I received the book Bread & Wine, and to be honest, I just thought it was really cool to read a book that some of the bloggers that inspire me were reading and reviewing. Little did I know… this book is a whole lot more than just a book with some stories and some recipes. There are recipes, but it is not exactly your typical cookbook. You can head over to our review blog to read my thoughts on Shauna Niequist’s book BREAD & WINE.
Note: These are all phone photos, so I apologize for the blurriness of the photos.
Below is the account of the girls making Blueberry Crisp, one of the recipes from the book.
Here are the ingredients, from one of the stores that Shauna frequents, Trader Joe’s. And we also frequent it because it is located right next to our church!
Melody reading the instructions to me so that we can double check that we have all the right ingredients and measuring cups/spoons.
The girls are pouring in oats.
Melody mixing together the oats, almond meal, maple syrup, olive oil, and salt.
Emily adding the crisp topping to the blueberries.
I really love this book, and it’s going to be one that I will read over and over again. If you haven’t already, head over to read my review of BREAD & WINE. It will make you want to cook, and throw a dinner party, even if you don’t know how to cook…or throw dinner parties, like me!
We decided to make sushi one night. Random. On the menu: edamame, miso soup, shrimp tempura, potstickers (aka gyoza), and lots and lots of yummy sushi rolls. They were all veggie rolls, or had chicken or smoked salmon, so nothing raw for those of you who don’t like that kinda stuff. :p If anyone is interested, I can post (links to) recipes later on.
Here is Melody getting ready to roll her first roll.
It was an inside-out roll, so adding just a bit of sesame seeds…
Some of the rolls Melody made
And…a close up!
Digging in…and taking a pic :p
Getting chopsticks ready
Emily made a ‘smiley face.’
And here’s Melody’s plate.
What I’m learning these days:
Don’t estimate what you kids can do, they will surprise you!
Check out the meal that these kids (age 7 and 4?) put together! Focaccia? Impressive!
I’m not a crafty person, so any of the crafty items you see around our home was made at MOPS. I love that I don’t actually have to go out to buy the materials. I’ve gotten compliments on all the things I’ve made. Thanks to our wonderful Creative Activities coordinators Monica and Genevieve for preparing all the great crafts!
At the last MOPS meeting we put together a Ranch Dressing & Dip Mix and a Moroccan Spice Blend. Definitely something that I would not do on my own but fun to do with the group.
*container for spices (I think ours were 6 oz.)
Ingredients for Ranch dressing and dip mix (40 servings):
*2 Tbsp dried onion powder
*4 Tbsp dried parsley
*2 Tbsp dried chives
*2 tsp garlic powder
*2 tsp dried celery flakes/powder
*1 tsp white pepper
*1/2 tsp paprika
*1/4 tsp dried dill
*1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
Instructions for Ranch dressing and dip mix (makes 2 cups): *Mix 3 Tbsp of dry mix with 1 cup mayonnaise and 1 cup buttermilk. Let dressing rest in fridge for 1 day for best results.
*Lighter Version: Mix 2 Tbsp of dry mix with 1/2 cup plain yogurt, 1/2 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise, and 1/2 cup buttermilk.
*Optional: Buy dry buttermilk powder from the baking section. Add 1/2 cup powder to the dry ingredients in the tub. When adding the wet ingredients, you can substitute regular milk for the buttermilk.
Recipe Ideas for Moroccan Spice Blend:
*Use as a dry rub on chicken and pan fry.
*Mix 2 Tbsp of dry mix with plain yogurt and coat chicken. Let marinate for 1/2 hour. Place in foil packets. Bake for about 25 minutes at 450*F. Comes out super juicy and flavorful.
*Mix with olive oil and coat potatoes or vegetables. Roast in oven until tender.
And also, not pictured was the chalkboard contact paper used to label the tops of the containers so that you can write down what spice was inside. We ran out of contact paper, so I don’t have that one mine.
I’ve been looking for some simple recipes for dishes to make for MOPS brunch. Usually I sign up to bring fruit, since it’s easy and we love fruit. But I wanted to try some new things this year. This French Toast Casserole recipe came into my inbox, and it looked simple enough.
I personally don’t know how this tasted because I brought it to MOPS, and I got called to work in the 2′s room. When I came back at the end of the meeting, it was all gone. I got a small piece that got stuck to the side. It tasted pretty good, but at that point, it had been the previous night’s dinner since I last eaten, so anything would have tasted pretty good. Looks like everyone at MOPS gobbled it up though. I will have to make it again.
Jodi posted about a new recipe she tried. It sounded simple enough. Baked cream cheese spaghetti casserole, what’s not to love? On the spur of the moment, I decided to make it yesterday. We didn’t have all the ingredients handy, but it was still yummy. I used Classico Sweet Basil sauce like she did too since that’s what we had. And I also used sausage like she did because, again, that’s all I had. Pantry cooking at its best. =)
Our jar of pasta sauce was only 24 ounces. It would have been better with the listed 28 ounces. We only had sausage on hand, but you can use whatever meat you like with your pasta, or no meat at all. Bummer, no Italian seasoning, but I did add garlic salt. Will add Italian seasoning on the grocery list this week. We also only had a Four Cheese package of shredded cheese. It worked fine. Basically, you can add or take out whatever you like, and the recipe still works. Well, mostly.
I kept seeing this recipe everywhere awhile back. We finally decided to try it (aka we finally bought cauliflower). There are many versions of this CAULIFLOWER “MAC” AND CHEESE CASSEROLE out there, so you can try whatever you find by googling or on Pinterest. We tried the one from Food Network. There are also similar recipes that has actual “mac” in them.
It is a little heavy on the cream as expected. I’m almost positive there is a “healthier” version of this somewhere.
Everyone loved it for dinner and as leftovers the next day! We added spaghetti noodles, and some ham from Easter dinner the night we made it and some lunch meat from a sub sandwich (the bread got too hard to eat) when we had it for lunch the next day. Yum!
So it looks like Friday is officially Pizza and Movie Night at our house. We’ve tried a variety of frozen pizza, but haven’t found any that is given a good grade by the Fooducate app. We decided to try Boboli.
I’ve only done homemade pizza once, but the girls didn’t get a chance to help out with that. They had a blast creating their own pizza. We each picked a quarter of the pizza and added the ingredients that we wanted.
The pizza crust definitely tasted healthier than any frozen pizza that we’ve tasted, but it does come at a cost since buying all the different ingredients was more. We all like it except for Emily, but I think it was the sauce more than the actual pizza crust.
Okay, so the image doesn’t shout Valentine’s Day! but I made these chocolate covered spoons for Melody’s class for Valentine’s Day. They didn’t look anything like the ones in the photo.
I melted the chocolate in a glass bowl over a pot of boiling water, instead of in the microwave.
Afterwards I found another way to make these. I can’t find the link now, but you basically use one of those cake decorating frosting thingies to fill the spoons instead of just dipping the spoon into the melted chocolate.
It’s a fun gift to make. Bummer I totally forgot to tell them that they should probably put it in hot chocolate for flavor. I hope no one tried to just eat it off the spoon, because I tried and it didn’t work. =p
I was trying to make dinner from the pantry, but couldn’t come up with anything good, so I decided to do “breakfast for dinner”, which we hadn’t done for a long time. We didn’t have any bread left, and I had made waffles for breakfast on Waffle Wednesday, so I decided to make pancakes. So pancakes have always been a little scary for me (like cookies had been). I think it’s because of the flipping over of the pancakes. Anyhow, I’ve only tried pancake mixes maybe twice. This time I decided to go see if Martha had a trusty recipe for me. And she did!
None. We had all the ingredients on hand. I used veg oil instead of butter because I was too lazy to melt the butter. Oh wait, I did add chocolate chips to a few of them. Oh, and I used a griddle instead of a skillet.
None…well, except I might try the melted butter next time instead of veg oil.
They were great. I browned them a little too much because I stepped away (actually, aside) to get working on the eggs. But even with that, everyone gobbled them up. Yum! I’ll try to add different things in there next time. (Anyone have tips on doing that?) I saved the remaining batter that we did use, and made some more for breakfast. Still good!
Since the Super Bowl is now scheduled to fall on the first Sunday of every February, this will happen to coincide with Melody’s birthday party every year. In honor of the big game (which wasn’t really a big deal around here since the teams happen to be all from the Northeast this year), I decided to throw together a football/game-day type of food: NACHOS!
Cheddar Cheese Sauce (if you don’t want the spice of Salsa or Chili)
….or Salsa/Chili Con Queso
1 lb. of Ground Beef (can also use Carnitas/Kalua Pork, Carne Asada Steak, or Shredded Pollo Chicken)
Taco Seasoning Mix to flavor the meat (or BBQ sauce if you want to go Southern)
Black/Refried Beans (optional)
Halved Olives (optional)
Sliced Jalapeno Peppers (optional)
Sour Cream (optional)
Shredded Lettuce (optional)
Sliced Cherry/Grape Tomatoes (optional)
Slices of Lime to squeeze on the chips or as decoration (optional)
Here’s how I made it:
Line toaster oven baking sheet with aluminum foil.
Cover the foiled baking sheet with tortilla chips.
Brown the meat on a skillet and then drain it.
In the same skillet, throw in the taco seasoning mix with a bit of water and wait until the sauce thickens to the meat.
Pour the meat mixture on top of the tortilla chips.
Pour beans on top of that.
Pour the cheese sauce or con queso on top of that.
Spread olives (and optionally jalapeno peppers) on top of that.
Bake in the toaster oven at 350 degrees for about 8 minutes (or until everything heats up……if the chips start turning brown, you’ve done it for too long)
Spread remaining “cold” ingredients all over the nachos and serve hot.