Tuesday, October 29, 2013

I was "that" person last night....

We had a busy afternoon/evening last night, so when we got home from Scouts at 7:45,  I sprinted to my room to change into my ratty tee shirt and PJ pants.  We had just finished dinner and Maggie yells down the stairs, "the hair dryer just turned off and there is smoke coming out of it".  The first thought that went through my head was not, "Are you ok? Do you have any hair left on your head?"  rather "Are you friggen' kidding me?  I have to change out of my ratty, comfortable clothes and go get a damn hairdryer?"   I just could not bring myself to change back into my clothes, so I threw a coat on and the closest shoes and off I went to  Walgreens to get a new hair dryer. 


Yep, paisley patterned pants and zebra print clogs.  I did apologize to the cashier...she didn't care and quite frankly neither did I.

In honor of my comfy clothes, here is a soup recipe that is comfy too!  I got this recipe at one of my bridal showers 17 years ago and I still make it several times a year.  It freeze beautifully too!  Thanks to Richie Hilbert for the yum!  xoxox

Ground Beef Vegetable Soup

1 1/2 lbs ground beef
2 onions, chopped
1 pkg frozen green beans
1 can shoe peg corn
1 pkg frozen lima beans
1 can tomatoes, cut up
2 cans tomato soup
1 1/2 soup cans of water
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp italian seasoning
salt and pepper to taste

Brown meat and onions, drain fat.  In a large pot mix everything together.  Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer 2 or more hours, covered and stirring occasionally.

Remember that this freezes very well.  Serve it with grilled cheese or salad or just a hunk of bread.


Monday, October 28, 2013

My friends call me MF....

This weird thing happened in the past couple years.  More and more people are calling me MF and MF'er.  I grew up my entire life with no one but my dad calling me MF.  Now people shout MF across a room or in a very less than full ball park and you get looks of horror and embarrassed laughs.  I think it is funny and I love it because it usually brings a smile to the face of the person calling me MF.  It is nothing more than a term of endearment. 

Sorry for the delay in posting something delicious for you.  I worked all weekend, so this is the first opportunity.  The weather has turned cool here, and we were jonesing for some chili.  It was fantastic and quick......kids really loved it too.

Beef, Pork and Bean Chili

1 1/2 lb meatloaf blend meat (mixture of ground beef and ground pork)
1 jar roasted red peppers
1 1/2 cups diced onions
2 TBLS chili powder
1 can black beans, drained
1 can chili beans, undrained
1 can Rotel tomatoes
1 can tomato sauce
salt and pepper

Start heating couple tablespoons of oil in a large stock pot.  Coarsely chop roasted red peppers and dice onions.  Add to pot with chili powder and cook until onions are tender.  Add meat and cook until done.  Stir in beans, tomatoes, tomato sauce and salt and pepper.  Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 15 minutes.

I served mine in a bread bowl, but put it over rice if you want.  Add cheese and sour cream.  You can even add hot sauce to heat it up a bit.  Mine simmered for much longer than 15 minutes because I forgot about it, but it was still great. 


Thursday, October 24, 2013

On My Mind Lately...

Today is the day!  The day I decided to start writing on this blog again.  I am going to try and do recipes everyday, but that may not always happen.  What I do hope is to be consistent and use this as an outlet for the randomness that clutters my brain.  No one may read it, and that is fine, but I may touch just 1 person and if I do,  I have done what I intended.  So often I focus on the people and situations that tear me sideways and miss the blessings of the silent ones.  The silent ones are who I want to team with.  They are the ones that make an impact in the lives of those around them.  They do it not for themselves, but for others.  That charges my batteries, not this other crap.  I can't really say what's truly on my mind, as I am not ready to get that vocal yet.  I will say that in the past 2 months, I truly see the value in having a handpicked small group of people that you know will hold you up when you need it.  I have always known this, but I honestly have lived it the past couple months.  Friends who join me in giving so unselfishly of their time to the school have been my rock (insert eye roll) and safe place many days.  They love me (I think) and remind me to always laugh at myself and not take myself too seriously.  Suzanne, Sarah, Susan and Kara, this post and a sip from a 2-liter is dedicated to y'all. I truly heart you all!

I will throw in a short recipe, as a week or so ago I posted that a spoonful of this makes everything ok.  The "this" is my mom's Homemade Hot Fudge Sauce.  It is just decadent (read: so damn good) and doesn't even need to be heated or poured over ice cream. Scooping a spoonful right from the jar works just fine!  Enjoy!

Mary Jeter's Hot Fudge Sauce

2-1 ounce squares unsweetened chocolate
1/2 cup butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
pinch of salt
1-6 ounce cane evaporated milk
1+ Tablespoon vanilla

Stir the first 5 ingredients together until the chocolate and butter melts, the sugar dissolves and the mixture comes to a boil.  This will take about 5 minutes or so over medium high heat.  Stir it constantly or it will burn.  Once it comes to a boil, remove it from the heat and stir in the vanilla.  Pour it into a glass jar  and store in the refrigerator.  This will make 2 cups. 

I usually double this and at Christmas I quadruple it and it will make 5 pints or 11 half pints to give as gifts.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Bring on the COMFORT!

I am so stinking excited to share 2 recipes today! I made both of these last night for dinner, but wanted to make sure they were Franny worthy before posting. Not only are they worthy, but they will rock your dinner table.

I normally do not cook anything more difficult than a frozen pizza on Friday nights, but something got into me and I spent Friday morning cooking dinner. My kids LOVED both of these recipes and what a huge bonus with all the vegetables that got eaten too. Both of these recipes are super easy to put together, so run on out to the store, grab your buggy and fill it with the stuff for your next meal!

Chicken Pot Pie (Courtesy of fellow dance mom, Dawn)

1 refrigerated pie crust
3 boneless chicken breast, cooked and shredded
1 can Veg-All
1 can peas
1 can diced potatoes
2 can Cream of Celery soup

Unroll one of the pie crusts into a deep dish 9 inch pie plate. Mix together chicken, Veg-All, peas, diced potatoes and both cans of soup. Pour into pie crust. Cover with other crust. make sure you cut slits in the top. Bake at 350-375 for 45 minutes.

Pot Pie notes: Use whatever canned veggies you have in your pantry. When I do this again, I will probably substitute carrots or butter beans for the can of potatoes. You can also use whatever "Cream of..." soup that you have or like.

Now for the best part....dessert! This apple pie recipe was in my November 2009 Southern Living. It was in an article that the magazine did on the Pioneer Woman. She has a great website chock full of amazing sounding recipes. I highly encourage you to check her out. As a bonus, she is funny too. http://www.thepioneerwoman.com/

Scrumptious Apple Pie-Southern Living November 2009

7 cups peeled and sliced Granny Smith apples
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cup flour, divided
1/2 tsp salt, divided
3/4 cup butter
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup uncooked quick cooking oats
Refrigerated pie crust

Preheat oven to 375 and line a deep dish pie plate with pie crust.

Mix together apples, sugar, lemon juice and cinnamon. Let sit for 5-10 minutes. Add in 1/4 cup flour and 1/4 tsp salt. Blend well. Pour mixture into crust.

Cut butter into remaining 1/2 cup flour with a pastry blender or two knives until mixture resembles small peas. Stir in brown sugar, oats and remaining 1/4 tsp salt. Top this mixture on the apples, pressing it in so that it adheres. Shield your crust edges with aluminum foil or those handy pie crust shields.

Place pie on foil lined cookie sheet and bake at 375 for 25 minutes, remove foil or crust shields from crust edges and cook an additional 25 minutes or until golden brown. Let pie sit at least 30 minutes before serving.

Pie Notes:

To get 7 cups of sliced apples, I used about 6 whole apples. If cinnamon is not your thing, leave it out. The original recipe did not call for it, but that is how we like ours, so I added it in. If you do not have a pastry blender, GET ONE! It truly makes "cutting in the butter" so much faster. While you are buying the pastry blender also pick up pie crust shields. I do not have these, but believe me after hee-hawing around with strips of foil on the crust edge I will be sprint to the store today to purchase pie crust shields. Lastly, I cooked this pie in the morning and we did not eat it until 10:30 last night. I just warmed it up in a 300 degree oven.

I can't wait to hear what you think of these. They are definitely in the dinner rotation at my house now!

xoxox, mfjm

Friday, November 6, 2009

Thanksgiving Planning

So, it is Friday morning and I am savoring the Today Show with a cup of coffee from my super cool Kuerig machine and oh....a FRESH apple pie in the oven! Good Lord is smells great in my house. I bet you think that I am going to give you that recipe today, but I am not. Quite frankly I find Apple Pies so common. Don't get me wrong they are great, but I strive to be different....yeah big shock!

A couple years ago, I took over the dessert portion of Thanksgiving. Growing up I was never thrilled with what was offered and as I got older I really thought that it would be ok to branch out from the usual pumpkin, pecan and apple pies. Enter in Chocolate Bourbon Pie. Oh yeah, you read that correctly...chocolate and bourbon in the same pie!

This Brian's favorite thing I make all year. This recipe came from one of my most battered and "go to" cook books that I own....The Stuffed Cougar! This will mean nothing to most of you, but my Richmond peeps know, or should know this book very well.

Chocolate Bourbon Pie

2 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted
4 TBLS bourbon
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 cup finely chopped pecans
1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
1 9" unbaked pie shell

Beat eggs while gradually adding sugar. Add butter and bourbon, blend in cornstarch. Stir in the pecans and chocolate chips. Pour into shell and bake 45-50 minutes at 350 degrees. Serve slightly warm with fresh whipped cream.

You can make this ahead and freeze it. Many times I will give this for gifts at Christmas and I just make them when I have time and freeze them in gallon size ziploc bags.

A note about the bourbon....just buy the cheap stuff! I use Evan Williams. I also put more like 5 TBLS of bourbon in the pie. Also a comment on the pecans....PULVERIZE them. Chop them in a food processor until they look like small BB's.



Wednesday, November 4, 2009

2 for 2...I'm on a roll!

Can you believe it? I am already hitting you with a new recipe. I feel so proud.....obviously it doesn't take much.

Not much chatter today, as I am trying to beat the clock. Today is dance day, so I have to be on the ball and get a bunch of crap done before we leave for dance.

The recipe I am giving you today is dedicated to my brother, John. I have never known a person who loved Macaroni and Cheese like he does. Not the creamy kind, but more like a Macaroni pie variety. This recipe was passed along to me by a former co-worker and super friend, Anita.

Crock Pot Macaroni and Cheese

8oz elbow macaroni, cooked and drained
1 1/2 cups milk
1 large can evaporated milk
2 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 tsp salt
dash (or 2) of pepper
3-4 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Grease crock pot (or use a crock pot liner). Mix all the ingredients except 1/2 the cheese. Pour into prepared crock pot. Top with remaining cheese. Cook on LOW for 3-6 hours. I usually cook for 4.5-5 hours, but have gone longer.

Let me know what you think. This is one of my family's favorites.

xoxox y'all!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

SSSSSH........I'M BACK!!

Can we get a woo-hoo? I know that many (ha) of you had given up on me that I would ever post again. Well, I am back and ready to roll. Did you notice that I spruced up the blog a bit? Many thanks to Kat-bird for steering me to this great blog creator site.

So what have I been cooking up in the past 6 months or so? Lots of the usual and one special addition.....Baklava! Major OMG about how freaked I was to make this, but it truly was so easy, and if I do say so, it came out beautifully. Most of you are probably thinking why the hell are you making Baklava...go BUY it! The story goes like this.......my brother proposed to his girlfriend in Greece on a spur of the moment trip over there......by "spur of the moment", I am talking booked the ticket 2 days before he went and stayed long enough to get a "yes", sleep a few hours and fly back to Virginia.I decided before his plane had even left the tarmac at Dulles that I was going to make Baklava for them. I excitedly bought the ingredients and then they sat and taunted me until I had a "come to Jesus" meeting with the fillo dough. When it baked up and got the honey syrup poured over it, I knew that I had nailed it. WOW! It was amazing.

I am not giving you the Baklava recipe tonight, as I don't want to jump back in with making you deal with fillo dough, so I am giving you a recipe that came to my inbox this morning from Southern Living. Normally I delete these emails, but the words "comforting casseroles" reeled this baby right on in. I changed the topping, from the original, and it was FABULOUS!

Chicken Cobbler

3-4 cooked and shredded chicken breasts
3+ TBLS butter
1 large sweet onion, thinly sliced
1 8oz pkg fresh sliced mushrooms
1/2 cup chopped jarred, drained roasted red peppers
1 can Cream of Mushroom soup
1 cup white wine
1 small pkg Pepperidge Farm herbed stuffing
1 stick butter

In a large skillet, melt the 3+ Tablespoons of butter and cook the onions for 10-15 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook an additional 5 minutes or so. Pour in soup, white wine, roasted red peppers and chicken. Stir well and cook for 3-5 minutes....until just boiling. Pour mixture into a greased 9 inch or so pan (do not use 13x9, it is too big). Melt the remaining stick of butter and mix in with the stuffing. Pour over top and bake, uncovered at 400 for 15-20 minutes.

I served with petite brussel sprouts...yum! My kids even liked it....woo-hoo!!

The only notes I have about this are that I might reduce the amount of wine slightly. It was almost overpowering. I also added lots of additional roasted red pepper, I would not add quite so much.

The only must have kitchen tools that I used for this was my mandolin slicer and a 10 inch "family" skillet. While you may not use a mandolin too often, I think that they are invaluable in achieving thin, even onion slices. The family skillet is something I use almost everyday. Not sure what I did without it. Mine is stainless steel and goes from stove top to oven to dishwasher. It is from the Emeril cookware line. The mandolin is from Pampered Chef......definitely on the short list for replacement very soon.