23 March 2015

Recipe 28: Mini Meatloaf Muffins

From Canadian Living's Family Cookbook

Mini Meatloaf Muffins
1 egg
1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
1 1/2 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 green onions, chopped
1 carrot, shredded
3 tbsp chili sauce (or ketchup)

In bowl, beat egg; mix in bread crumbs, basil, mustard, salt and pepper.  Mix in beef, onions and carrot; form into six balls.  Place meatballs in muffin tins; top with sauce.  Bake in 375 degree oven for 20-25 minutes or until no longer pink inside.

Tasted good, cooked fast.  And a bonus serving of veggies.

19 March 2015

Recipe 25: French Toast Churros

I found this recipe for French Toast Roll-Ups on The Girl Who Ate Everything.  And it was delicious - like fruit filled churros, leave a smile on your face, go back for more, yummy.  Here's the recipe off the website:

  • 8 slices white sandwich bread  *(make sure it is soft, or it will fall apart)
  • softened cream cheese, diced strawberries, or Nutella
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 heaping teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • butter, for greasing the pan

  1. Cut the crust from each slice of bread and flatten it out with a rolling pin.
  2. Place about 1-2 teaspoons of your chosen filling 1 inch from one end of the bread in a strip. Roll the bread up tightly and repeat with the remaining pieces of bread. 
  3. In a shallow bowl whisk the eggs and milk until well combined.
  4. In a separate shallow bowl mix the sugar with the cinnamon.
  5. Heat a skillet set over medium heat and melt a tablespoon of butter.
  6. Dip each bread roll in the egg mixture coating well and then place them in the pan seam side down. Cook in batches until golden brown, turning them to cook and brown on all sides, about 2 minutes per side. Add butter to the pan as needed.
  7. Put cooked rolls immediately from the pan to the cinnamon sugar and roll until completely covered in sugar. You can serve with syrup for dipping but I think they're perfectly good all by themselves.

I followed her "inspired by" link and they had more suggestions for fillings - peanut butter, jelly, dulce de leche, marshmallow fluff, any kind of fruit, preserves.  I made some with jelly and some with bananas.  Yum.  I didn't dredge in cinnamon, just sprinkled, and that was plenty.  

I dipped the crust trimmings into the egg and cooked those up too.  They were like French toast French fries .. toast fries?  Appropriate to go with the "churros" - like carnival food.  Definitely a treat.

*Half way through March and already at 25 new recipes?  I'm well on my way to 100 new recipes in a year!

18 March 2015

Knot Kitty

I know I already did one version of this dress for Project Run & Play, but who says I can't make another?  (If this is too similar, and against the rules, please let me know!)

Since we're spending Easter in Idaho with my brother's family, I figured I would make a matching dress for cousin Kitty.  But we won't be there for another 17 days, and I wanted to show off the dress now.

Kitty's mom requested something besides a maple leaf, so I had some fun changing up the flip side - a floral center panel (on front and back) with a light blue gingham.  I'm pretty proud of myself for creating my own pattern, I'm just hoping it's long enough for the little girl it's intended for, since I forgot to take some seam allowance into consideration (I remembered the hem, I forgot about the top).   

And thank you, little man, for modeling the dress - you were the only one around that fits in size 2.  I promise I will never use these pictures as blackmail.  But you do look adorable!  (Why can't I get such fabulous pictures of my own kid so easily anymore?)

10 March 2015

E is for Easter!

Project Run and Play posted this month's pattern last week - the knot dress on The Sewing Rabbit and I already had my fabric picked out.  The big flowers on the thrift store sheet are perfect for Easter, and with some tweaking, it works fabulously as a knot dress.  As much as my princess loves twirly dresses, I didn't like the idea of a waistline cutting into those flowers, so I figured an a-line would be more suitable for the fabric.  
I used the pattern provided, but skipped the keyhole back, duplicated the front, and then drafted my own a-line pattern onto it.  I absolutely love how it turned out - even better than I imagined it.  
And I just had to do it: I made it 
I didn't want to go to the store, so I searched through my fabric stash, realizing I don't have a lot of large pieces of fabric.  But I did happen to have another sheet.  And I didn't want just plain red, so I had to come up with something to paint on it.  So, much like Cupcake's Halloween skirt, I have created one outfit for two holidays: Easter and Canada Day!  
At two and a half my daughter is crazy full of energy.  She chased rabbits, climbed stairs, colored with chalk, danced with the broom and ran all over, and somehow I managed to get a handful of decent pictures.  After going through the pictures I realized with her hair down we lost the adorableness of the knots!  So I put her hair up and we went outside again.
 The photo shoot lasted about five minutes (which is fine because it was getting cool outside) and ended promptly when she ran and slipped in the puddle in the grass, landing on her bum.  
So which side do you like?  Easter floral or Canada leaf?

05 March 2015

Recipe 22: Lemon "Cuppins"

I found this recipe in an old book of Aaron's grandmother's - one of those community collections of recipes.  All things lemon sounds fabulous right now, so I thought I'd give it a try.

Lemon Buns
Cream together:
  1 cup sugar
  1/2 cup butter
  2 eggs
  1 cup milk
  rind of 1 lemon
Sift together:
  2 tsp baking powder
  2 cups flour
Add dry ingredients to wet and stir.
Bake in bun tins 25 minutes at 350 degrees.

The recipe called them buns, so I was picturing bread buns, but they are more like a cross between a muffin and a cupcake - very light and moist, with a nice lemon flavor.  I did swap out half the milk for some lemon yogurt, so that may have helped.

Because the directions were vague, I put half the batter in a lined muffin tin, and half in a sprayed one - they got a nice crust in the sprayed pan, which was nice when they were warm, but next time I'll just use cupcake wrappers (since I have a million of them in all patterns and sizes).

24 February 2015

Recipe 19: Hamburger Strata

This tastes a little like lasagna, and a lot like stuffed french bread (only easier to eat).  If I were paying more attention, I would have doubled this recipe.  Probably a good thing I didn't, since I've been cooking so much I don't need a lot of leftovers.  And my husband is picky, and doesn't like the tomato/cheese combo very often (except on pizza) so the small batch was perfect for me and Cupcake.  If making for a larger group, definitely double and use a 9x12 pan.

1/2 pound ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion

In an ungreased 10x6x2 dish, layer
1 cup plain croutons
1 7-ounce can whole kernel corn (drained)

Spread the beef on top and then layer:
1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 cup plain croutons

In a separate bowl, mix together:
2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
3/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning

Pour the egg mixture over top, cover the dish in foil and bake at 325 for 25-30 minutes, or until a knife inserted comes out clean.  Let stand for five minutes before serving.

22 February 2015

Recipe 17: Puff Shells

From the Company's Coming: Appetizers cookbook.

Puff Shells
Boil 1 cup water and 1/2 cup butter.  Add 1 cup flour and a dash of salt.  Stir vigorously until mix leaves sides of pan and forms a ball.  Remove from heat.  Add 4 eggs, one at a time, beating well after each.  Drop small spoonfuls on ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake at 400 for 15 minutes until puffed, brown and dry.  Transfer to a rack and cool.

Nothing fancy, but they taste like bite size Yorkshire puddings.

Recipe 16: Sunshine Muffins

I've posted orange muffin recipes before: here and here.  But these are completely different from either of those.  A lot more dense, almost the texture of cornbread.  I got this recipe from Aaron's Granny's collection of recipes - I think he got his love of cooking from her.

Sunshine MuffinsPut in the blender:
  1 orange cut into eight pieces (yes, the whole thing)
  1/2 cup orange juice
  1 egg
  1/4 cup oil
Blend until smooth.  Then add:
  1 1/2 cups flour
  3/4 cup sugar
  1 tsp baking powder
  1 tsp baking soda
  1 tsp salt
Add optional ingredients:
  1/2 cup raisins
  1/2 cup chopped nuts
Pour into muffin tins and bake at 375 for 15 minutes.
Makes a dozen large muffins.

And if you've been keeping track of my recipe count, I've skipped a few numbers.  I've done the recipes, just haven't done individual blog posts for them all.  But I've got a list of them all right here!

12 February 2015


Kids Clothes Week - Upcycle
Project Run and Play - Mademoiselle Muscle Tee

I've never really worked with knit before, so this combination of KCW and PRP was the perfect excuse to take the plunge.  I've got a small stash of t-shirts to play with, and was originally planning on doing something with ruffles for KCW, but life happens, and this is all that got done.

Nana got me a zoo pass for the year, so I thought it'd be fun for Cupcake to have a special shirt for when we go.  We went twice in January, and the red pandas were so active and adorable.  Such great inspiration for this shirt!  

I found a mens t-shirt at the thrift store, bought some ballpoint needles, cut apart an old tank top for the ribbing, followed this tutorial (specifically for the sleeves) and used acrylic paint for the face and tail.  

 We had to go to the zoo again to take pictures.  Thankfully it warmed up from the -10 yesterday to +10 today so we could get away without a coat long enough for a few pictures.  Cupcake would occasionally flash open her coat and show random strangers her new shirt - I think that means she likes it!

I know it doesn't exactly follow the PRP pattern, but I live in Canada where there is little need for sleeveless shirts (especially in February) so I added sleeves.  Got to be practical sometimes.  I still was inspired to use knits though - the tutorial made it look so easy!  And really, it wasn't so bad.  

26 January 2015

Recipes 9 and 10: Pork and Potatoes

Recipe 9: Baked Apple Pork Chops
Another recipe from the CrockPot cookbook that I modified.  Place your pork chops in the bottom of a pan.  Chop up a couple of apples and put them on top.  Sprinkle with a little cinnamon and a few tablespoons of brown sugar.  Cover, and bake at 375 for 30-40 minutes.  

They were quick and easy to make, but they were a bit bland.  We've got a smoked applewood spice blend that we'll put on the pork next time, along with the apples.  

Recipe 10: Cauliflower Scalloped Potatoes
This was something I made up, with inspiration from this post.  I put layers of potatoes, ham, broccoli, pureed cauliflower and grated cheese, sprinkled with garlic salt.  Bake, covered, at 400 degrees for at least an hour.  

I like scalloped potatoes, and have yet to perfect them.  This came closer: the flavors were good (Aaron didn't even mind the cauliflower sauce!), but I always have the problem of undercooked potatoes.  The stuff on top and around the edges was done, but the middle was still a little crunchy.  Must remember to use a bigger pan, so the layers aren't as thick, and to give myself enough time to let it bake - very minimum an hour, usually more.