Black Sheep Dancing

Why be like everyone else when you can be yourself?


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Confetti!

So, I looked in my fridge and realized I get a bag of potatoes or sweet potatoes every single time I go to the store, and just had a TON of potatoes to use up, so what to do? Make my Confetti Potato Salad of course! I made this up, but it’s my absolute favorite! Hmmm…On a side note, real confetti is one of my least favorite things.  It’s fun, but what a pain to clean up, and it is like glitter – it never fully goes away.

Anyways, back to our story…

Emily’s Confetti Potato Salad

Ingredients

  • 2 potatoes
  • 2 sweet potatoes
  • 1 c. mayonaise
  • 1/2 c. sour cream
  • 2 Tbs. mustard (yellow or dijon)
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1/2 c. chopped onion
  • 1/4 c. sweet relish
  • 3 Tbs. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp. paprika
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3-4 hard boiled eggs, chopped

Directions

  1. 1. Peel and chop sweet potatoes and boil in a large pan with a pinch of salt. While boiling, peel and chop regular potatoes and add to same pot until both are cooked but not mushy – about 20 minutes.
  2. 2. While potatoes are cooking, combine in a large bowl mayonaise, sour cream, mustard, celery, onion, relish, sugar, garlic powder, paprika, salt and pepper.
  3. 3. Cool cooked potatoes slightly and then toss with dressing.
  4. 4. Chop and gently fold in egg. Cover and refrigerate for 2-3 hours or until serving.

Since I was cooking up cubes of potatoes anyways, I boiled event more, and kept some to mash up for mashed potatoes. I haven’t decided if I am going to eat as is or use it in a casserole.


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Amateur Hour

So, this weekend I got to play my  French horn in a talent show. It was the first time I had performed since my son was born nearly five years ago. And I have two degrees in music performance. It was long over due. It was lovely. It was great. The kid who has played with the Moscow Orchestra and Aspen Music Festival totally stole our thunder. (I kid – he was awesome!)

After I played I sat to watch and Munchkin was playing games on my iphone. I got a text message so I went to clear it and he says REALLY loud “No mommy! Don’t take it away! I’m playing Angry Birds!” Nice.

Anywho, I got to meet CBear’s mom for the first time, so of course I had to cook a yummy meal for her, CBear, and my aunt and uncle. It was an All Recipe Extravaganza!

For Dinner:

Taco Casserole

Honey Cornbread

– Salad

Spiced Baked Apples served with ice cream and whipped topping

For the Taco Casserole I substituted the beef for half a bag of veggie burger crumbles and a drained can of black beans and just a bit of cayenne pepper. You know, since I’m a veggie. It was yummy and very homey feeling. I think next time I may add a can of corn, or even some hot peppers. And even better, the whole dinner was pretty cheap to make.

I think the best part about making yummy dinner, is you have a yummy lunch the next day. ALWAYS make extra.


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A “Whoops!” turns out yummy

So, I had this butternut squash that has been sitting around for awhile, and it needed to go. I looked up some recipes and I found a recipe for a squash casserole, but it was for yellow squash. I could sub butternut, right? However, after realizing I had lots of moments where I thought I had something and really didn’t, I made a completely new dish. And then I had some left over apples from some muffins I was making, so I threw those in too. And it turned out to be good!

Savory Butternut Squash Casserole

Ingredients

  • 1 butternut squash, cubed
  • 1/2-1 onion, diced
  • 1 Tbs. Butter
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 apple, diced
  • 1 stack of buttery crackers, crushed

Directions:

  • Warm a large skillet with the butter. Put in squash and cook for five minutes, stirring occasionally. After five minutes add in onion and water and continue to cook until tender
  • When cooked, remove from heat. Add in milk, sour cream and apples. Pour into a 2 quart baking dish
  • Top with crushed crackers and bake in 350 degree oven for 45 minutes, or until bubbly and top is brown.


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Herbed Sweet Potato Fries

A quick side tonight that turned out great and even the munchkin loved. I’m totally bummed I forgot to take photos, but the result was so yummy!

Herbed Sweet Potato Fries

3 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into strips (or slices, or waffle…whatever your fancy)

1 Tbs olive oil

1 tsp. rosemary

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. paprika

Kosher salt and fresh pepper to taste

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Put potato slices in a large bowl. Add in remaining ingredients and toss.
  3. Put potatoes on a sprayed baking sheet in a single layer
  4. Bake for 40 minutes or until done

Of course, this is a pretty basic recipe, so adjust to fit your taste. This can work as a side dish to your favorite sandwich, or would also work as an appetizer by itself.

I had hoped to use cayenne pepper instead of the paprika, but I am out. I’ll have to sub that next time. I’m thinking the kick with the sweet would be awesome. Regardless, I got my 4-year old to eat a reasonably healthy snack. Whoo hooo!


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G-S-C recipe guaranteed to go to you H-I-P

It is that time of the year again. The time that ALL of those cookies I ordered from my friends and co-workers’ little munchkinettes arrive and I am left with way too many cookies. In all, I got twelve boxes. TWELVE boxes. I polished the first box off after a co-worker dropped my order off at work. Tagalongs sounded much better than the lunch I had packed.

When I got home Munchkin and I had a few more. Of course all kids love cookies. I had to oblige.

And then last night I had a dream. A dream about my cookies. I woke up and I just knew I had to put these recipes into motion TODAY. No complaints from Munchkin or CBear. Funny thing…I normally don’t like cookies and I normally don’t eat ice cream at home. But today I threw caution to the wind.

Samoa Sundae

2 Samoa cookies, crumbled

Tbs. shredded coconnut

Vanilla ice cream

Chocolate syrup (not shown)

1 Samoa cookie for garnish

Tagalong Sundae

2 Tagalongs, crushed

1 Tbs Nutella spread

1 Tbs Peanut Butter

Vanilla ice cream

Extra cookie for garnish

And the best for last!

Trefoil Sundae (Of course when I was in Girl Scouts, it was was simply known as shortbread, but then they got all fancy)

2 Trefoil cookies, crushed

Half a banana chopped

Honey to drizzle

Vanilla Ice Cream

Cookie for garnish

Trefoil Sundae? AWESOME! After all these cookies that are pimped out to be even worse, looks like I’m going to have to work overtime at the gym. And maybe throw some veggies in there somewhere.

So go support your local Girl Scout troop and make some awesome sundaes!


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Fat Sunday

So, I found a recipe for Beignets last week, and had every intention of making them for Fat Tuesday. Then life happened. So, last night we made the dough and this morning we rolled it out and fried them up!

I used to be very intimidated by frying things…you gotta get the oil, heat it up, not burn yourself, find something to do with the old oil…but I found these very easy.

And even if they are a little over-fried, they’re still pretty good.

Here they are all done. Don’t they just look yummy? And they are light and don’t FEEL like fried food. That actually may not be a good thing. I don’t usually like donuts, but I liked these. (And do did everyone else.)

The recipe is from Our Best Bites, and can be found here. The only thing I changed, was instead of dusting one side with powdered sugar, I turned them over to dust both sides. Mmmmmm…sugary goodness.

 


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Tortilla!

So, I’ve become a fan of a lot of blogs lately, including Heavenly Homemakers. In her blog, she talks about ‘soaking’ grains. This always intrigued me, and as I become more and more obsessed with healthy foods and making things from scratch, I wanted more and more to try this. But, I was a little intimidated. I really hate screwing something up and wasting all that food.

Then, the other day I found a recipe for making your own whole wheat tortillas AND it included in the recipe to use coconut oil (like the kind I got the other day…) so I went for it! Thanks Kitchen Stewardship!

So, in the morning I made my dough and tonight I cooked them up. First, you get your exercise with these! It’s a lot of work rolling these suckers super thin! I don’t have an electric griddle or a cast iron skillet (although I want both) so I just used a frying pan. It took a couple of trys to get the temperature correct. Well, I think it is correct. I got the brown spots, but it didn’t look like it was all the way cooked all over, but I didn’t want a tortilla cracker either! Of course I can’t remember having a whole wheat tortillas EVER, so maybe I just don’t know what it really looks like?

Here’s the result:

I’m hoping to use these for breakfast tomorrow for some breakfast burritos. I guess we’ll find out then how they taste. Anyone else ever make their own tortillas? Thoughts?

I’ll tell you what, a good baker is a talent. Muffins, they’re easy, but breads haunt me. They’re so finicky!

Toodles,

Emily


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I’m in looooove

Recently, a co-worker was in the kitchen making her lunch…a lunch of steel cut oats. I have seen these many times, and asked her about it. She could not say enough good things, so the next time I went to the grocery store I picked up a box.

Today I decided to try them out. Prepping I read the side of the box – over 30 minute cook time? Oh my! But, alas, I was told these were super yummy, so I pressed on. 30 minutes later, yum! It surely doesn’t look like the oats I’m used to, and boy, it doesn’t taste like it either. IT IS SOOOOO GOOD! Warm and gooey and refreshing…like a big bear hug. Can I ever go back to regular oats again? (My wallet says I must, but definitely keeping an eye out for sales!)

On a side note, speaking of price, why do less processed foods always cost more? Shouldn’t they cost less since there is less work in processing? K. back to my story…

To add a little spice to my oats, I added in:

1/2 apple, chopped

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

handful of raisins

pinch of salt


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Pineapple Banana Bread…with changes.

Rough day today for various reasons, but getting a nail in my tire would be part of it. See, while I have a popular car, apparently I am the only owner who is a klutz and needs to order new tires all the time, so they are never in stock. It’s really a pain in the butt, but at least the tire is coming tomorrow.

What to do tonight? Bake!  I had some crushed pineapple left over from making some sweet and sour sauce, so I went to Allrecipes.com and searched for pineapple. What I found was bread that I had all the ingredients for! Pineapple Banana Bread!

However, I did change it a lot. Instead of 1 1/4 c oil I used 1/2 applesauce and 3/4 c coconut oil (my first time using it!). And I added pecans…and a wee bit of coconut.The result? Eh. It was lacking a lot of flavor. Oh, I did also reduce the sugar slightly, so that might be why, but I think adding that sugar back in would have made it way too sweet, yet not the nice blend of flavors I was expecting. I think if I make these again, I’ll add more banana and more cinnamon. I will say though, I bet the munchkin will love these anyways, especially if he gets to eat them for breakfast!

 


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Spinach Enchiladas

Unknowingly, I was in a Mexican kind of mood when shopping at the grocery store yesterday, and managed to buy all the ingredients for tonight’s dinner without even knowing it! This was super easy, pretty cheap, and good for you…well, the spinach is good for you.

Spinach Enchiladas

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbs butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 medium sized onion, minced
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 to 1 bunch fresh spinach, washed, stems off and chopped
  • 2 cups shredded colby jack
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 4 oz. cream cheese
  • 10 flour tortillas
  • 1 jar ortega mild taco sauce, 16 oz. (or whatever brand you like)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  2. Melt butter in a medium sauce pan. Add in garlic, onion, salt and pepper until cooked, but not brown.
  3. Add spinach, stirring and then cook until wilted, but not over cooked.
  4. Add in 1 cup of the colby jack, sour cream and cream cheese and mix until well blended.
  5. Place a large spoonful of spinach filling on a tortilla and loosely wrap and place in a 9×13″ baking dish, seam side down. Repeat with remaining tortillas.
  6. Cover tortillas with bottle of taco sauce and top with remaining cup of colby jack
  7. Bake in pre-heated oven for 20 minutes or until sauce is bubbling

I like to add a dollop of sour cream on top and I’d imagine a margarita would go quite nicely if you so chose.