Pinterest Recipes Weekly Round Up 7/31/2011

I am a Pinterest addict. In fact, I cannot seem to get enough of the site, and even when I’m out and about and I see something cute/funny/awesome/amazing/interesting, I wish I could add it to my Pinterest boards right then. I am in particular partial to Pinterest Recipes, but I also love Pinterest Crafts. I’ve taken to using my cell phone to take photos of some things to add, just so I can remember them. I’m also extremely partial to the DIY posts too. But I have so many boards with so many interests, I could not possibly choose a favorite.

Do you have a favorite among the pinterest recipes or a favorite craft that you’ve found? What is your favorite pin?

Each week, I bring you my favorite pins that I happen to come across on my feed and I share them right here. I’d really love to see yours too.

If you saw something cute/funny/awesome/amazing/interesting this week on Pinterest, a few favorite Pinterest recipes, a pinterest craft, a pinterest project or something just generally really funny and you’d like to share – simply add the pin URL to the linky below. It’s really easy. I’ll be back each week to bring you the best of the best and the most popular pins I come across that week.

Back to School Savings

School SuppliesI am quite sure you’ll hear a lot from me over the course of the upcoming days about back to school savings. This is pretty much because my kids are going back to school on the 8th. In fact, my freshman age daughter has a “transition” day into high school this upcoming Thursday. So I’m sitting here wondering… where did summer go? How did we get back to school already?

In any case, I already had school supply lists for two of my children. The youngest two who are both in middle school and seem to have supply lists that are a mile long – Also littered with items like gallon size baggies and construction paper (which we did not buy, because I have had three children already go through the school and never once were baggies or construction paper needed in 6th, 7th or 8th grade. Thus, I am not purchasing it.

However, my kids are amazing. They reuse supplies. Yep.

This year the only thing I had to purchase was a binder for my 8th grader and a composition notebook for my 7th grader. Every single other supply on the list we either had already, they are reusing from last year or we got on sale a few years ago and some amazing sale (a couple of years ago we found notebooks – 10 for $1.00 and we bought TONS!)

The best part is, I had a super cool binder that my 8th grade daughter wanted that I wasn’t using anymore and it is… wait for it… hot pink – so super cool, right? And it has clear plastic pockets in the front for her to insert photos of her and her friends, which she loved.

Cost of binder = FREE (no clue what it cost, but I bought it about 8 years ago and have never really used it for much)

Cost of composition notebook = 1.97 (now in fairness, I could have purchased a .50 black one, but I told her since she was willing to reuse everything, she could choose a “special” one, so she chose one she liked.

Grand total of school supplies for two children this year?  1.97

Stuff like that makes me SO happy!

P.S. I still have three more kids, all in high school – that need supplies to, but we won’t know what they need until their first day of class. Here’s hoping that they won’t damage the budget too much, we still have a few supplies left over ;)

 

Mug in a Microwave Recipes: Easy Chocolate Cake

My kids are always looking for dessert every night. I feel like somewhere along the way I must’ve spoiled them, because I never looked for dessert when I was a kid, at least not every night.

The good news is, there is a super simple solution that they can do themselves. (Score!)

Cooking in a mug in the microwave is super easy, but tastes great. Plus, it is absolutely PERFECT on a HOT summer night when they want a treat like cake, but I won’t let them heat the oven up because my house already feels like a sauna. (sigh, how I love living in hot, humid Missouri in the summer)

My kids have discovered that often their “mug cake” can be shared between two people, which is probably more portion controlled anyway. They serve it up with some whipped cream on top and a cold glass of milk.

Mug in a Microwave Recipes: Easy Chocolate Cake
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 1 Mug Cake
Ingredients
  • 4 Tbs. cake flour (for the record, we have used all purpose flour as a substitution and it works, however – the cake flour definitely makes it softer and more moist)
  • 4 Tbs. sugar
  • 2 Tbs. cocoa
  • 1 Egg
  • 3 Tbs. milk
  • 3 Tbs. oil
  • 1 lg. coffee mug
  • Topping of choice: homemade whipped cream, caramel sauce, fresh strawberries, cinnamon, powdered sugar, etc. (optional)
Instructions
  1. Grease the inside of the mug, just like you would grease a cake pan. You don’t have to do this, and not every recipe tells you to do this, but we found that if we grease the inside of the mug, it slides out easier and looks prettier. If you don’t care how it looks, skip that part.
  2. Toss the flour, the sugar and the cocoa into the mug.
  3. %http://dailydishrecipes.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/cake1.jpg
  4. Mix them all up. Add an egg.
  5. %http://dailydishrecipes.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/cake2.jpg
  6. Stir it into the dry ingredients. Now, add the milk and oil, and mix really well.
  7. %http://dailydishrecipes.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/cake3.jpg
  8. Now put the mug into the microwave for 3 minutes. Yep. 3 minutes. Now, I won’t lie – sometimes this part can get a little messy. But then sometimes it works fine and it doesn’t go nuts. So, I’m just gonna say, the larger the mug, the better this will be (or less messy anyway).
  9. %http://dailydishrecipes.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/cake4.jpg
  10. Wait until it stops rising and sets in the mug and then using a towel or a pot holder, remove the HOT mug from the microwave and slide the contents out onto a plate. Top with homemade whipped cream or caramel sauce, or whatever you wish to serve it with. Enjoy!
  11. %http://dailydishrecipes.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/cake5.jpg
  12. P.S. Don’t overbake – you’ll get hard spots in the middle. Not so great.

 

 

Have you ever made a mug cake before? We have loads of recipes we’ve made in the microwave for all kinds of treats in a mug.

Menu Plan Monday 7/25/11

Menu Plan Monday

Menu planning is such a functional way for my family to co-exist harmoniously with meal time. Otherwise its sheer and utter chaos. I didn’t stick to my meal plan from last week a whole lot because it was SO hot that we just didn’t feel like heating the oven up. This week I tried to keep that in mind while planning.

 

Monday

We have fife & drum practice, quick – easy Monday night dinner is always a necessity.

  • Hamburgers & Hot Dogs
  • French Fries
  • Apple Slices

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

  • We will be eating at Truman State University because we will finally be picking up our 14 year old from college ;)

Saturday

  • Fast Food of Some Kind  – maybe Pizza. We will be getting home so late Saturday afternoon I am sure I won’t feel like cooking.

Sunday

  • Simple Summer Supper (because it was such a huge hit last night, I can’t wait to do it again this weekend!)
  • Homemade Bread Rolls
  • Pineapple Slices

If you’d like to participate in Menu Plan Monday, be sure to check out this post.

There is Always, Always Something to Be Thankful For

ThankfulI received this YEARS ago in an email and saved it. It’s one of those nice things that on the days you forget to be thankful – it’s a quick reminder!

I AM THANKFUL:

FOR THE WIFE WHO SAYS IT’S HOT DOGS TONIGHT,
BECAUSE SHE IS HOME WITH ME, AND NOT OUT WITH SOMEONE ELSE.

FOR THE HUSBAND WHO IS ON THE SOFA BEING A COUCH POTATO,
BECAUSE HE IS HOME WITH ME AND NOT OUT AT THE BARS.
FOR THE TEENAGER WHO IS COMPLAINING ABOUT DOING DISHES
BECAUSE IT MEANS SHE IS AT HOME, NOT ON THE STREETS.
FOR THE TAXES I PAY
BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM EMPLOYED.
FOR THE MESS TO CLEAN AFTER A PARTY
BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE BEEN SURROUNDED BY FRIENDS.
FOR THE CLOTHES THAT FIT A LITTLE TOO SNUG
BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE ENOUGH TO EAT.
FOR MY SHADOW THAT WATCHES ME WORK
BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM OUT IN THE SUNSHINE
FOR A LAWN THAT NEEDS MOWING,
WINDOWS THAT NEED CLEANING,
AND GUTTERS THAT NEED FIXING

BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE A HOME.
FOR ALL THE COMPLAINING I HEAR ABOUT THE GOVERNMENT
BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE FREEDOM OF SPEECH..
FOR THE PARKING SPOT I FIND AT THE FAR END OF THE PARKING LOT
BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM CAPABLE OF WALKING AND I HAVE BEEN BLESSED WITH TRANSPORTATION.
FOR MY HUGE HEATING BILL

BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM WARM.
FOR THE LADY BEHIND ME IN CHURCH WHO SINGS OFF KEY
BECAUSE IT MEANS I CAN HEAR.
FOR THE PILE OF LAUNDRY AND IRONING
BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE CLOTHES TO WEAR.
FOR WEARINESS AND ACHING MUSCLES AT THE END OF THE DAY
BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE BEEN CAPABLE OF WORKING HARD.
FOR THE ALARM THAT GOES OFF IN THE EARLY MORNING HOURS
BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM ALIVE.
AND FINALLY, FOR TOO MUCH E-MAIL
BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE FRIENDS WHO ARE THINKING OF ME.

Live well, Laugh often, & Love with all of your heart!

Back to School Already?

Back to SchoolI keep seeing posts and tweets and all kinds of stuff being passed around the Internet, complaining about school supplies being put out in stores and back to school commercials, etc. Back to School Already?

But here’s the deal. For us, it’s Back to School time. Yep. One week from yesterday we will be picking up school schedules, getting yearbook photos taken, ID badges made and buying school supplies.

We’ve already gotten letters welcoming them back, information packets for schedule pick up day and the rest of all the stuff we have to deal with.

My kids go back to school Aug. 8th and that is why those supplies are already out. Because many of us are facing Back to School already.

Are we happy about it? Not so much.

I’m one of those parents that absolutely hates when my kids are in school. I should totally be a homeschooling mom and I was for a bit with my son, but that has passed. It was the best time of my life. I loved every moment of it. I treasure the time I have with all 5 of them, and I’m lucky enough to have teenagers that enjoy spending time with me and *gasp* aren’t embarrassed by me. Thank goodness!

The photo to the right makes me so sad.  That’s Mini Chef and Rye. Mini Chef was going off to second grade and Rye was going off to fifth grade. That was in 2005. This year Mini Chef is an 8th grader and Rye is a Junior in High School. We’re starting to look at colleges, and ask questions about the military and make decisions that will affect him for the rest of his life. Not that I haven’t been doing that all along, but it just seems… more final as we get into these last two years of school.

I love being a mom, and I am not happy about the Back to School stuff either. But yes, for some of us, it is already time.

Pistachio Muffins

Pistachio Muffin RecipeI roughed the hot weather, and heated up the oven this morning while it was still… well, not 110 degrees heat index. We decided to make a triple batch of these awesome, delicious Pistachio Muffins. Basically we plan to freeze two dozen of them to save for next week, or the next time I do not wish to heat up the oven. Yes, it’s just that hot.

Pistachio Muffins

You need:

3 c. flour
1 1/2 c.sugar
2 Tbs baking powder
1 box Pistachio Jello Instant Pudding
2 eggs, beaten
1 1/4 c. milk
1 1/2 Tbs. honey
3/4 c. coconut or canola oil

In a big bowl, mix together all of the dry ingredients: flour, the sugar, the baking powder and the pudding mix.

Pistachio Muffin Recipe

In a medium bowl, combine the eggs, the milk, the honey and the oil. Stir well.

Pistachio Muffin Recipe

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and blend until moistened.

Pistachio Muffin Recipe

Fill the baking cups full.

Pistachio Muffin Recipe

Bake 20 to 25 minutes in preheated 375-degree oven, or until muffins test done.

Mmm… Enjoy! Makes 12 muffins.

Pistachio Muffin Recipe

Awesome with a hot cup of coffee or tea. Spread some butter or honey and eat up. Oh, and my kids really like peanut butter on them? It really does taste pretty good. LOL

Hot Summer Cooking: Crock Pot Baked Potatoes

crock pot baked potatoesTo some it may seem silly to bother heating up your crock pot to cook baked potatoes, when just as easily they can be added to the microwave, however – having done BOTH, the crock pot baked potatoes turn out PERFECT every time. Microwaves tend to vary in how long it takes to cook each potato and I find that often they aren’t cooked all the way through and there is no perfect way to tell. Not only that, but sometimes I think they seem very dry.

Now, take a baked potato hot from the crock pot and you’re talking soft, moist and amazing.  Plus, Crock Pots expose your kitchen to no heat, unlike the oven, making it the perfect vessel in which to cook lots of delicious meals in the dead of summer heat. Oh, and don’t forget, you can totally substitute sweet potatoes for the baking potatoes.

You need:

  • a crock pot
  • olive oil
  • salt, pepper or for sweet potatoes – sugar and/or cinnamon
  • baking potatoes or sweet potatoes
  • tin foil
Now, you can completely skip the oil/seasoning step, but I will tell you it is SO worth it, and those that never ate the most nutritious part (the skins) will probably consume the flavor packed outside with the meaty inside. Yum!
Scrub the potatoes, and pierce each one of them with a fork a couple of times.
For Baking Potatoes: Rub them with olive oil (you can use vegetable oil, or canola, or whatever… we prefer EVOO). Sprinkle them with Salt & Pepper. I also used Lawry’s last time I made it instead, and yum! Wrap each potato in tin foil.
For Sweet Potatoes: Rub them with olive oil. Sprinkle them with sugar and/or cinnamon. Wrap each one in tin foil.
Toss the foil wrapped potatoes into the crockpot and cook for 6-8 hours.
Take them out with an oven mitt, carefully uncovering them. Allow them to sit for about 5 minutes before serving and then load them up with bacon, cheese and sour cream or go further and try topping with salsa, or chicken, green onions,  chili, black beans,  jalapenos and honestly, almost anything else.
Sweet Potatoes: Use butter, brown sugar,  mini marshmallows, cinnamon & spices and enjoy. (broil for 2 minutes to melt marshmallows, watching closely so they don’t burn)
crock pot baked potatoes

Hot Summer Night Cooking… or not.


When it’s too hot to cook, you don’t.

It’s currently 96 degrees but heat index is currently at 108. My house is hot. Ugh!

We were supposed to have Hillbilly Spaghetti Pie with some Cornbread – both of which require use of the oven. An oven, which there was absolutely NO way I was heating up today. Period.

So what did we do? We decided to improvise. There were only four of us to feed tonight, because Montana Man is at work, my middle daughter is at JBA and my son is at Grandma’s doing some work for them.


On our menu:

  • Fresh Cut Apples & Bananas & Grapes
  • Cold Pesto Pasta (that I was smart enough to boil this morning before it got super hot!)
  • Fresh cut carrots & celery
  • Meat Rolls ups (deli ham and turkey rolled up with Mozzarella, Colby and Monterey Jack)
  • Cheese Slices & Crackers
  • Watermelon Wedges

Yum!

 

Surprisingly we are all full! What do you do to beat the heat on a hot summer night when you don’t feel like heating up your oven or stove top?

Made From Scratch Tribe

TriberrHey friends. If you’re on twitter, have you had the time to check out Triberr? If you’re not on Twitter… you can skip this post if you want.

To give you the basic blogger summary of this awesomeness, basically it is a way to get your blog posts RT’d easily on Twitter. And you will RT for others automagically (I’m borrowing the founders awesome word.) You really have nothing to lose either. It’s so easy. Once you set up your FREE account, all you do is set up your RSS feed, and the site does the rest. Of course, you can earn bones (Triberr’s currency) by giving out Karma (which I do several times a day, but that’s ’cause I just do). The bones are used to expand your tribe beyond the #’s originally set up, and I’m sure later will be used for many other things across the site.

The reason I am asking this, is because I have started my own tribes.

Firstly, I’m part of a Busy At Home Tribe. When you join, you are given three of your own to run. I created my own tribe – Made From Scratch. But it’s not just for foodies who cook most meals from scratch – nope. It’s also for DIY peeps who like making things from their own two hands -including refurbishing items into something new. You do not have to cook every single meal from scratch. You do not only have to post DIY blog posts. Anything goes, but the main focus of your blog needs to be from scratch food, handmade items, or DIY kind of projects. If you can think of something else that fits under Made From Scratch – shoot me an email, because I’m pretty open and pretty excited to get this up and going. I have 6 invites left without spending any “bones”.

Do you qualify for any of that? Do you blog about it? Do you update your blog several times a week? If so, I would love to have you be a part of my tribe.
Email me: nicole AT dailydishrecipes DOT com
Please tell me WHY you want to be in the tribe, send me a link to your blog and if you’re a fit I will send you an invite to the group. It’s that easy. You will make new friends, get new followers who are genuinely interested in what you are posting and best of all, you will have your items RT’d multiple times by all the tribe members.

I have two other tribes I can set up still beyond this one, and I am still ironing out the details of what I want those tribes to be about – SO if you have suggestions let me know.
What are you waiting for? Want an invite to my group Made From Scratch? Send me that email.