Friday, February 24, 2012

Is it Friday yet?

That's what I've been asking all week. About this time of year, I get a little tired of the routine, of piano lessons, sports, scouts, etc. I get tired of our scheduled life and just want a break for a bit to do nothing. Or everything. Or anything we want.

But it's Friday, and things are looking up! On Wednesday, itching to get outside, I borrowed a friend's jogging stroller again and ran with H.  While I enjoyed his "Whee!" when I managed to go particularly fast, I did not enjoy the extra 30+ pounds or the throwing-the-treats-off-the-side-of-the-stroller tendency. I discovered another benefit this morning, though, when I ran without him and felt like I was flying. I turned off the annoying, monotone woman on MapMyRun who tells me how fast I have or haven't been going and just enjoyed the warm air, the breeze, the faint scent of blossoms, and tried to outrun the pollen that's been wrecking havoc on my sinuses this week.

In the autobiography class that I took in college, we talked about how autobiography can be most anything that tells something about your life--your artwork, a list of what's in your purse or what's on your playlist, and so on. So I thought today I'd share my week in recipes:

Sunday: Company! Laura, Matt, and James still visiting. Had leftover chicken noodle soup and grilled cheese for lunch.

Quick, Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup 
3-4 chicken breasts, cooked.
5 carrots, sliced
1 stalk celery, sliced
1 onion, chopped
2 quarts water
4 chicken bouillon cubes (You can use 2 quarts of chicken broth instead of water and bouillon, but I always use the water/bouillon).

Boil veggies, bouillon and water together for 15-20 min. Add cut up chicken.

1 (10 3/4 oz) can cream of chicken soup
1 tsp basil
pepper to taste
1 c frozen peas (optional)
1/2 of (11-oz) package Grandma's Frozen Homemade Noodles, thawed (I just use any brand of frozen egg noodles. And then I pick them out in H's bowl.)

Add cream of chicken soup, basil and pepper and bring to a boil again before adding defrosted noodles and peas.  Cook for an additional 5 min. (I cook it a little longer--probably more like 25-30 min. so the noodles aren't chewy).

And ate a tasty dinner (although I didn't manage to make dessert--sorry!)

MaryAnn's Rolls (I always double)
3 1/2 c flour
1 tsp salt
1/4 c sugar
1/4 c butter, softened
2 Tbsp powdered milk
1 c warm water
1 Tbsp yeast 
1 egg

Mix 1 1/2 c flour with salt, sugar, butter, and powdered milk. Add water, yeast, and egg.  Add remaining flour 1 c at a time. Knead for 10 min in mixer on slowest speed. Put in greased tupperware with lid and let sit 30-45 min. Pan them in a greased pan. Let rise til double again, about 30 min. Bake at 400 for 10 min or 375 for 12 min.
  • Cornucopia salad
(Courtesy of keeping up cookbook)
1 head red or green leaf lettuce, rinsed and torn (I used romaine b/c I had it in the garden)
3 green onions, sliced
1 (11-oz) can mandarin oranges, drained (I leave out. Can't stand the things)
1 avocado, diced
1 apple, diced
1/2 c dried cranberries
1/3 c crumbled blue cheese (I prefer feta)

2 T white wine vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 1/2 T sugar
1/4 c oil

1/2 c sliced almonds
3 T sugar

Prepare almonds by heating a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle sugar over pan and cook without stirring. When sugar is mostly melted, reduce heat to medium-low and add almonds. Stir until almonds begin to brown slightly. Remove from heat and lightly salt. Cool on wax paper.

Toss all ingredients together just prior to serving. If preparing in advance, add diced apple and avocado directly to jar of dressing to keep from browning. 

Monday:  Had some discomfort and disappointment this day. Coped with 

Oatmeal Cake
1 1/2 c boiling water--pour over 1 c oats and 1 stick butter and let sit for 20 min

Then add:
 1 1/3 c flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 c sugar
1 c brown sugar
1 tsp soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs

Mix and bake at 350 for 35 min. When it comes out of the oven, poke holes all over it (immediately, when it's not sticky) using a fork. Before serving it, make the icing and pour on it so it's warm.

1 c sugar
3/4 can evaporated milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 T flour
Mix together in saucepan and boil. Then pour over cake. 

Good thing I halved the recipe for my square pan since I ate 3 slices. J grilled the Cheeseburger of Champions (from Weber's Real Grilling) for dinner:

1 1/2 lbs ground chuck (80% lean--this is a MUST!)
1 T ketchup
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp Tabasco sauce
1/4 tsp pepper
4 slices Monterey Jack cheese

Makes 4 patties. Mix the ingredients using your hands. Grill the patties over Direct High head, 8-10 min, turning once. Then put cheese on. Toast the hamburger buns, cut side down, after spreading butter on the buns.

Tuesday:  Realized I had only cooked dinner 2 out of the last 6 days and tried to make up for it with a classic garden salad and 
Mom's Lasagna (I always double it to make one for the freezer)
1 lb ground beef, browned
1 envelope spaghetti sauce mix
2 tsp basil leaves
1 T parsley flakes
1 can (1 lb) tomatoes
1 8 oz can tomato sauce

Layer: 1/2 c sauce, 3 noodles, cottage cheese, grated Mozzarella, 1/2 remaining sauce, 3 noodles, cottage cheese, Mozzarella, rest of sauce, Mozzarella

Bake at 350 until heated through.

Wednesday:  Busy day, called for marinated chicken, rice-a-roni, and broccoli

Vickie's Marinade
3 boneless/skinless chicken breasts, pounded to 1/2" thin and poked with a fork
1/2 c soy sauce
1/2 c canola oil
1/2 c sprite, Mountain Dew, 7-up whatever you got
2 Tbsp fresh garlic, minced
2 Tbsp fresh ginger, minced (or the equivalent dried since I never have fresh)

Thursday:  Blue and Gold Banquet for scouts. No dinner-making here! Boys had to bring their favorite dessert. Mister surprised me by saying Peanut-butter brownies were his favorite. Easy-peasy, just like I like it.

Peanut-Butter Brownies
1 brownie mix, made up according to directions, but substitute Hershey's syrup for the water and add Reeses's peanut-butter chips.
Ice with 1 store-bought vanilla icing. Add 1/4c peanut butter to it and stir until mixed well. (Note: I can't stand most store-bought icing, with the exception of the confetti stuff, but this doesn't taste store-bought. I promise)

That brings us to tonight. Friday. Date night. Dinner out! This day is getting better and better.


Madsen Family said...

I love this. I love that I get a little glimpse into your life (and into your menu planning--I am totally going to try some of those recipes--what's a morton tri-tip from Costco, by the way??). I'm sure some day you'll be glad you have this to get an insight into what your life was like as a busy mom of three! You've inspired me to do it, but that means we can't have scrambled egg sandwiches for dinner every night....

bluestocking mama said...

Jessy, it's Morton's of Omaha tri-tip. It's a brand name. The tri-tip is already seasoned so perfectly and Joe grills it and smokes it slowly. Yum! And scrambled egg sandwiches would be so nice! I was all about that until H came along with an egg allergy. Seriously limits the breakfast-for-dinner options