Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Bubble Pizza Casserole

Bubble Pizza

I can't take credit for this recipe or the picture!


Pillsbury and my son!

I get e-mails from Pillsbury.

Like almost every day -- it's c.r.a.z.y!

But one day, my cherub was breathing down my neck reading over my shoulder and saw the picture of this recipe.

"Oh momma, that'd be good!"

And being a good momma, I said, "Sure thing!  Whatever you want!"

(Because that's what I say most of the time to him . . .NOT!)

We read the recipe; decided the changes we would make to it and then we got the ingredients the next time we went grocery shopping.

This recipe calls for pre-made meatballs.

Which I really don't like.

For many reasons.

One being texture.

The others -- you don't want to know.

Because truthfully, you probably didn't even care about the first reason!

But what we did is make our own little meatballs.  Here's the link for that!

We made the meatballs ahead of time and froze them.

Today, I pulled them from the freezer, popped them in the crockpot to cook and this evening, before ball, I put the casserole together.

While it cooked, the cherubs and I made a salad.

How easy is that?


That's the answer you said, right?

Bubble Pizza Casserole

1 can (11 oz) Pillsbury® refrigerated original breadsticks (12 breadsticks)                        
1  bag (16 oz) frozen cooked Italian-style meatballs (32 meatballs).  We made our own and made 25 walnut size meatballs.                   
1  can (15 oz) pizza sauce                        
1/2 cup chopped pepperoni   (I used the mini turkey pepperoni and didn't chop!)             
2  tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese                        
2 cups shredded pizza cheese blend (8 oz)  (I didn't have this -- I just grated mozzarella                  

In large microwavable bowl, place meatballs and pizza sauce. Cover; microwave on Medium-High (70%) 5 to 8 minutes or until sauce is bubbly and meatballs are thawed. Stir in pepperoni. Pour over dough pieces in dish; sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Arrange remaining dough pieces over cheese. (If you made your own meatballs, you can totally skip the microwave part . . .unless you cooked then froze . . .) 
Bake 16 to 20 minutes or until edges are golden brown and dough pieces are no longer doughy. (I baked our for about 30 minutes:  I wanted to make sure the dough on the bottom was done too!).  Sprinkle with pizza cheese blend; bake 4 to 5 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Let stand 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

**You can add chopped onion, black olives, diced pepper . . . anything you would want on a pizza to this dish!  Make it your own!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Cuban Pork

The Mr. had a birthday last week.

At our house, when it's your birthday, you get to pick your birthday meal.

But it's the Mr.

He usually doesn't have a preference.

So I picked his birthday meal.

When I told him, he whinned like a 2 year old that it was "his" birthday meal.

"He" gets to pick!

Really!  Because I had a good  birthday meal all picked out for the Mr.


He gets to pick!

He picked his usual:

Creamy Poblano Chicken over Cornwaffles with a salad and blackberry cobbler.

But I hate making blackberry cobbler the way he likes it.

And since his birthday, I've sworn off making anymore cobblers the way he likes cobblers.

Let me make cobblers they way I know how and lets all be happy!


That feels better!

So, since I didn't get to make the Mr. the birthday meal I was going to make for him on his birthday,

I made it a different day.

It was so yummy!

It smelled so great cooking.

And tasted so great too!

Cuban Pork

1 pork tenderloin
1/4 container of frozen orange juice (I just scooped out a frozen amount . . .no need to defrost)
10 cloves of garlic
2 tsp. soy sauce
2 TBSP lime juice
1 tsp. adobo seasoning
1 tsp. black pepper

Place all of the ingredients in a crock pot and cook on high for 4-6 hours, or until done. 

Take 2 forks to shred the pork and serve over rice and black beans.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Happy Father's Day
to my Mr.
You are just who we need;
designed that way by God!
When a dad is doing "his job,"
then his kids rightfully give him the title,
"Best Dad in the World!"
Here's to our "Best Dad in the World!"
You give us more than a place to live;
you give us a home.
You give us more than just good times;
you help us make memories.
You take the time to teach us;
You give us love;
and plenty of opportunities to laugh . . .
sometimes with you and sometimes at you!
You don't do everything perfectly . . . .
and that's ok!
You have embraced the two gifts God has given us;
made no excuses,
and you have given it your all!
You've taken the opportunity of being a father
and turned it into the privilege of becoming a dad!
All of our love!
The Cherubs and me!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

BBQ Chicken Pasta

I hate it when I have a recipe idea . . .

and so do other people!

Like the very same recipe I'm thinking of;

they've already thought of!

You know what that tells me?

That tells me I'm pretty smart!

If I can think of something that somebody else has already thought of, then my thinking is pretty creative!

Don't you agree?

Back to my real reason for a recipe!
I love BBQ Chicken pizza.

My cherubs -- not so much.

But that's OK; they don't have to eat every day, do they?

The other night, I made BBQ chicken and I withheld some chicken from my family so that I could try to come up with a dish that sounded very tasty to me in my mind:

BBQ Chicken Pasta.

But when I started thinking, I realized other's had thought too!

But I love BBQ Chicken Pizza; so I want to love BBQ Chicken Pasta too!

Here's what I created.

Kind of!
I took what other creative people before me had done and tweaked it a bit to fit my interested and ingredients on hand, and I served my family this recipe!

BBQ Chicken Pasta

Grilled left-over chicken, cubed
cooked pasta
some BBQ sauce -- maybe 1/3-1/2 of a cup
1 small onion, sliced
2 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoon flour
1 cup (or more) skim milk
1/2 cup shredded smoked cheese

Preheat oven to 350.

Prepare pasta and set aside. In a small sauce pan, add 1 tablespoon olive oil and sliced onions with a sprinkle of sea salt and let caramelized – about 10 minutes.

While the pasta is cooking, mix the chicken and about 1/2 of the bbq sauce together.

In a saucepan over medium heat, melt butter and whisk in flour to create a roux. Cook this butter/flour mixture a bit so that it doesn't taste "flour-y."  Add the milk and turn down to low heat and cook until thickened; you're kind of making a b├ęchamel sauce.  Add most of the cheese and stir until cheese is melted and mixture thickens – about 2-3 minutes.

In the baking pan, alternate layering pasta, bbq chicken, onions, and cheese sauce.  End with additional cheese sauce, and any remaining shredded cheese.  Drizzle some extra  BBQ sauce over the past. 

Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes, or until hot.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

5 Flavored Pound Cake

Last summer, while on vacation with our friends, we stopped at a road side park for lunch.

My friend pulled out this treat for dessert.

Wow!  It was so good!

The parking lot was busy.

The scenery was beautiful.

The weather was great.

We were having a fantastic time as we traveled.

We complained that there wasn't enough dessert for everybody to have 2 pieces!

I can't remember where she got the recipe from, but she was kind enough to share it with me.

Now, I share it with you!

5 Flavored Pound Cake

2 sticks butter, softened
1/2 cup Crisco (or additional butter)
3 cups sugar
5 eggs
3 cups all purpose flour, sifted
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 cup milk
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp EACH of the following flavorings:  lemon, orange, coconut, butter, vanilla


Over low heat, in a small pan, dissolve 1 cup sugar and 1/2 cup of water.  Remove from heat and add 1 tsp. of each of the flavorings to the syrup. 

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Cream butter and Crisco.  Add the sugar and cream well.  Beat the eggs and add to the butter mixture.  Add the sifted flour, baking powder, and salt.  Mix well.  Add the milk and flavorings and mix until incorporated. 

Spray a bundt pan with pam and fill with batter.  Bake for 1 1/2 hours or until done.

Let cake cool in pan for 15 minutes, then remove from pan to a cooling rack.  Place cake on serving platter and drizzle with glaze while warm.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Lemon Basil Chicken Pasta

It's dance recital time at our house.

This means nights of long practices

and the Mr. and the boy cherub at home wondering what's going on.

Sometimes, the Mr. has to work and the boy cherub has baseball, so I get to pull double duty.

I try to have some sort of dinner for the 3 of us

and I pack the girl cherub a snack-y dinner to have at rehearsal.

Tonight, though, I had a plan, but the plan got changed.

I told the Mr. what I sort of had in mind, but told he and the boy cherub to do whatever they wanted.

They came home and cooked!

They searched the internet for ingredients we had on hand

and found a one-dish-wonder that they could handle!

All I can say is:  "I love having roasted chicken in the refrigerator!" 

It sure makes dinner easier!

Here's what the Mr. had to say,
"You know, we didn't have any of the cream or half and half; so I just used milk.  I don't think I used enough cheese, and the only basil we had was the little bit left in that squeeze tube stuff.  But it turned out really great!"
This is actually a recipe from the Pioneer Woman; I'm sure she won't mind me sharing!

I'm sure if you make it like the recipe calls for, you won't be disappointed!

Heck, even if you have to make some substitutions or not use all that's called for, you're still going to love it!

Lemon Basil Chicken Pasta

4 whole Grilled Chicken Breasts, Sliced
1 pound Penne Pasta, Cooked Until Al Dente
½ sticks Butter
3 whole Lemons, Juiced
¾ cups Heavy Cream
¼ cups Half-and-half
1-½ cup Grated Parmesan Cheese (or Romano)
Salt And Freshly Ground Black Pepper, To Taste
20 whole Basil Leaves, Chopped
(I don't keep fresh basil at our house much; I use this product now and forever more!)

Cook pasta, reserving 1 cup of hot pasta water when you drain. Set pasta aside in a colander.

In the same pot, melt butter over medium heat. Squeeze in the juice of 3 to 4 lemons. Whisk together.

 Pour in cream and half-and-heat. Whisk until hot. Dump in cheese and whisk until melted. Add salt and pepper. Check consistency, adding some of the hot pasta water to loosen the sauce if needed.

Pour pasta and sauce into a large serving bowl. Sprinkle remaining basil all over the top, then add sliced chicken breasts. Serve immediately!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Wits and Wagers Game

North Star Games - Wits and Wagers

This was our "end of school" gift this year to ourselves!
A new game!

We absolutely love games!

In the Summer, we play a ton of games!

Matter of fact, we play a ton of games whenever we have a break from school!
Our game closet looks like a Milton Bradley factory!

This game is fun!

It's a quick-play;

and easy to learn!

It's designed for 4 or more people to play;

and it's great for groups!

It's a keeper!

Happy Summer!

**In no way am I endorsed by the makers of this game.  These thoughts are totally my own and in no way am I being compensated by the makers.  Heck, they don't even know who I am!  But if they did want to compensate me with a complimentary game, I'd love to have a free give-a-way with it.  The winner being the one able to post the most useless piece of amazing information!