Quick Timesaving Freezer Tip

Here are just a few ideas of how to use your freezer to make things very convenient and ready in a snap! (Did I just say Snap, Ugh?)

The key is using your cookie sheet. Whatever you are freezing, place it on a piece of wax paper on a cookie sheet and place in the freezer until solidly frozen (hours or over night) – then you can transfer to a freezer bag!

I make Charlie pumpkin “dog cookies”, by simply putting small spoonfuls of pumpkin (canned) onto the wax paper – then when I want to use, I take one out and hold it while he eats (he loves it!) or place it in his dish until it defrosts, then add his food.

Tomato paste, I’m sure you’ve had those recipes where you just need a tablespoon or two, what are you to do with the rest of the can? Even the tomato paste that comes in a tube has a fairly short expiration date once opened. I freeze in tablespoons and once frozen, pop into a freezer bag (don’t forget to label!) and use in recipes. It is SO HANDY!

Cookies ready to back at a moments notice. Chocolate Chip Cookies are another good recipe to freeze. I bake some, then I freeze some on a cookie sheet, then usually the next day because I forget about them, I toss into a freezer bag and *POOF* it’s like you’ve slaved away all day, ha ha…

Of course those are just a few examples. Also basil freezes well in a little water in an ice cube tray, leftover coffee freezes well in an ice cube tray too, perfect to add to your iced coffee!

Catch you back here tomorrow!

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A SUBMARINE SALAD – fabulous, fresh and quick salad!

Submarine Salad

How many of you love eating a submarine sandwich? Well, this salad TASTES like a submarine without the bread – it’s amazing!! We have this for dinner quite often with a small baguette (so much for no bread, but it’s much less bread!) and some olive oil for dipping… What makes this salad taste like a submarine? A few things, the lettuce being chopped, the salami and provolone and THE OREGANO. Don’t leave it out! I put very little compared to the original recipe and it was plenty, if you want just put a few shakes, but to get that oregano flavor in with everything else it’s just fabulous!

I first saw this in an email from Smitten Kitchen – Love her recipes and her blog – highly recommend!

The original recipe (PRINT HERE) makes 6 meal-size salads or 12 side portions. Make it however you like! The first photo shows only iceberg lettuce, the second photo shows both iceberg and radicchio, but no chickpeas. Good any way – the texture is fabulous, the crunch, with bits of salami and provolone. Owie, I needed this after an indulgent New Year…

Sub Salad

 

I make it for just the two of us and there are no leftovers, BUT, my quantities are much smaller and there are a few things that I change, because it’s our preference.  Click HERE to print my version (as seen below) – this is a recipe we will be making summer and winter!

Another note… I had a hard time finding a good looking head of Iceberg the other day, and ended up buying shredded lettuce (like for tacos, etc.) it was AWESOME! I always buy organic, but this time bought regular, and having it already shredded was nice!

submarine-salad

📸 IMAGES ARE MY OWN UNLESS STATED OTHERWISE, PLEASE CONTACT ME IF INTERESTED…

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Beef Stew with Turnip Root, Potato and Carrots!

Beef Stew

Beef Stew… fabulous when the weather turns cooler! This recipe uses one pan, a Dutch oven preferably, and cooks it low and slow. This beef stew was delicious! I made it a day ahead and served the next day so the flavors had time to meld and OH! Was it ever worth the wait! Trust me on that… The meat was so tender you could easily cut it with a fork.

This original recipe is from Once Upon A Chef. The original recipe uses 3 pounds of beef chuck, in the recipe below I changed things a bit, and made it for 2 servings with leftovers… Click HERE to print the original recipe as it or click HERE to print as shown below!  Either way, you cannot go wrong. Tweak it to make it how you like it best!

beef-stew-with-carrots-turnips-and-potatoes

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Cream Cheese & Pepper Jelly – is there anything easier, prettier and more tasty?

Cream Cheese and Pepper Jelly

Cream cheese topped with pepper jelly. That’s it. As much or as little as you like. LOOK at how beautiful! Perfect for the Christmas holiday’s since it comes red or green. I adore the red. This was a little snack. If you have a few more people use an entire block of cream cheese (I use Neufchâtel – low fat cream cheese) – I serve with Hint of Salt Wheat Thins.

Recently I had the opportunity to taste HOMEMADE RED PEPPER JELLY (thank you JW!!) – it was the best I HAVE EVER TASTED! It’s even prettier than what is pictured above, it has little flakes of peppers, it’s as beautiful as it is delicious! A treat of the very best kind. Home grown red peppers and homemade pepper jelly. WOW! ❤️ There is no better gift!

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Thanksgiving Day Prep – The Organized Way…

My hope is that this may help some of you who will be making a big Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow. I created a template, and just change it up as necessary. We usually eat around 1PM, so I work back from that time. I am a well-oiled machine, but do not talk to me as I will get distracted and then what? 😳 Ha ha… In case you need a plan, you can change the times and it gives you something to go by. Note that the turkey roasts much faster when set to Convection (if you have it). I love it! Links to a few recipes provided… This may be a bit weird, but it’s how my brain functions best, ha ha… Happy prep day!

Thanksgiving Dinner 2016 – 1:00PM

Day Before

Bean SaladMix up bean salad and refrigerate.

Pie Crust: Make pie crust, freeze one, Saran Wrap and fridge other

Dressing: cut up celery/onion cook with sausage

Day Of…

Turkey (6# bone in breast)

Set turkey on counter by 7:45AM, olive oil, S&P, onion in cavity.

Preheat oven to 350 (turn on at 8:15AM) – put turkey in oven at 8:30 AM on PURE CONVECTION. Should be done by 11AM. Let rest 15 minutes. Carve. (Pour fat in fat separator, wait 3 minutes then pour off fat, reserve a wee bit). (Convection may speed this turkey breast up, but then I can move everything up if needed).

Stuffing

Oven back on 350 at 11:50AM. At 11:30 cook celery, onion, water or broth, sausage, add to bread mixture and sage. Put in BUTTERED 3qt casserole dish and cover with foil.

Put in oven at 12:00 (noon), back 45 minutes (25 covered, 20 uncovered) – should come out of oven by 12:45.

Mashed Potatoes

Peel potatoes at 12:00 (noon), put in cold water. Have water boiling.

At 12:30, drop the potatoes in the water.  When done, mash, cover.

Bean Salad:  Remove from fridge at 12:30

Cranberry SauceRemove from fridge at 12:45

Gravy

Start gravy at 12:50. Pour into warmed container (or pot with lid).

Chocolate pie with homemade crust

Get coffee ready to turn on after dinner

Turn on coffee, slice pie.

Thanksgiving Prep 2017

Enjoy your Thanksgiving tomorrow and don’t worry if something doesn’t turn out. Thanksgiving is a day to be with friends and family, so don’t sweat the small stuff. It’s all good!

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts are quick to make and even those of you out there who don’t care for brussels sprouts on a typical day may find yourself loving them! Especially the outer crispy leaves – what a treat!!

Here’s how:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.

Wash and dry the brussels sprouts then toss in olive oil, salt and pepper. I take my hand with the leftover olive oil in the bowl and spread it on a cookie sheet. Then add the brussels sprouts, sprinkle with a little salt and pepper.

Roast them in your oven, I usually use confection, but it’s not necessary, if they get too brown too quickly just lower the heat.

They take about 30 minutes, but you can taste test or pierce with a fork to see if tender.

I them sprinkle them with Parmesan, because I love it and it goes so well with brussels sprouts.

Tada! You’re done!

You will be fighting over those crispy outer leaves that fall off – oh my!

There are different variations, some use lemon juice, some use a little red pepper flakes – you can’t go wrong, add what you like!

Catch you back here tomorrow!

 

 

 

Hamburger Steaks with Mushroom Gravy – Cooking Light!

Hamburger Steaks with Mushroom Gravy - Cooking Light

I ran across this recipe for “Burger Steaks with Mushroom Gravy, Sweet Potatoes and Haricots Verts” in Cooking Light magazine. It looked like pure comfort food. It was a quick and easy dish to prepare. I had a few Yukon Gold potatoes, so I opted for mashed potatoes, and we had a bag of Trader Joe’s Haricots Verts in the freezer (our dogs favorite snack of all time, he loves them frozen).

Decadent and delightful! Give it a whirl, this recipe serves 4. Click HERE to go to the myrecipes.com website where you can print this Cooking Light recipe!

If you are one of the few who hasn’t perused Cooking Light magazine, check it out! I’ve subscribed for around 20 years now – I look forward to that magazine each and every month!

Catch you back here tomorrow!