cook until thickened.  Lower heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.  Serve hot over rice!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


Well, 40 minutes of my life gone today, shoveling!  The good news - exercise CHECK, the bad news - it's supposed to snow more by the end of the night  . . .if you happen to be spending time shoveling like I am and are looking for a quick, yummy,supper to whip up, here you go: 

Hamburger Stroganoff
1 # lean hamburger
2 tbsp. minced dried onion
pepper to taste
Saute these ingredients together in your sauce pan until ground beef is cooked. 
1 can Healthy request Cream of Mushroom soup
1 can skim milk
1 c. fat-free sour cream
Stir until smooth - and heat thoroughly.  Serve over cooked egg noodles!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Supper tonight~!

Well, as I type this our winter in MinneSNOWTA continues - ugh.....I estimate a fresh 6" of white powder in my driveway and on my sidewalks since last night . . .how does one keep up with all this shoveling and where to throw it?  At this point the banks on both sides of my driveway require someone approximately 7' tall who can hurl the snow over the accumulations, this, is not me.   I didn't MIND shoveling at the beginning of winter but now its just getting plain annoying - no one said we enjoy doing it every single day.  In light of the snow and not wanting to leave the house - here is tonight's supper recipe!

Scalloped Potatoes with Ham
2 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. flour
1 1/2 c. fat free half & half
salt & pepper
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
1 bag frozen hashbrowns (chunky style)
12 oz. sliced, baked ham
1 c. grated cheddar cheese

Preheat your oven to 350.  Spray your baking dish with Pam.  In a saucepan, melt your butter over medium heat.  Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute.  Whisk in your half & half.  Bring to a simmer while stirring.  Whan sauce has thickened, remove from heat - season with salt & pepper.  Cut your ham into cubes.  In a large bowl mix your potatoes, onion, ham and cheese.  Pour sauce over and stir well to coat.  Pour into greased baking dish and bake for 1 hour. 


Thursday, January 6, 2011


I REALIZE that I live in a SNOWY, WINTER state - but do I have to wake up every morning to a new coat of the white stuff coating my sidewalks and driveway?  Can I have a morning off, please?  The date today is January 6 which means there is plenty more where that came from - ugh . . . I seem to be having trouble convincing my hubby that a move to Texas or Arizona might be in order.  So in light of this revelation, many times we Minnesota women hunker down with books, fireplaces, remote controls and snacks - so in light of this I give you a snack recipe that I found in the December issue of Midwest Living magazine:
2/3 c. vegetable oil
1/2 c. sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 12 oz. bag small pretzel twists
*In a large roasting pan, stir together vegetalbe oil, sugar and cinnamon.  Add the pretzels and toss well to coat with mixture.  Bake, uncovered @ 300 degrees for 30 minutes, stirring twice (or once if you are just snuggled in cozy on the couch!).  Spread on waxed paper to cool.  Store in an airtight container - that is, if you have any left to store!


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Year, New Resolutions!

New Year - 2011 = New Resolutions!
     I don't generally make a resolution but my husband and I made a deal, if he would take his nightly low dose aspirin for his heart - I would floss my teeth.  The funny part of this is that I was the original flosser in this house and then I fell out of the habit and my hubby picked it up and has been a nightly flosser for well over a year now (and always happy to gloat about it).  Lets face it, when I am getting ready for bed spending an extra 3 minutes flossing was just so not on my agenda!  So anyways so far so good - four days into the New Year and I haven't missed a flossing event  :)
     Here is a recipe for any of you who may have resolved to eat healthy or try new things:

Cashew Chicken
2 chicken breasts, chopped in small chunks
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
2 c. chopped celery
1 c. sliced onion
2 tbsp. hoisin sauce (find in your exotic food aisle)
Cashew halves (use as many as desired)  generally 1 to 1 1/2 c. cashews
Cooked rice *use brown rice for extra health benefits
Pour vegetable oil into a non-stick skillet over medium heat.  Add the onion and celery, saute for about 5 minutes.  Add in the chicken.  Saute until chicken is cooked. Stir in the hoisin sauce until everything is coated.  Stir in cashews and heat through.  Serve over hot rice.
*Now that we are considered empty nesters this is my favorite go-to meal - the kids don't like it but Ken and I do - and as long as I have the chicken thawed out I can get this whipped up in no time.  Impressive and very tasty.

Holidays . . .

Well, now that we have all survived many holidays piled on top of one another, there is finally time to update this blog!  My holidays went like this:
 1.  Thanksgiving - I was supposed to traverse to Bemidji to see my family but alas, the winter weather, rain, snow, sleet kept us home and me having to make a turkey, etc.
 2.  Christmas - we celebrated in Bemidji a week early due to the fact that Heather had to work Christmas at the weekend clinic here in Mo-Town.  A fun time was had by all and it included Dave's Pizza and watching my nephew Drew play a few hockey games so that was fun. 
3.  New Year's  - Well, I had to work at BP from 4-10:15 then I came home and managed to stay awake until midnight due to the fact that there were about 16 teenagers in my family room downstairs, tooting on noise makers and counting down to 2011!  My hubby, I can say, however, did not keep the whites of his eyes open to usher in 2011 with me.  Why is that?   Why can the man, dad sleep, but the mom cannot until all is quiet and everyone is home safe? 
Now its on to 2011 and my year has started with a new knowledge of how to secure tow trucks in the western Minnesota winter.  Tow Truck #1 - in Fergus Falls, where on Sunday we had to call one due to the fact that my Ford Explorer chose to croak approximately 3 miles before we arrived at our destination.  Tow truck arrived - hauled my vehicle to Fleet Farm to have a new battery installed and low and behold we made it back to Morris safely, (barely, however).  Tow Truck #2 - in Morris, where yesterday, Grant and I had to call one to have our explorer hauled to Morris Auto Repair for a new alternator!  UGH - enough already with the tow trucks (hey they were nice guys and all) but enough is enough.  I have not attemped to leave my house yet today - but when I do here soon - my car better run and get me to and from my desination - the grocery store . . .Here is hoping the rest of 2011 goes a bit better than the first few days have . . .