Archive for January, 2011

Menu Plan Monday

Good morning, everyone!  I hope that you had a wonderful weekend and are looking forward to the week ahead.  The sun finally shone in south central Kentucky this weekend and we all welcomed it with open arms!  What a glorious reminder of the coming spring!!

Now it is back to reality though…the weatherperson is predicting rain and more snow this week, but I hope they are wrong.  My dad’s birthday is this week (Happy birthday, Dad!), so one dinner will be a special one for him.  The rest of the week is made up of some good ol’ basics.  You will notice that there is one less main dish, but a side dish instead.  C & I eat at my Nanny’s one night each week and I try to contribute a couple of dishes.  Instead of a meat and dessert, this week I am doing a side dish and dessert.

Spicy beef vegetable soup

Cheesy beef corn chip skillet (new recipe)

Grilled steaks with butter roasted potatoes and salad

Grilled pork chops with olive oil roasted potatoes

Pizza night

Butterfinger Cake (Southern Plate recipe-more info on this on Thursday)

Italian pasta salad

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Hamburger Stew

I have been a subscriber to Taste of Home magazine for many, many years.  The issues are always packed with delicious and simple recipes that include ingredients that you probably have in your kitchen right now.  I am also a subscriber to their on-line newsletter and that is where this recipe originated.  I tweaked it just a little and it turned out great!

I know this dish will stay in my cold weather rotation for a very long time!

2 lbs. ground beef

1/2 medium onion, chopped

8 medium carrots, thinly sliced

4 celery ribs, thinly sliced

4 14.5oz cans stewed tomatoes (I used the sliced variety.)

3 medium potatoes, peeled & cubed

2 cups beef broth

1/2 cup uncooked long grain rice

1 to 2 tbsp. salt

1 to 2 tsp. pepper


The addition of onion, carrot and celery as a base of a dish is called a Mirepoix, which is a traditional French combination of aromatic ingredients.


In a large pot or Dutch oven, cook beef, onions, carrots, & celery until the beef is no longer pink.  Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.


Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 30 minutes or until the vegetables and rice are tender.  Uncover and simmer for 30 more minutes or until thickened.

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This was delicious with cornbread muffins or crackers.  You can also freeze this for up to 3 months.  Thaw in the refrigerator for 24 hours.  Transfer to a saucepan and add 1 cup of water.  Cook until hot and bubbly.

Come join Soup-a-Palooza at TidyMom and Dine and Dish sponsored by Bush’s Beans, Hip Hostess, Pillsbury and Westminster Crackers

Come join the fun at the My Baking Addiction and GoodLife Eats Holiday Recipe Exchange sponsored by Le Creuset.

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Check out this week’s spotlight at Eat At Home Cooks on orange veggies!

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Menu Plan Monday

Another week has passed and it is STILL January!  The cold snowy weather has made this month seem three months long to me.  Can you tell that I am not a big fan of winter?  Yeah, not so much.  I am a spring and summer girl all the way.

The one good thing about this time of year is that it leaves plenty of time for trying new recipes and enjoying some all-time favorites and that is where this week’s list comes in.  I have some oldies but goodies plus a couple of new ones as well.  Hope you are toasty warm and full of homemade goodness wherever you are!


Cinnamon Bun Pancakes w/bacon (We went out one night so I didn’t make these last week.)

Homemade sloppy Joes with oven baked fries

Sausage bake and fresh fruit

Pizza night

Famous pork chops (new)

coconut cream cake (new)

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Butter Roasted Potatoes

This is my go-to everyday side dish recipe.  It is quick, easy, and only requires three ingredients that I try to keep on hand at all times.  These potatoes go with just about any meat dish and are great made on the grill as well as baked.

This is the baked version since the weather is a little too cool for the grillin’ version.  Try these and I think you will love them!  Also, you don’t have to use the grilling seasoning.  Try any kind of seasoning you like…I have used Italian seasoning, seasoning salt and black pepper, and sometimes I just used plain kosher salt and black pepper.  Adapt this to your taste!

This recipe will feed about 6 or 7 people.  I generally plan for one potato per person and one tablespoon of butter per potato.

7 potatoes

7 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

1/2 tsp grilling seasoning (You can add more if you like the taste really strong.)


Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray.  Slice the potatoes into 8 wedges each and set aside.  Melt the butter in a large microwave safe bowl.  I set the microwave on 50% power for 1 minute.  Check the butter and microwave for an additional 30-45 seconds on 50% power if needed.  Add the seasoning to the melted butter.




Dip the wedges in the butter and place on the baking sheet.  Bake for 15 minutes and then flip the wedges over.  Bake for an additional 12-15 minutes.  (If you are only baking 2 or 3 potatoes, you will only need about 12 more minutes.  Watch them after that time so they don’t overcook and become hard and dry.)

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Come join the fun at the My Baking Addiction and GoodLife Eats Holiday Recipe Swap sponsored by Kerrygold

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Thoughtful Thursday

This is the second week for this feature, and I had not really planned on it being a feature, but here goes.  In trying to improve my writing skills, I hope to post a little something every Thursday (or at least most Thursdays) that is about something on my mind.  It may be personal, blog-related, news-related, or just a random thought.

Today is an audience participation day.  I have to admit something first, though.  I have had this blog for almost two years and very few people in my community know about it.  In fact, I can count on one hand the people I have told about my blog.  I am not embarrassed about it…far from it!  I have just always thought that this was my “alter-ego”.  I work in a very public job in a very small town where everybody knows your name, your parents’ names, and your grandparent’s names.  You get my point, and even though I never put anything offensive or embarrassing on here, it has been hard for me to tell people about it.  This space has been a sort of refuge from the real world since it contains only things in which I am interested.

What I want to know is this…when you first started blogging, did you tell your family and friends immediately or did you get your feet wet first?  If you didn’t tell them quickly, how did you let them know about it later?

I have people ask me for recipes fairly often and I have thought about telling them that it is on my blog, but I just can’t get the words out.  Help!

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This week’s spotlight ingredient at Eat At Home Cooks is taco seasoning.  Check it out here!

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