Everyday Mom's Meals: August 2011

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

1700 WINNER

Thank you to everyone who entered my 1700 FAN GIVEAWAY. I'm happy to announce Everyday Mom's Meals now has 2,000 fans on Facebook!! My heart is overflowing w/ love and gratitude and I'm so thankful for each of you! Look for another give away, with another cute prize package, coming VERY soon!

And now w/o further adieu.....The winner is:


I've emailed you and you have until Friday at 12pm EST to respond before another winner is chosen. 

Congratulations!!!


Summer Winding Down

I know, those words make me want to cry too. I can't believe this weekend we'll be celebrating Labor Day, the official gateway to what I call "boo hoo hoo time" also known as the end of summer. Schools are back in session, nights are cooler, there is a chill in the air each morning. This means fall is on it's way. And while I don't mind autumn-- the food, the smells, the fall festivals--I know it's only a matter of time before that dreaded "s" word makes another annual appearance. Shhhh....don't say it! It might hear you! But luckily here in Indiana we are usually blessed w/ some warm fall days, those Indian Summer ones if you will. So I refuse to end the summer posts quite yet. In my house growing up, this was a summer staple. My dad absolutely loved this salad and when he was growing cucumbers in his garden, mom would make it at least once per week. I love the marinated cucumbers I make, so refreshing and light, but this one holds a special place in my heart too. A little different texture, the addition of the onion and of course, the cream (mom actually made it w/ Miracle Whip and Vinegar), but it is still nice for a hot night, and perfect w/ a meal brought in fresh from the open flame of a grill. Autumn and all of its wonders may be right around the corner, but I'm hanging on to summer w/ all of my might for just a tad longer!

Creamy Cucumber Salad


2 large cucumbers, peeled and thinly sliced
1 small white onion, thinly sliced
2 tsp salt

Dressing:
1/2 c. heavy cream
2 TBS white vinegar
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper

Combine cucumbers, onion and salt. Let stand at room temperature for 1 hour. (I sit mine in a colander in the sink b/c it tends to draw out moisture) Drain well. Combine dressing ingredients. Place cucumber mixture in a large bowl and pour dressing over. Mix well to combine. Chill several hours before serving.


Shared on Lady Behind the Curtain Aug. 31, 2011
Shared on This Chick Cooks Aug. 31, 2011
Shared on Lark's Country Heart Aug. 31, 2011
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Sept. 1, 2011
Shared on Around My Family Table Sept. 1, 2011
Shared on Six Sisters Stuff Sept. 3, 2011

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

TRIVIA WINNER

The answer to TUESDAY TRIVIA was Madagascar. Thank you all who participated! The winner is: 
#4 Angela

I emailed you, and you have until Wednesday August 31 at 9pm EST to email me back at everydaymomsmeals@gmail.com to claim your prize!

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!


Almost Too Pretty

So I'm flipping through the pages of a very old issue of Everyday with Rachael Ray- seriously, I think it was from 2007- and I come upon a picture of a dessert that was so pretty, so appetizing I broke my cardinal rule about tearing pages out of magazines. (Yes, I'm one of those people who don't like my magazines tore up, or the pages of my books dog-earred). But it was late at night, I was comfy in bed, and I did not want to make the oh SO long walk to the kitchen for a recipe card. Okay, it's only down the hall, but I was tired enough it seemed like a 10K walk! It's just one of those desserts that when you serve it up it's almost too pretty to eat....almost. Let's face it, dessert is for eating, not for looking and that is what photos are for! I can always come back to this post and see how pretty it was before we devoured it. Pineapple, strawberries, vanilla---what more can I say? What more do I have to say? Nothing, right. You are as excited as I was. This recipe comes from Dole, aka the pineapple people. If they say it's good, then it has to be! As far as summer desserts go, I think this would be a show stopper at the next barbecue, pool party or family reunion (Labor Day is coming.....hint hint). It's one of those that when you take it out of the fridge little birdies sing and butterflies fly around (That's for you Brandie) So if you want to impress your family, and make them think you slaved away all day on something so beautiful (Really?? 10 minutes, tops) try this out and remember to take a picture so when it's gone in the blink of an eye, you can remember just how pretty it was!

Angel Lush Cake w/ Pineapple


1 20 oz can crushed pineapple, undrained
1 small box instant vanilla pudding (the 4 serving size)
1 c. Cool Whip
1 10 oz  Round Angel Food Cake (pre bought or made)
Fresh berries of your choice (I used strawberries)

Slice cake horizontally into 3 pieces, so you have 3 circles. In a large bowl, combine pineapple and pudding. Gently fold in Cool Whip. Let stand 5 minutes. Place bottom layer of cake on a platter.  Spread 1 1/3 c. on pudding mix on 1st cake layer. Top w/ middle layer. Spread 1 c. of pudding mix on, and then add top layer of cake. Spread remaining pudding mix on top and add fresh berries. Refrigerate to set, and any leftovers.

~Come see me on Formula Mom for Tasty Tuesday~


Shared on Chef in Training Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Sweetology Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Mandy's Recipe Box Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Celebrating Family Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Naptime Creations Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Hugs & Cookies Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Lady Behind the Curtain Aug. 31, 2011
Shared on This Chick Cooks Aug. 31, 2011
Shared on Lark's Country Heart Aug. 31, 2011
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Sept. 1, 2011
Shared on Around My Family Table Sept. 1, 2011
Shared on Something Swanky Sept. 1, 2011
Shared on Sweet as Sugar Cookies Sept. 3, 2011
Shared on Six Sisters Stuff Sept. 3, 2011
Shared on Everyday Sisters Sept. 4, 2011
Shared on Gooseberry Patch Sept. 7, 2011

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TUESDAY TRIVIA #2

Thanks to everyone who participated last week! I am very happy to see those of you who enjoyed this so much on Facebook have followed over here very nicely!


Rules:

1. To enter, COMMENT  here w/ your answer and email address. If you comment anonymously, please leave your name also.

2. Winner chosen by Random.org from all correct answers.

3. Contest Ends tonight @ 9 pm EST.

4. Winner will be announced here and a link on Facebook. If he/she doesn't respond in given time, a new winner will be chosen.

5. Winner will receive this cute Cupcake 2-Year (2012-2013) Planner (Stay organized and think of me!!)



Today's Question:
Which country produces most of the world's vanilla? 

Good Luck!!


Staring in September, TUESDAY TRIVIA will only be the LAST Tuesday of the month :)

Monday, August 29, 2011

Ask And You Shall Receive

It's ironic sometimes how Alex's timing is. I don't know if other parents find their children doing this, but sometimes it's as if the little guy knows exactly what I'm thinking. Maybe it's simply b/c Mommy and Monkey are so much a like and spend a lot of time together, but whatever the reason, I don't mind. It makes me smile. The latest occurrence of this happened when I was sitting at my computer coming up w/ the next Menu Plan for our family, and this blog. I'm looking through recipes trying to find inspiration and stumble upon one for easy  sloppy joe sauce. I will admit, this is something I usually buy in the can for convenience factor, but I have made them from "scratch" before. But it was one of those recipes that went like this: "Pour some in. Add some of this. A touch of that. Shake a little of this". So I wanted something a little more concrete to share w/ you. I had just typed "sloppy" when Alex looks up from the couch, knowing what I was doing, and says "Mommy, can we have sloppy joes next week". Seriously. I'm not kidding. I laughed out loud and told him "You must have been reading Mommy's mind". So I continued to read on AllRecipes.com and found one that had the exact same things in it that I have used, but in measured amounts. This couldn't be easier, and it can actually be made in the morning, stored in the fridge and added to the burger at meal time. What can I say? When my pride and joy asks, Mommy just has to make it happen :)

Easy Sloppy Joes
3/4 c. ketchup
1/2 tsp garlic powder
3 tsp brown sugar
1 tsp prepared yellow mustard
Salt and pepper to taste
1 lb ground beef
1/4 c. chopped onion
Buns

Mix first 5 ingredients together. Set aside, or refrigerate until use. In a medium skillet, brown ground beef and onion until no longer pink. Drain. Return to skillet and add sauce mixture. Reduce heat and simmer 20-30 minutes. Serve on buns, toast or bread.




Shared on Jam Hands Aug. 29, 2011
Shared on Chef in Training Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Mandy's Recipe Box Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Celebrating Family Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Naptime Creations Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Hugs & Cookies Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Lady Behind the Curtain Aug. 31, 2011
Shared on This Chick Cooks Aug. 31, 2011
Shared on Lark's Country Heart Aug. 31, 2011
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Sept. 1, 2011
Shared on Amee's Savory Dish Sept. 2,  2011
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Sunday, August 28, 2011

Church Supper # 7

I want to begin this Church Supper w/ a huge thank you! To each person who emailed me, texted me, posted on Facebook, posted here on the blog--for each kind word, encouraging thought, prayer and cyber hug, I will forever be grateful. Last week was a stressful one for our family, and I am happy to report that the Stem Cell Transplant went off w/o a hitch and Adam's donation to his brother Matt was more than enough. So much so, the hospital was able to freeze some for future use if need be! I am so incredibly proud of the gift Adam gave his brother, and I'm so honored to be the wife of a man so loyal, loving, giving and selfless. We realize this is the first step along the journey of Matt's leukemia being gone forever, but we also know it's his best chance and we are so happy Adam could help him in this way. Plus Alex had a GREAT week of 1st grade. He's making new friends and settling back into a routine. So, again, thank you all for keeping the Marshalls on your prayer list last week b/c many of those prayers were answered. The power of prayer is tangible and God's power is truly awe inspiring. He is in control, and to Him be the Glory! Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful food w/ me. Share your favorite recipes from the week, or past ones you know are hits!  Please remember I wish you God's blessings all week long!


Rules:

1. Feel free to link up as many recipes as you like!

2. Link up to your ACTUAL recipe, not just your homepage. Much easier to find you that way!

3. Include a link back to EMM on your recipe post.

4. Leave comments so I can visit you back!

5. Visit at least 2 other sites and tell them you joined them at my Church Supper!

6. Follow my blog here and on Facebook :)







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Saturday, August 27, 2011

Blogger Conversations

Sometimes I wonder what we all did before "www" was part of our everyday language. Yes, we had telephones and *gasp*, letter writing, but how did we manage w/o instant responses to questions, conversations that included loved ones and strangers alike, sometimes from across the world, and almost every move we make able to be shared in the blink of an eye???!!! I realize the cyber world isn't always a good thing, but for me it's become a way to connect w/ people about food in a way I could have never imagined, so I'll take the good w/ the bad and be thankful for the opportunity. The other day we (as in myself, my fellow blogger Brandie @ The Country Cook and fans) were swapping Olive Garden recipes on Facebook. We were relishing in the fact that we could now make their wonderful salad at home, and thanks to a recipe Brandie had come up w/ their bread sticks too. During this yummy talk, a fan asked me if I could find a recipe for their Stuffed Mushrooms. Not being one to disappoint, I immediately started scouring the Internet for a copy cat version. I found this one at Food.com, changed just a couple of things to fit my pantry and our likes (the notes will be in the recipe) and was happy to oblige. I've never had the original, so as I told the fan, this is a "blind taste test" since I have nothing to compare it too, but we love a good stuffed mushroom in this house. Fungi are our friends :) All of this b/c of a conversation that started about salad and bread sticks! Our ovens and stoves unite us all!

Stuffed Mushrooms (Copy Cat Version from Olive Garden)

8-12 fresh mushrooms
1 6 oz. can clams, drained and finely minced-- save 1/4 c. juice
1 green onion, finely minced
1 egg, beaten
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1/8 tsp garlic salt
1/2 c. Italian bread crumbs
1 tsp oregano leaves
1 TBS butter, melted and cooled
2 TBS finely grated Parmesan cheese
1 TBS finely grated Romano cheese ( I used 3 TBS Parmesan total to substitute for Romano)
1/4 c. plus 2 TBS finely grated mozzarella cheese
1/4 c. melted butter
fresh parsley for garnish ( I omitted this)

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly oil a small baking dish. Gently wash and stem the mushrooms. Pat dry. Combine clams, onions, garlic salt, minced garlic, butter and oregano in a bowl and mix well. Add bread crumbs, egg, clam juice and mix well. Add Parmesan, Romano and 2 TBS mozzarella to stuffing and mix well. Place 1 1/2 tsp of stuffing inside each mushroom and slightly mound. (This should stuff 8-12 depending on size.) Place in baking dish and pour 1/4 c. melted butter over top. Cover and bake 35-40 minutes. Remove cover, sprinkle 1/4 c. mozzarella on top and put back in oven until cheese slightly melted. Garnish w/ parsley, if using and serve hot.


Shared on Make Ahead Meals Aug. 28, 2011
Shared on Home Savvy A to Z Aug. 28, 2011
Shared on Jam Hands Aug. 29, 2011
Shared on Sweetology Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Mandy's Recipe Box Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Naptime Creations Aug. 30, 2011
Shared on Hugs & Cookies Aug. 30, 2011

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Menu Plan Aug 28- Sept 2

* New Recipe
(Where To Find On Blog)

Sunday
Coney Dogs (January 10, 2011)
Pea Salad (April 30, 2011)
French Fries

Monday
Honey Mustard Chicken*
Wild Rice
Corn on the Cob


Tuesday
Greek Salads (September 27, 2010)
Rolls

Wednesday
Stuffed Shells*
Garlic Bread

Thursday
The boys will have pizza b/c it's a Taekwondo night. I'm going to my favorite Gyro place w/ my mom :)

Friday
Alex is going to Maa Ma and Pa Pa's for supper
Adam and I will have leftovers.


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Friday, August 26, 2011

Not By Bread Alone

We are big bread eaters in this house. And when I say bread I am talking about bread, rolls, biscuits, bagels, muffins, toast, etc. We are the people that go to the restaurant, sit down and by the time our meals come are half way full b/c we've eaten so much bread/rolls. When I was growing up, most evenings there was bread and butter offered w/ the meal, especially if Dad had anything to say about it. And I have to admit that tradition has continued on Tulip Tree Rd. We think of it as extra flatware: Knife, fork, spoon and bread :) The other day I was on my cousin's blog Recipe Roundup, and she had made bread sticks for her family. Well, a lot of times her and I are on the same wave length b/c I was meal planning trying to decide what to have w/ a salad supper. The minute I saw the ones she made I knew not only did I want to make some bread sticks, but I knew exactly the kind I wanted. Pizza Hut's. I think "the Hut" has some of the bread sticks around and was super excited when I found the copycat recipe at Food.com. They are actually easier to make than I ever thought they would be (I'm sure Pizza Hut doesn't want me telling you this) and are perfect w/ my Olive Garden Salad. Wow, I guess in one simple meal, we made the rounds at some great Italian restaurants. Carb lovers anonymous here we come :)

Pizza Hut Bread Sticks


1 10 oz. can refrigerated pizza dough ( I used Pilsbury)
1 TBS Parmesan cheese
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. garlic salt
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. oregano
1/4 c. olive oil

Preheat oven to 450. Unroll dough onto cutting board. Cut into 16 even strips. Place each on a lightly greased cookie sheet. Bake 6-8 minutes until golden brown. While baking, mix dry ingredients. Remove bread sticks, brush w/ oil, and quickly sprinkle w/ dry mix.

*NOTE* I baked mine the entire 8 minutes and they were a little "crispier" than Pizza Hut's. They still had great flavor, but next time I will take them out after 6.


Shared on Mangoes & Chutney Aug. 26, 2011
Shared on Make Ahead Meals Aug. 28, 2011
Shared on Home Savvy A to Z Aug. 28, 2011
Shared on Faith and Family Aug. 28, 2011
Shared on Jam Hands Aug. 29, 2011


Featured On

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Thursday, August 25, 2011

1700 Facebook Fan GIVEAWAY

Yep, that's right your Everyday Mom is well on my way to having 2,000 fans on Facebook. Crazy!!!! And oh so wonderful. I've said it before and I will again, I could never have gotten this far, w/o each and every one of you who take the time out of your busy day to log onto EMM and share a little piece of my world! I appreciate every "click" of your mouse and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. And to celebrate, I'm giving away a little something to one lucky fan. The rules are simple, entering is easy and who doesn't like free treats!!

Rules:

1. Must "like" my Facebook Fan Page. (Click that, it should take you right on over)

2. Comment here telling me you did so. If you are already a fan, just comment.

3. In your comment leave your EMAIL address so I can contact the winner. If you leave an anonymous comment, please include your NAME too.

4. Winner will be chosen by Random.org and announced here, w/ a link posted to Facebook.

5. Contest ends Thursday September 1, 2011 at Midnight EST


The Prize
Paula Deen Gift Set: A Tin Seasoning Shaker, Matching Recipe Card w/ Recipe for Paula's House Seasoning and Cupcake/Muffin Papers. 

These prizes were bought by Everyday Mom's Meals and Ms. Deen has no connection to this giveaway.


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Mexican Night

 These are becoming more and more frequent at our house. Why? Because my son has discovered his love for chips and salsa. Lol. Well, okay, for more than just that. But it used to be if we went to a Mexican restaurant Alex was happy to eat plain chips; and if I had them here at home, I bought queso dip for him b/c he didn't want the salsa. That all changed this past Mother's Day when my boys took me out for some enchiladas and lo and behold, Alex decided he wanted to try just a little salsa on his chip. It was love at first bite. Mmmmm, Mommy this is good stuff. I'm pretty sure that poor waiter brought us 10 bowls of chips and 5 bowls of salsa that night, but even he was getting a kick out of just how excited Alex was about this "new" food. Ever since then, he is constantly asking to go to more Mexican restaurants and/or asking if we can have something at home, w/ chips and salsa as the side dish. I have to admit, Mommy doesn't mind. It makes for pretty easy preparation. Open a bag of chips, take the lid off the jar and instant gratification. Instead of another taco, enchilada or burrito, this time I decided on quesadillas. I saw someone on a food forum talking about how she likes to make mushroom ones on Monday nights for her family's "meatless Mondays". Although that wasn't my reasoning, ironically it was on a Monday night, but I just thought mushrooms sounded good, and a nice change. So, I guess we'll call it Mexican Mushroom Monday!!!

Mushroom Quesadillas

1 package soft flour tortillas
1 lb. mushrooms, sliced
8 oz pizza cheese (mine was a mix of mozzarella, provolone and romano)
Cooking Spray
2 TBS olive oil
Salt and Pepper

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add mushrooms and brown for about 4 minutes. Season w/ salt and pepper. Cook additional 3 minutes. Drain and set aside. Wipe out skillet. Spray w/ cooking spray. On medium heat, place one tortilla. Add about 1/4 c. cheese, 2 TBS mushroom mixture and another 1/4 c. cheese. Place another tortilla on top. Heat until cheese is melted and bottom side is brown. Remove. Respray pan and flip to brown other side. Serve w/ favorite toppings: salsa, guacamole, sour cream, limes. etc.


Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Aug. 25, 2011
Shared on It's A Keeper Aug. 25, 2011
Shared on Around My Family Table Aug. 25, 2011
Shared on Mangoes & Chutney Aug. 26, 2011
Shared on Make Ahead Meals Aug. 28, 2011
Shared on Home Savvy A to Z Aug. 28, 2011
Shared on Faith and Family Aug. 28, 2011
Shared on Jam Hands Aug. 29, 2011

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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

You Learn Something New Every Day

A few weeks ago I was doing my daily "flip" through my favorite blogs--and I can tell you there are a lot of them, so it takes a while! All of sudden I stumbled upon this picture that literally made me breathe in and say "oooohhhh and ahhhhh" to myself. It was the perfect little bowl of creamy goodness. It looked so simple yet delectable. I continued to read and learned something new, courtesy of Tina at Mommy's Kitchen.  Media Crema. Ever heard of it? Well, I never had until this. Also known as Table Cream. I had no idea I had probably passed this in the baking or international foods aisle of my grocery store a thousand times w/o giving it a second glance. What is it? It's non sweetened condensed milk. And the description does not lie. It's not sweet at all. But w/ a little sugar added...mmmmm. Apparently street vendors in Mexico sell cups of this treat to go-okay I guess I learned 2 new things. I had no idea this little secret was being kept just over our boarder. This is truly the perfect cool down after a spicy Mexican supper! Or when it's just too darn hot to have anything baked! Thanks, Tina for teaching me new wonderful, and most importantly, super yummy things!!

Fresas Con Crema Strawberries and Cream
1 lb strawberries, sliced and sprinkled w/ granulated sugar (this made enough for the 3 of us)
1/3 c. powdered sugar (this was the amount that made it sweet enough for me)
1 (7.6 oz) Nestle Table Cream (Crema Media)
3/4 c. milk
Whipped Cream for garnish

Pour table cream into bowl and whisk in milk and powdered sugar. After strawberries have macerated, split into 3 serving dishes. Pour cream over each and top w/ whipped cream.


Shared on This Chick Cooks Aug. 24, 2011
Shared on Lark's Country Heart Aug. 24, 2011
Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Aug. 24, 2011
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Aug. 25, 2011
Shared on It's A Keeper Aug. 25, 2011
Shared on Something Swanky Aug. 25, 2011
Shared on Around My Family Table Aug. 25, 2011
Shared on Sweet As Sugar Cookies Aug. 27, 2011
Shared on Make Ahead Meals Aug. 28, 2011
Shared on Everyday Sisters Aug. 28, 2011
Shared on Home Savvy A to Z Aug. 28, 2011
Shared on Faith and Family Aug. 28, 2011
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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

TRIVIA WINNER

The correct answer to TUESDAY TRIVIA was Licorice or Anise. I have such smart readers! Thanks to everyone who took the extra minute to log on and answer. This was always a big hit on Facebook, and I appreciate everyone supporting it here too. Congratulations to Deb Wilkie !!!!!

Please email me @ everydaymomsmeals@gmail.com to claim your prize! You have until Wed, Aug 24th 9pm EST to email me.



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Tuesday Trivia

I am starting a new weekly feature here at EMM. Normally this is something I do on Facebook, but b/c of their strict rules about contests and giveaways, I'm trying to comply (mostly w/ a smile) and use my blog instead. I'm hoping it becomes as much of a hit here as it was over there. Fans really seem to enjoy it, and I like playing games :)

RULES:


1. To answer the trivia question, simply leave a COMMENT here (NOT FACEBOOK) w/ your guess.

2. When commenting, please leave your name and email address so I can contact the winner.

3. Winner chosen by Random.org from all correct responses. Will be announced here and a link posted to Facebook.

4. Contest ends: Tonight, Tuesday Aug. 23rd, at 9pm EST.

5. Winner receives 5 Recipe Cards of your choice from the blog. You pick, I write them and mail them to right to your door!


QUESTION: Tarragon has an unique flavor which many describe as "candy" like. But what candy??

Good Luck and Have Fun!!


Family Connections: (Guest Blogger)

In May 2010 when I decided to dive into the deep end of the pool, so to speak, and begin blogging it was b/c of the encouragement and support of my friends and family. "Krista- you are always cooking something wonderful. I would love to read your recipes. You should start a recipe blog". Those were just a few of the countless things I heard over and over. And while there were many on that list of supporters, one at the very top of it was my cousin, and friend, Tricia. Tricia has been my cousin for 30 years, but I have to admit it's only been in the last 7 or 8 years I can say she is one of my dearest friends. Maybe it was b/c she was a little older than me, or b/c we have always lived 300+ miles apart, or maybe it was simply we had to "grow up" before we realized we had SO much in common! She is also a wife and a stay at home mother, loves to cook and we have kind of become two peas in a pod :) I'm so blessed and thankful to have her in my every day life now (Thank you Facebook), and to have her here today to share a recipe w/ you. Oh, and if you haven't figured it out yet, my cousin Tricia, is the same Tricia from Recipe Roundup---another fantastic blog you need to check out, bookmark and go back to daily!


Hello Everyday Mom's Meals Fans! I am so excited and honored that Krista asked me to do a guest post! I know we keep mentioning it but again, for those who are not aware, your Everyday Mom is my cousin! We have many fond memories of times spent together, but I think being in the blogging community together is some of the best times we've had yet!

I am an on-the-go, stay-at-home mom to a very active 3 1/2 year old little boy and wife to my husband and my best friend of  almost 8 years. I raised raised in the country and continue to live in the country- I'm a country girl, what can I say! I enjoy spending time with my family, cooking, reading, crafting and hiking. 


The recipe I am sharing with you today is one that I recently made as a light lunch to share with family that was visitng. It was a hit with them and I hope you enjoy it also!
Bruschetta Salad
1 Can Diced Tomatoes with Basil, Garlic & Oregano
 1/2-1 C Italian Dressing
1/2 C Slivered Onion
1/2 C Shaved Parmesan Cheese
4-5 Bocconcni, diced
1/2 # day old bread, toasted
2 Tbsp butter, margarine

Melt butter in skillet. Cut bread into cubes and toast 3-5 mintues. Drain  tomatoes and pour into a large bowl. Cut bocconcni into quarters and add to the tomatoes. Add onion and bread cubes and toss. Sprinkle with shaved parmesan cheese. Serve immediately




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Monday, August 22, 2011

First Grade Here We Come.....(Guest Blogger)

Today I am so lucky and excited to have a very special guest. While most of you have never met him, you've heard me talk about him many times. In honor of his FIRST day of FIRST grade, he is going to share a special recipe w/ you. (And yes, I helped word it a little, typed it up and helped w/ the recipe, but in my eyes, this is ALL him!)

Hi everyone! I'm Alex and I'm not a food blogger, but I'm a major food eater! You might call her your "Everyday Mom", but she is my Mommy every day. I'm excited to be here to share a yummy recipe w/ you. I love fruit. I love fruit salad. I even love the Wiggles song "Fruit Salad". Since this is my first week of 1st grade, this will probably end up in my new Spiderman lunch box (Thanks Maa Ma). But it's also really good for a mid day snack, light dessert, or even a quick breakfast.Hope you like it too.

Lemon Fruit Salad


1 c. sliced strawberries
1 c. blueberries
1 c. sliced black seedless grapes
*These are the fruits we used. Feel free to add your favorites*

Dressing:
6 oz. container lemon yogurt
3/4 TBS honey
3/4 TBS lemon juice

In a medium bowl, combine fruit. In a small bowl, mix together dressing ingredients. Pour over fruit and combine well. Chill before serving.

Mixing the fruit. Mommy cut it up so I didn't have to use a knife!



Mixing the dressing


The finished product. Yummy!
Time to eat
The First Day of School
Shared on Sweetology Aug. 23, 2011
Shared on Nap Time Creations Aug. 23, 2011
Shared on Mandy's Recipe Box Aug. 23, 2011
Shared on Celebrating Family Aug. 23, 2011
Shared on Hugs & Cookies Aug. 24, 2011
Shared on This Chick Cooks Aug. 24, 2011
Shared on Gooseberry Patch Aug. 24, 2011
Shared on Lark's Country Heart Aug. 24, 2011
Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Aug. 24, 2011
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Aug. 25, 2011
Shared on It's A Keeper Aug. 25, 2011
Shared on Something Swanky Aug. 25, 2011
Shared on Around My Family Table Aug. 25, 2011
Shared on Sweet As Sugar Cookies Aug. 27, 2011
Shared on I Can Teach My Child Aug. 27, 2011
Shared on Faith and Family Aug. 28, 2011
Shared on Recipes for my Boys Aug. 31, 2011
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Sunday, August 21, 2011

Church Supper # 6

Well, another week as passed, and as we enter into a new one, I have a couple requests for this Church Supper. It's a big week at our house. Monday Alex goes back to school, 1st grade this year! I can't believe my baby is a little man now. He's very excited to go back, but Mommy isn't so excited. What can I say, I love having him here w/ me. But I am happy for him getting to see his friends and learn and continue to grow into this fantastic little person. Then on Tuesday, our family is entering into our "leg" of a loved one's journey. My brother in law Matt is having a stem cell transplant to battle leukemia and my husband Adam, his older brother, is his donor. So Adam is heading to IU Med Center in Indianapolis Tuesday morning for the retrieval of the stem cells. We are so honored and excited to be able to help Matt in this way, and just pray that everything goes as planned and he can recover very soon. So today as you join this Church Supper, I'm asking you keep my family in your prayers: That Alex has a great first day of school and that the procedure goes well and Adam and Matt both are carried through fine. Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful food w/ me. Share your favorite recipes from the week, or past ones you know are hits!  Please remember I wish you God's blessings all week long!


Rules:

1. Feel free to link up as many recipes as you like!

2. Link up to your ACTUAL recipe, not just your homepage. Much easier to find you that way!

3. Include a link back to EMM on your recipe post.

4. Leave comments so I can visit you back!

5. Visit at least 2 other sites and tell them you joined them at my Church Supper!

6. Follow my blog here and on Facebook :)





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Saturday, August 20, 2011

7 Facts Blogger Game

Well, I'm been tagged, so I can't ignore it right?? My friend and fellow blogger, ....And Then I Ate It has requested me to play along, so sure! Here are my 7....if I tag you.....what are yours?


Most Beautiful Post (I have 2)
I don't profess to be a professional food photographer, nor do I take one picture and call it a day. I usually end up clicking, clicking again, maybe again and then fixing it on the laptop before I post it. But the minute I took these pictures I just knew!



The Most Popular Post
This is one of our favorites so I was so happy to guest blog it on The Country Cook and it instantly became a hit, and the most viewed page I've had. So thanks to all of my fans, and hers, for making it the top dog. Ha!



The Most Controversial Post
This is kind of a hard one, b/c all of my readers are always so gracious and complimentary to me, my food and my posts. So, due to the overwhelming feeling of support I always feel from my fans, I'm not choosing one. But I guess if you can think of one that was super controversial, please let me know!

The Most Helpful Post
This is easy, and the funny part is it's not even food! When I posted this in spring it instantly lit up the Internet waves. When I look "behind the scenes" of who is logging on, and from where, and to what, this one has drawn the most international viewers. Mostly b/c like me, people "Google" it for help, and they are directed here. It's nice to know people from around my city, state, country and world have softer hands b/c of me:)


The Most Surprisingly Successful Post
When I decided to make this cake and post it, I didn't really expect to have it be overly popular. Not b/c it's not fantastic or delicious, but I knew there were a ton of versions out there and a lot of people had probably already seen it and tried it. But much to my surprise it was very popular. Maybe it's b/c of the cute name (I do have to say, one of my more brilliant moments) or b/c I shared it on linky parties, but whatever the reason, it surprised the heck out of me.



Didn't Quite Get The Attention It Deserved
I thought this post was really cute, and it shared a little piece of my family and our vacation w/ the world. Maybe people were just busy that day. Lol The funny thing is every other post I've used this same beer batter w/ has been hugely successful. Maybe this will allow redemption :)



Post I'm Most Proud Of
I love this recipe. I love it came from my mom. I love I was able to share w/ it my son. I love my readers loved it. It was one of the first times I knew I had a really good picture of the food. It was one of the first ones I shared on Facebook, and 1500 fans later, it's still popular. Not to mention it included a picture of my Monkey, which always makes this Mommy proud.



Now it's time to spread the fun around. If I tag you and you don't have the time I understand (as my tagger told me) but if you do, be sure to comment so I know to head over to read what your 7 are!











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Everyone Can Use

A lot of things, to be quite frank. But in this case I'm talking about another chicken recipe. I'm sorry, but that's just the way it is :) I've talked before about how I have been limited to only preparing it one time per week b/c, well, to be truthful, when we first got married I had my husband eating it 4 and 5 times a week. Sorry honey, I like chicken! But now I have more of a wide variety of choices to offer my very understanding hubby. But..........well, sometimes I just can't resist; and when I see a recipe that is new, and looks DELICIOUS I'm going to make it and he'll like it!! (There, I've put my foot down. Lol) Truthfully though, I don't think you can ever have too many chicken ideas in your recipe box b/c it's a staple in most of our diets. I came across this on a fellow blog and friend, Mia's Domain and was so excited to try it out. I know one reason why it is SO flavorful is sitting in the fridge overnight getting "all happy" in the marinade (yep, she's genius that way). So, thanks to foodie friends I am adding even more chicken to our meal plans.....I know my husband can hardly wait!!

Lemon Yogurt Baked Chicken From Mia's Domain


6 chicken drumsticks ( Mia's recipe calls for a whole chicken. I used these since it's just 3 of us)
1 c. Greek yogurt
1 tsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, grated
1 large lemon, juiced
1 tsp paprika
Salt and Pepper to taste

In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients except chicken. Reserve 3 TBS of marinade to use while cooking. Place chicken in a 9x13 pan and coat liberally w/ marinade. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Remove chicken 30 minutes before cooking. Preheat oven to 450. Bake chicken for about 35 minutes, turning and basting half way through. Bake until crispy and brown.


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Meal Plan Aug 21-26

*New Recipe
^ New to you, but not me
(Where to find on blog)

Sunday
Boneless Buffalo Chicken*
Celery/Carrots/Blue Cheese
Stuffed Mushrooms* {Copycat Olive Garden Recipe}

Monday {Alex'x Pick}
Pork Chops
Smashed Loaded Red Potatoes (July 17, 2010)
Applesauce
Broccoli

Tuesday
Me- Bruschetta^
Alex- Pizza

Wednesday
Eggs
Hashbrown Cakes
Sausage Links
Toast

Thursday
BBQ Beef Sammies (June 15, 2011)
Roasted Butternut Squash*
Creamy Cucumber Salad^

Friday ( Has to be quick- Alex's 7 year portraits that night!)
Tomato Soup
Grilled Cheese


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Friday, August 19, 2011

Suddenly Salad

I will be the first to admit that if I'm running late, or I know it's going to be a busy night, I am more than willing to take some help from the store in the dinner department. I think we all need to ask for help sometimes, and I'm not ashamed to admit that! 

Plus, before Alex came along and I was still a "working gal" I either had to have meals that were easy to prepare when I was dead on my feet, or simple enough for Adam to either start before I got home, or even cook entirely. Working 40+ hours a week didn't always lend itself to the well rounded meals I enjoy preparing so much now. One thing I started making during those times was boxed pasta salad

It could be cooked and dressed in 20 minutes, went great w/ burgers, hot dogs, sloppy joes, etc., and Adam loved the stuff. Plus it made enough (when it was just the 2 of us) I could take some to work the next day in my lunch. Well, this is one thing I've just continued to make from the box, without even thinking twice about it. Until now! I figured, how hard can it be? And to answer my own question, not hard at all! And this variety tastes even better than the old, and makes a TON so it's perfect for supper, leftovers and for entertaining. If you need to take a little help from the store to feed your family, hold your head up high, we've all been there! But if you have a little extra time on your hands, try taking one of those "helpers" and making it fresh---you'll be amazed at what you can do!

Ranch Bacon Pasta Salad
1 lb. small shell macaroni
3/4 c. Ranch dressing
3/4 c. sour cream
1/2- 1 c. frozen peas- thawed and drained ( I left mine in a colander in the sink all day)
1 c. shredded carrots ( about 2)
1/2 c. real bacon bits

Prepare pasta according to directions. Rinse w/ cold water and drain well. In a large bowl combine other ingredients. Stir in pasta and combine well. Chill for 2 hours before serving.





Shared on Jam Hands Aug. 21, 2011
Shared on Make Ahead Meals Aug. 22, 2011
Shared on Home Savvy A to Z Aug. 22, 2011
Shared on Hugs & Cookies Aug. 24, 2011

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Time For A Refill

The other day when I went to the freezer I felt like Old Mother Hubbard. Well, okay, it wasn't quite that bare, but on the side where the pork is kept, it was empty w/ a capital E. We have plenty of freezer beef left, but for some reason the pig has flown the coop...or pen in this case. I don't know if you keep freezer meat in your house, but I have found it saves our family 100s of dollars per year if we stock up. Now, we are fortunate that my in laws still raise cattle and then have them butchered so all of us can share in the cost, but even on the occasions that hasn't been the case, we still get a quarter or side of beef from our local butcher. Plus chicken, pork and other staples too. If you haven't invested in this concept, take a look at your budget, your meal patterns and explore it as an option! Anyway, I digress. So there is no pork in our freezer. No biggie I will just buy some chops at the grocery store (which I'm willing to do in a pinch); and they were on sale, score! You would think this would have been simple. Well, here were my choices: Four pork chops to a package, or 16. No in between. So I'm standing at the meat case looking at my meal plan thinking "Wait, didn't I just download a recipe that called for only 2-4 chops?" In the words of Alex (via Phineas and Ferb), "Yes, yes I did". And then I remembered Alex was going to be having a sleepover at Mimi's house, so 4 would be the perfect amount for just the 2 of us. I came home, found the recipe, discovered it was easy as 1-2-3 and was content in knowing it would be okay :) This is a great weeknight meal to "throw" together at the last minute, and probably right from your pantry. And now after having fixed it, I know even w/ Alex it would be enough! With everything that goes into, and a veggie on the side, it's just the right amount to be satisfied. But still, it's time for a pork refill to the Marshall freezer.....are you reading this honey?

Baked Pork Chops w/ Apples From  Wanna Be A Country Cleaver
4 boneless sirloin pork chops
1 16 oz. apple pie filling
1 box Stove Top Stuffing Mix - If you can find pork flavored, if not, turkey- cooked according to directions
Salt and pepper
Cooking Spray

Preheat oven to 375. Coat a 9x13 pan w/ cooking spray. Place pork chops in and season both sides w/ salt and pepper. Pour apple pie filling over pork chops. Fluff stuffing w/ fork and pat over chops and pie filling. Bake for 40 minutes. Serve warm w/ a vegetable on the side.


Shared on Around My Family Table Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on Prairie Story Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on It's A Keeper Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on Coupon Cookin' Aug. 19, 2011
Shared on Jam Hands Aug. 21, 2011
Shared on Make Ahead Meals Aug. 22, 2011
Shared on Home Savvy A to Z Aug. 22, 2011
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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

No Need To Fight

I love when food is so good, so tasty, your family is in a grudge match to see who can eat the last piece, last slice, last bowl. I personally take it as a compliment. Two weeks ago when we were at my mother in law's house for a group dinner, as people were starting to leave and not many of us were left, her brother (Adam's Uncle John) called back (And I mean w/ the phone, after driving home) asking "is there any cherry pie left?" When we answered "yes" he declared he was driving back (good thing he only lives down the road), bringing his own container, and taking the rest home. We all laughed about it b/c he was determined he was going to have the last of that cherry pie. Then a few days later I found out that the next day when my mother in law was headed down to Indy to see my sister in law, she declared, "Mom, bring the rest of the cherry pie w/ you". She quickly had to break it to her that Uncle John and already taken care of it. To which, she retorted, "Uncle John and I are in a cherry pie war." Isn't that hilarious? Now I didn't have any of that cherry pie, but dang it must have been killer! But I am pretty sure I know who made it, and if it's anything close to her blueberry pie that I L-O-V-E--I cant' say I blame them. So when this showed up at my "Church Supper" blog hop, shared by Julie's Eat and Treats, I host each Sunday the following day after this battle took place, I knew I had to make it and share it to hopefully keep the peace in the family :)

Cherry Crunch Pie
1/2 c. butter, softened
1 c. brown sugar
1 c. flour
1 c. oatmeal
1 can cherry pie filling

Preheat oven to 350. Mix first 4 ingredients together. Use 1/2 of mixture to form crust in bottom of pie plate. Press down firmly. Add cherries on top. Sprinkle other 1/2 of mix on top. Bake 30-40 minutes until brown on top.



Shared on Hugs & Cookies Aug. 17, 2011
Shared on This Chick Cooks Aug. 17, 2011
Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Aug. 17, 2011
Shared on Around My Family Table Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on Prairie Story Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on It's A Keeper Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on Something Swanky Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on Coupon Cookin' Aug. 19, 2011
Shared on Sweet As Sugar Cookies Aug. 20, 2011
Shared on Jam Hands Aug. 21, 2011
Shared on Make Ahead Meals Aug. 22, 2011
Shared on Home Savvy A to Z Aug. 22, 2011
Shared on Sweetology Aug. 23, 2011
Shared on Everyday Sisters Aug. 28, 2011



Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Ballpark Treat

We are lucky enough to have a beautiful baseball stadium here in Fort Wayne, Parkview Field- the home of the Tin Caps. For those not from around my neck of the woods, Parkview is the name of a local hospital network, and they sponsored some of the building of this huge place, so in return their name is now forever linked to America's pastime. And the Tin Caps get their name from Johnny Appleseed- you know b/c he wore a tin pot on his head (or so the legend says) and spent many years here in Fort Wayne. This stadium is only a few years old, and when you enter it, you forget you are in Fort Wayne. It's as if you are transported to Chicago or Cincinnati. It's a great place to take the family for a good time, and some GREAT food. The smells that greet you at the gate are mouth watering! We're not just talking about the baseball park staples of popcorn, peanuts and hot dogs. The menu for this place is 4 pages long and includes freshly grilled hamburgers, brats, chicken, pulled pork, and sides galore. Plus, since the hospital sponsored it, they also are very health conscious and offer things at the "Apple Cart" stand that all include apples. And they also offer gluten free options for those fans w/ food allergies. The first time I saw all the options at the park I was astounded and actually surprised at the value too! My favorite treat when we go to a game are onion rings. So after trying my hand at Beer Battered Fried Green Tomatoes I figured why not take that same batter, coat some onions in it and fry 'em up! I love me a good onion ring and for me battered ones are always the best. Now I can enjoy these at my own table and if I need the excitement of a game to go w/ them, I'll just send Alex in the back yard and have him "slide into home".

Beer Battered Onion Rings
Batter:
1/3 c. flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/3 c. flat beer (I used it right from the bottle and it worked fine)

1-2 large Vidalia Onions
Salt to taste
Vegetable Oil for frying

Slice onions into 1/4- 1/2" rings. Whisk flour, salt, pepper and beer together until well combined. Dip rings into batter and let excess drip off. Heat 1" of oil in electric skillet set on 375. Fry rings in batches not allowing them to touch. Cook until lightly golden brown. Drain on paper towels and season w/ salt. 


Shared on Nap Time Creations Aug. 16, 2011
Shared on Mandy's Recipe Box Aug. 16, 2011
Shared on This Chick Cooks Aug. 17, 2011
Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Aug. 17, 2011
Shared on Around My Family Table Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on Prairie Story Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on It's A Keeper Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on Miz Helen's Country Cottage Aug. 18, 2011
Shared on Coupon Cookin' Aug. 19, 2011

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Monday, August 15, 2011

My Child Could Live On......(Again)

Back when we were in Florida, I posted a recipe for a crock pot spaghetti sauce. Well, something happened to that original post; and I'm not quite sure where it went! Lol. It kind of ran away from home and while I've searched every where "behind the scenes" of this blog, I can't find it. But that's okay, b/c your everyday mom is pretty smart and keeps a back up of all posts. The only thing I lost was the picture, so here is a new one. And the original post to go w/ it :)


I know all of you parents out there are finishing that sentence w/ various foods. For some kids it would be hot dogs, chicken nuggets, pizza, ice cream, candy---all of those favorites of childhood. And as I've said before Alex pretty much eats anything I put in front of him. But I think if I had to choose one thing my little guy would eat 3 meals a day, 7 days a week if I let him, it would be pasta!! I can't say I blame him, his mama loves her carbs too--Italian food is probably the cuisine I would choose if forced to only eat one type from now on. He puts my obsession to shame though. This kid can eat pizza, spaghetti, mostaccoli, ziti, etc etc etc until it's  coming out of his ears. (And w/ the way he eats it, sometimes it looks like it's coming out of his ears....boys are sloppy!) So when I find a way to introduce a new way of making some of his favorites, it's a good thing. In this case it was a new way of making spaghetti, which happens to be one of Daddy's favorites too. Sauce in the crock pot! How genius is that! Your sauce can cook all day while you are away and be waiting on you when you get home. Boil some pasta, and depending on the kind, supper can be done in 7-10 minutes. I like using angel hair when I'm extra busy b/c it cooks up in almost no time at all. I found this over at Southern Plate, and just glancing over the site, will definitely return to explore more of her recipes. The next time spaghetti is on your menu, keep this in mind-- about 15 minutes prep work in the morning will equal supper for the whole family on the table in under 10 minutes when you're dog tired and the thought of standing over the stove for any amount of time is equivalent to inhumane torture:)

Crock Pot Spaghetti Sauce

2 cans or jars of spaghetti sauce
1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 15 oz. can tomato sauce
1 1/2 TBS Italian Seasoning
1 TBS sugar
1 1/2 lbs. ground beef, browned and drained ( I only used 1 lb)

Put all ingredients in slow cooker. Cook on low all day. Serve over cooked pasta of your choice. And top w/ Parmesan cheese.

*Note* For a leaner version, substitute ground beef for ground turkey, buy low sodium sauce and serve over whole wheat spaghetti. This also freezes very well. Place in storage containers, allow to cool completely and place in freezer. When ready to use, thaw enough to remove from container and then heat in crock pot or on stove top.


Shared on Jam Hands Aug. 15, 2011
Shared on My Faith and Family Aug. 15, 2011
Shared on Nap Time Creations Aug. 16, 2011
Shared on Mandy's Recipe Box Aug. 16, 2011
Shared on Lady Behind The Curtain Aug. 17, 2011
Shared on This Chick Cooks Aug. 17, 2011
Shared on Gooseberry Patch Aug. 31, 2011
Shared on Country Cooks Across America Sept. 17, 2011


Guest Blogged on Skinny Mom's Kitchen Aug. 24, 2011
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