Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Pregnancy cravings = new recipes!

I love trying new recipes and I found a few recently that I LOVE and will make over and over again. The first is a potato crescent roll. These were the best textured rolls I have ever made! I followed this recipe as written, but I did substitute 2 1/2 cups fresh wheat flour and added 2 tbsp of dough enhancer. Instead of fresh, I used instant potatoes, and I did not raise in the fridge for 8 hrs, I just let it raise until double in size. However, this is a fantastic make ahead recipe as you can leave it in the fridge for up to 5 days!
Ingredients
  • 2 potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 2/3 cup shortening
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted

Directions

  1. Place potatoes in a saucepan, and cover with water. Bring to a boil, and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain, cool, and mash.
  2. In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.
  3. When yeast is ready, mix in 1 cup mashed potatoes, sugar, shortening, eggs, salt, and 3 cups flour. Stir in the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until dough has become stiff but still pliable. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl, and turn to coat with oil. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 8 hours, and up to 5 days.
  4. Deflate the dough, and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough into two equal pieces, and form into rounds. Roll out each round to a 12 inch circle. Brush generously with melted butter, and cut each circle into 16 wedges. Roll wedges up tightly, starting with the large end. Place on lightly greased baking sheets with the points underneath, and the ends bent to form a crescent shape. Cover, and let rise for 1 hour. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown.


Peanut Butter! Peanut Butter! Peanut Butter!
I made these twice last week, I cannot keep them around, the fam devours them!
You know, on regular days I like Peanut butter, but this pregnancy, I LOVE peanut butter and I found this simple cookie recipe that is a HUGE hit. I adapted it using my fail proof cake mix cookie recipe.
1 box chocolate cake mix (I used fudge and devil's food and both worked great)
1/3 cup oil
2 eggs
Combine ingredients. This takes elbow grease and makes a thick dough.
Next make filling.
Filling:
1 1/4 cup peanut butter
1 1/4 cup powdered sugar
Mix equal parts of peanut butter and powdered sugar. mix as best you can with a fork and then I just knead it together with your hands. Once combined, roll into approx 3/4 inch balls. 1 1/4 cup each usually makes almost 26 peanut butter balls.

Now take about a tbps of chocolate dough (it will take a couple cookies to get a hang of the correct amount) and flatten into your hand to make a flat circle. Place the peanut butter ball in the middle, then wrap around the peanut butter ball. once covered, roll the entire ball in your palm to smooth out. Roll finished ball in sugar and place on greased cookie sheet. Once the full sheet is made, take the bottom of a glass and press each cookie down. Bake for 7 Min in a preheated oven, 350 degrees. DO NOT OVER BAKE! 7 Minutes is key. If you bake longer, the outer cookie will be crispy instead of chewy. let cool on cookie sheet for several minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.


Lastly, for some strange reason, I was craving grilled shrimp and found this marinade. So easy and crazy good! You don't even need cocktail sauce.

Ingredients

  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 pounds fresh shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • skewers

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, stir together the garlic, olive oil, tomato sauce, and red wine vinegar. Season with basil, salt, and cayenne pepper. Add shrimp to the bowl, and stir until evenly coated. Cover, and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour, stirring once or twice.
  2. Preheat grill for medium heat. Thread shrimp onto skewers, piercing once near the tail and once near the head. Discard marinade.
  3. Lightly oil grill grate. Cook shrimp on preheated grill for 2 to 3 minutes per side, or until opaque.


Sunday, April 25, 2010

I am a "Big Mac" girl and proud of it!

So, where to begin? Last night my rocking Bro in law Jer had his 30th birthday, and to celebrate we went to his favorite restaurant, Takara (sp?) One of Katie and Jer's favorite thing is Sushi. Sounds pretty scary to me. I had an open mind and was excited to give it a try. They actually made sushi several months ago and I really liked it, so I had high hopes. (of course the sushi I had previously tried, was fully cooked and had steak in it. Pretty sure that is illegal in both Japan and China) Any how, I had ordered the "Sunny" roll which had rice, cucumber, mango, shrimp, avocado and cream cheese. Yummy! I had tempura veggies and shrimp, also delicious! The Ramen was nice and spicy, tasty
.............................and then....................
there was the "french kiss"
Sorry the pic is blurry, I used my phone and I was still hyperventilating at the thought of eating it. It was a pretty standard roll with crab, cucumber, and I don't even remember what else was inside.... but on top..................there in lies the problem... or my problem. This roll came topped with raw salmon, a thin lemon slice, some sort of fish eggs and scallions. I shutter just thinking about it all over again. To make a long story short, after totally psyching myself out, and much encouragement from my family at the table, most of which claimed to have "loved it," I finally popped it in my mouth. Wow.... and not a good wow. My face went every shade of red in the book and my eyes were watering. It took absolutely every power within my being to swallow that baby down. I guess it must be an acquired taste. So, I guess in the end, I do not have a sophisticated pallet, because truth be told, I would much rather have me a big mac from Old McDonalds any day!
On a side note, I at least learned proper chopstick etiquette and that is important:)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Butt Crack Era.....

I had to laugh last night as I was folding the laundry and looked down and I had 3 piles of undies. Weird. We are in day 3 of potty training with Morgan and things are going really good. I was fighting doing this, but she is so ready and wanted to do it, so here we are.
I just have one question.
What is it with the butt crack and little girls?
Do manufacturers not understand what they are doing when they are making pants? It is sorta cute, but I think it is going to drive me crazy! I never had this issue with my boys, but I have noticed that girls are plagued by the butt crack. Regardless, I am happy to be getting Mo out of diapers before this new little man gets here.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Getting a mind of his own.....

If I were to describe Will in 2 words it would be "good kid." He is doing fantastic in school and always nice to his friends and usually listens to his Mom with little persuasion. I have noticed lately that he is getting a mind of his own. He wants to pour his cereal and milk by himself, he makes his bed immaculately with no wrinkles (just how Mom likes it!) He wants to help with dinner and set the table and comb his hair without my help. He LOVES to ride his bike and wants to do it every chance he can get and assures me that he can do so, without constant supervision. I am not sure how I am so lucky to have such a nice boy. And since he is such a good kid, when he asked if he could wear a Mohawk to school, I quickly whipped his hair up in do fashion. I love watching him make decisions for himself (never mind that at times I am in the corner hyperventilating!)

Friday, April 16, 2010

What is making us so happy?

For one, SUNSHINE!!!!!! is making us soooooooooooo happy! But this post not about this long delayed arrival of warm spring weather.
Here is Grey, he looks pretty happy......
Will has been at this for the past 3 days now. I was shocked when he smashed the first pitch right back at me. He looks pretty happy......
And what of Mo? Well, let's just face it, she is happy most of the time, but there is one particular reason that she is a little more happy than usual............ One reason that we have been waiting for.......... for a long time.....
What is that reason? Well here it is...
New neighbors you ask? Nope, it's that long vinyl white thing obstructing the view of our potential neighbors.................... a FULLY FENCED yard! Happy dance, happy dance...... I love the fact that I can now send my kids and dog out in the back yard to play. And even only being somewhat unsupervised, for the time being, there will be no escapees!
I just had to add this picture of Teenie. She is quite possibly, the HAPPIEST of all about our fenced yard. I was thinking about her and the fact that she has lived in apartments for 7 years with barely a small patch of grass to relieve herself on and now she has not only a yard, but an empty garden plot where she has literally been living for the past 3 days. Digging, digging and digging some more, for who knows what exactly. But she literally has a smile on her face. (not in these photos of course, because she is worse than my kids and seems to avoid me at all costs if I have the camera. I guess we have photographed on or two, too many embarrassing dog outfits in her day) But she is definitely one happy pup and I am so happy for her to be able to finally have a little freedom.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

April Fools! I just couldn't help myself...

I have never really done any April Fools jokes before, but for some reason this year, I couldn't resist. The scene was set for dinner. I had made glasses of juice with Jello, and barbecued ribs with mashed potato frosting.


Adorable right? I told the kids that they were so good today that they got to have dessert for dinner. They cheered and got so excited. I am a terrible liar and was snickering under my breath the whole time I was serving them their "cupcakes."

video
This was the result. I loved Grey's initial reaction. He LOVES frosting so he took a huge bite off the top. As you can see, I thought I was hilarious! I was in tears I was laughing so hard..
Will took a bite and figured it out pretty fast.
Grey was more confused.

Morgan didn't really care.