Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Bake 52 Week 37: Deep Dish Pizza

September 12, 2012

I committed a serious crime this week. Several, actually. I have been eyeing this pizza recipe since the day I first opened our recipe book. It looked soooo yummy, and given that pizza is at the top of my list of favorite foods, I knew I’d be trying this recipe whether it was chosen during Bake 52 or not. I was excited when Amanda chose it for this week.

Which leads me to crime #1….procrastination. I rarely wait until posting day to do my baking, but the week got away from me this time around and before I knew it, posting day is here. And I feel like garbage due to a kidney infection. And we ate Little Caesar’s at 9:00 last night because we were late getting home from pack meeting and I didn’t feel good enough to make dinner. I would have sent my kids to bed without dinner had they not brought it to my attention that I had failed to feed them. But, never fear, I was going to bake through my misery anyway and we’d have pizza for dinner two nights in a row (not that there’s ANYTHING wrong with that!).

Enter crime #2. I baked cookies on Saturday and used up every last speck of my flour. And then promptly forgot about it. So, as I prepared to make pizza for dinner tonight, I discovered that I was going to have to go to the store. But, I feel like garbage, and the last thing I wanted to do was load four kids up in the car and go to the store, where I’d have to exert my already pained back lifting a 25 lb. bag of flour into the cart.

The end result is crime #3….missing the posting deadline for this week’s recipe. I feel so much shame…not just the missed baking, but the food that I’m missing. If it were just the lack of flour, I’d grind up some wheat and attempt whole wheat deep dish pizza. But, combined with not feeling well, I didn’t want to start experimenting only to have it not turn out and have to come up with something else for dinner.

So, my apologies to the rest of the group for being a failure this week. I WILL make this recipe as soon as I’m feeling better and will report back when it’s done! In the meantime, head on over to Amanda’s blog to get the recipe!

Bake 52 Week 32: Cheddar Cheese Bread

August 8, 2012

As far as recipes go, this was a really easy one to put together.  No off-the-wall ingredients (though not all things that I typically keep in my fridge either…but at least knew where to find them in the store), and no time consuming directions.  Since this isn’t a yeast bread, there’s no rising involved, so the bulk of the prep is the 45 minute baking time.

Unfortunately, that’s about as far as the praise goes in my house.  Nobody was really a fan.  I could tell while it was baking that it was going to put my taste buds into overdrive….I love parmesan, but extra sharp cheddar is a little lot strong for me.  Just the smell of that extra sharp cheddar combined with the parmesan nearly knocked me over.

The bread had cooled enough for us to eat with dinner.  The top crust didn’t hold together very well when I cut into it…it all just kind of crumbled off.  The bread itself wasn’t terribly flavorful, and was even a bit dry, so it was the cheese chunks that really packed the punch of flavor.  Although I cut the cubes of cheddar the size specified in the recipe, I wish I’d done them smaller so that they were better distributed throughout the bread.  The parmesan baked into the crust (especially the bottom) was probably the most enjoyable part for me, but it wasn’t enough to make me want to try this recipe again.

Betsy was this week’s host….head on over to her blog if this recipe sounds like one you want to try.

My first ever pie crust!

December 30, 2011

And it won’t be my last!

I’ve got two brothers-in-law, one on each side of the family, who are pretty darn good pie makers.  It’s been easy to just let them handle any pie-making that needs to be done for family gatherings.  Truth be told, making a pie crust always seemed very intimidating to me, and since I really find pie crust to be kind of bland and boring, I’ve never felt motivated to try to make one.  However, when my kids started begging to make a pumpkin pie, a little voice in my head said to just give it a try.  The worst that could happen is that it would wind up in the trash and we’d have to run to the store for a frozen crust.

I used Amanda’s recipe and was really quite shocked at how easy it was!  The only mistake I made was that the pumpkin pie mix that I used was big enough for two pies and I had only made one crust….whoops!  I failed to photograph anything but the crust once it was in the pie dish, but here it is in all its glory:

And after the pie was baked:

I was so excited when it turned out and having made it myself, it didn’t even taste as bland as pie crust usually does for me!

Double-Baked Crazy-Crisp Oven Fries

December 11, 2011

A couple of months ago, my mother-in-law told me about a French fry recipe that she had tried and really liked.  I’m pretty picky when it comes to my fries and simply don’t make them at home.  I NEVER buy the stuff in the frozen foods section because they never bake crisp enough for me.  I don’t like floppy fries, nor do I like them too thick (mainly because the center tends to be undercooked if they are too thick).  But she said that these turned out great, so I figured they were worth a try.  The recipe comes from Rachael Ray.

Ingredients

6 medium Idaho potatoes or other starchy potatoes
Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), for drizzling
Salt and pepper
Optional flavoring combinations (Rach’s fave is garlic and rosemary):
Minced garlic and lots of minced fresh rosemary or;
Old Bay or Cajun Seasoning or;
Chipotle chili powder or;
Minced garlic, Parm cheese and oregano

Preparation

Pre-heat the oven to 400°F.

Arrange cooling racks or wire racks over two baking sheets.

Peel the potatoes lengthwise, leaving a patch of the skin on each end of the potatoes. Cut each potato into very thin fries lengthwise no more than a quarter-inch thick – the thinner they are, the crispier the end product will be.

In a large bowl, dress the fries very lightly with EVOO – a couple of turns of the bowl ought to do the trick. Season with salt and pepper and arrange the fries in single layer without crowding either baking sheet.

Place the fries in the oven and roast for 30 minutes. Remove the fries and increase the heat to 425°F. Toss the fries in a large bowl again with seasonings, garlic and herbs of choice. Return the fries to the oven and bake for another 15-20 minutes until very crisp and brown.

 

How do you like my new bowl?  I won it over at Girl+Food=Love….check it out!

First, toss your cut potatoes in a bit of olive oil, and then season.  We just went with some basic seasonings this time….a little salt, pepper, and season salt.

The recipe calls for 6 potatoes….I opted to just use three this time (they were big ones though) and it turned out to be just the right amount for my family.   This is before they went into the oven for the first bake:

I forgot to take a picture before the second bake, but they looked pretty much the same.  I used a metal spatula to scoop them up off the cooking rack for their second seasoning.  This is how they looked after they were totally baked:

Not too bad, but would they pass the “no floppy fries allowed” test?  I have to say, I was disappointed when the first fry I picked up looked like this:

There was nothing “crazy crisp” about this fry and I figured the whole thing was a bust. However, we decided not to make a snap judgement based on just one fry, and I’m glad we didn’t.  Most of the rest of the fries were surprisingly crisp.  The kids all gave them 2 thumbs up and we’ll be trying them again in the future, maybe with some of the fun seasoning suggestions from Rachael.

What I’d do differently:

I’ll definitely cut them a tad thinner.  Most of the fries were cooked all the way through, but the few that weren’t made my stomach turn when I bit into them.  Also, a thinner fry will lend to more crispiness overall.

Next time I’ll probably try to give them a few minutes with the convection on in my oven and see if that helps crisp them up a bit more as well.

Blah, blah, blaaaahhhhggg

December 2, 2008

So, my blog is really BLAH right now. There are things I should post about, but I’m just not in the mood. Gotta get the rest of my 10,000 pages read and then maybe I can focus on sharing some of the good stuff! Stay tuned!

Not even Twilight could compete with this!

November 23, 2008

Move over Edward! You don’t hold a candle to a giant, blow-up pig with glowing red eyes and kangaroo ears. Sound random? It totally is. But isn’t that what Pink Floyd is all about? For Joseph’s birthday, I bought him tickets to Australian Pink Floyd, featuring The Wall. Pink Floyd is at the top of Joseph’s all-time favorite bands and given that he’ll never get the chance to see the actual group, the Aussie’s are the next best thing. We went to their Dark Side of the Moon show a few years ago and had a lot of fun, so he was really looking forward to seeing them play again. I had an invite to see a pre-premier of Twilight at the same time as the concert, and while I do want to see the movie, I wasn’t too disappointed that I couldn’t go…I was excited for the concert! I enjoy the music, but the real fun was seeing Joseph so excited! And an extra perk was seeing how crazy people got as they downed more and more beer….the crowd was quite entertaining by the end of the night! We had a great time and Joseph is still trying to get his voice back from all the singing and yelling he did!

Setting the record straight!

November 22, 2008

I had two people in the last week ask about us selling our house and moving. I must have looked completely confused both times because they both clarified “I thought I read it on your blog”. The first time I didn’t think much of it, but the second time I realized that somewhere on my blog I have misled people to believe that we are moving. We’re not! I went through some old posts last night I think this one is the culprit….let me clarify that I was talking about a couple of years ago when we were getting Ryan ready to move out of his crib. It made sense to me at the time (don’t you love it when what goes on in your head doesn’t always translate when you try to write it down or say it?), but I can totally see how it could be taken as us getting read to move. It gives me a headache to even think about packing up a house and moving right now, so rest assured that we’re not going anywhere anytime soon!

And, as long as we’re setting the record straight, you all should know that my house isn’t totally clean 100% of the time.  I realize that this doesn’t look that bad, but if I’d had a wide angle lens you’d have been able to see how far-reaching the clutter was that day!

Ack!

November 5, 2008

The bishop has asked me to teach the 5th Sunday combined YM/YW lesson this month. He wants me to focus on the dress and grooming section in the For the Strength of Youth pamphlet. I’m sure that I can yap my trap about that long enough to fill the time, but I’d really like to come up with something more engaging….something that will put a fun spin on a principle that the youth have heard time and time again. So, put on your thinking caps and throw out some ideas for me!

Yep, me too!

November 4, 2008

Looks like this is the news of the day around the blogosphere, so I might as well jump on the bandwagon as well.

Happy Birthday Joseph!!

October 27, 2008

The theme of the day at our house is “30” in honor of Joseph’s birthday. So, here are 30 things that I love and appreciate about him!

1. The long hours you put in at work to provide for your family
2. The way our kids light up when you walk in the door each night
3. The way you go along with all of my crazy home improvement ideas and manage to pull them off just the way I’ve imagined them in my head
4. The witty comments that you come up with on the fly
5. Your ability to make people laugh
6. Your math skills….our kids will be grateful that mom won’t have to help them with math homework one day
7. Your work ethic….no matter what the job, you give 110% to make sure it gets done right
8. Your relationship with your sisters….I’m so lucky to have a guy who was trained well to treat a girl right
9. Your relationship with your parents….how great it is that you can trust them with anything
10. Your relationship with my family….you fit in perfectly
11. Your loyalty to your friends….I love that you can call any one of them up and pick up right where you left off, even when it’s been a long time since you’ve talked to them.
12. Your willingness to do the dirty jobs
13. The fact that you’ll eat just about anything….a picky girl like me appreciates so much when I can slide the things I don’t like onto your plate
14. The silly songs you make up
15. The initiative you take in making sure that we have scripture study and family prayer every day
16. Your skills in being able to fix the cars and do home repairs….you’ve saved us lots of money over the years
17. The enthusiastic way you talk about your job, even when I’m staring at you with a glazed look on my face because I don’t understand anything you’re saying
18. Your willingness to help out around the house
19. The knowledge you have of the gospel….you’ve taught me so much
20. Your ability to wake up long before the crack of dawn to get to the gym everyday
21. The void you fill when you get home from work each day….everyone is happier when daddy is home
22. The way you always clean up after I’ve made dinner
23. Your ability to make friends quickly
24. The way you crack under pressure when I want you to divulge a secret or surprise you have planned for me
25. Your willingness to let me have a break from the kids from time to time to do something with my friends
26. The little gap in your top front teeth and the crooked row on the bottom
27. Your excitement to spend time with your boys and teach them new things
28. Your weakness when it comes to buying things for your little girl
29. Your willingness to scratch my back, even when I claim to be too wimpy to return the favor
30. The way you love me, in spite of all my imperfections

I hope today is a memorable one for you–we all love you so much and can’t imagine how dull life would be without you!!