Monday, May 28, 2012

Menu Plan Monday May 28th

Happy Memorial Day!  I hope everyone has a great day off to spend with family.

We have just come home from a weekend trip to the mountains.  We had a great time but I am so glad to be home and back in my own comfort zone.  Traveling with three little children is never easy.  Hiking part of the Appalachian Trail with three little children boarders on crazy!  They did good though.  Very little complaining and Jelly Beane slept on my back a lot of the way. 

This week's menu plan is all about me and my favorites.  My birthday is this week so I am planning all foods that are my favorites!  Of course, that does mean I am trying two new recipes and we will see if they make the cut to be added to the family favorties list. 

Also, to celebrate my birthday, Mr. Homegrown is taking me to dinner at The Cheesecake Factory saturday night.  I will be hanging on to that hope all week!  Any suggestions on what to order? 

Here is this week's line up:

Hamburgers on the grill

Onion Rings

Pasta e Fagioli a la Chez Ivano Recipe
Pasta e Fagioli
Garlic Bread Twists

Wednesday ~ Birthday!

Grilled Butterflied Brown Sugar Chicken

Peanuts in Coke Cupcakes
I am going to relive my childhood with this cupcake!


Easy Egg Rolls
Pot stickers


Pizza using Beer Batter Pizza Dough

The Cheesecake Factory!!!!!!!!!!

I hope you have a great week!  I am linking up with Menu Plan Monday.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Bread

I have been on a peanut butter and chocolate kick lately.  I can't help it.  It is the greatest combo of flavors ever.  It is a fact.

My String Beane outgrew his peanut allergy late last year.  We have treaded slowly, but surely into the peanut world.  I think I am finally at peace with him eating peanuts and peanut butter.  Maybe that is why I have been adding peanut butter to everything lately.

I saw this recipe on Pinterest and knew that I could switch it up a bit to accommodate us. 

I just changed some of the ingredients to make this milk free for us.  It was a delicious bread that everyone ate.  We ate it for breakfast and snacks.  It did not last long!  I have to say that it was especially yummy with a cup of coffee after the little Beanes had gone to bed.

Here you go:

6 TBSP unsalted butter, at room temperature (We use Fleishmann's unsalted- it is milk free)
1/3 cup peanut butter
1 cup granulated sugar
½ tsp. vanilla extract
2 eggs
3 medium, ripe bannans
2 cups all-purpose flour
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips. (We use Gharidelli semi sweet - no milk)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. 
Sift all of the dry ingredients together in a bowl and set a side.

Cream the butter, peanut butter and sugar on medium high for 3 minutes until light and fluffy. 
Add eggs, one at the time, beating after each addition.  Add vanilla and beat an additional 30 seconds.
Add bannanas and mix until incorporated.

With the mixer on low speed add the dry ingredients and mix until everything is just incorporated. Don’t over mix. Remove from mixer and fold in chocolate chips with a spatula. This will also help the rest of the ingredients mix in.

Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray.  Pour batter into loaf pan.  Bake for one hour and 15 minutes.  Check with a cake tester to make sure it is done.  Cool in the pan for 10 minutes and then turn out on to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Eat up!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Peanut Butter Cup Brownie Bites

I am almost certain that ,thanks to Pinterest, I can pull off almost anything on a moments notice.

Or at least I think I can.  On that note, the biggest problem that I see with Pinterest, is that so many people are on it.  I mean when you think you are all creative and make something to go to a party, people will say 'oh, I saw that on Pinterest'.  Sort of takes a little something away. 

Anyway, we were invited to a pool party last night.  Whenever we are invited anywhere, the biggest dilemma I have is making sure there will be food that will be safe for String Beane's allergies.  I had the dinner part all planned out, but dessert had escaped my attentions.  Enter Pinterest.

I saw this post by Cookies and Cups and thought it would be easily adapted for milk allergies.  I pinned it. So, about 2 hours before the party started, I started working on a dessert to take. 

I made these cute little Peanut Butter Cup Brownie Bites.  They were GOOD!.  They were simple and they were fast.  And, I made them without milk!

One box of Duncan Hines Chewy Fudge brownie mix and ingredients called for on the box. (This is milk free)
1/2 cup butter, room temp (1 stick) (I used Fleishmann's unsalted margarine - milk free)
1 cup creamy peanut butter
6 cups sifted powdered sugar
1/4 cup milk (you can add more if your prefer a creamier frosting) (I used Almond milk)

Optional Garnish of chopped peanuts and chocolate syrup.

Start by preheating the oven to 350 degrees.
Mix up your brownie mix according to package directions.
Line a mini muffin pan with pretty cupcake liners and give it a spray with cooking spray.
I used a cookie scoop to fill the cupcake liners about 2/3 full.
Bake for 12 minutes.  I wanted these to be a little gooey, so do not over cook.
Allow to cool for about 10 minutes and then move them to a cooling rack and let completely cool.

While the brownies are cooling, make your frosting.
Dump the margarine, peanut butter, powdered sugar and almond milk in a bowl and beat with a mixer until smooth and fluffy.  Add more milk if you needed to make the frosting the consistency that you like. 

When the brownies are cool, pipe some frosting on the top of each one and look at your pretty work.

Garnish with some chopped peanuts and a drizzle of Hershey's Syrup.   If you have any leftovers, store them in the fridge. 

Take one more look at them.

They are so good.  Make yourself some. 

I am linking up with Metamorphosis Monday, Allergy Free Wednesday and these other Awesome Parties.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Friday Favorites

It is Friday Peeps!

There is so much good food inspiration on the Internet.

It is just one food covet after another on Pinterest.

As usual, I have done a lot of looking and coveting of all the delicious looking food.  I will save you some time and show you my top 5 favorites. 

Here they are.

Pinned Image
Crispy Shrimp Tacos
These look unbelievable.  Mr. Homegrown would love these.

Pinned Image
Cilantro Thai Grilled Chicken
This looks like a great summer grilling meal.

Pinned Image
Cherry Limeade
I think my Little Beanes would LOVE this!  Me too.

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Samoa Cookies
Who doesn't love a Samoa?  These have already been made dairy free for my String Beane!

Pinned Image
Coconut Cream Poke Cake
This one is for me!

What have you found this week?  I am linking up with Finding Joy in my Kitchen


Sunday, May 13, 2012

Menu Plan Monday May 14

Last week's meals went well.  I cooked.  We ate.  The Little Beanes grew. 

Everyone ate pretty good.  I have learned one thing.  If you want my kids to eat, feed them breakfast for supper.  The Waffles of Insane Greatness are aptly named.  They really are delish and my kids eat them like they are starving.  That and a piece of sausage and they go to bed full. 

I am picking some meals that I think everyone will eat without too much complaint.  All of them are family favorites. 

Here is the line up:

20-Minute Turkey Tostadas
Turkey Tostadas

Homemade Spaghetti Ohs!
Homemade Spaghetti-Oh's


Pizza using Beer Batter Pizza Crust


Bacony Chicken and Rice Bake

Blue Plate Beef Patties Recipe
Blue Plate Beef Patties

Garlic Bread

I am linking up at Menu Plan Monday.  I hope you have great week with yummy meals.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Onion Rings

My mom is a woman of few talents.

I don't mean that as an insult.  It is just that she doesn't get all caught up in appearances or trying new things. 

So, there are a few things that she can do GREAT!  She is not an experimental cook.  She really only makes a few different meals and she just rotates them around so you don't notice it is the same stuff. 

My whole life, when there was a special occasion, she would make Steaks or Hamburgers and Onion Rings.  The power is in the onion rings.  They are the best onion rings I have ever eaten.  Everyone loves them.  L.O.V.E.

The trouble in trying to share the recipe is that there really isn't a recipe.  I will tell you how I do it.

Yellow Onions
Milk (we use almond)
All Purpose Flour

Grab yourself 2 or 3 onions.  Any kind will do, but try to get a Sweet yellow.  Slice the onion and separate the slices into rings. 

Put all the rings in a bowl and pour some milk over them and let them soak.  For my family, I pour over the onion rings almond milk.  I have used soy, almond and cow milk.  I really can't tell a difference in the out come, so use whatever your family drinks. 

Get a large pot and heat up some oil.  I used Smart Balance oil.  Put enough oil in the pot so it is at least 3 inches deep.  I don't measure the temperature of the oil, but I think you would go for 350 degrees.

Pour the milk off the onion rings.  Pour some flour over the onion rings and give them a shake so that they will be coated with flour.  I used all purpose flour.

Fry the onion rings to the oil in batches, so you don't over crowd your pot.  This always takes a little longer than I think it should.  I think it takes around 10-12 minutes to get the onions to a pretty golden brown, giving them a little flip half way through.  You have to stand right there watching them.  They will go from beautiful to burnt in a skinny minute. 

When they turn the beautiful golden color, take them out of the oil and let them drain on paper towels.  Start frying the next batch.

When you put the onion rings on the paper towels to drain, sprinkle them with some salt.  Here is the part that sounds weird, but you MUST do it.  Sprinkle the onion rings with some sugar.  I know that might sound weird, but it is so important here.  A little sprinkle of sugar takes these onion rings to a whole new level. 

Here is another look at them.  They will always mean family celebration to me.  Make you some and celebrate a little.

I am linking up with Metamorphasis Monday, Allergry Free Wednesday, and these other Awesome Parties.

Friday Favorties

There are lots of yummy food on the Internet.

Looking at all of it does nothing to help me get to my goal weight.

The more I look at the desserts and the more I dabble in making some of them, the more fluid I am with my goal weight number. 

Here are my top 5 favorites for this week.  None of them will help me get to my goal weight any faster.  Bummer.

Fried Pickles with Cilantro Garlic Ranch
Nothing to improve the diet here.

Seafood Pasta
Everything the Pioneer Woman does is right.

Brownie Pudding
This one will definitely require elastic pants.

Pay Day Bar
Mr. Homegrown would like this one.

Rice Krispie Treat for one
I guess I would not eat the whole pan if I just made one. 

I am linking up with Finding Joy in my Kitchen.  Go check out what everyone else has pinned.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Menu Plan Monday May 7

Last week's meals did not go exactly as planned.  The week started off as planned.  We followed the menu and ate well. 

Then we go some big and exciting news.  We bought a new house!  Yea for us.  So, I have spent the last few days browsing Pinterest for ideas about painting and decorating!  We are all very excited.  The Little Beanes are the most excited because the new have an upstairs.  String Beane said that he has always wanted a house with stairs. 

So for this week's menu, I am using what I have in my freezer and doing some easy meals so I will have more time to on line shop :-)  It is all about priorities right?

Here is the line up:


Enchilada Rice


Pizza using Beer Battered Pizza Crust


Grilled Butterflied Brown Sugar Chicken

Green Beans with Bacon and Carmalized Onions


Shepherd's Pie

Breakfast for Supper
Waffles of Insane Greatness
Scrambled Eggs

Chicken Macaroni Bake

I am linking up with Menu Plan Monday.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Strawberry Cobbler

Mr. Homegrown had a birthday last week.

I asked him what he wanted for his birthday dinner and dessert.

He chose hamburgers and onion rings for dinner and he 'couldn't think of anything for dessert'.

Dessert is pretty much all I do think about.  He needs me.

He said that he did not want a cake.  Huh?  He finally decided that he did want a strawberry cobbler.

No problem.  I can make that and it can be milk free for my String Beane.

This has been a cobbler recipe that I have used for years and it is a good one.  I actually like it best with peaches.  But since it wasn't my birthday, we did strawberries.  You can make this with any fruit you want, fresh is best but frozen will do.

1 pint of fresh strawberries, washed and cut
1 cup of Bisquick baking mix
1 cup of sugar
1 egg
1 stick (1/2 cup) margarine, melted (we used Fleishman's unsalted since it is milk free)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Put your strawberries in a 9x9 Pyrex dish.
In a separate bowl, mix the Bisquick, sugar, and egg.  This will be a course mixture.
Sprinkle the Bisquick mixture all over the strawberries.
Pour the melted butter all over the top. 

Bake for 30-35 minutes.  Check to see if the top is browned off the way you like it.  Bake it a little longer to get the look you want if you need to. 

When it comes out of the oven, let her cool for at least an hour.  Fruit gets really hot.  You will burn your mouth if you take a bite soon!

Serve it up with some whipped cream, ice cream or just naked!  I have been known to eat this fro breakfast since it has fruit and everything. 

Happy Birthday Mr. Homegrown!

I am linking up at Metamorphosis Monday, Allergy Free Wednesday and these other Awesome Parties!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Friday Favorites

It is finally Friday!!!

This has been one of those weeks that has broken all laws of physics.  I feel like it has flown by and I feel like it has lasted forever.  Ever have one of those?

I am glad the weekend is here and we can slow down and stay home!

Here are my top 5 favorites for this week:

Shrimp Salad on Cucumber slices
This looks like a great summer time meal.

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Cheeseburger Flatbread Melts
If I left the cheese off, I think my little Beanes would love this.

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Teriyaki Chicken
This would be good over rice.

Biscoff Rolls
I would try to pull this off as a 'special' breakfast!

Pinned Image
Cinco De Mayo Cookies
This would totally be a labor of love,  but it would win you mother of the year!

What have you pinned this week? 

I am linking up with Finding Joy in My Kitchen.