Sunday, March 29, 2009

K+K for Easter

I had two sisters and then Mom and Grandma too for a family picture to be done today.
I remember two Christmas's ago, when the eldest Miss K wouldn't even make eye contact with me. Then through two more sessions, she became my helper, and I even got some hugs out of her, and she let me help her with her coat too. It's the little things that come out of shoots like this, that make these days special!

Little Miss K turned one this month too, but she is at a stage where strangers are not her friends, so we were lucky to get a few of her by herself.

Nothing like home made bread!

This is a garlic-butter bubble pull apart loaf. Say that 3 times fast! This smelled so incredibly good while it was rising, baking, and after it came out of the oven!

Apparently, bread flour really does make a difference, as does good fresh yeast, both bought at the co-op in Little Falls.

Just wanted to share, and might even come back to put the recipe in too. It came from the Taste Of Home BAking cookbook.

Here's the recipe:

2 pkgs of acitve dry yeast, (2 scant Tbsp)
1/4 warm water (110-115 degrees)
2 cups warm milk(110-115 deg)
2 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp shortening
2 tsp salt
6 1/4-6 1/2 cups all purpose or bread flour
1/2 cup butter
1 Tbsp dried parsley
2 tsp garlic powder

In a large mixing bowl,dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, sugar, shortening, salt and 2 cups flour, beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.

Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surgace; divine into fourths. Divide each portion into 12 peices. In a shallow bowl, combine the butter, parsley and garlic powder. Shape each peice of dough into a ball; dip into butter mixture. Place in two greased 9-inx 5 in x3 in loaf pans. Pour any remaining butter mixture over dough. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes. (Don't crowd them into the pan. put about 12 spaced out in two irreglar layers per pan)

Bale at 375 deg for 35-40 min or until golden brown. Cool for 10 minutes. remove from pans to wire racks.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Tortellini dinner

Thought I would share another dinner tonight, which was really easy to make.

The tortelli can be bought as a 16 oz pkg of frozen pasta, and for the sauce, start with a bunch of finely chopped veggies, like carrots, onions, garlic, celery, red and green peppers, and any other veggies you like. Cook them in a small amt of water,in a heavy pot till softened. Then add your favorite 26 oz jar or can of sauce and some cooked beans or 1 can of black beans. Heat till the beans are warm. Add the cooked tortellini, and add a mixed vegetable, and you have yourself a nice colorful dinner, full of Vit C, lycopene, and fiber!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Added some color to a dinner shoot

I used some Pampered Chef items for a picture of dinner tonight. I love their white dishes, but don't use them enough!, and a towel from a previous Fall Collection added some base color.

Tonight's dinner was Black Bean Chili Pot Pie (I used kidney beans in this dish)

The Recipe is from The Vegetarian Times Complete Cookbook

taken while still hot and in the dutch oven. If you don't have a peice of cast iron cookware, but esp a dutchoven, you don't know what you are missing! It's a great addition to the kitchen, but is useful for so many reasons.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Dinner Fare......

I have really gotten into cooking again this past 3 weeks, trying out new recipes, and actually realized tonight, that we haven't had a repeated meal yet! Tonight's fare, with items bought at the co-op this am, was spinach fettucini with yellow squash and tomatoes, grilled fresh pinapple, corn frittata, and I made/ate beet greens for the first time ever. I really liked them too!

I have to say, that my dad is enjoying the lighter fare, if he is down for dinner, which is usually once a weekend.

I'm going to challenge myself to try setting up little sets on weekends for food photography. I think this is an area I'd like to experiment with!

I have to admit, I'm pretty happy!

Down another 2 lbs! This is one of those yes! mornings. My weekly weigh ins are Saturdays here at the house, and I could just feel like the scale was going to have moved, and it did! It's been a couple of weeks, so this is a good way to start off the day. Supposedly from my original goal of losing 25 lbs, I'm down 17, so that leaves 8 to go........we'll see!

Doing the happy dance today! And headed to the co-op in Little Falls later. IF you have never been there, it's a great place to get your bulk items or spices and herbs. They are so much cheaper than paying McCormick prices in the store!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The Frist Robins have arrived!

I guess that means that spring is REALLY around the corner for us now.....finally! While we may get a little more snow or flurries tonight or in the next few days.....the snow will continue to melt, the days will get warmer, and these beautiful bird's bellies will start getting huge!

I'm just glad to see them, even if it's a little early!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Vegetarianism and good food too!

Here's a weight check in....down 15#! I've slowed down again, staying the same weight for a whole week, but I honestly think it has to do with not drinking enough water on a lot of days. That all has to do with how busy I am at work, and how available it is to drink.

So instead of being a Flexitarian as stated in my post before this, I went the whole way, and gave up all meats, and I'm on day 17 now, and absolutely love it! I thought I would really miss sea food, and I really don't. Shrimp was always my favorite, but I am quite content with just my veggies and whole grains. I hardly eat any processed foods now either, so it's basically a whole food diet that we are consuming.

Steve is down about 22-25 lbs too, and I'm so proud of him for sticking to this. He wants to continue his occasional salmon eating, but other than that, he's a vegetarian too. (Technically he'd be called a pescetarian), but he has still significantly changed his eating habits.

Here's a pic to share with you, since I haven't updated very often. This is a salsa rice and beans dish with a fresh fruit salad and was very good.

Basic recipe is easy too: 4 cups of cooked brown rice (either long cooked or quick cooking, it doesn't matter), 1 cup of salsa, and 2 cups of any beans (or 1 can of canned beans).

This came from the new cookbook I just bought last week, called The Vegetarian 5-ingredient Gourmet, by Nava Atlas

Give a Meatless meal a try sometime, and actually even the government is encouraging Meatless Mondays!