Monday, March 31, 2008

$$$$ and groceries

I am sure everyone that reads my blog is super rich and hasn’t noticed high prices at the grocery store.:) Here in the mid west prices on everything are going up. I have family in Indiana and they buy less because prices are so high there. I am noticing how hard it is to buy healthy as the prices are so high. Do you notice that junk food is cheap and things that are good for you are a fortune? I wonder who thought that plan up. I notice that to buy organic is harder then before and there aren’t even any veggies that look good. Where are the veggies? I haven’t seen any good looking veggies in about 4 weeks. I don’t count onions or potatoes by the way. Onions and garlic is more like air, it is in everything I make. I thought it was asparagus time but I have yet to see any. I am hoping that soon will be farmers market open and maybe then……I am feeling forlorn from the lack of ingredients available. Do you have this problem? Am I alone? I am having trouble even thinking up recipes or trying some in my file tonight I made Papa John’s pizza. I had onion and mushroom. Yummy! Here is my recipe

Call in
They deliver
Open box
Inhale the smell
Dish up for kids
Dig in

This is a complicated recipe but worth all the steps.

I hope that everyone had a great March and I welcome a new month as the chance for great things and hopefully great veggies.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The cookies were a HUGE hit!!!!

Everbody loved the cookies. They were all eaten in less then a hour! Hubby had to hid a few for his afternoon snack or he wasn't going to get any. I am so glad my baking groove is back. Now to think of next week.......

Tuesday, March 25, 2008


Ok, I think I got my groove back. Today I made a super delish triple chocolate chip cookie. I had trouble making them as I kept sampling the batter. I was going to make chocolate chip muffins but it called for sour cream and I was out. I thought that was unexpected in the list so I wasn't prepared

Triple Choco Cookies adapted from

1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup cocoa powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
In large bowl, beat butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla until light and fluffy. Combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt; stir into the butter mixture until well blended. Mix in the chocolate chips and walnuts. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or just until set. Cool slightly on the cookie sheets before transferring to wire racks to cool completely. I actually cooked more like 13 min but I use a large cookie scoop. This makes about 30ish for the size scoop I have but I bet you could make more as my scoop is large.

I didn’t use any nuts as I am out at the moment but I think that would be a delish addition to the cookie. I used a mix of white and milk chocolate chips but I think you could use dark and milk or any combo you like. I am pretty much over my cold so this should be great for everybody (hopefully). I am more worried then usual after last weeks debacle. I do have a reputation as a fabulous cook to uphold after all:) .

Monday, March 24, 2008

Polenta New Item Of The Week

This is something I heard about and saw but never made. I was at whole foods last month and scooped some out of the bulk bins. It has just been sitting and waiting for me to figure out what to do with it. I thought it was much harder then it was, so I brushed aside my fear and boiled some water. It tasted a bit like grits so I thought you could doll it up or down easily. I just took a little bowl to taste it and I liked it. The rest I poured while hot into a loaf pan to get hard. I am planning to slice it and roast it until crispy, I heard that’s yummy

6 cups boiling water
1 cup polenta that is how the bin was labeled
About 1 t of salt you could do however much or little you like

Whisk the polenta into the boiling water so it’s not lumpy and just stir till it firms up it took like two min I turned the heat lower as I stirred as it bubbled furiously and I didn’t want to get burned or burn it. I was surprised how fast it cooked I thought it would take an hr I was misinformed but I love how fast it was a super easy side dish. I saw something that used spicy shrimp in the middle while it is still hot and soft so I may try that next. If you do something yummy please share as I love “new item of the week” time

Update on TREAT DAY

Well as you know I have a cold so I tried the cookies and thought they were bland but fine. I was WRONG about the fine part. One person actually spit it out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OK so flavorless in a nasty way. these are now on the NO list for repeats. About half the cookies came home! This is the first time this happened. Hubby told everyone I had a cold and they didn’t want to hurt my feeling but the comments weren’t kind. I was fine with that as I tried a new recipe but I was embarrassed. This didn’t help my slump but I have kind of taken the week off from cooking so I am ready to get out of my slump. I am making the tripe chocolate muffins for treat day so hopefully they are well liked and it can knock me out of my slump. I will post the recipe tomorrow.

Thanks to all who have commented I just so excited when I get a comment. Thanks for being there worldwide as I succeed and fail. Hey, we all learn sometime right?

Wednesday, March 19, 2008


I forgot to get cocoa powder so my thrice chocolate muffins are out. I am also almost out of brown sugar and white sugar! I know, I was surprised too. So I did some hunting to see what I had and I decided to make 2 different treats that have nothing to do with each other. I made my “famous” cinnamon suckers. I also made something new Lemon Poppy seed Cookies. They were a two day process as you let them sit in the fried for at least 3 hrs after mixing so I just did it for overnight. I made them Monday, baked them Tuesday and he took them this morning. Hubby liked them

½ c white sugar
2 T brown sugar
½ t salt
12 T or 1.5 sticks unsalted butter
2 t vanilla extract
1 ½ c flour
¼ c poppy seeds
1T lemon zest

mix white and brown sugar till combined and brown sugar is not lumpy add softened butter mix for about 30 seconds
scrape down sides and add flour pulse till dough forms
add poppy seeds and lemon zest and just combine it in
turn out onto a floured surface and roll out about a 10 in long I made it more like 14 inches but the end cookies were smaller. Wrap in plastic wrap and keep in fridge a few hours it will harden up quite a lot. Then you simply slice about ¼ in thick and bake in a 350 oven for 15 min they aren’t brown they look the same color as raw I left one batch in about 5 min to long and they got brown I actually like them a little browner they had a nice crunch.
This recipe is from America’s Test Kitchen. They recommend that you use a food processor but I used my beloved mixer before I noticed the fine print about the processor I modified the lemon zest as they used orange. But my kitchen is getting low on supplies and so I had lemon already so that is what I used.
I felt this were good but not spectacular. I still have my cold but they just seemed a little bland I thought about dipping them in chocolate but I thought with the poppy seeds it might be worse rather then better. They were fine and had a buttery feel and nice crunch.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Lost my mojo

I think I lost my mojo. I can’t seem to cook anything or at least I have no desire to. Ahh well I am gonna have to get it back as I have not been cooking all week! I think I may have the answer in treat day. I found a recipe for triple chocolate muffins that sound divine. I will post when I make them, I have to go to the store a get cocoa powder first, as it is not a staple item for me. I don’t usually need it as I normally only use chunk chocolate and rarely make a batter out of it.

Due to the fact I have not felt like cooking I have some veggies that are looking sad so I figured I would make a goulash type dish and use everything up.

2 green peppers
1 sweet yellow onion
4 cloves garlic (you could use less)
I softened all that up and then browned
1 lb ground buffalo it has no fat so it didn’t add a lot of grease like hamburger would
If you use hamburger I would cook it first drain the fat then add the veggies to soften
2 large cans of chopped tomatoes with juice
3 T basil
1 t sage as it seems to have a strong taste I use less
1T ground pepper
It is almost like a pasta sauce but I thought pasta would not be great so I added
4 c veggie stock I use organic whole foods brand
2 cups rice
and just let it simmer on med heat for about 45 min because the water didn’t boil like regular rice it takes a few extra minutes to get the rice soft.

UPDATE: Hubby did not love it he said it was bland but with my cold i thought it was good.
so if you wantto make it you can spice it up more to your liking.
I made it early in the day to feed my husband when he comes home for lunch. He works about 4 min away so he usually comes home for lunch. I don’t feel like making bread this early so I can’t make sandwiches.

A note about buffalo- I love it because it is so low fat. The first time I cooked it I was amazed that no fat dripped off! I always cook hamburgers in a George Forman grill so it is not so fatty. We also prefer the taste as it is just a nicer feel in the mouth, that sounds weird but it is hard to describe. It is a lot like hamburger just less fatty. I usually get it at whole foods they have it in the meat dept but now that I have my new butcher I was so pleased he carried it as well. It is about the same price as lean hamburger. I even made simple burgers for a little group dinner and we didn’t tell them what the meat was till dinner was over but everyone wanted to know what I did different, they all were surprised it was buffalo. They all loved it.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


If you are wondering where the treat is I fell down some stairs and bruised my hip yesterday(prime baking time). I am fine simply bruised my hip but they where very nice and said they missed the treat but I can make something extra good next week. I ‘m thinking brownies? Just wanted to let you know no yummies this week.

Spring is COMING!!!!

I am so happy that spring is coming. It is 80 degrees in Oklahoma today. I have fresh veggies dancing in my head. I just found out about a farmer co-op here that I am trying to join. But I don’t know if there is an opening so I am waiting to hear. I miss light and airy veggies and all the varity spring offers. I love broccoli but I would like something else. I am excited to compare the farmers market’s here as opposed to out east in Delaware where I lived last spring/summer. I think that every state I have lived in has a different variety I have lived from Oklahoma to Delaware/ Maryland so I (favorite was Florida) have the east side covered. In the 13 yrs I have been married this is our 10th state so I think we should head to California next but I think we are settling in to stay.

I thought I would do a perfect boiled egg today as spring is coming and that is the eggy season. Also I haven’t posted anything about food and I am feeling guilty. I put as many eggs fit to cover the bottom of my pan, mine holds 14- oddly enough. Then I use cold water to cover throw in 2 T salt and bring to a rolling boil while tightly covered. Put heat on lowest setting after the boil starts and leave for 10 min. pull off the heat and run cold water over it. This should give you a lovely bright yellow yolk with absolutely no grayish tinge. Perfect for slicing in salads or any other egg needs.

Junk Mail

This is more of an environment post then a food post. I hate junk mail it is annoying and completely not needed. I never even look at all the stuff I just stick it straight in the recycling. I always wished there was a do not mail list kinda like the do not call list. This is a petition to make a do not mail list I thought that was pretty cool so I thought I would link up. so just give it a click and we can see what happens.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

less fat then Mcdee's but just as good

Since I have been diagnosed with diabetes I have now lost 12 lbs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am extremely excited (can you tell?) I have been trying to be super careful because you can eat healthy and still manage to make sweets. For proof see last week’s treat picture, organic chocolate chip cookies. This website isn’t a “diet” blog but I felt so happy I will likely still share when things are going well. The goal of organic and natural eating is to be healthier and be kind to the earth. Weight loss results in a healthier and happier body so it works out for everyone. This morning I was hoping for a mcdee type breakfast so I used a whole grain English muffin and 1 egg scrambled with a little onion and green pepper. This was a great way to add a little veggie early in the day. I toasted my muffin and used Smart Start butter, I miss real butter but I changed at my cardiologist request. I buttered the kid’s muffin with real organic butter. I used a bit of cheese one thin slice of cheddar, about an ounce. Then I simply stacked it up so easy and I got the taste of a buttery biscuit without all the gross things they slather on the biscuits. I don’t always have time to make eggs in the morning but the kids were up by six am that should be against the law, as I don’t have to get up till 7 am. This was a nice change to cook a warm breakfast mid week as the term stay at home mom should be changed to sitting in the minivan mom.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Out of Town

I have been out of town this weekend. I went to a town in Oklahoma called Muskogee. We went out to dinner and it was so wonderful. We went to an Italian restaurant called Johnny V’s. I had the shrimp scampi with fettuccini Alfredo. This is not a meal I would usually cook but it is more of a treat food. The portions were huge and I could share my meal with my 2 and 4 year old and still have leftover for sunday breakfast. I enjoy having someone else cook for me for a change. This is a small town and not a lot of choices as far as places to eat but I feel we had a good time and made a good choice. I hope everyone had a great weekend.

Friday, March 7, 2008

WOW 300 people have seen my site!!!!

Wow, I am so happy that so many people have looked at my site. I have had so many changes to my life in the past month and I am happy that people want to see how and what I am cooking. Thank you so much for being there. Thanks for putting up with all my errors as I learn how to blog. This has been a great month and I promise to add more pictures and get better at my punctuations!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

I got a new toy!

My husband works dreadful hours. He leaves at 5 am and sometimes isn’t home till midnight. I try to have food ready so if he walks in at 7 or 9 I have something ready. This is not easy. I cook dinner for the kids at 5pm but he is rarely home then. I found a gadget that cooks a frozen chick breast in 9 min yes start to finish 9 min. I can prepare chicken or meat before in a marinade and throw it in when he is on the way home. I was leery to spend 100 dollars on a new product but on sale 50 percent off I decided to give it a whirl. It is called the Rocket Grill. It has parchment bags it cooks the food in so there is zero cleanup. I was concerned about the bags as I try to leave as small a carbon footprint as possible but it is paper so I thought I could recycle it. I love that because it cooks in the bag there is no cleanup time. Let’s face who wants to clean the kitchen again after you already did it right? So last night I made a simple garlic and balsamic vinegar breast. I threw a couple of cloves of garlic in with the breast and it cooked PERFECT. I made a quick dinner a 8 pm and cleanup took just 30 seconds. All in all I am happy and now if I forget to defrost I can still cook a healthy and delicious dinner.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

TREAT DAY the picture !

This is my very first picture! I used a dvd on the bottom to show the size. i used a 1/4 measuring cup and then pressed down. I put a normal one on top to show the luscious chocolate and walnuts better. I did about 10 super size and the rest are small using a tablespoon scoop so each on is the same size. I assumed not everyone would like a big one so I tried to cover everyone.

rice cookers

I am a lone wolf, at least that is how I feel lately regarding kitchen gadgets. Am I the only person in the world who doesn’t have a rice cooker? Every blog I read and every site I visit comments on their rice cooker. What happened to using a pot on the stove? For about 6 mos last year I lived in a 20 foot long trailer it was about 7 feet wide. I had 1 husband and 2 kids living with me so it was slightly crowded. My kitchen (including storage) was about 2 feet total, no you read that right, 2 feet. I learned on this voyage what a person REALLY needed. I was surprised to discover I didn’t need a lot. My large and luscious kitchen aid mixer was in storage as it was the same size as my stove. I had a mini rechargeable mixer system that hung on the wall to replace it. I also had no room for extras like a salad spinner or extra appliances. I had 1 nonstick fry pan and one larger cast iron pot for everything else. That is right 2 pans. Now I am in a larger place with all my bits and pieces and I wonder what I did without it! I do not however have a rice cooker. I am wondering if I need it as I never needed one before but I am thinking I need what the rest of the pack has. I love kitchen items. I read kitchen magazines with lust in my heart. Napa style catalog has so many types of salt I have no clue what they are for, but they are pretty. I pour over the catalogs dreaming of what I need and then I realize I don’t need a two hundred dollar olive oil bottle. I think for now I will leave the rice cooker on the shelf. I make rice rarely so I probly don’t need one but I bet I will need it later after I dwell on my desire. I’m gonna need a bigger kitchen.


It is treat day again and I decided to make a simple chocolate chip and walnut cookie. I discovered my hubby has eaten all the walnuts but I went to the store and got more as I think the cookies need it. I forgot to make a yummy last week so this time I thought - easy but fun. I decided to make them jumbo size to make them a little different. Instead of using a tablespoon I will do a ¼ cup that is a nice size for holding I thought. I decided to go fancy or unique as home cooking seems to be most popular; they still seem perplexed by the pumpkin cookies.

I am so happy that they like my treats. It makes it fun when I am appreciated even for something simple. I know the parents out there can understand that. Now I still need to make dinner and the kids are fighting ahhh, normal life. Have a healthy and happy day.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Sunday is In-Law Day

Every Sunday that we can my mother and father in law come to dinner. They live across the road from us and I try to make sure we see them often as my kids love them. Today I am thinking a large roasted chicken. I got a gorgeous chicken from my new butcher and it is rather large so this is perfect. I am going to make a lemon and onion stuffed chicken. I cook my chicken longer then I have seen other people do but I love a super crispy skin. I salt and pepper inside and out and put a cut up lemon inside and squeeze the juice of another lemon on the outside. I have a few potatoes roaming about so I will cut up some red potatoes and put around them, they can all roast at the same time. I love onion so I cut up one onion inside and another cut up outside with a clove or four of garlic. I use onion and garlic like some people use salt and pepper. I will pop it all into the oven at 2 pm at 350 degrees and will serve it at 5 pm.

I am not making a loaf of bread because if I can’t have any no one can. I am still in phase 1 of south beach so I haven’t make bread once this week. I normally bake a fresh loaf every morning but the smell is just so yummy I don’t want to be tempted. My husband is starting to whine about the lack of bread but one more week and I can start to add it back in.
I must go and clean my living room so I can pretend it isn’t always covered in cars and trains. :)Have a restful Sunday.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

National Pig Day

According to the wonderful people at it is national pig day. Now if that isn’t a reason to celebrate what is?
I have been looking for a local butcher that knows his meat and I found one! This may not excite you but in tiny towns in Oklahoma that have a wal-mart and NOTHING else- this is great news. They smoke all there own meat and I happen to have gotten bacon on my voyage yesterday. I am thinking I will make a tuna salad inside a tomato with bacon on the top, still healthy enough to please my cardiologist and yet plenty of tasty bacon.
I believe bacon should be its own food group. I am not normally a fan of meat. I was deeply saddened by the recent news on cattle mistreatment and I rarely ate meat until my doc said no more pasta. BUT, I always loved bacon I know it seems like a double standard and it is- I admit it. If I was stuck on an island with one food I more then likely would pick bacon, even thou I don’t love other parts of the pig i.e. pork chops. Don’t ask me why I am just a little crazy I assume.
More importantly - What will you eat on pig day?