Sourdough Bread and other things…

What a weekend!  Here where I live, Ohio, we experienced our first major snow storm this weekend.  Last year, we had snow all winter…more snow than we had in a long, long time.  We have been pretty fortunate this winter in that we were having a mild winter…until Sunday morning.  It started snowing at about 12 am Sunday morning and it snowed all day….and all night until about 10 am today.  All together I think we received about 12-14 inches.  Thankfully today, I was able to work from home! This is a picture from Sunday morning when I work up:

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So, I took myself to the grocery store (which I loathe) and got a few things.  One of them was a 4 pound beef chuck roast.  I came home and put it in the oven to make barbeque beef.  Three hours later on 350 degrees and it was falling apart.  Then Sunday morning I put some premade (store bought) meatballs in my crock pot with a jar of spaghetti sauce and a can of tomato soup for later in the week to have meatball subs.  Well–I didn’t think about what I would eat the bbq beef sandwiches or meatball subs on, so I ended up making these sourdough bread rounds/buns:

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They are glorious, so good…and if you wanted to make regular bread you can.  It’s a simple recipe and always turns out great.

Sourdough Bread Starter

1 package active dry yeast

1/2 cup warm water

2 cups flour

1 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons sugar

2 cups warm water

Dissolve yeast in 1/2 cup warm water.  Add flour, salt and sugar; stir in 2 cups of warm water.

Mix well.  Cover bowl, stir often for the next 72 hours.  After 72 hours, store in an mason

jar in the refrigerator and occasionally shake jar to mix.

Sourdough Bread

2 packages active dry yeast

1 1/4 cup warm water

1 cup sourdough starter

1/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon salt

2 eggs

1/4 cup oil

5 1/2 – 6 cups flour

Mix yeast, warm water and starter, let it get bubbly.  Add sugar, salt, eggs, and oil and mix well.  Add flour, knead until

smooth and elastic.  Put dough in a greased bowl and cover, letting rise in a warm place.  Punch down and make

bread as desired, letting rise again covered until double.  Bake at 375 degrees for about 30 – 35 minutes.

Add 1 cup flour and 1 cup water to starter mix to replace the starter you used for bread, mix well and put back

in refrigerator.

I also decided to try my blueberry muffin recipe in another way:

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I made it into a bundt cake instead of muffins, and it turned out way better, although I had to bake it a lot longer, almost an hour.  You can find the recipe here.

I have been in a cooking mood lately!  I also made crockpot lasagna for a coworkers birthday, and it turned out fabulous, even though I don’t have a picture.  Here’s how I made it:

Crockpot Lasagna

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, browned and drained

1 large container cottage cheese

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

2 jars spaghetti sauce

1 can tomato soup

1 package lasagna noodles (regular kind)

Mix cooked beef, spaghetti sauce, and tomato soup together.  Mix cottage cheese and 1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese together with Italian seasonings (garlic powder, onion powder, basil, oregano etc).  Layer as follows: meat mixture, lasagna noodles (uncooked), cheese mixture (repeat 3 times) and top with remaining mozzarella cheese.  Cook on high for about 1 1/2 hours and turn down to low for 2 1/2 more hours or until done.

I have to admit that this recipe gave me anxiety, because you have to work and adjust the noodles to fit.  I didn’t like it.  But it tasted fabulous and it was a big hit!!!

Keep Simply Delighting!!!

 

 

 

 

Staying in on a snowy Sunday

We are in the middle of a mini snow storm.  It’s cold, windy and snowy out.  Yesterday I ran errands and got a few things for the week.  I am not a big fan of grocery shopping, so I tend to only really go on a big shopping trip every 2-3 months.  When I do that, I stock up.  And I mean stock up.  I spend about $400 to stock up my pantry and freezer and pick up fresh items every week or other week.

So, yesterday I needed to get some stuff for a potluck at work this week (I am making crock pot lasagna…more on that this week) and some items for this week.  I wanted to make some queso so needed a few things.

After I got home, what I had in mind for dinner quickly went out the window, and I ended up making one of my favorite salads.  It’s a version of Cabbage Crunch Salad–and it was so yummy.

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I know it’s not a great picture but here’s how you make it:

cabbage–sometimes I use broccoli-slaw (precut)

1 carrot, grated

1 granny smith apple, peeled and chopped

craisons

slivered almonds

uncooked ramon noodles, broken up

The dressing is:

1/2 cup vegetable oil

3 tablespoons vinegar

2 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 packet of chicken ramon noodle flavoring

Today, I made some homemade refried beans (you can find the recipe by clicking here), and some queso dip.  The queso is super easy…just take a block of velveeta cheese, a can of rotel, and some browned ground beef and mix it in a crock pot.  Let it melt together and it’s perfect for a dip or for a snack or for dinner.

So that’s what I did today.  Check out the blog later this week for crock pot lasagna!

Keep Simply Delighting!

 

Getting Started

Happy Sunday!

Last night I was looking over some of the posts on my blog from a couple of years ago.  What a great experience to see how life has truly changed so much.  My life is so different than it was 2 years ago!  Last year around this time I was meeting my great niece Jaidyn for the first time, and now she’s two!  And she looks like this:

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and let me just say this girl…she is full of life and energy and personality!!!!  I love her soo much!

Anyway, today I didn’t get to sorting my fabric, but I did spend some time cooking and baking.  Last year for Christmas, my parents gave me a chest freezer, and so for the last year, I have been obsessing about freezing things.  It’s changed how I grocery shop and cook!  A couple of weeks ago, I was cleaning out the freezer and was amazed at how much stuff was in there.  So…I have been trying to cook and eat out of the freezer.  Today, I made this winter stew that my Mom used to make when I was a kid.

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How I made it: I browned 1 pound of ground beef and added about 3/4 cup of beef broth, a diced onion, minced garlic, salt and pepper.  I had some whole frozen tomatoes from my Dad’s garden that I froze this summer, and I dipped them in simmering water to remove the skin.  I rough chopped the tomatoes and added them to the skillet.  Then I added 4 peeled, roughly chopped potatoes (also from my Dad’s garden), and about 2 cups of chopped green beans (I bought those at the end of the harvest season at a farmers market on sale…another added bonus of a freezer!).  I added a little bit more salt and pepper, stirred it up, and covered it.  I kept it at a low simmer and it was done in about 30 minutes.  It is a great one pot meal and is hearty and warm for a cold winter day!

Then, I thought I would make some blueberry muffins.  I had some blueberries that I bought (also on sale at the end of the season at the farmers market and froze).  This was not a complete success…in fact, it was kinda a flop.

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I didn’t use a real muffin tin, I wanted to be adventurous and try a couple different pans my Mom gave me.  As you can see, they kinda turned out, but not really.  They don’t look very pretty, but they taste incredible!!!  Here’s the recipe:

2 1/2 cups flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 stick butter, melted

1 cup sugar

2 large eggs

1 1/2 cup sour cream

2 tablespoons milk

1  teaspoon lemon extract

2 cups blueberries, frozen or fresh

Mix the butter, sugar, sour cream, eggs, milk, lemon extract until well blended.  Add the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt until just blended.  Try not to overmix.  Fold in the blueberries (lightly dust them with flour so they don’t sink to the bottom of the muffins).  Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

Keep Simply Delighting!

 

Scalloped Potatoes and Ham

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I can’t even believe that I am blogging this, but I made scalloped potatoes and ham for dinner.  The reason I say this is because I do not like scalloped potatoes and ham.  I am not a fan at ALL of white creamy sauces.  I don’t like cream of anything soups, white gravy, or (and yes, I’ll pause for the collective gasp after I say this) alfredo sauce.  But…this recipe and dinner tonight was AMAZING.  And easy.  And only roughly 500 calories a serving.

Here’s the recipe:

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons flour

2 cups nonfat milk

1 teaspoon onion powder

1 teaspoon garlic powder

8 cups chopped and peeled potatoes

4 cups chopped ham (I used leftover Honeybaked spiral ham from Christmas that I had in my freezer)

1 teaspoon pepper

2 cups shredded cheese

Brown butter in large nonstick skillet, add flour and mix into a rue and let get brown, but make sure it doesn’t burn.  Add milk, stirring and bring to a rolling boil.  Add onion and garlic powder and pepper.  Stir.  Add potatoes and bring back to a boil.  Add ham and 1/2 of the shredded cheese, mix well.  Spray a 9×13 inch baking dish with cooking spray.  Dump everything from skillet into baking dish and sprinkle the remaining cheese on top.  Cover with foil and bake at 375 degrees for about 45 minutes.  Remove foil and continue to bake another 30 minutes or until bubbly, thickened and looking incredibly yummy.

I served mine with just a sprinkle of parmesan cheese.  Oooh so yummy.

Keep Simply Delighting!

Turkey Spinach Lasagna

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Tonight for dinner, I made something I have never made before: turkey spinach lasagna.  I was a little leary of this new recipe that I found but put my own spin on.  BUT…it was incredible.  Creamy, rich, and healthy!

Here’s the recipe:

1 lb ground turkey

1 T olive oil

1 medium onion, minced

2 garlic cloves, minced

3 cups marinara sauce

1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese

1 10 ounce package of frozen spinach, thawed, drained well and chopped

1/4 cup parsley

2 egg whites

1/4 t salt and pepper

12 lasagna noodles, cooked

1/2 cup mozzarella cheese

1/4 cup parmesan cheese

Saute onion and garlic in olive oil in large sauce pan.  Add the turkey and brown.  When turkey is browned, add the marinara sauce and continue to simmer.  Cook lasagna noodles until done.  Mix in a large bowl spinach, ricotta, parmesan cheese, egg whites, parsley, salt and pepper until combined.  In a 13 x 9 inch baking dish, spray with non stick cooking spray and layer 3 noodles, half the ricotta mixture and then 1/3 of the marinara sauce mixture.  Add 3 more noodles, the rest of the ricotta and 1/3 of the marinara sauce.  Add 3 more noodles and the rest of the marinara.  Add 3 more noodles, and top with the mozzarella cheese.  Bake at 375 degrees for about 45 minutes to 1 hour.  Let sit for 5 minutes before cutting.  I cut mine into 12 pieces.  Also I added red pepper flakes to my marinara sauce for a little heat.

This is definitely a keeper!

Keep Simply Delighting!

Yumminess Everywhere!

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Tonight for dinner, I made homemade barbeque chicken pizza.  It is Super Bowl Sunday, after all.  Believe me, it was incredible.  I dipped it it blue cheese dressing and it was just like I was eating some wings.  AMAZING.   Here’s how I made it:

1 package of pizza dough mix (prepared as the directions say)

1 1/2 cups cooked chicken, shredded or chopped (mine was the left over cornish hens from Christmas that I had in my freezer)

1 cup barbeque sauce (mine was homemade)

1 cup shredded cojack cheese

Homemade BBQ Sauce:

1 1/2 cups ketchup

3/4 – 1 cup brown sugar

1 cup water

1 teaspoon each of garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, and chili powder

Heat until comes to a boil and sugar is dissolved.  Let cool and thicken.

Put it all together and bake.  It was fabulous.

 

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I made more #scrappytripalong blocks today.

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These blocks come together so quick.  I love it.

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My favorite block so far.  I love those little porcupines.  Aren’t they cute?!!?

I started another quilt today as well, and made several blocks, but that will have to wait until tomorrow.  I had to stop sewing because I became engrossed in Downton Abbey that I had DVR’d….it’s my first season but I am hooked.

Keep Simply Delighting!

Snowy Saturdays

Happy Saturday ya’ll!

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This is a picture from my bedroom window.  I know it doesn’t look like a lot of snow, but it has been snowing since last night.  And it’s supposed to continue to snow all day and night and all day tomorrow.  So, I figured it would be a good weekend to stay inside and sew!

I started working on my 2 inch #scappytripalong quilt.  I am kinda methodically in how I sew.  I use (and reuse) little zipper top baggies to put my blocks in.  So, before I even started to sew any strips together, I put together all my blocks individually in bags. That way, if I wanna just grab a few and do some, I don’t have everything laying out.  Anyway, all of that to say this, I made 5 blocks today.

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On my living room floor design wall

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A close up

My blocks are truly scrappy, but I am loving the way they are turning out.

I also found a recipe for homemade refried beans over at Sewfrench.  It is her friends recipe, which you can see her blog post about the recipe here.

I followed the recipe, with the exception that I added a whole jalapeno, not just a 1/2, and mine were done in like 4 hours, but my crock pot cooks fast.

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Pre-mash

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Post-mash

This made nine 1/2 cup servings.  I froze most of them individually.  They are delicious and so much more flavorful than store-bought.

Linking up to Confessions of a Fabric Addict, Crazy Mom Quilts and TGIFF!  I am counting my blocks that are finished as a finish, and my beans!

Keep Simply Delighting!