Saturday, January 26, 2013

Breakfast for Dinner

The weather has been very cold this week and it's definitely been the perfect week for comfort food.  Tonight we took it one step futher . . . we had breakfast for dinner.  Who doesn't like that?

The menu:    Scrambled eggs
                    Fried potatoes and onions
                    Country gravy

It was definitely a home run dinner.  The only thing missing was everyone dressed in their PJs. 

Last weekend my hubby asked me, "How do you make your eggs so fluffy?"   I guess the grandkids don't like his eggs so much.  :)

My secret to fluffy eggs is to add about 1/2 cup of milk to about 12 eggs. Whip with a whisk until somewhat frothy.  Pour into a pan with melted butter over medium heat.  Keep your egg mixture moving so it does not  brown.  Your eggs will be fluffy and yellow - not skinny and brown. 

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Enchiladas - Not Out of the Box

Every once in a while I feel the need to totally revamp a recipe either to use specific items I have in the pantry or just because I feel like changing things up.  Last night we had Enchiladas, but they weren't the boxed El Paso dinner.  I used my Quesadilla Casserole filling and rolled it in whole grain tortillas and topped it with Enchilada sauce.  Hands down, these were the best Enchiladas I've ever eaten.

1 lb ground beef
1 tsp seasoning salt
1 onion, diced
1 - 15 oz can black beans (drained and rinsed)
1 - 15 oz sweet kernel corn (drained)
1 - 15 oz tomato sauce
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp oregano
1 - 15 oz Old El Paso Enchilada Sauce
1 cup shredded Cheddar or Cheddar Jack cheese
8 - 10 whole grain tortillas

Brown the ground beef with the diced onion.  Drain.

Combine beef, black beans, corn, and tomato sauce.  Add all spices and heat until bubbling.
Pour 1/2 cup mixture onto a tortilla and roll.  Place the rolled tortilla into a 9 x 9" baking dish
Repeat until all tortillas are used.
Pour the enchilada sauce over the rolled tortilas.
Sprinkle cheese over the top.
Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.

Serve topped with sour cream.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

McCormick Gourmet - Bourbon Spiced Pork

I discovered a new product in the grocery store last week.  It's a spice/seasoning packet found in the gravy/sauces/seasoning section of the store, and it's called McCormick Gourmet.  There were several flavors, but I chose to try the Bourbon Spiced Pork.  There is a recipe on the back of the package, "Bourbon Spiced Pork with Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Apples", and it was just delicious.

1 pkg McCormick Gourmet Bourbon Spiced Pork seasoning mix
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 pork tenderloins (about 1 lb each)
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup orange juice
3 medium sweet potatoes (about 1 1/2 lbs) peeled and cut into 1" cubes
2 apples, cored, unpeeled and halved

Combine seasoning mix and brown sugar.  Reserve 1/4 cup aside.  Brush pork with oil.  Rub with remaining seasoning mixture.  Place pork in the center of a large shallow baking pan.

Mix reserved seasoning mixture and orange juice in large bowl.  Add sweet potatoes and apples; toss to coat well.  Arrange sweet potatoes and apples, cut sides down, around pork.

Roast in preheated 425 degree oven for 30 - 35 minutes or until pork is done and sweet potatoes are tender.  Toss sweet potatoes and apples with pan juices; serve with sliced pork.

Because I decided on a whim to try the new seasoning packet tonight, I had to work with the ingredients I had on hand.  I replaced the pork tenderloins with butterfly pork chops and the sweet potatoes with butternut squash.  Dinner was absolutely delicious!  You have to try this one.

Thanks, McCormick for a fantastic new product!  I will definitely be trying the others.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Resolutions for the New Year

Call me a rebel, but I don't usually make a list of resolutions before New Year's Eve.  My list of resolutions usually develops as the new year progresses.

2012 ended with a few unexpected things popping up:
           1.  My car needs new tires - front only
           2.  The crack in my windshield ran all the way across the driver's side
                 right in my line of vision
           3.  The ice maker in the freezer quit making ice
           4.  The ceramic cook top on my stove cracked

Each of these was discovered literally within 24 hours of the new year beginning.  I don't know if this is simply a crappy ending to 2012, or a tough beginning to 2013.  I choose to believe it's a crappy ending.  2013 should be a fantastic year!

My first resolution is to get my financial house in order.  It won't be easy, but it can be done.  With two kids in college and a retired hubby who watches our 3 grandchildren everyday, finances can be challenging.

My second resolution is to make better use of the limited space we have in our little house.  We have a portion of our space that is not utilized to its fullest potential.  My hubby is a pack rat who has issues with parting with anything.  Not me - if it's not being used, it needs to go!

My third resolution is to laugh more.  I believe humor helps even out any situation.  I find myself totally stressed out quite often and it affects my ability to concentrate and even participate in some daily activities.  My mood is just awful and I'm certainly no fun to be around when I'm stressed out.  All of that should change in the next few months - stress levels should reduce immensely - and laughter will come more naturally again.

We can all find areas in which our lives can use improvement.  The choice is ours to do something about it.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

HGTV Dream Home

I have been religiously entering the sweepstakes to win the HGTV Dream Home on Kiawah Island, SC.  The home is absolutely gorgeous and who wouldn't want to live there?  Today, I realized what I'd be giving up if I win that $1.5 million home.  I'd have to give up MY KITCHEN.  I have the perfect cook's kitchen.  We've lived in our home since 1984 and it has had multiple renovations - mostly involving the kitchen and dining room.  It's my perfect space.  Sure,  I would like to have a new home, but it would mean giving up the space I've spent years perfecting.  Not so sure how I really feel about that.