Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Butterscotch Brownies

My sister visited us this past weekend and, as is typical, we wanted to do some baking. I had nothing in mind so we opened up a cookbook {which I picked up for $1 at a thrift store on our honeymoon} and found these. I was drawn to it because it didn't need the mixer. {It was approaching the end of nap time and I didn't want any extra noise to cause the children to wake early as it had been a rough night of sleep.}
With only a handful ingredients and the ability to stir them easily by hand these bars came together very quickly. They're soft and buttery with just enough texture from the coconut to add but not detract.

Butterscotch Brownies
 Print Recipe
Source: Betty Crocker Cookbook, 1988 Edition
Yields: 16-25 bars

1/4 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg
3/4 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup butterscotch chips
1/4 cup coconut

   1.  Preheat oven to 350.
   2.  Melt butter in a large saucepan; remove from heat. Add brown sugar, vanilla and egg; mix. Add flour, baking powder, salt; stir until almost combined. Add butterscotch chips and coconut.
   3.  Spread in greased 9x9 pan. Bake 23 minutes. Cut while warm.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Menu March 25

Butterscotch Brownies: My sister was visiting for the weekend so of course, we did a little baking. We opened up my Betty Crocker Cookbook and picked these bars, mostly because they didn't require the use of the mixer. They turned out great and will definitely be made again! {Recipe coming soon}
Creamy Vodka Pasta: My husband and I went for a belated Valentines Dinner a couple weeks ago to a local restaurant. He ordered their Vodka Shrimp Pasta and we both agreed it was delicious {well, in my opinion, without the shrimp.} My first attempt at home was good but there's definitely room for improvement. I'm excited to try it again, hopefully soon.
On the Menu...
{With Holy Week and leftovers from our guests this weekend the menu is quite different this week but that keeps life interesting!}
Leftovers: French Toast, Chicken Pot Pie, Salty Dog {Pepperoni} Pizza, BBQ Chicken Pizza
Black Bean Quesadillas {I'm going to try making my own tortillas}
Split Pea Soup {Our Maundy Thursday tradition}
Fish Sticks and Potatoes{Our Good Friday tradition, modified for this non-fish eater}
Brunch: Banana Bread Pancakes
Muffins: Leftover Oatmeal Muffins
Easter: Ham, Potato Cakes, either Blender Rolls or Crescent Rolls, Fruit Salad {exact recipe TBD} and Special K Bars. {Obviously I still have some work to don on our Easter menu!}
Visit I'm an Organizing Junkie for more menu ideas.  

Monday, March 11, 2013

Menu March 11

Steal-Good Pumpkin Bread: These were good but honestly, we prefer our normal pumpkin muffin recipe.
Corn and Bean Burgers: These have been officially added to our rotation of meatless dishes. While we like to put a smear of BBQ sauce on them it's not really necessary as they're quite flavorful on their own.

On the Menu...
Tomato Basil Soup with Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Crepes with Ham, Cheese & Asparagus Filling   
Soup Supper at Church-we're taking bread
Chicken Avocado Enchiladas or Chicken & Avocado Enchiladas{different recipes both would be new}
Chicken Bacon Ranch Pizza
Brunch: Egg Sandwiches on Bagels
Muffins: Banana Muffins
Visit I'm an Organizing Junkie for more menu ideas.  

Friday, March 8, 2013

Friday Foreshadowing

Bread, bread, bread... The majority of recipes that I found this week are bread. Nothing wrong with that! :)

Very Little Bother Oat Bread from Don't Waste the Crumbs: I've decided to slowly work on reducing {even more so} the amount of white flour we consume. While this recipe still has a fair amount it's also using oat flour, which would be new for us.
Very Litte Bother Oat Bread 2
The best homemade dinner rolls from Roxasna's Home Baking: These look beautiful! I'm starting to think about Easter menu and these might be the roll. After all, there's nothing like trying a recipe for the first time at a time when you want everything to be perfect!
Soft, buttery, tender and warm, straight out of the oven, these are the best dinner rolls. Recipe from
Pizzeria Style Pepperoni Pizza from Table for Two: My husband has pretty much taken over making our weekly pizzas and that's absolutely fine with me! We usually spend a fair amount of time each Friday supper analyzing how the pizza turned out so I'm always watching for new methods and recipes to try. This will be next!
Garlic Cheese Pull Apart Bread from Thirty Handmade Days: After adapting this oh so slightly to use homemade dough instead of frozen I think this would be wonderful. Butter, spices, cheese and bread all baked together...
Cheesy Garlic Bread with frozen bread dough
Coffee Cake Muffins from Fearless Homemaker: While I tend to shy away from the richer, sugary muffins for our breakfast muffins sometimes it's fun to have some that are more of a treat. These would be perfect for that. Add the streusel topping and we'll all be happy!
Coffee Cake Muffins

All images are from the original recipe source.
This is linked to Friday Favorites.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Broccoli Cheddar Soup

About a month before our daughter {who is three now} was born my husband and I went out for lunch to Panera. I was excited because I adore their Chicken & Wild Rice Soup. Sadly, that day it wasn't on the menu so I had to pick a different soup. I went with Broccoli Cheddar Soup and haven't looked back since.
Admittedly, I've made this soup more often now that I have an immersion blender but even without it wasn't impossible to puree the soup in my regular blender, it just resulted in more dishes. My kids come running when they hear me start to blend the soup because there's just something fascinating about watching it change so quickly before your eyes.

Broccoli Cheddar Soup
 Print Recipe
Yields: ~8 main dish portions
Source: My Blessed Life

1/4 cup butter
1 onion, chopped
1/4 cup flour
4 cups milk
4 cups chicken broth
1 lb frozen broccoli, divided*
2 cups carrots, chopped
8 oz sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
salt and pepper
   1.  Melt butter in a large stock pot; add onions and saute until slightly softened. Add flour, stir and cook for 3-5 minutes.
   2.  While stirring, slowly add milk and chicken broth; simmer for 20 minutes.
   3.  Add broccoli {all but a handful} and carrots; simmer for 20-25 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.
   4.  Add salt and pepper to taste; puree soup until smooth.
   5.  Add remaining broccoli and cheese; stir and heat until cheese is melted.

*If using large pieces of broccoli chop reserved handful into ~1/2 inch pieces.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Menu March 4

2 Ingredient Cookies: While they aren't my favorite thing ever because of the texture they are a good snack option for the kids. We added sunflower seeds, cranberries and chocolate chips to ours. When it came time to pick them out at snack time my 3 year old daughter was adamant about making sure hers had cranberries, with no concern about the chocolate chips. Not sure what's wrong with her!
Black Bean Quesadillas: I adapted the original recipe a bit, adding some brown rice and taco seasoning. They were a big hit and will definitely be added to our meal otpions.
Easy Homemade Biscuits: There is a reason I've been seeing these everywhere recently. They taste absolutely wonderful. They are soft on the inside but just slightly crispy on the outside, buttery, airy and delicious! My husband even asked if it would be a good thing to freeze in batches. I think he likes them!
On the Menu...
Baked Potato Soup
Cheesy Salsa Meatloaf {from the freezer} with Homemade Fries   
Soup Supper at Church
Corn & Bean Burgers
Sweet Hawaiian Pizza 
Brunch: French Toast
Muffins: Steal Good Pumpkin Bread {Muffins}
Visit I'm an Organizing Junkie for more menu ideas.  

Friday, March 1, 2013

Friday Foreshadowing

Chocolate Cranberry Energy Bites from My Blessed Life: Again, I'm always looking for good snack ideas. My kids love dried cranberries so I'm sure these would be a hit.
energy bites
Poor Man's Stew from Happy in Dole Valley: This looks wonderful. It features mostly ingredients I always have on hand so once I pick up some lentils we will definitely try this for a Monday Soup Night.
Oatmeal Cinnamon Butterscotch Cookies from A Spicy Perspective: I have a muffin recipe we love that uses cinnamon chips but don't really use them in anything else {other than eating them plain!} These cookies look like a good place to try.
Soft Oatmeal Cookies with Cinnamon and Butterscotch Chips | #cookies #oatmealcookies
KFC's Coleslaw from Recipe Lion: I absolutely love KFC's coleslaw {and their biscuits} and have decided to make an effort of finding a recipe that is reminiscent of the wonderful creaminess. This will be the first attempt.
Quad Cookies from A Beautiful Ruckus: Chocolate Chip Cookies, Oreos, Cheesecake and Brownies all in one decadent cookie? That sounds like an absolute must try to me!

All images are from the original recipe source.
This is linked to Friday Favorites.