Monday, September 28, 2009

Pom is da Bomb

The wonderful folks over at Pom sent me a case of Pom juice. I have seen that many other bloggers have received boxes of it also. My hubby keeps asking what I am going to do with it before it goes south, so today I made a turkey breast in the slow cooker and topped it with a mixture of cranberry sauce, Pom pomegranate juice and brown sugar. I washed and dried the turkey breast, seasoned it with poultry seasoning, sprinkled some salt on the inside cavity, then poured the sauce over it and let it go for about 10 hours. The pictures don't do it justice. It was tender, with a hint of tart juice and berries, and a little sweet from the brown sugar. I made scalloped potatoes (sorry, from a box) to go with it. There is enough meat for us to make two meals for the three of us, so I'm thinking some turkey roll ups for tomorrow.

This darn cat will not pose for me! But here is Tofu. We just got her declawed and spayed and all her shots. Free cat cost me $300! And she is naughty. Chasing her off counters and out of cupboards. Maybe it is just kitten stuff, but our old cat was much more mellow, but he was a year old when we adopted him. Feels like I have a baby in the house again! Time to take the brownies out of the oven (again, a box mix) and go in for overtime. I'm looking forward to this weekend as we are camping for the last time of the year and having all my cousins to the lake for a reunion. Watch out Lake Byllsbye, here we come!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

I left the Flashdance clothes at home....

and wore more appropriate clothing to my high school reunion. It was a fun night and I was happy to see some people I haven't seen since graduation night. There were several I had hoped to see, but didn't come. I went to a large school in the Twin Cities-we had about 450 in our class. I know that is small by some schools these days, but my kids were in classes of 36 and 52. Above with me is : Me, Lori and Kim. I have known Lori since we were 5 years old. We went to school together for every year except 9th grade. I have know Kim since 7th grade. It is sad that we don't see each other very much, but we hope to rectify that. In our defense, we were (are) all raising kids and Lori lives 35 miles north of the Cities and I live 35 miles south of the Cities, so there is travelling to be done. My BFF Liz wasn't able to make it, but her and Kim live really close to each other. It is easiest to meet in the Cities and we hope to do it soon. And as odd as it seems, but maybe it isn't so odd, so many people haven't changed, good or bad. I had fun, I drank little since I had that 35 mile drive, but also nice to be able to remember the night. I know of at least 7 that won't be!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Who else needs 40 hours in a day?

I have the best intentions. I keep buying mags promising simple meals, I keep tagging cookbooks with recipes to throw in the crock pot, I keep buying ingredients with great intentions. And the days escape me. And I'm exhausted. These allergies are getting the best of me and I have absolutely no ambition nor any gumption. I keep praying for a hard freeze just so I can get my mojo back! I am working almost every day this week with a cleaning project they have going on. The big thing this week is my high school reunion. 25 years. My gravy, how did this happen? Oh wait, because I'm old, that is how! My high school BFF forgot the date and scheduled a college visit for her son. Panic!! Some wonderful girls from high school that I reconnected with on Facebook and I are meeting at a hotel for a little pre-party party. Hmmm, reminds me of high school. We partied at hotels a lot. Don't tell my folks.

So this week is shot. I really need to get back on the proverbial horse and pull out some pans and food and just do it.

Now I need to go pluck all the greys from my hair, find something black to make me look thinner and get some hemorrhoid cream to make my eyes look non-crowed foot (footed?)

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Bacon Cheeseburger Meatballs

Last January (or February), Cathy over at Noble Pig ran a contest for Superbowl party food. I love bacon cheeseburgers, so I came up with a recipe to try. My kids liked it, but they were a little dry. Drama Queen has been begging for them again so I decided to make some to take to my friend's house for our monthly movie night. I made some changes, including the cheese. I was thinking of using a big ball of mozzarella and cutting hunks off of it, but then I saw Ciliegine cheese in the deli. It is small balls of mozzarella, about the size of cherry tomatoes. Then I turned on Food Network and saw Big Daddy's house-and he was making the same thing! Great minds think alike, but it honestly freaked me out a bit! I didn't see the whole episode so I'm not sure what he put in the meatballs, but they looked good with the spaghetti at the end of the show.

Bacon Cheeseburger Meatballs

3 pounds ground beef
3 slices of bacon, cut in half lengthwise, then into small pieces
2 eggs
1/4 cup ketchup
2 TBSP Dijon mustard
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp grill seasoning-I used a blend from Penzey's, but grill seasoning would come close
1 container of Ciliegine

Break up ground beef in a bowl. Sprinkle with bacon pieces. In small bowl, combine ketchup, and Dijon mustard. Pour over meat mixture and gently squeeze the ingredients together so you don't overwork your meat. Sprinkle seasonings over, and squeeze another couple times. Take a palmful of meat and flatten out, place a mozzarella ball in the center and wrap the meat around cheese. I got 20 meatballs out of my three pounds of meat. They are big, maybe the size of a lime. Line two cookie sheets with foil, then top with a rack. I used two cooling racks as they fit the pans best. Bake at 375 degrees F for 35 to 38 minutes.

I put some away plain for my daughter, but the rest went into a crock pot with some spaghetti sauce and just warmed them together. You could serve with spaghetti or pile in a hoagie bun for a meatball sandwich. Smother them with sauce, onions and peppers and a little cheese on top, and pop in the oven for a few minutes to melt cheese and warm all the ingredients.
Dude seemed to like them too!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Grandma Oney's Chocolate Zucchini Cake

It was a busy week here. It was our long week at work and the big festival/party was in town this weekend. Northfield is famous for being the town that stopped the Jesse James' gang. There was a shoot out at the bank in downtown Northfield with a local hero getting killed and the loss of gang members. After this raid, the gang went into hiding and is said to not have robbed again, or at least not as a gang. It is a HUGE celebration in town with food, art fairs, games, rides, re-enactments of the raid and of course, a parade. We had to miss it as it fell on our weekend to work-again. We did stop down on Thursday for Townie night (even though we aren't townies) and had some junk food. Oh, the pulled pork sandwiches-we wait for them every year! And who doesn't love shaved ice?

I was able to bake some treats, but looking at my photos, I only have pictures of this cake. I made 3 pans of bars and nary a picture. Hmmmm. Now, I called this Grandma Oney's cake. My Grandma was actually Grandma G. She had 3 boys, all who are married and all have kids. So now there was Grandma G and great-Grandma G. To make things easy, my cousin's kids just called her Grandma Oney, which is a play on her name, Iona. My kids called her Grandma G only because my Dad was married twice and to keep things simple they refer to their grandmas on my side as Grandma Karen and Grandma Sue. Long story to get through just for a recipe, eh?

Grandma Oney's Chocolate Zucchini Cake
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup oil
1-1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2-1/2 cups flour
1/4 cup cocoa
1 tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups grated zucchini
3/4 cup chopped nuts
3/4 cup chocolate chips

Cream butter, oil and sugar. Add eggs and beat well. Add dry ingredients that have been sifted together, add buttermilk alternately. Add vanilla and zucchini. Put in greased 9x13 pan. Top with nuts and chocolate chips. Bake at 325 degrees F for 45 to 50 minutes.

Super easy and was gone in a flash at work. I was told to use all the extra zucchini I had to make some more to bring in. Guess I need to flag that page in the cookbook!

I visited Penzey's today and loaded up on some spices. It is cooling down a little and this is when I love to cook. If I could live somewhere that was 70 during the day and 50 at night, I would be the most happy of campers. And I know I have said that before, and will probably say it more in the future. Just need to find that little spot of heaven!
Posted by Picasa

Monday, September 7, 2009

Sweet 16

My baby, Drama Queen, turned 16 today. It just doesn't seem possible. She had a small party on Saturday for a few friends and then asked if the three of us could go to Olive Garden for dinner tonight. I loaded my pictures backwards, so we start with dessert!

Zeppoli (holy cow, it was so good!)

DQ had spaghetti

The Dude had Pork Milanese

I had the Mixed Grill with Tuscan potatoes

Pink roses for her birthday

The birthday girl

Finally talked, well, texted with, the college kid tonight. She got home from her orientation trip and had a lot of fun. She was, however, quite happy to be sleeping inside a building in a real bed. And she gobbled down some Spaghettios and hot dogs when she got there. That's my girl!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

I survived...

leaving her at school. I was totally fine till I hugged her goodbye. The Dude of course made fun of me. "It's not like you won't ever see her again". Whatever-you didn't give birth to her! I see on Facebook that she went and hung out with the people she is doing her Orientation trip with last night and had some great 'convos' with them. Let's hope they don't get eaten by bears while camping out under the stars for 4 days, circling trees and singing Kumbiya, living on bagels and pitas and no meat. I wonder if she realizes she will need to relieve herself in the woods? I'm sure it will be a fantastic time. I hope she remembers her sunscreen and bug spray. Maybe I should call her......