A Visit to Indiana

Dear Sis,

Until recently, Aunt Angel was the only Indiana family member who had met Mr. Baby. We made a whirl wind trip to rectify that and to pass the few day remaining of Josh’s work trip.

Tuesday morning, we drove to Aunt Angels. The drive was just over an hour and Mr. Baby napped through most of it:) We spent to early part of the day with Aunt Angel chatting away. She made us Broccoli Braid for lunch, and remembering how well Mr. Baby likes grapes from her visit to us, kept the grape bowl nice and full:) After all that yummy food, I took Mr. Baby upstairs for a nap. Aunt Angel took some time to work, since she didn’t have the day off. Without meaning too, I fell to sleep and napped too.

Shortly after we got up from our nap. Cousin Charity was back from school and Uncle Paul began making dinner for us. It was a great evening together. Although I’ve spent lots of time with Aunt Angel and Charity, it was the first time I got to spend time with Uncle Paul outside of a huge family gathering. It turns out he enjoys cooking and is great at it too! He made us a yummy salmon and rice pilaf dish. Mr. Baby also indulged in some of Aunt Angel’s leftover broccoli cheese soup as an appetizer. It ended up being a late night for Mr. Baby, but with a dog, cat, and cousin to follow around he didn’t seem to notice.

We reconvened for breakfast in the morning until it was time for Charity to go to school. We were off to make our drive to Aunt Cil’s shortly after that. Again, it was an easy drive, just over an hour in length, through most of which, Mr. Baby slept:) 

Mr. Baby was quickly swept up by the Aunt Cil-cousin cluster of baby admirers. He likes being the center of attention, so it worked well for him. After a busy morning of playing in the kitchen sink with Aunt Cil and building blocks with Heather and Stephen, we sat down to lunch. Ironically enough, it was more Broccoli Braid. Sisters do think alike! It was super yummy both times, so we didn’t have anything to complain about:) 

Broccoli Braid
Serves 6
Write a review
Print
Ingredients
  1. 2 c chicken, cooked and chopped
  2. 1 c broccoli, chopped
  3. 1 c shredded cheddar
  4. 1/2 c mayonnaise
  5. 1/4 c diced tomato
  6. 2 t dry dill weed
  7. 2 (8 oz pkg) refrigerated crescent rolls
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Mix together chicken, broccoli, cheese, mayo, tomato, and dill.
  3. Unroll and press crescent rolls into one large piece on a cookie sheet. Heap chicken mixture in the middle longways.
  4. To create braided top, cut the dough into 10 strips on each side, taking care not to cut too closely to the filling. Twist and press together each corresponding piece over the top of the filling. Tuck dough as need to create a neat finish.
  5. Bake 25-28 minutes. Slice and serve.
Tag Sis, You're It! http://www.tagsisyoureit.com/
Aunt Cil pulled out the little tike car for Mr. Baby and he played with it almost exclusively the rest of our visit. 

Meanwhile, Aunt Cil, Meghan, Heather, and I worked when we could on the invitations for your upcoming baby shower. Together they colored all 100 invitations and 36 favor tags! That is my least favorite part, so I was gushing my thanks! I cut, corner rounded, and shape punched 150 bookmark mats, in-between periodic mom-demands:) 

Mr. Baby enjoyed meeting family! We were constantly reminded that Mr. Baby is precious and sweet and cute… none of which gets old to us:) We drove home Thursday, with a lunch break at Aunt Angels, just in time to play with the newly returned and napped Josh. 

Love,

b

Facebooktwitterpinterestmail

Meeting Neighbors

Dear Sis,

Mr. Baby and I went on a baking campaign that began yesterday evening. I knew I wanted to make cutouts, but couldn’t find my go to recipe. I also knew I didn’t want to do my usual frosting with a baby as a helper. Royal icing is a project for bigger kids:) I remembered your recipe

Mr. Baby got to put all the ingredients into the stand mixer and push the buttons. He thought that was great!!! Then, I gave him a step stool so he could be next to me while I rolled dough and cut out the cookies. He loved splashing around in the flour and squishing his personal clump of dough. It took about an hour to make the cookies and another hour to clean up after all the fun we had. 

Recipe Review: 

Your mother-in-law’s sugar cookies roll out very easily, which is not always true with cut-out cookies. The cookie alone is not sweet, but it is soft and almond-y. The frosting itself, would be too sweet, but a thin layer on these cookies is perfect. When I don’t have time for royal icing, this is my new go to recipe! Thanks for sharing.

Also, it makes about 6.5 dozen medium cookies. Might make a half batch in future… or freeze some without frosting and thaw and frost when needed.


This morning we made heart shaped brownie bites and rice crispy bites too. And we whipped up a batch of icing and frosting the butter cookies from the night before. Everything turned out great! 

I used a silicone pan. The plastic pouches of brownie mix are just the correct amount of batter for one pan. We sprayed each cavity with baking spay that greases and flours in one step, added a tablespoon of batter to each cavity, and baked just a few minutes shy of the full package baking time. Then we cooled them 10 minutes before pressing them out of the pan. Our drizzle is candy melts. We didn’t have pink so we melted white and red ones together:)

For the rice crispy treats, we made a half batch of my usual rice crispy treats and mixed in a jar of sprinkles for festive appeal:)


During Mr. Baby’s nap I made calling cards with our names, street address, phone, and email. When he woke up we arranged cookie plates and headed out to introduce ourselves to our new neighbors. In the course of an hour and a half we knocked on a dozen doors. Half were home, and happy to tell us all about our new neighborhood. It was an afternoon well spent. Now we can really get to know everyone better when the cold goes away and we all start hanging around outside!

Love,

b

Facebooktwitterpinterestmail

An Easy and Tasty Sheet Pan Dinner

Hi Sis,

I got this easy and yummy meal from Nate’s mom, who prepared a basket full of recipes with food… for busy days or just fun cooking! This was the first one we made, and even Nate went back for seconds! I am thinking it would be a good moving meal for when Mom and I come to visit and help you unpack.

Pesto Chicken
Write a review
Print
Ingredients
  1. 4 Small Chicken Breasts
  2. 4 Tablespoons Sour Cream
  3. 4 Tablespoons Pesto
  4. 4 Tablespoons Parmesan or Mozzarella
  5. 1/2 Cup Bread Crumbs
  6. 1/2 Cup Parmesan
  7. 1 egg, whisked
Instructions
  1. Preheat Oven to 370. Flatten each breast and put filling down the middle of each breast. Roll and use tooth picks to hold. (Filling is Sour Cream, Pesto and Parmesan).
  2. Dunk in Egg wash
  3. Roll in bread crumbs and parmesan cheese mixture
  4. Bake about 30 - 35 min
Notes
  1. For the rest of the sheet pan I tossed potatoes and a bag of frozen green beans with olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper, and some savory, marjoram and parsley.
Tag Sis, You're It! http://www.tagsisyoureit.com/
Love,

Jamiegoof

Facebooktwitterpinterestmail
This entry was posted in recipes.

Biscuits & Gravy

Dear Sis,

I decided that before we move away from Texas I had to learn to make biscuits and gravy. It was surprisingly easy!

Sausage Gravy
Write a review
Print
Ingredients
  1. 1 lb. ground turkey breakfast sausage
  2. 1/4 c unbleached flour
  3. 1 1/2 - 2 c milk
  4. ground pepper
Instructions
  1. Brown sausage in a heavy skillet over medium heat.
  2. Stir in flour. Add milk gradually, stirring between additions, until desired consistency is reached.
  3. Season with pepper, to taste. Serve over fresh baked biscuits.
Notes
  1. Makes enough gravy for 8 biscuits.
Tag Sis, You're It! http://www.tagsisyoureit.com/
Love,

b

Facebooktwitterpinterestmail

Eighth Night of Hanukkah

Dear Sis,

We started the evening with a game of dreidel.

We used this helpful chart style instruction sheet to guide our game.

Then, Charlotte lit the Menorah while I sang the blessings.

Baruch ahah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech Ha-Olam, asher kiddeshanu b’mitzvotav, vitzivanu, lehadlik ner shel Hanukkah. Give thanks for the blessing of lighting the Hanukkah candles.

Baruch ahah Adonai, Eloheinu Melech Ha-Olam, she-asah missim la-avotaynu bayamim ha-hem barman hazen. Give thanks for the miracles performed for our ancestors.

I put the finishing touches on dinner, while Charlotte read The Chanukkah Guest to the three kiddos.

Menu

Latke Topped Salmon served with Applesauce and Sour Cream

Roasted Root Vegetables and Dinner Rolls

Pecan Cheesecake Pie

Latke Topped Salmon
Serves 4
Write a review
Print
Ingredients
  1. 1 1/2 pound salmon filet (thick end)
  2. 2 T butter or ghee, cubed
  3. salt and pepper
  4. 16 oz package shredded hash brown potatoes
  5. 1/4 c butter or ghee
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9x13 baking dish.
  2. Place salmon in prepared dish. Arrange bits of butter on top. Season with salt and pepper. Bake 20-25 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, brown potatoes in ghee, in a hot skillet until moderately crisp and golden.
  4. Top salmon with cooked hash brown. Serve with applesauce and sour cream on the side.
Tag Sis, You're It! http://www.tagsisyoureit.com/

They don’t look glamorous because my photography is lacking a certain je ne said quoi, as it usually does, but I assure you… they taste glamorous!

Roasted Root Vegetables
Serves 6
Write a review
Print
Ingredients
  1. 3 beets
  2. 4 carrots
  3. 3 parsnips
  4. 2 sweet potatoes
  5. 1 red onion
  6. 1/2 c cider vinegar
  7. 1/2 c olive oil
  8. 1/4 c brown sugar
  9. 1 t thyme
Instructions
  1. Peel and thinly slice all vegetables.
  2. Preheat oven to 450. Line two jellyroll pans with foil.
  3. Combine vinegar, oil, sugar, and thyme. Pour over vegetables and toss to coat.
  4. Spread vegetables evenly over prepared pans. Bake 35-40 minutes, rotating pans halfway through.
Notes
  1. In future, I plan to by raw pre-cut sweet potato fries and half baby carrots to save prep time.
Adapted from Simply Recipes
Adapted from Simply Recipes
Tag Sis, You're It! http://www.tagsisyoureit.com/

I used this recipe. However, I intend to use the changes in the recipe below in future.

Pecan Cheesecake Pie
Write a review
Print
Ingredients
  1. 1 refrigerated pie crust
Cheesecake Layer
  1. 2 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, soft
  2. 1/4 c granulated sugar
  3. 2 eggs
Pecan Layer
  1. 2/3 c dark corn syrup
  2. 2/3 c granulated sugar
  3. 2 eggs
  4. 1 1/2 T butter, melted
  5. 1 t vanilla extract
  6. 1 c pecan halves
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease a springform pan. Center and press pie crust into pan.
  2. Beat together cheese layer. Pour over crust.
  3. Beat together pecan layer, stirring in nuts last. Pour over cheese layer carefully, so they don't mix.
  4. Lightly fold down any crust that extends more than 1/4 inch beyond filling. Bake 50-60 minutes.
Adapted from Inside BruCrew Wife
Tag Sis, You're It! http://www.tagsisyoureit.com/
With only 25 days left until the big move, it was biter sweet for us to talk as the children played into the night. They weren’t just neighbors, they were and are friends so wonderful they embraced us like family! We’ll miss Texas because of all the wonderful people and the strong sense of community we will be leaving behind, but we will work hard to recreate it in our next home!!!

Hope your Hanukkah was great like ours!

Love,

b

 

Facebooktwitterpinterestmail

Blueberry Oat Muffins

Dear Sis,

Blueberry Oat Muffins
Yields 12
Write a review
Print
Ingredients
  1. 1/2 c milk
  2. 1/2 c yogurt
  3. 1 c old fashion oats
  4. 1/2 c brown sugar
  5. 1/4 c unsalted butter, melted
  6. 1 egg, beaten
  7. 1/2 t baking soda
  8. 1/2 t salt
  9. 1 t baking powder
  10. 1 c unbleached flour
  11. 1 c blueberries, fresh or frozen
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375. Line a dozen muffin cups with parchment cups.
  2. Combine milk, yogurt, and oats. Stand until needed.
  3. Beat together sugar, butter, and egg.
  4. Combine dry ingredients. Stir into sugar mixture.
  5. Fold in oat mixture. Fold in berries.
  6. Spoon into prepared muffin cups. Bake 20-25 minutes.
Tag Sis, You're It! http://www.tagsisyoureit.com/

A gluten-free version of this recipe is available here

Love,

b

Facebooktwitterpinterestmail

Cranberry Orange Walnut Bread

Dear Sis,

I found 6 cups of cranberries in our freezer. With the move just weeks away, I am working hard to clear it out! I decided to make an old Thanksgiving favorite. It will work nicely has a holiday gift for library teachers and neighbors.

Cranberry Orange Walnut Bread
Write a review
Print
Ingredients
  1. 1 c granulated sugar
  2. 2/4 c orange juice
  3. 2 T avocado oil
  4. 1 egg, beaten
  5. zest of one orange
  6. 2 t vanilla bean paste
  7. 2 c unbleached flour
  8. 2 t pumpkin pie spice
  9. 1 1/2 t baking powder
  10. 1 t table salt
  11. 1/2 t baking soda
  12. 1 1/2 c cranberries
  13. 1/2 c crushed walnuts
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour loaf pans.
  2. Beat together sugar, juice, oil, egg, zest, and vanilla.
  3. Combine dry ingredients. Beat into liquid mixture.
  4. Fold in berries and nuts.
  5. Pour into prepared pans. Bake approx. 30 minutes; till cake tester comes out clean.
Notes
  1. Makes 2 loaves or 4 mini loaves.
  2. Working with frozen berries increases baking time.
Tag Sis, You're It! http://www.tagsisyoureit.com/
Love,

b

Facebooktwitterpinterestmail